Monday, May 28, 2012

Aren't they GREAT?

 Here are my folks with 7 of their 11 GREAT-grandchildren.
The oldest pictured here is 6 (almost 7.)

Watch Mom's expressions. She loves being around them.
(Well, so does Dad.)

Then watch what the babies are doing.
Three of them ~ 6 months, 4 months, and 3 months!

Plant Stands

Do you have house plants? 

Sometimes I wish I didn't. These belonged to my mom. When my parents downsized into a retirement house, I inherited her plants. My mom really enjoyed her plants. Me? Not so much. My method is to water them infrequently and ignore them most of the time.

This isn't really about the plants but about the stands that hold them.

This is a vintage stool that I painted orange. It was in my classroom for years, stationed beside the overhead. Sometimes, I even got to sit on it.

What's funny about this is none of my teacher friends would ever sit on it. They called it torture. Now I do not have a small "bum", as Cate would say, so I guess all my extra padding made this seat comfortable for me. Plus I was always just perched on its edge. It is the perfect size for a plant.

This high chair was used by my two brothers, me, and the grandchildren. I don't know what happened to the tray. I inherited this, too, when my folks downsized. I wanted to find a way to use it, so I decided it could also hold a plant.

Isn't that a sweet picture? The high chair is 65 years old.

For those of you who are interested in plants, the Christmas cactuses cacti bloom each year, even with my negligent nurturing.

Check out this post I read just before I posted mine. I love it when I find myself thinking like another blogger.

If you have plants, how do you decorate with them?

Saturday, May 26, 2012

What a difference a day makes.

First, let me thank you for the kind, encouraging comments you left on my earlier post about the frustration I was feeling with my dad. The thoughtful words you shared really warmed my heart. I will reread them when I need a lift.

I also need to explain that my dad does thank me a lot for the things I do for them. He actually makes me feel bad when he does because, of course, I'm going to be there for them. It was just that particular day, when I had tried to do the things he asked me, and he seemed unappreciative.

I spent Wednesday with them, and we were able to get a lot done. First, I stopped at their doctor's office to leave yummy cupcakes to bribe thank them for being so nice when I call them repeatedly. (I wish I had taken a picture. Just imagine icing as tall as the cake part and you'll have a good mental image.) Next up was Walmart to pick up the prescription that had eluded my dad. Guess what? The pharmacist said there was a problem, but he would check on it for me. (It had been sent to the Walmart in Florida! That was the big problem. But it's all fixed now.)

I went by the house to check ALL the prescriptions and found Mom was there with the housekeeper. So, I took her with me to meet Dad at McDonalds. They "belong" to one of those groups of senior citizens who meet every morning. I know you've seen them where you live. I think there is a group in every fast food place in America. Unfortunately, the friend Dad wanted the kangaroo for wasn't there that morning.

Dad left early for a test at the hospital, but Mom and I stayed from 10-12. (It's so hard for me to just sit, but it's how they spend their mornings.) Their friends are very nice people and treat Mom and Dad so well. Since Mom had a stroke, it's been hard to keep up with friends. Mom can't communicate (aphasia), making it difficult for them to do the things they were used to doing.

When we got home, we were surprised to find Dad waiting on us. The bone scan he was scheduled to have at 12:30 involved having "dye" injected into his arm, then going back to the hospital at 2:30. He teased us by saying he was radioactive and not to get too close.

After he left for the second part of the scan, this wonderful young lady arrived. Dad arranged for her to come to the house every month to give Mom a manicure and pedicure. (It's too difficult for Mom to climb in the pedicure chair.) This is just one example of how Dad looks after Mom and her needs.

Debbie (the wonderful young lady) was so surprised at how alert Mom was. Mom just kept laughing and (trying to) talk to her. Debbie even said Mom could lift her leg (that is paralyzed from her stroke) higher than she had ever seen her do.

This picture looks like Mom is sneezing, but she is really laughing at Debbie. She has such a great personality and carries on with Mom while she's there. She had just told Mom that now it was her turn to give Debbie a pedicure.

(I see two possible blog posts in this picture: the cane I decorated for Mom and Dad's phone for the hearing impaired.)

I'm glad we had such a great day together.

I hope you have a wonderful day today with your loved ones.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Goodwill comes through - again.

Did you read this post?
If you did, then you know I've been on the lookout for a kangaroo. (If you didn't read the post before or check out the link, I bet you're really curious now, aren't you?)

Saturday, hubby and I went to several yard sales, but there weren't any kangaroos to be found.

Before we went home, he suggested we stop at a few Goodwill stores. The first one is 2 miles from my house. Guess what we found?

Isn't she cute? And can you believe we (hubby) found her so close to home? Now I'm the one who always says that I can find anything at Goodwill, but even I was feeling doubtful about this pursuit.

See that pretty pink butterfly?

Guess what happens when you pull it?

Isn't that just the cutest thing?

The price was right, too. Just $1.95 ~ not a bad price to make my dad happy.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Wednesday's Questions (on Tuesday)*

Sunday night, Dad told me I needed to call the doctor and tell him Mom needed more warfarin. My folks live 2 miles from the doctor's office. They pass it each day on the way to McDonalds. Dad won't call or stop by for 2 reasons. One is valid ~ he has trouble hearing. The second reason ~ he gets mad and cusses the staff. He always says I get more information from them than he ever does. (That's because I'm polite.)


Monday I called, left a message, and the nurse returned my call. She mentioned that Mom should be taking 2 mg of the drug. When I talked to Dad, his prescription bottle contains 1 mg pills. So now the question became how much should Mom take last night? Dad went with his original prescription, which called for one pill with 1 mg strength. He told me to call the office again.

This morning was Cate's preschool program. I told Dad I would drive down after the program. (They live 35 miles from me.) He told me not to come all the way just for that, just to call. I had already planned to visit them Wednesday.

Click to view

After the program, I spoke with the nurse. I called Dad to tell him the new information and that I would pick up the new prescription in the morning. His reply: Pick up dilantin as well. No thanks from him.
 Person with question mark

Then, these questions:
What have you found out about Machu Pichu? This is a trip he wants us to take next May. I've picked up brochures, but I need to call a travel agent. - 8.2 K

Have you made us a reservation in WV (for a family reunion in July)?  No, I haven't.

fam16.gif - 3.5 K

I know they're not funny questions like in this post but it's so frustrating and it literally paralyzes me to where I can't do anything. I feel so overwhelmed.

Last, he said he had choir practice tomorrow at 4. I told him that was a problem because I really wanted to be home for choir practice (at my church).
His replies: Well, I know that but you didn't come today, and now you have choir practice, and then you keep the babies, so that doesn't leave much time. Okay, good bye.

I'm not kidding. I just want to scream.

While I was writing this, the nurse called me back to tell me Mom isn't due for a refill on her dilantin. I'm hoping that Dad tried to fill her monthly pill container, and that is why he thought he needed more. I may have to take over this duty for him.

Thanks for reading this diatribe.**
     **diatribe -  a bitter, sharply abusive denunciation, attack, or criticism:

*This is too funny. I glanced at this post and noticed that I had titled it Wednesday's Questions, but today is TUESDAY. See what I mean. My dad can make me crazy.

Friday, May 18, 2012

I think I'm back.

When I first thought about having a blog, my intent was to write about my frustrations and fun times with my folks, as well as share good bargains I found at Goodwill.
Somehow, I strayed far away from those original intentions. Since I still need an outlet for my feelings, I thought I'd try again.

Here is a good example. Wednesday I stayed with my grandchildren while my daughter worked. (She's a pharmacist and is fortunate enough to work one day a week.) This was my first time with both children, and I was a little anxious.


First phone call from my dad came out 11, the same time as William's first bottle (and mine, too. I was still working when Cate was a baby.)
      Dad: (lots of background noise) In the nursery rhyme, A dillar, a dollar, a 10 o'clock scholar,
               what is a diller?
      Me:  Uh,  Dad, I really don't know. Why?
      Dad: Well, my friends and your mom and I are sitting here at Mcdonalds. Can you believe  
               they've never heard that nursery rhyme? Are you baby-sitting now?
      Me:  Yes, Dad, all day.
      Dad: Well, just see if you can find out and let us know, okay? We'll be here for awhile.

Once I had both kids settled, I googled it and called my dad back.

Here's the whole nursery rhyme, in case you've never heard of it either:

A diller, a dollar, a ten o'clock scholar!
    What makes you come so soon?
You used to come at ten o'clock,
    But now you come at noon.


Second call came later in the afternoon.

      Dad: Do you know where I can find a kangaroo?
      Me:  A kangaroo? What are you talking about, Dad?
      Dad: Well, this friend of mine is always talking about going to Australia, so I thought it would be
               funny to buy him a little kangaroo. How about seeing if you can find one somewhere, okay?
      Me:  Sure, Dad. I'll keep my eye out.

Lest you think my dad has mental issues, let me reassure you. Nope, no mental issues. He just depends on me to be his executive assistant since my mom isn't able due to the effects of her stroke.

What is the strangest thing you were asked to do this week?