Thursday, May 21, 2015

Thoughts on Thursday

Yup, I have plenty of 'em.
Or would it be Anxiety on Thursday...
What Now Thursday?...
or How Can a Life Be So Messed Up???
Whatever it is I am sharing my thoughts.....
I fell asleep with them and woke up at 4AM with them....
Hubby's son, E, is 30 and has nothing other than a wife and 3 boys. Technically one of the boys is not his, but that's neither here nor there. E considers him to be his son.
His wife took the boys and moved in with her parents almost a year ago. They still manage to do things together but it seems (to me) like they have serious issues and might be better off apart. That's not the point either.
The point is that E and his roommate were evicted because a 3rd roommate took their rent money and absconded with it. Now he has no place to live...and no money...he never was good with money. He is also on probation and with no address there would be jail time instead and that would lead to him loosing his job. I asked Kev about him (we are both tuff love believers) and convinced E to call him. Kev needed time to think about what we are doing to do. Those two do not have a close relationship. E is the kid who left as soon as he turned 18, quit school, and got into some minor trouble. He seldom calls and comes over only when invited, and not always even then. Kev is NOT a talker or EMPATHETIC person.....it's very hard to know how he feels. They did talk on the phone a little last night and Kev told E that does loves him and wants to help him. So E is coming over after work this morning to talk and we're going let him stay for a while. That means I have to clean up our one small, spare room.....it's normally the kids room. The small closet packed.....I have to attempt to clean it out, at least most of it out. ugh!!!!!We'll try again to help E get his life straightened out.

Something else to think about......
In 10 more days we will not have insurance. Kev has not had any job offers yet. I have doctor appointments this week, no more until July, and my meds are filled for almost 3 more months. I'm not sure what we are going to do. Cobra is expensive, if we apply for other temporary insurance we'll have to meet the deductible AGAIN, and who knows what could happen if we take a gamble???

And...
Kev was promised a nice severance package if he stayed with his company until it closed. The place closed for lack of money....so what do you think? ....we're thinking there won't be any payment. 

That's enough for me to think about today.
Right now I am going to concentrate on the sunshine...........looks like rain again for next week.






Tuesday, May 19, 2015

More Living With Linda

Hmmmm
I've been trying to think.....
and
Yes, I think I have chemo brain..............although I hate to admit it. I'm not ashamed, but it is another imperfection. I never had a good memory, as I said before I don't remember much of my childhood, but I do clearly remember certain things. It seems like lately I often times have trouble coming up with the right word....ie: today when I was at Subway I was pointing to the cukes and said spinach, one day I told them I wanted paprika on my sub when I always have oregano (and I was picturing oregano-where did paprika come from?). Sometimes I try to explain what I am trying to say with my hands....and it's really surprising when the person I am talking to knows exactly what I mean. 
The other day I drove to my grandsons' school for their last concert. I found a great parking space and walked up to the door, it was locked. I rang the buzzer and the secretary asked if she could help me. I inquired about the concert and she informed me that it was the following day. DRAT! I know I have not done that before. Life will go on.......and on.........and on.
I KNEW it was the following day, in fact, as I was driving I kept wondering why I told Kathy I was busy on Tuesday when I was attending the concert on Monday, and I only had something scheduled for One day this week.  I knew we both had plans for Tuesday. 
I did make it to the concert and even sat on the floor with my 4 year old grandson and let him take photos with my phone. Mom, the other grandma, and some other family members saved me a chair near the front. The boys are so happy when we attend their events.

I always write all my appointments and plans on my calender so I know exactly what all of my options and obligations are.....BUT I guess I have to actually look at my calendar every day.
It has taken me 2 days to think of the word for the spray oil to use on cooking pans.  'PAM',  that's it! :-)

I have a 'coffee' date with a friend on Thursday. Will I go on the right day????

On the bright side hubby is getting some resume's and job applications sent out. Everything is done online nowadays.


Monday, May 18, 2015

Springtime Crafts

I'd like to take the credit for this cute plant holder, but I can't. I saw it on someone else's blog.....I am not sure whose. 
Of course, I had long ago thrown out my banana hanger. So I was on the lookout for another. When you shop the thrift stores like I do it's not hard to fine one for a $1 or 2.
This started out as a light colored wood banana hanger, I painted it white and distressed it a bit. Does it need more? Right now it lives in my house and the African Violet is for display only. All 3 of mine are blooming (thanks Carolee). When it warms up it will go outside with some small flowering plant. 



I also made another flip flop wreath and I WILL NEVER MAKE ANOTHER ONE....unless I can figure out an easy way to adhere the flip flops to the wreath form. I think they are so darn cute and summery! 
Naturally the wreath and flip flops are from the thrift store.

I'm not really proud of this one, but it certainly adds some color to the fence...which hubby needs to power wash yet. He does in in between golf outings. 

Thanks for stopping by and if you want my blog in your email (so you know when I post something and you can read when you feel like it) please sign up at the upper right hand column of this page. 

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Some of My Weekend

Finally, on Saturday, we had some nice, sunny weather so I went outside and did some weeding. I was unable to get at it last year so I had a mess....so much quack grass it was hard to find the flowers.  The flower bed that I was working in has to be dug up and redone. I was going to rent a small tiller but hubby says no....so he gets to do it. I can't, I have no doubt that he can, it's a small area....but WHEN will he get it done????
Mid afternoon my grandson called and the boys wanted to come over, It was nice day so I said yes. We went to the park for a while and I got roped into playing foursquare (the normal way). When grandpa got home from golfing he picked up broasted chicken from the deli (yum) for supper After we finished eating he took the boys to the park. It is the school playground across the street from our house. He lost the game of funnel ball so he ended up walking another block to the Uni-mart gas station and buying each boy a treat. He took J's 2 brothers home and the rest of the evening was uneventful. 

actually being quiet and playing a game


When I looked out of the window this morning this is what I saw. 
Do you see it?
Look at the sidewalk.....part of it is wet. Hmmmmm
Looks like a sprinkler, it's not. We seldom water.
Moisture dripping from the leaves? Nope, there is a big tree next to this birch and the sidewalk under it is dry.
I guess we had a small shower in our front yard.

Can you say fog?
We live next to Lake Michigan and have had some very foggy days.
This is what main street looked like this morning. 


Better weather is predicted for later in the week. Woo Hoo! I have more weeding to do. And hubby is power washing the deck.

Have a great week!

Friday, May 15, 2015

A Couple of Odds n' Ends

How could I not not love the boy who made this beautiful, belated birthday card for me???? I am not sure what he means by the second statement...but the last line almost has me crying. 
He loves to decorate, can you tell? The front has washi tape....another of his favorite things to use.
It's not perfect but I love it!
This card is a keeper. I hope I get to show it to him in 10 years!

I finally framed my J. I used burlap....thanks for the idea Roise? and Carolee thanks for the burlap. I think it's perfect. I added some of my other J's to it.
I have to cover up the ugly paneling somehow. 


It's another cloudy day today........but I see some sun in the future!! 
Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Day Was A Total Fail

We have 3 grandsons who live here, the rest are about 60 - 100 miles away so I don't see them often. Now that I am 'healthy' and retired I hope to see more of all of them. I try to attend all of the boys'  school events, in fact today I am going to the last bookmunchers for the year. I bring food for the boys, we have lunch together, and they read to me.
I was fortunate enough to be able to attend grandparents day again this year. One of the fun things about the day was that it was grandson J's birthday.
I had to be there earlier than usual and no fast food places (that my VERY picky grandson likes) were open for lunch. I drove through several places and finally found one and picked up some food that I thought he'd eat. I attended a couple of his classes, music was fun. Next was recess, he likes to play foursquare. They certainly don't play the way I played as a kid. Of course I took a few pictures. 

Lunch is after that..........now is when the real fail starts. We sit with J's brother and other grandma. OHHHH NOOO
The soda I bought (I usually don't buy soda) was in a cup and it tipped while I was carrying it around outside. My bag was dripping and his lunch was floating. J doesn't like the food from that fast food place anyway....but.... His brother and grandma are eating their subs. There is not any time to run out and buy something else so I go to the principal and ask if there is anything they can do. He and the woman at the lunch counter are so nice and say he can make a PB&J sandwich or eat off the salad bar (they know emergencies happen). J is nearly in tears and refuses. He's stubborn like his dad and grandpa and we can't change his mind. I tried.
What else can happen? It's not over yet.
My, expensive, key for my car (with the remote start on it) was in my bag and is wet. I tried to revive it and was unsuccessful so now I am using the cracked one that barely works. A new one is over $200 and I can't afford it now.
They have a book fair that day too. I don't bring my purse in the school when I visit so didn't have any $ for him..... another disappointment for him. As much as I hated to do so I asked the other grandma if she had some money I could borrow. She did. I was glad there was a hint of good in the day. Misty was parked next to me so I waited for her to come out and paid her back. I like those quick and easy transactions.
After I left school I finally ate my lunch. I felt so bad for him, he's 10 and things like the school events and the lunch I bring are important. Today we can laugh about it. I think this should be a scrapbook page for him.
Today is 'book for a buck' at their school so I will bring in a couple of dollars and they'll be happy. I know exactly what to bring for lunch for each one. 

This week is full of lunch dates: 
Yesterday I went to visit my sister and we had lunch. We stopped at a couple of thrift stores. Right now I am enjoying the smell of the lilac bouquet she gave me. Ours are no where near open yet.
Today I'm having lunch with my 2 grandsons.
Tomorrow is lunch at the senior center to honor the director who is retiring. 

I have been running every day this week, thankfully next week will be much quieter!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Tulip Time Part Two

I love flowers!
It seems like whenever we go on the spring trip with the Better Red Than Dead Red Hatters we see beautiful flowers. My birthday and Mother's day is in the spring but no one ever gives me flowers....a gift certificate to a green house would be perfect (hint, hint to my family who doesn't read my blog LOL)
Well, I digress......
We saw  gorgeous azalea bushes many times in front of homes. I live on the 'cold' side of Lake Michigan and Holland is on the 'warm' side so their flowers are ahead of ours.



The day we toured the city it was raining...hence the raindrops on the bus windows.

I see a wee bit of sunshine on these unusual tulips. I have never seen tulips with striated leaves like this.


The step on guide we had for the bus tour of the city. She explained her costume....there's a reason for everything she is wearing.


In the historic, residential part of the city the boulevards are lined with tulips and every house has a row of tulips planted next to the street, called tulip lanes. The city plants over 6 million tulips. I could live there!

We also ate lunch, watched a show, and toured the senior center. 'Big deal' you say. NOT!
This city is wealthier than my little city.
The senior center is in an old school, that is very evident when you walk upstairs.
This is the dining room/stage area.


Our group.

 Some of the volunteers at the Senior center.
Often girls will dress up like boys for the dances. There aren't enough boys to go around, I guess.
 The last act of the senior show was a tribute to the armed services. It was awesome, the whole show was. In back you see the choir, they also had an excellent male quartet and a young female singer from LA. I had to ask how they got her there. She's the granddaughter of one of the quartet members. The costumes were wonderful and the singing was great. It was not what I'd call a normal senior center program. 

Can you see the old school in this photo of the upstairs hallway?
There's a big art room, a large dance room, home ec with kitchen (of course), study hall, computer room, and more I am sure I forgot. They have lots of classes, clubs, and exercise activities. Annual membership is $50 but....they have bigger packages that include all of the classes/activities for about $450. A local hospital contracts with them to perform therapy and exercise classes. They have a nice pool for lap swimming and a big hot tub too. 

Here's a photo of their huge wood shop, can you believe it???

Here's the outdoor courtyard, pretty, huh?


One of the dances some of the children performed at the Dutch Marketplaats we stopped at.

 We saw 3 great shows when we were there:
New Odyssey - 3 guys 30 instruments (yes, they play all 30 instruments) 
They were very fun and entertaining. I spied people dancing in the back....was I one of them???



Magician Jay Mattoili.
He was pretty darn good, and funny. One of his tricks was quite transparent but we loved him anyway.

That sums up our 3 day trip to Holland MI, As usual we had a great time with no lack of food!!!
The first night there I was too tired (up at 3:35AM) so I didn't join the others for games. On our second night I exercised in the pool with Carolee (I knew she'd make me), then we hit the hot tub, and joined the other women for a dice game. It's quick, easy, and fun. I like playing games.

No trips planned for the near future, but I do have lots to catch up on.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Holland MI Tulip Time

  Monday morning, bright & early (4:30AM), five of us left to catch the bus for a Red Hat trip to Holland MI. Four of us are Red Hatters and one woman is a good friend. It was a nice trip because we were not on the bus all day. This picture is at our first day dinner stop. Redamak's is a tavern in New Buffalo that specializes in hamburgers....and....they don't accept credit cards. Now THAT is unusual. 

our Two Rivers group
 I had on khaki colored jeans the first day. When I went into the bathroom I noticed I had a brown spot on the zipper area of my pants and 2 on my inner thighs. You see, I'm somewhat messy and I must have dropped a piece of chocolate from one of the treats we had on the bus (a total of 39 in all for the 3 day trip were shared on the bus). I'm glad no one had a camera handy as I was looking down at my crotch area and trying to clean it. We did have a good laugh over it. One woman brought me a small glass of ginger ale and a paper towel the waitress had given her. Paper toweling does not do much, but rub off into a mess, when trying to clean off jeans. Thank goodness my friend was able to get a real towel to use. Finally one of the women gave me a Shout Wipe, that really did the trick! Fortunately I had another pair of (dark) jeans along. 

We visited Pillar church in Holland, it's the first church established in 1847. A beautiful church with a gold rooster on top.
 Lovely pipe organ.
We did listen to it play....heavenly sound.

No matter where we ate we had delicious food. One meal each day was at a church.

 Rows and rows of tulips, as expected.
   Of course we toured Windmill Island and the De Zwann windmill. It is the only authentic, working Dutch windmill in the United States. The placement of the blades, when not moving, has a meaning.
borrowed from the internet

We toured 4 stories of this working windmill. it would have been very interesting to see it in motion. The miller is a woman, wife, and mother. She is the only Dutch certified miller in the United States. Milling is HARD work.
  
And you thought wooden shoes were so plain. 

I'll finish up Holland in a day or 2.
I have a lot of catching up to do...on my blog.....and reading yours.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

It Doesn't Happen To Me

It only happens to the other guy.....but oh, it does happen
 to me!
Last year I had breast cancer. Thank God that is behind me.
This year I had a long lost cousin, first cousin, contact me.
I was away on a short vacation with some Red Hatters....more on that to come.
When I got home last night Kevin tells me that someone left me an unusual message on our answering machine. He says "I don't know if it's a scam or not and I don't know what you're going to do about it. Be prepared."
By this time I am frightened......so I call up the voice messages. I hear a woman asking if I am so and so's daughter. Nope.....but she has all the other information correct. Hmmmm After I think about it I guess that she mispronounced my mothers name. I called Lori this morning and we had a nice visit. Her dad was my mom's youngest brother and he had 2 daughters that we do not know. Lori is in WI and her 1/2 sister (whom she recently met) doesn't live very far away from her. In July they will be nearby so I hope to meet them. One of them is a redhead too :-)  (from our grandma and her mother)

Yesterday I found out that I am married to a man without a job. He was called into work (he's been laid off every 2nd week) and told that the company has closed it's doors. We have insurance until the end of the month....after that??? I pray God will provide! There is a minute chance that some investors will put up money and purchase it.

I have not unpacked from the 3 day trip but I have thrown papers all over my kitchen counter and washed clothes. I, at least, want to clean up the kitchen....so.....bye for now.


Friday, May 1, 2015

the Friday 56 and Some Other Chatter



Joining up with Freda's Friday 56
p. 56  "We both suffered from stomach cramps and diarrhea, so we spent a good portion of the day and night in the roach infested bathroom, which became our sanctuary."

I read this book for our book club.  Our meeting was a couple of nights ago and we had a lively discussion. Many of us liked the book and some did not, they didn't like the style of writing and thought the author dragged it out too much and was whiny. I loved it. Often we get onto other topics....that night we discussed punctuation and the way math is taught in the elementary schools now. That is part of what makes our group so much fun. At first I was afraid to join a book club because I was afraid everyone would be too intellectual. Not this group, we have a good time. 

We also had a chili tasting event....not sure how that came about but we enjoyed all the different chili's. We had your standard, 'ordinary' chili, a white chicken chili, barley chili, zippy pork chili (I think this was my favorite), my chili had pumpkin in it. We had beer and wine too. Thankfully DR said a glass of wine would be OK for me. Some brought tasty toppings, delicious desserts, homemade bread, salad, and even jello with cherries....that is liquor infused cherries. Wonder if that is why we had such good discussions????

I just downloaded GONE GIRL to my Nook so that will be my next read.....when I can find time to read....on the bus trip to the tulip festival in Holland MI?

Have a good weekend. I am off to a stamping convention in northern WI with 3 other friends, it is an annual event for us. Then I'm home for one day and off again.......gotta take advantage of the opportunities when they knock at your door.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

What I've Been Reading

I've been on vacation so I read on the airplane and at the pool.
This first book was for book club. I think I've read it before. It's a book I could not put down. The mother agrees to take her young daughter to Iran with her husband to visit his family. In 2 weeks they will be home. He holds her hostage and it takes a lot longer than 2 weeks for her and her daughter to return to America. What she goes through is unbelievable, it was written in 1987 and I am not sure how much of that might go on now.




Harlen Coben is one of my favorite authors.
There are so many twists and turns in his books....as the story goes on you find out the characters are connected and and 'who done it'.

THE GLASS CASTLE is a memoir, another great book.
Parts of it are so hard to believe. The parents are very dysfunctional so the children aren't always sure that their life is not normal. This family moves many times, usually in the middle of the night and lives in rundown houses, often without running water or electricity. It's intriguing to see how the 4 children grow up and how some of them turn out to be 'normal' and others just can't.

These are all great books!
Have you read any of them?
Tonight we're discussing NOT WITHOUT MY DAUGHTER and having a chili tasting party. I am looking forward to it. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Greetings From Sunny El Paso, Texas

We arrived at our hotel Friday on a warm, sunny, afternoon.
Today is our last full day here. 
The temperature has been perfect - high 70's to mid 80's. I am not looking forward to going home to 40 degrees and clouds. waaaaaaaaaaaahhhh


I am taking advantage of the sunshine and pool this afternoon. 
My mom always liked short hair, she'd probably like this....as long as she didn't know why it's so short.
Try to ignore all the wrinkles...maybe we can just call them smile lines. 

It's time to get back to the pool!
Thanks for checking in on me!!!


Sunday, April 19, 2015

Some Of The Things I Find In Thrift Stores

Wonder why I peruse the thrift stores? 
There are a couple of reasons.
1) I am frugal
2) You never know what you will find

Such as this art.
Was it made with a face mold? or someone's actual face?
Yuk....who wants that slimy stuff on their face???
It looks like torn stips of fabric were used...or paper? I think an old sheet would do.
It's a nice deep shadow box frame. 



Here's an interesting, huge, carved wooden coffee table.

Only $400,probably worth it. 
I wonder where it came from.


These table skirts were manufactured at my former place of employment. I quit that factory in 1990 when I moved and got remarried.


Nope, I did not buy any of the above items.

Do you find interesting things when you're thrifting?

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Throwback Thursday & I Love/Hate Options


Deb from Sharing Interests shared this photo on facebook and I LOVE it.  We both want to look like this again, my hair is shorter now and hers is longer. (1996)

Yes, I have a love/hate relationship with options. I HAVE to have options, yet I hate having them. SOMETIMES I wish I didn't have so much clothing, purses, jewelry, shoes, etc. Actually I have considerable pared down my pants and capris....I am retired and don't need that much! Tomorrow at 12:35 pm we will be in El Paso and the temp should be about 70 degrees. **smile** But when we leave our house it will be about 45 ...... clothing layers, here I come. I have been packing all week....taking things out, putting things in...and I'm still not done...... the bedroom floor is covered with suitcases and clothing. I say I don't need anything new...but then I buy something. I have some things to return, I'll take care of that when we get home.
It's going to be 75-85 during the day and 50-55 at night. Do I need a pair of jeans for at night? Will we be out in the evening? What if I don't feel like wearing the shirt I have packed for that day??? I need to bring some extras. I know I'll need a sweatshirt or sweater for air conditioning. Since I've been on my wonderful new meds and my BP is low I am often cold. 
Do you have problems packing like I do? Michele (who is going with us does....makes me feel a little better). Kev will pack tonight and it will probably take him 15 minutes...how I envy men.
I slept in today and am taking advantage of not having to be at radiation at 9:30 so I NEED to shower and get dressed.
I might schedule some posts for the next few days.....have a good weekend. I plan to!!!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

I'm Giddy, I'm Excited!!!

Last night I was so happy with anticipation that I could hardly stand it. I felt like a child who's waiting for a birthday party, the gifts, the cake and ice cream..... Like a schoolgirl waiting for her first real date to arrive......like a 6 year old watching for the ice cream truck to stop in front of her house.  My last radiation treatment was scheduled for the next day. I felt like I would be free....free to get up when I want....free to get dressed if and when I want... and free to stay home all day if I want. Oh, I could hardly wait, Silly? Maybe, but sometimes it's nice to enjoy the simple things in life.

And now it IS over, I've completed 33 treatments, the last 5 were boosts, the only thing I was able to notice that was different regarding the boosts was the machine's positioning. Yes, my breast is sore, it is uncomfortable when I wear a bra,  but now it will start feeling better! Yay!!! The bad sunburn feeling will diminish. **smile**

 There were now bells, balloons, or confetti but I did get a card and 2 small pins from Carol and Leah,the EXCELLENT nurses who saw me every day. They said they will miss me  and we hugged.
 After I opened and read the card I did shed a tear. They are great and I will try to visit when I am there.
the inside of the card they gave me

Remember this about cancer!!!

Today was a wonderful day....not just b/c I finished my radiation treatments, but the weather was fantastic!!! I raked the leaves out of nearly the whole flower bed next to the house. Then I sat on the deck with my book and finished it....you know that is almost heaven to me. I also decided to clean the bathroom so it's clean when we come home next week. I have most of my clothes packed, still need to get my carry on packed, figure out what I am wearing (it's always difficult when you travel from 50 to 80 degrees), and pack a few other last minute items.

Thanks for stopping by...........time for the never ending task of folding laundry....you know the feeling...I am sure.