Share Your World – Week 1

In my effort to write more I am committing to doing the Share Your World challenge for the entire year this time. So here goes with week 1. (Thank you Cee for doing this as it gives me ideas and topics to expand on.)

Share Your World – 2014 Week 1

What are some of your favorite type of proteins to eat? (meat, eggs, soy, cheese, nuts)

So simple for me – cheese. I love soft cheeses, hard cheeses and have passed that love along to my son. We love nothing better to go into those high-end stores and try the samples offered.

Are you a morning or night person?

I used to be a morning person but am finding as I age I’m becoming grumpier in the morning until I have that first cup of sweetened hot tea. Can’t say I’m a night person though either. I’d have to say I’m a middle of the night person now as I often have insomnia due to my pain levels and that is when I get to have my quite time, reading and catching up on shows I like to watch.

What is your preferred hot drink: coffee, tea, water or other?

I’m a water and tea girl. I try to stay hydrated all day as some of my meds are really dehydrating. Tea is my favorite drink though and I love it hot, cold, blended with ice – you name it and I’d try it. I’m not fussy when it comes to it either but have to say simple black tea is my favorite though I love to try new teas that are loose leave. I enjoy the scent of those almost as much as the taste.

Out of your five senses (touch, taste, sight, smell, hearing) which is your favorite?

Touch is my favorite. I’m a tactile person and always feel as though I can get to the heart of something if I’m just able to touch the source. The remainders are important to but I’d feel bereft if I lost my ability to touch – people, things, it’s all so important to me.

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Random Acts of Kindness

I’ve been giving RAK’s a lot of thought lately. In reflecting on my own blessings during the month of November I’ve come to realize how my family, friends and even strangers impact my life in small and BIG ways. This has made me realize that I to have the opportunity to bless others and have decided to start now and work my way through 2014 seeing just how many RAK’s I can accomplish. My family will be joining me on this adventure whether they truly realize it or not.

This past week I’ve been happy to provide a Thanksgiving meal to my husbands cigar supplier, and more importantly friend, Pedro. Pedro is an awesome old fellow from Cuba with many stories to tell. He’s a master chess player and has not only taught my husband how to play a good game of chess over a cigar or two but is working to make Joey a champion player as well. He enjoys spending time with my boy so much that literally he closes his cigar lounge to any smoking while Joey is there. His family recently relocated to other parts of the U.S. and he has been left to his own devices. He owns a small cigar shop in Carmichael, CA and basically lives and works in a 2-block area. We tried desperately to get him to actually come to our home to join us for Thanksgiving but as he’s not comfortable leaving his 2-block comfort zone we couldn’t convince him to do it so the next best option was to bring a plate to him. Of course it gave my hubby a good opportunity to pick up another cigar to two as well so it was win-win in his mind. I’m hoping that before 2014 is over that we’ll actually get him to come to more of our family events as we’ve adopted him whether he realizes it or not.

I was able to score a few hours to myself the other day and decided to go shopping. I managed to get a good deal or two on several toys for the Toys for Tots motorcycle ride that Larry and Joey participated in on Sunday. They looked so cute, Larry dressed up in a full Santa suit and Joey with his elfin ears and hat with jingle bells. The guys got to spend 4 hours with other motorcycle enthusiasts and the children in our community benefitted with thousands of toys being donated, along with cash donations, to make the holidays a little more cheery.

Santa and his Elf getting ready to deliver some toys.

Santa and his Elf getting ready to deliver some toys.

Joey the Elf show a little love to Puff the Christmas Dragon.

Joey the Elf show a little love to Puff the Christmas Dragon.


Santa securing his load.

Santa securing his load.

I was also able to shop for Larry’s tree angel that he selected from the tree at his office. She had requested a sweater and I found the softest one for her in a beautiful charcoal grey. That was all she asked for but I think I’ll pick up a few more items just to round her gift out and make her holiday a little more joyful.

On Saturday we, along with my in-laws and some friends, went to the Eskaton Care Facility and sang Christmas carols for my Mom and the other residents who wanted to participate. We may not have been in tune on all the songs but it made no difference going by their smiles. Joey, his cousin Elsa and their friend Ari handed out Christmas cards that we’d all signed. When we finished singing I went to the rooms of the residents who are bed ridden and gave them a card and chatted with each of them for a while. It’s amazing how such a small act can brighten someone’s day. I’m going to try to come up with a few other things we can do with the residents over the next several months since this one was such a smashing success. I’m thinking I’ll take my two dogs next, dressed up in their holiday attire, and do some visiting with those residents who like to hang out, talk and pet the dogs.

Joey and I are going to be making up some pre-packed bags for the homeless that we come across on our daily adventures. Not anything extravagant but items that are needed. We were thinking of tooth brushes with a tube of toothpaste, a bottle of water, some gum or mints, gift cards for some our local fast food restaurants, that kind of thing. We’ll also be donating to Joey’s school food drive, the 680 Sock Drive, and providing a coat for one individual to help them get through the coldest days.

If you have any suggestions for RAK’s that I can do, or that we can do as a family, I’d love to hear about them. Who knows, maybe one you suggest will be our next project and I promise to post photo’s of all that we do over the coming months. In the meantime I’d like to ask each of you how you can make an impact, big or small, to bring a little pleasure to the life of another. If you choose to do some RAK’s yourself we’d love to hear about them.

Share Your World 2013 – Week 8

Rocks

I don’t feel like doing anything other than writing right now so I thought I’d share my world with all of you.

Question: What is your favorite day of the week?

Answer: The last few years it’s always been Saturday because that’s when my hubby’s work week ended and we could get in some good quality family fun but since he got laid off in December it is fast becoming Friday’s. We do field trip Fridays with our son Joey and together are getting the opportunity to not only learn but to have fun while accomplishing that goal. So far we’ve gotten to go into space at our local Discovery Museum and last week we toured the California Automobile Museum and got to discover a whole new line of vehicles – micro’s and mini’s. Joey really loved them because they were sized just about perfect for a 5-year olds imagination though I doubt he’d still have been able to utilize the gas and brake peddles since they are legal street vehicles that adults drive. I’m now in the process of researching new places to experience within a 2-hour drive from our home base and am truly excited at all the possibilities. If the rain holds off this week then we’ll be off to pan for our fortunes while learning about the California Gold Rush. Something Joey’s been dying to try ever since we went camping this past summer and one of our camping “neighbors” gave him a gold pan and filled his head with stories of all his treasure hunts around California. He was even kind enough to give him a little vial filled with real gold which of course has since been broken while the kids were playing with it. Who knows, maybe we’ll get enough from our own panning experiences to fill a family vial.

Question: Have you ever had a recurring dream? What was it?

Answer: I have and I’ll be darned if I can recall it at the moment. You know it’s immediately evident upon waking that you’ve had this same dream before, for me at least a half-dozen times and if my memory serves me correctly I do have it written down in a journal somewhere and even went so far as to discuss its meaning with a therapist a dozen years back but I can’t even recall one detail of it right now.

Question: Have you ever been drunk?

Answer: Yes, when I was turning 16 my friends threw me a pony kegger party and I drank so much beer that I ended up throwing up several times and to this day dislike even the smell of beer. I also tied one on at my girlfriend Suzy’s bachelorette party when we had a little tequila drinking contest with shots – I won. I think that was the only time in my life where I physically felt so out of balance. Even laying down I felt as though I was spinning around in circles. Both those experiences taught me that alcohol should only be consumed in moderation if it is meant to be truly enjoyed.

Question: Out of your five senses (touch, taste, sight, smell, hearing) which is your favorite?

Answer: Oh, that is such a great question. I think because of the fact that my health has created the possibility of losing my sight one day down the road that I don’t take it for granted at all and it makes me value it a little more as I know it’s not a given. Now having said that I would say that touch is my favorite because I’m a very tactile person. I’ll see something and immediately reach out to touch it, to experience it first hand and to try to capture a little of its essence if I’m drawn to it right away by sight. I also like to connect with others and think that touch is such a powerful medium for doing just that. I couldn’t imagine never holding hands with my son, or feeling my husbands whiskers against my chin when he leans in for a quick kiss. I love to feel the heat rolling of rocks, the softness of my dogs bellies, and to feel creation occurring when I let clay travel through my fingers on a wheel leaving tendrils of wet silt running down my arms and onto my jean clad legs.

Share Your World 2013 – Week 6

California State Capital
I love the eclectic randomness of Cee’s questions. It opens my mind and makes me really have to think of what I would do differently than I’m doing now. Here are her questions for week 6. It would be a lot of fun if those of you that follow me would write some of your answers to these same questions in the comments section.

Question: If you given $22 million tax-free dollars, what is the first thing you would do?

I’d buy some property in the mountains and build custom homes for my in-laws and my sister so we could connect more often and perhaps on a more authentic basis. I would self publish a book. I’d love to start a non-profit for battered women and their children to help them get back on their feet. I’d finance my husband’s dream of owning and operating a cigar lounge even though I don’t like the smelly things. I’d also build a charter school K-12th grades that offered a lot more than our public school system and only hire the most creative, loving, and intellectual teachers out there. Those are just a few of the things I would do.

Question: Where were you born?

You know I think it was San Jose, California but I’m always unsure as it could have been Santa Clara as well. I do know it was California and in the Bay Area as I’m a California girl through and through and think their is no better state to live in even if the cost of living can be much higher than other states. We have all this natural beauty here from oceans to mountains and lots of things to see, do and learn from.

Question: Can you change a car tire?

If I had to I could do it as my Uncle Armas taught me how to properly do it when I first got my license a gazillion years ago. I’ve only had to change it myself one time and the rest of my experiences have been handled by AAA. The last time I attempted it I couldn’t even manage to get one lug nut off and called my husband to come help me. He also couldn’t get the lugs loose so we had to call for service. When the tow truck arrived the guy even had difficulty succeeding at the task and had to had a long pipe onto his lug wrench to get the leverage needed.

Question: What is your favorite part of the town/city you live in. And what Country do you live?

I live in the United States, in California as stated above. The favorite part of my city is first of all my friends. I’m fortunate to live on a circle that two of my best friends live on which makes it so easy to get together and to allow for opportunities for our kids to play together. I love the diversity of experiences available to us as a family. We have the State Capital here, tons of restaurants of all types, lots of natural environments to get lost in like state forests and the Sacramento river, and a lot of museums and music venues.

Share Your World 2013 – Week 3 & 4

I’ve been remiss in blogging about anything of late, and have even gotten behind in the Share Your World Q & A, so here is my quick attempt at catching up.

Week 3

Questions: Is your hair short (total neck and ear showing), medium (covering ears and neck), long (below shoulders) or extra long (at least halfway down your back)?

Answer: My hair is typically in a pixie, shaped to my head and around my ear. At the request of my hubby and son I am attempting to grow it out in 2013 but I usually only last a month or two before the new growth starts to tickle my ears and neck and so I give in and get it chopped off. For now it’s shaggy short and head bands are my new best friend to keep the bangs out of my eyes during the day.

Question: What is your favorite color of hair? You can name your hair color or a color that you just like.

Answer: I’m a brunette and I do honestly believe that we have the most fun but I like pretty much all hair colors and think it’s fun to switch it up every once in a while whether it’s a quick change out with a wig, hair piece or some spray in color or a professionally highlighted job. Or in the case of my son, some extra strong hair gel with a little food coloring thrown in for fun.

My lil' Joe all mohawked out for Crazy Hair Day at school.

My lil’ Joe all mohawked out for Crazy Hair Day at school.


Question: Which bad habits, if any, drive you crazy?

Answer: There are a couple – folks who constantly interrupt others (which I sometimes do and I think that’s why it drives me so crazy) and when people are rude to those providing service of some kind to them. I believe you can really tell the measure of a person by the way they treat their wait staff. If they can’t be kind and courteous during the most basic of exchanges how will they treat you in the long run, especially in times of challenge? Just think about it, and don’t bother wasting your time on them.

Question: What are some of your favorite type of proteins to eat? (meat, eggs, soy, cheese, nuts)

Answer: Cheese, cheese, cheese. I honestly believe I could give up meat, eggs, etc. but I’d be miserable if I couldn’t have a taste of really good cheese.

Week 4

This is a little different from weeks past. Instead of specific questions, here is Cee’s inquiry.

Almost everyone has heard of a bucket list which is a list of things you want to do before you die. List 4 things off your bucket list that you would like to share with us. Assume that money is no object. Have a lot of fun with it. Would you like to fly to the moon, dive to the bottom of the ocean, live a month in India or learn how to tap dance? What is on your list?

There are a lot of things on my list from little to BIG. My first would be to travel the world – alone, with my hubby, with my son. We wouldn’t have to do the whole thing together but I’d like to share parts of the journey with each of them individually and collectively as a family. Going along with that vein in mind I’d like to learn to at least speak conversationally in a foreign tongue in the majority of places that I intend to visit for more than two weeks at a time beginning with Italian. I think it’s such a beautiful language. My son on the other hand wants to learn Spanish and Mandarin so I guess I’ll have to learn those as well in order to keep up with him.

I’ve always wanted to obtain a pilot’s license but due to health issues it wouldn’t be safe for me to really do but I’d still love to take a plane up with an experienced pilot and be allowed to take control if even for only a moment or two.

I want to publish a children’s book… and yes, self publishing would count. I’d partner with a bold illustrator who would bring my book to life along with my words and no pastels would be allowed.

I want to take cooking lessons with my husband – doesn’t matter what kind, it could be sushi making, or Best of BBQ, or creating the perfect salted caramels just so long as we could do it together. I love cooking with him in the kitchen and we don’t do it near as often as we did when we were in the courtship phase of our relationship and I miss it.

So that’s it in a nut shell. I’m caught up and current and now am just wondering what you would do for your bucket list? Anyone want to share?

Share Your World 2013 – Week 2

Week two is already upon us and Cee has come up with some fun questions to respond to so I say let’s get right to it.

Question: What is your favorite color?

Answer: Purple. I’m not sure why exactly but in giving it some thought and research it seems pretty fitting for me. It’s the color of the 7th Chakra which is known as the Crown Chakra – spirituality, strength, passion, and a sense of oneness in the world. I’m always looking for the connections with people, the earth, myself, my thoughts so it’s fitting that it’s my favorite. And besides it looks great on just about everyone don’t you think?

Question: Favorite thing to photograph? Write? Or Cook?

Answer: My favorite thing to photograph is nature followed closely by people – generally people I don’t even know. I love to capture the nuances in both, what a line in someone’s face signifies or the rings of a tree. I find it fascinating. I love to write anything and everything – plain old journaling, poetry, short stories. As for cooking, I love trying new things from other cultures. Sushi making, check. Hand rolled pasta, check. You name it and I’m willing to give it a try but, and that’s a big BUT I don’t like to do it alone. I love cooking with my husband, my son, my friends.

Question: Name two of your best personality traits.

Answer: I’d have to go with my sense of wonder and my loyalty to family and friends.

Question: What word or words are fun for you to say?

Answer: Spaghetti which I always pronounce as sketti and Napkin which I always tend to leave the p out of if we’re being literal. I also have a lot of fun with words in general. Joey is just learning his letters and so he’s always trying to spell words that make no sense. On the way to school he’ll say letters out loud and then ask me what word he spelled. Usually it’s something like PTEEROS and I’ll respond that isn’t a word but just letters he’s strung together. This is almost always followed by his request for me to sound it out anyway and when I do he always says, “See Mom, it is a word.” Don’t even get me started on the definitions we come up with for some of his words or you won’t be able to stop laughing. For example did you know that PTEEROS means a purple and orange dinosaur that wears footed pajama’s? See you learn something knew every day.

Now how about you… how would you answer these questions?