Thursday, June 19, 2014

I want to talk about my dog Otto.  We have him about 3 years now.  He is our dog, but technically he is my dog.  The reason I say  that is because he doesn't like George very much.

Honestly, I don't think he "tolerates" George.  That must seem weird.  A dog "tolerating" a human.  He is very good, he behaves, he is obedient.  He just doesn't tolerate George.

He is reactive.  Which means he reacts to things.  In his case he doesn't react in a good way.  Basically he attacks.  Since he is a big dog... about 77 pounds, that is a bad thing.

We have had numerous behaviorists and trainers evaluate him.  Both vets and "trainers".  The first vet was treating him when he was young.  About 10 months old.  George wasn't crazy about her.  She wasn't cheap.  Well let me qualify this.  She would spend about 3 hours at the house, only charge us for 1 hour.  In her defense, she really loved Otto.  In hind site, maybe we should have started him in puppy socialization classes right away.  We did not know his background.

So let me go forward and say, really in hind sight a lot of his behavior, is my fault. That being said I am going forward doing what ever I can for him.

We adopted him at approximately 5 months old.  The lady we adopted him from eluded to the fact that he was "tortured".  When I shoed sympathy upon her saying that she quickly said...well, I can't say that for sure.  Now keep in mind torture to an animal enthusiast, such as myself, and this person can be anything, from not feeding him regularly, beating him while he is tyed on... to chasing him out of the yard.  So basically... it is relative.

Let me add that he was only 16 pounds when we picked him up.  That was 2 days after he was found.  The day he was found he was at the Geneva feed store.  He was starving and covered with fleas.  The day we picked him up, he had a few meals, had a bath and had a pill to get rid of his fleas.  He had also had a checkup and I believe his preliminary shots.

Everything was fine.  We took him to friends houses to play with their dogs.  He really loved our older dog, who had no patience for him.  Typical behavior between a puppy and an older dog.  Then one day, it was like someone fipped a switch.

He saw a kid and a strange man, and went nuts.  Started thrashing around,  and nipping/biting at anything in site.  It started happening more frequently.  So we called a trainer.  The strange thing was, at other times he was fine!  We had the trainner/vet come about 3 times.  It cost us close to $1000, including the leashes, toys, gates, treats, etc.

Needless to say we stopped the training.  It was too expensive.  Now let me add, this trainer left us with all the tools and knowledge we needed.  She also arranged (by that I mean she brought a trainer to our home, at no charge, to meet Otto and us, that we could bring Otto to an outside facility for training, that was much less expensive) to continue training with another trainer.  That didn't last long.  See, I don't drive. Well I do, but I can't anymore because of a disability.

Then one day George came home from a friends house.  They have a chocalate lab who is VERY affectionate.  On top of that, George was in a very bad mood.  Very cranky.  So much so that I went upstairs to get away from him.  Next thing I know, George is yelling at the dog, pushing him away.

Before I knew it, when I came down stairs, the dog was on George, or had him by the arm and wasn't letting go.

If you want to know my opinion...both George and I let Otto down.  I did because I left him alone with George when he was clearly in a vey bad mood.  (George, not Otto was in a bad mood). We didn't use any of the tools the trainer had given us.  I left Otto alone with George, when George was clearly in no frame of mind to deal with Otto.

George ended up in the hospital.

We still have Otto.  Now let me add how I realize that anyone else other than George, would have put his foot down, and Otto would be "bye-bye", in one sense of the phrase or another.

We have had Otto evaluated by 4 or 5 other trainers.  I called two others who were not in the "positve training" mindset.  They truly scared me.  Just talking to them on the phone scared me.  Before anyone wants to be helpful, don't suggest the dog whisperer to me.  That little mexican should be deported.

Otto is now 3 and a half.  We still deal with issues.  We have had the guru of dog trainers evaluate him.  A doctor from Gainesvlle.  She has him on fluxotine and clonidine.  He was almost 2 when she saw him.  Gave us the same advice as the first behaviorist.

I love him, he is well behaved.  He tolerates his crate, he tolerates his muzzle.  He tolerates the cats.    He never has an accident, I mean never!  He just has this switch that we don't see.  We have no idea what it is that will set him off.

I just wish I knew what it was that flipped the switch.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

It has been a little over two weeks since I posted last.  I have since pulled out my cucumber plants.  I found one cucumber on there, that might have turned into a viable cucumber, but it was too late.  Besides, the others that I waited on rotted before they were big enough to pick.

I still have about 10 bell peppers left.  That's not including the blossoms.  I also haxe the eggplant plant, which I am sure will probably not go anywhere, but you never know.

As I said in the last post, the zucchini and the pickeling cucumbers are up, but they are slow going.  I think that is because it has been very hot here.  As I have said before, this is all a learning experience..

I have been auctioning stuff off on E-bay.  Have made about $45.00. That is $45.00 more than I had a month ago.  Now I have taken on a battle with the USPS.  W e sent a package Priority- 2 day guarenteed delivery.  As of 6-7-14, it still "out for delivery". So now I am about to wage war.  And, here we go.

My sister was down for a week.  She was on business so we only got to see her  for 2 or 3 days.  Otto loves her.  It is pretty amazing.  I think he needs more diversity in his day.  Unfortunately I can't do that yet.

I made him a new daytime bed.  I think he likes it.

I also got a milkweed plant.  From what I have read, they re-seed themselves.  We shall see.  Butterflies love them, hopefully it works.  A friend told me that the big hardware stores treat their plant with a insectcide that hurts bees and butterflies. Hopefully, that will change soon.  They are much cheaper, and very convenient.

Well, I better go.  I have a bunch of things to do!

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Hey everyone, it's a rainy Saturday.  I love rainy days.  Last week I planted some zucchini and some little cukes, seeds that is, and they are coming up!

I pulled out my tomato plants, I had a bunch of tomatoes left, about 8 pounds, so I am going to make some tomato bisque soup.  I need to get a food mill, so when we go to bed bath and beyondtoget the razor cleaner for George's razor, I will get a fod mill.

I now have some green peppers growing.  Some burpless cucumbers, chives, parsley, thyme and basil.  Oh yea and eggplant.  Idon't think anything will come of the eggplant...but never say never.

Otto had his yearly exam by Dr. Martin this morning.  He is 77 pounds.    He is my BIG boy!

Meta gets here in a little over a week. I am looking forward to it, even though it is only for one night.  I really wish we lived closer.

Well better go.  I want to read my book, and eat my lunch.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Good Morning!!  Happy Saturday!  Weather has been very hot lately.  Surprisingly, I am very happy...none the less.

Last night we went out for dinner.  Went to a chinese place called Won Lee.  Boy, was that good.  Old fashioned chinese cooking.  The restaurant was a throw back to the 70's.  I thought I was never going to find another place like 3-6-9 in Winter Springs...but I did!

Then we went to Lowes and I got 7 bags of top soil and 7 bags of manure.  I expanded my garden.  I want to plant the little pickeling cukes aind the zucchini again, before I put in my winter veggies.

Otto chewed his bed again yesterday.  You just can't figure with him.  Sometmes he is good, and sometimes he just loses it.  It must be the voices he hears.  Well, I fixed it.  I hope doesn't do this much longer.  I think he is getting better...I hope.

I am also reading a very good book.  Second in a series of I think 7.  The last one came out about 2 weeks ago.  Diana Gabaldon, the Outlander series.  I read Outlander (recommended by my cousin Dale) the first in the series.  I thouroghly enjoyed it.  Now I am reading Dragonfly in Amber.  So far I am loving it.  It is over 700 pages, an I am looking forward to reading every single one.

Well I amgoing to run. It is 8:42, and I want to get an hour of reading in before I start to spread my soil and manure.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

We had dinner yesterday, and it was very enjoyable.  Everything turned out great.  My favorite was dessert, and Otto was very good.

Today it was very cloudy, and rainy.

George didn't feel well and finally went to the doctor.  His blood pressure was of the charts.  So he went for x-rays and blood work and he has to go back tomorow morning.

I picked 9 more tomatoes.  I think I will need to find someone who I can give some to.

Otherwise nothing else is new here.

I am making naan bread for dinner. We are having left over chicken, tziki sauce, feta cheese, tomatoes (of course), onions and some lettuce.  I am kind of excited actually.

Tonight we can have ice cream for dessert.

I have to be honest.  I really want to lose about 15 pounds, but I really love dessert.  Nothing else has much flavor to me.

I think that is why I liked working in theyard so much.  It took my mind off eating.

George just went out and picked more edging that I ordered.  I really need to use it.

Well that is something I need to plan on doing the next week or so.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

We are having company for dinner tomorrow.  Our friends Tony and John are coming for dinner.  I am making Eggplant Rollitini, Penne pasta, Bruschette, kale chips and a Calaprese salad.  I am only making a small salad, mainly because I only picked half a pound of fresh mozzerella.  Should I make sangria?  I forgot the ingredients.   You know what, a glass of red wine will be just as good.

Tonight I am making a roast chicken.  It is 5:00 now and I am sure the chicken will need to be in there at least an hour.

So cutting this one short, so I don't get yelled at that dinner is late.

I will let you know how everything turned out.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Here it is...another beautiful morning.  I have to say, this morning as I sat on the porch, reading up on how everyone is doing...two blue jays land on the lawn. Cardinals, blue jays, downy woodpecker, carolina wrens;  all this, nothing exotic, but so nice compared to hot sun, cement, rushing cars.  I am not sure what is so difficult to understand... I tried to surround myself with trees, plants, gardens, but it wasn't the same.

Now I will admit, there were some ducks that found their way into our old neighborhood.  There were also some armadillos that would come in at night. However the homeowners associarion hired a "pest" company to trap them.  Happily the armadillos won.

George will be mowing the lawn today, tomorrow the backyard.  Wednesdsy we are having company for dinner.  I ordered more edging for my trees and gardens.  I am going to try and get a plum tree this week.  Maybe Wednesday or Thursday.  Today I will get my hydrangea.  Then I have to start researching roses.

I so love having a yard!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mothers Day!   Been a lazy day, I finished my book, "Outlander", by Diana Gabaldon. It was good, think I will get the follow up book.  I could probably get it from the library...maybe I will.

I have to get more edging for my trees and my gardens.

Oh, my latest bit of exciting news... a wren, believe it was a Carolina Wren, made a nest in one of my window boxes of geraniums.  Of course I took pictures!!

That is my latest news.

Other than that...I must go now to load the dishwasher and wash a few dishes.  I think I will also peek in on my wrens...quietly

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Today as I sit out on my back porch, I have decided to put in a rose garden.  I will put it in on the east side of the house, in the back of course.  I am not sure of the exact location yet.  From what I have read, for central Florida, you can plant all year long.  There is a rose soceity that meets at Mead Gardens twice a month.

So now I am going to study the yard to see how the sun works and make my decision where to plunge my shovel into the ground.  Of course I have to consult with George, since he does the mowing, however he usually tells me it is up to me.  I think I will start in the back yard, and if I am successful move to the front yard.

Other than all this, my blood pressure has been giving me trouble again.  I have started with a new doctor here in DeLand.  I think I am going to tell him that I want to go back on the non-generic BP medication I was on for many years.  It was called Benicar.  It was more expensive, but it worked.  Since I have been on the generic, I have had nothing but problems.  I appreciate the savings, however, I want to feel better than I do.

On another note...on observation of my yard today, I have found that my fig tree is getting figs.  I am hoping they are bigger than they were while the tree was in a pot.  The tree is gorgeous, it looks healthier than it ever has before.  I am in the mood for mt fig cake, but I also am looking forward to some larger figs to cook with.

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

SURPRISE!  I'm baaacck!  I know I have said that before, and I will probably say it again, but this is my blog, and quite honestly I don't think anyone has missed me.

So what's new...?  We moved, we live about 40 miles north of Orlando.  We have a house now.  We have a new dog.  Otto.  He is a rescue, in the truest sence of the word.  His background is a huge question mark, up until 2 days before we brought him home.  He was a 5 month old malnourished male.  Let me tell you ot doesn't get much worse than that.  That being said...I love him.  He loves me too!  George, not so much.  Well let me clarify that...he doesn't dislike him conciously.  He was mistreated by some creep.  That creep happened to be a man.  That is how he has become attached to me.  So he has become my sloe responsibility.  That is a very large responsibility, one that is very big at times.  I have to admit, at times I wonder if I know what I am doing, but then I look at him, and how hard he tries, and I say... he is worth it.  This is what it must be like to have children.  Is that sick?  So be it!

I have a garden!  I grew peppers, tomatoes, large cucumbers, small pickling cucumbers, eggplant, zucchoini, parsley and I transplanted my chives.  The  status at this point...I have lots of tomatoes, about 7 peppers.  I got these huge plants for my zucchini, lots of zucchini.  The eggplant, well I have plants but they will never produce anything.  Only two huge cucumbers.  Lots of blossoms on the pickling cucumbers, but so far... no pickles.  My guess...too muchh in too small a place.  So I am doubling the size this summer toplant a wnter garden in September.

So if anyone has some dog or garden advice...all comments are welcome!

Friday, April 06, 2012


A week and a half has passed.  I know nothing more than I did a week and a half ago.  Nothing.  Well, the Attorney is sending me another document to sign.  But this is not really anything that I didn't already know.  In fact I thought this information was already established, understood and agreed upon by everyone.  But, I guess not.

I don't know if my sister has started to search for a mortgage, or not.  I don't know what she has done, is doing or plans to do.  So in other words I know nothing.  It really is more than a week and a half, because my last post was No New is Good News... at that point I said it was a week since I had heard anything.  In fact it had only been a week since I received an e-mail from my sister asking about the pay off amount on Mom's home.  That is all that I know that she knows, or has done.  She asked for the pay off amount on the home.  I was under the impression that she had called the bank that held the mortgage to get that information over a week before that.  Prior to that e-mail, I had recommended that she contact Quicken Loans, numerous times, as well as telling her the same thing when I replied to that e-mail.   

So I wait.  I think I have my mind made up on what I need to do... but then again, maybe it will change.  No...  it won't change.  I am not sure I am doing the right thing, or correct thing.  It is definitely not the "right" thing... LOL!

Oh well, I will be sure to let you know as soon as I hear more on the matter.

Oh, in an effort to change the subject.  I am cooking dinner for friends for Easter Sunday.  Personally, I dislike this holiday immensely.  I find no reason to celebrate a trait of humans beings that is as despicable as a crucifixion of another human being.  Today we call it the death penalty.  Either way, it is a horrible event.

I realize that we aren't really celebrating the crucifixion.  We are celebrating the resurrection.  Yes I know... but there would not be a "resurrection" (and there are those who aren't sure that there was a resurrection, myself being one of them) if there wasn't a crucifixion, right?   Yea, Yea... that is what faith is all about... blah, blah, blah...

Take Christmas... the virgin is having a baby?  Ok, maybe she made a mistake... Maybe she counted wrong.  Maybe she had a dream because she was in denial.  They make reality shows out of people like that right?

As far as making her stay in a stable, well, we allow others today to sleep in their car, while some of us live in lavish homes, in fact, some have 4 or 5 lavish homes at a time.  We idolize baseball players who have 10 year contracts worth well over $2,000,000.00.  Are we really all that different? 

So let's take all the "stretches";  Easter is the most gruesome of them all.  Personally, I am sticking with the Easter Bunny.  Bunnies are sweet, and cute, and personable, soft and sometimes cuddly.  The thought of a little critter, or a lot of little critters, delivering hard boiled colored eggs, chocolate, etc, to everyone's house, in decorated baskets is quite endearing to me, and deserves a holiday.  Crucifying someone on a cross does not.  Not even if the result is a resurrection.

So, my menu consists of Semi Boneless Ham, scalloped potatoes, peas, cauliflower and a salad.  For dessert I am making a fruit and cheese pie.  Kind of like a cheese cake, but... not a cheese cake.  It is good.  I have made it before.

I will post some pictures.

Until then... I will wait... and wait...and wait...etcetera, etcetera...

Monday, March 26, 2012

No news is good news... not necessarily...

The weekend had gone by... it is Monday, and no word from my sister yet.  Well, there is word, but nothing that tells me anything.  In fact that is probably the way she wants it.  I have come to accept that this has become a game.  One that she feels there is a winner or a loser.  Of course if she is the loser, so to speak, she wins, because she showed me... How ever if she is the winner, I of course then lose.

That may not make any sense.  At first glance it doesn't to me, but it does if you really want to think about it... Which believe me is not worth it.  Suffice it to say, either way I come out the loser.  Well, I am tired of playing games, and trying to figure out what to say, when to say it, or if I should say it at all.  The decision has always been don't say anything, it isn't worth it.  The re-precaution is the what you have to deal with in the end is just not worth it, and eventually you will have to deal with it anyway, so you might as well put it off.  See there is no PRO-active action that can be taken here.  By the way I have tried.

This brings me to another topic.  The stress of all this.  Stress is not something that I handle well, for a number of reasons.  It causes me to lose sleep, become irritable, and last but certainly not least... it is not good for my health.  One of the reasons I am not working.  This fact seems to get lost with my sister.  I am speaking of course of my brain stem Angioma.  I am told that I have had this my whole life, and it was in fact found by accident back in 1998.  A CT picked it up.  The CT was done to rule out aneurysm or brain tumors.  It did however find the Angioma.  It was small at the time, less than 5 mm.  That was in 1996.  I was told that the headaches were migraines, which are hereditary, and since my Mother suffered from them, it made perfect sense.

I had another CT in 2001, and it said that nothing had changed.  I was satisfied, deciding that this Angioma was just what the doctors had said in 1996.  It was genetic, had it all my life, and probably wouldn't know I had it for the rest of my life.  In other words this is just incidental information.

Fast forward to 2005.  At the time I was dealing with a very stressful situation, by Dad having had his last stroke.  Of course lots of stuff happened in between.  I am not going into that right now.  It was August, and I received a particularly disturbing call from my Mom, while I was at work.  I became extremely irritated.  Well that is an understatement.  What I can tell you is that my blood pressure shot up very fast, and I had a terrible headache when I hung up the phone.  It was a Friday.  I went home, still complaining about my head, had dinner and went to bed.  I woke up the following morning and I felt dizzy.  I ignored it and went bowling.  Before the night was out, I couldn't walk a straight line, was holding my head at a angle, and my face was distorted.  Everyone that looked at me said, "Are you sure we shouldn't take you to the emergency room?  Just to make sure you aren't having a stroke."  I laughed, told them not to be silly.  My Dad had strokes, this was not a stroke.  I was just a little bit dizzy, and this is how it was manifesting itself in my behavior...

Of course the rest you can read in the history of this blog.  It is now 2012, the Angioma on last MRI (2010) is 15mm.  I am not working, not driving, and still dizzy.... all the time.  I still suffer migraines, although not as often as before.  Actually, when the stress levels rise.  I try to control that as best possible.  I have been told by one Neurosurgeon, that the migraines/stress headaches, are not related to the Angioma. I don't think I agree with him, and honestly, does it really matter.  What is important is that I control my stress and in doing so control my migraines.  The migraines do cause me to be dizzy, and I have read that others with Angioma's  control their headaches with Imitrex or the generic.

So, that is my story, for now.  That being said, I am going to take Schatzie on the trail for a walk with my husband.  I will keep you posted.  

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Well another rough patch...

Mom is almost gone a whole year.  The probate process is nearing it's end, and once again I am faced with a decision to make... Well I have made my decision, but now I am faced with enforcing it.  It never ends.  Never.  I have had "confrontations" with my sister for a while.  Well, actually since 1998.  Now mind you, that was before my Mom and Dad passed, in fact before my Dad's last stroke.

Now with both of my parents gone, and estates to settle, the disputes start all over again.  I am now accused of breaking up the family, "driving a wedge" was how it was put exactly.  I am not sure what I am supposed to do, except to do what I have to do.  There are so many disconnects here.  So much doesn't add up.

I admit that my main concern is in ensuring that if I or my husband become sick, we (hopefully we, my husband and I) will not become destitute or homeless.  I don't have children, and if something does happen, it is only me or him that we can count on.

I have tried to explain this to my sister, only for it to reach deaf ears.  Instead I get accused of driving a wedge, breaking up the family.  I have used my head to try to make what ever meager means we have as a family work to our advantage.  At the same time making sure that my future, and now my husbands and my future we as secure as can be expected.  However, I was told last night that the security I am talking about is not a priority to my sister, and she will for go her security to save the family homestead.

Excuse me if I say, I envision scenes from Bonanza, with Little Joe, and Hoss, and Adam behind a fence with guns pointed, defending the Ponderosa from the bad guys.  Only now I see only my sister.

And let me add, I am not against my sister buying the home, and making it her home.  In fact I prefer that.  After all she has lived there for the past year and 8 months.  What I can not do is just say, take it, live there, I will sacrifice what ever security this may offer me from emergencies for the sake of  our family.  Up until today, to the best of my knowledge, she has not made any attempt to acquire any type of mortgage or funding for the home.

Well, more on this when it happens.  Right now I am a wedge.  I am breaking up the family. 

What am I supposed to think or do?

Thursday, November 24, 2011

I am confused, concerned. I hope everything is OK!

I haven't been around in a while.  Well around here.  By that I mean my blog.  A lot has happened.  My friend Tarja from Sweden is MIA.  I hope everything is OK with her.  I hope she is healthy, and nothing bad has happened to her.  If anyone knows, please let me know.  If it is something personal, I don't want to pry, just want to know that she is OK.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I just read my last post...

...needless to say.. I feel compelled to continue the saga, and let you know that everything worked out fine.  I guess Wayne was having a bad day, and admittedly... so was I, when I read it now.

Anyway, we went away on vacation, and everything was fine.  Schatzie did fine, Wayne did fine, and we made it home fine.

What happened was.. I spoke to George and explained to him that I could not leave with the feeling that I had at that moment... about leaving Schatzie.  He understood, and he spoke to Wayne, and explained that, well, there were no variables here, and she needed to get the shots at the 12 hour increments, no deviation from that.

When George spoke to him, there were no excuses, comments, etc.  Maybe there weren't when I spoke to him, but it seemed to me that there were.

Well anyway.. there you have it.  No problems any longer.

Now we are planning a camping trip next month, and there is a question whether we should take Schatzie with us.  Part of me says no, and part of me says yes.  The jury is still out on that...will let you know.

As far as what's new.  Well it has been very cool lately.  Today however it is almost 80 degrees.  Anything over 80 and I start to get hot... I mean real hot.  I guess it doesn't help that I am sitting here with sweat pants and a long sleeve T-Shirt.  The last power bill that came in was very nice and LOW... almost half of what it was the month before.

Also, need to get some work done around the house, and don't have the inclination to do anything.

Well that is about it for now.  Will keep you posted on what happens with the camping trip. 

Sunday, August 07, 2011

It is Sunday...

It is Sunday.  About 11:00 AM.  About 1 month before we leave for the North East.  Not sure if I had posted this previously, but Mom's dog, Schatzie, was diagnosed with diabetes last October. 

Well, we have a pet sitter, and I have sang his praises in the past.  I still think he is good... but I now need him to take care of Schatzie while we are gone.  This is going to take extra effort on his part, since it is imperative that she gets her shots at the same time every day (twice a day, 12 hours apart). 

Well he came over last week to see me go through the routine, feed her, give her the shot, and then give her a glucosamine pill.  He only came over for the evening routine, which differs slightly from the morning routine.  He also had pizza.  Which George went out to pick up. (since I don't drive anymore, and it would cost about $7.00 more to deliver it)

While George was out, I proceeded to show him the shot, and basically the routine.  Which by the way, I have discussed with him many times, and he has assured me that I had nothing to worry about.

Until now.  Let me now tell you everything he had to say ... all of which was negative.  Totally negative...

His responses to my actions or what I said will be indented and in blue.

  • I cook for Schatize.  She is diabetic, and when you buy the prepared dry food (all canine diabetic food is dry) she will not eat it.  She does not like it.  If she does not eat, she can not get a shot.  If she doesn't get a shot she gets sick... I can't make it any plainer than that.
  •  Wayne said:  "Well this won't last, I can't tell you how many clients I have that have tried this...."  (pointing at the container of food I prepared) "and they get tired and go back to feeding canned food."
          I explained that this was not a choice I had... If I didn't cook, she didn't eat.  I also explained (patiently at this point) that Schatzie could not eat canned food.

  • At this point, I am buying the ingredients, and preparing Schatzie's meal, and storing the ingredients and the finished product in the freezer.  This is taking up a lot of space.  However, at the appointment that we have for Schatzie this week with Dr. Martin, I will ask him if she seems to be doing well, and if her Fructosimide blood test comes back good, I will be buying a freezer, so that I have the room to store everything.     
  • Wayne said:  "Oh that is very smart, you will be gone during hurricane season, what if the power goes out?  Then what do you think will happen? Last time a hurricane went through, the power was out here for over a week."
Needless to say I was starting to get frustrated, so I said, " us, and we will take care of it, until we get home, you will be able to handle this."  That was just responded to by a shrug.  So the next thing I said was "...well then my only solution is why don't you just cook for her every day... how is that?
  • Needless to say I went to get the needle, and the insulin, and fill the needle.  Schatzie is on a fairly high dose of insulin twice a day, 35cc's.  I told him that it is best if he fills the needle each time he gives her a shot, since the solution will settle if you pre-load the needle and take them out as you need it.  I show him how not to shake the bottle, and make sure it stays cold, so don't leave it out on the counter, and that he needs to be careful, because the bottle/vial made of glass will break if it falls on the tile.
  • Wayne says:  "Oh boy she takes a very large amount of insulin, cats only take 1 cc.  You better have enough insulin here for me, so I don't run out."
While I was explaining how to mix up the insulin, not to shake it because it will cause bubbles, and destroy the integrity of the insulin... he was more focused on amount of insulin I was filling the needle with.

  • I started to give Schatzie the shot, and she whimpered a little, which is not all that unusual.  I tried to explain to him that you have to inject the needle slowly, because the insulin is cold, and it is less painful.  The best thing to do is to count and you should be finished between 10 and 15 seconds.
  • Wayne says:  "She cried because you were awful close to her spinal cord.  You have to be careful of that."  I started to tell him " I wasn't close to her spinal cord, because you give the injection under the skin.  You pick up a handful of skin, and insert the needle (which happens to be very short, btw) below your thumb, so you are no where near her spinal cord."  Wayne seemed annoyed by this and responds immediately with "I watched you, you started with the needle horizontally, and when you were finished the needle was vertical.  That means it was injecting her spinal cord.  That is a very sensitive area on animals, and you want to stay away from there."
 At this point I have had enough...  George is out getting the pizza, and my patience is gone, finished, non existent.  Basically I have moved on to think, what can we do...should we kennel her?  Should I find another pet sitter?  Should I take her with me?  Should I cancel my trip?

  • Wayne then asks me:  "What time is her last walk?"  So I said "9:30 / 10:00 at night.  You have lee way on that."  Wayne then buries his face in his hands, and says, "Well that just isn't going to work!  I have another client on the other side of Oviedo, who has their last walk at 10:00.  If I have to be here at 7:30 to give a shot and a walk, then at the other place at 9:30/10:00 to walk that dog, then back here to walk Schatzie, I might as well camp out here.  I just don't know how this is going to work.  And I have to be here at 7:30 in the morning to give her a shot...?  I just don't know how this is going to work.  September is filling up quickly, which is not a bad thing... I just don't know how this is going to work."
To say I remained silent only responding to him a few times when I had to, is a pretty honest statement.  To me, he was looking for any reason not to take this job.  Unfortunately for him, that means he is losing a customer, and a helper for when he is over loaded with work.  George has covered for him over the last few months, and Wayne owes him over $500.  A credit we have been carrying to go against what he would charge us when we went away this year. 

We have been using him for over 10 years.  We have recommended him to others, we have helped him on various occasions and not just in reference to pet sitting.  Not to mention the fact that we told him about Schatzie as soon as she was diagnosed, we told him about this trip to NY in September in December of last year.    

George said I am obsessed, and I am getting upset over nothing.  Maybe I am, but none the less, I have to live with this.  I am not going to be a very pleasant wife or vacationing partner for him, if this is not addressed with in the next two weeks.

All I can say is if I am being an ass be it, then I will shut down, and you know what happens when the ass hole shuts down.  I am planning the whole trip.  I have contacted everyone.  Set up the itinerary.  Scheduled all the appointments.  At any point in time, I can just as easily stop...  he can go if he wants to.  I will stay home.  I can be a real ass hole... watch me...


Wednesday, August 03, 2011

A new beginning...

Here I am 53 years old, retired because of a medical disability.  I am not complaining.  Not at all.  I am not rich in the monetary sense, but I think I am rich in other ways.  I have a good husband, who loves me and I love him, and we have the same values.  We have a nice home, we have good friends, and we have good family.  Those are things you can't buy with money, except for maybe the house.  However, you can't buy a home. 

We are planning our next yearly trip to the Northeast.  Why the Northeast you might ask, to visit family.  Mom would come with us in the past, in fact she made 3 trips up north with us, out of 4.  We will miss her this year.

We were going to stop in Baltimore to see the Red Sox play the Orioles, but we planned this trip late, and there weren't that many good seats left.  So we decided not to go.  We were also thinking of going to Colonial Williamsburg.  Will not work this year.  We can always plan that maybe next year by itself. 

This year we are going to the Steuben Day Parade in NYC.  When I was younger we would do this every year with my Dad.  It was one of our trips to "Meca" so to speak.  I think Mom was looking forward to going also. 

Our friend Hans Jurgen gave us a bunch of stuff for my car.  Flags and what not, that will adorn the Volkswagen on our trip into NYC on the 17th.  I will be sure to post lots of pictures.  I am really looking forward to going.  I am hoping that a lot of relatives will be going with us.  We could possibly go to the Plattdeutche Park Restaurant on Sunday, but it is usually soooooo packed with people, it may not be worth it.  I know last year it was.

So those are the big plans I have coming up.

Kind of sad all the changes that have happened recently.  Mom passed, Mathie passed, Wesley passed.  Lot's of big changes.  But I guess that is part of life.  It just kind of happened all at once for us. 

Well, I am planning on ending this year with a bang.  A good bang.  It started pretty sad, and just kept going from there.  Now we have a chance to turn it around.  The economy is pretty bad, and the people in Washington are pretty worthless, more than usual.  But the things that they can't effect, like losing family, and long time companions (Mathie and Wesley) showed me that they really don't really count unless you let them.  I don't plan on letting them hurt us this year.  We have had our share.  We really have.  I plan on proving how insignificant they are... to the best of my ability.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Pretty soon it will be time to smile...

Yesterday ended a part of my life that was very special.  It started over 16 years ago.  I always knew that one day things would change, and we each would have to move on.  Well yesterday was the day.

We said goodbye to Mathie.  She was truly a special little creature.  She was more special to me than a lot of people I know.  She had principles, more than most people.  She had standards, boy did she have standards.  In fact a lot of times I didn't meet up to her standards, and she had no problem letting me know.  However, she loved me more than life herself.  I have to say I don't think anyone ever loved me or ever will love me as much as she did.

What I find most difficult at a time like this is... I want to call my Mom and tell her that we said goodbye to Mathie, and I can't.  Maybe she knows, maybe they are together right now.  God it hurts right now.  Honestly if they were both looking down on me right now and watching me it would still hurt, but I could look at them and know that I didn't have to worry.

When Mathie was a puppy, I found her.  She was less than 4 pounds.  We were in Kissimmee, I was at a boyfriends property...I had my big girl Gretchen, and we were walking Daisy and Chrissy (his dogs) one morning.  Mathie came out, literally screaming, but she came to me... and we fell in love on the spot.  That started a 16+ year love fest.  We went everywhere together.  We did everything.  She trusted me 150% percent, no exaggeration.  When I had big decisions to make, she was right there supporting me.  When I tell you that she supported me... I meant it.

Well she is gone now.  I said goodbye to her yesterday morning.  I held her and kissed her and told her that I loved her, and how sorry I was that she had to go.

The last 7 months she couldn't walk very well.  But she rode in a little red wagon that we bought for her.
We put her in her wagon, walked her in her wagon to the spot that she could go potty, and then put her back in the wagon.  When it was cold.. and there were some cold days, she was wrapped up in Opa's blanket.

She has left a huge whole in my heart. HUGE!!!  That I can't help.  Mathie planned it that way.

Friday, April 29, 2011

What a Day...Morning...Oy!

So... here are the curtains I made...Notice little Annie, looking in the window next to the bird cage.... 

Made me smile, because God knows, I need to smile today.

It started out like this... My sister called to say that the Johnston County Clerk of the Court would not release to her a copy of my Mom's will.  Now mind you... the will is public record, once it is with the Clerk of the Court, and it is supposed to be there so that it will be accessible.  What they don't tell you is that is only accessible to someone if the people at the clerks office know what they are doing.  In the case of Johnston County... they don't know what they are doing.

However then Will Crocker, the right and honorable Will Crocker, the actual Clerk of the Court, then called me back, and said that he had his very good staff (OH MY GOD!!!) in his office and that he was going to do what ever he could to get a copy... mind you that is all I wanted was a copy of the will, to me. 

Well, I called my Sister, and told her to call them, and there is something you have to know about my Sister.  She may have been born in NY, but she can turn on the "sweet southen' suga'"  when she has too.  Unlike her "Yankee Heathen Sista" (me!)   Apparently she was told that she "might could" send the death certificate by e-mail to their office.  That is because they tried to fax it, and it didn't work.  Twice... she tried to fax it and it didn't come across.  (DEEP SIGH!!!)

Now I wouldn't be so worked up about this, except, I called their office 3 times.  I e-mail once, and I was told that I could have my sister pick up a COPY if she brought a copy of the death certificate.  As far as I am concerned.... I am a novice at this... they on the other hand are the professionals.  They are supposed to know what they can and can't do...I have only done this once...thank god I don't have to do it again...

My appointment with the Attorney here is next Wednesday at 2:00.  Hopefully I will have what I need.

The next thing was this.. my husband, George, is helping out our pet sitter Wayne Tracy, because his Mom passed away.  He is watching a cat who is approximately 25 years old.  Wayne called this morning because the cat, from all appearances, had not urinated in about 24 hours.  A sign that the kidneys are shutting down.  The owners are on a cruise, and I think are due back tomorrow.  Why some one would leave to go anywhere when they have a 25 year old cat is beyond me.  But... that is just me.  I saw this cat...very scary... god bless him... really.  Any way... the decision was made to bring the cat to the vet.  Maitland Veterinary Clinic.  So since Wayne was on a plane to Rhode Island... George picked up the cat (Boomer) and took him to the clinic.  The receptionist told my husband that they would not see the cat, unless he was going to guarantee payment for the visit.  So George called me to see if I had a problem with that.  Of course I didn't, but then I thought, surely if I don't have a problem, and we are broke, the vet wouldn't have a problem billing the owners of the cat.  I asked many ways, I explained to the receptionist that we are on a limited income, and my main concern was the cat... so he said, as is ours... but they were not set up to collect from anyone but the person who brought in the cat.  I didn't say it, but it sounded to me like their first concern was the money owed for the visit, and not the cat at all... since they would be very satisfied to let the cat die, and not be seen if we didn't have a credit card or cash...

Well as it ended up, the cat is fine, well, as far as his kidneys are concerned.  He is still approximately 25 years old.  That can't be fixed. Oh, and the visit, was only $35.00.  Of which, I am guessing will come from the owners who happen to be on a Princess Cruise.  Just sayin...

However, we still don't have Mom's will.  And the hospital bill is still looming out there.  Mom's mortgage is still due every month, and as low as it is... I don't have the money to pay it.

That is still pending... I am sure I will be filling you all in on the saga of the Will and Johnston County.

Saturday, April 23, 2011


... I am making curtains for the back door...  I should have made them a long time ago, but I am going to make myself do them today.  I will take a picture of them when I am done.

These will not be difficult curtains to make, but I have to force myself to do them.

Everyday I will try to accomplish something.  Today will be curtains.  I read my book outside this morning... "A Year in Provence" by Peter Mayle.  I am up to July.  Nice book...

I am starting to think about where things will go once we move down to the other bedroom.  It will be a few months, and I have a few things I need to do before that happens... and I will need to have the outlets for phone and cable switched, since I am thinking of changing up the furniture a bit.  But I think it will be very nice, none the less.

I have before and will have after pictures as that happens.  I also want to plan a trip out west to the National Parks.  That will be next summer.

As long as everyone stays healthy, we need to start doing things for us.  Since I don't think the house in Connecticut will ever work out for me...(deep sigh, oh well...never say never, so how about...probably will be a very difficult option.. how was that?), I want to spend my summer months going places that are NOT Florida.

This year we want to do a cruise, a trip to NY for the Steuben Day Parade on 5th Ave, a trip to the Finger Lakes Region, and maybe a trip to Williamsburg, Va. 

Oh... and if there is a Red Sox game on the way... that works for me!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

A stroke support group...

Yesterday George and I went to a stroke support group at Florida Hospital in Orlando.  It happened to be in the Florida Room, that George and I sat with many guests and used to spend a lot of time in.  It brought back some very bad memories.  Both because this was the hospital that Mom was in, and I was just there, only a week ago, and not for very good reason, and of course that is where I spent 10 days only 4 years at not such a good time with George.

It was rough, just all around rough.  This group was for people under 50 that have had strokes.  It was so hard, and so gut wrenching.  I wanted to run out, but I couldn't, even if I were able to.  All these people who never experienced stroke, or their experience was fairly recent, and the only time they experienced it.  I wanted to do more for them, but there is nothing I could have done. 

I wanted to talk to them, I wanted to tell my story about my Angioma, but I know that no one would have understood... not even the physical therapists there.  They were talking about the "angioplasty" and the surgery they had done.  They were hungry for information, yet they did not have the patience (maybe because of the stroke, or maybe they never had it) to listen.  They were all impulsive.  Almost rude, but not at all intentionally.  It was like being with my Dad, and George, right after both of their strokes, only multiply it by about 10. 

George had said he wished it could have been controlled more, or led.  From our standpoint, I have to agree.  However to suit the purpose of the meeting.. probably not.  See, most, no, maybe half, of these people had their strokes with in a year or 6 months.  They were still, a lot of them going through PT.  They needed to not work so hard for an hour or so, around  others struggling like themselves.  Believe it or not, many had insurance but it didn't cover occupational therapy, or speech therapy.  Those are the two that make you feel as though you are getting back to yourself.  Those are the two that give you the social skills that are missing.  Gosh I have a big problem with that.  What a person needs most, is not to feel like an outcast.  The obvious disability will be the physical one, and yes that needs to be addressed, by all means.  What was good is that the physical therapists were there to give everyone hand outs to help them address those needs if they wanted them.  What I am afraid is that many of the people who needed this information, wouldn't follow up with it at home.  Maybe they didn't have the support at home, or maybe the support they had didn't understand the importance of being there, or being positive.

All in all, it was a hard 2 hours for me.  At the end while we were walking out, I was feeling very dizzy.  Part of it was because I was hungry, but a lot of it was my angioma kicking my ass a little bit.  You know what, all I wanted was to get out of there as soon as possible.  As far away from there as I could, and it was becoming a race against my tears.  The last thing I wanted to do was be around the Stroke Club, or in the hospital when the water works started flowing.

I felt kind of selfish, but it was a bit more than I could bear at the time. 

Monday, April 18, 2011

I guess she isn't coming home...

... and honestly, it is a feeling I can't explain.  You know I remember people saying, "I wish I had my Mom to talk to..."  and not that I took her for granted, but I remember thinking... yea... but...  I am here to tell you the "yea but..." is very appropriate.  I miss her... a lot.  Mom has lived with us for two years.  Almost to the day as a matter of fact.  It was a lot of work too.  You wouldn't think so, and she didn't think so...this I know for a fact, because she said it on many occasion... (that she didn't realize she was so much work...),  but the responsibility that is not tangible, but none the less there, was very big.

And I think that is part of what is causing that giant hole right now.  That along with the fact that it is not going to be filled for a very long time.  It will have to grow in, like someone cut a hole in my skin, and it would have to heal inward.  I guess there is no sense waiting for this to happen either...  It would be like watching the moon move across the sky through out the month in extra slow motion.  Actually worse.

I can't get angry, in fact if I try, I find myself getting angry at myself first... and that doesn't work...actually makes things worse.  Honestly I don't think my Mom is or was mad at me.  Well maybe she was, actually, she was annoyed more than anything, because she said I never shut up...  Actually I think she was probably right.

I am sad, but it is so hard to explain.  It isn't sad like when one of my pets passed away.  It is different.  I think that is because I can't let this grief run it's course, and then I get another dog or cat.  I feel like this grief will never run it's course.

I don't cry.  I did... the last few days she was in the hospital I cried a lot.  In the car on the way home from the hospital.  I tried not to, but it just happened.

I stopped crying when we took her home on Monday afternoon.  Well not exactly.  I spoke to my cousin on the phone and I cried a lot.  However, when I hung up, and went in to fix dinner, and met the admissions nurse, and received a ton of phone calls.. I stopped crying.  I was very busy, had many decisions to make, things to do... When things slowed down,  and it was time to go to sleep, I went in to say goodnight to Mom, and she looked pretty, and peaceful.  The most peaceful I had seen her since 3 weeks earlier.

At 3:30 AM, my sister came in to my room upstairs, to wake me up.  The Hospice nurse told her that she should go get me, because she believed that Mom had passed.  (My sister was here, and slept on the couch that night)

In fact, I didn't cry when the funeral director came and took her away after she died.  I remember thinking, that isn't my Mom on the stretcher.  That is an elderly lady whose life just ended.  But my Mom...nah.  The funeral director said this was because my Mom was in my heart.

She is in my heart.  Maybe that is why I can't cry.  I do remember I looked at a picture that morning.  I have looked at that picture many times.  It was taken about 23 years ago.  It is a picture of all the Aunts and Uncles, from both sides of the family and my Mom and Dad, at my sisters wedding.  There were a few Aunts and Uncles missing, but most of them were there.  After my Dad passed 5 years ago, I remember being sad when I looked at it... and from that point on, I wouldn't look at my Mom and Dad, just the Aunts and Uncles.  Well, Tuesday morning, when I looked at that picture, I looked at my Mom and Dad, and for the first time I wasn't sad.  I specifically remember not feeling sad.  I was kind of embarrassed by that too... so much so that I didn't say anything.  I called one of my Aunts a few hours later, on the phone, and she said "Well Mom isn't alone anymore, now her and Dad are together."  I have to tell you, I was really taken back when she said that.  Mainly because she validated the feeling I had earlier, but was embarrassed to say out loud.  I am still amazed when I write it now.

See my Mom and Dad didn't have an extended honeymoon, let's say.  In fact, I felt that they were companions in the true sense, most of their marriage.  They were Mom and Dad.  They argued and fought, and got on each others nerves, and probably did not like each other a lot of the time.  But they were together and tolerated each other.  As they got older, it was difficult, with feebleness, and dementia setting in... but despite that, they were a team.  They were my team.  Now the captains of my team are gone, and I am one of the captains of my own team.  Up until a week ago, I was one of the captains of Mom and Dad's team too, by default.  It was a hard job. I guess it is a hard job letting go of the "by default" position that I had.

Maybe that is what I am feeling right now.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

The latest and not so greatest news

So today I decided to take time out to sit down and post on my blog.  I am still going to write about what I have been writing about... just a different venue.

2 weeks ago today my Mom had her surgery.  The surgery that was needed because of multiple trips to the ER that I have blogged about before.  However what was supposed to be a simple surgery, has turned into 14 days in the hospital, and 13 days in ICU. 

What wasn't known to me, and probably for good reason, was that it was real touch and go for a few days there.  However I think they (the nurses) told me and the doctors alluded to it.  Maybe I just didn't hear it.  Anyway, here we are 2 weeks since her surgery, and I am exhausted.  Mom is still pretty sick, but everyday seems to be a little bit better.  It is going very slow, and she has been in ICU all this time, and I have gotten to know the nurses very well.

I have been keeping touch with people by way of Facebook, and e-mail and phone.  Mom doesn't realize of course that 2 weeks have gone by, and a stuff has happened outside of her hospital room.  For instance, her good friend passed away yesterday.  I haven't told her, and I don't think I will till she gets home and settled. 

Another thing is this is not the fault of the mechanics of the surgery.  That went very well.  It seems she contacted a bacteria, and her kidney shut down.  They seem to be working fine now, according to the blood tests, but with her Parkinsons, there are other complications that don't make themselves obvious right away.

So.. I and usually George have been going up to the hospital everyday for the past two weeks.  Twice a day, and between I am fixing dinner, and feeding the dogs, and giving Schatzie her insulin shot twice a day, calling family, trying to get stuff done in the house.  George runs the errands for me while I am at the hospital, and occasionally,  I run them with them because I need some diversion from the hospital.

Right now she still has the intubation tube, and she is not sedated, and it is very uncomfortable for her.  She wants to go home, and I think she thinks I put her in a nursing home.  She can't talk, but that doesn't stop her from talking at length, even though no sounds come out of her mouth, and I can't understand anything she says.  They have her breathing spontaneously even though the tube is there for support, and if she needs help inhaling or exhaling, it is there.  Every day they take her off the ventilator as support, and she is breathing entirely on her own for 1-2 hours.  This is all in an effort to wean her off the ventilator.  She can't have it any longer than Thursday, and even though the nurses are all saying it will be tomorrow, until tomorrow is Thursday, it will not be happening... I know that, even though no one has told me.

So today is the day that I need a break from all this hospital stuff.  So George and I will be going to the Dry Cleaners, pet food store, bank, and maybe.... just maybe... Kohls.

The work will not be over for a long time... because once Mom comes home... the real work will start...

Sunday, February 20, 2011

It had been almost a month...

A lot has been happening in the past month. 

I have made two trips to the ER for my Mom.  She is probably going to have surgery very soon.  The good news is that the surgery is not because of disease, but for repair.  Other than that, I won't go into the details.  The bad news is that it is surgery, and at her age, surgery is always a greater risk.  We do trust this Doctor, and this is something that "must" be done, as the ER doctor yesterday confirmed.

Mom is getting more confused, and very sleepy.  She has always been, in her older years anyway, very lethargic.  However, it is noticeably worse lately.  For me it is difficult in two ways.  First to see and admit that my Mom, is now, more a child than ever before.  Even if she doesn't want to admit it.  She still sees her role as a parent, and does not listen to me, since I am the child.  However, she is not able to make decisions for her well being any more.  The problem is she isn't taking it all that graciously from me.  All this is something that I have to learn to adapt to, and... remember that my husband is here as well. 

It really is a balancing act that is new to me.  For those of you who are new to my blog... I moved to Florida from NY, away from my home and my parents in 1987.  That was 24 years ago.  In that time, my younger sister got married, had 3 kids, had marital strife.  My parents retired, saw their youngest daughter get married, became the grand parents to my 3 nieces and nephews.  My Dad had a stroke in 1998, again in 1997, started to suffer from dementia, which was not treated, and his final stroke in 2005.  They moved (everyone, my sister and her family) to North Carolina in 2001, and my Dad passed away in 2006.  George and I were married in 2007, after he had a pretty severe stroke in 2007.  My Mom came to live with us in 2009.  I am not used to being married, and especially not used to balancing all the emotions.

Luckily, or not so lucky, I am disabled from work, and have taken myself off driving, because of an Angioma on my brain stem, that has grown 2 1/2 times it's size in 6 years.  Lucky in the sense that I am able to care for my Mom, myself, my husband and our home, without the stress that comes with a job, especially in this job market.  Unlucky in the sense that my balance, and abilities are compromised.  I am not able to drive confidently, I can't do as much as I could before, because my balance and my vision are severely impaired so I tire easily.

So... that brings me to today... now.  I find myself getting angry at both my Mother and Husband.  I find it to be very justified, 1.  because  of how I feel, 2.  because my Mother is requiring more attention than she did before, and is not very patient with my instructions, or my short temper.  And, 3.   my short temper, which I never had before, is not being taken very well by my Husband, who is reciprocating with the same short temper. 

Doesn't sound like a great place to be right now, does it...  It ain't!

I would love to have a vacation.  A real vacation.  The last 4 years my vacations have been to NY to visit family.  My mother has come with us 3 of those 4 years.  My Aunt and Uncle, ( my Dad's Brother and his wife) would take my Mom for a week, while George and I stay at George's Cousin's house.  It has been a nice escape from the normal routine at home.  This year, I am not sure it is going to happen.  Because of money, and also, because my Mom is not up to where she was in the past, and it wouldn't be fair for my Uncle or Aunt to be responsible for her.

What I would love to do is go on a cruise.  A short 4 or 5 day cruise.  They are relatively cheap from Florida, since we can easily drive to Cape Canaveral and catch a cruise ship.  The problem is my Mom will not get on a cruise ship.  Mainly because of fear.  Fear of it sinking, and her inability to swim, and fear of falling over board.  She seems to be of the notion that people disappear on cruise ships, and that only means on thing.

So in order to go, Mom could stay with my Sister, in North Carolina, in my Mom's home there. My sister won't or can't take a week off, and spend it with my Mom.  (My sister is living in my Mom's home since she split with her husband.)  So, that means that my Mom would be stuck in her house, alone, with out TV, (it is in a very rural area, and in this GREAT country of ours, cable TV is not available in those areas, and my sister does not want to get satellite TV) for approximately 13 or 14 hours a day.  The reason we brought her down to Florida, is because she was doing that 2 years ago.  However, she did have satellite TV then.

So that is my story.  The reason I have not added to my blog recently.  Hopefully that will change soon.  Not sure how that will happen though. 

My mind is working over time to figure this one out...

Sunday, January 30, 2011

One step closer...

Well, as I said last week.. I am one step closer to getting on with my life.  I have some goals... like losing some weight, and getting in a regular routine. 

Mathie is still with me, but I can see the decline.  It is amazing... she is like a baby.  She gets tired and cranky, so I bring her upstairs, and lay her down on the guest bed with her for a few minutes and she falls off to sleep for about 3 or 4 hours.  Pretty amazing really.
Here is the whole door!

There it is... who would have thought?

Friday we were going to take Mathie and Schatzie for a walk, and found that the garage door wouldn't open.  Called a repairman, come to fine out the spring (man this was some spring... ) was broken, in fact both springs, so they were replaced.  To the tune of almost $500.00.  UNBELIEVABLE!!!  The good thing is that it has a 5 year guarantee, which is as long as we are in this house.  They were here at 7:40 Saturday AM, and the door was going up by 8:00 AM.

Then a friend took Mom and I to the beauty parlor, for Mom.  Once we got home, George took us to Petsmart to get Schatzies diabetic food, and then home.  After that I was baking and fixing dinner.  I made Cheddar Bay Biscuits... (yes the kind you get at Red Lobster) and Black and White Brownies. Then I made dinner.  Tilapia, yellow rice, and green beans. 

Gave Schatzie her insulin shot, and we were on our way to friends house for game night...Cranium.  All in all in was fun, but we were out till after midnight...and I just can't pull those all nighters anymore.

It also put the quash on any thoughts of a super bowl party at our house.

So... on with the next phase in my life.  I will keep everyone posted.

Friday, January 28, 2011

The Letter Came Yesterday...

Well I got my letter in the mail, and I have been approved for Disability.  I thought that was going to be the big battle, how ever it was the "other" stuff that was a real struggle for me.  Now let me tell you, it wouldn't have in the past, and after 5 hours of struggling with phone calls and computer, and people, I finally decided to sit down and heat up some left overs for dinner, and relax.  But at this point, I was absolutely exhausted.  I hadn't eaten lunch, I was dizzy, I mean real dizzy.  So, it was once again confirmed to me that I  am not capable of going back to work.  I could barely handle this whole mess without having a melt down, and if it wasn't for George coming up stairs and concentrating on the computer, I would probably have thrown the monitor or the key board, and folder that was about 1 inch think with papers across the room. 

In fact just heating up a can of Progresso Chickarina soup was a chore for me.

But, I can say today, that I am a little bit closer to finishing up this mess today... or finishing up as much as I can.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

New Doctor...

I went to a new Neurosurgeon on Monday... Dr. Max Medary.  Best thing I ever did.  I am not sure if you remember but the last doctor (Neurosurgeon) made a complete 180 degree turn around when I went to see him.  There are a few reasons why he would have done that: 
  1. He is a Neurosurgeon, and unless he is going to operate, they really don't want to see you.  However he was roped, simply by his misfortune, into saying that I was not able to work.
  2. He suggested GKS (Gamma Knife Surgery), which is his deal.  However it is not a suggested fix for Cavernous Angioma's.  
  3. GKS is an easy $30,000 for a Neurosurgeon.  Let me tell you that even if my application for SS Disability is approved, I wouldn't get half that much money in one year! 
So.... if any of those reasons were the reason for him to make a 180 degree turn around in his opinion, he isn't much of a doctor in my opinion...  But what do I know right?

This doctor said that with the best intentions, anyone who did surgery on me right now would hurt me.  They would cause me to end up with more problems than before the surgery.

So, that is the story.  I so liked this guy, so much so that I am now going to stop any consideration of going to Phoenix to see Dr. Spetzler.

It isn't often that I feel so totally and completely satisfied by a doctor.  As a matter of fact, there are probably only 4 doctors in my lifetime that I could say that about.  The unfortunate part is that one moved to NC, and one retired.  That is not including my dentist by the way.  So I guess you could say 5 doctors.  But that is my entire lifetime.  Believe me I had to kiss a lot of frogs to find those 5. 

However only one of those frogs wanted to point radiation at a spot in my brain, in a very "eloquent" location, just because he didn't want to say I was disabled, or, just because he needed a quick 30 grand, or, especially because he didn't want me coming back.

Someone who reads my blog told me that they had fired a lot of Doctors, who were supposed to be experts or specialists.  I can truly understand that.  I had my doubts that I would ever find someone who looked out for me, and not what the ledger book said at the end of the day. 

Well, on to the next adventure.  Who knows what that will be, or where it will lead me.  Right now I am just glad to have found someone who will care for me if and when the time ever comes that I need a knowledgeable Doctor on my side.  Maybe that day will never come.  That would be the best case scenario.  However, I will not keep my head in the sand about this.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Wesley and Linda Chappetto

This video was taken a few years back.  We had a bunch of friends over, and Wesley managed to get up on the couch, and on Carmela's lap, and behind Linda's head so that he could be scratched, and well basically to be as close to Linda as he could.  He was loving every minute of the attention he was getting too....

Happy New Year...!!

Well I know it has been a while since I posted anything...  A lot has been going on.  Let me start by saying my friend "Girl with a Pearl Size Angioma" sent me a necklace that she made.. which makes it extra special, in return for the buttons for her P-Coat.  I have been wanting George to take a picture of me with it on, and that will still come, as soon as I can.  This holiday has been special, and it has also been sad.  I have made some new friends that I look forward to hearing from, and who I can count on being there when I need an ear, we had a visit from family in NY, and with that came the promising news that "C" might be getting a scholarship to Flagler College for Baseball.  I received a call yesterday that my LTD from my job was approved, so the first part of the puzzle is somewhat solved.  The sad news came on Sunday.  Our dog Wesley (pictured in this post) passed.  It was sudden, and in fact in this picture he already had the the mass that caused him not to be able to breath.  We had taken him to the vet because he wasn't eating, and something wasn't right.  The vet heard a slight heart murmur, and decided to do x-rays... which at first glance didn't show any problem.  Now keep in mind this was the holiday weekend, and for the most part Wesley was doing fine.  Short of not wanting to eat much, he was doing fine.  Until Saturday, and Sunday.  That is when the breathing difficulty started.  So we took him to the emergency vet, and called our vet on his cell phone.  While at the clinic, which at first thought, was under the impression he was having congestive heart failure, which relieved us since that can be addressed with medication for a while before any decisions have to be made, our vet called us back, and immediately called the Doctor on call at the Emerg. Clinic.  Unbeknown to us, he had the x-rays taken two day before looked at by a specialist, and found that there was a huge mass in one of Wesley's lungs, which now had fluid collecting.  Since Wesley was not in any distress at that point, the vet didn't feel if was necessary to ruin our holiday weekend, and he could talk to us on Monday, so we could make a decision. 

At this point, we knew we had to make a decision.  George couldn't stay with Wesley when he was put to sleep.  He went to say goodbye to him in the treatment area, and he just broke down.  It was so sad, and since his stroke, he has very little control over his emotions... and this was one of those times.  So he waited in the car, while I sat with Wesley in the exam room... and talked to him, and hugged him, and cried.  It was very hard, and the thought that we wouldn't be bringing him home that day was hard to handle, even as I write this today. 

The doctor came in and the both of us kept telling Wesley what a good boy he was, until he no longer had any trouble breathing.  Somehow that didn't make it any easier for me to say goodbye.

We had him cremated privately, and he will be in an urn by all the other special members of our family.  That probably sounds weird, and maybe it is... but somehow, it makes me feel better to know that he is still close by.  He will always be in our hearts and minds, and even on this blog.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

I just had to add this...

Pictured:  Linda, Michael and Chris in NY at a July 4th Barbeque
The guy on the right is Chris aka "C".  He is one dynamite baseball player.  Yesterday Lynda, our cousin in NY let us know that Big Chris and Little Chris (aka "C") heard from Flagler College.

We just heard from his Dad, and he is here in Florida, at Flagler College, trying out for their baseball team, for a scholarship.  Flagler College is in St. Augustine.  It is a great college.

Anyway, it was great to hear from him, and so nice that Chris called us.  He also heard from St. Josephs college in NY (Patchogue), they are interested in him also.  Apparently he is a hot commodity...but his family knew that all more ways than just baseball.

My cousin's son also was offered an academic scholarship to St. Josephs College in Patchogue.  What a hoot!!!  I guess we come from good genes...!