Saturday, May 30, 2009

Home from the night out

Well, I got to all 3 events.  Went to the grad party, was there for about an hour and a half.  Sat with the programmer from work, his partner and then the other programmer and his wife.  Missed K & J because I got the call that the hub and daughter were going to sing.  The house where the party was at was a huge mansion.

Got to the HS, listened to them sing, I got teary eyed at in the middle of it.  I got it on the camera, wonder if I can post it here or not?  Also watched the show choir stuff.  They were great.  I missed all the teary eyed stuff that the daughter went thru as she realized she was ending her 4 years with the choirs.  A hugely valuable part of her HS life.

Left there went to book club.  All in all, I spent about an hour and half at each event.  

I decided to wear a fitted dress for the evening.  with makeup and 3 inch black slingbacks.  Good thing I wore a cardigan, it was cold.  I thought maybe if I wore a dress with cleavage I could detract from my very obvious splint.  Uhhhh, people noticed it anyway.  LOL.  Basically, I was a well dressed nose for the evening.  A few people at school actually said something about my nose splint.  

Which was a little surprising.  Today at the store I was on the phone with my friend and telling her that most people would stare at me but then their eyes slid right past my face and they'd pretend there wasn't a giant white plastic thing in the middle of my face.  The woman in front of me (who didn't see me come up behind her) turned around and looked at me and then said to me: "I didn't even notice it at all!"  Bwhahahahaha.

I told Doni tonight (she came to the concert) that I thought I might want to collage the splint.  LOL.  Maybe with the word "Broken" across the front of it.  I'm thinking everyone thinks I got a nose job and a bad one at that.  "hmmmmm, she paid for THAT?"

It was a nice evening even tho I didn't get a whole lot of quality time with everyone at every event. I'm going to need tomorrow to recoup.

Oh and special thanks to the daughter who actually trimmed my hair.  She did a pretty good job.  

The social schedule for today

It's not surprising I didn't sleep til  late last night.  Probably 3:30 is when I fell asleep.  And here I am awake.  The dogs are out, the boys are fed so I can go back to bed for a while.  

Tonight I have to go to 3 things all basically at the same time.  It's gonna take some coordination.

I have a graduation party at 5:30

A choir concert at 5:30

Book club at 7

Here is my plan.  I go to the grad party til I get a phone call from the husband telling me about when he and my daughter sing their solo.  I leave the grad party go to the concert, hang out there til after they sing and then go to book club.  

It'll all work if the solo is about 7 or 7:30.  It might be that late because the danged concert usually lasts til 10 or 10:30.  Hopefully when the husband and daughter go to rehearsal today the husband can find out about where they are in the program.  

If the solo is earlier than that I'll have to go to the grad party, the concert, back to the grad party and then to book club.  

Today I have to go buy a gift for the grad and if I have any money get my hair trimmed.  I don't think I have enough for both, it's the end of the month.  It'll depend on how creative I can be with whatever gift I decide to get her.  

Hopefully Sunday will be nice and quiet cuz I think I am gonna be beat from all the running around I have to do today.  

Friday, May 29, 2009

The procedure

I've slept the day away.  Got there at 8:25, had my vitals taken (blood pressure at 90/59) got whatever drug they gave me around 9:45.  I do not remember going into surgery.   Then I woke up in recovery with a really sore throat and pressure in my nose.

My nose doesn't feel too badly, my throat is crazy sore.  They gave me apple juice in recovery, I thought it would help sooth the sore throat but no.

The husband drove me home and was gonna stop at Starbucks to get me a latte.  But I asked him to take me home directly.  I was feeling sick and didn't think I could handle idling in the driveup.  You know I was feeling badly if I chose going home instead of getting a coffee that I sorely needed.  My head was already exploding before surgery because of the lack of caffeine.

I got up once today around 3, but after 30 mins went back to sleep.  I remember hearing thunder and thinking "it's all thundery outside" and then I was out again.  

The husband got me some jello, good thing.  And earlier he did get me a latte and I'm still sipping on it hours later.  

The nose splint is this weird white plastic that looks like a grid but if you touch it there is no texture to it.  It's just smooth plastic.  And it's giant (it probably isn't but it looks giant to me).  hahaha, it does hold my glasses way up so I can see well and the pads are not digging into my nose.  That will help heal those bruised spots where the pads hurt me.  What a benefit eh?

Ya know my knee surgery last year was easier in that once I got home from recovery I was up for the day mostly.  I didn't feel badly from the drugs.  This time I was totally wiped.  Bummer.

I hope tomorrow I feel better because I have too much to do to be feeling like crap.  I think I'll go to bed again so I can get as much rest as possible.

Oh and guess what drug they gave me for pain?  Vicodin again.  I hate vicodin and won't get it filled.  

I'm keeping my fingers crossed that my nose looks fine once the stupid splint comes off.  He wants me to keep it on for 3 wks, but said the adhesive might be unsticky in about 2 so he wants me to tape it on.  I'm hoping that by week 2 I won't need it and can forget taping it on.  

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I'm already missing my latte

I still don't know what time my procedure is on Friday.   I called today and I was told they call you the day before.  Weird.  Good thing I know not to eat after midnight and not to eat in the morning.  I hope the time is early.  The earlier the better so I don't have to be tortured by a lack of coffee.  

I mean if you could have one of these every morning wouldn't you be tortured if you couldn't have one?  Even if you don't do the steamed milk art? 

I want one right now.  But I think I'll refrain.  For now.  Tomorrow morning I'll make myself a double.  

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

How much blood do you have to give the courts each year?

Another summons to jury duty.  Every year almost without fail I get called.  I haven't served locally for 14 months but about 6 or 8 months ago I had to serve (only 1 day tho) a federal case.  I guess I'm lucky that federal cases can only call for a juror every 2 years but locally I can be called every year.  

I don't have any excuse not to go, that's only happened once.  I got called for a date in Dec 1991 but the date was my daughters due date so I got myself excused.  She was actually born on the day I was supposed to serve.

Today I went to get an ekg and bloodwork.  Took forever because first they didn't have my lab work in the system yet and I got there too early...they don't answer the phones til 8:30 a.m.  When they finally got it in the system I went up to the lab and the woman only checked me in for my bloodwork, not the ekg.

The blood people told me to sit in that waiting room and they'd call me.  But at least 5 people were called who came after me.  So I checked with the front desk and found out they never did check me in for the ekg.

Once I got in for the ekg, it was fast.  The rest of the day was uneventful.

Well, 'cept for that summons that was waiting for me when I got home.  

Monday, May 25, 2009

The weekend revisited

Today I washed my car.  For some odd reason the husband asked: Why are you washing your car?  Because it's filthy.  Hello.

Then I trimmed the wisteria.  It's overgrown (which happens in just a few days) and all the greenery was smacking me in the face every time I walked in or our of the house.  Because I kept running into it and my nose is still tender (plus I am unconciously flinching every time something comes near my face) I had to do it.  

(Yesterday I trimmed this funky tree-like thing that drags all of it's leaves on my car as I pull out of the driveway.  Each time I snipped off a branch I got a little paranoid that it would flip up and hit me in the face.)

Then I went out and weedwhacked some yard.  We don't have lawn, just foxtails at this point...well, except we have these stickery weeds that sprung up by one of the faucets.  They have woody stems and are juicy when you actually cut them.

My forearms didn't like the weedwhacker, that elbow surgery has left my right arm significantly weaker than the left.  Wielding it today showed me how weak both of my forearms are now.  I need to do something about that and hope I don't tweak the tendon.

I was covered in dirt and plant material and gawds knows what else.  The dogs poop out there so I'm sure I whacked some dried up poop.  As I stirred up the dirt I got a little concerned about the abrasion on my nose.  I'm supposed to keep A & D ointment on it at all time until (I guess) my surgery on Friday.  All I could think about it all kinds of germy things sticking to that A & D.

I had to shower in a bad way.  The morning was nice and cool but by the time I got out there to weedwhack it was hot.  The shower was refreshing and made me feel quite a bit less ookey and germ-aphobic.  

Then we went over to K and J's and ate food and chatted.  The kids all played basketball and we basically sat in our chairs.  It was fun.  It was impromptu and just enough time to get the weekend news, let the kids blow off steam and we were back home.

A nice way to end the weekend.

Btw, we also went to dinner last night with Doni and the BIL.  We saw an old friend and her daughter and invited them to sit with us as well.  Passing by we saw my doctor, our friends Scott and Julie, and then 2 peeps the husband is acquainted with.  That was fun too.  

It was a full weekend. 

Sunday, May 24, 2009

The big party

We have 2 groups of neighbors on our street.  Group A is a little older than Group B.  Group A has parties that invite you over with real invitations that come in the mail.  Group B has parties that don't.  The 2 groups mix when there is something happening on the street (like that time when the cops came to bust up a teen party 5 doors down) but they don't always mix at parties.

Yesterday we went to a Group B party.  The Group A people were not there.  It was funny to hear the Group B people talk about the Group A people.

I guess we belong to both Group A and B.  We get invited to both groups parties and we don't say anything negative about either group.  Much safer that way.

One of our neighbors who is definately a Group B person invited us to see her animals.  We took a tour of her menagerie.  She has exotic animals.  She rescues them when the authorities need someone to take a wild or semi-tamed exotic animal.  She also has a business showing these animals.  Often they are on television or in the movies (the animals, not her).  She has big cats, pythons, kangaroos, foxes, hawks and other kinds of animals.  

She had 2 of these (adults tho, not babies).  Sooo cute.  Click here. I've never seen a hedgehog in person, the pygmys are soooooo darling.  Pokey too.  My version of the little guy below. 

It was great fun to be able touch a couple of the animals, and get a little education about each one.  

Then we went back to the party and I began getting a headache (maybe it was all the 80's metal music that was blasting in my ear?) and we came home.  

It was a good thing too because the party got a little wild I hear.

I heard the police were called, someone got into a fist fight and someone got burned. 

Turns out one of the neighbors (a woman) got coldcocked by a party goer.  Then her husband came over to see what was going on and he got shoved by the DJ.  The neighbor called the cops but he was going to haul them both to jail so the neighbor got up and left.

Most of the people there were in their late 30's and 40's, way old enough to know better.  Evidently not.  

I'm very happy we're sorta quiet not big partier types.  No drama in our lives.  

Friday, May 22, 2009

Swoon-worthy cupcakes

I love pie more than cake.  But if a cake is exactly right I do love a good cake.  My criteria is not too sweet and definately no frosting that is made from lard.  Butter is good but only if it's not too sugary.  Normally I scrape off frosting.  I'm just not a huge sugar eater.  (although my entire family is mad for sugar).  

An aside here: My family goes to the grocery store and rarely buy salty things, it's all sweet.  I'm deprived because I always go for the salty and tangy stuff.  

A few months ago one of my co-workers brought in some cupcakes made by his wife.  She's a danged good baker.  I held back from eathing the cupcakes tho, they were mounded with frosting.  

But the sounds that were coming from all the co-workers were making me wonder just what I was missing.  I was swayed as I saw each person take a bite, make a noise and then their eyes practically rolled back into their head.

I tried one.  OMG, soooo delicious.  The icing was exactly right.  Buttery with the exact right amount of sweetness.  The cake moist and perfect.  I had to have the recipe (so my daughter could make them as I do not bake).

I emailed the baker and she told me it was this recipe, click here. She made one small adjustment, she used evaporated milk instead of coconut milk.  She doesn't like coconut so she improvised.  

I like coconut but I didn't miss the taste of coconut.  I might swoon if I (hahaha, the daughter) made it with unsweetened coconut milk so I (errr, the daughter) thought one day I'd try and find unsweetened coconut milk and try.  She did put toasted coconut on some of the cupcakes and that was delicous too.  I ate 3 that day.  2 with toasted coconut, 1 without.  I swooned all three times.  

Just in case that link ever goes away I thought I'd post the entire recipe here: 

Vanilla Bean-Coconut Cupcakes with Frosting
The secret to these moist cupcakes? Reduced coconut milk.
makes 18 

Recipe by Abigail Johnson Dodge (posted at

April 2009 
reduced coconut milk
2 13- to 14-ounce cans unsweetened coconut milk (preferably organic) 
2 cups all purpose flour 
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder 
1/2 teaspoon salt 
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature 
1 1/3 cups sugar 
3 large eggs 
Seeds scraped from 1 split vanilla bean or 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract 
1 cup reduced coconut milk (see above), room temperature 
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature 
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar 
1/3 cup reduced coconut milk (see above), room temperature 
Seeds scraped from 1 split vanilla bean or 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract 
1/8 teaspoon salt 
1 1/2 cups sweetened flaked coconut, lightly toasted (for garnish) 
reduced coconut milk
Bring coconut milk to boil in large deep saucepan over medium-high heat (coconut milk will boil up high in pan). Reduce heat to medium-low; boil until reduced to 1 1/2 cups, stirring occasionally, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from heat; cool completely. Transfer to small bowl. Cover; chill (coconut milk will settle slightly as it cools). DO AHEAD Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep chilled.
Position rack in center of oven; preheat to 350°F. Line eighteen 1/3-cup muffin cups with paper liners. Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until smooth. Add sugar; beat on medium-high speed until well blended, about 2 minutes. Add 2 eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition and occasionally scraping down sides of bowl. Beat in seeds from vanilla bean and remaining egg. Add half of flour mixture; mix on low speed just until blended. Add 1 cup reduced coconut milk; mix just until blended. Add remaining flour mixture; mix on low speed just until blended. Divide batter among muffin cups.
Bake cupcakes until tops spring back when gently touched and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Transfer cupcakes in pans to rack; cool 10 minutes. Carefully remove cupcakes from pans and cool completely on rack.
Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until smooth. Add sugar, 1/3 cup reduced coconut milk, seeds from vanilla bean, and salt. Beat on medium-low speed until blended, scraping down sides of bowl. Increase to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy.
Using pastry bag fitted with large star tip, pipe frosting onto cooled cupcakes. (Alternatively, top each cupcake with 2 tablespoons frosting. Using small offset spatula, swirl frosting over top of cupcakes, leaving 1/2-inch plain border.) Sprinkle with coconut. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 day ahead. Store in airtight containers; chill. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Me nose procedure

Saw the ENT guy today.  He's a funny guy and he laughs at my jokes.  I'm getting a little procedure next Friday.  He's going to use forceps and manuever my broken nose back into place.  And then I have to wear a nose splint for 3 wks.  

The septum problem won't be addressed for 3 to 6 months...I don't seem to have any real problem breathing while I'm upright, although if I cover either nostril I'm not getting as much air as I used to get.  If I lay down, I'm stuffy in one or the other nostril.  

If it gets worse or the ability to breathe freely is still a problem  I can get it fixed later.  I'm going to wait and see.

So Friday I'm going to the surgery center.  

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Surprise NSFW

My boss at work gets this catalog: Walter Drake.  It has a bunch of As Seen On TV items as well as other helpful things around the house.  Here is some of the kitchen ware items, click here. 

Look here, you can get christian mementos! You can get aids for daily living here.  A lot of stuff.  So I'm browsing all the stuff and I see this little item on page 31.  Click.  Errrr, I've never seen one of those and I hope I never do and I hope I never have to use one.  

I flip 2 more pages to page 34 and nearly spit my soda out of my mouth.  This is a warning, this item is not something you'd expect to see in this kind of catalog.  If you are at all offened by items you might keep hidden in the back of your closet, don't click the link.  This link.  

Hello?  What the heck is THAT doing in there?  I can just see my MIL leafing thru this catalog thinking she might pick up one of those rolling grocery carts, or maybe the meatloaf pan that drains all the fat out of the pan or even a pair of the moistureproof salt and pepper shakers.  But that?  


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Sorta smooshed

As I changed the gauze this morning I could tell my nose is smooshed over to one side.  It's not terribly smooshed down but slightly over and the bridge is kinda still wide from swelling.  It hardly hurts now tho.  

I didn't like my old nose, I'm really hating this new nose.  : D (  

Breaking your nose ain't no picnic.  If just for the change in appearance.  

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Me xray

The nose feels pretty ok.  It's not the focus of my every moment like it has been, as long as I don't touch it.  Taking my glasses off on a regular basis helps a lot.  I've been worrying that the weight of them might be a bad thing.  

I consider myself lucky since nobody can really tell that I've broken my nose.  One girl at work today said she thought maybe I'd gone to the dermatologist and had some kind of skin thing or something.  It's amazing how many people didn't mention the bandage, the glaring bandage on my nose.  I guess they just thought "Hmmmm, if I pretend there isn't a white bandage on her nose she won't know I noticed it."

It just doesn't look swollen to me.  Even this morning when I took off the gauze it didn't look that bad.  Now there is still that one gel/skin thing on it so I can't actually see the wound and there is still some slight swelling but overall, it doesn't look all smashed up or anything.  

I did sort of touch the sides of my nose near the wound tonight and it *squished/shifted* a little.  Kind of creepy but not very painful.  Just a little discomfort.  

I'm thinking if it was really bad it would hurt a whole lot more, or maybe I'm just healing really fast.  

So here is a sharpened photo of my xray.  

It might have come out better if I'd put it against a brightly lit window but since it's dark out I held it near my ott light.  It's funny because I googled for an xray to compare mine to but can't find one.  This photo would also be better if someone besides me held it up but nobody is home at the moment.  

It looks teeny doesn't it?  Weird. 

Literally and figuratively

Well, one thing with the broken sort of preempted Gary out of my conciousness for a few days.  Nothing like a swollen hurtie nose in the middle of your face to take up some focus.

Seems I've been smacked literally and figuratively these last few days.  

Monday, May 18, 2009

ENT consult

So I got in to see the Ear, Nose and Throat doctor today. He was nice enough to see me during his lunch time. Apparently they want to see you asap. The downside is I have to go back on Friday at 3 p.m.  He think by then the swelling will have gone down enough for him to see how well the broken bone sits in there and whether I have a deformed nose now.  (although I can say my nose was never a perfect, perky nose, it's sort of a indian head nickel kind of nose).  

The possible first surgery depends on whether the broken bone is twisted or not.  If it is he'd prefer to do within 2 wks of the injury.  

The second possible surgery is because there is a septum deviation to the right inside my nose.  He can't tell how bad the deviation is based on todays exam.  He says there is an enormous amt of swelling inside and it's pretty well mashed inside there so he can't tell yet.  

I go back on Fri. IF I need surgery (for a possible twisted bone) he likes to do it within 2 wks but the deviated septum part might have to wait 3 to 6 months. The bone surgery needs to be done quickly because otherwise it's too hard to move the bone once it's healed. The pushed over septum must be healed completely before he'll do surgery on that. And it will depend on how difficult it is for me to breath.  At the moment I can breathe fine (and he says that's a good sign).  

Personally I don't think the swelling looks to be that bad but I can't see inside my nose.  But my nose is running (which is common) and there is blood in the snot. It's harder to breathe if I lay down so I'm staying as upright as I can at all times. How very nice is that?

btw, he thinks the cut and abrasion will heal ok, but I have to keep it moist for the next month or so!  Great, in about a week I have to keep vaseline on it at all times so it's always moist.  Gross. 

The upside to all of this is my swollen nose is keeping my glasses up on my nose above the lacerations.  The downside is as the swelling goes down my glasses might fall down where it really hurts.  

Well, I'm chalking this up to lessons learned.  

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Ouch-a-mus proboscis

I have a broken nose.  Broken.  Ouchie.

 How'd it happen?  Welllll, my yard is a mess and whenever I can get up the gumption to do something I do.  Last weekend (or the weekend before) I trimmed the giant man-eating hibiscus.  today it was hot, so other than watering the flower bed (which is now not getting enough sun, but it's hot enough to parch the ground) I didn't do any real clean up.

We have this stinking trees called Shamel Ash that live in our yard.  The street behind us is lined with them.  And they have kajillions of seeds that fly thru the air with the greatest of ease.

They grown like wildfire.  And if you don't pluck them when they are little they grow fast.  You can't just chop them off at the ground, you'll get many many little trees growning from that one chopped off tree.

So my plan is to chop them down at the bottom, spray them with plant killer stuff and then cover them with black plastic.  I'm hoping the combo of no sun and plant killer stuff will kill the many, many saplings we have growing.

We have a few growing right in front of the living room window.  Which is where the water faucet is located.  Since I have fight my way thru freaking TREES to get to the faucet to water the flowers and I'm deathly afraid the roots are going to either crack the foundation or get into our plumbing (MIL's plumbing at her house is all messed up from Shamel Ash).  I thought I'd start with that one.

Well, let me tell you.  Sapling are flexible.  Very flexible.  If you hold down the sapling with your foot, whack at it with giant choppers, it WILL spring up and smack you right in the kisser.  And if you wear glasses it will cut the crap out of your nose and bleed like a mofo.  

You will put your hand to your face and it will come away with a whole handful of blood.  Your blood, which is rich in iron and very red.  It will drip all over the floor and into the sink. 

Just grab a handful of tissue and find your phone.  Call the husband who is taking his nightly walk.  You will say to him: I need you to come home right now because I got hit in the face by the tree I was trying to chop down and I'm bleeding and I need to go to Urgent Care right now.   He will, btw, ask really dopey questions, like: How did that happen?  


He got a ride home and by that time I was sitting on the steps waiting for him.  It wasn't gushing blood anymore, I kept pressure and ice on it.  He got my purse, we got the dog inside and then he stopped to clean up blood that was on the door.

The whole of it is I have a jagged cut, underneath that I have no top skin, it got scraped off.  And the nose is actually fractured.  The fracture doesn't look that bad from the X-ray but it does hurt.  Not enough for pain meds (they offered, I declined).  I have to take antibiotics and I got out of a tetnus shot, I think I got one about 6 years ago.  They put some kind of new skin thingy on it.  It stays on for about a week and just absorbs into your body.  That is covered with a gauze pad and strips of tape.  It looks teeny and sits exactly under my glasses.  Thank the lord because otherwise I wouldn't be able to see.

Gods, my nose is already prominent.  Now I'm going to have a boxers nose.  

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Are you artistic, creative and maybe a little tortured?

Artistic? Creative? Tortured?

I love this talk by Elizabeth Gilbert.  The idea of the creative person being tortured and angst-ridden - have you bought into it?  Can you get out of the fear that conjures? 

About 19 mins long but worth it.  

I just can't shake it

I took yesterday off, because ya know I was going to go on that trip.  Yes, I could have gone to work but I just didn't want to.  It's not like I love my job or my work is so interesting and challenging that I want to be there.

I can't shake Gare out of my thoughts.  I'm surprised about that.  Yesterday after I took the son to school, me and Susan sat and drank coffee out on her porch and ate strawberries while we talked about everything surrounding his life and death.

I got an email from one of the bookclub girls who's known Gare longer than I.  She asked me if I thought Gare knew how much we cared about him.

I know he knew from me although I don't think I ever told him how much others cared about him.  How others felt about him never came up between us.  Too many thoughts about his (from others) that ran the gamut from "What an asshole" to the other end of the spectrum.  Besides, I don't think he really cared what others thought of him, unless they talked directly to him and he'd tell you what he thought.

Someone else posted on FB that they thought of him as a father figure to all kinds of misfits.  That concept is not right for me.  I never thought of him as a father figure.  An authority figure yes (he was my boss for many years) but never as a father figure.  

I guess he was a lot of things to a lot of people.  

The other thing I did yesterday was make some cool textures to be focal points for some jewelry.  Maybe I'll finish them today and post pictures.  

Friday, May 15, 2009

No trip today, later maybe

I'm not flying to Ore today.  Gare died yesterday morning.  We didn't get there in time or Gare decided he couldn't wait for us.  

When I got the call yesterday my eyes filled up with tears.  The depths of my feelings were even larger than what I anticipated.  Throughout the day I found myself spacing out, staring off into the distance as I thought about him, our trip, the finality of his passing.  

I cannot convey how large this man was.  Personality-wise he was a Svegali type.  He wasn't really evil, just extremely driven to develop (some would say exploit) a talent.  But that said, it was always with credit.  My husband is a fantastic singer.  Best voice ever (although he is now miserly with it) and Gare ALWAYS crowed to anyone who'd listen that he had the best voice in the world.  

In our day we were the coolest, the smartest: the intelligencia of the theater world in our town.  And we believed it too.  The belief in that was what got all of us to do what we did.  And we accomplished a lot.  We started theater groups that continue on to this day 20+ years later.  

We couldn't have done it without Gare.  He believed in that dream and pulled us along for the ride.  

There were casualities along the way, but even those who left will tell you he made an impression.

I'm missing him, knowing he will never shout out my name again.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

My good friend

I'm getting ready to fly up to OR. on Friday. Gare has been on my mind a lot lately. My friend Carin wrote to me when she found out I was going up there and here is out exchange:

Carin: "Who is going with you? Your husband? Susan? He has always had a soft spot for you because you never caved in to his sh@#, but still remained loyal."

My reply: "Me and Susan are going.

I'm not sure it was because I was loyal but because no matter what - we always had respect for each others opinion, no matter how different it was from our own. There is a lotta growth potential for that kind of perspective and he never shut me down because of our differences and vice versa.

I think we taught each other that opinions don't mean a thing, actions do. How you treat the other is the important piece.

Funny how the most intolerant, most conservative man I know gives me the most space and tolerance of anyone I know."

I worked with the man for many years.  He's been a rough and tough kind of guy, everyone who meets him thinks he's so crude (because he is) and rude (because he is) but he has this soft spot for the people he loves.  The people who take the time to get to know him.  He's never held back what he thinks that's for sure.  He's pissed off a lot of people in his day.  

Whenever someone left the organization he'd get a little belligernt with them.  When I left (to do other things) he was pretty kind to me.  He understood and didn't say terrible things to me, he wished me well.  

He has kindness in him, a lot of kindness.  Just sometimes it comes out in a rough way.  Not everyone understood that.  If you looked him in the eye and said, "Knock off the BS" he'd back down and grin at you.  (mostly).  It seemed like the stronger you were to his very strong personality, the more respect he had for you.  I was already a stong personality, dealing with him made me even more assertive.  LOL, sometimes a good thing, sometimes less good.  

Once I had to be in San Diego because my dad was terminally ill and had to visit a doc out there.  I also had to be at work at 6 or so.  I got my parents back home and drove like a bat out of hell to get to work on time.  I'd called earlier letting him know I might be late.  

When I got there, rehearsal was in full swing.  I was maybe 10 mins late.  (he was always on time, and ready to work).  There were probably 50 people on stage in the middle of a scene.  I opened the side door letting daylight into the theater and walked up to his spot (row I, center) where he was watching the rehearsal.  He saw me and yelled to everyone to "STOP".  The entire cast stopped what they were doing...sure he was going to yell at them for someone doing bad blocking or messing up the dance number.

He yelled out: "Listen up!  I have an announcement!"  I stood waiting for him, I was sure I was in trouble.  He said:

"This woman comes into rehearsal late.  10 mins late.  Let me tell you 7 years, 7 YEARS!  this woman has NEVER been late to work.  Ever.  Not once.  Today she is late.  I wanted everyone to know she gets a lot of credit for always being here, always ready to work...except for today.  She was late but she had a good reason and she called me to tell me she was going to be late...and it shows me she's human.  I'm happy she finally came in late, she puts a lot of pressure on me knowing she's never late so I can never be late.  Give her a round of applause for her always being here, always ready to work".

They gave me a round of applause, he turned to me and asked about my dad.  He hugged me.  Then we went to work, rehearsal resumed.

He gave me credit in front of the whole cast.   With Gare, he only gave praise to you if you really deserved it and when you really deserved it, he let everyone know.  

A few months later I was working up in the costume room.  I got a phone call, it was Gare.  He was very worked up.  He told me my mom called and my dad was on the way to the hospital, he was dying.  I'm not even sure how he understood my mom, she had a thick accent that almost everyone had trouble understanding but he understood every word and understood the urgency.  He told me to go, get to the hospital right now.

I didn't make it there before he died.  Even tho I raced down the freeway.  

Gare was kind to me, to my mom and gave me whatever time I needed with pay.  I still made it to opening night tho, a day or so after he died (although I didn't make the rest of the run).  He got someone else to fill my duties during the run.

I was appreciative that he was able to understand my mom on that one day and he was so filled with concern.  He broke whatever rules he wanted to break to give all of us space.  That's pretty powerful and shows a sense of loyalty and caring.   It was that sense of caring that helped me stay loyal to my job and my sense of place there.  

So now he is dying.  I only hope he stays alive long enough to know me and Susan were there.  He gave me a lot guidance, a lot of praise, a lot of friendship over the years.  He supported me in ways I didn't get from others.  He was a good friend.  

Monday, May 11, 2009

A quiet Mothers day

A nice dinner out last night. The birthday boy chose the place: Cheesecake Factory. We were invited to go to Nina's, to their new house (along with other friends) but since it was the son's bday we did the family thing instead.

Doni joined us and so did the BIL. Grammy was there in spirit (and the BIL very nicely gave the son a card with cash in it from her). The son wanted a wah-wah pedal so with the cash he received from his uncle and grammy, he's going to get his pedal.

Doni was quiet, the son was not. The husband and his brother were not quiet (they rarely are) and the daughter was about at the midpoint.

He got a harmonium and melodica from us. Oh and a bunch of guitar picks. He played with the melodica all day. He's waiting for the harmonium to come via UPS and wants it right now. I think he's collecting world instruments. He's already got a couple of guitars (electric and acoustic), a digeredoo, a uke, and a trumpet.

There were lots of mothers and families there. Most of them were dressed up. Almost all the little kids were dressed up too, so sweet in their little matching clothes. I was not. Capri jeans, sweater; very casual. The dressiest person in our group was Doni, she looked fab in silk.

We lingered over dinner, we drove to Best Buy afterwards but they were closed. Went to the grocery store where the son bought me some candy with his birthday money (for Mothers Day). And then home.

I didn't get my car washed and the front yard still is a mess. No world peace either. But I had family night and that will do (although that yard is crying out in a big way).

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother day

Happy Birthday to my first born!

Happy Mothers Day to all mothers or those who've had mothers. LOL!

What I want for Mothers Day:

The yard picked up and manicured.

My car washed.

World peace.

Friday, May 8, 2009

woeful dog who is in the midst of training

The puppy. The 50 lb puppy. He looks all worried in that painting doesn't he?

Probably because he knows I've vowed to be consistant and train him to be a dog who actually follows commands.

Right now he is leashed and is expected to sit next to me wherever I go. Last night and tonight he's sat with me. He's done pretty well too...considering. he knows Sit and his ability to sit is directly related to the reward he thinks he'll get. He sits fastest if I have a treat in hand. Or if he has to pee, he will sit his butt at the door (if only to touch his butt down) because he knows the door will open for him once he does it. He will also get a pet if he sits. But that's all if he's leashed. He doesn't like to listen if he is unleashed.

I'm working with a dog trainer via email. She's not charging me, just giving me guidance.

I'm also teaching him how to heel. I walk him and he must stay on my left and if he pulls I walk the other way. He sits when I stop and stands to go when I say Come. He is getting better. He's been trained to be on a leash (he isn't afraid of it) but he has no manners when he walks.

One thing he never does is jump up on people...which if he did could be disasterous. 50 lbs of hefty dog can knock you on your can, easily. Dogs that jump up make me crazy. His mother used to jump when we got her. Now she just rears up on her hind legs but doesn't (most of the time anyway) put her front paws on you. Jumping isn't tolerated. Which means I'm very consistant about that rule. The other rules less so.

I must be trained. And that also means I must train the others. It's likely the only person in the house who will listen and put those things in practice is the daughter. The husband and son have no interest.

So it's time to take him out and give him a break from sitting here with me. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

foil tape: large economy size

I get these emails from a craft magazine publisher that lets me know when there are fabulous crafty ideas and they always try to sell something thru the page.   I've never purchased any items (when I want to do a project, I can't wait for days for the item to come in the mail).  

This ad (which I clicked on in the email and got sent to this webpage) was flat out wrong.  They show the foil tape is 14 inches wide.  So foil tape is something you use on stained glass, to wrap each piece so your solder will stick to it.  Foil tape does not come in 14 inch widths.  

You can get this kind of metal tape at hardware stores, it would work on stained glass too but stained glass doesn't generally have the kind of width that kind of tape does.

In any case, if you could get craft foil at that width for that price, you'd be doing very well to buy it.  But if you've got pieces of tile or glass that needs to be foiled for jewelry that are that wide, I'd like to see the person wearing the piece.  

Monday, May 4, 2009

The beach

Yesterday me and Kim and our girls went thrift shopping.  Pretty fun day.  We didn't go, go, go but took our time.   Our last stop (out of 4 stores) was in Huntington Beach. 

By that time it was close to 4 p.m. and we decided to run down to the beach and stick our toes into the water.

It was beautiful on the beach.  It was warm with a breeze that cooled you off just right.  The girls waded in the surf, wearing their jeans.  LOL, yes we looked like tourists who just stopped to stick our toes in the water.  We're all fully dressed, with no beach towels in sight.

There weren't many people on the beach or in the water.  I sat and watched the girls and the pelicans dive (Kamakazi!) fishing for fishies.  I love the sound of the surf.

You could see Catalina from the beach.  I love that.  It's some 26 miles away and you could see it out there.  Hazy but it was there.

As we trudged back to the car with the surf behind us and the fabulous beach houses in front of us I wondered why I never set my sights on living at the beach.  I love the beach, I love the smell of the ocean, and I should have, at some point in my life lived at the beach.  

I'm beginning to think I might have some regrets in my life, simply because I'm getting older and there is so much I haven't done.  Or haven't pushed to do.  I have to ponder that.