Filed under: *whinge*, Dewicate feewings, In The Garden, Rest and Relaxation
(scuze me while I put a piece of a post-it note over the Jillian Michaels ad in the sidebar…she’s glaring at me for the potato soup i had for lunch. Piss off ya hipless witch. And for God’s sake stop wearing those pants that look like they’re about to slide off and expose your cooch. You look like a tart.)
Ok where was I…oh I hadn’t even started yet. Ok so…enforced inactivity is ANNOYING. So in an attempt at livelyness I set up a Vince Guaraldi channel on Pandora and now I’ll all finger-snappy and got some energy! Awesome piano jazz! He’s the guy who wrote all the Peanuts jazz in the Charlie Brown specials and I flamin LOVE this stuff!
And of course, I could be doing mild activities around the house, feminine things like removing dust bunnies from bookcases and perhaps alphabetizing the spice rack. I could even be painting a watercolor picture of a bird and lifting nothing heavier than a coffee cup. However this morning I read (finally) the post-procedure instructions from the doctor, and it said something about ‘resume daily activities as able’ and I totally took that to mean it was FINE to go outside and dig a hole. Now JerseyChick, before you plotz, I had #4 help. He did the heavy lifting. And now my lovely, lovely Golden Celebration rose is in the ground, watered and mulched and ready to start makin’ me some big, fat, fragrant gold roses. Like this:
See, my father had this philosophy about infirmity when I was growing up. That is, you’re allowed to be sick one day. 24 hours, and that’s it. Anything more is malingering and Unacceptable. He was able to enforce this until I came down with mononucleosis in the 8th grade, and was put on 1 month bed rest. boy that killed him,nearly. Me, looking perfectly fine to his eyes, no spots or raging fever, nothing tangible that he could look at and say “it’s sick” with conviction. Just my 13 year old self,feeling puny (punyness was definitely frowned on) and sipping hot tea for my (apparently but he was unable to confirm beyond my admonitions)sore throat. He could have handled it much better if I was wearing a cast on my leg or something. Every day he’d walk by and grump something about how I didn’t look that sick. Mom protected me tho,by waving the paper with the Dr’s orders on it and putting her foot down. “Backoff Arvle! do you want her sick for the rest of her life?” This was right about the time the correlation between mono and Epstein-Barr was coming out.
I inherited that philosophy. I try hard to rein it in. I think with the rest of the family I do a pretty good job, but with myself I have a very hard time tolerating inactivity, and I do NOT like being told I can’t do anything I want. And what I want, when I can’t, is exactly what I am not supposed to be doing. When I had my hip replaced 3 year ago,I wanted nothing more than to be able to cross my legs and climb stairs. Now, after this most recent procedure, I want to lift and carry heavy things, dig holes,plant stuff. I could go 6 months and never lift a heavy thing and not care one bit. But now, when I’m not really supposed to, that’s what I want to do the most.
And it’s even worse when I’m here at the house by myself, with no friend to say “Sit DOWN.” Or husband to ductape me to a chair. It’s just me, going “I feel ok. That rose isn’t going to plant itself you know. It’s not a huge hole I need, and that bag of manure isn’t that heavy. it’s not like I’m digging a trench or anything. And it’s sandy soil,easy and soft.” and then I imagine Terry’s reaction when he gets home and sees that the rose has been planted. He’ll sigh, call me Arvleina, and tell me he’s not going to listen to any complaining if something hurts.
But at least the rose is planted.
Filed under: Dewicate feewings, Disease and infirmity, friends IRL, home and hearth, In The Garden
After a few days off. I had a D&C Monday and have been feeling wan and precious, plus a friend was here to help and commiserate, which is always lovely. she even rearranged the inside of my fridge…and before you gasp and say something about her temerity…now I can find everything in it! I love that she did that because I am always doing stuff like that and turnabout’s fair play. AND I CAN FIND EVERYTHING. She said “you have 3 half bags of mozzerella cheese. If you kept your fridge organized you wouldn’t have stuff like this” and she’s absolutely right. See, this is the kind of friend I need. One who can say “look here…” and I know where her heart is.
Anyway, we had breakfast yesterday at Waffle House. (Do you know what she does? She gets a waffle, no syrup, and bacon, and makes a sandwich of it. I am totally doing that next time. It looked delicious.) She asked me “how often do you clean your baseboards.” and I answered “I think I’ve done them twice since we moved here.” (We’ve been here 5-1/2 years) and she said “Good. My mother would do them every week and I think that’s excessive.” and I replied “I do them when I notice that they’re covered with crud.” That’s my entire cleaning philosophy. I do it when it bothers me.
I will vacuum the floors once a week or so. With pets comes hair and with boys comes dirt tracked in. Once a week there. I’ll mop when I notice splatters or maybe when someone is coming over. Once a week, at the most, usually less. I’ll clean the toilets and sinks weekly (I’m not completely gross),and the tubs less often but at least 2 or 3 times a month. I mean…I don’t HATE cleaning, but it’s not my favorite. I’d rather be
playing solitaire on the computer learning how to use my new camera and editing software or working in the yard.
I got a new rose to plant. I love me some roses, and my favorite are the David Austin variety. I ordered it a week ago, with a request that they go ahead and ship it because even though we are technically Zone 8 we are closer to a zone 9 due to the coastal influence, and they didn’t say “oh no! we can’t do that! We never ship to Georgia until February!” because there’s Georgia Athens/Atlanta mountain foothills which needs February, and there’s Deep South Statesboro flat, coastal which is nearly a completely different climate. And I wanted my rose. The customer service person wrote right backand said “Sure thing!” and less than a week later, here it is, in a bucket out back, waiting to be planted this afternoon! (with #4 digging the hole for me, as D&C preciousness will not permit heavy lifting on part).
I love to plant a rose, you have what looks like a bundle of green sticks with a cluster of brown roots, plain and dull and not very attractive. Stick it in the ground with some manure and love, water it good and in a couple of months it turns into something that produces lovely, fragrant flowers for years and years. The David Austin roses are particularly satisfying,as they tend to be extremely healthy and generous bloomers. *AND* they don’t look like your hybrid florist roses. I have several, and I highly recommend them, particularly if you like roses that smell amazing.
What do you like to plant?
Terry had such a good time with the National Championship (War Eagle! Hoot!) party he held in the mancave, he wants to do it again. I’m down with that. Men in a cave in the backyard,far enough away I can neither hear nor smell them, that’s my kind of party. All that is required of me is food- and not even that, really, but I offered because the gratitude at him having a party in the cave and not in my living room is thick and heavy. More tamales, he said they were a huge hit and Brandt even announced they were the best he’d had outside of the roadside stand in Oaxaca (what were you doing in Oaxaca? Um…let’s not discuss that, he answered). Last night as we were munching on chips and cheese dip at El Sombrero, I opined that a wee crockpot full of said dip might be good at the party and Terry concurred. However, our wee crockpot tends to get a bit hot and can scorch dips. It doesn’t have a setting, just “hot”, so we, being problem solvers, are working on a way to convert it to some sort of double boiler, maybe with a large beaker as an insert.
It turns out a couple of men who Terry didn’t think of inviting last time got their feelings hurt, and that’s part of his motivation for doing it again. He also wants to set up the firepit in there, and maybe even make a grate so they can possibly grill bratwurst or something, or hang a dutch oven full of chili. I don’t know…this thing keeps growing and growing. It is not, however, any of my concern. Other than the tamales. I already have everything needed to make the tamales except the corn husks and thanks to a very large Hispanic population in Statesboro, they’re very easy to come by.
Terry has never been a huge socializer. We just aren’t party people, preferring normally to have a couple of people over for dinner and shooing them out the door by 9. Even in college, a ‘party’ ment a few of us in Terry’s apartment and Buckaroo Banzai on TV. (or B’nook-a-noo Buzzno…which is what one of us called it when we were enebriated)
He is, however, really enjoying this bit of playing a host and having several friends over, and I am delighted for him. He gives so much of his time to everyone else, and to see him be able to cut loose with friends and just BE A GUY, all while staying at home so he doesn’t have to drive…it’s a good thing.
And the whole entire Super Bowl Sunday evening, I can just…watch a movie, read a book, and NOT wear a frenchmaid’s outfit or serve the men. Nor would they even think to suggest it, lest Terry, who’s 6 inches taller and 50 pounds meaner than any of them, whup their ass.
I grew up before home computers, cell phones and the like. We got our first microwave oven when I was in 9th grade, and I didn’t have a color tv until after Terry and I got married.
So, I learned the art of writing a letter. Y’know, with a pen and a pretty piece of stationary, the kind that has matching envelopes and you put a stamp in the upper right hand corner. I have an address book. Not a ‘page’ on my computer, but an honest-to-goodness address book, with real pages that are alphabetized. It’s kind of falling apart, I think I need a new one. Mom gave it to me right before our wedding. Now it has crossed out addresses from when friends have moved, relatives have died, pages are falling out because I’ve just about used it to pieces. I’ll look for a new one,I think. Come to think of it, I’m about out of notecards too, and stationary. The last letter I wrote to a friend was on notebook paper, but she understands. Her stationary is like that too. I have a friend in Australia whom I’ve been corresponding with since we were 9, I got her address through the National Geographic Pen Pals club (I guess they don’t do that anymore). Here we are, 46…and still writing paper letters by hand, exchanging cards and occasional gifts…all via snail mail. Come to think of it, I owe her a letter.
One of the effects of having grown up without email is the understanding of the importance of a thank-you note. As I type that right this minute I am overwhelmed with a sense of hypocrisy, because I just now, right this minute, realized I never wrote a thank-you note to Jerseychick for the Christmas gift she sent…(Hangs head). Generally speaking, the people who send gifts in the mail are older folk, parents, an aunt, grandparents. These people CERTAINLY didn’t grow upwith email, and sending and receiving thank you notes in the mail are expected. Offense is taken if they don’t get one within a week or two after an expected date. Sometimes, enough offense is taken that they simply won’t send another gift until they get a thank-you from the previous one.
I don’t have a problem with that. I love sending personal notes on a pretty card, and receiving them, as well. However, I am having a terrible time teaching my children that.
Then they were young and malleable, I’d make them sit down Christmas Day afternoon, right about the time they’d start whining about being bored, and make them write everyone a thank-you note. Up until they left home, I’d do that. When they were teens,and they’d say dumb things like “They know I appreciate it, why do I have to write a stupid note to tell them?” and I’d reply with “They’re old school,and expect it, and you won’t get another gift from them until you do.” I would say “Come in here and sit down for a minute” and put a piece of paper and a pen in front of them, and say WRITE. They’d gripe and complain eventually do it.
Now tho, I am fairly sure…make that almost certain…in fact POSITIVE that they don’t do it anymore. #4, who often times shows more sense than the older 3 combined, will write a note willingly, and include a drawn picture in it. In fact, he’ll do it for no reason other than to write a letter. The other 3, of course, are too busy to take 5 minutes to tell the senior citizen member of the family,the one who lives alone across the country and would give their left leg to get a letter from someone young, and just write a flippen letter to them. I give them envelopes, paper and stamps. I put a pen and paper in front of them and still they’ll waffle around and make excuses. But then when they don’t get a gift…they wonder why. Dumbasses. I have even tried to compromise a bit and give them the email addresses of those same relatives (who still really like a letter by post, but will take what they can get) AND THEY STILL WON’T DO IT.
So one of my resolutions this year is to send real paper letters more. My grandmother, 98 yrs old and in a nursing home in Texas (a very nice place, not a grim type place) adores letters, but she really actually loves the email,because her eyesight’s going and email can be typed out in HUGE font size. For every email I send her, she writes a letter back and includes a recipe or two for #4, because he writes her as well. I have friends around the country in various states of distress, and I want to send them silly encouragement cards, because I love it so much when I get one. I am tired of all my mail being bank statements and catalogs. I want some PERSONAL stuff, hand written just for me, and I bet you like getting them too!
Now, how do I get my young adult male children to understand that old adult female people require a note with a stamp on it occasionally?
Do you like getting personal stuff in the mail?
…and other news.
It’s not so cold now. Those 18 degree nights were highly peculiar for this region,tho I am not complaining because a good solid chill like that makes for FABULOUS roses in the Spring. We had cold like that last year and the roses were spectacular. Now, however, it’s just January yuck. Raining, which makes it hard to take the doctor prescribed walk…I suppose if I were more dedicated I could wear a raincoat and walk anyway, but there are limits to my enthusiasm. It rains in January. In other regions it snows, but here, it just turns grey and damp and just cold enough to require hot beverages and soups. Which is fine…I like soup!
I have a D&C scheduled for Monday next week. I’m looking forward to that, uh huh. Middle aged lady parts sometimes misbehave, and as such need checking out. Whether or not more extensive work will be done depends on the conclusions reached by Dr. R after the D&C. I admit to some eagerness when considering the idea of a hysterectomy. While it will be painful and possibly a degree of misery for a while afterward, the idea of never dealing with…y’know…Communists In The Funhouse…ever again is cause for enthusiasm. My dear friend JerseyChick is using me as an excuse to come for a child-free visit next week, which is also very exciting…I predict we’ll solve all the morality problems of the world and possibly get some Elizabeth Gaskell movies watched.
It bothers me, considering health issues. I have always been quite hearty, physically, and to realize that this body of mine ain’t so hale no more is off-putting. Oh I know, it happens when you get older. I’ve been taking daily pills for 17 years now for mental issues, but the physical ones have never been around and it kind of offends me a bit to know that the body isn’t as strong and invincible as I’ve imagined. It all started 2 years ago with the kidneys crashing…but they have recovered enough that I can essentially ignore them (as long as I watch the salt and drink enough water)… and now this….FEMALE nonsense. Bah. Terry is fairly sure I’m going to be a delicate flower for a few days, as is Dr. R, having prescribed a bottle full of Lortab. I am fairly sure I’m not going to take it at all, since morphine based drugs do strange and unpleasant things and I’d rather be precious on the couch with a heating pad and a stack of DVDs than deal with side effects. Lortab,Percodan,Vicodon all make me feel like there’s bugs crawling on my skin, and for someone who screams and climbs a chair when there’s a bug on the floor, feeling like they’re on my skin is, to say the least, distressing.
And so this week will be spent with the anticipation of delicate sensibilities next week. Cleaning, doing a bit of food prep, and so on. Not much else is going on…no special events or fancy hoo-hah, just an ordinary week. Which I kind of love, really.
I love being 45 and more worried about comfort than style. 2 years ago, with a degree of trepidation, I purchased a hot pink velour track suit. Probably not the best choice of color because with my narrow shoulders and wide hips I resembled a bottle of Pepto Bismol, but Lordy it is comfortable. Then with this year’s resolution to walk 3 days a week (still kept, by the way. GO ME!) I decided that another suit or two would be a good thing. The Jessica London catalog had them for buy-one-get-one-free, so a black on and a dark blue one were added. Yesterday I was in JC Penney to get #4 some jeans (he had the temerity to OUTGROW the ones purchased in the summer!) and ambled over to the women’s department to see wot was wot…and lookee there, a pretty chocolate brown one in my size, marked down from $70 to $30. That’s a sign if I’ve ever seen one. Now I have 4 of them…SO COMFORTABLE…that’s one for each of the 3 days I walk, plus one for my day off when I don’t do anything.
See, I know what the fashion world thinks of velour track suits, or anything with an elastic waist and a zipper up the front. I’ve heard the disparaging comments about ‘settling’ and ‘laziness’ and ‘what will people think’ and I say “Yes, your point would be…?”
Here’s the plus list:
b.knit fabric that’s stretchy and accomodates the size variety inherent with being a perimenopausal woman
c.soft on dry, sensitive winter skin
2.Doesn’t have to be ironed
4.comes in a variety of colors allowing one to look a variety of ways
a.like a black olive
b. like a bottle of Pepto bismol
c.like a bottle of Phillips Milk of Magnesia
d.like a brown beer bottle or possibly a full bottle of Coke missing the lable
5.Significantly reduces the need to figure out what to wear (already an outfit with top and bottom)
6.comfort…did I say that already?
Here’s the minus list
1.Dissed by Stacey and Clinton
2.wearer could be accused of “settling”
3.Makes the wearer look like bottles of digestive aids
But, y’know, a comfortable woman is a happy woman. I know it’s not the sexiest thing in the world, but neither is a look of pain or anguish from wearing 4 inch heels or fear of spilling lunch on a silk blouse. NOTHING shows on velour except cat hair. Which is why God invented masking tape. Ok maybe not exactly why but it is certainly a good use for it.
SO YAY for the velour track suit! They’re cheap! They’re comfortable! If you layer them with a long sleeve t-shirt and a scarf, you can even go walking in the 23F morning and not freeze! Who cares if you look like a bottle of gut gripe, it’s not as if I’m auditioning for a job at Goldman-Sachs.
So I decided to google “velour track suit” and apparently they’re not as pedestrian as I thought! Apparently I can spend lotsa money on them and act like I’m fancy or something! I could even get one with Juicy written across the butt or with sparkly things here and there. Alas,no, I do not want Juicy on my butt nor do I sparkle on purpose, but I stand by my plain little cheap velour track suits, and will wear them even until they’re considered Out.
What do YOU like to wear?
Filed under: *eep!, Dewicate feewings, Grandparents, He'p meh He'p meh Oh Lawzy He'p meh, Not another Change!, Sometimes she thinks too much
I’m aging. There’s an upcoming medical procedure that is a result of getting old and I am NOT looking forward to it, but it needs doing.
And…sigh…I guess it comes with getting old, which I never really thought about happening to me but here it is anyway. Arthritis, Lady Parts Problems, that hair that keeps returning to my chin…long and black. What? like a pubic hair, it’s coarse and thankfully there’s only one of them.
I don’t mind getting old, really. I mean, it beats the alternative, right? I have several friends who are older than me and they seem to be handling it ok. It is a little annoying to live in a culture that reveres youth and beauty over age and wisdom, but I am finding as long as you keep a few friends who are aging alongside, it’s not so bad. And I’ve never really felt comfortable in a bikini anyway, so it’s no great loss.
I look to my grandmother when I think of aging. She’s 98 and still kicking. Her doctor (the 5th one she’s had because she keeps outliving them) warns her at every visit that she needs to cut back on the bacon and eggs, and she reminds him that she’s outlived 5 of his kind and will eat what she pleases. I love watching her eat breakfast, 2 over easy eggs, 2 pieces of VERY buttery toast, 3 slices of bacon and 3 sausage patties, 2 cups of coffee. Screw the doctors and cholesterol. She gave up driving about 5 years ago, and moved into Assisted Living. I don’t know if I want to live as long as she has. She told me once recently it was very hard being 98, because all of her friends have died, and she feels very alone now. However, she said, she’ll go when God wants her, and assumes as long as she’s living there’s a reason for her to be here.
And so, I approach aging with as much grace as possible. I don’t resent it, and even get to make fun of certain aspects (like the chin pube). I enjoy watching my children become adults, and getting to witness the kinds of people they are turning into. I am really looking forward to one day having grandkids to spoil.
Filed under: Uncategorized
OK THEN! Auburn won the National Championship (that’s for college football, and we live in the SEC…that’s the SouthEastern Conference…which is like…y’know…Football is LIFE in the SEC well ok maybe not entirely, and probably not at all for me, but since I like living here and don’t want to get stared at I wear the colors and hoot at appropriate moments) so we’lre all done with the festivities and obligations and stuff until…well…for a while. Normal Life can now resume. No parties to plan, no nothing special at all! I kinda like that!
War Eagle! Hoot! (it was an appropriate moment)
Now to get the house in order. There is the upstair Stuff Room. Technically it’s my studio, where the clay and sewing and desk live,but this time of year it’s the “throw the junk in there so I can act like my house is tidy for company” room. Now I have to get it back in order.
And there’s the downstairs Stuff Room. Formerly CJ’s bedroom, intended to turn into a library/office for Terry, but first the flooring needs replacing and I’d much rather do that before we move 4 bookcases and a desk the size of Rhode Island into it. The desk is currently in my studio room. That sounds grand, doesn’t it…Studio…like it’s a big sunny room full of natural light and all artsy and stuff…reality is, it’s a 10×10 little room with one tiny southwest facing window that gets almost no light at all. The walls are Builder’s White and yes, it has some great furniture that Terry’s made, it also has the Desk the Size of Rhode Island.
First, replace the flooring in the downstairs room intended to be Terry’s office.
Then move the bookcases and DtSoRI in there
THEN paint my “studio”
THEN figure out how to make a 10×10 room look like it’s MINE and not just an upstairs afterthought where I throw stuff when company’s coming and I’m too
lazy stressed to put stuff away properly. Terry thinks I should paint it a buttery yellow. I’m thinking peach. I have NO idea.
nothing is simple.
What color should I paint my studio with the tiny window? I have a whole bunch of pictures of roses, some photographs,some painting, some needlework, all roses. The furniture is natural oak- a desk and a couple of shelf units. Once Rhode Island has moved to Terry’s office, I may get a daybed or a chaise to go in there, or perhaps a pretty and comfortable chair and table. But first, a color on the walls. Halp!
Sometimes friends try to get me out more. “You need to be around people more! Come eat lunch! Come socialize! When was the last time you were at a party? What’s wrong with you?”
Nothing’s wrong with me, I’m simply content in my own company, that’s all.
Oh sure, it’s fun to get up with some friends and go to lunch, or shopping, or whatever, maybe once a month. It’s already stretching the limits of my sociability to go to Prayer Group once a week and spend a couple of hours with some ladies. It takes me an hour to get psychologically ready for that, and another hour afterward to come down out of it. To even think about being at a larger gathering is daunting.
And a party? Where you’re expected to roam the room and make small talk and be constantly smiling? Eeek! I’d rather have an ingrown toenail cut out!
Church is different, it’s not a social event and I can sit at the back of the room and slip out quick if the crowd make me nervous. Today there was a list going around, to sign up for Dinners of Eight. It’s where you and 3 other couples meet once a month at someone’s house for dinner. The host cooks the meat and everyone else brings a side, and you do this for 9 months. I looked at the list and my hand hovered with the pen, then I realized we’d have to host it twice. 6 people I barely know would be in my house. For a meal. Oh sure we have room and a nice big dining table and all and Terry’s always saying we need to do something like that but I kind of went EEEK in my head and didn’t sign us up. Because we’d have people in the house. This house, my refuge and fortress from the world, where I can drop the shoes and it’s a safe and comfortable place.
And….I like being alone. And I’m kinda chicken about having company…
So,#4 had his Super-Regional (I think that translates as “Southern half of the state but there was a group from Cobb County there, so not actually sure) Lego Robotics meet yesterday. Smart, Smart event organizers. Very wise and useful event organizers who totally knew what they were doing.
You had 44 teams, ranging in size from 3 to 15 members, assorted coaches and parents. Sponsors of the event included Chik-Fil-A and Zaxby’s who provided food at a low cost. The thing was held at the Warner Robins Air Museum,so during the copious amounts of down time between events there was something interesting to do. I kept thinking how,if this had been held at a Civic center, it would have been some kind of fresh hell to go to, but no…there were all sorts of exhibits and big ol’ airplanes to look at and flight simulators for the kids to ride in. Granted, I can only look at a B-17 so many times, but there was also a warm and cozy cafeteria that apparently no one knew about, staffed by a couple of cheerful women who kept bringing hot coffee “oh…no charge, no one ever drinks this stuff anyway” and since it was on the 3rd floor with panoramic windows, Terry and I could sit and basically see the entire (well guarded and fenced) campus of the museum, and keep up with where #4 and Andrew were (plus we gave #4 a cell phone so we could call him from the cafeteria and say things like “get off the F-14, didn’t you see the no climbing sign?” and he’d think we were somehow God-like that we knew he was doing that.)
At the end of the day, there is an awards ceremony, trophies etc. Naturally, I was looking forward to that like a root canal. Wordy people talking about how smart the kids all are and spending 30 minutes thanking Chik-Fil-A and Xaxby’s for the cheap chicken, thanking each and every volunteer by name, all that…oh yay I was looking forward to that. then it started, and the Emcee guy said “thanks everyone, for the cheap chicken and for helping out. Here’s who won what: etc” and 20 minutes later we were in the car and heading out. Boom, just like that.
Anyway, his team didn’t place, so they aren’t going on to the State thing. Part of me is all “rats” because it would be cool to do that, but the other part is all “WHEW” because it’s held in Atlanta on the Ga Tech campus and its 3 days after I am having a painful medical procedure and there simply isn’t that much to do at Ga Tech in between events so the boredom factor is potentially very high.
I was deeply impressed by all the kids that were there. Smart, smart kids,who knew there stuff. Well behaved and good sportsmanship, funny costumes here and there…it was a good thing.