Miscellaneous & Recommendations

This WordPress.com site is great for bloggers and readers.

Leave a comment

Just another day. November 8, 2014

Happy birthday, self.
Take note the passing moments.
Embrace the present.

Sixty six over,
A fresh year appears to me
Celebrate today.

Another year gone,
Time escapes so quickly
my birthdays speed by.

I still feel the same
only gravity reveals
another year passed.

Can I stitch wisely,
this tapestry I weave?
Future’s moments pend.

Each year is shorter
than the one that came before,
seventy beckons.

Injoy:) Carolyn

I love the following & HAD to reblog it for my own birthday today! Every word is perfectly placed.

“Week’s loose ends still frayed.
Will I choose to unravel,
Slip knots into ease?”



One year ago


I’m not sure what happened to this original post. It seems to have evaporated into cyberspace. So this time last year we were on the way to Las Vegas. I spent my 66th birthday thanking my surgeon for saving my life. It was a hard year with dreadful illness & two major surgeries. I was on ‘industrial strength’ antibiotics intravenously for nine long weeks. I was without a knee cap & unable to bear weight for 12 longer weeks. Then I had the replacement surgery & three more weeks of i.v. antibiotics. I almost died from a bone infection in an artificial knee I’d had for eleven years. No one knows HOW I got the infection. I realized after it was gone that I had been sick far longer than I realized.

I am grateful to be alive to write about it. I’m still battling my two herniated discs in my back &  waiting impatiently to get into a pain clinic for nerve root injections with steroids. I’m being ground down by chronic debilitating pain. Vicodin doesn’t help. TENS unit helps a little sometimes. Ice helps a little sometimes. For those few moments I’m grateful.

I’m approaching my birthday again. I’ll turn 67 on Saturday. But today I am 66! No real celebration is planned. I’ll have some Ben & Jerry’s fudge brownie with whipped cream & pretend it is a ‘Thunder-down-under’ from the Outback.  On the following Wednesday we’re making a day trip to Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, Harbor Freight & See’s Candy. I’ll make sure my kindle is fully charged. This will be the first trip out of town we are making in my 1997 Dodge Ram named Bo Peep that the truck fairy left for me a few months ago. It had been black with silver stripes but I had my hubby take off the ‘plastic’ stripes. We had it lowered by removing leaf springs. We also replaced tires. It’s beginning to be personalized. Next step will be to replace the fabric bucket seats with leather. I’ve been so spoiled by leather in all my previous vehicles. I went almost three years without driving & am SO grateful to have that freedom restored. Of course I will NOT drive if I’ve taken pain medication, so my excursions are still limited. But baby steps of independence count.

Here are some aging gracefully images. I love the beautiful rust bucket. I’ll develop some later of Bo Peep. Birthday hugs from Snoopy. I’m older than I’ve ever been before & I’m younger than I’ll ever be again. Getting older isn’t for weaklings. I celebrate each day I wake up.

Happy Friday everyone!


Dreams & other maladies. Musing on a Sunday morning.

I wake with the echo of hoof beats from the mares running through my dreams. It doesn’t happen as often as it used to, but still I have night terrors. I wake in a puddle of cold sweat. Sometimes it takes half an hour to stop trembling. Other times I wake with tears which have drained into my ears. Neither situation is ideal, but such is the night life of a dreamer.

I used to keep a dream journal to capture the memory the moment I came to consciousness. If I don’t write it immediately, it skitters off the edge of my memory.  I don’t know why I stopped. I could have given Stephen King or Dean Koontz a run for the money if I ever actually wrote about where my night time imagination carried me. I was not always fond of bringing the thoughts into my waking hours. A true quandary, or a quagmire or some other puzzling place to be. I was afraid if I examined these horrors in the light of day, I might learn far more about my subconscious than I was ready to know. That seems as likely an excuse as any. Perhaps I was simply undisciplined & lazy.

Ramblings of a night passed. It’s a good thing when I wake & am eager to start a fresh day. At my age, I’m grateful to wake.

Now on to Sunday morning musing.

I wonder about the origin of words & phrases. I’ve lived in different geographical locations & there seem to be regional colloquialisms. The Southern ones are often more comical to me. “Rode hard & put away wet” could certainly mean something different to someone who was unfamiliar with the needs of grooming a horse at the end of a ride.

‘Yep, that little filly was rode hard & put away wet,’ could be the starting lyric of a country song or changed mid-stream into a steamy hot novel.

Ponderables, musings, thoughts to keep myself entertained on a Sunday morning.

My bedroom laptop bit the dust day before yesterday. How frustrating! We bought from a local company who assured us the warranty was good. Turns out, anytime the machine was taken in for repair, there was a mandatory $50.00 charge. Some warranty. It’s been repaired four times already…yes, that’s $200.00 tacked onto the original $1,000 for the machine. My Hubby is ready to take it to the desert & put a bullet in it. Sadly, there are things there that were not backed up. Fortunately I had taken a thumb drive & saved most of my ‘freebie’ downloads. But as for the photographs that were only in that laptop, I shot myself in the foot. **sigh** I’d have thought that by now I would have learned. That’s the sad thing about digital downloads, if they are removed from the camera & stored only in a laptop, they are GONE!

The irony is I have another broken laptop in the bottom drawer of my dresser that stays on only long enough to load Windows & turns off before I can retrieve my stories.  Perhaps some day I will learn. With my track record, it’s not looking good.

Today my mission, should I choose to accept, is to get at least one large black garbage bag filled with items to take to Goodwill. I’ll start in the room we call ‘the lair’. It’s our television room which can’t be used during the summer months. Since it’s mid-October & in the high 80’s we should be able to use it soon. I’m getting it cleared out today so we can sit on the couch.

Leave a comment

A dear friend died today.

It’s a selfish response on my part to have wept much of the afternoon after I  received the news that a dear friend died today.

I simply cannot believe she’s gone. It happened so fast. I can still see her smile, hear her laugh & now only imagine her sparkling eyes. I must hold them in memory. I will gift wrap these memories & store them in my heart.

She will be greatly missed. The world is a lesser place without her in it. God speed, dear one. I’m glad you are now pain free.

Leave a comment

Memories of Mama on a Sunday morning.

Mama Conway in the mid 1970's

Mama Conway in the mid 1970’s

My Mama was a Southern Lady. She had a sweet contralto drawl that could soothe & relax. She also had laser green eyes that could freeze me in my tracks. They actually worked until I was almost thirty.

She had an indomitable spirit. She battled & overcame cancer for almost two years. I was blessed to be able to go to Texas to enable her to die in her own home in 1986. How can it possibly be that long? I can’t imagine I’ve survived twenty eight years without her living presence in my life.

I have treasured memories. I can see her laugh until tears rolled down her cheeks. I can hear her scolding tone if I acted out: “Carolyn, don’t be vul-gah!” I especially remember an incident where I described my boss as ‘the wrong end of a horse’ & received the vul-gah remark. I said: “But Mama, I didn’t say anything bad.” She drew herself up to her full height & with a determined tilt to her chin said: “Don’t you think I KNOW what the wrong end of a horse is!”

She was a multi-talented artist in several mediums. I’m blessed to have several of her paintings hanging in my home. There was one of me where she painted me posed in a blue chair when I was about eleven. She had me wear one of her ‘fluffy high heeled mules’ hanging off my right foot.  When people see the painting, they’ll exclaim: “What a great nude!” All that’s showing is the edge of an upper arm & a calf & foot. I’m always surprised when that assumption is made.  I guess it reveals that any vision is ‘in the eye of the beholder’.

She worked for many years as a legal secretary for an attorney in a small Texas town. One story she told was of a woman accused of murdering her husband by stabbing him with an ice pick. In trial, the woman explained: “But it didn’t leave a very big hole!”

Another tale she told was of how she didn’t look overweight sitting behind a desk.  Her upper body was relatively slender, but oh my, what a bountiful booty, a prodigious posterior, a fantastic fanny, humongous heinie, colossal cheeks & a delightful derriere. Her large buttocks sashayed as she walked. That was a sight to behold.

My daughter was only six when her grandmother died & one of her most prominent memories was following behind my mother as she walked. Once she stopped suddenly & my daughter didn’t put the brakes on soon enough so she literally bounced off my mother’s backside. We still giggle about that memory.




Leave a comment

Accomplishment, I’m uncertain.

One of the most difficult things I’ve experienced is giving myself credit for an accomplishment. The recent March of Dimes for Babies, my donation page is still up at http://marchforbabies.org/personal_page.asp?pp=5262488&ct=4&w=6650627&u=carolyninjoy&bt=15 My contribution was overall successful. I was able to collect $380 on behalf of premature babies & the issues that special needs babies experience.  It was also for the babies that DON’T get to go home.

My life before my Beloved Hubby & I got together is a cloudy mass of nebulous & murky pain-filled memories. I started measuring time from before I met him, until after I met him.

In my life during the period of time before…I gave birth to my first son, David Michael, who was full-term still birth (aka born sleeping). He would have been 48 this August had he lived. That period of time was nightmarish. He was born in a military hospital. Then they put me in the maternity ward where all the new mothers & infants were since they didn’t have staff to put me in another location of the small hospital. A nurse walked into the room carrying a crying infant & almost handed it to me.  My breasts were leaking milk in response to its cry. At the last minute she halted, said “Oh, you’re the one whose baby died.”

She turned about-face & walked out of the room.  I was left alone with tears flowing down my cheeks & the front of my gown drenched with milk. While they did NOT allow me to see him, they told me he was perfectly formed.  Because he was full term, he required burial. Picking out the tiny coffin was something my parents did since my ex-husband was on his way back from Viet Nam. As a grandparent now myself, I can only begin to imagine how they must have felt at the time.


Now there are greatly needed organizations that make angel dresses & suits for the babies that don’t get to go home. There are even specialized photographers who take pictures of the parents & their deceased infant. I’m grateful grieving parents have these choices now. I feel sure it doesn’t lessen the grief, but perhaps it can permit the smallest bit of closure.

The picture below was of me planting an ‘angel flower’ in the MOD garden on his behalf. My walker is behind me & you can see a small butterfly chime hanging on the handle. I wanted the thought that every time a bell rings, an angel gets their wings to be with me every step of the way.


The walk was four miles. I had hoped to complete it.  I was able to walk only one mile before I was encouraged to stop by my Hubby & friends.  I wanted to continue but could tell I was on the verge of a heat stroke so I conceded. Perhaps next year I can go the distance.

The following day, I received an email that brought tears of joy to my eyes. A friend & her husband completed the walk on my behalf as members of my support team.  That warmed my heart.

This time a year ago, I did not have a knee. My artificial joint had become infected along with some of the bones around it. The artificial knee was removed, packed with antibiotics & I was on intravenous antibiotics through a PICC line for twelve LONG weeks. I consulted an infectious disease specialist who told my Hubby “If you had waited another two weeks for treatment, you would be burying your wife.”

There were weeks when I was too weak to turn over by myself. I was almost a month in a rehab center where I was taught physical therapy for how to manage when I was ‘toe touch’ only with zero weight bearing. So I was quite sick for most of 2013.  It started in January & continued through August when I got my new knee revision. I have 16 inches of steel stems inserted into the femur & the tibia of my left leg. I can walk short distances without canes or a walker but I took the rolling walker with a seat so I could rest when I needed to do so.


I’m sharing this amount of detail, because I wanted to bear witness to where I WAS versus where I am now. I was able to complete one mile of walking, yet instead of celebrating the joy of that, I was berating myself for not being able to finish.

Why am I so harsh a judge of myself? Why is is so difficult to acknowledge accomplishment? I KNOW it’s nearly a miracle that I was able to get that far. I’ve had dozens of people tell me they couldn’t do it. So the fact that I started this meandering blog with the title: “Accomplishment, I’m uncertain” is the best truth I can express.

By God’s grace I’ll be stronger next year & can go further.