Friday, February 22, 2008

GO Fun Friday

Oh Wow, This is just so unexpected. I really have to thank all the guys who didn't ask me out in high school and college, because with all that free time I had nothing better to do than obsess over movies. I would also like to thank my mom and dad for making me want to do well on quizzes. I wan to thank my beloved husband who has been with me all these years and makes me feel like a winner every week. I know there is someone else I should thank but the music is beginning to play so I guess it is time to leave gracefully. Oh I also want to thank God for making a world where movies are so much fun to watch. (or would that be Louis B Mayer, after all he thought he was god).


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

GO: Training Tuesday

So I am at the one month mark in my training regimen. I feel awesome. I work out with the weights four days a week (begining this week I am going to four days a week strength and cardio at the Y, up till now it was 3).

I can feel my body changing. I know that my clothes fit better, especialy my pants. Every pair of pants I own feel loose through the hips waist and thighs. I can feel changes in my abs as well, although after five pregnancies and two abdominal surgeries I am never expecting to have bikini abs again.

The annoying thing is, after four week of concentrated physical training, and two weeks of closely monitoring the types of food I am eating and cutting out all of the foods that cause me to gain weight ( in my case high simple carbohydrate foods) I don't seem to be losing any weight.

I am telling you that the scale is stalled on the exact same weight as when I began this journey. I haven't gained or lost an ounce (well I can't guarantee that as my scale isn't that precise, but I weight exactly the same to the half pound that I did four weeks ago.)

I am beginning to wonder if my inability to lose weight has something to do with the new arthritis medicine I am taking. I hate to not take it as it actually works and I am not in pain, but if the alternative is that I will begin to lose weight again maybe the trade off is worth it.

I think I should probably go and see my Dr. before I do anything as foolish as go off my medication as "an experiment". Maybe I am just building up muscle mass which is more dense than fat, and eventually when my metabolism gets this all figured out the weight loss will kick in. Maybe the lack of weight loss is being caused by another factor I'm not even aware of yet.

I know I am doing all the right things. You don't know how hard it has been for me to give up chocolate for the last week (because I am trying to limit my overall carb intake to as low as possible to see if I can jumpstart the weightloss). Being frustrated makes me want to eat a piece of chocolate all the more, but I have been very careful for the time being (I didn't even sample the yummy bars mrangelmeg gave me for Valentines day yet).

I have decided that I am going to give it till next Monday, and if I don't have any weight loss by then I am going to make an appointment with my Dr. to discuss options and figure this out, because I really do want to add weight loss to the whole "getting in shape" life change I am trying to set in motion. I will keep you posted.


HIring the Handicapped

Last spring we had a crucial decision to make when it came to what path our #2 daughter would take for the upcoming year. She is a very high functioning person with Autism, and was about to graduate from High School. She could have gone on to college, but we decided that she would benefit from a year of work to give her some life experience.

We began working with Vocational Rehabilitation and a job coach to find her a part-time job. It is now Februrary and she is on her second job coach and still has not found a single employer in this wonderful progressive college town that is willing to give my daughter a chance at a part time job.

How demoralizing it must be for her to apply for job after job and be turned down time after time because of her obvious disabilities. (she has some serious social interraction deficits). If someone would give her a chance she also has some amazing abilities, such as she can do just about anything with Paintbox Pro, and PhotoShop. She writes really well, and can format flyers and other types of media. She could be taught to run copy equipment or do data entry.

The last few weeks her job coach has resorted to having her apply for jobs like hotel housekeeping, because she has exhausted everywhere else. It has to be frustrating for my daughter. I know I am very frustrated. Handicapped people with much less ability than she are working all over the city, but no one seems to want to give her a chance.

I keep second guessing our choice. Would she have been better off if we had encouraged her to go straight to college? She would have one entire semester of classes under her belt by now instead of half a year of wasted computer time (which is what she does all day when she is at home -- plays around watching web junk. What a life. ) At least she is volunteering one morning a week at the school library where I volunteer, but even that isn't giving her any real outlet, or leading to a job.

If anyone has any ideas of which saints I should be praying to, or where I might suggest to her job coach to look for a placement for Molly, please help me out. The year is about over, and the life lesson that Molly has learned is that when you are handicapped you have to work ten times as hard to get anywhere. Which I suppose will be a good lesson in the long run. I would have liked for her to at least be getting a little income along with the lesson though.


Friday, February 15, 2008

The Countdown is SO ON! Save the Date!

84 Days and Couting!

I got my official registration form for St Meinrad Graduation today. I will receive my Gradual School Diploma for a Master of Arts in Catholic Thought and Life on May 10, 2008.

The Schedule of events includes

10:00 a.m. Eucharist in Archabbey Church

12:00 p.m. Formal Luncheon

1:30 p.m. Robing and Pictures

2:00 p.m. Convocation/Graduation

reception in Alumni Commons following the Convocation.

So far there is only one hitch; I get 6 tickets for the luncheon. Which one of the kids has to eat Wendy's from up the highway? (no really we can order more tickets but I am going to ask them just to see their faces).

Now I have to order my class ring, and figure out what I am going to wear, and make sure the kids all have nice clothes to wear, and make sure that mrangelmeg tells them at work that he needs to be in Indiana that weekend and not somewhere else. Whew, and I thought all the hard part was over.


Rest as a Spiritual Practice

Today a friend was telling me that she has been very weary lately. She has been unusually overscheduled for the last month because of her children, and has had some difficulty adjusting to the harried change in her normal routine. That has been coupled with some mental pause moments that are causing her to have less than adequate sleep at night.

I did tell her that there is something very rejuvenating about a quick afternoon nap. It helps me a lot, especially when the alternative is that I will be in an awful mood around the kids for the remainder of the evening.

What I should have told her was that rest is so very important that God elevated it to the level of a commandment. We NEED rest that much. A lack of good rest can cause all kinds of physical and mental issues and lack of rest coupled with stress in other areas of our lives can make for very dangerous situations.

Just this week in Spiritual Direction Fr. and I were discussing the spirit/mind/body connection. How can we be in a healthy spiritual place if we aren't in a healthy place mentally or bodily. We have to give ourselves permission to take care of ourselves especially when our lives are extremely stressful. We are at our best when we take care of the all three areas of our lives.

Maybe what I will do is write my friend an email and send her a copy of this post. But first I think it is time for me to take a nap. I had a session with my trainer today and I am wiped out. Then I need to cook dinner for the family. We are having fish tonight because it is Friday, I am actually cooking fish all by myself. Wish me luck.


Thursday, February 14, 2008

GO Theology Thursday From IC

This one is too good not to share:

The Twisted Lenten Drama of Green Eggs and Ham Uncloaked

as seen through the eyes of our beloved friend the Ironic Catholic.

You have to read it to believe it.


GO Thursday Theology (of sorts): The Calculus of Love

This being Valentines Day I wanted to share the beautiful sentiment that my loving Engineer husband mrangelmeg gave me in the card that I found in my car this morning. That is our tradition --leaving valentines cards in each other's cars to be found as we drive off on our respective ways on the morning of Valentines day.

His choice this year was out of the norm for him, one of those sentimental cards (usually he goes for the funny ones) it read:

A chance meeting

became a smile

became a conversation

became a touch

became a kiss

became a knowing

Then inside it reads became a destiny.

below that he wrote (with a nod to Back to the Future)

Angelmeg, You are my Density!

Density id defined as the ratio of Mass to the space occupied.

And ever since our first date to Mass you have occupied all the space in my heart!

.'. You are my Density Q. E. D.

I mean, It just makes a my heart flutter to think our love is important enough to him to qantify it in a calculus problem. Now that means a lot coming from an engineer.

Hope your one true love puts his or her feelings to that much thought. Oh and he remembered the chocolates too.


Monday, February 11, 2008

Its Always Darkest . . .

My family has taken another blow. My yougest brother suffered a heart attack while working in Toronto for his company. He is up there cut off from the family and in the hospital all alone, being single. The attack was mild, praise God, and he may only have to stay in the hospital a few days, but what a scare to have to handle with no support system.

He has decided to return to the US and recouperate at my sister's house in Phoenix where he can get good care and any treatment he might need and be around family.

Please say a prayer for him. He is an avowed agnostic, but that doesn't mean that God has abandoned him.

I don't know how much more "testing" my family can handle.


GO New Media Monday: Feed the Hungry and Increase Your Vocabulary a Win Win if I Ever Saw One

We have an amazing man here where I reside who created a fun website where you can play a game which helps to increase your vocabulary and while you are playing you are actually donating food to people in parts of the world where it is needed most.

The site is called Free Rice. As of February 10, 2008 18,174,763,250 grains of rice have been donated by people who have played the game. It is really stimulating and anyone can play. Challenge the kids to see who in the family can get the best score, and donate the most rice. You can even watch a video of the rice being distributed.

So go on over to
Free Rice and start donating rice while you build your vocabulary.


Sunday, February 10, 2008

An Ammended Lent (Already?)

So we are only at the first Sunday of Lent and I am already seeing that my Lenten Promise is going to take some ammending:

I had promised to give up being judgmental (something I struggle with mightily) for lent. After only the first three days I was totally aware that it was going to be utterly impossible for me to give up being judgmental cold turkey. As mrangelmeg says the first step is to admit that you have a problem.

So I have ammended my lenten promise. Now I am going to make myself aware of the times when I slip into a judgmental attitude and pray for God's grace and forgiveness at that exact moment. After a few days of adopting this new more prayerful attitude I have found that I am praying almost constantly, which while a bit sad, is not altogether a bad thing.

I heard a priest on a show on EWTN the other night say that one should ask God for a spirit of docility because a docile spirit is one that is teachable. So while I am becoming aware of how totally judgmental I am of others and asking God to break my stony judgmental heart and create in my a new, more compassionate heart I am trying, desperately to do it in the spirit of docility so that the lessons God is teaching me will stick and when I move through these forty days I will emerge at Easter having been made anew.

Hey stop laughing, it could happen!


Friday, February 08, 2008

What a Week!

So I began this week saying goodbye to mrangelmeg who had to fly out to meetings for his job and would be away for the balance of the week.

Then on Tuesday I went to mom's nursing home for a Care Plan committee meeting where we discussed what kind of changes were going to be in mom's near future. As I have blogged about recently mom has been falling alot because her peripheral vision is being affected. Her doctor doesn't think it is time for her to be moved from the memory care unit even though there is a chance that she still might get hurt because of her unsteadiness and the chance of being hurt in a fall. Her doctor thinks, and I agree, that she needs to be in the more active ward as long as possible. The next step will be for her to be restricted to a wheelchair full time and in the more restricted ward of the nursing home. We both want to put that day off for a little while longer and keep her active and independent while she can be. These decisions are hard. I am so glad that mom has a Dr. ther who has personal experience with a parent with this disease, because knowing that he went through this with his own father makes me trust his judgement in these decisions so much more than if I thought he were just going on textbook knowledge alone.

So, for at least a little while longer mom has the freedom to move about (with someone right by her side when she is walking, as often as they can have it that way) and remains in the active ward where she knows everyone and everyone knows her.

Wednesday was Ash Wednesday, we had two amazing gifts at Mass. Our retired priest Fr. Charlie, who has been ailing for the last few months not only said Mass, but handed out communion assisted by St. Elmo (his portable oxygen tank). We are so happy to see him able to be active in his pastoral ministry. Also Fr. Emmanuel, a priest friend who went back to his homeland of Zimbabwe Africa last year was concelebrating. He looks a little bit older an more gray, but other than that not much worse for the wear of having survived cancer. I thought the Angelbaby was going to burst all through Mass wanting to rush up onto the altar to give him a hug, but she waited patiently until after the final hymn and ran back into the sacristy, but even then he had slipped away quietly before she could get to him. That is his way.

Thursday my older sister had a mild stroke. With mrangelmeg out of town I couldn't get up to see her, but I was in touch by phone with my sister who lives with her and another sister who drove in to see if things were okay. Now that I have seen her I think she is in much better shape than my mother-in-law was after her stroke last year. She will probably be home by Monday with outpatient physical therapy for speach and swallowing. She now knows that she is diabetic and needs to take much better care of herself.

This was my week to do hospital ministry. While I was there doing my rounds I found that one of my visits was to a dear friend Aggie. She is an older woman whose husband is also in the Knights of Columbus with mrangelmeg is flat on her back in Critical Care with pancreatitis. She was extremely cranky (which is partly her normal way) on Tuesday I stayed with her for a short time. I went back on Wednesday for a bit and again on Thursday after my regular rounds. Each day she got worse instead of better. I am really scared for her. I am hoping things turn around soon for her. I don't know what her husband will do without her.

While I was visiting Aggie, another Knight friend of ours Joe came in, and we found out that he has non-Hodgkins Lymphoma! He starts chemo this week.

So, I am asking all of you to send prayers my way to all of my dear ones who need it (or are on the mend).

Monday, February 04, 2008

GO New Media Monday Morning Quarterback

So, Which of the Superbowl 42 Commercials were your favorite?

I have to say that mine were the E-trade spots with the baby, especially the one where he rented the clown with his "extra coin" and "really understimated the creapiness" I laughed so hard at that one.

If you want to re-experience all of the Superbowl ads in their glory you can find them here.

Oh by the way, who knew it would be a Manning Two-fer! If the Colts couldn't win I suppose having Peyton's little brother pull it out in the fourth quarter and keep Miami as the only team with a perfect season (Go Coach Shula, we love you man. I bet that champagne tasted awesome last night) was the next best thing.

The Mannings Rule!

I will also have to admit it was a lot of fun watching Tom Brady get sacked time, after time, after time.