Friday, March 30, 2007


Okay, so I'm obsessed with this word. Well, not the word actually, but what it means.

Here's what the Merriam Webster dictionary says integrity means:

1 : firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values : INCORRUPTIBILITY
2 : an unimpaired condition : SOUNDNESS
3 : the quality or state of being complete or undivided : COMPLETENESS
synonym see HONESTY

I like the idea of acting from an unimpaired and undivided place. I would like to say that I act this way all the time, but I don't. I made a commitment to myself to act with integrity and to act from a place of integrity as often as I can. And when I find myself acting from a place of immorality or dishonesty or judgment I move myself back to a place of integrity as soon as humanly possible.

I saw on Oprah's show recently that she had a minister who was encouraging his congregation to not complain. The church had these purple bracelets made, like the WWJD bracelets, with the words "A complaint free world" written on it and are sending them to all over the world. The idea is to get people to not complain for 21 days. Supposedly 21 days is how long it takes to create a habit. So, the idea is if you don't complain for 21 days, then you have a habit of not complaining. Here's the recipe for making a new habit of not put your bracelet on your wrist and when you find yourself complaining, you move it to the other wrist. You do this until you've gone 21 days without complaining, and then you've created a new habit. You can continue to wear your bracelet as a reminder to yourself and to show others that you are into not complaining. Of course, whenever you complain you have to move your bracelet to the other wrist.

Now, I think the idea of wearing a bracelet is sort of corny, but I like the idea of not complaining. Complaining does not fall into my definition of integrity and hey, if wearing a bracelet helps you to remember to not complain, then more power to ya!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

It's my birthday!

Today is my birthday and I thought I'd contemplate what I am thankful for.

I am thankful for:

my health

I think first and foremost on this sub-list are my ability to think, see, walk, talk, touch, taste, smell and hear. Not necessarily in that order. As I age I am becoming more and more aware of how lucky I am that I am for the most part, healthy. I have high cholesterol and take medicine for that, but everything else is good. I am a tad overweight and not as flexible as I used to be, but I work on that.

my loved ones

Especially my sister, who is also my best friend. I am very grateful that she loves me unconditionally. I am not sure what I would do if I didn't have her. She has been my rock and my confidant during times of chaos, trauma and joy. And, she is 9 years my junior. She might be younger than I am, but sometimes I think she is much, much wiser.

I am also thankful for my brothers, nieces and nephews, and my friends. I am grateful to have so many people in my life who love me. There was a time when I wasn't aware of how loved I am and have been. But I am aware now. And I feel lucky.

the knowledge that my parents loved me

Even though both my parents are deceased, my father died in 1986 and my mother died in 2006 and losing both my parents has been incredibly traumatic for me, it has been so incredibly helpful to me knowing that both my parents loved me very, very much.

my ability to care for myself

I feel very empowered when I am taking good care of myself. That means when I'm eating right, sleeping well, taking vitamins, being responsible with my money and living in my integrity.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Things my mother told me:

I just read Rosie's blog and she asked if her reader's made their beds everyday. That got me thinking about things my mother told me and I wonder do other's live by their mother's "Rules For Living"?
Here are my mother's "Rules For Living":

1. Always wear a clean, unholy pair of underwear. Just in case you get into a car accident you wouldn't want the ER doctor to see your holy underwear.---I always listen to my mother.

2. Never go outside without dressing nice, doing your hair and wearing make-up. You always want to make a good impression because you never know who you will run into. It could be a really nice, single, handsome, jewish guy.---I mostly listen to my mother.

3. Always make your bed. You never know who will stop by one day and you'll want to give them a tour of your nice house and you'll be so embarrassed if your bed isn't made.---I always listen to my mother.4. Always brush your teeth in the morning and at night. And always floss your teeth at least once a day. You only have 1 set of teeth and you want them to last a lifetime.---I always listen to my mother.

5. Drive safely, you're carrying precious cargo.---I mostly listen to my mother.

6. Call mom when you get home, even though you're in your 40's she will worry.---I always got annoyed with her when she would tell me this, but always called her so she wouldn't worry, and as I said in a previous post...missed her telling me this since she's died.

7. Don't take more food then you can eat, and always eat whats on your plate. There are people starving in Africa. You should be grateful for what you've got.---I always listen to my mother, even though sometimes my eyes are bigger then my stomach. What happens then is that my stomach stretches to accommodate all that food and no wonder I'm overweight.

Did I forget any?

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday Zack! He had a blast, ate tons of cake (never had sugar before in his whole life...1 year exactly on Tuesday), played with balloons, had a meltdown when he first got there cuz he was scared but his aunt (aka ME) calmed him, and best of all, got some really awesome gifts!

Here he is giving his new "Noony" (aka Snoopy) stuffed animal an eskimo kiss. He loves him some Noony!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Another 1st.

It's my nephew's 1st birthday on Tuesday. My sister and I are preparing for his big bang of a birthday party tomorrow. She's out shopping and I'm watching the little guy and making tons of pasta for the spaghetti dish we'll be munching on tomorrow.

I'll post pictures sometime soon.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Stolen post.


My nephew, who turns one on the 27th of this month, got his haircut for the first time ever today. My sister, in following with someones (I don't know whose) tradition of not cutting the baby's hair until s/he turns one, didn't cut his hair until today. Even though her big sister (aka ME) pestered her incessantly about cutting his hair because the sides were incredibly long and he was starting to look like a girl.

Before they head out to the barber for his cut I call her and whine to her that i've changed my mind; she shouldn't cut his hair. That he won't look like a baby anymore. And she laughs at me while I get teary eyed at the thought of my sweet baby nephew no longer being a baby.

So, she gets home and sends me pictures and I cry. I was right, he doesn't look like a baby anymore. He looks like a little boy. (Well, isn't that what he is?) And that makes me feel sad...for the fact that he's growing up and moving closer to being one. His 1st birthday.

Moving us closer to another 1st. The 1st anniversary of my mother's death.
Save for the fact that his birth is so close to my mother's death...and that makes me sad...not that I have a wonderful, sweet, lovely nephew, but that its been almost 1 year since my mom died.

Someone told me, the other day, that she would feel better as the 1st year anniversary drew near, then she would closer to the 1st month anniversary. I can't wrap my mind around that. I think I would rather be closer to the 1st month anniversary. For me, that would mean that I have more recent clear memories of my mother. Memories of having spoken with her, of having visited with her. Memories of the sound of her voice. But being closer to the 1st year leaves me with more faded memories. And that makes me sad.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Cruisin in the afternoon

My sister convinced me to take a vacation with her and her husband and son. We are taking a cruise. This is the boat we will be traveling on and the map shows our destination. I've never been, but they have and they love it. I'm not sure I will love it though. My idea of a vacation is one where I get to experience the local culture. I am not a sun goddess. But I do love to read and wouldn't mind spending a week reading for pleasure instead of for work. As I learn more about our trip, I'll fill you in.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Living My Best Life.

Okay, so now you know. I'm an Oprah fan. I think she has a lot of class. And, she inspires me to "live my best life." As such, I've been trying to speak and live in my truth. That means, I say what I believe to be truthful statements. Even if I risk being hurtful to others. Mind you, that does not mean I am purposefully mean. I do try to say truthful things in the most kindest of ways. This is where my clear understanding of what it means to be empathic and to be tactful comes in. And I do mean clear. (I have been well trained in this arena.) As well, I try to act in ways that feel true to me. I say "no" when I truly cannot deliver what I'm being asked to deliver and say "yes" when I can.

I really started living my best life after my mom died last year. Her death has led me to be mindful of many things. Including not having any regrets when I die. I've changed a lot since I decided to "Live My Best Life." I've cleaned my house and thrown away all sorts of things I was saving because I thought I would need this or that sometime, only the sometime never came. I also donated all the clothes I haven't worn in a year. I also followed Dr. Oz's advice and cleaned out my cupboards and refrig of all the bad things. As a result of this last effort, I've lost 5lbs and an inch without trying too hard.

I'm also on the verge of making some major changes in my life. Coming to the decision to make these changes was fairly traumatic, but since I've made them, and taken action on them I feel pretty good.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Weather report

The forcast for today, in metro Detroit, Michigan is sunny skies, with a light breeze. The temperature is now 82 degrees my office. The temperature outside is 43 degrees Fahrenheit.

I am just schvitzing! For those of you who aren't Jewish, and don't speak Yiddish schvitzing means sweating.

I've taken to wearing layers so I can shed them 1 by 1 without giving my office neighbors a peep show. They would probably like that, however I would not.

Okay...back to work now. I just needed a break.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Weather warm-up

I'm sitting in my office right now enjoying the sound of the birds and the sight of the sun. However, since I can see the sun from my office, one can guess that my office window is a south facing window. That means the sun just pours in the warmth from late morning till late afternoon making my office unbearably hot. Normally, I don't complain when the sun is out. I love the sun. Mind you, I don't have, nor am I convinced in the existence of S.A.D. (seasonal affective disorder) but my office just boils when the sun is in the sky. Because it's still winter, the air conditioning in the building is not on...yet. Even when its on, it never quite cools my office down. I have a fan blowing outside air into my office, but even that doesn't work. I've also closed the blinds shutting out most of the sun, but that doesn't work. And when I do that, I can't enjoy the sunshine. I feel like I'm stuck between a rock and a hard space. What's a girl to do?

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Cheater cheater

I think I cheated when I "wrote" my post on lemons. I really don't think I wrote it. Well, I wrote the first paragraph, and posted one of my pictures but the rest I didn't write. So, I apologize for misleading you and I will now write about lemons.

I like lemons. {See my picture on left.} I think they are gorgeous! Besides being gorgeous fruit I use them for so many things. I use them to season food. I love lemon garlic chicken. And I make a mean lemon garlic chicken dish. I also use lemons to season my water, to lighten my hair, to tighten my pores, to make my garbage disposal smell nice and to clean the smell of garlic and onions off my hands. Just saying the word lemon conjures up, in my mind, a wonderful smell. The word has also been used to describe a certain type of yellow.

What do you think about lemons?

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Did I say Basement Shmasement?

Now that's a basement! This is the basement in my new house. See how nice it looks? Do you think this space will be used for storage? That's right, not on your life.

Notice the nice fireplace? It isn't working right now, but it will be by the time all is said and done.

I also have a nice bathroom, pantry, office, laundry room space and walk-in closet (leftover from my old house.) I think I'm going to like this space.

Monday, March 05, 2007

When Life Gives You Lemons Make Lemonade.

Who knew that lemon's were so lovely and yet so impossible a fruit with such versatile uses except, of course, to be eaten raw by most adults. This picture is of a toddler I know who had no trouble devouring her half of the lemon. Her twin brother had no trouble eating his half. I wonder why toddlers don't seem to mind the intense sourness of the fruit, while most adults I know can't tolerate it. Read the following:

When I was just a lad of ten, my father said to me
"Come here and take a lesson from the lovely Lemon Tree"
"Don't put your faith in love, my boy" my father said to me
"I fear you'll find that love is like the lovely Lemon Tree"

Lemon Tree very pretty and the lemon flower is sweet
but the fruit of the poor lemon is impossible to eat
Lemon Tree very pretty and the lemon flower is sweet
but the fruit of the poor lemon is impossible to eat

One day beneath the Lemon Tree, my love and I did lie
A girl so sweet that when she smiled the stars rose in the sky
We passed that summer lost in love beneath the lemon tree
the music of her laughter hid my father's words from me

Lemon Tree very pretty and the lemon flower is sweet
but the fruit of the poor lemon is impossible to eat
Lemon Tree very pretty and the lemon flower is sweet
but the fruit of the poor lemon is impossible to eat

One day she left without a word. She took away the sun
And in the dark she left behind, I knew what she had done
She'd left me for another, it's a common tale but true
A sadder man but wiser now I sing these words to you

Lemon Tree very pretty and the lemon flower is sweet
but the fruit of the poor lemon is impossible to eat
Lemon Tree very pretty and the lemon flower is sweet
but the fruit of the poor lemon is impossible to eat

(According to Wikipedia, Will Holt wrote this song. Peter, Paul and Mary recorded as well as a number of other artists.)


Lemon trees bloom and produce fruit year-round. Each tree can produce between 500 and 600 pounds of lemons in a year.

Next time you have a sore throat, reach for a lemon!
Add the juice of one lemon to an equal amount of hot water for an anti-bacterial gargle.

Food historians say lemons have been in cultivation around the Mediterranean from as early as the first century A.D.

High in vitamin C, lemons prevent scurvy, a disease that causes bleeding gums, loose teeth and aching joints. To this day, the British Navy requires ships to carry enough lemons so that every sailor can have one ounce of juice a day.

The demand for lemons and their scurvy-preventing properties hit a peak during the California Gold Rush of 1849. Miners were willing to pay huge sums for a single lemon. As a result, lemon trees were planted in abundance throughout California.

During the European Renaissance, fashionable ladies used lemon juice as a way to redden their lips.

California and Arizona produce 95% of the entire U.S. lemon crop.



Did you know you can make electricity without a battery or a generator? You can make a small amount of electricity with a lemon. To make a lemon battery and feel the electric "juice" flow, just read the materials and procedure.

You'll need these materials to make the Lemon Battery:

1 fresh lemon
1 sharp knife
1 dime and 1 penny. Or you can use a zinc and copper strips
1 adult helper


1. Shake and roll the lemon on a table to "activate" the juices in the lemon.
2. cut two small slices in the lemon about 1/2 inch apart. The penny and dime will go in these slits.
3. Place your penny into one slot and your dime into the other slot.
4. With your tongue touch both the penny and the dime at the same time. Can you feel anything? Maybe a tingling?

How It Works

The acid in the lemon reacts differently with each of the two metals. One of the coins contains positive electric charges, while the other contains negative electric charges. These charges create current, which will flow if the battery circuit is complete. Your tongue acts like a wire and conducts the charges, making the circuit complete. The complete electric circuit causes a small amount of electricity to flow, which causes the sensation on your tongue. Regular batteries are very similar to your lemon battery. Good Job!