Caregiving, Cookies and Self-Care by MJ Santangelo

Caregiving, Cookies and Self-Care By MJ Santangelo I’m a wife, a mother of two, a caregiver for my mom and a struggling author. I love warm barely cooked chocolate chip cookies straight out of the oven. Oh, who am I kidding sometimes they don’t even make it to the oven! I don’t endorse eating raw cookie dough, you know because of salmonella blah, blah, blah. Anyway, seven years ago, due to some new diagnoses my mom’s health became too much for her to manage on her own. So I stepped in to help. I quickly found myself thrown into a balancing act I was not prepared for. When looking back on those first few years when my life turned itself upside down I remember one of my biggest fears … [Read more...]

Proud Quitter – Guest post by Kari

Starting on Monday. What an ideal concept, right? Like Monday is the automatic reset button for everything and anything you've ever started or attempted to stop in your life. Diets. Quitting smoking. Exercising. Mending fences with someone. We've all said it but I wonder how many people have actually stuck to it. I can say that, for myself, I have failed miserably at most things I have said this about except quitting smoking. I loved everything about smoking. I loved the act of buying the packs of cigarettes, slamming them unopened on my palm to "pack" them (apparently this helps them burn longer), unwrapping the cellophane, and lighting it up. There was nothing like the first … [Read more...]

Every Parent’s Nightmare -Terror in Parkland

**Note: While this blog has been kind of dormant on and off over the years, I thought this may be a good place to post this, especially with the title Starting on Monday--we can't put this off anymore, more of our children will die. This was MY TOWN. MY KIDS' SCHOOL. I SUBBED HERE. I can't keep quiet. Angry. I am so angry. I’m sad, I’m scared. I have been crying for 3 days straight. My oldest son (graduated) was editor of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Yearbook. My younger son will be going there in a year and a half. I have substituted there. This is my home. When I see a mass shooting on TV, I cry with the nation, but it never really hits home until it actually hits your home. There … [Read more...]

This Big Girl Is Gonna Do It!

I keep starting and stopping this blog. I get really into it when I'm on a new diet, then after a few weeks, when I'm back to my normal eating, I abandon this page. Sure, I lose 10-20 lbs, but I put it back on, with some interest within weeks. I'm a sugar junkie. And I mean junkie in a very real sense. It's a drug to me. I can't remember the last day I went without a sweet treat. But it isn't just sugar, it's carbs as well. And cheese. I look like I'm 8 months pregnant. I have front butt. I'm a size 20. But my husband and older son struggle to GAIN weight (fuckers). My younger son and I just look at food and another jelly roll appears. THEY can eat whatever they want and do. And … [Read more...]

Guest Post – Angelisa Stone

I wrote a children’s book. Not to make money. Not to get rich and famous. Not to win any awards. I did it to simply carry on a tradition that my mother started with us when we were children. I wanted more people to share in the joy of what we’ve always done, The Wishing Santa. My daughter is five-years-old. For a treat for all of her classmates in her kindergarten class, I went in and read them the book. They liked it. One boy picked his nose. Another girl stood up and showed me how her dress swirled out. Emersyn, my daughter, said the words aloud with me—she’s heard it quite a few times. But when their teacher told them that I was the writer and creator of the book, you would have thought I … [Read more...]

Tuesday Check-in 1-19-16 A Waffley Week

Yesterday was a holiday, and calories never count on holidays, right? Well that's my story and I'm sticking to it! In fact, it was a holiday weekend! My 18 year old son and his girlfriend came home this weekend for a music festival and two shows. My son is a singer/guitar player, so I spend a lot of time in bars eating bar food and running up tabs so he gets invited back (lame excuse, but I'm sticking to it!). It was a cool weekend because he had some really famous musicians come and sit in with him. Even Gregg Allman came and played at a show my son did with Gregg's son. (Unfortunately, my son wasn't on those two songs, but it's still cool). And, you know, festivals mean food truck food. … [Read more...]

Really and Truly….Starting on Monday

I got a treadmill for Christmas! It's been in my room, all set up since last Friday, over a week ago. I haven't used it yet. I was still on vacation. Not to mention the awful cold I've had. Today though, it's Monday. The first Monday of the New Year! New habits I'm adopting: (small changes!) WATER WATER WATER!!!!  I suck at drinking water. I need to set an alarm to make me drink! 15 minutes on the treadmill a day for now (let's not push it). No more Diet coke. Tracking on My Fitness Pal Wearing and using my fitbit daily (works with My Fitness Pal!) At least 3 servings of fruit and veggies a day (I currently have none). Cut cookies/sweet snacks down to weekends only. (OK, … [Read more...]