Birthdays, Nightmares, and Love

Birthdays are so interesting. At least they are to me. It’s sad as we get older that they get less and less important. That won’t happen with me. No sir. If I can get ONE day to do whatever I want, no questions asked, you better believe I’m gonna take it.

This year, I choose to reflect. This past year can’t easily be labeled.  On this day in 2017, I was celebrating my 50th birthday. Not in the fashion I had hoped. My family was in the quiet farm town of Ottawa, IL preparing for my father’s first surgery. My husband and daughter were getting ready to travel back home while I stayed to help out. It was no big deal. We thought.

A few weeks after this milestone birthday, our family experienced the nightmare of a lifetime. My father…strong, healthy, funny, intelligent, witty, active, generous, efficient, handsome, and dearly loved…was reduced to a shell of a person. And it turned our world upside down.

Over the past year we have experienced fear, anger, frustration, hospitals, doctors, nurses, surgeries, rehab, lawyers, expenses, arguments, sleepless nights, confusion, paranoia, messes, relocation, tears, lies, cover-ups, CYAs, panic attacks, depression, hopelessness, grief, disagreements, and separation. All horrible. All unfair. All unbelievable.

But here’s what I reflect on today:

  • The time the doctor asked my Dad who the President was, and he said, “I’d rather not talk about it.”
  • The two RNs and one PA who were always there when we needed them, were honest with us, KNEW my Dad before this, and said, “What in the hell happened to your Dad?” (They understood our shock and disbelief.)
  • All of the medical staff here and in Illinois who have helped my father return to a new version of himself, still all that he was, just taking a little more time to get there.
  • The privilege of welcoming my parents into my home to rest, recover, and be loved by a daughter who owes them her life, a son-in-law who has a heart of gold, and a grand daughter who will always know what family means.
  • My friends who were curious, shocked, supportive, forgiving, helpful, patient, loving, and here. Just here.
  • And no matter what the hospital does or who takes responsibility for what happened or whether this could be a legal case….I really don’t care. All of that will be taken care of by the all mighty spirit that knows ALL of the answers and how to work things out.

What I really care about is the here, the now, and that everybody feels loved. Everything comes from love. There is no other source.

It’s my birthday. I feel loved.

I hope you do too.

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The Anatomy of Birthdays and Heart Surgery

The Anatomy of Birthdays and Heart Surgery…

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He turns 86 today. She turns 50 in 10 days. He is awaiting heart surgery. She has a plane ticket to Chicago to celebrate her birthday. He wants to get this over with. She wants him to be okay. He doesn’t want to miss or disturb her birthday plans. She says that he is the priority and birthdays can be celebrated any time. He has always insisted that birthdays be celebrated ON THE DAY. She agrees.

This is one of those times when living in the present can really help. They know very little about what’s going to happen, yet they would like to do things as planned. They don’t want to have to change their plans, but of course, they will. It’s his heart after all.

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If they live in the present, none of this matters.

He is important to her. She loves him. He’s been there for her a countless number of times. She will be there for him. She will be present.

Bottom line…she wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for him. He trumps her.

Take care of HIM. Period.

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Learn Lessons of Love and Laughter in the Foreign Film, Heidi

Learn Lessons of Love and Laughter in the Foreign Film, Heidi…
Sweet, touching, and full of love, Heidi is a story of a little girl with a big spirit who overcomes the narrow minded attitudes of a few adults in her young life. She wins the heart of her grandfather and two friends from complete opposite class standings. Her smile never fades even through the darkest of times and always shows that kindness, laughter, and love will prevail.
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Throughout the film, you are treated to the stunning countrysides and mountains of Germany and Switzerland. But it is through Heidi’s eyes and heart that we discover how her life is far more rich living in her grandfather’s primitive Alps cabin than it could ever be in the mansion of the governess.
Watch here as Heidi meets the governess, Miss Rottenmeier.
Heidi is available TODAY (4/4/17) as a DVD (exclusively at Walmart) or Digital.
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Heidi (Anuk Steffen) lernt Lesen in Frankfurt
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Klaras Großmutter (Hannelore Hoger) liest mit Heidi (Anuk Steffen) ein Buch

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More from Film Movement:
“An international box office smash, filmed on location in the Swiss Alps,
this Dove Foundation “Family Approved” live-action feature based on one of the best-selling children’s novels of all time, makes its U.S. debut on DVD and Digital April 4, 2017.
DVD AVAILABLE EXCLUSIVELY AT WALMART
 
With more than 50 million copies in print, Swiss author Johanna Spyri’s beloved 1880’s novel, “Heidi,” is one of the all-time classics of children’s literature, which has also spawned numerous adaptations – from a 1937 Shirley Temple vehicle and several Japanese anime series to a Hanna-Barbera feature.  This April, Omnibus Entertainment invites families everywhere to head for the hills with HEIDI, a new, lavishly produced adaptation starring Bruno Ganz and marking the big screen debut of Anuk Steffen as the titular Swiss mountain girl.
 
Orphan girl Heidi spends the happiest days of her childhood with her eccentric grandfather, Alpöhi (Ganz), cut off from the outside world in a simple cabin in the breathtaking Swiss mountains. Together with her friend Peter, she tends to grandfather’s goats and enjoys freedom in the mountains to the fullest.  But these carefree times come to an abrupt end when Heidi is whisked to Frankfurt by her Aunt Dete.  The idea is for her to stay with the wealthy Sesemann family and be a playmate for his wheelchair-bound daughter Klara, under the supervision of the strict nanny, Fräulein Rottenmeier.  Although the two girls soon become close friends and Klara’s grandmother awakes a passion for books in Heidi while teaching her to read and write, young Heidi‘s longing for her beloved mountains and her grandfather grows ever stronger.
 
Spyri originally published “Heidi” as a two-volume novel – “Heidi: Her Years of Wandering and Learning” and “Heidi: How She Used What She Learned” – and, according to the original subtitle, was written “for children and those who love children.”  Aside from being translated from the original German into over 50 different languages, HEIDI has also become an enduring figure in children’s entertainment through many theater productions; television programs, including one by the BBC and one by Walt Disney; films, including a silent one; a musical play co-written by Neil Simon; a video piece with Paul McCartney and Mike Kelley, and a talking dog version with Angela Lansbury.  There is even a “Heidiland” in eastern Switzerland.
 

Called “handsomely crafted” (Edmund Lee, South China Morning Post), this most recent adaptation, an international box office smash that has played at top children’s film festivals across the U.S., also captured the award for “Best Children’s Film” at last year’s German Film Awards.  Omnibus Entertainment’s DVD features both the original German language version with English subtitles, as well as a dubbed version.

 
HEIDI (111 minutes) Directed by Alain Gsponer. Starring Bruno Ganz, Anuk Steffen, Isabelle Ottman, Quirin Agrippi, Katharina Schuettler, Hannelore Hoger, Maxim Mehmet, Peter Lohmeyer, Anna Schinz, Jella Haasse.
An Omnibus Entertainment release, distributed by Film Movement.”

“Oddball” DVD Review and Giveaway!

Oddball is a dog. A really sweet dog. But he’s a dog who gets into a lot of trouble. Until he finds his calling…penguins. “Oddball” is a sweet, loving, and happily ending story for the whole family. The cast of characters, both human and not, are as different from each other as they can be. But somehow they all come together to show that persistence, love, and instincts can solve the toughest problems. We promise you will adore this movie! Enter my giveaway to win the DVD or Digital Copy. The giveaway opens at midnight tonight!

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A little more from Entertainment One:

“Oddball is based on the true story of an eccentric chicken farmer, who with the help of his granddaughter, trains his mischievous dog Oddball to protect a penguin sanctuary from fox attacks in an attempt to reunite his family and save their seaside town.”

Thank you to Momentum Pictures for our complimentary CD in exchange for this review and giveaway. Good luck everybody!!

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Dreams Realized in Small, Yet Wonderful Ways

Dreams Realized in Small, Yet Wonderful Ways…

My first book, In So Many Words, was released on December 7th and I can’t believe the heart warming response received thus far. My sales are more than I imagined. My reviews and comments contain just the feedback I had hoped for. It has even reached beyond my little community into North Carolina, Nebraska, Minnesota, and Illinois. I am simply blown away and this is only the beginning!

You can buy my book here or on Amazon. Join in on the conversation.

A few stats:

Books sold via pre-sale and this website: 22

Books sold on Amazon: 11

Books given to stores to consider selling: 2

Books given as gifts or in exchange for a review: 14

Reviews on Amazon: 2

A great read…

A wonderfully woven tale of friendship, discovery and a journey towards motherhood. A great read for all but particularly if you find yourself at a crossroad of spirituality, growth and the human experience. Libby allows us in as she discovers the spiritual connections around her.  
I loved this book! It’s a quick read but packed with marvelous observations about friendship, becoming a mother and learning about life. Makes me want to try yoga.

 

So, there are 51 of my books out there in the world giving people inspiration, love, and a feeling of connection. Insert happy dance!

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Three of my contributing writers: MaryAnne, Donna, and Mary.

Some of the feedback:

From fellow mom: Hey girl..awesome book! Just finished…I wanted to read more…lol guess I’ll have to wait. Let me know about your link to site for review. I’ll start working on it. So happy, proud, and excited for u. 

From my Aunt: Libby, I thoroughly enjoyed your book. It was insightful and I keep thinking about what you wrote. An easy read, a quick read and an unforgettable work.

Check out Sonya’s Facebook Post.

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From fellow mom and friend, in reference to the page below:

Oh how I struggle with this. So glad you put it on paper for me to see it.

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Merry Christmas from Shanti Mom!

Blessings to all for a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year! Get ready to make 2017 a year of love, light, peace, and truth as we stand together as one. Thank you for the opportunity to share my inner most thoughts with you.

JOY TO THE WORLD!

shanti mom

 

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