Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving 2013

For those of you who don't know, Thanksgiving was the holiday that my dad, my sister, and I always spent together. My mom always worked on Thanksgiving, but never failed to prepare a feast for us to eat when she got home. We almost always had duck. At least it was a bird. 

Last night I had the opportunity to go out into the night (something I rarely do anymore) and listen to the great Denny Tuma play his saxophone and tell stories of my dad.  I was reminded of my dad's love for the almighty can of Fix A Flat. Denny told a story that took place in Decorah, Iowa one night on their way home from a gig they had played.  They got a flat tire and while Denny offered to change the tire because he was younger, my dad whipped out his can of Fix A Flat and proceeded to "fix" the flat tire. Denny had never seen the stuff before and was amazed. This was a story I had not heard until last night. A rare memory indeed that I will treasure always.

I presented Denny with a framed photo of a montage that contained my father's things last night. He was so moved that he let a couple tears roll down his cheeks. I was happy to give it to him as he was my father's best friend and band mate. 

This Thanksgiving, I'm reminded of the little things that make the difference in people's lives. It's a photo or a story or just spending time with loved ones. 
So enjoy that today, for time is so precious.

Happy Thanksgiving to you all.

Monday, November 18, 2013

2 Years, 1 Day

Two years ago I opted to change my life. Little did I know that it would be a blessing and a curse. I had bariatric surgery (the Sleve Gastrectomy procedure) to help me loose the extra weight that I had been carrying around since I was 10 years old.

So today, November 18, 2013 marks the 2 year and 1 day anniversary of the above mentioned surgery.  I took my measurements this morning, as I did last year and every month for the first year, so that I can see the progression or digression.  Here they are.

Weight=178 pounds (up 12 pounds from last year)
Hips=44.5 inches (up 2 inches and my pants tell me this)
Waist=34 inches (up 1 inch)
Bust=37.5 inches (up 1.5 inches, more boobies for me!)
Chest=34 inches (down half an inch)
Thighs= R=27.5, L=27.5 (up 2.5 inches and symmetrical)
Arms= R=14, L=14 (up 1 inch and symmetrical)

So while I've digressed a little bit, I am not worried about it as it's been about the same for the whole last year. I see the dietician and the doctor tomorrow and I'm sure they will be pleased with my stability, but at the same time last year, the dietician told me that 140 pounds was my "healthy" BMI range to shoot for. Not sure that I agree with her, but it's something to shoot for. 

Remember in the beginning that I did not set a weight loss goal, but rather my goal was simply to fit into my sister's clothes. While last summer I achieved that goal, now I must set a new one (or two) for the next year. 

This next year I would like to lose 28 pounds and get down to 150.
I would also like to start exercising more so that I can tone up instead of flab down.

I'm hoping with the new position at the Faribault Correctional Facility, I will achieve these goals.  That's a lot of walking and being on your feet, which burns way more calories than sitting on your ass charting about behaviors. 

Until next time,

Friday, November 15, 2013


Today I am at a crossroads in my life. I have choices to make. Hard choices.
I can choose to stay in my current position as the Lead in a group home or I can start a new career as a Corrections Officer at the Faribault Prison.
Do what I love and stay happy for less money or do what I'm unsure of unhappily for more money.
Those are my choices. 
This is why I'm at a crossroads.
So I prayed. I prayed to God in Heaven above to show me the way to the right choice. Because when you can't handle something, you should give it up to Him. So I did. It's in His hands now. 
I will trust that He will show me the right choice so that I can follow His plan and not mine.

Even though I work odd hours and sometimes long hours, I love my job. Although it's not a job if you enjoy what you do. And it's certainly not work.  It's a cush job for sure, but it's my family away from my family. The pay isn't all that wonderful, but the rewards are awesome.  When I see the crooked little smile on my girl and she gives me that giggle, that's what it's all about right there. My heart is in it. And the boss knows this, sees this, and loves me. She sees my potential and she's willing to work with me on it. She teaches me, not just preaches to me. And I like that about her.

So, hard choices to be made with some guidance from up above. I think I got this. 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013


14 years ago today I gave birth to my fourth and final child. I can remember my father coming to see me at 6:30 in the morning. I had asked him if he wanted to see her be born as this was the last grandchild and his last chance to experience such a thing. He declined and told me that only daddies should see their babies be born. He was such a modest man. He went home to bed as he had been working the night shift at Wal-Mart and was tired. Little did I know that 5 1/2 hours later, she'd be here.

Dr. Howell walked in at 11:58 a.m., put a glove on, and caught her head as she was coming out. I only pushed a couple times and there she was. I almost had to deliver her myself as the nurses were telling me to not push. Seriously, if you're an OB nurse, that's one thing that should NEVER come out of your mouth.

Two of my most favorite memories from the day you were born.
So, Miss Monique Louise Trump, at 14 years of age here's what I know.

You have a love for animals. Clearly seen here as you cuddled with Denise's puppy and fed her horses.
You are a smart girl, although you don't always act that way, I know better.
You love your family, but would rather text than talk on the phone.
You've played Volleyball, Football, and now Basketball.
You've been on the Danceline team.
You're still best friends with Mollie Kaupa.
You're still the Princess in the house.

You'll always be my baby no matter how old you get. Even when you're 71 and I'm 100. And I'll always love you, even when I'm dead and gone.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013


I turned 43 yesterday.
I was lucky enough to spend my day with my nieces at the State Fair. And it was Labor Day.
I crossed two things off of my bucket list as well.
1. Take my Godchild Ashley to her first concert EVER and
2. See the infamous Tim McGraw (Brantley Gilbert was an added bonus).
Seriously, I am not sure who had more fun, her, the other girls, or I.
This was taken at the 102.9 Buz'n booth. They had Tim McGraw, Luke Bryan, Blake Shelton, and Sheryl Crowe lined up in a row. These girls posed for all the guys and loved it.  I'm glad I could be a part of their day and them a part of mine.
So, back to Ashley and her first concert ever.  Because she's sensitive to sound, she's never attended a real concert before and probably won't attend an indoor one until I can get her to about 4 more outdoor ones (and maybe score some meet and greet passes too!).  Her mom thought she would freak out and not like it. WRONG. This is the child in which music is her whole world. She was in choir, listens to the radio, KNOWS that ever was (I swear).  She was so excited to go that for 2 weeks before the concert she was posting to my facebook page about just HOW excited she was.  I didn't want her pacemaker to kick in and have to rush her to the hospital, so I was very careful to explain things to her prior to Brantley Gilbert taking the stage.  I explained that the volume would be louder than what the pre-concert music was set at. She was okay with that.  Then I explained to her about the house lights going down (usually in an indoor arena, but not outdoors with the sun not set yet) and about how the encore performance worked. She was okay with all of that.  Now let the jamming commence. And the good 'ol Georgia Boys took the stage. (LOVE me some SOUTHERN!)
And oh geeze. DON'T play the "Highway Don't Care" song or she's going to go nuts on you. I thought she was going to pee her pants she was so excited for him to play that! 
Yes, she truly had an absolute blast last night. I must say it was probably the best birthday to date, just to see her face light up and realize a dream come true for her was all worth it.  I say this all the time, but you truly CAN'T put a price on memories because their precious factor is priceless.
So with that said, y'all go on out and live like you were dyin' because this little girl did and always does.
Thank you Tim McGraw and Brantley Gilbert for doing what you do and touching people's lives even when you don't know you do it.  There is something special about a singer/songwriter that can't be expressed into words.  You have made a little girl's dream come true and we love you for that. You will always be loved.
Love Always,
Tonja Trump
Southern Girl at heart