Helping Hands

It’s been an ‘all hands on deck‘ kind of week. School is in full swing, dance lessons are back, and as they say in this Yiddish Proverb:

If you ever need a helping hand, you’ll find one at the end of your arm.  Aoyb ir alts darfn a helping hant ir vet gefinen eyner in di suf fun deyn orem.

Take a look at my kinder (Sweet kids) and their hantalehs (hands) at work play!

They were so fascinated by the typewriters! They didn’t want to leave! Azoi!

Shana Tovah to all who celebrate! May it be a sweet and happy new year ahead for us all.

    

      

Forget your tsuris (troubles), c’mon get happy…

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While I don’t think I’ll be shouting ‘hallelujah’ anytime soon, it’s time. I need to stop brooding over the literal dreadful future state of the union and turn my frown upside down. After all, I’m a kveller (one who bursts with pride and positivity) not a kvetch (complainer). Remember my glass half full look at life? Well, I’m trying hard to conjure that back up since the events of November 8. So here goes… My top five, Nu? I’m lucky to find three things to get my ‘happy’ on, ASAP:

  1. Smile. It’s contagious. Smile at a stranger, a coworker, a spouse, a kid, and mostly, they will smile back at you. It’s like a yawn, without the tired, hazy, breathy feeling. It’s a necessary contagion to release into our world right about now. For those who don’t smile back, well, they must be having a really bad time. Perhaps they are constipated (okay, we are adults here you know – constipation can be quite unsettling and cause severe cantankerousness). A smile may help the stuffed-stranger release endorphins to help them, well, ‘go,’ if you know what I mean. At the very least, we will have one smiling person, and one on the run… Before you know it, prior puffy person will be a bit lighter on their feet, grimace-be-gone, and they can head into the world spreading more smiles. See how this theory works? Smile begets smile. It’s quite lovely and much more sustainable than tsuris (troubles).

Tsuris tsezegen di harts. Trouble cuts up the heart. Dem bitersten mazel ken men farshtellen mil a shmaichel. The bitterest misfortune can be covered up with a smile. 

  1. Enjoy the moment. I don’t know about you, but I need more bad news like I need a luch in kop (hole in the head). Perhaps I need to turn off those CNN alerts on my phone and stop worrying about every scenario from this meshuggeneh (crazed) new administration. Relish my time with the Mrs., my Little and Big. With Gatsby, the most present of us all! At work. At play. With friends. Worry eats the present, delays the future and causes some scowl on my punim (face). Nothing says you are an adult more than a scowling punim! And, to extrapolate further, a scowling punim makes those horrid lines appear around my mouth and in between my eyebrows. I need to look more like an alta kocker (for real, this means an ‘old shit’) and get more gray hairs over this? Fuck that! I think not.

Zok nit kin vey. Don’t worry about it. Mit mazel ken men alles. With goodness, everything is possible.

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  1. Laugh more. Open your eyes and find the funny. I know, these times, they are not the best. But they are the times we now must knowAnd somehow, I hope we can realize and learn how similar we all really are. Let laughter be our joiner. The thing that unites us. That allows us to coexist, and then grow. Nothing sounds better to me then my kinder (kids) chock-full of chuckles and merriment. My weekly coffee klatsch (you know who you are) having a knee-slapping good time. My shvester (sister) and I chortling so hard, yes, we may pee a little! The sweet sound of the Mrs. in a hearty guffaw… (Maybe, that last one is just for me). But you get my drift. Euphoria is there. Make people laugh, laugh more with people. It may not change the world, but it sure will make this world more enjoyable.

A gelechter hert men veiter vi a gevain. Laughter is heard further than weeping. L’Chaim! To life!

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The first Tuesday after the first Monday…

Vote on Tuesday, everyone, please!
Vote on Tuesday, everyone, please!

Du zalst nisht bu, Shtimen! Don’t boo, Vote!

I share the sentiment of the quote above, by President Barack Hussein Obama. I can only hope that everyone of voting age here in the US, living abroad, or via absentee ballot, exercises their civic duty and votes on Tuesday, November 8th, if not before. We have a democracy, so dammit, go out and vote!

There are many more of you than I’d like to admit, that I staunchly disagree with in your choice of nominees. That gives me great shpilkis (stomach upset, jittery) as we approach the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, election day.

What I do know is that I am sick and tired of hearing about the lies of crooked Hillary. I am sick of the Donald getting a free ride in the media, even after the famed, “I grab them by the pussy” tapes and the uprising of victims saying, “uh, Yeah! He does!”

I am so exhausted by the Wikileaks emails from famed ‘nasty woman’ Hillary? Have you read any of them? I hope you are sitting down, because this stuff is hard to take in:

  • She was eager desperate to help a 10-year old girl from Yemen who managed to get a divorce (she was fucking 10 years old) have a better life, get to the US, attend school and seek counseling
  • She was finding ways to help dying patients get faster medical care, food and water in Haiti after the terrible earthquakes
  • She wanted to put a stop to child trafficking in Haiti
  • She worried about the closing of a home for abused boys in Illinois
  • She planned her daughter’s wedding

She was checked, examined, poked, prodded and cleared — unable to indict of any wrong doing. FBI case closed.

Now because of yet another misogynistic texting perv, Anthony Weiner (duly named), she comes under fire and examination yet again, causing a spiraling fall in the polls. The emails in question belong to close Clinton staffer of decades, Huma Abedin, and her estranged, very strange hubby. Emails were found on the laptop and iPad of Weiner. I sure hope they washed their hands after picking up those bits of technology! This new FBI action comes with no evidence of any wrongdoing by Hillary, or even a single connection. Comey, the FBI double-naught spy in question said, “They appear to be pertinent.” He said this without ANY examination at all of said emails. With four days until the election, it still remains unclear if these alleged emails found have anything to do with Hillary and if there is enough antibacterial soap to help those who handled them.

Yesterday, Melania Trump stumped in mainline Berwyn, PA. Wearing a very tight, pink blouse, she spoke eloquently to a room filled with Trump supporters, mostly men clad in red Trump hats. She spoke out against bullying. For real! She did. Bullying. Alanis, please add this to your song about irony. This epitomizes irony! Her hubby, the Donald, is the most infamous bully of our time.

Perhaps Melania doesn’t know her hubby very well. Perhaps he has moved on to a younger, more cleavaged immigrant and this has caused her to forget his xenophobic, misogynistic, racist, anti-disabled, anti-LGBT, anti-Muslim, anti-Black, anti-Latino, anti-Mexican, pro-violence, and lying, cheating flip-flopping ways.

And while the world is immersed in the email scandals, lest we forget Trump’s:

  • Fraud scandal at Trump University
  • Declaration of bankruptcy 6 times
  • Rape case of a minor pending in federal court
  • 75 open pending lawsuits against him and his businesses
  • Trump Foundation activity
  • Inability to show us his tax returns
  • Ties to the Kremlin

Those of you dumb enough wasting your vote on the Green Party, did you know they just endorsed Trump? So even before, when we told you a vote for Green was a vote for Trump, now there is direct proof.

Which brings us to Tuesday, one of the single most volatile days for our country. A day that will truly go down in infamy. A day I fear. If you care about women, equal rights, healthcare, marriage equality, global warming, black lives matter, religious freedoms, the Supreme Court, any of the freedoms we have won over the last 8 years, and the generations to follow in our footsteps, please choose Hillary. Even if you don’t like her.

Please don’t fall for that reality show dolt who basically, day in and day out: Du kanst nicht oif meinem fus pishen und mir sagen klass es regen ist. He pees on your foot and tells you it’s raining.

What’s worse? Too many of you believe him.

Big, Little and the Mrs. Photo credit: @willowandsage1 on IG (my Mrs.)
Please help me protect my mishpocheh (family) Big, Little and the Mrs.   Photo credit: @willowandsage1 on IG (my Mrs.)

And my last plea before I enter the polls on Tuesday is this: If you care about my family, The Mrs., me, Little and Big, please vote for Hillary. I am one proud, nasty woman who applauds the pant suit crowd and will happily pull the lever for our first ever, incredibly qualified, woman president. 

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The simple truth about my guilt packing a pistol

Anyone who knows me knows that I despise guns. I believe the right to bare arms has been totally misconstrued from a constitutional amendment that stands for a well-armed militia, hundreds of years ago, vs. ‘I’m scared of you and your pack of skittles,’ or, ‘your tail light is out; get me your license and registration.’ ‘Nuf said. You can read many of my other posts pontificating on the excessive violence, racism and hate in our world.

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I feel quite the hypocrite. I have a puppy. His name is Gatsby. Yes, after the Great Gatsby. He is the first real dog we have had. He chews on the wood trim and doors. He buries and hides his bones throughout the apartment. He digs holes outside in the common areas. He climbs the sofa and leaps to the kitchen counter (really) to eat the scraps of a peanut butter sandwiches left over from Big. He puppy-nips at Little for, well, being Little. He scavenges for food as we walk around the neighborhood.

Enter this pistol packing, gun-toting, and charlatan of a Yiddisher Momma. To clarify, the arms I carry is a water pistol / squirt gun. It is used purely for correctional puppy purposes. It shoots sprays a stream of water from afar, alerting my dear, loveable mutt that he is acting less than the stellar boychik (little boy) we need him to become.

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A happy puppy is a well-exercised puppy. This also fits in with the lifestyle of this Yiddisher Momma. As we gad about the ‘hood, Gatsby is an incessant barker when he spies another pup. He is fantastically friendly, yet simply desperate to meet a new buddy. The yapping, more like a geshrei (quite loud and piercing), ceases the moment he is nose to nose with a new canine comrade. Where their noses go after, they should live and be well. But until that point, vey iz mer (OMG!)…

I hadn’t yet mentioned that he is a rescue. Here, the term is dual in nature. We rescued him because he was in need of a loving family and a home, and he rescued us, as our family was in dire need of an affectionate and playful pooch. We all make a nice family.

The boychik (little boy) of the family!

As a rescue, he rummages for food, no matter how many times we fill his bowl with healthy, raw, canine cuisine. If left to his own devices, he will eat pure dreck (trash, poo, bugs, vomit, grass, and dead things), along with anything else in reach. Just last week, I pulled from his mouth, a small dead bird, 4 chicken (oh my, I hope so at least) bones, many wood chips, and did I mention the deceased fowl?

After much reading, and searching our memories of pugs past (Atticus and Elijah), we remembered the squirt tactic. I searched high and low for an affordable ‘squirter’ that did not resemble a G-U-N. Fifteen years ago we had an alligator and a snail, or a flower… that delivered the same watery lesson. But the lifeless, leathery bird was too much mishegas (craziness) for me to bear. This frugalista had to do something fast and furious. I entered the Family Dollar, and found 3 shiny, colorful water guns: red, green and yellow. They were small enough to carry, big enough to do the job. All for one dollar.

We can now walk for an hour or more, and have maybe, 2 squirts, mostly related to over-barking. We can walk right past that mummified mouse, covered in ants. Newfound wisdom allows him to dodge the remains from the Colonel’s chicken bucket. It’s a remarkable transformation for which we are all kvelling (bursting with joy)!

But I am still packing. So if any of you are aware of some affordable arms that hold no resemblance to those ghastly items I loathe, do tell! Gatsby and me, we are a work in progress.

 

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Repetition is the Mother of Mastery; And sometimes it’s not

Yoga guru Baron Baptiste always says (at least when I did his DVD over and over again, that  “Repetition is the Mother of Mastery.”

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“Repetition is the Mother of Mastery.”

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“Repetition is the Mother of Mastery.”

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“Repetition is the Mother of Mastery.”

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“Repetition is the Mother of Mastery.”

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“Repetition is the Mother of Mastery.”

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“Repetition is the Mother of Mastery.”

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“Repetition is the Mother of Mastery.”

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“Repetition is the Mother of Mastery.”

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“Repetition is the Mother of Mastery.”

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“Repetition is the Mother of Mastery.”

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And sometimes it’s just not.

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And sometimes it’s just not.

And sometimes it’s just not. We have to change it up. We have to stop it.

We just have to stop this horrible behavior.

 

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Why is there so much hate in the world?

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My heart, it hurts, a lot.

Help me; I feel a bit discouraged today. I’m not my usual sunny self.

My kinder, Little and Big, are growing up in a culture that is so riddled in hate. And it is growing overwhelmingly, and at warp speeds.

Me, I’m out looking for the fairies tossing pixie dust, playing harps (really cool ones), planting trees and lighting the path to eternal sunshine, love, peace and happiness? Others, they put on vests voluntarily and enter crowded airports and tourist hot spots, or purchase firearms and forever change what safety means.

Such brokkh (disaster and misfortune) I refuse to get used to!

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Hate, the worst of the four letter words, is learned and it spreads like a contagion.

I have a friend whose family came here to visit, leaving from the very same Turkish Airport that the terrorists blew up, less than 24 hours later. Someone was shot in our parking lot just a few weeks back, and just minutes before, he killed another human being.

I’m sorry, but moments of silence and prayer are bullshit not cutting it for me. I do not mean to offend those who believe, but there cannot be a God whose plan is that we strategically pick each other off the planet to see who wins; most often, one by one — and too often, en masse. Poo, poo, may they all rest in peace…

Why the hell can’t we find a way to all live in peace? Is that so farshlugineh (crazy, irrational, mixed up)?

Did we just throw away our moral compass?

How did the bar get so low?

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This post is filled with questions that I do not have the answers to. What I do know is that:

  • I’m all for gun control, background checks and mental health checks
  • I don’t think my neighbor, or yours for that matter, should have the right to bear arms. I have shpilkes (panic) when I consider that he or she may – what if my shana madelahs (sweet little darling girls) are there for a play date?
  • Color me crazy, but mental health is and should be valued as highly as physical health, whether you want a gun or not
  • I think we all should feel safe going to school, the movies, a dance club, the airport, at work and anywhere else the fuck we want to go
  • I think everyone should be able to pee without showing a birth certificate
  • I want to love out loud, fearlessly

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Do we have the chutzpah (balls, yes balls) to make change out of this unconscionable tsuris (troubled, mayhem) of a world?

Won’t you help me? Please? My kishkas (intestines) are in knots at the thought of us not joining together with empathy in our hearts. Don’t we all deserve so much better than this? For the kinder (children), we make it better?

Alevai (It should only happen)!

Das hartz hat mir gezoght (My heart told me) it would.

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The Good, the bad and the ugly truth: My Smile is Back

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photo by @willowandsage1.  Follow on instagram

Shhhh. I’m kvetching (ranting). It’s Friday.

Good News: My effervescent (not in a gassy way), cheerful, and sunny disposition has been fully restored to my punim (face) as I recently regained the use of my right trigeminal nerve. Yes, I’m a regular Mary Poppins-berg! In short, I’m able to smile, beam, and grin again like the Cheshire cat.

Bad News: Since March, my punim (face) has been fahrkrimpteh (twisted, scowling). My ability to fully smile, while usually a wonderful and somewhat contagious activity, means that the Botox treatment used to treat the nerve pain I experience from occipital neuralgia and cervical dystonia has completely worn off, shy of the 90 day term. Stop what you’re thinking. It’s not ‘that kind of Botox treatment.’ While I have the shoulders, back of my neck and scalp of a 21-year-old female, this punim (face) wears the aged mask of an alta kocker (old fart) from years of living in chronic pain.

The Ugly Truth: Chronic, persistent, prolonged pain sucks ducks. The walking wounded, we amble among you. We are everywhere. We may look just fine, and we are faking feeling great. Botox, actual botulism in a bottle, when administered by the proper neurologist, beautifully battles the suffering. When combined with bionics and meds, I’m the closest to normal I’ve been in decades. A bei gezunt (We should all live and be well)!

Good News: I am 13 12 days until my next treatment. That’s nothing! My cranium will regain its youthful glow as the surrounding nerves freeze and ease, like Elsa in Arendelle. I don’t mind needles or shots. I’m gonna “Let it go.”

Bad News: I am 13 12 days until my next treatment. Depending on how things go with the turbulent barometric pressure, stress, physical activity, posture, and luck of the draw, we’ll see how I feel day to day. How much can I fake it, and how I can avoid impending flares?

The Ugly Truth: This last round was wonderful! I had one or two days at a time when I totally turned off the bionics (occipital stimulator). On the classic pain scale where I (new-normally) live a persistent 6-7, I saw days in this past couple of months where I was a 2. Nu? Me and the Mrs., we were afraid to talk about it…I am amazed that some gantseh macher (big shot, genius) had the gumption to inject this enchanted neurotoxin to freeze nerve endings and reduce wrinkles. Who am I to judge that this mastermind’s first intention was to use his goldeneh hendts (golden hands) to fulfill the vanity needs of aging starlets? En route, there was a common oddity found among those firmer in the face. These maturing movie stars also saw benefits of less head and neck pain? Ah-hah moment!

Good News: Armed with the trifecta of Botox, meds and my stim, I get more days on my calendar than, well ever before. I have more time with the Mrs., Little and Big, more days for work, more days for play. Priceless.

Bad News: In terms of costs, Priceless, not so much. In fact, “OUCH!” This family will feel the pain in an already vulnerable wallet. There is no frugality in Pharma. They expect a lot of gelt (money). What price pain? This round, we will see how my new friends at Allergan pitch in to help.

The Ugly Truth: Soon, when I lose my smile, know how happy I really am. Pain, gay avek (go away) Neuro-paralysis, here I come.

 

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