JUDY FROM THE BLOCK

JUDY FROM THE BLOCK

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Phoenix, Arizona, United States
Retro wifey, mommy to a princess, editor, PETA fanatic, and I Love Lucy!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS; YET SANTA ALWAYS PREVAILS!




Narrated in my Boris Karloff voice:

The Grinch (voiced by Boris Karloff) is the film's main character. He lives in a cave in the fictional Mt. Crumpit, located above Whoville. The Grinch is a surly character with a heart "two sizes too small" who has especially hated Christmas. The Grinch, determined to STOP Christmas in Whoville, dons his Santa suit and heads to Whoville on Christmas Eve to steal all the boys and girls gifts. 

Poor Max, his doggie, innocent as he is, had to be his reindeer and lead the sleigh into Whoville.  Well, he sorta kinda "hitched him a ride" on the sleigh, and Mr. Grinch didn't like that much...LOL!

After they arrive in Whoville, with their sleigh of empty bags to steal the gifts, in the first house he arrives in he encounters Cindy Lou, who awakens when she thinks she hears Santa in the living room. 
The Grinch tells Cindy Lou that he is merely taking the tree to his workshop for repairs, and then sends her back to bed. He empties the first house of all the food and Christmas-related items, then repeats the process at the other houses in Whoville. He also takes the Village decorations.

With the Whos' stolen Christmas goods, the Grinch and Max travel back up Mt. Crumpit. Before dropping the loaded sleigh off the mountain, the Grinch waits to hear a sad cry from the Whos. However, down in the Village, the Whos joyously begin to sing Christmas carols, proving that the spirit of Christmas does not depend on material things. The Grinch begins to understand the true meaning of Christmas, and his heart grows "three sizes." He brings everything back to the Whos and participates in the holiday feast.







Narrated in Judy's voice: 

So, I wanted to remind everyone about the Grinch in case you had forgetten the true meaning of happiness at Christmas.  He couldn't steal what was in their heart and the true meaning of the Christmas spirit, only those materialistic things that only money can buy. 

Our Grinch this year however, not sooooooo much the same way, listen in:



Unfortunately, three weeks before Christmas, and of course during the time that Bug is just getting out of the hospital and recuperating from an almost diabetic coma and spending 4 days in ICU, we find out that one of my jewelry boxes had close to $5000 dollars worth of my jewelry missing, to include my "original" wedding rings from Junebug that we actually got married with (of note, I have two wedding ring sets.  I have a white gold set and a yellow gold set...missing is the yellow gold with 1.5 carat total weight of diamonds).  Also missing is a 14k gold ring with a 1 ct Topaz setting with 2 diamonds on each side (my mother bought me this ring).  Another ring is one of my mother's own rings with sapphires and diamonds.  And, two pairs of 1/2 carat diamond earrings, one pair of which was the first piece of jewelry Junebug ever bought me!  He actually bought me both pairs!

"IN EVERY GOOD LIE IS A LITTLE BIT OF TRUTH." 

Do we know who the Grinch is?  Of course we do.  Did they admit it, YES!  Have we recovered all my jewelry, NO!  Junebug has been to 3 different pawn shops that this person took him to, where some of my things are and some are not; others that don't even belong to me that were stolen from someone elses home, but which we had to pay for in order to recover my own things.  "Missing in action" are still my two pairs of diamond earrings, which I think we can write off ever seeing again.  I am almost sure that I will never recover them. 

Since this has happened, I decided to do a little, okay A WHOLE LOT of research into this person's background in the last year or two.  It hasn't been pretty and things we suspected were pretty much true.  This person will end up in jail eventually, oh not because we called them but because they are out there breaking a lot of laws these days and you can only continue to run for so long.

I know what every single one of you are saying right now.  Why didn't we put this person in jail NOW? 

It was our first thought, as I would have at least recovered the jewelry without having to pay for it.  And what couldn't be recovered, we could file in our homeowners insurance.  As the pawn shops told us, "if we prosecute, they prosecute." 

After a lot of prayer, and thinking about what my mother would have wanted me to do, I have at this time chose not to make a police report.  I want to emphasize that at...this...time I have made this decision.  I am a woman and am entitled to change my mind without further notice!!  

I would also like to say that this thieving behavior will not go un-noticed by a court of law in some other way, shape and form as well.  I certainly cannot go into detail about what current court proceedings we have undertaken at this time for the benefit of MY family in order to protect what is mine!

For those of you who know us well and for those of you who just follow along in my blog, facebook or twitter, it shouldn't take a rocket scientist to figure out who did this to us! 

So with that being said, we still didn't let it ruin Destini's Christmas!  Nor did any of her Auntie's let it take away from their niece!  Though Bug has been without a paycheck for almost a month now, and we have drained our savings, there is no monetary value on what we will do for Destini.  It's true that the materialistic things we give her are not near as important as the way we love her every day and give her shelter and food and clothing, but this was our FIRST Christmas with Destini and no matter what, it was going to be special for her!  No Grinch could steal her Christmas!

Here's some shots of Camel Christmas 2010




Desi's new "big girl" car seat

Who didn't have a sit n spin?

PONY, PONY, PONY!
NIKE SHOX....OH YEAH BABY!
TOY BOX W/MATCHING TABLE AND CHAIRS!
TEA PARTIES...I CAN'T WAIT!
CLOTHES, CLOTHES, CLOTHES!
PRINCESS TIANA TUTU!
DOLLY!
So, you get the idea!  A lot of clothes, which you can never have enough of, am I right?  Shoes too!  Plus she got a beautiful 14K gold bracelet from her Auntie Tiffany as well that I didn't get a picture of before I put it away, as Destini's little wrist is still too small for this one.  It is gorgeous though!


 
Our Christmas Princess:













MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM OUR HOUSE TO YOURS...

HERE'S TO A HAPPY AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR FOR ALL!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

DIABETES = CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE! MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM US TO YOU!

DIABETES!

Friday, December 3, 2010 my husband was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.  Unfortunately, we had found this out when he was already in an "extreme" danger zone, very close to a diabetic coma with a blood sugar reading of over 1400!!  And, with a blood pressure of 208/108!! I knew he was sick.  I thought it was the flu.  I had NO IDEA just how sick he was, and it definitely wasn't the flu!


I have to say that I haven't felt that pit in my stomach since the day mom was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease.  IT HITS HARD!  And when you have 6 doctors surrounding you asking you how, why, what triggered this?  All I could say was the truth:  "He's a pack a day smoker, a 12-pack a day Pepsi drinker, and he loves food more than life, obviously."  Of course all that didn't matter to me at that moment.  All I could think about was how serious is he and what are you going to do?  The hospital staff was excellent.  They moved rapidly and they clearly were focused on him!!  Or as my dad would have said, "they jumped like a lit fire under their ass." 

He was taken to ICU after scans of the brain to assure no brain damage had occurred, THANK GOD, there was none!  He stayed in ICU for 2-1/2 days, then moved down to a step-down ICU for a day, and then moved downstairs to a regular floor for 2 days.  As the days went on, I could see my regular old "Junebug" coming back to life.  Even as he left the hospital this day, his sugars were still in the 250s.

I am happy to say he is at home, though insulin-dependent....for now!  Can you say WAKE UP CALL?  I see the weight just dropping off of him right now, but of course that is to be expected.  The hardest part is the long-run, the forever lifestyle changes that will need to be made for him.  I certainly am not willing to cook 3 different meals at one time, ie, one for Destini, one for me, and one for Bug.  So I know there is a compromise out there in the big "google recipe world" waiting for me that is pleasing to all three of us.  And, please, if you have any great meal plans for a diabetic or seasonings, et al, do forward them to me.  It's been hard this past week trying to figure out what to cook and how to cook it and what he can have and what he can't have.  I figured my goal is to get as much weight off of him (and me too) and get his sugars under control, then we can focus on implementing some old foods he likes, such as a 1/2 cup of rice or 1/2 cup of potatoes.  For now, we have given up the "whitey's" all the way around.  We discovered first night that brown rice, well I'm just gonna say it...WE'D RATHER EAT DIRT! 

I have found cooking with other herbs such as rosemary, sage, cilantro, garlic and oregano make for some good stuff.  However, the biggest problem is that the meats seem so dang dry.  Bug has never been a fan to begin with of chicken breasts, and I just don't know how to make them juicy yet healthy.  Again, I am open to any suggestions one might have for me. 

I went to the grocery store and loaded up on every flavor of Mrs. Dash, can you tell????????


I also stocked up on the Crystal Light drinks.  They aren't bad at all!  We've been inventive a little and made some of the lemonade Crystal Light and added some tea bags.  Gotta sayyyyyy....NOT HATING IT! 

           Don't judge by looks cuz it kinda looks like urine....just sayin :((((



I also bought the econo-size Splenda® sugar.  I intend to use this with regular iced tea and by baking him something sweet this weekend.  I found a great diabetic peanut butter cookie recipe using Splenda® that I am going to try this week. 






OUR NEW RITUAL AFTER BREAKFAST AND DINNER:

First, we start out checking his blood sugar level. The old poke the finger, make it bleed, let the meter read your sugar level, blah, blah, blah....
He is currently on Novolin N insulin twice a day, 40 units in the morning, 25 units at night.


Okay, I won't lie, I really like "sticking" him....hee hee hee!  I am happy to report that since he has been home we have his blood sugars in the 99-153 range.  He's come a long way and I am proud of all he has done to better himself, and that Destini and I are important enough for him to want to make these changes.  I was really really really worried about him and losing him is not an option.  I refuse to let him give up on this fight!!!!  I see his "will" and "determination," one can only hope he remains this vigilant...I'm in it to win it!


I can bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan, and never, never let him forget he's a MAN...
Since Bug has been home and gaining his strength back, and because he really needs this time in my opinion, he won't be going back to work until after the first of the year.  This of course has put a huge financial burden on us at this time, so I will be working 10 hour days for a while to help out.  But, we are "SURVIVORS" and with God and great friends, they will watch over us during this time.  We certainly won't let that effect Destini's Christmas and since he has been home, he has made sure to finish his decorating the house and making it extra special for us....







                                 MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM THE CAMEL'S


Monday, November 29, 2010

It's never too soon to say.....SANTA IS COMING!

Thanksgiving was a success!  My tummy is STILL full.  We had good friends and family over for Thanksgiving, and we had a great day!  Though cooking is a week long event, it's so worth it in the end.  Every year I say the same thing after dinner, "I am not cooking again next year!" But, I always do : )

With that said, even before Thanksgiving I am already thinking about....


CHRISTMAS!


Since I was a little girl, I would make my "wish list" from our mail order catalogs that mom and dad received  every year.  Mom liked that idea, it gave her a sense of what Judy wants the "most" and wants the "least."  I have to say Christmas has always been special in our house.  Mom and dad always made Christmas the BEST time of year for me.  I hope to pass that down to Destini.  All I want for Christmas is to see her happy, as my parents did for me. 

Well, now times have changed when it comes to shopping.  I still get all the catalogs in the mail, but now we have the beauty of "online shopping."  I like that a lot, but it doesn't totally prevent me from the crowds in the stores, and actually that is still kinda fun too : )

I was thumbing through one of the catalogs I received and I found something that caught my eye and that I had been wanting for a long time.  I thought this is the perfect time this year to buy it and was so excited to call Mr. Camel and tell him that I finally found the one I want.  We could call it my "Christmas present from him."  (Though I would love those Paula Deen or Rachael Ray pots and pans, honey...hint hint Mr. Camel).

Before I knew it, I was ordering and purchasing!  I was so excited about it, until I checked my email the next day and it said, "sorry, this item is on backorder."  And, the shipping date is not expected until Jan. 11, 2011!  Disappointed to say the least, as I really wanted it before Christmas : (  But I'll wait anyway : )


I KNOW, RIGHT?  IT WOULD HAVE BEEN PERFECT TO DECORATE!

It was my birthday this month!  I am 46 years old.  I'm not ashamed to say it, I don't feel 46!  I think that is in large part due to Destini, who keeps me young mentally and physically!  I woke feeling like just another ordinary day.  I am not "big" on birthday's, it's just a number for me.  Mr. Camel, however, is "BIG" on any kind of holiday!  My day started off like any other day, which he knew it would.  I usually get out of bed between 7-7:30am every morning.  Mostly because one of my cats (Muffy) isn't going to let me sleep any longer than that because her tummy is on "tuna time."  They always get tuna in the mornings!  Then I brew my java for the morning.  By that time, Destini is waking up.  Booty change for Desi, a Sippy cup of milk or juice, and SpongeBob is her routine for the next 30-45 minutes, until breakfast.  That gives Judy some "me time" to check out the world news, celebrity gossip, and of course, Facebookin! When I got to my office with coffee in hand, I find a little sumpin sumpin on my keyboard....

Hmmmm...FOR ME? What could it be....



My Zodiac... Sagittarius!!!!

THANK YOU HONEY, IT'S PERFECT!

But, the BEST part of my birthday was later in the day when Mr. Camel texted me a picture of a little girls piano at one of his customer's house!  Why you ask?  Well, it just so happens we had decided to get Destini this particular piano for Christmas that I found online.  When he texted me this picture, I seriously think I passed out for a minute.  It was so incredibly close to the one we were going to purchase, and this nice lady told Mr. Camel, "take it, it's yours!" SAY WHAT?  These are not cheap!  Just so you get an idea of the one we were going to buy and the one we actually got, I have a pic for ya: 


The one we were going to buy


Baby Gaga's piano!

Cousin Semaj is teachin...
All I can say is, "THANK YOU nice customer lady for bringing a smile to my face on my birthday!"

So, since she now has a piano we had to decide about Christmas again.  We decided on a BIG TOY BOX, but don't tell Destini....shhhhhh, she hasn't given Santa her list yet!  I am looking for a "princess" type toy box, which I am sure I will find.  I am a woman on a mission!


Thanksgiving weekend, my sister-in-law, Yolanda, was having one of her best friends from Pasadena coming out to visit with her hubby.  I was excited to meet Dale.  I have heard about her for the last 13 years! Though, I have been to Pasadena many times, I had yet to meet one of her "school friends."


SIDEBAR:  Yolanda is actually my husband's sister-in-law, thereby making her my sister-in-law.  Yolanda is my husband's brother's (Jermaine) ex.  They have a child together, Semaj.  I met Yolanda at the first family function that hubby took me to, which was in fact our very first date!  We had an instant connection for some reason and have been inseparable since that time.  Unfortunately, Jermaine has, shall we say "lost his way" in life and has had many problems and issues; that, I myself, believe in him and pray that he will find his way back one day.  I love Jermaine, but I love Yolanda and Semaj more!  I have helped Yolanda raise Semaj since he was not even quite 2 years old at the time.  Her and Semaj moved into my home early on (NO, I DID NOT LET JUNEBUG MOVE IN)!  It would have been easy for Yolanda to just move back to Pasadena to be near her own family, but she stuck it out, got her an excellent job, and made herself a home here in Phoenix.  Since I worked from home, I took care of Semaj while she worked.  Sometimes, if I had things to do, he would go to daycare, maybe 4-6 days a month...LOL!  My husband is also from Pasadena and he grew up around Yolanda and her family.  I have traveled a many of the I-10 freeway to California to spend time with Yolanda's family.  Her family became my family, especially her mom, Paulette (I call her P. Diddy).  Her family moved from Pasadena to Palmdale, so I really didn't get to meet many of Yolanda's friends from Pasadena, only the ones from Palmdale.  P. Diddy was my "road dog."  I have had a lot of fun times with her!  She was the "cool" mom every kid wanted.  Whereas my mom was the "Leave It To Beaver" type mom.  I remember saying to Yolanda once that how fun for her to have a mom who refuses to grow old.  Yolanda said to me, "not really."  It's funny how we idolize one persons mom and they are idolizing yours.  Yolanda had a deep connection with my mom, and she loved the "traditional" in my mom. 

ME AND YO (1998)
P. Diddy, unfortunately, fell into a coma 3 years ago after having a stroke at home by herself.  Due to the lack of oxygen to her brain for so long, it left her comatose.  Though P. Diddy is still alive, well her heart is still pumping anyway, I know that this is NOT "living" for her.  However, Yolanda's father is STILL not ready to make final decisions and for that, we have to respect it. 

The next year, when my mother was terminal, Yolanda immediately left her job, her and Semaj moved in with me, and she stayed by mom's side day and night until her last breath!

Yolanda is more of a sister to me than my own sister.  I am not saying that to be hurtful to my sister, it's just a true fact!  My sister didn't even spend day and night with my mother, nor did my brother come home!

So, that's the story of Yolanda and Semaj....thought I needed to share that before I proceeded!  Here's a little slide show of Semaj, me, and Yo..



So, as I was saying, I finally was going to be meeting one of Yolanda's school friends; and that was exciting for her that Dale was coming to Phoenix, and I was excited for her! 

Dale and Yo....throwback!

Dale and Yo....TODAY!

Dale and her hubby, Paul!
Dale, me, and Desi!
We had a fabulous time at dinner with Dale and Paul.  It was a pleasure meeting them.  GOOD PEEPS!
Looking forward to their next visit.  I think we have made tentative plans for a trip to the Grand Canyon on their next visit here....FUN!

Well, to wrap up our weekend, Mr. Camel has opened the sheds and released the Christmas "Clark W. Griswold" in him!  Our house will no doubt be the brightest on the block.  What's awesome is it has remote control to all the lights so I can shut him down when he won't stop fidgeting with it.  He is already on day 2 as of this morning!  I love him at Christmas more than ever!

BIG SANTA!

REINDEER 1


REINDEER 2
Stay tuned for my next blog, hopefully Clark (I mean Bug) will have the whole house done by then!