Monday, December 20, 2010

5 days till Christmas!

It's hard to believe Christmas is almost here again!

It's been hard to get in the mood to write lately. Feeling tired a lot. And hard to find the time and energy between working and taking the kids here, there and everywhere. Tonight Lexi has a girl scout party and Nicole has youth group. 

The family has been fighting illness.  It started with Lexi.  Then Norm and Nicole got it and then me.  I got over it fairly quickly but it went into Nicole's ear and Norm ended up with an infection as well.  Now Lexi seems to be getting it back.

Work has been going really well, except for the water main break last Wednesday.  Then we had to revise things for a couple of days.  This week we only work until Thursday and then have off until January.  

We are going to Norm's parents on Christmas night and to my family on New Years day.

I've  been depressed about my weight .  I haven't been doing great with dieting but I think I should hang it up and not stress over it until the holidays are that's what I will do. 

Anyway, Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Thanksgiving and other stuff......

On Thanksgiving we went to my mom's house with my family.

Lexi was initiated into Girl Scouts in November

This weekend Nicole was in a play called "The Man Who Came To Dinner" where he played Nurse Preen.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thankful for family and friends.....for health and for good health insurance and doctors when we need them. For food on our tables, a roof over our heads and a working furnace to keep us warm.......for a Father who gave us the ultimate gift..... We are so blessed!
We are going to my parents to celebrate with my family today.  It will be a little different due to a change in a recent family dynamic but that's the way it is.  There is always change whether we want it or not.  I know that is something I have had trouble dealing with in the past.  I know it will hit me hard when my daughter goes to college but for now I can only embrace the changes and go with the flow.
Photo of the moon
Nicole, at a recent band awards ceremony

Lexi, at a Brownie Induction

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Beautiful November Weather!

Today our pastor gave a definition for remission:  "Letting go as if it has never been committed."  He was talking about forgiveness but it just struck me how it could be applicable in so many different ways.....including cancer.  I often want to just forget I ever had it but it will always be there no matter how much I want to forget it.  I think though that I have reached the point that i feel I can live again without all the debilitating fear that it will return. 

It has been such a busy weekend!
On Friday we went to meet a dear friend in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania who had flown in from Seattle for a wedding.  I have never met this lady named Nancyjean in real life until Friday.  We drove many hours to spend a meal at the Olive Garden and then walk around the mall.  We also collaborated with a friend of hers who lives about an hour from us.  He wanted to surprise her so I had to tell her a little lie that i was babysitting an extra child so she would reserve an extra spot at the table.  The look on her face was priceless when she jumped from her chair shrieking his name.  I think the other customers wondered about her.    After we left her we decided to stop at the Flight 93 Crash site which is currently under construction.  We didn't have a lot of time as it was about to close but we were glad we stopped. 
Norm and Tyler braving Pittsburgh in his Eagles sweatshirt

Nancyjean, snapping photos of Tommy

"What?! No Eagles Store? (Tyler)

Norm, Ty, Lexi and I

Norm, Ty, Lexi, Nancyjean and I

Nancyjean and Tommy

At the Flight 93 Memorial

This Saturday was also Nicole's State Band Competition where they walked away with first place!

This weekend also busy with working in flower gardens, loads of laundry, birthday parties, a herd of deer, a pig roast, Christmas shopping ,choir Sunday and a fellowship meal at church................ I'm tired!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Autumn activities

As the weather cools, I am realizing that I am growing to love Autumn, particularly October when the leaves change to brilliant golds, reds and oranges.

 Nicole, homecoming dance
 Nicole and Coby

 Tyler had to dress like a hero for a wax museum at his school so he chose George Washington.  Lexi chose a cool girl for her Trick or Treat costume.


Monday, October 18, 2010

The Love of My Life

I woke up this morning at 3am, turned and noticed that my husband was not lying next to me and I wondered where he had gone...
He was in the living room sleeping on the couch comforting our dogs because he had not allowed them to sleep in our room last night because I was having a hard time getting comfortable. He snuck back in our room and told me not to worry because they were all resting well. (ever since my surgery and chemo my dogs go "everywhere" with me; imagine if you will me and all 3 of the dogs in our hallway half bath:-)
I dosed off and woke again at 4am, turned and saw that he was sleeping and snoring soudly. My mind started clicking and before I knew it, I was thinking of things that I know that I should not allow myself to ponder...
Who would spoil my grandsons? (Who else could they text and say "how's chemo? please send contacts!) Would anyone else in their right mind send printer paper, wite-out (i didn't even know they sold wite-out anymore) and pencils overnight, so that they could focus on their big school project?)
Who would tell all "those" stories at Holiday gatherings?
The one where our ski boat engine failed and my husband paddled us into shore, while the rest of us laughed at our situation and ate cookies and drank sodas.
Or that one time years ago before 9/11 when I was flying to see customers and had forgotten something and my husband drove like a madman, got what I needed and convinced the gate agent to let him bring it to me on the plane, just before it took off.
Or when he surprised me with our Las Vegas "quicky wedding" and flew in my daughter and grandsons.
Or when he flew to and drove all over northern, CA, found my adult severly bi-polar daughter living on the street and flew her back to NY so that we could get her into the best mental health facility?
Or when he told me he would face and fight this crazy disease with me every step of the way... - his voice was the first voice that talked to me in the recovery room
- he slept by me every night during my 8 day hospital stay
- he has gone to every Dr appointment
- he has gone to every chemo session
- he does everything around the house
- he says that my only job is to focus on myself and get better
- and he still chases me around the house and tells me I'm sexy
At 4:30am, I turned and woke him up... I said I was scared and needed him. He turned, snuggled me and we talked, laughed, cried and shared our fears and dreams. And again, he reminded me that I was sexy:-) He told me that it made him happy just to lie beside me and that I could never really comprehend just how much he loves me.
He also reminded me that he would always be there to do the things I couldn't and yes, he would even send wite-out overnight to our 15 year old grandsons.

Thank you sweet ladies for letting me share and brag about this incredible man I'm married to

Prayers, hugs and lots of love - Cathy Â

Reposted with permission from Cancer National Alliance

Sunday, October 17, 2010


My daughter, Nicole, went to the Homecoming Dance last night. We had a friend do her make-up but I did her hair even though I had no clue as to what I was doing.......

We spent the day doing not much of anything today which was a little nice.  I took a long nap and will probably pay for it tonight by not being able to sleep.  I probably needed the nap though.

My viral thing I have is slowly improving and I hope to soon be back to total recovery.  It's also been bothering me in my left leg and hip again so I am hoping it's not another bulging disk.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Beautiful song!

What Faith Can Do- Kutless
Everybody falls sometimes
Gotta find the strength to rise
From the ashes and make a new beginning
Anyone can feel the ache
You think it’s more than you can take
But you're stronger, stronger than you know
Don’t you give up now
The sun will soon be shining
You gotta face the clouds
To find the silver lining

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do

It doesn’t matter what you’ve heard
Impossible is not a word
It’s just a reason for someone not to try
Everybody’s scared to death
When they decide to take that step
Out on the water
It’ll be alright
Life is so much more
Than what your eyes are seeing
You will find your way
If you keep believing

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do

Overcome the odds
You don't have a chance
(That’s what faith can do)
When the world says you can’t
It’ll tell you that you can!

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
And I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do
That's what faith can do!
Even if you fall sometimes
You will have the strength to rise

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Enjoying the fall season.................

We had gone on a couple of hikes these past few weeks. Also, we had our local town fair. Below are some photos from those times. I hope you enjoy them.

We are doing fairly well health-wise. I had gotten a little bit of a setback where I may have contracted a viral infection but I am awaiting a test on that.  If not, they will run another test.  I think maybe the chemo I had finished 18 months ago may have affected my immune system and my ability to fight things. 

I am also trying to work at getting my daughter some help in school.  Both I and her teacher believe she might have dyslexia but I heard getting help could be a challenge.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Revamping my blog!

Recently I had the pleasure of going to our church's ladies conference where I learned I need to give God my Rags. I was prompted to rename my blog and revamp my self-image as well.

I wanted to share a post from my friend, Amy, who also attended the conference. Enjoy!


2010 Ladies' Retreat: From Rags To........

by Amy
Isaiah 64:6 - "All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away".

The theme of this year's Ladies' Retreat was "From Rags to......" and six women spoke of how God has been working in their lives to take their filthy rags and give them clean, beautiful, new fabric.  To give God those rags so that He may provide His renewal in their lives; for His redemption in their lives; for His riches and for His reliability in their lives.

What about the rags I need to give to God?  What about my rags of rejection; my rags of unsuitability; my rags of regrets;  my rags of victimization; my rags of fear; my rags of pain & loss; my rags of shame & failure; and my rags of seeking & putting others before God in my life?

I'm learning day by day to give God my rags and ask Him to give me HIS REALITY.

The reality that:

I'm Accepted
     "You didn't choose me. I chose you.  I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name."  (John 15:16)

     "But to all who believed Him and accepted Him, He gave the right to become children of God."  (John 1:12)

I'm An Over-Comer
     "For whoever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world--- our faith."  (1 John 5:4)

     "Think about what I am saying.  The Lord will help you understand all these things."
(2 Timothy 2:7)

I'm Secure & Loved
     "Can anything ever separate us from Christ's love?  Does it mean He no longer love us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or in danger, or threatened with death?  No!  In all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loves us.  For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anyting else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:35, 37-38)

I'm Not Afraid
     "For He has rescued us from the kindgom of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of His dear Son." (Colossians 1:13)

     "For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love and self-discipline." (2 Timothy 1:7)

I'm Not A Failure
     "So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.  And because you belong to Him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death."  (Romans 8:1-2)

     "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." (Philippians 4:13)

I Will Choose To Put God First
     "But seek first the Kingdom of God and all things will be added to you (Matthew 6:33)

And so, thank you to the ladies who had the courage to share their stories, their struggles and their Sovereign Lord with us.

And thank you Lord that daily, I am going From Rags To.... a new Reality in You!  

Monday, October 4, 2010

It rained and poured for forty long daysies-daysies......

Remnants of Hurricane Nicole

We had some flooding with Hurricane Nicole. It took a couple of days to go down.

Our Fair Week started today. Nicole got a first and second on her artwork. I will put up some photos when I get them all.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Bump in the road

     We came home today from  the hospital AGAIN.  This time the patient was my husband, Norm.  After some testing, it was discovered he had diverticulosis.  He also had another polyp that they are testing but the surgeon felt  it was normal.  We won't know that for a few weeks.  We came home this afternoon.  Glad to be home again!  I am hoping the rest of the year is QUIET!

     This weekend is our Ladies Conference at our church.  I've been looking forward to it.  They are even having a Lock-in type thing.  
     We were also saddened to have another family issue in my family regarding marriage.  I do not want to mention them by name but I hope you can keep them in your prayers both for them as well as for us as we have to process this and deal with the aftermath.  And please keep their three children in prayer as well. (ages 11-15)

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Back into routine.....

     After that hospital stint, we are getting back into the swing of things.  Tyler seems to be healing.  Norm takes him to the doctor for his follow-up tomorrow.

     Yesterday Nicole's marching band went to a competition.  There were 11 bands in their part of the competition and they got 5th place out of all 11.   Nicole was happy about that.

This morning their youth group left for the beach.  Due to a hurricane out to sea, they are not allowed to swim in the ocean so they will be stopping by a beach at a nearby bay.  We heard the waves were huge so I am glad that the state beaches decided not to allow anyone to swim.  

I have created a forum for Ovarian cancer warriors to go to connect.  I am letting it open for a month yet and then will take down if I get no more interest.  It is called Teal Warriors.  You can also click the Button on the left of this page.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

You never know what's gonna happen......

Last Monday evening we ended up at the Emergency Room with my son, Tyler.  He turned out to have an infection in his abdomen so we ended up staying in until Friday.  They sent him home with antibiotics.  It seems to be healing but there is a possibility of it returning.  I pray it won't.

On Saturday,we decided to continue with the planned trip with my parents to the beach. (photos below) We went to a beach in New Jersey and then headed over to 6 Flags Safari. Kids had a great time!

I managed to call my oncologist to inquire about my tumor markers. Turns out they are great which makes me very happy!

Monday, August 30, 2010

School and birthdays.....oh my!

Today Lexi, my youngest, turned 8. 

It was also the first day of school........

I also went back to work.  Unfortunately the dishwasher broke about halfway through the day so tomorrow am we have to go in to work early to wash dishes..... if it got fixed......

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Back to school!

Next Monday our school starts again which means I go back to work.  It's been a short summer and I didn't get everything accomplished that I would have liked to but I got a lot of it done.  Monday is also Lexi's 8th birthday.  

This morning I had a Ovarian Cancer Awareness Table at a church clothing giveaway.  I was a little disappointed more women did not stop but I can understand why.  It's something they think they will never have to think about because it won't happen to them.  Two years ago I would have thought the same thing.  So, how do we get women interested.? I was hoping to put the symptoms in large letters all over a board would catch their attention but it didn't.  How do we spread the word to a public who thinks it won't happen to them?  I had thought about shoving symptom cards in woman's hands but I don't like to be pushy.  If anyone has any ideas, let me know! 

Sunday, August 15, 2010


For a period we had long days of no rain but this past week we've been having a lot more rain.....almost every day.  It's good because we really needed it.  Local crops were beginning to look really bad.  

Yesterday I was getting a baking pan of barbecued chicken out.  I made the mistake of using a loosely crocheted potholder and it burned through to my hand causing me to jerk the pan back causing sauce to splatter on my forearm and hand.  The whole length of my forearm (approx 6 inches long and six inches wide) has a 1st and second degree burn on it and 1st degree on my fingers.  I had some burn cream my doctor gave me last year when I burned myself on the mower, so, with the help of Norm, I was able to treat myself.  If the burn had looked worse, I'd have probably headed for the ER but I figured this I could take care of because I had the stuff to do it anyway and it wasn't as excruciatingly painful as last year. 

I've been struggling emotionally and spiritually lately.  Call it after-effects of post traumatic stress from the cancer.  It is a syndrome that others who have gone through cancer have also experienced.  I know because a dear friend has shared the same thing.  It's like for so many months you are overwhelmed with friendship and it just suddenly stops.  I don't want gifts but it's like, "Where is everybody?"  I don't want to upset anyone by that.  I know it's actually something not even related by like a phenomenon of long-term illnesses.  I guess i am just trying to sort out feelings because that is how I do that.  I write them.  Another thing is that for so many months you are depending on God to get you through and now that it's over I just keep asking myself, "Now what should I do?"  I guess I've been feeling a little lost with that.  I don't know if it's the different perspective but sometimes I just feel like I am treading water.  I've been reading through Isaiah lately but sometimes I just don't feel Him speaking.  And then I wonder what i am doing wrong or what i can do different.  Then this morning our associate pastor had a lady get up to speak and it was almost like it was answer to prayer as she spoke about the burdens we carry.  I was just so touched by what she said.  I just needed to hear what she had to say today.  

I am including below some photos

Norm and I
Tyler, almost 12, and Coby, 5
Lexi, almost 8

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

It's almost time!

September is Ovarian cancer awareness month. Let's promote what is known as the silent killer so that others can learn the symptoms and have a better chance at surviving! Go to the link for more information....and then go out and buy your teal polish!

Monday, August 2, 2010

As August begins.......

Summer is speeding along and it won't be too long until the kids are back in school and I am back to work. I feel like there hasn't been enough time to get things done. I guess it does not help that school finished later and I was unable to do anything for three weeks due to my back. I am thankful that is mostly healed.

Nicole started band camp this morning. She will be doing that all this week and next week. It will next next Friday with a picnic and Parent Preview Show.

This will also be the month for appointments as I have scheduled a lot of doctor and dental appointments for the kids and I before school starts again. I am also looking forward to a Ladies tea as well as a business meeting.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Summer continuing.........

Monday was my last day with physical therapy. I tried returning to the gym on Tuesday avoiding two pieces of equipment and taking it easy but I could tell i was still healing and was not used to exercising. I'm trying to do my stretching exercises at least every other day so I'm completely healed by the end of August when my job starts again.

Nicole's youth group had a good trip to Kentucky. The team helped a single mom restore her trailer to a livable condition.

Our church has VBS this week. I was running the Pro Presenter Slides for the band. I learned a lot about adding new songs to the play-list. Usually that is already done for me on a Sunday morning.

I've been trying to work on raising awareness for Ovarian cancer in our town. I am trying to get a Turn the Town Teal movement going for September during Ovarian Cancer Awareness month. I have to get approval from the town council yet.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Hot summer days.....

We just ended a very long 90+ degree heat wave last week. (a lot of times over 100 degrees!) Norm got some wash lines up for me hopefully cutting down on our electric bill most of the year although I have been hanging things in the basement since February. My back is improving from Physical Therapy but it is still hard to carry a heavy load of wet laundry up the stairs, through the kitchen and down some unstable "steps" made from concrete blocks.

Lexi has started summer school and on Wednesday afternoon she goes to camp till Friday evening. She wanted to go longer. Hoping to be able to send her for a week next year.

Nicole is headed for Kentucky. They left after lunch yesterday and were stopping for the night at a church in West Virginia to sleep. This morning they will go on a mine tour and then head to their crew headquarters to get their assignment. They return on Saturday and will get in late......somehow I will have to get Nicole's clothing washed and dried and repacked for Sunday afternoon where Nicole is volunteering at the same camp Lexi will be at this week.

I am hoping to continue my library work today cataloging books, labeling and putting cards inside.

I hope you are enjoying your summer!

Psalm 100

The LORD Is God
Shout praises to the LORD, everyone on this earth. Be joyful and sing as you come in to worship the LORD! You know the LORD is God! He created us, and we belong to him; we are his people, the sheep in his pasture. Be thankful and praise the LORD as you enter his temple. The LORD is good! His love and faithfulness will last forever.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy Independance Day USA!

The local fire companies have had a very rough week. Last Sunday three motorcycles crashed into a van. We don't know the complete story of what happened with that yet, but five of the six motorcycle riders were killed and the sixth one severely injured. Early this morning they went to another crash involving fire..... another gruesome fatality. Please keep all firefighters, police and ambulance responders in your prayers.

Last Sunday morning we were also awakened early to a major leak under our kitchen sink. It was repaired but when we got the water loss estimate from the borough, the water lost was 7 times more than what we use in an average day. We are thankful that the borough said they were doing to credit us for some of it.

On Monday I started having lower back and leg pain. My oncologist sent me for a CT scan and a tumor marker but that came back okay so now I have to find a way to relieve the excruciating pain. I believe it's sciatica but I am almost scared to find out what I need to do to fix it. I am not up for surgery. I would like physical therapy better. We have to come up with some money to do something. It is very frustrating because I had so many things I wanted to get accomplished this summer.

Tonight we are planning to go and see some fireworks with my parents. I thought we might take a little picnic along.

I will leave you with a verse on Freedom:

John 8:36 - "If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed." God bless!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Send a Virtual cake to benefit Ovarian Cancer Research fund

Brighten someone's day this summer with a virtual cake. Each day you send a cake, Electrolux will donate $1 to the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund. And you'll be entered for a chance to win the hot new induction range from Electrolux2.