Fab Friday!

I must be crazy. Mom insisted on going out today into the frozen tundra. She hadn’t been out for awhile. She says the cold doesn’t deter her, just snow or ice will. She’s sure she should go while she can. I have to agree with her. I tease her when she’s says, “I’m not keeping you too late, and I?” I tell her, “No, it’s ok, I’ve got all the time in the world.” The Babe told me over five years ago to do whatever I needed to do to help Mom when she needs it. “You only ever have one Mom.” We spent many hours on the road back and forth to Sioux Falls, South Dakota to make sure we saw his mom. She lived 12 years in the nursing home with MS. She is my hero and will always be.

Mom is still mobile (barely) and nearly blind and deaf. We went to Walgreen’s #1 to get her eye drops (Rx). We then went to Walgreen’s #2 to pick up her “supplies” as she calls them. She is wearing incontinence pads during the day and adult “pull ups” at night. Poor thing! So, we’re in the aisle, she’s on her walker, I’ve got the shopping cart at the ready. She asks me to be her eyes and ears. I found the pads she wanted, checked the price, then it was on to the pull-ups.

OK, proper size, proper absorbency, “what’s the biggest box they have?” Yes, that will work! She adds, “Get two of those.” Yep, all handled. She looked on the other side of the aisle, and there were stool softeners, Metamucil, and the like. She was quiet after I told her what was there. I said, “You don’t need any of those.” Quiet. Followed by uproarious laughter. We giggled until we may all have needed Depends. “No, I guess I don’t.” It was hilarious. If you don’t think so, just know you had to be there! It’s a good thing she still has a sense of humor. My brothers and I try to help her find the humor in everything.

We went to lunch at her favorite – Village Inn – and home. She was so tired. I’m glad she seems a little more accepting of how things are and she could have it much worse. We seem to go in cycles in how we tolerate each other. She is much less critical than she has been. I help her because I promised Dad I would; she and I have a complicated relationship to say the least. I have forgiven her in my heart, and hope that’s enough to get her on her journey to the next world. She may hang around for ten more years, who knows? Not me, for sure. I love the longevity we may enjoy because of her.

Something really cool happened this week. I applied for a Gretna Public Library card. With the community being so small, and our housing subdivision just being annexed, I wasn’t sure if I’d have a free card or have to pay a fee. Luckily, we were annexed last summer, so it was free. I cannot wait to go to the library maybe next week. I want to find out what kind of small business information they offer, which is illustrated and noted in the brochure my card arrived in. Only reading nerds will understand; I hate to think of how much money I’ve spent on books this year. They probably are deductible, right? Tools of my trade, right?

I have some deep cleaning for over the weekend, I’m adding a reading “spot” in the bedroom. It should be nice and perk things up. Tomorrow morning, I have a baking engagement (chocolate chip cookies to take to a friend’s birthday party tomorrow), and pick up Addison after dance. It should be a great day with family/friends. It will be good, What’s up for your weekend? Whatever it is, enjoy your people. Have a cookie! We’ll see each other tomorrow.

Friday Fun

Hello from the home office in Gretna, where the magic happens. This is a day to finish up things for the work week and think of something wonderful to do over the next two days you have off the job, and refresh for next week. It’s a whole new game for us retired folks. Since school has started, though, we need to begin picking up our granddaughter after school on certain days so we can get her home with Gavin. So far, so good, on the school days. I hope they continue. The masks are required, and I think these two are old enough to understand it’s a must if they want to keep in school. I think they missed it a great deal. Our grandson in Virginia will be remote learning until at least November, then it will be reevaluated. Cross your fingers, pray, and wear your mask, people!

New Stacked Stone on Fireplace. Well Worth It!

Isn’t the new fireplace nice? It’s amazing how changing to stone from ceramic tiles made such a difference. Yes, there is a board standing there until everything dries, it’s not part of the new look. I love that the trades (hopefully) will see a revival. We will always need someone to do this type of work. Electricians, plumbers, concrete finishers, block and brick layers are all desperately needed as are auto mechanics. It’s a shame the mantra of the 1980s, “You can make more money sitting down than you do standing up.” Yes, tech jobs do pay tremendously well. I had one myself. The salary depended on your skills and abilities, not your sex. And now, it suddenly occurs to the educators and others that we need schooling in those areas. Not a surprise, really.

One place I wouldn’t want to work is the United States Post Office. My former husband retired from there over ten years ago. It was a good job, being a letter carrier. He had an old walking route while I was still married to him, and he did a good job. Back in those days, you had to sort your own mail, and bundle it according to your stops. The carriers seemed to know when someone moved, or if you had a wrong apartment number on a letter, they had sense to see that and still deliver the letter instead of returning it. That doesn’t happen now.

Since the Babe and I got married in 1998, we have received weird mail, it’s as if companies made up more people at our address by using our last name in conjunction with my three kids’ first names. Seriously. Frank Raabe is one. No one by that name. Still, we get one every so often. Those mailing list companies make so many assumptions when they’re eager to sell off names and addresses. And we received one for Rebecca Raabe. Nice name, but we have no one by that name either. Sheesh!

This expresses my studio and craft rooms perfectly

There are days when I get irritated at myself for the creative clutter I have. Not enough (yet) to go through each and every item for each and every hobby or interest, but I get irked nonetheless. Sorting and culling the herd will be a winter project. No, it’s not hoarding, but my daughter and sons have commented there are more boxes of stuff to make stuff than of clothes, kitchenware, and decor. See if I’ll have them help us move again! Lol. No, it’s to the assisted living place next move. I mean it.

Speaking of moving, I think Mom holds the world’s record on living in the same house for the longest. She and Dad married in 1948, had an apartment, then moved into the house in which she still lives in 1949. Seventy-one years living in one house. Wow. She was 20 when they moved in. Just think on that. So, in her life, she only lived at three places: growing up, brief apartment living, and our home. At first they rented three rooms upstairs to a couple from Offutt. There was an actual second kitchen upstairs, one room living room, one room bedroom, and they shared the bathroom. Seventy one years in one house has to be a record.

Can you imagine sharing a bathroom with another family? Even when I got married in 1970, furnished apartments were very common. Kitchen, living room, bedroom furniture came with your rent. Good and bad. Someone else’s old lumpy mattress? Often it was like the one we left at home. People didn’t spend what they didn’t have. The hygiene patrol would probably have a heyday with this.

My studio/office/craft room, it’s where the magic happens!

Hope you have a beautiful rest of the day. Take time to appreciate your surroundings. Appreciate yourself, too. I’m off to do laundry and quilt. That Poppy masterpiece may be finished yet. Thanks for reading today. I appreciate the time you spend with me. See you again tomorrow. Be safe. Wear your mask, wash up. Let’s just do what we need to do and get through this. It’s the quickest way to make our own way into the future. Don’t live in fear. Be confident we are only temporarily inconvenienced by wearing masks. It won’t be forever. Use civility. Use compassion. Use kindness.