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Ovarian cancer will be diagnosed in 1 of 72 women; 14,000 will die. Please know the symptoms and risk factors: read Outshine: An Ovarian Cancer Memoir. Books at www.amazon.com. ALL PROCEEDS GO TO GYNECOLOGIC CANCER RESEARCH. I am a member of Rave Reviews Book Club and Rave Writer's International Society of Authors, and Patient Leadership Council for Tesaro, Inc. I WILL NOT USE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS FOR ANY OTHER PURPOSE THAN CONTACTING YOU DIRECTLY. ALL ORIGINAL CONTENT COPYRIGHT 2011 THROUGH 2018.

Friday, January 29, 2016


                       Do you sometimes say to yourself, "If only I...."?

If only I had not worked so much...

   If only I had been a better parent or better child...

      If only I had tried more things (taken risks)...

         If only I had spent more time with loved ones...

            If only I had pursued my dreams...

               If only I had taken better care of myself...

                   If only I had done more to help others...

    As we travel through life how many times have we bypassed opportunities, was not in a kind or generous mood, or abused our health? The more advanced we become in our years these if only's often prey upon our minds.

    So I say to the younger generation:

          Do not be afraid to open doors, at least peek inside or perhaps walk through.

             Look at each moment as an opportunity to do or say something nice or helpful.

                Your body is the only one you will have, so cherish and nurture it. What you do today may
                        well determine your health for tomorrow.

                     People come into your life for a reason, whether family or friend. Learn from them, love
                         them, and let them love and teach you.

                          There are always risks to any decision or action, take the risk and learn from it.

Here are some quotes that can benefit any of us as we travel through life:

  • The hardest thing and the right thing are often the same.
  • We become what we repeatedly do. (Sean Covey)
  • Have enough love to trust love one more time, and always one more time. (Maya Angelou)
  • Life is not about finding yourself. It is about creating yourself. (George B. Shaw)
  • Why not go out on a limb? That is where the fruit is. (Will Rogers)
  • Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future. (Paul Boese) 

For those of us that have traveled the path of cancer perhaps are more aware of the "if only's". I write about it in my book Outshine: An Ovarian Cancer Memoir, because it was a large part of my learning to accept and live with cancer.

All proceeds go to ovarian/gynecologic cancer research.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016


Just as we are the guardians over animals so they are for us. Not only do they provide food, but they also can give us clothing, protection, tools, wisdom, companionship, and healing.

I recently met Mickey Hatcher, professional baseball player now retired. At one point in his long career he played for the Minnesota Twins (yea!). At the Twins Fantasy Camp he was sharing about his pet duck, Daffy. Mickey found the chick barely alive in a pond in front of his house. There was no sign of the chick's mother so he picked it up and took it back to his house. Mickey and his wife fed it a little with an eye dropper, warmed it up, and sent it love from their hearts. Over the next two years Daffy became a member of the household returning to the pond when he chose to, sleeping in the Hatcher kitchen at night, and becoming a friend to all the neighbors. Daffy is their "watch-dog" and companion.

We all know about the wonderful ministries dogs provide as service dogs to so many disabled people.
Did you know that dogs and cats have been shown to "sniff out" cancer? They can smell human urine or breath and react if there is cancer cells present.

Even the small (and pesty) fruit flies have antennas that are sensitive to illnesses, including cancer. In the trials, compounds applied directly to the fruit flies' antenna lit up with the increase of calcium, indicating cancer cells via a fluorescing sensor.  

Rats and honeybees have proven to be effective in detecting explosives hidden underground. Can this skill be used to detect diseases like cancer?

Scientists are working on a robot with the qualities of animals for sniffing out cancer.


A very important role for the animal and the human is that of companionship. Pets of all kinds provide love, purpose, protection, and health. Our skin is our largest organ and is affected by every other sense (smell, sight, taste, hearing). To me it is the most important sense. The healing that takes place from loving touch is immeasurable. I have witnessed it in nursing homes, hospitals, and homes. When a person strokes a pet endorphins are released in both the animal and the human. Endorphins are the chemicals that decrease anxiety, fear, and pain. They are healing!
When we have a pet it requires us to be involved with them: feeding, bathing, exercising, giving love and attention. But our pets also protect and help us.

I remember with happy memories I had from earliest childhood up to ten years ago: dogs, cats, horses, a white rat, birds, goldfish, and horses. They each brought me great joy (even the white rat!) and I hope I brought equal joy to each of them.

                                 GOD BLESS THE ANIMALS!

Saturday, January 9, 2016


          You cannot have mountains without valleys nor will valleys exist without mountains.

      When I am in the mountains or see one from a distance, I feel strong, protected, and peaceful.


The times of joy, peace, laughter, happy thoughts and just simply "warm and fuzzy" were the result of coming out of a valley or desert.
                           "I see no evidence of cancer," said the doctor.
                           "You have a healthy baby boy," said the doctor three times!
                           "I love you," by so many people and it is so special when my husband says it.
                           "Congratulations, your book won first prize."

There are three women friends who have been special people in my life for over 20 years. When the four of us get together there is LOTS of laughter, GREAT talks, and UNBELIEVABLE talks about anything and everything. Though one of us might be walking in the desert the other three are able to bring her up to the mountain step by step. There is trust, honesty, and compassion.

 As a teenager I spent many weekends in the desert because my dad loved to go rock-hunting there. For me the landscape was barren, unfriendly, and unwelcoming. I felt vulnerable and lonely. But, those also were years of great challenges, troubles, and fears.

What can we do for ourselves when we are out in the desert?
             1. Meditation or deep prayer is a powerful way to release fears and find peace.
             2. Exercise helps to move blood around, clear the mind, get endorphins flowing.
             3. Eating right. Turning to alcohol, sweets, and junk food only harm the body. During
                 times of stress the body needs foods that are high in vitamins/minerals, fiber, and 
             4. Share why you are in the valley. Often just saying the words out loud is enough to ease
                 the pain. True friends will be there to listen and only give well placed advice.
             5. Laughter is one of the best natural healers. When I was diagnosed with cancer and after
                 my surgery I watched "Laurel & Hardy," "Carol Burnett," and such shows. I avoided
                 negative people, television shows, and news articles.
              6. Don't forget to hug yourself! Go to a mirror and look deep into your eyes and smile at
                  the beautiful soul that is there.

From the times in the desert or low times of life we can learn from whatever challenge we are facing. It is an opportunity to take steps towards the mountain for a healthier and more fulfilling life.

My prayers are for those dear "cancer sisters" I have met and come to love and appreciate. May they have a lot more mountains than valleys in their lives. 

                      May you be on more mountaintops than valleys for the year 2016. 

Friday, January 1, 2016


Remembering the highlights of 2015:

                 Monthly lunches with Women for Hospice; raising money for Cornerstone Hospice.


Ovarian cancer lunches offering support, education, and fund raising at Teal Magnolia Lunch, Lunch-Bunch, and Waterman Hospital Gynecologic Cancer Support Group.      


                         Visits from Minnesota friends & family; laughter, tears, great talks.

                                Weekly golf outings...good exercise and great friends.

 Promoting Novy's Son at Barrel of Books & Games, Mt. Dora. A book about a man seeking acceptance and love from his father; however, uses unhealthy behaviors to do so. A rather common problem among men which I discovered while I was seeing clients as a nurse therapist.

Educating: Pharmacy students of U. of Fl., Am. Cancer Society, Survivorship Seminar, BlogRadio, Articles for Hormones Matter, Oncology Times, etc.

                        Weekly blog providing information, support and inspiration.  

 Trip of a Lifetime: In France as close to Mona Lisa as I could get; visiting Monet's home and gardens; seeing where my great-grandfather lived, schooled, and his exhibits; the house where my great-great grandfather was born and lived; on to the beautiful city of Barcelona and meeting Theresa Zanatta an ovarian cancer sister and professor; and then crossing the Atlantic on a cruise ship seeing the Rock of Gibraltar at night.

                        I am blessed to be alive 7 years after my diagnosis of ovarian cancer.
    My prayers for 2016 are to be blessed with good health and doing more educating about this too often deadly disease. 

                 I will soon be launching a new website and blog about being an author. It will support authors, favorite books, and views of readers. My second novel will be published in Feb. 2016. More news about this coming soon.

             As always I thank you for following my blog and supporting me. Thank you to my guest bloggers: Caroline Eudy, Dr. Michelle Bengston, Hayley Dubin, Ely Jacobs, Dr. MJ Logan, Karen Carlson, Janice Spina, Robin Maupin, and Elizabeth Scala. The ten countries that most visited my site are U.S.A., Russia, France, Ukraine, Germany, U.K., Canada, Australia, China, and Turkey.