Never Live “Coulda Woulda Shoulda!”

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Just a few months before my father passed away from complications of diabetes and kidney disease our cousin asked him if he could do anything differently, what would he change.  Dad’s answer: I wouldn’t change a thing.  At his funeral Mass of Christian Burial I asked to have Frank Sinatra’s “My Way” sung.  I would have done it myself but did not think I could have kept control of my emotions. 

“Regrets, I’ve had a few, but then again, too few to mention.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6E2hYDIFDIU

He modeled this behavior for me and I try to live it every day.  I have taken a few chances and once I decide one direction or another, I do not spend much time wondering what it would have been like to have chosen the other.  I do not have enough time in my life to use it up worrying about what I did not do. 

If the desire to do something I “coulda woulda shoulda” is so burning that I keep thinking about it, then I’ll just do it.  Or set the plan in motion.

I have had a burning desire to write a book.  In 2011 I am going to do just that.

Why not begin 2011 without a “to do” list?  Just turn a few “coulda woulda shoulda’s” into a plan and then go for it!

Life is good!

Jude

Twitter: MidMajorMom

Twitter: JudeCaserta

AthleticBudgetCoach.com

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Merry Christmas!

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As my life changes, as our son gets older and is on the brink of independence, Christmas morning is a most precious gift to me.  No matter what the packages contained, that it was my husband and my son with me around the tree with a warming fire in the hearth and classic Christmas carols on the background, my joy is complete.

Christmas Eve and the continuing family celebrations give me strength, warmth and sustenance.

The Christ child gives me peace and hope that someday I will see my son in heaven and be with Him forever.

To those of you I know and to those of you who I may never meet, peace and joy today and always from my house to yours.

Holiday Stress Meets Female Hormones: Holimones©

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Yes, Holimones©! I think it is a great description of what many of us women feel this time of year.  And, if you are a middle aged female you can really understand this because of the sleep disruption associated with this period of life.

Picture her at the Post Office, sliding her packages through the winding que only to get to the counter and find out she used the wrong marker for the address.  She melts down and a neighbor in line remarks to another “she is normally a very nice, courteous person but, you know those Holimones©…!”

She’s the one online at 3am ordering the Sponge Bob Chia Pet.  What right-minded person would do that?

There she is, like Gumby on acid, dusting the living room at midnight, while cookies bake in the nearby kitchen.  Sleep can wait until the 26th!

She is winding the last package with ribbon as she walks out the door for her next holiday party. 

And, guys, you’re not off so easily?  What happens with middle aged men and their hormones?  What else?

Holirones © 

Life is good!

Jude

Twitter: MidMajorMom

Twitter: JudeCaserta

AthleticBudgetCoach.com

The Art of the Facebook Friend Request

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It’s creepy to friend request someone a generation younger than you.  I mean, really really creepy.  Don’t do it.  Then you are a creep.

I learned this early in my social media life.  Years ago, when Facebook became an athletic department nemesis, our Director of Athletics gathered the entire department in a large classroom and explained that each coach needed to get on Facebook and see the pictures their student athletes posted and tagged.  14 of our 16 sports had pictures tagged which, if not an NCAA violation, were a violation of our code of behavior. 

They were given one week to clean things up and staff was asked to set up an account and poke around, as well.  I set my account up then forgot about it.  About a month before my son was graduating from high school I got my first friend request.  It was from his best friend.  I only knew because I got an e-mail about his request and that he wrote on my wall.  My wall?

I accepted and took a peek at my account but still had no idea how it really worked.  Within a week at least 20 of his friends requested me and I accepted them all.  My son thought it was the strangest thing and did not want to have any part of me being on Facebook.  I totally respected his feelings and never EVER asked him to include me.  This was his world and I did not want to interfere.

The kids included me in conversation and when they went away to school they kept in touch with a quick post or tag.  Sometime first semester my son requested me and I enjoy being a part of this world. 

Here are my rules:

            I never request anyone a generation younger than me.  That includes my cousin’s kids, my son’s friends and kids in the neighborhood.  If they want me in their timeline they request me.  I am pleased to say I have developed wonderful relationships with many of the “cousins” and respect their invitations by not stalking their wall.

            Unless they are close personal friends, I do not request any co-workers.  I think it is important to recognize that relationships at work are not the same as relationships outside of work. 

            If I do not recognize a name (especially a female who chooses not to use her maiden name) and we have no friends in common, I ignore.  Linkedin and Twitter are the professional me.  Facebook is a peek inside my living room.  I don’t open my door to strangers.  

That little icon pops up and gives me a burst of excitement every time.  Who will it be?  Is it someone I haven’t heard from in years?  High school?  College?  I can hardly wait to click the little red icon and see who it is…

Life is good!

Jude

Twitter: MidMajorMom

Twitter: JudeCaserta

AthleticBudgetCoach.com

My Mother’s Face

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It actually took my breath away.  It made me cry.  It filled me with love.  It made me realize how precious life is.  It made time freeze.

Yesterday was day like so many others.  I sang with Voce Regales, a female vocal group formed about 4 years ago by our church’s music minister, Peter Smith.  I have been singing in choral groups since I was in 4th grade, so, that makes it…4 plus 5 minus 52…a really long time!

When I was a kid, my father used to clear his throat.  This way I knew he was there (never always sure about that – he worked a lot and had lots of things going on) and where he was sitting in case I could glance over and smile, wink or discreetly wave.

But my mother was always there having already dressed me in the appropriate outfit, baked the requisite item for the punch and goodies afterward and delivered me to the appropriate venue with minutes to spare after the boots were removed and choir chair found.

If Dad was the wild card, Mom was the Queen.  If Dad was the variable, Mom was the absolute.

Have you ever noticed how little we think about the absolute and how the wild card gets all of the attention.  Yesterday that thought was like a punch in the stomach for me.  My lovely lively mother sat at St. Peter’s Church staring at me with the most devoted face of love I have ever witnessed and all I could do was cry.

To gain composure I looked a little further in the distance, several rows behind me and saw the parents of one of my favored choir members.  What did I see?  I saw the look of absolute love for their daughter.

Most profound for me, however, was the reality that I still had the opportunity to see that look of love and how lucky I am to have at least one of my parents.  To have made it into middle age and still have a parent is a lovely thing.

If your parents are alive, give them a call today for no reason, only to ask about them and offer love.

Life is good!

Jude

Twitter: MidMajorMom

Twitter: JudeCaserta

AthleticBudgetCoach.com

Crazy Culinary Confessions

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I like Cream of Wheat. With chocolate chips…they get all melty… When I first started making Cream of Wheat for Tommy when he started eating (or maybe it was Cream of Rice, whatever!) I used to call it Cream of Concrete. It’s yummy and soft when it’s warm but much like polenta, when it dries it sticks to the dish/spoon/high chair tray like super adhesive.

I like egg salad. With sweet pickle relish…I like the crunch as long as it isn’t an egg shell…

I like Tang and I like it the way my brother and I used to make it. More like Tang concentrate.

I like chocolate cake. I like milk. Not so strange except that I like the chocolate cake in the glass of milk. Dad called it mush. The trick is to get enough cake in the glass so that the spoon stands up in it. The cake in the milk is delicious but when you get a taste of the frosting, SCORE!

I like corned beef sandwiches with mayonnaise. Yes, that’s right, mayonnaise. I was almost thrown out of Mastmann’s Deli on Hertle Avenue in Buffalo when I was 8 months pregnant with Anthony for requesting that sandwich. He refused to put mayo on the sandwich until I told him it was for me. He relented but cautioned me that my baby would be born a Gentile! He was crushed when I told him I was not Jewish.

Have a yummy day!