Friday, February 25, 2011

Babies, Bridal Showers and Cakes

Babies have a knack for breathing fresh, new life into families.

The evening my dad died, it was strange. For some odd reason, all of our family members landed at his bedside -- at the same time. My mom, sis, brother, niece and nephew and myself. It could not have worked out better if we planned it.

We knew the end was very near, though I thought he had probably one more day. Denial works in mysterious ways.

In the midst of our sadness and silence, my niece blurts out that she has an announcement. We all looked at her and wondered what it could possibly be. "I'm going to have a baby. I'm 12 weeks pregnant," she said. Stunned, our jaws all dropped to the ground. I don't even think my mom heard what she said. My dad was no longer coherent, but I know he heard her. It was shortly after that time that he died. I think he knew that something happy was going to make things better for us all and it was ok for him to pass on.

Ironically, while mourning a loss of life, we had new life to look forward to -- and the baby is due somewhere around our dad's and nephew's birthdays. Wouldn't that be something. The anticipation of a May baby has helped to keep our mom going. A new great-grand baby. She keeps the ultrasound pics by her bedside and looks at them often.

We are planning a baby shower for my nice, and I'm in charge of getting a baby cake. Scary that they would give me that task. It should be interesting. I'm not very good with these things. With no kids of my own, I live vicariously through my friends and family members who do. While I'd love to try to bake something on my own, disaster could result. The last cake I made didn't rise more than a couple of inches. I am fairly certain a trip to the bakery will soon be on my to do list.

I am so looking forward to the breath of new life for our family.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Great Online Marketing Read

I'm an avid reader of both fiction and non-fiction books. When I read a good one, I like to let people know.

I recently read "The McGraw-Hill 36-Hour Course: Online Marketing" by Lorrie Thomas. I always love to check out info about technology and how I can help my clients utilize it effectively. Lorrie did a great job of communicating this on a level that works for the beginner as well as the seasoned marketing professional.

Her "how-to's" were especially valuable as were the pitfalls to avoid and best practices. Though I've been in the industry for 28 years, I still love to glean new tidbits that can provide a competitive edge. This book was a quick, easy read written in language anyone can understand and immediately implement!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Strange Behavior and the Weather

For as long as I can remember, we have never had a winter here in Indianapolis like this season. When I was in high school, there was the exciting blizzard of '78. Lots and lots of snow and snow days off from school. Back then, it was fun.

As a working adult, it's starting to annoy me when I cannot safely make it out of my driveway and to my office just a block away.

Today takes the cake so far. We had about a half inch of ice over night with another inch on the way this afternoon. Needless to say, I am trapped at home. Luckily for computers and networks, I can work from my kitchen, though, none of my clients are able to work today either. You know it's bad when doctor's offices and surgery centers close down.

I must say, this round of weather has brought out some strange behavior in both me and my right hand -- my dog Maggie. She whined all evening yesterday and demanded to go into her crate with the door shut. She usually only behaves like this during thunderstorms. When I awoke early to take her out this morning, she was terribly confused about where to go to the bathroom. There were no goof sniff spots! What is a girl to do? She just looked at me like I had the answer.

I have accomplished a great deal work wise due to the quiet, but I find myself taking breaks to putz around and do odd things like dust my shelves, vacuum, shovel ice, laundry and meal preparation. It must be a nesting thing where I am forced to look for comfort activities.

The weather folks on TV have the whole city atwitter. The electric companies are giving warnings about what to do if your electricity goes out for a long period of time. Am I prepped if the lights go out?

* Food: check (but it's mostly in my freezer, so I may be out of luck without the assistance of the microwave)
* Snow shovel: check (but the ice is too hard to make it worth the while)
* Ax: check (I did ax some driveway ice but it did not make a dent and made my arms hurt; Unbeknownst to me that I even owned an ax.)
* Ice Melt: check (but last I looked it was not melting anything other than the paint on my deck)
* Flashlight: check (but I think I forgot to get batteries)
* Wine: check (It was the most coveted and talked-about item in the drugstore checkout line last evening)
* Treadmill: check (I can run on it even if the belt cannot move without electricity)
* Cheese and crackers: check (though the crackers appear a bit stale from being in my cupboard for awhile)
* Binoculars: check (in case I need to see if tress passers are trying to climb my icy hill; Maggie will growl and hope they have treats or a bone.)

I guess we'll have to wait and see...