I Got Skills!


keep-calm-i-got-skillsMad skills. Crazy good skills. Skills that help other people. Skills that I’ve really enjoyed developing over the course of my life so far. Am I a master at any one of them? I’m not sure I’d call myself a master of any of them; although there are a few that I so thoroughly enjoy, that maybe one day I’ll be referred to as an expert.

If I could choose to be a master of any skill in the world, and one I do so enjoy, it’s public speaking. I know that for most people having to get up in front of a group causes nausea, sweating, memory lapses, hyperventilation; all kinds of reactions! Regardless of the size of the group or whether or not the group members are known to the speaker, it is documented as one of the biggest fears of a human being.

After I make any sort of presentation I’m asked, “How do you do that?” “Were you nervous?” “You make it look so easy!”

I learned very early on, in fifth grade actually (thanks, Mrs. Fontana), that the key to speaking in public is to be prepared! That means, know your “lines” and practice, practice, practice. It helps too, if you’re somewhat passionate and excited about what you’re doing. There are any number of life hacks (tips for how to do something difficult, more easily) on-line for how to speak in public. Just Google and you’ll have pages of ideas and suggestions for overcoming your fear, some of them are quite good. But I’ll go back to the advice from my fifth grade teacher every time: know our lines and practice, practice, practice.

Today’s thanks goes out not only to Mrs. Fontana, but to everyone who has given me the opportunity to practice!

Other Bloggers With Skills:

It’s that time of year, again!


12507381_10208508269691060_4783544318916625728_nIt is five years since I was diagnosed and then had my thyroid removed. The time from suspicious cells being found through the fine needle biopsy to the complete thyroidectomy, was only 7 weeks. Not a particularly long period of time in the grand scheme of things, but by all accounts in the reading and exploring about thyroid cancer that I’ve done, it’s lightening speed!

“Suspicious cells” became cancer only after the pathology report was returned from the lab: papillary carcinoma, follicular variant.

The report was handed to me by my surgeon at the follow-up appointment two weeks after surgery. My sister took me to the appointment because my husband was out of town. I think the fact that I was still trying different medications to normalize my thyroid levels, calcium level, and to simply have the energy to get out of bed, the “cancer” diagnosis didn’t really register for me. By the time I might have wrapped my brain around the fact that I had “cancer”, my life was turned upside down by three young grandchildren who came to live with us; and then I was back to work.

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Can’t even see the scar in the mirror any more!

There were other follow-up appointments and one treatment of radioactive iodine to make sure the cancer cells were obliterated. I continue to have an ultrasound of the thyroid bed done annually–not sure how long that will last, but I imagine its forever; as well as several appointments throughout the year with my endocrinologist to monitor medications and such.

 

Image result for CHECK YOUR NECK THYROID CANCER MIRRORSeptember is Thyroid Cancer Awareness Month. Thyroid cancer is often referred to as “the good kind” of cancer to get. Perhaps because if it’s found early enough and treated correctly, there is a 100% chance of recovery. Not everyone however is “lucky” enough to be diagnosed and treated as quickly as I was; deaths from thyroid cancer hover at 2,000 every year.

My thank you today is for the reminder that the month of September provides for me, and all of you, that there is no “good kind of cancer”.  Take a few minutes this month to CHECK YOUR NECK!

Flower Frame


20160826_143928The Weekly Photo Challenge “Frame”, brings me once again out to our garden.  This year Steve was able to grow HUGE sunflowers.  He did everything in the garden from seed this year, and as you can tell this bee [framed by the beautiful petals and seeds of the sunflower] is having a grand time of it!

Check out Frames from other bloggers that I enjoyed!

Frame: Statue of Liberty

Framed!

Frames of the World

Cell Phone Frame

weekly photo challenge frame

 

Cat Chat


I just came across this draft of a post from 2013 that I never published.  I still like it, so here it is.  Our cat still sits atop the jelly cupboard every day, perhaps with the hope of a reply from the faces in the picture…who knows really what cats are thinking?


The Weekly Photo Challenge, Dialogue, prompted me to find pictures I’ve taken of our cats.  I often see Bubba, sitting on top of the jelly cupboard staring into this framed print.  He does it for several minutes at a time and occasionally will make a few small meows into the reflection.  I’m not sure if its the dog, the cow, or the blonde haired girl in the picture or “the other cat” he sees, that’s most interesting to him.  Nothing, not even treats in the window, will tear him away from his friend in the picture!

bubba dialogue

 

Lucille (weekly photo challenge)


This week’s photo challenge (Rare) got me thinking about how rare it is for me to have an elderly person in my life.  Last week we took our friend and former neighbor, Lucille, out for her birthday–her 89th birthday!  been in assisted living now for 3 years; since her third, and last, fall in her home.

She does not have much family and  no one really visits her with any regularity, except for me and my husband.  That’s not to say though, that she stays cooped up in her room all day.  Not Lucille!  She takes advantage of every road trip, bingo session, sing-a-long, or any other activity that’s offered at her residence.  Either my husband or I take her shopping at least once a month and stop to visit when we are in her neighborhood.

Lucille has let us know, often, that we’re “her people”. I’m grateful today that I’ve had the chance to get to know her and call her a friend.

Lucille

Bugs on Flowers


“If your photographs aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough.” — Robert Capa

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I’ve been completely enamored by our garden this year.  Because my husband, who normally takes care of our garden–from seed to supper–was having his hip replaced, I took over.  I planted everything that he’d started under the lights in the garage in March.  I don’t necessarily enjoy gardening, but I will admit that the peaceful, cool mornings before the sun hits the flowers, is an amazing thing. This is one of the pictures I took recently and am grateful my the camera on my phone can get so up close and personal!  It is presumably a cucumber bug, but it was in the pumpkin flower!

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Early morning busy work!

Liam Love — Sunday June 19th 2016


Pressure Support


Every day during the month of May, my father, Liam’s Grampa, made bowls in his pottery.Like children, these bowls are one of a kind, made with love and in the moment. Rough around the edges these handmade stoneware bowls will be smooth and food safe inside. On June 19th, Father’s Day, My father and I hope that you can join us in the ISB Gallery of Rhode Island School of Design (55 Canal Walk, Providence RI) for Liam Love, a pottery sale to benefit the Liam the Lion Fund.

In addition to dozens of handmade unique stoneware bowls, the event will feature the unveiling of this year’s limited edition Olson & Son Hopyard t-shirt available for purchase in some sizes and orders for others, and also our brand new branded 12oz belgian beer glasses will be for sale.

Attendeeswill be treated to a retrospective exhibition of the wonderful paintings of

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