Monday, March 31, 2008

Human Thing

Take a moment, watch and listen to this.

Shorty Grapes

We went to visit this remarkable man on Saturday. Hospice had just gotten there, cleaned him up, shaved him, and then medicated him. We went in to the small bedroom. Each of us took our turn, kissing him, holding his hand. My Handsome Prince told him he looked handsome, Shorty responded "I wouldn't say that". It was awkward, my daughters not quite sure what to do, MHP talking. We left him to rest a bit, cried a bit, visited with Ellen, Enid, Maude, Carolyn was snoozing with him. These women are his 2 daughters and sisters, who are his constant caregivers, constant companions. Remarkable man, remarkable women. Our next little visit was easier, we snuggled in a bit more, even Apple Sunshine found a warm spot in the crook of his belly where he could caress her, we held his hand or just touched him, we stopped the visiting and sang. We gave him water and just were there in the moment. The house is a constant of people in and out. I think the house was full yesterday, when he finally died. I am sad, my children are sad, my husband is sad. I know there are many others. What I do know is that Shorty was ready, he was at peace, he was ready to go home.

Friday, March 28, 2008


Oh, I love getting a massage. My Handsome Prince and I arrived at home at the same time. He asked "Are you allright?" I said, "oh, yeah." I think I looked a bit loopy.

Are You Allright?

There has been a little nagging thought in the back of my head for the past week. Easter is a time of ressurection, rebirth, now I am reminded of the death of a young woman, too early taken. I think of her rebirth through her children. I hope stories are told, the good and the bad, the photos are shared. I'd like to know if there is a certain story of her that is told, remembered.

It was a busy day, starting at an early service, where Audrey was a participant. Always a meaningful experience when the youth leads the service. Breakfast at church then off to my father's church, where Emma was singing. Our presence there moved my father to tears. What a wonderful feeling, to please someone so much, with no pressures, nothing expected, just to be there. Of course, it made me cry too. Home for a brief moment, to regroup and let the dogs out, then back in the car to go to Mom's. Gathering there were the 4 of us, My sister and her family, plus Auntie and Uncle. Barely halfway there, the phone rang, wondering where we were, there were starving people in Towson. The pressure was on. Once we ate and scattered a bit, things calmed down. The girls, plus MHP, all played a hilarious game of cards that lasted forever. You never heard so much laughter. I know it pleased my Mom to have us there, laughing and loving.

I've been in pain this week, with neck issues and what I believe to be tendonitis in both elbows. I ache every morning so I soak in the hot tub before doing anything. I haven't lifted in a month, so feel flabby and blah. Today is an appointment with Laura for a massage, so I am moving forward. We missed two appointments due to various things but will now be on track and hopefully avoid the neck issues.

I made no friends in class this week. On Wednesday, my turn to present my research findings, our teacher was finishing up our chapter review and decided to let us out of class early, not remembering there were presentations to be made. I literally held my hand up and said "NO!" She looked at me, questioning, head cocked, and I held up my notecards. There were people at the door, ready to leave and she made them sit down for my presentation. It was only 5 minutes, I was prepared, I was not going to do it another day. I'm sure they are saying things about that "old" lady in class, what a PIA she is, too perky, too outspoken, too participatory, etc., etc. I'm amazed at how little fun they have.

It's Friday. I have a massage. I am shopping tonight with my daughters and a friend. I'm caught up with most of my homework, so might get some stitching out. That would do it, wouldn't it?

Tomorrow is a day that we have put aside to go to West Virginia to visit Shorty. He is not well and worsening all the time. A sad time.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Ahhhh Spring Break

Mondays night out with the girls to the local Irish Pub for a couple Black and Tans

Tuesdays Pilates class and a nap

Wednesdays lunch with my fitness instructor friends, planning our getaway. I smiled all the way home because it was asked if we would sleep in one bedroom because it's more fun that way. It's a big girl slumber party!

Wednesdays nap after lunch and CSI reruns

Drinking way too much coffee in my car.

Thursdays exam, with careless mistakes. Taking exams is making me nervous, palms sweating, even with notes available, and taking them in my jammies with a cup of coffee by my side. I'm sure I'll get used to it.
Friday morning's mimosas with a friend while we sort our Project Linus blankets.
Friday night's acid reflux, late night tv is really bad, SLSC (Secret Life of a Soccor Mom?gag)
Saturday's kick ass bike class, rocking music
Saturday's lovely afternoon with my neice while we wait for Audrey.
And now an early morning service and an afternoon with my extended family.
I just hope today does not turn into spastic colon sunday, man that would suck.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Quick Visit

Bridgeville Delaware is home to Ralph and Paul Adams, better known as RAPA, the scrapple Kings. Because we cook and eat pork products over the open fire when camping, and yes, scrapple is a favorite, we salute Ralph and Paul Adams along with the mandatory "Thank you Ralph and Paul Adams!" I think My Handsome Prince's BFFB (Best friend forever Brian) came up with this. I did not salute all by myself but I managed to get a photo, albeit not a very good one.

By the time I got to the house, MHP was already home from work and I was famished. We don't have much in the way of cooking utensils yet and hate to stock up the kitchen with to much food so we eat out as much as we cook. The Latino population is quite large so the choice of mexican food is great. This time we went Tex/mex. This place was not as good as La Quetzelteca. Food was just not as fresh or as well prepared. But they did have some guy walking around with this pitcher of wine with a long spout on it, you were supposed to tilt your head back while he poured wine in your mouth. I don't know about you, but I prefer to sip my wine from a glass. We came back to the house and watched "No Country For Old Men". Grim, but worth a view.

In the morning, I was invited to breakfast at the house of my new friend. I met this woman in the Organic food market, we've been in touch via email and finally got a chance to get together. She had set a beautiful table, including a cloth napkin with a cute little tie around it that said "new beginnings" on one side and "Always find joy in the ordinary things in life" on the other. Now, how did she know? As my kids would say, I think we are "thoulmates". We went to the Holistic Health fair and laughed our way through. I do not think we ever stopped talking (or laughing) during the drive, the fair or the drive back. She filled me in on few necessary tidbits on shore living, like the best bakery, how to avoid traffic, cool stores, etc. I am looking forward to our next get together.

I then went for a quickie on the beach. All those times over the past two years of driving to the shore to look at houses and never even seeing the water has paid off. I do not go with out at least a small walk on the beach, search for shells, and a moment of wonder at the surf.

Now I am back in my primary home, with a messy kitchen (well, a messy everything), a paper to write, an online exam to take, a presentation to prepare, and some reading. Nothing like the real world. I've got a small glass of wine at one side, two puppies sleeping on the other side, girls out with friends and cousins, the house is quiet, I can sort of hear the surf, can you?

Friday, March 14, 2008

The Saga of the Vest

My niece decided to learn to sew. She's a gymnast and has a back issue so is resting and wearing a brace. She started a black denim fitted vest, it's so easy mind you, or so the pattern says, with the most adorable lining - red with black polka dots. Well she got it constructed but when it came to turning it right side out, they could not figure it out. I received a phone call or two, they took it to Grandma, who washed her hands of the matter after some frustrating time. Everyday I'd call, "Did you get it?" No. This was bugging me as much as them! So, I cleaned up my studio and told them I had 2-3 hours that afternoon. Li'l Sis packed up the kids, her patterns, the vest, and came over. Remember the last time? Well, I had no expectations other than to finish the vest. It was a mess! It had been through the wringer more than once. The lining was beginning to fray from the handling. The construction was great, though, and Abigail had done a wonderful job sewing. Finally, after looking at vest patterns, my own frustrated turning, I looked on the Internet for some guidance. God bless the Internet. That's how I've learned some of my knitting (some from Auntie). We decided there was an error in the pattern. So I carefully ripped and carefully sewed and gave instructions on how to patch, should she need, and how to hand sew the opening closed. She did a beautiful job. She is quite pleased as she should be. It's a lovely vest. BTW, she also made the dress she is wearing.

Remember Bino and the powder? This time it was the Master Mind game. This is just a small portion of the mess that was on the floor. I found him on his back, on the floor, shooting the little pieces as if they were missiles, compete with the the noise.

It was a wonderful, much needed time with my sister and her kids. We don't get this time much anymore. I left for work before they left. Audrey had just gotten home so they were doing their visiting. On my way to work I called My Handsome Prince and told him I had the Best Afternoon! It's been a good week.

Today I head to the shore. Heaven.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Now Today Students...

In Health we were physically active, playing DDR, jumping rope (with others turning), lifting weights, tinikling, and more. At the end of class, another instructor was setting up. She had a heavily stuffed sock (?) on the end of a long rope and started spinning it with the instructions to jump. Then she went faster. It was great fun! I talked with a young man who likes taking photographs and got a new camera. My partner who sits next to me was sad at the end of class and said she'd miss me during spring break, we hugged. I'm making contacts.

In Spanish, we stached this movie over the course of two classes. I recommend it. What desperation, what determination, and sometimes what disappointment. I had a hard time not embarrasing myself with tears at various points.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

What Makes for a Good Day

early morning hot tubbing

massive amounts of coffee but best of all sharing it with a neighbor or should I say, she sharing with me

I've always wanted to find a note left on my car, and I did!

barefeet, even if only for a moment

sweet smelling candle

Also on this list is an unexpected night off work, a clean bathroom, dinner with my family, a phone call from my daugher who sounds much happier, Ben Harper on my ipod in the kitchen "I believe in a better way"

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Girls Weekend

I am attending this in April. We are staying here. I am going with these wonderful ladies. Do you know that this will be my first ever girls weekend that was not family? I've been away with my sister, my Mom, my Aunt, and of course my girls. My daughters and I used to camp for a week together without My Handsome Prince, their Daddy. But girlfriends, never. We are all giddy when we think and talk about it.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

A New Blog

Please check this blog of My Handsome Prince's cousin. What an amazing young woman of courage and fortitude.

Scenes From My Week

You saw Mondays note

Tuesdays guerilla art

Wednesdays crazy dogs trying to sit on my lap while driving. I had to pull over, snap a photo,
and set them on their own seat.
Thursdays men at work, late night workout.
Fridays wonderful production of Chicago (that's my daughter in there, 3rd on in from the right)

Thursday, March 06, 2008


Is this too precious? Sometimes she lays the side of her head against my body, leaning into me.
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I don't kickbox much anymore. I no longer have my own class and the other class that I subbed for is on Monday and Wednesday evenings and there is no time. So, when asked to teach for my Lifetime Fitness class, after feeling a bit intimidated (for about 3 minutes) I said yes. It was hysterical! I knew it would be a fun class. Initially, the guys and girls were not excited, some of the women were a bit intimidated and some of they guys were just a bit above that, or so they thought. I had them grunting, dancing, kicking, squatting, punching, and sweating. At the end of the class, one boy said "That was the hardest ab workout I've had in my life!" Yes! I did my duty.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Jason Mraz

I had the good fortune to see this guy a couple years ago at a small college on the eastern shore. Wondering where he has been and he's been here all along.

notes, part 2

Wouldn't you just love to find one of these?


This is the note I left in the maintenance cart at the college. Inspired by Keri
Smith's Guerilla Art book
, this post, this site, this message, I decided this would be a great youth project. was ok. They made a few notes, some of which were precious. One wrote 4 messages on one note in 2 minutes and was done for the evening. That's 6 & 7 year olds for you. We had fun coming up with things and tried to sneak one into the church office but it seemed to always be occupied. My book bag is full of thesel ittle tidbits and I will leave one everywhere I go for a while

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