Friday, November 28, 2008

Thankful for Nuts

In my haste, I forgot the nuts for our Thanksgiving celebration. You know the bowl of mixed nuts you always have around this time of year? It just isn't Thanksgiving without nuts, right?

Well, I had forgotten them and wasn't planning another trip to the store, so for us it would be no nuts. I started to prepare the appy's and realized we were missing provolone too....sooooo, out the door he went on Thanksgiving morning to find provolone. Jimmy had to have provolone. And would you believe he picked up some nuts too?

That was sweet. Jim always does stuff like that. Just when you think they're not paying attention.

That was my first thought.

Then, we had our Thanksgiving dinner.
I started to see another side of Jimmy and my family members.

I started to think there was some kind of nutty conspiracy going on.

Well, you'll have to decide. I took some very choice video of our family sitting around our humble, meek and beautiful desert table.

There were more varieties of nuts at that table than you can imagine. There were also a few missing. You know who you are. We love you and we miss you and we're ever so thankful for you. Can not wait to be together soon. But, in the meantime, enjoy this and happy thanksgiving you frickin' nuts : D xoxo

Monday, November 24, 2008

Cedar Grove Superbowl Champions

Cedar Grove would go on win the game 25 to 15

I am so proud of my husband Jimmy and the Cedar Grove Panthers who won their Superbowl of Championships yesterday afternoon on another brisk 29 degree day.

They lost earlier in the season to undefeated Livingston and came back to beat them 25-15 for the Championship. That's what I'm talking about.

Coach Jim and the CG Panthers

It has been a long football season for the Cedar Grove Football team, the coaches and their respective family members. These Coaches put so much time and effort into developing these young minds for competition. It's so nice to see everyone who participated reap the reward of Championship at the end of their journey.

Although, we all know for most it is just the beginning.

The whole crew. Lots of happy #1's : )

Everyone sacrificed. Everyone put their time in.

Everyone. But one stands out to me more than the rest.

My husband.

Jimmy was born to coach football. More importantly, he was born to coach young minds. It's in his blood. He absolutely loves the chess-like competition. For him, this is not your regular game of football. There are plays and then there are plays.

I've watched Cedar Grove do things that nobody else is doing on the field. The same old offense is met with new, dynamic defense and the match is on. The same old defense is met with new, outside the box offense and the game is won.

They win championships, they don't just play the game.

I remember when Jim first met with the team. He came home and sighed and said "I don't know about this year Ree". "This year", he said "might really be a challenge".

They're all challenges Coach.

But they've already won, 'cause they got you. And so do I.

Congratulations on your good works my love. The proof is in the fruit.

Love, your biggest fan.

Me, warming up at half time.

Here are two videos.

The final seconds of the game and

the Panthers, the Coaches and the Championship Trophy

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Winter Sports

We had great hockey tickets last night, the NJ Devils vs. NY Islanders at the new Prudential Center in downtown Newark.

I've only ever been to hockey games with my husband. I've seen so many games at Madison Square Garden but these, these were the best seats that I've ever had at any hockey game ever. They were down, in the front, on the ice, in the front row.

Un be liev able seats. They were a gift from a really close friend of the family. And we thoroughly appreciated them.

We invited our friends along who we haven't seen in months due to football season.

All of these pics were taken with my cell phone which explains the fuzziness.
We don't look too happy do we?
Gotta love winter sports.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Here Today, Gone Tomorrow

Happily on our way to the Wellmont Theatre on a brisk,
32 degree night in New Jersey.

To my delight our friends got orchestra seats - third row baby.
The Wellmont is a beautiful facility to have a concert.

It was great seeing our friends. They were in and out of town like lightning.

Travelling is their lives. They'll be back in only two weeks so we get to do it again.

We get together a few times a year for the last several years. We're grateful for the time we get to share.

Funny as you get older you wind up with family and friends all across the 50 States (and beyond). Getting together is not as easy as it once was. It's so important to appreciate the moment - how ever it's sliced - it too will change one day.

Speaking of getting older, Steely Dan was great. They put on a solid show for an hour and half with one encore.

The audience ate it up. You could tell some were long time fans and sang along to every word.

I didn't know every song, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. Here's a little piece of Steely Dan.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

A Capsule in Time

Our friends are flying in from North Carolina as I type but I HAD to get this posted.

It's not like I have the time, but I have the will.

So far, the computer gremlins are still sleeping so it looks like I may get this done.

I recently found our family's old home movies that our Poppy put together.

Thank God Poppy had the foresight and the technical savvy to pull this off.

He took videos where ever we were growing up; birthdays, communions, Thanksgivings, etc. Any family function just about and Poppy was there with his camera.

The downside? Really the wasn't one.

Sure the light on the top of the camera would burn your retina faster than you can say cheese - but we tolerated it and I'm glad we did.

The video tape is a couple of hours long. It's precious and I cried like a baby at my most recent viewing and then I thought . . . I've got to video blog about this.

Thanksgiving is coming up and November has always been a sad month for this family as it seems that most of us cross over around this time of year...I don't think we much like the winter.

To my family (here and there) I say, I will always love you and I am proud to be yours.

And to you, whoever you may be, I hope you enjoy this small video capsule in time of my family back 'in the day'.

P.S. I'm the little one flitting about ... I was a pretty happy kid. Still am.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

House Guests

What is it about having house guests that makes us clean our houses more than usual?

Do we normally live such filthy lives that a complete overhaul is in order (no pun intended)?

Not only do I feel compelled to clean, but I've just painted the door AND the radiator in our guest bedroom.

I just hated the way they looked and needed them to be what I pictured them to be in my mind, before our guests arrived, of course.

Compulsive behavior over. I hope.

They are only coming for one night from out of town.

We're going to dinner and to see Steely Dan locally here in Montclair.

It should be a lot of fun. We're really looking forward to it.

I just hope I'm not too tired from all the cleaning up.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Breaking the Fast

Whew. The one day fast is over.

You know what? It wasn't that hard.

I certainly felt different yesterday than, let's say today.

Yesterday, I chewed nothing. I drank a lot.

Tons of carrot juice. Tons of water and tea.

I felt great. Good energy. Different.

Towards the end of the night I got a slight headache and then it went away.

But then it came back and that was enough for me...the light started bothering me so I just went to bed.

Slept great and woke up feeling refreshed and ready to do it again (but I didn't).

Today so far I've had a protein, blueberry, banana, psyllium, flax seed oil & water shake, a tea w/milk, one teaspoon of sugar...

1/2 cup of cooked couscous w/a handful of walnuts, soymilk and and 1/2 an orange.

I had TWO peanut butter sandwiches on toasted multi-grain bread w/regular 2% milk.

And, I'm having baked salmon in teriyake sauce w/celery & carrots and a big salad for dinner.

All homemade.

That's a lot of food.

I'm starting to pay closer attention.

I like to eat healthfully - probably more so than I realize.

Whole foods, less processed (which I don't really eat), fresh ingredients.

And less of it. Smaller portions.

More water.

This should be easy and for some it is, others have to work harder at it.

I'm not perfect, I ate my share of halloween candy - but when the time came,
I put that garbage away happily.

As for fasting, Thursday's seems to be the target now with my Forum friends.

EVERY THURSDAY : | Don't know if I can do it every week.

How 'bout you? Can you give it up - for a day?

Take the fast for a day challenge and see if you've got what it takes : )

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Quick Fast

When was the last time you fasted?

You know, stopped eating for a day or two to cleanse your body of toxins, to open your Spirit, to delve deeper down the rabbit hole?

Did you know ?

“A little starvation can really do more for the average sick man than can the best medicines and the best doctors. I do not mean a restricted diet; I mean total abstinence from food for one or two days. I speak from experience; starvation has been my cold and fever doctor for 15 years, and has accomplished a cure in all instances”.

-Mark Twain

“To Lengthen thy life, lessen thy meals. The best of all medicines is rest and fasting.”
-Benjamin Franklin.

"Fasting is an effective and safe method of detoxifying the body…A technique that wise men have used for centuries to heal the sick. Fast regularly and help the body heal itself and stay well. Give all of your organs a rest. Fasting can help reverse the aging process, and if we use it correctly we will live longer, happier lives.”

-James Balch M.D. Author of Prescription for Natural Healing

“Fasting is, without any doubt, the most effective biological method of treatment… it is the ‘operation without surgery’. . .it is a cure involving exudation, reattunement, redirection, loosening up and purified relaxation. While fasting, the patient improves her or his physical health and gains much. But he or she will have neglected the most important thing if the hunger for spiritual nourishment that manifests itself during fasting is not satisfied.”

-Otto Buchinger, Sr., M.D., Germany’s great, self-described “fasting therapist,”

“There are hundreds of journal articles in the medical literature documenting the value of fasting in improving the function of the entire body including brain” [cites studies].

-Joel Furhman M.D. Fasting and Eating for Health

“Fasting must be recognized as a fundamental and radical process that is older than any other mode of caring for the sick organism, for it is employed on the plane of instinct and has been employed since life was first introduced upon the earth. Fasting is nature’s own method of ridding the body of ‘diseased tissues,’ excess nutriment and accumulations of waste and toxins.”

-Herbert M. Shelton (DC, ND) The Science and Fine Art of Fasting

'When you wake up in the morning, Pooh,' said Piglet at last, 'what's the first thing you say to yourself?' 'What's for breakfast?' said Pooh. 'What do you say, Piglet?' 'I say, I wonder what's going to happen exciting today?' said Piglet. Pooh nodded thoughtfully. 'It's the same thing,' he said.”

A. A. Milne, The House at Pooh Corner

Those are a few quotes I received today from my Reiki Forum friends. A few of us are fasting today and using Reiki to ease the 'pain'.

So far, so good. I've juiced a few veggies and apples, had tons of water and green tea but nothing else.

Dinner is rapidly approaching and the munchy night hour, but I will not fail.

It is only one day - maybe two depending on how I feel in the morning.

I feel remarkably energetic and clear minded. I don't feel weak or angry or cranky.

And, to know me is to know - that I MUST EAT THREE MEALS A DAY - or watch out.

I get c r a n k y when I don't eat. Not today.

We decided two days ago to do this.

We joined our energy.

Focused our intention and now, we're more than past the half way point.

Yesterday, for a brief second, I heard random thoughts running through my head:

'you'll never be able to do it'

'you'll skip breakfast and have lunch and tell the Reiki Forum you just couldn't do it'

'you'll skip breakfast and lunch and maybe just eat dinner, that'll be fine. At least you fasted for two meals'


How come yesterday's mind was talking me out of it and today's mind is all in?

Maybe because I noticed thoughts.

I noticed a thought pattern and shrugged at it and 'poof' it has no power over me.

They were just thoughts.

Not nearly as powerful as intention and focused energy.

Thoughts - can be brilliant and can be not so.

I'm choosing the brilliant ones and letting go of the not so.


Get out of my way Me....I'm coming through, fasting.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Dreaming Dreams

I had a great, familiar dream the other night.

I looked and saw the earth surrounded by stars from afar.

They were shining and twinkling.

In fast forward motion the stars moved around the earth.

I thought - I am so lucky that I get to see this everyday.

But, I should try and take a picture with my cell phone.

And then I woke up.

All is well.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Still in the Moment

Here are two more shots from my night at MSU.

I can't wait to go back. We're talking about doing a Reiki Workshop!!!

Of course, I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

In The Middle of Creation

Last night was a big night for me and my list of intentions.

I have been focusing on my path.

This is unlike any other path before it.

This one is deliberately created by me.

The other paths I think I sometimes just stumbled upon.

Not all of them, but most.

I learned a lot. I wish I could forget a lot.

But, then I wouldn't be me, would I?

No, the path that I'm on now is sublime.

I know I am a teacher, healer and blogging author - but I didn't know anyone else knew that.

I'm mean really?

My Grandmother used to say to me "Maria, you could sell sand to the Arabs!".

That's hysterical.

She was right.

Corporate Sales was awesome and fun. I managed multi-million dollar books of business.

I travelled all over the US and brought in more new customers than my counterparts.

It was easy for me.

Let me clarify. Selling was easy. Public speaking and presentations, easy.

Travelling away from my home - not so.

Sure I loved to fly. I loved to visit new places and explore. But not alone and I digress...

Once I believed in a product, I could sell it. People responded.

Well, indeed, I've always had the gift of gab.

I received a D in Conduct in First Grade. Just would not shut up and disrupted the whole class.

This was different.

Last night, I had the privilege and honor of speaking to two Montclair State University's Introductory to Religion classes about my passion - the healing modality of Reiki.

There were about 35 students in each class.

Only four students had ever heard of Reiki.

One said she had a Reiki treatment and didn't like it. Hmmm.

This was not selling sand to the Arabs.

This was important.

You can see Mikao Usui, the founder of Reiki, behind and directly above me in this shot. How appropriate.

I'm sure most of these students have heard of lexipro, prozac, and paxil just to name a few.

I'm sure they've heard of antibiotics, and flu shots and drugs on the street.

And I could list probably a million more drugs that they might not know about yet, but if the pharmaceutical industry has it their way, these students will know about them, think they need them and be addicted to them before you can say 'heal yourself'.

But Reiki, they've not heard of Reiki.

My time has come. I taught them all I could.

The response was wonderful.

Lots of questions at the end. Hopefully, I answered all of them.

And a few angels that needed some extra special attention came up to me and we talked.

Yes, that's who I showed up for.

It was not about selling or pushing a product.

It was about connecting with people in their vulnerability, in their dis-ease and dis-comfort for themselves, or someone they love.

The selflessness struck me.

They shone like the sun/Son in that moment.

My eyes got all twinkly.

Namaste to the students at MSU for allowing me inside.

A loving thank you to my friend, my cousin, my sister, Professor Lisa Sargese who invited me to her home court at the lecture hall on the campus of MSU. Please visit her blog at She's witty and funny and beautiful and has a serious crush on comic Jimmy Norton that has reached new heights : )

And lastly, a sincere thank you to God who has freely given.

Those who have ears to hear . . .

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Lately, I've been experiencing a heightened sense of awareness.

Yesterday for instance, I saw the light go on in the den. I saw the warm glow of the light. It had been somewhat dark and the light made a huge difference. I squinted my eyes. I turned around and looked.

I then realized the light hadn't been turned on.

At least not yet.

I went back to what I was doing.

Five minutes later, my husband came home and turned on the light.
I didn't hear him come in. I only saw the light.
It was the same exact way. I saw the light. I turned around squinting.

This time it happened.

But the first time it felt so real.

I squinted. I looked and turned around because I thought it was him. But it wasn't.

Not yet.

It hadn't happened yet.

Then, the word clairvoyant came to my mind.

I thought I was thinking about it, until later on that night.

I was reading and the word clairvoyant came leaping off the page.

It was big. As big as it was in my mind earlier.

Hmmmmmm. What to make of this?

I am meditating using brain wave technology.

Perhaps I'm tuning in the radio channel a little clearer.

I hope so.

Who wouldn't?