January 1, 2019:  

HAPPY NEW YEAR!  If you are in the south, did you eat your black eye peas and ham-hocks today?  Well, I DID, lol...and they were delicious! 

Will I have a 'lucky' new year because of it?  I trust we'll all have a blessed one, though the food won't be a factor in that, it's just a southern tradition that we've always had here to eat the black eye peas.  We look forward to it.  They are YUMMY! 

Did you make resolutions for the new year?  I did that, too.  First, to stick with a mostly Keto lifestyle, staying away from sugar and carbs on all except very special occasions.  For those of us who have survived breast cancer, it just makes sense to give our bodies the best chance of staying healthy.  I already have eaten very healthy for a long while, it's just time to do more fine-tuning.  You, too?

Second, I'm getting back onto a budget.  I've felt as if I'm bleeding money lately, bet you have, too, and that's never good, right?  A reasonable budget is a pretty good way to keep stress away all through the year.  I like to count up my whole year's expenses every year, divide by 12, and print out a little budget on 12 sheets of paper, marking off when each bill is paid every month and allowing for a bit to be put aside for an emergency.  It makes me feel good.  Sure, we can't always stick to it exactly, but it's good to have a plan.

Third, same as every year, work harder at saying no.  People will make you feel guilty, but I say yes to plenty of things, bet you do, too, so, it's often good to have a healthy amount of 'no' in our lives.

Fourth, well, stop putting things off that I've looked forward to doing.  And yes, I know, you want to as well.  The thing is, life happens.  Make a little time for yourself, and let it.  Life can wait while you go craft a bit, sew a bit, or play with your pets a bit.  What did you survive breast cancer for, to put in more hours away at work?  To be constantly on the go?  Yeah, sure, right.  Go have a little fun occasionally in whatever way YOU choose.

As for me, (and it seems to be hard to make others understand this so I don't get to do it often enough) I enjoy being alone and quiet, working in my sewing room or craft room, more than almost anything.  Gives me time to think, to pray, to plan, and it soothes my soul. 

It it easy to find the time?  No, it's just worth it.  Lock the door, turn off the phone, let social media rock on without you for a bit, and just BE. Plan time for it, it's the only way you'll achieve it.

Love and hugs, and best wishes for a happy and healthy new year for all of you!

Mary

Dec: 2018  Merry Christmas to all my Mastectomy Solutions friends! I still can't believe it's almost Christmas.

Every day passes with lightening speed lately. Between sewing for all of you, taking a neighbor's little boy to basketball practice (totally new for me as I never had children, lol...) and working on my church's fellowship hall to get a small corner ready for a sewing program, I just didn't notice how close the holiday was until friends were talking about our plans to visit that day. Oh my! It's HERE!

Sometimes, I feel as if I'm living in some sort of alternate universe since my dear husband, Steve, passed last year. On that first holiday, I spent Christmas day pretty much bypassed by everyone. Those of you who are widows, know what I mean. But, when life gives you lemons, you make lemon-aid as best you can.

This year, I will be with a selection of other ladies who are also widows. We will make the best of it and keep moving forward. Yes, hankies will likely be involved, but there will also be lots of laughter and fellowship. We lift each other up!

Isn't that what MastectomySolutions is all about? We were handed something we didn't expect and never wanted, breast cancer with mastectomy. Being women, we know we can't sit and dwell, nor can we continue to be uncomfortable in silence. We deal with it and try to move forward. We develop solutions of our own and share with each other, to reduce the discomfort mastectomy leaves us with.

If you are hurting this year, emotionally or physically, find a way to share with others going through the same thing. They will listen, you will listen, and you both will learn and grow. Sometimes just sitting with someone over a cup of coffee, can be the most beautiful thing, it can change your outlook. You are not alone, what you are going through is normal, and you will not only survive, you will thrive.

I love you all, dear friends! I feel honored to have met you, even if only online and email, it feels as if we have been friends all these years. Looking forward to another year of sharing, solving, and sewing.

Merry Christmas!

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