Random Thoughts This Weekend

I had written a post last night about something that happened to me yesterday that had me quite upset.  But my WordPress site was not cooperating and it was not saving my drafts. Then when I was trying to download some quotes, it froze and then somehow I lost the entire post.  Sigh.

I’m in the middle of attending a 3 day veterinary conference right now and I was too tired last night to start the post all over.  Besides, I decided maybe it was God’s way of saying he didn’t want me posting those particular thoughts.  And I wasn’t feeling too good about the post anyway.  My commute to the seminar is usually  only a 45 minute commute but due to wrecks on the interstate yesterday morning, that commute turned into a two-hour commute.  And then traffic on the way home was bad once again (bumper to bumper for quite some time) so it was another 2 hour drive back home.  I’m not used to that.

This morning I left earlier and was very glad I did.  On the way to the conference, I drive over a bridge that goes over a lake, and this morning the water was so peaceful and calm, sort of like the peace I’ve been praying for.  And then I saw the most beautiful sunrise.

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I was having a nice long talk with God about what I was so upset about yesterday and what a gift he gave me.  He truly calmed my soul with the Peace that passeth all understanding. And I desperately needed that.  I felt like I heard the answers to prayers.  I just love when that happens.  I made a decision I have been needing to make for a very long time and I’m totally at peace with that decision.

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I’ve learned so much the last two days at the veterinary conference and for that I’m grateful.  Yesterday, I attended a half a day of feline lectures.  I also attended one by the DEA on controlled substances.  I learned that veterinarians are now the #1 go-to medical professional that drug addicts go to to get drugs (or attempt to get drugs from) drugs.  The DEA rep told a story and showed pictures of a dog who had been maimed by someone just so they could take it to the vet to get pain killers.  Sad, huh?  She said you can spot these people a mile away because they will just about always come in requesting Oxycontin or hydrocodone and if the veterinarian tries to dispense something else, they will quickly tell you NO, that their dog needs Oxycontin! The average veterinary client would never do that. Yesterday, I also attended a very good lecture on the latest updates on treating feline urinary blockages.  Since I have a cat with feline interstitial cystitis and just went through a trying time a few weeks ago with a friend when her cat, Buddy, blocked up, I was particularly interested in that one.  I also attended one on mosquito borne illnesses with the latest updates on Zika virus.  That one was an eye opener and quite scary!  But I learned a lot. Today, I attended lectures on canine heartworm disease.   Heartworm disease is transmitted in every state in the continental U.S.  Yes, heartworms are transmitted in Chicago and Arizona, and California.  House dogs are not immune because mosquitoes get inside your house.  The speaker said all dogs should be on year round preventative.  This guy’s passion was also veterinary medical photography and he showed some very interesting videos (of live heartworms moving in the heart– that one made me squirm so I can imagine how the poor dog felt) and photos of the damage heartworms do.  It’s a horrible, horrible disease.  Here in the southeast, heartworms are very prevalent and vets deal with them on a daily basis.  Here, if a dog is not on preventative, it’s going to get infected with heartworms sooner or later.  His research showed an advantage to using both a heartworm preventative and mosquito repellents.

This afternoon I attended a lecture on mindfulness and meditation.  The speaker led us through some mindfulness exercises.  I was either very tired after a big lunch, or I was extremely relaxed.  I dozed off and almost fell forward out of my chair!  That would have been embarrassing!

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Tomorrow I’m attending lectures on a topic I’m very passionate about and have a strong interest in—Pet Loss Grief— and in particular anticipatory grief.

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This is one of my favorite grief authors.  I read several of his books on grief when my parents died, and then found this one when I lost my beloved cat.  His books are very simple and easy to understand and he gives good suggestions.  And I need simple when I’m grieving.

Since I experienced profound anticipatory grief with both my parents ( who both had prolonged illnesses) and my cat (who I had to euthanize 3 1/2 years ago), I’m looking forward to hearing the lecture tomorrow. My cat was 19 1/2 so my anticipatory grief lasted quite a while!   I like the speaker and I think I’m going to learn a lot from her.  I hope so. There will also be topics on euthanasia and hospice care for animals which are subjects I have a strong interest in.  I’m also attending a lecture on feline lower urinary tract disease as it pertains to stress and metabolism so I’m hoping I’ll learn a lot.  I think tomorrow will be a very busy day but a good day!

Have a great rest of the weekend!

Gail ♥

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Sunday Glory

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Love and kindness are never wasted.  They always make a difference.  They bless the one who receives them, and they bless you, the giver.  —Barbara De Angelis

 

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.  Ephesians 4:32

Gail ♥

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Sound

This post is in response to the WordPress daily one-word prompt: Sound

I always find it interesting how people differ in their sound preferences—from music preferences, to sounds in nature, to “how much” sound is too much, etc.

My husband and I have a sound spa in our bedroom that sits on my nightstand.

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It has six different nature sounds to choose from: ocean, waterfall, summer nights (crickets), rain forest (birds), thunder, and rain.  The sounds are very realistic.  We used to have a thunderstorm CD prior to getting this sound spa and it was so fake and “tinny” sounding that I couldn’t stand to play it.  My husband’s favorite sound option by far is the thunder, which is my least favorite.  He finds it soothing and peaceful.  I’ve always found thunderstorms a little scary and so it brings anything but peace to me.  I find the sound of the thunderstorm works its way into my dreams and I find myself in scary storm dreams, always trying to escape tornadoes, etc.  My favorite sound is the summer night chirping crickets, which is, as you guessed, my husband’s least favorite “pick” on the sound machine.  So we usually compromise and go with the ocean waves, the rain, or the waterfall.  It’s funny, but when we go on trips and stay in hotels, neither of us sleeps well without our sound spa (and our ceiling fan).  I don’t know why we never think to toss the sound machine in the suitcase and take it with us.

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I also can sleep easily with a radio on.  My husband can’t and says it keeps him awake. My youngest son is like me in that regard, in that while home, he always sleeps with a radio or some kind of music on.

My mother had tinnitus for many years that never went away.  Tinnitus is the perception of noise in the ears.  It is often described as a ringing but can also sound like roaring, hissing, buzzing or crackling.  My mother’s was a loud roaring.  She had to have white noise or some kind of noise on when she slept. Otherwise, she heard the constant roar in her ears which kept her awake.  My husband also has tinnitus (his is a ringing) and he says the sound spa and white noise helps to drown that out.   My mother’s TV stayed on 24 hours a day and she slept in a recliner chair in her den with that TV blaring.  I’ve heard her brother (my uncle) say he doesn’t like white noise.  He and his wife live in the peaceful, quiet Idahoan (is that a word?) wilderness which is like heaven to them.

I remember when my youngest son was in kindergarten, he went through a period where he would seem to get sensory overload when his very rambunctious classmates would get too loud.  The teacher would find him sitting at his desk with his face down and usually tears pouring from his eyes.  She would have to put a chair out in the hallway and let him sit out in the quiet for a while.  After just a few minutes, he would be okay and come back to the classroom.  I learned he was going through this when I was helping out with the classroom Christmas party.  Let me tell you, a room full of twenty-four rambunctious five-year olds who are high on sugar and the excitement of Santa and Christmas can get pretty loud!!  We were working on a craft with the class, when I saw my son sitting there with tears streaming down his face and his hands over his ears. He had been fine minutes before and I didn’t have a clue what had happened.  When the teacher saw him, she quieted the class down a little and told my son to take his chair and sit in the hall for some quiet time (I joined him).  She then pulled me aside and told me this had happened a time or two with him before.  This is my son who had severe speech language delays and who didn’t talk until he was four.  He had been diagnosed with verbal apraxia.  I was concerned when the teacher told me he had done this before.  It concerned me enough to have a talk with our pediatrician about it who assured me that he would grow out of it. She was right and he did.  I later was told by one of my son’s speech therapists that sensory overload in the form of noise is not all that uncommon in children who are late talkers.

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When I went off to veterinary school, I lived in some graduate/married student housing apartments. There was a train track that ran right beside the apartment complex. The first week of living there, I was awakened every time that train went by.  And when the train’s loud whistle blew, I about came out of my skin.  I thought for sure I would never get used to that blaring train and would have to move.  But it didn’t take long for me to grow to love the sound of that train and even its whistle.  In no time at all, I got so used to it that I didn’t even notice or hear it.  I didn’t even realize that had happened until a good friend of mine came to visit for the weekend.  The next morning after we awoke, she said, “GAIL, HOW IN THE WORLD DO YOU EVER SLEEP WITH THAT TRAIN?!!!!”  I laughed and told her that while I struggled with it at first, that I didn’t even hear it anymore and I truly didn’t. When I graduated from vet school and moved away, I sorta missed that ole train.  I can still hear it.

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I’ll end this rambling post on sound by saying that I think my favorite sound by far is the sound of a happy cat purring.  I’ve often told my husband that I wish purring was an option on our sound spa. It’s a peaceful and well… a happy sound.

 Leave in a comment: Do you like to sleep with sound or total quiet?  What sounds do you like?  

Gail ♥

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One of My Most Favorite Ann Voskamp Posts

I love this post by Ann Voskamp:  The Real Truth about Romance & ‘Boring’ Men—and the Women who Love Them: Redefining “Boring Romance”

There is so much truth in this.  I sent this post of hers to both my sons and hope they read it.  Beautiful.

Gail 

 

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Valentine’s Day Love Songs

What would Valentine’s Day be without listening to a few good love songs?  I may be dating myself with some of these, but here are just a few of my favorites.

Can you tell I’m a huge Lionel Richie fan?  I had Endless Love and Truly sung at my wedding.  I saw him in concert while in college and heard him sing all of these.  You know who his opening act was?  Tina Turner!

Had this sung at my wedding too. There’s just not many voices like that of Barbra Streisand.

A love song about a father.  I was privileged to see Dan Fogelberg sing this live.  What a legend he was.

What a beautiful, beautiful duet between these two women.  Moves me to tears.

I sung this many a night as I rocked my babies to sleep.  Still a much-loved favorite.

I can’t tell you how much I love this song.  Such heart wrenching lyrics and sung with SUCH emotion.

I think this Adele song is my most favorite song ever.

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Gail ♥

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Guilty Pleasure

Today, while grocery shopping, I was bad.  Really bad.  I’ve spent the whole of 2017 watching what I eat and not indulging in sweets (granted that’s only been a month and a half but it feels like six months).  I haven’t even purchased sweets because I know if they’re in the house, I WILL EAT THEM!  But it’s been a hard few days with getting some not-so-good news about a family member’s health condition, accidentally kicking my cat hard right in the belly (I had no idea he had parked his little body right at my feet under the dining room table where I was sitting, so when I got up, I kicked him and man did I feel bad).  I also broke a favorite glass pig figurine in my kitchen (about the third one I’ve busted in a month’s time so my husband has been busy gluing pigs back together!) and somehow managed to knock down a few books on top of my book shelf which promptly caused a whole avalanche of books to go crashing to the floor.  My kitties were sleeping soundly nearby and now they need therapy.  We won’t even talk about stepping in the still-warm, slimy, gross hairball that one of my sweet boys left for me right outside the bedroom door.  Yes, while bare footed.

So when I passed the Marie Callender’s peach cobbler in the grocery store today, I couldn’t resist.  I was wanting and needing some comfort food in a bad way.

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And with warm peach cobbler, one has to have vanilla ice cream.  Did you know Breyers has four different types of Vanilla Ice cream to choose from?  Yep, I stood there and counted while debating on which kind to get.  Decisions, decisions.  Breyers, why oh why do you do this to me?

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I remember back in the days when I could walk into the store, go to the ice cream aisle, and there was just one type of Vanilla.  VANILLA.  That was it.  By the way, I went with the Extra Creamy Vanilla and it was yummy.

Then I passed the bakery section of the store and bought six Valentine’s cupcakes.

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Looks like I will have some extra walking to do this week!

Gail ♥

 

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Sunday Glory

 

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You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister?  Or why do you treat them with contempt?  For we will all stand before God’s judgement seat…   So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.  Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister.

(Romans 14:10, 12-14)

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