This blog was formerly dedicated in 2009 to my Dad who died of Alzheimer's in 2013. It's been three years now...and I find myself missing I am re-inventing my blog... because, after all, life is about moving through, and going forward...

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Cranky Cinderfella...

Mom visited Dad today and is questioning the Psychiatrist's decision to lessen Dad's dosage on his anti-depressants...

She arrived while Dad was eating his lunch.  When she walked over to greet him, he smiled and told her he was glad she came because he was going to call her to take him shopping for some tennis shoes.  Mom felt the panic rising within her, so she called Doctor-Doctor over for re-enforcements.  Doctor-Doctor told Dad they could not go shopping today.  When she left, Dad looked at Mom, telling her if she did not take him shopping, he would call a cab.

When Dad lived at home, he was always shopping for hats and shoes.  He would come home with tons of hats, but rarely a pair of shoes because he did not like the quality, yet if my brothers had shoes they no longer wanted, he would tell them he could use them.  He has a whole closet full of shoes of varying sizes.  He could spend the day shopping and come home with nothing.  I know, because I made the mistake of shopping with him on several occasions.  It is always an exercise in frustration!

Dad always wore his shoes too big.  He would wear two or three pairs of socks to make them fit.  Both Mom, my sister and I were constantly coaxing him to get his feet properly measured.  When I convinced him to get his feet measured one particular day while we were shopping for shoes for his grand son's wedding, he insisted the man did not know how to measure properly.  He was convinced he wore size 12, when he wore size 10.  This unreasonable examples were all to real signs Dad was going down the one way street of dementia...

Mom attempted to distract him with his lunch, helping him shovel his turkey, peas, and mashed potatoes into his mouth.  He still had his ice cream, Ginger bread, roll, milk and coffee... but told Mom he was NOT going to eat them, and brought up the shoe shopping again...

Mom reminded him how much he loves ice cream.  Dad asked why she was not home watching their children.  Mom told him their children were all grown.  In a rude tone, he asked what she does with all her time.  Mom reiterated about her having the windows replaced, the house being treated for termites and replacing the patio roof.  Abruptly, Dad told her he did not want to hear any more! Mom looked at his tray and he had polished off all the rest of his lunch while arguing with her!

Mom had brought Dad a book on Catalina, one of his friends at church had written.  Dad used to be a faithful fan of the Huell Houser Travel Series and rarely missed a program.  His friend had been featured on one of Huell's shows and Dad had been very impressed.  Dad did not even bother to look at it and told Mom to take it home.  He said he would read it later, when he got home...

Dad told Mom he was ready to go.  She thought he meant he wanted to go out on the patio.


Mom was momentarily stunned, as last week's visit had been so good... Dad yelled at her again,


When she finished pushing his wheel chair into the hallway, he turned and  told her to GO HOME and he would take care of things himself!

Mom gave him a quick kiss and left.  She stopped at the nursing station to ask one of them to see if he wanted to go to his room or back to the lunch room with his friends.  She related what had happened and one of the nurses told her a student nurse had tried to put shoes on Dad earlier in the morning. 

Because of Dad's wound on his pinkie toe, he is NOT suppose to wear shoes, only foam booties or very soft slippers.  No doubt when the student nurse struggled to get his shoes on, which causes him discomfort, he probably thought he needed new shoes.

After reading Mom's email, I called the nursing home and spoke with the charge nurse.  She and I agreed it might be a good idea for Mom to bring all his shoes home.  He should only be wearing soft slippers or his foam booties anyway.  I asked her to talk to the morning shift and to put a note in his room and on his chart.  She said she would.

I know this will upset Mom and no doubt she is screening her calls now, because when I called, the answering machine picked it up...

Hopefully, this mishap is not a result of lessening his dosage...he has not had an outburst like this in awhile.

I had asked the nurse if I could speak with Dad and she told him he was in the middle of his activities and suggested I call back after dinner.   I know better.  Dad has Sun downers and is not in the happiest of moods  in the evening.  We will all hold our breath when we go to celebrate his birthday at the nursing home at 7pm.  Mom and I will go earlier in the day and make sure the nurses have him rest, and have an early dinner.  We did the same thing last year and he was in very good spirits.

Oh Lord, please allow Dad to be rested and in good spirits for his birthday next week...AMEN!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

First Day Of Retirement...

Today was my husband's first day of retirement, so I took him to breakfast at Coco's and then to see the movie, HEREAFTER, with Matt Damon.  We really enjoyed it.  *** I wrote a review on my other blog***

I can tell my husband is winding down.  His eyes have more of a twinkle and he smiles instead of looking so pensive.  He is laughing more, less uptight and more relaxed.  Despite the fact the Alarm company has called, several employees, and a few clients, I can tell he is looking forward to retirement and leaving his work behind him.

We are busy making arrangements, for our upcoming trip to California for Dad's 90th birthday.  I think we will leave a day earlier, since we don't have to worry about HIS work schedule...He is calling and arranging for COBRA so we can continue our dental and vision insurance.  We will have it for 18 months, so it will give us time to find something on our own...

He still feels like he is enjoying days off.  He said it felt like Saturday...then he asked me, "What day is it anyway?"  I told him, "Who cares!".....

Monday, October 25, 2010

It's Official...

Today was my husband's last day of work.  He came home early and does not have to finish out the rest of the week.  Tomorrow he wakes up free to do as he wishes, when he wishes to do it. 

We are excited to begin this new chapter of our lives...

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Updates and Venting On My Frozen Shoulder...

The nursing home called to let me know Dad's left pinkie toe is doing so much better and is almost healed.  They also told me the Psychiatrist came yesterday and decided Dad is doing so well the doctor is going to reduce Dad's anti-depressant medication.  That is GREAT news. 

We had a great time with our friends last night, but stayed up a bit too late. My husband is a master at barbecuing steaks. YUM! We are still in our pj's and just relaxing.  Izzy even stayed up late with us, so she has been catching a lot of Zs herself.  I think I will get dressed and take her for a walk around the block.

We are having dinner with one of my husband's friends tonight, so I am looking forward to it.  He is very funny and was one of the buddies who went to Mexico with my husband.

OH!  I finally got my settlement from my slip and fall July of 2009.  It was more than they offered me, they rounded up, but I think the reason they gave me some extra is because it took so long to get the check.  I had been dealing with the claims person and she kept telling me the head of security would not return her calls...

So I got the guys phone number and called him.  When he did not answer my call, I called the President of the Casino.  The next day, the head of security's assistant called me and told me "the check was in the mail".  That was before I left for California.  So when I returned and found no check, I called the head of security again, who again did not return my call.  I called the President again, and that afternoon I finally heard from the head security guy telling me the check was ready. He wanted to know if I would  want to come pick it up or for them to mail it.

I told him it was raining, and I would hate to take a chance of slipping and falling again in their casino, so would they please mail it to me.  JERKS!  We will not go to that casino ever again!  They denied my claim because they claimed they did not know about the water spill I slipped in, and if they did not know, they were not liable.  Well, that is a no brain-er on their part, huh ?  When I called three different slip and fall attorneys, all of them said if there were no signs or cones up it would be difficult to prove and would not take my case.

It was a new walk up bar they had built, and there was construction being done in other areas where there were cones, but this particular bar had just been finished.  In front of the bar was a lit up floor which had been placed over where carpeting had been.  I felt there should have been a rubber mat on the floor since all patrons of the casino walk from carpeting across the lit floor, then back to carpeting. Having it lit, makes it even more difficult to even see the surface of the floor. 

Whether someone had spilled a drink or the spill was from a leaking hose, I felt it was negligent on their part to not have something on the lit floor to prevent people from slipping...on anything!  Especially with all the seniors who frequent the casino.

Oh well, it is behind me now, and at least I got some compensation for my sore frozen left arm and shoulder for one year.  At least it covered the co-pays I had to put out for the x-rays and treatment in the ER, the doctor and orthopedic bills, and the MRI.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Warped Humor and Fun I Share With My Sister...

When my sister was here, we were so busy having fun bargain hunting and gambling, we forgot to take pictures.  On the last day she was to leave, I insisted we take some pictures.  It was a great opportunity to test out the full length camera tripod I had found as one of my $5 treasures.

My sister set it up and then we proceeded to take about 40 or 50 photos... I think the first thirty were off center or out of focus.  We were laughing so hard so we were "off our mark", out of focus, her eyes were shut, or I had my head down in hysterics, trying to catch my breath...

While we were waiting for the timer to flash, my sister was instructing me to keep my jaw up so my "turkey neck" would not show and then I burst into laughter and "click" the picture was taken.  I would tell her to sit up straight so she was not shorter than me, and reached to tuck in her blouse into her pants so she would not have too much cleavage, and "click" it looked like I was molesting her.

Finally, in frustration, we decided to do crazy is some of our fun...

She is good...I laugh too easy...

 She was making sound effects which starting me laughing again...

                                                    Spontaneous frustration...

                                         See? My hair really does look ashy gray!

This was during our first scrapping weekend.
My sister is in the white pants and me in the blue.
We call this one, 'The Three Butt Salute'.

                           Also from the same scrapping weekend...and one of my favorite pics of us...

Originally, I was going to Cali this weekend.  The city where my sister lives fills the down town streets with a wonderful craft fair called "Village Venture".  We had planned on going together.  We used to go together when I lived closer in California.  Her husband is a man of many talents and skills, and one of his skills is being a part time Pastor.  He is doing a wedding ceremony for one of his son's friends tonight, so she could not stay long at the craft fair any way... 

My high school reunion is also in California this weekend, plus my sister's daughter's birthday was the 21st, so they are celebrating this weekend.  She already told me she would be so busy she may not call me... But since we are going to California twice in November, we decided to cancel this trip.

Its a beautiful blustery day.  Cool weather and medium breezes.  Izzy and I took a longer walk this morning and I look forward to much longer ones, since the weather is cooling off.  Tonight we have friends coming for dinner and to play cards.  I think tomorrow, after church, we will go see the movie, HEREAFTER, starring Matt Damon and directed by Clint Eastwood.  I really enjoy most of Eastwood's films.

Enjoying the weekend and happily awaiting next week when my husband will finally get to retire...Have a great weekend everyone!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Bless His Heart...

Dad has another UTI.  He will be on an IV of antibiotics...they had their Halloween Harvest Festival today...hope Dad did not get scared again from the costumes.  Doctor-Doctor is there today, so I am sure she protected him.  Been so busy today, will call tomorrow....Bless his heart, hope he is not too miserable.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Dad, The Pontificating Absent Minded Professor...

Mom called me today while I was filling out paperwork for my new Dentist. I am still on the hunt for a "good one" and am getting yet another estimate for two implants to replace the two tooth hole, from my former Dentist who broke off my tooth at the gum line, when removing my bridge.  He is the one who gave me the painful injections and put a knee on my chest to pull my tooth!

Anyway, Mom wanted to know if I wanted to talk with Dad.  Unfortunately, the staff was waiting for me to finish the paperwork, so I could not.  Mom had a good visit with Dad. She planned to go earlier this morning, but the window guy (she is replacing some windows in the house to quiet street noise and lower the utility bills) kept her longer than she planned.

Dad had just finished lunch, so they went to his room and thankfully, neither of his room mates were there. He sat in his wheelchair and she sat on his bed. It was drizzling outside and there were student nurses all over the place, including their "special nook" where Mom and Dad usually go to visit.

She told him some church news which she felt he understood, and then she asked him what kind of cake he wanted for his birthday party on November 5th. Surprisingly, he told her he wasn't too fond of cake, so she suggested an ice cream cake.  Dad's face lit up on that suggestion!  He told her to get a big one so all the guests could enjoy it. She promised she would.

The nursing home will give a big party during the day for all the birthdays in November, that way, all the patients will think it is a birthday party for them individually... I know Dad will.  Later, at 7pm, we will all converge into one of the meeting rooms and celebrate Dad's 90th birthday.

Dad told her he writes a daily column for the staff there. He reviews the movies and reports which ones to see. He also helps them place their bets at the race track.  (Just gotta' love him...)

He told Mom he wanted to open a bank account so he'd have money to entertain with.  She told him she already had one account with his and her names on it and one with just her name. He smiled and seemed content.

Dad suddenly launched into a lecture about how people suck.  Mom thought he meant it in a negative way, but he went into a long explanation about how well babies do when they suck (Dad was pontificating, so his voice was quite LOUD!)  He determined adults should suck mother's milk as well.  Mom just agreed with him and told him how interesting that was.  Mom had barely finished her sentence, and Dad was off on another topic. His mind must be jumping all the time.

Dad is in love with another young gal there with beautiful brown eyes.

She told Dad about having the house treated for termites.  He was very proud of her for taking care of things around the house. So she told him she was considering replacing the windows and he thought it was a wise move. When Dad was home, she fought with him "tooth and nail" about getting things done around the house.  He was so paranoid, he was certain the workers would steal from them.  I know it relieves so much of her stress getting the house in order after waiting for so long.

Mom reminded Dad it was his sister's 85th birthday today, as well as his niece's birthday.  Mom tried to call her so Dad could speak with her, but she was out. She called again when Mom got home and they chatted for awhile.  His sister had been out to dinner with her daughter's family.

Dad told Mom how well she looked and asked about the rest of the family. She told him the exciting news about my second to the youngest brother graduating next month.  Dad smiled and said he was so proud of him. She told him my youngest brother was busy as were the rest of the family. Dad told Mom he had talked with me the other day.

He seemed tired and closed his eyes, so she suggested it might be  nap time. Dad said he was ready to take a snooze...

Listening to Mom tell us about Dad acting like a pontificating Professor, it brought back memories of one Halloween.  Mom dressed as a Flapper and had Dad dress as the Absent Minded Professor.  He wore a white shirt, tie, dinner jacket, boxer underwear, shoes, socks and sock garters....NO LONG PANTS! 
They took first prize.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

My Youngest Grandson Is One Month Old Today...

           Is it just me, or does he get cuter every time you see him?

As you can see, he is already a "ham bone" posing for pictures...or as his Daddy says, "He is too sexy for his blanky"....

It stormed all day with thunder, lightning and pouring rain.  Perfect day for making soup and staying home...

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

My Dad, The Love Doctor...

Early this morning I dreamt Dad escaped again from the nursing home.  This time he drove all the way from California, in the rain, to my house in Nevada...

Mom had visited Dad last Thursday morning, waking him up.  Doctor-Doctor told Mom Dad had not slept well the night before.  One of the aides asked Mom to bring in more of Dad's clothes.  By the time she returned to his room, he was asleep again.  She read to him from The New Testament as he slept through the rest of their visit.

Was he plotting and planning for his escape?

When I opened the door and saw him, it was so real!  Dad was dripping wet and looked as he did at fifty or sixty years of age with his dark hair.  He looked at me like he does, and my first reaction was, "Oh crap", but I quickly had to check myself and act pleased to see him, as if him driving in the rain was perfectly normal and common place.  I hoped he did not notice my initial reaction.

I awoke feeling guilty and panicked.  I realized I had not spoken to Dad in a couple weeks.  I called the nursing home, only to get the same old story, that he was in the dining room "doing activities".  I was due to leave the house to get my hair weaved and run errands.  I needed to talk with him...

Finally, I persuaded the nurse to go find Dad and bring him to the phone...

Hearing him say, "Hello?" , made me feel a combination of joy and relief .

"Hi Daddy,"  I gushed. 

"Donna Dee! It is so good to hear from you!"

I was relieved he was safe and joyful to hear the happiness in his voice.  He laughed and chuckled throughout our disjointed and bizarre conversation.  First, last and always, he talks of the love and protection he constantly receives from "his lovely people".  I could hear people talking and laughing in the back ground and Dad was responding to all of them.

He began a lengthy non stop dialogue about how he counsels everyone in retirement, business, making lots of money and sex.  He told me every time he speaks with me, he makes lots of money.  I agreed and complimented him on his advice and wisdom.  He told me to tell my husband to sell his business, make lots of money and then relax with family and friends.  Good advice.  I am hoping my husband will agree to retire by the end of this year...

Never mind the fact my husband is employed by a bank and does not have his own business.  As we all know, working for banks is not the best job to have at this particular time...

He paused briefly to discuss the benefits of Milk of Magnesia and how it prevents many problems.

Listening to his counseling and advice to others about sex was a real classic.  Morning hours are the best for his sex counseling.  He invites everyone to come right in and see him.  Every one has to take their turn.  He likes to keep it harmonious at both ends.  He interviews for sexual preferences, makes appointments depending on attractions.  Its important to compare notes.  The most important is to have peace and no fights. 

My Dad, The Love Doctor...

Monday, October 18, 2010

No Pressure, Right?

Having returned from California this past Saturday, my husband and I took to the couch and slept.  It's a combination of emotional, mental and physical exhaustion.  I feel so behind in my blog posts and we are not suppose to feel like that...  No pressure, right?

I think I need another day to re coop...

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

He Is Back In My Arms...

We are in California again... staying with my husband's daughter in Riverside.  Arrived yesterday and drove straight to my sister's to drop off her stuff, then on to see a movie.  We saw LIFE AS YOU KNOW IT (I think that is the title...)  Really cute movie.  We both enjoyed it.

Tonight, within the hour, I will have my grandson Jacob in my arms!!!  Cannot wait.  I spoke with my daughter over the phone earlier today when we were in Brea getting my wedding ring sized (due to arthritis in my knuckles).  He sounded like a little baby elephant when he squealed.  My husband bought me a beautiful white gold bracelet for our anniversary tomorrow.  We will celebrate nine years.

Tomorrow we are meeting our agent in Hemet to look at some houses.  The HOA is way too high, but we will look.  I found a few more we can look at.  I think we might need another agent because I don't feel she listens to me and I seem to find most of the houses...

Friday we will spend the night at my oldest daughter Holly's house and have some fun with my other two grandsons.  We will drive home on Saturday.

Short and sweet.  Not sure how long this "piggy back" connection will work.  They do not have Internet and I can only get on upstairs... They should be here in a half hour, so better get busy in the kitchen, we bought dinner for everyone.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Back To Reality...

I posted about the Tony Curtis funeral for Monday, October 4th, Tuesday the 5th, and Wednesday the 6th,  so I think I am all caught up. Except for Friday... I am still organizing photos. I am trying to recover from my sister's and my week long whirl wind, because that is sure how it felt!  It went by way too fast, but trying to recall everything we did is a time I better take notes.

Tomorrow my husband gets home from a week in Mexico, then Tuesday we leave for California for four days to celebrate our 9th wedding anniversary and see the grandsons.  I have to deliver all the "bargains" my sister bought, which would not fit into her suitcase. 

Yesterday my sister and I laughed our heads off taking pictures on my new full length tripod, one of my great finds for $5.  I hated to see her go, I missed her as soon as I helped put her luggage on the curb...I had to maintain so I would not cry.

I got a text from her today telling me she is back to tearing up carpet and installing more wooden floors with her I think her vacation is officially over.

I have been trying to be productive today...but all I want to do it nap!  I just finished Friday's post...                                        

Friday, October 8, 2010

Yard Sales, Movies And Our Last Day To Jam In More Fun...

We left the house at 7:30am.  I got up at 6am so I could walk Izzy before we left.  I don't know how I am surviving on so little sleep.  I don't think we have hit the sheets any earlier than 2 or 3 am since my sister arrived!  Her gift today was a Michael's gift card.

Our mission today were yard sales. Holly got a new droid phone, so her GPS on her phone came in very handy.  My sister found another art print of that artist she fancies.  Normally his art for a small print like she found, cost $30.  She got each one for a dollar.

We had installed a web cam on my PC and a Trans Dock for my iTouch.  While driving to the various yard sales we tried desperately to tune in the dumb thing, but all we got was static.  As far as the web cam goes, guess we have to use a video conferencing program like Skype or ooVoo to use our web cams.  I bought both my daughters web cams so we can all video chat and SEE the grand kids.

After the yard sales, I took my sister over to Hobby Lobby to check it out.  Like me, she was not impressed.  The staff was more interested in bashing a fellow co-worker who did not show up than helping the customers. We went to Michael's so sher could spend some of her gift card.  We told the manager how unimpressed we were with Hobby Lobby and how much we appreciated the Michael's chain.  

By noon we were heading to the South Pointe Casino to see  the movie, Secretariat.  The South Pointe runs a special for seniors, any movie before 4pm is $3.  I have to admit, I really wanted to see the movie, but I kept nodding off at the beginning, because I was so dang tired.  What I saw...was excellent.

After the movies, I asked my sister what she wanted to do, and you guessed it, more gambling.  She saw a Monopoly game she wanted us to try.  It was one of those progressive machines where four people play and the more who play, the more often the bonuses hit, and every one wins.  My sister and I selected the convict for our character, while the man next to me was the dog and the lady next to my sister was the beauty queen.

In a very short period of time, we each had $50.  I was hungry, so  we cashed out and headed to the cafe for dinner.  I had prime rib and Holly had a hamburger.  After treating me to dinner, she coaxed me back over to the Monopoly machine.  I ended up loosing all the money I made, but my sister made another $50.

I drove us home and we quickly got into our pajamas, put the kettle on for some tea, turned on the TV and got on our computers.  I could not concentrate, so I moved to the couch and that is the last thing I remember...

Thursday, October 7, 2010

The Best The Marines Have To Offer...

Dad was in the hallway with his physical therapist when Mom arrived for her visit.  The therapist had a belt around Dad's waist to steady Dad as he walked in his walker.  Dad was happy and in good spirits.  After his therapy, Mom wheeled Dad out front of the facility where all the flowers were bright and colorful.  Dad loved it.

Dad told Mom he was in the best facility the Marines have to offer.  Mom just smiled and agreed.  Dad frequently believes he is in a Veteran's hospital.  Mom thought he seemed confused, which is usually not the case when visiting in the morning.  He told her he would be keeping the same manager for the Angels baseball team so they could win the pennant next year...

Dad smiled and greeted every female who entered the facility through the front door.  He told Mom he had enjoyed a great breakfast, but could not remember what he had.  Mom noticed his eye is irritated again, but did not seem to bother him at all.  Dad's arthritis seems to be getting more gnarled.  His fingers are more twisted and crooked and he has less rotation in his neck, especially turning to his right.

Mom explained to Dad she was getting an estimate on new windows for the house, so she could not stay as long today.  Dad was very pleased to hear of the new windows and told her not to be late.  She wheeled him back inside and into the music room, kissing him and saying her good byes there.

My sister and I spent the day in our pajamas, playing on our computers.  We slept in until 10:30 am.   Izzy loves my sister, climbing all over her and giving her kisses.  I think she smells the same DNA and we sound so much the same.  It is so nice to see her happy with my sister, sitting on her lap, like she does with me.

Tomorrow we plan on seeing some movies and catching a few yard sales...

I am still working on this week's posts... so please stay tuned.  I had a lot of pictures on my cell phone and ran into some temporary issues in trying to get them uploaded to my computer. We have been having so much fun and staying up way too late...  I will back date the posts to keep the week in order of our adventures. 

Today her gift was a pair of Mary Engelbreit tea cup socks.  I got myself a matching pair also.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Strawberry Daiquiris...

We were up at out the door by 9:30 am because I made a beauty appointment for Izzy to get her face and rear end trimmed along with her nails.  While she was at the groomers, my sister and I enjoyed that $3.99 breakfast at Coco's again.  Such a deal and so delicious!

Since we were so close, we hit the Goodwill store again.  I found a a blue fanny pack, some school grading stickers for my daughter who helps volunteer in her son's class room, a dry high lighter and a business holder to hold some of my gift cards.

We picked up Izzy, looking so cute with her pink bow, and took her home.  Both my sister and I needed to make some phone calls and do some paperwork, then we were out the door again, headed for the Salvation Army.  Today is 50% off all clothing.  I found two pairs of denim Capri's, a Hello Kitty tank top and some cute striped PJ Capri's.

We have been on the hunt for my particular brand (Cardiostat Omega-3) of fish oil at various Walmart stores, and did not have any luck.  Hopefully we will find it before Saturday, when I run out of my current supply...

We had lunch at the Fiesta Casino then my sister twisted my arm to do some more gambling.  I think she is my good luck charm because I was so lucky most of the night.  It was one of those nights where everything we touched, we won or played a long time on very little money.  We laughed our heads off not understanding the game or how we won. Her gift today was a lucky $20 to gamble with. The strawberry daiquiris were not bad either...

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

More Shopping, More Eating and More Fun...

I woke up at 9:30am and my sister had been up a half hour.  I made us some fruit salad and yogurt for breakfast, and then took Izzy for a walk. We wrote on our computers for awhile and then got dressed.
My sister's gift today was a Mary Englebreit notebook and a lace heart doily.

We left the house around 1pm and did some shopping at Target and Michael's.  We stopped into Yogurtland for a nice treat and then ventured into Las Vegas for more Thrift stores. We determined I live by the better ones.  The only thing I found was a plastic bin for eggs for the fridge and a full length tripod for my camera for $5.

We went to the M for a two for one buffet, since my sister had a coupon.  In line, we ran into some friends of my husband and I.  We invited them to join us and we all dined together.  My sister has never seen the incredible buffet the M offers.  She could not believe all the 200 plus choices.

We did a little gambling after dinner, playing multi card Keno (20 penny cards).  We held our own.  We came home and cleaned off the stuff we bought, then both fell asleep watching a movie on TV.

Monday, October 4, 2010

What A Beautiful Day For A Funeral...

Thank goodness my son in law called this morning at 9am.  We over slept.  We planned on meeting my son in law and his wife at 9:30am, at their home, and follow them to the services at Palms Memorial Park.  I hung up the phone and ran in to wake up my sister.  When she asked how long we had to get ready, I was so tired, I forgot whether he had said 9:30am or 10:30am.  When I called him back, he confirmed 9:30am.

Miraculously, we were ready and on the road in 20 minutes.  We arrived an hour early for the services, but the parking lot was full and there were crowds of people.  The  main chapel filled up quickly with family, close friends and dignitaries.  They had three other rooms set up with audio and television, so we got in the front row of the one of those rooms. Waiting in line, there were collages of pictures of Tony and Jill and  above our heads on a TV Screen, was this picture of Tony Curtis in his prime. The same picture was on the program, only with his line from the movie Sweet Smell Of Success, "Cat's in the bag, bag's in the river".

It was a beautiful ceremony. It was opened with a prayer from the Rabbi, as Tony Curtis was Jewish. They had a very touching DVD presentation entitled, An Affair With Tony Curtis.  There were clips from almost every movie he had ever played in.  Some of his paintings and drawings were set upon easels on either side of his flag draped, closed casket.

The Governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger gave the first eulogy. He really was very funny.  He met Tony at the height of Tony's career and Arnold as a struggling actor, before Terminator. Arnold sat next to Tony at an actor's dinner.  Tony was very friendly and down to earth, , giving him generous and encouraging, helpful advice.

Later, when he had made it with his Terminator and other movies, Tony would call him up and congratulate him.  Arnold also likes to draw and paint, only showing it to his family.  Again, Tony took the time to show him how to draw figures, fingers and hands and how to paint.  Tony gave him one of his paintings, but Arnold would not allow him to give it to him for free and insisted on paying  for it.

He talked of Tony being 85 but obviously seeing himself as a young man.  Tony had conversations with Arnold about how much he hated getting older.  Tony had hair pieces, sports cars and dated beautiful women to feel younger.  Arnold and everyone who spoke talked of the great love between Tony and Jill, his wife and now, widow.

Arnold told everyone how proud Tony was of the way he lived his life and took care of himself.  On his 80th birthday, he had a picture taken of himself in the backyard of their home, with Jill lying in her bathing suit on a chaise lounge, and Tony naked, except for holding two of his small dogs in front of his privates.  Arnold exclaimed how no one in their right mind would pose naked at that age, or if they did, would put a fig leaf to cover themselves. "Not Tony", Arnold said, "His private parts were so huge he had to hold two dogs in front of himself!" That brought a huge roar of laughter from the crowd. (See top left in collage below)

The Rabbi commented after Arnold sat down that he had NEVER heard a eulogy given quite like his eulogy.

Jamie Lee Curtis followed Arnold.  Her first words were, "Talk about a hard act to follow!" She began her eulogy by doing some imitations of her Father, which sounded really good and made everyone laugh with her.  She told everyone she inherited her Father's compulsive need for attention. She read a very moving poem written by her sister Kelly, because Kelly was very emotional.

Jill, who was clearly struggling with her grief, had everyone spellbound with her courage and strength. She told us all how much she will miss his wonderful sense of humor and how his positive attitude was so infectious.  She told us how he loved animals, but did not realize how much he would have to love animals, until they married.  She told of all the animals they had in their home, including a baby burro, who lived with them two weeks before getting him well enough to stay at their Horse Rescue.

Tony's wife spoke of his quirk of wearing his signature white shorts and a tattered white sweater any where they went, which was a major source of "discussion" between them.  She apparently had to keep mending the sweater, but he wore the outfit every where.  When we went to visit him, he had his famous white shorts on but a bare chest.  He even painted, wearing white. (See pic on lower right)

She told us how Tony used to refer to his iPhone phone as his "IV" because it was his life line to friends and families.  They were together sixteen years, but would have celebrated their 12th wedding anniversary next month.  She told of one of her favorite quips from Tony; someone had asked Tony if he thought it was dangerous dating a woman 45 years his junior.  Tony replied, "If she dies, she dies". Jill laughed and everyone joined her...

Tony hated not being able to drive, being bound to his wheel chair. Jill shared with everyone how he always wore his driving gloves when he used to drive, so he continued to wear them while in his wheel chair.  Jill put his driving gloves in the coffin with Tony as part of his "travel kit".  Dressed in his favorite white shorts and sweater, with his stetson under his arm, other items in his "travel kit" were his iPhone, some gold coins, some money, some of his paint brushes, pad of paper and his drawing pencil, pictures of his kids and grand kids, and a poem from his favorite book.  His grandson Nicholas' baby shoes were also included. There were quite a few sentimental items, but these are the ones I remember.

She told us all Tony's friends and family knew, when they were at home, any where or even at a restaurant, Tony would find anything to draw on.  Napkins, table cloths, scraps of paper, all carried his drawings as he constantly was creating. On the collages on display, there were several of his drawings on napkins or a piece of a table cloth.  Also displayed were love notes to one another...

One touching note from Jill, she wrote to Tony telling him to have fun in Heaven,  but not too much fun without her.  She wrote she would join him one day.  She told him how much she loved him, being grateful for the time they had.

The Rabbi  ended the eulogies by saying Tony Curtis was 85 going on 21.  He spoke of how disappointed Tony had been not receiving an academy award, but he said how much more he achieved by being so important to so many friends, family and fans.

Another DVD  was shown at the end of the funeral.  It was more clips from several of his movies and at the end, it showed Tony in his younger years, black and white, smiling straight ahead at the audience.  He looked to his right and the word THE appeared.  He looked to his left, and the word END appeared. He then looked straight ahead again at the audience, smiled, shaking his head, like he was thinking, "No way, this is not the end for me...there is still so much more".....

Everyone followed to the grave sight, covered with tents for privacy.  He was buried with military honors as he was an injured Navy veteran from World War II.  Jill had told us how much Tony loved clouds and how he would call to her to come and look out their home windows to enjoy them.  He would say to her, "Today is a good day to be a cloud."  I have never seen such beautiful cloud formations as I did today above his grave.  Absolutely breath taking.

Flowers and white stones were placed on the top of his coffin before it was lowered into the ground.

After the service, Jill saw my son in law, and came to give him a hug, telling him she was so happy to see all of us...and thanked us for coming.

Everyone was invited to a reception at the Luxor, but my son in law and daughter in law had to return to work.  My sister and I decided not to go to the reception. Instead, we went to lunch together and talked..

I am so grateful the funeral was open to the public and my sister agreed to go.  I have been a life time fan of Tony Curtis.  Just the brief encounters my husband and I were lucky enough to enjoy with Tony Curtis, thanks to my husband's son, allowed us to see what a truly gracious and loving person he was.  At the end of the last DVD, the last sentence said, "Thank you to all my fans for allowing me to be part of your lives" I think that statement sums up what kind of a person he was.

My sister's gift for today, were some Mary Engelbreit scrap booking embellishments.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

The Sisterly Fun Begins...

I picked up my sis yesterday at the airport at 9am sharp.  Took her to Coco's for the special $3.99 breakfast of two eggs, toast or pancakes, bacon or sausage, and country taters.  Delicious!  Next we rummaged around two Goodwill stores and one Salvation Army Store.

I hit the bonanza for purses.  I actually was coveting my sister's travel pouch, and then I found one for $2!  I also found a darling denim purse ($2) and a really nice silver big sack type purse with 3 Canadian coins in it ($8).  I found a beautiful baby blue Tommy Hilfiger pullover sweater for my husband and a small white mirrored cabinet for my husband to use for a medicine cabinet.

My sister found some incredibly cute chocolate brown Merona cargo Capri's for only 99 cents, some Waverly flowered double sheets for $3 and a Story People print by one of her favorite Artists, Brian Andreas, for 99 cents.

It began pouring rain, with thunder and lightning, so we drove back to my house so she could unpack, and visit with my honey before he left for Mexico.  He was watching football, so my sister and I each took the opportunity for a wee nap.

I have gifts for my sis each day she is here.  Yesterday's gift was a bowlful of her favorite candies,
M&M peanuts.

My husband woke me at 5pm so we could smooch goodbye.  He drove his friend and called me at our regular check in points.  My sister and I ate dinner at Winchell's, a Golf themed sports restaurant, very popular with the locals here.  Afterward, she wanted to go to the M casino for a little gambling...

We got home around midnight and had to play with Izzy for awhile before she could settle down to go to sleep.  I think we hit the sheets around 2 am or so.

This morning we had planned on going to an Art and Craft show over in Boulder City, but the weather was blustery and looked like it might rain again.  We decided to cozy up on the couch, drink coffee snack on fruit and yogurt and just "be".

Her second gift was a mug that read, CATS LIKE OBEDIENT PEOPLE.

We cleaned out my jacket closet so we could take two bags of donations to get two 20% discount coupons for the thrift store.

We left about 2 pm for Savers, another thrift store.  This time I found some cute green cargo pants and a little zipper bag.   Holly found a Fiskars Cutting Mat, a darling red and white zipper bag with hearts on it, which I was ticked that she found it after I specifically looked through the purses before she did!  We always seem to do that... she finds something I want and visa versa.  It's a challenge shopping with someone with similar tastes... but we are willing to deal with it. If one of us whines too long, we end up trading anyway...

We were in there FOR-EVER and realized we had shopping right through lunch!  It was almost dinner, so at 5pm we drove over to Green Valley Ranch for the two for one seafood buffet.  Holly has never tasted crab, so I thought it would be fun to have her try it Cajun style crab and shrimp (only we requested mild).  Here is her plate: Not bad for $10, eh?

Messy and delicious.  She loved it.  We had to get "down and dirty" to eat it, but it was soooooo worth it!  My mouth is watering just remembering...

After some brownies and ambrosia salad for dessert, we waddled out of the buffet and over to a Keno machine.  We played for a while and held our own, then paired up to share some penny machines together.  We love playing machines we have no clue how to play, and then are so excited when we win.  We laughed ourselves sick.  I won $15 and she was the big winner with $104.

We got home and watched The Amazing Race, which we had recorded on the DVR.  Holly wanted to relax in the spa, so we bundled up and went in the spa to relax.  Izzy stole one of our bags of M&M peanuts, but gave it up when both of us let her know TO LET IT GO!  I gave her one of her chew treats to keep her occupied.

After a half hour of soaking in the spa, we were relaxed so we could have a good restful sleep... After a refreshing shower, I came out to tell my sister good night, and she was on her computer!  So I decided to fill you all in on what we are up it is almost 3am.

We are going to attend Tony Curtis's funeral tomorrow at 11am, so we better hit the sheets here pretty quick. Besides, I can't hold my eyes open any longer....We have a long list of things we want to accomplish...

Why, when I am here alone, time drags by so slowly.... and when I am with my sister, the time just seems to fly!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

On A Clear Day, He Can't Remember Anything...

Between cloud bursts, lightening and thunder, yesterday Mom ventured out into the elements to see Dad. He was in the lunch room with the "salty sailor". The sailor wouldn't eat, complaining how awful the food was. Dad gobbled everything with gusto, telling his friend how delicious it was. He raved about the food and asked Mom to tell the chef.  Mom told the Administrator after her visit, and he said he would pass it on.
One of the therapists, was telling Mom, she is trying to figure out a way to have the residents do line dancing with their walkers!! Her idea sounds fun, but tricky.

Mom took Dad out on the patio.  The weather had calmed down and displayed a spectacular blue sky. It was a beautiful day. They talked and Dad commented on the little children who come visiting, always come to talk with him because they know how much he enjoys little children. Mom listened to him pontificate and ramble on about many things she couldn't follow, so she nodded and allowed him to say any and everything he wanted to say.

Dad was glad to hear I had arrived home safely because he worries about me driving so far. He was also worried about my second to the oldest brother's business.  Mom told him she was pretty sure things were going well for him. Mom told Dad she hadn't seen my two youngest brothers lately, but knew they were busy. She told him my sister, Holly was leaving today to spend a week with me and Dad seemed happy about it. She told him my husband was going fishing in Mexico and Don responded, "Oh yeah!"

Dad became tired, so Mom took him to his room and let the aide know, so he could help Dad get ready for a nap. Mom told him his birthday was next month. Dad asked her what month next month was, and she told him. He thanked her several times for telling him about his birthday. Doctor-Doctor was off today, so he felt a little melancholy.

He said the doctor came to visit him today and told him he was doing very well. Mom asked if it was his primary care doctor (which I am sure it was, because he visits Dad on Fridays), but Dad told Mom he had a new doctor.  Mom asked Dad if he remembered Dr. B, his former primary care doctor.  He went to him for years before residing at the nursing home. He said he couldn't picture him...

Dad looked very cozy and comfy after he was tucked into bed.  Mom kissed him and said her good byes and went home to take a wee nap herself.  I think not working, is agreeing with her.

The skin care nurse called to let me know Dad's little toe is acting up again.  It seems just as they get it almost healed, it opens up and starts weeping again... I am sure his primary doctor came to check out his foot.

As quickly as the dark clouds clear from the sky, Dad has those days when the clouds still seem to be with him.  It is so sad he cannot even remember when his own birthday is, or even the month or the year.  I am so very grateful he still remembers us...

Friday, October 1, 2010

Updates...A Little Of This and A Little Of That...

Its drizzling today... October always dials down the temperature.  By Halloween it will be very chilly here and will spin us into our winter season.

I am tidying up my desk, AGAIN...getting the last minute details resolved before my sister arrives tomorrow morning. I AM SO EXCITED! My husband and his buddy leave in the afternoon for California.  He has his annual Mexico trip with his good friends and a couple of his sons.  My sister and I will have the house to ourselves and a whole seven days to do whatever we feel like doing, whenever we feel like doing it.  Stay tuned, I will be posting some of our activities...

I have been talking with my daughter Jodee every day and little Jacob continues to be a "good" baby.  He is eating and sleeping every two to three hours. His navel raisin fell off the other day.  Her incision is healing and feeling better and better.  She has been able to get some good sleep and naps, as her boyfriend Jeff cooks her delicious meals and helps so much with the baby.  I am so happy everything is going so well...I miss them so much.

I learned I do not have arthritis of the eye, it is actually called Episcleritis, which is inflammation in the outer part of the white of the eye.  My doctor compared it to arthritis of the eye, in that it involves inflammation.  She suggested artificial tear eye drops, green leafy vegetables, fish oil and to let her know if I have any further problems.

My kink in my neck is a lot better...still a little stiff, but way least I can turn my head now...pretty tricky driving home from California and not being able to look over my shoulder...

Since Izzy returned from boarding, she no longer hides under my bed when it is time to get in her crate.  She just goes right in without a fuss.

Last night my husband and I went to see WALL STREET.  We planned on going on his birthday, but we were both too tired. I may have to see it again, because I am "investment challenged" with all that Wall Street Talk, but the acting by Carrie Mulligan and Shia La Beouf really stood out.  Frank Langella always delivers and it was nice to see Susan Sarandon again.  Haven't seen her in any movies in awhile.  Michael Douglas as always was a toned down Gordon Greko.  The scenes with his daughter (Mulligan) were very touching.

I feel so bad for Michael Douglas, having stage four throat cancer.  He looks so gaunt in recent pictures and is under going chemo.  I have always been a fan of the Douglas men.  I was a huge Kirk Douglas fan, especially in SPARTACUS, THE VIKINGS, TWENTY THOUSAND LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA and LUST FOR LIFE. 

His Father fought with a vengeance after his stroke, so lets hope Michael can beat throat cancer...