JUDY FROM THE BLOCK

JUDY FROM THE BLOCK

Monday, January 17, 2011

REMEMBERING MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.

                  
               I HAVE A DREAM....













Saturday, January 15, 2011

TUCSON SHOOTING JANUARY 8, 2011....A DAY ARIZONA WON'T SOON FORGET

Sept 11, 2001 flag from Twin Towers flying over Christina's funeral
Unless you don't have a TV or radio, then of course you know about the horrible, heinous act of one very disturbed person who changed Tucson, Arizona forever on Saturday, January 8, 2011. 

I want to say first that this will NOT be a political commentary about the shooting.  We have no idea yet as to why Jared Lee Loughner http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2011-01-14-loughner-timeline_N.htm
would commit such a violent act against his country, not just Arizona.  This affected all Americans such as the Oklahoma City Bombing, the McDonald's Massacre and, of course, September 11, 2001.  I also will NOT be turning this blog into any more about the shooter, as he will get enough national attention and I for one, find him creepy and disturbing to look at and in no way want his picture on my blog, but feel free to click the link above for his story. 

Congresswoman Giffords
Saturday, January 8, 2011.  A beautiful day for Congresswoman Gabby Giffords of District 8 to begin her morning by meeting with her constituents.  People were lining up in front of the Safeway in Tucson that morning to "Meet and Greet with Gabby"; while some folks were just there to do their Saturday morning grocery shopping.  

Unfortunately, the morning quickly turned to tragedy in the town of Tucson, just to the south of where I live in Phoenix. 


I am a major CNN "news watcher" everyday, so I actually was watching a news breaking story out of Tucson, a massive round of shots heard, Gabby Giffords shot in the head, others were down. 
There were so many stories unfolding so fast about what actually happened.  I was turning the channel between CNN and FOX to see where I could get the most up-to-date and latest of Gabby, as they were really focusing on the fact that Gabby had been shot in the head and they weren't really too sure how many other victims or who these victims are in association with Gabby.  As the news progressed, it was first reported that Gabby had in fact died.  It wasn't until about 15 minutes later that we were again hearing that she was ALIVE and already undergoing surgery.  Thank you Jesus!

Astronaut Mark Kelly with wife, Gabby Giffords, as she holds on for life
As the day and night unfolded we began to hear all about the other victims, 20 in total who were shot, 6 of whom died very suddenly in the attack, and 13 in the hospital being treated for various bullet wounds, and of course one very critically wounded Gabby. 

I feel very compelled at this time to pay tribute to those 6 who lost their lives:


Dorwin Stoddard...

Dorothy Morris...


Gabriel Zimmerman...



Phyllis Schneck...

Federal Judge John Roll


 Christina Taylor-Green...
In no way do I want to trivialize any of the victims of this horrible, unforgiveable act of violence against the innocent, but I did want to focus in on CHRISTINA and her little life that was so full and lost too quickly. 



She's a face and a name I had never heard of until the day she was tragically killed in this shooting rampage.
We started learning very early on about our "youngest victim."  First, she was born on September 11, 2001...YES ON 9/11!  She came into the world on a day that America was attacked by terrorism!!!!

Twin Towers Sept 11, 2001



Pentagon Sept 11, 2001
Flight 93 Sept 11, 2001

CHRISTINA was even featured in a book called "Faces of Hope," a book of children born on September 11, 2001. 
With simple eloquence, the author shares these messages of hope for each baby's future:
-I hope that you find good in all people.
-I hope you catch snowflakes on your tongue.
-I hope you always have more than you need and share your plenty.



From what I have read, according to her parents she seemed to be born "destined" into some type of politics.  We have learned in the news that she was recently elected to student council at her school.  How exciting for her!  And what a great way to start off her new "political career" by meeting Gabby Gifford, which brought her to what would later be the place where she would lose her life, in TERROR!  CHRISTINA would lose her life on a day of terrorism, just as she entered the world on a day of terrorism. 
Bill Cosby once said, "a parent should never have to bury their child."

Christina's family


The "angels" who prevented protesters at the funeral

CHRISTINA, like myself, at a young age took an interest in politics.  I too was in student council in high school, a "Representative," both freshman and sophmore years. First, it's such a privilege to be elected!  So I know her excitement and the excitement of learning about politics.  CHRSTINA, like myself, probably had a strong connection to politics as we both represent "historical days in the history of America" that in some way, shape and form politically motivated us. 


President John (Jack) F. Kennedy
I myself was born November 22, the same day John F. Kennedy was shot and killed, albeit one year later.  I remember pretty much my whole life growing up sharing my birthday with one of the greatest presidents of our time who lost his life on the same day I was born!  Every year I had to share my birthday with the same headline news in the papers and on the TV...Kennedy, Kennedy, Kennedy.  I somehow have always believed that my STRONG Democrat self was due to my being mesmerized by the Kennedy's, their lives, their stories, their views, their stance on just about every issue that I found myself believing in.  I've always liked to say I am the reincarnated JFK; as he was leaving the world, I was gaining his spirit.  I'm a MAJOR liberal, what can I say....Don't judge me, I won't judge you.  I do have some conservatism in me, probably more than you know!  And I get it from my daddy!  As liberal a man he was, and a Democrat, he too was very conservative.  Plus, we actually kinda liked Reagan.....shhhhhh!

So as I said, I somehow connect with CHRISTINA and her excitement into politics, especially when you were born into it some way, shape, or form.  May you R.I.P. CHRSTINA with ALL the other great ones who have passed before you.  Say hi to Jack and John John for me....

During our period of mourning in Arizona, and in trying to sort out why this would happen, it brought our great President of the United States and the First Lady to mourn with us.  Also, The McCain's, Retired Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, Secretary Janet Napolitano, and House Minority leader Nancy Pelosi, Arizona Governer Jan Brewer, and so many more.  I cried during the entire ceremony.  It was such a tribute to all who were victimized, and to recognize the amazing heroic acts of kindness from those who knew one another, to those who were complete strangers, the Tucson Police Department, the EMS team, the trauma unit at UMC, the life saving physicians who acted so quickly to save those who were desperately clinging to life.
Intern Daniel Hernandez, a TRUE HERO!
President Obama sharing a hug with Mark Kelly, Gabby's husband!
The President stated, "I want our democracy to be as good as she (Christina) imagined it.  All of us-we should do everything we can to make sure this country lives up to our children's expectations."

I have since learned this afternoon that CHRISTINA had her organs donated and a lucky little girl in Boston has underwent a life saving transplant this morning, and so....SHE lives on forever!  Bless you to the Green's for their selfless act of kindness.  They are already beginning the healing process.... 


Monday, January 10, 2011

355 DAYS TO GO....

I've never been a big fan of the "New Years Resolution" thing.  Probably because, for me anyway, I NEVER lived up to one that I made.  Oh sure, I have good intentions when I say it.....but then, LIFE HAPPENS!

The truth is nobody knows what the New Year will bring for any of us, so all we can do is take it day by day and hope that we are healthy, a little wiser, a little stronger, and certainly have good fortune.  Not just in MY household, but in EVERY household. 

Of course, if you read my last blog, our December 2010 wasn't exactly the best ending to our year!  Bug was hospitalized and diagnosed with diabetes; we had $3000 dollars worth of jewelry stolen from us; Bug was off from work for a whole month; and, I've been swamped with full-time work, full-time mommy'in, and part-time lawyer'in (on a side note, I've come to realize I just may have "attorney at law" after my name before it's all said and done...LOL)! 

So, I guess with all my crazy "I Love Lucy" life, probably the most suffering and abuse in December has been to my poor house....well, so I was told.  As my BFF so politely pointed out to me last weekend when she was here, I believe she said something to the effect of, I've never not seen your house "tidy."  SAY WHAT?  Why would she say such a horrible thing to me?  Ohhhhh, maybe it was the 15 loads of laundry I had, the dishes from that morning still were in the sink, baby toys everywhere, walkers, teddy bears, pacifiers, a pee-pee diaper that only made it "half way" to the trash, a little dust on the coffee table?  After looking around, I realized, she was right!!!

Now lets not go there about why isn't Bug doing these things why he is off from work.  SERIOUSLY, lets not go there!  His job description in his mind is to watch the baby, feed the baby, watch TV with the baby, take a nap with the baby, and go outside and play with the baby.  Y'ALL GET IT?


It had been awhile since I saw vaccuum marks!
This weekend, I took the time out to "tidy" my house once again, get the laundry done, all that good stuff, only to realize that when you have a 15-month-old, IT'S JUST NOT GONNA HAPPEN!  This 15-month-old has won, I cannot compete with her! 

All the rooms in the house are starting to look like this!

So, it got me to thinking that we have so much stuff that she has absolutely outgrown like toys, clothes, shoes, etc., I decided to put some things on CraigsList.  In the first day, the first person wanted her baby Jordans.  Naturally that would be the first thing to go, something that didn't take up so much room to begin with.  I had two cases of newborn diapers, that was the second thing to go.  Again, come on peoples buy the BIG STUFF like her swing, and bouncy chair, her gym-boree, walkers, high chair (she got a new one), Exersaucers.  Instead, they call about shoes and diapers.  Man, I got good stuff here!!  Worse comes to worse, we will just have a garage sale I guess, but in the meantime we will see what happens on CraigsList.  Here's a few of my listings:

https://post.craigslist.org/manage/2121106547/?button_edit=edit
https://post.craigslist.org/manage/2137996256/?button_edit=edit
https://post.craigslist.org/manage/2121126203/?button_edit=edit

Doing all this reminded me of just how big Destini is getting.  I just cannot believe it when I look at her sometimes.  After she turned 1, it seems like she went through a real growing spurt!  With that being said, she has finally, finally taken her first steps and is on the road to walking.  She can be a little lazy when she wants to, but every day she is getting better and better and is walking farther and farther by herself. 


video

HER'S A BIG GIRL NOW...



Now that she's on the move, the old "putting her toys in front of her door to keep her from crawling out" is officially OVER!  She's on to that and can climb all over everything!


Can you say baby gait?
HA HA, who's in the pokey now?
WOW, let's talk about Mr. Camel's weight loss!  I really did see how big we were both getting and I guess the diabetes should have been a huge wake up call for both us.  His weight loss, however, has been phenomenal.  And this really is him just eating more grilled foods, more fruit and salads, NO soda at all, very little starches (not completely though), and very little sugars.  And, walking!  I am really proud of him that he has taken this seriously and it means something to him to make a change.  Any of us who have struggled with weight loss knows it really is one of the hardest things to do is to lose the weight. 

I have a before and after snapshot for you just so you can see how much he has lost:

BEFORE!
AFTER!!


Grilled hake with steamed veggies...he loves it!

Bug's not big on "raw" fruit as much as he is canned fruit, which is not the best choice for a diabetic.  I, however, did a little shopping around and found some awesome fruit.  I just make him pour out the syrup.  It's organic, so much healthier too.  But listen, I could sit here and go on and on about this fruit, but you really need to go get you some of these, especially the peaches and strawberries.  THIS FRUIT MELTS IN YOUR MOUTH!




I FOUND THESE BEAUTIES AT SMART AND FINAL!

He had a followup doctor appt this last Friday.  After some blood work comes back, it is possible that he might get to be taken off the insulin and on to a pill.  I so hope for him that this will be the case!  He's really working hard!  And now that he is back to work and on the road all day, I hope those tempting fast food restaurants wont be calling his name...DON'T SUCCUMB HONEY!

Well after waiting over a month, IT finally arrived!  Through my Christmas present was late, it was worth the wait.  I am so happy with it and pretty to look at too!


Pay no attention to the mess on my coffee table...

Great heat output...and just darn pretty to look at!

Well, I guess I can say that so far 2011 is going along A-OK.  Of course it's only January 10, which means we have 355 days left to go this year.  Here's to a great 355 days....

Sunday, January 2, 2011

CAMEL "KABOOM" NEW YEARS EVE 2010


TO ALL MY FELLOW BLOGGERS, TWEETERS, FACEBOOKERS, FAMILY, OLD FRIENDS AND NEW FRIENDS....

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!



Though we were celebrating the coming of the New Year, we were also celebrating our friends, Maeloni and Marcus, son, Marreon, 1st birthday!  This was a bittersweet for us all, however. 

Marreon died of SIDS at 6 weeks old.  Though he was only here a short time, he was loved ♥ and we wanted to remember him on what would have been his 1st birthday on New Years Eve:


Cold Stone Creamery....YUMMO!
Marreon Vanderbilt

Mommy and Daddy blowing out Marreon's candle...awww


R.I.P BABY MARREON....


We catered food from Pullano's, it was delicious...AS ALWAYS:




Yessss, I snuck the first piece...hee hee hee!

After stuffing our faces until we were sick, we went on to play a board game called Battle of the Sexes.  Men versus women.  My BFF, Yolanda, was here as well, along with my nephew, Semaj.  So, we had 3 women folk, 3 men folk...SHOW DOWN!

I'll just say this...MEN ARE SORE LOSERS!



Kaboom
After the game was over, the men busted out with the "Kaboom" for midnight while the BFF was in the kitchen whipping out the blender and making strawberry margaritas... CAN YOU SAY DEEEELISH? Whip cream on top too!
Soooooo goooood


Well suffice to say, I am not a "drinker" of sorts.  This is me after one margarita.  Yep, they did me dirty by sticking fireworks up my nose...ha ha, jokes on me!

Marcus, however, is still partyin the night away:



My newphew had to settle for sparkling cider only :(  But he was happy with it just the same :)


Sparkling cider for Buggie too :(


12:00 MIDNIGHT 1/1/11
"KABOOM"





HERE'S TO A HAPPY, HEALTHY, AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR TO ALL!