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A good friend of mine took his life one week ago today….

THERE are NO WORDS….

I have struggled and spent time in silence and then spent time talking nonstop to make SENSE of his choice….

It was HIS Choice………

He was facing challenges……lots on his plate…….

What is left behind now is hurt, confusion, questions and a great LOSS…..

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One of my very wise friends said it BEST….

You never know what is behind the smile…you never know what someone is going through…….

I know how it feels to be lost……..I have had some very sad moments in my life……

I challenged myself EVERYDAY to get up and once my feet hit the ground……..it was a NEW day

But it took GREAT STRENGTH and the love of my 3 sons to get me through it

 

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I will MISS his laughter, his kindness, his SPIRIT so MUCH

BUT for me the Key to his person was his LAUGH….it was a GREAT Laugh

It’s here in my heart…. Always and forever……

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We became friends in an emergency.

One of our patients was having a code blue and Jen and I were the assigned nurses.

WE bumped into each other, we tried our best and we bonded.

25 years ago, I met a work friend who became my life friend and who on most days, reads me better than I read myself.

She calls me on it, loves me when I don’t love myself and supports me everyday.

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Some days, I can be the margarita to her martini, but through thick and thin….

SHE is the first person I call when I need advice. 

Thank you JZ for 25 years of friendship.

YOU mean the world to me………

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I am SOOOO THANKFUL for all my friends…….

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Six years ago today a bright light in my life passed away.

She was my dearest friend, my coworker, my “go to “girl……….

She passed away suddenly and it hurt so deeply. I cried for weeks.

As I live my life today, I keep her spirit and her SMILE close to my heart.

As I care for critically ill children, I often say “What would Suzanne do?”

THANK you Suz for so many years of friendship, love and mostly SMILES to keep me GOING!!!!

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For most of my 25 year nursing career, I had a friend.

Not just ANY friend.

She was THAT friend.

We could look at each other across the room and KNOW what the other was thinking.

Every month for many years, we had to attend these LONG leadership meetings that went on and on and we never resolved anything……

“Lets talk about it next month was always the consensus”

We had this private joke.

When the meetings went on too long or our sarcasm got the BEST of us, we would motion like we were sticking a fork in our eye.

It was our way of saying REALLY?

The fork joke stayed with us for many years and we even gave each other random plastic forks as gag gifts to signify our connection……..

When I saw this quote I laughed and cried at the same time.

My fork friend passed away suddenly 5 years ago.

It was one of the saddest days in my adult life.

I was paralyzed and couldn’t function for many weeks.

I still have MANY days…….

Now as I go through my life , I run across plastic forks in the oddest places

and KNOW they are from her telling me to

carry on when I don’t want to and be strong when I want to give up.

She was THAT friend to me.

I want to take a moment and thank the many friends I have in my life right now.

One text, one phone call, one hey and YOU are there for me.

YOU mean the WORLD to me and I am so blessed.

THANK YOU for helping me get through the many FORKS in my ROAD of LIFE

YOU are ALL LOVED!!!!!

For the last few years my friends and I have decided what we wanted as Christmas gifts was TIME together instead of a material gift.

It has been the BEST decision. 

We have shared spa days, fantastic lunches, a day trip together and THIS year a makeup makeover.

I got to sit in the middle of a CROWDED Sephora the day after Christmas and try out some GREAT makeup….

Fell in LOVE with THIS…………

RUN don't walk to BUY THIS!!!!!

Seriously fell in love with the Hourglass line……….

THIS mineral veil makes your face feel like…….HEAVEN!!!!!!

You put it on before your foundation and it feels like soft, smooth AND fabulous all at once!!!

My BFF Kristin treated me to my favorites and together we did some MAJOR damage at Sephora!!!!

We also had some GREAT LAUGHS which didn’t help all the LAUGH lines I was trying to HIDE!!!

THANK YOU Kristin for seven years of a BEAUTIFUL BLESSED friendship.

I may have been your first nursing mentor , BUT YOU have taught me soooooo much more about LIFE and how to be a true friend!! xo

TIME with friends is so cherished in my sometimes hectic life.

I am truly blessed and I LOOK forward to another year of TIME together!!!

May 2012 be BRIGHT, HAPPY and bring YOU all the wishes in your HEART……..Cheers!

I may be LUCKY enough to spend time with these boys……if I can find ALL of them….

There is a saying well-known to mothers around the world.

It is

“I have THREE under 3”

It means that you have 3 children under the age of 3.

My coworker is pregnant with twins and has a 16 month old, so she will have “THREE under 2”

It got me thinking……..

I have “THREE under 18”

The boys are 4 years apart and BELIEVE me that age gap was MUCH needed.

I always joke at work that once one got into a stage…… the next one was coming out of that stage.

Terrible twos…….4 years apart…..YOU need that TIME to recover…...

Last week, the oldest was asked to play in an All-star basketball game,  

the middle one was elected Sports Commissioner at school

and the youngest one was in a championship baseball game and devastated by Buster’s injury.

We also had school projects to finish or

“wait till the last-minute to start “

as was the case with Mr. Andrew.

Luckily, the clerk at Beverly’s did not see my face when I was told  

in the middle of the store

that besides the one project we were there to get supplies for,

there was “well, a big end of the year Religion project that is also due TOMORROW”

Sooo buying a Snickers SOON.....

KINDNESS…I have been surrounded by it this week. So many nice people in my life…….Blessed

One of my favorite people is Janelle Troncone, the owner of Comfort Silkie.

I am working on a project to bring comfort to the mothers of the children in the PICU.

My goal is to have each of them receive a silkie pillow case and eye pillow to rest in our women’s sleeproom at night.

Janelle sent me a box of items to try out.

She EVEN included soft pillowcases for the “THREE under 18”

and a blankie and pillow case for me.

THANK YOU …Please check out her company at http://www.comfortsilkie.com and type in “shlo” for 10% off

Ahhhhhhhh…….

My thoughts today (and very often) are with one of my VERY BEST friends who would be 50 today!

Cards we shared fill my memory box and

today I send a heartfelt THANK YOU for her friendship

and will toast a special glass of wine ( her favorite) to Suzanne who passed away unexpectantly almost 5 years ago.

She is very much missed……

Here’s one of my FAVORITE cards from her…….

We KNEW how to LAUGH…….

OH, how she made ME LAUGH…….

The inside caption....FRIENDS are the BEST Therapy!!!!!

AMAZING Grace keeps me Grounded!!!

GRACE to go..It is an idea my nighttime coworker and buddy Winnie coined.

Since I live my life running from one place to another, she thought, I should always take some GRACE with me.

She bought me my own small vial and it lives in the cup holder of my car for THOSE days!!!

GRACE to go……what a concept and something I need. Thank you Winnie.

BTW Winnie rocks my night shift world because first of all, she knows a little bit oops,

a lot about EVERYTHING (think walking encyclopedia) and she has a habit of adding “alicious” to words randomly when things get crazy busy.

Example if a parent is especially stressed and starts lashing out they are “annoyalicious”………

If something in the unit just doesn’t work right it is “funkalicious”……..

TRY it ……….add “alicious” to any word, it makes you SMILE every time!! :0

Seriously..it is THAT time of year again. The mothers, I mean the Girl Scouts are OUT again!

We first saw the mothers, I mean girls, last week during our trip to Patxi’s Chicago Style pizza. The pizza takes 30 minutes to cook, so I spotted 2 mothers, I mean girls, across the street and decided to surprise the boys with a box (or two) of their favorite Samoas.

The girls had a table set up and a VERY limited selection.

They told me their goal was to sell 200 boxes.

I asked for 2 boxes of Samoas and 2 boxes of my favorite Dosidos. To their loss, they only had the new flavor and 1 box of Tagalongs.

The new flavor was Berry Much and the 10-year-old girl told me it goes well with coffee.

Why a 10-year-old is drinking coffee is another story, but I bought them to support their mothers.

When I got back to the restaurant, the boys were shocked to see such a sad Girl Scout showing.

I told them they were out of their favorites and Andrew said they will never sell 200 boxes of Berry Much, but it does look like a cookie that would go well with coffee.

What is it with kids and coffee these days???

Leave it to the adults. It will stunt your growth Mr. 6’5″

Mmmmmm…….”Coffeealicious”


Starring ASUNTA in the middle XOXOXOXOX

Every year my best friends and I gather to celebrate our friendship. We do this in light of an unexpected loss four years ago of a very close friend.

We talk about how not to take any day for granted, how blessed we are to have each other.

It is as special time together.

This year I asked my friends to make this time together a more frequent event. Not just once a year, but every couple of months, if not more often. I have a scheduled time with another of my BFF’s and we meet once a month regularly now. I ALWAYS look forward to our visit.

It is ALL about experiences and memories together for me this year. I love having time with my friends, just catching up and supporting each other AND LAUGHING……..oh, how we laugh 🙂

This year, my very special friend Asunta joined us for dinner. I have known Asunta for MANY years and she has 3 boys like me, so we are kindred sisters.

Four years ago when our close friend passed away, I spoke at her service. It was one of the hardest talks for me because my heart was so broken.

After my talk, Asunta came up to me and asked  if I would speak at HER service. It shocked me a bit, but I thought what a tribute to our friendship.

I don’t remember what I said at the service, but many people came up to me after and hugged me and said my words meant so much.

I know I talked about having 5 close friends who I cherish ALWAYS in my heart. I still have those 5 close friends and YES, Asunta you are in the circle of 5.

I admire you, I adore you, I am in AWE of all you do and I so VERY much appreciate YOU in my life

Your smile and kind heart mean so much to me and I would be honored to speak about how special you are in my life anytime, anyplace. LOVE YOU!!!!

Think  this year about sharing experiences and memories with friends instead of gift cards…….

TREASURE those who mean so much to YOU this Holiday Season.

I know I will…….

Helloooooo Jake....

Lazy Sunday started with a run (or walk in my case) for Run Wild for a Child in Golden Gate Park. The boys all stayed home, so it was a date for Mark & I. He finished 18th in his age category for the 10 K run. Yahoo!!

We had another date earlier this week as I dragged him to see Love and Other Drugs with my newest crush… Yes, CRUSH Jake Gyllenhaal. The movie was ok, but Jake oh Jake..his clothes, his lack of clothes, his eyes, his mere presence on the screen.
My friends at work asked how Anne Hathaway was in the movie and I said “Was she even in the movie? “I didn’t notice. I think I need to see the movie again by myself in the back row, so no one can see me drool.

I have a gorgeous husband, who is quite the runner, so this is only a fantasy, I like what I have at home thank you……… but ooooh Jake …….be still my heart.

In other randomness, I have been thinking this week about my very special friend Suzanne who passed away suddenly four years ago next week. If there ever was a cheerleader in my life, she was it!!

Suzanne was always there for me through thick and thin. I miss her every day and especially when work gets crazy, I need her smile and sense of humor.

She helped me through so much and I keep her memory close in my heart always.

This week, my 3 friends who helped me during the days after Suzanne’s sudden death will meet up for a drink to toast us……. to toast friendship …….to toast life!!!!

The day after Suzanne passed away, we all met for breakfast to cope. I remember like it was yesterday, my swollen eyes, my sadness and yet felt so loved by my friends Jen , Ann and Julie. I am so glad we will meet again this week!!

So blessed with good friends…..

THANK YOU Suzanne for being in my corner, for believing in me……. for all the gifts you brought to my life. LOVE YOU!!!!

She looks TOO good for NIGHT SHIFT!

22 years..I have known her for 22 years. I am speaking of my best friend Jen or JZ as we call her. She and I have worked together for 22 years. I made the decision 13 years ago to work straight nights for the boys, so I could be around after school. They LOVE that decision 🙂

Jen stayed on days…straight days..me straight nights..YET our friendship has stayed strong, if not stronger,

This last week when I was the only scheduled charge nurse on a night shift, Jen agreed to be with me, supporting me, just like she has for the past 22 years.

When I  started in the PICU, a wise nurse manager told me to pick someone to be my “person” ….

the one I turn to in times of crisis for support, love, advice.

JZ has been my “person” all this time and for that friendship, I am sooo grateful and blessed.

It has also saved me millions in counselor fees 🙂

I adore her, cherish her and know she will be there for me no matter what, as she has proven time and time again…..

LOVE you JZ, especially when you hang with me on nights…….

BTW, you DID look like Barbie night shift as my mascara was running….

YOU even had more energy than me by sunrise.

What is THAT all about? XOXOOOXOOX

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