2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 5,000 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 8 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

My Daddy Forever

Aren’t Daddy’s supposed to live forever?

As a young girl my Daddy was the man my Mother adored….the man who was gone to work before I woke up each morning and was the last one home at the end of the day.  He was the father that took me to the Girl Scout Father Daughter Banquet and put up the tent in the backyard as a practice run for our family camping trip.  My Daddy (along with my Mom) was my Santa Claus, my Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy. He later took on the special honor of walking me down the aisle to give me away on my wedding day.  My twin’s birth made him a grandpa for the very first time….he drove miles and miles to arrive within the hour of they’re birth just to be there for the day I began my journey as a mother.

Aren’t Daddy’s supposed to live forever?  As a thirteen year old boy my Dad probably asked that same question.  You see he lost his Daddy…but at too young of an age…in a single aircraft crash on a beach in South Texas…he was supposed to of been on the plane with him, but for one reason or another he did not make it in time to go with him.  He loved his Daddy very much. I can’t imagine his pain…his loss….and how his heart must have ached.  He spent his teenage years and his adult life missing him and wondering what it would have been like if his Dad was only there…guiding him, loving him, seeing him become a man.  I got to have what my Dad didn’t and I’m thankful for the fifty years with him and I wish forever….but I’m forever thankful for every year, month, week, day, hour, minute and even one second I have with my Dad.

Aren’t Daddy’s supposed to live forever?

We almost lost him lost him back in the late eighties when the semi he was driving rolled down a embankment over a railroad and a few years later when he had quintuple heart bypass surgery.  He was a miracle and our family was so thankful.   I remember the day I was told my Dad had been diagnosed with Leukemia (CLL)…I realized life is precious and fleeting…so we moved from another state to return home to be closer to my parents.  It was one of the most important decisions my husband and I have had to make in our married life. Later my Dad would get shingles that lasted a year and was the worst case his physicians had ever seen.  Not long after that he had his spleen removed due to his Leukemia causing it to swell up to the size of a watermelon…..the surgeons saying it was the largest spleen they had ever seen removed.  Not long after this he would be diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.  During this time…in and out of remission….going through many chemo therapy treatments.. he had two strokes to which he recovered fully from both over time.  Just two weeks ago my Dad got the news that the Hodgkin’s had returned for a third time.  With Hodgkin’s each time is worse and each remission shorter.   Last week he began chemo treatments once again to help extend his time with us…its a milder chemo that won’t damage his heart further like past treatments have done and one that he can tolerate better.  The decision to do chemo again was a hard decision for him to make.

Aren’t Daddy’s supposed to live forever?

I’m realizing the answer to this is no.  I’m not ready for him to go…I’m not ready to not be able to hear his voice, to not see my mom hold his hand…..to not watch him walk his land…..or for all the grandchildren and great grandchildren to not get their “Papa” bear hugs he’s so famous for….or for him to no longer call me “Debbie-Do”.  Just not ready… no one is ever ready to lose their Daddy….my Dad wasn’t and I won’t be either…

….and when it does happen he will live in my heart forever and I believe the day I die….he will be there waiting for me… holding my sister’s hand….my big sister I never knew….and he will say “Debbie Do, I love you and I’ve missed you”.

Hug your Daddy’s today and tell them that you love them…..because Daddy’s don’t live forever…..

~~~~ Debbie
This is dedicated to my brave and courageous Daddy whose cheated death many times …. who told me today that he can’t live forever…that he’s going to fight some more…but that there will be a day he will have to let go.  He looked me square in my eyes …and told me he loved me.

I also dedicate this to my Momma…..who has loved and been supportive of my Daddy so very much and been by his side since they were teenagers….and through every hospital stay, chemo treatment and doctor visit.  She’s simply amazing and also brave and courageous.  She’s the love of my Daddy’s life. I can’t imagine one without the other.

Goodbye Sadie, You Will Be Missed

2001-2012

“Sadie” Spot

Sadie was family.

Sadie was ours for eleven years.

She was a Cocker Spaniel and we loved her dearly.

Sadie joined our family when our children were 8,9,11,14,14 and so they grew up with her.

She will be missed greatly!

It broke our hearts to put Sadie to sleep today. She developed a mass on her abdomen, the Vet put it in people terms that Sadie had breast cancer.   Her surgery would have been extremely expensive and then she may have needed treatment.  He explained that it may have gone on to other organs already and that in possibly 6 weeks she may have passed despite the surgery, therefore we opted to put her to sleep.  She was almost completely blind and had other health issues.  It wasn’t an easy decision but it was the right one.

We believe that Sadie is running in heaven chasing our beloved cat TomTom who died. about five years ago who we had for ten years, since she was a baby kitten.  TomTom & Sadie grew up together and they are both greatly missed.

Sadie as a pup with the kids, to the left is our cat TomTom playing with Sadie when she was just a puppy.  They were our Black & White Twins. :)

Sadie loved the snow!

MY FOREVER PET

There’s something missing in my home,

I feel it day and night,

I know it will take time and strength

before things feel quite right.

But just for now, I need to mourn,

My heart — it needs to mend.

Though some may say, “It’s just a pet,”

I know I’ve lost a friend.

You’ve brought such laughter to my home,

and richness to my days.

A constant friend through joy or loss

with gentle, loving ways.

Companion, friend, and confidante,

A friend I won’t forget.

You’ll live forever in my heart,

My sweet, forever pet.

– Susanne Taylor

BEYOND THE RAINBOW

As much as I loved the life we had and all the times we played,
I was so very tired and knew my time on earth would fade

I saw a wondrous image then of a place that’s trouble-free
Where all of us can meet again to spend eternity.

I saw the most beautiful Rainbow, an on the other side
Were meadows rich and beautiful – lush and green and wide
And running through the meadows as far as the eye could see
Were animals of every sort as healthy as could be
My own tired, failing body was fresh and healed and new
And I wanted to go run with them, but I had something left to do
I needed to reach out to you, to tell you I’m alright
That this place is truly wonderful, then a bright glow pierced the night
“Twas the glow of many candles, shining bright and strong and bold
And I knew then that it held your love in it’s brilliant shades of gold.
For although we may not be together in the way we used to be
We are still connected by a cord no one can see
So whenever you need to find me, we’re never far apart
If you look beyond the Rainbow and listen with your heart.

Author Unknown

You were LOVED Sadie & TomTom!

You will always be missed.

Love, Your Family

Friends & Pets

This has been a gorgeous week!  The weather couldn’t be more spring like….the wind blowing…grass is greener since we got about 4 inches of rain last week.  When I leave work on my lunch break I don’t want to go back…just too pretty to be inside the building!

After work today my friend invited me over for dinner with her family.  i was so glad she did because it was going to be my third night to eat alone.  I haven’t really wanted to cook this week so I was not looking forward to another decision of what I could fix for just me, so I was happy to be invited to a sit down meal with my friends family!  My friend and her mom joined together to prepare the meal of smothered steak, mashed potatoes, corn on the cob, Olive Garden salad and home made bread! Yum!  Her kids are more spread out in age than me and so she has one who has been on her own over 10 years and has already bought her first home, a senior in college… about to leave home, and one still in high school.  But, this family gets together with her mom and her aunt (sister’s in their late 70’s) and they all have a sit down meal once a week together.  I think that is awesome!  They make it a priority to fix a meal and get together….ONE time a week…not once a month or once a year or just special occasions.

They welcomed me like I was a part of the family and I sat down and joined in the laughter and chit chat.  I have known this family for 20 years almost.   She lived two houses down from me then.

After dinner they always play a game and so tonight it was LEFT RIGHT CENTER !  So much fun!  I didn’t win, but I didn’t care it was a great time!

I came home, almost dreading the quiet and realized its not really quiet…we have four dogs and two cats! They can be noisy! I took them outside and I played with them in the backyard and took their pictures with my cell phone and sent them to some of the kids and family members.   Our black dapple dachshund hates to have his picture taken so I had literally had to put him on a patio chair to snap his sweet little picture.

Puddles ....in the chair

Some of these pets are my grand-pets….the large one is Zoey my middle son’s dog that he got when he lived out on his own and so when he moved back home…Zoey came to.  My oldest son rescued two cats, Tasha & Betsy (the cat that hops like a rabbit and stands like a prairie dog) when he lived away from home and of course when he came back he brought them with him.  The other three are our family pets we have had awhile: Sadie, our ten year old cocker spaniel and the other two are our dachshunds Penny & Puddles.    You know how most couples start off with pets before they have children….while the kids only stay around for 18 to 21 years (except mine)…you end up with pets after the kids too!

"Penny"

"Puddles"

"Zoey"

"Sadie" (Betsy in back ground)

"Tasha"

"Betsy"....not a great pic, but she's standing straight up..and her eyes look like they are glowing. She's very sweet.

As you see our house is busy just with the pets! LOL!

My oldest daughter and her husband have been trying to find a puppy for them to love in their new home they just bought.  So….this is how it goes…pet first kids later….so my co- workers were joking with me that I will have grandchildren in about two years!  That’s fine.. I am turning 50 this year so I can wait on grandkids…turning 50 is a big event on its own, I need more time. :)

So, that was my Wednesday night….it was lovely and its going to get me through the week!  I live for the weekends!   .

The week is more than half way over! YEA!

Happy Wednesday! Hope your week goes fast!

Debbie

Catching Up

I started my blog because honestly I like to chat.  I am an open book and don’t mind sharing with people I am comfortable with.  I don’t have much to hide and feel that being open and honest works for me.   I started with random blogs because quite honestly I’m going to write about what has recently happened in my life or what is currently happening.  I don’t have a exceptionally exciting live, but its my life and I like it. : )

After a few weeks into starting this blog … I all the sudden had nothing to say…..not much was going on and felt a little silly about starting my blog.  Work had been stressful and I was just plain exhausted. But, I decided it was okay to have nothing to say and when I was ready to write again I would post again.  My life is a little boring at times so there may be long stretches in between my blogs. LOL!

So, while I was “away” so to speak….my youngest son had the opportunity to go to several out of state for some indoor track meets, two which we got to see because they were at a large university near our home.  He qualified to go to Nationals (NAIA) in a relay and that was a great opportunity for him.  Although they didn’t make it to the finals, they are ranked 15th in the nation.  He had fun watching his teammate make it to finals as well as his best friend, who goes to another school, take first in finals to become a National champion!  He got to see Cleveland, OH and go to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and go to see Detroit when they flew home.  I am so happy he is getting these great opportunities to travel !

I had the flu.  Ugh.  It was the worst ever.  I don’t know that I have ever had the flu before but whether I have or not…I absolutely never want it again.  I have never been a fan of getting the flu shot because you hear things about how the shot makes you feel bad and plus I had never gotten the flu so why worry about it. Well there is a first for everything…my number came up and it was my turn to get the flu and boy did I.   About 4 days prior to my first sign of the flu was a migraine…three days into my migraine I got a Tordal shot, which only relieved me for a few hours.  The next day though my migraine was just a headache and after missing a day and a half of work because of it I was happy to be relieved of my migraine…….but then later I realized the migraine was a precursor for what was to come.  My husband picked me up Friday after work and we went to see a movie (I have already forgotten the title that is how great it was – or maybe getting the flu erased it from my memory).  As we were coming out of the theater and on our way to dinner, I had a funny little feeling in my throat….and I thought it was a little weird. After dinner I didn’t feel like myself and didn’t sleep well all night and by morning I had a 100 degree temp and chills,sore throat and ached all over.  Thought maybe I was getting a sinus infection and stayed in bed…..by night I had over 102 and was just plain miserable and still thought at the worst I had strept throat.  On Sunday I went to the urgent care and the doctor said he wasn’t going to test me because he knew it was the flu and that the test would probably come back negative anyway that almost all of them do.  Gave me scripts for Tami Flu and cough medication.  Crawled back in bed for four more days with cold, cough, sore throat, fever, body aches and terrible lack of energy.  By Thursday I was feeling much better and went back to work.

Remarkably none of my family got it and they were with me during the worst of it, although I did try and stay in my bedroom.  My husband went back to the road the first day, so that was a good thing.  A co worker unfortunately must have caught it from me….she was out about the same amount of time I was….terrible for her she was getting married in a week. I felt bad for her, but I had no idea that Friday I was going to come down with the Flu…and I certainly didn’t ask for it!  I certainly didn’t like that I had to use almost 40 of my paid days off I had saved for my son’s track meets and vacation!

This past week my two youngest kids came home from college and we have tried to do a few things while they were home…we have gone out to dinner, watched movies and had a game night with their cousins.  That was fun!  My sister lives just down the road for me since our kids were on spring break we decided to have the kids get together to play some games and have pizza!  We played our favorite games Nertz and Apples To Apples !!  It was a LOT of fun and we need to plan on more game nights!  For how to play Nertz I copied this link to a Blog that shows w/ pictures how to play Nertz! http://ohamanda.com/2010/07/22/how-to-play-nertz-the-best-card-game-ever/

A month ago I bought tickets for us to go to see The Hunger Games at our brand new IMAX.   We got to the theater two hours early (my kids actually had to get out of bed before NOON!!  OH MY!) and were about 30th in line… my son parked himself on the sidewalk and started reading The Hunger Games book.  He was gong into the movie not really know much at all. The theater seats 600 so we knew we would have the pick of the seats and boy did we!  Smack in the middle of the theater right in the middle.  They let us in an hour and a half early since it was the first showing of the day and so we were able to sit in the plush comfy seats of the theater for an hour and a half. My daughter was entertained by the conversations of some teenage boys and their sister or friend ….it was funny.  The whole audience sang Happy Birthday to a girl who was celebrating her 16th birthday as she entered the theater unknowingly that hundreds would be singing to her.  We got our popcorn, drinks, candy and had our cell phone devices (Dusty on page 13 by now of the book) so we were set for the hour and a half wait!  We even saw some friends of ours and so that was a good distraction for awhile….and then finally the guy with the mic talked about the new Imax and rules and the show began!  The IMAX is a GREAT experience.  This is the biggest screen in the world and the sound was fantastic!  After a few previews The Hunger Games began!  It was a good movie and was very true to the book for the most part.   We enjoyed it.  Afterwards we went to eat and answered all of Dustin’s questions.  It was sorta neat to see it with someone who had not read the book and was clueless as to how the movie was going to end!  He was on the edge of his seat a few times.  Now I need to finish the third book and patiently wait for Catching Fire to come out in theaters later next year.

Well….its time….time for my two college kids to go back to their schools today.  Its been SO nice having them home and I will miss them.   I wont’ have to yell for them to turn the TV down when I’m trying to sleep for work the next day.  LOL!   But, I will see them soon enough and the rest of their Spring semester is waiting for them!

The Spring will hopefully go by fast!  We have a lot to look forward to!  Our youngest son, Dustin has his outdoor track meets coming up, we will only get to see him run twice when they are nearby, the rest are out of state.   He got a summer job at a christian summer camp for youth groups!  He’s very excited and he will start only 2 weeks after he gets out of school and moves back home.   The other bit of news we have to look forward to is our trip to Hawaii to celebrate both of our fiftieth birthdays and our 30th wedding anniversary! I can’t wait!  We are staying on Oahu, where we have been once before.  Last time we went we went to Maui.  Wish we could go back there…we loved Maui.

Well, I think I have made up for the time I was “away” by being exceptionally chatty ! LOL!

That’s what is going on with the BizzyBunch for now….until next time….

Debbie

Chaos to Quiet: On Our Way To Becoming Empty-Nester’s.

My Kids at age 3,4,6,9,9As time marches on…I’m beginning to accept that having time to myself is actually a nice perk to becoming an empty-nester.  At first…I wasn’t sure about it.  When my kids were younger or even when they were all in middle and high school, I would have given anything for few hours of peace and quiet to watch what I wanted on tv…..sleep late…or decide to cook or not cook if I so choose to.  Our home was always chaotic at times, loud, and messy.  I mean…five kids in six years….there is going to be noise, chaos and messes.  I remember the days when one or more of my kids trying to pull me out of bed to make them cereal or asking if they could watch cartoons…at the crack of dawn and even before dawn. I would try and convince them to go back to sleep…but I wasn’t always successful. Trying to get them to go to bed was a whole other story. I was an exhausted mommy…didn’t they understand that?

The older each child got, the later they would sleep and easier it was to get them to bed.   I was seeing light at the end of the tunnel.  I’m sure I am not alone …..and yes I had guilt over feeling this way…but I was one of those moms that would give anything to go to a hotel ALONE and just SLEEP! Just one little bitty night  Then they became teenagers and college aged and the roles were reversed…I couldn’t bribe them out of bed in the mornings!  On Saturdays ..forget it !  They’d stay up til 2 am and sleep until noon.

When one of my twins, my daughter, went off to college five years ago I was thrilled for her…I had a great college experience she will too…I was a little envious remembering my college days which didn’t seem all that long ago.  Sure I was a little sentimental…but I actually didn’t cry after leaving her at the dorm. I was very excited for her and plus I had more children at home.   Then her twin brother left home, moved into an apartment with a friend.  With less hormones in the house I was good with the twins leaving home and I wished the best for them.  Then my middle son moved into a house with a friend.  The house became more quiet.

I knew it was too good to be true, but I turned our 4th bedroom into a computer and sitting room …moved all our books and movies into the room and filled up the closet with all my organizational boxes and keepsakes and then…..my oldest son moved back home.  There went my computer and hobby room. My daughter came home after her first year of college to live at home and commute to and from college. A year later she became engaged and so we spent the next year planning and preparing for the wedding….we had wedding stuff  we had been collecting all over the house and in closets.  A year and a half ago she married and of course moved out of our home after sharing a room with her sister for 18 years and her twin brother for a few years before that.  As she was moving out…our middle son moved back home to save money to go to school.

Our youngest daughter left us for life in college the year before her sister married.  It was then that it began to hit me…to affect me….and all these emotions came at me like a brick wall hitting me in the face.  I found myself crying often…what will I do without my little shopping buddy…my little shadow…she grew up and became a college freshman.

With my oldest son working a lot and my youngest son busy with high school and track and cross country I was finding myself alone more and more.  My husband has driven over the road as a truck driver for over 20 years and I have become accustomed to his being away and am use to it, as much as you can get used to being away from your best friend and spouse…never easy, but somehow you manage.  But…then you add the kids leaving and it becomes a little more emotional.

This past Fall our youngest child, our third son, became a freshman in college and was recruited by a university 3 hours away…6 hours round trip, so we didn’t get to see him very often. After one semester we quickly realized, as did he, that this was not the school for him.  He had the opportunity to run for a school closer to home, but this time on a full scholarship.  I thought he would be home more often being 25 minutes away, but that has not been the case as he has been traveling with his team out of state and even to Nationals in Ohio.  We have had a few opportunities to see him when he has run locally, but besides that he has been home for Spring Break this week and we have enjoyed spending time with him and our daughter.  They leave tomorrow to go back to their schools and finish up the Spring semester.

Slowly, I am becoming accustomed to the quiet….to the boys coming in from work after I have gone to bed and me leaving for work early in the morning….to eating meals alone.  I have realized that its OK to be alone….to have peace and quiet….because it gives me time to reflect on how blessed I was to have had five beautiful and healthy children to raise.  Sure it was stressful at times, it was hectic at times….but most of the time it was fun and we made a lot of memories.  Their childhood’s flew by so fast and sometimes wish I could go back and do a better job, but it is what is … I did the best I could with our situation.  The life we created for them was good and they have always been loved. I wasn’t perfect, they weren’t perfect and it is OK.

Here we are…my husband and I about to turn 50 this year … we aren’t fully and true empty-nester’s….but we are close.  Our two oldest boys will hopefully be moving out this year and our two youngest will be in college for another two and four years.  They will continue coming home on occasional weekends, holidays, spring break and summers.

One thing I know …and that is to enjoy your kids when they are at home, because it goes fast … and then they are adults…building their own life’s…….but they STILL need you…be there for them always.  Because I still need my parents….and I’m about to turn 50!

Debbie

House Warming

A house is made of walls and beams; a home is built with love and dreams.

My daughter and son-n-law graduated from college, got married, got their first jobs in their career field and bought a house all in a year and a half.   They enjoyed their time searching for their first home and it didn’t take long to find THE one and they quickly closed and were moved in by Christmas this past year.  It is a very cute three bedroom home in a nice, new neighborhood.  My daughter has always lived for this day, just like I did many moons ago, to decorate her first home, with her and her husband’s style of decor and put to use their wedding gifts.

Last weekend they hosted a housewarming or open house for family.  I spent a few days trying to decide what to get them for their home.  Before I went shopping I decided to get on the internet and see what were some traditional house warming gifts as well as the more modern gifts.    After researching, I decided to go the traditional route and do a basket of traditional new home gifts.  These are traditional gifts and meanings that are from European countries for the most part.  I compiled a list of these traditional gifts and purchased as many as I could and fixed up my basket of goodies with a label attached by colorful fibers on each with the meaning of that gift attached!

Loaf of Bread – May you never know hunger.

Salt – May life always have flavor.

Wine – May joy and prosperity reign forever.

Rice – May you be blessed with fertility

Honey or Sugar – To remember life’s sweetness.

Knife – To protect against intruders.

Coins – May this bring good fortune.

Candle – So you will always have light to banish dark times.

Broom – Sweep troubles away –or –May your house always be clean

Rooster – To keep trespassers and dangers away.

Plant – May you home always have life.

I wish them many happy memories in their new home as newlyweds now and as

loving parents in the future……and may they be always blessed!

Home is home, be it ever so humble