Wednesday, July 06, 2011

You My Fave-it!

Having fake grandkids around really, really does my heart good.  Oh, they are normal little girls who can be really really bad sometimes, but it sure brings a smile to my face when they come running towards my truck, huge grins on their faces, arms extended, and both of them yelling, "GRAMMA CINNY!!  GRAMMA CINNY!!!"  as I park in their driveway.

I'd bought Jethro a little gift at the Dollar Tree Store, where we'd picked up the gifts for Britney, so I was taking it to his house to give to him.  I also have a package of Pull-Ups here that I found on the huge discount/everything is on sale table at Kroger and picked up for Justice.  Of course, I forget those every time I see Jethro or Macrame.  But I took him his present, got my hugs from the girls, listened to their chattered and admired their new squid hats, and then Justice, the cuddle bug, said, "Pit me up!" and she held her hands to me.

I picked her up, and she curled her arms and legs around me, and put her head on my shoulder, saying, "You my fave-it!" to me.

How can any heart stand up to something like that??  Everything just melts when you hear a little one say, "You are my favorite."  Awwww!!!

I always say things to the girls like, "You are my very favorite Hope in the whole wide world!"  Or, "You are my favorite 2 year old!"  I let them both know that I love them equally, and they are both my favorites.

I also love it love it LOVE IT when I get a letter from my very favorite, Anna.  I don't get to see her nearly enough, but she sends us pictures and letters, and sometimes we get a phone call from her. I miss this kid like crazy, people.  I see the pictures her mom sends or posts with Anna playing soccer, and I can remember her learning how to run, and the funny way she moved her arms as she chugged along.  I see her writing, and remember her "painting" the porch with water and a paintbrush.  When she lost her first tooth, I remember when she was a toothless little squishy baby, and how cute she looked with her teeth as they came in.

One tough little soccer goalie!

Anna is the one in green with gray sweats, closest to the ball.

The older, crazy acting, weird woman who was stalking Dr. Lampshade until she realized he was bad news, called Saige's phone late last night.  Apparently she found a lot of Wii games were missing, as well as some other items.  She knew Lamp stole them, because someone had told her that Lamp stole her stuff, but she hadn't noticed these games and items were gone.  I don't know what she's going to do.

He got my phone number, and yesterday he called me to remind me it was Brit's birthday.  I told him that we'd seen her and taken her some gifts, and that yes, we had to go through all the security to get to her.   He thought it was bogus that we could see her, and he, as her husband, could not, and I just agreed with him.  I was thinking, though, that if he'd behaved while he'd been there while she was in the SICU, and he'd actually been a husband instead of a little boy, he probably could go visit her.

But he burned those bridges that he needed to cross, and now, too bad, so sad.

He's going to end up in prison, the way he's going.  I think he needs hardcore rehab, not prison, but what he's doing to get drugs is illegal and punishable by prison time, or jail time.

It is so hard to love a son so much that you would do almost anything for him, and realize that what you are doing to try to help is simply wrong for this kid of yours.  It is enabling him to continue in what he's doing, and it's hurting, not helping.  That is hard, hard, to understand and come to terms with.  It's hard seeing the boy that was underneath the man he's become, and realizing that I am not the one to get that boy back.  I can't do it.  He needs real help, not just a sandwich and a glass of water from Mommy.

It hurts.

So having a little one grab me in a big bear hug and say softly, "You my fave-it," is something that helps my heart heal.

Yesterday Saige and I didn't go to any fireworks show.  Jethro had picked up a lot of firecrackers and smoky things and exploding things when he was in Missouri, and so he handed Saige a few items to mess with at our house.  Nothing big or illegal, just some popping and smoking type fireworks, and a few sparklers.

When I was about 6 years old, our neighbors had some sparklers, and they asked my mom if I could play with one.  Mom said that I could, and I was thrilled to hold this sparkling piece of metal.  I remember they told me to whirl it around, and I obeyed, watching the beautiful sparks against the dark sky.  It felt, and looked, magical.  I didn't realize that I was holding something that burned at over 2,000 degrees, and I'm sure mom didn't either, or I would never have had that moment of fun.  Mom was very safety conscious with us, and we couldn't eat things like hard candy in the car, we wore seat belts and special kid seat belts even when it wasn't a law.  "Cross arms!" she'd say, as she closed the car doors, and we'd cross our arms over our chest so we wouldn't get our fingers slammed in the door.  She didn't coddle us, though, and she did let us run and play in mud and creeks and in the woods, but in the car, especially, she wanted us as safe as possible.

She'd lost her favorite cousin, Gary, who'd been like a brother to her, when his car was demolished by a drunk driver.  The drunk man in the other car got off without so much as a cut, but Gary was killed.

I'm sure that's why she felt as she did, and why she wanted us to stay safe.

She was extremely anti-alcohol, which, I'm sad to say, made some of us desperately want to try it.

Wow, I went way off topic here.  What the heck??  Who is supposed to be keeping an eye on me and stopping me from doing this, hmm?  You're not doing a good job, let me tell you.  

Where was I?

Oh, the fourth of July.

I think Saige and I had fun, even if we didn't go to a fireworks show.  She is terrified of those party popper things, which makes me laugh. You know, those plastic bottles that have a string you pull at one end, and there's a little bang as strings and confetti come out the bottle top.  Saige does NOT like those.  I was nice and didn't point mine at her.

She put those party streamers and some toilet paper up in the tree.  We lit some of those silly black snakes.  When the black pellet started to expand into the "snake", Saige said, "Are they supposed to look like poop?"  Well, uh, yes.  But they didn't  sell well advertised as, "Poop Pellets."

The kids have always loved those snappers.  Unfortunately, our dogs and the cats hate those snappers.  They aren't very loud at all, but that snapping pop scares the pets, poor things.

But sparklers are pretty cool.. er.. hot
I remember one fourth of July where I showed up at my best friend's apartment.  My boyfriend had decided not to pick me up, or call, or anything, so I went to her place.  My brothers and their friends had made up this rather silly, slightly foul song, and I was singing it to her, while we drank some beer and shot off bottle rockets.  I never laughed so hard as I did when my friend suddenly spouted off a verse of her own to the song, and it was hysterical.  Let me tell you, the words she came up with were hysterical even without beer. Or bottle rockets.  She definitely cheered me up, and I said a wonderful, sparkly goodbye as the bottle rocket I had shot straight into a tree instead of going into the air like it was supposed to.  

Maybe you had to be there.

But it was funny.

I just found this friend again through the wonder that is Facebook.  I wonder if she remembers that day the way I do.

Saige and I had a silly string war, too.  You can't tell by the photo, but I won that war, fair and square, only I cheated.  Hee hee!  While she was out merrily tossing toilet paper into the tree, I was lying in wait for her, my silly string can in hand, ready to spray.  

She shrieked like a little girl when that first blast of cold yicky smelling string hit her in the head.

I actually draped myself in the silly string for the benefit of this photo.  


Ask Saige.

I won.

We both busted up laughing, though, as we sprayed that nasty stuff at each other.  I even wished we had more!

You can run

But you can't hide
I hope Jethro and his family had a nice time lighting off all the fireworks he had.  The girls were so excited when I got there, and then Jethro was so excited to show me everything he had.

I took Lamp to his appointment with the psychiatrist, who wanted to see me.  I made the mistake, apparently it was a mistake, anyway, of telling the doc that Lamp stole my Zune.  I told Lampshade he was very lucky I even took him to the appointment, and that I hadn't wanted to go in to see the doc in the first place.  He's lucky I didn't say more!  

And get this...

I took Lamp to the place he's staying.

It's a nice apartment complex.  He plays basketball, has central air, video games, a washer and dryer, and no rent to pay, plus plenty of food. Yeah, I think my kicking him out to have him hit rock bottom has really worked well, don't you?   Hopefully, his friends will start to tire of having him around, and some time soon, he'll find himself without a friendly couch to sleep on.

That might sound hateful of me, but it's the only way, I truly believe, that an addict can start to heal.  Hit rock bottom, with no support so he or she can use, and then go on to rehab and learn to live without drugs.

Watch Intervention if you don't believe me.

I told the psychiatrist that Lamp was headed for prison if he weren't careful.  Lamp thinks he can get out of it.  I'm not sure how, exactly, but he was turning over different scenarios in his mind and talking aloud as he worked through them.  Mostly I was ignoring him.  

Anyway, that is it for now.  Go in peace, be warmed and filled, stay out of the heat, and stay out of jail!

Monday, July 04, 2011

Happy Day of Independence!

Well, happy Independence Day for those American readers of mine.  I do realize that other countries have different days of independence than we have.

A few years ago, okay, many years ago now, we were in Germany, and the base put on a fireworks show.  My husband and I, along with our kids, went to see this show.  We all sat down in the bleachers provided, and were teasing our British friends, asking if they were even allowed to celebrate this day with us.   Suddenly, there was an announcement over the P.A. system, and we were told to move across the field to the other set of bleachers, so we wouldn't  be hit by flying embers.

The show began, fireworks were shot into the air, and the wind shifted suddenly.  We were being bombarded with glowing embers, pieces of fireworks, and ashes.  Of course, we found it hysterical, not because we were being burned alive, which we weren't, as most of the embers went out before they hit us, but because they'd made us move before the show started.  Had we been left alone, we wouldn't have gone home with blackened faces, smelling like smoke and gunpowder.

It was fun, though, and a very memorable Fourth of July!

Sometimes I wish Ob were still alive, so I could say, "Remember that 4th of July in Germany where we were getting hit by falling fireworks and yelling out, 'INCOMING! as they fell towards us?'"

So today is Britney's 21st birthday.  Saige and I ran out to the Dollar Store yesterday afternoon, and purchased quite a few gifts for her.  Saige is really good at picking out gifts for others, and puts a lot of thought into what she picks out.  Me?  Well, in all honesty, I spent most of my time picking out a case for my cell phone.  Hey!  It took quite a lot of thought to be able to find one that fit my phone and that looked good enough for my standards.  Okay. I have no standards.  But while Saige was picking out girly nail polish and art supplies, I was putting my phone in various cell phone holders.

I did pick out some adorable flip flop shaped erasers for Britney, and I picked out the colored pencils.

Saige picked out everything else.

We came home, where Saige wrapped all the gifts.  At one point she looked around, surrounded by gifts as she sat on the floor, and she said, "Well, I am a bit overwhelmed!"

Still, she did a great job. She wrapped quite a few of the presents, and we'd picked out a couple gift bags for the rest.  We loaded up the truck with the gifts, and a huge bouquet of balloons.  We wanted to try to make Britney smile, at least, for a moment.

Have  you ever tried to drive for an hour with a bouquet of balloons bouncing around behind you, blocking your rear view?  If not, may I suggest you don't try it?  Not unless you have a helper in the seat beside you, so when you screech, "I can't see!!"  The helper can try to push the helium balloons downwards, so you can see, if just for a brief moment.

We got to the hospital, and then drove forward a few blocks to the Dairy Queen, to buy an ice cream cake.  (Britney had requested one)  We wanted to get one that would allow us to put her name, or to put something like, "Happy 21st 4th of July!" but alas, all the cakes were already covered.  We found one that had a tie-dyed design on top, and it said "Happy Birthday".  It was white with green frosting trimming around the top of the cake.

We drove back to the hospital after we bought the cake.  This is a large complex, you see, and you have to park in a parking garage.  We found a place to park, and then we had to figure out how we were going to carry all the gifts, the balloons, and the cake up to Brit's room.


The handles broke on one of the gift bags.

I don't know how we did it, but we did it.  Saige had to do most of the work, because with my muscle issues and tendency to drop things, I can't carry too much.

The balloon bouquet covered everything we could think of:  The 4th of July, Happy Birthday, Princess (Which is the theme Saige came up with to make Brit smile.  She's more the, well, vampire type than a princess), favorite colors of Black and Red, and Get Well Soon.

Still, she put on her blow up crown right away, as we came into the room and visited with her and with her dad.

Princess Britney and her Dad

He refused to put on his crown.  

There are just so many lines some men won't cross.

Erma and Ambrose showed up to say "Happy Birthday", which was nice.  Ambrose?  He willingly put on his crown. In fact, he wore it all the rest of the evening, and even into Taco Bell, where we met up after the birthday celebration.

We did a lot of laughing, which was awesome, considering the circumstances.  But laughter heals the bones, and in Brit's case, I hope it helped heal the spine, too.

She's been in a tremendous amount of pain in her legs, which the doctors say is good.  That means her spine is healing.  Slowly, but it is healing.  

Saige decorated the room.  There's the Happy Birthday banner on the wall behind the bed, and she decorated the door with streamers. You can't see that.  She didn't put a lot of thought or time into decorating because, as she said, the nurses would probably pull the decorations down anyway.

So Britney received art paper, paints, crayons, coloring books, colored pencils, erasers, and anything else we could think of that was artsy.  Saige picked out some foam frames and some foam stickers, as well as glitter glue, so Britney could make some cool picture frames.  She got the girly stuff, like nail polish, nail polish remover, facial towels, baby wipes, and some of those cute little towels you put in water and they get bigger.  Anything we could think of, like I said earlier, that might be fun and make her smile, as well as give her stuff to do, is what we brought her.

I think she liked her gifts.  Sadly, she found out about the death of one of her hamsters right before Erma and Ambrose arrived, which was rough, and then she was in so much pain right as we were leaving that I felt badly for her.  It's hard to see anyone in that much pain.  

I bought Jethro a present at the Dollar Store, but he is not answering his phone.  Hmmpht. I might just keep it for myself.

Oh, in case you were wondering, I did find a case for my cell phone.  

Gotta love the Dollar Store.

So, what are our plans for tonight?  Apparently, according to Saige, she and I are having a silly string war, and then she's going to decorate the tree out front with the leftover birthday streamer.  I'm not sure what that has to do with the Independence of our nation, but hey, I'm all for Silly String.  You can't beat that for a fun time!  

We saw quite a few fireworks as we drove home, as it was pretty late by the time we took off to head back to our town.  We could see several shows going on at the same time, and the skies were filled with dark, scary storm clouds, AND with bright, happy, sparkly fireworks.  

Saige said she thought she preferred seeing the fireworks from the moving vehicle, rather than sitting there in a large group of people, oohing and aahing.   

One more thing.  We bought some of those birthday, oh, what are they called?  You know, you blow them and the paper part unfurls?  They don't make any noise, really.  Well, whatever they are called, BDG is absolutely TERRIFIED of them.  Terrified.  Saige blew on one, not even facing him, and he came unglued.  That silly dog was barking his panicked, scared bark, and then he leapt on to the couch, right on top of me, and attempted to somehow meld his body with mine.  It was not a pleasant sensation, as he is one big old dawg.  I told Saige to stop doing that, but then, it was so funny, she did it again. And again, BDG panicked, and burrowed against me.  

We cannot figure out why he was so scared.  Fuzz Dawg, the dog who is afraid of singing, didn't bat an eye.  In fact, I think she was bored by the noise maker that made no noise, and she fell asleep.   

I finally got BDG off of me, and he laid down on the floor beside the couch, wanting protection in case that scary thing came back to bother him.  

That was our day.

Hope you have a great holiday today.  

Go in peace, be warm (but not too warm in this weather!), and filled. 

Sunday, July 03, 2011

The Only Thing We Did That Night, to Fill Our Hearts With Cheer..

Was scrape the ice cubes off the corpse and put them in our beer!

Mom used to sing that song, remember, siblings of mine?  The Night That Paddy Murphy Died, I think, is the song. I sang it to my kids, and now I walk around and sing it to the dogs.  They are not impressed, and to be honest, my singing makes Fuzz Dawg anxious, especially if I go to a falsetto voice.  Poor Fuzz Dawg will come running towards me, concern in her eyes, and she'll paw at me in distress, and nuzzle me, and generally try to get me to show her that I'm okay, not howling in pain.
"Are you okay?  I heard howling.  Were you singing?  Huh?  Ooh!  Can I go outside with you?"

"I was singing!  'Oh the cow kicked Nelly in the belly in the barn..'"

Speaking of anxious dogs, last night the fireworks were going off around us, and Fuzz was running around the living room, peering out the windows, and barking hysterically with each loud boom and crack.  She was very upset.  Last year both dogs were terrified, but this year, BDG, the Big Dumb Golden, just kind of laid around on the floor, not paying a lot of attention to the scary noises.  Usually at this time of year that big old dog becomes a lap dog, and when the fireworks start going off, he climbs into my lap, begging for protection from the scariness.

They're not like this at all with thunderstorms, so they know the difference.

Today Saige and I are planning to take a trip to see Britney in the hospital.  We're going to take her a few gifts and we'll pick up an ice cream cake or something for her birthday, which is the 4th.  Right now Saige is sleeping since she's turned into a party animal--party all night, sleep all day--so I'll let her rest and then wake her up when we have to go get the stuff and put gas in the truck and take off.

"I wasn't singing, but I am a party animal!  Rawr."

Okay, in all honesty, I'm pretty sure that Saige isn't partying in the way, say, her big brother Dr. Lampshade would party.  She's actually really allergic to smoke, especially to marijuana smoke.  But it is strange to realize that she's no longer a little kid, and that she has friends and she goes to parties.  ARGH!  Stop growing up, Saige!!

You know she's going to be all defiant and she's going to keep growing up.

Rotten kid.

So, it's insanely hot outside.  The animals mostly just lie around the house, trying to stay cool.  A couple of them spend a lot of time near the potty, not to use it, of course, but to get a drink of water from it. They do that even when their water bowls are filled with nice cool water and ice cubes.  

We've found homes for most of the kittens. We still have P Bear here, who is the most relaxed, gooey cat I've ever known.  By gooey I mean that she just turns to a boneless, floppy kitten when she's sleeping or being petted.

One of the rescued kittens from the ugliest litter on record in the entire history of the world got a new, forever home a few days ago.  I'm glad.  We called her Lola, but her new name is Zoe.  Her sister, Bella, needs a new home soon, because I'm becoming attached to her.  She attached herself to P Bear, it seems, and they spend a lot of time sleeping and playing together.

This photo shows P Bear in the middle, cuddling with Bella and Lola.

I had to laugh yesterday, when Saige and I came home from running some errands and picking up a few groceries.  Why did I have to laugh, you ask?  Yes, I hear you asking.  Well, because of this, first of all:  

Which made me quip, "Sometimes you want a salad, but sometimes, you just want to eat the lettuce seeds."  I'm not sure which animal took a bite out of this seed packet, but I have my suspicions.

The other reason I had to laugh was because I have determined that when you put a bag of groceries in your dresser drawer, you have either turned into your mother, or you are tired and distracted and should just go take a nap.  

Not that I put a bag of groceries in my dresser drawer.


Okay, I am done rambling and carrying on.  Go in peace, be warm and filled.  Have fun this weekend, and be careful!