pie lollipops...

Where have these been all my life? Filled with cherry pie filling or chicken pot pie - I DON'T CARE. While slightly crazy, I am so there.

Until today, could never have imagined the words pie and lollipop in the same sentence - now, I will never imagine them any other way. It is quite a thing to learn something new and be excited about it. It is the only way to live - open and ready. Can't say I practice all what goes through my mind but have high hopes for myself on days like today. When I see the possibilities and feel that excitement - that is hope right there.

On the flip side, I spent most of the day holding a sick boy. Have never seen chills head toward semi-convulsions. He scared me a bit but I held his stare and as I told him it would be ok, he held my stare with mostly trust. Not the same excitement that comes with the pie lollipops but certainly a new experience all the same. The older I get the more I see the value in being open to new things, be they good or less than.

I hope my boy has a good night - we will be heading to the doc first thing in the morning and when he gets well enough, off to the store to get the ingredients to make the pie lollipops and whatever else we discover by then...


This is DH's uncle. He buried his wife yesterday. The second one. He had the great fortune to find 2 wonderful women to spend his life with. He also had to see cancer ravish both of them. I can't imagine burying one spouse, no less having to go through the whole experience all over again.

If Uncle Elbert's life would be seen in a timeline, I imagine he would tell you it would mostly post on the positive side. He is a tough character. Seen alot, experienced more. No one gets to the nineties and hasn't had the opportunity to see all different paths on that timeline.

He inseminated cows for a living. Imagine that. Quite the Storyteller, just like DH's dad was. For the Dille men, there wasn't a meal or a Story, they could pass without partaking. With their gruff voices and bushy eyebrows - they are quite a sight to behold. With his new straw hat on, he looked just like DH's dad - kinda of spooky.

There was also a Dille girl and she is still a firecracker. The grandkids say she looks exactly like her mother now. As I watched brother and sister sit there and really talk about nothing much - just being together. She has been a widow for many years and their default is to laugh and move on. It is the Dille way which has yet to be proven to have been passed on to the next generation. I hope so. I hope the faith they believe in, is what is keeps them going.

Would a timeline of my faith look a lot different than a timeline of my life? Obviously, since I started my faith life so late in life, the timeline is shorter but has as many bumps as the life one. I want to say that I think we have reached some kind of even keel of both timelines but I am not sure. I want to be, I am just not. I want the faith that I saw yesterday complete with tears of sadness knowing that I will come out on the other side, different but ok. Elbert and Catherine gave me that hope by example. My instinct is to hope I do the same someday for someone else. We'll see...


I checked out of life for a few hours today. I curled up at a Starbucks with a caramel frappucino, a notebook, a pen, my trusty cell phone MP3 player, and headphones. That’s my way of exiting the world and getting personal space in the land of 1 billion people.

Until you got to the billion people part, you like me, would think this was a blog post from Any Small Town, USA. It is from an American woman living in China. Not only an American but a red headed one at that.

When we think of exiting, it is usually on less than a positive note. It denotes leaving and not coming back and leaving on a more or less, permanent basis. I equate exiting with the old time cartoons where someone would use a cane to drag the bad performer off the stage - which cartoon character was it who said, Exit - stage left?

I can only imagine what 1 billion people must look like and it makes the hair stand up on the back of my neck. There are 80,000 people in my hometown and that is too much for me but I think Kimberly is on to Something. First that we need to exit every once in a while to keep our sanity and that we can do it without hiding behind closed doors. If we can learn to exit while in the company of many, we can learn to do most anything. Usually, we say, when the stars all align or I get older or I get smarter, then I can(insert better thing here). When everything is just right, then I can. When, Then. I like Kimberly's way better. It is learning to do Then, on the run. It is saying no to When. It is saying that Then is possible outside of When and I am just the girl to do it.

Don't think this is brain surgeon only material and a pretty, good life lesson. One you could pass on or even better, put into practice. If it is good enough for K and 1 billion people, it's good enough for me...


Dr B told us "He's in bad shape." I'm trying to hold fast. Dr B is trying to ring Boston again. Will you pray!??!
34 minutes ago from Tweetie
Stellan is getting Lasix now to help him get rid of his fluid (it's a diuretic). Dr B is here. He upped a med & will try Adenosine next.
35 minutes ago from Tweetie
http://twitpic.com/bte9p - Holding him close always.
about 1 hour ago from TwitPic
His bicarbs & ph are low. He's in an acidotic state (metabolically speaking) and won't eat. Gave him Zofran but he barfed it.
about 1 hour ago from Tweetie
Stellan is no longer urinating, his Potassium is up, he is still in SVT, very swollen & at midnight he began incessant vomiting,
about 2 hours ago from Tweetie
He will come back to the bedside shortly & we'll conference. Can I reiterate that these last many hours have not been good!?
about 2 hours ago from Tweetie
Stellan is hanging in there, but is deteriorating. It's not good. Dr B is here on the floor, but off conferencing with other cardiologists.
about 2 hours ago from Tweetie
I almost can't bring myself to write with more bad news.
about 2 hours ago from Tweetie

These are Jennifer's tweets from the last 2 hours. The last 2 days have been filled with more tense moments than one could ever imagine. Unless God intervenes, Stellan will be with Him soon. His family knows the score but like all of us when push comes to shove, we will fight back with all we have. All that talk about can't wait until getting to heaven - goes out the door and the battle to hold on is as fierce as any war fought battle.

DH's aunt lost her battle last Thursday and we will honor her tomorrow. She was on Hospice and had lived a good 90 years but her family will miss her. Her husband has lost 2 wives to cancer. He has gone through the agony of watching women who he loved, endure unbearable pain and he knows his time is coming. As I have all weekend, my prayer for Stellan and his family is one of peace. More than cure, there comes a time when all has been done and what you believe become real. If you believe that Jesus died on the cross for your sins and you accept His Grace, you need to claim that. If you believe Something else, you need to go there. It is natural to want to claw and scratch for every Moment when you are in MckMama's position. For each of us, it is human nature to demand relief when there is none in sight. This is what MckMama says about her son and what happens to him on her blog,...But God does and we trust Him no matter what He decides.
I found out last friday that a friend that I worked with for many years has a terminal disease. She is not looking at curative treatment just goign with pain meds. Could it be because her daughter is clinging to very little time herself and her mother wants to be her? I don't pretend to know any of the answers but want to keep asking the questions...because Someday, it will be my turn.

Someday it will be me scratching and clawing.
Someday it will be me needing all the peace I can get
Someday it will be me and I want to be ready to give an account for what I believe...
Dr B told us "He's in bad shape." I'm trying to hold fast. Dr B is trying to ring Boston again. Will you pray!??!
34 minutes ago from Tweetie
Stellan is getting Lasix now to help him get rid of his fluid (it's a diuretic). Dr B is here. He upped a med & will try Adenosine next.
35 minutes ago from Tweetie
http://twitpic.com/bte9p - Holding him close always.
about 1 hour ago from TwitPic
His bicarbs & ph are low. He's in an acidotic state (metabolically speaking) and won't eat. Gave him Zofran but he barfed it.
about 1 hour ago from Tweetie
Stellan is no longer urinating, his Potassium is up, he is still in SVT, very swollen & at midnight he began incessant vomiting,
about 2 hours ago from Tweetie
He will come back to the bedside shortly & we'll conference. Can I reiterate that these last many hours have not been good!?
about 2 hours ago from Tweetie
Stellan is hanging in there, but is deteriorating. It's not good. Dr B is here on the floor, but off conferencing with other cardiologists.
about 2 hours ago from Tweetie
I almost can't bring myself to write with more bad news.
about 2 hours ago from Tweetie

times like these...

With only 160 shopping days left, it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas in some stores.

Reuters - After U.S. retailers posted 10 straight months of sales declines, some chains are trying to bring holiday spirit — and revenue — to the summer with "Christmas in July" promotions.

Both Sears Holdings Corp and privately held Toys R Us are holding wintry holiday-themed events this summer ahead of their back-to-school promotions, which usually start around the end of July.

Christmas in July? Digi sites and QVC made the yuletide rounds this weekend. Value, fear and greed make strange bedfellows - when they join forces, we are the receiptants/targets of this strange trio. While most people are jsut trying to make it through the day or week, the thought of what to buy Aunt Millie for Christmas seems like a bad joke. The news is filled with Stories about how alcohol is ruining our society but whine about the lack of sales. Obesity is running rampant. In 1993, there was no state with a 20% obesity rate - today, there are 49 yet we are bombarded by fast food ads everywhere we go. Our TV broke last week so we got a new one - free delivery, free install and free hauling away of old TV. When we bought new appliances last year, I spent over $300 on delivery charges.

I dare say we have lost our way when Christmas starts before Back To School. You can feel the desperation not of the Season but of the retailer. At the end of the Day, perspective is called for and should not be graded on a curve. It is exactly times like these, that we need all the perspective we can find to keep ourselves from going crazy.

This morning, The Daily Digi made this observation, There are so many ways to teach, model, and practice a giving spirit. When gifts come for no reason other than love and care, they mean so much more.. Perhaps, we could get an early start on teaching ourselves and those around us, a sense of giving. Not just gifts but that is part of it. Bigger isn't better. It isn't about covering every square inch of space under the tree. Look around - what do you see? What could you mirror for those around you? Maybe the idea of Christmas in July isn't such at bad idea, hmmmm.

The best wedding entrance ever...

I know it's 5 minutes of your life that you will never get back, but don't think you will mind too much...


That overwhelming feeling that overtakes each of us. It feels like we are drowning and there is no way out. Sometimes the why is out of our control - it is about others and the choices they make that affect us. Sometimes, it is like Miss M - self inflicted and out of control.

Have had the Conversation about wanting to give our kids more and make life easier - and the consequences of what that has come to look like. Had that Conversation today. The consensus is that we are not sure we did that generation any good and if we even harmed them. They have had most everything handed to them and the result was not one of giving thanks but wanting more, and more...and more. Then you have to decide if you go toward the Tough Love light. The truth is not sure that we are ready to live with the Consequences of them being mad at us or worse, not having the skills to live thru the Touch Love. I have come to think they are stronger than we think and when we stop the madness, they can and will step up. But not until we stop. No stoppy by us, no stoppy from them. It will have to start with us. We will have to make the first move - they are not capable of taking the first step...until they are dropped from the nest - there would be absolutely no reason to even consider leaving the nest.

For each of us, the Flood will come. It will come in different ways, at different Seasons of our lives. It will feel overwhelming and awful but all floods come to an end, eventually and what is left is where the rebuilding can take place. What is washed away is gone. Time for Something new. Time for a new way. Time to change...

winds of change...

I was sitting in the rocker, running a bunch of God ideas, mine not His, and some of his people when my humble bubble burst and the thoughts took a sharp left. Redirection came in a most unexpected way and came with a few less than positive warm fuzzies. You could almost call it a payattentionGIRL with some guilt of my own thrown in.

There is bad guilt and good guilt. It's fine to start with bad guilt as long as it turns pretty quickly to the good kind. Bad guilt will keep you in your own head and then you will be of little use to anyone, yourself included. Good guilt takes you to a place where the Good Stuff is. The kind that makes you look around, and see the winds of change. The winds I have missed.

The neighbor to the left of us, left her house and it is in foreclosure. The weeds have started into my yard and I am left with little option but Round-Up. She said the house was sold but I think that was her way of saving face. Neighbor, on the other side - is gone. Has been spending time away from home and by the roundabout of cars, there is some bad things going on over there. Not drugs but relationships that are anything but healthy.

The neighbors directly across from us have been neighbors for over 10 years. I haven't since Susie since school ending. Her husband had told my DH that she was sick and I guess I expected she was back on her feet, Obviously not.

Seems like everything is a bit off this year. The hot weather came later than usual and we all know that life is different for many people this year. Last year, it was about taking a staycation instead of a vacation. This year, it is about eating and putting gas in the car. To put it honestly, I have forgotten about my neighbors. I haven't given them much thought. No prayers, no hello, no nothing. There is no excuse and I feel bad. Bad enough to pay attention to the winds of change. Not sure what that will look like but I am open to suggestions. At the very least, they will purposefully be in my prayers and hopefully, there will be Something More. Done right, guilt can be a good thing. Today sealed the deal for me...

middle Summer...

There are three Seasons of summer. Beginning summer, the weather is unstable and we are all just getting our summer bearings out and dusted off. Late summer, back to school is a reality and while it is still hot outside, the new season is all ready here. Middle summer is the best. You know it is doing to be horribly hot for many days in a row and there is nothing you can do about it.

It also brings, by it very nature, the best in us to do nothing. Nothing pressing, nothing that can't wait until...some other day. While we sit under the cool, ceiling fan - there are many thoughts to be thought. Of days to come and days that have been. As I type this, there is a wonderful little seven year old boy sounds asleep - waiting for another one of these days. He has little expectations for the day other than to be the center of my world which can only happen when his little sister is not around. If Miss M is around, no one else is allowed within a five foot radius of me or fists will fly. She has claimed me, just as if I was the state of Louisana and she was the sole owner. So, these Moments with the boy are precious to us both.

We played pilot and co pilot last night and he gave the reins of pilot to me. He liked the way I told everyone to put their trays back in the upright position and to prepare to land. He was good about waving the plane in for a safe landing. These are the things that are filling my head in middlle summer. Not much of anything in particular but a whole bunch of Something to pay attention to...

July 20, 1069...

A week ago, I couldn't tell you where I was 40 years ago on a given day. I couldn't tell you where I was last week! but that all changed last week when in an instant, I knew. Without a shadow of a doubt and with unbelievable, clarity.

It was the summer of 1969. I had graduated on June 13 from Pacifica High School in Garden Grove, California and a few weeks after that had a Beach Day that changed the summer of 1969 and whatever plans I had. It had to do with no sunscreen and a all over body burn that landed me in bed for over a month which was where I was when the first man walked on the moon on July 20. I can't remember what part of that month but it was closer to the beginning than the end. I couldn't wear any clothing and had huge blisters and acres of skin that kept peeling off. It was a nightmare and not a great way to start my new independence from high school. I can remember thinking this was probably how my life was going to play out - a series of bad choices filled with painful consequences. Sunscreen wasn't a big deal in those days and I was an idiot but that night, I remember.

I was most certainly living in the Moment because while watching and thinking how cool, I didn't think past that. What would be next? Where would we go as a country? It was mainly, OH...bright and shiny...and ouch, that hurts Don't' think I thought much more about the whole moon thing after that, just went back to trying to get out of bed and get something going.

Little did I know that 28 years later, to the day - my only child would be married and that 40 years to the day, I would be having a full-blown sleepover at my grandkids home so said child and hubby could celebrate their 12th anniversary. It will be a night of whatever and a morning of several breakfasts. I am nothing if not the perfect short order cook.

Wish I could have told that poor girl stuck in bed with much pain, how it was going to turn out. Wish I could have let her know, the worse was behind her. She would be able to make her own choices and while there would be times of anger and craziness, the real craziness - the kind she had no control over and couldn't escape was about to get alot better. I would tell her, if you think this moon thing is awesome, JUST WAIT and see what is coming. It would be hard to almost impossible to take in, like if God hadn't of given us free will and sent the Plan of our lives down to us.

From there to here in 40 years...who could have imagined and this is just the Beginning... PS. gone on Monday, will be back on Tuesday!


The kids each have a popa Steve. It worked well for picking a middle name for Keaton but fell apart when Gage was on his way.

Grandma Sue has a Steve
nana has a popa,

Sue's popa
and nana's popa.

Popa Steve retired yesterday. Sue's not mine. They celebrated with a family dinner last night and the boys couldn't understand why we weren't coming. They understand and will tell you, as they did yesterday in trying to figure this all out, that they are 1/2 Dille and 1/2 Smith. They also know their mommy is all Dille and their daddy, all Smith but we do so much together with the Smith's, the lines blur for them. They think I am all Dille and we will have THAT talk another day. Gage has been absolutely fascinated with the Story I told him about my mother. He has asked about her all his life, and I lie to him. He will look me straight in the eye and ask me if she was nice and I will hold his stare and lie through my teeth and say yes. For now, that is the only way it can be but I did tell him the Story I heard several times growing up.

Germany, WW2. My mother was a young woman and own her way home from work, she was chased and shot at by the Americans. Different versions have had different details but the jest of it was she dodged the bullets and kept running until she got to her apartment and was safe, Her mental problems have been blamed on this and a few other incidents. Gage can't get enough of this Story and has shared with Grandma Sue and whoever else will listen. The one he doesn't know is when a bit later, her apartment complex was bombed and they had to get out fast. The neighbor upstairs had a baby and my mother ran up the stairs, grabbed the baby who was on fire and ran down the stairs. When she got outside and unwrapped the baby, all that was left was ashes.

I don't and never will know how much, if any is true but it would explain a lot. Popa Steve is a pilot. First commercial, then UPS. He has flown all over the world. I imagine he will have lots of Stories to tell the kids once he settles into retirement. I also imagine it will take some time to sink in. Over the years, he has miss many birthdays, holidays and soccer games just not of his gk but his own sons. The other reality is retirement. It means you are entering another chapter. It makes you face your mortality, like it or not - here I come! It must be a bittersweet experience, one I am glad I will never have to have. Being downsized was a way better way to go, but I would have loved to see the firetruck shoot over the plane as he came in for his final flight. I wish for a great retirement for popa Steve only I wish it was nana's popa...


For me, creativity comes in waves. Not unlike waves of nausea during flu season. Something will click and I will not be able to turn my mind off. I did the photo treatment of Miss M on Picnik. It is a free site with the ability to upgrade for some cool effects and a easy way to fix and edit your photos.

Another site that makes all this digital scrap booking site so creative is Fotofusion.com. You can play for free but not print (they put their watermark on the photos). If you like collages, this program is fantastic. You can crop, enlarge and fix most anything in this program. Automatic drop shadows and if you don't like the look of the collage, just hit the Auto Collage button and it will rearrange all the pictures in totally new configuration, Just plain cool.

I have told you about Photofunia.com - just love them and they keep adding more and more templates, The new one today was the Gallery with room for 5 photos. I see a lot of potential with this one.

If you are needing some digital freebies, Ikea Goddess.com makes the round of free goodies most days. Lots of styles - something for everybody.

And the typewriter from Holliewood's Queen Bee kit(Oscraps.com)After the yellow layout, it is showing signs of being a book. There are already 2 layouts with more coming - I can feel it.

Today, the inspiration was flying off the shelf. The layouts and photo editing ideas just kept coming and coming. I expect that will not be the case tomorrow so I enjoy it while I can knowing that one can't live on the mountain - top every day. I wouldn't want to even if I could. How would you ever learn to love living in the valley...


If you have never heard of Donald Miller, you are missing out. Grab Blue Like Jazz and hole up until you have read it. Be prepared to throw out a lot of what you believe, mainly the warm, fuzzies of being a follower of Jesus.

They make it look so easy, so desirable - like all the bad stuff goes away. it doesn't. You don;t automatically quit smoking or over eating. In fact, it will probably get worse. I don't remember the part in the bible where we were to go to out and ask everyone, If you were to die tonight, would you go to heaven or hell? or that we have this great, free gift for you = all you have to do is accept it and all will be well. This isn't about getting a free two liter bottle of Coke for nothing - just sit back and enjoy. It is not like that and those who say it is are liars. If you don’t have people around who will tell you, you stink - you are dead in the water, says Jerry Seinfeld. I think this could be true in more areas of our relationships than we think.

DM is right, so a few others like Anne Lamott. If it was simple and easy and fun, you would still only have a small percentage sign up. We are a fickle people and value has layers which all have to be useful for us to even check something out. I take Miller's position, it is going to take a long time and it is going to be rough but will have geniune value. Still interested?.... If there is still one who can say,I want to see what you guys see. I want to know why you are hanging in there. Where's the value for you...We invite you to share the journey. We don't have answers but we will honest and will stand with you whenever you need us. We can't pray the pain away but will help hold you up as you go through it. It is really all we have to offer - anybody offer you more, run away baby, run away...

going to church...

Got up yesterday, intending to go to church but didn't want to. Really didn't want to, on so many levels. Had pictures to play with, wanted to know who was preaching, don't like to go by myself and a million more things going thru my head. I'm not sure when I made the decision to go or ever what that process looked like but at the appointed time, I grabbed my journal and Diet Coke and headed off.

Got my seat and everything lined up and life was good. Then my friend showed up and said she had volunteered to greet and I heard the words come out of my mouth, I'll help you! Who said that - certainly not me. I had greeted some 13 years ago when we were a small group and decided it was not my gift and never did it again but here I am - greeting.

Say Good Morning, hand out a bulletin. It really wasn't so bad. Some couples prefer to share and some want their own. I am sure after a while you would remember who wants what. Some who don't want one at all, tell you they can't read which makes them seem like a bad comedian. Just say you don't want one - would you really rather appear illiterate than own up to not wanting a bulletin? Really?

With two greeters on either side, you have the Huggeing Pastor in the middle. I avoid him, every chance I can. I will decide who hugs me and he is not on the list but it did give me a chance to see how other people react. There were those like me who took an instant dive to the right or left to miss the hug but there were a great many more who ran into his waiting arms. Little kids, and big kids all wanted a hug from Pastor Hugger. Like they had been waiting all week for it. Like they couldn't live without it. After a half hour of greeting and hugging, I had a better idea of why I wasn't home, playing in Lightroom.

For whatever the Reason, my attitude was a bit different coming out of church than going in. Will it make it easier next time I go? I think not. I am not looking for easier, or even an explanation. There are signs everywhere ( Thanks L) of why people have a hard time going to church. These two are across the street form each other. The thing is, it's not about the people or the music or the politics - it is about Jesus calling the church, His Bride and try as I may, I have not found a way around it. You don't have to like it to go, you just t\have to go. You might learn something about yourself or Him. That I am up for...


If you send a photo to be printed, SOOC ( straight out of the camera) to a photo lab, they decided what part of the picture to keep and what to crop. I learned that the hard way. Only took once and from then on, I have cropped and resized my own photos. I choose the size I want and make my own 11x14 or 8x10 or whatever size I need. do my own cropping or enlarging, then send the saved file to Costco to be printed.

You resize - you choose
They resize - they choose.

How much and where,
Completely different look and feel.

Our lives work very much the same way. We can choose or we can let others choose - either way, we have to live with the consequences. Either you have to step up or step back. Knowing which direction to go and when to go, is the key. Sometimes it is better to hand over the resizing, not to people but to the One who made you. His cropping is at times, painful and hard to see why but in the end, someday it will make sense. Letting people pick for you is not always the right way to go but we sure give them the power, more often than we should.

Today, I am going to crop Gage's photo before I upload it to be printed. I am feeling pretty good about that. I love this face and know it well. How it looks hanging in a frame at my house can best be decided by me. It is the One who gave him to me that did all the cropping before he got here. Can't wait to see what else he has for this boy. I have high hopes that this boy will get it right more often than not. While he is in his MJ moonwalk phase, he sings Awesome God with more emotion than you could ever imagine. That is good enough for me...

July 9, 1999...

That was long day, a tense day. When he wouldn't come out and went in to fetal distress and the doctor started barking orders, I got scared, For my girl and my grandson. A friend of ours had her baby four days earlier - but he wasn't due until September and there were many touch and goes for them. I never thought about that I wouldn't get to be with my girl and see my grandchild born until all the commotion and she was whisked off for an emergency c-section. I would have to wait until someone came and told us they were ok. They didn't come fast enough, fear took its sweet time and went after me. By the time, I knew everyone was ok, it was too late. My mind took a while to calm down. My girl didn't wake up like she should so we had to take care of him until she could which was late into the night.

He has been such a joy. He is the kindest, most sweet boy I know. It is his nature to care about everyone and their feelings. He will give, trade, whatever is needed with his sister and brother to keep the peace. He has taught all of us the true nature of Love - I will never be able to thank him for all he has taught me, all he has shared with me and all the Love, he has shown me.

Happy Birthday Keaton, I love you to infinity and beyond - I hope you have a wonderful day and that we can show you half the Love you have shown us...love nana.


Latest Twitter post...aliedwards Taking a leap of faith.

Been a long time since I have thought about taking a leap of faith. Seems like mine have been mostly in my head, nothing with any action involved - not that there is anything wrong with that but one can't live by intellect alone. I guess you could describe my growth spurts in the realm of what is possible, not what has become possible. My mind and in turn, my heart has been learning that I truly know nothing and that anything is possible. While that sounds like a cop out, it really has been quite the experience when I see how my thinking has changed. It opens up a whole new world.

But when I read Ali's tweet tonight, I perceived action. A verb instead of a noun. A physical taking of a stand, not knowing how it will turn out. No guarantee that what is being done is rightor will have a good outcome or is even the right thing to do. That is why it is called taking a leap of faith. Maybe it is time to stop being a student and get out and try out what I have learned. Out of the classroom and into the Real World. Hadn't ever crossed my mind until just now. Five little words were all that it took. Not sure what it is going to look like but I understand there may be a new path coming my way and like Miss Ali, I want to take that leap and all that comes with it. Without using what you learn, there is not much point in learning. You can store up knowledge forever and never go any farther but have you really learned anything? Without action, not much is gained...

man in the mirror...

One pair of tickets attracted a bid of $275,000 on eBay before the listing was removed. It was difficult to tell whether the offer was serious.

Both eBay and Craigslist took steps Monday to thwart the ticket sellers.

"eBay will not allow Michael Jackson memorial service tickets to be listed on the site," the company said in a statement. "If found, eBay will remove them from the site immediately."

By Monday afternoon the number of listings for "Michael Jackson memorial tickets" on eBay had dropped to a handful, and the site was removing them shortly after they appeared.

Craigslist allows its users to flag ads they find inappropriate, and ads receiving enough negative flags are automatically removed from the site. Many ads proffering Jackson memorial tickets were removed shortly after they were posted Monday.

Among those was a listing posted by a man who identified himself only as Peetey, 29, of Venice Beach, California. He was asking $8,000 for a single ticket; the winning bidder would accompany his girlfriend to the service, he said.

The ad was removed within 15 minutes, he said, but that was enough time for five people to call with interest.

In a CNN poll, 60% of those under 50 are MJ fans and 39% of those over 50...and that is just in the United States. The MJ Love ratio is much higher in Japan, Russia, South America and the UK. He had spent the last few years out of our country and his comeback tour was not on American soil.

There have been complaints from multiple camps that MJ is not being treated like Frank Sinatra and Elvis to which most anyone would say, none of them had been charged multiple times with child molestation and self admitted strange ideas about children. You can't divide a person. He was a musical genius and a bizarre man. We know all the words to Man In The Mirror and we have those memories of him trying to convince us that sleeping with other people's children was a normal, loving response.

Yet, there is Something inside us that makes us go a bit crazy. Have read that Elvis has made more money in death than in life - several times over. You can see where the MJ gravy train is headed. He died in the New World. The Twitter and Facebook world. It makes the world seem so much smaller and personal.

I wouldn't miss the funeral today for anything. I am going to thoroughly immerse myself in the music and ceremony. You see, we are all the man in the mirror. We all end up in the same place, facing the same future. Whether you are the King of Pop, or the Queen of Hearts, someday you will have to face the King of Kings and all the things of earth will fade away. Tomorrow, our lives will go on and most of us will not give MJ too much thought until we hear a song on the radio or news about his estate. He is Elvis to his generation and will live forever in their hearts. I know some Elvis fans, they have never forgotten him and never will. MJ fans will do the same if not more.

What does this all have to do with you and me and the Moment? Look in the mirror, realize how much you are loved and how complete you already are. Understand that we each make a mark on this world and have a posse of Love that we can count on. We are the Man in the Mirror - RIP Michael Jackson...


There was a message on our answering machine when we can home on the 4th for a short break in the holiday action from DH's cousin. He needed to talk to us while he was in town, needing to catch us up with his dad, DH's uncle.

Uncle Elbert is the oldest of the three kids. With DH's dad passing away last year that leaves him and a sister left. His 2nd wife is dying from stomach cancer, Hospice is on board so it is just a matter of time. Besides trying to care for her and for him, they have to be start making plans for what will happen to him when she passes - at 91, he may not be able to take care of himself and decisions may have to be make quickly.

What a difficult time of life. His first wife died of cancer and he knows what is coming and his wife has had cancer and also knows, her fate. Someone must be there 24/7 now for her and then for him. If you know anything about Hospice, you know that will predict nothing. They know the process of death obviously and can help explain the physical process of the human body shutting down but as to when, where and how long - they offer very little. We talked about how she is now in the sleeping stage. She says she is happier sleeping - no pain and it just feels good. Having volunteered with Hospice, I have seen a this scenerio several times and the patients all agree. She could live a few weeks or a few months. It is a waiting game for everyone. Talking about the Veteran's Home as his next step but with a 8 to 10 month waiting list, his physical and mental health may or may not make that possible.

For now, it is a waiting game and everyone feels helpless. There is no predicting of anything. Much like those of us who have no known future looming over us. Every day is a gift, filled with the unknown and completely unprddictable. We should live our lives a bit more on the wild side. Take more chances, go on a few more wild rides and get out of the predicting business, that is for the One who made us. Live Big today, however that may look to you. I hope to do the same...

a day in the life...

It was a great 4th of July, absolutely fabulous.

I decided a few days before the holiday that this would be a good time to do my A Day In The Life of...project. We started the day early with the 4th of July parade then headed to Aunt Bebe's for food and fun and finish the day with some backyard fireworks. It was a long day but we all took a couple hour break between fun and fireworks to chill out.

Looks like the book will have some great shots. I think the book will be a great look back for the kids. Usually photos isolate an incident - freeze a Moment in time but a progression of photos gives a sense of flow. Family flow - each one is different. In some families, love flows like an never ending fountain. My gk's live this kind of life. They couldn't be loved or lavished more. Two sets of dotting grandparents and extended family along side great parents, give them a sense of deep Love. The kind you can take to the bank. The kind that last a lifetime.

Growing up, my best friend Maralyn had a great mom. She was always so nice to me in a very subtle way. Never overly anything, she knew the score at my home and was a kind as she could be but what I remember most is Thursdays - grocery shopping day. Every Thursday was her shopping day. After school we would go to Maralyn's house and have to help her mom unload and put away groceries. The reward was something to eat when we were done. I never missed a Thursday. When I grew up and thought about it, I realized that she could have gone earlier, when we were in school. She didn't work and there was no good reason for her to wait...unless that was her plan. To make a hungry high school girl's day. I am 57 years old and a Thursday has never gone by that I don't think about that woman and what she did for that girl. That is deep Love. That kind of Love will last forever.

Beside what the kids will remembe rwhen they grow up, I want this book to remind them that we knew how to party and did it often. It is a visual experience of a known event. Not bad for the day after which reminds me, I need a nap...

for the land of the free...

...and the home of the brave.

We all wake up every morning, taking for granted, that we are safe and that 911 will never happen again. Before 911, it never occurred to us that we were that vulnerable. Our superpower status fell apart in a instant and we found out how powerless we really are. As we go into the weekend and celebrate the 4th of July in all the ways we do, maybe take a few minutes to think about those who are and have given us a trust that allows us to go through our everyday lives, pretty much with not so much as a bump.

I don't know anyone personally who is protecting me this 4th of July but I do know a little something about trust. I am not good at it and have a very short list of those on it. As I was trying to talk Miss M into jumping into the water, I assured her I would catch her. I trust you nana. she said. I think she meant it. What she didn't trust was all the other things that she imagined that could go wrong.
That is probably how the soldiers feel. Those who are not home this 4th of July with their families. All those things that could go wrong...

We are a free nation, sometimes too free and it gets us in trouble. Sometimes we are not so brave for so many reasons. Take a bit of time to express your gratitude for living in a land where anything is possible, time is short and being brave is for each of us. Our paths are different but we are all traveling the same road. May our paths cross and may we live vicariously through each other in hopes of being better people. Happy 4th of July...