Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Bunny's Shutter Shock Challenge

Tristin at 2
For those uninitiated, Bunny has posted a "Shutter-Shock" challenge and this is the 6th picture in the 6th folder on my pc. I know it is Tristin and I know this was taken off my back deck about 5 years ago on a cool spring day. He was still in diapers! And coincidentally, I posted about him tonight, lol.
And I don't KNOW HOW to tag others, Bunny, so it stops here, I guess. Sorry :(

The "Wrestler"

Watching Others and Waiting

My 6 year old grandson Tristin decided he wanted to wrestle last year and what fun he had! He won several medals and is back at it again this year! Last year I was really worried about him getting hurt, but this year I know he is paying attention and learning to be safe while he WINS!

Tristin in Action

I haven't gotten to see him yet this year except in photos, but I get a regular play-by-play from his Mom. He has been sick this week with a strep throat and missed last night, but hopefully will be all well before Friday night.

Going for the Pin

He's a real competitor and has had to at least TRY every sport available to him. He traded in soccer this year for flag football and I think he likes football much better. They are going on simultaneously so he can't do both. I'll keep you posted periodically on this year's progress, but things are looking good for him.

Do you think it's time I quit referring to him as the "baby"? This is hard, very hard.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Extraction

Polly's Pretty Teeth
in a very old picture

Sorry I haven't been here for the last few days. I've been anxiously awaiting the appointed time and place to have "THE TOOTH" problem taken care of. In a prior post I had been to the dentist on Feb. 16th and came away with a diagnosis of an abcessed tooth that absolutely could not be saved.

Today was the day. I worked most of the day saving the worst till last. After leaving my car at the shop this morning and receiving a call informing me of the WIRES showing and having to make the unplanned purchase of 4 new ones, off I went to the dentist.

This is much worse than it sounds, but of course I am a "whiner" from way back. Dr. Randy knows this and I'm sure, prepares himself for me before my arrival. I was so nervous that when the girl called me from the waiting room, she had to wake me up. Another lady there was laughing because she said I was snoring. Umm, ladies don't snore, but I didn't take time to correct her.

Required INJECTIONS into my gaping mouth brought tears to my eyes. (This is probably making most of you queasy about right now.) Then he comes toward me with this HUGE set of what looks like clean wire pliars and begins loosening my tooth, working it back and forth, back and forth. I grabbed his arm as I thought my jaw was breaking. He truly didn't think that part was too funny and gave me a second to chill out. Back again with the pliars and out comes the biggest, ugliest thing you have ever seen!

Dr. Randy declared that to be the tooth, but that's not what it looked like when I faithfully brushed and flossed ?????

Home again, home again. PJ's on and longing for food. I finally found a can of french onion soup and have drank it down. Yummy, not, but filling nonetheless.

My whole jaw is hurting. I am the one who refused a prescription for pain pills. My jaw is REALLY hurting.

Take care of your teeth. I'm trying.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Birthday Love Letter to My Son

David and Me on his Birthday LAST year

Always so PROUD of my Son

Making Faces as a Teenager

David with his Dad

David with His Sister

My Boy

David at Christmas

My Baby David

February 18, 1974

Thirty-five years ago today was undisputedly the happiest day of my life. God blessed me with the greatest gift, my son David. And today he is a man. A married man and father of two children of his own. A man I am so proud to know and to love so deeply, as only a Mother can know.
It seems we did everything right,his father and I. We married and David was born 5 days shy of our first anniversary and soon became who I was. I was a MOM. When I was a little girl growing up I can remember saying what I wanted to be when I grew up was a Mom. And here he was, all 5 lbs. 14 1/2 oz. of boy. He was small, but he was perfect. Kissing all his fingers and toes and rarely putting him down. David brought me joy, David brings me joy.
I won't go into a long discertation reviewing his life. He was a typical little boy, rough and rowdy but always laughing. He is still usually smiling.
He has always been a daring child and has been in many accidents, usually involving a 4-wheeler of some sort and a tree or other immovable object. I have spent many hours praying for healing for him.
He married Barbie and blessed me with two adorable grandchildren, Sydney and Hayden. And yes, I love them more than I can say. But there is nothing to compare with the love I have for their Dad.
I am so proud to know him. And I am so proud I can call him my son.

Waiting for David

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

No More Nutri-System

The No-More Nutri-System Dessert


Walgreens Drive-Thru

Today was Teresa's day to come clean for me and wow, my house was ready for her! I love Tuesdays. Even the garbage men come on Tuesday.
Regular day at work even though the abscessed tooth required semi-regular doses of Motrin to make it tolerable. After work I ran by the local Walgreen's drive-thru window to pick up by prescriptions which were, SURPRISE, ready. These were the prescriptions I got yesterday.
I didn't want to get out of the car a. because I'm so lazy and b. because it was freezing rain outside and I didn't wear a coat.
To Rafferty's in Clarksville for dinner and as you can tell from the picture the Nutri-System is all boxed up in the closet. Hey, I wore a suit to work today that I haven't worn ALL YEAR.. that deserved chocolate and ice cream!
The bottom picture is of a friend of mine from church, Wanda Sullivan. I am teased quite regularly about where "my pew" is in church. I sit right in the midst of a delegation of senior single/widowed ladies. I love it! It's the only place I know of that a 55 year old "girl" and go and be referred to as the "baby". Yep, I fit right in there.
Wanda sits directly in front of me and was diagnosed with cancer a few short months ago and this afternoon Wanda died. I am thankful she will not suffer any longer but rue my loss. She was a beautiful, giving lady and was always a LADY. Never a hair out of place, never forgot a birthday or get well card. She worked in the kitchen at church with all the meals until her illness forced her to stop. She will be missed, she already is.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Just a Big Pain in the Mouth

Today was pretty slow at work, thank goodness. I had to get my son's birthday package in the mail to him, which didn't look promising since today was a POSTAL holiday ??? So, I took the hilarious gag gift along with a check to the UPS store. THEY don't take President's Day off and promised me it would be there tomorrow. How about that for service? He'll never even know I was almost too late.
I thought I had a dental appointment for 4:30 this afternoon until I looked at my calendar. Oops, it was for 2:30 so I had to scurry around and leave Frank alone all afternoon. I apologized profusely and he was pretty gracious about it, actually.
I showed up right on time for my 6 month check-up and told my hygienist something had been bothering me but I couldn't even tell if it was my gums or a tooth, just general "bothering me". She said it was time for x-rays anyway so after a thorough cleaning, Dr. Randy came in to SHOW me what had been bothering me.
Turns out I have a seriously abscessed tooth. It is so bad as there is no BONE there to do anything with. My only option is to have it extracted. I went so far as to ask him if he was really a dentist, because dentists don't extract teeth anymore, do they? He just laughed while he wrote a prescription for an antibiotic and for a yeast infection killer. Yep, I'm one of those. If I take an antibiotic, he might as well go on and write that one, too, cause I'm gonna need it.
Okay, I know that's a little more information than some of you need, so we'll move on. He asked if I wanted a prescription for a pain killer. Then it was MY turn to laugh, responding that it wasn't HURTING, it was just bothering me. "Are you sure?" he asked. NOOOO, I don't want a prescription for a pain killer.
I left the dentist office and headed to a Republican Women's Club meeting and while there, I felt the place in my mouth that had only been "bothering" me begin to HURT.
I am at home now with a throbbing mouth! Where's that PAINKILLER when you need it?
Hurting at home,

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Mardi Gras Party on Valentine's Day

Friends Enjoying the Food
Sam and Scott
Our Entertainment

Coolest King Cake Ever

The Jester
Wins the Prize for Best-Dressed

Just the "girls"
(Polly's in the Middle )

These are just a few random pictures from the party last night. Those of you who are my facebook friends have already seen them, though.
It was a lot of people, a lot of food and a great time.
There ARE a few interesting stories to tell, though. My friends Mike and Gail had neighbors who had to move away a year or so ago and they were so close that they referred to them as "their other kids". I invited Cecil and Carol to this party and they drove all the way from the Atlanta, GA area to be here in western KY as a SURPRISE. They got here about an hour before party time and instead of going to Mike and Gail's, came directly to MY house to surprise them. That was really great!
The guys from my work had brought dry wood for a fire out back and huge propane heaters for the deck. We set the bar up outside but wow, the wind was howling and it was freezing outside, so the only time anybody went out was to get a drink! That was a flop. Of course when people got thirsty, they didn't have many options except to race out to the deck and race back in. That was hilarious.
The vocalist I had was really pretty good! I hadn't heard him before but hired him through a friend who knew a friend, etc. I have NEW friends now, love Sam AND his wife Coco. They're pretty cool.
The house is not in too bad shape altogether and I had time to clean it all up perfectly today but instead took Mom to church this morning and did NOTHING this afternoon. What a great day!
It was wonderful being with all my friends last night and sharing some light-hearted fun. Now tomorrow it will be back to work but I sure have some fun memories to take with me!
Until next time,

Friday, February 13, 2009

Friday the 13th

The Mess in the Kitchen Tonight

Baked Snack Mix with Honey and Powedered Mustard

Still Daylight when the Stock was Simmering!

Missing Shingles

Knowing today was Valentine's Day Eve didn't sweeten the fact that I am having a big Mardi Gras party tomorrow night AND the people who catered it for me last year moved BACK to New Orleans. No problem! I will just cook myself. WOW, what a mistake!!
My gumbo recipe is four pages long.....typewritten. This is not good. No, I can't use store-bought chicken stock so the first 5 hours into this was simply for the stock using 10 pounds of chicken backs and yukky pieces along with what seemed like 50 other ingredients.
It is almost 2:00 a.m. now and I have just this minute finished in the kitchen. BUT the gumbo is made and I actually tasted it. It is fabulous. Now if the party will be just as fabulous I will be happy.
So many preparations. I WAS able to hire a musician and a girl for the kitchen. The guys from work brought outdoor heaters over today, we'll put them on the deck. Lots of tree limbs around here to burn for a bonfire, too.
My friend Gail is making shrimp creole and her husband Mike makes red beans and rice, Sharon is bringing pralines, Jimmy is making a King Cake, lots of friends bringing lots of food and drink. Wish you could all come and share with us!

Belle Brown at 4 months old

Of course I'm including an updated picture of Belle and one of missing shingles that I documented before I call the insurance adjuster.
Happy Valentine's Day to all of you!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Uncle Odis

Odis and Eva Gatlin
My Uncle Odis' funeral was Monday afternoon and I took time away from work to do what I thought was the "right thing" . I picked Mother up as she wanted to go, too. It was held in a small funeral home in a very small town near here on a warm February afternoon. I had dreaded going as it was always uncomfortable for me to even visit other funeral homes, as this is also my profession.
Upon entering, we did the traditional thing by signing the register book and making our way to the front of the "chapel" to speak to Aunt Eva. She was composed and elegant, as always, but of course, very saddened. I have written in previous posts about his illness so this was not a totally unexpected death.
We seated ourselves near the back of the family section and watched as the little chapel began to fill with mourners. I saw many cousins and Mother was happy to be able to see many of her friends from that area that she is not able to see as often since she moved to Hopkinsville.
The little room filled quickly and began to overflow to a standing-room only crowd, as was befitting the man who had no enemies to my knowledge.
As the pastor of their church began to speak, my thoughts turned to those around me. It seems that just a few short years ago I was a little girl and these middle-aged folks were children, too. We saw each other at holidays, reunions, weddings, funerals. Now they had grandchildren with them and we only see each other at funerals. Many of us had lost a parent or maybe both. It was the saddest day I recall for quite some time.
Then I thought of Odis. Lots of thoughts of Odis. When I was about 10 or 12, my Mother was involved in a very serious automobile accident. She was actually hospitalized for more than a year. During that time our family was separated and Uncle Odis and Aunt Eva took me into their home and cared for me.
He was a simple, hard-working man. He worked days in the underground coal mines and eventually was able to purchase a small farm in Hopkins County. At that time, he had two small boys of his own and of course, Aunt Eva did not work outside the home.
He did not complain but gladly fed and clothed me, sent me to school and even paid for my piano lessons. They made sure I was in church every Sunday and loved deeply. I will never forget that time in my life nor the unselfishness with which they opened their homes and hearts to a little niece who needed them.
Of course, time passed and thankfully Mom fully recovered from that tragedy and we were all reunited.
Eventually Odis and Eva joined the Madisonville Church of Christ (coming from a Disciples of Christ Church) and things changed between us.
I am now a Baptist and believe that there is a place in heaven for all of us. I do not criticize other religions, especially those that I do not understand. But they did not understand me, I fear. They let me know quickly that I would "burn in hell" as only members of the Church of Christ may enter heaven. So of course, there grew a rift between us. I am sorry about that. I was sorry about that then.
My father died last year at the age of 80, but was saved and baptized at the nursing home where he was confined only a year and a half before he died. Aunt Eva and Uncle Odis would not come. I am sorry about that, too. My Dad was deeply hurt. Their pastor used to visit him but stopped after he was baptized by our Baptist minister. I am sorry about that, too.
I am thrilled that my Dad lived long enough to accept Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior and know he is in a better place. I feel that my Uncle Odis is in a better place, too. Yes, I believe members of the Church of Christ will meet me in heaven, too.
I miss my Dad every day. I miss my Uncle Odis.

Friday, February 6, 2009

I Want It To Be Friday!

Wait, it IS Friday! But what a Friday it was. And to know that I have the pleasure of working all weekend.
Today started out pretty good, as I got to sleep until 6:30 this morning. Mother had an appointment with Dr. Riggs to talk about some issues she has and how to proceed. The appointment was for 9:45 and I started calling her at 8 to remind her to get ready. No answer. Showered and dried my hair. Called again, no answer. I was starting to get really antsy when she finally answered at about 9. She had been to the beauty shop and was checking out the items for the Heart Bake Sale they were having at Chapel House and was quick to inform me she was ALREADY ready to go and waiting on ME.
Okay, so I go pick her up and we get to the Dr.'s office 10 minutes ahead of our appointment. After waiting for 15 or 20 minutes, his nurse comes out to tell us he has been delayed at the hospital and it should be another 20 minutes or so. Okay, I've taken time off work, picked her up and waited this long, I will wait till he comes.
Suffice it to say, it was almost 11:30 before he showed up. I thought my 79 year old mother was going to punch him, or at least say something to embarrass me until I felt like crawling under the table. So she, in effect, "defused" my impatience. How could I misbehave when my biggest fear was that SHE would do the same thing. Boy, this switching roles with your Mother as they age is NOT fun. I don't always like being the grown-up here. After the visit, I took her straight home and raced to work, fearing the worst which would have been to be desperately needed and just NOT there.
It seems everything was under chaotic control, as usual, but I was behind the 8-ball with papers piled high on my desk. Ken had a funeral scheduled this afternoon and thankfully, he didn't need me to help, just to stay in the building for phone calls and walk-in people or even a death call.
It did give me a little time to get caught up on the paperwork.
An update on my Uncle Odis who I posted about last month. He died last night and is now at peace. I am praying for my Aunt Eva and for their children, Mark, Mitchell and Dawn and for their grandchildren. He was a Christian and so I am comforted in that as I am sure they are, too.
My son David called from LaRue County tonight. He has been working so hard to clear debris and things are in much better shape now with many folks still out of power, but all being cared for in their community. AND Hayden, my youngest grandchild at 3 years old, has chickenpox! He is running a low-grade fever and feels bad, but is doing as well as can be expected. His precious sister Sydney, is at her other grandmother's trying to avoid the virus, but I'm sure she's already been exposed. Ah, such is life.
I wish it was Friday! MY kind of Friday.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Charlie's With the Guys

Twenty years ago yesterday, Scott graduated from Mortuary College and came to work for Alan at the funeral home. He came and went a couple of times, or so I understand, but finally STUCK. Tonight our professional staff went to Charlie's for a really nice steak dinner in an atmosphere that was NOT all work.

As anyone from northwest Kentucky or southwest Tennessee knows, Charlie's Steakhouse in Oak Grove is an institution around here and you can't get a better steak at any price. Of course Scott, in the top picture, has his a little too rare for MY taste.

Frank and Scott seem to be listening intently to some story Alan is telling. hmmm

BUT it looks like he enjoyed the night along with the rest of us. It was a good time, even if it IS a work night. Here's to another twenty years!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Meet Belle Brown....the Newest Member of our Family !

Yesterday started as any ordinary Monday, hectic as all get-out! Payroll to do, reports for the staff meeting, a family to meet with (unexpectedly, of course) and the list goes on.
One of my part-time employees, Harold, was bemoaning the fact that his son had decided, with the economy the way it is, that he was going to thin his menagerie of pets that include several horses, dogs and I truly don't know what all. He explained that they had paid $300. for this adorable pomeranian/schitzu mix (two of them) but if Harold didn't find someone to take it, he was taking her to the POUND! And you know what happens after 7 days at the pound.
I work so much and am home so little that I have always known I would not be a good "Mom" to a pet but I immediately thought of my Mom!

Harold was excited and called his granddaughter who scheduled an "interview" so she could see for herself who would be taking care of Belle and where she would live. She is about 10 years old and was NOT excited to send Belle to another home, especially to someone she didn't know.
I think is was love at first sight! My Mom has been grieving for my Dad since his death in May (and maybe even before that, when he was confined to the nursing home). I have read many articles about how owning a pet can be the turning point for lots of older people, but I just wasn't sure how she would react.

Turns out Baby Belle is a serious "lap dog" and my Mom is eating it up. She calls her "my Baby" and carries her around the house like one. I took her a baby blanket today and here they are, all snuggled up together. She even slept with her last night.
Belle is a dream come true, a prayer answered and I think they just MAY have saved each other.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

A Sunday Cleaning

The sun is shining beautifully and it is almost 60 outside after the worst ice storm in my memory (and many others, too).
So many men and women are working feverishly to get power restored to all of Kentucky and have been doing so since the beginning. I continue to pray for their safety and praise their hard work and efforts.
I am at home today with much to do. Garbage to take out, dirty dishes scattered about, laundry calling my name if I listen hard enough, muddy boots to clean up, it seems the list is endless of chores that I should be doing. Yet here I am procrastinating again. Hey, I DID tackle the ironing board last night and finished! I found clothes I hadn't seen in so long I almost forgot I had them. That part was great!

Those of you who KNOW me, know that cleaning is NOT my strong suit. The first luxury I afforded myself when I could possibly do it, was to hire my beloved Teresa, who cleans up after me on a semi-regular basis.

Although I think I am very feminine, I very much hate most all housework. I DO want my house to be all clean and tidy, I just don't want to be the one to do it.

Now cooking is another matter. It seems after my children were grown, I silently protested the kitchen and didn't cook hardly at all for many years. In the past few years, the "entertaining" bug bit me and I have revived the love of the kitchen. Maybe having a remodeled kitchen a couple of years ago had something to do with it, too.

My niece that I was so worried about emailed me this morning and their power has been restored. They are all warm and safe. Madisonville, KY is slowly coming back to life.

Tomorrow I will return to work to face who-knows-what. That's the best part of my job, never knowing what will be next. It is certainly never boring. I do hope they weren't too busy this weekend. We have a professional staff meeting on Tuesday and I will have reports to generate. I know of only one employee of ours without power and he DOES have heat so I don't worry about them.

I am missing my children today and wondering what they are doing. They are with other family members and so I know they are warm and safe with food and shelter. I just miss them incredibly. I would have driven there to see them, but they are not at their home and there is no gas to buy there.

I actually own a little rental house there, although it is empty now. I need to call my son and have him check on it as there are several trees in the front yard close to the house (roof). He is wonderful and will clear brush for me from the yard when he gets time.

I haven't written much about him. David owns a small concrete finishing business in Buffalo, KY and is also a volunteer fireman for the Buffalo Volunteer Fire Department. He is certified in too many things for me to mention, but he works a LOT voluntarily and I know he has spent the past several days working hard to help get older folks to shelters, clearing roads and checking on several elderly families in his community on a regular basis. He does so much and asks for nothing in return. He is absolutely my hero!

He was so fortunate and proud when Laura Bush visited Hodgenville (Lincoln's birthplace) that he was selected to help with her security. Of course, she had Secret Service everywhere, but there was a lot for the local folks to do. That is a proud memory for him to cherish always and one for me to share.

I am way "off track" here but am going to do HOUSEWORK....... right now! :)