Sunday, June 30, 2013

My Goals for July

Ready, set, here we go.....another month of a blogging Challenge. Please sign into the daily linky and go visit the other blogs....Have fun!

Click on the button to find all the questions!

My July goals

  • Complete the July Blog Challenge
  • Participate in Sandy's Memory Monday challenge
  • clean out some files and pictures on my computer
  • clean my kitchen top to bottom
  • Try to stay cool
  • Keep my outdoor plants alive and watered!
  • Hang curtains in Darian's room
     That is enough goals for one month. I don't do goals very well, but I am going to try to get these few things done. Since Richard has been on Hospice I have gotten so lazy and really let my house go. So maybe if I try for deep cleaning one room at a time, maybe I will be caught up again. Now I am off to read what the rest of you put for your July goals.

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Saturday, June 29, 2013

Highs and Lows in June

Day Thirty

Your highs and lows this month

My highs and lows for June.

  • We are all still alive!
  • It is favorite time of the year
  • My new roof is on!
  • I still have a bit of money in the checking account (not much, but a bit)
  • broken down brand new washing machine and the hassle of getting it fixed
  • don't get to go outside as much as I would like
  • did not put up the swimming pool
  • It is really, really hot and can't take Richard outside

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    June Photo a Day Challenge


    my handwriting

    Well here we are at the end. June was fun even though some of the posts were really deep. Now lets all dive into the July Blogging Challenge

    Click for details

    Memory Monday

    Memory Monday

    Click on the button to read the rules and details

    I am going to link up with Sandy on Monday's to do this little blog challenge of hers.
    I have lots of 'old' pictures sitting right here that all have a story to be told.
    So come join us on Memory Monday at Sandy's

    Friday, June 28, 2013

    My Goals for the next thirty days!

    Day Twenty-Nine

    Goals for the next thirty days

    Today I shall pass this prompt by
    For too soon it will be July
    Doing another challenge will be fun
    And I will answer this on day one.

    Okay, Okay so I am not a poet. But talking about my monthly goals is the first prompt of the 

    Come join us!

    Sign the linky

    June Photo a Day Challenge

    in your bag

     I don't carry a bag but I splurged on this little Vera Bradley wristlet that carries all I need and has the pocket on the front for my cell phone. So I just need to grab this and my keys and out the door I go.

    Starting Monday!

    Click to make it larger and clearer
    I am not sure why it looks 'foggy'

    Thursday, June 27, 2013

    The Things that I miss....

    Day Twenty-eight
    Something that you miss
         Do you know what I miss? I miss the time that I used  to spend with my grandchildren. The times when I could just be a grandma. Before I became a full-time mom  to Darian and Harley. We used to just have fun when the kids came over. I always dropped all that I was doing and spent quality time with them while they were here. My goal was to be a better grandma to my grand kids than my grandma was to me. And we had some really fun times. We baked together! We created together! We played games and make-believe and swam. We played in the snow. We picked wild flowers. And we have those memories that can't be taken away. But then life got in the way. I became a mother to two of them. And Richard got sick and life changed. We still try to have fun once in awhile (see picture below of a spa day we had last summer with chocolate face masks) but mostly our days are spent in taking care of Papa and doing the things that need to be done. I miss being a full-time grandma!

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    June Photo a Day Challenge

    Pots of red petunias on my patio

    3 more days

    Coming Soon!

    Wednesday, June 26, 2013

    What About That Washing Machine?

    Day Twenty-Seven

    A problem you have had

    First of all I apologize for how long this is!

         I recently spent almost four weeks without a working washing machine. After doing a load of laundry, one Sunday afternoon, my brand new Maytag Bravo X stopped working. Just stopped! Would not wash another load. Would not turn on. Would not sing to me anymore. (Have you heard all the bells and clangs these new machines make?). I had just gotten this washer and dryer for Christmas 2012 from my son and his awesome girlfriend. I know, right, an awesome present. And now it wouldn't work.
         Early the next morning I tried to call Sears to report my non-working washing machine. Have you ever attempted calling Sears for anything. Ring, ring, ring....".Hello! You have reached Sears. Our store is not currently open. The store hours are 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. If you know your party's extension please dial now." So I hang up and wait the 15 minutes until the store opens and call again, anxious to get a repairman on his way to my house. I have two teenagers and an invalid husband that can make piles and piles of laundry everyday. Ring, ring, ring....."Hello! You have reached Sears. We are happy to have your calls. Press 1 for service or ordering department, Press 2 for automotive, Press 3 for....and on, and on, and on." So I press 1....and wait for a human voice. Nope, another recording. "Press 1 if you want to order parts, press 2 is you want to schedule an appointment, press 3 if you need to change an appointment....." Hell, I don't know what it is I want to do, so I press one. After several rings...."Hello! Automotive service department" I start to explain what my problem is and she says "oh, wait I will transfer you to that department"...ring, ring ring......."Hello! You have reached Sears. We are happy to have your calls. Press 1 for service or ordering......" By this time I am screaming into the telephone. But no one can hear me because I am talking to a recording. I have now been on the phone for over 20 minutes and I have as yet gotten to explain my problem. I finally get through to the lady in the automotive department again and she kindly listens to my problem and tells me that she will set me up with an appointment and they will call me back.
         To make a very long story a bit shorter (although in total I spent 63 minutes on hold on this day alone at several different calls) I am set up for an appointment that will take place in 5 days. "Five days, I scream with frustration" I explain to them my situation with my husband and how much laundry he generates on a daily basis and they transfer my call to a department to plead my case and possibly be treated as an 'emergency' needed call. The man tells me that "This is NOT an emergency" I tell him if he is lying in wet clothes on wet sheets I bet he would change his mind. So he agrees that I can be added to the emergency list and I get an appointment for in 4 days instead of 5. Whoop de doo!
         Not being able to wait 5 days without a washing machine I take my first trip to the laundomat in over 20 years. Imagine my shock at finding out that it now costs $2.00 for every load. Last time I was there it cost $.50. I spent $10.00 to wash the clothes and took them home to be dried.
        On the magical day, with much anticipation, the repairman arrives. He goes into my laundry room and looks at the machine. Literally stands in front of it and looks. He plugs it in. He turns the dials. Nothing. It doesn't work. He unplugs it and makes his first call on his cell phone. I am starting to come down off the high that I was on when I welcomed him into my home. He opens a box and starts to try to take the top off the machine. I hear him tell the guy on the phone that he can't get the top off. I hear the guy on the phone tell him how to take the top off. I am pretty worried now. He hooks up a little machine and fiddles with a few dials and asks me to explain what happened. I tell him. And then I ask him if he knows what he is doing. He is offended. But I don't care. This is an expensive washing machine and he doesn't act like he knows what he is doing. After making two more calls, he tells me that he needs to order an interface (whatever that is) and an accuator (whatever that is) and will be back next Wednesday. This is Thursday. Needless to say I am not very happy.
         At my brother's suggestion I go to the Sears Facebook page and start to complain. I have a lot of good company. There are a lot of folks on this site and they are all complaining. Someone asks me to send them all of my information and they will contact me. I send them my information. And then I wait. Nothing on this day. The next day I go back to the Facebook site and complain some more. They tell me they are going to have my case manager call me. What? I have a case manager! Wow! Didn't know that. Finally received a call from my case manager, but the entire I am talking, she is talking. So I don't get very far with her.
         Now I go to the Maytag Facebook site and start to complain. A very nice young lady named Jennifer came to my rescue and began to work with me. She lets me know that the Sears service people will definitely be back next Wednesday and that the parts will be delivered to my house........
         I can go on and one with a blow by blow of this entire horrible episode. But I think you are getting the idea of my problem here. After almost 4 weeks and 3 different repairmen and 2 different appliance repair companies, my washing machine was fixed. They replaced the interface (whatever that is) 3 times, the mother board (I think that is what makes the whole thing work), an accuator (whatever that is) and finally the drain pump which was the culprit in the first place. It was full of SAND. All I can say is WOW! A brand new washer with a total of  5 brand new parts. I am out $40.00 for the laundromat. Maytag gave me a free of charge one year additional warranty. What a headache. One thing I do know from this entire episode is that the social media is a powerful tool! Even if Sears blocked my from talking about my problem any further. They claimed that I was becoming repetitive. If it hadn't been for Jennifer at Maytag I would probably still be waiting for Sears to figure this out....
        And this is A problem that I have had. What's your problem??

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    June Photo a Day Challenge

    into the sun

    This picture was taken into the sun just as it went down. The sky was a beautiful pink

    It's almost time

    Get ready, get set,
    July will be here before we know it. 
    Encourage all your friends to try out

    And kudos to Cristy for making her first ever button just for our challenge. 
    Check out her blog at My Own Personal Stage

     Click on picture to make it bigger and easier to read

    I am attracted by.....

    Day Twenty-Six

    What kind of person attracts you

         Way back when I was just a young girl, my answer to this question would have been "someone who is tall, dark, and handsome." But, thank goodness, I have grown up. And grown older. And grown wiser. I found out years ago that most of those 'drop dead gorgeous' guys are horrible. They know how good-looking they are. And they don't have an ouce of goodness in them.Now I know that there are really handsome men out there who are also GOOD men, but  it is true what they say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. What I find handsome may not be the same as what you find handsome. And that is okay! My husband is not tall. In fact, I am a couple of inches taller than him. And he has very little hair. And what hair he has is snow white. He says that I caused most of that. It used to be ginger in color. I never knew him with ginger colored hair. And he does not have a six packs for abs. Just a round little tummy. Or that is what it used to be before he got sick. Now for some traits that I do find attactive:

    • honesty.....this is my number one important character trait. I cannot stand liars. 
    • kindness
    • sensitivity
    • sense of humor
    • intelligence ....not the college degree type, but the type with some common sense intelligence
    • hard working
         For the most part, I have been lucky to find all of this in my current husband. And he loves me. So that is a plus. Now you tell me..what kind of person attracts you.

    June Photo a Day Challenge


    Time to fill up the coffee cup again

    Tuesday, June 25, 2013

    July 30 Day Blogging Challenge

           Kwizgiver at What if this is As Good as It Gets sent me a list of questions from a 2012 blogging challenge she found and wondered if we wanted to do another challenge. Sure, why not! I rewrote some of the questions and added a couple of my own and here it is. Let's do it again! Good way to make ourselves blog everyday! Would love to have you all join in again. Get ready....set...we will start July 1!

      Click on picture to make larger

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        These two Fascinate Me

        Day Twenty-Five

        Someone who fascinates you and why

             This blog challenge started out twenty-five days ago with some really heavy subjects. We all made it through those and now we are nearing the end with some more fun things to write about. This one has made me stop and think about who out there fascinates me and why. I have quite a few people who fascinate me. In fact, in general, I am fascinated by most people. I am a people watcher and for a variety of reasons I will find someone to be interesting and fascinating.

              But there are two people in my life who I am particularly fascinated with. And they are two of my grandchildren. Darian and Harley, this post is about you and for you.
        Harley 2000

        Darian 1998
              I have found both of you to be fascinating since the day that you were each born. Such tiny little creatures that managed to make their way into this mean, old world. Born into a difficult situation. Both of you so blonde. And so chubby. I loved to hold you in my arms and rock you and hold your bottle. I loved to feel your chubby little arms around my neck. I loved to look into your eyes.

           As time went on , you became toddlers, I found it fascinating to watch you grow. I loved to see how interested you were in the world around you. Darian, you were always interested in how things ran. Cars and motorcycles fascinated you. And you fascinated me! Harley, I can't remember a time when you weren't interested in babies and all things for babies. Whether that meant your own baby dolls or someone's real live baby, you were fascinated. And I was fascinated by you!

             And then you came to live with us. The first time. Darian, you were barely 4. And Harley you were only 2. You went to pre-school during this short time with granny and Papa. Your little personalities became fascinating to me. Darian,
        you were such a sweetheart and all the teachers fell in love with you. You knew then how to wrap a lady around your tiny little finger. And Harley...what can I say? I remember how that little personality of yours came out. You wanted what you wanted, when you wanted it. I have a stack of notes written by a pre-school teacher that I will happily share with you (and your kids) someday. You were a hand full. And you let the world know that you were around. And that you had an opinion. But even then, I found you to be fascinating.

             Both of you continued to fascinate me with your desire to learn about your environment. Things were really tough for you at home. But Darian you always took care of your little sister. Harley, he always had your back. He was always there to listen. He was always there to console you. And he fought all of your battles for you. Even way back then. Do you remember the fight he got into on the play ground because some big boy said something mean to you? And he got a bloody nose! And he got into trouble? But he was looking out for you, even way back then. I have always been fascinated by how close you two are. How you always want to know that the other one is 'okay'. I have often said that I don't know how you two would have survived some of those horrible first years if you had not had each other.
             And now you have entered the teen years. Your life isn't as horrible as it used to be. You have stability. You have US. But you still have each other. And I am still fascinated by the closeness of your relationship. Sometimes Harley annoys you, Darian, but you won't let anyone say anything bad about her. You won't let anyone be mean to her. And Harley, even when you are belly-aching about how much Darian bugs you, if he is not at home you miss him. It is like part of you is gone. You two complete each other. I don't think you yet realize how unusual your relationship is, but you will someday. And I will continue to find you both fascinating. 



        June Photo A Day Challenge


        Both of these kids are Sharp!!

        Sunday, June 23, 2013

        Not much into Movies

        Day Twenty-Four

        Favorite movie and what's it about

             As I have said before on this blog, I am not much of a movie watcher. I have seen a few that I thought was 'okay' but none really that I would cal my favorite. I have finally seen the Titanic and thought it was good. I have seen Blind Side and found it to be inspirational. But I can't think of any movie that I would really call a favorite. And there isn't any movie that I would watch more than once. So I guess I am just a party-pooper on this one. What is your favorite movie?

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        June Photo a Day Challenge

        negative space

        A flowering plant on my patio table

        Saturday, June 22, 2013

        A Day of Lust

        Day Twenty-Three

        Five famous guys you find attractive

        President Bill Clinton

        David Caruso-Lt. Horatio Caine CSI Miami

        Chris Noth-Peter Florrick The Good Wife

        Tom Selleck-Magnum PI or Frank Reagan  Blue Bloods

        Maurice Benard-Sonny Corinthos of General Hospital

        I saved the best for last....I have lusted for this man for many a year now.
        Love the gangster type as well as the cop type I guess.

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        June Photo a Day Challenge

        My last project
        A tee shirt scarf

        Friday, June 21, 2013

        Have I Changed?

        Day Twenty-Two

        How have you changed in the past two years

             In the past two years I don't know that I have really changed all that much. Richard had a stroke in September 2011 so I have had to quit my full time job as an RN at a nursing home, so that I can stay home and take care of him. Our entire lives have changed.  A bit more stress as he continues to decline. But otherwise I am much the same that I have been. Still fat and sassy! I used to say "more sassy than fat" but all this staying home and cooking is making me fatter! How have you changed in the past two years?

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        June Photo A Day Challenge

        enjoying life

        Taken on Darian's 15th birthday back in January

        Thursday, June 20, 2013

        The Good Wife

        Day Twenty-One

        Your favorite show

        I love the show "The Good Wife".
        It comes on  Sunday evenings on CBS at 8:00 where I live.
        I look forward to my hour with Alicia.
        The funny thing about this show was the first season that it was on
        My husband did NOT like it. So we didn't watch it.
        He was the RULER of the remote control.
        (aren't most husbands)?
        After his stroke in 2011 the show had already been on a couple of seasons.
        I think.
        And suddenly I was in charge of the remote control.
        So we started watching it on Sunday nights.
        I liked it so much that I went on EBAY and purchased all the past seasons
        that I had missed and played catch-up.
        The show is about a wife and mother who has to re-enter the workforce after her politician husband's
        very public sex and corruption scandal lands him in jail.
        She is a lawyer and goes to work as a junior partner at a very prestigious law firm.

        Cast of Characters

        Alicia Florrick....Julianna Margulies
        Peter Florrick ...Chris Noth
        Diane Lockhart...Christine Baranski
        Will Gardner...Josh Charles

        I can't wait for the new season to start. You will know where I am on Sunday evening.
        What is your favorite show?

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        June Photo a Day Challenge


        This is NOT my picture. But this is what I ate today.
        I forgot to take a picture
        Silly me

        Wednesday, June 19, 2013

        The Importance of an Education

        Day Twenty

        How important you think education is


             I used to think that every child, everywhere, needed a college education. I no longer feel that way. I have seen many of my friends kids go to college, waste a lot of money, and come out with or without a degree. Then they struggle for awhile trying to find what they want to do in life. I wish that after kids graduated from high school, they could get a job, find out what they want to do, and then pursue that dream. Whether it be a college degree. A technical education. Or on the job training. A lot of wasted money would be saved. Not everyone needs the college experience. I think the high school education is what is important. They need the basics in English, history, geography, and math.

             With the current generation, everyone wants to go to college. We are fighting the highest unemployment rates our country has ever seen. And we have the highest unpaid student loans of all time. Maybe it is time to tell the youth of our country that going to college, just for the sake of going to college, is no longer an option. Go to college if you can afford it. Go to college if you have a plan. Go to college to do what you want to do for the rest of your life. Don't sign up for every on-line college that makes going to college sound good. There is a lot of expense in on-line colleges. And often those degrees aren't worth much to your future employer. In fact a lot of college degrees, period, aren't worth much to employers. Technical education is what is valuable.

             Education is important. But it needs to be the right education. At the right time. Only the proper education will save our country from the downfall it is in. I used to tell my husband, not everyone needs to be a college graduates. A lot of our country is about the 'blue-collar' worker. We need to support further education in the lower levels of  America. Not everyone is going to be a doctor, lawyer, or CEO. Not everyone need to go to college. What is your thoughts on education?

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        June Photo a Day Challenge


        Youngest granddaughter Meadow
        taken by her mother at Easter

        Tuesday, June 18, 2013

        Disrespecting parents

             It seems to me like we are living in a culture where kids are often disrespectful, cruel, and nasty. This type of behavior has become glorified in TV, movies, music. I think the kids think it is cool. And I have seen a generation of parents who are much more interested in being a friend to their kids, so it is not COOL to discipline them. They believe that their kids have these rights. That kids should be treated as adults. This is the furthest thing from the truth, in my opinion. Children should be treated like children. They need to earn respect and they need to give respect. They need to be taught that is is not cute to talk back, argue, yell, ignore you or simply be disrespectful. And if it is not taught at home, I can guarantee you, they are NOT learning it.

             Kids have got to learn how to function in the real world. They will not get by with talking back or rolling their eyes at their future bosses. They can't yell at their teachers (or they shouldn't). If they get pulled over by a cop, talking back or disrespecting them is only going to lead to more problems. It is up to us parents to teach these kids how life is going to treat them. And it starts at home. Ask my grand kids what talking back, eye-rolling or arguing gets them. It is up to us adults to set the limits! What is your thoughts?

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        June Photo a Day Challenge

        currently reading

         I am currently reading both of these book on my Nook Color

        These are not my pictures

        I am Angry!

        Don’t tell me that you understand.

        Don’t tell me that you know.
        Don’t tell me that I will survive,
        How I will surely grow.
        Don’t come at me with answers
        That can only come from me.
        Don’t tell me how my grief will pass,
        That I will soon be free.
        Accept me in my ups and downs.
        I need someone to share.
        Just hold my hand and let me cry
        And say, “My friend, I care.”
         Author unknown

             I was reading an article on grief recently when I had one of those 'light bulb' moments. I am trying to LIVE, while my husband is trying to DIE. We are on different paths here. And we won't get it together. We won't walk this final path hand in hand. He WILL die. And I WILL live. He will leave me. And I will stay right here. His suffering will end. And mine will go on. 

             Just as the dying goes through the steps to arrive at the acceptance phase, I believe that family members go through the same steps. And we may not go through them at the same time. I can well remember when Richard was first diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. I can remember his denial. I didn't feel any denial at all. I knew that is what he had. I knew it before we ever went to see the neurologist. I accepted it and moved on. He denied it and moved on. 

             The next step is usually anger. I don't remember that Richard has ever been angry. He is just not that type of man. He doesn't get angry.  And I am still angry. I am angry that he is dying. I am angry that he can't stand up without my help. I am angry that his feet are stuck on the floor and won't move. I am angry that he coughs all through every meal. I am angry that it takes him so long to answer me when I ask a question. I am angry that his thought processes seem to be stuck. I am angry that he needs help with everything. I am angry that he can smile at me and tell me what a wonderful wife I am. I am angry that he sees that I am angry.   I am angry that he knows that I am angry and that I can't seem to control that. I am angry that when I am angry I take it out on all those who are around me. I don't like any of this one damn bit. It isn't fair. He is a good man. He doesn't deserve this. It makes me angry.

             I don't think either of us have bothered to do any type of bargaining. I would, if I thought it would do any good. But making deals with God is just not my thing. And I can assure you that it is not something Richard would do. He would be much more likely to bargain if it were me dying. He won't bargain on his own behalf. He just accepts that it is what it is! I hate that expression.

             We could very well both be in this next stage together. Depression. I know that I am depressed. Not the "I need to get to the psychiatrist and get on a pill" type of depression. But my life is depressing. This isn't what I envisioned. I always knew that being married to an older man was going to mean that he would be older and at the end of his life ahead of me. But until I began to live it, I didn't really know what it would feel like. And it feels like shit! I hate it. I don't want to live it. But I have no choice. It is what we are living. Richard has always been a very positive person. He is the 'cup is half-full' guy, while I am the 'cup is half empty' girl. We balance each other out. Our cup is full this way. But I know he is sad. He doesn't want to die. He tells me that. But then he says, "Well if that is God's plan, then I am ready. When it is my time to go, it is my time". 

             I doubt that we will hit the acceptance stage together. I doubt that I will ever get there. I am not going to accept it. I don't want to. And I am not going to. So there. But since this isn't about me, then I will watch. And I will see if Richard gets to acceptance. I don't want him to. I don't want him to accept this. I want him to keep right on fighting. Right up to the very end.....