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My Life- Thoughts and Happenings

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Hope your mom likes her new place, Silver!


My parents have a retirement home they picked out where there are even some of their friends. But now that it is clear that my mom is developing dementia I wonder if she will be able to be there.


My dad was feeling a bit more energy today and I think it is because I have been making him drink water each meal. It was so hot and humid I think he got dehydrated.


Today the boys and I swam in the ocean again. We are on the East coast (US) and the Atlantic is far warmer than the Pacific. At least warmer than the Pacific at the Oregon coast...


We saw 2 seals swim by us and they were so cute


My son got an answer to his question about the extra scholarship- it was discontinued this year. So disappointed!

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Today we didn't swim due to thunderstorms, but in between the weather we went for a walk on the beach and a baby seal came up onto the beach and crawled to about 10 feet away! It was so cute and I think it was curious about us.


My dad even had energy to walk on the beach for a bit. He and I talked a bit. He is sad that a lot of their friends and acquaintances have died. There are few people left their age (90's). Must be tough.


My sons have been so polite and helpful. So proud of them!


Last night after we found out the scholarship was discontinued I was up worrying for many hours wondering how I was going to afford my sons college. I'll just have to do the best I can.


I made ratatouille tonight for dinner and it turned out pretty well despite the lack of ingredients.


My mom, with her dementia keeps telling the same stories over and over again. Today she and I went to the store, and when we got back she said the clerk got her an ice cream cone without her asking. I was making faces at my dad behind her back and then I told him what really happened.


She wanted to buy a pint of ice cream so she went to the counter that serves ice cream cones or scoops in a cup. The clerk gestured to the cones or cup and when she heard what we wanted we were directed to the freezer section for ready packed ice cream. She was insisting to my dad that they tried to give her a cone already scooped with ice cream.


I better to with my dad about it tomorrow.

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Oh Hi Lumi,

It's nice you are getting to spend this time with your parents. I feel so much more understanding now of how difficult it must get for them.


Sorry to hear about your son's scholarship, but maybe he will have other opportunities for scholarship. My son took out a loan for his university education (as did I for my own studies). That's pretty much how it is usually done here unless people come from wealthy families where they pay upfront.


I have only swum in the Pacific Ocean, and it's always been cold where I have swum in it too. I can't even imagine a warm ocean! I like seals too though I've mostly only seen them in zoos. I also like squirrels a lot too though we don't have them in Australia.

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We are done visiting with my parents, who were renting a cottage on Nantucket island near my cousin's cottage.


We took the ferry into Boston yesterday and then went to see my niece at an improv group performance. That was fun to see! I am not sure if it was nerve wracking to have family in the audience but I do know she worked hard writing and memorizing her lines (it wasn't exactly improv...)


The boys assembled a large grill that my sister had bought 2 years ago but never had put together. It was fun to see them working as a team. They even tested it out and showed her safety tips.


We grilled steaks yesterday and some amazing swordfish tonight! (Olive oil, minced mint and basil leaves, minced garlic cloves, fresh lemon juice and salt and pepper.).


My brother showed up today on his way to Nantucket to be with my parents, so he stayed at my sisters house too. I am glad we got to see him and we had a discussion on what will be next for my parents, because we can see them going downhill, health wise...


Their neighbor put his house on the market and a developer bought it and will tear down the house and build a new one. My sister is urging my parents to do the same, since they live up the street from there. Their neighbor got a good price for it.


My dad is so frail, and I think it is hard for him to go up and down the stairs. And my mom apparently has dementia- not real bad yet, but it is certainly advancing.


Today my sister and the boys and I drove up to Connecticut to visit my uncle who is in a nursing home due to lung cancer. He never ever smoked, and he actually had spots on his lungs about 15 years ago but they watched it and it never changed until last year. And now we know it is cancer.


Anyhow, it was 3 hours of driving today but he was so touched we came to see him. I'm glad we went- because it will likely be the last time we see him since we live on the west coast.


Tomorrow is a long day traveling on the plane - home agin home again jiggety jig...

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My cat is soooo happy we are home! Purrr purr purr all night long.


Now back to realty - unpacking, getting my kids to their dad's, doctor appointment, laundry, yard work, etc.


I am very very thankful for my generous sister who paid for our trip. It is very possible that is the last time we see my uncle and even perhaps one or both of my parents. Hard to think about, but they are all in their 90's.


My sister's house is so nice- all fixed up and remodeled and neat as a pin! And then I come gone to major clutter here- aargh! Very inspiring though.


So I guess I had better get going with my day now...

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Hi Lumi,

A number of years ago, I had a series of lovely prints in jigsaw form which my son and I spent ages assembling. They were artworks of Nantucket which I REALLY liked a lot. I can't remember the name of the artists, but they were all quaint sort of child-like paintings of rural and seaside settings very similar to the one at this link:


link removed

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Oh that's cute, Silver! It does capture the essence of the quaint cottages with their roses and flowers.


Sadly many of those quaint cottages are being torn down to make way for super mansions.


I hadn't been to the island for about 5 or 6 years since my marital split-up and my cancer diagnosis- both of which cleaned out my bank accounts. Since we live on the west coast then it entailed very expensive flights to get there.


My parents paid for the rental but I just couldn't afford the $2000-3000 in travel costs. Many of my siblings live within driving distance so they have been able to go every year, at the very least for a weekend or two.


Anyway, when we went this year then I found out that the trend is to knock down and rebuild. Some of the quaintness is sadly going away.


But- back to reality at my house. It has taken all week to get back onto my time zone. I wanted to really have energy to get a bunch of stuff done when I returned but it didn't turn out that way.


So- lots to do today- watering the yard, put away laundry, clean up the house, all those lovely and necessary tasks.


As far as job hunting I think I am going to have to go back to school. So I need to figure that out.


I just refinanced the mortgage (to put it under my name) and the payment is a few hundred dollars MORE but in the end I think it is the same because before I was saving up for the insurance and taxes on my own but now they want it in escrow.


I think the mortgage company saw that I had cleaned my savings out because of the trip to see my parents last December. And some medical bills. Sigh.


My cat's vet has not been charging me for her visits which is so generous! The vet knows about my divorce and cancer issues and knows I don't have much money. The good news is that my cat is so much better now! Lets hope it stays that way...


Well I guess I had better tackle "mount laundry".

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Hi Lum,

Most importantly, I hope you are clear of cancer now. I have been through similar to you - marriage breakup which meant a lot of changes, including financial. This was 20 years ago for me, and in Australia at that time, it was a lot more difficult for women to get loans for homes. Unfortunately, I lost my home because of that, and I wish I could have done some things differently. I did go back to school and completed a degree, but if I had to do it again, I might go for a different line of study because, frankly, I just don't earn enough. Like you, I also have my pets which are part of the family. I'm definitely petted out these days so no more for me. My family also live interstate, but fortunately, it is less expensive for flights, etc, but it's only been in recent times that my employment contract changed so now I am getting paid leave.


My older sister has worked as a PA for quite a few years. She is never out of work and earns great money - and likes what she does.


Well, good luck with the laundry! Hope you have a good day!

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Silver, I am 4 years cancer free since I had my surgery 4 years ago. My doctors all said my prognosis is excellent.


That is good to hear about your sisters job as a PA. I would have to go through a lot of school for that since I never took sciences except what was specific to my field.


At my age (mid 50s) it seems silly to go back to school but if I have to then I will. Probably good for my brain anyway...


Very annoyed tonight with my ex and my son. My ex didn't get him here into after 9 pm and he still had to pack for summer camp. Aargh! We have to be there at 7 am sharp tomorrow.


On a different note my cat was meowing a lot last night and kept going in the litter box but only a limitless pee would come out. She was clearly in pain so I took her in to the vet today. They were so nice to fit her in right away and I met the other vet that works there. They wanted me to leave her do they could get a sample but in the end she peed in her cat carrier so they went with that.


Poor thing has a bladder infection. So I got the antibiotics and some pain killer for her and she seems so much more comfortable.


So glad they got her in today so she didn't have to be in pain all weekend.

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Hi Lum,

Well personlly, I got a lot out of the study - even if it was really of financial benefit. At that time, I'd had thoughts between going to a hairdressing college for 18 months with the view of working for myself or going to uni and doing a degree. I did the degree, but sometimes I wonder if I might have been better off. I can't know, but at least I enjoy the work I do.


So glad you are cancer-free. Hope Kitty is feeling better very soon.

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Got my son off to camp today, which means he is not out and about getting into mischief with other middle school aged kids. He is learning and I am sure he will have a great week.


My cat seems to be doing so much better. I have been diligent in giving her the medicine plus they sent some pain killer for her too, so she is not meowing so much.


I have been really worried about money this week because my mortgage payment is $300 higher. Money I don't have. Theoretically I would have been putting that much away to pay for insurance and property taxes so I guess it will work out. But it is scary to have that much less to work with.


I need to go through my budget to see where I can make cuts and save money. And in the meantime I am job hunting...

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  • 2 weeks later...

My son came home on Saturday from summer scout camp, did laundry and repacked, and then was off to church camp in a blink of an eye...


Spent some time with a friend whose contractor had bilked her out of a bunch of money. She is taking them to court and the hearing is today. These guys took advantage of an older grey haired lady. And we figured out that the husband had been in prison for check fraud about 5 years ago!


I got a call from a friend of a friend and wondered why she was calling. After the chit chat I figured it out. She was inviting me to a free "life changing" seminar.


I was honest with her and said I simply couldn't add another obligation into my life, so the answer is no.


And then I got curious about it and started asking questions. Turns out it was started by Werner Erhard and is called Landmark Education. It is a cult like group- no thanks!!!

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My cat's meds are finished and she is feeling so much better!


My youngest son is at church camp this week and my oldest one is here with me for the week. I have had him extra because their dad went to Alaska in vacation.


It is nice to be just with him so we can connect- today he told me that he thinks he has depression. I talked with him about it and he says he just feels lethargic and has no motivation to do anything.


I have observed that in him since before he graduated from high school. He barely got through school that very last term- and it took a lot out of him. I started to see a spark when he went to orientation for university, but he says that the low grade depression is constant.


I told him I have felt the same way for a few years, and that I was just about to make a doctor's appointment to discuss options for myself.


My son wants to go on meds too.


Time for us both to go to the doctor...


On a bright note, the scholarship came through for my son after all!!! Someone in the financial aid office had given him incorrect information so we had lost all hope and i was so worried! He gets $5000, renewable each year! That will pay for half the year's housing, along with the student loans they are giving him. I am so relieved!!!!!


I am working through the clutter in my house this week, and it is beginning to look so much better!

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A friend of mine is here from out of town to help me clear out a bunch of stuff from my house.


We have cleared off the shelves of half a wall - mostly toys that my sons have outgrown. It's crazy how many toys there were. What were we thinking?


Anyhow, I am going to have a big garage sale in a few weeks. Time to move things through to someone that will use them.


Already the room looks way better!


During the past few days I have become increasingly more concerned about my son. His depression seems to be really hitting him. I asked him to write some thank you notes and he just couldn't do it. His mind was paralyzed from writing.


He literally has been forgetting to eat, has been sleeping a lot, and is so lethargic.


And he goes to college in 6 weeks.


I am going to call on Monday to see if I can get him in to the doctor.


On the bright side he had two job interviews. I really want him go get a job, since it will provide structure in his life.


Younger son is now home from camp. He had a great time but is glad to be home. I picked some blackberries from the yard yesterday and hAd my older son help me make a blackberry pie in honor of having both of them home. It was yummy.


The cats here have been having territory wars. This morning I woke up at 5:30 and was astonished to find both cats asleep on my bed- at opposite ends. However once I woke up then they were each trying to claim the bed as their territory.


I put the aggressor outside but he promptly came back in the cat door. He is sleeping in the hall by my door and the other is on my bed.

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Well my friend left to go home but I am still working through getting ready for a garage sale. There will be a lot of kid toys there. I had already gotten rid of their outgrown clothes to various friends and relatives. And I will be donating books to my older son's old school's library, because it had burned down a few years ago.


It feels so good to be working on getting organized! After my marital separation and then the cancer diagnosis and then the divorce, I became so overwhelmed with life that everything just sat on a shelf for five years.


I am a bit shocked at the stuff we have hanging around- stuffed animals, Lego Duplos, Fisher Price Little people- toddler toys! Sheesh!


My boys are teenagers... And one will be going to college in a month. So- I'm moving it all out so some little ones can enjoy and use these toys. And it feels great!


We will have extra space to put and store our camping equipment, and I will set up a new study area for my younger son.


The space is empty right now and it looks great!


In a few days I will go to help my friend with her mess and clutter. It's always much more fun when it is someone else's house and mess!


My older son seems to be more focused today - but I am still going to have him see the doctor.


My younger son is home from camp and it is good to have them both here. My friend and I picked some blackberries in the back yard yesterday and then my boys and I made a delicious blackberry pie last night. The boys finished it off at dinner. It was really good!


I am so sorry to say that my son did not get either job...We really really need him to make some money this summer but its not going to happen.


We thought he was a shoe in for the computer job at the university. But apparently they had 70 people apply for it! He did get an interview- and I view that as a positive since they wouldn't possibly interview all 70 candidates. I told him to email them to thank them for considering him and that he hopes they will consider him for any upcoming positions.


He will try for other campus positions...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi Silver


I typed in a response here yesterday but somehow lost it all when trying to sign back in.


But all is well - I have just been busy getting ready for a yard sale here.


My old housemate had come to town to help me clear things out and that was a huge help!


So I drove up to stay at her place to do the same. We took a few loads of things to donate at Goodwill, recycled a bunch of old papers, and she even loaded up some things for me to so at my garage sale.


I am home now and I am going through boxes of stuff from my garage. Lots of memories from when my boys were little, but it is time to clear things out.


Tomorrow I will park my car elsewhere and set up tables in the garage to get it organized. Then on the day of the sale I can get my sons to put the tables out, already loaded up.


It's a lot if work but it feels good to move things out of a crowded home plus hopefully we will make a few bucks.

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I REALLY need to clear stuff out!

It is embarrassing how much stuff I have here.


Little by little I am getting there.


Today I went to the shed in my backyard and scrounged through all if the stuff my ex left (he took all of the good tools but left supplies).


I found a kit with brackets to make a pair of saw horses. All I needed were some 2x4s and there were just enough left over from a shelving project and they were just the right size! So I constructed the saw horses and pulled an old closet door from the shed and put it on top for a large display table for the sale.


Tomorrow I will be able to get it more organized and priced. I will have my son place a notice on Craigslist and I better make up some signs too.


On a different note I got a text from my younger son's scout group. They have been backpacking all week and tomorrow they will be rafting. Then home late tomorrow night.


I have kept him busy all summer but now he will have some free time before school starts.


Except he will have to help with the yard sale.


My older son seems to be perkier- I have been stressing healthy foods and good sleep habits with him and that seems to be helping. I also put a full spectrum light on the breakfast table to sneak a shot of light into him first thing in the morning.



LOL Lum! Flylady would be proud of you!
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Hi Lum! Well, you HAVE been busy.


I don't think I have heard of the full spectrum light on the table. I have a vague recollection of some special light you could get here (expensive) for people with seasonal affective disorder. It worked on a timer so turns on gradually, getting stronger at around 5am. Pardon my ignorance, but what do you mean by full spectrum light. I'm guessing this is also to stimulate melatonin production.

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Hi Silver

I am equally clueless, but natural daylight is the standard and this lamp supposedly shines a light that is very close to it.


I think light does play a part in hormone production for your circadian (daily) rhythm. I am not sure if it is melatonin or serotonin or both, but I had heard that this would help him. Ideally I would get him outside first thing each day but that's not going to happen...


So I snuck this one in, onto the breakfast table.


He is probably being a typical teenager this summer by going to bed at 3 am and then gets up at noon or later, but when he was at his dads he was staying up all night and sleeping all day and I truly think that triggered the depression.


So he has been going to bed a bit earlier each day and then I've been getting him up earlier each day.


Saturday will be a rude awakening because he knows he has to be up to help with the garage sale.


The light I got was not expensive at all - it was $30 from Costco, although it was more than ten years ago.


I like the idea of one on a timer, like an alarm clock. But there is hopefully one that us adjustable because I think 5 am is way too early for me!!!


Hi Lum! Well, you HAVE been busy.


I don't think I have heard of the full spectrum light on the table. I have a vague recollection of some special light you could get here (expensive) for people with seasonal affective disorder. It worked on a timer so turns on gradually, getting stronger at around 5am. Pardon my ignorance, but what do you mean by full spectrum light. I'm guessing this is also to stimulate melatonin production.

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My younger son got home from his backpacking trip! It sounds like he had a great time.


They also went rafting yesterday on a river that has a dam. A few days a week they release water from the dam, so the rafting guides schedule raft groups on those days. So they rode the wave down the river!


I made him unpack last night and we already got the laundry washed.


Older son was up later than I wanted- I got up at 3:30 and told him to get to bed. It just seems like he has no brakes or judgement right now. So frustrating that I have to monitor - and I pray that he will be fine when he goes to college in a month. Maybe his roommate will be a good influence.


Much to do today to get ready for the garage sale- more pricing, signs, organizing, etc.

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Phew! All ready for the garage sale. Just have to move all of the tables out into the driveway in the morning.


And we have to post some signs around the neighborhood.


And I have to dig up some change.


So tired, and my feet hurt from running around all day.


At least we have a good weather forecast- last time we had a yard sale it poured down rain!

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