Sunday, December 8, 2019

Memories

My mother (89) and I had a chuckle yesterday
"It must have been crazy to try to
balance all Christmas things out for 22 people!"
"Seriously, I don't remember".

My mother does not remember much of our childhood.
No clear remembrance of any firsts except my oldest brother.

We all played tennis and swam, but there is no memory of meets, or games
or even sitting at the softball stadium all day, ever other day, in the heat of the summer
while each of us played in our own leagues.
Confirmations, even baptisms - five children in ten years.
It is all a blur.

She does not remember details after her father died when she was in high school
when the household went into poverty for a bit.
She does remember that she shared the wedding dress
with her two older sisters
but I had to explain why.

But there are things she does remember:
Her year as a clerk at the local hospital
Her year at college
Her time as the Vice President of the Junior League.
Her taking the trolly to school in downtown Phoenix.

The mind is an amazing thing, isn't it?
My mom can argue politics until she is purple
she keeps up with technology
she gets upset when her books don't balance.

Still, the memories that I treasure most in my mind
Are gone.
Mom has been older for a long time,
she hit elderly about three years ago...
and with that, only clearly happy memories come through.

It makes me ponder,
what will I remember?




Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Who Knew?

About two weeks ago
A bout of anxiety and depression started.
Was it the news?
Or the move?
Or being tired?
Or surgery?
Jet lag?

The spiral has been significant.
Even with the trip to Hawaii,
I cannot seem to shake it.
My crazy driving (60,000 miles to see grands in two years)
has come to a sudden halt.

Tonight I expressed to a dear friend that I am just sad,
Really sad.
She and I shared prayer.

The back story is that I take very few medicines.
Vitamins
That is it.

Since I shattered my elbow I have been taking
2000 mg of Ibuprofen a day for the pain.
It does great.
My arm is comfortable.

I was prompted to look up Ibuprofen.
This is what I found on WebMD:
"Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: easy bruising/bleeding, hearing changes (such as ringing in the ears), mental/mood changes, unexplained stiff neck, signs of kidney problems (such as change in the amount of urine), visionchanges, symptoms of heart failure (such as swelling ankles/feet, unusual tiredness, unusual/sudden weight gain)."

I did mention to my doctor that my ears are now ringing ALL of the time.
I am also bruising a lot! I have a stiff neck, and 
the mood...oh the mood.

Who knew?
I am taking myself off of it,
Praying that is the answer.
At least I feel guided to this possibility.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Many hands make light work

The food pantry at my Church is in full swing.
We are small.
We normally giving enough groceries for a week
to 15 to 20 families.
Families come on Mondays and Wednesdays.
Our families usually are referred to us by the city
since we have no real "clearing" team.
I am on a mission to begin to get our elderly to come for help as well.

Most of the food is by donation in the bins at the Church hall.
You would be surprised how much food comes in two cans at a time.
Favorites are canned chicken, hearty soups, spaghetti and PB&J
A local deli gives us loads of bread
and a grocery gives us their "almost ready to throw out" produce
AND all of their 'old cakes"!

This time of year we are on double time.
I am sure you have seen lots of "State Food bank" ads for donations.
Unfortunately for us, the food bank charges us to buy the donated food.
Bummer.
Soooo---we set out begging.
Actually, people don't seem to mind
because they know we distribute well.

Last year we packed Thanksgiving for 82 families.
The families of one or two get turkey breast. The rest get a full bird.












We have a neighboring fully Spanish speaking parish
Usually we provide for about 20 families.
This year the number has jumped to about 40.
They prefer pork or chicken to turkey
and we are happy to fill their bags.
They get corn meal of tortillas as well.

This year the parish has been very generous.
We are still short about 20 turkeys, but we still have a week.
We have enough cakes, stuffing, milk, beans and corn for everyone
The Amish donate bags of potatoes and onions.

We also supply much of the base for the homeless shelter foods.

Many hands make light work,

What happens in your community during Thanksgiving.

PS- we turn around and do the same thing for Christmas!
Busy bees we are. Busy bees!


Friday, November 8, 2019

Celebrating with my sister in law


Two nights on the Pacific. Five to go. It is snowing at home. I love my life.

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Boomers age and housing

The last few weeks there has been one man who has shown up at the food pantry.
Pretty well dressed.
A ten year old car, that is immaculate.
First he came once a month,
then once a week and now every three days.

Our food pantry primarily cares for the working poor.
We have about 150 families in a month
who come to help get over the line from not enough to eating daily.
About a fifth are "poor life choices" people.
many take their lunch break to get the food.

And then there are the few elderly who are slowly showing up.
Mr W is 88. Mrs S is 69. Mr T is 72.
All live in a house/townhouse.
In our area the safe housing begins at $120,000.
They all have mortgages.
Mortgage is paid first, and then utilities, then food.
All have a cat or a dog.
All are single- widowed.
None have "family"around.
All are apologetic for even showing up, embarrassed.

The conversation among workers has been pretty negative about these older people.
"Looks like" they have money.
They should give up their animal.
Why don't they get public housing
(which you have to qualify for and has a five year wait).
They are taking from others who need it.

I am taking this article into the pantry tomorrow.
It is about housing and the elderly.
We are about to be hit with a whole new wave of elder poverty.
The surprising part is those people WERE middle class.
The scary part is that WE are a part of the age group.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Relationships

I shattered my elbow a few weeks ago.
Yes, that is it now. 
Ice, sleep, exercise, Morton.

The take away?
Relationships.

My husband and I don't hold hands, or any of that.
We have different hobbies and interests
I travel, a lot, he loves the doggies and home,

Satisfying Retirement Bob gave some tips on keeping a relationship going.
Good ideas

My tips are loyalty and laughter.
I am fiercely independent,
 but my best friend rubs Blue Emu on my back 
and finds funny movies on the tv.
We talk politics, 
world news and 
family.
He giggled when I came out in a crazy outfit-
and then clothes pinned me in.

I can say the same about long time friends.
My daughter and I grouch and laugh daily.
My son calls with tips to help.

 My sister and sisters in law are amazing.
Just checking in
I am so excited to start living closer to all of them.

And my dearest friends
Who knew you could text message philosophical questions
in between laughs and tears of every day journeys?

Jesus lays down my path
and relationships are my trees to lean against along the way.
In that I am peaceful.

And this is what  I think about
on pain medication
on a lovely fall day.

I'd take a picture,
but I have a tough time with being a lefty :)



Saturday, October 5, 2019

Birthday week

I turned 62 on the 30th.
It was a wonderful weekend with grands,
fudge brownie birthday cake
and my first real decision to wait for Social Security.

The grands left
and I to hustle to the food pantry.
We have been slammed lately, and I so cool goodies.

Then the hazard of three began to happen.

I got pulled over for going 62 in a 40 zone.
When the trooper got to my car I could not find my insurance.

That was number one.

Seven am the next morning,
 we were taking the puppy to get spade.
She got off the lead.
Running to traffic she turned when I screamed her name.
She ran back,
I leaded down to scoop her up
and.....as she went under my legs, I fell.

Number two.

We got home from 14 hours at  the hospital
and got an email
with the CCRs for our almost purchased land.
there were some pretty weird things in them.
If they were not fixed...
our week trip to find land would have been a waste.

Number three.

On the "good" side
The trooper took pity on me. I was the only one who stopped in  a line of seven cars.
Instead of a huge fine and taking my license.
He wrote me a pseudo ticket for 44 in a 40
which I have already paid.

The fall? I have a dislocated fracture of my elbow.
Very nasty mess.
Rebuild will be  on Tuesday.
Can you imagine if I had hit my head?
I am relearning how to write and type with my left hand.

The land?
Since we were the first people to buy to live in the development
(many spec home lots)
they took out what was crazy
and explained the rest- in writing.
We are happy again.

Here is hoping that the second week of my sixty second year goes better,
If not,
I will be applying for Social Security next weekend!

If you pray,
I could use all prayers for my surgeon on Tuesday!