A Blue State of Mind

"The biggest adventure you can ever take is to live the life of your dreams." Oprah

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Location: The Western U.S, United States

I spent 48 years caring about what people thought of me. I'm not spending the rest of my life caring about that anymore!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Tying Loose Ends

I don't know if I'll have time before leaving on Monday to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and pleasantly exciting new year. My mother and I are flying out Monday (pending any snowstorms between here and Boise), my sister and little brother plan on taking off Wednesday afternoon. They'll rest over in Vegas then the Triplets will complete the excursion up. I'm praying for good weather on both sides, in the air and on those wet, icy, slippery roads.

One of my cousins won't be joining us. He signed up for a cruise and y'all may know the hell involved in changing itineraries. He's gonna drive down from Washington state, spend a day or so with my cousins then head back in time to leave for the cruise. That's what he gets for not inviting us along with him:-)

The weather here today was heavenly--raining and gray. My favourite kind of weather. I LOVE rain and cold. Being in the desert all my life, living through 300 days of sunshine can be rough. Now I know some of you are shaking your heads thinking I've hit the eggnogg earlier than I should, but really, when you live in a climate that has no measurable rain for up to four months, any type of weather fluctuation will make your heart go pitty pat, trust me.

I'm going to be selfish a bit here and lament that I may not be able to watch most of the Cowboys/Eagles game, but our flight should get us there very close to 2nd half so as long as I'm there for the last 15 seconds of the game I'm fine. To say this is an important game is like saying Donald Trump and Rosie O'donnel are not two of the biggest newshounds on earth.

Dallas absolutely needs to win this game. Romo's doing great and has been invited to the Pro Bowl this year. But....Jeff Garcia needs to win this game too. I personally have liked Garcia since he led the 49rs. He's hot in the shadow of the mighty McNabb and he has a personal score to settle w/henchmouth owens.<-----I deliberately used lower case for owens 'cause I dislike him sooooo much.

I promised God I wouldn't bother him by praying for football games, but this game is certain to make me pray, fast, burn incense, light a candle, borrow someone's rosary, chant and anything else that I think will help the 'Boys.

So, back to tying up loose ends. Because of this year's special circumstances my family here is celebrating Christmas on Sunday with the gift exchange and dinner. So with all the cooking and packing I need to do, I don't know if I'll get around to everyone to personally leave a message. I would be creative and leave a communal card like Meloncutter did but uh, no. So, from all of me to all of you who have stopped by to say hello or just to glance through, thanks. To those who have continued to come back to my humble abode, thanks too.

I usually don't include too much religious thinking here but most of you know I'm a conservative Christian so I'll wish you God's blessings, that He bless and keep you, that He make His face to shine upon you.

"And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising god, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men." Luke 2:7-14

christmas Glitter Graphics From GlitterYourWay.com

Mis amigos, Feliz Navidad y prospero ano nuevo.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Thursday Thirteen #6

Generate Your Own Glitter Graphics @ GlitterYourWay.com - Image hosted by ImageShack.us


1. Waiting at least 20 minutes to be seen.

2. Having to be weighed then watching the assistant purse her lips as she writes it on my chart.

3. Having to tell same assistant I need the larger (thigh) blood pressure cuff. She always has to go look for it and make a fuss about in the office, further drawing attention to me. B#@$%!

4. I'm going in because I think I have streph throat which will prevent me from traveling to Boise to attend my aunt's funeral which will SUCK!

5. I have a new doctor and he will blame my sore throat on my weight. Bast#$!

6. The chairs in the doctor's office have handles which make for a tight and uncomfortable wait.

7. There are all those SICK people in the office who will be breathing, coughing and wheezing on me.

8. Having to fill my Rx even though I'm not feeling well.

9. Hearing me challenge my blood pressure readings because the cuff's not a good fit.

10. Being stopped from leaving because I have to reschedule an appt I won't keep.

11. Feeling guilty for snarfing through yesterday's office potluck. Did I REALLY need to eat all those chips?

12. Knowing I'm the most obese patient in that office. The little assistant told me this a few months back. Have I called her a B@#$% yet?

13. Because there's nothing like a visit to the doctor to remind you of your shortcomings and non-existent will power!

Monday, December 18, 2006

And So It Goes...

"Angels will be singing! Joybells will be ringing! They'll all welcome me when I get Home!

So I got the news about 8p this evening that Aunt Grat had died. I was in shock because she had revived sort of and was singing and ready to leave the hospital and go home. I called the hospital to speak w/her because I was so happy she was doing better.

The nurse's station passed the phone to my aunt Minnie who, after hearing it was me, began crying. This scared me and you know those two side belly muscles that tense up when you're getting ready to be punched? Well, those muscles contracted which told my brain to prepare for some bad news.

Minnie told me about Grat leaving and I just sat there stunned. I mean here I am at work, surronded by others and I've just been told my favourite (one of them) aunt has died. I rang off from Minnie and just went back to what I was doing but then decided, "forget this, I'm calling Momma."

Well, I wasn't going to tell Momma that Grat had died so I did the next best thing. I called my sister and told her about Grat's death and instructed her to tell Mom. You see, I learned a long time ago that when you're the first person to give bad news, you have to be prepared for the reaction. I used to love to be the first to tell bad news, just to relish in the fact that people would be saying Debo told me, or Debo told so and so. What power!

Then one day I told someone some horrible news and that person almost fainted on me. That scared me so badly I decided then and there that I'd never do that again. I mean, if there were two of us stranded on a desert island and I knew something bad was about to happen, I'd put the message in a bottle, write it on sand, paint a picture and leave it for the other person to find before I'd tell it. I don't need another experience like that.

So my sister told my mom and I'm home now. We've looked up flights and are discussing who's going when and with whom. It seems we'll all be together for Christmas, something not done in thirty years.

Grat always liked family gatherings and was usually the one setting up reunions and vacations. This is just like her, to bring us all together at Christmas time to sit around laughing about her antics, her sage teachings and her love for us all. We'll pray for our cousins Dee Dee, Vonda and Al for having lost both parents, while secretly thanking God our mothers are still here.

We won't spend too much time grieving for Grat because we know where's she's gone. She told us where she was going a long time ago, when we were running around her knees and falling asleep in her lap. Blessed are they that die in the Lord for theirs is eternal rest.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Mother Mae Gratis Bowens May 17th 1942 - December 17th 2006

This is a repost from an October entry. Aunt Grat's decided enough is enough with the cares of this world so she's decided she'd rather be with Jesus and claim that Reward she's worked so hard to achieve. I'll see you in the Morning, Grat.

I have a favourite aunt, we call her Aunt Grat. Actually I have four favourite aunts but whenever I think of the one aunt that made great impressions on me, it always comes back to Grat.Aunt Grat and my grandfather moved to Boise, ID when I was 9 years old and when there were VERY FEW Black people living there. My siblings and I eagerly awaited the arrival of summer because it meant my parents would soon be loading up the car and driving us up to Boise to spend the summer.
I guess that's when my love for traveling was first realized-during the daylong drive from the shimmering lights of Vegas, through the quiet plains of Ely on through Wells, the breathtaking mountains of Twin Falls and then finally cool Boise. Well, at least cool in relation to my hot state. Depending on my father's work schedule, my parents usually stayed in Boise a week or a few days, hugged us and gleefully headed back home knowing no children for a full month. Sometimes I wonder whose smiles were largest-us kids or our parents.

Each summer my two siblings would move in to Aunt Grat's and Uncle Al's house which already was filled w/her three children, my Aunt Mary's three, any other friends that wanted to spend the night or summer and my two siblings. I went to my own personal Heaven-Big Daddy's house.

Big Daddy lived about six or seven minutes from Aunt Grat but to me it was a whole other world. There were no eight to ten noisy kids arguing about the tv, waiting for the bathroom, grabbing for food then disappearing when chores were due. At Big Daddy's two-story Victorian there was just me, Big Daddy, Big Momma Nancy (Big Daddy's 4th wife) and Unc Artus.

After chores, I would hide away down in Big Daddy's basement and plow through issue after issue of Nat'l Geographic. Big Daddy knew I loved to read and fondly told me that not only did I resemble his first wife appearance-wise, but I also had the love of reading that she had. Each week Big Daddy would visit the neighbourhood thrift store and bring new copies of Nat'l Geo and chuckle proudly when I would advise him that I had completed the last stash.

I loved that old basement. It was always cool and smelled of wet earth. Although you could hear people walking above, only when they opened the door and hollered down at you could you hear voices. The rare times when the other grands would descend upon my Heaven, they would go down into the basement then come out creeped out because of the dankness and darkness. Everything I loved about it.

Big Daddy's gone, Unc Artus too. Big Momma and the house w/the wonderful basement are also gone. Aunt Grat's still here though, thank God! I started this thing about Aunt Grat so let's get back to her.
Time has not been good to her. Diabetes has taken hold of her body and become a horrible tenant. The brown eyes that could see a lie from across the street have become dim and watery. The 5'8'' lean frame that could stand precariously close to the edge and pull a 3 pound perch from the fast moving Snake river has leaned and slowed, requiring a walker. The mind that could tell the best jokes and mind teasers has dulled to mumbles and rambling sentences. One thing that hasn't slowed or been reduced due to illness is her love for God and His Commandments.

Since I was able to comprehend, Aunt Grat has loved the Lord w/all of her heart, mind and body. She was faithful to the Church and every pastor. She attended all services and made us attend too. Every cousin and sibling knew that going to church Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays was a requirement, no discussion. She worked hard in the church, cooking and selling chicken dinners to raise money for the church. Organizing concerts, picnics, fishing contests, anything to help the church.

She became the State Supervisor of Women when her Supervisor left the position. Knowing there would be times of struggle ahead, Aunt Grat forged ahead into the vineyard to do the work of the Lord, her eyes fixed firmly on the Cross. She traveled across Idaho and other states to support church work and church leaders, although most of the time none of the oh so important church folks came up to Idaho to help her. She dragged us to sing in prisons, to work revivals by leading the testimony and praise services, help w/the sick and shut in and everything else she thought we needed to do.

After a new bishop came in, he quickly sought to kick Grat out on her behind and he succeeded-the hoe-chasing, alcoholic fake that he is. And all those church folks (notice I'm not calling them Saints because Saints wouldn't treat her like this) that she ran up and down the highway helping? You guessed it, no where to be found. They're too important to talk to Grat now that she's no longer a State Supervisor and suffering from failing health. Now that she can't drop dollars in their offerings and we're not there as professional slaves, they don't need her.

So, most days Grat sits at home listening to Gospel DVDs or The Word tv programs. Her house is now quiet because all of us have grown and moved on...even her three children are out of state or out of touch. My aunt Minnie has now become Grat's care provider, herself ailing from diabetes. And after Uncle Al died, Grat became the pastor of the church but that too is in poor health. Most time the attendance at the church is no more than Aunt Mary, Aunt Minnie and Aunt Grat and one or two more members.

Rather than throwing in the towel and just staying home, Grat continues to serve the church as faithfully as her health will allow. She continues to press her way to the church just in case someone comes who needs comforting, prayer or just to see how she's doing. And although she can no longer see the words of the Bible, she is able to deliver her messages from the pages written on the tablet of her heart. When others would have long given up and given in to hatred and resentment, she has remained humble and faithful. She is stedfast and unmovable, always abounding in the works of the Lord because she believes her labour is not in vain---up the road is eternal gain.

I only hope that when I am faced w/the same troubles thrown into Aunt Grat's life, that I will be able to fight on like she has. I can only hope.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Thursday Thirteen #5

Thirteen Things That Scare Me

This is why you shouldn't post while stressing with Finals:

1. Someone else from my family or friends will die.

2. I will be left alone in a nursing home, never receiving visitors and being abused by the staff there.

3. I will be arrested and convicted of charges not made by me (mistaken identity).

4. I will be the victim of ID theft.

5. I will find a lump in my breasts.

6. I will die a slow, agonizingly painful death.

7. I will lose my job and its benefits then have to struggle to find something comparable at my age and my weight.

8. My brothers, nephews and cousins will be shot and killed by police or anyone else for that matter.

9. I'll never, ever, get this stupid, worthless MBA.

10. My nephew isn't developing at the same level as his peers in 1st grade.

11. My window of opportunity is quickly shrinking.

12. I'll hit someone in my car and be sued of all my worldly possessions.

13. That Jesus will return and I'll be found wanting (lacking).

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

I'm A Reindeer!

Which of Santa's Reindeer are you?

Which of Santa's Reindeer Are You


Like Cupid you know how to spread love. You have a place in your heart for everyone and are always there with a hug or a kiss

Find out which of Santa's Reindeer you are at Quizopolis.com

Stole this from Barb. Man, I'm using everyone's ideas tonight. Can't wait to share w/Sicka who seems to have gone into some type of quiz fit.

Well, I've Never...but Maybe One Day I Will

Found this over at Blu's who stole it from someone else. I was gonna make comments on Blu's blog but decided to just steal the theme outright (of course I did warn Sister Blu that I was stealing). So, even though I scored a measley 85 on her Misgivings list, here are some additional things I've never done.

I've never lied on my timesheet at work (why get fired for something so menial? Cuss somebody out, pimp-slap a boss. Don't get fired for little stuff)!

I've never gotten a speeding ticket (doesn't mean I don't occassionally speed. Just means I manage my time most days).

I've never lied on my taxes (Wesley Snipes, Ronald Isley, Leona Helms, Frank Gotti. 'Nuff said).

I've never liked the Pittsburgh Steelers (since the days of Roger Staubach and Terry what's his name).

I've never liked basketball (that's not sport! Football is the real deal y'all!).

I've never understood the fascination with golf (real skill is trying to get that ball to the other end of the field by going through or around 17 guys bigger than you).

I've never wanted to be supermodel thin (I've always wanted thick thighs, a round butt and breasts that jiggle when I moved. Unfortunately I have four thighs, two round butts and breasts that wobble when I move).

I've never cursed in or on a churchyard (where is the respect for the house of God?).

I've never been to a bar and ordered drinks.

I've never had a threesome (don't want one either).

I've never liked Linda Ronstadt (unless she's singing Mariachi).

I've never liked Italian food (spaghetti cooked by black people is soooo different).

I've never stolen money from my brothers or sisters or my mom.

I've never abused an animal (my mother warned us God would punish us for abusing a helpless animal).

I've never liked the show "Girlfriends" (especially bug-eyed Tracy Ellis. PS-why does she use her mom's last name rather than her real name of Ellis? Trading in on the name?).

I've never watched "American Idol" (except when I watched Ruben v. Clay).

Monday, December 11, 2006

Monday Musings

I wonder how Condoleeza Rice is doing.Where will she spend Christmas eve? Will she have a secret Santa? Is she completely surrounded by Secret Service every hour? Does she have regular girlfriends who sit around talking about hair, makeup and stuff like that?
I know she's no mythical creature, that she's just a normal woman like me but I sometimes feel bad for her because she's always getting beat up on by the press, the black community and now James Baker.
The press, like it does everyone else reports on her style of clothes, whether she's dating anyone, her awkwardness with being relaxed and open during interviews, everything. The black community scolds her for being a Bushite, for being conservative and for believing the Bush department did everything it could for Katrina victims.
Essence magazine did an interview with her and showed this picture of her looking out the window. I suppose from her office. I'm sure the picture was supposed to make it seem she's in a tower far removed from the rest of us, it made me think she was thinking, "when will this be over?"
She has no family except for an aunt and cousins scattered about the country, and I know she is a member of a group of chamber musicians. Face it, the girl is one of the most recognized women in the country, if not the world but I'm just worried about her. Now I'm certain there are those out there who will think I shouldn't worry about a successful, rich politician but I do.
Why does being sick feel so crappy? I'm home today because I'm not feeling well and just don't want to have to heave my fat butt out of bed, shower, get dressed, drive on that crazy freeway for 25 minutes, spend five to ten minutes looking for a parking space, squeeze through the security turnstiles that were not designed for the obese, then sit at my desk and be run upon by my folks who need help with this or that. Today I'm staying in, studying for my upcoming Final and just getting better.
Being Too Safe? Last week I did the Misgivings List (dated 12/5) over at Blu's and scored a whopping 85. Some of those people scored as high as 1400 and NONE scored lower than 300. Except me. Am I really THAT good and safe? I blame my parents for this.
When I was being reared, my parents told me I had to live as if.....
  • As if Jesus would return any moment. Would I really want to be found by Jesus having sex with a married man/married woman/maried couple/being in the room while someone's having sex?
  • As if I were in an accident and had to go to the hospital. Would I want the people to undress me and I'm wearing holey, raggedy underwear or I haven't bathed or my feet stink?
  • As if the world or weak Christians would see my doings then judge all Christians by my actions. "Ye are the salt of the earth." As if these big name preachers and all these immoral others haven't done enough to taint the name of Christianity.
  • I was grateful for my job. If God blessed me with a good job I am supposed to be a good servant and have a strong work ethic. This hasn't hurt me and has given me somewhat of a good reputation at work. But, it hasn't helped me that much either except my bosses now they can depend on my to not lie on my timesheet, have my work done and updated and that working more than 40 hours won't make me pout.

So what's bad about being safe? I don't think anything. Besides, everybody loved Mary Poppins, didn't they?

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Forgotten Memories of My Childhood-One More

This is still my most favourite poem from grade school. I remember first reading it and thinking the author was just goofy but the one section (the bolded section) has remained in my brain and has not released. As I've aged and revisited the poem, my perpective has changed. Today I realize that it's about modern times and how we go through life each following what we think is our unique path when in fact someone in the next town is doing the exact same thing. Just think, there's another you just at the next town.

Here's the poem in its entirety (I apologize that Blogger's not allowing my edits to stick--

anyone lived in a pretty how town

anyone lived in a pretty how town
(with up so floating many bells down)
spring summer autumn winter
he sang his didn't he danced his did.
Women and men
(both little and small)
cared for anyone not at all
they sowed their isn't they reaped their same
sun moon stars rain
children guessed
(but only a few and down they forgot as up they grew
autumn winter spring summer)
that noone loved him more by more

when by now and tree by leaf
she laughed his joy she cried his grief
bird by snow and stir by still
anyone's any was all to her

someones married their everyones
laughed their cryings and did their dance
(sleep wake hope and then)
they said their nevers they slept their dream
stars rain sun moon
(and only the snow can begin to explain)
how children are apt to forget to remember
with up so floating many bells down)
one day anyone died i guess
(and noone stooped to kiss his face)
busy folk buried them side by side
little by little and was by was

all by all and deep by deep
and more by more they dream their sleep
noone and anyone earth by april
with by spirit and if by yes.
Women and men
(both dong and ding)
summer autumn winter spring
reaped their sowing and went their came
sun moon stars rain

ee cummings

Forgotten Memories of My Childhood

I was over at Blogaway's and she mentioned some of the books she read during her childhood. Her blog made me realize that I've left behind a certain type of book I was passionate about. This has spurred me to find a book dealing with culture the next time I'm at Barnes & Noble or the library.

As far back as I can remember I always liked to read. Visiting the library or checking out the magazine section in my grocery store was most often the highlight of my week. Of course visiting the library was always the best fun and something I did regularly. As a matter of fact I was just at the library last night for a study session.

While I can't remember all of the books I devoured, I can remember those that mattered most or left a mark on my world-rather positive or negative. Here they are in no particular order.

1. Charlotte's Web. What little girl didn't cry over the description of how the cleaning crew was clearing debris from the fairgrounds, unaware of the dead spider in a nondescript box thrown in with the rest of the trash?

2. Mystery of the Witch Who Wouldn't. I wanted so much to be Aurelia and blow holes in clouds and read minds. Sometimes I still do.

3. To Kill a Mockingbird. This made me so sad and left me with a lot of questions about race relations in America. The answers were provided by my community-the church, my parents and a growing awareness of being a black girl growing up in the shadow of the Black Panthers and Watts riots.
4. Grapes of Wrath.
Wow! Human resolve. Human perserverance. Tragedy. I cried a lot through that one too.

5. Heidi. I didn't want to be blond, I just wanted to be able to eat some of the foods she and her uncle ate.

6. Everything by Agatha Christie. I had just discovered this used bookstore that sold books cheap and gave you a discount if you returned books. I never returned any of her books. If I had to name two of her best, "By the Pricking of My Thumbs", "Elephants Can Remember".

7. Pipi Longstocking. I always felt bad for Pipi after I discovered she lived alone. Never mind that she was rich and strong as two oxen. Because I was surrounded by family everyday, it made me sad that this little girl had to live alone with pets.

Friday, December 08, 2006

All I Want For Christmas

Every year at Christmas and my birthday I buy myself presents. Not because I don't have friends or family who will buy the things I want. Rather I buy myself gifts because they are personal things I want, sort of a reward if you will. This year is no different. At my last birthday I bought myself Armani Code cologne, Sheer Veil cologne and body lotion, restocked on Clinique and Bath & Body Works necessities, bought new shades of MAC and bought myself a new HP notebook.

And every year at Christmas and my birthday I send detailed lists of what I want because I believe if people insist on buying me gifts, I should be accomodating enough to give them information on what to buy. I mean think about it, if you know someone's gonna spend their hard earned bucks on you, shouldn't you help them out with ideas? This prevents them from buying worthless items that may be re-gifted or returned.

This Christmas I've done something I don't ever remember doing: I've not sent a list and I don't intend on sending a list. I have sooooooooo many things that I don't need anything else. Now if you're expecting me to advise my friends and family to make donations in my name to a charitable fund you're going to be disappointed. Just 'cause I'm not sending a list doesn't mean I don't want anything. This year if people ask, I'll request gift cards-the most well-tailored gift item on the planet.

I love gift cards for lots of different reasons:
>they always fit
>they're my favourite colours
>I don't have to worry if the item is a re-gift
>the stores they're from are almost always online which enables me to shop anytime of the day and night.

This year my Christmas gift(s) to myself will be an iPod surround sound system, a digital camera and the most important gift ...paying off a Dept store card. I actually did this tonight. I went in and paid it down to $20 bucks which I will pay off next month. I want to start the year off with one less bill and one less worry and I've successfully done that. This leaves one credit card open and that's used for emergencies only. What better gift (other than a medical physical) to oneself-financial peace of mind and a working plan to reduce/eliminate debt.

Hope your holiday season has kicked off to a good start and you're considering a plan to reduce debt. I'm off in search of my iPod system, enjoy your weekend.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

If I Were A Flower

I am a

What Flower
Are You?

I've always loved flowers. Daisies and tulips, carnations and lillys are my favourites. My least favourite are red roses because I never received roses from a guy, or anyone until I was in my mid-thirties so roses, to me anyway, represented an unattainable dream. Aren't we strange beings? We place blame on objects then reject them for live.

Another Patriotic Thought

In remembrance of all the brave men and women who served in Hawaii during the attacks on Pearl Harbour and those who gallantly fought during the subsequent war.

—Francis Scott Key, 1814
O say, can you see, by the dawn's early light,What so proudly we hail'd at the twilight's last gleaming?Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro' the perilous fight,O'er the ramparts we watch'd, were so gallantly streaming?And the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in air,Gave proof thro' the night that our flag was still there.O say, does that star-spangled banner yet waveO'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

On the shore dimly seen thro' the mists of the deep,Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep,As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,In full glory reflected, now shines on the stream:'Tis the star-spangled banner: O, long may it waveO'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

And where is that band who so vauntingly sworeThat the havoc of war and the battle's confusion,A home and a country should leave us no more?Their blood has wash'd out their foul footsteps' pollution.No refuge could save the hireling and slaveFrom the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave:And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth waveO'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

O thus be it ever when free-men shall standBetween their lov'd home and the war's desolation;Blest with vict'ry and peace, may the heav'n-rescued landPraise the Pow'r that hath made and preserv'd us a nation!Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,And this be our motto: “In God is our trust!”And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall waveO'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

Thursday Thirteen #4

Thirteen Great Things to do When Feeling Blue (according to me)

One of my favourite bloggers was feeling down the other day but I hadn't known about it because my tail was stuck at work and my head was stuck in the books. Because we all will feel down, unimportant and invisible at one time or another, I thought to share some of things I do when I'm feeling blue.

1. Listen to uplifting music.

2. Pray and read the Bible.

3. Go to an ultra-exclusive store's website (Neiman Marcus, Ralph Lauren), fill the shopping cart with EVERYTHING I could buy if I had the money, complete the order form then leave it all there.

4. Light my favourite candles from Bath & Body Works and just lie there listening to music with the volume turned very low.

5. Compare my life to the richest or luckiest person I can think of, then compare everything I have that s/he doesn't (i.e. they'll never know my grandfather or my daddy, they'll never see my niece's perfect smile etc).

6. Watch my favourite movies (Blazing Saddles, Diary of a Mad Black Woman).

7. Change my bed linen, spray it down w/my favourite scent (currently Sheer Veil or Armani Code) then crawl into bed w/a bunch of mags or the notebook.

8. Cook something low-fat and pretend I'm starring in my own cooking show. I talk through the whole event, from chopping onions and garlic to heating the pan.

9. Sit outside on my porch listening to my iPOD and singing.

10. Call a friend and just listen to them talk. Most will be so glad to just have someone listen to their problems mine will begin to fade and I'll see how blessed I really am.

11. Mentally list all the things I'd like to do before I die (touch a horse, spend a few weeks in snowy Vermont or Maine at a picturesque B&B writing the next great all-American novel, graduate Grad school).

12. Turn off the phones, turn down the iPOD and take a few naps.

13. Watch "Jerry Springer". My self esteem rises considerably after watching those losers.

14. Allow myself to get better.

15. If I'm not getting better, call my doctor. Hey, there's nothing wrong with Christians seeking medical help for mental and emotional problems.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Some Tips to Help You Be Phat and Fly

"Debo Debo Debo can't you see? Sometimes your words just hypnotize me. And I just love your flashy style..." I wonder how many know which song this is? It goes back a few years if you can remember the melody. Hint: think trumpet player Chuck Magionne.

Folks who are fat and want to be phat and fly, I'm gonna share some web sites for you to check out. Unfortunately Blogger's not allowing me to link or format my blog tonight so you'll have to take my word that these sites are around.

1. Silhouettes.com (Sizes up to 56! Great variety, quality of clothes, current fashions)
2. UllaPopken.com (Sizes up to 54! Great variety, awesome quality, not so current fashions)
3. Coldwatercreek.com (Sizes up to 24. Awesome variety and quality, more relaxed than business)
4. Lanebryantcatalog.com (Sizes up to 56! The old standby. Good variety but quality lags)
5. Roamans.com (See Lane Bryant)
6. Marylandsquare.com (Sizes to 13 EEE! Good variety, awesome quality)
7. Cowardsshoes.com (See Maryland Sqare)
8. Macys.com (Sizes to 24. Awesome variety and quality)
9. Dilliards.com (See Macy's)
10. Old Pueblo Trader (sorry, don't know the link)
11. JMS-Just My Size (Stockings, tights, undies for the rest of us. Good variety)
12. Junonia.com (For the workout bunch. Pretty pricey for workout clothes)
13. Catherine's (Sizes up to 54. Horrible website, poor quality of clothes)
14. Avenue (Sizes to 32. Great variety, current fashions)

An Ugly Four Letter Word

I have been living with this word hanging over me for so long I don't know how to react when it's not around. It would reach into my chest and contract my stomach muscles or grab my lungs and cause them to work too quickly or to breathe shallowly. At night I would feel it slide into bed next to me, laying its cold body on my pillows. Whispering to me frightful, scary, sad things that may happen to me or my family.

I let it guide me, harness me, pimp me and even speak for me. There were times I could hear myself saying things I normally wouldn't say but the word's power over me caused me to become dumb and mute while controlling me and making me succumb to its will.

I can't remember exactly when I became a living host for this word. For I can remember so well most of my life doing what I wanted to do, going where I could afford. Enjoying life to the hilt and laughing at anything that tried to stop be.

When did I allow it to possess me so? Was it during my childhood when all the preachers and missionaries told me Jesus was coming and if I weren't found doing His will I'd go to hell?

After daddy died, is that when?

Was it after watching all the people at work promot ahead of me knowing their common denominator was being thinner, younger and blonder than me?

Maybe it was after reading the article that Black women were more likely to be struck by lighting than marry. I don't know, but I do remember when I started fighting back.

Last September while dining out in a PUBLIC restaurant, the chair I was sitting in broke, causing me to fall back, hit my head and be knocked unconscious. Luckily my sister was with me and could call the paramedics because most of the other patrons didn't or wouldn't speak English.

When I came to myself I was wondering what had happened, why I was on the floor and why my sister was crying and yelling. My immediate concern was to soothe her because I hadn't realized I was the one in the perilous situation.

I felt so ashamed of myself after this that I vowed never to eat out again, to end all ties w/my friends because no one as big as I deserved to have friends and be loved, right? I stopped going out, stayed at home, began shopping through the Internet. Stopped attending church and other social events because fat people SHOULD be discriminated against and targeted by the public because it's stupid that we allowed ourselves to get this big, right? Yep, I allowed the word to come in and change/manage my life.

I became a shell of my former self. I stopped reading the fashion magazines because no one in the glossy pages looked like me. I buried myself in business magazines and newspapers. Began cooking my own meals and took an evening/weekend shift at work to help me become invisible. I felt this would give me a good excuse for not showing up to baby/wedding showers, or weekend trips with the girls, or ANY social thing.

THEM: "Will you be able to come/attend/sing?"

ME: "No girl, I'm working nights and weekends now so I won't be there. Good luck/have fun enjoy your life."

THEM: "But it's no fun w/o you. C'mon, take a day off and come w/us. We haven't been together in a while."

ME: "Sorry but I'm the only one there some nights and I can't leave my peers stranded. Take pictures!"

But one day I started laughing about something. I don't remember what it was but I started this bubbling laughter and it felt GOOD! It felt familiar and happy and the more the word tried to drown if from me the happier and lighter I became. With the help of a very good friend (I got a lot of good friends) and encouragement from family I started fighting back. And the first thing I did was confront the word--->f e a r.

I'm sure most of you had already picked up on the word. Look at it. It's so small and insignificant looking but it sure put a number on me. But I was tired of being punked out. I started praying again, attending church again, living out loud again, and just being me again. Smiling, singing, taking pictures, walking to the restrooms by myself again. Girls you know what I'm talking 'bout.

I'm not about to let fear deprive me of living anymore. I owe God so much for this wonderful life He's given me. Friends. Intelligence. Education (paid for by Daddy, not loans or grants). Traveling. Bill Parcells and Julius Jones and Gramatica (Dallas Cowboys, y'all)

If you've stayed w/me this long through the blog, thank you. This was all inside and had to come out.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

I Think My Cover's About to Be Blown

Okay, so one of my friends published on her blog her impressions or thoughts of me. And, of course I've agonized about it since reading it this evening. I mean really, that's what she thinks of me? When I featured her on my blog was I that mean and personal?

I'm glad I read it. Am I being paranoid? Perhaps I'm irritated because I've tried to interpret what she's saying from every possible angle. Maybe I'm just feeling offended that she opened up about her impressions of me on a WORLDWIDE blog!!

I really can't explain how I'm feeling except that now I wish I hadn't shared my blog with her. Like Blogaway has said, sometimes what we put in our blogs can come back and hurt us so we have to be diligent about the information we put out here in this blogosphere. Now I have to wonder how many others she's shared this with.

Going forward, do I continue to put my heart out here on this blog or create a new one and not share it? I know that I'll continue to blog because this is why I created this blog in the first place.

I just wanted a vehicle I could refer to from time to time, hiding behind the cloak of anonymity of the Internet to tell how I'm feeling. Along the way though I stumbled upon some great blogs and left my calling card by commenting on their sites. I began to enjoy finding comments left on my ramblings. It makes me feel 'certified' if you will.

So this is MY thing. Something I haven't even shared w/my family. A place I can come to throughout the morning to get a climate of other people from all walks of life, beliefs, intelligence level and most importantly THEY don't judge me.

I decided not to get on one of those auto link sites because I don't want to draw more attention to my blog and get all kinds of traffic, but then I'm tickled pink whenever I hear from my 'regulars' or someone new stops by to say hello or commend a particular thought. I think this is termed passive-agressive, but I'm not sure.

All I know is that I enjoy what I'm doing. It's fun, I get to travel all over the world without leaving my bedroom/kitchen/living room, and I can communicate w/people I'd not ordinarily associate with. I'm sorry about the rambling and I'm probably analyzing this thing too much.