Thursday, April 29, 2010

My Memorial

Most of 2005 was a struggle for me...and at times, it got so bad, I was pretty sure I was not going to live through it. I started to put together a "memorial" to be shown at my funeral. I know, I know...horrible thought, but HEY--there really were some pretty dark moments during that time. There are about 50 pictures in the memorial slide show and the song playing is "We may never pass this way again" by Seals and Crofts. (Here are just a few of the shots from the Memorial Montage) I have watched it at least a hundred times. Maybe more.
The AMAZING thing is that as I would watch it and "work on it"--add new pictures, change the order, change out pictures--I began to realize how happy I was in all the photographs! Every single one showed me smiling and having fun and enjoying life and living life with incredible people. Each time I watched it, I would be reminded of my deep friendships and my magnificent family, especially my fabulous children. I cried many times watching the memorial and was gradually reminded of how much I had to live for. I began to believe that the tough times would pass and life would, indeed, go on...and all these great times would not only continue--but multiply! Working on the memorial allowed me a glimpse of what my life was really like--full of happiness and loving people and GREAT times!
I still watch it once in a while and each time it ends I say the line from my favorite movie,
"You see Julie, you really have a wonderful life..."

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The new phone book is here!!

A new phone book was delivered to my front porch today...
Really? I can't tell you the last time I used a phone book...
Maybe 1995?

Homeowner's Insurance

In an attempt to lower my monthly expenses, I have been calling insurance companies for rates on my car and home owner's insurance. The car was's four years old and thanks to a cute little gecko, I am going to save about $160 on my car insurance.
The home owner's seemed to throw the companies for a loop. The people kept asking me, "What is the value of the contents of your home?" To the first lady, I said, "I don't know, maybe $3,000?" She laughed out loud on the phone! She said that was impossible. So I hung up on her and called the next company. When asked the same question, I figured I would adjust as to not get chastised again and answered, "$5,000". The guy said, "No, you're not understanding. You need to walk around your house and add up the value of everything you own. Everything, including (here's the good part) your jewelry and your furs." This time I laughed out loud. I told him I would call him back. And I walked around my house...
My couch and chair were $900 at Levitz. The dining room table, coffee table and end table were a combined $350 at a consignment store. The couch in the TV room-$250 clearance at Robinson's May. The TV-from my Grandparent's nursing home room--I don't know--$100?
The DVD player was $24 at Target. My bed-$159 for the bed (IKEA) and $250 for the mattress. The dresser and nightstands a combined $150 (same consignment store.) Here's the funny part. I opened my jewelry box--and only one pair of earrings in there cost more than about $8. (Thank you Claire's) They were a gift on my 21st birthday. I don't wear any other jewelry. No furs. No art work besides my finds. To my entire closet I gave a very generous total of $1000. It's three pair of jeans, about 20 tee shirts, a few sweaters and my Harrod's bags. My work suits are the only thing that brought up the total.
Honestly, it STILL barely added up to my original $3000 estimate. I called the guy back. I said, "OK--What is the lowest amount you are going to allow me to say?" He said, "$10,000"
Here's the deal--my home is awesome. It's EXACTLY what I want in every single way. But there's not many things in my home that have any monetary value. I have often joked that if a thief broke into my house, he'd be so disappointed, he'd turn around and leave. But the truth home is full of treasures...MY treasures. My pictures, my old 45s, my Santa collection, my little plates and statues and knickknacks from all over Europe, my antique postcards, my tea cups, my Dodger bobble head dolls, my bowling trophy, my Bobby Sherman lunchbox...and all my books!
My valuables are invaluable! They are the stuff that have stories...all the stuff that makes me smile with good memories...all the stuff that couldn't be replaced for all the money in the world...MY stuff is priceless...
So I took the $10,000 insurance policy.
Heck, if I have to, I'll upgrade the TV and buy a new pair of running shoes.

Friday, April 23, 2010


I am glad I have just one sink in my bathroom.
I think otherwise, it might feel like something's missing.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Botanical Therapy

When I got to work today...these were on my desk.
All day long I wondered who they might be from and why they were left with no note and no explanation. I made up stories in my head of who might have brought them and who wanted to surprise me, treat me, make me smile. I was in a contemplative mood to begin with when I came in this morning--pensive, deep thinking--lots of stuff going on in my brain at 5:45 am.
I walked the gorgeous Montage grounds...very early and very cold...
still thinking about the flowers...and so many other things...
The air was brisk and the water looked magnificent. I took it all in as I tried to process my thoughts...and wondered about those flowers.
This bird just stood there for so long without moving. So did I. Both of us deep in thought.
I walked back up, taking the long way around the resort grounds to get to my job. My head full of thoughts and conversation that would have to be put away til later.
The cool thing was those flowers--waiting for me on my desk! All day, as I looked at them, I imagined that they were an amazingly thoughtful gift--delivered literally in the middle of night--from someone who cares for me and wanted to brighten my day. That made me smile. By the time my 8 hours was up, I didn't need to take the thoughts back out and re-process...the flowers had helped absorb the hurt and confusion I was feeling in the morning and reminded me of the amazing salvation that a simple gift can bring. As I left, I grabbed the flowers and brought them home to live with me...they are still making me smile tonight.
Truth is, the flowers were probably not for me at all. They were more than likely left there from a big dinner event the night before.
But don't tell the flowers...they were so happy to be there for me.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A very simple life

I am sitting here in my jammies, laptop keeping me warm...watching the Dodgers' home opener on my DVR (sans commercials...)
It's very quiet in my sweet little house.
I am grateful for my very simple, extremely peaceful and satisfying life.

You know, it wasn't always this way.

Let me assure you that you can do anything you want to matter how old you are, how much money you have or where you are on the path.
You can finish school, get a better job, move away, audition for a play, get in shape...
you CAN start a new life!
You have control over your destiny.
Trust me, you do.

You just have to change something.

And it's really simpler than you would think:
Turn off the TV and go for a walk.
Go online and check out classes (I was 37 on my college graduation day--STILL one of the best days of my life!)
Cut up your credit cards and make a plan to pay them off.
Make up a new resume.
Apply for a job. And another. OK, one more!
Move to another state. Or another country.
(I moved 10 miles--and found a whole new world.)
Have a plan. Set some goals.
Give yourself a date to get it done.

Decide to live a simpler, more peaceful life...

It's never too late to live happily ever after.
Start today.

Get up, take a shower, get dressed and move forward!
It's really pretty simple.
And the only one who can make it you.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Sunday, April 11, 2010

wine down...

A little wine and a whole lotta love...
Elisa, Kelly, Sharel and me...friends since 1977!

Sunny Day!

Great shots from our night at the ballgame.
(Not sure any of them is worth $18.99 plus shipping and handling...)

Friday, April 9, 2010

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Snuggie Night at Angel Stadium

We were there! Part of the World Record Snuggie wearers!
(More pics on Facebook)

Take me out to the ballgame!

(click above text to enlarge)
Sunny and I are headed to Anaheim Stadium tonight to be part of this once in a lifetime amazingness!!
(That sarcasm font would be perfect right about now, huh?)