Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Encyclopedia of Me - "G & H"

I've been celebrating since Saturday and I think this year was one of my favorite birthday's. I'm exhausted but excited for my big adventure next week. My family all came together for the first time in years for my birthday and no tension was to be found. We talked, reminisced, laughed and ate. We ended the day bowling and eating some more. This is my brother (Patrick), me, my grandson (TK) and my dad (Patrick). I'm choosing GOOFY and HAPPY as my letter's for this week and next. Life is good!

A lovely sweater from my dad and his wife for my trip and "I Love Lucy" DVD's from Jess. Oh, and I got a Shirley Temple DVD and a bag full of beauty products from my friend Lynne (for my trip). I was spoiled! Thank you for all of your cards and birthday wishes.

TK was dazed and confused as to why they were creating a fire on such a yummy cake. Gramy had let him stick his finger in it earlier...shhhh.

He felt that since everyone sang but him he would do the feeding. He thought the singing was VERY odd but the frosting and ice cream was VERY good.

This is my best friend Renee' from 4th grade. She lives in Modesto and made a birthday visit. We had brunch in my backyard as we shared some real girl time on my actual birthday, Monday. Renee' and I both lived together after our first marriages ended and she had a son named Jessie. We all call him Jessie-boy to this day because I had a Jessy too back then. Jessie is now 20 and she has a 14yr old daughter. I had TK stop by and he flirted shamelessly. She brought me a beautiful crystal cross necklace from the day spa she owns and gave Dave her famous swiss steak recipe. Dave and I went to the movies later that day and had a relaxing private celebration. :)

I'll be leaving on Monday for a week to visit my fellow ALS warrior Pam, AKA Batman. My good friend Sherrill is escorting me to Maine where we will then rent a car to drive through New England. Our destination is uniting the cape crusaders in Vermont. I'll be missing next week but might have time to stop my preparations for SS.

A fellow blogger from Long Island, NY is driving to New Hampshire so we can meet. Nancy and her hubby will be driving 6 hours to celebrate her birthday at a B & B an hour away from where we are staying. How cool is that!
Dave is going on interviews in two different areas so when I get home I'm hoping we will be moving and he has the job he wants. We will not be renting the old house after much research and we will be leaving it on the market. I really miss him already and now I wish I owned a stupid cell phone. Wish us luck!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Encyclopedia of Me - "F"

I asked Dave to give me a word that best describes me beginning with the letter "F." He didn't hesitate in his answer "funny" he blurted! I then asked "how am I funny?" and he got a puzzled expression on his face saying "I don't know, you just are." I could not let it go so I pressed on by asking "is it because I say what I think?" and he said "nah, that's just annoying." Yes, he received the "look" that could freeze a teenager in their tracks. lol

Apparently it is in my mannerisms, body language and sarcasm. He said that when I'm watching TV my intensity is more fun to watch than the show. When I make comments on getting a wedgie with every dressing it makes him laugh as I squirm mumbling under my breath. Oh, let's not forget the "duck" sounds I make when I laugh real hard. I may a gas-bag but I find humor in most things and usually share it with Dave...lucky guy. :) I'm very animated and I keep him laughing so I'm thinking it's a good thing.

This is my new LIME green blog desk that we worked on while we were up at the house. The colors are wrong due to the sun. Desk-lime, carpet-sage and desk top is antiqued to sage. Work in progress. I offered to read the directions in the assembly of the lime monster and its thousands of parts but he declined. We don't discuss the leftover piece lying over to the side that will never make it on the desk. Real men don't need no stinkin directions...arrr...arrr.

This is the room I don't think works but Dave likes it. Dave refuses to prime so my light sage turned mint, YUCK! He was not happy that I nagged until I got a new color but agrees it looks good. It's darker in real life but then again the sun was streaming in. My master bedroom now flows better with master bath and feels warmer.

Lowe's messed up what I wanted but their mistake looks just right. It's really a carmel color and changes with the light.

A collage of my special master bath. Roses in Paris theme with maroon walls, rose molding, Paris outlet cover and mauve accessories. The shower has two seats and is huge. I could live in just this room.

This is the Dave/guest bath and we love it. Luckily there is a 1/2 bath in basement for "handyman Dave." lol We are almost completely done inside...yay! Outside is in need of some lovin but winter is coming so it will have to wait.
We did a good job search and came up empty but Dave is not giving up. I'm reuniting my brother and dad on Sunday after 15yrs of being apart. I'm trying to get both girls to come and Dave is adding a cake. This just might make for a great 46th birthday.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Hitting the Road

My Dalia's are growing so tall they are sticking their pointed little heads up past my flower box outside my kitchen window. That's my morning coffee comfort zone so me thinks someone needs a haircut!

We have decided to try looking for responsible renters to love this house. We had planned to take the house off the market for the winter so a renter would be ideal. The horror stories of bad tenants have made us very cautious but Dave would not have to work. Dave was offered a job today to hold us over until we find a renter or get a better job offer up at the new house.

This is where we will be job hunting until Wednesday. The town closest to our new home is Placerville. Isn't it cute?

I met a terrific lady and blogger for the first time this week, Biene at I met her through Annie of who I had already had the pleasure of meeting. Biene came to my home and could not believe it had not been sold, which felt really good. We chatted for hours and found lots to talk about as we eventually went to lunch. I really enjoyed meeting her.

Dave felt kind of lost after he left work for the last time. He had spent half of his lifetime there so he was surprised he wasn't doing cartwheels out the door as they took his badge. Biene's hubby says it could take some time to adjust but I am enjoying the warm body next to me in the mornings. He does need something to do and fast before he gets stir crazy. Dave is not a couch potato or sports watcher (thank you, Lord!).

I'll miss SS and Writer's Island but I'll be baaack Wednesday! HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Amber & Regina!

Later Tater's

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

A TK Day!

I needed to update my journal on TK as our relationship continues to bloom. I got my first TK sleepover. How could I have forgotten that first morning smile and sweet scent of baby sleep lying next to me. It's been many years since I've had a baby cuddled next to me kicking me awake at 6am. Dave was out of town and I asked Jess if she would ditch her hubby and have a sleepover at my house. She made the meals and changed the diapers but let TK and I be together by hanging out in the den. I had to be firm but he was such a good baby that we created a rhythm. He wore me out and I needed a full day of recovery.

We all went to breakfast one morning at the casino a 1/2 mile away and I don't normally agree to eat in restaurants with a 20mo. old but he was great. He flirted with everyone and didn't throw any food. He thinks riding on my walker is the bomb and the many other people with walkers found in the casino were doing double takes. We have to hide the walker now but only after a few rides around the house.

He has a big thing with men, like grampy Dave, my brother etc. He follows Dave like a puppy and Dave lets him water the flowers or sneaks him a treat. He thinks my 6ft brother is a jungle gym. Nikki and him are getting better at being buds after 1000 demonstrations and repetitions of the word nice. He always shares his food with her and loves dog kisses, but Nikki doesn't understand his open mouthed "engh."

His parents play REAL rough with him and he loves to be scared, like boo scared. He hit my head with the door lightly but I acted like it hurt so he will learn to be gentle with me. He reached for me with big empathetic eyes and hugged me saying awwww. Then out of no where said "you all ite.? Kill me now! In my house if he finds something he knows he shouldn't have he brings it to me. Yup, my lap gets very full. lol If I drop something he always picks it up saying "uh oh" and hands it to me. He is VERY aware something is different with me. He senses my disability.

When he makes his entrance into my house he now runs into my arms with a big long hug, before Nikki (my dog)was his main focus. My heart just bursts that I have been given this time with TK and the honour of being a gramy. I will miss him the most when I move but I'll only be 2-1/2 hours away.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Writer's Island - "My Imaginary Life"

My Imaginary Life

by Tammy

What is an imaginary life?

Is it wishes made with pennies
glistening through the fountain water?

Or our childhood dreams-
exhaled on our pillow tops?

Does it steal from real life?
Or just make us want more–
like a fat cat’s meow at meal time?

Maybe it’s just a fantasy
like any storybook tale.

Could it be hope?

My first entry for the new . I've been so busy with living in my real life that my anxiety level only allowed for a short poem. My real imaginary life would be a healthy, long life that could have filled a book. Come join the fun!
Photo from Stock-Xchng

Encyclopedia of Me - "E"

Efficient is something that I have become over the years. I am very productive using the least amount of wasted effort. I must be productive in my household and yet some things that are too tiring or dangerous I just don't do. Examples:

Showering and meals are planned out so I don't fall or make a huge mess. Dave leaves stuff out that I can handle and showers are timed with energy levels or when someone is home.

I manage our money online so there are no envelopes, checks or stamps to wrestle with. I buy stuff online if I find free shipping. I'm not a comparison shopper and believe you get what you pay for. I do look for sales but only name brand stuff and I don't want to rummage for bargains.

I make business calls first thing in the morning after my coffee. When I'm best understood and have the highest energy.

I make lists of what we need and it helps Dave keep errands straight. I can't write but still do lists and can't do clutter or unorganized. Chaos makes me uncomfortable and I even have my grandson trained to know what he can and cannot do at my house. Jess can't understand why he behaves at my house.

I straighten up everyday so that when housekeeper comes every other week it is only to clean. Yes, I clean before she comes but just light pick up, bed and toilet seats.

I'm a problem solver when things go wrong and formulate plan B's and C's. I always need a plan.

When I shop for myself I take Dave and know exactly what I want before I go. Dave is great at finding what I'm looking for in case I get distracted. ;) I don't like getting exhausted by trying anything on but if the item looks iffy Dave will accompany me into the fitting room.


It was actually Sunday but I took the weekend off from blogging. TK's daddy danced this weekend on the reservation in the traditional Mi-Wuk dress at the Acorn Festival. I ended up a no-show due to heat and missed seeing my lil man on grandparent's day.

Dave's daughter Jolene turned 25 on Sunday and sent this lovely card for grandparent's day. We received the news this week the new baby is going to be a BOY! He will be our fourth grandson expected around January 24th. Congrats guys! We can't wait to meet him. ;)


House has still not received ANY offers and Dave's last day of work is Wed. Yay! No more four hour commute!!!!!

New plan, due to no local job offers, is to find a job near new home. Dave will only need to work until old house sells and new plan will allow us to move forward instead of living in limbo. Our savings is spoken for so we are going up on Friday for some job hunting. I'll be MIA this weekend and part of next week. The Apple Hill area will be in full swing so I'm sure we will be found there too. :)

Dave made apple jam & apple/pear butter but the jam never set. :( He said he needs more detailed directions and is not giving up. We spent our weekend just relaxing by going to the movies (Death Sentence), renting movies and shopping for fall outfits to wear in Vermont. I even got Dave in foundations looking for "boy shorts" underwear. I told him I'm not comfy in my current bikinis and when I showed him granny panties the hunt began in earnest. ;)

Writer's Island makes its debut tomorrow so I moved The encyclopedia of Me to any day I have open during the week.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Poetry Thursday - Hosted by Delia

This is to all of us who could use a little reminder of our own courage. I wanted to share this poem because it spoke to me. Reading and sharing other poet's work is like opening a gift and sharing it. With many going back to school, dealing with health issues or just temporarily in limbo. I'm thinking of you.


It is in the small things we see it.
The child's first step,
as awesome as an earthquake.
The first time you rode a bike,
wallowing up the sidewalk.
The first spanking when your heart
went on a journey all alone.
When they called you crybaby
or poor or fatty or crazy
and made you into an alien,
you drank their acid
and concealed it.

if you faced the death of bombs and bullets
you did not do it with a banner,
you did it with only a hat to
comver your heart.
You did not fondle the weakness inside you
though it was there.
Your courage was a small coal
that you kept swallowing.
If your buddy saved you
and died himself in so doing,
then his courage was not courage,
it was love; love as simple as shaving soap.

if you have endured a great despair,
then you did it alone,
getting a transfusion from the fire,
picking the scabs off your heart,
then wringing it out like a sock.
Next, my kinsman, you powdered your sorrow,
you gave it a back rub
and then you covered it with a blanket
and after it had slept a while
it woke to the wings of the roses
and was transformed.

when you face old age and its natural conclusion
your courage will still be shown in the little ways,
each spring will be a sword you'll sharpen,
those you love will live in a fever of love,
and you'll bargain with the calendar
and at the last moment
when death opens the back door
you'll put on your carpet slippers
and stride out.

Anne Sexton

Photo: Photographer unknown ( in a email fwd )

Poetry Thursday is traveling. This week the amazing Delia is hosting Poetry Thursday here:

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Encyclopedia of Me - "D"

I have always been a DARING person who likes an occasional adrenaline rush. I don't do danger but I like to push the envelope just a tad. This has always been a part of my personality and being 45 with ALS has not taken that away. I think my ALS has made me more daring.

Growing up I camped in the wild where there were no bathrooms or running water. I learned to snow ski on moguls that were as high as my waist. Water skied on one ski and learned to make huge fan turns. Fished while standing in a swift moving river, 7mos pregnant. Loved the biggest and scariest rides at the numerous amusement parks I attended. Learned to surf in Hawaii on my high school graduation trip and worked at a gun range where I shot 12 gauge shotguns.

Once I was diagnosed I still camped but now I use a tent potty and an off the ground air mattress. I use my walker in rough terrain to get down an enbankment for the best fishing spots. Dave and I went river rafting on our third date (mild river but no guide). I swam and learned to snorkel in the ocean on my honeymoon in Kauai using a blow up raft. Took a helicopter ride all over the island on my first trip to Kauai. I rode a wave runner in the ocean in Mexico. I won a gold medal in disabled sailing even though the boat flipped in a practice round. I took a bi-plane ride over my house and we did a dive into the canyon in my backyard (my stomach stayed in my throat for a week). Not to mention I still love the rides at amusement parks. I want to try snowmobiles, disabled snow skiing and disabled horse back riding once I move towards Tahoe.

I'd call that pretty daring aside from being a parent and wife. ;)

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Sunday Scribbling - "The End"

It was on a cold November day when my life was changed forever. I remembered the focused look on his face as I lay helpless in the ground as he continuously covered me with dirt. I heard each dig of that shovel enter the ground until I felt the darkness and cold surround me completely. Somehow I could breath through the earth as it held me down, in my cold dark tomb. I accepted my fate and simply gave in to it. I lived motionless and oblivious to the world.

One day my cold dark existence began to feel a surge of warmth. I struggled to move from my deep sleep wanting to rise toward the warmth. I fought the earth slowly, but with renewed hope, to transform my fate. I reached the surface and felt the sunlight feeding my strength as I lay weakened from my struggle. Each day I grew stronger, yet felt helpless to move, as the rain quenched my thirst. I began to feel an awakening deep inside to keep moving and survive.

I rose up and felt alive for the very first time. Bursting with joy I rejoiced up to the sky thankful to be alive. In the distance I saw a man who was slowly approaching, watching my revelry. As he drew closer I recognized that face and the shovel he carried. I stood very still as I felt his gaze focused on me. He knelt slowly before me but he was smiling and I was no longer afraid. The man called out over his shoulder and said "hey babe, this one's the prettiest lily I've seen this year" as his gaze turned to pride. My struggles were not in vain as I will touch many lives, again and again.

The End

You guys have awakened Dave's creative juice's after he read the comments on my last post. This morning he asked what SS's prompt was this week and jumped right in. I must admit he is a good idea man but collaborating can be a real eye roller and can end with me asking "don't you have a lawn to mow?" LOL I wanted to make up a story for the very first time and Dave hopes we had you going as we made this up.