Cheater Cheater Pumpkin Eater!

Cheating on your partner?  What’s the point?  If you are in a relationship, what is that all about anyway?  You want your cake and you want to eat it too?  I’ll never understand cheating ~ it’s something I could never get over nor forgive.  God teaches us about forgiveness but that’s one thing I could never let slide.  I’ve been married for 25 years and the thought of cheating is something I cannot wrap my brain around.

I see it time and time again.  The lies, the excuses, the sneaking around.  Is the cheater trying to be a “good person” by sparing their partner’s feelings?  Ha! Ha! Ha!  A good person.  Family’s broken and torn apart, left to try to piece things back together again.  I cannot imagine a worse betrayal.

If you are that unhappy, why not just get a divorce and then move on?  Why do THE worst thing you could possibly do to another human being and betray their trust by being with someone else when you pledged your life to them to begin with?

My husband and I had an understanding early on in our marriage, that if we ever felt that bad in our relationship we’d talk to one another but we’d never, ever cheat.  That’s a hard-line for both of us and one we wouldn’t tolerate it from the other.  I’m so glad we have an open line of communication and were able to throw that out there early on.  I appreciate my husband’s consideration of the matter and know he would come to me first and we would go our separate ways before one of us ever cheated and burned the other like that.  I would rather he come to me and tell me he’s unhappy in our relationship than to have him lying and cheating to top it off.  Him not being happy and wanting to move on is something I could deal with much better than if he had an affair.

TRUST

Chances are, you’ll wind up divorced after cheating anyway so why not just go your separate way BEFORE you cheat and mess everything up?

I think when it comes to this subject I am a bit “judgy” because I see it happen and just cannot understand how someone could be so selfish.  What are your thoughts on cheating?

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You Are My Light Scott ♥

Long ago I was just an empty shell.  I had nothing.  Nothing to offer and coldness inward.  You looked past my vision of myself.  You saw something intramural in me.  You saw light beaming where I saw dark shadows.  You saw espousal hope where I felt incapacity.  We became united and in sync.  Rough patches to begin as I was learning the ropes.  You were patient and loving and I was excited for the first time in my life.  Getting past my insecurities proved to be a monumental task, but one that I conquered because of your unimaginable support and love.  You’ll never know how grateful I am to you for all that you have given to me.  I love you more than anything in this world and I always will.  You my dear, are the truest best friend any girl could ever have.  Thank you Scott for being you.  I am the luckiest girl in the world. 

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I see you perfectly.

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I’m so tired……..

Ya know, I’m just exhausted.  I think mentally which translates to the physical.  The physical hiding in my bed with the covers pulled up over my head.  The not wanting to get out of bed nor participate in life.  Except for the necessity of getting up and ready for my night shift work- where again, I’m hiding from the world.  It works out perfectly for me.

My mom always said, once you have kids, you are always tired.  Then you have the “others”, the “do’ers” that claim, “You can sleep when you are dead”.  I wish I could say that I fall somewhere in between those two extremes but I don’t.  I am a sleepy girl and you’ll always find me in my bed, even when I’m awake.

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I don’t remember the last time I had enough free time on my hands to go out and just “be”.  I spend all of my spare time in bed trying to make up for working full-time nights.  So, I work Sun-Thurs. overnight and have Friday off (which is a wash because I just came off of Thursday night overnight) and Saturday I have to clean my house and my mom’s house also (long story), and Sunday day I spend the morning cooking and cleaning, and by that time it’s time to get a nap in before work.  Not much of a way to enjoy my life.  Something has gotta give.

I have applied to a few different places along as within my organization to try to get on a day shift.  After 13 years working night shift, it really is time to get back on a regular schedule.  Initially I worked overnights because my twins were 7 and my oldest was 11 and it was a way to contribute financially without having to get a babysitter.  It has served me well.  Now my oldest is married with a child of his own and my twins are 20 so there really is no need for me to still be working graveyard.  I’ve been saying this for years but change is hard.  I’ve become so comfortable in this life I have created and it’s hard to even fathom a change.  It is time.

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I’m going to have to say that I will miss the night shift although it will be nice to sleep in a bed with my husband every single night rather than 2 times per week.  What on earth will I miss about the night shift?  Everything.  I LOVE my job – love, love, love my job.  I work as a hospital operator and answer all incoming and outbound calls.  I am the answering service for 100’s of physicians and am responsible for monitoring all the code phones and panels.  It’s a great job.  The thing I love most about it is making a connection between the caller (the patient) and the Dr.  Connecting the caller to the Dr. at home or paging.  I love being the in-between that helps to make things happen.  I still get nervous to this day when the code phone rings because you never know what could be on the other end of the phone but after doing this for so long you become very good at your job.  I love the challenge and the variety of calls that I get.  I also LOVE my co-workers.  We’ve been together for a long time and make a great team.

After writing the above paragraph it makes me not want to stop the night shift, LOL.  But, I do think it’s time to get on a regular schedule like everyone else.  I’ve become too complacent in my life and stuck in a routine that is not healthy for me.  I was offered a position on the PM shift here and this sounded good except it involved working at my current location and at one of our sister sites as well.  Also, it included working the weekends which although mine are spent sleeping- they are still the weekend and if I want to make plans I can.  This would be no good so I politely declined.

Wish me luck in my job search.  I surely hope something good comes along so I can make the jump, the leap of faith.  Go from the comfort of knowing what I do best into the unknown.

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Pineapple Upside Down Bundt Cake

Written by Kate

When we have family parties with my husband’s side of the family I’m usually in charge of dessert. I’m the baker in the family, so I’m happy to make dessert. Baking is stress relief for me.

My father in law had been craving pineapple upside down cake for a few weeks, so I decided to make one for Father’s Day
I had seen a picture of a pineapple upside down bundt cake on Pinterest, but I couldn’t find a recipe. So, I decided to expirement based on the picture. It turned out better than I had expected!

Pineapple Upside Down Bundt Cake

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Ingredients:

1/2 cup (1 stick) melted butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 can pineapple rings in 100% juice (reserve the juice)
1 jar maraschino cherries
1 box pineapple cake mix
1 4-serving box instant vanilla pudding
3 eggs
Vegetable oil
Milk

Instructions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Prepare the bundt pan by generously applying pan release (special cooking spray with flour added to it – I love it)or non-stick spray.
3. Melt the butter and evenly pour into the bottom of the pan.
4. Sprinkle with the brown sugar.
5. Cut the pineapple rings in half and alternate with the maraschino cherries around the bundt pan as shown in the picture. Set aside.

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6. In a stand mixer or large bowl, stir the cake mix and pudding mix together.
7. Pour the pineapple juice  that you had saved into a measuring cup, and add enough milk to make 1 cup of liquid. Add this with the eggs and the amount of oil called for in the recipe to the cake mixture; following the instructions on the box.
8. Carefully pour the batter over the fruit.
9. Place the bundt pan on a baking sheet and bake as instructed for a bundt cake on the cake mix box. The cake is done when an inserted knife comes out clean.
10. Cool for 10 minutes in the pan. Slide a knife around the edges including the inner ring.
Invert the cake onto a serving plate.
12. Slice between the pineapple rings and serve warm or room temperature.

My Lemon Heads :)

You know what I think is so interesting?  That each of us has our own story to tell.  You don’t have to be Oprah or a famous person to matter in this world.  We all count, each and every one of us.  We all have our own unique life story.  I love getting to know people and learn about their life.  I noticed too that we share a common thread; sometimes it’s not always a happy story and that’s incredible that we have the ability to commensurate and share.

How nice it is to know you are not alone in this world.  That there is someone out there who can understand your struggles and your happiness.  I think it’s more important to have people out there that can relate to your story and help you make some sense of it.

DREAMS

I have been so blessed in my life to be surrounded by good friends and family.  I wrote friends first because they are the family to me that I didn’t get to “pick” for myself ~ yet God put them in my life and I feel like they are my family; my sisters.  I don’t know what I’d ever do without them.  They don’t judge me on choices I’ve made in the past, they accept me for the ever evolving ANNEBELLA that I have become and they love me unconditionally.  I can count them on two hands but know how fortunate I am to have each and every one of them.

Each of our lives has purpose,  each story IS important, our dreams count and our voice does matter.  I do believe we were born to make an impact and I believe that’s achieved by the connections that we make and showing love to all.

I use to blog quite frequently until fb took over and slowly all of our blogs vanished.  I was with a team of 5 women that I have grown to love and adore.  They are my sisters.  We’ve known each other for roughly 8 years now and although I’ve never met them we still chit-chat daily on fb.  I started blogging again because I need this outlet to let my thoughts flow free.

Thanks to these blog friends, and the new ones that I have made ~ I have grown by leaps and bounds.  I’m so grateful to Heather, Trisha, Joanie, Lisa, and Cally.  I’m also grateful to my new friends that I’ve made here, specifically Kim.  You never know how good life is until you meet a kindred soul that accepts you for exactly who you are and makes you realize all of your potential.  If you had told me that I would have “internet friends” 10 years ago I wouldn’t have believed you but the bond that we formed is unbreakable.

They raise me up and I consider them to be my best friends in this life.  My goal is to one day meet them in person and thank them for being there for me.

Heather:  True blue.  Honest and funny.  Beautiful inside and out.  Always knows what to say and has such empathy and caring built into her soul.  A believer in God which gives me great hope.  I love that she is always there checking up on me to make sure I’m alright.  She knows my struggles and keeps tabs on me to make sure I’m on the straight and narrow. When I’m down she is always there to pick me up.  One of the things I admire about her most is her zest for life.  I’ve never met anyone like her before- there is rarely a concert she misses or an outing that she passes up and I feel as though I live my life vicariously through her.  I wish I had 1/10th of her energy.  The love that she has for her daughter’s blows me away ~ I’ve never met a more involved parent or one that is such a strong pillar for them to lean on.  Heather is a success story – she has made it on her own and came out stronger for it.  I admire my friend and am sooo soooo lucky to have her be a part of my life.  I love you Heather and thank you for being there for me consistently through the years.

Trisha:  Where do I even begin?  This gorgeous woman full of surprises.  She is so talented; in art, cooking, and writing.  Highly intelligent and I can honestly say I’ve never met anyone that just KNOWS exactly what to say in any given situation.  Her advice is sage and trustworthy.  It’s as if I am sitting down drinking a cup of coffee when conversing with her online because that is how authentic she is.  Her love of cooking amazes me, it is shared by her lovely bf Brian who I have also come to know and love.  What an amazing couple.  Trisha can take anything and turn it into something beautiful.  She has great love for her family and grandkids. A creative at heart and her artwork is amazing.  Lover of wine and all things good; such as live bands and socializing.  I love to hear her stories about hanging out with her friends.  A person that lives for the day and is enjoying her new life with Brian and that makes my heart happy.   I feel like I could tell Trisha anything and she would understand or try to help me make sense of it.  What a special soul with the mad ability to put others at ease.  She puts her family first and I admire her for all that she is and all that she has become to me in life.  Thank you Trisha, I love you with all my heart dear sweet friend.

Lisa:  OMG, funny woman!  Hilarious beyond belief!  Hardworking sweet soul and always with a smidge of snark.  Highly intelligent and up to date on current affairs with a much appreciated opinion of her own.  Always a different take on something which gives me pause for thought.  I need that in my life.  Lisa is beautiful inside and out.  A quick learner and making it on her own.  The love that she has for her two kids is inspiring to me.  The relationship that they have is a bond and so special- I admire that bond.  Lisa can take anything serious and make me laugh, she has a quick-witted sense of humor that makes my heart happy.  She is one that cannot be pushed around and I know she always has my back.  All I have to do is give the word and I have someone on my side ready to defend me.  Lisa and I have completely different religious views and yet I have the utmost mad respect for her beliefs.  I know she is a lover of nature and earth, she has made so many positive changes in her life.  The love she has for her German Shepherd is amazing and watching their bond grown and his skill set grow leaps and bounds has been so fun to see.  Makes me wish our pups could meet 🙂  Lisa I feel like we are connected on such a deep level- and although we’ve never met I plan on making that happen sooner than later since we live the closest.  One of these weekends!  Love you girl, thank you for being such an integral part of my life; I adore you just the way you are!

Joan:  Funny as hell.  I love Joanie so much because she is so honest.  Always a calm source and one to look to for sound solid advice.  Always a cheerleader and accepts me just the way I am.  You cannot shock Joan and she doesn’t waiver – just true blue and always there with real words to calm the soul.  Joan is a lover of the island where she lives and a lover to her grandkids and amazing children.  She jokes about things in her life and it always brings a smile to my face.  I’m hoping and praying for only good things for you Joan, now and always.  I love this beautiful woman, she is gorgeous inside and out.  Joan is always looking for things to entertain her grandbabies, I would have killed to have a Grandmother like her!  She cares so deeply for her family and is always there to support and love them.  Joan is also a creative soul.  The ink drawings that she makes are mind-blowing.  I love that she enjoys creative scrapping and I miss seeing her work; it’s been a while Joanie 🙂  I love that Joan is nosy, the things she says and does make me laugh.  Joan has always been there for me on a consistent basis and I just don’t know how much luckier I can get having a friend in her.  I imagine great times on the beach with Joan if we were fortunate enough to live near one another- we’d be fighting the seagulls for our sandwiches.  LOL!  I love you Joan and consider myself so lucky to have you be a part of my life.  I thank you for always being a constant.  XOXOXOXO

Cally:  Although we do not have the privilege of knowing one another that well, from what I have gathered though the years is that you are solid.  Solid as a rock and absolutely stunning inside and out.  A stellar woman with hard work ethic and mad love for her family.  I love that you are always there with a kind word or an “atta girl” – I love that you know who you are and what you stand for.  I love that you are so confident.  I can take something from each of you, but from you I can take walking with a little pep in my step knowing you are just a text or fb msg away.  I can confide in you and know you’ll be there with great advice and you are always sympathetic to others.  I also feel strongly that you are one that knows what she is talking about.  One of those people who always knows WHAT to say.  I have trouble in that area and I’m working at it so I’m always in awe at your vast wisdom.  I love your sense of humor and am so glad to be part of the group with you.  I’m so glad we met and look forward to getting to know you better each and every day.  Love you Cally and am always wishing the best for you!!! XOXOXO {{{HUGS}}}

Kim:  Wow, what can I say ~ who knew I’d find another “keeper” at my new blog but that’s exactly what has happened.  Someone so funny and wise.  Your writing takes my breath away with all its beauty!  You may not know it, but you too- are beautiful inside and out and I felt an instant connection with you.  We are just starting our friendship but I look forward to what the future brings.  I find it hilarious the comments that you make- another one with quick wit (something that I severely lack and wholeheartedly appreciate) because it makes me LOL.  You have an uncanny ability to read between the lines and your comments are always so thorough and thoughtful.  I love that we share our Christian beliefs and that I can always count on you to remind me when I’m down that He is here.  I also appreciate your colorful language and that I can just be myself and you accept me for who I am.  I love that you are trying so hard, especially through hard times to be the mom and wife that you know you are capable of being. I think about you and pray for your well-being and am so glad that we met this way.  I wouldn’t have it any other way.  You really should look into writing a book- your writing and blog post titles are so creative and take the reader to another place.  {{{HUGS}}}

So, there it is.  Just thought I’d let the world know how much you all mean to me.  I keep this blog as a journal and I want my family to know also how important you are to me.  I really do consider you all my sisters.

Much love always,

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When My Time Comes

I’ve been thinking a lot about death lately; in particular my own.  Death my be so scary to most but for some reason (maybe because of my recent bizarre dream)  I have just felt at peace with the fact that we all have our “time”.  That I will have my time.  Am I ready to leave this earth?  Absolutely not but I know there is something better waiting on the other side, I do believe in everlasting life and I do believe wholeheartedly in Christ.  I do believe that I will fall into the loving arms of Jesus Christ our Savior when he calls me home.

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It’s hard to fathom though, that I will one day, and no one knows when, I will take my last breath.  It could be tomorrow, it could be next week, or it could be when I’m 95 years old- there is no telling but that’s one thing we all have in common.  We will each have “our own time”.  A time when time just simply stops, I will take my last breath, and I will die a specific way.  I don’t want this post to seem morbid or sad – it’s just a fact of life.

Surely, we are invincible.  People die, but that will never happen to us.  We only see it on the news and read it in the paper, that happens to other people.  Truth is, those people are just like you and I.  Just living their lives and then one day POOF!  Their time came and chances are it came too soon.

I am a daughter, a mother, a wife, a sister, a friend; and one day I wont be here on this planet breathing in this air and enjoying my day to day with the people I love and cherish most.  That is why I want to start living for the day.  Not dwelling in the past or worrying about the future but actually living in each day and celebrating this life.  They say “Life is short” and it truly is.  Sometimes I look in the mirror and see a 46-year-old staring back at me and wonder where the precious time has gone.  Before you know it I’ll be celebrating my 50th, or will I?  Will it be my time before then?  Nobody can answer me, nobody can know.

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I even have my playlist for my funeral.  When I hear a song that strikes a chord, I write it down on my list.  I want there to be music for people to KNOW that I picked out myself and that I loved and it meant something to me.  There is a message in each song.  I also want them not to be sad.  I don’t want people to be sad when I go.  Because I’m ready to go when God calls my name and I know he will take care of me and my loved ones and I will meet up one day.

When your time comes to die, be not like those whose hearts are filled with fear of death, so that when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way. Sing your death song, and die like a hero going home. -Tecumseh
Even in the event of death, my love will go on.  I want people to not dwell on sadness, rather think about who I was and what I stood for.  Remember me for the good times and know I’m just around the corner, on the other side waiting to be reunited.  All you have to do it believe in Jesus Christ to have eternal life.  I want that, I do believe and I look forward to seeing my Father, my holy heavenly Father, and my Dad, Grandma, and others that have gone before me.
I’m not afraid, I’m just curious and know the time will come.
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Dreams

Whilst sleeping last night I had the most bizarre dream I have ever had before, in my life.  It was of the dark variety and I woke scared and stunned but the one MESSAGE that was loud and clear was the following:

John 4:4 (NIV)

You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.

It was a dramatic startling dream, however, a message was released to me that no matter how big the bad might seem, God is bigger and more powerful.  I have faith and am grateful for this reminder.

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God Bless,

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Love is Stronger Than Hate

Written by Kate

Since the news of the senseless, brutal murders in Orlando broke, I’ve been trying to wrap my head around the whole situation. I’ve been seeing Facebook posts from  friends with very different opinions. I haven’t commented, or really said much because I didn’t want to turn this tragedy into a war of politics or religions. However, I saw a post today that I can’t understand.

Today, a distant family member posted that “ALL muslims believe that ALL homosexuals should be put to death.” I couldn’t believe what I was reading. This really made me think.

Does this person know any Muslims? I’m not claiming to be an expert on the Islamic faith, but here’s what I know. My Muslim friends are outraged, appalled, shocked, and deeply saddened by the actions of one radicalized man who was a domestic terrorist. They don’t want to be judged by the actions of this man whose religious beliefs are similar to those in name only.

Does this person  know anyone who is part of the LGBTQ community? Again, I’m not claiming to be an LGBTQ expert, but here’s what I do know. My LGBTQ friends are outraged, appalled, shocked, and deeply saddened by the actions of one radicalized man who was a domestic terrorist. I have yet to see a single one of them say that all Muslims are to blame for this tragedy.

Does this person know Christians of all different churches and doctrinal beliefs? Again, I’m not claiming to be an expert on all of Christianity, but here’s what I do know. Myself as well as all of my Christian friends are outraged, appalled, shocked, and deeply saddened by the actions of one radicalized man who was a domestic terrorist. We see our friends and family hurting in the wake of this tragedy, and we are praying for all involved.

You see, despite our differences, the vast majority of people that I know are all outraged, appalled, shocked, and deeply saddened by the actions of one radicalized man who was a domestic terrorist. The man who committed these senseless murders does not speak for the Muslim community any more than the Westboro Baptist Church members speak for the Christian community. Both are radical, and they twist religious beliefs to justify their hatred.

At the end of the day, we are all humans who feel deeply. At a time like this we should be coming together despite our religious and political beliefs. It is entirely possible to disagree with someone, and still love that person. We need to focus not on our differences, but instead focus on loving our fellow man because love is the only thing that can overcome hate.

Be Your Beautiful Self

Misunderstandings and miscommunication are all around us.  I know for me personally, it’s so painful when someone misunderstands my intentions.  It is also frustrating when I have made changes in my life for the better and others refuse to acknowledge them, instead, insisting that I’m incapable of change.  It’s just easier to remember me for the mistakes I’ve made in my life.  They cannot comprehend that I’ve evolved over the years.

I use to reeeeally care what others thought of me.  At that time in my life it could make or break my day.  I was so unbelievably sensitive and what others thought of me carried a lot of weight.  If someone were upset or angry with me it would turn me into an emotional wreck.

You know they say with age comes wisdom ~ I think I much prefer the knowledge and wisdom I’ve gained over the years to being young and confused/hurt.

I’m at a good place in my life, just breaking through the threshold of freedom from what people say about me, what they think of me and when they completely misunderstand me and my intentions.  It took a long while to get here but I’m so grateful I have the type of personality that allows me to evolve, grow, and change for the better.

You really cannot win anyway so why fight it?  People are going to talk about you, misunderstand you and question you – so why not just be yourself and run with it.  People are going to dislike you no matter what you do because it is impossible to please everyone.  I say, so what.  Big hairy deal.  You cannot change other people, you only have control over your own self and own actions, so unfortunately if someone would like to think the worst of you or misunderstand your intentions- there is really nothing you can do about it anyway.  You know, they’ll probably gossip about you too – spreading their misconception and that’s ok too because those that KNOW you will know what is real and what is true.  If they don’t, big whoop.  Your life will go on.

I try to concentrate on those that are there for me and love me unconditionally.  For those that realize I’m not the sum of my past mistakes but the whole person that stands now feeling empowered, peaceful, loving, and healed; they are who I am concerned with.

So I say, be yourself and love those that accept you for who you are.  Be your own beautiful unique self and let your freak flag fly!  Do what you want to do, be who you want to be, dare to shout it out to the world.  That’s what is really important in this life.  It is the icing on the cake of life – anything else is just crumbs.

And I’ll leave you with one of my favorite songs by Alicia Keys “Brand New Me”

Lyrics:

It’s been a while, I’m not who I was before
You look surprised, your words don’t burn me anymore
Been meaning to tell you, but I guess it’s clear to see
Don’t be mad, it’s just the brand new kind of me
Can’t be bad, I found a brand new kind of free

Careful with your ego, he’s the one that we should blame
Had to grab my heart back
God know something had to change
I thought that you’d be happy
I found the one thing I need, why you mad
It’s just the brand new kind of me

It took a long long time to get here
It took a brave, brave girl to try
It took one too many excuses, one too many lies
Don’t be surprised, don’t be surprised

if i talk a little louder
If I speak up when you’re wrong
If I walk a little taller
I’d be known to you too long
If you noticed that I’m different
Don’t take it personally
Don’t be mad, it’s just the brand new kind of me
And it ain’t bad, I found a brand new kind of free

Oh, it took a long long road to get here
It took a brave brave girl to try
I’ve taken one too many excuses, one too many lies
Don’t be surprised, oh see you look surprised

Hey, if you were a friend, you want to get know me again
If you were worth a while
You’d be happy to see me smile
I’m not expecting sorry
I’m too busy finding myself
I got this
I found me, I found me, yeah

I don’t need your opinion
I’m not waiting for your okay
I’ll never be perfect, but at least now I’m brave
Now, my heart is open
And I can finally breathe
Don’t be mad, it’s just the brand new kind of free
That ain’t bad, I found a brand new kind of me
Don’t be mad, it’s just a brand new time for me

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