Category Archives: Holiday


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2016 had its highs and lows and was both fast fleeting and slow going depending on the day. What I remember most about this year is it was iconic and quickly became capricious.

It is iconic for the most lost lives of more than noteworthy people in the world in one single year; people who made a difference in politics, arts and entertainment, community, health, environment, sports and so much more. {May the major networks at least come up with a looooong special in January about all of these amazing people and what the world lost when they left earth}.

2016 is also capricious with all of the erratic and unpredictable change that occurred throughout the year.

For me, I struggled to keep my head above water and concentrate on the good that was going on in the shadows of the lies and horribleness that reared its ugly head this year. My heart broke as each angel left earth and entered their new journey onward, which started in January with Pat Harrington Jr. of ‘One Day at a Time’ fame. Followed quickly by
David Bowie and Alan Rickman, two artists who I admired for their uniqueness. Celine Dion’s husband, René Angélil died the same day as Rickman sending the music world into another grieving moment. Then my Grizzly Adams died (Dan Haggerty) the day after, followed by one of my favorite Eagles, Glenn Frey and finishing off the sad month was ‘Fish’, Abe Vigoda from Barney Miller and Paul Kantner, founding member of Jefferson Airplane. My heart ached that month and it seemed like the deaths would not end.


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But February brought about more deaths inside and outside of the music and movie industry. Inside we lost Joe Alaskey, Maurice White, Vanity, George Gaynes, Sonny James, Angela Raiola, Tony Burton and George Kennedy. But outside of these industries we lost, BMX racing legend; Dave Mirra, astronaut Edgar Mitchell; US Supreme court Member, Anthony Scalia; two authors- Harper Lee and Umberto Eco.


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March rolled on with fifteen more deaths that rocked the world: Lee Reherman, Joey Feek, Pat Conroy, Nancy Reagan, George Martin, Keith Emerson, Frank Sinatra Jr., Bob Ebeling, Phife Dawg, Rob Ford, Joe Garagiola, Garry Shandling, Jim Harrison, Mother Mary Angelica, and Patty Duke.


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In April we lost Erik Bauersfeld, Merle Haggard, David Gest, Doris Roberts, Les Waas, Chyna, Prince, Michelle McNamara, Isabelle Dinoire, Papa Wemba and Billy Paul.


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How would we cope with all this loss? We learned that instead of simply mourning their loss, we needed to remember what each of these people brought to us and what can take away from them being on earth as long as they were. We will all die sometime so what will we each leave behind for the living to remember? May gave us chance to ponder.

Seven extraordinary lives succumbed in May. Afeni Shakur Davis, Jane Little, Emilio Navaira, Guy Clark, Morley Safer, Alan Young and Nick Menza.


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But June pounded us back into reality with the deaths of Muhammad Ali, Kimbo Slice, Theresa Saldana, Gordie Howe, Christina Grimmie, Ron Lester, Anton Yelchin, Ralph Stanley, Bernie Worrell, Bill Cunningham, Alvin Toffler, Buddy Ryan, Scotty Moore and Pat Summitt.


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July slowed us down again with the deaths of Elie Wiesel, Michael Cimino, Noel Neill, Abbas Kiarostami, Garry Marshall, Mark Takai, Rev. Tim LaHaye and Miss Cleo.


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August gave us a running for unlucky with thirteen noteable deaths…David Huddleston, Pete Fountain, Berry Jenner, Kenny Baker, Fyvush Finkel, John McLaughlin, Lou Pearlman, Matt Roberts, Toots Thielemans, Steven Hill, Sonia Rykiel, Juan Gabriel and Gene Wilder.


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September did not want to be outdone by August so it beat it. Joe Polito, picture book author-Anna Dewdney, Jerry Heller, Phyllis Schlafly, Lady Chablis, Greta Zimmer Friedman, Alexis Arquette, Edward Albee, WP Kinsella, Curtis Hanson, Shawty Lo, Bill Nunn, José Fernández, Arnold Palmer and Shimon Peres.

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With the US Presidential campaigning in full progress in October, the world watched with squinted eyes. The following people almost slipped through unnoticed but we did mourn: Tommy Ford, King Bhumibol Adulyadej and Steve Dillon.

Onto the most capricious month of 2016 where a vast majority are now wishing 2016 to end. November trumped up the shock value not only with who won the US Presidential election (not my choice) with these incredible losses: Janet Reno, Leonard Cohen, Robert Vaughn, Leon Russell, Gwen Ifill, Holly Dunn, Sharon Jones, Florence Henderson, Ron Glass and Grant Tinker.


As we come to the very last senectitude of 2016, I hope there are no more capricious moments before 11:59 p.m. December 31. Not only did the group Emerson, Lake and Palmer lose Emerson earlier this year, the first WOW fatality of December was Greg Lake, another member. We took ourselves back in history to celebrate the life of astronaut John Glenn who died December 8. Longtime soap stars, Joseph Mascolo and Barbara Tarbuck passed on as well as author E R Braithwaite; actor Alan Thicke; sports broadcaster, Craig Sager; model and fashion editor, China Machado; actress Zsa Zsa Gabor; pop star George Michael; comedian Ricky Harris; Children’s author, Richard Adams; Princess Leia- Carrie Fisher followed immediately one day later by her mother and also famous actress, Debbie Reynolds.

My advice for the coming year which is already in motion for surprises: every person who dies in the world is noteworthy and left behind some kind of legacy that can be learned from in some capacity; so take time to learn about the people who have left you whether in your own family, your community or the world and put their life into perspective. Love and enjoy those around you and live every moment as if it’s your last because it could be. What legacy do you want to leave behind for the world? The significance will be great no matter how small you think it may be.

As for me, I have set myself some lofty goals for 2017 that I plan to attain. I will experience failures along the way but these failures will lead to my eventual success. Therefore…

2016, I bid you adieu. Bring on 2017!

Happy New Year all and may your highs be more abundant than your lows which is also my wish for the world in the new year!













photo credits: Traci Bold:;

HAPPY NEW YEAR: A Crazy Way to Start My Year Off


New Years Eve 2015 started off being a little tingly for me; literally. A little tingling sensation radiated from my neck on my left side down to my legs. Even my left arm experienced it. This came and went through New Years Day, then stopped. However, I had been quite fatigued for the past few days and not sleeping well. The holidays always make me a little anxious and this year, I had my first Christmas without our beloved Brittany Spaniel which was making this season even harder. I kept my symptoms to myself not wanting to worry my hubby or kids.

On to Saturday, January 2, 2016. I fully planned on writing my first blog of the year but at 11 a.m., I abruptly felt achy pain in my left arm that would not let me type. This pain continued throughout the day and finally before bed, I took a high dose of Ibuprofen. I slept well until the early morning on Sunday when I had to get up early to pick my daughter up from a friends house. My left arm was heavy so I drove with just my right arm.

Back at home, I went back to bed. When my hubby got me up at 11:20 a.m. I felt off and not myself, my arm throbbed again and my jaw was tight as was the back of my neck. I had some back pain in my lower left lumbar and when I moved my left arm, I felt nauseous. My mind started processing, finally. All of these were signs of a heart attack but again, I kept this to myself and told my hubby to go help out a friend on the north side of town. Irrationally I thought maybe a hot shower would alleviate the pain in my arm. So I took a long hot one and after getting dressed, the pain intensified in my arm and I felt sick to my stomach. Immediately I took a baby aspirin and ate some food since the aspirin never sits well with me on an empty stomach.

I called the ER and talked to a nurse who promptly told me to get my butt up to the ER. My daughters, who were sleeping, promptly took me when I woke them and told them and called their dad meet us there. Immediately I was hooked up to monitors, etc. and then sent for a CAT scan. My blood pressure was high for me at 142 over 90 and my heart rate 88.

American Heart Association for women

Luckily, the CAT scan showed no sign of a clot but my ER doctor did find a pinched nerve in my neck on the left side. When she massaged it some, I felt relief but when she quit, the pain came right back. My heart was fine.

The crazy part was that I was diagnosed with a pinched nerve which was responsible for my pain symptoms; this same nerve is also responsible the pain and the same symptoms when having a heart attack.

I felt stupid for going in when she told me I had a pinched nerve that was causing my pain, but she assured me I did the right thing coming in because it could easily have been a heart attack especially given my previous history with mild heart anomalies in the past. In fact, I was smart because women die every day from heart attacks because they ignore those signs that I had and do not go in and become a statistic. Also, she said that if I experience them again, to make sure I come in even though this time it was a pinched nerve because that may not be the case next time.

This is the list of symptoms you could experience and if you do, PLEASE get to the Emergency Room immediately. DO NOT BECOME  HEART ATTACK DEATH statistic. Instead, become the statistic that celebrates getting checked out and stops it. I am so happy I did. Cheers to me!

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Warning signs for a heart attack:

  • an abrupt change in how you feel
  • atypical pain, discomfort, pressure, heaviness, burning, tightness or fullness in the chest, left or right arms, upper back, shoulder, neck, throat, jaw or stomach (chest pain may be central, or felt “armpit to armpit”; in about 40% of women, no chest symptoms at all are present)
  • weakness, fainting, light-headedness, or extreme and unusual fatigue
  • shortness of breath, difficulty breathing
  • restlessness, insomnia or anxiety
  • bluish colour or numbness in lips, hands or feet
  • nausea, vomiting
  • clammy sweats
  • persistent dry barking cough
  • a sense of impending doom

Not all of these signs occur in every heart attack.  Pay attention if these signs come on suddenly or feel unusual for you. Sometimes they go away and then return. They usually come on with exertion, but may also appear when you’re at rest. Women typically wait longer than men to call for helpFind out why.

In fact there are also the silent signs of a heart attack and this link below will fill you in on those.


Now that I started my New Year with a scare, I am taking that as a sign to take better care of myself and work hard at my passion; writing children’s books. 2016 is going to rock! I hope it yours too.

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU ALL! May you all have a healthy, happy and prosperous 2016!

#hearthealth #newleaseonlife #lifeisgood