My life… I sat on the floor in the corner of this room, looking for something specific. And to my surprise I found much more than I intended to. The bottom two shelves are the photos and music of my life….

I was looking for a picture of a lady I work with. She is retiring in a couple of weeks and this photo was from when I met her, back in 1989. She oriented me to hospital nursing. She and I have had our paths cross for years on end, and then for a bit we may work in different places..but we never lost contact.. And times along the way we end up back in the same place again. She is a special lady. As I looked for this one photo I ran across my life. Things that have been pigeon holed in places in my mind.

It is funny how a photograph can bring you back to that year. It can make you remember a smell, or a breeze, or a sense of wonder . It brings back a feeling of being special, or discovering a place you had never been to before. It also can bring back a feeling of loss, or pain. It reminds you of relationships, of stages of youth, of people who have left this temporary home on earth to go to their destination. It kind of reminds us we are alive.

To relive these moments, to watch my little guy and Marks little girl grow up in photos. To  see their kids growing up… 100_3398

To realize that even thought it seems the years have flown by..those photo albums on the lower 2 shelves represent miles of life’s highway. The whale watches, the camping trips, the mini vacations Jeff and I took, the whale watches that Jeff ,Mark and I went on, the seemingly endless precious weekends that Jeff and Adrianne got to share with us, the evolving of my family from me being a baby to having all my brothers and sisters, smiles, reunions, marriages, births and deaths. All in-between sunsets and sunrises..each one different.

A100E0347nd as I soaked in the memories as they came to life.. I thought about how lucky we are to live in this country. The unrest in other parts of the world.. I wonder if these people have good memories. Have they stopped to see the beauty of the world? My heart says they have missed a lot of the soft sides of life… for they carry around such anger and hatred.

Yes … my journey through time that has been, it has  reminded me that I have been truly blessed. I thank God for that, over and over again.

I hope you have memories of your life captured somewhere. Stop and take a moment to remember. Good night all. Mrs Justa alais Cindy


Life can be a jumbled bunch of puzzle pieces- they begin to look alike but do not fit in the right places.

I was going over a health care plan with a friend who is looking to see if her live in boyfriend would be covered under her plan. They are expecting a child and she was wondering if she could go with a family plan…. 

Well we scanned over the eligibility part of her plan, and we got thrilled to see it covered spouses, children and domestic partners. We thought this is great. He is self employed, a really hard working guy, and has not the money to afford a single health plan on his own.

We started to read the details of the plan ..only to find out the those pieces of the puzzle we thought fit…well they do not fit. Why???because to have domestic partner coverage—it has to be someone of the same sex.

I was floored…. I am not criticizing people who chose to live with lovers of the same sex—and the way of the world is more and more rights for the gay and lesbian people..but to discriminate on a heterosexual no married couple ! This plan  makes the heterosexual committed live together couples impossible to get health insurance..but if you are homosexual and live in committed to one another—than bam—health insurance is a non issue. And if you are a woman, you can have coverage for a child— but only for the other parent if they are another person of the same sex… I am amazed—I mean how is this right? The intent of this is not to say if homosexuality is appropriate or not… or if living together heterosexually is okay without marriage… but the scales on this health plan are definitely unbalanced.

Pieces of puzzles in life—dec 2011 001it is nice what they line up, they interlock, and start to make a picture. Like at Christmas time, when the cards come in and everyone’s life’s pieces are shared with a moment of cheer.They interlock together in emotion, in the moment of realizing there are people out in the world who care for you and you for them….

There are so many loop holes in life though, as I look at the the percentage of nay-sayers, the evil and hatred in the world… I feel we have puzzle pieces that fell out of different boxes..and to not get caught –someone picked them all up and threw 100_6282them in the same box. Patience will help to get each piece together… wisdom and looking for sunshine behind the darkness. We need to try less hard to make the fairness in the world, for just like in this person’s insurance issue—we have worked so hard to show a smaller percentage of people they are treated fairly—that we totally overlooked a much larger percentage.

There has to be a way to balance the scales, to work for the good of all, and to bring opportunities for good work to all… Oh what a blessing that would be… May you find pieces that will fit together…Love Mrs Justa alias Cindy

nite time 9-6-11 001

As the day turns to dark… what goes through your mind?

As the day ends, do you feel blessed to have just come through the day, or regrets for a day that has passed?

On my way in today there was a contest on the radio. This man called, he sounded rather monotone—he had a deep voice, spoke slow and clear. He won the contest and the station has what they refer to as “a shout” , where the contestant can say something to someone or a group of people… people say hi to spouses, or co workers, or kids, or maybe a group they are a part of…. and they offered him a “Shout” …. silence…. the radio personalities asked him if he was still there… and he said yep… than they were kinda pep talking to him for his chance to “shout out”..and he said ..”I have no family… I have no friends…I have no one…. “ The radio guy and gal did not know what to say….it was one of those moments when words do not come….out of the darkness of the awkward silence the man said “I will shout out to everyone trying to make the world a better place.”

I wonder if this person 100_6248had just recently become all alone in the world..or has it been for a very long time. Did he have a big family..or was he an only child? He did not sound like he had activities outside of the home…. he sounded truly alone. I felt so bad for this person….

And than I thought about many of us…. how many of us would be in the same situation on the bumpy road of life. Those people who live their life with one person, their every move and breath feels at times it is for the other person, and in a blink of an eye—you can be alone. I know a lady who is recently widowed…they had no children…it was them..He had kids from a previous marriage who are all grown up and have places other than here to be.. and I wonder about how she feels as the daylight turns to darkness… She has a strong faith, she believes in God and in the wonders of life beyond here… but she has asked we not ask her too much about how she is..she is trying to heel the pain from the loss….

When my mom became a widow—she had just given birth to her 6th I do not think she had time to feel the darkness the way I think this woman might be.

Life is what we make it… but sometimes I think it becomes overwhelming—exhausting—to make it anything but lonely.

Love to all…

I hope you have at least one somebody in your life… Mrs Justa alias Cindy 

A Hot Humid Friday night, thunder storms rolling past us, and I just finished a lime freeze pop. I did have 2 lime ones, but shared with my honey.

So here I sit, for a moment or two, thankful the weekend is here. This week was a little hectic at times, I worked a lot on reading legal documents and trying to simplify them into lay person’s terms, so that I could do a power point.

I got it done, I warned the group it was a rather DRY subject and hoped they had had some caffeine. It did go well….

Now the weekend is among us, A graduation party tomorrow afternoon, and some stuff I want to do around the house. We did just go get our groceries, so that is out of the way.

Graduation from high school.. ahhh.. that was 40 scary years ago for me. It was a bitter sweet moment in my life. I had many people in my class, and to me, they were people I called friends. But as I look back ,years since high school, there were not the friends I imagined.

There is a person from high school that I stay in touch with, but we were not friends in high school..we knew of each other….she and I consider each others to be good friends now.

But all those people I shared 8 years of my life with, I do not think I meant anything to them. I remember that I idolized many, going through yearbooks and looking a their different photos, wishing I had relationships like they did..but my life was different. I had a lot of family responsibilities, being a child in a family of 7, with a my mom widowed for all these 8m years, there were things to help with, kids to watch.

Our niece on the other hand has some really good friends. She and her friends are who we shared driving to the outer banks in April. I truly can see them staying in touch through their adult years, through college, marriage, childrearing, empty nest syndromes and all in between. I wonder if graduation will be hard for her and her friends?

I think maybe it was hard for me, because on my heart I knew that my “friends” were really not… and when I took off that robe and cap.. I was taking off life as I knew it.

This year is a 40th class reunion, I am not going to go, because I do not really have anyone that would be looking to see me… and I can not think of anyone I would be looking.

It will be neat to see Morgan after she has graduated,   she seems to have good friends and a level head on her shoulders.
How neat to see good kids grow up !

Peace to all, be careful out there.  Love Mrs Justa alias Cindy

Lake Effect Storm 1-16-2011 023

Today was a day where it snowed all day long. It is lake effect, which means 5 miles down the road it can be perfect. This afternoon Shawn, a good friend of ours, called to see if we were home. Mark told him yes, Shawn said he was coming up. He lives maybe 12 miles from here.

Mark told him we were getting hammered, Shawn responded something about it being sunny where he was… maybe he thought by saying we were getting “hammered” that we meant we were getting drunk…( WE DOBN’T DRINK !!)  well he found out what “hammered “ means in the lake effect path. He said all of the sudden whoosh- from sunny to white out. Lake Effect Storm 1-16-2011 003 It just keeps coning. He stayed for maybe 2 minutes…. dropped off something and was gone. I was laughing,.. he had crocks on…

First thing this morning everything was cleared up, than again tonight after 3:30, and it is coming still. So tomorrow will be another go at the snow.

I bet we got at least a foot and 1/2 today. It is funny , we look on the radar and it is not showing… but man it is here!.

It is neat though, really when Lake Effect Storm 1-16-2011 050 you think about how small a snow flake is, Mark was saying this morning about how amazing it is that there are enough snowflakes falling to make feet of snow. That is A LOT of snow flakes !

We keep the bird feeder filled, and the birds appreciated it today… Lake Effect Storm 1-16-2011 030 I took a few moments to stop and just watch them / Lake Effect Storm 1-16-2011 032





I feel bad I did not make church, but it was really bad out and church is a 30 mile round trip. It was too bad to make the venture.I love going, I love the feeling there, I love the messages and the people. The Pastor is so real, down to earth and sincere. I know God understands.

I hope this finds you warm, healthy and loving what ever life is bringing you. We really have no choice… Life is what it is,… so why waste time complaining about it… love it while you can. Mrs Justa alias,,CIndy

Life.. the older I get the quicker it seems to fly by.

100_6246 I was thinking about that as I was out shooting some photos of the sites around our home, and the sun was setting. I got to thinking about all kinds of stuff, and how no matter how many sunsets come and go, there are parts of my life that seem like they just happened.

My brother jokingly made a comment that I am about to out live my dad, and I thought of way back when, when I was 10, and hearing that my dad had died. Man that is fresh in my memory, and whoa, it makes me think a lot about this was all the life he was given. He had turned 57 in July of 1963 and he died on Nov 3rd of 1963. I am about to turn 57, but I think I am healthier than my dad was. We are exercising and watching what we eat, my blood pressure hovers around 113/64 and my cholesterol has never been an issue, and EKGs and a stress test a few years back all were normal.

So , gosh I hope I break his pattern of life-years. 100_5328

How sad though really… to only live for 57 years. To never see the child your wife was about have, to never see the other 8 children you have, to think you were about to come home from the hospital and never wake up again. Sad.. really sad.

Than I was think about years later and finding out my first marriage was in trouble. Boy, I thought there was supposed to be warnings, but none I saw. I was fricken oblivious to the whole thing going down in a spiral, and he just assured me things were okay. I thought he had a friend, he said she was just a person in need of help… so I trusted that, and than one day… poof… the rug taken from under my feet, and there I am facing the world with a 2 1/2 yr old in hand- hoping I would see the sun rise. For I was definitely seeing it setting.

The pain from both of these life challenging events- it does not go away, it is like that one song that Trisha Yearwood sings about “The Song Remembers When”… we all have moments in our life, and I was thinking as I was watching the sun set, that those moments are setting suns in a way… they are ends to chapters, and hopes that life will be there for a new chapter.

I wonder if there are people who have never had that type of pain? That kick –  the gut wrenching pain when it is a total turn in life? I was told once that each gut wrench is supposed to make us stronger… but I think it makes us more withdrawn in a way. I vowed a very long time ago I would never break the trust of another, I would not lie, and I would not make the most of each day. For through the loss of both parents – it became so important to remember to leave wherever I am with a positive memory… and through the loss of a marriage.. I learned to never pretend to care… people I love, they know I love them, and I will never let them down. I wish you all peace, I wish you well, I hope you have beautiful sunsets and  peaceful sunrises…. —until later…  I hope you each have a good night. Cindy

I had read a quote the other day from “Kathy Austin” … it has been going thru my mind ever since.. 100_5673

Managers light the fire

       under people.

  Leaders light the fire

       in people.”

So this weekend I have been really thinking about this, and it goes way beyond managers and leaders, this can apply to parents, and friends, and spouses, the list goes on and on.

In my wondering , pondering mind as I was observing the world around me, wherever I went… I saw interactions that displayed people who have the fire lit under them and those with the fire lit inside them . Those who light the fire under or in me.

A moment of time spent praising someone for something, a kind word, a sincere question “ How are you today?” ( and than staying still to,listen for their response).. those are things that I believe light the fire within.

We were at a restaurant this morning and I was watching and observing the employees interactions with the customers and with each other, they were inspired to be there. It appeared to be a place where people feel needed, and appreciated.

We were at a store yesterday and there was a guy at the check out who had a major attitude… like an attitude of he wanted to be anywhere else but there… and he did not like dealing with people. The way he handled the merchandise, the way he took the money, no eye contact… it was a complete contrast from today’s experience.

Today at the gym there are certain people who greet us when we come in and they seem sincere… there are others that greet us at other times as they are walking away to do something else. Today’s person, she is an encouragement… there is another one in particular … she seems like in her mind she is thinking “ door opens… greet people… “ like it is a task she really does not want to do.

100_5522_edited  100_6018   The role of a parent and grandparent… is such a critical role… we need to encourage our children to learn, and praise them for their attempts at different things. Children need to know it is okay not to be perfect, and to not be afraid to admit when they have made a mistake.. we need to light the fire within them . They need to know they are loved.

Have you ever had a teacher that lit the fire in your hunger for knowledge? Those are the teachers that helped to mold each of us. I think Mark was that type of instructor when he taught at the NTTS truck driving school. My drivers ed teacher was like that. My kindergarten teacher was like that. Special people who made us become the best that we could be.

Or a nurse that helped you help yourself to heal? Who answered you questions? Who gave you a back rub? Who stopped in her very busy schedule and sat next to you bed and talked to you, held your hand, gave you undivided attention for a few moments.

A police officer who helped you feel better in a bad situation? A time when you are feeling frightened, alone, and unsure what to do.

A pastor who was there in a time of need? Who shared guidance without even knowing how helpful they had been? A waitress who made you feel special ? A doctor who took the time to listen and helped you through a tough time? A counselor who  was there for you in a time of need?

It makes all the difference in the world how we treat one another. You can make the difference in someone’s day.. you can light  a fire within… we all can…

Thanks for stopping by, for taking some time to click over here, and I do appreciate it!

I love our kids, I love my husband, I love every person in our family…

and I am sending a little bit of Love to all… Mrs Justa… Alias Cindy

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