WordPress’s Evaluation of My Year


Take what you will from the evaluation below, but what I see is, “Hey Wonder-V, why such a slack-ass? I mean, all year you can only crank out one pathetic blog? What the hell?” That’s what I hear!

I think all I need is 3 or so more to break 100, so let’s make that a goal in 2014, whaddya say? Yeah? Good. Stay tuned. Meanwhile, the Cajun blog seems to be a hit, maybe go back and give that one a look-see, k? Don’t mistake the rant I did about the ever so popular cajun blog, they are totally different.

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 6,600 times in 2013. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 6 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Unwritten….


Wow, it has been 8 months since my last blog! I am still getting views, though, which is amazing. A boatload just last week, and can you guess what people were searching to find it? Yep, Cajun sausage. Le sigh. Oh, well, I give and accept it for what it is.

The amount of change one can squeeze into 8 months without completely shattering is about what has been going down here in my world, for sure! From health and wellness, activities, aspirations for the future, lifestyle and living arrangements in general…SO many changes. Let me attempt to briefly catch you up.

Starting in November of last year, our family started adopting changes in our diets due to the girls showing sensitivities to certain foods. The one that really stuck for me and was the most valuable has been sugar! I am now the queen of stevia and happy! It is amazing how gagging regular sugar stuff can be now.

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My cute orange juicer! I love it!!

The I moved on to counting carbs, which was a disaster. It was no fun, and I barely lost any weight though I kept my totals on average around 40 grams per day. The nutritionist told me I had a parasite and weight loss wouldn’t happen till the bugger was gone. So, I did what any sane person would do and did my best Joe Cross impression and embarked on a 10 day juice fast, which wasn’t really that bad! I can honestly say (stack of holy books in hand) that I never cheated that fast even once! But boy, was that last day hard….a girl never wanted a salad so bad in her life! I lost about 10 lbs during that time,which was pretty awesome!

During the fast, I discovered the Paleo lifestyle and decided it made a ton of sense, seemed more fun than second guessing every tomato, carrot, and apple I encountered, and embraced it happily moving forward. Nerd Fitness has been a HUGE inspiration to me, and is also shaping my workout routine. Not to mention, Steve is pretty adorable, too! Good stuff, check it out, for sure!

And a girl couldn’t have been more happy with the results! From January to June, I had lost 39 lbs and 2 clothing sizes! Exercising was fun, I loved getting out and getting moving, and it was all going just swimmingly!

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Just keep swimming….!

However, things weren’t completely on par in the rest of the scope. A major event in May caused our families dynamic to shift. On June 1st, my oldest daughter and I moved into our own apartment to start a new life. The ups and downs, levels of healing, layers of hurt, self discoveries, personal empowerment, challenges, successes, fears, realizations, epiphanies, set backs….all of it has been very whelming. I do believe that things will level out and will get better overall, and swimming parallel to the shore is all we can do till then.

I quit a 20 year smoking habit in July with the help of auricular therapy. It was an interesting experience and was certainly not a cure. I could SO light one up at any time, though 90% of the time I don’t even think about it. I can run better and longer now and recover MUCH faster catching my breath, which is awesome! I can also take a deep, full lung breath at any time I like! VERY awesome!

Through the process of dealing with 3 other people’s emotions along with mine, lack of nicotine, not allowing piles of cake in my house, and not moving as much due to lack of time, lapse in Y membership, and insert-excuse-here, my anxiety blew up like I had never experienced before! However, with the help of some herbal extracts (Kava-Kava and Lemon Balm have been great!) and hard exercise (running has been my go-to) I have been able to manage it. Hoping to find a bike soon and start riding again.

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I’m all about my shoes having teeth!

During the month it took to get this under control and find a solution for it, I admittedly was “feeding” my anxiety versus smoking, drinking, or pacifying in other ways, so I am not set back about 5 lbs. However, the scale is moving in the right direction again as of this week, so YAY!! Moving on, now!

My time as a Ninja is nigh once more as well! I have decided that being a pro-admin is no longer the flag I choose to wave full time. I am working on flying some new colors, y’all! Organization, project management and event planning have all been passions of mine for quite some time. Throw in volunteer/team leading so I can be bossy with a purpose, and life is all good! I am still developing what it will look like, however I am looking at cultivating this ball of titles into the overall “Relocation Concierge” umbrella! There are some across the country that bring a lot to the table and really take it way before and beyond a move, and learn more before embarrassing myself is a must! No hurry, a ninja must have patience!

My daughters are BOTH in high school now! So I feel really old and can’t imagine what I will possibly do in 3 years when #1 graduates. Then #2 the next, leaving me without child-babies at home, if, in fact, they both go away to college, which we will have to see when that time comes. Regardless of their living arrangements after high school, it is just so hard to imagine them not small, vulnerable, needing constant guidance, not minding holding my hand (I still catch myself reaching for their hands in parking lots…..they don’t like it!) or hugging me in front of their friends. Mneh!

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Yee-haw!!! Bring on the rapids!

Aside from trying to hike whenever I can and wanting to learn to kayak and give up a nearly lifelong fear of boats….that’s about it! Does it seem exhausting? You would be correct! But it is what I have. Move in a positive flow I shall, live the life I intend I must!

Namaste, y’all!

Soooo Confused!!


In my mailbox today I got an awesome overview of my blogs activity this year, which honestly, I didn’t feel would be very much. I haven’t been the best blogger this year.

Little did I know…

In June of 2011 I had a conversation with a friend whose fiance (now wife) is from the deep south. He was telling me of a trip they recently took visiting her family. Of all of the food, the Boodang Sausage was the one we talked about the most. I have always been very interested in bayou and Cajun culture, but never really dipped my toe in the food and decided this would be a great topic for a blog.

Again…little did I now….

That November 28th, 2012 something in the cosmos would pivot and align in a certain way to make my mediocre blog, gathering anywhere from 9-25 hits a day, to suddenly get 242 views, for why?! Cajun cuisine and BOODANG sausage! From that moment and throughout the month of December, my sad little neglected blog rarely saw less than 50 views a day, more often over 70, 10 of these days well over 100 with December 5th rocketing up to 877 views! Because of Boodang sausage!

I am not bragging, I swear to you! I am simply confused. And curious….

And furthermore…I was just Googled Cajun Boodang to try to come up with a new photo for you, and I couldn’t. For I was too busy sorthing  through photo’s of me (yes, my FACE!), my Cajun blog, and every other topic I have every blogged about! I mean, why can’t I go down in history for my epic Jim Henson essay? My editorial on corporal punishment? Anti-bullying?! SAUSAGE?!?!

Can anyone out there in the rest of the world tell me what may have happened to cause such a stir in culinary world to make so many want to know more about meat, veg, rice, and seasonings stuffed into pig intestine? Please reply any information or theories you may have. Meanwhile, may the boodang be with you!

2012 in review


The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog. I thought it was not only visually exciting, but pretty stinking cool! Hope you do, too!

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 11,000 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 18 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Table for “Pity”, Party of One!


Isn’t it amazing that when we start feeling sorry, it is often for ourselves? I mean, we can feel sorry for others and wish them a better turn than they are experiencing, however even then, we can flip that into “well, what does their misfortune mean for me?!”

I kind of wish this was one of those times. I would just be able to say, “Nothing!” and move on with my merry self.

Today I mourn. I mourn lost dreams, broken friendships, loves lost, childhoods never had, lack of peace, TOO much overwhelm, all enveloping a woman on the verge of a breakdown.

Oops. Someone should clean that up….

A breakdown would feel really good right now, actually. You know what I mean? A kicking, screaming, throwing, full on “Blaze of Glory” style episode filled with victims within earshot of all shapes and sizes. JUST so someone might be able to get it, what is making me so miserable.

But the fact of the matter is, the misery isn’t just one small stone in my shoe. They are many small stones gathered over time to completely fill my shoe and leave me limping along with one naked foot and still trying to carry on every day.

One thing I have definitely realized over the course of the past few months is that Super Woman I am NOT (despite the moniker “Wonder-V” I like to brandish) and to those whom I have led to believe this, I would like to extend you my deepest of apologies. For within lying to you, I was lying to myself and have done us all a great injustice.

My goal for the next few weeks will be to cast a few of these more meddlesome pebbles back off into the world where they belong, so I might make some room to deal with the others. In the mean time, I have decided adopt a “self-serving” attitude while I try to cope instead one of being “in-service”.  I am sure there will be come confusion, but this will also allow others to experience a moment in my head as well.

Now if you will excuse me, my first course just arrived.

Happy Birthday, Baby Girl!


My baby bunny #2 turns 14 today.

14 years ago I was prepped for surgery. I was hooked up to respirators, heart monitors, IV’s, a healthy cocktail of anesthetics and the like. My belly cut open, doctors and nurses pulling from my child from me. I was incredibly scared, though it was all down hill after having an epidural with no contractions to distract me. Michael almost passed out while soiling himself, but hung in there quite nicely.

And my little 7 lb 2 oz bunny was born just before 9 am!

14 years later, here she is. Completely an individual, mature and loving, intelligent and creative. A wonderful woman-in-training!

Happy Birthday, my Boo-Bunny! Mommy loves you!

Growing Like A Weed


I still remember by first Mothers Day. I was already pregnant with #2 and hubby and I took our little #1 to the zoo. That was the most uncomfortable trip to the zoo I have ever taken!

Our baby that was there to enjoy it was small, but REALLY squishy…it was on this trip that a girl passing by noted that she looked like the Michelin baby! Her arms and legs resembled stacks of doughnuts and her cheeks were almost as wide as her shoulders!

We used to play silly games like “Shoo-eee, stinky feet!” where we would sniff her feet and have her sniff them…it was funny and she laughed incessantly! Her Dad would the cause her to convulse in laughter by playing “Shooooo!” which was when he would hold his hand over her tummy and get closer with each “shoo”, which of course ended in insane tickles.

#2 would play the same games, but was also very into being a bit more dramatic. She loved dancing and would play dress up and be the princess and spin and dance in her plastic high heals. She had a smile that would melt you, and a scream that would shatter whatever was left! Her dimples were so deep, you would think they connected to the other side of her face. I still remember her first birthday when I made her pink and yellow #1 cake, and her reaction to her first peanut butter and banana sandwich!

Today, those babies are going back to school. #1 starts her first official day of high school, which I am still not on board with, but I am getting better. #2 is going to her first day of her last year in middle school (8th grade). In 5 short years, I will have no more children in primary school. They will be making decisions about their lives and going in the directions that move them. Am I going to be ready for THAT?!

I don’t have time to mourn very long today, though, for I start a new job as well (more info on that later). It is kind of good, though, so I won’t have as much time to worry about it. Distractions can sometimes be so blissful and timely.

While I am not ready to be a “high school Mom”, the bottom line is that I am incredibly proud to be the mom of 2 such amazing women. They are growing up so fast, but also so well. So embrace our future I will, and love them through it I shall.

Homecoming is in about 4 weeks. I’m gonna die.

Chicken Fried


It is strange, sometimes, the things that make you think.

Last week I met a client for lunch to go over a new business he was starting that I would be helping to facilitate. He asked if we could meet at Chick Fil A because it was his favorite place, and his son’s too, who was with him that day.

I got there early, he was held up late with a client, so I waited. For over an hour the place was packed beyond all reason! While people were waiting for tables to open or braving the heat and just eating outside, the orders kept turning around quickly, one after another. The kids behind the counter were smiling, people were waiting the tables offering to refill beverages, busing the tables…things you don’t find at “normal” fast food restaurants.

My client said that this was why he kept coming back. After having my chicken salad sandwich, quite honestly, I knew it wasn’t THAT that kept him coming back! It was a nice reprieve from the normal sad and overcast experience, with the employee’s saying “My pleasure” when offered thank you’s.

We discussed the culture and that at the base of it all, this was, in fact, just another fast food restaurant. Even if the teens were paid more, likely they wouldn’t know to appreciate it more because they would have no lower paying job to compare it to. What did the company do to make the atmosphere so welcoming?

Any of you who read my Jim Henson essay will know why I love this one! I am so proud of my Jim Henson Studios for not supporting this madness either!

So I thought, this would be fun to research. Really dig into the inner workings of Chick Fil A and find out how they can create such a staff. Who is writing their handbook, and more importantly, who is implementing it and how do they do it to a point that they can impress it upon average teens and early 20-somethings?

So I started to research it a bit. When I Googled Chick Fil A culture, I saw article after article about the chains stand against gay marriage. How the owner Dan Cathy, himself, stated that he was wholly against gay marriage as it does not coincide with Christian morals.

Shaken, I did another search, trying to be more specific. I did find some items concerning how they strive to create an environment that is unlike any other, making the customer feel welcome and appreciated.

So why? I couldn’t look past the previous search.

I knew that I would no longer be able to write the essay that I had intended to write before because, while I admire Mr. Cathy for having his beliefs and holding them close to his heart, he also did not seem to see that while tending to this amazing culture and environment for his customers, he is spitting on it at the same time.

I have long felt that any religious practice or belief that aids the followers in admonishing people who do not “fit the bill”, so to speak, was typically having the opposite affect that the original word of that religion was attempting to get across. In Mr. Cathy’s case, while he is nurturing an enigma in the fast food industry to be welcoming and inviting to all who come through the doors, he openly ostracizes an incredibly large population of the planet, making them incredibly UNwelcome.

As I said before, I applaud Mr. Cathy for his convictions, though I do not agree in the slightest. Above all, however, I have to wonder why he chose to make his business, with all it’s unique attributes, the potential ground zero for a hate war.

I now regret having gone to that store, and will never go again. While I, myself, am not gay, I do support SO many people in my life that are, including certain people very, very close to me. I have known women and men who have relationships that I could only dream about, and sometimes do. They deserve to be recognized for that, and not made to feel shame for loving as 2 people, if not EVERYONE, should love.

And I don’t need a fried chicken sandwich to tell me otherwise.

So I will start going to other places, again, who take us all as we are, for whom we are. I hope for all of the chaos that will continue to ensue from here on out, that Mr. Cathy agrees with his decision later down the road.

10 Questions for the Dalai Lama


After many years of knowing about the movie and having a deep desire to watch the documentary ’10 Questions for the Dalai Lama’, I finally fulfilled my wish this evening. I have to say, I wish I had watched all those years ago, so instead of first time revelations, I could have been experiencing a reminder of sorts from His Holiness.

Amazing documentary about an amazing world political and spiritual leader!

Having worked in my spiritual center’s bookstore for several years, I had access to numerous books, CD’s, DVD’s, tchotche’s of all makes and fashion, FASHION! You name it, it came past me at one point in time. The one thing, however, aside from the movie ‘The Secret’ that I valued so much was the score from the documentary which I was able to obtain as a sample for the store.

The score was written by the amazing New Age composer and pianist, Peter Kater. Within some of the music on a couple of the tracks is prayers and mantra’s being performed by His Holiness and other Tibetan monks. It is a sound that is so consuming and haunting that is truly permeates your soul. I had watched another doc once where the principal in the film had said that hearing the monks at prayer just draws you in and takes you away from yourself. I have to feel that this, in some way, is the point.

The movie did a great job of detailing the struggle of the Tibetan people and the culture on a whole after the Chinese occupation. It also acted as a timeline of the Dalai Lama’s growth from young Lama to International Diplomat at a very young age and how he had to react to preserve his people, their culture, and their faith.

At one point in the movie, the interviewer (Rick Ray) had asked His Holiness why he thought that the poor of India and other countries he had visited were generally happier and smiled more often than their more affluent counterparts as well as those in the United States.

His response was simple. “Greed.” Basically, those who have less have less and are content with their place in the world are happier and feel less stress than those who are constantly chasing more, more, better, bigger, etc. Even at the end of their life, they are still never satisfied and there was something missing.

Beautiful Tibetan woman with her prayer wheel.

Of all of the 10 questions that Rick had for His Holiness, I have to say that this lesson has given me cause to pause and think. My current state of life has left me feeling as though I were one of those who are only in lust for more, more, better, bigger, etc. In the end of the day, how can one with a modern life simplify and be content and not feel the need to consistently ask for more? When is what you have enough? And when is wanting more outside of principal and not feeding a healthy and contented soul?

Maybe, if ever given the chance, this will be one of the questions I would have for the Dalai Lama.

I encourage you, my friends, to watch the documentary (On Netflix now!) and enjoy the soundtrack! After listening to it for years and encouraging others to listen as well, it was interesting seeing it unfold visually! Let me know what you think, and which lesson you will take with you.

Namaste!

It Rained…Good God Almighty, IT RAINED!!!


Think the title is a bit over the top? A bit dramatic? Maybe even a bit uncalled for?

In a land where river traffic has been at a standstill, farmers are losing everything, and livestock are being sent to market before they get sick and die of malnutrition and dehydration, and where water tables are becoming lower and lower…we would not call it “overkill”.

Ahhh..can you smell the rain?!

I am not a farmer, nor am I a ferry boat captain or tug boat pilot. I do not raise livestock. I do not drink or live off of well water. However I am a resident of this land and have seen even the struggles nature around me during this drought. Most recently was the discovery of 3 baby birds whom were dead on our patio, likely from the nest that was built in the rafters long before the heat rolled in.

Crunchy ground, wilted bushes that have been here longer than me, sand bars revealed in the Missouri River that just simply shouldn’t be seen…you don’t have to go too far to see the affects.

But today it rained! I woke up to my husband telling me that it was raining and it had been for hours! While it is still cool out, I know it will heat up and dry out soon. So let me offer my little bit of proof. Happy drops on a happy bush that, if you look close enough, has some not-so-happy burned up leaves in the middle of it.

Enjoy!

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