Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Haven't heard from my brother about his job prospects. He had 2 that sounded like they would make offers. I hope that no news is good news in this case. He's waited patiently for the right opportunity and I think a change would be good for him and his family. I'm worried most about my niece. I know how difficult it can be to move away from your friends, especially since next year will be her senior year. I hope that she can adjust to the change and enjoy the year. She is so on the brink of her life; there is so much more to experience and enjoy. I know what it's like to be in high school, have good friends and then have to leave them. But at least for me, the move to a new city was a good thing. I look back with some great memories at my high school years. I hope, that if she has to move, she will make good memories too.

Speaking of memories, they can be so fleeting. Mom still has so many good, important ones. She just sometimes gets confused about them. It sucks. But each day is a blessing for all of us.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Supposedly there is nothing wrong with the air conditioning. The fact that it was set at 78 today and only got to 80 is normal I guess. Not sure what to do.

It was a lovely day today. A cool breeze is blowing. But May is almost over! I don't want the summer to fly by, it's my favorite time of the year!

Came home feeling exhausted. Sitting all day at a computer does that to me. And then sitting for 90 minutes to and from work doesn't help. I've got to find a job closer to home.

At work they are offering Long Term Care insurance for employees. I'm going to go to the spiel since dementia appears to run in my family.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Heatwave

It has been in the upper 90s for the last 2 days and our air conditioning has been broken. It runs, but it doesn't cool off the house. It's pretty unbearable. Thank God we have a basement where it has been cool. I worry about Mom though because she is upstairs and she can't recognize when she is overheating. I have a fan blowing on her. It is supposed to cool down soon. The repairman is supposed to come tomorrow. This is the second problem that we have had with the heating and cooling system at this house. In the winter, we had a problem with the blower and it got very cold in the house. Now we have a problem with the air conditioning. I'm going to bring this up with the builder. Who would expect it to be so hot in Minnesota for Memorial Day? I'm used to it being so cold and rainy. We went from having our furnace on to having to use our air conditioning in a matter of days.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Well, it looks like we taxpayers are going to fork over tax money to pay for a new stadium for the overly wealthy Carl Pohlad. On the front page of the Strib there is Tim P. signing the bill at a Twins game. It irks me that money can be found for the wealthy when they ask for it, but if you're poor, forget it. In fact, government will use you to 'balance the budget' by taking away services that you rely heavily upon. I'm tired of seeing those who can least afford it, lose more and more. It's just not right. The greed in this world is just way too overwhelming for me. The governor should hop a 16, 50 or 94 bus sometime, he can catch it right outside his office, and see how the other half lives. It just might open up his eyes. Or maybe not.....
A wonderful thing about May, June and July in Minnesota is that around the summer solstice it is light until after 9:00 in the evening. That is a super great time of day. It's calm and the birds are singing. It's so peaceful. Tonight was such a perfect evening.
Good news. My brother emailed that his recruitor called to say one of the companies that he interviewed at is interested in making him an offer. He has been unemployed for a while so I'm hoping that this works out for him. It would mean that he would have to move, but I think he is ready to do that.

Mom and I went to breakfast this morning. When we came home we had a message from my aunt so we called her and talked to her for a while.

It is a sleepy day even though the sun is out and it's really quite warm. Don't know why I just want to sleep today.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

I had a productive day today. Something I have been working on went over well at work with the users. It feels good to be validated.

It's a humid night. There is lightening flashing in the distance. Wonder if we will have a thunderstorm overnight.

I have the next 4 days off of work. I'm looking forward to relaxing and getting some things done around the house. And spending some time with my cats and Mom.

We have a birdfeeder in front of our house. Last week I saw a bluebird at the feeder. It was beautiful. I have never seen one in Minnesota before. It was a pretty cool sight. Mostly we get finches and chickadees but I have seen one female cardinal

I haven't been too achy this week but I've had some weird knots in my back that I've had to massage out. Icky.

I am so amazed by my new iPod battery. I listened to my iPod a lot today and I still have at least 3/4 of the battery power left. It's great! I'm so glad that I replaced it. I listened at work and actually got a lot of work done while listening to my 70s music playlist.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

iPods Rock!

Another glorious day. Sunny and beautiful. Downloaded the Dixie Chicks' single "Not Ready to Make Nice" even though I'm not a big fan of country music. It's a good song. Also downloaded "Rhiannon" by Fleetwood Mac. Thought I grabbed it off my CD before I got rid of all of them. That's one of many good things about the iPod. No CD collection cluttering up my space. I must have had about 200 CDs that I donated. I probably had at least 50 vinyl albums that I purged too. Another thing I like about the iPod is that I'm not forced to buy a whole CD if I'm only interested in a few songs. That probably hacks off the music industry but too bad! Maybe if more albums had mostly good songs people wouldn't have that attitude. They gear so that one or two good songs get constant airplay but when you invest in the whole album you end up with a bunch of duds and one or two good songs. I used to fall for that ploy all of the time when I was younger but not anymore. I like being able to listen to clips of the songs before I buy them.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Lilacs


The lilacs are blooming in front of our house. The are so incredibly fragrant. When you walk into the den, if the windows are open, you can smell them. Tulips are also in bloom but they are starting to die off. It was a glorious day here today, sunny and warm but not too warm. Tomorrow it is supposed to be 81 degrees. That might be a little too hot for me. Got my new iPod battery this past weekend and put it in. It was pretty easy to do. Hope it keeps a charge for longer than my old one. Downloaded a bunch of songs from the 80s. Now I have over 700 songs on my iPod!

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Blog, blog, blog....


Found my niece's blog. It's kind of interesting to read about her life from her point of view. Got all of the pictures and stuff re-hung in Mom's room. Everything looks really, really good. Cloudy and overcast today. Really hasn't been that great of a weekend but it could have been worse. Did several trips to Target. Am trying to find a Shabby Chic duvet in Lavender that they used to carry. I hope they haven't discontinued it. Mom and Olivia are both sound asleep.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Stuff

Today was sunny but windy here. It's nice to see the sun after so much rain. Our living room is a beautiful green color. It looks great. It's nice not to have white walls. Mom keeps asking me why I am clearing out rooms and moving furniture for the painter. It gets really tiresome but I try to be patient with her because she can't help it. I'm thankful that so far she hasn't been too confused by all the disruption. Tomorrow the painter is going to do her bedroom and the den where she spends most of her day. Not sure if she will know what to do without her TV. It should be interesting.

I was so surprised that Elliot was voted off of American Idol. I hope Kat does well next week, but I'm really not excited about either of the top 2.

Friday, May 12, 2006

National Fibromyalgia Awareness Day

Today, May 12, is National Fibromyalgia Awareness Day. To learn more about Fibromyalgia go to fmaware.org or check out medline at http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/fibromyalgia.html

For Ivy

This poem is for my friend Nancy, who had to put down her dog Ivy last week.

If it should be, that I grow frail and weak,
And pain should keep me from my sleep,
Then, you must do what must be done
For this, the last battle, can't be won.

You will be sad, I understand
Don't let your grief then stay your hand,
For this day, more than the rest,
Your love and friendship stand the test.

We've had so many happy years,
What is to come can hold no fears,
You'd not want me to suffer, so,
When the time comes, please let me go.

Take me where my needs they'll tend,
Only, Stay with me to the end,
And hold me firm and speak to me,
Until my eyes no longer see.

I know, in time you will see,
It is a kindness you do to me
Although my tail its last has waved,
From pain and suffering I've been saved.

Don't grieve it should be you,
Who decides this thing to do,
We've been so close, we two, these years,
Don't let your heart hold any tears.

Smile, for we walked together,
for a little while.

(Author unknown)

Tuesday, May 9, 2006

Fat but Happy

Why can't researchers come up with an antidepressant that causes people to lose weight rather than gain it?? I'm so happy to be stable mood-wise, but I can't stand the weight gain side effect. The only way I have ever lost weight is to taper off the antidepressant, then after about 9 months I can finally get the scale to budge downward. And to top it off, in January I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. According to my doc that explains a lot about my health including my inability to lose weight. I'm still going to make every effort to exercise, even though most days I am exhausted and achy. It's not the ache that you get when you work out too hard; it's a weird, burning ache in places that you weren't even exercising. Sometimes I can walk fairly easily and not get too winded. Other days, I feel like I'm 90 years old. And I can never build up any endurance. This is not like when I was younger. I was in great shape! I could do 60 minutes of step aerobics and feel awesome! There was nothing like the endorphin buzz. But then I started to have asthma attacks induced by exercise. Soon the darkness of depression engulfed me and I wasn't motivated to work out even though it was the best possible thing I could do. And then the chocolate cravings set in and it was goodbye to my conditioned body. Yuck. So, if you're reading this and you're a researcher, please, invent some antidepressants that cause weight loss. I'd be most grateful.

Monday, May 8, 2006

Manic Monday

It has been a long day. Had ceiling fans installed in 3 rooms in the house. Mom had several 'accidents' today. It is so humiliating for her. I try so hard to be calm but it's exhausting to clean everything up. I feel so sorry for her. She woke me up at 4:30 AM thinking it was time to go to church. She's done this 2 other times. I keep wondering what will be next in this progression.

Now it is quiet and we are winding down getting ready for bed. Mom is stroking her kitty who is asleep on her lap. We are having a thunderstorm with lightening. It's kind of comforting and all is well.

Friday, May 5, 2006

Books

I am a voracious reader, especially when it comes to self help and illness. I found 2 good books on Alzheimers that I have been devouring. They are The 36 Hour Day" and "Into the Mist". I have learned so much about this disease. The first thing to remember about ALZ and dementia is that your loved one is not intentionally doing things to aggravate you. In the early stages, they are just as freaked out as you are by the changes in their mental acuity.

Tonight Mom and I went to Applebees for dinner. She likes to get out and I think it's important for her to do so. She has this new thing where she will put the napkin under her plate, like it's a placemat. Not sure what that is all about. Other times when we have been out she has done other unusual things. Like once at breakfast she poured her apple juice on her pancakes.

I am still struggling to get her to shower, at least once per week. I have cut back my work week to 32 hours in hopes that I can spend more time with her and keep her mind stimulated. She does seem better too.

I try to refrain from treating her like a child, but she is so child-like sometimes and other times she is so maternal. It's a very strange thing.

I worry about taking care of her. I hope that I am doing a good job and making good choices for her. I work hard to make sure she is comfortable and that she is eating nutritiously.

I also wonder if Alzheimers is in my or my siblings future. Hopefully by that time researchers will have made enough progress so that Alzheimers will not be quite so devastating. I hope.

Thursday, May 4, 2006

Musings

Who are the Hollywood producers telling actresses that in order to be a 'star' they have too look like a bobble-head doll? Most actresses are such skeletors. Lindsey Lohan looked awful when she was so thin, she looked so much prettier when she was normal sized. And Laura Flynn-Boyle; she really needs to put on some weight, she is another skeletor. Why are women told they cannot succeed in the entertainment business unless they are pencil thin, while men can be any shape or size? Case in point is the judging on American Idol. Why can't someone with talent like Mandisa succeed in the business? Why is it OK for a guy to be overweight? Hollywood is really, really screwed up.

Tuesday, May 2, 2006

Good Day


Today was a good day. In fact, it was a beautiful day. My mom was like her old self; it was nice to experience that. And the sun was out! It was beautiful. I spent time relaxing, something I haven't done for a long time, and enjoying life. I was able to pretend that things were like they were before....

Watched Idol tonight. This season just is not generating the same excitement for me that last season did. But I do like Paris Bennett and Chris Daughtry. And the last song that Katharine did was really good. I feel really old though; I didn't know any of the current songs that the contestants sang (except of course "Something")...

Sweeps Month

Oh boy, it's sweeps month on TV and local news is going crazy. Just saw a teaser for tonight's news about state employee pensions. Yes, taxpayers fund part of these pensions, but guess what folks? State employees are taxpayers too! There are jobs available at state agencies, check out the Department of Employee relations and you too can get a job at the state with a pension.

Monday, May 1, 2006

Rainy days and Mondays

Monday, manic and rainy. Crazy day at work. Mom woke me up at 12:30 AM to tell me she took the garbage out. I couldn't get back to sleep. Was achy and tired in the AM at work. Then the rain. It's been raining since Friday, steadily. But everything is so green and gorgeous. We really needed the rain. Trees have popped with leaves. Spring is finally here. There is nothing like spring in the midwest. We've survived winter and now we are ready for rebirth. Crab tree blossoms are ready to bust. I've even seen lilacs in bloom.

Painter came tonight and gave us an estimate for painting our living, dining room and kitchen plus 2 bedrooms. The cost is reasonable. She is going to recommend some colors too for Mom's bedroom and the den.

My beautiful kitty is here, comforting me. She is my best friend.