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Sunday, January 17, 2016

After a longer 5 months

Saturday, January 16, 2016 @ 6:36 AM

Good morning.  I know this is the part where we say, Hi, My name is Ann (Marie) and it’s been almost exactly 5 months since we’ve written.  We did start a note to Dr. Marvin a couple of days ago, but it was only four paragraphs and we erased it.  We’re back to wanting to write again – especially in the morning, and we want to be able to write safely enough to do the journal, though we might write and then cut-out parts that are specifically for Dr. Marvin, especially in writing our thought on people relationships that we’re in.  Seems all along it’s been something that we’ve worried about, but never sure how to deal about it so we wane from writing to much to not writing at all – We’ve got to come up with a better idea than that.  So, again, more writing, but less family and friend writing.  At least the kind of thing that might upset them if they happened upon the writing, you know?

Oh yeah, your getting a lot of the old bad language habits.  We are after all still us.  Fighting the urge here to ask, “Right?”  Hmm, we’ll that was at least a conscious move hehe.  A lot has happened since writing last on August 17th.  Well, not a real lot but some pretty significant stuff.  My Mother has died.  We hadn’t seen that coming.  She died September 3, 2015.  They are not sure of the exact time.  They found her in her home, sitting on her favorite recliner with both Bibles in hand.  She had her old familiar Bible and the one that we had given to her – so we’re thinking that it was the morning – Thursday.  There was toast on the plate on her counter and we knew she read her Bibles first thing in the morning.  She died of a stroke, which she had had in the past.  There might be more to it than that, but that’s what we’re able to recall.  There was a long sentence like explanation, but we haven’t been able to look again at the death certificate which came out quite a while afterward. 

My mother also left a small fortune for the group of us.  We had known for a long time that David her step-son would receive 26% (for John’s family), the three of us Scott, CS and us would receive 18%, Tim a family friend of John’s would receive 10% and Pastor Peg’s and my mother’s very small church would receive 10%.  We had thought that my mother’s friend Jane would receive the other friend’s portion, but it appears that paperwork was never completed.  We did offer Jane the first option on buying the house, but she was unable to do so.  The house itself was split between CS, Scott, David (step-son) and us.  It wasn’t very high priced, but should be closing about this time next month.  We hope things go well. 

We haven’t gone much of a day where we haven’t thought about my mother and responsibilities since she’s been gone.  I’m not going to talk about it a lot here, at least directly, but as all my other thoughts – it makes the circuit.  In general we feel a little lost, confused and sad.  Most of my mother’s financial concerns are being handled by financial advisors – And, we have been up to the house in MN four times since she’s passed.  The first time was for the funeral, the second time was for taking apart her household, the third time was just to pick up a few things – while we were on that side of the world, and the last time was to finalize the house for closing.  We had been also at our mother’s WITH her the end of July. 

We were fortunate that my mother left the taking care of work mostly to Pastor Peg.  We really have gotten to know and enjoy her quite a bit since the first time.  We had met her several times before going up for our annual July trip.  But, this time we were working with her in person.  We really love her to pieces. 

Hmm, we think that Rich might be getting up?  I heard him move and clear his throat, but now I don’t hear anything.   Maybe?  NOOOO He is up!  Ahhh … we just got a nice warm hug as he passed.  He’s on his way to make coffee.  Good Rich.  That is one of the things we’ve associated with writing is the morning coffee.  Lately, we’ve only taken what Rich has made – and only on some of the days.  First thing REALLY seems to be water or even pop – something to clear our throat.  I think it’s a diabetic deal that we’re drinking so much of the above.  I know PRETTY soon we’ll have to go visit the doctor – though the last time was only in October, 2015, so that wasn’t WAY far ago.  He had wanted us to come in before Christmas, or at least this month, but we haven’t arranged that yet.  Soon – couple problems we’re thinking about.  BUT, it would mean that we have to do something with the diabetic numbers.  He’s not going to be happy with that. 

Rich just came to give me the extra water in the bottle he had to use for coffee.  Some reason the blanket was over our head, but we’d reached out to hold his hand again.  He said our hand needed lotion – and that got somebody to come out because we had just been thinking of that a few seconds ago.  We told him Dr. Marvin and us just talked about it and that we’d have to have some special kind that wasn’t so oily and that we had to have something that reminded us less of sex.  Ok, obviously we’re not very good on the privacy part, but – at least we can say that kind of stuff is still happening!  Good Anns!

I think we’re going to skip the doctor conversation right now.  We are having problems with depression, but the new thing now is that it is 5 months later, and we are writing again – that’s a good thing, right?  I’m thinking … hmm, we just got the lotion for Rich anyway so he could spread it on the outsides of our fingers because they were hurting to type.  Now they are better, but we have to deal with the “aroma.”  *sigh*

I do seem to remember this part where we’re typing and typing and then we lose the thought so someone double “enters” and we are on to the next paragraph.  That seems very efficient, wouldn’t you say?

I think we were talking somewhere between my mother and Dr., but not Dr. Marvin, because those would be safer thoughts.  He’s still extra special.  THOUGH that has some problems too because we haven’t been going in as much as we should.  We still talk twice a week, but we’ve been going lightweight.  I’m thinking that part of that is the depression.  It’s about how much we can handle going outside our safety zone.  Joe talked to us about something that is working for him right now.  He’s using an online game system that’s called Habitica.  It’s a very simple framework for adding habits, dailies, to-dos and rewards in getting things done.  You may be remembering how hard this kind of thing involving self-regulation is for us. 

Right now in no particular order for our habits our:  coloring, cross stitching, money management, mail and sorting, laundry, make dessert, quilting, make a side dish, make a main meal, project time, brain buster, language, TED Talk, Personal Management, Nutrition and creative recreation (like writing).  For our Dailies we have:  Talk with Dr. Marvin, Talk to Linda on FB, Reading, Meditation, and Exercise.  Then we don’t have anything special under rewards, but the program suggests a lot of game playing gear for our “little Ann Person.”  Anything from Training Sword to Snowman Suits!  And then the last thing is our To-do list.  We did have Talk to Dr. Marvin and steps toward going in, but now we have Discussing with Rich the bathroom remodeling project – broken down in steps because Ed is coming over about noon.  He’s our general contractor. 

I suppose we should say that some of our money from our mother is going into our bathroom remodeling project – we have the Master bath costing the most, then our laundry room bathroom, and our guest bathroom.  All three are having major work done which includes things like sinks, vanities and toilets, to floors, ceilings and walls.  We want to replace a couple other lights so that they all match, but maybe we won’t install that til we do a little work on the kitchen.  We were forced to get a new dishwasher this week, but primarily in the kitchen, we’re just going to do walls, ceilings and countertops.  Extra projects will be new steps in the front of the house (matching back porch), Lights and wanting to fix the trim in the major part of the house – but, that could come a long way down the line.  Spouse that would happen during painting of walls and ceiling.  Basically we want something besides gypsum or whatever this is and have just regular drywall.  That should update the place greatly.  Just know that in the old days mobile home seams because of their movability were done with plastic trim for almost all 8’ x 4’ panels.

Pswhoo – It’s now about 7:50 AM and we’d forgotten to take our medicine so we went back and did that – and since Weekends are feed yourself breakfast days – we had to make ourselves something.  We told Rich we wanted orange slices.  And, he looked at us and asked if he NOW had to get us oranges too!??  And, we were like no – we wanted the candy orange slices.  Needless to say that was pretty much disarranged.  *sigh*  So we made ourselves some Rice Krispy cereal we had left over from making bars.  Oh yes, you’d be surprised at some of the turnarounds here!  By that we mean some cooking/baking by us has been happening.  WOW!  THAT’S some difference, isn’t it?!

For the record I still like leftover dinner for breakfast, but there was none of that to be found this morning … there’s no end to the amount of *sighing* a person could do. 

We were going to say that we also gave the boys some significant money from my mother’s will.  Not a GREAT amount, but yes a great amount, because I wouldn’t have been able to do that before. 

Hmm, where are we?  Forgot what we were saying – we had a second helping of cereal – it was just 172 calories WITH skim milk.  So that wasn’t too bad and we did share with Dakota.  He seemed to like it.  Good boy.  By the way, he had a nice day yesterday.  He went in for grooming.  He smells pretty and is soft to the touch.  He had some relaxing to do when he got home, but in general didn’t seem too traumatized or anything.  He did want to come home.  We were sitting on the park like bench outside the groomer’s door and when he came home he jumped up on the bench to see us, but then we had to get him down – he’s a big dog to be doing that kind of hopping around.  Hehe – he WAS happy to see us and be out the door.  I think it’s a lot to go through for a dog with all the activity of grooming AND being around so many animals.  He did pretty good – we did play some games with his stuffed animal pets.  Rich had gone to a customers with us on Thursday and he packaged dog things, so when he saw Dakota – he brought him three new stuffies.  Dakota couldn’t be more pleased to get home and try them out.  One is like a tug of war toy, so we’ll wait until Maury’s dogs come over to give that a try. 

Maury’s dogs will be here from Feb 19-23.  Not sure where he is going this time, but he seems to get around.  We had traded him getting our new TV computer stuff ready for me to be taking the dogs.  We’re a little worried about the contractor being here then, but Maury is brining over a gate to go between the fireplace wall and the sitting room wall so that we can hopefully keep the dogs in check on the other side of the house keeping space open for Ed to be getting in and out.  Ed is the contractor.  We hope we like him and his work AND prices, because we have other work, we’d like to do too.  I think we mentioned this briefly before.  We’ll have to see how it holds out – they money.  Not sure in February when he’s coming, but we hope sooner than later.  Our master toilet is sinking enough so we can’t sit down on it anymore.  AND, I think we worked it out the toilet in the pantry is coming out and we’ll leave it pretty blank until Missy goes and we won’t need to use the space for kitty box.  The next move though is the toilet and sink will come out and be capped, and then we’ll just use a chair in there until it’s time to go to a full pantry.  Hopefully Missy stays around for quite a while longer.  She is 17 though so we know the time is closer than not.  God Bless her!

I’m thinking how do we pull the time closer together.  Maybe talking about a little of Mom.  We found out that she was gone after most of Thursday had gone by.  My brother had called, but I didn’t recognize the number – he called during Dr. Marvin’s appointment.  Later we tried to get a hold of him, and then my sister and my mother, but the latter two didn’t answer.  After a short while CS called back and said I don’t know if I should be the one telling you, but Mom died.  I think Rich was home earlier that day – remember him coming in and using the washroom, but by the time he got out we were pretty hysterical and cried for a couple of hours.  I think that first shock was the worst of things, though we’d had problems after it.  We just couldn’t make light of it.  We had just seen her and she seemed fine.  We did finally after some calling around get a hold of Pastor Peg and once we got up to MN we found that Scott had accidentally given us his home phone instead of his mobile and he’d been on the road to Mom’s.  At the time we were pretty frustrated – but, during the time we were up there and talked to he and Deb for 2-3 hours, we’d gotten past a lot of our communication problems we’d had over all those years.  I think both of us were thinking our own ways, and without checking things out they stayed like bad images in our brains for a long time.  I still think he gets very grouchy, but we can appreciate he’s in his own stages of grieving and he is a different person than us.  I think the best thing is in getting to meet better his wife Deb.  Things have been happening bad or good, but for the most part they are good.  We’re just learning about one another. 

CS was another story through all of this.  She was up for the funeral, but she wasn’t able to travel back to the house to help with the major packing up of the house.  Between the group and us, we’d saved her about 20-25 boxes of things she’d said she wanted in the china and jewelry.  CS was in and out of the hospital because of infections and such.  We wondered for a while if she wasn’t going to die.  It seems to be much better now, but at the time it seemed touch and go.  We will admit to calling her more when she was in the hospital, then the time she’s been out, but we know she’s making her way in life then since.  We’ve pulled back from Deb too.  Just feel she’s busy and we’ve been pretty much withdrawn into our own small life within the house and too Dr. Marvin’s. 

I think there were times that changed too due to some of the things we collected at Mom’s.  Like we seemed to get our fair share of her old sewing things and that of my Grandmother’s and Aunt Alice – which means things like we collected 20 thimbles.  I know it’s silly, but it happened.  We sorted out the yarn collected in it’s own boxes and when we meet the girls in February the yarn will get switched over to Linda’s care.  We’ve since sent her pictures of the boxes, but in general I hope she’s going to be very happy with the collection.  CS and I don’t knit or crochet and we both have enough with our other stuff, so that we see it going to a good cause.  Linda might work on donating baby blankets with some of it, but has promised to make CS and us something first.  I’m thinking we would like just a lap afghan.  There is like two gigantic boxes, and a couple of smaller ones.  I can’t wait to see Linda’s face J

One of the other things that my mother had a lot of was DMC cross stitch thread.  Along with that came the Aida thread and patterns.  That’s the part that I got really excited about.  It is why we added Cross stitch to our new habits.  We’ve got a design picked out and started with like 9 country style bears – working around a quilting circle.  I’m just on the second bear now.  We’re not real regular, but am keeping it next to the couch for times, we can focus on it.  I think all told during our inventory process – there are about 1950-2000 flosses of ALL kinds of threads.  We had everything we needed when we pulled out the group needed for our quilting bears project.  And we’ve got hundreds worth of background cloth. 

Because we had that and so many new things, we redid the quilting room to be more productive.  We went crazy with sorting drawers and then made a video of all that.  Maybe later we’ll post it on our blog.  Lots of the drawers about 150 of them or so – are little drawers for just the putsy of stuff, but we had a lot of pleasure finding space for everything.  In the process we emptied all the bookshelves and all the scrap stuff, and we sorted through and refolded stuff so that we now have shelves for regular fabric a couple yards and bigger, a shelf for the DMC threads, a shelf all the bundled scraps, we’d worked through before, and a shelf of stuff we’re working on and other newer quilt kits from CS.  We also filled our wicker shelves with a couple shelves for coloring and the others for books and magazines for quilting.  All the little drawers are on the tables which are mostly cleared off.  Our sewing machine sits also on that and there are five new bigger drawers under the tables, and then we’d brought the old sewing machine table back to between the regular shelves for my mother’s sewing machine.  Since that time for Christmas, we’ve given Andy my mom’s sewing machine, because she’s doing so much hand sewing AND machine sewing over at his mother’s.  This is the old Amy.  He’s in role playing activities where he is making his own clothes.

Hmm, been gone for a while.  It is now 9:45 AM.  We first talked to Linda in IM, and then we had to clean the kitchen and take care of papers on table while Rich vacuumed, and now as soon as he leaves the bedroom/master bath – we’ll take our shower – oh and we’ve got a load of towels in the washer – AND the dog has been outside.  Between the dishwasher and washing machine, we hope we have enough water for a shower.  We’ll be checking that out.  Rich couldn’t remember if he said 10-12 pm, where we thought he said 12-1 pm.  So we both had to be ready just in case.  Ok, time for another break – Rich is in the sitting room – hate to be electrocuted if he was vacuuming the bathroom while we were in the shower, you know?  Ok, chances not, but why not eliminate the chance all together.  Ok, here we go!

Good good – we’re back, our things are charging, we’re showered and dressed and Rich is just emptying the garbage from the vacuum cleaner … think we’re finishing almost on time.  I think he went through the entire house.  Think we have to do the litter and the garbage.