Tuesday, September 1, 2015

And Life Goes On As Usual

My husband returned to work this morning after a full month off.  I will miss having him around all day and the spontaneous day trips for shopping and local sight seeing.

However, it is time to get some routine back into our lives.  Neither of us had any trouble with the alarm going off at 6:30am, my husband was excited to get back to work and see his colleagues, I know I am going to feel less sluggish and lazy with better regulated meal times and having to plan most of my week in advance once I find out what days the car is available to me.

I am about to get started on the long neglected housework to mark the end of my part of the Holiday Time.  As long as I don't get interrupted I may just accomplish some good work today.

I need to call a local "friend of a friend" and arrange delivery of a package to her from one of the camper wives from AB.  There is a birthday party for another friend here in town on Saturday, so there is something fun and social to look forward to at the end of the week.  Company is coming for an overnight next week, another similar visit is happening at the end of this month, we have family and friends we want to invite over for dinner throughout September....oh how lovely to have an actual social schedule that needs arranging!!  I am delighted!

Had a lovely "farewell to summer holidays" dinner at Bushwakker's last night.  I had the always fabulous taco salad with beef and what my husband's steak sandwich lacked in size of steak it more than made up for with the accompanying spinach salad, that included sliced cherry tomatoes, sauteed fresh mushrooms and onions and smoked gouda chunks.  Such reasonable prices will keep bringing us back.  I am finding that with the popularity of salads in recent years, the prices have climbed to ridiculous heights for nothing very fabulous. Bushwakker's thus far is my favourite exception.  The dinner made up for the horrible buffet we had on Sunday at a pub that shall remain nameless.  Yeeeeuck!!!  We wouldn't have eaten it, but by the time we got to the restaurant my hunger was so great I couldn't face leaving and attempting to find something else open in the area.

So, holidays ended on a postive note and I am now inspired to get to work around here.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

My Magic Laundry Basket

This afternoon the sun came out after a brief rain shower.  After the grey skies of the past few days, caused by all the forest fire smoke, the blue sky and sun energized me to get off the couch and go to the mall to purchase a new laundry basket.  The old one split as I was taking it downstairs the other day with a full load of laundry inside it.  I lost my balance trying to hang onto everything and nearly fell down the stairs.  Thanking God I didn't fall and break more bones.  

I should have gone straight to WallyWorld and purchased the basket as there is nothing in that store to tempt me into extra buying.  However, since the mall is closer I went there instead.  Having had a fairly large lunch I knew I needed exercise so I walked all around the mall before I went into Canadian Tire and bought the basket.  

Lo and behold, when I got the basket back to the car it was filled with small bags of new clothes from some of the ladies' wear retailers in the mall!!!  My o my....a magic laundry basket!  How delightful...AND all the clothes were clearance priced so they didn't need to feel guilty about coming home with me and having my husband notice them inside the basket when I tried to sneak it past him as he was watching a favourite movie ("Reds 2") on tv.

I have decided that a magic laundry basket is a wonderful addition to my home.  Yah!!  You too can find a magic laundry basket at Canadian Tire for $3.99, BUT it is only magic if that Canadian Tire is attached to a shopping mall. 

Trust me, I know...........

Well....Staying Out of It Lasted All of Three Hours.....

My parents called today.  They have worked and reworked their finances and have come up with an affordable plan to move to the seniors' facility of their choice.  

We got my very logical and experienced husband to get on the line as well and my parents walked us through their research and their conclusions.  Based on whatever happens with their tour of the place in 2 weeks time and on the answers to their many questions, it may actually be possible for them after all.  Thank you Jesus!!!

I demanded to speak to my mother alone and grilled her and grilled her some more about her feelings.  Other than the cooking/baking she is not really ready to give up, she had no other objections. So, I took some time to explain to her that I would be happy to come to Calgary and teach her how to bake cookies and muffins, scones and small fruit loaves in her toaster oven that she will be allowed to have in the facility if she does move.  That excited her and she said that would take care of the last of her own objections about moving.  I also asked if she didn't think Dad would flourish far better being surrounded by other people and new friends, instead of laying around in their present condo alone most of the time, depressed and miserable.  She admitted that yes it would be good for him and also that they would both enjoy the many entertainments provided in the social room.  Hallelujah!!!

Then I talked to Dad alone and asked him if he could cope better with mom continuing to take buses around the city on her own if he was surrounded by the folks in the facility instead of at home alone worrying about her safety.  He said it would be a huge load off his mind.

Okay then....IF they can get what they need from the sale of their condo then I will do all I can to support them in this move.  That is my prayer...price and timing of sale for their condo in a depressed market.  We sold our house years ago in the worst real estate market in about 30 years in our area and still ended up with exactly the dollar amount we needed and the sale went through at the exact last possible second to make our next move work out.  I can only pray Mom and Dad will also do well enough to make their dreams of moving come true.

I feel so much better. Thank you guys too for praying for my family.

What Does An Only Child Do??

My parents have hit "ludicrous speed" in their quest to explore seniors' living possibilities.  Dad is determined he is going to "look after your mother" before he dies by trying valiantly to move them into a progressive care seniors' facility they can't really afford and that my mother, should dad actually die first, will be forced out of once his government pensions cease to come in.  

Mom cannot stand up to him, to make her own needs known. She never has been able to.  She is not ready to go to any sort of place where she can no longer cook and enjoy her favourite baking hobby.  She is aware of the horrendous drop in condo prices and how little they will be able to get for their place if they put it up for sale on the current real estate market.  She is aware that if he does die before her she will not be able to stay in the place he has chosen for her to be looked after in.  He is also technically aware of this fact and yet is no longer able, mentally, to grasp what he would be doing to her future.....or, knowing dad, maybe he can and is trying to punish her should she outlive him.  With dad it is pretty difficult to know when his mind is clear but nasty and when he is not with it enough to be completely rational.

In the meantime I am caught in the middle...each one pleading a separate case and expecting me to be an advocate for that case with the other one.  I, whose input and assistance has never been wanted nor accepted, is now expected to solve their present life crisis.

I do not know what to do, what to say to either of them.  So I have chosen to step out of the equation for now.  They go for a tour of their preferred and unaffordable facility in the middle of September and so we shall see what happens as a result of that visit.

There is certainly no reason to assume she is going to outlive him and that is what I can't get through to either of them.  The stress in her life is going to do her in before his heart problems finish his earthly life, but not one thought for the future is being spent on this possible scenario.

Well, that is my rant, my venting for today.  I feel better just writing it all down to peruse at my own leisure.  

As with everything else, I will commit the situation to daily prayer and see what God does with it.  So far in life most everything has ended up working out for the best interests of both my parents once the dust has settled on their every stressful situation.  I have to assume that will be the result this time as well.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Whew! HOT!!

I admit to truly enjoying the return to super hot weather the past couple of days.  Today we were back in the +30C range once again and o my, how lovely it was.  It is still rather warm this late in the evening, 10pm, so the windows are open, the fans running for the night and the white noise from the fan will be just enough to take the edge off the rock music pounding in the park.

All the campers are safely home, raving about what a wonderful time they had, even though it was such a short trip.  My husband and his friend from here have decided they are going to fly to the mountains and back from now on. That long drive back here is so brutally boring and monotonous, they both feel they just can't face it again next year.  Flying to the mountains and back plus the costs associated with the camping are not that much more than a week long canoe trip in the north country by the time the added costs of rentals and extra food are added in.

For myself, I had the most lovely afternoon tea time with my new friend.   Hopefully we can get together again sometime.  Her husband likes the same Indian restaurant that my husband enjoys so there is hope of us going out for dinner some time once the three of them get readusted to their return to work this coming week.  All three of them so enjoy their jobs and I admit I am envious. I can't think of one job I have ever had that I enjoyed enough to want to continue to do it for any length of time.  Isn't that pathetic?  I can't believe how much I enjoy being at home, doing home body stuff, taking care of my husband's health issues.  Somewhere along the line I got caught up in some kind of "space/time continuum" and returned to the 1950's as far as my interests and lifestyle.  

Two more days with my husband.  YIPPEE!!  Monday night we will celebrate the end of our holiday time together with our weekly Monday night date, but will go somewhere extra special.  Tomorrow I have no idea what we will do.  Maybe we will go to our friends' church....if we wake up in time....if we are feeling up to it....if we decide we really want to go....if....if....if.....

Happy Sunday in two more hours everyone.

Men in Tents

The men will be home closer to dinner tonight than we thought.  I am glad they had a good trip despite forest fire smoke and some rain, but I can't help hoping they won't get home so early that I can't get together with one of the other wives for our planned tea time later this afternoon. haha  I think we can have our tea and I can get back with at least a half hour to spare...I hope. haha  Making new friends here is high on my priority list and this gal is working full time and then some.  If we don't get together today I don't know when there will be another chance.  I need to make as many new friends here in the city as possible before the snow and ice settle in and getting around anywhere becomes more difficult.  There is something about winter that zaps peoples' motivation to go anywhere they don't absolutely need to go, so it can be a much lonelier time of year.

So, here's to a happy tea time and a safe arrival home for our guys.

Dickensian Description

From Charles Dickens' "Martin Chuzzlewit":

"It was a small tyranny for a respectable wind to go wreaking its vengeance on such poor creatures as the fallen leaves, but this wind happening to come up with a great heap of them just after venting its humour on the insulted Dragon, did so disperse and scatter them that they fled away, pell mell, some here, some there, rolling over each other, whirling round and round upon their thin edges, taking frantic flights into the air, and playing all manner of extraordinary gambols in the extremity of their distress.  Nor was this enough for its malicious fury:  for not content with driving them abroad, it charged small parties of them and hunted them into the wheel wright's saw-pit, and below the planks and timbers in the yard and, scattering the sawdust in the air, it looked for them underneath, and when it did meet with any, whew! how it drove them on and followed at their heels!  The scared leaves only flew the faster for all this, and a giddy chase it was:  for they got into unfrequented places, where there was no outlet, and where their pursuer kept them eddying round and round at his pleasure; and they crept under the eaves of hosues, and clung tightly to the sides of hay-ricks, like bats; and tore in at open chamber windows, and cowered close to hedges; and in short went anywhere for safety.  But the oddest feat they achieved was, to take advantage of the sudden opening of Mr. Pecksniff's front-door, to dash wildly into his passage; whither the wind following close upon them, and finding the back-door open, incontinently blew out the lighted candle held by Miss Peckshiff, and slammed the front-door against Mr. Pecksniff who was at that moment entering, with such violence, that in the twinkling of an eye he lay on his back at the bottom of the steps.  Being by this time weary of such trifling performances, the boisterous rover hurried away rejoicing, roaring over moor and meadlow, hill and flat, until it got out to sea, where it met with other winds similarly disposed, and made a night of it."

This is what I have been missing from modern novels:  intricately written descriptions of the simplest of natural events and laced with good humour.  Thank you Mr. Dickens!