Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!...

From my home to yours...

Wishing you blessings, safety and joy on this Christmas Day.  I hope you are spending it with loved ones.   My wish is that you may have some time today to meditate on why we have this holy-day.  God bless you, my dear readers.  Love, Val xox


Saturday, December 22, 2007

Facts on suicide; What you can do...

I got these facts on suicide from SPAN USA.  I hope you can take the time to read them and follow the link at the bottom to a site that lists things you can do to help.  This is a issue that is dear to my heart.  I have placed a free suicide hotline number in a red box in my sidebar if anyone needs it.  It will remain there.  Thanks, my friends.  I will be back soon to let everyone know what is up in my life.  Alot has happened.  Chelsea and her boys are on their way back to Florida.  They moved =(  AGAIN.  Stay warm, take care and be good to one another.  Hugs, Val xox


* More than 31,000 Americans die by suicide each year.
* There is 1 suicide every 16 minutes and 88 suicides per day.
* Suicide is the:
- 11th leading cause of death overall in America;
- 3rd leading cause of death for young Americans between the
of 10-24; and
- 2nd leading cause of death for American college-aged students.

* For every US suicide death there are 8 to 26 attempts.
* There are an estimated 1.4 million attempts per year in the U.S.
* For every suicide death there are an estimated six new

Suicide is an often ignored and stigmatized topic

* Suicide deaths consistently outnumber homicide deaths by a margin
three to two.       
* There are more suicides globally than deaths from war and violence

* Approximately twice as many Americansdie by suicides than from  

Suicides can be prevented

* More than 90 percent of people who die by suicide have depression
   or another diagnosable mental or substance abuse disorder.
* In a national poll, 78 percent of Americans think that many
   suicides are preventable
with appropriate research, interventions
   and services.
* And 86% of Americans surveyed think it is important to invest in
  the prevention of suicide.

Risk and protective factors can vary according to age, gender, ethnic group, or occupation, and can vary over time. Some examples, are:

* 20% of all suicide deaths occur among veterans.
* More women attempt suicide, more men die by suicide.
* 80% of completed suicides are men.
* Elderly comprise 12.6% of the population yet account for 16% of

* Older white men have the highest suicide rate of all age groups.
* According to several nationally representative studies, in any given
   year, about
5% to 7% of adults have a serious mental illness. A
similar percentage of children (about 5% to 9%) have a serious
   emotional disturbance.
* These figures mean that millions of adults and children are disabled
   by mental illnesses every year
* In addition to the tragedy of lost lives, mental illnesses come with a
   devastatingly high financial cost.  In the U.S., the annual economic,
   indirect cost of mental illnesses is estimated to be
$79 billion
   ($63 billion in lost productivity, $12 billion in mortality costs, and
   $4 billion in productivity losses for incarcerated individuals and
   for the time of those who provide family care).

What you can do

Sunday, December 16, 2007

This is for Jessica...

I got a call from a really good friend about three weeks ago telling me that her 18 year-old daughter, Jessica, who was in college, had killed herself.  I was dumbstruck.  She was so, so young!  I felt so ill when I heard this.  So sick to my stomach.  I didn't know what to say to her.  All I could do was "be there for her" and allow her to talk about it.  We have been friends for about six years.  Then a neighbor in town here killed himself about a week ago.   I have been walking around in a sort of "fog".    I am no stranger to suicides.  I have had several friends/acquaintances who have killed themselves over the past 20 years.  I am in the mental health system (I am bipolar and have OCD) and have met quite a few people who have been depressed.  I have talked people out of suicide before.  Suicide doesn't have to happen.  I have been suicidal myself.  It is the worst felling you can ever feel.  It is a "soul pain".  When someone is feeling this way, it is hard to convince them that they will ever feel any other way but what they are feeling.  I belong to The National Suicide Prevention Network.  I got an email from them this morning.  I was reading and found out that the highest rate of suicide is actually among the elderly.  If you want to do something this holiday season, visit this website, plug in your zip code and sign some petitions, make some phone calls and get educated!!  Also, if you are feeling suicidal yourself, I have a free, national suicide hotline number in the links in my sidebar.  It will always be listed there.  They are there to help you.  Please give them a call.  You can email me as well.  I care.


Monday, November 26, 2007

Prayers please!...

If you haven't heard yet, John is in the hospital.  He is neutropenic.  This means he has very, very little immune system to fight off whatever infection it is that he has.  He is in a critical situation.  He needs your prayers right now, if you are the praying type.  If you can, please lend Krissy and John some support over at The Gazette, too.  I will be keeping you updated when Krissy can not.  Right now he is still at the local hospital.  He is still having fevers.  They are considering transferring him to Hershey where he will get more specialized care, but that is still up in the air.  Thanks so much for all of your prayers and support, everyone!  I will update you again when I am able.

Where have I been?  Tired, so very tired and fatigued.  My fibromyalgia is kicking me in the rear.  I am hoping to feel better very soon.  I am sorry I have been very quiet lately, but my fatigue is so very draining.   I have also been trying to enjoy my grandsons and daughter before they moved.  They DID move.  It was sad.  They are doing fine, though.  They are only 20 minutes away.  It feels weird not having them across the street, though.  I was used to seeing the little ones whenever I wanted to.  ~sigh~

I will be back tomorrow with a Hunt subject.  You all still have until then to give me any Thanksgiving photos for last week's Hunt.  Now, I will leave you with a new pictures of my grandbabies.  Take care all of my friends!!  Hugs! xox



                  awwwww... Josiah loves his brother!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Thanksgiving Scavenger Hunt!...


Photo Scavenger Hunt #122 will be due on
Sunday, November 25,
at 11:00 PM EST.
Our subject this week is:
  "Thanksgiving, thankfulness"

I am so sorry I disappeared for a couple of weeks.  I haven't been feeling very well at all.  I have been very fatigued, too.  I needed a break.  I wanted to make sure I got in the Thanksgiving Scavenger Hunt, though!  For those of you who won't be celebrating the holiday, how about taking a shot or two of something you are thankful for? 
PLEASE post your submissions by copying your FULL entry URL and pasting it into the comments section belowIf you have any questions about how to do this (or how to upload or post photos) do not hesitate to send me an email at valphish@aol.com.  Have a blessed holiday and stay safe and warm!!  Oh, I am watching snow fall and am so excited!  I love the holiday season!  Tee Hee.  God bless! xox

Monday, November 5, 2007

Halloween Photo Hunt participants...

Photo Scavenger Hunt #121 participants

"Halloween or orange"

The submissions this week are beautiful and fun!  Please stop by and visit and leave a comment if you are able.  I want to thank the following journals for participating in this week's Photo Hunt:

Dare To Think
I'm A Survivor
Starting life over at 40
My Critters
Footprints in the Sand
Ye Olde English Posy
Faith In Roman Catholicism

Thanks, you guys!  I will return shortly with next week's subject.  If anyone has a subject that they want me to use, please feel free to put it in the comments section or send me an email.  Hope everyone is having a nice start to their week!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween! Interesting facts!...


Happy Halloween everyone!  I have never been much of a Halloween person.  I'm not sure why.  I was when I was a kid, but as an adult, I can't recall dressing up once for Halloween.  I guess I'm just not into it.  I live in an apartment and no kids ever come here, so I just turn out the lights on Halloween and watch TV.  I don't think I have gotten a single trick-or-treater in three years.  I don't expect tonight to be any different.  I always buy candy, though, just in case that one or two kid come, if by magic, every year.  This year is no different.  I will eat the candy all by myself.  LOL

I found these fun facts on pumpkins that you may not know.  I do not know the author or I would give credit.

      Pumpkins are fruits.  A pumpkin is a type of squash and is a 
        member of the gourd family (Cucurbitacae), which also includes
        squash, cucumbers, gherkins, and melons.

       The largest pumpkin ever grown was 1,689 pounds. It was
        grown by Joe Jutras of North Scituate, Rhode Island and
        weighed at the Topsfield Fair GPC weigh-off in Topsfield, MA
        on September 29, 2007.

      The top pumpkin production states are Illinois, Ohio,
        Pennsylvania, and California.

       In early colonial times, pumpkins were used as an
       ingredient for the crust of pies, not the filling.

       Native Americans called pumpkins "isqoutm squash."

       Using pumpkins as lanterns at Halloween is based on
        an ancient Celtic custom brought to America by Irish
        immigrants.  All Hallow's Eve on October 31st marked the end
        of the old Celtic calendar year.  On that night, hollowed-out
        turnips, beets, and rutabagas with a candle inside were placed on
        windowsills and porches to welcome home spirits of deceased
        ancestors and ward off evil spirits and a restless soul called
        "Stingy Jack".

Pumpkins originated in Central America and were a popular crop among Native Americans. Some tribes used the seeds for food and medicine and made sleeping mats out of dried pumpkin strips.  Besides making pies, American colonists cut off pumpkin tops and made handy edible bowls, filling them with milk, honey and spices and cooking them over a fire or hot ashes.   Pumpkins are 90-percent water and contain high concentrations of potassium and vitamin A.


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Photo Hunt #121 subject!


Photo Scavenger Hunt #121 will be due on
Sunday, November 4,
at 11:00 PM EST.
Our subject this week is:
  "Halloween or orange"

Please note
this is an extended hunt.  I wanted to make sure that everyone could get their Halloween pictures in on time!  Also, I know everyone doesn't celebrate Halloween, so I am giving you the option of the color orange.  Is your costume scary or fun this year?  Show us!  What about your children's?  Are you going to have a Halloween party?  PLEASE post your submissions by copying your FULL entry URL and pasting it into the comments section below.  If you have any questions about how to do this (or how to upload or post photos) do not hesitate to send me an email at valphish@aol.com.  Have fun!! xox


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Monday, October 22, 2007

"autumn" Hunt submissions!...

Photo Scavenger Hunt #120 participants


The submissions this week are truly stunning!  Please stop by and visit and leave a comment if you can.  I wanted to thank the following journals for participating in this week's Photo Hunt:

Linda's World
Ye Olde English Posy
Footprints in the Sand
Sometimes I Think
My Hug's Journal
This and that, and hockey!
Photo Trek
(Greg) and here

I will return shortly with this week's Hunt subject!  Good Monday to you all! xox

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Photo Hunt #120 subject!...

Photo Scavenger Hunt #120 will be due on Sunday, October 21, at 11:00 PM EST.
Our subject this week is:

Please note that
this Hunt is shortened.  I am very sorry about this.  I have had a bad flu.  I also wanted to let you know at this time that I am not able to post the last Hunt entries because a few of you sent me your submissions by email.  While I was getting my computer fixed, I lost ALL of my saved emails.  PLEASE post your submissions by copying your FULL entry URL and pasting it into the comments section below.  If you have any questions about how to do this (or how to upload or post photos) do not hesitate to send me an email at valphish@aol.com.   Again, I apologize for not being able to post the last Hunt entries.  I hope you find this Hunt fun!!  I know I will!!  I absolutely LOVE the Fall and its glorious colors!!  Are you having a vibrant Fall?  Show all of us what your neck of the woods looks like right now!


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Sunday, October 14, 2007

what's up with me, pics of Jonah!...

Good Sunday, everyone!  I haven't written a proper entry in ages, wow!  A few days after Jonah was born, my computer started acting up.  It was slowing down dramatically.  I took it to a friend to get it fixed and didn't get it back for a week!  I am shocked at how many emails can pile up when you don't check your account in this amount of time!  Then ten days ago I came down with asthmatic bronchitis and sinusitis.  I was also trying to help Chelsea with her two little ones while Desi was out of town.  It has been crazy!!  I have just been spreading myself too thin.  I have been trying to figure out what to do about this.  I need a personal vacation!  I can't do this when there is still too much to take care of.  I have decided that I am going to try to give the next two weeks to myself, and only myself, except when absolutely necessary.  I wonder if I can do this.  LOL  I have a messy apartment that needs cleaned, a body that still needs to heal, and a lot to catch up on on my computer.  One step at a time, right?  Today I wanted to share some pictures of Jonah with you.  I just got these a couple of days ago from Chelsea.  He is doing quite well.  Friday he weighed 8 lbs.  He does have a little sniffle that is going around, but other than that, he is just fine.  He likes to eat and sleep and sleep and eat.  LOL  Here is the little guy...




On another note, I realize I haven't posted Photo Scavenger Hunt entries from the last Hunt nor have I given you all a new subject in a few weeks.  I will be posting the entries and a subject tonight or tomorrow morning.  Thanks so much for your patience!!  Hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend!  Hugs! xox


Friday, October 12, 2007

please welcome...

My brother-in-law, John (the one who had the bone marrow transplant), has started a new journal Too Stubborn To Die.  Please visit and give him a warm JLand welcome!  Thanks!

Sunday, October 7, 2007


In honor of Respect Life Sunday...

click here
click here
click here
click here

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007



I haven't been around for a few days because Chelsea has been in labor since Thursday.  She had a little boy last night.  Mom and baby are doing very well.  She had contractions and was dialating for four days, poor thing, but they wouldn't induce because she was just shy of 38 weeks until yesterday.  Jonah Alexander was born at 11:06 PM last night.  He is 7 lbs 1 /12 oz. and 20 inches long.  He is beautiful, but I am bias.  LOL  I will post pictures as soon as I receive them.

Monday, September 17, 2007

50 questions Part II...

25. Ever been in a fight? verbal ones.  Maybe some
    small physical ones with my sisters when I was a
    tot.  I am not a fighter.

26. Are you wearing nailpolish?
27. What time is it?
12:27 PM
28. Innie or Outie?
29. Ever used a Ouija board?
as a child (I think they
    are evil.)

30. Sweet or sour?
mostly sweet
31. Sun or Moon?
32. What shoes did you wear today?
  none yet, barefoot
33. Favorite eye color of the opposite sex?  dark brown
36. Time of day you were born?
4:05 PM
37. Do you know your blood type?
0 positive 
38. Do you know how to kill a zombie?
you climb up a
    tree and act like a zombie then you hit it over
    the head with an axe (or you can drink it down
    in one gulp.).

39. Do you smoke?
I'm on the patch
40. What would you spend 5,000 dollars on right now if
      you were handed it?
  Probably save $4,000 in the
    bank and go on a shopping spree with the other

41. Who is your favorite musical artist?
Josh Groban
42. Which animal(s) remind you of yourself?
43. What's your background on your pc?
my grandson,

44. Did you grow up in the city or country?
45. Would you ever consider going on a reality tv show
      if offered a large sum of money?
maybe, depends
    on which one.  Not if I had to perform a talent.

47. What's one thing you're really good at cooking?

nothing in particular.
48. Kisses or hugs?
49. You have 10 dollars to spend in the dollar store..what
     do you get?
see if there are any name brand
   shampoos or toothpastes,etc., that haven't
   expired. If there aren't any, I would just buy
   silly stuff.

50. Slurpee flavor?


Sunday, September 16, 2007

50 questions Part I, give it a try!...

Linda finished these 50 questions in her journal quite awhile back.  I am now finishing them myself.  I tried to put all 50 questions in one entry and I went over the maximum characters allowed.  So today I will post questions 1 - 24.  Part II coming soon!  Go ahead and give them a try!  They were fun!  Leave your entry URL in the comments section so I can see your answers, too.  Hope you enjoy!  I always love learning new things about everyone!  Hope you are enjoying your Sunday!  Hugs!!! xox

  1. Are you taller than your mom? about 5 inches
2. What color is your shower curtain? duckies =)
3. What is the closest thing to you right now that is red?
    a sweater
4. What is your ring tone?  just got a new phone,
    haven't set a ringtone yet

5. Does anything hurt on your body right now? What
    DOESN'T??.. mostly back and neck.

6. What color is your favorite pillow? a long white body
    pillow - depends on what pillowcase I put on it.

7. What is your favorite video game? Tetris
8. Had a nap today? not yet!
9. Gold or Silver? silver
10. Is there an animal that creeps you out? don't really
    like snakes much but I will touch them.  No animal
    animal really creeps me out much, though , not
    even spiders or bugs.

11. Who was the last person you rode an elevator with? I
    boyfriend, John.

12. Did you go ice skating as a kid? no - would love to
    learn as an adult, though.

13. Ever have stitches? from surgery, yes, from an
    injury, no.

14. Favorite non-alcoholic drink? orange juice and water
    mixed together.

15. How long ago did you hug someone? all night long
16. What's something you want to do before you die? get
    a house, maybe get married again.

17. Have you ever caught something on fire? only on

18. Have you ever seen a ghost? perhaps
19. Have you ever seen northern lights? no, would love

20. Do you know how to use chop sticks?  yes!
21. Name something good that happened today. I talked
    to my sissy, Krissy, on the telephone.  I haven't
    been able to spend enough time with her lately.
22. What room are you in? my computer room
23. Are you worried about something you can't control?
a little bit, but not really worried.
24. Do you take daily medications? Too many!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Journal Tournament V sign-ups...

Kellen, a freshman college student, runs a Journal Tournament and is taking sign-ups for his most recent TourneyThe game is explained hereI have played a few times and enjoyed myself immensely (and won once!)!  You will learn a lot of obscure facts as well as meet new journalers and have a blast!!  Are you a competitor?  If you have questions about the Tournament feel free to ask me in the comments section.  Run, run and sign up!  The deadline is tomorrow night!


Thursday, September 13, 2007

Photo Scavenger Hunt #119 subject!...


Photo Scavenger Hunt #119 will be due on
Sunday, September 23
, at 11:00 PM EST.
Our subject this week is:
  "a favorite food/foods"

Please note that
this is an extended Hunt.  I wanted to give you all some extra time because I am giving it to you later in the week.  I do hope you have some fun with this!!  I am very curious to see what is submitted!  If you know anyone who may want to play this game and does not know that it exists, send them a link!  Everyone has a favorite food and they just may want to play!  Please put your FULL entry URL in the comments section below.  If you have any questions about uploading or posting feel free to email me at valphish@aol.com.  Have fun!!