Wednesday, December 30, 2009

I'm feeling rather down and very sentimental today. While I still try to soldier on through this latest "Flare Up" that started after a very emotional and angering phone call a couple days before Christmas, it looks as though the New Year is going to greet me with my new reality. "Enough of that!" I think to myself. "You're going to put on something pretty, put your face on, do your hair, and Welcome in the New Year even if you are alone! (Shweetie has to work, of course. 17 years together and I can count on one hand how many New Years we've kissed in.*Shaking Head*)

What keeps me going are the short and long term goals, and Ackergill Castle for our 7 day 20th Wedding-versary Fete is a *Loch* in!!!! I think I may have heard the tiniest of groans from the one person I think reads this sight. Might help if I told my "My People" as it were, about this sight, (the Shweetie doesn't even know the web address, though I do read him some of my entries) but for some reason I just can't do it. It's at times too raw, too frenetic, too all over the place, too me, too too. I think what I need to do is create another blog that is strictly for my health updates, be it daily, weekly, bi-weekly.

*This thought train derailment brought to you by Morphine! Morphine! It's not just for pain anymore!*

Now, for the the reason I started this entry. I have seen a vast and massive drop off in couples who want a video for their weddings, which I have to agree with. Spray Cheese on a Ritz Cracker, STAT! But now, I'm seeing them making a come back with what I feel are (depending on the artistry and videographer's love of their craft) fresh, to the point, a peek behind the scenes, and really lovely, and when set to the right music, truly moving DVDs of the day. The move back to real Super 8 (not the computer generated stuff, which I can spot from a mile away! or at least I think I can) is giving couples an opportunity to really capture a timeless look of THEIR day almost instantly! How wonderful is technology and the people who embrace it and turn it into an art form?

I saw this one, and because of my mood, tears were a flowin'. I LOVE Peter Gabriel's music, but for some reason had totally forgotten "Book of Love". The video on it's own would be...nice...but you add "Book of Love" to it, and it turns me into a puddle of sentimental tears of joy, and hope for yet another couple I don't know. The videographer placed a voice over of her vows (would have LOVED to have heard his, and some laughter that can help humanize such a sacred, solemn, and beautiful sacrament. (BTW, these two will have stunning children, should they choose that path.)

Our "Song" is the UB40 version of "Can't Help Falling (In Love)". As whirlwind as our meeting, courting, living together, and then marrying was, it's just the perfect encapsulation of our pledge of love to each other. "Book of Love" fits us quite well, too (I used to read to him and sing to him (in the car along with a song) all the time, and when we married, didn't have the money for proper wedding rings. We used a $29.99 garnet and diamond chip yellow gold ring (bought as a consolation "prize" after he spent $50 bucks on new hockey pants...he spoils me, now) and was meant as a pinkie ring. Shweetie could only get it up to my second knuckle. Why I stopped reading to him, I'll never remember, but what a beautiful gift to give him for his 40th coming up in Feb. A narration of "Our Book of Love".

I hope you enjoy the video. There are some things I would have done differently, but I love the direction that wedding videography is taking!

As Always, I'm your Una *Unabridged*

Dornoch Cathederal - Christen & Mark from Alastair Brown on Vimeo.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Why it's not "Just a Piece of Paper"

The joy that flows from this couple, and the incredible artistry of the photography just made a very rotten day, feel a whole lot better!


As Always,

Una *Unabridged*

it’s the little things stillmotion#comments: "this is what makes a wedding day – for me anyway.

liam proposed to liz exactly a year before their wedding day in florence, italy.
the tux he wore on the Day was the same tux he wore when he proposed.
the jewelry liz wore was left to liam’s future bride by his mom before she passed.
the watch that liam wore was the same watch that his mom gave his dad on their wedding day.
the battery in the watch died shortly before the wedding, so liam changed the time on it to say 2:00, the time of their ceremony.
it still says 2:00.
as a wedding gift, liz gave liam two things:
-a pocket square she made out of a piece of her dress
-a pair of cuff links made out of two pieces of map. one had a map of florence, the other a map of st. catharines.
liz and liam got married in st. catharines.
and they are so happy.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Moved to Tears by People I Don't Even Know

I was pulled in.
I was enthralled.
I was moved by the images and the music
I was still.
I felt the tears.
I laughed.
I felt the yearning of wanting to know their story.
I feel hope, for these strangers I will probably never know.
I feel hope that their vows to one another will forever be sealed by them.

Bride and Groom Cinema-Style Flip Book, Aves Photographic Design from Lauren Aves on Vimeo.

Behind the scenes in a real world Vogue session

Photography is a great love of mine, and since I've been on this quest to find the perfect photographer for our 20th WeddingVersary, I have found a whole new world has opened up since I was a photography major! This video, to me, has to be one of the freshest, and most beautiful pieces of self marketing I have ever seen. I'm all about self marketing, as a voice over artist, you have your Demo, your business card, and now, your website that doesn't show you, but shows what you do. Not an easy task and a eye watering $3500 life lesson. Let alone that this guy has an incredible talent, his pictures are really beautiful, it gets to show you, the person in front of the camera, what you might experience during your photo shoot. Enjoy!

As always,



Metrophoto by Jason Magbanua from Oly Ruiz on Vimeo.


Sorry about that. What sat here before was a really fantastic video of a rather dark and creepy "Trash the Dress" session. For some reason, it was OK to copy and embed a few days ago, now, it's not. Ah, the fickleness of arteests. What I don't get is why a business would turn down free advertising. If they took a few minutes to actually look at my blog, they would have noticed that any follower of mine would have gotten excited about it too! Say Lovey.
This small group has done some of the most amazing, beautiful, fresh, exciting, and gorgeous work I've seen!!!! My hope is that they won't deny anyone who might read this blog, the sheer delight in watching their work, let alone that it's FREE advertising. FREE.
I can only hope that there is enough money in the coffers to fly a couple of 'em to Scotland for our T.T.D. session that I want to turn into an amazing shoot for all our guests to participate in!
I want our beloved family and friends to let loose, seize the day, and do a little trashing of their own!

Griffen + Curtis' Trash the Dress Shoot in CA from stillmotion on Vimeo.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

There's a buzz in the air!

This is a cause that we should all care about, and while this is a bit "Fashionista", it holds this cause up to the light and says, "Shit, if a jewelry maker cares enough to give 10% of the proceeds to helping the bees, I better give a shit too!"

That lovely Pinot/Cab/Chard/Reisling you may be sipping at the moment will never exist if we don't figure out why, worldwide, honey bees are dying off in massive droves.

So bee sweet *rim shot* and start joining in the cause. It's can bee as simple as buying Haggen Dazs's Honey Vanilla Ice cream.

Remember, no bees means no pollination. No pollination means no food, no food means global famine. Are you ready to experience what it is to be truly starving? Didn't think so.

As Always,
Una *Unabridged*

Alex Woo Jewelry Little Seasons Bee in Sterling Silver

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Feeling like a jerk.

This one's going to be short and sweet because I, honestly, feel like I've been hit by a Mack Truck, immediately followed by the asphalt flatten-er thingy (you know what I mean). On the 1-10 scale, I'm at a lovely 7.6. So why am I even writing, you may wonder? has to do with family, and how seriously badly I've dropped the ball. My shweetie has a brother who has two amazingly beautiful/handsome, polite, smart, and very pleasant to be around teenagers.

Our Niece, Jessica, was born the day after I met my shweetie, August 13 (making her 16 now) and our Nephew, Calvin, was born 13 years ago just days before my birthday. His being Sept. 27th (I'm almost positive...see??? I suck) and mine being Sept. 29th. They've both been through some pretty rough stuff with their parents getting divorced, moving all over the place, and then become a "blended" family when their mom remarried, and then their dad (no kids from their dad's partner, but it still is a hard adjustment. These two, from what little I can garner, Facebook being a place that brought us all back together a's easier to connect with my niece because 13 year old 6' foot tall boys are not my forte.

OK...let me just lay it out there...Kids...from about newborn to 29ish *snort*...are Not. My. Forte.
I have my little 18 year old 5'11'' sister, Mollye, whom I would give me life for, but she's different somehow. I don't know why, but she got a free pass on the "Kids get on my freakin' nerves" train. I still drop the ball. I don't call enough, write enough, remember important dates enough, and I do the same thing with my god-daughter, Ashley, as the same thing with our niece and nephew....and I haven't talked to my cousin Vanessa who is 16 years my junior, in YEARS.

Here's the kicker...I LOVE to spoil them when I'm with them, and it ends up looking like a feel all guilty so I'm over compensating. It's not that black and white. If they were in my daily life, I would spoil them rotten every day I could. I LOVE buying them gifts...but it's almost an out of sight out of mind thing for me, especially now with me being so sick and unable to keep up on email and facebook.

These are all amazing, beautiful, precious creations of this Universe...and I'm just a big honkin' jerk that forgets to show them that they matter. Not just with material things, but with my time, my wisdom, me life experience, my ears open.

J.E.R.K. much for a short and sweet post. I feel worse now. I hope they know that I do's just a different way of showing it.

Till next time,


Click here to view these pictures larger

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Please...just a little relief.

I'm writing this after we brought a precious little ball of fluff that we named Miss Minnie Mae, Duchess of Mork, in a whirlwind of three days. She's a mama's girl, and we're both pretty sure she's a full blooded Maine Coon that somebody bought in to the Contra Costa SPCA because she's not "Show" worthy. She is my saving grace in aiding me to grieve for Basil, who's name I can't even type without starting to cry. It's been one year from Oct. 7th since he passed and I know I'll never get over it, but somehow will get through it.

Minnie Mae is the joy in my life right now and my body doesn't care. From joy to sorrow, every emotion I have manifests itself into a physical symptom. I'm coming off a 24 hour migraine, and I already feel the haunting of another one coming. I'll do the usual scramble of medicines to hold it a bay for at most, a week...but there's no escaping it. I've broken two fevers in as many days, one reaching 102.7. My body is a total wreck, I can't get hydrated, I have vertigo so bad that standing is a whole mission. I now have greying/blacking out episodes that left me on my bedroom floor for 40 minutes when Todd was at work. I couldn't reach the phones, and every time I tried to stand, I just couldn't. I finally scooched my way over to the kitty stairs at the end of our bed, and slowly, step by step, got myself up. I threw up last night (of course, what's a migraine without vomiting) and instead of blackish brown, it was totally clear. Yay!!! No blood in my vomit!!! This is progress. Progress. Me NOT throwing up progress.

Before we got MinnieMae at the Concord PetCo, we decided to get out of the car and buy some new toys for her. Eating for me is very hard right now, so between the lack of nutrition, loss of electrolytes, and dehydration, I have a hard time walking in a straight line. Todd was watching me like a hawk and at one point when I started to grey-out, he grabbed me by both arms and ordered me to "look at me, Una! Are you there? Una, Look at me!" I guess I finally locked into his eyes and then proceeded to break out into a cold sweat. Todd walked me back to the car and came back with the brand new kitty loot. When Amy from C.C. SPCA got there, Todd helped me in and thank the Universe, there were chairs. I got the usual once over by everybody there. Let me explain the "Once Over". It consists of people I know that haven't seen me in a while or total strangers who do a sort of double take. If you haven't seen me in a while, I think I would shock you. I don't really feel like getting into my "looks" right now because my self esteem is so raw, but in another post, I'll fill you in.

We got Miss MinnieMae and not a peep from her the whole car ride home. Somehow, like always, I made it up the pathway and flight of stairs to our condo (stairs can kiss my giant ass!)ccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccc<---Miss MinnieMae typed all those "c's" and just flopped down on me. She's been playing with Wally so it's time for kitten coma sleep.

I'll sign off for now, but the whole point of this entry was me needing just one day of no pain, symptoms, or side effects...just one

As always, I'll bulldog my way through this illness that can't be named minute by minute if need be.

Till next time,


Saturday, October 10, 2009

This is...

I'm not uber inspired right now to wax on poetically and beautifully about a moment, a thought, a website, an occasion, but it's been a while and I want to blow some cobwebs out of this dusty brain of mine before I open this blog up to those that I want to update more regularly about my health, my struggle with the progress, my bitching of bad days, my heartache of sad days, my sarcasm directed at lots of things or people, my laughter at the funny, my awe of this wondrous Universe, and my odd little rants, ramblings, and rumblings.

This is hard for me. My plan is to send out an email which I will formally name an "Una Unabridged", and the people I like, love, care about, cherish, and adore can click on my hyperlink, and read what I wrote that day, or just favorite me to catch up on me when they have a moment to really sit down and take it in.

Writing is a very personal thing for me. When I'm inspired to write, I'm totally open with whatever emotion pushed me to open my laptop and share who I am with people. This isn't the fairly upbeat and funny me that my loved ones see in a social This is me, stripped down. This is me happy. This me livid. This is me depressed. This is me surprised. This is me hurt. This is me healing. This is me raw. This is me.

I may shock some people with what I have to say and I have to hope that they'll still care about me. I'm terrified of rejection, judgement, and disappointment, but I will write my truth regardless. I cannot lie nor can I pull a Pollyanna "I'm Great! How are you?" anymore.

My battle with an illness that cannot be diagnosed has me in pain every time I wake up till I go to sleep. I'm fragile, I'm brittle, I'm drugged, I'm confused, I'm so angry, I'm defeated, I'm a warrior, I'm scared, and I'm trying. My will is defeated by my body every day that I open my eyes, and yet, I still open them.

This is my leap of faith.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Why I'm REALLY *Una*-bridged now. Yes, this means no-no words.

In polite society, I am a Master at holding my tongue and my usually betraying facial expressions. Oh please, get that shocked look off your face. While I am a stickler for social graces and mannerly correctness in Social Gatherings of a certain ilk, my favorite part is the run down with the hubby on the drive home! Yes, I do believe in and revel in *GASP* GOSSIP! and even more surprising, I want people to gossip about me, too...I just don"t want to hear or know about it. "But Una!" you say/think/muse/don't give a crap about "You speak of karma and what goes around and being kinder to each other to make life a better experience!" You talk all the time of having "A Life Well Lived!"

*Sigh* little bastards making me explain mysel...OH! Was that in white and black? Er, yeah. *A throat clearing followed by hacking cough and extreme vertigo.* Nah, I'm not sick, it's just Uranus in the 7th Moon...fuckin' health "who gives a crap" I mean, "care" system.

Allow me to pop another sedative for my soul crushing anxiety and severe P.T.S.D. flare up after learning of the deaths of the 4 Officers in Lakeview, WA, which for me,has brought back to the surface everything that so many of us in the O.P.D. family dealt with. The suffocating fear, panic, pain, anxiety, and sorrow from when our 4 Oakland Police Department Officers were murdered in cold blood on March 21st, 2009, while I also just learned last night (the reason I have yet to fall asleep) that an old classmate of mine, Tom, was shot dead in front of his 13 year old daughter while walking their dogs to get ice cream. The murderer killed him because one of their dogs was sniffing at the murderer's leg, so the mother fucker pulled out a gun and shot Tom dead in front of his 13 year old daughter, who incredibly, had the presence of mind to run back to the store and yell for them to call 911, *10 very deep breaths and a few tears, please" and I'll explain my gossip theory. more deep breath.

Yes, Grasshopper...Yes, I do speak of these positive warm and fuzzy things and in light of my recent physical limitations now, this bitch is throwin' down as much good JuJu as she can. (ooohh...I just talked about myself in the 3rd person! How cool am I?!?) Here's the thing about gossip. It needs clearly defined rules. My Shweetie is ALWAYS a safe bet for not spilling beans AND I get the added benefit of getting a gnawing, festering, anger inducing feeling out of my gut. Surprise, surprise, I don't let things go very easily. To me, that is no different than talkin' to my therapist.

As this disease and this pain I bear every damn day of my life grinds me down, my smiling, at times, sweet veneer is getting more and more cracked. My ability to hold my tongue now involves my teeth actually physically biting it.

My rope is fraying to a point of my Shweetie frantically running around in circles juggling his work cell phone on his left ear, personal iPhone that's still needing its security pin to his right ear with his shoulder (try it, it'll become your best party trick if you can master it), his Police Radio (He's a Sergeant for the Oakland Police Department) Mic bobbing up and down, and accidentally kicking one of our house phones trying to pick it up as he is randomly pushing buttons and yelling "HELLO!?!?! (he's not real good when it comes to me being hurt, sick, in an accident...Dr. heal thyself and yer family, the meowing furballs included, the big softy. I gotta give him kudo's though, he's doing the best he can with me, The Amazing Question Mark of Wildly Changing Moods) whilst a particularly very calm yet forceful Dame of mine is on the phone yelling "Oh Shit, Get a Bouncy House for her to Fall On! Shit, STUPID DUDE AT BOUNCY HOUSE PARTY RENTAL STORE, I NEED ANY KIND OF BOUNCY THING YOU HAVE! I don't know!!! A My Little Pony Castle, I Guess?" whilst I delicately trill "WHAT THE HELL!?!?!?! I DETEST "MY LITTLE PONY!!!" when the rope snaps my Dame will yell back "LIVE WITH IT, YOU WEENIE!" and my Shweetie will call out to me "I LOVE you SO much, Honey...That was a great fall! You did it perfectly!" and yes, I do need both of those energies! An unlikely scenario, but it sure makes for a good visual.

Here's another "I Spy" Guess where my general social filter went? Buh-Bye. Yet another reason I don't go out. (it's actually much deeper and spookier than that (more on that later...maybe much later...(very. strange.), but hangin' at home keeps my total loss of say, Grocery Store filter from me getting pounded by some bitch buying non-organic banana's for her drooling, screaming spawn to ingest and then get sick from all the post-industrial chemical crap Monsanto gets all the third world banana growing places to use.) Can someone tell me why every ingredient list has "Natural Flavoring"on it, yet no one knows what that is?

Back on topic now. I have a tendency towards rambling, rants, and wait, what was I writing about?

I guess what I'm getting at is that gossip, practiced correctly, is a form of therapy and can be just as, if not more cleansing because there is usually laughter involved. I don't know about you, but I can't be "Fake it till you make it" happy (thanks "The Secret" for making me suppress so much of my anger) hoping that my life will suddenly turn around and the little bluebird of happiness will flutter his little wings on my windowsill and kick my Chicken of Depression's ass off it. I gotta get that crap out, no matter how small, so it can just vaporize away and not weigh so heavily in my mind, ya know?

I've also got a really tight knit group of My Dames that are truly like minded thinkers that I would trust with my life. They may talk about me amongst themselves, but they would never let an "outsider" in and May the Universe help the usurpers who even tries to talks da smacks abouts Me's to My's Dames.

However, everyone can talk all the smack they want about me...just as long as I don't find out.

And that...well...that's the pebble, Grasshopper.

I truly meant for this post to be funny and up-lifting in it's odd little way and I just proved to myself that I can't put the abridged version out there anymore. I can promise my 1 reader that there will be more posting with different subjects, but I'm not really capable of a PollyAnna show anymore...even in my writing. It's a dark time in my life but I don't want that rubbing off on you, Gentle Reader. Take for what it is...Me living My Life. I just hope you can identify, find interesting, and maybe even be moved to create light where there is darkness. You know...the whole "Pay it Forward" thing.


VulvaLoveLovely on Etsy - Vagina Pillows, Vagina Pendants, Uterus Plushies ....

VulvaLoveLovely on Etsy - Vagina Pillows, Vagina Pendants, Uterus Plushies ....

Really? No...I mean REALLY!?!?!?

I will come totally clean that yes, yes I am a prude of the most judgemental sort about certain things...but baby, Sex ain't one of them! I don't want to know about your bathroom issues, bodily secretions, mucus, bodily noises, and things in the nether regions that may be of discomfort to you. No thank you. I am not lying when I tell you that it took an entire year to even let air escape from my stomach which therefor caused my esophagus to convulse in a very rapid motion that created an honorably fought, but alas, loud noise. Most people call it burping or belching, but I find even those words, shall we say, distasteful. *snort* (Snorting is aloud because it is an involuntary noise I make whilst laughing and I deem that it is charming for certain people to make this noise, including, but certainly not limited to, myself. Oh! The snor-ter must also create the noise in a mirthful, and dare I say, Lady Like way.)

Anyway, to the subject at hand. I am all for women's Lib! Hell, I marched with my Grandma for N.O.W. and E.R.A. Our Bodies, Ourselves! Whip out those mirrors and check out your bits! Tell your man where, how, faster, harder, more pressure, to the left, No, the other left, *SIGH* get off me and let me get my pocket rocket! Ah, now you may commence pleasing YOUR self as I please MY self and we all win without really having to work for it. (This in no way indicates the kind of Rumpy Pumpy that the shweetie and I enjoy...ed, before I got so sick.) You don't live your life with your soul mate for 17 years and have to tell him "No, your other left."

Ooh...goosebumps just remembering that feeling of absolute abandon because he knows my body better than I know my own, and vice verse. This auto-immune disease sucks, but let me tell you something, my man still calls me beautiful and we laugh together till our ribs hurt (which for me these days doesn't take much, but you get my meaning.) Wanna know the secret? Good times and Bad, Richer and Poorer, Sickness and in Health. I will put the caveat in that you fight hard, gutting out these hard times in your lives together with the person you were meant to be with. In Yiddish, your soul mate or " Destiny" is called your Bashert. No relevance, I just love the meaning.

Now see? Total T.M.I. about sex. Not a Prudey McPruderton about that. I can play one in certain company, but it takes some serious work to get me to blush about sex. Mention any sort of human waste product from the posterior nether region, and I wish you could see it, but I'm blushing right now.

Finally, I've got a scenario for you that is pertinent to the link of Stuffed Vagina's. *SNORT* (that was totally delicate and feminine, I assure you.)

Say you come to visit a friend you haven't seen in years, have a bit too much to drink, and they insist you spend the night. They have a lovely guest room, already set up with a robe, extra towels, a toothbrush, toothpaste, lotion, dental floss, shower gel, bubble bath all set in a little basket. "DAMN", you think,"Martha Stewart's got nothin' but money and an army of staff on these guys" You proceed with your nightly ablutions and notice how inviting, plush, posh, and soft the linens and bed look. This room is paradise. Wait, that's an odd stroke it a few times thinking "wow...really soft and so familiar." You're sleepy from drink, move the other decorative pillows and think, "Screw it...I LOVE this soft, long, pillow with all these folds that I can adjust to support my neck" not realizing you just gave up two perfect NASA foam pillows that cradle your neck and head in perfect alignment with your spine.

You wake up, the morning light filling the room and realize "Oh shit! I just drooled all night on their decorative pillow....shit, SHIT!" You panic and hold it up just the right way to see if you can wipe the drool away....and your heart just kinda stops. You spent all night drooling on a labia minora...and now it's drooling on you!

You know what, after writing out that scenario...that's a comically GENIUS way to screw with your guests.

I have to go now, I have a Plush Vagina to purchase.


Una *Unabridged*