5/25/2008

ten party questions

this is where I do most of my blogging in my studio with all my "stuff'.
I love having a window to look out as I work here.

TEN QUESTIONS :

1.RELATIONSHIP: Married to John. We will celebrate 38 yrs in July.
He is my one and only!
2. CHILDREN: The greatest Joy in my life is being the mother of these wonderful Kids: Ryan 32, Sarah 31, Bethany 29, Brianna 28. They have given us four beautiful and special "other kids" (their spouses Lehua, Ryan, Bryce, and Jason.) The most amazing gift of these children are their own: Nakiah, Sydne, Tovi Joi, Nai'a, Lauryn and the new baby .
John and I love being OMA and OPA. What a special privilege for us.
WE love all of you sooooooo much!!!!

3. PETS: my babies are Callie a calico cat who is my second shadow and Anna a gray black and white tabby who is coming into her own.
I also have a Beta fish: Ben met a premature death while we were gone on vacation. It was not the cats but overfeeding by the neighbor watching him. I now have another beta named by sydne: Gil. He still hides in the bottom of the bowl and hopefully will swim more freely when he is used to me moving around.

4. AGE; I am a 58 yr old. I don't feel that old most of the time and my mind definitely is not that age. I agree with the old 'adage' you are only as old as you let yourself be. I try to stay active as I can within my limitations.
I always stretch my brain matter.
5. STAR SIGN: capricorn.....stubborn as a goat for sure!! heh heh
6. Fave Food: bq'd ribs
7. Fave Drink: flavored coffee, ruby squirt
8. House decor: vintage, shabby chic some victorian mostly a mix of 'fun' arsty stuff.
9). Collections: vintage linens, buttons, jewelry, hands of any material,
hearts, sound objects for art.

10).How did you get into blogging?: I started a blog about living with my RSD and tried to be humerous and light. I then started finding all the blogs that appealed to me at my 'spirit' level and my muse found much more in all the artists and women with such similar interests. I decided that it was more 'live giving' to me to blog about my interests and my art and focus on the most positive aspects of my life rather than about my RSD. I am not my disability.

Thank you Rose for this fun idea for your blog anniversary. Hi to all you new readers. NICE TO MEET YOU.

5/24/2008

IT"S A PARTY!!!!!!!!!

Rachael@ the rose room is having a party!! It is to celebrate her 100th blog entry and gives us all a chance to meet new 'friends'.
Go to her site to get the button and the info.
I will be posting a pic of where I blog from as well as answering the ten questions she has asked us to answer.
This girl knows how to throw a 'great' party so hurry on over. It is going on for 100 hours!!!

5/20/2008

KNOCK KNOCK...... WHO'S THERE?

Last post I mentioned that the first few days back from Hawaii were pretty bizarre. Evander had been here about an hour visiting. He left and we were watching TV when the doorbell rang once again.

Standing there was a young lady---late 20's or 30---- a tall blonde greasy hair, tear stained face, ultra sheer top, baggy jeans and dirty bare feet.


She looked at John and the conversation was like this:

blonde: I want to talk to my husband

John: Ummm he isn't here.

blonde: Oh yes he is. I followed him over here and saw him go in.

John: I am sorry but it is just my wife and I in here.

blonde: you're lying I know he is in there.

Me at the door now: Hi does your husband come here often?

blonde: no but he went in here.

John: You are welcome to come in and look around. No one else is here.

she keeps looking toward the field by our house and acting so strange. She looks like she is going to burst into tears.

blonde: I came here because I saw your pretty cat and she looked well cared for. I thought it would be safe here.


John and I: come in please. IT is safe here. It is really okay.

After much encouragement she came in. John introduces us and asks her name.

'stephanie' then she gives two different last names.
john: what's your husband's name?
stephanie: ryan no............ adam................
we can smell no alcohol on her breath. Her top shows every 'little' mole and other appendages through it. She keeps covering her breasts with her hands.

me: please come in we can help you call someone to help you.
she tells us she was outside and a man was following here and grabbing at her. She bursts into tears now.

We lead her into the family room and john offers her a glass of water.
I grab the phone and head to the bedroom and call 911
911: state your emergency
me: I am sorry but an adult lady showed up at our door and she is either high on drugs or is mentally ill and hasn't taken enough! She needs to be somewhere safe and we do not know where that is. She looks and acts very confused.
911 then asked for a description, asked for my full name and patched me through to a deputy. They are on their way.

Back to the living room with a sweater for 'stephanie'.
John looks relieved. We start talking again and then we get out of her that she was at a nearby restaurant. She again starts talking about the man following her and grabbing for her.
John grabs a jacket and goes out the door.

me: how long have you been married stephanie?

stephanie: a few months well we aren't married but we have been together a very long time.
me: how long is that?
stephanie: a few weeks
me: I see. where do you live?
she tells me she lives on the corner of two parallel streets that do not intersect anywhere.

I have her call her 'husband" She picks up the phone and dials three numbers then lays the phone down on the table.
See? they aren't answering me. They know it's me. They never want to talk to me.
The door bell rings and the deputy sheriff shows up.
Stephanie is visibly upset to see him
what the hell is he doing here?
me: stephanie this is my friend mark. I called him because you need to be some where safe and I do not know where that is. He is going to help me find out where we can take you.

She moves closer to me and he sits down across from her.
I explain we know she came from the rancho viejo down the road. So she has walked through muddy fields to get to our house.

officer: where are your shoes?
stephanie: they took me outside and kept them
officer: who is 'them"
stephanie: the mean people. I couldn't help it. I went into the bathroom and you have two chains you can pull. I must have pulled the wrong one.
I pulled it and the sign came down that said ; you are now pregnant.
I started crying a lot. I don't want to be pregnant. I'm not even married.

me: do you have a husband stephanie?
stephanie: yes you know I do. I already told you that.
officer: what is his name?
stephanie: uhhhh ryan
officer: did they cut you off at rancho?
stephanie: I didn't even have a drink. I came out of the bathroom crying because I didn't want to be pregnant and they made me leave.
me: do you have a purse or wallet?
stephanie looking around the room: Yes you took it away from me.
me: stephanie you had nothing with you when you arrived here. could it be at the restaurant?

stephanie: no yes maybe

officer: stephanie we have to take you somewhere safe. This nice lady wants to go to bed it 's late. Where can we take you?

stephanie: can't you just drive up and down a street and if i see something familiar you can let me out?

officer: no ma'am I can't do that.
me: do you have family here stephanie?
stephanie: yes my father lives at newman lake.
officer: well that is a little out of my area but I guess I can take you to your father's.
stephanie starting to get up.
me: why don't you call your father and make sure he is home. That way we know it is okay to take you there.
stephanie takes the phone from me and dials two numbers and puts the phone down. She picks it up and dials two more and then again lays it down on the table.

she looks at both of us and says: see he is home. He just doesn't want to talk to me. I only call him when I am in trouble and he knows it's me.

The officer looks at me and rolls his eyes!!
about that time John walks in, the officer is guarded until I tell him it is my husband.

John: I went outside and all around the yard then went to the end of the drive at the fence and there was a guy standing there just watching the house. He is Mexican and about your size. He saw me then quickly walked off. I followed him through the fields and down the street to the rancho building. He turned down one side of it and stopped when I still followed.
He did not seem to understand or speak much english.
He said no when I kept asking him if he had been following that girl and he had a rancho shirt on. He said he bought it and did not work there.

He kept pointing to a red car in the parking lot and the license plate number is. and then he recited the number.
he also had a sack with him. He said he went into the restaurant and asked about the blonde girl. Everyone wanted to hear what had happened and where she was etc.

They told john she was alone and never was with anyone when she entered. She went into the bathroom and then came out crying and yelling and then started stripping right there in public. She said she was pregnant and had to get rid of it.

They tried to calm her down and get her to stop. They got her sheer top back on her and then escorted her out of the building.

The police officer called for back up and then for a trace on the license plate number.
officer: tell me your name
stephanie: ummmmmmmm stephanie
last name?
stephanie: i don't have one that i remember
john" wasn't it hodgkins?
she shoots john a glare and agrees.
officer: i need your birth date
stephanie gives him one that makes her 24 she looks much older so am thinking she has had to have had a pretty rough life to look like this at 24 or she is just lying.

The officer mouths something to me and I shake my head. He then writes 'warrants!" on a piece of paper. auhhhhhhhh i get it now.
officer: Stephanie we are going to take you to a safe place to spend the night. Let's go.
she goes with him out side then half way across the grass. Another unmarked car barrels up with out headlights and parks behind the first car.

She panics and wants to come back to me "she is safe i feel safe with her."
I tell her it is okay to go with mark. So she does. The other officer gets out and towers over them both. He says something then she gets angry and he must have read her her rights. They hand cuff her and start yelling at her to give them her 'real' birth date.

John and I go inside and when we check in a half hour both vehicles are still parked there. An hour later they remain.
90 minutes later they are gone.

The next afternoon the neighbor's daughter shows up at the door
come and tell Mom and ryan ( her grandson) who that woman was.
I go across the street with Maria and enter Angie's house.
Her great grandson is 17. They listen as I relate the story.
ryan: did she have a package of cookies?
me: what? cookies?
ryan: yeah I was moving stuff from the pickup to my new car and I left my door unlocked. I went back outside and everything had been rifled through and thrown all over the car. The only thing missing was a package of cookies I bought for my mom.
me: nope no cookies barely all of her clothes no crumbs on her mouth.
angie 80 is spanish and grew up in spain. She still has a very thick accent. she is about 4 ft tall and a spitfire.
angie: I tell ryan he no change cars in the dark. Some one think he steal and they call the cops. He goes back outside and then I go to the door.
angie: Ryan Ryan you should not do that at night. Some one gonna call the cops on you!
IN the meantime ryan notices the cops and the yelling about a birth date and thinks someone called the cops on him. He is talking to his mom on his cell phone.
his mom tells him to walk over to the police and she will talk to them.
in the meantime angie yells again

angie ryan come in before you get in trouble and they call the cops.
ryan: it is okay grandma the cops are already here.
cops: who is that
ryan: my great grandmother
angie: You leave my ryan alone he is a good boy.
ryan: grandma it is ok go back into the house.
the police tell him he is fine and this has nothing to do with him. He asks his mom to call great grandma and calm her down.
so that was the second night we were home!!! can you believe it?

At one point it crossed both of our minds that this could be a 'setup' to be robbed or worse but it was nothing like that. Our adult children were all'
'why didn't you leave her on the porch and call the police?"

John and I are not like that. I think we are so helpful we just go into 'action' and do what needs to be done. She looked and acted so lost and confused we couldn't just leave her out there.
One of the neighbors offered to come over the next night and ring the bell at bed time and see if he could keep us 'in the swing of more events'.

We asked several friends and family members how they would have responded. Not one of them said they would have had her come in to heir house. They would also not go looking to see if anyone was following her let alone follow the guy.
Has this ever happened to any of you? How do you think you would have reacted had it been someone at your door?

5/12/2008

WHILE YOU WERE OUT!!

HI everyone! We have been back from hawaii for a week. The week back has been one of reacclimating from 85 degrees and high humidity to 40's and 50's with rain and wind!! Too much of a change for me. OUCH!

This coming saturday... May 17th... we are hosting a Spokane reception for Sarah and Ryan for all those friends and relatives who were unable to join us in Hawaii. The weather has thwarted our mad rush to make our yard presentable. The weatherman is prediciting temps in the mid to high 80's by friday. Today it is 52 with rain for today and tomorrow. I am weeding between rain sprinkles. eyyych.

The past week has been very interesting and most bizzare. The second night we were home a few friends wanted me to join them at a nearby casino for dinner and celebrating a fellow nurses' 'divorce'. John had mowed the lawn for three hours it was so high and we have a large large yard. He was too tired to move.

My friends said they would bring me home if I could find a way there so we decided I could just take a taxi cab. No problem

He arrived to pick me up and I jumped in the front seat. The conversation was as follows.

:hi i am larry.
Hi thank you for picking me up.: I was just here last week. This is beginning to become a habit.
THIS HOUSE? LAST WEEK?: Yep You have a beautiful daughter. I am not sure which one she was but they were all beautiful!
: AT THIS HOUSE?:Oh yeah it was this house all right. I am sorry to tell you though there were five girls and they were drunk on their asses.
UMMM (trying to compose myself) We have been on VACATION the last two weeks in HAWAII. ALL of OUR daughters are married and some with children.: hooooy boyyyyy some one is in deep doo doo. Sorry but I can't lie. My super was on a ride along with me for my eval. Let me get her on the phone.
::Hi i am larry's supervisor. He just told me you weren't home when we did the pick up? Yeah five girls a few russian... dressed for the prom but sorry to say drunk as all get out.
:Yeah see I told you I wasn't lying.
Oh ummm man alive.
::Oh yeah did he tell you the call came for a pick up down the street from you?
But when we got there the house was all dark and there were a few boys down the street hooting and whistling and trying to flag us down.
: Hey we are going to drive right by it right here on the right. This one with all the cars..............the kids said they gave their buddy's address because they had no idea where they were staying. It was almost 4 am.

with a sinking feeling I looked at the house of our neighbors. Evander...17....visiting us since he was 7, eating dinners with us as often as he can..... wonderful parents and two of his sisters come to our house every monday for 'art day'. Evander the young man we have followed for ten years and attended games and what not in his activities. We had discussed with him and his parents if he thought he could feed our cats every evening and Ben the beta fish.

No problem. well I am now really upset with the news.
We had talked about just talking to evander about the incident but then we thought it should be discussed with his parents. It wasn't something little enough to disregard their knowledge. So i talked to his mom that next day. She was so devastated and embarassed. His Dad works out of town. He called us long distance and was also disappointed and embarassed.

John and I felt so bad for them. We didn't want them to feel like that but as all parents know, our kids aren't perfect. We as adults aren't perfect. We still make wrong choices and have to be accountable. None of us are exempt from a lapse in judgement.

Our kids know we had a few 'incidents' in their teen years. We can laugh about them now at least most of them. But we had to 'parent' within the scope of our values and skills and hope we were handling it the right way. Only they can say if we did or not.

That was Monday. Both parents asked us to wait to say anything to Evander until his dad came home this past weekend. They wanted to handle it as a united front and in person. So we had no problem with that.

Monday night Evander showed up and John paid him. He then joined us for dinner. We had a great visit sharing the wedding and vacation in hawaii and he caught us up on his track and field efforts. It was the usual when he is here. He said he had hoped it was okay his sisters were here playing with the cats while he was here. No that was fine. He said he hoped it was okay he watched tv while he was here. That was fine too.

When he left we laughed to each other and John said 'that pooooor kid. He will be completely 'blindsided'. hmmm tooo much 'survivor"? HA

This Saturday afternoon Evander walked into the yard---all 6'4' crying. He was here to apologize and talk to us. We brought him in the house away from prying little sisters and other neighbor kids. None of them know about it.

He was so sorry and so upset. He tried to give us back the money we paid him and John would hear none of that. He said evander you did the job we asked you to do.
You keep it."

He explained that his cousin and best friend knew he was house sitting and it was prom night. A bunch of them wanted to go somewhere and 'hang out'.
He kept saying 'no' then they were all egging him about 'no one will know etc.' He said he gave into the peer pressure.

He said all they did was come here and watch movies. The kids that were drunk had been drinking all night and they did not drink here. One boy brough a bag of liquor and evander said they couldn't drink here so they went outside.

Evander and his cousin both signed a no drinking /drug contract with the high school because they are both athletes. IF you break the contract your out of sports.

He takes his sports and his promise to not drink to heart. He told us everything they did or didn't do and we believe him. There was no reason to lie now. He said he had wanted to tell us a million times that monday night but he was too afraid.

We agreed he broke our trust and hurt us by not telling us. we just tried to encourage him to be honest with his parents, to seek their forgiveness and really show them he was sorry and would regain their trust.

We assured him things had not changed with us. We still love him and his family and we always know he is a very good person inside. We talked about our kids ... sorry kids... ha ... and how we know how it is to take advantage of not having parents (or neighbors) at home and how easy you can fall into making a not so wise decision.

It was such a random thing to call a cab and have it be the same one who picked the girls up. OH yes they were mostly exchange students. We told Evander that he was supposed to be found out. We also said that parents are supposed to teach their kids and each other about accountability. He said he was so glad he was 'caught'. He was having a terrible guilt problem and he felt so much better that his parents and us knew.

I tried to make a joke about how 'I was going to hang a whip on the front door because your Dad came by this morning and talked with us. We knew you were coming today.'

He lookead even more stricken and said "I was so scared walking down here that would have scared me even more." I told him Evander, you have to look for the humor in anything and everything no matter how awful it seems at the time. It may not feel funny but it helps you cope. (That is how I have coped with my life as a nurse in the field I was in. It is how I am coping with my disability.)

He offered to come down and help with the yard work before he goes to regionals this weekend. We gave him hugs and he cried even harder.

Evander is still a kid with great substance. He reminds us of our own children. He has a good heart and he tries so hard. He will turn out like ours.......very productive honest caring adults. ANd he will teach his children to be the same.

If anything we have strengthened our bond with him and his family. But isn't that what we are supposed to be about in the first place?