Monday, May 29, 2006


Bear with me on my hodgepodge of random thoughts today....for those of you that REALLY know know my mind does tend to ramble around...Too bad the males in my life can't seem to "keep up" with that random thought process.
I can sometimes talk about several things at once with Becky and she can follow, but not so with my 3+1 guys. My husband will respond to me: "That comment makes no sense...I thought we were talking about so and so." Oh, well, another of those "Mars/Venus" things I guess.

It seems like I have been really busy with not much time to sit down and write lately, but when I think back on what is keeping me so busy...I can't come up with anything real specific.

I have been working in the yard a good bit...It's like therapy. I enjoy being outside and like the exercise. All my hard work :

This photo especially for my "professional " lawnboys, that taught me how to mow: "Just look straight ahead, Mom, to where you are headed and your lines will be straight!"

I used to tell my mom all the time that her compulsion to hang clothes on her clothes line was her "Therapy." She was here for a few days and was helping with my laundry. She misses her clothes line and always comments that she "would hang this on the clothes line, IF I had one."
I do understand why she likes to hang clothes outside, but it never was "my cup of tea", so to speak.

She was flying to my sister's to see my nephew ( her grandson) graduate from high school. She usually drives up to my house to drop her dog, Tasha, off for us to dog sit when she travels.
Tasha needs her own suitcase for all the "special" food, treats, and medicines she needs. I guess that is only normal with a 14 year old dog.


It is an experience to take care of her now because she is partially deaf, has always been a little stubborn, and just wants to do her own thing. That is ok in most cases, but when you have to leave for work at 6 AM and the deaf dog wants to sleep can make for an interesting morning! It really isn't a big problem but you have to plan ahead a little bit. (Not my area of expertise.)

We are also dog sitting, Maddy (Tommy & Becky's dog), this weekend. She is a trip and is like having a little kid around. If she gets quiet, then it's time to find out what she is doing. She likes to drag out all of Lucy's toys all over the room. She barks at all the neighbors when she is outside because she thinks she is "protecting" us. Because she is still a young dog, she is full of energy....she played by herself, throwing her toy in the air and then chasing after it, for a solid hour this morning. (Unfortunatley that hour was 6-7 AM on a holiday!)

Last weekend was busy because we were helping celebrate Dr. Joe's graduation from med school. (That is our ex-neighbor's son and Tommy's first year college roommate) It was a great accomplishment for him and we were all very proud of that accomplishment!

The boys provided the entertainment for Dr. Joe's graduation celebration. The weekend was taken up with "practice " on Sat. and the "performance" on Sun. (I enjoyed the extra time the boys were at the house practicing.)

Joe's parents did a lot of work on the party and a fun time was had by all. (Except for the one audience member who thought the "band was too loud!" I was told to take that comment with a grain of salt and remember the source, so I will!) Actually, I think the rest of the party goers enjoyed the band and the boys were even asked "Do you do Bar mitzvah's?"
Not sure they are up for that...
All I can tell you is that it definitely takes a lot of equipment hauling to do a gig, that's for sure!

Today, the boys will be coming over for BABS....that's their accronym for :
We will also have the requisite hot dogs with chili and slaw...
the good ole WV way!
Our friend, Chris, will be coming for the cook-out and to spend the night. He rode his Harley up to DC from Ohio for "Rolling Thunder". He'll visit with us tonight before he rides home. Can't wait to hear his tales on that... He said that the ride from the pentagon to the wall would have near half a million bikers in it. Can't imagine that, but he lucked out and was suppose to be in the first third of the bike pack. He said one guy last year didn't even leave the pentagon until 4:30 and the ride started at 12 noon! Maybe more on that another time.

Better stop this hodgepodge now...can't stand any more!

Friday, May 19, 2006

Sunday Morning with Charles Osgood

It's becoming a tradition around our house to watch Sunday Morning with Charles Osgood.
I am a big fan because it has such an eclectic variety of stories that appeal to my personality trait of liking obscure facts.
It annoys me to no end that I can remember the weirdest, dumbest statistics or facts, but have trouble with names!
Becky has said in the past that it cracks her up when I pull some dumb fact out regarding sports because I'm not even a big sports fan.

In all honesty, I don't really remember all that many facts or statistics, but some of those unusual, obscure pieces of information appeal to me. I like to learn and the more unusual the info is, the better I like it in most cases.

NONE of my family likes to go sightseeing with me in DC because I like to read all the interesting info at the museums. Sometimes when I take friends and extended family members to DC, they actually appreciate some of those obscure facts that I expound on like a tour guide...but not my immediate family....they have heard them all before and politely but adamantly REFUSE to go to DC with me.

So the Sunday Morning Show is a good fit for me.

Where else can you see stories aobut medical misdiagnosis (right up my alley with my profession), the history of skirts (with the required pictures of designer Prada skirts), collectors of teapots ( there were thousands of them is all different shapes. Since I'm a tea drinker, that was pretty awesome that so much time and attention has been devoted to making tea pots!), and trains...all in one show?

The train story was interesting because I never realized ( or really gave it much thought for that matter) that there was an area in the US that ALL trains going to Florida have to go through. They said that over 70 trains in a night go through Folkston, Georgia. They have set up a viewing platform, and get people from all over the WORLD coming to watch. Granted there were some pretty "far out train watchers" profiled on the show, but there was also just the people who came just for FUN. Just people watching would be an experience!

One comment that stuck with me was "it was like birdwatching....but easier!" So, this story could appeal to a train conductor, a bird watcher, a people watcher, or to someone like me that never thought about trains that much!

Anyway, if you have never watched Sunday should give it a try. Sometimes it is not as interesting as other days, but there is always at least one really good story on the agenda.

Maybe in another blog I'll expound on medical misdiagnosis. I could really get into this topic but my family is not a big fan of me giving my opinion about medicine. I keep telling them that I am a valuable resource when it comes to their health...they just aren't totally convinced yet!

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Honey, I'm home

Happy Anniversay to my wonderful husband!

It is hard to believe that we have been married for 32 years!!

When I think back to when we got married, I am amazed that we got married so young and that my parents actually "let" me get married at 18! Our kids just seem so young, and we actually had a baby at the age our youngest is now!

One of our good friends said to us at the time that we may just be dumb enough to make it last...and even though that wasn't all that complimentary at the time, it probably was true!

I 'm not writing a long blog about how wonderful my husband is because he "hates reading long blogs" but suffice it to say that this blog about him COULD be a lengthy tome otherwise.

We have had some really good times and some bad times together, as anyone who goes through life has, but we have been so fortunate to always have each other and be able to depend on one another. He is my rock and I love him dearly! ( He says I am spoiled and he is right about that because he always puts me first in his life and takes great care of me!)

He was making a joke yesterday when he came home, about how he comes through the door and says, "honey, I'm home". He joked that I got all excited about him being home...this said in a sort of sarcastic tone because I was busy working. I have to say that it is no joke that I am still happy to see him, happy he is home, and happy that he is my busband...that's pretty good after 32 years!

So, Love and Kisses to my wonderful's to many more years... and "Honey, I'm home" is music to my ears!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Nice Mother's Day

So I had a very nice Mother's Day yesterday. We went to Tommy & Becky's for dinner and had wonderful food. That Becky can really cook and it still amazes me that Tommy does some work in the kitchen, too! (It was like pulling teeth to get him to do much kitchen work when he lived here!
We had a really great shrimp appetizer that was similar to one of the appetizers at Bonefish Restaurant. I think I ate about 1 lb of the 2.5 lbs of shrimp they had. Fantastic!

We also had margaritas and chicken enchiladas that were tasty too!

More importantly, we had a really nice time with the whole family there. It is less frequent that all our schedules allow us to get together like that and I really enjoyed it.

#3 Son got me a 12 foot tree trimming tool...he knows I really get into my garden equipment, and he noticed a few branches on the backyard tree that are in the way of the horseshoe pit.
#2 Son is planning on supplying me with a bunch of firewood for those cold days next fall and winter. That is always heavy labor for him and I appreciate it.
My hubby took care of my mother's day, anniversary and birthday all in one and got me a top of the line DVD/VHS/memory recorder. (This will be neat if I can ever figure out all the instructions. I may need to go back to college to figure out how to work it! He is my little technology geek!)
So I thank all my family for all their hard work and thoughtful gifts I received... they are the BEST!

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to my Mom!

M-Is for the many wonderful times she has been there for me and all the times she supported me. If I tried to list all that is wonderful about her, the list would go on for a long time and probably be pretty boring for anyone BUT my mom.

O-Is for how original she is. She is definitely an original person and knows no strangers. Many stories come to mind for her originality but I always tell the story about her train ride to VA from WV. This was about a 7-8 hour trip and she was riding with Andy, her youngest grandson. When they got off the train in VA, the female conductor was standing at the open door, waving goodbye, and yelling to me, "I love your mother......" and that reframe drifted off as the train pulled out.
My coworkers still comment about her wearing black leather pants to my Christmas party: "She looked darn good.. and not many woman her age could pull that off!"
Most of the boys' friends also think she is pretty cool and many of them have taken their valuable time to go visit her in WV.
And last but definitely not the only original thing about my mom: How many grandmothers do you know that will go to a Dave Mathews concert or a Bare Naked Ladies concert with their grandkids...and really enjoy it? (Michal said that he had to be on his better behavior when she was with him but it was cool that she went.)

T-is for the trying times that she has helped me through and all the tears she has shed over the years for me. She has always been there to listen and support me through thick and thin.

H- is for her huge heart and all the happy times we have shared. We have travelled a long road together : ( from Italy to Mrytle Beach , Florida, Texas, Chicago and more). I remember when we were in Italy and she was able to be happy and upbeat, while I was laying on the hotel bed lamenting: I just want to lay here and pretend I'm home for a while. ( This after a long trying day travelling, worrying, missing our dinner meal, and being accosted by the gypsies. )

E- is for her easy going attitude and ever present smile. She has a way of walking through life with a positive attitude. That rubs off on those around her. She is one of those people that everyone wants to be friends with. I will again say thanks for EVERYTHING she has done for me.

R- she is my rolemodel. I think after having children, you really appreciate your mom so much more. This is not to say that people don't appreciate their moms if they have no kids of their own, but I think it really" brings it all home." That old saying that I hope you have kids"just like you" takes on new meaning when you are a mom yourself. I only need to look at my mom for help, assistance, and guidance because she is a real rolemodel for me.

Put them all together they spell MOTHER and that's what you mean to me!

I am grateful that I have the wonderful mom I have and hope she knows how much I love her.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Finals and a trip down memory lane

Jeffrey is in the process of his finals at Va Tech and it brought back memories of finals when I was in nursing school.

Before I go there... Study hard Jeff ... I know you can do it!...Ok... had to get my mother worry mode out of the way...

One of the major classes we had to take in nursing was anatomy and physiology. This involved both class work and labs. The professor that I had was one of those really intense, brainy kind of guys that loves science. ( think Justin.. for those of you that know Justin).
This professor really got into his work and actually loved to dissect anything.

Our animal for dissection was a cat. Now, I know you cat lovers out there won't like to hear that but I didn't have any choice what animal we dissected.

All of the nursing students really disliked the lab dissections, mostly because of the smell and partly because not many of us were any good at doing the dissection without ruining what we needed to dissect. You could smell the lab well before you reached the classroom and you could continue to smell the lab on your clothes and hands after the fact! There is nothing like formaldehyde!!

We had to use the same cat for the whole semester and to work through all the body systems. (Talk about a smell that does NOT get better with time.)

We all learned early on that if you asked the professor for help, he would get all involved and actually end up doing most of the dissecting for you. It was a race to see who could ask the first question so the professor would come "help".
Obviously, he could only work on a couple of cats a lab period, so some of those cats were pretty butchered up by the end of the year.
Some of those lab groups really had no idea what they were doing. You can also imagine a whole labroom full of young nursing students with only the token "science major "student interspersed. As I look back at the professor now, I can see why he did a good bit of the dissecting himself and I wonder how he stood all that estrogen!

At the end of the year, we had to complete an anatomy lab final. This involved the professor setting up lab stations with little flags stuck in the cats for the student to identify the body structure. In the final, this could be anything from a vein, artery, bone, muscle, or organ.

Trust me when I tell you that some of those structures didn't look anything like they were suppose to because of the poor dissections, so it was pretty important that you had a good knowledge of the anatomy.

My 2 other lab partners and I were pretty worried about the final. We decided that dedicated study was the only way we would ever pass that blasted final. (This line is also dedicated to Jeffrey!)

We were allowed to "check out our cat" for "home study." Now let me tell you that this was real carry around a semester old, badly dissected, formadehyde cat in your car!!!
We had a study-a-thon and all of us were pretty sick of that @#%$ cat by the end of the weekend.

(Now I'm a little ashamed to admit what happened next, but Michal actually likes this part of the story.)

My lab partner had a neighbor that was a real grouch. They evidently had had some run-ins in the past. She decided, after a weekend with very little sleep, that it would be "funny" to leave our poor dead, formaldehyded cat in the neighbors mailbox! Well, no sooner than it was thought than it was done. We made the laughing, running in the dark, mail deposit and off we went.

I think back now that it was a pretty DUMB thing to do...I'm really surprised we never got would have been a real shame if we had been thrown out of nursing school because of that stupid stunt. I guess when your young, you always think "it will never happen to me."
(Aside to all those younger folks that may be reading this, because you know I can't miss an opportunity: ...just because I didn't get caught, doesn't make it right!)

My lab partner went on to be a great nurse and ended up working in a high stress, cutting edge heart hospital. I do have to laugh when I think of her. She ended up working in that heart hospital and could have her hands "dripping in blood," but if she even scratched herself and saw her OWN blood....she was out like a light!

I often wondered what that neighbor thought of finding that cat??
The good news was that the extra study paid off and we all passed that final with flying colors!