Tiffany’s Random Musings

As I’ve been told many times, I think too much. So today, I have decided to share my rather random and unconnected thoughts with you. And believe me, there are plenty more where these came from!

Deal of the Day!
It’s Lent and as practicing Catholics, we observe the “No Meat” on Friday restrictions. So, WJJ and I had an early dinner at Red Lobster — It’s Lobsterfest! Our wait server Keisha was amazing!!! WJJ ordered the Lobster Lover’s Dream. Two lobster tails, one “rock lobster” and one Maine lobster. This is served with a creamy lobster-shrimp linguini. I ordered the “Mix and Match” Lobster special. 3 Maine Lobster tails stuffed with seafood! We enjoyed Caesar Salad, their yummy cornbread, baked potatoes, broccoli and two drinks. The bill: Under $100 AND we brought home a ‘doggy bag” which will certainly allow us to enjoy one or two other Lobster meals. WJJ is planning to make Lobster with whiskey sauce–a recipe from our old “Ritz Boston” day. Yes, Red Lobster is my personal “Deal of the Day”. In case you are wondering…this was NOT a good Diet Day!

I’m beginning to become more and more like my Mother and her diet. Every Monday, I start and by Friday, I’m finished, only to start again on Monday. Guess what? It’s not working!!!

Odd
Speaking of Lent, I asked my sister Chris if she got ashes last Ash Wednesday and she replied “yes”. I asked what Mass she attended. Here is her answer. “Oh I didn’t go to Mass –I went to Starbucks. There were two clergy administering ashes–so I got mine. “ Hmmm Coffee to go –Ashes to go… Not sure how I feel about that…. What say you?

What to buy on Amazon: First, become a PRIME Member!!
I am the Amazon Queen –I buy ALMOST everything on PRIME –so here are my recommendations for this week.

Books
My wonderful friend Linda who is stunning, successful and an inspiration to all women, gave me a book called “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young to give to a friend of mine. It is a daily devotional. It helped Linda immensely as she was going through a very difficult time in her life –which was caused by others not Linda. And boy… did Linda come through –with flying colors. I loved the book so much –I bought one for myself. My friend and I read the passages daily + we often do it together over the phone. I highly recommend “Jesus Calling”!

The Miracle of Mindfulness –A guide to Meditation by Thich Nhat Hanh. Thich Nhat Hanh is a Vietnamese Buddhist Monk and Peace Activist. He has published more than 100 books. .

If you have a mind that never seems to stop –buy this book now! Just try practicing “staying in the moment”. My first day was Thursday. I lasted one hour. As I walked down our corridor towards the kitchen, I actually looked out towards the ocean and SAW the ocean. I was once asked, “Do you take time to stop and smell the roses?” I responded, “I don’t even see the damn roses”. 2017 I am working on that.

All of Thich Nhat Hanh’s books are inspirational –but I strongly suggest you start with this one.

Health:
Cystex Liquid Cranberry Complex–A sip a day keeps UTI’s away! It’s that simple –I LOVE this product! It’s available in pill form, but be careful the pill form has NDAID (like aspiring and Ibuprofen) so it should be used only when you get a feeling that a UTI is “on the horizon”.

NEWS Of THE DAY:

SHOCKING:
Arnold Schwarzenegger has quit & will not be returning to the “Celebrity Apprentice”. Did anyone watch it? I did—-once!

MORE SHOCKING:
President Trump tweeted that Mr. Schwarzenegger was fired -he didn’t quit “Celebrity Apprentice”. In fact, truth be known, the Russian government conspired to have Arnold fired.

Tj’s Words of Wisdom–These are my own personal mantras –Enjoy!

Life is not a spectator sport –Play to WIN!

#redlobster #celebrityapprentice #makeamericagreat #amazonprime

Another Lesson–Damn It!

WJJ and I love to watch Jeopardy. Watching that show keeps me very humble.
Sometimes I’m really good + most times I’m adequate at best. But WJJ and I love to watch the show, answer the questions and often times, we will comment on the contestants.

Most often we make harmless remarks like, “She might be smart, but she sure isn’t savvy”. Or “Someone should tell him to get a haircut.” These contestants are perfect strangers and it’s just Walter and I making small talk.

Several weeks ago, Jeopardy had a contestant who just kept winning. Obviously, she was incredibly intelligent, but it seemed to end there. I commented that she had an awful haircut, didn’t smile and seemed to have no personality. She won six consecutive games and over $100,000. When she finally lost, I said that perhaps she could take the Dale Carnegie Course “How to Win Friends and Influence People” and then a makeover.

Shortly thereafter, Jamie (our son) asked if I had heard about the Jeopardy Champion who had died before her episodes aired. I hadn’t. Well in fact the contestant who died was Cindy Stowell –the very same contestant who I had chastised for her appearance. Cindy did not have a sudden horrible accident. No, Cindy died of cancer some three weeks before her episodes aired. In fact, when she appeared on the show, she and only a handful of staffers including Alex Trebek even knew she was sick.

Her lifetime dream was to compete on Jeopardy. So with Stage 4 cancer she went through the preliminaries, the in-person test and of course competed and won. Cindy Stowell donated all her winnings to cancer research. Fortunately, Jeopardy sent her the episodes beforehand so she and her family could watch before it was aired and before she died.

So why am I sharing all this? That’s simple. When I found out about Ms. Stowell, I felt horrible. I had made snarky comments about this dying woman. It doesn’t matter whether or not I knew in advance. It doesn’t matter that I was home and only talking to WJJ. What does matter is “nasty” is still “nasty”.

I said several prayers and asked forgiveness –from both God and Ms Stowell. And further I have decided that whether it’s a Kardashian’s bum or a bad facelift, or a non-smiling person—no more negative comments from this woman.

You know, just when you think you learned your lessons, God in his infinite wisdom teaches you a few more. I just have to keep remembering what my Mother said, “If you don’t have something good to say then say nothing at all.

#jeopardy #lesson #kardashian

Divorce

Are meatballs grounds for divorce? Last night my husband WJJ made the most amazing meatballs EVER–yes, Mia Pisacano-Pompi & Mirella Monascalco. The best meatballs EVER! (Better than my Nanna’s)

To prepare them, I know he used our Country Gourmet Home– Mama’s Italian Blend Seasoning Mix and Mama’a Meatloaf Mix both of which will soon be part of our Wine Decadence Gourmet Food products. But he won’t tell me what other ingredients he used nor will he tell me exactly how he made them.

We had pasta and meatballs and thanks to Shirin Brenick’s suggestion, we enjoyed our Altvs wine with this yummy Italian meal. Our dinner was fabulous –the meatballs were “to die for”. HOWEVER, WJJ refuses to give me his meatball recipe. I’m serious. He said “If I tell you –I’ll have to kill you”. After all, he is Agent 007

Walter is an “only child Leo” and he doesn’t really like to share. Actually nor do I. But come on …it’s only a recipe. And I NEED that recipe so I can share it with my friends, family and our Wine Decadence Consultants.

I am now developing my strategy. I’ll check the kitchen to see if he wrote the recipe for future reference. I’ll remind him it’s the Holiday Season.. the Season of love and SHARING. And finally, if all else fails….. remember I was in the lingerie business –so I just may have to resort to….”The Power of the Bedroom”.

I’ll keep you posted.

#winedecadence #divorce #meatballs #undercoverwear

Long Awaited Friendship

Several months ago I was contacted via Facebook about my 50th high school class reunion. Now I can certainly go into a diatribe about how quickly time flies and how it is impossible to be this old, but I won’t. By the way, I was the youngest member of the class just in case you were wondering.

My high school days were not particularly joy-filled. I grew up in Lawrence, Massachusetts and before entering high school; I was very smart, pretty, popular and frankly quite amazing. We moved from Lawrence to Methuen and as a freshman at Tenney Memorial High School, I was completely out of my comfort zone and became insecure, unpopular, and not very smart. To illustrate my unhappiness, let me share with you that when I entered high school I weighed 94 pounds and when I graduated, I weighed 152 pounds. Can you say miserable???

So when I realized that Tenney High School was having this special reunion I was not particularly sure I wanted to attend. However, everyone I love besides my husband still lives in the area –so that was a good reason to go back to Methuen and attend. Plus I did have a few friends I would like to see like Theo, Ginny, Valerie and Cheryl.

My sister told me I should attend for one very important reason. She said, “You look really good for your age, you should go and show the men what they missed out on.” Those of you who know my sister Chris must be laughing hysterically. Well that was not exactly a driving force. But maybe it would be fun.

The committee had been working hard to organize this event. Dan, Sarina Patricia and Anne were names that I remembered. If my fading memory served me, they were all very nice. No, I wasn’t particularly close to them, but certainly I had no animosity. Attending could be fun.

As luck would have it, my niece’s wedding was 4 weeks before the reunion & it was being held in Boston. Now one might think that the timing would be ideal. No shot. There is no way, that I could convince WJJ to leave Hawaii and spend 6 weeks in Boston. So unfortunately, I decided that I was not going to go to my class reunion.

I was somewhat disappointed. And as the “reunion chatter” continued, I was eager to hear more about the activities. Anne was a driving force in encouraging all to attend. During the process, I learned a lot about Anne. She now lived in Florida. Her husband Dick had passed away from Cancer a couple of years ago. From all the Facebook posts, I discovered that they had a remarkable relationship that was filled with smiles, fun, laughter and lots of love. I also learned that Anne had achieved professional success. And I’ll be darned; Anne and I had the exact same political views. Part of me wonders why we never became friends. But that was a long time ago, and I’m sure we were both very different.

I became more disappointed that I had chosen not to attend the reunion. That would have been a perfect time to connect & reconnect with everyone especially Anne.

Shortly before the reunion, Anne announced on her closed Facebook page, that she would not be attending the Tenney High School 50th class reunion. She shared that she had Cancer and the trip would be much too difficult. Obviously, we were all shocked. There had not been one indication that she was ill. For the next few months, Anne’s post continued to be upbeat while she “talked politics”, talked about her husband, shared photos and briefly updated us on her health.

A few days ago, Anne shared that her Cancer has spread very quickly. As she said, “It’s everywhere.” Hospice has been brought in and perhaps she and Dick will be spending Christmas together.

So one would think that this is a devastatingly sad story. But it’s not. I’ve never spoken to Anne personally. All our correspondence has been through Facebook and Private Messaging. Anne is smart, witty, caring and loving. Although it’s only been months, I feel like I have had a long-standing friendship with this great lady.

Anne continues to be a ray of sunshine. Instead of feeling resentment and pity for herself, she embraces the fact that she will soon be back with the man she has loved–no, the man she adores. Soon she will be in Dick’s arms –which is where she wants to be.

There is no anger in Anne. She has handled Dick’s death and her illness with grace and elegance. And now, there is a sense of peace and perhaps even joy. While she has continued to breathe (with difficulty) each day and even on occasion to smile, laugh and enjoy life, it seems to me the day Dick died –he took Anne’s heart with him. Her body has been on this earth, but her Heart and Soul have been with Dick.

Soon she will join him. Soon he will wrap his arms around his beautiful wife. Soon they will be complete again. And unfortunately, soon, we will loose a remarkable woman. No, I didn’t know Anne in high school and that makes me sad. But in the last six months, I have learned to respect and “yes” love this woman for all that she represents.

More than likely, I will not have an opportunity to chat with Anne. That’s unfortunate. But I can assure you, that sometime in the future Anne, Dick, Walter and I will have our very special “reunion”. And it will be like “old times” where we talk about high school and Bea’s Sandwich Shop and what it felt like growing up in the Merrimack Valley.

In the meantime, Anne relax, close your eyes and know that soon Dick will welcome you with that same smile, warm embrace and tender kiss that you know so well. And finally Anne, thank you for sharing your journey and thank you for being my friend.

#reunion #dying #love #friends

Greek Stuffing

My Mother always made the most delicious Greek Stuffing on Thanksgiving.
It consisted of Hamburger, onion, rice, Pignole nuts, walnuts, tomato sauce and lots of spices. Don’t bother looking it up the on any online recipe sites because it just doesn’t exist – other than my Mother’s handwritten copy, which I have.

Since my Mother has gone to heaven, my sisters and I have attempted to replicate her recipe. No matter how hard we try and now matter how exact we are, it never comes out as good as our Mother’s. And for those of you who are thinking that perhaps my Mother purposely left out an ingredient or two, you obviously never met my Mother. She would NEVER want any of us to fail, so I can assure you that the recipe she gave us is accurate. But obviously, we are doing something wrong because it’s just not the same.

So it’s Thanksgiving and it’s time to make the Greek Stuffing. So as I was shopping for the hamburger, as always I chose the very lean –low fat. As I was moving away from the meat department, I halted. Wait a minute–my Mother certainly never bought low fat anything. Being Italian and Greek, we ate meatballs and sausage and lasagna with rich ricotta cheese.

Have I discovered my Mother’s “secret”? Yes, I went back to the meat department and picked up the “fatty” hamburger. While part of me was excited another part of me began to have anxiety. “Why”, you ask?

Because we have many social events in the next few weeks, I want to look good–really good. I LOVE the Greek Stuffing. No really LOVE Greek Stuffing. And let me assure you that there is NOTHING low calorie in the recipe. And now add in the fatty meat.

So when I got home, I started debating whether or not to actually make the stuffing.
After all, Walter will make the bread stuffing & I’m not that fond of it, so I can certainly only have a tiny bit. I’ll stuff myself (pardon the pun) on the turkey.

I know if I make the Greek Stuffing, I’ll eat it. If I eat it, I’ll gain weight. If I gain weight, the dresses and gowns I plan to wear, won’t fit. If my gowns don’t fit properly I’ll be miserable. And “no” for me it is impossible to only “eat a little” of my Greek Stuffing.

I was having a Tiffany vs. Tiffany mental debate last night. To make it or not to make it. …That is the question. Let me invite you into one of my typical debates. “Tiffany, just don’t make it. But it is part of our Thanksgiving tradition. But you know you’ll feel fat! Then again, it’s only one day. But you’ll be eating it all week. But is so worth it –isn’t it. But you don’t want to gain weight.

Finally, I decided no Greek Stuffing this year. End of story…. Not quite!

My sister Charlene called. And her first question was, “So do you think we will finally master Mom’s Greek Stuffing?” Ever so meekly, I whispered, “Well Charl, I’ve decided I’m not going to make it this year.” Before I could even attempt to share my reasoning, the floodgates of Greek Guilt opened wide.

“How can you not make Mom’s stuffing on Thanksgiving? …Are you serious?” She continued, “Mom’s stuffing and her stuffed dates are part of her legacy to us.” Did Charlene stop there? Oh no, she didn’t. “It’s non-negotiable, Tiffany, you have to make the stuffing and the dates.” For a moment, I had forgotten about the dates that are stuffed with walnuts and rolled in white sugar. Oh great more carbs and vacant calories.

I was still pondering my decision, when my sister Chris called me. She continued where Charlene left off. Now the irony is Chris never makes the stuffing and is bone thin –but as she explained –with absolutely no logic –I am the oldest so I have to maintain tradition. Just because she is married to Steve who is Jewish does she really think we are doing “Fiddler on the Roof”? TRADITION!!

As you’ve probably guessed, I made the stuffing and the dates. Who cares if I look fat for the next month? Of course I do, but truth be told on this Thanksgiving, I’d rather be thinking of my Mother than worrying about looking fat. For those of you that might be wondering if my thinking is a bit convoluted and this really is a “cop out” because I want to indulge in eating something I love, you’re obviously not Greek or Italian. For us, it’s those fond memories that create the warmth and love of Family. I can assure you, my sisters and I believe that our Mother will be watching and laughing as we eat our stuffing and say, “Ok, this is not as good as Mom’s!” However, I’ll bet my “fatty hamburger” might just do the trick.

And finally, for my Hawaii friends, when you see me over the next few weeks, you better say, “Oh Tiffany, you look soooo healthy!” No doubt that means my fuller face and fuller figure is a sure sign that I’ve gained weight. But it will be so worth it.
Hey, maybe I can buy a very full muu muu, send it off to Kim Nelson from Bling by Zing + have her put lots of rhinestones on it. Got my solution!

Well we shall how the stuffing turns out. One thing for sure–thank you Charl & Chris for “gentle encouragement”. And thank you Mom for your recipe and more importantly thank you for all you have given me my sisters and myself. You would be very proud of the love we share!

#kimnelson #thanksgivingstuffing #blingbyzing

Bossy vs Nasty

I’m just a little confused. A couple of years ago, Sheryl Sandberg COO of Facebook created a movement called “Ban Bossy”. It suggested that young girls should not be called Bossy. At that time, I wrote a blog saying that I did not agree with the negative interpretation of the word bossy.

Some of you may remember that my cousin “squealed” on me and told my Mother that everyone at school thought I was bossy. Of course I had a perfectly reasonable explanation. At only 8 years old, I shared with my Mother that I seemed to be the only one who had any original ideas or leadership skills. I’m sure that does not surprise you.

Let’s fast forward to the here and now. While I have only shared my political views with a few of my friends, most of you know where I stand. Frankly, both Presidential candidates could “use improvement”. I have met both –obviously on different occasions. In my opinion, both are flawed. The Country could have done better.

As you know, at the end of the third mud-slinging debate, Donald Trump called Hillary Clinton “nasty”. The media was all over him. Imagine a man calling a woman nasty!!!

Well this morning when I turned on the news, there was a tirade of nasty women remarks. No, Donald was not “at it again” this time, it was Elizabeth Warren.
Sen. Warren hammered Trump predicting “nasty women” will mobilize to elect Hilary Clinton. “Nasty women are tough. Nasty women are smart. And nasty women vote. We nasty women are going to march our nasty feet to cast our nasty votes to get you out of our lives forever,”

So let me be clear. Women find the term “being bossy” offensive. But we want to embrace the term “Nasty”. Am I missing something here? Or is this just politics as usual.

For those of you supporting Hillary, that is your choice. I will not make any political comments. However, if you are a woman who chooses to vote for Mrs. Clinton, please do so as a smart, strong, tough loving woman who wants the best for your Country, your Community and your Family.

I’m not nasty. I hope you are not nasty. I don’t want my granddaughter to be nasty. I certainly don’t have friends who are nasty. And finally, voting is not nasty. But we can all agree…. This is one NASTY election.

#HILLARY #TRUMP #NASTY #BANBOSSY

Tiffany’s Got Talent

There are things I do really well. There are other things that I do not do well. And there are things that I think I do well.

For example:
I think I can sing. –Walter disagrees. Excuse me, I sing a “mean” I’m an Undercover Agent and an amazing “Happy Birthday Mr. President”

I think I drive really well –everyone who has driven with me disagrees. (You mean you’re not supposed to drive between the yellow lines)

And I know I can “do” accents really, really well. Many of you have heard my “That’s Nice” joke where I emulate a Southern Belle. I would surely give myself an A+ on that one. But my latest and best accent is that of Mel B.

When Niccie is in Hawaii, one of our favorite programs to watch is America’s Got Talent. We take it very seriously. While we don’t have “X” buzzers, we do provide an X arm crossing complete with a “zonk” sound when we don’t like a contestant.

Mel B is my favorite AGT judge. I love her looks, her style, and of course her accent.
She is fabulous. Whenever AGT is on, I use my Mel B impersonation throughout the entire show. For some strange reason, Walter, Jamie, Cheryl and Niccie all think that I sound like a cross between Jon Snow and Frankenstein. They are wrong. I am good.

Mel B is my “act”. While Jamie and Niccie have jokingly tried to emulate her and think they can do it better than I –all I have to do is give them a “Tiffany look” and they quickly stop. Again, I am “Mel B”.

Jamie, Cheryl and Niccie are back in Boston. So it’s just WJJ and me. Last night as we were watching AGT of course, I “did” Mel. To my great surprise, Walter decided that he could do a better Mel B voice than I. So he started. I politely asked him to stop. He kept going. Again, I said, “You know better, I am Mel B, please stop.” But just to annoy me, WJJ continued.

I’m sorry I had no choice. I had to beat him. And beat him I did. In our TV room and in our bedroom I have lots of FOM pillows. Those are the little pillows that are filled with tiny beads. I LOVE my FOM pillows. I hug my FOM pillows; I sleep with my FOM pillows and yes, travel with my FOM pillows. As WJJ persisted in annoying me, I discovered that FOM pillows are “weapon of choice”.

In order to stop WJJ’s horrific Mel B impersonation, I was compelled to repeatedly hit Walter over and over again with my FOM pillows. There he lay reclined on the sofa –with no defense whatsoever. I felt like Rocky Marciano with my FOM pillows as boxing gloves. I hit him in the arm, then a quick left jab and then one straight to his belly. Over and over again, I trounced him. Whack Whack Whack — Needless to say, the result was hilarious laughter. Finally we called a truce because frankly I was getting quite tired–though I would not admit that. Note to self: FOM pillows were not designed to be a lethal weapon and can separate at the seams with all those tiny little beads flying everywhere. Cleanup is a “bitch”. But I felt victorious …last night.

This morning, per usual WJJ and I went into the pool. I had no idea our “war of the accents” would continue. He started but this time I was “weapon free” While I have mastered combat with a FOM pillow, WJJ is the Michael Phelps of pool splashing. He can create a tsunami of waves that hit you from every angle. His revenge was sweet. And I was soaked.

Ahhh. The battle continues. What will be my next weapon? I’d try whipped cream, but we all know where that would lead. And I learned a long time ago…. don’t use whip cream for anything other than dessert in warm weather…. not pleasant.

So I am on a quest to continue to find my next weapon and of course fine tune my Mel B voice –Oh my gosh I could even try singing like Mel B –that would definitely be “Off the Chain”.

I HATE CANCER

Today was a Glorious Day. May I please tell you why?

A dear friend of mine (whom I shall call ‘Cora”) was diagnosed with Stage 2 Breast Cancer about 6 weeks ago. The treatment is chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation.

Cora is a very private woman. On July 2nd she and her husband (whom I shall call “Bill”) were with WJJ and me for my birthday. She was “quiet” but nothing else seemed unusual. A couple of days later, Bill called and shared the news about her cancer. Further he said that Cora did not want ANYONE to know about it. Ironically at the exact same time, another dear friend Lulu was also diagnosed with cancer. Lulu wanted all of her friends to know about her cancer so that we could all pray for her. Throughout my life, I have learned that each person handles Cancer differently.

From the moment I found out about Cora, I was texting Bill often. I encouraged him to “let her do this her way”, but also wanted to insure that Cora had a “support team” to help her through this ordeal. I’m sure with the gentle coaxing of Bill, three days later; Cora called me and shared “the news’. Cora is in her mid-50, stunning with long brown hair.

Once we officially knew about the cancer and before her treatment began, we invited Cora and Bill to our home. Being all too familiar with cancer and of course being the rather “pushy” person that I have been known to be, I strongly suggested to Cora she had to get her hair cut–IMMEDIATELY. (We all know what chemotherapy does to one’s hair). She asked, “Why?” and I gently explained that it was to her advantage to do so.

Before her chemo even started, Cora followed my suggestion and had her haircut to a “bob”. When she came over again, I KNEW that hair was not cut short enough. If you know anyone who has endured chemotherapy, you know ….cut that hair SHORT –because if you don’t the trauma of having your hair fall out with bald spots showing up everywhere is almost unbearable.

Her first week of chemo was not good. She got an infection. So they put her on antibiotics. Week 2, she was still very week. So we knew she was not really up to “socializing” but we also figured out that her family needed some sense of normalcy. So we invited Bill and the family for a BBQ. As always, our son Jamie was fabulous–friendly, fun, and incredibly witty. He also did all the cooking!

I have been in constant contact with Bill. My friend has had NO desire to be among her friends or in fact socialize at all. While a few more people know about her cancer… again…. Cora is very private. Plus she’s ill and lethargic. She is coping with finding out that she has cancer, undergoing chemo and knowing that she will have to have surgery and radiation. She has a long road ahead of her.

As women, I know how we feel about our hair. It is often our “crowning glory”.
But as I stated earlier, I have witnessed what chemo does to one’s body and, of course, one’s hair. So I repeatedly shared with Bill that Cora’s hair needed to be cut SHORT… VERY SHORT… VERY VERY SHORT. Further I half jokingly said, I would be delighted to “do the cutting”.

Today is our 46th Anniversary…. As you know I married WJJ when I was nine. So while I was quietly celebrating all the joys of my life, I got a call from Bill. He said, “She’s ready… Bring your scissors over and I’ll make the martini.”

I took a deep breath and said, “I’ll be right over.” I had not seen Cora in three weeks. But I gathered my brush, my comb, my rollers– (that’s how I cut) and off I went. (Some of my UndercoverWear Agents will remember I cut Yvonne Hebert’s hair at our theme night at Rendezvous. She was a good sport and I did a GREAT job)

When Cora answered the door, I was not fully prepared for how she looked.
Her skin is sallow. She has lost weight and her normally beautiful hair looked dull and thinner. My goal was to cut her hair SHORT, but keeping a little ‘style” –knowing full well –that it would be very temporary. But I figured…steps…baby steps.

Cora wanted to cut her hair in the bathroom –made sense. But I was not going to stick her in a small room. No we were doing it in the kitchen/entertainment area with her family around. Do you think I cared where the hair was going to fall? Nope!

As I started brushing her hair, I realized that my styling thoughts might have to change. Clumps of Cora’s hair gathered on the brush. I started cutting. At first I was methodical, taking three inches off each layer. Then I would brush it. –More hair falling in my hands and to the ground–lots of hair. I was not fully prepared for this.

Thank God I have some acting ability. I joked and talked about my exorbitant fees of being an “on call” stylist. Her children were there and I could see the fear in their eyes, while they also seemed grateful that for the first time in weeks, Cora was talking and even smiling.

One of the girls gathered the hair and tossed it into the trash. As I continued to cut, Cora mentioned that she had not brushed her hair in 3 days because the last time she did, lots of hair fell out. I understood & I continued to brush.

Cora’s first bald spot appeared in front. That’s when I knew —95% of her hair had already fallen out. So I kept cutting and brushing and preparing Cora that — I was cutting it all off. Despite the fact that the chemo had already done its damage, I said, “Cora, we are taking control of your hair –that damn cancer is not.” Ok I lied.

The more I brushed the more hair dropped. Actually I didn’t have to brush it, I merely had to touch her hair and it just kept falling out. There was one “stubborn” spot in the back that I cut within a quarter of an inch –but I’m sure that will be gone tomorrow.

Several times, I had her look in the mirror before completion. She had prepared herself. Like most men, Bill had no idea how to do or what to say. His best comment, “Cora, you have a really nicely shaped head”. Thank you Bill –LOL

When we finished, Cora looked in the mirror and said, “OK, we did it”. She then quickly put on a turban. She was cold–she said. Probably not valid –she probably wanted to hide her baldness even from herself. That will change–she will deal. Cora is strong.

Bill had shared with me that the Dr. said Cora had to start leaving the house and get some exercise. So starting tomorrow “because I’m trying to lose weight”, Cora and I will take a 15 minute walk each day.

Again, using my God given “gentle manipulation skills”, I suggested to Cora that she needed a manicure (her nails are normally perfect) and that tomorrow, time to start putting on that makeup again.

Further, I shared with Cora that she and I are going to have fun on “wig day”. As many of you know, thanks to my many roles in UndercoverWear, I own 30 or 40 wigs. So with Cora’s family and Cora we were joking about being Marilyn Monroe or Cher. BTW, Cora has already bought a natural looking wig –but we still MUST have wig day. Why? Cancer is horrible and the treatment is horrendous. .

In the next few weeks Cora will probably get worse. We MUST give Cora some semblance of fun and humor and enjoyment–no matter how small or how silly. She, like every Cancer patient, has to take as much control as she can. In any small way, she must take the power away from Cancer! As difficult as it is, she cannot see herself as a victim of Cancer. She must see herself as a Conqueror of Cancer…the ultimate success a Cancer Survivor.

After all this, one might ask, “Why was this a glorious day?” As I walked in the house, I thanked God that He has given me the humor and wisdom to help others.
I cannot tell you how difficult it was when I walked in and saw my beautiful friend who was now, now thin, rather yellow, with sadness in her eyes.

Words cannot describe how much control I had to have when the first large clump of Cora’s fell into my hands or when I saw that very large bald spot as I continued to brush. As tears were ready to start forming in my eyes…. God gave me the words and strength to say “Tiffany knock it off”.

Let me be clear… My emotions waned in comparison to what Cora was feeling. This is her journey. And she will handle it in HER way. I learned a long time ago, that now matter what book you read and what advice you get, you are only a support person to a Cancer patient, they have the right do it “their way”.

I knew that because I had been “called upon” to help Cora deal with her new reality, I had been blessed. And it was God who gave me the skills to be humorous, the strength to not show any sad emotion, and the wisdom to “council Cora” while still reinforcing that this is her journey–this is her battle.

Walter and Jamie asked me how everything went. And while I “shared” a bit, for some reason despite the fact that Cora’s entire family were watching and participating in this “experience”, I felt strongly that this was just “our little secret”.

So why I am sharing it with YOU? Because you don’t know who Cora is! And I feel the lesson here is much too valuable not to share. What is that lesson? If you are ever called upon to help a cancer patient win their battle, please do whatever you can with your God given talents to help them & guide, them, but always allow them to move forward with their strength and dignity. Remember always, it is their journey–it is their battle and just pray that they win!

PS. Lulu’s surgery went well and we are waiting for the biopsy reports. Please pray for her … and Cora!

No “If’s, And’s or BUTTS about it!”

WJJ and I had a great weekend at the Four Season Hotel. The Hotel has 3 different swimming pools–the Adult only pool (which is an infinity pool), the Children’s pool (which initially looks no different than a ‘regular’ pool) and the Relaxation Pool. After a long beach walk, we inadvertently stopped at Children’s pool, where one set of parents, grandparent and two young children –(probably 3 and six months) were sunbathing and swimming.

Despite the fact that we realized we were at the “wrong” pool, we actually enjoy watching young children having fun in the pool so we stayed. BTW, initially a couple of staff members walked by saying that the group at the other side of the pool was Goldie Hawn, Kate Hudson and their families. They were at the Hotel filming a movie. But I’m sure they were mistaken.

Anyway, both the Mother and Grandmother looked great. The Mother was wearing a very skimpy bikini. She had obviously gotten her body back into shape very quickly. I was certainly impressed. When she turned around, WJJ and I noticed that she was wearing a very skimpy Brazilian thong bikini. Now I have been to Aruba where there are nude beaches. I have been to Monte Carlo, where everyone is topless and I have been to San Paolo where everyone wears those thong bikinis regardless of age or size. And frankly this gal had an amazing derriere!

BUTT, (pardon the pun), I commented to Walter that I did not think wearing that bathing suit at a “kids pool “ was appropriate. If she wanted to wear it at home, or at the adult pool, or even walking the beach I guess that’s OK. But wearing at a pool that is designated for children, I felt it was inappropriate.

For the first time EVER, WJJ accused me of “old fashioned thinking”. So I am reaching out to all of you. Has my age influenced my opinion? Have I now become a dowdy opinioned old lady? Am I wrong? Or is it plain old jealousy?

Please let me know what you think. BTW, if you are male, you would have enjoyed the “back view”.

Why Is It?

Why is it?

• When we’re younger we want to be older?
• When we’re older, we want to be younger?
• When we are waiting for someone we love to return home, it takes forever?
• When we’re running late, time flies by?
• When we purchase things they are precious and valuable, but when we try to sell them, they are “old and useless”?
• When we’re dating we find so many things humorous and yet when we’re married those very same things are really annoying?
• That some people live too long and others die too soon?
• Bad things happen to good people?
• That only maturity brings wisdom?
• That grandchildren bring us such joy?
• That as you mature, you suddenly hear yourself saying those same words your mother said?
• That when we’re young, you love to “sleep in” and when we’re older you can’t seem to sleep at all?
• That nuns live longer than most other women? (Oh, we know the answer to that…no husband, no children, and no grandchildren to worry about!) My uncle would often joke, “I wish I was a sterile orphan!”
• We spend the first 40 years of our life collecting things and the next 40 years trying to figure out a way to get rid of it?
• That a round pizza comes in a square box?
• That the number of hot dogs in a package never matches the number of rolls in a package?
• That people post things on Facebook that are really personal, really dumb and/or really controversial? Either they think nobody is reading Facebook –then why post it? Or they think everyone is interested in their mundane activity. Seriously, do I really care about what type of donut someone is eating?
• That actors get paid zillions of $$$ while teacher can’t make a proper living?
• That babies make us giggle?
• That the elderly are often forgotten?
• That life was easier when we were younger?
• That eggs were good for us, and then bad for us, now they are good again?
• That so many people are now committing suicide?
• Our nightly “beauty” routine now takes us 45 minutes?
• Our time and our friendships become much more valuable?
• That the US is 19.3 trillion in debt?
• People tend to talk too much and not listen enough?
• That everything is now controversial –“Am I feeling like a man or a woman or a transvestite or lesbian or transgender or binary today? Just tell me which bathroom I should use!
• And finally…why is it I have so many unanswered questions