Thursday, February 27, 2014

Can She Win the Cavallini?

Dear Shaynie,

Although I only recently started following your blog, I've been a lover of paper, journals, notebooks and pens for as long as I can remember.  Sometimes, when I need a pick-me-up, there's nothing better than wandering down the aisles of a well-stocked art supply or office supply store.  Thumbing through the blank notebooks and eyeing the gel pens in every color of the rainbow often is enough to lift my spirits.  A really bad day, though, might require a purchase, which is how I've come to have a small collection of Rhodia pads, as well as notebooks from Moleskine, Ciak, Miquel Rius, Clairefontaine and others, including a few Staples' classic black and white marble notebooks.

One Ecosystem notebook with a purple cover was my constant companion for much of 2011.  It's filled with notes from doctor's appointments, lists of questions for upcoming appointments, blood pressure readings, and output measurements from four Jackson-Pratt drains I had following some complex surgery I had during the summer of 2011. Thankfully, I wasn't sick (the surgery was prophylactic), and flipping through those pages from time to time reminds me of how right that tough decision was for me, how proud I am of myself for making it, and how far I've come in my recovery.  Other of my journals and notebooks are filled with lists, ideas, doodles, thoughts, sketches, favorite quotes, and more. A few others--their bindings unbroken and their pages sleek and crisp in their pure white emptiness--are awaiting the thoughts, ideas, lists and doodles that will fill them up and bring them to life. Oh, the potential...

Having said all that, I'm writing now so that I might have a chance to win the beautiful Cavallini Roma Lussa journal with its wonderfully marbled pages that you received from the company to give away.  Following the instructions in your most recent post, I'm pleased to tell you that:
  1. I have been following Journaling Journeys for several months and very much enjoy reading your posts.
  2. I recently visited Cavallini's website and my favorite thing, beside the leather journals, of course, is the decorative paper tape, especially the vintage office themed set!
  3. Journaling Journeys is now listed (with its link) on my blog roll...along with several other similarly-themed websites I've recently discovered.
  4. In addition to writing this letter to you via my blog, I will, as is my custom, spread the word via other social media channels, including Facebook and Twitter.  I also will leave comments on your post itself.
Many thanks to you and to Cavallini for the possibility of adding a true treasure to my small, but growing collection of journals and notebooks.  I hope to have an opportunity to write my own review of the exquisite red leather Cavallini soon!

All the best,
~ JanetheWriter.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A Tale of Two Hardware Stores

Monday night, while cooking dinner, I pulled the knob to open a kitchen drawer only to find the knob in my hand and a stripped (and too short) cabinet screw poking out where the knob had previously been affixed to the drawer.

After dinner, I removed the screw and the wooden drawer panel it was holding in place.  The cabinet screw and the knob went into a Ziplock bag and into my purse; the drawer panel sat on the counter.

On the way home from work on Tuesday, I stopped into Hardware Store #1.  The events that followed are best described in the letters and photo I posted on Facebook on Tuesday evening:

Dear Hardware Store #1,

Just because a customer is a woman, you shouldn't presume that she can't understand what you're saying or that you can "put one over" on her. If you'd listened to me, you could have sold me a package of cabinet screws. Instead, I'll never set foot in your store again.

~ Jane.

Dear Hardware Store #2,

Thank you for lettinYYg me explain the problem I was having with one of the drawers in my kitchen. Thanks, too, for taking the time to find just the right size cabinet screw to fix the problem. Next time I need something in the hardware store, you can be sure I'll come visit again.
Your friend,
~ Jane.
As my father is fond of saying, and as the photo above illustrates: “Ente gut, alles gut.”

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Another Kid in My Life

Last month I wrote this blog post about a few kids in my life to whom I am "Aunt Jane."

Now I have a new one to add to the list:  Duncan.

A little while ago, he sent me this photo:

There was a note that came along with it:  
Thanks again for my bone toy, Aunt Jane!!!
I promptly replied with this:
You're welcome, Duncan.  Your dads are raising you to be so polite.  Better than lot of others kids these days. xoxo.
Sweet Duncan sent this in response:

Love that kid!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Equal Time

Earlier today, I promised my sister I wouldn't use social media to check in here.  And I didn't.

However, I did not promise her I wouldn't blog about my experience, but don't worry, I'll spare you the gory details.

Nonetheless, if I'm truly going to advocate for cancer detection and prevention, I can't do it just for this test; I have to do it for this one, too. (As a BRCA2 mutation carrier, I am at increased risk of several types of cancer besides breast and ovarian.  These include pancreatic and primary peritoneal cancer, as well as melanoma. Although some early studies suggested a possible link between BRCA mutations and increased risk of colon cancer, it has not been confirmed in subsequent studies.)

Regardless, having recently turned 51, I fall within the demographic of the general population who should be screened for colon cancer. 

And with that, I'll leave you with a few statistics and this public service announcement about screening based on information from the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy:
Colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. Approximately 150,000 new cases are diagnosed every year in this country and nearly 50,000 people die from the disease. It has been estimated that increased awareness and screening would save at least 30,000 lives each year. Colorectal cancer is highly preventable and can be detected by testing even before there are symptoms. The American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy encourages everyone over 50, or those under 50 with a family history or other risk factors, to be screened for colorectal cancer.
Oh, one more thing:  The propofol-induced nap was amazing and the test results were completely normal.