Archives For Life

Join me and AUTISM SPEAKS in celebrating WORLD AUTISM AWARENESS on April 2. We are going to LIGHT IT UP BLUE. This is the sixth year of the global initiative to help raise awareness of this growing health concern. Major buildings around the world are going BLUE for Autism! The Empire State Building, Rockefeller Center, Sydney Opera House, Aspen Mountains, Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro and many others are turning on the blue lights. How about you? At my local Home Depot they have a prominent display of blue lights as you walk in the door. My porch light is going to burn blue all month-long! Why not join others in making a statement in our fight against Autism?

My nephew is one of the heroes in my life. He is in his 20s and is autistic. He lives in a  group home, works in the cafeteria in a nearby school and does several other part-time jobs. He loves working with animals, straightening shelves and telling Knock-Knock jokes. He attends church with his housemates and loves to go on adventures with his family. I have learned a lot about autism by watching Garon. Sometimes behavior is not ‘normal’ and strangers can easily misunderstand. Other times an autistic person looks no different from the child playing right next to them. Families with autistic children make many sacrifices, they have to figure out how to get around a particular issue or habit and they need the help of many to make it work. Autism is a wide spectrum of behavior. No person is exactly like another. So there is much sacrifice on the part of families. I admire Garon’s family so much. They have had a lifetime of loving Garon and will not slow down in making his life better. But I do know it can take its toll on families. If you know someone with autism, can you love on them today? Can you get involved in helping find a solution to this debilitating disease? 

My gift to Garon each year at Christmas is a weekend with Aunt Diane. We have had many adventures together!! He is always eager to get here and cannot wait to see what project we will work on. This year we will be going to an Oriole’s game also!! He is a huge fan. It is my joy to love him and to stay involved in his life. I look forward to his weekly calls and his reports on life in the house and at work….plus his Knock-Knock jokes are really funny!

What can you do? Change your Facebook profile picture BLUE here. Post about it on your Facebook status. Tweet about autism. Give to organizations that are working to help autistic families. Get a blue light. Talk to your friend about their autistic child, because I am sure you know someone. LIGHT IT UP BLUE .If you are not aware of the realities of the autism spectrum of disorders, please check out more information here.

Thank you!

Garon wedding

My all time favorite picture of us at his sister’s wedding!! He’s got his dancing shoes on!!!

The reach of cancer

Diane Hidey —  February 24, 2016 — 4 Comments

I have not been a faithful blogger and the truth is, I am OK with it. In the past 18 months so many things have changed in my family. My sister Janice was diagnosed with Stage 4 Breast cancer, which has traveled to her bones. When we got that diagnosis June of 2014 everything in our family changed. Suddenly things of this world were dim and things of the eternal were bright. Janice has been in the care of a great team and her cancer has not grown. We are thankful she has responded well to a drug (administered via a shot once per month). Janice’s cancer responds well to hormone therapy, effectively blocking cancer’s ability to grow off the hormones in her body.

She does not need chemo at this time. AND the great part is there are many options available for Stage 4 cancer patients. Seems hormone based cancer is where most of the experimental drugs are being tested and where more drugs have been put into use by the FDA.

Janice and I ended up spending a few weeks at the beach that summer and it was life giving for her. Family rallied around her. Friends showed up in droves to minister to her and pray for her. I am so grateful for her and how hard she is fighting to prolong her life. Stage 4 cancer is terminal. The inevitable can be delayed, but cannot be beat… this time. We purchased a small condo at the beach and were able to spend distracting time redoing the 1980’s beach decor. I will post pictures later 🙂

The other major distraction to blogging was MY diagnosis of Triple Negative Breast cancer this past July. I have undergone a double mastectomy, expander insertion and am in the middle of chemo treatments. We caught mine early enough and there is hope of a full recovery. I will be posting more about my cancer journey. But in the meantime, please stick with me. I may not post as many great deals or opportunities, but I will post about hope in the midst of struggle and I know many of you could use the encouragement.



Head over to Facebook today and enter to win! What a great contest. I was able to test several products from Tuttorosso and I already own and love my Spiralizer. If you don’t own one then you definitely need to enter the contest! Today, April 15 is the last day to enter. Sorry for the late notice, but I know you love entering…so go get ’em!

11081233_775008955901804_4616582072196978847_nIf you are looking for how to use your Spiralizer then head over to Aly’s blog at Inspiralized. She has taken the simple Spiralizer tool and brought it to a whole new level. Find new ways and simple ways to use the tool. Get some great recipes and find ways to get even your kids to eat vegetables. When I got my Spiralizer I used it only for zucchini noodles. Now I use lots of different vegetables and fruits. It makes meals classy!!

I also enjoyed trying my Tuttorosso products. I received 3 large cans of their tomato products. Using some of the recipes on their blog I was able to turn plan spaghetti into a gourmet meal. I look forward to using their products in the future. If you are looking for a tasty tomato product for a recipe of yours, you will love them! A favorite recipe for me was the Al Fresco Zucchini Pasta Salad.

Enter to win a Spiralizer, Aly’s cookbook or an Apron. The grand prize package includes all of that plus a picnic basket and kitchen gadgets. Head over and enter today

I received free product from Tuttorosso in exchange for my honest thoughts on their product and the promotion of their contest. All the opinions are mine!



November is such a fun month…not just because it is the month of my birthday, but that is one of the reasons 🙂

I love November because it is the real beginning of Fall. In spite of what the calendar says, I don’t think it’s November until there is a chill in the air every morning. Yesterday, some of my South Carolina friends woke up to SNOW on the ground! Now that is crazy, but oh how I wish I were there. Instead I am enjoying rain and temps in the 40’s.

The leaves are falling fast, the sunsets are more beautiful and almost all the chestnuts have been gathered by my squirrel friends. Today I put away the jack-o-laterns and am enjoying my Fall mantle. And the best part of today? The extra hour of sleep last night!

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I got the letters, candles and felt leaves from Grand in Road and all of them were on super sale! They are clearing out their Halloween Haven, but all of these items are perfect for my mantle between now  Christmas.


Photo courtesy of WIS TV

I love the Against All Grain cookbook by Danielle Walker. I have made a bunch of things in the book and it is full of sticky note markers for my next projects! The recipes are Gluten and Dairy FREE. Danielle shares these recipes out of a hard physical journey to health. Most recipes are uncomplicated – perfect me a new GF/DF convert.

I am thrilled to say that she has just released a new book and it available for Kindle for $1.99 or you can download the ebook version for $4.99 from her webpage Against All Grain. I got the Kindle version today and there are a few things I am definitely going to add to the Thanksgiving menu! Don’t they look delicious?

disclosure: If you use the link on this page, I will receive a small percentage back from Amazon. Thanks!