Saturday, December 29, 2007

Mixed Emotions...

As I sit here writing this, I can't help but think about what could have been & am so thankful that it's not. But...what could've been keeps popping into my head.

Let me back up a little & explain. I've had a "lump" (for lack of a better word) in the palm of my right hand for the past 3 1/2 ~ 4 years that started out the size of a lima bean. I had an MRI done on it in October, 2004, & it was diagnosed as a ganglion cyst which is described as the following: "A ganglion cyst is a tumor or swelling on top of a joint or the covering of a tendon (tissue that connects muscle to bone). It looks like a sac of liquid (cyst). Inside the cyst is a thick, sticky, clear, colorless, jellylike material. Depending on the size, cysts may feel firm or spongy." In essence, it was nothing to worry about ~ not cancerous, etc ~ & no surgery needed to be done unless the thing grew and/or gave me pain or limited what I could do.

Well...the "cyst" has since grown to a lump nearly the size of my entire palm. It either hurts me or makes my hand & fingers numb & tingly; it has gotten to the point where it does limit what I can do with that hand (& being a righty doesn't help matters). I went to a orthopaedist near where I work on December 17th ~ he's partners with the head of the department in the local hospital & another doctor ~ & point blank, with little feeling or concern & after only feeling my hand for a couple of moments, told me that it's either a lipoma or a lipocarcoma. I asked him, "lipocarcoma, that sounds like cancer. Is that what you're telling me?" "Yes," he said. I then asked him, "well, what does that mean? What happens?" I fully expected him to say that the lipocarcoma (or tumor) would be removed & I'd have to go through chemo and/or radiation. All he said was "you'd lose your arm." It hit me like a ton of bricks...I didn't know what to say. No mention of chemo/radiation; no "you'd only lose your arm in a worst case scenario;" just plain & simple "you'd lose your arm." WTF??? He then told me that I'd need to have an MRI done & we'd go from there.

I've since had the MRI done & went back to the doctor's office, but saw the 3rd partner in this practice. He was very kind & gentle & told me happily that it wasn't cancer & was indeed either a ganglion cyst or the lipoma (which is described as "A lipoma is a common, benign tumor composed of fatty tissue. Lipomas are soft to the touch, usually moveable, and are generally painless. They grow very slowly...") & that it could be removed easily since it was all sitting on top of any tendons & arteries/veins.

Sooooo....this Friday, January 4th at 10:40 am, I check into the hospital for same day surgery on my hand. I won't be under a general anesthesia thankfully. They'll give me some medicine to make me a little drowsy & a little loopier than I normally am & then put a "block" in my shoulder to numb the entire arm. I'll have a whole bunch of stiches, starting in my wrist & travelling up into the palm of my hand & I'll have to wear some sort of brace on my hand/wrist. 7 ~ 10 days later I'll have the stiches out & start to exercise my hand. I'm so happy that the nice doctor will be doing the surgery & that he's also a plastic surgeon, so that the scars won't be too hideous. I'm so thankful to whoever was watching out for me from up above that it wasn't cancer & yet so angry at the one doctor for telling me this & in the manner he did it ~ I had to go through Christmas with these doubts & worries in the back of my head.

I haven't mentioned any of this before now because I didn't want to alarm anyone needlessly. I guess I didn't want to think about more than necessary myself either. I wanted to know exactly what I was dealing with before I wrote about it here. I also haven't wanted to make a big deal out of it & draw attention to myself ~ that isn't even the point of my posting now ~ just wanted to fill you all in. I do post this with a picture of blue skies because I feel like there is some sort of a silver lining to the cloud that has been following me for just over a week.

I'll try to post again before the surgery, but I'm not sure if I'll have the time. I will update after the surgery, but give me some time. I'm not sure how much pain I'll be in or even how well I'll be able to type.

In the meantime, I wish you all a great 2008! Hugz to you all!!!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007


Yes...I'm being lazy today & proud of it! I've done virtually nothing so far (it's now almost 5:00 pm), except sleep until about 1:30 or so. I haven't slept that late since I was a teenager or very sick. Guess the ol' body just needed it.

We had a great day yesterday, but very long. My family was here from 4:30 until close to midnight & I didn't unwind & go to sleep until 2:00~ish. Lots of great food, presents, company...the best way to spend Christmas.

I'll post a picture or 2...or 3...another time, but my brain just isn't functioning (still!).

Hope you all had a fabulous Christmas!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

To all my friends & family out there...

Wishing you all the best this Christmas & in the new year!

Monday, December 24, 2007

A Gaggle of Questions!

My dear friend, Carly, is playing along with the whole "Ask Aunt Nub" game & has asked me a whole gaggle of questions for me to answer this Christmas Eve. As usual, I should be doing the last of my wrapping & getting ready for Christmas...but I'd rather answer these right now. Thanks for the questions, Carly!

1. If you could be any one of Santa's Reindeer, other then Rudolph, which one would you like to be? The first one that entered my mind was Vixen...always wanted to be considered a sexy thing! LOL

2. What is your favorite song? I've got a lot, don't know if I could narrow it down. I guess it depends on my mood.

3. If you could be in charge of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, what new balloon would you add? Hmmmmmm...good question. A giant, beautiful butterfly perhaps.

4. If you could have one famous person, living or dead, over for the holidays, who would it be? Lauren Bacall has always fascinated me, plus she reminds me so much of my Aunt Elaine who passed away in 1993.

5. David Duchovny or Dylan McDermott? David Duchovny...but I'd much rather choose Vincent D'Onofrio. ;)

6. Chocolate Mousse or Chocolate dipped strawberries? Mmmmmm...both good choices, but I'd pick the chocolate mousse.

7. Where oh where has my little dog gone? (Have fun with that one!) "Oh where, oh where can he beWith his ears cut short and his tail cut longOh where, oh where can he be?" Perhaps Lucy is staring at her stocking, wondering what Santa has brought her this year. Either that, or she's harassing her sister, Stella, the cat.

8. If you could have a completely different name, what would it be? Victoria Marie & I'd call myself Tory. However...Mom, if you're reading this...I do love my full name, Elizabeth Ann.

9. What is fantasy gift would you like to receive for Christmas? A fully decked out giant~sized RV, so I could travel around the country with Skip, following the good weather.

10. If you could go on any game show, which one would it be? Deal or No Deal fascinates me & I'd like to think I'd do OK on it. Plus I've always liked Howie Mandell.

11. If you could own an exotic animal, which one would it be? Two total opposites here...either a big beautiful cat, like a Jaguar, or a monkey of some sort.

Feel free to play along & answer the same questions, either here or on your own journal/blog. Consider yourself tagged! Please feel free to ask more questions, even if you've already asked one!!!!

Now I really must go & get stuff accomplished. Merry Christmas Eve everyone!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Merry Christmas Eve Eve!

Here it is, Christmas Eve Eve already. Tomorrow night I go to my mother~in~law's house like we do every year to celebrate Christmas with Skip's family & exchange presents with her, my sister~in~law, brother~in~law, niece & nephew & what have I done in regards to wrapping? Nothing. I've got 4 or 5 presents wrapped & I don't think any of them need to go with me tomorrow night.

::::big sigh::::

We picked up the lasagne that we ordered from a local place that makes the best pasta & will have that plus chicken & prosciutto tortellini, lemon chicken, garlic bread (all from that same place) & salad for dinner on Christmas day when my family comes over to our house.

I'm prepared in just about every every way but the wrapping. I'm going to have to enlist Skip to help me & some of the presents will have to go into bags with tissue paper or funky cloth bags called Wrapsacks. Tomorrow, Skip is opening the store for 1/2 a day (10:00 ~ 1:00) on his own (I'm staying home), so I'll be able to get his stuff wrapped while he's gone & also do some last minute cleaning/organizing.

Thankfully, we're closed not only on Tuesday for Christmas, but on Wednesday, too. I desperately need these next 3 days off, not only to enjoy the holiday, but for my own know...a little relaxation, whatever the heck that is. Maybe I'll get a little time to catch up on my stuff that I TiVo'd. In the meantime....don't anyone dare tell me what's going on this season on "Project Runway" because I haven't watched a single episode....they're all sitting there on the TiVo waiting for me with a ton of other shows.

Since I do have the next 3 days off, I'll be able to post somebody, anybody, send me some questions...anything you like, doesn't only have to be holiday related...just ask away!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Insane in the membrane...

I must be insane in the brain...or something like it. I'm in need of a full frontal lobotomy tonight. "Why" you ask? Because I had a doctor's appointment this morning at 10:30, so I decided it would be today, 1 week exactly before Christmas, that I would take off & jam the remains of the Christmas shopping (which was just about ALL of it) into 1 freakin' day.

I did a few odd stops at stores along the way, but most of the shopping was done at the Palisades Center (a H-U-G-E mall about 15 minutes away from my house). Unfortunately, I think most of Westchester County & Rockland County was there, too, with the same thing in mind. I circled the parking lot like a vulture, following anybody coming out with packages, ready to swoop in & fight off anybody else trying to get into that spot. I parked so dang far away, I might as well have parked at home & hoofed it. Y'all would've laughed your butts off watching me struggle to the car at the end of the day with all of my packages & having people in cars follow me.

99.9999999% of the shopping is done (just 1 last easy present), it needs to be wrapped, & I'm exhausted. Next year I plan better...............

Sunday, December 16, 2007

My Turn/Your Turn

My Turn: I am a creature of comfort, routine, structure, ritual. I sit down at my computer in a certain way. I lie on the couch in a certain way. My bathroom routine at bedtime is very specific. My "morning stuff" around the kitchen follows the same pattern every morning before I toddle back upstairs to shower & dress. I feel funny in the morning when I get to work if I don't get to sit down with my not~toasted, buttered bagel & check my e-mails & really let it sink in that I'm at work & that it's a retail store. I don't think of myself as the stereotypical O.C.D. person, but I probably have some of those tendencies. I even wonder sometimes if I've got a mild form of Asperger's, but never diagnosed. I have some of those tendencies, too. I do know that I've got B.P.D. (Borderline Personality Disorder) & a social phobia (not easy to deal with when working retail). One bedtime ritual that I must always do, just to ease my own mind because you never know, is to tell Skip that I love him "forever and a chopstick" (meaning all that plus a little bit more) & he says it back to me. I don't think I could fall asleep without telling him that.

Your Turn: Do you currently or have you ever had any routines or rituals that comfort you?

OH! OH! Mr Kotter!

Greetings & salutations on what is another yucky weather day here in the northeast. We've got some sort of n'oreaster going on here in the NYC metro area & every weather report that I've heard in the past 24 hours gives a different account of what's going to happen. We did get another inch of snow here & what sounded like some freezing rain. The winds have been crazy & will probably continue for the rest of the day. All I want to know soon can we get Spring here? Not soon enough in my opinion!

On to other stuff...another question! Keep those questions coming, as I'm not starting to do my journal jar until the new year!!! Today's question comes from my buddy Martha (in warm & probably sunny Florida ~ dang you, Martha! LOL). Yet another great question!

Have you ever had any odd paranormal experiences?

In hopes that some or all of you don't think I'm more wacko than I already am, I'll admit that I've had some paranormal experiences, although I'm not sure what classifies them as odd or not.

I suppose that any paranormal experience is odd, since they're not exactly the norm. I saw my dear father~in~law standing near a coat rack across the room at the funeral parlor on the day of his funeral. He's talked to me ever since, told me all sorts of things, some of them I couldn't know, although I haven't really seen him like that again. My maternal grandmother, who passed away on January 14th of this year has spoken to me, too. Both of them have been in the car with me when I was driving home late at night from my old security guard job, holding my head & talking to me. I could feel them, hear them, smell them. I've also had the experience of smelling both my grandmothers quite vividly at different times & in different parts of my house. I've got a picture (which I'll try scanning & posting here at some point) that I took in black & white of an old country church, but upon developing it, there is a misty face in the lower left hand corner.

I could rationalize a lot of the above by saying that I really miss all of these people & wish that they were still here & therefore my mind is doing things to me, but I don't think so. So what do you think of me now? And.....have any of you had any "odd" paranormal experiences?

Thursday, December 13, 2007

One last post for today...w00t...3 in 1 lucky can you all get?!?! I was browsing around through I Can Has Cheezburger & couldn't resist posting this picture from there.

Gotta go more posts for today...may be a couple of days........
PS Please send more questions my way!!! Seriously!!!!!!!!!!

Oh Christmas tree...

OK....besides curling up into bed for about an hour with my heating pad (bad cramps) & dozing, doing 250 lbs of laundry, catching up on some of my TiVo'd stuff, actually wrapping some Christmas presents ahead of time instead of in a wild frenzy in the last 36 hours before Christmas (that's the usual with me)...I actually, finally got my Christmas tree decorated!

Skip & I decided to go the artificial tree route this year. We figured that: 1) we'd be saving a tree; 2) since we're working so much now that we wouldn't enjoy a real tree as much as in the past; 3) we'd actually be saving money (instead of shelling out at least $60 around here, we'd be paying that ~ or less ~ & be able to use the same tree for several years). It's not a very big tree (not a lot of space in our living room) & has been up & lit for a few days now, but no decorations on it. I took advantage of the lousy weather & got it done. I'm still going with the "less is more" look this year, so I didn't bring out all the tree decorations & only used a few special ones. It actually looks quite nice, but I must apologize for the blurry picture above. I wanted to show off the lights, but my camera phone didn't want to cooperate. Oh well...c'est la vie!

Christmas Memes & Snow Storms

Aloha! My brain may be wishing it could blink me away to Hawaii right about now, but in reality, my body is still in the NYC metro area & in the middle of a big snow storm. People in upstate NY or Colorado or Minnesota or other similarly cold/snowy places may be laughing at us southern New Yorkers with our forecast of about 8" or so of snow, but to us this is a lot. I get nervous on days like I'm trapped or something...even though it's beautiful when all is said & done. Crazy as it might sound (since I talk about it a lot), I'd rather have the depressing, gray, sunless days than too much snow. At least I can get out & do things. Anyway...I always make the best of it & catch up on stuff & be lazy with other things. goes a Christmas themed meme that I found on both Phinney's & Martha's blogs. How about you 2 ladies get over here & have some hot chocolate with me? We can build snowpeople later!

1. Eggnog or Hot Chocolate? I'm really not a hot drink drinker, but I'd choose the hot chocolate.

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? Santa definitely wraps. What fun is it if the he just sits the presents under the tree?

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white? Colored lights on everything but the wreath outside. We lit it up for the first time this year & used white lights.

4. Do you hang mistletoe? No

5. When do you put up your decorations? We usually put it all up the first week of December, but with working so damn much, we've kinda be doing a little here & there, so it has taken a little longer this year.

6. What is your favorite holiday dish? Anything but fruitcake.

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child: I remember the joy and wonder of Christmas morning. It was all just so magical to see the tons of presents & the great big giant stocking my grandmother hand sewed for me practically bursting at the seams. My parents really made sure I believed in Santa & that was special.

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? I have no memory of learning it, and it doesn't matter to me. (Ditto to this ~ in fact, I still like to believe:D)

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? Yes, but only at my mother~in~law's house. We celebrate & open gifts with Skip's family Christmas Eve; Christmas morning is for Skip & I; that afternoon is with my family here at my house.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas Tree? Lights on first & then some special ornaments. I make sure the non~breakable ones go around the bottom portion in case Lucy (our doggie) or Stella (our kitty) decide to investigate.

11. Snow! Love it or Dread it? I think I already covered this above.

12. Can you ice skate? Yeah...but I'm not that good...can only stop by crashing into the walls of the skating rink, so forget about skating on a pond. LOL

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? I've had so many favorite gifts over the years. Last year, Skip got me Sirius Sattelite Radio.

14. What's the most important thing about the Holidays for you? Being with my family, counting my blessings.

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert? Bananas Foster.

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition? Probably the stockings! Not sure if Skip & I will do this year, though.

17. What tops your tree? A really pretty light up star.

18. Which do you prefer giving or receiving? Giving of course!

19. What is your favorite Christmas Song? O Holy Night ~ gets me every time.

20. Candy Canes? Sure...why not. Rather have chocolate though.

21. Do you feel Christmas is too commercialized? Or is it still magical for you? It has gotten too commercialized, but I'm trying to keep it as magical as possible.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

I'm on a roll.........

Fingers don't fail me now ~ I'm on a blogging roll this weekend, trying to make up for lost time! I'm impressed with myself, being able to get 2 posts out within 24 hours on a hectic weekend!!! (patting myself on the back)

My 3rd & last question (until somebody asks some more or I think up some to ask myself) comes from the ever~cute Miss Phinney! Her blog is private or I'd post a link here. Thanks Miss Phinney!

When you were a little kid, let's say grade 5 or so...who was your best friend? Do you know where they are today?

I like this question because I'm proud to say that I know where my best friend from 5th & 6th grade is & that I'm still in touch with her ~ I don't get to see her often, maybe once every couple of years (even though she only lives in NYC) & I'm hoping to change that to a more frequent get~together.

Her name is Randi & we were basically inseperable in 5th & 6th grades. We had another best friend named Anoopa (unfortunately, I have no idea where she is anymore), but Randi & I were always together more somehow. We slept over at each other's houses, had a crush on Shaun Cassidy (this'll be the first & last time I mention that on this blog ~ LOL), taped crazy skits on her tape recorder, & had very vivid imaginations together. Randi was always the artistic type & I always admired that, especially since she was able to follow up on that & start to make a living at it. We lost touch for several years during High School (went to different schools) & college, but somehow, at somepoint, we made contact again. She was even at my wedding which was pretty cool. How many people can say that their best friend from 5th or 6th grade attended their wedding? I mean.....unless you come from a super~small town (no offense to anyone who does). LOL So.......Randi......if you're reading this.....HI! Drop me a line!

Alright y'all..........ask me some more questions either in the comment box or e-mail 'em to me!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Another question!

I've been super busy this week, all the while hoping to get a few free minutes to do another "question post" ~ but, alas, I come home, move some laundry from washer to dryer, eat something (anything), & then promptly collapse on the couch, nearing a deep & golden slumber. I am with question #2 which comes from just down the parkway from me...Miss Becky! Thank you, Miss Becky!

"If you could go anywhere in the blink of an eye, where would you go first?"

Normally, that would be super easy for me ~ I'd have to say Montauk, NY. But, it being what time of year it is & how the Tri~State area (meaning where NY, NJ & CT all basically meet & you can drive through 3 states fairly quickly) can be during December, January & February (see the picture above & then understand how I might get Seasonal Affective Disorder & need a lightbox), I'm going to have to say something entirely diffent. My "I Dream of Jeannie" blinking powers would have to take me somewhere warm & with lots of continous days of sunshine. Florida, perhaps. Hawaii would be nice. The Bahamas will do just fine. Those are the sort of places I need for the winter. I need to be a snowbird ~ warmth (not TOO hot/humid mind you) & sunny skies all year long. Hubby & I have talked about buying an RV when we retire & following the good weather around the country. So here I go...blink...blink! Am I there yet?

I guess not & that's too bad. Anyway, I've got another question to do, but will save that for tomorrow possibly. Feel free to ask a question...or 2...or more! I like this!!!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Apologies & Questions I forgot to add Carly in on my list of regular readers. I'm a bad, bad girl...please don't tell Santa! I'm so sorry, Carly, can you forgive me? I've got 3 readers out there...that I know of. Official hugs to Phinney, Becky, & Carly! YAY!

Another big YAY to the questions I've received in my comment box for my last entry! It makes my heart smile & I feel all squishy inside (in a good way...get yer mind outta da gutter!) My first question is from Carly, whom I shamefully left off the list (hanging my head in shame). It's a good one, too! Are you ready for this? "Who would you most like to see have their likeness made into a Chia Head?"

I absolutely cracked up when I saw this question! I also knew immediately who I'd like to see done as a Ch~ch~chia, Chia Pet. Actually, it's 2 people, 1 fictional & 1 real. The first would have to be Mr. Clean, because I'd love to see what he looks like with hair. The other would be Donald Trump. Not that I'm a fan of the Don, but because his real hair ~ that dang, hideous, revolting, heinous comb~over ~ is sooooooo bad, that just about anything could be better! I mean, seriously, wouldn't that be hysterical? I think so, but then again, I've got a fairly warped sense of humor.

Great question, Carly! I've got 2 more questions to answer so far, but I'm going to save them for another day. If you haven't already asked me a question, or have thought up another 1, please feel free to add to the list, either in the comment box or my montaukny e-mail address.

Sunday, December 2, 2007


AAAACCCCCCKKKK! It fuckin' snowed while we slept last night!!!! It wasn't supposed to do that until later in the day! Skip & I have been so busy working 6 days a week & not getting home until around 7:00 pm, that we were going to put up our Christmas lights outside this morning. Now everything is covered in about an inch of snow & rain is possible later! YUCK! I really, really, REALLY wanted to get my Christmas lights up today!!!! Maybe...just maybe...we can still get them put up since the snow isn't too heavy. Keep your fingers crossed! Hooray! We were able to put up the lights in front of the house! The lights & the big inflatable Santa can wait for another day this week ~ those are the easier ones to do.

I'm just not ready for winter; not mentally at least. I love Christmas & all that, but the long winter months really get me down. I started dealing with S.A.D. (seasonal affective disorder) a long time ago, but last year it was really bad ~ so bad that I got myself one of those lightboxes that simulate sunlight (but without the bad UV rays) to help combat it. I got it late in the season & it helped, but the real test will be this winter. Just need to have it near me for about 15~30 minutes in the morning on gray days.

I wish I had more to write about. I get here to my blog with a ton of things on my mind that I want to say, but then my mind goes blank or I get distracted & I forget about what I wanted to say. Just getting old, huh? I'm going to start the new year off with a journal jar, suggested by a good friend, Becky. the meantime...if there's anyone out there actually reading my blog (Hi Phinney & Becky! I think you're the only 2!).....why not ask me a question...any question...& I'll answer it here. Either leave the question in the comment section or e-mail it to me at my montaukny address.

PS I mailed out all 120 Christmas cards ( read right...120!) late on Friday night so that they'd be in the early mail on Saturday, December 1st! That means that if you're on my Christmas card list, you should be getting a card from little ol' me any day now!