Sunday, January 29, 2012

Are you reading this Sarge?

Sarge Charlie and Sollie--July, 2011
I love you, Sir...
and I will miss you.
I am so very lucky to have had you in my life.

"True friendship is when two friends can walk in opposite directions, yet remain side by side."

Monday, January 23, 2012

OK ... Last Week Didn't Count!

12 sticks of butter my friends!
That's a total of 18 pounds (my lucky number) and
Miss Bee ... thank you for being my inspiration.
I'll put up a picture when you do!
I feel a little funny when I hear that someone lost 10 lbs in 2 weeks or over 30 lbs since September ... but I'm chugging along and I'm pleased with my slow progress.
I took the broiler pan and Pyrex baking dish out of the oven to roast vegetables and put them on the stovetop.  Somehow I turned on the burner and didn't realize it until ...
The Pyrex dish got so hot it exploded!  There were huge chunks of glass all over the work area of the kitchen!  If I had been there ... or Deb ... or one of the cats ... we would have been seriously ... and I mean SERIOUSLY hurt!
It's not the first time I have turned on the burner by mistake.
I don't like when that happens.
Well ... I think Deb and I swept up most of the glass ... but I know we'll be finding little pieces on the floor.
Our training team reunion is in two weeks.  I'm anxious to see my training buddies ... and hope that we pick up a few more teammates!
The end ... for now.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Cancer: "The Battle We Didn't Choose."

Cancer: ‘The battle we didn’t choose’
“The minute I saw her, I knew. There she is. That’s the girl I’m going to marry,” photographer Angelo Merendino said of Jennifer, the woman who indeed became his bride.

Angelo and Jennifer had been married for five months and living in New York City when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in early 2008. After surgery, chemotherapy and radiation, she was cleared of cancer. The good news came just after their first anniversary.
But the cancer had metastasized and spread to her brain. On December 22, Angelo Merendino lost his wife of four years. She was 40.
His photo documentary, “The Battle We Didn’t Choose,” follows her fight against cancer. Angelo began the project as a way for family and friends in Ohio to understand what Jennifer was experiencing after phone calls and e-mails didn’t seem to portray the intensity of the situation — or produce a response.
“They didn’t see Jen taking 12 pills, giving herself shots, going in for hospital visits,” he said. “If words weren’t working, then actual photos would jar people. This is serious. We needed people to be more involved.”
Being the subject of a photo essay can be intimidating, but Angelo said Jennifer wanted the photos to be an honest representation of her struggle.
“‘I don’t want to hide anything,’” he recalled her saying. “‘I want to help others — not just women, but anyone with cancer.’”
He found that telling his own story through a lens was challenging.
“It was our life. As a photographer I would see something and react as a photographer. As the story began to tell itself, I would stop and edit photos and realize, this is my wife. And she has breast cancer.”
The impact of these photos will be everlasting because Jennifer is in them, Angelo said, but the experience is what makes the biggest impact. There hasn’t been much time to process the past four years, he said, but now he has time to just stop and think about her.
“The photos get even deeper,” he said. “My admiration of her grows. I remember each moment. They show how strong, brave, courageous Jen was.”
While Angelo’s grieving side wants to curl up in a corner somewhere, the other part of him wants the world to know Jennifer’s story, he said, things about Jennifer that he loved. For instance, in the midst of her turmoil, she started a dragon boat racing team for cancer survivors.
“I want people to know about real heroes, someone who had something thrown at her and responded. That kind of hero.”
He also wants people to appreciate every moment. He wants women to get mammograms and men to do self-checks. He wants people to be more aware of others’ suffering — to know that sometimes you don’t have to know what to say. Sometimes you just say, “I love you.”
He’ll start spreading the word with an exhibit in New York on January 26. And he’ll continue working as a documentary photographer.
“I feel like I can help people with my camera,” he said, “and that is what I want to do.”
                         To see Angelo Merendino's photo documentary of Jen's fight against cancer ... click here.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Time to 'Fess Up and Get Back To Work

Ok ... ok ...
so I gained .6 lb this week.
I blamed it on my trip to Florida.
I can't really do that, though, because Mom eats a big 2 meals a day for goodness sake.
So now I'm blaming it on the birthday party for Ronnie's cousin where I tried a number of different desserts ... and Sashi's birthday dinner where I ate some fried calamari and bread and a donut for dessert.
I think I'll be back down by next Monday.
You keep me honest!
Speaking of food, Burt's Babes will be publishing a cookbook (if we ever get it together.)  We're in the "collecting recipes" stage ... so, if you would like to contribute and see your name in print, send your favorite recipe or two or three ... OR MORE ... to  
Did I tell you that I was featured in the Commack Teacher's Association newsletter along with a few other teachers who do charitable work?  Well ... the CTA is giving us $200.  An email went out today asking what we would like to do with our share.  Responses were to get something for the school ... host a breakfast or lunch ... go out as a group ... but I wrote that I would like to donate my small share to Susan G. Komen.  I thought that made the best sense.  
Let's see what everyone else says.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Lost and Found ... Found and Lost

New Year's Eve-2011 (or maybe it was 2012)
Last week I was a bit disappointed that I gained 1.2 lbs.
Sashi figured it was the jeans I was wearing.
So tonight, I took off the jeans and put on the black slacks I have been wearing since October 31st and drove off to "weigh in."
Maybe she was right!  I lost 3.8 lbs ... almost 16 sticks of butter!
So I lost the weight I found last week.
Last week I lost my glasses.  Tonight I found them in the meeting room.
So ... Found and Lost ... and Lost and Found.
It is a good thing!
That's a picture of me having a great New Year's Eve.
Great fun with great friends ... I hope that's just a preview of what's to come this year.
I have been watching Breaking Bad non stop since Friday night when my friends Lynn and Joel told me I'd love it.
I have watched the entire first two seasons and have five episodes of season three to watch.  Thank you Netflix.  
This is such a great show!!!!
It's back to work tomorrow.  
Back to work 15.6 lbs down!