Saturday, April 2, 2011


Day 10


Today was not so bad...I am looking forward to going out tonight to Mercato, a little restaurant close to my house.

Today's Food Log

2 egg whites on flat raisin bread with a slice of american cheese

3 oz tuna with tomatoes and red onion in a 1/2 whole wheat pocket

low fat greek yogurt with fresh blue berries

Tonight I plan on having the Grilled Shrimp with feta  at Mercato and a few cocktails.

It's SUPER SATURDAY...Live it up!


Tony Walker
A man & his wife are stranded on a desert island for several years. One day a man washes up on the shore. 
The new man & the other man's wife are instantly attracted to each other but of course must refrain from their temptations. 
The husband is also glad to see a new man. 
"Now we can each work 8 hour shifts in our makeshift watchtower on top of that tree. It will be so much easier that way instead of my wife & I working 12 hour shifts looking for boats."
So the new man goes up the tree right away. The husband & wife start gathering materials to build a fire. 
From the top of the tree the man yells, "Hey! No screwing!"
"No one is screwing down here!"
A few minutes later, "Hey! No screwing!"
"No one is screwing down here!"
This goes on every few minutes during the new man's shift.
At the end of the 8 hours the man comes down.
The husband starts to climb up.
As he is halfway up the new man & the other man's wife immediately start having sex.
Once at the top, the husband looks down & sees them.
"Wow... it really does look like they're screwing from up here."


Barbara Ward-Finneran

Autism affects one in 100 children.
One in 70 boys.

My son, Shawn is one of the many children.  Today I will wear blue.  My whole family is in blue.  Our DRL family  is wearing blue (pictures to be posted later).

Shawn asked why we "had" to wear blue, and smiled when I told him it was to celebrate kids like him.

Today I join with the world to create awareness and celebrate Shawn and all those who have made a Journey Through the Silence , like our family, to find courage, triumphant over challenges, and celebrate the joy in the laughter and love that is always perfect in every way.

Enjoy the beautiful day, breathe deep, laugh, smile, hug, someone - somehow celebrate the good in your life! Celebrate all that matters to you in your corner of the world- light it up blue!



On the evenings of April 1 and 2, 2011, prominent buildings across North America and the world — including the Empire State Building in New York City and the CN Tower in Toronto, Canada — will turn their lights blue to raise awareness for autism and to commemorate World Autism Awareness Day on Saturday, April 2.

Autism support groups are aiming to light the world blue all throughout April — city by city, town by town — by taking action to raise autism awareness in our communities. How will you light it up blue?


Dawn Boyle

Super Saturday...that's what I am calling today! It is a beautiful day here on Long Island. Felt great waking up this morning after NOT going out last night! I think it was the only weekend night that we have nothing for the next 8 weeks.

My plan for today is to go out and clean up the yard. For some reason my landscaper is the only one who has not done a spring clean up on my block...slacker! Anyway the kids are outside playing, and I might decorate the house for Easter. I have two windows open upstairs...enjoying it! We probably will get snow again sometime next week!!



Marion Pellicano Ambrose

I started my first job at the age of 14. I worked the “Fishing Boat”shift at the local Dunkin Donuts. At 5 am, the ships filled with tired, hungry men who had been out on the water all night, pulled in and they all came to have coffee and a donut (more like several donuts!). We ran non stop from 4am, stacking shelves, filling sugar jars and making coffee, through the 2 or 3 hours of hungry fishermen drinking gallons of coffee and consuming dozens of donuts. By the time they were done, the shop reeked of fish and sweat, my ankles were swollen like balloons, and my once white stockings were splattered with hot coffee stains. Then the regular working crowd started. By the time I got off at 11am, I could barely walk the half mile home. This was to be the pattern of my life, working hard, long hours, going to school, and loving the feeling of being useful. After being a “Donut Girl”, I worked in the library, in a luncheonette, at a five and dime, and as a guitar teacher. Finally, in my senior year of college I taught music in an elementary school. I was immediately hired upon graduation and have been teaching ever since, even during the 6 years I was an Assistant Principal. I couldn’t imagine my life doing anything else but the job I loved so much.

Friday, April 1, 2011


Day 9

Today was spent in the house cleaning and working on the blog with Barbara....there was ZERO exercise. Maybe if Mother Nature would throw me a bone and it wasn't so crappy out all the time I would feel a little bit better! I need Vitamin D. I need Summer. I need to trade in the mini van.....

Breakfast -
4 jelly munchkins (yeah...that's right and I would've had more if I felt better)
xtra large decaf with skim milk and splenda

Lunch -
1 1.2 slices of pizza

Snack -
1 cup if a cup is a bowl of cheeze itz
TLC Peanut Chew bar

Dinner -
Egg Drop Soup
Vegetable Egg Roll

Tomorrow is another day...didn't get on the scale today...I am waiting til Monday


Tony Walker

A guy walks into a bar. With him is a little guy a foot tall. The guy walks up to the bar & the little guy walks over to the piano where he starts playing & singing.

The bartender, amazed at the sigh of this little guy playing the piano & singin, moves over to the guy to talk to him.

"Hey! That little guy is really good! Where did you find him?"

"I got him from my genie."

"You've got a genie? Do you mind if I borrow your genie? I could use some help!"

PARANORMAL PUB - "Tar & Feather"

Robert T. Rothschild. Jr.
Tar and Feathering of Charles Kelsey:

The Kelsey Outrage in Huntington, is a scar on the towns name. Was it justified, you be the judge!
the time in history was back in 1873 where men on the north shore of LI was all about whaling. So the townsfolk found the likes of Charles Kelsey as a quirky, odd fellow. Charles was an avid gardener, poet, and Sunday School teacher. One Sunday school meeting with 20 year old Julia Smith, is all it took for Charles to be smitten with the perky Julia.

On September 5th in 1873 the newspaper read that a funeral was held for the lower torso of Charles G. Kelsey. The 2nd Presbyterian church on Main Street was packed with patrons regarding the funeral for half of a man. The horrific events leading up to that point is one of the most sensational trials ever held on this ground. It had elements with sex, mutilation, spurned love, Tar and feathering, and half of a missing body...



Thanks for everyone's prayers, thoughts and positive vibes!!!! 

April Fools Day

Marion Pellicano Ambrose

Have I mentioned that I hate April Fools Day? I know hate is a strong word and a real no-no for good Catholic girl, but there it is: I hate this day!

From the time I was a little kid, I had no sense of humor when it came to pranks. I couldn’t see the amusement in making others look and feel like idiots. Having been the butt of some of these pranks didn’t help improve my opinion on the day either.

I recall one “smart” boy in my class pouring a cup of water under my seat in school and telling everyone I wet my pants. Obviously everyone knew it was “April Fools” but I can still feel the red heat eminating from my face, I was so embarrassed. Another time, my sister told me the boy I had a huge crush on called while I was out. I was so excited I totally forgot what day it was. When I asked if he left a number or was going to call back, she and her friends began to laugh hysterically. I pretended to laugh and think it was funny, but I can tell you, my sister didn’t laugh when I put a cold rubber snake in her bed that night! (OK, so maybe I find a little humor in pranks!)


Our hearts and prayers are with Jenn a member of our DRL family who is undergoing tests today at 1p.m. EST. Please join us in prayer that she be blest with the news that she is cancer free....we love you Jenn xxoo


As per AUTISM SPEAKS autism affects 1 in 110 children, 1 in 70 boys..odds are you are directly or indirectly affected by autism...

How have you been affected?

In addition to wearing blue, please SHINE A LIGHT today and share a snippet of hope and your story.

Here in the lounge a few of our family members are directly affected, follow the links below to their stories


Today begins National Autism Awareness Month.  I remember a time when my only reference to this word conjured images from the movies; Son Rise and Rainman. My how that changed for me after the birth of my first son, Shawn.  
My first child.  My beautiful baby boy.  The light of my life who I had longed and prayed for for years.  Who made me love to the limitless levels that I hadn’t even known existed.  He was perfect in every way, especially to my husband & I and our families.  His smile lit up the room as much as it filled up my heart.  He giggled, loved and played just like most babies.  As he aged towards becoming a toddler each milestones achievement along the journey wasn’t on schedule.  I also noticed differences that I couldn’t quite nail down, but just knew, something was “off”, “different”, my friends had babies the same age and my heart ached to hear him say Mama.  The months went by and Mama never came...
Doctors told me, "boys just talk late". I fought to get services. I was expecting my second child and wanted base line tests before the regressions that are natural with the arrival of a sibling.  I fought and fought and fought.  With my husband, Steve, we fought, and fought and fought. None of it ever coming easy.  Medical tests. Genetic testing. Hearing tests. MRI’s. Endless paperwork with torturing fill ins where you choose; “always, frequently, sometimes, never”. Doctors, doctors, doctors. Evaluations. Observations. Neurologist visits. Speech Pathologists.  Occupational therapist.  The list could go on and on.  


Dawn Boyle

Everything happens for a reason. You encounter certain people to lift you up and sometimes to knock you down, but no matter why the reason they are in your life, it is meant to be.

A few weeks ago I received an inbox on FaceBook. It was from Gabby. She commented on how much she enjoyed the blog, thought we were doing a great job and how our paths had previously crossed. We were in a similar situation by getting screwed by a common "friend".

Turns out she had my back well before this inbox. Over a year ago she noticed my involvment with this "friend" and mentioned it to a relative of mine, that she knew, to be on guard about this mutual "friend"... boy was she right! Anyway a few messages back and forth we found a number of similarities between us and a cyber friendship was forged.  She mentioned a friend of hers, Doris, had gone to school with herself and my DRL partner. Gabby went on and stated that, Doris was involved with this amazing project about Breast Cancer Survivors called BCABPP (Breast Caner Awareness Body Painting Project). A project creating awareness, hope  and beauty through art.  Before we knew it, Barbara and I were involved, hook, line and sinker, spreading the word about these incredible people and amazing artistry.

Although I wish neither Gabby or I had dealings with our original connection... I sure am glad we are friends now and have this incredible opportunity to help spread the word of BCABPP.

Paths cross for a reason, good, bad and indifferent.  You may not initially understand why in some instances, especially those that cause pain. However, if you continue on the path, focusing on the future, usually there is an a new vision or understanding that is born. As my good  friend Mary Sunshine would say "Out of the darkness, comes the light. Always be open to letting the new light in.  Look to it, for then the shadows fall behind you." She always says the nicest feelings - we got screwed for a reason! Check out the BCABPP Fan Page and stay tuned for more Gabby right here in DRL...turns out there is another connection Gabby and Barbara share a great love for art. Looks like we may have a new room soon here in the lounge for artists! SPREAD THE GOOD MY FRIENDS!!! MUCH LOVE!!!

Our original post on BCABPP..check it out

The two fabulous women we have connected with ALL due to Gabby and had the pleasure of having here at DRL...more to come!

Thursday, March 31, 2011


On the evenings of April 1 and 2, 2011, prominent buildings across North America and the world — including the Empire State Building in New York City and the CN Tower in Toronto, Canada — will turn their lights blue to raise awareness for autism and to commemorate World Autism Awareness Day on Saturday, April 2.

We’re aiming to light the world blue all throughout April — city by city, town by town — by taking action to raise autism awareness in our communities. How will you light it up blue? 


See the writers & friends comment & interact as well as get post updates via status post!

Click here to like our fan page:


Day 8....

New Attitude!!!

Okay -
Breakfast I had Kashi 3/4 cup with skim milk, lunch I had a Jenny Sante Fe with salad, snack I had an orange and a sting cheese. Shrimp in Fra Diablo sauce with salad and onion soup (no cheese/bread)!

I am all about turning this MOTHER OUT!

PARANORMAL PUB - "A" Model Point of View - Part lI

Marion Pellicano Ambrose

After the lighthouse, we proceeded to the old jail, where many paranormal investigators have reported a great deal of ghostly activity. Just walking through the facility at night was frightening, but when a crazed former inmate showed up (an excellent actor by the way) he was able to make us all have shivers run up and down our spines. He told the tale of the 8 hangings that took place at the jail, one being his own. When a paranormal team visited, they were able to record an EVP that seemed to say “There were only 8”. The EVP was played out loud as we stood in a dark cell on the second floor of the dimly lit jail, and believe me, it was frightening!

We drove past the City Gates where a specter known as Elizabeth is said to be seen regularly. It seems that Elizabeth was a young girl who came to the gates of the city seeking refuge within during an outbreak of yellow fever. She was denied entry and died right there at the gate. Many people report finding a misty white figure in their photos that they didn’t see while taking it. Others claim to actually see a young girl with long flowing hair dressed in a billowing white gown standing by the City Gates. She was reported to be seen so often, that the police began bicycle patrols in the area and several officers have reported seeing her themselves, only to have her disappear as they approach.

WANNA LAUGH?!?! ...The Late Show - Rated M for Mature

Meaning of... 'potentially' and 'realistically'

A young boy went up to his father and asked him, "Dad, what is the
difference between 'potentially' and 'realistically'?"

The father thought for a moment, then answered, "Go ask your mother
if she would sleep with Brad Pitt for a million dollars. Then ask
your sister if she would sleep with Brad Pitt for a million dollars,
and then, ask your brother if he'd sleep with Brad Pitt for a million
dollars. Come back and tell me what you learn from that."


Barbara Ward-Finneran

Have the courage to find your own wisdom. 
Define life as you long for it to be, by taking action. 
You have the power to do anything. 
Imagine all your dreams, believe with all your heart and soul, then achieve it with all that you are!

Keep the promises that you make to yourself!

Photo Courtesy of Barbara Ward-Finneran and Drawn 2 Designs, LLC
All Rights Reserved



Ellen Gondola

I was in my early 20's when I felt a strange lump behind my nipple. It wasn't painful, but I knew it wasn't "right". I first went to my general MD, after all, who thinks breast cancer when you're barely 22?  I was told it was probably a case of mastitis, as I was a runner, and it was most likely due to irritation from my running bra's. Given antibiotics, I was on my way.

Two weeks later, a full course of antibiotics and the lump was still there. Something in my gut said to get it checked out. I went back to the doctor. I heard that it was, again, "probably nothing", but this time, those little hairs on the back of my neck stood up. I couldn't accept that. I needed to know for sure. I asked for an x-ray, or a mammogram, and was told I was too young to be concerned about cancer. "Too young"? The words rang in my ears as I left the doctors office. I spent that night thinking of all the children that get cancer.  I went to my Gyn's office the next morning with out calling first. I was suddenly terrified of this 'thing' growing inside me. I begged at the window to be seen by  the doctor, and was told I could wait. When I was finally fit in, the Dr. said the same thing "nothing to worry about, you're too young".

Again, I asked for an x-ray, or a mammogram. He smiled at me and said that he'd had enough experience to know when something like that was needed, and I should go home, and stop being dramatic.I tried, I did. I tried to ignore it. But I couldn't. So, I found another MD...and then, took four months, and countless doctors before I found one that said "Yes, this does need looking into"!

One mammogram, one diagnosis. DCIS ( ductile carcinoma in situ) Oh, there were needle biopsies, and all the other needed tests, but without that mammogram, they never would have happened.

My surgery was scheduled quickly, and unfortunately without researching surgeons, I was left with a botched surgical site. My nipple sutured half inside, half out. The surgeon taking far more than just the ducts and glands that needed to be taken, as if he'd used an ice cream scoop, rather than a scalpel.
Days after surgery, my stitches became "untied", and calling his office, I was told to use 'band-aids' to cover the opening, a gaping wound that I can still visualize, 25 years later.

A trip to the local ER put me in contact with a wonderful plastic surgeon, who had to 'tape' the wound, but promised to make it "all better" once it healed. 18 months later, I'm proud to say, he did. With reconstruction, scar revision, and release of my nipple, he made me look almost 'normal'. It was during that 18 month period, that my live in boyfriend walked out, telling me he couldn't take my "freakish appearance" anymore. 

I'd fought for my health, fought for my life, hid my lop sided appearance the best I could, but would not fight stupidity. As he left, I felt something new through the pain of heartbreak, I felt the strength that I had grown without even realizing it. I had beaten cancer. So, I had some scars, soon, I'd beat those too. I'd found something inside myself I might have never known....

I'm a survivor, I live, I love and I know deep inside what really matters everyday.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *  

Please read our first BCABBP Survivor's Story
From Darkness & Despair - Doris' Story

DRL's original post about the fabulous BCABBP

For more information please email Michael Colanero at

Photos used with permission of Michael D.Colanero & UNCOMMON GALLERY.
All Rights Reserved


Many  continue to inquire about Marion and her family.  We are thrilled to share the first glimmer of hope that resolution has begun as reported by Marion below.  If you are new to the lounge or Marion's story, the links to the previously posted articles can be found here too. 

We at DRL continue to hold onto faith that this injustice will very soon be corrected.  We ask that you continue to offer prayers to support Marion and give her strength.  

Many thanks to those of you who have offered to make donations.  Dawn and I, with Marion's blessing and help, are still researching how to set up a fund or account for Joe to use for legal costs and/or other expenses incurred by him as a result of his loss of benefits.  

All of us at DRL thank you for your continue interest and support of correcting this negligence in the system.  

Peace & Prayers,
Barbara & Dawn


Thank you Governor Scott! I received a response asking me to have my son get in touch with a member of the staff of the Bureau Chief of Program Operations, Florida Department of Health, Division of Disability Determinations. Do I dare get my hopes up? I can’t help it. This is our first sign of hope.

I’d like to thank everyone for their continued prayers and support, especially RM who had been so kind, and my friends at DRL who have become like my second family! I hope I will have good news to share with you all soon!

Marion Pellicano Ambrose


Dawn Boyle

I had a crazy dream last night.
Have you ever felt like your dreams are so real that they must really mean something? Have you ever made contact with someone that has passed in your dreams? Do you ever have reoccuring dreams?

Tell me about them and help me feel like I am not going crazy!!



Patty B






 Marion Pelicano Ambrose

Are you a “Gleek”? If so, you’re in good company.  The hit show “GLEE” has become the #1 show of teens as well as the #3 favorite among the 18-49 crowd.  It’s hard to argue with 16 million song downloads, the #1 soundtrack of 2010, 2 Grammy Award nominations, and 19 Emmy and 11 Golden Globe nominations. Glee scored with 4 Emmy Awards in 2010 as well. There is a long list of other awards (Peabody, Screen Actors Guild etc) but I think you get the point. Glee is a cultural phenomenon!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Barbara Ward-Finneran
I am a big believer in the idea that you have the power within you to create your own happiness.  Foster your own dreams and fashion a reality that is the sum of your combined goals and talents.  The life you dare to imagine dwells in your spirit and feeds your soul.  To change anything, to create anything that you imagine or desire takes one thing - YOU.

If you get lost in the doubts.  Let reason rule why it can't be done.  Listen to the nay-sayers. Abide in negativity. Or allow impossible to be in your vocabulary. You have already put the writing on your own wall.

You are meant to have an astounding life! To accomplish your own greatness.  To have love and happiness abound.  You have to believe it!  Desire it!  Want it!  Speak it into being with your thoughts words and deeds.  Challenges will surface and if you view them as tools to learn and grow rather then as just obstacles and endings - things seems to turn a corner sooner.


Day 7

Dawn Challenge

Who thought this was a good idea anyway??? Stupid food log below.
3 egg whites and peanut chew TLC bar
tuna in water in a whole wheat pocket
shrimp with brown rice (1/4 cup cooked) and salad
1 weight watchers cookie BLAH BLAH BLAH!



Marion Pellicano Ambrose

OK, so why is it that women have to retain so much water and men don’t?  I take a medication called Furosemide to keep my ankles and legs from becoming swollen. My husband and I went away for a few days and I forgot the meds.  I came home and “poof” my ankles, knee and legs blew up like a hot air balloon at a county fair! I can almost hear the “swish” of water as I walk!  I cut out salt, I drink lots of water (which I hate), cut out soda, I keep moving as much as I can, and I drink tea from morning till night. So why am I still the marine version of the good year blimp?

My husband on the other hand, eats salted peanuts all day, drinks cases of Diet Coke, pours about a pound of salt on all his food, and never retains an ounce of water! It’s true he’s very active, but come on, is this fair?

It’s the same story when trying to lose weight. I eat enough veggies to rival a rabbit, cut out just about everything with taste and that little needle on the scale doesn’t budge. He eats 1 large bowl of Fruit Loops instead of his usual 2 and loses 5 pounds!  Based on these facts alone, I have concluded that God must be a man!

Am I the only one with this problem? Is there a man out there somewhere that suffers along with us women when it comes to water retention and weight? And most importantly, does anyone have a suggestion as to what can help deal with these issues besides more medication?  Please respond to my “ Bloat Blog”  and let me know!