Monday, May 26, 2014

May 26 - 31, 2014 - SF

Monday, May 26.  Happy Memorial Day and thanks to all those who have served our country.

My morning started with a beautiful walk (except for the golf ball that clobbered me on the back of the knee) to the Legion of Honor and then along El Camino del Mar with its beautiful views of San Francisco Bay and the Golden Gate Bridge.  I know you have all seen this photo before, but here it is again.  

It is kind of sad thinking that I may never see it again.  What would bring me to this part of the country in the future?  Who knows.

Ben and family had things going on with friends today, so I had the afternoon to myself.  I spent it washing the car, doing laundry, reading, and a little nap.  Nice!  Comparing the 2 lifestyles, theirs is filled with endless activities and there is barely time to take a break.  With mine, every opportunity I get to sit down and relax, I take.  I do remember how it was, though.  In fact, I was one of those non-stop kind of people, stopping for a break only when everything on the list was taken care of.  Things sure do change as the years go by.  One of my retirement goals was to allow myself to sit back and relax, especially in the mornings.  I've accomplished that one.  Mike was a great help with that one - there was a man who knew how to relax.

So today I hear that another RVing friend is dying.  We met Don in Pacifica when we all worked at the 
SF RVResort, he was another workcamper that we became friends with.  Heck of a nice guy and we have stayed in touch with him through the years. I hope he doesn't suffer too much - damn cancer is going to take another good one.

Thursday, May 29.  Yesterday, Marta came to hang out and we had a great time just chatting and having some lunch and playing with the twins.  I was glad that it worked out for her to come over as who knows when our paths will cross again.  I have a feeling that they will.

Plans are getting made for a memorial family gathering for Mom this summer, as we didn't have one (other than a graveside service) when she died in December.  Right now, it looks like July 12 or 13th will be the day.

Friday, May 30.  We have had a couple of days of cool and cloudy weather, in fact, it was cold this morning and I was glad that I had 2 layers plus my fleece hoodie on when I walked the dogs.  I am ready to change back into my warm weather clothes.

The day went smooth, the twins are so easy to care for, and I was able to get little nap in this afternoon.

Saturday May 31.  The month ended on a good note.  A babysitter was hired for tonight and we all went to Joan and Kerry's apartment for a farewell party for Ben and Jill with about 40 of their friends, many whom I have gotten to know through the years.  It was a good time, although bittersweet for them.  It was the latest I have been out for a long time and the most that I have had to drink in a long time too.

Monday, May 19, 2014

May 19 - 25, 2014 - SF

Monday, May 19.  Jill and I spent a lot of time in the kitchen today.  I started out by making a pot of Zuppa Toscana soup and then she spent a lot of time cooking up and pureeing baby food to last for the next 3 weeks, hopefully.  Those girls sure do like eating their solids and have only stuck their noses up at avocado, otherwise they have liked everything that has been offered to them.

We got all of the art packed up today.  The apt is filling with boxes.  

I've been thinking a lot about the loss of our friend Danny Vidal back in 2011.  What started out to be a fun and enjoyable pizza party in our community with friends ended with Danny getting ill and ultimately having a massive heart attack.  It's so sad and my heart goes out to Connie.  She has been there for me after losing Mike - guess she knows just how I feel.

Tuesday, May 20.  Jill and I decided that we just had to get out of the house, so after the babies' naps, we fed them and headed to the park, stopping at Garden Cafe for a sandwich along the way.  It was cloudy when we took off but the sun came out while we were sitting in the park.  We put both if the girls in a swing together and they just had a ball, although they're looking pretty serious in this photo.  I think they liked it better when they were in the swing together.

Thursday, May 22.  I got a message from my sister-in-law, Karen to let me know that the memorials for Mom and Dan that they had placed on the living wall at Olbrich Gardens in Madison at complete and in place, right near Mike's.  It is so sad that we lost them all in less than a year.  I miss them all so much, especially Mike and his wise cracks and humor.

It has been a busy week here, with packing and people coming by to look at the car or to pick up things that have been listed on Craig's List - baby stuff, Ben's bike, and tonight, the dishwasher and pot rack went to Jill's friend, Leah..  The kitchen is empty and bare now, and I won't be falling asleep to the sound of the dishwasher any more.  The clock is ticking.

Saturday , May 24.  I don't have much to write about tonight except that I learned today of a good friend, Jim Russell's passing.  We met at Master Gardener training in Ocala back on 2003 and have stayed in touch ever since.  Mike and I and him and Carol went on a few outings together while we lived there and we tried to see them whenever we got back to Ocala.  It is sad that he is gone, I'm glad that I talked with him a few weeks ago before he got sick.  I feel so bad for Carol and his family.  Rest in Peace, dear Jim.

I was able to get an appointment with Jill for a haircut today.  What a nice feeling it is, to actually out on makeup and go to the salon for some "me" time.  She had only one appointment after mine, so I strolled along Fillmore St, window shopping and going into a few of the shops - many that are specialty and very pricey clothing stores.  I did buy a book that I've been looking for and I also stopped for a Chai Latte and a frozen yogurt.  Parking on the street cost me $7.00 for 1.5 hours - I now have to replenish the utter purse in my car.

Sunday, May 25.  The house was a bustle of activity this morning the the family preparing to go to a party with friends.  What an ordeal it is to get everything ready, packed, the kids fed and dressed, and then all of them loaded in the car.

I took a drive to Pacifica, hoping to say hello to folks we know when we worked there back in 2007.  Everyone has moved on.  Driving through there, I was glad that we aren't there any more as it is looking pretty crowded and dumpy with a lot of old, junky, permanent RVs.  No thanks.

From there, I did some shopping and picked up a new pair of jeans and a t-shirt.  Back at home, I did some reading and took a little nap.  

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

May 12 - 18, 2014 - CA

Wednesday, May 14.  It's a good day, finally!  I didn't feel dizzy at all this morning and when I was walking Frisco, I bent over to clean up his mess and didn't even feel like I might fall in it.  

The week has been a bustle of activity.  On Monday, Jill and I got lots of stuff packed. And last night, Ben sold his car so my car now gets the parking spot right in front of the house and Ben will be driving it to work.  I don't feel real comfortable leaving it parked on the street several blocks away.

The construction project on the street in front of the house has come to an end.  Yay!  It has been so noisy and dusty and smelly.   The days have been in the upper 70s and we haven't been able to keep the windows open because of the dust and the smell of the asphalt.  The construction guys hosed everything down, swept, and moved out all of their equipment, so things will get back to normal around here.

She looks so cute with her hair in a bun.

Camille and Norah after their bath.

Thursday, May 15.  Charlotte and I headed for the zoo this morning.  She promised me that she would stay near me and cooperate, so we took the stroller but she didn't need to be in it except for coming and going.  I was a little uncomfortable when I saw 3 school buses unload, but they were broken into small groups and the place is huge.  We had lots of fun and stopped for a hot dog for lunch and shared our table with a mom and her daughter who was about Charlotte's age.  CC was good and cooperative the whole time, even when it was time to leave the playground.  


Big news! Norah cut her first tooth today.  We were wondering why she was so fussy this afternoon.  And Camille has one that is real close to breaking through.

Friday, May 16.  If I were back in Stoughton this weekend, I would be taking part in the annual Syttende Mai celebrations, meeting up with friends, drinking beer, passing out water to the runners and walkers, and just having a good time.  For many years, this was an event that I looked forward to and I have lots of memories of those good (and a few bad) times.

I was able to say goodbye to Betty, the cleaning lady today.  She is sad to be losing Ben and Jill as clients, after being with them for 8 years.  She said it's not that she doesn't have enough work, it's that it's hard to find nice clients to work for.  Now that is sad.  I got in a nice, long walk with the twins and a stop in the park for a sandwich while she was here.  And the house was clean when I got home, not like last week.

Sunday, May 18.  Wow! Another week has passed - it is flying right by and we have less than 3 weeks left here.  A lot of packing progress was made today and Ben got rid of a lot of plants and planters to his former gardening boss, Vernon.  It was nice to see him again - it has been a few years since Mike and I went to his house to buy some of his shovelface pieces from him.  He's an interesting guy.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

May 5 - 11, 2014 - CA

Monday, May 5.  Congratulations to Ben and Jill!  They are homeowners!  Jill's parents are already there and beginning with the kitchen remodel project, floors in family room and entry will be replaced to match the rest of the downstairs, and garage and roof will be replaced before they move in.  For Mike and I, it took years to come up with the money for remodel projects but then these two have been saving for years to get what they want in a home. I am so happy for them.

My day didn't start out so well.  At 5:15, I woke up and headed to the bathroom but when I got back to my bed, the room was spinning and I felt like I was melting into the bed.  I laid there for a half hour, trying to sit up but each time I felt all dizzy and nauseous.  After a half hour, I went to Ben for help and we called 911 - since my cardiologist told me not to mess around if I had any symptom like shortness of breath, light headedness, or pain.  Unsure of what this was, we decided this was the best approach, especially since their day was full of activities, starting with their closing at 7am.  After several hours of tests, nothing showed up as abnormal - it's not my heart and blood tests showed no infection.  Well, then - what on earth is going on? I felt better as the day went on but not very stable.

Tuesday, May 6.  Today started out almost as bad, although I didn't have the dizziness, only today I feel a bit feverish off and on and the symptoms are more flu like.  Jill's work day started late, so I was able to rest most of the morning and was feeling better by the time she had to leave and I had gotten some food in me.  What a drag this is - I'm supposed be helping them but instead I'm causing more work for them.  Tomorrow will be a better day.  It's a good thing these babies are so easy.

Thursday, May 8.  I can't believe this drama continues, although this evening I'm feeling the best I have all week.  I saw a doctor yesterday and she thought this could be several things:  a virus, vertigo (gave Meclazine to see if it helps), a urinary tract infection (testing my urine) or high blood pressure (I will monitor for a week to see if it stays high).  Grrrrr.

I have gotten Frisco out for a few walks the last 2 days but Jill has helped with that too - not that she has lots of time to be doing it, but it sure has helped me out.  I also felt good enough this afternoon to put an Enchilada casserole together for dinner - that is, at least 2 dinners - kind of the way we roll around here these days.  It sure makes it a lot easier to not have to cook a meal every day.

Saturday, May 10.  My days are still starting out feeling yucky and improving as the days to on.  An infection was confirmed, so I am now taking Antibiotics too.  Still monitoring the BP which seems to be inconsistent but consistently high - waiting to hear in that.  I have begun to take farther walks and that is feeling pretty good - I know that Frisco appreciates it. 

Yesterday was a strange.  I invited my friend Marta to come and hang out with me and help me out with the twins when the cleaning ladies came.  I got everything ready for an outing and we headed out for a walk, stopping at a nearby cafe for a sandwich and then headed to the park to eat.  On our way, Marta stopped at her truck to get her dog, Spirit to come along with us, and there was a $65 parking sticker on her windshield for parking during street cleaning hours, although she said the street had already been swept because it was wet.  I thought that I might be finding one on my car when I get to it too.  We ate our lunch and before long it was time to head back home again and I barely got the girls fed their bottles.

When I got back home, the cleaning ladies had not even been here and I learned later from Jill that it was because I locked the deadbolt when I left and she doesn't have a key to it.  I knew that!  What was I thinking or should I say not thinking?  She will come next week instead.  The good news was that when I went by my car on my evening walk, there was no ticket because I am parked in a 
Wednesday street cleaning zone.  Let's hope that I remember to move it then.

Today was a good but busy day.  I tried a recipe for Broccoli Cauliflower Casserole tonight that was deeeelicious.  It had cream cheese, Parmesan cheese, and Italian seasoning and was topped with buttery breadcrumbs.  Charlotte liked it so much that she had 2 large helpings.  

Sunday, May 11.  Mother's Day.  I think of her so often.  Especially these days when I am with these babies and I think of how much she would have adored all of her grandkids.  She was a hard working woman who died way before she should have - imagine being 42 years old and having 10 children.  I just can't.  I also can't forget my in-law Mom, Jane.  She was there for me in every way - a dedicated and wonderful woman.  Rest in peace, both of you.  I will love you always.

It was a busy but enjoyable day.  I was able to be with one son and have a great phone conversation with the other.  I felt the best that I have all week, although the mornings are still a bit shaky.   All 3 of us got naps while the kids were napping this afternoon - that was the best treat of all!  I went on 2 nice walks with the dogs.  Charlotte went potty all by herself twice today.  All in all - a very nice day.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

May 1 - 4, 2014 - CA

Thursday, May 1.  I think I had forgotten how tired I felt at the end of the day, but only 1 day and I remember it well.  It is a good kind of tired - each day is filled with happy times and the rewards of smiling faces.  Have I said what good babies Camille and Norah are?  They are just smiley all of the time, eat well, nap well, don't fuss at nap time, wake up happy, and sleep through the night.  I sure couldn't ask for more.

The last 2 days have been unusually warm for SF - yesterday it was 83 and today was mid 70s.  Jill took Charlotte to the beach this morning and forgot to take a diaper along, so they came back home but Charlotte was having so much fun that we put her swimsuit on, packed a lunch, and then she and I went back to the beach.  There was a shallow stream of water that all of the little ones were playing in and she spent lots of time climbing up on a log and jumping into the water, singing and counting the whole time.  It was a blast!

Sunday, May 4.  I'm getting back into the busy family routine and the degree of busy-ness has increased with preparations for moving across the country.  The kids are fun to be around and it means so much to me to see the excitement of Ben and Jill and the next phase of their lives.

Today started out with a great conversation with Pat. Then got busy from there with grocery shopping, playground, and cooking.  Ben is making me a coconut cake to celebrate my birthday and the house smell deeeelicious.  Charlotte is excited because that is about the only time she gets to have sweets.