The Sunshine Factor

where sunshine is a way of life


Try, Try Again

Hello folks,

you who give me positive strokes!


Have you ever made plans

that were excellent but then didn’t turn out

like having lots of pots and pans

but being lousy at making kraut?


Methinks I need to reformulate in my life

stress causes personal strife

Take advantage of when your body and mind work best

Put good principles to the test


What does all this have to do with Debbie Dear?


She was wondering why evenings are very low productivity for her

(if any can be measured!)

Why is it so easy to write and clean house before work?

Why does a pretty pumpkin arrive at her house every night

content to sit and smile but that’s about all?


Aha, thought she,

I will work with my inclinations and their time table

and not act when I am expected to

Do my have-tos and want-tos

(cleaning and writing, respectively)

in the morning when I am at my best

This is not a “do what the Joneses do” type of thing


I never wanted to follow the Joneses anyway

and I was always kind of off in my own little world

Here is where my different-ness can be a plus

I don’t have to try to come alive at night


Let me be a morning songbird

who writes and cleans and smiles and sings

before work ~~

Let the night owls guard the night

and use their energy when they want to


When a plan or plans don’t work

it doesn’t mean they were bad

they are just something to give credence to  the tried and true ~

“Try, try again”.


What would have happened if all the inventors

had given up?

They found their way

and so will I.


So, my friends….this is my latest attempt at “getting myself together”.  Do you know what, though?  It is great this time because I could write a poem about it so it’s more firmly in my mind.    🙂   How do you think I will do?  Do you have anything like this going on for you — trying to have the parts of your life fit together better?  I am sure my readers would like to hear, too.   Until then….

your friend Debb





Online Shopping at Debb’s Mall


My business,, has added a new feature to its original line.  Now, in addition to helping you order anything under the sun from wherever you are, my mall offers an Amazon link.  I used this the other day to order my 2014 Writer’s Guide.  So easy!  So fun!  🙂

As I’ve been recovering from the flu (and what-not) lately, I was browsing through all the different shops (some major retailers like Macy’s and Walmart) and specialty stores.  I was amazed to find that at every shop that I hadn’t browsed in before, they offered between 10% and 30% off for new customers.

Last year I ordered flowers for my mother-in-love from a florist in my online shopping mall.  She told me that what she received was far better than the orders we had placed long distance for her from a local florist.  I am very pleased…and pleased to know that most, if not all, shops offer the opportunity to use the currency you use in your country.  How do I know this?  I was browsing in the perfume stores, trying to find a perfume that I had loved in my teens.  I found it but said to myself, why is it in pounds?  Ah-hah, I said, I have the British flag icon at the top.  Once I changed that to U.S. dollars, everything made sense!  🙂

Last but not least – a portion of the proceeds from my site will be directed to various charities.  🙂

See you at my mall!  🙂



A Word From the Magazine

Stanton Sunshine Magazine

Stanton Sunshine Magazine


I’m feeling better now and getting excited about February’s issue.  But I need you…I’m throwing out an “SOS” here:  looking for photos, artwork, stories, poems, or recipes.  In fact, Claire (the Ask Claire lady) is wondering why her mailbox hasn’t seen much action…do you have a general question she could answer for you?  🙂

I’m sure you’ve heard me say this before, but it’s worth repeating:  don’t be shy.  Do not be so critical of your work or talent that you keep it to yourself.  I’ve been told that it’s worth it to publish a post, even if it would help just one person who needs to see or feel the message you are conveying.  Just think… if the reaching just one person happens from a lot of contributors, the more people we can reach…and love…and help…and bring sunshine to.

SEE http://www.stantonsunshine/submissionguidelines for ideas.  And, my email box is always glad to fill up.  ( 🙂

In the community spirit,



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The Adventure of Debb’s Blog and Her New Trail: Part Two

nature often inspired Debb to write

nature often inspired Debb to write

Want to know how Debb decided what posts would be in her blog?  She explains it below.

I promised God that I would post something every day, since He had inspired me to write a blog.  Amazingly, I was able to accomplish this.  (I try not to make promises lightly, since I am a woman of my word; but this promise to God – well, I thought that maybe I was promising in the heat of excitement and realization, and maybe I wouldn’t carry it out.)

In September I noticed that my early morning walks often yielded an idea for a post (or many posts).  I drafted the post or posts in my head while walking and enjoying nature.  (Oftentimes, the posts did talk about the nature I’d seen.)  I’d come home from work and rush to the computer so I could capture my thoughts.

The more I wrote, the more lively my imagination became.  I no longer cared what my audience would think.  Whatever grabbed my attention is what would show up in my blog.  I laughed at myself within posts (for instance, when I had bragged to my boss I was a good cook, and when he came to dinner, the dinner bombed – haha) and put myself out there as someone who makes mistakes – plenty of them at times!

Next up:  what forms of writing did Debb employ?  See you next week!


Happy November!

Some children looking at a selection of Christ...

Some children looking at a selection of Christmas Cards during the 1910 holiday season. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Ahh, now the snow can come freely; it will be more seasonable now than if it comes in October.   It is a month where on the last Thursday, Americans celebrate their freedoms and their blessings.  Some gather with friends and family for a scrumptious feast.

For others, November marks the start of a flurry of holiday shopping, baking, and parties.  Or the approach of the end of the term or semester at school.

For Ms. Stanton this November, it marks the glorious time of our two households merging together, and we’re loving the changes already.  🙂

It also marks a very creative and exciting time in this writer’s life, as she is getting the Sunshine Factor ready to join another website.  It’s exciting because I will be offering my readers many new features in addition to the ones you’ve come to know and love.   What’s also exciting is the possibility of this new website being a clearinghouse for great ideas and letting our community contribute – male and female, children, teens and adults – contribute their drawings or poems or stories or recipes or ideas…  The deadline for the January issue is December 10, 2013.  More details coming soon!

Here’s to another awesome month…take good care.



Jenn’s Cancer is Back – Please Pray!

Howdy folks,

I may have mentioned Jennifer D to you before.  She is my pastor’s wife who played guitar, along with her husband, for our wedding (and sang for us too), and she is an extremely lovely person with a very talented voice.  Today in church she sang “At the Cross”, and there probably wasn’t a dry eye in the place.

I bring Jenn up now to you now if you are so inclined to pray for her — this request is actually from her.   After successfully beating colon cancer a couple years ago, she has had numerous surgeries for possible lung cancer.   That’s the real kicker – she’s not a smoker.  Now, as it turns out, they did find a tumor in between her two lungs — AND the cancer has now affected her lymph nodes.

Jenn and her husband see the oncologist on Tuesday, October 29th.   Please surround her with your prayers.   I so appreciate the prayers for her, as she will feel better as she feels your prayers.    She has a tremendously strong faith, but even she could use a boost right about now.   Jenn is a wonderful person, and I want her to be around for her brand new grandson (first grandchild) who lives way out in Montana.  I want her to be around, period.




Editorial: I Don’t Believe It


Grief (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today I’d like to address the issue of grief and the common misperceptions about it.

I ran into a friend the other day who was grieving the loss of her dog.  I expressed my condolescences, being an animal lover myself.  “No, no,” she assured me, “I am doing just fine.   I’m in a new season of my life now, and I really like it.”   That might have been believable, had she not been overly exuberant about her new exercise routine and all the changes she was making in her life – almost like she was trying to talk herself into being “okay” about her loss.

Some people claim that God does not want us to be sad or get depressed.  This is what I don’t believe.  God gave us various emotions for a reason, so we could feel all the highs and lows that life dishes out.  Even Jesus wept and grieved.  I don’t believe we are to always be happy.  Nice goal, but totally inaccurate.

What I do believe is that we live in the real world.  Sometimes it is great and we are able to grab the brass ring.  Other times, it is human to have feelings on the negative side.  It is okay to be human.  It is not okay to always put on a brave front.   It is not okay to deny yourself feelings.  Besides, it is how you act on those feelings, and not the feelings themselves, that is important.

September is National Mental Health Month.   Speaking of that, I’d like to quickly address the subject of depression.  There is a type of depression that has nothing to do with what’s going on in your life (situational).   Some depression is caused by imbalances in the brain.   That kind of depression (major depression) and other mental illnesses cannot simply be swept under the rug or denied — much like I could not wish away the cancer that my body came down with four years ago.

Just to recap my opinion about grief…to get over a loss, walk right through it.  Sure, it’s going to hurt.  But living in denial of your feelings can have negative consequences in your future, too.


Debb Stanton

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Sugar Blues

Français : Echantillons de différents sucres, ...

Français : Echantillons de différents sucres, de gauche à droite et de haut en bas : sucre blanc, sucre complet, rapadura, cassonade (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I must admit
here again I sit
writing on a whim
early morning with my eyes still dim

Usually I write posts a week at a time
and oh, the good feeling I get is sublime
Last weekend I was very busy
enough to make a girl dizzy

Sugar is a thing of my past
it wasn’t helping me
I want my good health to last
Sugar, get out of my system, is my plea

So now without sugar I’m sort of in a daze
let’s see if I can make it through this haze
I need to come awake
and write something good for your sake

Thank you for still reading my blog
even if, like today, I am in a fog


The Unproductive Time of my Day

I am definitely a morning person.  I even get up early on Thursdays and  Saturdays at the same time I would if I were getting ready for work.  Sundays I “sleep in” till about 6 a.m.

If I’m not at work, it’s very hard for me to produce anything or do tasks in the afternoon or evening.

I think it’s because my body has its own clock setting.  It doesn’t care when I would like to demand extra energy, so far it just isn’t complying.  🙂

I bring this up because I am coming to grips with what is, and what isn’t, Debb.  I’m realizing that though my hours are peculiar, I am not strange.  Just in case you’re wondering why your body does strange things, know that it’s okay; you’re unique, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

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Book Review on Author Collette A. Henry

Hello friends,

Yesterday I read Get Outta My Head:  My Journey Living With Brain Cancer by Collette A. Henry.  Collette has a great blog here on WordPress, and I would like to share with you the review I wrote about her book on

I am so glad to have been given the opportunity to read Collette’s book.  Like her friend Allen O. Green states, she does have a winning smile, and this book shows me that she has a winning life!  Her attitude, passion for helping others, and engaging way of talking with her readers, make this a very inspiring book.  In fact, I am a breast cancer survivor, and I learned more cancer facts through Collette.   She is helpful to all people, in my opinion, sharing exactly what cancer is and how you can do healthy things for yourself to hopefully keep cancer away.  Collette has a very great story that needs to be read.

I was hoping for a cancer experience book that could make you feel comfortable with the author.  I was not disappointed.  If I could, I would give Collette and her book a standing ovation.  🙂



English: The original Piggly Wiggly Store, Mem...

English: The original Piggly Wiggly Store, Memphis, Tennessee. The first self service grocery store, opened 1916. Français : Le premier supermarché Piggly Wiggly ouvert en 1916 à Memphis, Tennessee (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My immune system is very low, probably because of late-onset cancer survivor side effects.  That’s what would explain my many bouts with illness this past winter; usually years go by without my getting even a cold.

I figure there are ways I can enhance my immune system, which coincides with the change to my eating patterns that I have already been working on.    I will list the various aspects of what my life is like now – not that it’s earth-shattering news, but it will serve as a reminder to me.  Somehow, if it’s out there for you all to see, it makes it more real.

  • The juice of one lemon in hot water, drunk when I get up in the morning, before eating or drinking anything else.  It is said to help with digestion and rebalancing your insides, and I’m sure the Vitamin C won’t hurt either.  If it’s a typical lemon from the grocery store, I get the juice from only  half of it and save the rest for the next morning.  However, lately in the story I have found Tropicana sells bags of small lemons, so I have one of those per day.
  • Speaking of lemon juice, I am willfully surrendering lemonade, one of my favorite drinks.  Forget the added sugar — I will be satisfied with water.
  • My dietician is delighted that I am digging (loving) vegetables and fruits – the more variety and colors on one plate, the better.  They are helping me to feel better and not so tired.  Long Live Vitamins!  🙂
  • Speaking of vitamins, I want to get into a regular routine again for taking them.   It’s amazing how little time this takes, but I sometimes don’t take vitamins or other supplements simply because I want to get going and out of the house for work.
  • My daily walk of 30 minutes.  I want to do this in the morning before my shower, then any dancing around the house or walking at work I do will be a bonus.
  • For sure, taking a little time each day for spiritual reflection will be a good practice.  (So would listening to soft music when I come home from work each day be helpful, but one thing at a time.  🙂 )

Do you know of any other healthy practices that would help me?

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Sunday Snowstorm in MN/Vitamin D

Yesterday we got snow, then sleet, then rain all afternoon.  The Minnesota Twins’ baseball game even got canceled at Target Field.

Today it’s still cloudy and just above freezing.

In cloudy winter and spring days like this, I’ve heard it said that taking Vitamin D helps prevent depression – it acts like the sun.  🙂


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NaPoWriMo #14


They say coffee gets them going

and with writers, their thoughts start flowing.

Me?  I don’t like the stuff

Water, milk and juice is enough.


Sugar is what I am quite attracted to,

sweets for the sweet, they say ~~

Giving sugar up is very hard to do

Having fun with sugar is my way to play.


Salt is what some people crave

the road to a higher blood pressure, it will pave.

It gives meals a taste to savor ~~

and you don’t even have to waiver.


Nothing is bad if done in moderation —

that’s a right dandy quotation.

However, as I try to learn this small trick,

I feel like a sad, water-logged candle wick.


English: Main complications of persistent high...

English: Main complications of persistent high blood pressure. Sources are found in main article: Wikipedia:Hypertension#Complications. To discuss image, please see Template_talk:Häggström diagrams. To edit, please use the svg version, convert to png and update both versions online. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


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NaPoWriMo #7

Papyrus Migraine Therapy

Papyrus Migraine Therapy (Photo credit: Wikipedia)



what a pain.

It is them I disdain.

I have had both kinds

sort of like if I were to eat lemon rinds.

One is of the migraine headache kind,

a more painful thing you cannot find.

The kind I have had lately,

is the kind that is in your eyeball sedately.

It gives no pain,

but you sure get a fantastic light show.

You don’t feel quite yourself

unless, of course, you are an elf.

I now, once again,

practice all the things I can to keep them away.

When they go away for good,

it will be a grand day!

(But no light shows to celebrate, okay?)

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News Flash From My Doctor


Well, the bronchitis and cold bug I had didn’t quite resolve before I started  hacking on Wednesday.  Thursday is my day off, and today I worked a 10 hour day but hardly made it through, coughing so hard.   I have never smoked so no problem there.  They took a chest Xray, and when pneumonia was ruled out, the doc said that my lungs are having a reaction to the bug I had — and do you know why?   My 2nd course of chemicals for chemotherapy had made my lungs inflamed.  I had to take Prednisone to get rid of the problem.  The one good thing that happened because of that side effect:  The Prednisone gave me super energy, and even while a cancer patient (and while living alone) I was moving heavy oak furniture all by myself!

Long story short, I am on the “minor” end of asthma; I may have it the rest of my life but not all the time, just when things get stirred up too much.  I am now on an inhaler and Prednisone.  Heave-ho!  (just kidding)

If I don’t post anything on Saturday, please be patient.

Please add my name (and Dave’s too, please, he has regular bronchitis right now) to your prayer list, if you would.  I don’t have energy to post it to our Prayer Corner!




Very early morning,

I call in sick to work again

eat a small breakfast

take a shower

and lay back down in the living room

so as to not wake up my husband.

The lights from the metropolis south of here

warm up the sky

so it’s not perfectly dark out.

The trees  outside my window

are like unruly soldiers

some standing straight

some leaning as if elderly.

Winds light and variable

The new day begins,

and I shall go to the doctor.


English: The Poem

English: The Poem (Photo credit: Wikipedia)



There were songs with this title, sung by Kool and the Gang and The Association.  Much as I love their versions, I am not talking about music here.

I’m talking about the privilege to cherish people, love, freedom, and our dreams.

Cherishing someone or something adds a wonderful quality to our life.  It fills in the bare spaces and somehow makes the unknown less scary.  It adds value to our days and peace to our nights.

What and who are

Publicity photo of the music group The Associa...

Publicity photo of the music group The Association. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

you cherishing today?

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Why not?

Isn’t it normal to have a slip

and to be human?

My childish self would say

no, I’ve come too far

and progressed too well

to lose it all now.

At the beginning

is where I don’t want to go back to.

I’m still the same person

(I’m happy for that)

who strives and works hard

and is hard on myself

If I go back to the beginning

I only want it to be a place

where I learn more patience

and love for myself

Would I treat my child this way?

I believe I would be a really good parent to someone

so now I can practice on myself.

Loving guidance,

more patience,

less foot tapping,

and knowledge that healing is still possible

don’t let the laughter leave

I can still have joy amidst my trials

but please, I still need help


Seeing and Doing: A Story Poem

Statue, Three Servicemen, Vietnam Veterans Mem...

Statue, Three Servicemen, Vietnam Veterans Memorial (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

After Roger*’s time in the service,

his life went down the tubes.

Too much booze

and not enough work

and post traumatic stress

did a number on him.

A request out of the blue

gave him the courage

and the necessity to live again.

His buddy from the war

had asked if his friend could look after his wife

and children in case he should

not make it home safe.

With the buddy gone now, the buddy’s wife

was dying of cancer.

She was living in the hospital

but her two children had nowhere to go.

The place where Roger was house sitting for the winter

would not let the children stay there unless he was married.

Marcy* said,

“Sure, I’ll marry you,

if you can stand an ugly shell of a person

who can’t give you anything in return.”

Roger by this time had given up the monkey on his back,

gotten a job as an early morning  newspaper delivery person and  as a waiter.

All his money went toward feeding and clothing his new stepkids.

I saw him at this restaurant once ~

his eyes were penetrating and watchful

as if to wake up out of a dream

and watch the patrons

and try to remember how it felt

to live like they do.

Can you see him?

Marcy walks around in a daze

when she has a day here and there

with enough energy to walk.

Repeat motions.  Repeat thoughts.

Repeat fears.  Enough repeats already.

Can you see her?

Ryan* and Shelby*

feel alone in a scary world,

walking to the shelter after school

until their new daddy can pick them up after work.

They’re missing their precious Scruffy,

the dog they had asked for so many times

and now who had to be given away

so he wouldn’t starve.

Can you see them?

Will you help them?

* fictitious name

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Daily Prompt: Quote Me

Do you have a favorite quote that you return to again and again? What is it, and why does it move you?

My favorite quote is something I came up with just today as I came out of having a massage at the spa.   I felt so good and relaxed and happy, that all the way to the grocery store and then back home, I kept running it over and over in my mind.

The phrases that linked themselves together made these sentences:

You can’t improve yourself unless you’re good to yourself.  And you can’t be good to yourself unless you love yourself.

Most of my readers know that I like to redo or rework the negatives…I framed my phrases in a positive way, and here is the quote I came up with:

“When you love yourself, you end up doing things that are good for yourself.  When you are good to yourself, it’s easy to improve yourself.”

This quote moves me because I have finally figured out what would help me with my quest to improve myself.   Loving myself the last couple of years makes it possible to improve myself without going all militant and perfectionistic.



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Daily Prompt – December 29th

“Tell us about the role that faith plays in your life – or doesn’t.”

Top of the World

Faith plays a big role in my life.   Through the abuse in childhood to a couple near drownings, abandonment as a teen, miracles, and complete cancer recovery, I just “know that I know” that God was with me every step of the way.  I owe my life to him, as without him I would probably be dead already.

My faith has always given me something to hang onto even when I felt very unloved and like there was no one on earth that wanted me around.

My faith nicely took away my problem of worrying.

It got me through my breast cancer and allowed me to remain positive and inspired through it all.

My faith helps me to see that it’s not all about me, and there is a grand scheme to this thing we call life.

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Daily Prompt – Dec. 31st – Use It or Lose It

Write about anything you’d like, but make sure the post includes this sentence:  “I thought we’d never come back from that one.”

When my husband and I divorced, it was a peaceful divorce.  We were labeled as “the friendliest divorced couple.”   Yet, we had each changed, gotten intolerant and impatient with the other, and gone our separate ways.  At the time, there seemed to be no solution but to be divorced.  I couldn’t possibly think of ever getting back with him.   Though peaceful, our divorce was very sad.  I thought we’d never come back from that one.

But then cancer happened to me.  And  being laid off from a 25 year job happened to him.  Because we were still friends, it just seemed natural to lend each other support.  It felt right.  Dave took me to my first chemo appointment, in fact.

Then, that year of my breast cancer surgery and treatment, we were good buddies again and went to many cancer benefits together.  I just wanted to HELP people, and Dave has never changed his generous nature; he wanted to help cancer survivors too.  This even led to us going to a benefit for a family whose house and dog were lost to a huge fire while they were out of town for a hockey tournament.   When I saw the news story, my heart went out to them because my family had also had a house fire.

Out of town we went to that benefit, and I had written to the grieving mom that she would recognize me at the benefit because I would be the bald lady.

It was on the way home from that benefit that Dave and I discussed that it was silly to pretend it wasn’t happening.  We weren’t just hanging out, we were dating now.  That was 2010.

Near Valentine’s Day of 2012 Dave proposed to me.  And a little over two weeks ago, he and I married on 12/12/12.  This second time around is already happier than before.  And we would have missed it, had we not been open to changes.


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How to take full advantage of Sunshine Factor

Whoah, now that’s different! Encouraging someone to take advantage of another? Well, in this case, it’s about using this blog to your best advantage.

Those of you who read Sunshine Factor in Reader on WordPress, or read me on your email notifications, don’t get to see that there are several tabs for this blog.

I have recently added a new page (tab) to Sunshine that you can click on to read about to follow my recovery walk (recovery as in recovering from (getting over) unhealthy lifestyle habits or old tapes that play in my head, and also recovery from cancer and leading a healthier life).

Poetry Castle Gift Shop is a place where you can order a story or poem to be written for a special person or occasion in your life, the author being myself.

All of the tabs are for different purposes, and when you feel like reading something specific, or follow what I am doing in my recovery, they’re there at your disposal.

How to see all the tabs?

Sunshine Factor’s web address is  Put Sunshine Factor on your desktop as a shortcut, that way you can just click on that and there I am.  (On a PC, once you’re on the site, right click and create shortcut.  Are there any Mac users that could tell us how to put a shortcut on your desktop?)

From reading Sunshine Factor, you might have guessed that I like to use metaphors – words that say something is like something else – so here’s another way I can describe my blog:  Sunshine Factor is like a home in a neighborhood, and in this home I talk (post) every day about something of interest.   The other tabs on Sunshine are like my favorite neighbors in the neighborhood that I like to visit and chat with.

When I post something in one of the tabs, I will not notify you.    I will continue to post on the home page daily, and the tabs are for you to open at will.

Please help me get the word out about the improved Sunshine Factor – and if you’re another blogger, could you be so kind as to reblog this and tell your friends who might benefit from this site?  Thanks ever so much!cropped-795040-r1-026-11a_011.jpg

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Poetry Castle Gift Shop Now Open



I’ve added a gift shop to this blog – please check out the Poetry Castle Gift Shop page.   Thanks!


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Slow Down and Be Prepared

This sounds kind of like a Boy Scout slogan, doesn’t it?

I say slow down because so many auto accidents have happened because someone was jumping the gun – like turning off the car when it’s still in drive, or backing out of a parking lot space without looking to the right or the left.  (These are the people who say that the other car “came out of nowhere”.)

If you slow down, you can arrive at work a little ahead of schedule and then your day doesn’t  have to start out with you already being behind.  That’s called being prepared.

Pros of being prepared:   your blood pressure doesn’t rise because of something you could have prevented; you don’t get short of breath; you may not need to relax very long after work tonight.

Cons of being prepared:  if you’re a drama queen or king, then being prepared would be a con.   Being prepared makes you look so efficient to others that soon people are clamoring for your attention and help. 

Just kidding, I don’t think there are any cons to being prepared.  Well, maybe for the people who like things to go in a certain way and that doesn’t happen…

Be prepared for Yours Truly to never get tired of writing.  🙂


I Have a Confession to Make

I must say, I take vegetables for granted.

I see that they’re colorful (and thus meaning they pack a lot of different vitamins within the vegetable family), easy to cook, and even taste good.   I know that they’re good for my health, especially as a cancer survivor.

So why do I not eat more of them?

Because I figured since I had had good chemotherapy for my cancer and even had some preventative treatment, I didn’t have to “overdose” on getting my vitamins in.   I also figured that the “natural” multivitamins I took would do the trick…  free_139512

But alas, it’s very rarely that I remember to take my vitamins in the morning; Zero times have I taken them with supper as directed on the box.  So, THE JIG IS UP for Dear Ol’ Debb.  Now I am asking encouragement from you!

Oh yeah – since I am a visual person, you would think that all my beautiful, full color, WONDERFUL cookbooks would entice me.  Yes – they entice me to “make plans to eat more vegetables” and they even make my mouth water – but alas, that is where the good vibes end.

I’ve always had it as a goal (as yet unreached) to try one new recipe a week.   That didn’t work.  Then I changed the goal to once a month – but that didn’t help either.  When I bought some Williams-Sonoma cookbooks, I thought that would convince me to practice being a gourmet cook.  It didn’t happen!  I’m glad Dave thinks I’m a good cook, but I’d like to improve.   I do have to remember, however, that I’ve been very busy.  I can’t get down on myself for this.

So – since vegetables (and also, their fiber) are so very important for my health, please comment with any suggestions or hints you may have for me.  How did you come to the place where you naturally grab for a vegetable when you are hungry?

Waiting to hear from you, I remain

The Friendly Vegetable Lady.

(using a positive thinking approach here!)


What I Am Thankful For


Friends (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WordPress Logo

English: Diamond Engagement Ring with side sto...

English: Diamond Engagement Ring with side stones – In Platinum – 1791 Diamonds (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: pink ribbon

English: pink ribbon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today is a holiday in the U.S. that promotes thankfulness.

I wish giving thanks were on the forefront in other parts of the year too.

The holiday is known for feasting (and usually overeating).

Personally, I sort of gag on turkey and prefer other meats (if at all).

Back to the subject of giving thanks – here is my list of the past year (in chronological order):

1.  After dating a couple of years, my former husband and I decided we should marry again (see my countdown in the right margin).  It’s so much different, and better, this time around.  We wonder if it’s because of the difficult things we have had to go through the last five years that made us appreciate each other once again.

2.  I was in my first photo shoot in February; I saw my picture on a billboard on the way to work every day for 2 weeks in April.

3.  I found my new favorite author – Ken Barr of  – and I asked him if he blogged and if so, where.  He said “WordPress”, and I was immediately hooked into this wonderful community we call WordPress.

3a.  Having three different blogs has really been a blessing in my life.  I have hit my writing stride and feel so artistically complete (and dreaming of and working on other projects too).  Thank You, God!

4.  Last April Fool’s Day I marked my 23rd year of work at the same company.  They have treated me very well.   I also have them to thank for my cancer care and recovery!

5.  At my job I have been learning many new tasks.  It is an exciting time there for me.

6.  I am thankful for all the incredible blogs I have been reading and for all the friends I’ve made through them.  So, in other words, you are my #6.

7.  My first follower on this blog, my first blog, is a phenomenal person.  (You know who you are)  His support and enthusiasm is a constant.

8.  I live in the U.S., which has its problems of course, but I love it here.

9.  I serve a God who loves me and wants the best for me.

10.  Last but not least, I am so glad I have life in my body, that I am here to write to you.   It’s an amazing journey!

Thank You, God,

and thank you, friends,



Today I will be describing the point in my life at which time I knew my life would be forever changed.

My answer is in two parts about the same subject:  cancer.

Of course, when I first heard the news over the telephone that I had breast cancer, I knew it would be life-changing.  I didn’t think about it too much, though, because I was in shock.  A few tears rolled down my cheeks, I called my friend Patti, and then I prayed, “Okay Lord, so what is my first step?  Can you please guide me through this?”

But the most influential time in my life that I knew I would never be the same again, was later on in my cancer recovery.

I was in my cancer care center, scheduled to get a blood transfusion because my levels were dipping dangerously low.   A friend had driven me there to be on the safe side, in  case I felt woozy afterwards and wouldn’t be able to drive.

I was asked to sit in a recliner that was in the general transfusion area instead of being put in my regular, private infusion room.

“Ooh, I’ll have an audience,” I quipped.  My driver friend and I had quite an interesting conversation going, and then she got stir-crazy and declared she had to get up and walk around through the hospital.  Knowing I often slept through my treatments, I told her it was perfectly acceptable for her to take a break, and to have an enjoyable time on her walk.

One bag of blood had been imparted to my ailing body, and the second bag was started.  That’s when my turmoil also started.

I think I grew delirious because I was so warm, I was threatening to take off my sweater (and only top!), and I wasn’t being my normally teasing self.   Yup, I must’ve had a fever, because in about 10 minutes I was freezing cold.  I actually DEMANDED that the nurses give me several cotton flannel blankets fresh from the heater.

This was one treatment I didn’t sleep through.

This, right here and now, was the moment that changed my life forever.  I felt I was dying, I was so scared, but I knew that if I survived I was sure going to look at life differently and act accordingly!

When my friend returned much later, she saw a strange sight.  There I was, wound practically as tight as a mummy with all my white blankets, covered completely with only my eyes, nose and mouth peeking out.

The nurse asked me, “Do you want to tell her, or should I?”  I was so out of it that my friend started to cry.

She was told, “Debbie has had a severe allergic reaction to the new blood she received.  We need to keep her overnight, I’m sorry.”

Somehow I was able to give my friend directions for the keypad to my garage, so she could go feed and water my cats.  She did a wonderful service for me, considering that she and her son disliked cats severely but took care of my cats anyway.

I launched my new intent (to appreciate life and encourage others) that night in my hospital room.  I made the nurse laugh and she got to share all about her family, and I encouraged her.  I told her she made a difference and she should love herself because she is special.  SHE nearly started to cry.  What was it about me that encouraged tears?!

However, later that evening my pastor and his wife came to visit me.  I regaled them with several tales and they ended up feeling better than when they came.  Laughter was definitely present, and I believe it healed me from my allergic reaction.

Laughter and joy became my constant companions, and they have never left my side.  I was blessed to be given a second chance, and I am still living!



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Another Pink Ribbon Day

English: pink ribbon

English: pink ribbon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

published on debbieloeselstanton blog on 11/3/12.

“Another Pink Ribbon Day”

Now that October has come and gone,

The Pink Ribbon still has an important mission.

There are still breast cancer survivors

fighting for their lives

and other breast cancer survivors past the hurdle

doing all they can

to raise money for research, education

and patient care.

We wear pink ribbon clothes

and use pink ribbon goods

because we have formed an alliance

to let cancer know that we will defeat it.

We know not when, but

it will be done.

All the other colored ribbons

representing other cancers

need our support too.

We need to help others

so that they can afford medical care

for their treatment,

so parents don’t have to choose

between feeding their kids and getting treatment.

I thank all the corporations for funding research for us

and helping to raise awareness.

Dear Lord,

I pray for those who are dying from cancer,

that they receive hope and life on earth,

or with an ultimate healing in heaven.

Grant them strength and peace

and the same for their families and friends.

We know you’re not forgetting us Lord,

but it’s hard to believe sometimes

when things look grim.

We place ourselves in your capable hands

and even if we don’t know the outcome,

you do, and you will help us through.

Grant us to have one more pink ribbon day

and the promise for a better tomorrow.


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Hear Ye, Hear Ye

Dear Friends, Followers, and Visitors of


I’ve decided to put all my writing about cancer exclusively on – unless there is some exquisite writing that poem lovers on Sunshine Factor would enjoy.

Effective immediately, you can search for key words over at Cancer Chat Room for all things pertaining to cancer.  I have had requests for very specific cancer poems (geared toward a certain family member or patient in various stages of recovery), so I want Cancer Chat Room to be your “go-to place” for all things related to that.

Meanwhile, I hope my friends and followers from either WordPress blog will mosey on over to visit its sister blog.  (It wouldn’t be harmful to me if you were a follower on both sites – grin).

Requests or questions for either blog can be sent to the same email address:


(Note in subject line which blog you want something posted in.)  Please don’t be afraid you’ll “bother” me, I hope you will ply me with many, many suggestions or questions or comments – I don’t bite anymore, haha.

Thank you again for letting me enter into your personal world, and I am as always very fortunate to have such a great group of friends here on WordPress.





Dying Person’s Prayer – In Three Perspectives


My Prayer For All The Dying

Dear God,

I pray for all dying cancer patients –

If they’re sad, may the sadness lift,

May they turn to You in their last moments,

May they feel calm in the safety of your hand.

Give the gift of the peace from your love

And may they catch a glimpse of you and heaven

ahead of time, if that will encourage them.

Keep them safe in your care

until it is time for them to finally go home

and see their friends and family

waiting for them on that far shore.

The Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh.

Blessed be the Name of the Lord.


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Dying Person’s Prayer – In Three Perspectives


I Am Scared

Dear God,

Now that I’m dying, I have to make sure I have a good guardian picked out for the kids in case something happens to my husband after I’m gone.  Of all things to be worried about as I’m dying, I wish it wasn’t necessary to do such careful planning.   I was supposed to have a very long life, especially since I was so healthy before the cancer.  Well, I guess it goes to show that eating right and exercising don’t always  keep disease away.

It’s been a good life, Lord, but way too short.   Now I will never get to see Ryan graduate from college and Katie getting married and having grandchildren for me to spoil.  I hate this dying thing!  Why didn’t you choose someone else’s life to end early?  The ones who want to die and are so desperate that they take their own lives.  If you let me live, God,  I can live their life for them – really – just trust me, I want to do this – everybody near me wants me to stay with them too.   You’re so big and powerful, certainly you could work this miracle for me?

I’m scared, Lord, because I’m needing so many naps lately.  Then after I have visitors, I can ‘t even remember who was here.  Please let them know I didn’t want to be forgetful like this.  Everything around me is like a hazy gauze that floats around me.  Maybe it is angel wings?

If I got cancer as a punishment for something, isn’t it enough that I got cancer?  I mean, couldn’t you leave it at that and not demand my death, too?  I’m scared that I will go into a coma and never come out.    I don’t know what waits for me on the other side.   I hope I can go to heaven, but only you know where I will end up.

Please keep me going until it is time to die, God.  I mean, take me off my painkillers so that I can fully interact with my loved ones at my bedside.  Help me to remember the things I need to say to everyone before I pass away.

Will you please take care of my husband and children for me?  And when our pets die, could you send them on right along to me?  I would be so glad to see them.

I put myself into your hands, because I don’t know what else to do.  Please either make me better or speed up my death, because the not knowing is killing me.

Thank  you for listening to my prayer.  Amen.

Next up:  Perspective II.


The Cancer Survivor Warrior: A Poem

English: pink ribbon

English: pink ribbon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I will use the pronoun “she” in this poem, even though yes, some men do get breast cancer, and I don’t forget that many men suffer many different kinds of cancer too…The Cancer Survivor Warrior

There she is in the grocery store

looking tired and weak.

She is certainly these things

but her badge of honor is not worn on the outside.

She is much stronger in her character now

Much stronger than she’d ever guess herself to be.

She has been through so much

and probably still forces herself to keep going to her paid job.


There is another cancer survivor in the post office.

Unless she is bald,

you would never know she has cancer.

She goes about her normal every-day duties

even though she  has a membership in “the club”.

The cancer survivors club was not something

she ever chose to join,

it just found her as she won an unseen lottery

that wasn’t necessarily genetically based

or inherited.


The lottery “prize” for this club is

a sharp wake-up call,

an experience that will teach you things

that you never dreamed you would learn.

The experience changes the warrior’s life

forever, but not in a bad way.

Cancer survivor warriors report that they

receive a new clarity, a new appreciation for life

and their people.

Sometimes membership in the cancer survivors club

leads to a shortened life

and sometimes to a life that has been changed for the better.


Whether their lives are cut short or returned to them,

let us remember the warriors in prayer as they fight for their lives.

They need our support more than

advice we are not qualified to give

and our opinions that mean nothing.


Hats off to my dear fellow members

of the cancer survivors club.

You are awesome and incredibly strong,

brave and courageous.

You may not feel that you are these things,

but some day you will realize it is these qualities

that helped you through.


I pray that the Lord would bless you

with good health, guidance and peace.

I am so proud of you,

I love you, and to you I will

always remain loyal and supportive.


— Debbie Loesel Stanton




A Breast Cancer Patient’s Prayer

English: The Auntie Jane Breast Cancer Wreath

English: The Auntie Jane Breast Cancer Wreath (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Breast Cancer Patient’s Prayer

—-  by Debbie Loesel Stanton


Oh dear God,

I haven’t talked to you in awhile,

but even if I had,

I would still feel like

I had been washed in a turbo washer

and hung out to dry, miles above the earth;

so totally alone,

even though I know you are actually with me

and I have my family and friends and care team pulling for me.

I hate it when people say

“It’s God’s will”, because I know

that you do not want people to hurt and get sick;

that’s just the way things go in this world.

God, my cancer isn’t your fault,

but can you please help me anyway?

I have many, many people and things to live for.

Can you make sure I can stick around here for awhile?

I want to make a bargain with you,

but that’s silly, because what do I have to offer you?

My faith and trust are on a downward slope right now,

they are threatening to disappear

like a rock on a slippery, icy mountain slope.

And, I also feel like I’m drowning;

please don’t let the waters of fear or illness

overtake me.

It’s been real hard to pray this, Lord,

because my thoughts wander all over the place;

my head is spinning and my nerves are as tight as violin or guitar strings.

I’m ready to explode into a great big puddle.

Please, please take your little girl’s hand

and lead her away from the shadow of death.

They say you’re walking with me through this valley,

but I don’t feel you, God!!  Please help!

Maybe someday when my thoughts aren’t so muddled

you can tell me why this is happening to me.

For now, I imagine me climbing up into your lap and being rocked to sleep

I know you care for me, it’s just very hard to believe that right now.

I know you understand…

Oh, and one more thing Lord.

Please keep these people away from me:

ones who say they know just what I’m going through,

when actually they have never had cancer.

And the ones who ask if I need anything but then don’t follow through,

also the ones who give me advice about wigs and breast reconstruction

because they have never had to consider these things.

In trying to be helpful, they say anything they can think of.

Help me to be patient with them; they know not what they do.

Help me to obey my doctor’s orders

so that this very long road will not have to be even longer.

Please help your little warrior fight this battle.

Now I lay me down to sleep,

I pray the Lord my soul to keep…


New Poem: Kindness

The Great Kindness Challenge Logo


Kindness is one thing, if used,

that will not produce regrets.


It follows the Golden Rule

while at the same time kicks hate

out of the playing field.


Kindness nourishes the hungry in heart,

calms the anxious,

gives hope to the hopeless,

rest for the weary,

and strength for the weak.


Kindness does not look for reward.

It asks, “how can I help?  What

would I like in this situation if in their shoes?”

It suggests by action,

“you are loved, you are worthwhile, and

you are meant to be living on this earth.”

Thank you for your kindness to me

Without trying, I catalogue each event in my heart and brain

and never forget…




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“I Like Boobies” bracelet confiscated!

English: CNA’s building is often illuminated t...

English: CNA’s building is often illuminated to reflect civic happenings or to acknowledge a meaningful calendar landmark. This design recognizes Breast Cancer Awareness Month. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Since it is Breast Cancer Awareness month and I am a survivor, I thought it’s only fitting to brag on my “nephew” Landon, what he did for me three years ago.

My godson Brodey and his brothers Kasey and Landon all wore those pink rubber bracelets supporting breast cancer survivors, in honor of me.   Kasey and Brodey were in junior/senior high at the time, and Landon I think was in 5th or 6th grade.

Landon got in trouble at his school because his bracelet said “I like boobies.”  The teacher didn’t “like the language” on it and confiscated it the very moment she saw Landon wearing it.  Poor Landon, he was just being a very supportive nephew, and he didn’t care what other people thought.  I just felt bad that his teacher couldn’t have been more understanding, because there was a reason those particular words were on the bracelet.  Thanks anyway Landon!  🙂

I got another very positive, warm fuzzy feeling from the boys’ mother, my friend Caprice.  (You remember her – the feisty redhead who was with me at the oncology surgeon’s office?)

In a music store at the mall, Caprice and I were wasting time until a movie started.  Across the store two teen boys were making fun of my bald head.  It was one of those times you knew you were seeing and hearing right and not assuming anything…Caprice strolled over to the boys and said, “Listen!  How would you like it if your mom had cancer!  Leave my friend alone!”   They kind of mumbled “sorry” to her and ran out of the store.  Thanks Caprice for being my advocate!  If I was the Velveteen Rabbit in that store, I would have become “real” at that very moment, I felt so loved.

Dear readers, here’s hoping you are not judged for what you do or what you look like.

Your friend,



Reality Blog Award

Thank you to mypenandme at: nominating me for this blog award.  I am very moved and appreciative of receiving this award.

To my nominees:  You can decide how you would like to participate.  Please take into consideration that  there are no rules for this award, so you can follow this pattern, create another with your own questions, or simply just accept the award and nominate a few other blogs that you like.  Mypenandme passed on five questions and because I liked them all, I chose to answer all of them.

My nominees are:

Likely many of these nominees do not accept awards, but that’s okay—this award lets them know that I have enjoyed their blogs and would like to recommend them to others.

Questions and Answers:

1) If you could change something what would you change?

I would somehow do away with all selfishness and replace it with compassion.  That would go a long way toward improving our lives and this world we live in.

2) If you could repeat an age, what age would it be?

Age 10.  My fifth grade year was the best year of my life.  However, to get back to my current age I would want to just get back here and not live through all the years after age 10 again.   🙂

3) What one thing really scares you?

Standing in the lake or ocean and being in water over my head.  I know how to swim, yet I think with two near-drownings in my past, I admit I get a little anxious.  I still love being in the water, and looking at it gives me peace.

4) What one dream have you not completed yet and do you think you will be able to complete it.

To have a publisher say to me, “We would like to buy your manuscript.”  I know I will be able to complete it at least once, and hopefully many more times.

5)  If you could be someone else for a day, who would you be?

I can honestly say, I’ve finally arrived at the place where I am glad to be me and just me.


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Talk to the Animals

Non-pet owners may think the rest of us are crazy when we talk to our pets, but I think it’s good for us and for our pets.  Statistics show how pets, especially dogs and cats, can lower our blood pressure and lessen our chances of getting depressed.   

It is quite a routine in the Stanton household when I leave for work each morning.  I give the same speech, day after day, to each of my two cats.  I try to talk to them one on one and look into their eyes, and they look into mine.  On days when I’m in a hurry, I go bounding down the stairs on the way to the garage and call out my speech to both cats:

“Okay, boys, Mama has to go to work now.  Make sure you’re good boys today and be nice to the other kitty.  I want you to have a good day and know that Mama loves you.”  I smile when I think of how I’m always talking to them as if they’re children (that I didn’t get to have).  I think Tiger and Micah look forward to that little speech, because when the garage door opens right after I have given them my farewell speech, they know that they can now begin their hard work of the day – a nice snooze on their favorite places.  Lately they end up in my home office where they spend all their time with me when I am home.  It’s almost like they are place cards, holding my place till I get back to my blogs!

I also talk to wild animals and birds outside my home (in my neighborhood, besides the numerous squirrels, we have a band of wild turkeys).  I guess I figure that since they’re there, why not be kind and talk to them?  (But I’m sure they wish for the opposite.)


And of course, I don’t want to forget our animal friends at the zoo.  Their majesty and beauty are really something else.

My “Queen of SSS”story last week tells that I used to pet the insects that got into our sunroom, simply because I felt bad for them because they were hated by my mother.   I was sensitive even back then, I guess.

I grew up with wonderful dogs and now have cats.  My favorite wild animals are the Big Cats – which animals do you really like?




Swedish Clogs

English: Clog, mule-style, with wooden sole an...

Clog, mule-style, with wooden sole and perforated leather upper. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Oh, how I loved all my Swedish clogs back when I had them.  I had them in all colors and designs, but my chiropractor at the time told me to get rid of them because they would “hurt my back”.  How I wish I had not listened to him!  I ended up giving six practically new pairs to Goodwill.  Since then I have figured out that what hurt my back and knees was not the clogs I wore, but sports and the injuries I endured.

Clogs have been the only shoes that I have not kicked off as soon as I got home.  They were the only shoes that I bought in many colors (I am not a shoe fiend).

I bought my clogs about an hour from here, in a tiny Swedish town and from a genuine Swedish shoemaker and his American wife.  Sven could make any pair you wanted in the width you needed, both wide and narrow.  (So even narrow-footed people could wear clogs without falling out of them.)  Every fall to enjoy the colored leaves I would drive up there to Lindstrom and get new clogs.  Sweet memories!

Last spring I bought a pair of clog-look-a-likes, ones with clog tops but heels too.  I just love them and am still wearing them, even though they have a flower design on them and we had our first freeze overnight last night.  Apparently, I don’t want to give up my comfort…even when now one of my doctors has suggested I wear shoes inside my home because of chemotherapy nerve damage in my feet.  Sorry, this I refuse to do.  I hate wearing shoes indoors!

So why did I go on and on about a pair of shoes?  To give myself an example of how following advice isn’t always in my best interest.   🙂  And, you can wear whatever shoes you like, even if they currently aren’t a fad or if no one you know wears them.  So what?   It’s your feet that should be wearing properly-fitting shoes.

Hats off to Sven and my Swedish friends on line!  🙂




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Let Me Be Your Advocate


English: PEARL HARBOR (Feb. 11, 2009) Cancer s...

English: PEARL HARBOR (Feb. 11, 2009) Cancer survivor Lt. Dennis Wischmeier and his son share a moment outside their home on Ford Island. In 2005, Wischmeier was diagnosed with an advanced stage of testicular cancer, resulting in an 11-centimeter tumor in his lower abdomen. (U.S. Navy photo by Blair Martin/Released) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Flag of Denmark ("stutflag" version)
Flag of Denmark (“stutflag” version) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Advocate = a helper.

What’s nice about the Internet is if you have a burning question for someone, you can ask it from anywhere around the world, no matter what time it is.   (Welcome to my latest follower – she’s from Denmark!) 

That is one of my roles in life, that of being of help when someone needs it.  I would like you all to feel comfortable to ask me for help if I can be a sounding board or encourager, for no matter what situation you’re in.  Advice I can give, but only if asked.  You can trust me as a faithful friend, and I feel other people’s pain in a major way.  I also love to pray for people if that is desired.

My qualifications:  I’m a cancer survivor, I’ve attended the School of Life for a long time now :), and many strangers have confided in me things they have never told anyone before.   I love people (cue the Barbara Streisand song, “People, People Who Need People”), animals, and nature; I want to give back somehow, as I have been richly blessed.  🙂   (not a million bucks, mind you… ha!)  I never consider questions or situations “dumb” or “too small”.

My offer to you was answered by someone on Friday who does not even know about my blog…  On Sunday, September 14th I am going to arrange flowers for a small wedding on a riverboat!   Over the years I have learned to make a pretty decent arrangement from the flowers I’ve received – but I’ve never had to do it “professionally” before.  Also, my friend asked me if I can kind of keep things organized before the main event – also a delight, since I like to organize!  I am thankful for this opportunity and am excited to go dress shopping for myself.  I saw my friend’s gown already, and it is a knockout!  🙂   Then in November and December, this friend is going to take me to the place she got her gown so I can get one for my wedding.   OMG I’m excited about these two weddings!

Love and Shalom,


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Coming Soon to a Screen Near You! New Blog ~

English: These are some items given away to pr...

English: These are some items given away to promote Breast Cancer Awareness during the Breast Cancer Awareness Seminar on Oct. 24 held at Chapel One on Vandenberg AFB. The Breast Cancer Awareness Seminar was created to help educate and inform the population about breast cancer. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hello friends!  Pretty soon Sunshinefactor will have a sister blog.

I will post its first post on Saturday, October 6th, and it will deal exclusively with cancer, survivor, and family and friends of survivors info.

Sunshinefactor will still have a new post coming to you each day.  The new blog will post every Saturday and sometimes more often – it will depend on what I get inspiration for or suggestions or questions I get from my readers.

Stay tuned – thanks!

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Happy October/Labour Day/Breast Cancer Awareness Month

English: pink ribbon

English: pink ribbon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As some of you folks remember, I love the first day of every new month.  Happy October!

And to my Aussie friends:  Happy Labour Day!

October marks (national?) Breast Cancer Awareness month. Pink ribbons of support are everywhere, as are shirts and bags and many other things used to show support.  This is good – really good.

But I want a cure for ALL cancers to be found.  They say we are getting closer to that point, and I pray that that’s true.  I  love the American Cancer Society‘s slogan, something about helping to promote having more birthdays.  I always have loved birthdays, mine and others, but for sure I have even more to be thankful for now as a cancer survivor.

During this month I may share excerpts from the book I am writing about cancer recovery.   I will try to have something PINK on every post – I figure if football teams can wear pink uniforms for the cause, I can use it on my blog.  🙂

The main thing I am trying to point out is:

A diagnosis of cancer  does not necessarily mean a death sentence.

My life is better now than pre-cancer, and that is because now I am really living to the fullest.  Thank you so much, God!   May my words help others to find hope.






My Yoga Saturday

English: Vrksasana, the tree position, a Yoga ...

English: Vrksasana, the tree position, a Yoga posture. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Besides “honesty is the best policy”, laughter comes in as a strong second.

I began to fully live the day that I first laughed at myself.

Today I laughed when I attempted yoga for the first time.  I loved it even though the space in my bedroom that I’ve allotted for it is kind of narrow.   Most of this Rodney Yee CD yoga practice was in a sitting or lying position, and when I was lying on my mat I couldn’t fully extend my arms to either side because cats were in the way!  Tiger on my left got surprised when all of a sudden my left hand ended up at the place that unbeknownst to me he was lying.  Micah on my right gravitated toward my hand for a neck rub, because that is what he is used to doing.

Both cats were purring at the same time but definitely had different purrs.  I think they like yoga!  But next time I want to remember to cast my fan club out of the bedroom and shut the door.  Then I can concentrate and hear Rodney better!

I was really pleased with Rodney’s CD.  I only had to pause him twice, once to get my yoga strap and once to get a blanket for one of the poses.  I happened to do the a.m. yoga segment, and it was so relaxing.  I wonder if I can do it on a weekday when getting ready for work, without falling back to sleep?!

I found my muscles to be really tight, especially the hamstrings (no surprise here), but it felt so good to stretch.  Yoga seems to be coming into my life…yesterday at work my boss showed me how to do a tree pose.  The object was to place one foot at the bottom of the opposite leg, slowly slide the foot up along the leg, and raise your arms out to the side and up to the sky.  I immediately raised my foot as far as I could on the leg, put up my arms, and didn’t fall over.  “Debb!  You’re already doing it!” my boss said.  And to me, I was just doing a graceful stretch that until yesterday didn’t know that this pose had a name.

Yoga practitioners:  do you have any advice or comments about my new adventure, what to do or what to expect?  Thanks!





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Two At a Time Is Just Fine

English: Greensett Tarn Hmmm. Reminds me of a ...

English: Greensett Tarn Hmmm. Reminds me of a very well known antipodean country from here. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I was talking to some wise friends the other day, and I suddenly discovered how I could stop spinning my wheels.

How do I spin my wheels?  I get so enthusiastic about life, and I’m curious about so many things, that I seem to want to try everything new or different – all at once!  Not a very practical way to go, I admit.  It turns out that I get a few things done or tried and the rest are running around in my mind, waiting for me to get “organized” so I can do everything!

Hmmm, case in point of a perfectionistic mindset.  I have become less of a black-and-white thinker in the past couple years, but I still tread the path of striving to knock perfectionism out of my life.  I’m learning that “good is good enough” and “you are where you are, so start there.”  Superwoman I am not, and I no longer try to be.  Yet, (and this is because of my cancer experience) I am so afraid that I won’t achieve my goals and dreams before my life is over, that I want to do everything now.  (My cancer, incidentally, is 100% gone, and my life expectancy is as long as it was pre-cancer.  So, I’m guessing this is just another perfectionism thing rearing its ugly head.)

AND NOW – this is what I learned from my friends, and I am on Day One of living this way:

  1. Choose the one or two most important habits or goals you want to work on.  Only one or two!  You will have time for the rest!
  2. Keep on doing whatever else in your life works for you, and also concentrate on these new habits.  (Being consistent with a small amount is better than floundering at many.)
  3. After three weeks (the average time it takes for a new habit to be more ingrained), choose one or two more habits while keeping on with the new habit you’ve already adopted into your life.
  4. In three more weeks, choose another habit…

I’m wondering if a person keeps on adding new habits, when will they run out of time each day to incorporate all of them?  I’ll let you know when I find out, as my list of possibilities is very long!  Be sure to comment here if you can inform us on the subject.  Maybe some of the habits can be brought down a notch to “every other day” or “once a week” to make room and time for the new ones…that seems un-perfectionistic to me.  🙂

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The Importance of Touch

English: Cover from label "Touch It Recor...

English: Cover from label “Touch It Records” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I consider myself to be a very tactile person.

I love to give and receive hugs and touch the arm or hand of whoever I’m communicating with – even though I used to hate it when my mom did that to me!

I don’t shop for clothes very often, but when I do, I’m sure I’m known around here as “the Sleeve Toucher”.    There’s nothing better than to grasp the sleeve of something on the rack and feel the texture – I especially adore the soft and snuggly fabrics.

When someone is grieving, they can feel the thousands of unspoken comforting words you have for them in a hug.

A handshake can say, “pleased to meet you”, or “so nice to see you again” or “I acknowledge that you exist.”

Babies in the hospital nursery get a “failure to thrive” diagnosis if they are not picked up and held enough.

A hospital patient can experience comfort when someone kisses their forehead or brushes the hair away from their eyes.

We can also touch people with our actions, but that is for another post!

Remember that old commercial, “Reach out and touch someone”??  Well, that is still good advice for every day.

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New “About Me” Page

a great variety of colors


I deleted the “Welcome to this Blog” and replaced it with “About Me and My Blog”.  I think this new “About” encompasses more topics and themes that I address.  I’m also trying to be more user-friendly!  🙂

Keep smiling!   🙂



About Me and My Blog

Hi, I’m Debbie Loesel Stanton.   My friends call me Debb…

I am a:  writer, small-time philosopher, small-time get out of debt and  stay that way advisor, big-time lover of  people/animals/nature/beautiful writing/beautiful poetry/beauty-period/peace/photography; a reader, cancer survivor, comforting and encouraging friend, bringer of sunshine to the soul and spirit, and appreciator of life.

I am for:  peace, love, joy, and other such blessings; fairness, equality, and respect.

I am against:  hatred, violence, abortion, abuse of people and animals, wasting the earth’s natural resources, and judging one another.

My political stance:   I believe we each need to study the arguments and vote according to what our conscience states, and not what side we think we are supposed to be on.  Suffice it to say, just make sure you get out and vote.

What my blog is for and about:  a smile for your day, loving thoughts and encouragement, sometimes whimsy,  sometimes a recipe or two, a movie review here and there, and always a love of life that I hope to pass on to others.  I’ve been writing a lot of poems since being on this blog but I also write in other forms.   I post daily because there is so much we can talk about. . . I welcome your comments.

Thank you for joining me on this adventure we call life. 

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Prose poem: Does She Have It All?

English: Willow Tree - Glebe Gardens

English: Willow Tree – Glebe Gardens (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I went for a walk today and did a lot of thinking.

The temperature was perfect and the sunshine gentle and blissful.

The house with the Dutch-roofed house and big willow tree made me feel like I was home.


I began to realize that I have it all.

Certainly not how folks usually consider something as “having it all”.

I own my home and have a wonderful mate and job,

but I don’t have riches that I don’t know what to do with or

travel plans for the next 10 years.


I do have what money can’t buy:

Trust, hope, love, faith, joy.

I don’t have an agenda to change my mate

and I don’t manipulate to make things happen.


I am very blessed, and that makes me rich.

Yes sir, I do believe I have it all.

And most likely, so do you.  🙂


Dutch people

Dutch people (Photo credit: Nikola Nikolski)


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Prose Poem: Full Circuit

Prose poem:  Full Circuit

On Saturday morning, I woke early on my day off and wanted to take a walk to enjoy the beautiful weather.

I then got sidetracked by the computer and finally ate breakfast – because my body needed it.

I set off for my walk at 9 a.m. – still fairly early for most people.  However, I had wanted to leave earlier so I could enjoy nature by myself.   Some of my best writing happens on these walks, from my heart into my brain, and my writing takes off – if only in my head at first.

What lushness awaited me!  Fifty one degrees, and I only needed a long-sleeved shirt.  The sun played on everything – suburban streets, interesting architecture (I’ve always been fond of studying it), trees of many varieties among the rolling hills and streets and the city path in the woods that somehow connects everything.  I got to see a few of the trees turning color and apple trees supplying humans and birds with delicious vitamins.

English: Apple cultivation in Nepal

English: Apple cultivation in Nepal (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Normally I take only 30 minute walks – big mistake!  What I’ve been missing since I haven’t been on my 1-2 hour jaunts on the weekends for a couple of years now!

I’m glad to be alive and see/hear/smell my surroundings.  And I took a walk – because I needed it.  Wow, such enjoyment to be had while doing something good for your body!

I will also be starting yoga soon – because I need it.  My body needs to come back to alignment and stretched often.   Ahh, I feel peaceful just thinking about it!

The nearby tennis courts beckon me to pay them regular visits in the spring, which I plan to follow up on.  Wish you guys were near enough to play with me!

The cartwheels that I always want to do when I’m happy:  they have to wait to be done by this body again, but they will be done!  Age matters not.

I feel like I did a full circuit today – not in the exercise sense, but in the way my spirit, soul and body all seemed to be fed today.  Today I’m drinking it all up – because I need it.   I even want to!

I like taking walks with friends or alone.  When alone, I can contemplate a lot and still be silent.   I thought back to one of my friend’s posts the other day, how I resonate with her concept of allowing others to be different from you and judging no one.

And as always, I wish you blessings, peace and love and all the joy your heart can hold.

Your friend,


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A Bedtime Story – Conclusion


“Hey, did I leave the front door open all day?” Debbie said.  “Well, the screen door was probably locked, I don’t have to worry.  But maybe I should check it anyway…”  The door was unlocked, so then she began to worry.

“And Micah!  Did you push Raggedy Ann off her shelf and drag her to the living room?  And why did you knock the music boxes off the mantel?”  Debbie was really worrying by this time.  Micah and Tiger spoke Cat among other cats, but it only sounded like purrs and meows to humans.  Raggedy Ann spoke Doll, yet Tiger and Micah could understand her.  And the music boxes?  They spoke Just Here, so the cats and Raggedy Ann could understand them.  And poor Debbie, the only one who couldn’t hear their languages, is who needed their message the most.

“Well, you guys, “Debbie sighed as she sank down onto the couch, “I have good news for you.  Now I know why I’ve been slow and not feeling myself.   I had a very, very bad headache and I kept seeing lightning bolts out of one of my eyes.  I feel pretty good again.  Oh, I guess I can’t expect you to understand what I’m talking about.  Just know that I, your Mama, still love you.”

But Debbie didn’t realize they could understand what she said.

Tiger closed his eyes in agreement but made it look like he was asleep.

Micah, all of a sudden, through his saucer-like round eyes, saw the gauzy, filmy thing over Debbie’s clothes disappear.

And Raggedy Ann?  Behind her painted-on smile, she really was smiling on the inside.  And the I Love You heart that is painted on her chest was threatening to tear off, because her real heart was bursting with love – and relief.

The music boxes patiently waited for Debbie to pick them up and put them back on the mantel.  Being on the floor made them nervous, because they did not want to get stepped on.

And we can’t leave out the Energizer Bunny.  Even he was celebrating!  But his celebrating was done outside as he bounced way up to the living room window in order to see and hear what was going on.

Energizer Bunny 2     ~ THE END ~

P.S.  I don’t know who the little girl in the picture below is, but she looks identical to me at that age – only my hair was more blonde, almost white.  🙂

Me And Raggedy Ann
Me And Raggedy Ann (Photo credit: KateMonkey)
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