Saturday, August 31, 2013

WHEN YOU GET A "NO"

If you are like me no means no.  Some people do not accept of "NO" and manipulate situations to get a Yes.  When I first began blogging I did submit for AdSense through Google and got a NO.  The other day I reviewed my application and resubmitted it and today for some reason I got approved!!

So this is my alert to you all that I will be running ads on my blog.  It is something that could indeed generate some income ~ not getting my hopes up ~ every little bit does help during these trying days as I am not a member of the 1% unless you are going the other way as in totally broke!

I was just talking to my friend and fellow blogger the other day about how I couldn't get the AdSense and she was surprised which made me A.  Retry and B.  Succeed.  She also offered her technical savvy as I truly do not have any.

Sure, I can program a V.C.R. (oh wait ~ those are obsolete) navigate my way around the Internet, play games, uninstall and reinstall programs and change a hard drive out if I need to, but that is about the extent of my usefulness as far as code and crap goes.

I am not of the techie generation.  I was living in the country screwing up my computer every other day and taking care of a house, two kids, a dog and two acres of land while I was recovering from my accidents. The only reason I know how to reinstall everything is because it was necessary after I began changing the wrong settings on my computer accidentally!

On another note ~ I am feeling so so ~ the headache has not come back yet today and my muscles seem much looser today thankfully!  I made it to the supermarket and picked up my supplies before the rain came so I am ready for the next two days of playing in my kitchen!

I will be documenting it so god willing the pictures will come out okay and I will have something besides a full tummy to show for my day!  I am planning on the won ton wraps from scratch to make some won ton soup and some Crab Rangoon's (the cream cheese should be safe overnight ~ no bagels in the house).

I did some housework today so that I wont feel guilty for playing tomorrow.  I do need to figure out a treat I can make for my son with the products I have on hand ~ maybe a cake or some cupcakes or something so he wont feel left out.

The thunder is booming and the lightening is flashing so I am going to end this for the day.  I hope you all have a great and safe weekend ~ have fun and designate a driver if you are going to be drinking.  Happy Labour Day and enjoy the final day of August.

Friday, August 30, 2013

SELF IMPOSED LIGHT DUTY!

I have been experiencing a couple of days of high pain levels which began yesterday with general neck and back pain which did not take long to radiate to a huge headache due to pressure.  I carried on with what I needed to do hoping that the activity would help loosen the muscles, but no luck all day.

By late afternoon I just wanted to rip my head off of my neck and slap it around a little but refrained from doing so ~ opting instead for some heat which did not work along with stretches which also did not work! After dinner ~ thankfully sauce is better the second day ~ and after whipping up a few meatballs to change it up from the night before ~ I heated up the heating pad and went to lay down to see if that would work and got a few minutes where the headache went away.

I rotated the heat to six different place which had pressure points of pain which did nothing for my headache pressure until I placed the heat on a spot in my middle back which increased the brain pain!  Sounds odd ~ but I think I found the core.

After a bit of heat in the general area of my middle back the headache did subside and I got some sleep finally.  When I woke up my brain pain seemed to be gone and I was thankful.  My back and neck and shoulders are still reeking havoc so I know I am not out of the woods yet.

I decided to play the day by ear ~ knowing I only had two real places to stop today.  Of course when I took my shower to get ready the water on my back triggered the start of the brain pain again so I decided to make it really okay and limit my activity to only what I needed to do.

The fresh air felt good and there was a nice breeze as I headed down North to the pharmacy ~ scoring on a good price on  Lipton tea at Rite Aid ~ always a bonus especially when I am on my last half dozen tea bags ~ if you know me you know that is only tea for two days tops.

I decided to continue my errands after the pharmacy and walked all of the way down North Street and cutting through what was once the dirtiest scariest alley in Pittsfield that has been revamped into a clean and well lit alley with a nice little courtyard to a restaurant and some nice music playing and a hell of a nice wind tunnel when the wind is blowing in the right direction.

I took the alley and cut down between the bank and the parking garage where they have built a nice little walkway with some pretty nice landscaping and which saves me a little bit of time down to my bank across from the supermarket.

I looked at the supermarket from the bank and decided that it was not worth the trauma on my neck and back to carry anything ~ nothing I absolutely had to have which I wanted to sacrifice myself for.  I headed back the way I came and made it back upstreet in no time.

I cut down one of the side streets and had to smile to myself at the luck in timing as my friend Diane and her dog Sheyna were beginning their walk.  We caught up for a minute and I had to decline the invitation to join them on their walk as by that time I was pretty much ready for my house and relaxing.

I can only feed my son pasta and sauce so many times before he gets sick of it ~ and myself as well, so I had to take something out for dinner.  I made myself some Buckwheat noodles and a tea and thought about it so long that I forgot to take anything out!

Now I have chicken thawing in the sink with water running over it.  I hate using the microwave for cooking or defrosting ~ which, let's not kid ourselves is what you get when you defrost ~ if you can successfully defrost without cooking whatever it is that you are thawing ~ more power to you ~ I am not one of those people!

Not sure yet what I am going to turn this chicken into ~ it is boneless so there are so many options.  I may just take the easy way out and make some chicken tenders.  I have not done any deep frying in a couple of weeks and I have plenty of oil and both cast iron skillets are clean and ready to go.

We have a long weekend here in the United States for Labor Day ~ which most people do celebrate with picnics and parties.  It marks the end of summer and the children going back to school.  I do not have any children in school anymore, and I wait for Indian Summer before I declare summer over personally.

It will be pretty low key here.  I am regretting not hanging on to at least one of my cars before I moved back here.  Lessening my carbon footprint and all that.  I am beginning to recognize it as one of my biggest show of flawed thinking on my part, one of a couple that I have noticed now that the shock of losing everything is becoming easier to accept.  I have had a car since I was 16 so I do not know what I was thinking!

There are a couple of openings I would like to check out this weekend so maybe the universe will provide a solution.  I also saw a pretty cool job listing the other day which would suit me just fine but one that you need transportation for.  I have definitely added a vehicle right up there next to straightening out my financial problems!

I am glad I am getting some perspective so that I can move forward!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

THANK YOU!

Buddy Guy is playing through the stereo, sauce is simmering, I feel good!  Yesterday, I hit the big 10,000 pageviews on this blog!  The universe must have known it would happen yesterday because I had a nice meal planned and instead of for no reason it was a celebration dinner for me!

Considering I began this blog as an journey and exploration of myself, which I never expected anyone to read I am totally blown away!  I have discovered a lot about me which I had forgotten over the years as my focus was on children, work, home and survival.

I have been reminded of my love of Art ~ appreciation of and participation in; Cooking ~ and not just as a responsibility but as something I love to do and enjoy learning and discovering new ways to me be it new recipes, techniques, and flavorings of food; and most obviously Writing.

I am still working on the interpersonal relationship skills.  I do fine except I am still learning to assess people. I say assess because I still think judging people is bad, although I am learning you need to make judgements in order to make accurate assessments!

I am great with people, need a certain level of interactions on a regular basis or else I just do not feel right, but not people who are selfish, greedy and self promoting or mean.  Being a person who see the good in most everything that is difficult as people, even when they say they are showing you their "authentic selves" are lying.  I have rediscovered what friendship is by reconnecting with authentic friends who remind me of the difference between the real deal and the false faces.

That is my most difficult lesson besides not reacting to those people who do not have my best interests at heart ~ the vampires who suck the life right out of you ~ throw you aside ~ wait for you to recharge and regain your energy and come back and do it all over again!  That is going to take a bit more time.

I have learned that 13 years is too long for me to be unproductive, that I have value and worth and that I need to tap into those resources within myself and that when I do I feel so much better as a human being!  I have also learned that I am a social person and that I do like myself and that not everyone on the planet hates me!

I say this because over the past 11 months of writing I have only had to delete two comments out of 163 wonderful ones and that is because there tone was a bit snotty and I did not appreciate them from a "friend". I do not consider that too shabby personally.

Since I don't know the technical side of blogging, I do not label, tag, permalink or add search descriptions because I do not know what the heck all that means!  I have 22 followers whom I thank personally for reading and inspiring me, share publicly on Google and Facebook with a link most recently going to Twitter and that is it.

I still do not have a plan in mind specifically other than to remain faithful to my writing, look for a tangible story which I know is in there and which is getting clearer and clearer but is still hiding from my fingertips somewhere in the recesses of my brain.

All and all, I think it is going well.  Yesterdays blog did much to advance my confidence, the feedback was so nice and yes I will admit it made me feel good ~ something that is foreign to me and to tell the truth I feel a bit guilty about feeling good.

I could not have done it without you all and again ~ thank you for all of the support when times were hard and my son was sick, that really made a difference ~ thanks for boosting me up when I was down and reaching out and making me feel the energy you sent back to me when I asked.  For me riches are not measured in money, it is the love that you send out and receive and that for me is more valuable than all of the gold or oil in the world!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

SATURDAY ADVENTURE

I was invited on a group outing on Saturday.  My ride came to pick me up at 10:10 and I was ready for anything as a full day was planned.  We took a ride through the beautiful New York countryside to the home of Harry Lazare where we were greeted by Harry and his rescue dog and most of our party and looked around in his 2 car garage studio where the walls are adorned with some of the most unique "Assemblages of Natural and Found Materials" created by Harry while we waited for the rest of our large group to arrive.













Once we were all assembled Harry began his talk about his education, art, health and life.  It is amazing to hear how his work comes together ~ almost like magic the individual pieces call to him and after a time he is ready to nail down and hang up his work.

His studio is very organized despite all of the odds and ends he has gathered for use when the time comes. All of his pieces are made out of found objects and people randomly drop things off they think he may be able to use and he gathers things himself as well.  He also has many pieces going at once.

Future work of art?


work in progress

Harry Lazare describing some work to Tess and Paul
It was great fun and very interesting meeting such a unique man with such an amazing vision.  I will never look at mixed media art the same way!  It was an amazing time and I was happy to be included on such an interesting adventure!

This was only phase one of our day which Tess had planned.  We all said our goodbyes and 11 of us in six cars headed down the long hill of a driveway with a view so far reaching the mountains in the back looked almost invisible as they will do!

Our next stop was the Fields Sculpture Park and Architecture at the Omi International Arts Center on Route 22 in Ghent, New York which was just a short drive down some country roads and across both lanes of the Taconic State Parkway ~ which crossing is an adventure in itself!

Tess did a wonderful job of getting all of us there and we arrived and overwhelmed the two person lunch station which offered some delicious soups, salads and sandwiches as well as some fresh peach pie and chocolate chip cookies at reasonable prices and adequate portions.

We all ordered our lunches and the eleven of us squeezed cozily at one table and chatted about Harry's art and this and that while we anticipated the arrival of our food.  The day was perfect as the weather was not too hot and there was a beautiful breeze.

A few people left before touring the wonderful Sculptures as they had other obligations.  My friend and I caught up to part of our party who had gotten ahead of us in time to say goodbye before they departed and we never did catch up with Steve and Jean who were ahead of them!

It was a really large place with pieces all over many acres.  I cannot even begin to estimate how large it is. Some of the installations were in the fields, some in the woods along the paths and we found the pond a couple of times from various angles.

The art was diverse and varied.  One of the pieces which I found interesting was done in the 1960's ~ it looks like something out of alien!  Of course we did not have a map when we began.  My friend thought he picked one up in the stack of papers but we had walked by them when we came in not noticing until we had finished and procured one ~ better late than never!


















 




Omi International Arts Center is a gem hiding in the middle of nowhere!  I would recommend it, as they have food,  but you can bring your own as well and have a picnic, they offer free water ~ which is unusual this day and age, it is peaceful, beautiful and appealing ~ I did not get nearly enough pictures and there were many more sculptures than what I have presented here.  It is also child friendly and a good way to tire out the kids!

You would think that this would have been a full day for most people.  You would be right!  By the time we walked the fields and went back inside the reception area to use the restrooms, check out the indoor gallery and find out what Omi stood for (it is the name of the town ~ too small to make the map), we opened up the car to cool it off, looked at a map and programmed the GPS ~ hate them and love them, I had a quick smoke and we headed down the road.

We had no idea which end was up when we pulled out of the main driveway, thankfully the GPS did not get us lost and we were soon in Austerlitz, New York at the Historical Society where there was a day of music until 6 and then Contra Dancing after that.

There we found some musicians in the yard playing a nice melody I remember from my Grandparents, as we walked over to the barn where music was wafting out the doors and about 50 people were seated and listening.  It was like going back in time the only thing modern was the clothing.

We left there and stopped at the Circle Museum Sculpture Park on Route 22 in Austerlitz, New York.  http://cargocollective.com/circlemuseum I personally have driven by this place many times over the course of my lifetime, but had never stopped.  Today we stopped.  

There were so many sculptures it was amazing, all made of various objects welded together and most pieces were large.  We walked around only to discover a upper field of sculptures along with the other four areas of work to look at.

The artist was on the premises and was inside the building where there were also paintings of his on display. We had a wonderful conversation with the artist regarding his inspiration, and life and the welding process and soon there were others stopping so we took our leave to head to Great Barrington where there was a Summerfest happening for the first time in I think 20 years.

We found a parking spot which was amazing in itself, considering all of the people on Main Street in Great Barrington.  The minute we got out of the car we heard music ~ drumming to be exact ~ so we walked over to the stage to check out the tail end of the Berkshire Bateria http://www.sambaland.com/the-berkshire-bateria/.

We walked over to the Mahaiwe Theatre to see if anyone was around as my friend volunteers there and I have as well once.  http://www.mahaiwe.org/HOME  No one was around so we used the restrooms and went in pursuit of more music.

While we were wandering around, we decided to beat the rush and grab some food at the Gypsy Joynt as of course we had burned to much energy and needed to refuel and the food was great last time we were there. We grabbed a couple of outdoor seats and began people watching as we waited.

Amazingly, I won the contest.  My friend should have known more people and I am surprised he did not considering he is out in the world way more than I am.  I, however, recognized people from my days in West Stockbridge at the Video store, along with people I used to wait on at Friendly Restaurant which was my first real gig in the mid to late 80's.

After we ate we wandered down to find the next closest stage for music and hit the end of a show which Static was performing and my friend was fortunate enough to capture not one but two shirts which they were blasting out of a cannon into the crowd!  I just love a good souvenir to mark the day!

We checked out Whiskey City on the stage, another country band on another stage ~ and wandered down the road again, my friend required some frozen yogurt so I saved some seats while he went in to get himself a treat.  I had already eaten more than I do in two days so I passed but I did sample and it was good if you like it but I am love regular ice cream better.

Interestingly enough, there was Palm and Tarot readers directly in front of the table and I inquired how much a reading was.  I am not a sucker, but I have always been interested in that sort of thing so I decided to give up $10 to have my palm read ~ a new experience for me.

It was good, but not all good.  My niceness came up, my love of nature and the earth and my spirituality was right on the money.  So was the heavy heart and the burdens I carry financially.  There was a silver lining as I was told that I had suffered enough and that positive changes, which were already around me were going to keep coming and a possible grandchild in my future!

It was all good and well worth the splurge of cash.  We all have to eat! One of the women lives a few blocks away from me, but the one which did my reading was a young girl from Schenectady.  I left feeling satisfied for sure!

We did the loop again and it was getting on 8:00 p.m. by that time with a 45 minute drive back home.  With the sun going down it was beginning to cool off and my jacket was in the car and I was totally exhausted after all of the walking, information and food so I called it quits and my friend agreed so we headed back to the car where I found a cool black scarf on the sidewalk.

Not the kind of find Harry would use for his display, but one which I could definitely put to use!  We made a stop for gas and were soon at my residence where we parted company and my son greeted me as if I had been gone for a week instead of a day!  I am blessed to be loved.

We hung out and talked about my day, watched some t.v. and parted company ~ me for sleep land and he for his computer.  It was one long and totally awesome day!  I hope you enjoyed it although it was more like a book than a single entry.  I am tired all over again just reliving it!  Good thing I only have things which I want to do instead of have to do today!


Monday, August 26, 2013

A QUICK HELLO

I know it has been a few days since I have last written and I do apologize.  I am totally tuckered out after a wonderful ten hour day out in Columbia County New York ~ which was wonderfully planned by Tess and then added to by my friend Paul when the group broke up.

The details will be in a later blog, as I am still trying to catch my breath and organize and process everything in my head to share with you all.  Today, being Monday was totally busy in the afternoon with the weekly session with my counselor and errands following that all the way down the other end of town on foot which also added to my fatigue.

I did have a chance encounter with Michael Rousseau and got a chance to catch up and find out how his commission to Italy was going ~ I happened upon a picture of it and it is gorgeous!  It hasn't shipped yet, however, and you know how artists are with finishing touches!

I then scored some Buckwheat noodles at the local Asian Import Store.  A treat I have been missing most of the summer as she has been out when I have been looking.  Who knows ~ maybe I will practice those won ton wrappers tomorrow now that I have some inspiration ~ there is a bunch of pork in the fridge thawing out and ready to be ground into filling...

My son got kidnapped again last night by his brother.  I can say it is a step in the right direction, life going back to some kind of normal.  Before we moved back to Pittsfield and my son stopped going out of the house he did used to have a very social life full of friends at the house and him going to his friends for weekends or holidays.

I guess it just seems odd to me, since my life goal was to get out of the house when people were there (I always loved being home alone in my house in West Pittsfield.), and since my boys were visiting here and there throughout their childhoods and beyond, to have Tom not be able to go out or have the desire to go out.

As a parent it is hard to know how to direct someone who is stuck like that.  I am not the best motivator to say the least.  I try my best.  I am fortunate to have help now that his brother is out of work on that end.  I have enough difficulty motivating myself most days but I do try my best to do so.

I have been hard on myself lately anyway.  I recognize that, although they do say that recognizing that you have a problem is one step closer to solving it.  I will accept that.  I have been mentally processing a lot of stuff and the process is slow for me and it slows me down as well and I get very introspective.

It does take time to change the way one thinks and believes and to kill that negative self talk.  I have to try to focus more on the positive which means that tomorrow I am positively going to focus on sharing my incredible, extensive journey which I took on Saturday ~ with pictures even!

Until tomorrow do have a wonderful day!  I am going to see if I cannot restore some of my energy and get back to normal!  Hope you all have a great evening!

Friday, August 23, 2013

WONDERFUL WATER WEDNESDAY

I have been feeling like I have been missing a step lately, so when I had the opportunity to join the canoe adventure with my friend I was looking forward to the peace of the river.  I had not been out of my house much and recovering from the food poisoning, in the stage where I still felt sick but not sure if  it was because I had not eaten for three days or if it was from the bad food.

I was all ready to be on time when my son's Dad knocked on the door and distracted me halfway through writing my last blog.  I am easily diverted and with the help of Frisbee Golf on the WII Resort I barely had time to get in the shower and get dressed before my ride was outside my house.

The potluck had been canceled much to my dismay, but I was encouraged to bring the dessert anyway by my friend.  He had the cooler ready to go to keep it chilled until we were finished with the trip.  We headed to Lee to the home of the Housatonic Valley Association to sign our waivers and meet up as a group.

There were some familiar faces and some new faces.  As it was my second time joining the group, it is always exciting to be a part of it.  People who canoe are a nice and laid back group.  Everyone was looking forward to the paddle.

We carpooled up to the starting point in Lee where the canoes were waiting for us to bring down to the water.  I believe there were seven canoes and 2 kayaks so it took a few minutes for everyone to get on the water and get the practice time in.

The river was yet another part which I have not been on.  It was pleasant, as it always is on the river.  I always find a great sense of peace and solitude, and after my crazy couple of weeks and the solitude of my home I settled in and absorbed the power, strength and beauty of the atmosphere around me.

This was not a completely leisurely paddle however, although the river is pretty wide and somewhat deep and calm, some places were less deep and you needed to pick a line, avoiding rocks and trees which could be under the water, and other boats around you, along with the more rapid areas which were trickier and sudden where you had to be on your toes.

One more than one occasion I had to ask my partner in the back of the boat if he was still with me.  Once when we made it through a tricky spot and the second part was less doable in a canoe as say a kayak.  We had to carry the boat across the island around the impossible area, I asked where the water had come from in the canoe only to find out I almost lost him in the trees ~ oblivious as I was to the fact at the time.  I did however laugh out loud at that.  I will admit.  I was thankful that the whole canoe did not go over and that we just gained a bit of water!

We just missed seeing the bald eagle by a couple of minutes at one stage of the game, but were chasing a blue heron downstream.  There was also a lot of weeds in the river, I am wondering if it is from the high waters and extreme heat or if they are normal, as in my part of the Housatonic river we did not have weeds like that.

We were joined by Russ Cohen of the Massachusetts Department of Ecological Restoration who would stop and point out various edibles along the river, besides grape leaves (which I love to make) he located some wild spearmint, a tuber which leaves look like beans, and thistle ~ which I was unaware you could eat as well, along with another plant which I could identify by sight but not by name ~ sorry!

The trip was three miles by car which equated to about 5 miles on the river.  It was a nice time to say the least, but I was grateful to pass under the final bridge and see our exit from the river.  I knew that it would take a minute to get my land legs so I utilized that time by helping gather paddles and life jackets to put away before I helped lug some boats up to the trailer.

More carpooling back to the starting line and goodbyes and departures by some who had their cars at the end. In the end, after everyone was back and the canoes were locked up five of us were left to sit and chat and have dessert together, which is one of my favourite parts of the adventure ~ the conversation and sense of community.

We finished up and headed to one of my friends favourite places ~ Friendly's.  The way he tells it he received a coupon that very day for a buy one get one free sundae ~ coincidence   Not sure ~ so we shared a salad to help counteract the negative cholesterol in the upcoming ice cream and he told me about a crazy adventure he and a friend had on a river in California which blew me away!  All I can say is he is one brave guy to continue to be an adrenaline freak after that one!  

I was looking forward to getting home as my son was coming home that night, and he arrived shortly after I did.  It was a good thing I still had two pieces of Shepard's Pie left because he was starving!  True to form it was gone in less time than it took to heat up!

We got caught up and spent some time hanging out together, talked and watched some t.v. before I crashed.  I knew I was going to be feeling it the next day ~ which I did a little in the arms and some in the legs.  I thought it would be worse than it was, but I must be getting used to the paddle because it is now Friday evening and I am feeling great!

September's trip is full, but I may be able to get into October's trip.  I have a busy day planned for Saturday in Columbia County with an array of activities with a group of people whom I met a couple of years ago.  I was told I had to write my canoe blog first so here you go!  I hope you enjoy it!  

Here is the link for the Housatonic Valley Association if you would like to check out events or make donations it is a really wonderful organization and a great bunch of people who put in all of the work and effort and love doing it!  Hope to see you all out on the river canoeing and kayaking!

http://www.hvatoday.org/


Wednesday, August 21, 2013

RANSOM DEMANDS MET

I was majorly foiled last night ~ tricked by my own kids!  I paid the ransom of Shepherds Pie only to have my sons tell me "You are beat ~ I bought a new video game and Thomas is coming home with me!"  I can accept that.

The worst part is everyone who came for dinner happened to eat a couple of (or less than) hours earlier. With the excuse that ~ "you called after my Dad went to McDonald's" and a good one from Tom's Dad ~ "when you called I was just putting the last bite of food in my mouth at an unexpected gathering".

I should have known that something was off when my middle son did not dive right into the cooling pans of Pie when he walked into the house.  There was no instant run for the table, since I was just happy to see them anyway it did not raise any red flags.

Gotta love my clan!  The three of them had a conversation about it when I was out of the room then all fessed up when I came back in.  It is bad enough that the very sight of food made me want to vomit,(although it smelled wonderful!)  I still pushed through thinking of my kids and the joy that I had at seeing them after 5 days of solitude.

This meant more socializing before we sat down to eat, chatting and working up an appetite.  I did not care though ~ I was still not feeling well.  They made me laugh as I pretended to be mad at them and they were very funny sleep deprived as they were.  They left with a pan of Shepherd's Pie for later, and I have two pieces remaining which is a miracle all on its own.  I am sure once my son returns it will be gone by the next morning.

They have been having one heck of a good time hanging out together staying up all night playing games, and I am sure ~ driving Pat's Dad crazy.  I wish that Pat would come over here and stay once in awhile.  I love the way my sons interact and miss it regularly, even though I am a target for their ambush and they know how to get me going!

For me it does suck adjusting my life to my increasingly empty nest.  I am still not over my oldest son leaving and it has been more than ten years, six for my middle son and who knows if and when my baby will leave. On one hand, it will be a new adventure for me ~ one I have waited for 28 years to begin, on the other hand it will be scary and lonely being on my own for the first time since I was 19 years old.  I will surely cross that bridge when I come to it.

I am having a great time socializing, doing new things and meeting many people in the process.  I for one love change ~ it is a sign of growth and I am all about learning, doing and expanding my self on many levels.  I am off to get ready for the canoe trip so I will talk to you later!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

MAKING IT THROUGH THE DAY

I feel like crap ~ literally.  On Sunday evening I decided to cook half of the 5lb sirloin roast I had purchased as a surprise home cooked meal for my son when he returned.  Upon cutting it in half prior to cooking, I noticed it smelled a little bit off, but thought it was my imagination.

After cooking it and eating a couple slices I went to watch my shows and went to sleep.  When I woke up Monday it was all I could do to stay out of the bathroom for five minutes at a time.  I checked the "sell by" date on the second half of  the package (which I had put in the freezer) and found it was August 27 ~ which apparently meant nothing.

I began checking and packaging the rest of the meat which I had purchased, happy to find no more tainted meat in the bunch.  I phoned the store and spoke to the manager who told me to bring in the remainder of the meat and get a refund.  

At least my son was  not home for the meal, which going on day two of horrible stomach pain and too much bathroom time is a plus.  I feel worse today on day two than I did on day one!  I hope it doesn't last much longer because I have the last canoe event of the season on Wednesday which I am really looking forward to.

My second canoe journey will be from Lenox to Lee followed by a potluck dinner.  I have already made the dessert which is chilling in the fridge.  I definitely want to canoe next year, it has been great fun being on the river and seeing the sights and this trip should be more eye opening than the previous one!

My son should be home today.  The hamburger is defrosted, I only need to peel potatoes and throw the meal together and give them a call.  I however, think I need to lay down for a bit before I can even think about doing any such thing!

I was in a bit of a fog all weekend before this bad meat ordeal, now I am feeling all wishy washy and dizzy and not really in the mood to even look at food.  I forced myself to eat something yesterday, woke up sort of hungry this morning yet wanting to hurl at the same time.  To be sure food has not won today, my stomach does not want any part of it!

I missed another event last night, as well as a couple this weekend in the course of my solitude.  I was all geared up for the Jazz band at the Mission last night.  Today, my son's Dad came over and told me how wonderful it was.  I was surprised to learn that he even liked Jazz!  

Learn something new everyday!  Today I learned thanks to Rick (Tom's Dad) all about Hannibal via the Internet and Rick showing off how much he knows about history.  (A subject I really did not retain in school) but one which I find very interesting to say the least.

I wish I had felt better while he was here talking, but as time wore on all I could feel was the pounding in my head and the pain in my guts.  I hate to admit that I was relieved when he left not too long ago.  This is really draining and it is already 3:00 in the afternoon!

So I am off for now to rest, cook and feed the masses ~ okay, not the masses, just two sons and one Dad - probably two Dad's cuz I know my middle son's Dad will be expecting some as well!  I do not know what it is about Shepherd's Pie that makes people go crazy!  I had one of the North Street hanger outers offer to buy me dinner anywhere I want to go for some Shepherd's Pie!  Tempting to say the least, but even with making two pans there is never any left the next day.


Monday, August 19, 2013

ENJOYING THE SOLITUDE

I have spent the whole weekend doing absolutely nothing.  Well ~ not leaving the house from Friday evening until Sunday afternoon ~ and then only because I needed supplies at the store.  I did bake and cook and play on the computer.

I enjoyed the solitude.  My son was and still is over to his brothers having left on Friday evening after I left for the service at the Funeral Parlor.  I am glad he and his brother are hanging out and leaving the house, even if it is to go to the safety of what has always been his second home.

My middle son phoned me while I was walking my friends dog and told me that he was not bringing Thomas home until I make Shepherds Pie ~ which was how I enticed him to bring me grocery shopping on Thursday. I told him he was out of luck for tonight as I froze all of the hamburger so he would have to keep him for another day.  It was pretty funny, considering that they both refused to even let me make it their entire lives before 6 months ago!  Kids!

I usually feel a bit guilty for getting out and doing things, extending myself out of my comfort zone, and leaving him home alone.  (Leaving him home alone is not the "out of my comfort zone" part.  If you recall, last weekend when he was gone the silence was killing me.  I guess it is true that we are adaptable, because I had no such problem this weekend.

I did not even have one unexpected visit, but I did phone all of my sons and called friends who are far away just to hear their voices and was even pleasantly surprised to have been told that I was missed by an old friend.  That made me feel good, as sometimes I do wonder if I make any kind of impact on anyone who isn't obligated to have one.

I listened to music and danced in my living room ~ how could you not dance with Aretha Franklin doing her thing!  I marinated chicken pieces for souvlaki for the first time and wow ~ it will not be the last!  If I knew it were that easy I would have been doing it years ago!

I caught up on "The Bridge" and have to try to remember it is on when it is on because it is getting interesting.  Watched the first episode of this seasons "Breaking Bad" in case I was up when it re-aired  at 11:30 Sunday ~ which I was not.  I love On Demand as you can fast forward through all of the commercials (which I hate!)

I made banana bread and for the first time in 37 years I undercooked it.  It was a bit disappointing as bread is so easy.  I don't know what compelled me to remove the bread when the toothpick was not clean ~ but such is life!  (I did try to finish it up in the microwave ~ not sure if it was an epic fail or an epic save yet!)

I even managed to remember today was Monday and made it to my doctor's on time, which means I had time to read some of a magazine before he was ready.  His waiting room is the absolute only waiting room so  far in my life I do not feel uncomfortable waiting in.

In the past I have waited in bathrooms and or stairways if by some chance it was not time to see the doctor. It is really strange to me that it is one of my "issues" since I am pretty sociable with strangers and often strike up conversations with the most random people about the most random things!  It is important to have a comfortable waiting room I feel, if you are going to make people wait!

I am off to grill the remainder of the chicken souvlaki, do my daily games for the last time and check out the latest episode of "Under The Dome".   Hope you all had a manageable Monday and wish you a pleasant week!


Saturday, August 17, 2013

FAMILY, FAITH AND LOVE

After writing yesterday I noticed a post about the Berkshire Museum being open to Berkshire County residents for free so I grabbed my camera to gather some photos and go eat up some free time at the museum.

I was not about to let the morning ruin my day.  I had to prepare as well for the celebration of Chandler's life later in the evening so I wanted to be as anxiety free as possible.  I know it is foolish, but I get pre~anxiety with things like this, even if I will be surrounded by people whom I have know for 30 years.

The Museum did it's trick.  I checked out everything there was to check out, including a second look at the PaperWorks exhibit.  I am still amazed by what amazing things can be done with ordinary paper.  My favorite part of the museum however are the rooms of things that used to be main displays over the years. The familiar huge old oil paintings which are not in their "usual" places as they were in my childhood.

I felt better when I arrived back home.  I had a couple of hours to spend with my son, so we watched the latest Spider Man Movie which turned out better than I thought it would be.  I showered and changed into my third dress of the day and made my way to the funeral parlor.

The place was packed with people filling the main room, the outer halls straight out the door and under the carport.  I was amazed, yet I wasn't.  Chandler, since he was a baby was full of life and energy.  He was blessed to have an awesome mother and older brother to help guide and shape him, along with a great Grandmother, Aunts and numerous cousins and a zillion friends!

I am sorry to say that my life took me away and I had not seen Chandler grow into the amazing young man which he was, never heard him rap in person, but I will never forget what his Momma will miss most ~ the smile which filled his whole face ~ including the twinkle in his eye.

Allek, his older brother, although deeply saddened and missing his brother was a rock.  I am proud of  his strength and love he will always have for his brother.  His expressions of love during this time for his baby brother have been so deep and poetic.

The hall was full after the service with more people I have ever seen in one place celebrating the life of this young man who has been taken from the planet way too soon.  His family has great faith.  I have always known this, but to see the faith, love and strength which this family possess during this trying time was so reaffirmed my faith.

The hall was rented til 11:00 ~ but the bartenders were not up to the task of dealing with 5 people let alone 100 people, and while no one was out of control or anything they shut the party down an hour early.  The same could not be said for the family, however.  They did an amazing job at serving a buffet feast with two huge long tables heaping with hot food, another table of salads, sandwiches and meat platters and two tables full of desserts!  There was no way anyone left hungry ~ although I missed the collard greens and mac and cheese I did happen to lay my hands on one of the best pieces of coconut cake I have ever had in my life!

We cleared the hall pretty quick ~ packed up the food and put the tables away and congregated in the parking lot where we released a mad amount of balloons up to the heavens to Chandler.  They all headed far and fast ~ filling the sky.

I made it home with every intention of changing into comfortable clothes to head a block over for a last Chandler style party.  However, when I sat down to put on my sneakers my feet and my body protested so greatly that I gave up trying ~ my bed was calling.

I am honored and blessed to know and love this family.  I gave and received some of the best hugs and had the best time catching up with some amazing friends.  It was truly a celebration ~ no time for tears and grief!  I hope to attain the level of faith and grace this amazing family has ~ they are a true inspiration to me and everyone whose lives they touch!  I thank the Lynch and DuBois family from the deepest depths of my heart for reminding me what faith, love and family are all about.

Friday, August 16, 2013

WHY IS MY MOTHER ALWAYS RIGHT????

My mother was right.  I admit it and accept it and give her credit for knowing what I was so blind to see all those years ago when I got involved with the alleged man of my dreams.  Despite the cheating, the drinking, the drugs I was too blind to accept and to see then what have the great displeasure acknowledging in my heart and BRAIN!

For a smart person, I am a stupid woman.  I overlook the negative aspects of someone and see beyond somehow into what slim good is in them and base my life, love and faith on the wrong things.  It has been proven over and over again.

By my friends definition of a person doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results ~ I am crazy!  Especially since I kept hoping one person has/had changed, finding out the hard way over and over and over (repeat at least 20 times) again.

It makes me sick to realize.  I wish she had passed that intuition off to me through the genes.  I also have a broken "picker" according to another friend.  It does not surprise me or hurt me when people tell me these things, they are true.  Could be part of the reason that my middle son forbade me to date again after yet another failed relationship with another man who is the same kind of man just a different face.

I took the opportunity last (not this) July 4th when I was broken up with by the same offending "man of my dreams" to make a change.  Unfortunately, he thought he would be able to get me back same as always but I refused to talk to him, and the only contact we have is in court in front of a judge ~ (some things never change) with me trying to find safety in a piece of paper, which any criminal knows doesn't mean jack ~ they know how to play things their way.

I was of course made to look like an ass as he made an ass of himself in front of the judge blaming me and accusing me of things that are not in my nature.  For one ~ he can't put his motorcycle on the road because of me??  Wait ~ your chiropractor told you not to ride it because of your neck and back injury after your second or third or was it fourth accident where you are seeking damages against someone to collect money??

Wait, wait, oh, that is my fault???  I am going to slash your tires??  You steal my belongings, threaten me on the phone, and still watch your D.V.D.'s on MY DVD player??  You wouldn't let me get my things out of your garage and yet when I mentioned it to you before you broke up with me you waited to dump things that don't belong to me on my front lawn, make trouble, steal my house key and who is the asshole????

Classic ~ and my favourite ~ the judge ordered you to pay damages of $30 in my mailbox by such and such a date and you what ~ saw me talking to a male in front of the library so you went to the bank and got rolled coins ~ went to court and said it wouldn't fit in my mailbox.  When asked by said judge about the coins you said you rolled them by hand when more than 80% if them were rolled and sealed at the bank you lying piece of shit!!!

Good thing I have faith in god and trust in Karma because you will get yours my friend.  I have patience and you are a drug addicted alcoholic who brushes their teeth with beer and while you are a great actor it will come back and bite you and I hope to be on the planet when it does!  I don't even need to see it.  I will cry over your grave however, because, unlike you, my life with you and my love for you was never fake.  Just like my fear of you.

MONDAY MADNESS

I was sleeping nicely when my phone rang Monday morning.  It was earlier than my alarm.  Since it was my friend Laura (with only one day remaining before she returned to her home), I answered and groggily answered with a slurred hello.

She was inviting me for breakfast.  I am not a morning person, and don't eat breakfast normally, but it is not usual for me to have the opportunity to see this friend as often as I would like to, I accepted.  The day before one of my friends was talking about a great place for breakfast which is nearby so I figured we could go there.

Of course we parked and walked up to the door to find it was closed!  Just our luck!  So we headed to Friendly's the classic standby.  It was nice chatting away, catching up some more.  And before we knew it, too much time had passed for all that I had to do.

On our way back to my house she took the wrong turn which turned out to be the right turn.  We passed our friend Carm's house and Carman was outside in her yard so we turned around to see how she was really managing with her loss and to offer support in person.

We spent way too much time there, but it was totally necessary.  I felt a bit more relaxed about worrying how she was managing.  I would not have been managing so well, I can tell you that!  They do say that the more love and support you have around you in times of crisis and bad health is always a benefit.  Thankfully Carman has love and support overflowing!

I was so behind that I was late in waking up my son for his appointment ~ which I usually go to as well, but this day was different ~ he had to go by himself as I had a meeting at my house with a friend to sell some music to.

Dave arrived a bit before noon, as we had planned on ~ so I got to say goodbye to Laura and hello to Dave!  Parting is such sweet sorrow to be sure!  I don't know the next time I will see my friend, but I hope it is soon!

Thomas made it out the door and Dave and I chatted and conducted our business.  After three long years of waiting to make this particular sale, we were both excited to put it to rest.  He has new finds for his awesome record collection and I have a few extra dollars!

My friend Mike Jones showed up unexpectedly while Dave and I were catching up with past and present happenings.  He is another friend from the "early days".  Hometowns are where you run into people from your past and Dave is one of my favourite people locally for a very long time!  One of my all time funniest memories from High School was made by Dave and I still laugh out loud whenever I think of it!

Dave left, and Mike wanted coffee which I do not keep in the house.   We walked up to the store so he could get a cup of coffee and I needed half and half and Tom wanted a soda.  I of course forgot the half and half which I did not realize until I got home.

On the way from the store we ran into Cynthia and she walked back with us.  That is when I looked at my clock and realized it was Monday and it was after 1:30 and I should have been on my way to my doctors appointment, not walking home to play WII and chill.

I made an executive decision to phone my doctor.  I would be late at the very least but was hoping to cancel as the day had been a fun, yet overwhelming in a good way kind of day and it was only half over!  My doctor convinced me to see him, which I did arriving only a few minutes late which was a relief!

Of course, when I got home and went to make a much needed tea and catch up with myself ~ that is when I realized I had no half and half for my tea.  Which for me is a major let down.  Too tired to run out I settled for milk instead which just doesn't cut it!

This past weekend and this day was just like the old days, busy, chaotic and totally fulfilling!  Being pulled gently in more directions than I can possible manage at one time, but getting it all covered ~ except for (almost) forgetting my appointment!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

PART TWO OR WHAT I FORGOT THAT RELATES

I left out the best parts about Saturday ~ because there were two great things (for me) that happened ~ the first was that my old friend John phoned and I joined him to grab a pizza in Dalton.  We grabbed some slush's at Cumberland Farms on the way back to my house.

After the ribs I could not eat pizza and after he was done we set to the task of figuring out how to get my D.V.D. player to run through my stereo speakers.  Something which I had done in the past yet when re hooking up the player I was unable to manage it.

It happens, but it sucks because I haven't been able to play my C.D.'s and I had been going through music withdrawal ~ bored without my favorite cassette working anymore and my missing audio drivers on my computer still ~ we managed to figure out with some trial and error the proper placement.

At one point it sounded like I had blown my speakers when playing a c.d..  Since the speakers were fine with the radio and the cassette we realized we were in the wrong slots and tried the one marked c.d. ~ the obvious and not so obvious choice.

We were rewarded with the sweet clear sounds of Robert Johnson playing his old time blues.  A much missed treat I must say!  That and my New Orleans jazz, blues and swing began to work to get me out of my funk.

After John left my girl Laura who was in town from Arkansas popped in with her son's girlfriend.  We did what girls do no matter how many years it has been since they last saw each other and shared stories and pictures.

I really liked meeting her sons girl and hope to see her son, who moved back to the Berkshires a couple of years ago.  They really brightened my day a great deal.  It is more of the universe giving me what I needed, as I was still really struggling with the loss of my sons friend ~ or more with knowing the loss and pain she was going through.

I was somewhat of the mind of my friend Laura ~ about knowing our friend was suffering and most definitely dealing with many people who were also shocked and saddened.  Although the three of us were close and shared many memories and experiences ~ we also wanted to respect her time, let her know (which she did) that we were there for her, and pray that she had the strength (which she does) to be there for her other son as well as herself.  So we worried together.  It was good to be with my friend!

I already got through Sunday in my previous post and I am not taking the time now to go any further ~ consider this an absentminded part two of earlier today and Getting what I needed from the UNIVERSE!!




GETTING WHAT YOU NEED

It has been so long since I have written that I had to go back and review where I left off.  Saturday seems a year ago as opposed to five days ago!  The ribs were so good that I could not stop myself from eating all of them.

As I recall, I left them slow cooking in the oven covered in foil and went out to do some shopping  and visit the Downtown Pittsfield Farmers Market.  They were having art and artists so I went there first.  Saw some really amazing art by some artists who are not regulars at First Friday Artwalk.

I have been missing the cottage in Lanesboro since I have not been there in too many years to recall.  One of the best things I love and miss about the cottage is the flower beds ~ the phlox to be exact.  Many a year have I enjoyed the smell and the work, so while I was at the Farmers Market to my surprise ~ were phlox's for sale and on sale ~ so I had to run to the bank and hustle back before they closed.

I also thought the store which I needed to make my purchases at was closer than it was, so I scooted over to do my shopping and then headed back to the Farmer's Market with minutes to spare before the closing bell was rung and purchase my pretty purple phlox and a beautiful hanging basket of flowers since they were both on sale!!!

When I finally made it home with my loot ~ believe me, walking with a hanging basket, a potted plant and a bag of groceries was not the easiest thing to do ~ I had to stop a couple of times over the course of the three blocks to readjust my load ~ the ribs were smelling awesome!  I uncovered and barbecued the ribs and let them cook a bit longer ~ before I sampled a few and then made the whole rack disappear ~ they were that good!

The rest of the day was a blur ~ I kept thinking it was Sunday and passed on the Pow Wow to do some laundry knowing that Monday was a busy day (still thinking it was Sunday).  The boys came over before they went to Game Stop so I took a ride with them and my son remembered to pick up a copy of WII Resort for me!!

I love WII Resort for the Archery.  We realized we needed the controller sensors which we did not have and with the store closing it was too late to grab more money and pick one up.  When they left, I was too tired to play anyway.

The next morning ~ which was the real Sunday ~ my friend Mike Jones phoned to see what I was up to.  It was a great and unexpected surprise as he was the one that turned me on to WII Resort originally.  He had a sensor which he brought over and we spent the day playing and having fun.  He is more competitive than I am so it was very challenging for him to keep up with me (joke).

Thomas was expected home, so in between playing I cooked a  pork roast so that we could have a nice dinner, as I have been lax in my meal preparation.  After such a great day where the universe gave me just what I needed ~ the sensor to try my game ~ I was happy!

After dinner ~ and dinner is never at a normal hour ~ we treated ourselves to some ice cream at King Kone ~ where they make the best hot fudge sundaes within walking distance and chilled in the Common for a little while before we realized we had about ten minutes to make it home for True Blood.

It was great to have someone in the house again besides me that is for sure!  I don't know what I am going to do when my last little bird flies away!  !  Monday was a busy day so instead of returning to write I just crashed instead and was grateful considering the way my Monday turned out!  More on that next time!
It was great to have someone in the house again besides me that is for sure!

The universe sure has been looking out for me in all ways!  For that I was grateful!  I do love when I am losing my mind with grief and worry and without even being aware of it or asking out loud and getting what I need ~ in this case good friends and family to fill up my alone time just when I needed it the most!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

WAKING UP RENEWED AND READY

Last night after I posted the mad jumble of random and to me chaotic thoughts that filled my brain in an attempt to regain a workable balance and one up the loud silence that filled my empty house, my phone rang. This was after I shut of the A/C and gathered my provisions to make my nightly trek up the stairs.

The universe must have been looking out for me because my son's came over for a visit and soon the silence was filled with the familiar and welcome sounds of two of my children and another of my oldest friends.  I was thankful as it definitely was necessary!

After everyone departed the quiet was not so loud and I was ready to finish the day and begin again tomorrow.  I closed down the house and tried to make it upstairs again ~ this time successfully!  I looked around my room ~ which after more than a year of living here is a mess!

It is the last room I have left to arrange and decorate, having completed my son's room a couple of weeks ago to his satisfaction when we thought his father was going to be staying for a couple of weeks.  How quickly plans change!

I picked up a little here and a little there.  My side table drawer had come apart and there was everything from that drawer in a pile next to my bed where I had put it the night before ~ removing it from the end of my bed without properly putting it away.  (I had put the drawer back together but am assessing if I want to use glue as opposed to nails since there is not a nail to be found in the whole piece, and set it down for future repair the day before.)

I am almost ready to begin my room ~ Everything that makes it's way in a pile eventually ends up in my room waiting to be dealt with and I still have 5 boxes to sort through which are glaring at me from a corner.  I realize that the job will take less time once I begin ~ but isn't it always starting the job which is the most difficult???  For me it is then I kick myself for not doing it sooner!

The sun is shining today.  The house silence is not as loud as it was yesterday, and I am feeling more myself.  Ready to face the day ~ barbecuing some baby back ribs in the oven for later today.  I find myself comforting my sadness with the weirdest things.

Yesterday afternoon I went for the 8 pack of raisins when I was at the pharmacy instead of sweets or junk food, New Orleans Jazz, and today baby back ribs.  Which are not my usual fare but will work for me for sure!

I am thinking about walking to the Farmer's Market to see how my people skills are today.  I have to admit that the pharmacy surprised me on Friday ~ having our script ready and waiting when it was my turn at the counter ~ not sure if them putting my name and face together is a good thing ~ but it was helpful yesterday as I wandered around in my funk!

I will take any and all positive interactions.  Keep the negative ones away!!  (Raises cross in the direction of demons).  It sure does help when you get what you need!  My boys and my friends saved the day yesterday for sure and for that I am eternally grateful!

The ribs are beginning to smell good as the meat is starting to cook ~ time to get up, get out and greet the day in a positive way!  Hope your Saturday is awesome!


Friday, August 9, 2013

THE LOUDNESS OF SILENCE

I have been deep in thought since Wednesday when one of my oldest friends sons was injured my a firearm.  It was an accident from what I understand which has now turned into a huge tragedy resulting in a young man passing.

Over the years I was not there to watch my friends sons grow into men, as my friend was not in my life to watch my sons grow into men either, as lives move in different directions.  Our sons were friends because we were and shared childhood memories and they were pretty close in ages.

This incident coincides with the visit from another woman from my life and we were all friends with each other, she has been gone for a long while as well.  All of our children have connections with each other    We are it.

The thing about the three of us women, is that we are all three strong women who have done the best that we could to raise our boys up to be the best that they could.  We sacrificed and worked hard to give our boys what we could materialistically, they had more love and guidance than two parent children have.  We gave all of ourselves and love our boys up to the heavens and back again and would give our lives for them.

These two women out of everyone on the planet whom I am blessed to know ~ are my oldest and dearest friends regardless of how often we see each other or know of the day to day details of each others lives.  I can honestly say that her loss is my loss but I can only imagine how she is feeling.

I have been numb. To make matters worse my son is visiting his brother so I am surrounded by a loud silence.  And rain.  I was thankful when Laura called and she was up the street asking directions ~ future daughter in law in tow asking me if now was a good time.

Any minute of any day is a good time for a visit from one of my oldest friends.  The years pass too quickly and the time is more valuable than gold ~ the comfortable familiar presence of someone who knows you through and through ~ loves you and remembers the times before.  If you have a true blue friend you know what I mean.

Time flew quickly, although we got to spend the afternoon together.  Back to silence the loud and pounding silence.  Opened the book to escape down the river on a raft with Huck Finn until I needed to unload my brain which remains the only thing that is not silent but there are too many tangents to be coherent!

Hard to believe it is Friday again.  A whole week and I have been promising you all week to tell you about the artists I found most amazing and interesting to gaze upon their work and listen to their stories and be amazed at by what amazed me and I will, but not right now.

I have been jolted and distracted.  Counting my blessings and keep my sorrow in check.  Being distracted by networking at Jacobs Pillow and the amazing stage outside.  The amazing view of the treetops and mountain behind the dancers dancing.  The music sad and slow then up and the movements both graceful and jagged.  The audience ~ full attention to the stage engrossed ~ the little girls in front of the stage watching the dancers and moving as they move dancing in their dreams at night.

Anger and sorrow and fresh air and people.  Going through the motions but no one knows me so no one knows.  A walkway down to a pond with little fish trying to eat a piece of timothy drooped over into the water.  The cattails all around me ~ sheltered from everything on the planet except my thoughts for a moment at peace and alone with the fish.  Reflecting and reflections and deafening loud silence!





Thursday, August 8, 2013

ANOTHER DAY IN THE LIFE!

This week continues to  be a hell of a crazy week.  My doctor's office phoned on Monday and the receptionist told me I had to go get another chest scan on Wednesday in North Adams.  This surprised me, as when my doctor phoned the week before with my results she told me I was good for three months when I would have to go and get another scan to make sure there are no unhealthy changes.

I was puzzled about the scan and insisted that she was wrong, but regardless to what I was saying to her, she insisted she was right.  I phoned my son at work to see if he could drive me to the appointment, and he had the day off so I was good to go, except it did not feel right.

I re listened to my doctor's message again and phoned her back in the afternoon to have her double check.  She tried to tell me it was for a different scan than the one that I had on the 31st.  I explained that the doctor said nothing about any scan for three months but she was sure!

Later in the day she phoned my cell phone to tell me that she is scheduling a sonogram as per the doctors orders ~ again out of thin air and my doctor is thorough and communicates everything ~ so again I am confused as hell!

Wednesday rolls around and I proceed the 45 minute drive ~ it is a nice ride ~ up to North Adams to the hospital and down to the radiology department where I check in and read a couple of pages of Huckleberry Finn before they call me into the room for the scan.

The Technician was as confused as I was as to why I was there, noted I had been there for the same test and there was no indication I needed a retest and sent me on my way stating that no one needs that much radiation ~ and I am in agreement!

It was a nice ride up and back.  Nice quality time with my son one on one.  It was good to be in a car and listen to him and we laughed all of the way home wondering what is up with my doctors receptionist!  We looked at the bright side however and not the 2 hours out of our day, the gas and the distance and the total waste of time ~ ours and the hospital staff!

I phoned the doctors office a few hours later puzzled by the experience and wondering what the heck it was all about.  The receptionist was off that day ~ probably getting her beautiful nails redone, and the girl whom I spoke to was as puzzled as I was considering it was the second call she had about it that day since the hospital phoned as well.

I went through the whole thing with her and she agreed it sounded like the absent receptionist ~ always right and not listening ~ which are not necessarily good traits in my mind and in my experience as well.  She could not tell from the notes what had happened and said she would talk to the doctor and have her phone me as well.

I hung around and she finally called and she could not understand it either and since the responsible party was not around to ask she said she would look into it the next day.  She also has no idea what the sonogram is for!  So that makes a handful of confused people!

Not surprising that is the way my life is going this week.  I feel like hiking into the middle of nowhere, laying down stakes and hiding away from the world!  Crazy I know, but sometimes, when there is a shift like this it is the only sane thing to do!

I am fearless however and am not going to seek shelter in an isolated place.  I am going out in the world this afternoon and do some networking with real life people.  Who knows maybe something extraordinary will come of it ~ or maybe I will just sip lemonade and eat hors d'oeuvres and enjoy myself in a new environment!

I have to make it through the rest of the day ~ normal Thursday routine which has also been thrown off kilter thanks to a couple of random incidents this morning ~ both of which I could have done without and both of which left me wanting to throw up and with a huge headache!

With any luck there will only be love, light and positive happenings the rest of the day!  They say life is what you make it so I am working on making that so!


Tuesday, August 6, 2013

SLEEP DISTORTION AND LAUGH OF THE DAY!

I am seriously rattled today.  There are a couple of reasons for this, the first being the distortion of my sleep ~ which has been seriously messed up over the past two months by my "quiet" neighbor and her house guests who live there with her in her one bedroom apartment now that her son is in jail ~ and I am sure he will be back soon as well to add to the disquiet!  The second will be revealed later in the blog.

My neighbor and her "guests" have a great habit of slamming the door each time they leave or re-enter the apartment.  In the beginning it was between 10 p.m. and around 2 a.m., and lately they don't start until 1 a.m. and continue on until the wee hours of the morning ~ I guess their habits must need re-ups frequently between 2 and 6 a.m. because that is when they are most active!

They are quiet as church mice during the daytime ~ probably sleeping ~ which may change soon enough when I move my stereo into a room where I can most disturb their sleep during acceptable noise making hours as they do to me during non-acceptable noise making hours.  She is a bitch however and will probably report me to my landlord ~ which will probably produce different results than my complaining produces but we shall see!

Short of performing mayhem I just do not know what to do about the situation.  I have learned to adapt to limited hot water although I pay quite a bit of money to live here and the heat and hot water are include ~ just give me a heads up on the two or three days a week when I am not going to have access to that hot water for 6 or 7 hours at a time!!!!

Broken sleep ~ being awake at 4:30 a.m. and then having to force myself to try to go back to sleep and then having my day turned upside down along with my concentration and focus just doesn't work too well for me!!

Having my next door neighbor complain to me about the idiots next door when they are singing and dancing as the three of them leave at 3:30 a.m. getting their party on does not really work for me either, as it is not my problem or responsibility to go and get my teeth knocked out for complaining and believe me that is the mentality we are dealing with here!  At least he is a man ~ but he obviously doesn't want his teeth knocked out either!

I was so tired yesterday after doing the 4 a.m. bullshit ~ I went upstairs to watch the last episode of Season Three Downton Abbey before working on my ArtsWalk Blog before "Under the Dome" at 10 ~ I just could not pull myself up out of bed to walk downstairs to my computer to work.

My son woke me up at 10:00 so we could watch our show, having taken a half hour nap, and I stayed awake through it and then fell into a deep sleep immediately afterward until the god awful hour of 4:30 a.m. waking with a slam followed by another slam a minute later.

When my friend phoned at 9:30 a.m. to share a story with me I was barely coherent.  After the phone call I made a cup of tea which after one sip promised to be one of the best teas I had made for myself in a while.  I went to roll a cigarette and found that a fly had decided to commit suicide by dive bombing into said tea!

The second first cup of the day was not as tasty as the first one would have been but it soon did the trick and I was beginning to feel more awake, although not as motivated as I could have been to write, so after a couple of hours I decided to take a walk to clear out the nastiness floating in my brain.

The D.V.D. was a loaner from the library so I decided to return it.  I had no solid plans for the day so at least that would have been productive, but during my walk I ran into my good friend who had phoned in the morning ~ knowing she had not seen the third season I hesitated not at all in letting her borrow it so I would have two people whom I could discuss the sadness and shock with besides my son.

I took a walk with no destination just to enjoy the fair weather of the day.  It was sunny and breezy a good combination for the Berkshires and I found myself walking down one side of North Street and then crossed and went back the way I came, stopping to talk to the "old timers" on the street along with random passer byers as I do.

I decided I had a clear enough head to walk back home and do some writing after stopping back into the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, as the door was open and the gallery was quite full on Friday when I was in checking out the Islamic Art.

I prefer a crowd free gallery when I am really looking at art so it was very welcome and inviting to be the only patron in at that time.  I could take my time and get up close and personal and check out the detail without being in any one's way.

So I departed, heading towards the Common on my way back home when a very funny thing happened.  By funny I mean odd as opposed to rib splitting laughter.  Some bloke in a wheelchair who looked like J.J. from Good Times (an old show from the 70's) approached me.  I am not opposed to talking to strangers.  I do it on a regular basis, and I knew before he approached me that he was after something.  Hence the second major disturbance as promised follows!

I was smoking a cigarette on my way through and he began by asking me for a smoke ~ which even if I did have an extra he would not be getting one ~ get a job!!!!  Then he began to ask me how I was feeling ~ (who are you and WTF) then the classic "Can I talk to you".

I know from the 30 years ago that that doesn't mean that he wanted to have a conversation, having misunderstood that particular phrase when I was young and naive.  I am still naive but not as young as I was! So I quickly said no you cannot talk to me and began walking in step with a woman I know who was passing through the park as well.  "Oh, so you're not feeling well" was his response ~ note to self I guess if someone asks you how you are feeling it is a code of some sort.

So I just said I am feeling fine and walked away with the woman I know and was shocked to realize that I had just gotten propositioned as I was going through the park!!  I wonder what he would have used as money since he had no cigarettes oh wait ~ I probably would have had to pay him!!!

So I continued on my way home ~ my clear head not so clear as it was after I left the Gallery.  I made it in my house and decided to make some cupcakes for my son as cooking and baking always help put me in a better frame of mind.  I wasn't as clear as I could have been as I dropped an egg on the floor coming out of the fridge and almost broke another one putting it on the counter!

Needless to say, I was prompted to wipe it up and mopped up 90% of the kitchen before the cake even got in the oven.  Yes, the cupcakes got turned into a cake since my box of cupcake wrappers was in the cabinet empty for some reason!

The cake is done, the floor is cleaner and the butter is melting for frosting.  My blog topic has been changed because my Art blog deserves a clear and focused head after all of the wonderful and amazing art and conversations with said Artists, much more than I can commit to at the moment.  I am already days behind so I can't see what difference another day will make.

Since this blog is about my journey this is more personal and fitting to my actual theme, although Art is an important part of my life as well, and we all know I live and breath for it!  Hope it made you smile and maybe laugh a bit ~ as I am now in retrospect!

Time to make some frosting and pull some notes together from Friday and figure out what I am going to create for dinner later on since I do not think cake will cover dinner!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

CATCHING UP...

It has been hectic and slow since I last joined you.  I posted last about the canoe experience and was looking forward the next day to a trip to the Williams College Museum of Art.  When I woke up Thursday I felt great until I stepped into my kitchen.

I noticed the maid had not come in and done the dishes while I slept, nor had the magical little elves. Considering I had cleaned out the refrigerator the day before, I found it necessary to do the work before even thinking about tea that morning.

I only had until 11:00 to be ready.  I believe in work before play, and found it necessary to start some laundry as well as punishment for letting the dishes get so far out of control in one day!  The dishes done, I made my tea and got to my computer before taking a shower and dressing.

I was just about ready when my girlfriend phoned to say she was going to be ten minutes later than we had planned.  No big deal, I can always use ten extra minutes.  Since I was done it worked out well, happy with my look for the day.

It was a nice sunny day when we set out through Pittsfield and into Lanesboro.  Approaching New Ashford, my friend asked me about my old house and she pulled into the driveway to give it a peek.  I hate how they don't take care of the front yard, and now after driving down the driveway, I am also disappointed in how overgrown everything is by the house as well!!

Thankful to have the prospect of a new museum to check out, I dismissed the overgrowth and enjoyed the rest of the ride to Williamstown and the Campus.  Funnily enough, I parked there once to hear Mark Danielewski ~ author of "House of Leaves" give a talk one time on his times on the road even before my brief time living in Williamstown, but had never placed the driveway as belonging to the museum.

We saw two really great exhibits  http://wcma.williams.edu/exhibit/now-dig-this/  - a very interesting array of various black artists, and http://wcma.williams.edu/exhibit/teaching-with-art-the-persian-image/ which was much smaller but very tiny and delicate Persian art.

It began to rain as we were heading out.  I still had my dog walking and lab visit, as it was Thursday.  I phoned my son from the car and got him motivated to be ready to go between raindrops just in case we were not lucky enough to miss the rain.

It turns out, it began raining harder during our walk to the lab, but slowed on the way home.  Armed with subs for a late lunch/early dinner.  We decided to both walk the dog, and my son waited outside while I collected her and we all headed on the walk.  It was barely raining by then, although more clouds were collecting thicker in the sky so we wasted no time walking the dog ~ getting her home before it began to pour again, and then arriving home before it really began to come down!

I had enough for one day, so I got out of my wet clothes and into my p.j's before settling in front of my computer with my grinder and a tea, catching up with my daily routine although instead of morning it was already 4:30 in the afternoon!

I was looking forward to Friday so I made it an early night ~ planning on a busy day Friday before noon.  Finding out early on Friday, instead of later that something had gone amiss between the lab and the pharmacy, as they hadn't gotten the report yet and were unable to fill the prescription without it.

I put on my detective hat and quickly found out the root of the problem and remedying it with ease with two phone calls.  Not too shabby.  Within an hour my script would be ready so I wasted a little bit of time and planned my route to finish my Friday tasks with as little wasted time as possible.

Of course, nothing goes as planned, and the pharmacy misjudged when the script was going to be ready ~ and even with ten minutes more than they had told me it would be ready they tacked on a 25 minute wait in addition.  I decided to give up on it for the day and get it later since I was coming back out for ArtWalk.

ArtWalk will be it's own blog, as I have limited time it being Sunday, and it is going to be more elaborate than this space allows without overkilling you all with too much information.  Suffice it to say ~ I had such a great time, and so much wonderful new art and artists on my mind it completely slipped my mind to return to the pharmacy!  Good thing we did not need the meds until Saturday evening ~ but don't tell the pharmacy that or they may make this a regular happening!

Saturday I woke up so early that I went back to bed and did not wake up until 11:30 ~ setting records everywhere these days!  Tom's Dad showed up and had tea and I realized it was August 3 ~ my son's one year wedding anniversary!

I phoned them to wish them a Happy First Anniversary and they promised to stop by for a visit as they were headed out soon.  I quickly found paper and wrapped the flowerpot I had decoupage for them at my friend Diane's workshop.  I could not remember where the tape was ~ thank god for Tom's Dad ~ he was the one who remembered it was in Tom's room from putting in the A/C last week!

It was great to see my son's little family and they loved the flower pot.  It has a picture of them on their wedding day, one of my favourite pictures ~ my granddaughter looking like a princess and the three of them smiling happily!  I love my family ~ as I am sure is evident whenever I write about them!  I also got to see my middle son later in the day so you know my day was good although it was a very lazy and unproductive day!

Lazy seems to be about the gist of the whole weekend.  I was going to be community minded today and enjoy the Car Show and Ethnic Fair and see a Documentary today as well, but every time I began to leave ~ it began to rain so I read instead and procrastinated writing.

I bribed myself to write with my reward of a hot fudge sundae ahead of time ~ which was very delicious and worked on the craving and on the writing!  I hope you enjoyed my quick little catch up of the weekend.  I will be very busy Monday so ArtWalk will probably be on Monday afternoon when I finally get a chance to take a break and catch up further.

Happy Sunday and may you all have a manageable week!