Wednesday, November 27, 2013

I Got Lots

The name of my blog, "I Got Nothing", is not a comment on my physical possessions.  As you followers have read of late I have way too many possessions, especially for the square footage in which we have chosen to live.  The title came from, as stated before, Husband always asking things like, 'What would you like": to eat?;  to go do?;  to go see?  ad infinitum.  I never really had an answer that suited him.  Finally I started saying, "I got nothing".  I had no input, just whatever he chose was fine with me.

As I reflect on that beginning title, I know that a part of the reason I had no input was my input had been used up on other projects.  Over the last few months as we worked toward relocating from Missouri to Texas, I migrated responsibilities.  That migration was done slowly as I trained folks to do the projects I worked on at church.  I am certain the works that continue will be greater than anything I did.  The works that end will have lived their season.  That is probably the greatest lesson that a 66 year and 51 week life has taught me.  Do not yearn for a past season, live in the season spread before you.

Reading a devotional, saying a prayer for different groups of people and reading some inspirational blogs is one way I have of beginning most days.  This is all done using online access, not typical of my demographics I am told by Son.  Next I usually read my emails.  Many of the emails are from companies with offers for % off deals.   Those are usually just deleted without 'opening'.  One frequent mailing is from my church denomination's international communications group.  I read the headline.  When the lead touches something in my mind I click to read the full story .

One such mind touching story was about a pastor getting caught up in the African mall siege of recent months.  He was simply going to meet a friend at a coffee shop to discuss getting tablet computers for the seminary students.  The students did no even have full Bibles to study, just pages photocopied from one Bible.  A seemingly simple, ordinary day.  The pastor, who was from the US, was caught up in the crossfire.  He was not injured and was able to lead many groups of people to a safe location outside the mall.  So many aspects of the news story resonated with me.  Things like right place, right time to save lives.  And even the fact that there are seminary students in 2013 that do not have access to Bibles!  I have been giving away Bibles from my 'bounty!

Today one email news story from the United Methodist News Service is about a man in jail.  It is the usual (here my cynicism shows through) of a person finding faith because they are down and out.  A formerly successful, award winning newscaster turned business man that lost his job at 60 years old.  As I read the story my cynicism faded.  The story was not just about a man that fell on hard times but about the folks that lived the gospel.  An older congregation that took a homeless, convicted man into their church and their hearts.  The story is about what love, true love can do in another person's life.

Bernard Addison is the name of the man that fell from an honored life into the arms of grace and love.  The members of the Lincoln Park United Methodist Church in Knoxville, TN, are the arms of love into which he fell.  Now incarcerated in an Atlanta federal prison camp for a minimum of 3 years for his part in mail fraud, Bernard writes a blog, Behind The Wall.  This blog will probably become a part of my reading on line.

I have lots.  I know the Creator calls me to action on many levels.  I know I am blessed with Bibles and ways to read the Bible on line, 24/7 as long as I have a wifi connection.  I know I am blessed with friends, family and strangers that pray for me daily.  I am loved by and love others.  I have friends spread across the world that I will never touch physically.  Those friends have touched me spiritually and I pray I do the same for them.  What a glorious life I am so richly blessed to live.  Yes, surely I have lots!  But I still really do not care what we eat tonight so long as I do not have to cook it!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Thank Full Ness

This week's prompt on the Spin Cycle is Thankful.  As I sit on my sofa looking across the new view through the sliding door I am full of thanks.  My precious husband is alive.  There were 24 hours back in April 2007 when that was very much in doubt.  To hear the words, "The next 24 hours will be the deciding time if he will make it" puts an entirely different look on life.  To stand over the body of a loved one as the life disappears from their eyes at too early an age is terrifying.  To watch an extensive group of teams work day and night to bring back and maintain that life is humbling.  I am thankful for each and every person that worked so successfully to save Husband's life.

I have two friends that have had similar experiences, one the husband survived, the second did not.  I am thankful this morning to hear Husband snorting and blowing his nose to clear his sinuses.  I am thankful as he falls asleep in his lounge chair and snores so loudly I cannot hear the TV.  I am thankful he tickles the Middle grandson and calls him Pickle.  I am thankful his desire to continue to live was granted by the loving Creator.

My cup is so full of joys with enough sadness to make the joys even better.  I am thankful for the irritating cold weather and rain.  The soil is so hard from years of drought in this area.  The rains, almost 4 inches over the last 5 days, have raised Lake Travis' water level over a foot.  That leaves only about 38 or so feet to go to get it back to the levels of 5 years ago.  I am thankful I have clothing to keep me warm as I do errands in the cold, damp weather.

I am thankful for friends, an abundance of loving, caring friends.  So blessed am I with friends.  My life long friend/cousin just lost her brother.  Part of my thanksgiving weekend will be spent going to his funeral because I love my dear friend.  I will take my Mom with me to the funeral and possibly the visitation.  I am thankful my 95 year old mom had her hip replaced this summer cause now she can go places again.

Thanks filled my heart on Sunday as Son and Middle grandson stopped by for a few hours of visiting.  Son shared his adventures during his recent 12 day business trip around Europe.  I am thankful for his job in a time when jobs, good jobs, can be hard to find.  I am thankful I see joy in Son's eyes again.  I am thankful Middle grandson laughed when Grandpa gave him the tin of pickled flavored mints.

Three sisters were placed in my life.  I am do very thankful for our love of each other.  Oldest sis has suffered many trials such as the death of two husbands.  I am thankful Oldest is a strong woman.  She forges ahead in spite of continuing family challenges.  Just Older sis has, likewise suffered trials beginning as early as 24.  She lost the sight of one eye as a result of complications of tests being run on her brain.  Fluids had collected near the optic nerve of her left eye.  The dye used for the test caused a reaction that destroyed her vision in that eye.  I am thankful it was fluid and not a tumor.

Youngest sister and I have not experienced the types of tragedies endured by our older sisters.  I am thankful we have been given opportunities to help our sisters.  I am thankful we four sisters have each other to hold in prayer if not in our arms.

Thank Full Ness could go on and on in this post as I am such a blessed person.  Thank You, dear Creator of all things that You called good.

If you wish to see what others are saying, "Thanks" for this week just click here.  If you are a blogger, please, join in the chorus of thanksgiving with Gretchen at Second Blooming or Ginny at Lemon Drop Pie.  And Happy Thanksgiving!


Monday, November 25, 2013

New Sounds

We have not lived in an apartment or other type of multifamily dwelling since September, 1969.  Sounds were limited to mostly what we created or passing cars.  Birds, dogs and children at play made up a lot of the sounds.  There were some motorcycle enthusiasts in our last neighborhood so there was some of that noise.

Living on a first floor apartment next to the stairwell is being intriguing.  Naturally there are the sound of steps from the person above us.  The footsteps of a person getting dressed and leaving for work then returning at the end of the day.  Obviously the person overslept this morning as the footsteps were a frenzy of activity.  Not sure if this will ever become irritating but for now it is mostly amusing.

Today Husband decided to see if I could hear him climbing the stairs.  We had heard rapid footfalls that seemed to emanate from the stairwell.  Husband's feet made no real sound.  I suspect the footfalls we hear are those of young persons bounding down the stairs.  Quite different than the plodding footsteps of a senior citizen.

Then there is the water heater.  3871's water heater made great, loud clunking sounds.  That was due to the lime buildup from 21 years of use without draining more than one time.  That heater was in the garage.  This heater is suspended on a large shelf above the dryer.  Yes, Husband has bumped his head on the shelf just today.  Ouch.  This heater is quite with only a small sound of the heater.

The washer and dryer are no closer to the living area than the ones at 3871.  We were spoiled to alerts for end of cycles on both the washer and dryer.  No such alert here.  We just have to listen for the end of the cycle.  With us either working and making noise or sitting with earphones, it is easy to miss the lack of noise of a turning dryer drum.

Oh, one other noise, wind.  The halls are open to the outdoors.  Wind whistles down the halls and under our door.  Husband commented it sounded as if we were living on the prairie.  Guess what, we are.  See the tumbling tumbleweeds!  These are all just a few observations of parts of our new life.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Settling In

This Sunday morning two weeks after the 'locked out of our son's apartment' night we are enjoying a leisurely morning.  Yesterday was a productive day of rearranging and additional sorting.  We now have the little trailer almost full of additional items we are selling.  It is beginning to feel good to let go of the stuff.  It is like losing weight.  Now I will not pretend to be living a spartan life by any means.  There is still the whole storage room to sort and rearrange.  The load is lighter none the less.

Yes, it is a shame we did not do this while still in Springfield.  What can I say, it is a physical and emotional process.  Maybe it is because we are living closer to our son that I do not feel so compelled to hang on to his childhood and baby toys.  Maybe it is the lack of space for such luxury.  What ever the reason, it is happening and it feels good.

Yesterday we finally were able to get the top of the little freezer visible and accessible.  Today we hope to get the last of the boxes out of the living/dining area.  It will be good if we can actually use the breakfast counter and stools for more than just piling what we unpack.  Each day brings us closer to that goal.  Surely there is plenty still to do but it is so much better.  

It is pleasant to be sitting on the sofa in the evenings and look out the sliding glass doors.  The view is one of a long distance valley and rise covered with the lights of a small city.  Not the high rises normally associated with a city, more the lights of homes.  It is fun to watch the busy street that runs about 60 feet from the same doors.  Watching the busy lives of folks going to and from work in the nearby companies like Dell and Emerson.

The nearby businesses help fuel the need for restaurants in the immediate area.  We have been taking full advantage of the variety and ease of access to these restaurants over the last two weeks.  Nothing like a day of unpacking, sorting and schlepping boxes to and fro to work up a healthy appetite.  Likewise the schlepping wears down TOFs to the point we do not wish to cook.  So off we go to help boost the food industry economy!

The weather has turned quite cold for this area.  There were actual potential freeze warnings for the next couple of nights.  But we do not need to worry about faucets or the bathroom cabinets being left open.  We will focus on making a pot of soup and relaxing on this cold, cloudy Sunday in Round Rock, Texas.  The Jeep has its Texas plates and we are truly settling in to our new surroundings.

Gene in his favorite new place.


Friday, November 22, 2013

Siren Calls


This weeks challenge on The Spin Cycle is Temptation.  By my body volume one can see food is an obvious temptation for me.  Food is used any time I need to be soothed, rewarded, cajoled and even courted.  Husband brings me goodies if he meets someone for coffee knowing it will score brownie points for him.  And food is one of those two edged sword kind of temptations as one must have food to live.  Swearing off of food as I did cigarettes in 1995 is not an option.  It is just that at this point in life I do more living for food than food for living.

Losing my temper is a constant temptation for me.  It is so difficult for me to keep all of my emotions in check.  My mom is a bit queen of drama.  We joke she cries at supermarket openings.  She uses her temper as an intimidation tactic without even realizing it.  And this nut not only fell from that tree, but took root and grew even bigger.  My family, former co workers and friends will comment on a tone in my voice, an edge that makes them instantly uncomfortable.  The discomfort is a fear of the potential Mt. Janice eruption.  While it is better than years ago, Mt. Janice still has steam vent releases.  One as recent at just two weeks ago.


Not following through on promises or projects is a constant temptation to which I fall prey.  Right now I am self absorbed trying to get the 'box canyon' down to maybe the size of a small box ditch.  I have thank you notes to be written for all the help during the recent move, death of Husband's mom and all that surrounded those two nerve wracking weeks.  It is tempting to just let it go.  And there is the enclosure for the grandsons' bunk beds to make a fort. That will take some time, effort and room.  Room I do not have right now.

And that leads to the last two biggie temptations of my life.  Overspending and over decorating.  These two go hand in hand for me.  I always wanted a 'House Beautiful' kind of home.  Problem was/is I have a 'Salvation Army Store' income.  I am working so hard with this move to overcome this obsessive temptation.  We are selling off many of my prized possessions.  Possessions that have possessed me for too much of my life.  I am still fighting this battle of temptations.

In the early hours of this new day as I lay awake waiting for Husband to rouse from his night's sleep a thought came to me.   The thought, "What a first world problem to have.  Which set of china to eliminate?  Sell the Drexel Heritage 43 year old chairs?  Which silverplate trays to sell?"  The fact is the world average size of living quarters for a family of four is 10.5 feet x 10.5 feet.  Just over 100 square feet.  I/we have a storage room on the site of our new living quarters that is just a little smaller than that area.  It is stacked probably 9 feet high with extra decorations, memorabilia and gadgets.

As I unpack additional boxes I will be tempted to keep more of my precious pretties.  Will I be able to do as was the rich, young man was instructed to do almost 2,000 years ago?  "Go and sell all you have and give to the poor."


Oh, yes, in an earlier part of my life, sex was a Siren Call  And that's all I have to say about that.



Are you tempted to see to what siren calls others are prey?  Just join Gretchen at Second Blooming or Ginny at Lemon Drop Pie.

Second Blooming


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Where The Heck Is......?

With moving comes lots of fun games of hide and seek.  We have cleared out enough boxes now to get to the wall to hang the TV.  Isn't that a funny thing to say, hang the TV.  I can remember my folks first black and white TV that sat on a swivel stand with four iron legs.

Those are the legs but not the big black metal box TV.

Next came the console TV's and eventually the home entertainment centers.  As Husband and his dad had TV repair shops we lifted more of those huge, heavy things than either of us care to remember.  I can assure none of these TVs would have been hung on a wall without a contractor involved.

All this TV talk really brings me to the subject of tonight, "where are things?"

  1. Toilet paper.  We had brought 4 camper rolls.  Those were almost gone when I finally located the box that had the 9 rolls I had packed.  
  2. Bandages.  One thing we always need and quickly used the small supply in my travel bag.  Finally gave up and purchased a new supply.
  3. Butter for toast.  Could not move it, forgot to buy it and butter flavored Crisco is just nasty when used as a spread.
  4. Bras.  As much as I hate them society norms require I wear them in public.  My two least hated were not to be found.  Finally 'discovered' one in the dirty clothes I left at Son's place.  The second was hanging on the backside of the utility room door which had boxes stacked in front of it.
  5. Support socks.  Husband and I both have problems with swelling ankles and calves.  These socks were like my bra, in the dirty clothes.
  6. Charging cords.  We can find more ways to hide these from ourselves.  Finally unpacked the charging station with all sorts of chargers.
  7. Envelopes and stamps.  With Husband's mom's passing there are numerous items he must attend to by mail.  Finally, stamps & envelopes.  Which reminds me, must get started on thank you notes for all the kind gifts and sympathy cards.
  8. Level.  Still searching.  Found a square so improvised for hanging the holder for stuff like waxed paper and foil.
  9. Stud finder.  Still searching.  Cannot hang the TV till this is found.....  Guess that finally explains why I started writing about TV's instead of hunting for stuff.
  10. Husband.  Yes, I managed to lose him in 880 sq. ft.  Finally called loudly enough for him to decide to answer.  He was standing in the shower with the curtain pulled and no water running.  Guess he just needed a little alone time.
I am certain that we will continue this game of hide and seek for weeks, months and possibly years.  Eventually we will forget we even have the darn stuff and not even think to look for it.  Now, where did I lay my mouse in this mess?

Monday, November 18, 2013

Organizaton Versus Attention Deficit

I am one of the more anal obsessive neat freaks in my circle of close friends.  I have friends that have no difficulty having stacks of magazines, envelopes, crafts and various items strewn about their homes.  I have other friends whose homes look like 'after' type pictures in magazines.  What this all means is I am not a happy camper living in what we are calling the box canyon.  Today did give me some relief.

Husband hung the do dad wire shelves in the bathroom storage closet.  In addition the device that holds all the broom, mop, etc is now, likewise, installed in the bathroom storage closet.  With those items in place additional items have now begun to migrate into a more permanent location.  As of this evening we have a functioning desk complete with chargers for all our toys and a printer!  Whoot!  It is amazing the effect of this work is a calmness when I look at the order.  And an added sense of direction for the next box to tackle.

Well, one would think I would have a direction.  Husband says I see rabbits and get distracted from a given task.  He is spot on in that observation.  Sitting here writing this blog after eating some yummy homemade by Husband soup I see two boxes, no three that could be unloaded into the recently available spaces.  Each goes to a different area.  I will have to be careful to not become involved in sorting more already unpacked items in one of the places to finish emptying a box I have started.  I think I just saw another rabbit.

The ability to complete the task of unpacking from this move is almost a formula.  The reduction of boxes is inversely proportional to the ability of rabbits to reproduce.  As a result of this problem of easily distracted unless extremely focused, I do now want to stop a task when I am making progress.  That interferes with Husband's preparations for tasks I had suggested we accomplish the previous evening.  This makes my patient, loving Husband want to step aside the next time I am falling off a ladder.  And no one would blame him.  After all it would be justified by having to live with a person with OCD and ADD.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Downsizing

I have no posts of Skies to watch
Nor amusing tales for The Spin
I sit with Husband and discuss
How the heck we'll fit it all in.

So we sit and stare and contemplate
What is really necessary to our life.
When I suggest things of his to go
He says, "I could give up a wife."

Then he hits me with this news
He will never move away
So I guess that means I'll
Be living small till his my dying day.




Saturday, November 16, 2013

Friday And Dang I Am Still Tired

After accidentally attempting to fly from the 4 ft. ladder on Wednesday, I took Thursday off from the moving and unpacking frenzy.  I caught up on "The Mentalist", "The Big Bang Theory" and a few other favorite TV shows.  Helped clear my head and rest my weary body.  Today was my turn to visit the new doctor.

May I just say the term new doctor has two meanings in this case.  Having relocated to the Round Rock area of Texas means new everything for us TOFs.  And when one is on Medicare, one's selections can be limited.  We fortunately have yet another personable new doctor.  Of course, he has to be new at being a doctor as he looks like a teenager.  The internet searches before seeing him said he is in his early 30's.  So he is not brand, spanking new but you can still see the glue residue from the price tag if he were an article you just bought.

Having grown up on Brooklyn, NY, he speaks so fast I had to ask a couple of times for him to repeat what he said.  And honestly it was more than a couple of times.  The newness of the medical staff and process was just enough different it threw me a curve at the end of the session.  I understood him to say the nurse will be in to ........   I sat for about 5 minutes.  The doctor opens the door and says he told me to go and give the paper to the nurse.  Oops, red face OF.  But that is okay.  I will adjust to the fact the nurse does not come back to hand out the papers and dismiss the patient.  Besides, it was nice just to sit quietly not looking at the canyon of boxes surrounding me in the new home.

I tell you some funny anecdote about the day but it is well past OF bedtime.  So good night, do not let the bed bugs bite.  And did I mention that I had to sign a paper at the apartment office that I did not have bedbugs in my home?  And that I had inspected the new apartment for bedbugs?  So really do not let the bed bugs bite.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Beauty Is

Beauty is:

Breath of a puppy
  Evergreens covered with snow
    A child at play
      Umbrellas opened wide to give shelter
        Tambourines keeping rhythm to a wonderful song
          You


For more Beautiful definitions whirl on over to The Spin Cycle.


Second Blooming

Photo Theme Thursday Shapes, Textures, Trees, Clouds ...

Gulf Coast area of Mississippi eight years after Katrina.

This blog has been inwardly focused for the last several months and especially the last two weeks.  I had heard of a huge typhoon bearing down on the Philippines.  It was not until last evening that the extent of the calamity really had my attention.  According to everything I read Typhoon Haiyan was 3X wider than Katrina and about 1/3 wider than Sandy.  The Gulf Coast of the US is still working to recover after 8 years as well at the Eastern Seaboard after one year.  Prayers are sent for all the peoples of the areas damaged by this horrific natural disaster.


Survivors stand among debris and ruins of houses destroyed after Super Typhoon Haiyan battered Tacloban city in central Philippines November 10. (Erik De Castro/Reuters) #
http://www.boston.com/bigpicture/2013/11/aftermath_of_typhoon_haiyan.html#photo4

Is This Wednesday, Again?

Is there an app to sync one's brain with the universe's time?  Well, the time according to whoever invented days of the week.  Cause if there is such an app, I am needing to download it ASAP.  I usually have a 'frame of reference' for keeping track of time and space.  This finely tuned referencing system has been completely blown to itty bitty pieces.

For instance, in my Missouri life I would have referenced maybe the day the folks made an offer on the house.  Or the day I made a trip to such and such event or farewell party.  Possibly a highlight such as the day we closed on our house.  I remember the day I went to the Plan Shoppe in Garland, Texas, was February, 24, 1969.  That was the day following the burial of my maternal grandmother.

But the last six weeks have been like a machine gun of 'frames of reference'.  Like just since Monday morning, yes, that was the day the moving van was to arrive at 7:30 AM.  Guess what, no really, try to guess....  You are half right.  The van was a little late.  Why?  The fuel pump quit working and had to be replaced.  Had our run of challenging situations now begun to spill onto those around us?  Hope not.  (Those guys were amazing when they were able to arrive.  And moving the almost 100 year old piano!  WOW)  That was, also, the day Husband was to go for his first visit to the new doctor.  Oops, Husband has, likewise, lost his frame of reference and misses the appointment.  

I think that was the same day Sissy and I took advantage of Husband's military service and bought a car full of shelf liner, toilet brushes, hooks, new trash can for kitchen, etc., etc. at the 20% off everything sale at Bed, Bath and Beyond.  I was so excited to get into the place with the stuff I almost ran up the walk onto the patio.  The door was open as Husband was sitting on the patio.  So I charged into the room only to be bounced back by the rather sturdy screen door.  I went into an uncontrollable fit of laughter.  I mean, what else can one do  .....  just give me a minute to regain my composure.

Tuesday, that is still the day that follows Monday I hope, brought no significant event.  Well, maybe one or two.  For background you will need to know the new place has a really big master closet, like 7' x 12' x 10' high.  No light switch but a motion detector mounted on the 10' ceiling controls the light.  The two smallish doors open into the closet.  I was working in the closet unloading and rearranging about 5 wardrobe boxes and lots of miscellaneous boxes and tubs.  Apparently I was not moving in the correct way as the light went off so I waved my arms.  No light.  Okay, I know the thing comes on when I open the doors so let's just close the doors and open them.  That is when I discovered another unique feature of the closet, no inside door knobs.  I waved my arms wildly several times, but still no light.

Again, as with the bounce off the screen door experience,  I am cackling like a hen house full of chickens laying eggs.  I cannot speak, only laugh uncontrollably.  Evidently Sissy and Husband did not find this behavior to be the least bit abnormal and neither came to check.  Had they never heard of someone dying laughing?  I was finally able to get a couple of fingernail holds on the very edge of one door enough to get it open.  Then I stumbled into the living area gasping for breath as I attempted to explain the reason for all the egg laying sounds.

After several hours of lining shelves and unboxing kitchen stuff we decided to have dinner at Longhorn Steakhouse.   No, Longhorn was Monday night.  See, I need to re sync!  But I'll go ahead and tell how we decided to be seated in the bar to avoid a lengthy wait.  The waitperson/bartender lady comes to take our order for drinks.  We ask if we can just order our food at this same table.  "Sure" was the young woman's answer. Then, looking down in Husband's direction/lap area she asks, "Where's your little thingie".  Immediately she covers her mouth and a look of horror crosses her face as she realized where she was looking when she said "little thingie."  Now all four of us are in uncontrollable laughter.  I mean, how did she know?  She, of course, had been looking for the notification device they give people waiting for a table.

Thumbs up for finding the Little Thingie


I guess other than the closet event, Tuesday, oh, no, Husband did make it to the new doctor's office.  He was told he was old and fat.  Not breaking news to him or me.  And the AT&T guy came to get the internet up and going!!  Whoot, whoot.  But Husband almost forgot his 5 PM beer date with a surrogate son.  With us all being drag butt tired, it was another eats out night.  Mexican was the meal of choice and Mesa Rosa was just the ticket.  And the waitperson was not interested in any one's little thingie, just good service of food, not thingies.  Just to clarify.



That brings my story to this day which Sissy helped me finally figure out was Wednesday.  It still is for a few more minutes.  I knew going into the day I was really tired and achy.  I started by 7:15 working on putting away items that had not made it to a 'home' on Tuesday.  Also, tried to figure out why my clock went blank overnight.  Top outlet mysteriously quit working in the middle of the night.  Anyway just learning things about a new space.  Sissy arrived, we had some breakfast and started the routine of her unpacking and me finding homes for the stuff in the kitchen.  One item seemed to need to be taken from the top shelf above the fridge and placed in an adjacent cabinet.  Husband had just returned from a get rid of paper run to the dumpster.  He was walking away from me as I was turning on the ladder to place the item in a different place.

So I will remember for a few days that Wednesday was the day I fell from the ladder.  I was not laughing at the time but screaming for Husband to help.   He did catch me enough to break the fall and we are relatively unscathed.  He did tell me I was pretty heaving when falling.  I told him I was pretty sure the doctor would tell me I am fat and old on Friday when I go to see him. Even if I do not fall on the doctor.  Sissy did more unpacking and any high items to be put away were not done by me.  We did slow down the pace.

Around 2 we decided it was time for food.  We discovered it was too early for Logan's special.  Following the tradition of old people wanting to eat out, I had coupons for Schlotzskys.  Really good eats for three, tired folks.  The tomato basil really hit the spot.  



We returned to the apartment, Sissy left for her home and two senior citizens collapsed in the available chairs.  We did finally get up enough energy to rearrange some of the boxes so we could get to the sofa and lounge chairs.  Then we collapsed again.  While I am sure I will be 'stove up' as us old folks say I am ok at the end of the day.

I will remember Wednesday, November 13, as the day Husband caught me in mid fall.  The day he was yet again an angel, my angel.  And that, my friends, is a big thingie.


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Saturday and Sunday Sillies

You must understand that we are beyond having much energy left in our senior citizen bodies after the summer, moving preparations and the loss of Husband's Mom the day after closing on our home sale.  That event required a complete change of plans from a vacation to planning and having a memorial and burial of Mom making do with regular clothes as her burial clothing was on a van to another state.  And one of the days in all the turmoil of homeless folks living in a friends home the Jeep would not start without a jump from the BIL's vehicle.  There were a few run on sentences.  Get over it English teachers.  I am, also, on my last nerve, maybe.
Patio preview on Friday.  We can pile stuff here before 10!

Saturday morning, Husband, Son and I were on a mission to unload the 10' U Haul by 11:00 AM.  We could not get into the new apartment until we signed all the contract stuff at 10:00 AM.  We unloaded everything in the truck that went to the apartment onto the patio before 10;00, signed all the papers, received the key to the onsite storage unit and unloaded the items for the storage unit.  Thanks to planning ahead and having the apartment stuff toward the truck back, we did it and were only 14 minutes past the turn in time.  No penalty for being just 14 minutes late.  Thank you , U Haul and an amazing Son who has appointments and packing for international business trip to get done.

Husband gave me a high five on job well done as we leave the truck.

On our return trip from the U Haul store, we stop for laundry supplies.  We had 15 days of laundry built up due to the all the crazy stuff and having sold our washer and dryer a few days before the move.  Back at the apartment Husband and I bring in items from the patio and distribute through the apartment.  Clothing is sorted and the mountain of laundry is started.  Son has returned from his errands with lunch.  We eat standing around our new kitchen counter.  We forgot to keep out our folding lawn chairs.
New living, dining and kitchen area.  Can you say cozy?
As we are taking our last bites of wonderful egg salad sandwiches when our Longhorn Band Nephew arrives to help with the unloading and lifting.  Husband, Son and L B N make quick work of unloading the ton of rocks and stuff this idiot brought from Springfield to Round Rock, TX.  Well, there were some pots and other stuff, too.  But still, "rocks? wouldn't the moving company have carried these?", spilled from Son's mouth at some point.  LBN (that's Longhorn Band Nephew) had no such comments, just smiled at crazy, harmless Auntie Jan.  Son had a 3:00 deadline to return to do more laundry so he left.

We offered LBN some lunch/dinner at a location of his choice.  His phone found 5 restaurants withing 1/2 mile.  Sweet, let's go sit down and watch you eat while we drink something.  The key word in the last sentence is 'sit' as we still have no chairs in the apartment.  Taking a potty break to us means just going to sit on the stool to rest.  The edge of the garden bathtub is good for resting, also.  We blissfully sat, nibbled on an appetizer while swigging tea and sangria as LBN enjoyed sliders and hot wings.  We lingered and visited until time for LBN to leave for his appointment.

The short trip back to our apartment helped us realize how much we were already enjoying our new location.  LBN left for his appointment as we rolled the last of the items from the Jeep into the building.  We assured him he was welcome anytime and there would be free food.  He smiled and we smiled knowing poor college students and relatives have one thing in common besides mutual love and that is food.  We have discovered another reason to like this location, a wonderful nephew.

We like the view in the distance, beyond the road and water tower.


This post is getting too long and I am tired, again, tonight.  In part because of the events of the next few hours.  We gathered clothing to return to Son's apartment for the night.  He was out with a friend for the entire evening and we would have his place to ourselves for some much needed quite.  My cell was needing charging and all the chargers were at Son's apartment.  We drove up to his place and Husband let me out at the door.  It was probably 9:45 PM by now and we were ready for a shower and good night's rest....  And the fun began.

The door to son's apartment was locked.  I turned to Husband and asked if there was an arrangement?  None, so I checked under the doormat.  No key.  Give Son a call.  Oops, Husband's working cell was back at our apartment.  Really?  Ok, Son's BFF lives nearby and  has the extra key.  We head for BFF's and at 10:00 PM my husband with a ball cap covering his head and part of his face rings the doorbell.  BFF's wife opens the door finally once she recognizes Husband.  Yes, BFF has a key, it is on his keyring with him on an out of town business trip.....   Calls made, Son curses loudly.  Offers to stay at BFF's home, realize must take meds are back at our apartment.  Offer declined saying we will stay at Mariott next to new apartment.

One the way to the Mariott we have a Dave Ramsey moment, a night's stay in the motel is not in the budget.  K.  We go to our apartment and gather every piece of padding we have used in packing the trailer.  This along with our blanket is spread on the floor.  A top sheet and two afgans complete the king size pallet on the floor of our carpeted bedroom.  We shower, thankfully Martha Stewart's 'things to take with list' included the survival box of bathroom necessities, medicines and bedding.  Husband's CPAP machine is not available as it is captive in Son's apartment so he snores a fitful sleep.  I groan with each turn and a simple trip to the potty for the real purpose is a gymnast's act for each of us.  Multiple times.

After an adventurous night's 'rest' I awake thinking of how to arrange the office area to be able to unload a couple more boxes of 'valuables'.  Things look less valuable after a night on the floor instead of a soft bed.  Though tempted to reduce even further, I simply adapt to the available space.  We both dress and await the Son's call on Husband's working cell to tell us we can come to his apartment.  Husband  moves the Jeep from the 4th floor parking space to ground level.  We cannot use our assigned parking space for the Jeep as the trailer is parked there.

The call from Son comes and we clamber into the Jeep.  There is no grace in our movements as the carpet, padding and blanket made for a firm sleeping surface.  And Husband turns the key.  The dreaded response is the sound of the starter grinding to no avail.  The battery is dead.  He calls Son and Son drives over.  Husband announces we, who are dead tired and have been AAA members for 40 years, will push the Jeep uphill so Son can jump the battery.  I level my eyes at Husband and said flatly, "No way will I do this".  He frowns at me and says I am not being very cooperative as Son wants to jump the Jeep.  "No, Son is leaving for 12 days, the movers are coming tomorrow, we will use Son's vehicle and call AAA sometime in the next week.  The Jeep stays put next to my last nerve.  End of discussion, period."

Like I said, on my last nerve, maybe.  Son drops us at a bistro while he gets a haircut.  We get coffee and food but the answer is still no on jumping a Jeep.  Head for Son's apartment, zoom to Son's sons for bye hugs before 12 day business trip, we gas Son's vehicle while he has bye time.  Waves only at grandsons, off to airport, drop off Son, run a list of errands the last of which is go back to BFF's house and leave tickets to a concert.  We come to a stop in BFF's driveway which is only about a block from Son's sons' moms' home.  From out of nowhere Middle and Youngest Grandsons had found us.  They greeted us with two stinky, sweaty little boys' biggest hugs ever.  Then they ran back to their playmates.  I was no longer on my last nerve and neither was Grandpa/Husband.

Cause those two little, sweaty, stinky boys plus two more are why we moved.  I am one blessed Grandma.

Husband/Grandpa & Me/Grandma at our new digs patio.




Skywatch Friday On The Move



Where in the world am I this Friday?  If you visit my blog other than Fridays you will know we are moving from Missouri to the Austin, Texas, area.  Today's submission are shots through the windshield as I drove a 10' Uhaul truck.  The photos cover the 200 mile (321 K) traveled from Dallas to Austin on the final leg of our move.  For more beautiful skies across the globe, click on over to Skywatch Friday.

Cow town fly over.

Cow town skies with bug splatters



Favorite bakery in West, Texas
Near Belton, Texas

Nearing the final destination.
Building along the Old Chisolm Trail.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Traveling Thursday

This day started early for us.  
It began in a frosty Missouri 
Wound across colorful Arkansas
Oklahoma's Highway 69 took us south
 At nightfall we crossed the Red River.
Does that make us Texans again?





Weeping Wednesday

While the colors of the trees brightened the gloom of the day
It was a day of sadness on so many levels.
We said our final goodbyes to fiends of so many years.
More than that we parted with Husband's beloved mother.
Family and friends stood in a cold, damp wind
As Son gave a tribute to his quite, sweet Grandma.
His Gardner Grandma that saved ears of sweet corn for him
To have when he returned from college at Thanksgiving.
We wept this Wednesday.









Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Tuesday Temper

The end of my rope I did reach
And I became a raving Bi&^h
'Nuf said.

Missouri Monday

Some days are all well planned
And things run smoothly
Like the stream of hourglass sand.


Monday, November 4, 2013

Sunday Sanity

After weeks of lots to do I find myself this day feeling at loose ends.  Things that must be done like ordering flowers and choosing clothing for burial are not available till tomorrow.  Things that can be done, clearing out Edna's few remaining possessions, are being done by Husband and BIL.  I am doing my best to put my mind into neutral, to coast a little.  To gather strength for the next few days of a few family members arriving for the burial.  I am working to not worry that there is not place for them.  Even Son will be staying with other friends.  Cousins will need to fend for themselves, I guess.

There is still the final stages of our move to complete here in Missouri as well as in Round Rock.  The original plan for dealing with all the extra stuff we could not carry is no longer as cost effective.  A trip is no longer a need for Edna.  We now have a plan that resolved that part of the issue.  It is our plan and one with which we feel comfortable.  And that is all that matters to us.  Rent a small moving truck and donate the Lincoln. Yes, I need to just be a Mary for a few days instead of a Martha.  I need to choose to focus on God and learning from this experience.  So on this traditional Christian day of rest I shall do just that.

One Last Look 




Sunday, November 3, 2013

Closing Day T - 0

It is Halloween and closing day on our house.  I do not even want to go into all the details of this excruciating day.  We awoke around 6:45 to the news that Gene's 99 years old mom was in the hospital.  We still had stuff to get out of the house we were closing on at 10:00 AM.

To sum up this final day of count down is to say God has a plan for all our lives.  We have plans for our lives.  Some days the plans are not in sync.  This was one of those days.  The closing on the house was completed.  By the grace of the buyers we were given additional time to finish packing up the few items left at the house.  Wonderful friends, neighbors and cousins helped accomplish the tasks at hand.

Our evening and night are spent in the hospital with Gene's Mom.  Gene and by telephone with his brother make the excruciating decision to take no further steps to prolong their mother's life.  At 3 in the afternoon she was moved to a palliative care routine.  This simply means letting nature take its course while keeping the person as comfortable as possible.  The mission on keeping the patient comfortable with no visible signs of pain like frowning and groaning was accomplished.

Earlier on the Halloween day Edna said to Gene that he was her oldest boy.  She did not know his name.  She asked where Dad was.  Dad is how she referred to Gene's father.  Gene asked if she wanted to find Dad and she smiled yes.  Then watch for him was the gist of Gene's response.  Later in the day Gene leaned over to speak to Mom.  She raised her arm over his back and began to caress her baby boy and he caressed her.  This lasted for several minutes.  Edna was mouthing inaudible words.  Lip movements resembled I love you and bye.  But we were not positive.

Last embrace
On Thursday morning Edna was initially brought into the emergency room.  From there she was transferred to the the 3rd floor surgical wing.  The staff did not expect her to last through the day.  But she was still with us a 6 AM on Nov. 1.  And the sunrise was beautiful.

Sunrise viewed from Edna's 3rd floor room

By 7 AM the staff was told to move Edna to the hospice floor of the hospital for the remainder of her time which could be days. The hospice unit was located on the 7th floor.  The area on the 7th floor through which we would travel with Edna in the bed was the area where Gene's Dad had passed away in 2005.

The little caravan of two nurses, Gene, me and Edna in the hospital bed twisted through the maze of halls.  We joked about leaving crumbs so we would not get lost.  We arrived at the new room and the transition of responsibilities between nursing staff began.  I snapped a couple of pictures out the window.



As I turned back to the bed I noted to the nurses, "She is not breathing."  The bed was hastily rolled into place.  The nurse retrieved a stethoscope and checked for sounds.  She then said something like we are sorry for your loss.  Edna had lasted until 8:31 AM on All Saints Day, Nov. 1.  She was 99 years 13 days old.

I turned to Gene and said, "Dad was waiting on her up here and they are together again."  He agreed and we collapsed in each other arms in sobs.  We believe with all our hearts that Dad and Mom found each other that morning.  God surrounds us with angels both visible and invisible.  Each is reaching out to help those they are sent to care for along the way.  May we each recognize the angels in our lives.  Be they friends, family, health professionals or even grumpy folks that are in a hurry.  Each could be sent to give us just what is needed.

And when I started the T - countdown I guess God already knew that to which I was really counting without my knowing.






Friday, November 1, 2013

Loading Day T - 1

No time to post before the wifi was shutdown.  Will post pictures later.  Sum up the day with
  • too much stuff to go
  • car filled to the ceiling
  • Jeep filled almost to ceiling
  • trailer overloaded
  • friends help clean floors
  • friends keeping stuff at their homes
  • Mike's Unique is awesome for picking up all the for sale stuff in a pouring rain
  • I do not shrink when wet
  • Good friends give the best hugs