Author: Vixen (Page 2 of 101)

Rejoice While You Are Alive – Thoughts From My Jubilee Year

    1. I will continue to strive to become the cowgirl I’ve always dreamed of being. I want to spend at least 2-3 hours a week just working or communing with my horse. Ground work, saddle work, grooming work – whatever I do, I am committed to creating a deeper bond with my beautiful beast. I want to have a deeper spiritual experience with this way of life that I have fallen so deeply in love with.
    2. Save more, spend less. I spent the first half of my life (yes, I plan to live to 100) trying to overcome deficits and rebound from the unexpected. Someday I would like to retire…and I think I will need some kinds of funds? I think what I really am trying to say (to myself) is: I need to become more responsible with my money. I can almost guarantee that 85% of my money troubles are because of my lack of self-control.
    3. I will attempt to become a healthier version of myself. I am fully aware my body will never be the same. I am never going to be 20 or 30 again. I will never have a pre-baby body, because I am post baby (x3). I will never have normal function of all my body parts, because I have broken things, pinned things, torn things, slipped things and generally gotten some serious use out of my body these past 50 years. I am still in shock that I was able to quit smoking on November 1, 2012 after 34 years of that addiction. I am even more surprised by the fact that quitting so has been so much easier than I ever, ever thought possible! I am not sure what the difference is, anyone would have thought being pregnant (x3) would have been motivation, but it was not for me. This time it is almost like I just adopted a new stance. My brain and I got together and decided I am a non-smoker. Not a quitter, not an ex-smoker. I am going to try to apply this new self-mind-control to other aspects of my health. I need better control of my diabetes and I truly, truly must lose about 30 pounds.
    4. Meditate, appreciate, enjoy. Try to find something every single day to really grasp and enjoy for the moment. Forgive, move on, find peace within. Have faith, preach faith, feel faith every second of every day.
    5. Find my voice. The voice inside me, always longing to get out. Make note of it when I hear it, allow it to flow and be savored.
    6. I am going to go heavy on following clichés/quotes. I will try to find every cliché or quote I’ve ever heard/read. I have ever liked and try to do it, best I can. Today I am starting with:

Carpe diem! Rejoice while you are alive; enjoy the day; live life to the fullest; make the most of what you have. It is later than you think ~ Horace

My Jubilee

The year of Jubilee in both the Jewish and Christian traditions is a time of joy, the year of remission or universal pardon.

“Thou shalt sanctify the fiftieth year,” Leviticus 25:10

Today marks the first day of my jubilee year as I am going to call it. It sounds so much more magical than ‘half a century’ and ‘semi-centennial’, agreed?

Yesterday, I was grousing about stretching myself this year. But now that I understand the essence of the year of the Jubilee I am excited to spend it in joy, savoring my universal pardon and granting forgiveness to my past. I am looking forward to every.single.thing.

I am still going to come up with some stretch goals, but perhaps they will be something different from what I have anticipated. I don’t know, but I look forward to finding out….

Big Day Tomorrow

Tomorrow, January 3rd 2013, I will turn 50. I don’t think I mind being that old, at least not very much. What I do mind are the things I have not accomplished by now. I have this overwhelming feeling I should have done more by now. I have no idea what more or how more or why more. I just have a feeling.

I said in my last post I was not going to do a New Year’s resolution this year. But now that I realize I am going to be 50 tomorrow, I believe I want to do something that is like a resolution but not quite the same. Perhaps more like a bucket list. Not a list of things to do before I die, even at 50 I am hoping I am only half way through this life. Maybe a list of things to do this year. Things I really want to do/learn/whatever. In this year. Some easy to carry out and some that are a stretch. That’s it… I want to come up with a couple of stretch goals for my 50th year.

Maybe by tomorrow I will have some ideas and I will share. Or maybe you have some ideas?

New Year, New Effort. Oh wait, that is tomorrow.

Well, if 2012 was notable for anything, it’s that I had ALOT to blog about and yet all there is on my blog is blank pages. It is my sincere hope that I change that in 2013. Not for you, for me.

Today, I saw a post from PB&Jazz and I was inspired (we’ll see how long that lasts, LOL):

1. What did you do in 2012 that you’d never done before?

Break a bone (or six). If any of you have made it to 49 years young without breaking a bone, I must say I don’t recommend it.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I have no recollection of making one last year. I also don’t recall ever keeping a single resolution I made in the past. I am now making an executive decision to not make any more.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

Yes! My son and DIL (MacDougal and Funsize), gave birth to my fourth granddaughter in August.

4. Did anyone close to you give die?

This year we suffered the unexpected and sudden losses of my dear Uncle Paul and my too-young-to-be-gone brother-in-law, Kenny.

5. What countries did you visit?

I don’t even have a passport, LOL.

6. What would you like to have in 2013 that you lacked in 2012?

The winning lottery ticket. Or a money tree.

7. What dates from 2012 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

Wow, this year was filled with etchings…the birth of baby J, Ladybugs first bike ride without training wheels, heartbreak, candy skies, riding with Bear, new people and new places.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

I was able to not only make the best out of a horrible situation for my daughter, it turned out to be one of the best things I was able to do for my family in many, many years.

9. What was your biggest failure?

I allowed myself to forget how short and precious life can be. And I let fear deep inside; still trying to kick it all the way out.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

See above, LOL. Broken bones, torn ligaments and surgery. All from one little, bitty fall off a horse.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

The best thing I spent a large amount of money on was the new place we got a two-year lease on. I wish we could buy it. That would be a dream come true.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?

My kids have come through some truly difficult times this year. They were always there for each other and they make me so proud.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

Fishboy. But we are working on moving on without him.

14. Where did most of your money go?

MOVING! So damn expensive…first, last, moving vans, time off, etc.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

MOVING. Ha, ha. Never thought I would say that. But we are so happy and in such a better place physically and emotionally because of it.

16. What song will always remind you of 2012?

Mmmmmotorboatin’!”Pontoon” – Little Big Town

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:

a) happier or sadder? I don’t think happier is a big enough word for how much better I feel this year than last year.

b) thinner or fatter? Fatter, but working harder on it!

c) richer or poorer? Poorer, but so better off!

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?

Riding. Ground work. Chasing dreams.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?

Recuperating. Working.

20. How did you spend Christmas?

My mom and dad were here for the holidays. All the kids and grandkids came over for Christmas Eve. We opened one gift (pj’s) and Great Grama read Twas The Night Before Christmas to all her great-grandkids.  RolyPoly, being 2, was hysterical during the reading and we all laughed until we cried. The next morning we went from house to house seeing what Santa had delivered, then back to my home for dinner. This was the first Christmas I have been with my Mom in many, many years and it was so wonderful to share it with her and all our grands!

21. Did you fall in love in 2012?

No, but I am learning to love myself again.

22. What was your favorite TV program?

No contest, Parenthood

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?


24. What was the best book you read?

I read too many books. I can’t choose just one!

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?


26. What did you want and get by year’s end?

I didn’t know how much I wanted our own place in the country, but I got it and now I don’t know how I survived without it.

27. What did you want and not get by year’s end?

I really wanted to be comfortable enough to ride out on the trails every single day.

28. What was your favorite film of this year?

I really enjoyed the Dark Night Rises opening with my kids.

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

This year I turned 49. Since I worked and my birthday is so close to Christmas, we didn’t do anything.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

I truly believe winning the lottery would be immeasurably satisfying. I would at least like to try it.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2012?

Ha, ha ha hahahahahha. I just try to find something clean that I can still zip up.

32. What kept you sane?

Calypso, my four-legged equine BFF! Ok, my husband helped too.

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

I don’t think I will ever stop pining a bit for Brad Pitt. I can’t stop myself.

34. What political issue stirred you the most?

I hate how divided our country seemed this year. It was disturbing.

35. Who did you miss?

I miss seeing RolyPoly every day. And I miss Bear since she got so busy.

36. Who was the best new person you met?

My new co-worker and friend Ms. Iowa.

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2012.

Be prepared!

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.

Life ain’t always beautiful
Sometimes it’s just plain hard
Life can knock you down, it can break your heart

Life ain’t always beautiful
You think you’re on your way
And it’s just a dead-end road at the end of the day

But the struggles make you stronger
And the changes make you wise
And happiness has its own way of takin’ it sweet time

No, life aint always beautiful
Tears will fall sometimes
Life aint always beautiful
But it’s a beautiful ride

It’s Getting Crowded Up In Here and I Love It!

The den has welcomed yet another new face! Say welcome to Bumblebee, our newest granddaughter. Born to MacDougal and Funsize on Aug 31st, the chunkster weighed in at 9 lbs. 8 ozs.! Her big brother RolyPoly weighed 9 lbs. 5 ozs., so she has moved into second place as biggest baby in the family, directly behind her father (MacD was 9 lbs. 11 ozs).

Stunning beauty though she is, apparently my grandchildren have some unspoken agreement in which they torture their parents and I by never making things easy. Within moments of her birth, before we could see her or hold her, Bumblebee tested with a very low blood sugar, rapid breathing and a very rapid heart rate. While the blood sugar came up with an IV, the heart rate continued to be very high. She added an abnormal EKG to the mix and she was off…transported from the local NICU to Children’s Hospital.

She has atrial tachycardia, but after testing, observation and medications the specialist believes the cause to be “one of those things” and she will be on medication for approximately 4 months with testing and monitoring along the way. If all goes well, she may never have another issue. But let me tell you, she scared the CRAP out of us. They were talking about external conversion (the paddles, people!) and possible congenital abnormalities and other scary as hell crap.

However, she spontaneously converted to a normal rate on her own and only had three very short events the first night she was in the NICU. Today she was released and we brought her home. We thank God and all the people who prayed and wished us well. As I have said a million times before (see Ladybug), miracles to happen.

And my miracles are pretty damned cute too. (also if she looks familiar, she looks exactly – like identical twin exactly – like RolyPoly.

Flashdance….err I mean flashback…

On this day, 30 years ago….

  • On primetime TV: Matt Houston, CHiPs, The Jefferson’s, One Day At A Time and Trapper John, MD (also the Sunday Night Movies)
  • Playing in Vegas: Bill Cosby, Rich Little, Shelley Greene and Tom Jones
  • In fashion: shoulder pads, shell suits, Lycra leggings, leg warmers and Deelyboppers
  • Fads: Smurfs, Valspeak and Valley Girls, Chia Pets, Space Invaders, Atari, the Walkman, CB radios, and the keytar.
  • Top of the charts: Eye of the Tiger – Survivor; Hurt’s So Good – John Cougar; Hold Me – Fleetwood Mac; Even the Nights Are Better – Air Supply; Abracadabra – Steve Miller Band; Keep the Fire Burnin’ – REO Speedwagon;
  • Top Movies: Friday the 13th Part 3; E.T. – The Extra Terrestrial; An Officer and A Gentleman


yours truly marries her sweetheart (Mr. Vixen) in a lovely full mass ceremony at St. Matthias Catholic Church followed by a spectacular reception at a local country club.

Happy Anniversary to my best friend and lover.

Thirty years later and we still got it.


The Fourth Year

Collin Michael 8/9/08
Not a day goes by that I don’t think of you.
Love, Grandma

Too Overwhelmed to Write

So a lot of things have changed around here since I have been regularly posting. So much, that I eventually gave up posting. I was/am overwhelmed. I want to share everything but there is so much I can’t get myself to do it. It seems impossible. So I will use bullets to share highlights of what I can remember. And then, if anyone still reads here, you can all PIPE UP in the comments and tell me which teaser you would like more information on first and that will be my next post! Sounds fun. (probably won’t work because no one reads anymore, but perhaps all this will be out-of-the-way and I will be free to begin blogging again? One can hope?)

  • RolyPoly is getting a baby sister! MacD and Funsize are having a scheduled c-section on Aug 30th. The baby needs a super-secret-internet name. You all should get on that right NOW.
  • Bear and Fishboy became engaged just before Christmas.
  • We got a second horse at Christmas. Miss Bonnie Blue (reg. Pushin Little Princess) is a curious, intelligent, trouble making sweetheart TN Walking Horse. She and Calypso adore each other. It was a gift from me to Mr. Vixen so we could start riding together.
  • Mr. Vixen got a new knee!
  • In February, at the beginning of my first ever trail ride a motorcycle came up on a side road and scared Calypso. He spun and took off, along with the two horses that were being ponied by my friends. I did not make the spin. I instead launched off, rolled down an embankment and landed under a pasture fence. I broke 7 bones throughout my body, needed surgical repair (pins) placed in my finger, bruised everything and also tore some menisc-ally stuff that still is going to need surgery to repair. Was not fun.
  • Because of that I haven’t ridden much and am just getting my confidence back.
  • Baby Banana (Nannygoat’s youngest) is going to turn one next month and she has THE MOST BEAUTIFUL EYES of any child on the planet. I have pictures to prove it. She also needs a better S-S-I name, which you all can pick too.
  • In May, Fishboy decided he did not want to be a part of the den anymore. At all. This caused significant heartache for Bear and for us to have to move on very short notice.
  • However, sometimes good things come out of bad experiences. In June, we relocated the Den to “Pterodactyl Ranch”. Our house is twice as big as before, has central air and (most importantly) is a horse property.
  • The horses now live in my back yard. This has reduced our TV time to zero and computer time to 1/16th of what it was before. We are real country-folk now. Living in the country is 100 times less stressful than I dreamed.
  • Being in the country and working on 2-acres of yard that had gone to waste is a good way to start losing weight. Mr. Vixen has lost 15 pounds already and I have lost 9. I am still more overweight than I have ever been in my entire life (even pregnant) and need to find ways to make that happen.
  • I made some super cute things for the new baby girl’s baby shower, very original, keepsake value and uber-inexpensive. I should put up how-to and pictures, right?

I know there are many, many more things I have left out. But if I don’t post this now….it will just sit here for another year and even more stuff will happen.

Know that I am still here and still reading all your blogs, even though I may not comment! Leave me a comment and help me change that!

Found: Lost Blogger Wearing Glasses and a Sun Hat. Reward to whoever picks her up first.

Can you see me? I see you! And you are not as blurry as you were before! Been wondering if I ever would get back here to post. I hope this isn’t a once in a year shot, because WOW do I have a lot to share.

My life has changed dramatically since I was last here. Things are very different around the den. In fact, the den relocated. And so did the horses. And my life. But that is another post to come!

This here post is about reading, writing and seeing. My glasses were giving me grief and I needed new prescription eyeglasses. I went to the eye doc and lo and behold – my insurance only covers one pair of glasses every two years! Suckers. So new prescription in hand, I started searching for the best deal. Much to my amazement the best deal, biggest choice and quickest turnaround was found on the internet! Who would have ever dreamed of shopping for prescription eyeglasses on the world-wide web? I wouldn’t have. When I shop for glasses in a storefront, I spend hours putting on and taking off glasses, making a pile of the ones I think are the contenders. All the while, some salesperson is hovering over me telling me how “those ones won’t work with your prescription” or “those are perfect” to the ones I hate.

I knew I wanted a certain shape and I knew the one thing I did not want were those little plastic things on the bridge of my nose. Those things antagonize the heck out of my nose. I hate them, they were on my current glasses, and were the number one reason that pair had to go.

So I found the best prices, the quickest turnaround and the best selection…but how much more complicated would my search for the best pair be if I had to save every picture of the ones I thought were cute? Or if I couldn’t see them on my face? Then I FOUND THE Virtual Mirror; probably the number one reason I ended up at

Upload a picture and try on all the glasses you want! Alone and in the privacy of your own home. I probably spent twice as long perusing all the glasses than I would have out in public. Which to me means I actually got the perfect pair of glasses for me, not some I just settled for because I was tired and wanted to go home. I ordered my glasses on line, faxed over my prescription and had my new pair in less than a week. Super, super fast service!

I love them. High quality, super comfortable and I can see again! Most importantly I have fancy-shmancy glasses for a mere fraction of what you could pay elsewhere. I love function and style but mostly I love INEXPENSIVE!

I want to share my find with all my glasses wearing readers, if you are looking to buy glasses head on over to GlassesUSA and check out the virtual mirror. Check out the most current discount codes here Sales & Coupons(the 4th of July sale is 30% off + $30 cash back + free shipping. You can’t pass up a deal like that). GlassesUSA provides:

  • 110% lowest price guarantee and a 100% satisfaction guarantee
  • A generous refer-a-friend program (You can get $30 for each first purchase a referred friend makes – and use the $30 towards your next pair of glasses)
  • A Facebook page and Twitter feed with exclusive discounts for fans

Now before I run off and start working on my next post (ha ha haha), here is a little shot of my new specs:

I received a free certificate of value from GlassesUSA t0wards the purchase of a pair of new eyeglasses to do this review. All opinions are honest and mine based on my experience ordering glasses through GlassesUSA


Belated Mother’s Day Post

This Mother’s Day, I’m working with Clever Girls in support of Macy’s Heart of Haiti to shine a light on the “trade, not aid” program, which provides sustainable income to Haitian artisans struggling to rebuild their lives and support their families after the 2010 earthquake.

I had a great Mother’s Day tribute in mind when I accepted this sponsorship, but as is very common in my life, it didn’t work out. Life tends to get in the way when you are mom. It doesn’t matter if you are a mother of young children and they are sick or if you are a mother of older kids. So many of the people I have connected with online are young mothers. Sometimes I am a sounding board for them and I love that role. I am glad to share whatever knowledge and wisdom I gained through my younger mothering years as I can. I remember those years so well and so dearly. Mostly how desperately I valued the life-stories of others who had ‘survived’ motherhood. What I am coming to realize with nearly-empty-nest syndrome is how difficult mothering continues to be. When your child is hurting, nothing compares to the pain in your heart. However, when they are younger the ability to help them through their troubled times is one-hundred fold your abilities when you a mothering adults.

And therein lies the difficulty. You can’t step in and make it better. Rarely can you even be an arbitrator in their difficulties. Now instead of mean kids, failed tests, bullies, or BFFs who aren’t true(all of which can be “my life is never going to be the same/I will never get over this” experiences; you have to try to comfort them through infidelity, children who are gravely ill, broken hearts and sometimes even the loss of a child. This parenting adults is damned harder than teenagers. You can’t control anything. You can’t influence anything. You can’t make it better and you can’t make it go away.

But what you must always do, as a parent, is share your heart. No matter how much you feel their pain or have your own pain, you must be there for them. Give them all you have. Show them your heart, so they know it is okay to feel pain. It is okay to heal. It is okay to hurt. It is okay to grieve. They will still, always, have your heart.

To mothers everywhere, thank you for loving your children. Thank you for always being there for them, even if they aren’t ‘children’ anymore. A heart needs its mother and father just as much at 28/35/62 as it does at 16. Maybe more.

Thank you to Macy’s Heart of Haiti for sponsoring my participation in this “Share Your Heart” promotion. I was selected for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective. All opinions expressed here are my own.

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