10 Favorite Things

Today I want to share 10 of my favorite things that I enjoy in life. My first list of the year.

  • Movies – I love watching movies. Mostly action movies.
  • Gummy Bears – Don’t judge me! I’ve cut back, but I try to keep at least one pack in the house.
  • Football – I’ve loved football since I was in Germany. Think I was in middle school when I started watching, but fell in love with it later in high school.
  • Dance videos – No, I’m not a dancer, but I enjoy watching those that do. It gives me life. I might attempt the easier routines or try the ones made for exercise. (I.e. Zumba is one example)
  • Site Seeing – It doesn’t matter where I go, I can almost find something to go see. I will even tour my own city like a tourist. You’ll be amazed at what you find. Try it!
  • Writing – I don’t write as much, but I’m getting back to my love. Poetry is one of top things to write followed by blogging.
  • Spoken Word – A good show is always good for the mind and body. It’s always a joy just to listen to all that raw talent.
  • Reading – This is another thing I’m trying to build back up. A good book can be read in a day or two.
  • Jewelry – I’ve always loved picking up a cute accessory, especially earrings and rings. Now that I see it, I’m falling in love with a lot more styles and colors. Let me go place an order! 😁
  • Photography – I’ve been in love with taking pictures since middle school. Yep, Germany again. How can you not like taking pictures in such a pretty country.

  • There’s my random list of 10 Favorite Things!

    My Tribulation That Made Me Stronger

    What tribulation have I gone through that has made me stronger and the person I am today? At first I really had to think about it. Then I realized that there is more than one, but one situation keeps coming to the forefront.

    One thing that has made me stronger is when I was a manager in Virginia. Being in Virginia taught me so much. As a manger I learned a lot in all my stores. Each store was a special experience.

    However, Virginia, that was a whole different ball park for a number of reasons. I love my family, so I was always driving distance away. Not a twelve hour drive. So that was new. But having made a great friend that worked with me helped a lot. That in itself wasn’t a trial, as much as it was an experience.

    Now, work, that is where the tribulation happened. There were some great days, and some awful days. One thing for sure is that it made me stronger. I stayed there two years and learned a lot about who I am. Even though my manger was prejudice, spiteful, and an instigator, I still pushed through. Why? Because I knew I could and for my wonderful associates. That is, until that fateful night.

    I was working overnight. We had a manger trainee doing some last minute work before she left for class, and a number of our support mangers were there. As the night progressed, I was feeling worse and worse. The store was small, but I was having trouble making a complete circle without getting dizzy. Needless to say it was either let her drive me or call an ambulance. It’s true, I was still trying to wait until the end of my shift to go to the ER. This was for two reasons, I tried to completev all my task, and the fact that neither my store manger or co manger were answering their phones! None of them were having that. So at 2am I was taken to the hospital and admitted within an hour. What was wrong? ALL my vitals were at stroke level!

    If there was a time I needed to be close to home, this was it!! Not knowing what was going to happen next had me freaking out completely! My one true friend visited me all three days I was there. He bought my go bag from my apartment. He took me to get real food before getting my car when they let me out.

    It was during those three days I made the decision to leave the company. Once the decision was made and I told my mom, it seems a calm and peace presence overcame me. My vitals began to drop as well. It was then that I put in my 2 weeks notice. When I tell you that was my best decision ever, it really was. While I miss some of the people, I don’t miss the added stress and drama.

    This situation really helped define who I am today. I had never been stressed like that before at any job. I refuse to allow it to happen again. It made me stronger, and helped me appreciate some things I took for granted before. I’m forever thankful to those that held me up during those times.

    Why Share My Gratitude

    I love doing gratitude challenges. I also love to share my gratitude challenges through my blog. Why?

    I love doing gratitude challenges because it keeps me grounded. They help remind me of the many things I should be thankful for. The small things sometimes go unnoticed, this reminds me of those things. When I start and end my day by being thankful it makes for a better day and an even better night.

    Why share the gratitude challenges on my blog? I know, I could just meditate on it, write it in my journal, but I like to do more. I know, I’m a little extra sometimes. By sharing on my blog it holds me accountable. I’m always looking for ways to make myself accountable. I also do it it in hopes of helping someone else. Sometimes we all need reminders of things we can be thankful for.

    Sometimes I know things can be going all wrong in our lives. It makes it hard to be positive and thankful at times. This serves as a reminder that we should be grateful for even the small things in life.

    Do you share your gratitude with others, or do you keep it private?

    Having Surgery? Had Surgery?

    My quick update: My recovery process is going pretty good right now. I missed almost a week and half of physical therapy because my therapist was out with a suck family member. So between that and all the rain and dropping temperature have me a slight setback and made me very stiff. I’m getting back in the groove of things.

    With that being said, this post isn’t really all about me. It’s about you. Maybe you are thinking about total/partial or some other knee surgery, or any surgery really. Maybe, your surgery is scheduled and you need more information or advice. Maybe you’ve had your TKR and don’t know what to do now. This is for you all.

    When a doctor tells you need to have surgery it can be a scary and nervous moment. Even more so if you’ve never heard of it before. It’s completely normal and to be expected. I know when I was first told a total knee replacement was needed I felt all kinds of butterflies in my stomach. After all, you always hear the horror stories, rarely the positive. Today, I’m going to weave in bits of both from my journeys. Most of my journey will be centered around my last surgeries, which were total knee replacements. I’ve had others over the years that not limited to the knees.

    When you find out you need to have surgery, what do you do? The key is ALWAYS research. Don’t just go off one website either. When I found out I had to have a TKR, I was pulling up information daily. Yes my doctor was awesome both times with the expectations I should have. I felt like I needed more. Granted, 80% of what I found was the exact same thing he said. Some he hadn’t mentioned, but it wasn’t a deal breaker. It just made me more informed. When doing your research remember that most people post their horror stories, not the good stories. While you’re doing research, you find you have questions or concerns, don’t be afraid to ask your doctor. I kept my doctor and nurse on speed dial. I even had a nurse from my insurance company assigned to me.

    So now you decided to do the surgery, right? You’ve done your research. What do you do leading up to the surgery? The most obvious, yet, most ignored answer, FOLLOW ALL OF THE DOCTOR INSTRUCTIONS!!! This should be a no brainer, but we as people can be hardheaded sometimes. The instructions they give you will be beneficial going into surgery and coming out of surgery.

    I always tell people to prepare in other ways as much as possible. What do I mean? When I had my breast reduction it was very important to have shirts and dresses that didn’t require me to lift my arms much. For my TKR, you want accessible items. A raised toilet, raised bed, shorts, extra pillows, and other things that will help. I found that this is a question to ask others who have been through it some of their BEST practices. Try to stay with the positive aspects. It’s important to go into surgery with a positive attitude.

    So you’ve had your surgery and headed home. My word of advice is again, FOLLOW ALL DOCTORS ORDERS! If there is something you can’t do or it makes the pain worse, contact your doctor. Don’t overdo it. With my TKR I was able to exercise laying down. I would bend my leg while laying on my side. However, I was cautious to not over bend it. While recovering, don’t be afraid or proud to ask for help. If you have family or friends that can help in the beginning, let them. Just don’t get dependent on it. That can be your worst enemy.

    With my TKR I had a roller coaster of emotions. The pain was up and down in the beginning with all surgeries. Also with the TKR my sleep is way off. I’m saying this not to scare you, instead to give you a heads up. You’re body is going through some rough stuff with surgery, so some things might change with your body.

    I hope all of your surgeries go just fine and you have a speedy recovery. Keep your head up!!!! If there are any questions I can answer from my personal experience, I will.

    Total Knee replacement Week 5

    I’m halfway through week 5 of my post – op recovery. This has been an interesting journey so far.

    I have started driving a little bit. Nothing too much just yet. I did drive in Atlanta a little on the way home. I’ve mostly been going between my house and my mom’s house. There is a little pain, but not much. The more I do it, the less the pain.

    As far as the overall pain, it has gotten better. I can now go almost all day without any pain medicine except for when I have physical therapy. PT on the other hand is a bit more rough than it was last year. I seem to be okay at home lifting my leg, but when I get to PT, that’s a whole entire different kind of beast!! I still continue to push through because I know it’s only making me stronger, but sometimes, I just want to quit. Don’t worry, I don’t.

    The one thing I think isn’t going as well is me standing from an average chair height. I can do it, but it hurts like crazy, especially if I sit for a while. I’ve only been able to sit for an hour. That’s probably my two biggest concerns. I have just under two months to strengthen it. Hopefully between PT and getting some serious walking in it will get stronger. I do notice it isn’t buckling as much as it was last year. So that’s a plus for sure.

    Again, I’m overall pleased with the results from the surgery. I know the healing process takes time and no two surgeries will be the same. I will continue to take it one day at a time as I move forward.


    There’s nothing like having a great friend that always in your corner. Recently I realized I had a few fake friends in my circle that I had to distance myself from. I’m forever grateful for those loyal few.

    Today though is all about my best friend Brandy. This lady has always be a constant since we meet. One thing I love about her is her heart. She’s always loving. I sent her a message some months ago because I was thinking about visiting. I was all in my feelings that day, the words she spoke bought me to tears. I don’t think she realized just how much those 2-3 sentences really meant. For that one moment I’ll be forever grateful for. Sure reminded me of the foundation of our friendship just that quick.

    As people get older, life changes, peoples likes and dislikes changes too. You won’t always agree on some things. Getting older you understand that it’s okay to agree to disagree. There are things we don’t agree on, but that has never defined our friendship. As a matter of fact, in some ways it has made it stronger.

    Brandy is a friend that I hold dear to my heart. She’s like a sister to me, so much so that her family is mine and mine is hers. I’ll always be eternally grateful for her friendship!!!!

    Who is the one friend that you are especially grateful for?

    A Few Accomplishments

    I’ve the years I’ve accomplished a lot of things. It’s hard to pinpoint what I’m most grateful for. So I’ll talk about a few accomplishments I’m grateful for.

    Being an assistant manger for seven years. I feel like I did a lot in those seven years. Yes, there were some bad days and moments, but the good out way the bad. I learned a lot during those years that I’ve been able to take with me. I’m grateful for that learning experience.

    I’m grateful for my entrepreneurship. It’s great to own my own business. While it’s not full-time and I still work my day job, this has been an awesome road. There are so many people that poured into me to help me find my niche. I couldn’t even begin to name them for fear of forgetting someone! I hope I’ve been able to pour into other the same way!

    I’ve published eight poetry books!!! I started writing poetry what I started college with the help and guidance of a friend. I developed and grew (still growing) my craft. Then a final push from an author that visited our book club I published my first book in 2007. The books cover a range of topics. There’s something for almost everyone.

    Those are just three of my accomplishments I’m very grateful for. Each have taught me some valuable lessons along the way.

    What accomplishment are you most grateful for?

    Tomkatt Our Teddybear

    We all know the saying that people come into your life some for a season, some for life. In life you meet people that you create a special bond with. That bond can last a season or a life time.

    Today I want to talk about someone that’s so special to me. Thomas Walton. Even though we didn’t speak or see each other often, he was always there. Even when he wasn’t feeling good or in the hospital, he still kept his head up and made you smile.

    We meet at work at Wal-Mart. From what I remember we got along from the start. At the point I was in my life I was doing a lot of partying with my friends. He was always a staple piece in our crew. The laughter and drinks were always flowing. Not mention my handy shutter button too! Thomas was one of the few that never shied away from the camera.

    Oh the good times we had. We called ourselves the 1284 Crew. We didn’t just party, we had dinners, and other various events where he always supported where he could.

    I hate his life ended so short. It broke my heart when I was told the news. You know what though, I didn’t cry. I smiled and even laughed remembering some of his antics. As we get closer to the day of his service, I’m remembering all the happy moments we created over the years. I hate I don’t have current pictures. However, I’m okay with the older pictures because that’s how I remember him the most!

    Thomas, thank you for the smiles, laughter, and love you always showed. You are already greatly missed!!!

    Feel free to share your memories and/or pictures.

    Surgery Journey PT 2

    Here we are. The day before the surgery. Normally I go I into surgery pretty calm. This time, for some reason I’m a bit nervous. I’m ready, just nervous.

    Last year I had almost a month to prepare physically and mentally. This time, two weeks! Yes, I knew it when I selected it from the options given. Still, I was a bit surprised it got here this quick.

    If you are preparing for surgery always keep in mind the cost and/or deductible if they pertain to you. Know what your insurance will pay. My doctor normally wants full payment upfront. Crazy I know. However, he does try to work with you. For me doing the surgery now has a few benefits. Of course the major one is to get rid of the pain. A huge second one is that my deductible has been meet. So instead of paying over $30,000 I’m paying. $2,000. Big difference. That in itself is a relief off my shoulders.

    As I prepare for this second surgery I think of the benefits since I’ve had one knee replaced already. It’s those thoughts that keep me calm. For instance, I know what to expect pain wise after surgery. People can tell you all day long, but unless you experience it, you won’t really know. I also know know how to prepare for my recovery a better.

    I also am grateful for having my family therefor their support. knowing I have them their to help me is one ofthe major things that truly keep me calm as we approach my surgery. There is nothing more valuable than that!

    I think that’s about it for this round. I’ll be back later after surgery in a few days.

    Were you nervous coming up to your surgery? How did you handle it?