[dkpalmer]'s diary

701768  Link to this entry 
Written about Sunday 2005-11-20
Written: (5630 days ago)

1:06 am
I had the need to bake today. We currently have yellow cake with triple fudge chip frosting, lemon poppy seed cake with lemon glaze, and a pan in the sink that was apple crisp. Surprisingly, Tommy likes the lemon. No one else in the house will touch it. It was neat having tea and cake with him, while Robby was napping.

Tommy and I had some alone time, which I know he's really been needing, during Robby's nap. He wanted to play makeup, which involved him putting makeup on me. I drew the line at the mascara, though. Afterward, we cuddled on the bed, and I told him the story of Donald MacLennan. I made it into a story, not just the bit that Nana dictated years ago. Let's see if I can remember how it went....

-----

A long, long time ago, long before you were born, long before I was born, even before Grandma was born, there were three brothers named Donald, Alexander, and Daniel. These brothers lived far away across the ocean in a place called Scotland, which is part of England. These brothers decided that they didn't like living in Scotland anymore, and wanted to go off and explore the world.

So, they all got in a big ship, and sailed far across the ocean. The trip took weeks and weeks, and they had waves and wind and storms. The food ran low, and they were tired and dirty. Finally, they came to a place called America. They were way up north in America, in a place called Canada.

Now, on the end of Canada, out in the ocean, there's an island called Nova Scotia, and that's where they landed. So, the three brothers each picked a piece of land, and built homes and farms there. They liked the new place so much that they sent a letter to the King in England, asking him to give them the land, because Canada belonged to England then, and the King could decide who would get the land. The King decided that giving them the land was a good idea, so he sent them pieces of paper called grants that said they would own those three pieces of land. If anything happened to one of them, the others would get his land, too.

Well, Donald, Alexander, and Daniel had farms for their families, but they were really deep sea fishermen. They went out in a boat and caught fish that they sold to their neighbors and to the nearby towns for food. One time, when they were out on their boat on the ocean, a storm came up. There was wind whooshing, and rain splatting, and lightning crackling, and thunder booming. Waves were coming up over the sides of the boat, and it was rocking back and forth. We don't know exactly what happened, but the boat went down in that storm. Donald managed to swim to shore, but Daniel and Alexander died in the ocean.

So, Donald went back homne, and he inherited his brothers' land, and then he had a really big, huge farm. Since the farm was a lot bigger than his family needed, parts of it were sold over the years, until there was just a small, ordinary farm that looked out over the ocea. The rest became what is now called New Campbellton, with lots of people and towns in it.

Let's see, Donald was my Nana's grandpa's grandpa, I think. He was part of our very own real family.
That farm still exists, or did when Mommy's Nana was a girl. Nana used to go there on her summer vacations to visit her Uncle John.

Now, Uncle John had chickens on his farm, and do you know what they fed those chickens? Well, they fed them corn, of course, but they also fed them the remains of cooked shrimps. Do you know what those shrimps did to the eggs? It turned them pink! It made them taste like fish, too.

Back then, people didn't have bathrooms in their houses. Insteasd, they had little buildings out in the yard, called outhouses, to go to the bathroom. The outhouse at Uncle John's farm had its door facing away from the house, out toward the ocean. One time, when Uncle John went to the outhouse, he was out there for so long that Aunt Effie started to get worried about him. Now, if you're in the bathroom too long, we can just call through the door and ask if you're okay, but back then, you had to walk across the yard to get to the outhouse, so Aunt Effie had to go walking out there to check on Uncle John. When she got there, the outhouse door was open. What do you think Uncle John was doing? He was just sitting there, looking out at the ocean, watching the boats in the distance, and seeing where the sky came down to meet the water, and thinking. He had forgotten to get up and go back to the house!

Now, when Nana went there as a girl, the people on Uncle John's farm drank a lot of tea. They gave her tea for breakfast, tea for mid-morning snack, tea for lunch, tea for afternoon snack, tea for teatime, tea for supper, tea for evening snack, and tea for bedtime. But Nana didn't like tea! She liked coffee, but they never, ever made coffee at Uncle John's farm. They had tea, with cream and sugar. Nana drank it, to be respectful to her aunt and uncle, but she never liked it, and never stopped wanting her coffee instead.

-----

After the story, Tommy wanted to try tea, so I made us each a cup of tea with milk and sugar, and we had it at the coffee table with pieces of the lemon poppyseed cake.

Robby woke up while we were having our snack, which was just before 9. He had a late supper of chicken tenders that I had fried, then we all watched "National Treasure" on TV. The boys got restless right at the end, and went to bed with very little fuss.

701767  Link to this entry 
Written about Friday 2005-11-18
Written: (5630 days ago)

2:24 pm
I made cake yesterday. Yum! The cake part is plain, ordinary, yellow cake, but the frosting is a tub of triple chocolate fudge chip. No one remembers buying it, but it's so good!

I'm not even exactly sure what I did yesterday. Nothing of note, apparently. Let's see, I read more of The Lord of the Rings (finally into Book 6). I played Zoo Tycoon. I did addition worksheets with Tommy. I cleaned the kitchen and helped Lewis make supper.

Tommy was funny during supper. He has a habit of sliding down in his chair when he doesn't get his way, and usually kicks Robby under the table when he does it. I finally got sick of it, and told him the next time he did that, he'd lose the computer for a day. Less than a minute later, down he slid. I told him he just lost the computer. He was stunned. I'm actually surprised that he accepted it without a fuss. The rest of the meal, he kept catching himself starting to slide down, and straightening up, with a look of real worry on his face. Lewis was almost in tears he was laughing so hard, and Brett and I kept chuckling. Of course, that consequence is bothering him a lot more today than it did last night.

Robby got himself grounded from toys, and play in general, last night. He's stuck on one of the couches for today and tomorrow. It would have been just today, for not helping Tommy clean their room, but he decided to speak up and tell me he wasn't going to clean, so it's two days. I put him in his bed, where he begged for another chance (we were two hours into clean up time already). He finally gave up and fell asleep a little before 9.

It's cold in the house today. Lewis bought a heating unit last night, but we need to get a couple more on payday. We're really trying to avoid dragging the kerosene furnace in from the shed, with the price of oil this year. The kids' room, my room, and the laundry room all have electric baseboards, so that part of the house is comfortable, but this side of the house is still chilly. At least it's sunny, and the sun coming in the office window is nice and warm.

The washer has sprung another leak. Lewis went over all the pipes and connections a couple of days ago, but the laundry room was flooded again this morning. I'm afraid it's a connection inside the machine, possibly one that was damaged during the move. We're just sopping it up with towels and the mop for now, until he can get in there again to look this weekend. At least it seems to be cold water, so we're not running the water heater for a leak in the system. That's a small blessing.

Lewis and I put one of my paintings up on Ginger's eBay account last night. It's one I have at the store, but I'll sell it by any means I can. If it seems to do well, we'll list more of them. To keep everything even, I'll consider income from the sale of anything I have at the store to be income for the store.

I received Deb's money order for the gargoyle I'm painting for her. I need to get that done and shipped soon. I have it all drawn, and the painting started.

701766  Link to this entry 
Written about Thursday 2005-11-17
Written: (5630 days ago)

10:22 am
More about Daddy, working on solutions
I pasted yesterday's musings to my friend with this message:

I was journalling about the conversation you and I have been having in here, and I thought I'd share the results. It's not completely coherent, but I think you can follow it.

Her response:

" I know. This must be particularly tough for you because you really don't like confrontation. And what has to happen now involves confrontation.

The only thing I can suggest is that you keep it really personal (guilt space) so they have to respond to YOU... not just to the situation in an impersonal, offhand way. For instance... you might ask Marian why she's keeping things from you... then, before she can do the denial thing, speculate: "If you're keeping things from me to protect me you aren't doing me any favours. He's my Dad... I want to know what's going on." Then there's, "I'm not sure what I've done to you that you should be treating me this way. I thought we had more respect for each other than that. I need to know what's really going on. I don't want to have to get a lawyer to find out. For heaven's sake, Marian (or whomever)... talk to me."
(Now.. of course... if Marian seems to be not in her right head .... like from Alzhiemer's herself.. better to address this last piece to one of your sisters.)

Anyway, you get my drift. You feel helpless... so go with that. Be helpless, and yet let them know you aren't going to settle for that. You probably won't get it all... but maybe you'll get enough information to sort things out a bit better. Practice a few things before you call, though you have to be flexible. Practice in the mirror, so you have it firm in your head where you want to go with the conversation before it happens. Remember to not let them deny stuff... just skip over it and insist that you want the facts.

Geez... I hope this helps. It's too bad people can't just be straight with each other, eh?"

My reply:

Thanks Wen. Yes, that does help. I'll work on practicing that.

701765  Link to this entry 
Written about Wednesday 2005-11-16
Written: (5630 days ago)

7:41 pm
More re Daddy
More coments from my friend:

Well then, you're going to have to communicate with them in very real terms. You need to talk with Marian and/or one or more of her kids, and point out to her that if you took in your Dad, he would be living an awful long way away from her. (Let's just assume she still wants to be near him even if she can no longer care for him, ok?) So, from several perspectives, including a financial one, you taking him in just isn't a practical option. So then, you might ask her if she's looked into nearby seniors' residences where the two of them might remain together in an environment of constantly available help.

This will no doubt stir the pot with her kids, but hey, at least it lets them know in a fairly diplomatic way where you stand on the issue and what you think ought to be done about it. If they still don't agree, the ball is in their court. At least they'll know for sure that they can't just ship Dad off to you and put him out of their little minds. And, if Marian no longer cares if she sees your Dad or not, it sort of forces her to express that, which means they can no longer expect to control his assets, however minute. I mean, if they own a home and a car together, half the value of that home and the vehicle has to be available to see to his accomodation, for instance. Now I don't know how things work there, but here, gov't run seniors' homes will simply claim that from the couple's estate to pay for his upkeep. I mean, they wouldn't put her out of her home or anything, but neither she (nor her children) are selling it (or inheriting it) without paying half for his upkeep... same thing the car. Basically that means that if they want you to find suitable care for your father, they'll have to sign over a lien to you on house, car and any other property to which he has claim. (This will have them scrambling I think.) ;o)

Hey, I know this is your beloved Daddy, and it's terrible to have to play family politics with his well-being. But with the way things are, that's pretty much what you're going to have to do in order to make your own position plain and ensure that he's getting the care he needs. Waiting for an injurious accident to get the thing done.... whoa.

My reply:

Thanks for a lot to think about. You make sense.

No, I'm not at all happy with being told I pretty much have to wait for one or both of them to be seriously hurt before anything can be done. That's really unacceptable.

I'll try to call my sisters. That's never done much good in the past, but I have to try it. I'll try talking to Marian, too.

I'm reaching a sort of mental/emotional overload on this one. If I could, and if it would be good for him, I'd have Daddy live with us. That's not a question. I don't think I could give him the care he's going to need, though, and I don't think it would be good for him. I just don't know what comes next. I honestly don't see Daddy going to a facility willingly, nor do I see Marian taking the steps to force him into one. I don't want to see him forced, anyway, unless there's no other choice. I certainly don't see Pam or Alison making any moves to get him or them into a facility. They're the ones who got them the house they're in now, with the intent that they'd be there forever. Also, Marian has begun to deny that Daddy even has Alzheimers. The last excuse she gave me for his condition was that he had something going on with his kidneys that made him progressively more confused and forgetful. She was the one who first told me about his condition, when he was diagnosed years ago. Was it as much as 10 years? No, I think it was closer to 8. She knew what was going on then.

Marian's behavior has been troubling me the last year. She won't talk to the boys on the phone at all, which has had them in tears more than once. I feel like she's keeping secrets from me when I call and ask about things. There's usually stuff going on that she only tells me if I ask sufficiently pointed questions. She has repeatedly refused to give Pam or Alison my email address, or to give me theirs, even though I want that contact in case they need to reach me about her and Daddy. It's like her cell phone. I wouldn't know they even had one if it hadn't come up on the caller ID on Sunday. She said they've had it for about a year, when I asked about the unfamiliar phone number. She has yet to tell me that she and Daddy are in separate bedrooms. I know that because Patty told me about it, after Marian made Daddy move to the other bedroom. I just feel like I'm being excluded from their lives in a big way. I don't understand it, and it adds to my feeling of helplessness.

701764  Link to this entry 
Written about Tuesday 2005-11-15
Written: (5630 days ago)

9:38 am
Regarding Daddy
A friend's off-LJ response to Daddy's situation:

"It sounds as if they should be in a seniors' residence where they can be checked on regularly. Are you the only child? Are there siblings you should be discussing this with?"

My reply:

"My younger sister and I agree with you. Our five older siblings disagree. My two older sisters got them the house where they live, and see them daily. I live too far away to see them more than once or twice a year. *sigh* If that often.

I'll keep bringing it up to the others. I don't think either of them should be driving, but they both do.

Oh, the five are her kids, and we two are his kids, but hers have been calling the shots for a lot of years.

*sigh*"

Her response:

"Ah... a very frustrating situation I'm sure. The thing is though, if they see them so often, how come Mom was pushing Dad's wheelchair in the hospital instead of one of them? And yeah, how come they're still driving when they obviously shouldn't be? Nice that the older kids "see" them daily, but just waving hello doesn't quite make it. This must be very difficult for you. Do you know if anyone has asked what Mom and Dad would like to do?"

My reply:

"Actually, the reason my step-mother still drives is mostly so she can go babysit my neice and nephews while one of my sisters works. *sigh* Actually, I guess that's only one nephew now, as the others are now in school, but still.

As far as I know, no one has asked them. they're in separate bedrooms because Marian says Daddy is too hard to sleep with since his condition started going downhill. That was more than a year ago. Marian did tell my youngest sister that she and I need to figure out who will take care of Daddy once she can't anymore. That means it's up to me, since Patty won't do anything for him. (She's still angry about the divorce 24 years ago.) She thinks he should be in a care facility, but that's the extent of her interest. With the Alzheimers, I know that once he gets to the point where Marian can't take care of him, he'll probably be at the point where none of us can take care of him properly at home, so I'm not giving serious thought to bringing him here (which is what I think she was suggesting).

I think we'll be at the point of having to make a decision soon, regardless of their preferences, for their own sake. I've asked my pastor to be in touch with them, with an eye to having her make some suggestions about their care. I know Daddy will accept that kind of suggestion from a minister, where he might balk at it from me.

I knew this point would come eventually. I'm having some trouble dealing with the fact that they really can't be on their own much longer.

Thanks for listening, and for some good suggestions. It's helping me think this through."

I want to keep it all here, so I can find it easily. I have some thinking to do. I think I need to call Pastor Cindy and have another long talk. She just moved her dad, with the same condition, to a care facility this past year. She'll know what's going on in my head.
11:09 pm
More regarding Daddy
My friend's comments:

Sounds like you've got some good ideas for dealing with it. Have you checked on what facilities are available that would be suitable for your Dad? If Marian is leaving it up to you, does that mean you can make arrangements for him and his assets will be available to cover the cost?

Hey... glad to trouble shoot... it's a very awkward, frustrating thing you're having to deal with. I hope you find a reasonable way to resolve it. My thoughts are with you. :)

My reply:

I had a talk with my pastor this evening. She's going to try talking to Daddy and Marian. She said if either of them had been hurt, beyond bruised knees, in that wheelchair incident, as in a broken leg or something, chances are good that the hospital would have contacted adult services to get care for both of them. As it is, unless they want us to do something, we can't really do much. Cindy (the pastor) says she expects that another incident in the fairly near future may end up that way, at the rate they're going.

No, I get no say in anything as long as Marian feels able to care for him, and then I still get no say unless I agree to bring him home to live with us. There aren't a lot of assets, just social security and a quarterly dividend from the trust fund I'll inherit someday. (Later rather than sooner, I hope.) I know nothing about the facilities that might be available where they live now. We all always assumed that he would go to the same nursing home my grandmother went to, if it came to that, but then they moved out of state.

I don't feel like I'm coming to any resolutions at this point. I really feel pretty frustrated and helpless. I hate this situation. *sigh*

701762  Link to this entry 
Written about Tuesday 2005-11-15
Written: (5630 days ago)

I did some drawing after I got Tommy to bed. I'm working on a B with dragons, vines, and a slightly different wizard. It will say "Believe" when it's done, I think.

701761  Link to this entry 
Written about Tuesday 2005-11-15
Written: (5630 days ago)

12:46 am
It was a pretty good day, I think.

In the morning, I did a seasonal arts and crafts froject with the kids. We made turkeys and cornucopias, mostly from construction paper. For the horns, I cut fruits and vegetables out of white paper and had the boys color them. We glued the turkeys to small paper cups, which we turned upside down, so they stand nicely. I'll try to remember to take pictures of the results in the morning.

I did a lot of plain, mundane stuff. I got the laundry hung out. I got the dishes washed and the counters scrubbed. Those things took a lot of the afternoon, somehow.

I fixed broiled cube steaks, mashed potatoes, brown gravy, spinach, and green beans for supper.

Robby fell asleep sitting at the dining room table tonight. He was so cute. Lewis took his picture before Brett carried him to bed for me.

701760  Link to this entry 
Written about Monday 2005-11-14
Written: (5630 days ago)

10:22 am
The kids did well in church yesterday. Nolar, a boy about 8 or 9 years old, was in church again, and Robby chose to sit with them. That worked for about 3/4 of the service, which is a long time for Robby to sit relatively still. He was right in front of me, so I could still remind him when he did start to fidget. Robby sitting with Nolan upset Tommy. He wanted Robby to sit with us. The fact that they were directly in front of us wasn't good enough for Tommy. He complained off and on all through the service, though he did still draw some good pictures.

The second service was a bit harder. Robby spent most of it in the back room. Tommy went back once, but I had to go get him because they got too loud.

We recognized veterans at church yesterday. Cindy asked me to stand. I did serve, but my service was so different from that of the others that I felt uncomfortable. At the first service, she only asked for people who had served to tell their own branch and years, but at the second service she also asked for family members. That made me feel better, as I named Daddy (WW2 and Korea) and Lewis (Desert Storm), as well as my own service.

I felt like crap yesterday afternoon. I was running a low fever, and kept drifting to sleep. I was better by the time I was cooking supper, though.

I cooked deep fried chicken tenders and homemade French fries last night. Lewis fixed pinto beans and his chicken-carrot gravy. Brett made stuffing and chicken flavored rice mix. We all forgot vegetables until we were putting in on the table, and decided to just skip it for once. I ran into a snag with the chicken when the electric fryer quit working after the first batch. Lewis helped me transfer the oil to a tall stock pot, and I finished the other four batches on the stove, then went on to the fries. Really, the pot did a great job, but I missed the fry basket for draining.

I painted the six wooden signs we're going to hang in the front window of the store. Lewis is going to put chains between them, to space them out, and hang them in the window next to the one I painted. It should still be high enough to let people see the village we're displaying in that window.

I'm still half asleep this morning. Tommy got me up toi get them breakfast, which is fine. Once I was up, they both opted for leftover chicken tenders, so I didn't have to do anything after all. I'll stay up, though. I need to rewash the laundry that didn't make it to the clothesline, after all.

I talked to Marian on the phone last night. Daddy got the letter and photos I sent last week. She said Daddy has reread the letter at least twice. I made it nice and newsy, with lots about the kids, house, pets, and store. She said she had to have a biopsy this week, but didn't say what it was for. I'm a little worried. She also said Daddy had to have a steroid injection in his spine, to help his legs, and is going to get one in his neck to make his arms work better. I didn't realize he was having that much physical difficulty. She talked about wheeling him in a wheelchair when they went to the hospital for her biopsy, because he couldn't walk enough to handle the hospital's halls. She said she lost her grip on the wheelchair going down a long ramp, and hospital staff had to stop Daddy at the bottom. When he stopped, she said he was confused about where she had gone. She said she fell when the chair got away, and the staff insisted on taking her to the ER to be checked. She has nasty bruises on her knees. She said the two of them were in wheelchairs by the time they were ready to go home, and got pushed to their car to avoid them getting hurt again before leaving the hospital. It always bothers me to hear how they're both deteriorating. I know he has Alzheimers, and gets confused and forgetful a lot, and she got the medication as soon as they found signs of her also having it. Of course, he'll be 79 and she'll be 77 next month.

701758  Link to this entry 
Written about Sunday 2005-11-13
Written: (5630 days ago)

1:58 am
Let's see, what did I do today?

I cut the boys' hair. It was well over their ears, and getting shaggy. Actually, Tommy looks good with it a little longer, but Robby's is too thick and straight to be long. Now, their hair is about half an inch long all over. Two of my knuckles have the battle scars from Robby, but Tommy really managed not to struggle much this time.

I finished outlining the new version of Lewis's patents of nobility for the SCA. The old one is ruined with melted wax. The new one is now ready to be painted.

I started carving the stonework on Lewis's guard tower. That's going to take some time. The screw I used on the merchant shop was too small for comfort. The gutter nail I was using on the church is too long and heavy. Tonight I remembered the small, double-ended knitting needles in my sewing box. I got one, and it's carving the plaster beautifully!

I worked on my wall calendar at Cafe Press. It's almost done.

I actually sat and watched TV with the kids a bit. That was different. I had both kids and the cat all on my lap at one point, cuddling. That was nice.

I washed a load of laundry, but it was dark before I remembered it, so I couldn't hang it out. I'll try again tomorrow.

I'm still having weird dreams at night.

701757  Link to this entry 
Written about Saturday 2005-11-12
Written: (5630 days ago)

5:57 pm
And a new ticket is submitted. :)

"Ticket #462596 is currently in place 1737 out of 1737."

701753  Link to this entry 
Written about Saturday 2005-11-12
Written: (5630 days ago)

5:27 pm
My latest Elfwood ticket got processed. Yay! Now to start building the next one.

701752  Link to this entry 
Written about Friday 2005-11-11
Written: (5630 days ago)

5:37 pm
I almost lost my computer last night. Lewis restarted it after playing a game, because the virtual memory was low - not unusual - and it got stuck on the memory check on the restart. About ten tries later, when Lewis was really freaking out, I decided to shut it down and go to bed. It was about 1:30, after all. I know this will sound odd, but I prayed and asked God to fix my computer. This morning, I pressed the power button, and Windows came up just as usual. Am I grateful? OH YEAH!

I started remaking Lewis's patents of nobility for his SCA persona last night. The original got ruined when it was left in the car toio long and the wax pendant seals melted all over it. I have all of the pencil work done, and will do the ink outlining tonight.

I finished another fun illumination. I'll scan it later and post it. I have yet another in the white work stage, so I'll finish the white, gild it, and scan them at the same time. The first says "Enchanted," and the other says "Blessed Be."

I just about froze my fingers hanging laundry yesrday. It was a cold, blustery day. By the end of the second load, I was having trouble making my fingers squeeze the clothespin. I was actually in tears from the cold and related pain when I came inside. I'll be very glad when Lewis gets the dryer fixed!

701751  Link to this entry 
Written about Wednesday 2005-11-09
Written: (5630 days ago)

:58 pm
It's been a long day, but mostly pretty good.

I took the kids to their library group this morning. We went almost an hour early because Tommy wanted to have time to read books together before it started. The theme for today was Native Americans. They had a few stories, several songs (including way too many verses of 10 Little Indians), and made papooses out of paper lunch bags. Denna brought cornmeal cookies and pumpkin muffins that she had made for the kids.

I spent the greater part of the afternoon cutting out stencils for more wooden signs Lewis has decided we need for the store.

I did a small load of laundry, then discovered that nearly half of my clothespins are missing. The kids swear they didn't take them. I found enough hiding in the grass to get the clothes up, but it was close.

Tommy and I worked on phonics while I was frying the potatoes for supper. He worked on ou/ow, singular and plurar possessives, and rhyming words. Sitting at the kitchen counter seemed to work well for him.

I'm working on my CafePress store now, adding some new products.

701750  Link to this entry 
Written about Wednesday 2005-11-09
Written: (5630 days ago)

2:11 pm
I had another weird dream last night.

I woke up in a hospital, and was told I had passed out in a store. I sort of knew my blood sugar had been low, so that made sense. Then they said I had to have a guardian give permission to release me. I argued that I was 36, and they said various things about me being too crazy to release myself. Then they injected something into the IV going into my right arm. I tried to pull the IV out, but the drug got to me and I passed out.

When I woke up, the doctors said I had been unconscious for three days. There was a long conversation then with the doctors saying I was crazy, and me trying to convince them I wasn't. Then, as I was getting really scared, I heard Lewis's voice in the hall, trying to find me, and I screamed. He and my pastor came in. It turned out that it was the day before Christmas Eve, and I had been missing for over six weeks. They had the FBI looking for me. A friend of Brett's who was a nurse had seen me at the hospital, even though the FBI didn't find me there, which was why Lewis was there looking for me.

There was a big commotion that involved police then, and I was sent home. On the way, the pastor said I'd lost weight and needed to stop at Walmart for clothes. Then I noticed my clothes were ridiculously loose. I had lost about 170 pounds in the hospital.

Once home, we were trying to wrap Christmas presents, when reporters showed up to cover my abduction and rescue.

It was really vividly clear, like watching it on TV. It was weird.

701749  Link to this entry 
Written about Wednesday 2005-11-09
Written: (5630 days ago)

1:48 am
As usual, I'm tired. I spent the greater part of the day drawing and painting again. (Believe In Magic)

I have another one almost fully outlined in ink, that I should be able to finish tomorrow.

I updated my CafePress shop some. I also made some mental notes of changes I need to make there. While I was there, I captured screen shots of all my product pages to use in making a catalog to keep on my desk at the store.

Supper was really late. I was already reading bedtime stories to the kids when Lewis said it was ready. We got them up to go eat at 10 PM. Ugh! At least they ate decently, and went to sleep pretty easily afterward.

Lewis and Brett picked up the new weapons shipment. They got me a set of bodice daggers this time around. Pretty little trinkets, and sharp. I like it. They have a little double sheath, and very pretty handles.

While they were in town, they got me a "textures of ivory" paper assortment. It's got some nice, subtle papers in it, though the one ridged paper looks questionable. They got me more cardstock, too.

701748  Link to this entry 
Written about Wednesday 2005-11-09
Written: (5630 days ago)

1:46 am

Daniel called today. He spent last night in the hospital. His cell mates held him down and forced him to swallow some pills. I had a very long heart to heart with his lawyer on the phone after he called. Among other things, the lawyer wants to have him evaluated psychologically, to which I enthusiastically agreed. We discussed how a hospital is far better than a jail for him. Mental hospital. He's going to contact Daniel's former psychologist. The one who was the county mental health director, is also a real doctor, and gave us the diagnosis in the first place. Lewis is finally completely behind that decision, too. At last.

701747  Link to this entry 
Written about Tuesday 2005-11-08
Written: (5630 days ago)

11:49 am
It's a gloomy day. I had weird dreams last night, which seemed to involve Sandy the cat and his evil twin. It's all hazy, but it was very odd.

I was up at 2 AM to let Roxie back into the yard. I don't know how she got out, but she was barking at the gate, wanting to come in.

Tommy and I are working on phonics, using a stack of Word Works magazines that Ann gave me. He does a great job, and is starting to read the recurring words, but he still loses interest fast. We just have to keep going back to it. So far, these magazines and our Dr Seuss workbook seem to be the most effective for him.

I've got another fun illumination going on my desk. I have it drawn, traced, and outlined. I should finish it today. It says "Believe in magic," and uses a variation of my new wizard design.

701746  Link to this entry 
Written about Monday 2005-11-07
Written: (5630 days ago)

9:08 pm
I've been on a painting frenzy. I started about midnight last night, stopped to sleep about 3, and started again a little after 8 this morning. The result? Two "just for fun" illuminations that I really, really like.

(Castle and Magic)

I'll be taking both of them down to the store in the next day or two.

Robby's running a fever tonight. He's playing like normal, but he's hardly eating, and he put himself down for a nap this afternoon. I'm going to be home with him tomorrow, I guess, at least part of the day.

We ordered more swords and other weapons for the store today. We'll have them sometime tomorrow. :)

701744  Link to this entry 
Written about Sunday 2005-11-06
Written: (5630 days ago)

1:48 pm
I went to bed at 10:30 last night, and ended up having a weird dream.

I was in a house, I think it was this house, looking out the back door. In the yard, up a small hill to my right (which isn't there in reality), there was an old, wooden shed. I was curious about it, and just getting ready to go see what was in it, when I noticed a white singlewide trailer just below and beyond the shed, facing up the hill. Someone out of view reminded me that the trailer was where Louie Watson lived, and that I'd better stay away. (Louie is a nice guy in reality.) As I was watching, Louie's brother Clyde came out of the trailer carring a black garbage bag that looked full. He was wearing a navy blue suit that was too snug to button, and walked like a penguin. He carried the bag to the interesting shed, at which point I remembered knowing the shed was for garbage.

I went out to talk to Clyde, and found myself on a sort of paved walkway on a grassy hilltop, looking down on the trailer on my right and the back door of my house on the left. Clyde and the shed were nowhere in sight, but a very large (think lumberjack) man with a lot of bushy, dark hair and matching beard, riding one of those tint indoor scooter things they make for people who can't get around, was just in front of me. He and his scooter fell over just then. He lay on the ground and laughed about it, but then another man, maybe late 20s, Italian-looking, also on one of those scooters, fell over just down the path from him. I found myself leaning over the first man, who made a rather large mound to lean over, and helping the second man get upright again, reaching ten feet or more to do so. Then I helped the first man, who was still laughing, to get up.

Then I was at some sort of festival or celebration. I want to say it was a wedding of sorts. Robby was to be in some sort of race, running with a little girl. I strolled with some other women through a park-like treelot to the slope of a hill, where I looked down and saw Robby and the girl burst out of the bushes and run pell-mell across a paved road toward my hill, which was carpeted with yellow and brown leaves.

There was more to do with the wedding, but it's very hazy now, except that at least some of it was inside a pink room, and there was no actual wedding.

Anyway, back to reality.

The boys and I went to church today. The Anchor of Hope service was fine, but Robby pretty well lost it during the Galena service. I had to bring them home at Scripture time, because he was thrashing on the floor, kicking and yelling, though I'm not sure why. Frances brought them a bag of Halloween candy, and she made them each a fabric book. At Galena, Howard had two dozen eggs and a bag of reading textbooks that Ann had sent for the boys.

701741  Link to this entry 
Written about Saturday 2005-11-05
Written: (5630 days ago)

9:37 am
Today's the day. I'm not sure we're ready, but we open in an hour and a half.

I had weird dreams last night. Somehow, I was staying with rich people, or part of a rich family. There was a housekeeper, and I kept getting into trouble for doing her work. Oddly, it was this house. At one point, the door from the laundry room to the kitchen was sealed up with pink plaster and wallboard, so I was stuck in the bedroom area. Sometime after that, the housekeeper was sitting at the dining room table, and the father of the family was saying she couldn't eat dinner with the family. Lunch, maybe, but not dinner. Because she was a servant. I hugged her shoulders from behind and told her I had been a housekeeper when I was in college, so I understood. Now, I really was a housekeeper, but I never went to college in the usual sense. Still, the dream flashed to several memories of lunch and tea breaks in the rectory kitchen. All in all, it was a restless sleep, at best.

Brett and I were up until 2 AM, putting her necklaces on cards for display. She made 25, plus a bracelet. They're really beautiful! She used a lot of quartz, rose quartz, amethyst, hematite, moonstone, bloodstone, jasper, amber, and a couple whose names I don't remember, as well as some standard clear crystals.

701740  Link to this entry 
Written about Friday 2005-11-04
Written: (5630 days ago)

The store opens in the morning! Yay! We're nearly ready, too. I'm really excited.

I finished painting the window this morning. I'll be sure to get pictures.

I'm really tired, but I have work yet to do tonight. At least I feel a bit better. My fever broke.

Roxie and Spooner kept getting loose today. I love having a fenced yard, but there are too many gates with iffy latches. The boys and I went for a walk with the leash to find Roxie and bring her home, even.

I'm off to card jewelry.

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