Illegitimis Non Carborundum

Monday, June 29, 2009


Sometimes it takes something so little to make you realize how lucky and blessed you are. We tend to take for granted the simple things, the little things, the every day things. Sometimes you really do have to take a step back. Even though there are so many things that make us crazy, tired, worn out, we really do need to step back and appreciate the fact that we are able to enjoy some every day mundane things.

My 12 yr old son has a good friend named Jim. Jim's mother is waiting for a liver. This time last year, Jimmy wasn't around at all because they were forever down the shore at their house they have down there. Lucky them! Now this year, they are tied to the house because his mother can't even walk up and down steps let alone go away for a weekend or even a day. She can't take long car rides and she can't be too far in case she gets that call.
I think it's really hard for this 12 yr old boy to have to go through this. I know it's hard on his mother and the rest of his family but I can't imagine what thoughts and fears are going through his head. I just wish a liver would become available for her.
Think about being a donor. Just take that one little step that might make a huge difference to a family, to a 12 yr old boy, to a child, to a mother, to a daddy, to someone who just really needs your help!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Just what I needed.....

Friday night we were sitting at home doing nothing and out of nowhere, my husband says we should go down the shore tomorrow. We were half thinking about going right then and there but I realized I needed to wash a few things that we would need. So we decided to get up early on Saturday and get moving. That's when my husband went up to bed. That's when I started the wash. That was around 10PM. So, at 2AM when I'm all finished and he's been snoring without missing a beat, we are officially ready to go. The alarm is set for 6:30AM. This should be fun!

Actually, it wasn't bad. I'm used to not getting more than 5 hours a sleep a day with my crazy shift so it wasn't a big deal. I got everything ready to go and we were on the road with my 3 kids and our niece to keep my daughter happy, all by 9AM.

The beach was gorgeous! Nice breeze, not too hot and not too crowded. There were even a few big dark clouds that brought some shade which I loved! We had a little drizzle but that didn't stop anyone. We left the beach for a little bit to have Mack & Manco pizza since you can't go to the Jersey shore and not have it. Then we went back on the beach for a little while. I took a bunch of pictures, read my book and just relaxed. After a bit of a stressful week, it was just what the doctor ordered. I'm such a good doctor to myself!

Here's my oldest son catching a wave on his boogieboard!

And my daughter enjoying the beach!

We hit the boardwalk at night so the kids could go on the rides. We bought tickets at half price back on Easter weekend. Good heavens that boardwalk was crowded. And the strollers. More coaches, strollers and wagons than I remember there being when my kids were in them. Seeing all the kids on those little rides that just go around and around reminded me so much of when my kids were younger. Made me realize those were some of the best days! Not that I don't love and enjoy my kids now, but the looks of excitement on their faces when we would go on the boardwalk and rides were priceless. You don't get to see those looks anymore. They get excited and happy, but it's not the same, it's not that "look". I miss it.

Oh how I miss it.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


This is my oldest son J. sitting and relaxing in the backyard of this house that my husband was doing some work on. The owners travel a lot with their careers and live part time in Colorado. So they aren't always home and told my husband that he could bring the family up to enjoy sitting and relaxing while he works. So that's what we did. I had a blast because I took up my new camera and took about 100 pictures. Jerry and I both had our books and we thought it would be perfect to just sit out there in the breeze all day and read. The only thing this place was missing was one of those swings with the cover, or a hammock. Either would have made me happy!

Like I said, I'm having fun with my new camera. My husband bought me a Nikon D40. I thought these little baby pine cones were so cool! The detail that you can see in these pictures is amazing. I have to learn how to play with the pictures and put them on the blog via a link or something. I'll work on that. I can't wait to get out this weekend and take some more photos. It's amazing how you notice things more when you think of how you could take a picture of it. Tonight on the way to work I was wishing I had brought my camera to work. The moon and clouds were really cool looking. I think I'm going to pack it up and bring it tonight. I'll be driving everyone nuts with photos!

Like they say, I'm going to take a little time and enjoy the view!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

What on your nightstand??

I'm just wondering if anyone found anything new and exciting to put on their nightstands this week!

Some books came in from the library for me that I had put on reserve. I was beginning to think they forgot about me.
I have some books on my nightstand that I'm going to return and get at another time because the few that I have gotten recently are ones that I'm really dying to get into and read fast.

Here's my nightstand pile of library books:

1. The Girls from Ames - Jeffrey Zaslow
2. Judas Child - Carol O'Connell
3. Columbine - David Cullen
4. Secrets She Left Behind - Diane Chamberlain
5. The Lost Hours - Karen White

Here's my nightstand pile of books that I have and really want to get through this summer:

1. Dead Before Dark - Wendy Corsi Staub
2. Friday Night Knitting Club - Kate Jacobs
3. Summers Child - Diane Chamberlain
4. Love Walked In - Marisa de Los Santos
5. How To Be Lost - Amanda Eyre Ward
6. Black for Remembrance - Carlene Thompson
7. Angels & Demons - Dan Brown

Then I have about 50 others on my shelves and in my piles that I really want to start reading. I have a few new to me authors that I want to try. Then I have at least 2 of my favorite authors that are coming out with new books that I want to put on reserve and read when they come out. That should get me through to September. Actually, I'm hoping to get done them all by September. I need to make a goal for myself. Not that long ago I was making sure I read a book a week. The end of year schedule messed up my routine and now that I don't have to pick the kids up from school every day, I don't have that reading time waiting for them to come out of school. I miss that time!!

Ok, time to hit the books!!!

Saturday, June 20, 2009


I'm not talking about the garden. I don't do gardening. Some people find that completely enjoyable and relaxing. And that's just wonderful, but I'm not one of those people.

My weeding this week is going to be on the book shelves. I've decided that I need to take at least 10 books off my shelves. I'm going to do it. I need to take 10 books off the shelves and take them to the hospital where I work and donate them to others who may need them. I'm a giver like that!

I can do this! Really I can! I'm not saying it's going to be easy, but I'm going to do it.

Wish me luck!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Fabulous Friday!!!

My absolute favorite day of the week is Friday!!! I sleep good on Fridays! I don't have to go to work on Friday nights! I just love Fridays!!!!!

The sun is shining today which hasn't happened here in Philly in DAYS!!! It's been a long wet week.

And when the sun shines, the kids go out to play. And that is good!

Jerry's report card came from high school today. I knew he did good because we checked his grades on gradeconnect. But I was dying to see his ranking! Ok, no pressure because it's really not that important. What's important is that he did well and he came out of his freshman year without too many battle scars!

But I was still dying to see the ranking. He's #20 out of 334! Ain't too shabby in my book! I'm so proud! He really had an adjustment this year to high school. There were days when we laughed, but there were days when we cried. There were good times and bad times. There were even some scary times. But all in all, he aced it! He came out better than he went in and that's what matters. He's a true Salesian Gentleman which is one of the things their catholic school strives to instill in their students. He has a beautiful, strong faith. He's a gentleman in every sense of the word and I'm just so damn proud of him!!!

It's really a fabulous Friday!!

Thursday, June 18, 2009


When I sit here at my desk at night at work, there is this noise that happens over my head. I'm pretty sure it has something to do with the air conditioning pipes/system that is in the ceiling.

The noise will drive you nuts but sometimes it makes me smile. I know, sounds nuts, but consider the source.

The noise makes me smile because it sounds like a train. It's like the noise a train would make as it's leaving the station. It starts slow and then little by little it picks up, just like a train would as it was leaving the station. I mean it actually makes the chug chug sound.

Now, why in the world would this annoying noise of a train leaving the station make me smile? I'll tell ya why.......Trains remind me of my Dad! My dad had a huge platform in his basement after my oldest son and the love of his life, Jerry, decided that he liked trains. Anything and everything to do with trains, my father made sure he had because of Jerry. We could stock our own Thomas store with all the trains, track and buildings we have. I still get Jerry a train on his birthday in honor of my father. He doesn't play with them at the age of 15, he's saving them for his son. But I like doing it for the memory of what it meant to him and my father. I can sit on the deck of my house and I can hear the train whistle even late at night. We don't live too far from the Amtrack train station and they run all hours of the day and night. I love hearing it when it's about midnight and I'm sitting out there on a Friday or Saturday night. It's a comfort noise.

I miss my dad. Even though it's been 7 1/2 years, I miss him like he just left. So much has changed in those years, so many things have happened. I can almost hear him laugh or chuckle and see his grin when things happen with the kids. I can see in my head what his face would look like if he was there watching them, seeing what they are doing, enjoying who they've become, marveling at their accomplishments. He'd be so damn proud, of them and of me. I really think he would be proud of the mother I am, of the children I've raised.

So, to my Daddy, I'd like to say,
Happy Father's Day Daddy, there's not a day that goes by that I don't miss you!
When I sit outside this weekend, blow your whistle for me!
Love ya!!

. . . ...... o o o o o
____==== ]OO_n_n__][.
oo oo 'oo OOOO- oo\\_

Library Loot.......

My library reserves were taking forever to come in! I was starting to think they were lost in the system somewhere and I'd have to get in line again. But today they were at the library waiting for me.

I picked up:

Columbine by Dave Cullen
The Lost Hours by Karen White
Secrets She Left Behind by Diane Chamberlain

I think I'm going to start Columbine since I was on a long list for it and I'm pretty sure it's not going to be renewable. That means I'll have to put my current read, Judas Child, on hold for a few days. After I get started reading Columbine, I'll see if I can stick with it. If it's too sad then I'll wait till another time.

Anyone grab anything good at the library lately?


I thought I needed a new look for summer! I kind of like this one, a little girly but that's okay for now! As long as it's purple I'm good.

Normally, I'm horrible with change. New beginnings scare me and endings terrify me. I'm starting to realize that this really is a problem for me so I have to work through some changes, get a grip on things and make myself relax and work it out. I'd even go so far as to say I have anxiety about change. I think it's getting worse as I get older. Or maybe it's not so much as I get older, but as my kids get older. They are the ones changing, going through most of the changes and I'm the one having the anxiety about it. All part of motherhood I guess. So I figure if I get a grip, grab it by the horns and hold on for dear life, I might just be okay with some change here and there. Maybe.

Instead of focusing on the changes, I'm going to focus and put my energy into other things. Control what I can, while I can. Maybe even sit back and enjoy a few things. Wish me luck with that!

So to help kick off my big change with change, I think I'm going to give myself some time this weekend. I really want to get out and play with my new camera some. I really want to curl up on the deck on my favorite lounger and read while sipping a big glass of sweet tea (thanks for the idea Cyndy) with my tiki lights going. I want to play a few rounds of Apples to Apples & Uno Attack with the kids. I want to stay up late and talk! I want to take a little time and just enjoy the start of summer.

And while I'm doing that, I'll just keep saying over and over

Oh God, give me the Serenity to accept the things that cannot be changed, the Courage to change the things that can and the Wisdom to know the difference.

Maybe that'll do the trick!

Monday, June 15, 2009

It's Monday!!!

It's Monday! What are you reading this week? is a weekly event hosted by J. Kaye of J. Kaye's Book Blog to list the books completed last week, the books currently being read, and the books to be finished this week.

I thought this looked like fun and something a little different! Plus I really liked the picture! I borrowed this from, one of the blogs I love to read!

Books finished last week:

Before the Storm by Diane Chamberlain

Bone by Bone by Carol O'Connell

Currently Reading:

Judas Child by Carol O'Connell

Books to Finish this Week:

Judas Child by Carol O'Connell

Starvation Lake by Bryan Gruley

How about you? Why not join in with what you've read, are reading or planning to finish this week or share with me in a comment.


My book this week.....

This week I'm reading Before The Storm by Diane Chamberlain. I really like Chamberlain's books and this one doesn't disappoint.

"Fifteen year old Andy Lockwood is special. Others notice the way he blurts out anything that comes into his mind, how he cannot foresee consequences, that he's more child than teenager. But his mother sees a boy with a heart as open and wide as the ocean. Laurel Lockwood lost her son once through neglect. She's spent the rest of her life determined to make up for her mistakes, and she's succeeded in becoming a committed, protective parent - maybe even overprotective. Still, she loosens her grip just enough to let Andy attend a local church social - a decision that terrifies her when the church is consumed by fire. But Andy survives and remarkably, saves other children from the flames. Laurel watches as Andy basks in the role of unlikely hero and the world finally sees her Andy, the sweet boy she knows as well as her own heart. But when the suspicion of arson is cast upon Andy, Laurel must ask herself how well she really knows her son...and how far she'll go to keep her promise to protect him forever."

As with all of Chamberlain's books, there's always a few twist and turns in the plot that throw you for a loop. Each chapter ends with a sentence that really makes you want to read just one more and makes it hard to put down!

My new toy....

I got a present the other day! I don't even know why. But I'm not going to complain, I'm just going to enjoy it! I got a Nikon D40 digital camera. It's awesome! It takes fantastic pictures and comes with 2 lenses. I have to figure a few things out and find out how to get the pics from the camera to the computer. My computer doesn't have a drive to insert a disk so I have to figure that one out. I think we are going to have to go with loading it on a flash drive and then loading that onto my notebook. I didn't have much time to get out and play with it this weekend. We either had kids over to hang out or I was driving kids around to other kids houses! I can't wait for a day to just get out and take some pics. Might be a good time to take a ride to the beach or mountains!

I'll be adding lost of pics to the blog once I get it all figured out! You've been warned!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

I can smell it.....

summer is right around the corner. It's almost in my grasp! We're this close!

Only 2 more days of school for my 2 younger kids. My oldest completed his first year of High School today! Where did it go?

I've been thinking a lot about this year. It's been a big one with lots of changes. Some good, some not so but such is life.

I have these books at home for the kids. It's those books that have a folder/pocket page for each year of their schooling. Well, I figured 9th grade is a big one so I think I'm going to do something for their freshman year. I'm going to type out a year in review and stick it in that pocket without telling them. I think I might do it in a letter form. Something for them to look back on and see it from how it happened and give my point of view on it all.

They'll think I'm a sappy dork if I tell them about it now. But maybe some day they'll enjoy reading it and remembering. I think they will. I really wish I had thought of this years ago but it's never too late to start. I was thinking earlier today where we were a year ago. Jerry was graduating and so many thoughts came flooding back to me. I had my broken elbow. Jerry had gotten a scholarship and several awards. And my friend Terri was alive. That's what made me think of doing the letter. You never know what tomorrow can bring and I have all these beautiful memories in my head. I don't want something to happen some day and these memories all go with me, without sharing them with the kids. Very sappy and bordering on morbid but I want them to have something to look back and maybe feel how I felt when it was all going on.

Maybe when I'm 100 and sitting in my rocking chair, they'll come to visit me and we'll sit on the porch and read them together. That would be nice!

How special.....

and a special Thanks to Stacy for being so kind and sharing! Stacy has a great blog so check her out when you have a few!
I'm new at this award thing so I hope I'm doing this right!
One Lovely Blog Award goes to new blogs and blogging friends.The rules are: Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who granted the award and his or her blog link. Pass the award to 5 other blogs that you’ve newly discovered.
I'm happy to pass it on to some of my personal favorites!! Kathy @, Dar @ & Cyndy @

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

High Five!

Tonight was my first Mothers Association meeting since I became President of the Association! I really wasn't that nervous but I was a little anxious to see how things were going to go. This is a tight group and some of them have been together for a few years. I just joined last year, boy did that fly by! There were times I wasn't really sure if I wanted to keep doing it either. Sometimes I felt like such a "freshman" mom. But I hung in there, got to know the girls and kept showing up at things, giving it my all. When it came time to elect new officers, I went to the plate, ready to give it my all. I did not for the life of me think I was going to be the only one. So, by process of elimination and before I could think twice about it, I was becoming President.

I have to be honest and admit, I like, no I love being involved with my kids schools and activities. I like being known at the schools. I like being comfortable with the faculty and staff. But all this high school stuff is new and it's just like being a freshman again.

I think we had a really good meeting and a lot of my ideas were met with nodding heads and smiles. I think some of the ladies were thinking the same things, just hoping someday someone would come along and make the necessary changes.

Tonight when I got to work, I got an email from Fr. J who is the priest that sits in with our organization. He's wonderful and I really like him. Here's the beginning of his email to me

"GREAT JOB tonight! You have a natural gift! It will be a pleasure working with you!I loved the way you brought up our conversation about meeting changes,etc. I don't know if you could see, but many of the moms were smiling and nodding in agreement. I think our changes will meet with much approval."

That felt good! Makes you feel like the work that you are doing is really worth it and is going to make a difference! And I do believe it's going to be a good year!!

Book review & recommendation

I absolutely loved Bone by Bone by Carol O'Connell. Very well written, fabulous characters and a great story! I just have to read her other stand alone called Judas Child and I'm just going to have to add her series to my TBR list!

I've started what looks like is going to be another good one, Before The Storm by Diane Chamberlain. I like Chamberlain's books and have recommended them before. She always seems to grab you in those first few pages and before you know it, you're hooked!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

One Sensational Saturday!

I had such a good day, I feel guilty!

Well, not really.

This morning my husband got up at the ungodly hour of 5:30AM to leave for Vermont. He was going to get a machine that he bought for his shop. We're hoping this works well and takes off for him. It could really jump start his business again and hopefully open some new doors. Everything I own is crossed!!

So after I got up with him for a little bit and said goodbye, I went back to bed around 7AM. I woke up at 9:30 and decided to get moving. Greg had a bday pool party to go to so I dropped him off and Jerry, Victoria and I headed to the mall. I had GCs to burn and I was determined to have fun spending them. I wasn't in the door of B&N for 2 seconds when Jerry pointed it out to me. I knew I had to have it. I must be the only one who doesn't buy books at B&N. I like getting my books from the library. We all know I have an library fetish. So what do you buy if you won't buy books? You buy an Elevated Lighted Lapdesk to read on. Yep, that's what you do. And this lapdesk is the perfect size for my notebook computer. Oh sweet, I'm in love! I grabbed that baby on the way out of the mall.

We met my friend Lisa and her 2 daughters J & K. J and Victoria go to school together and are very good friends so they were off and being all girly in the mall. Jerry went off on his own for a little bit. Lisa, Kelly and I went shopping. We stopped in New York & Company and that's when my world lit up! They had some purple pocketbooks. Now we all know purple pocketbooks are my other obsession! I'm looking around and find two pocketbooks. Normally, I would have to chose but when they are having a 60% off sale, you just don't have to do that! So I get the 2 and on the way out, K finds another purple one! Now, do I? Should I? Hey, I have birthday money. I'm going for it! I also notice a few wallets, little change purses and this really cool dark purple cell phone case. Yeah, the case was 60% off too. Goodbye birthday money......hello happy birthday girl!!

We had a really nice lunch at the food court with the kids. We hit Claire's where I found this really cute cell phone holder that I wanted for my desk and of course Victoria found some lip gloss. Then we took our other gift card to B&BW and had some fun in there. I got some Cucumber Melon shower gel and lotion. Victoria got some Warm Vanilla spray and lotion. I can't wait to get my shower soon! I even manged to find 3 bras at Sears. It was a really good shopping day!

We went to 4:30 mass and even more good things happened. I was saying to Jerry that 2 of the boys that work at the rectory are leaving for college, he should ask Father if he's hiring. He thinks about it and I say, you should go catch him before he leaves to do his running around. He goes back and asks Father and he says, Jerry I just saw you sitting out there and thought, I should call Jerry and ask him if he wants a job. LOL!!! Pays to go to mass and be friends with your pastor. The boys that work there usually just have to answer the phones and greet anyone coming to the rectory for a meeting. They can do their homework, watch tv and bring their laptops if they have one. This is the perfect job for him. It's a couple days a week from 3-7PM. Doesn't interfere with much and the hours are perfect.

Greg had a hockey game after mass. It was a playoff game but they lost. Greg had a goal so he was happy. The coach had some really nice things to say about him after the game. Proud mommy moment!

Now I'm home doing some wash and playing on line. I think I'll curl up with my book and relax some before hogging the whole bed to myself!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Crazy 8s

I'm going to be a copycat from Cyndy over at Putting the Fun in DysFUNctional -I don't think she'll mind! And of course I've added a few of my own. At least I didn't list my 8 favorite shades of my favorite color.

8 things I'm looking forward to:

- summer break, being president of the Mothers Assoc., going on vacation, spending some time relaxing during the summer, new changes at kids school, getting the kids report cards, going out with friends next Friday night, sleeping in all summer
8 things I did yesterday:
slept, picked up the kids at school, went to Pathmark, had a nice talk with my oldest, made dinner, went to work, read my book, snuggled with my daughter.
8 things I wish I could do:
own a bookstore, win the lottery, worry less, sleep more, get locked in a library overnight, read people's minds, be a stay at home mom again, go back in time!
8 shows I watch: -
House, Big Bang Theory, Criminal Minds, Desperate Housewives, The Bachelorette, Big Brother, Harpers Island, Lost
8 favorite fruits:
pineapple, bananas, grapes, cantelope, bananas, pineapple, grapes, cantelope.
8 places I would like to travel to:
Italy, The Grand Canyon, England, Paris (w/Victoria),Disney World, Hawaii, Alaska, back in time.
8 places I've lived:
my parents home, our first house, back at my parents house, our home now,
that's it for that!
8 favorite authors:
Adriana Trigiani, Diane Chamberlain, Karen White, Carol O'Connell, Karin Slaughter, Wendy Corsi Staub, Carlene Thompson, Linwood Barclay
8 good books you've read lately:
The House on Tradd Street, Very Valentine, Bone by Bone, The Hour I First Believed, The Bay At Midnight, Charley's Web, Lucia Lucia, Beyond Reach

When I'm down....

there are only a few things that will make me "snap out of it". Two of them I can combine and guarantee I will be in heaven for a few days!

First one........SHOP and find something really cool for myself!
Second one.........have that something really cool be PURPLE!
Good news......tomorrow starts the weekend, I have $50 in B&N gift cards and I'm sure I can find something purple somewhere!

Yeah, I'll be fine in a few days!

I've found a new author......

and I'm really loving this book!

The book is Bone by Bone by Carol O'Connell. She has another stand alone called Judas Child that I've ordered from the library. It looks really good too! She also has a mystery series that I've never heard of or read but I'm adding it to my ever growing list!

I just love when I find a book that I just can't wait to get back to reading. I want to hurry and find out things but I don't want it to end, that's how much I'm enjoying it.

Looks like I forgot one.....

His first break-up. Yep, so ends another great romance! Turns out they just like hanging out as friends and there isn't any chemistry there. Ahhhh to be 14 again! Just one of many I'm sure!

I'm just very grateful for the relationship that we have together. I'm so happy that he came to me over the last week and talked to me. I'm glad he trusted me and I'm glad I got to be there for him. Made me feel good as a mom! That's something I'll never take for granted!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

What a year.....

well, not a full calendar year but a school year!

Way back in September, my oldest started his Freshman year of high school. Wow, what a year it's been!

We've had a lot of firsts at his High School. We've shared a lot of firsts and he's experienced A LOT of firsts!

It seems like just yesterday he was sitting in the car telling me that he didn't like it there, didn't want to do this anymore. It was hard and it was an adjustment. He went from being one of the top dogs to being just one in a room full of top dogs. But by the second half of the year, he was ranked #19 out of 344. Not bad for a kid who swore he just couldn't do it!

We had our first Mother Son Dance this year! I'm very lucky that I have a son that will go to these events with me without having to beg and bribe. Believe me, I've heard stories of what some moms had to go through to "get" their sons to do this with them. I'm lucky!

And he's had a lot of firsts too. His first article for the newspaper, his first high school dance, his first girlfriend and even his first kiss. Don't know if he'll admit it, but he's had a really good first year!

Looking back, it's bitter sweet. I'm so happy to have experienced things with him. I'm lucky to have been able to watch him experience other things. And with each experience, he gets one more step closer to growing up, moving on, leaping into manhood. And as much as that is an honor to watch and experience, it's heartbreaking to see. I love the teen he's becoming but I so terribly miss the little boy who thought wearing a Rubbermaid bowl on his head was cool!

I'm happy for him, but sad for me. Motherhood is one tough job and it's murder on the heart!

Lord help me when he's a senior!