Saturday, March 31, 2012

adventures in dating

I had to get up and at it this morning and one of my stops was at Lowe's for AC filters and engine oil. As I was strolling around with my stuff I passed this guy that I had ONE date with thanks to my balls in asking for his phone # when I spotted him. Dude was all about me showing up at his house to ply me with margaritas so that I could listen to how his wife did him wrong and ran off with a country singer. His latest ex had dipped her glass in splenda or something before the tequila. The next time I saw him was at church and his arrogant ass acted like he never even saw my face before. Kinda like today. Dude was on a man mission I suppose.

Next stop was Pennington's for some herbs and whatnot. That part of the square was absolutely crawling with farmers who recognize an opportunity to plant early and water often. I still don't have straw bales laid out in a pattern, but I do have some basil, rosemary and chives. The rest will come when the time is right. Pride is still roaming as he pleases and I don't have a clue where the puppies are. If it's meant for them to live, so it shall be. There are thunderheads building and I swear if it rains, I'll dance in it.


Friday, March 30, 2012

memaw update redux

Shortly after I jotted down that short and sweet narrative about the hospital to nursing home transfer across the asphalt by three devoted family members while hauling multiple bags of stuff, I called mama to see how things were going. She was lucky enough to have a solo room for the night since her other "female bed" was in the hospital. Believe it or not, when I called her she still had that trusty Jitterbug nearby and one of the EMTs handed it to her. They were headed to the ER again, this time with chest pain and shortness of breath. As George would say "Oh boy." I rode shotgun with BG in a deja vu experience of last Friday and we knew from experience to stop by the store for drinks on the way. Just under four hours later, she was admitted to ICU. Chancey was her intake nurse and our friend Allison was on duty so we were set to catch a few winks before my early shift. By the time we got to the house after midnight, both of us were too wound up to even consider sleep thanks to mountain dew. It's the non coffee drinker's wake up call, if you know what I mean.

She's better now..resting comfortably with my co-workers as her angels of mercy. They are the ones who do it out of love. Somehow I lost my phone in the shuffle this afternoon, but an angel of my own found it in the parking lot and there was some calling and meeting to retrieve the damn thing. Sometimes I wish we still had the pony express. I mean, really.


Thursday, March 29, 2012

memaw update

We wrapped up mama's stay at the sawmill and me,daddy and BG hauled her and all her stuff across the street to rehab. We met the staff and got her settled in and left so that she wouldn't be so sad. That's what the experts say, anyways. Let the people do their jobs, ya know? I've seen my daddy cry about twice in my entire life, and today was the third. They've been married for 58 years. He's about to freak. Ms Faye's sister died so she's off 'til Monday. Thank you big E that he's got TV and corndogs.

I'm not much focusing on politics or any other damn thing right now except caring for my parents and getting to work and back so I can rest. Mama's BFF told me today that she remembers it well, being the middle of the "sandwich". They grew up together when things were harder, yet much simpler. I know where they lived and who lives where now. All thanks to my mother's historical side.

Peace out kids. I'm zonked!


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

sleeping with delmer

Hannah is one of my favorite nurses of all time and her world went to hell in a handbasket last October when her house caught fire and both her husband and young son were badly burned. They went to different hospitals for treatment and poor Hannah was stuck in the middle, running herself ragged and praying 24/7. Delmer died from one of the many complications that come as a part of severe burns, and Tripp survived and has undergone multiple surgeries for grafting and such. A few days ago they returned to "home" for the first time since that awful day when their world changed forever. One of the many benefits for the family was a t-shirt sale, baseball type with his number on back. I promptly bought two and BG and I have worn them constantly, a testament to faith. On the front is a verse from 2 Timothy 4:7 to be exact. "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith." That just about says it all, huh? To Hannah and Tripp I send much love and hope for recovery and a new life.

Mom is MUCHO better today after heavy duty IV antibiotics and some physical therapy. The only morphine she had made her hallucinate so that was a no-no. She's not really hurting...just needs something to help her to relax and heal. She will be going to a skilled care facility in a couple of days to complete her rehab. Where and when are to be decided by us and the case manager. My list of people to make cakes for has grown to about 50 since she's been at the sawmill so if I win the lottery, that'll be first on my agenda. Thanks Big Ernie, for the opportunity to work with a tremendous group of people. I have totally seen a team in action.

The high court has a huge issue on their plates considering the future of healthcare delivery. I have watched and fumed as the GOP becomes righteous about birth control and abortion when there are much bigger issues on the table. Basic preventive care of all types is something that this government can afford if it's done without bias. All the big players like pharmacy and insurance will have to get with the program and cut some CEO salaries to make it happen, but it can be done. I watched in horror as the UMC took over the funding that had been traditionally given to Planned Parenthood in Memphis. That's my home church and I love it, but it's not about religious beliefs. It's about health.

The weather is great which means that mr. snake is out and about. We lost one of the puppies yesterday, but he was back this morning so it's all good. They're having a ball playing in the new green and bonding. Almost weaned and ready to fly! So far, no takers.

God is good...all the time ^j^

Monday, March 26, 2012

making amends

Mom is still in the hospital getting antibiotics through her brand new PIC line and resting on morphine. My aunt and cousin came by to see her with flowers but she was all draped out and sterile getting the line while I watched with my mask and cap on. Physical therapy came by and left a walker and a lesson on proper use. Dietary made an appearance as well and I truly felt like part of the team and marveled at the way we all work together. Mama remarked yesterday that I must be paying her back from all those trips to UT Memphis to talk me out of quitting healthcare 3 months shy of a degree. I wouldn't have it any other way, but I can't deal with the physical demands much longer what with constant drama on the home front. Anywho...that's where we're at and looking at a skilled care stay at the end of the week.

Most anybody who knows me and the little black cloud theory understands that when shit happens, I tend to sigh and say it is what it is. The BG and I have become more of a team as well, putting out fires and scurrying to the loan shark or employer for enough to cover the light bill. Her car was shaking so bad from a busted tire that we had to make a pit stop in between hospital and work to get her a new used one. That was quite the experience in itself. These guys knocked out that job, with a balance in fifteen minutes flat for forty bucks and she even got to work on time. It's been a tough day all around for both of us, and sometimes I don't think anybody but the two of us will understand how we came to where we are now. It's a long story.

I continue to be amazed at how friends come and go in your life, working out their own issues as you wrestle with your own. Some are always there. Others drift away but come back around when times are hard. Those are the real ones and I don't have many. I'm physically and emotionally exhausted from five years of trying to keep my parents at home while I live in a house that is more than I can afford just to be a mile away. If I hadn't worked all weekend, I probably couldn't even tell you what day it is. Mama sure can't.

This is not a pity party by any means. Experience has taught me that thoughts and feelings not expressed will kill you from the inside out and that is precisely what I do when I come here. Usually it's upbeat and historical. Right now? That's not an option. Those of you who are believers in prayer or karma or whatever your meditation may be, please send some my way.


Sunday, March 25, 2012

supreme court watch

I am employed by a subsidiary of a very large company that buys up rural hospitals and attempts to deliver patient care to those who walk through the revolving door that is healthcare today. I suppose that the goal is to rip off Medicare have the team communicate in the most efficient way possible to treat whatever presents and pays our salaries. A whole helluva lot of us do it because it's an opportunity to do the right thing. Some don't, but that's their problem. I have spent about 48 hours as my mother's patient advocate accompanied by other members of the team. I'm taking notes and checking them twice, even though we're a long way from santy claus time.

In any service delivery organization, the key is communication. Most of the physicians that I have dealt with are of some foreign origin where women are to be seen and not heard. The exceptions are other team members who know that a well informed staff can tell you what's up. Where I work, that's a rarity because we are serving a population that is not much on keeping up with details. Mostly they hire people at minimum wage to do what folks with a little bit of training and education could do much more efficiently, but that costs money. When we were acquired by Wall Street, things went from a jumbled up mess to my worst nightmare as a healthcare provider.

My mother is almost 80 years old...Daddy is already there. I am prepared to care for them until there's nothing else to do, but that doesn't include heroic measures that pad some idiot's pocket so his wife doesn't have to work and he can afford malpractice and can raise their kids here in the land of the free and home of the brave. I am totally over doing somebody else's job for them because it's not worth it if you have to fight that hard. I will take care of me and mine the best I can and other than that? You're on your own. I'm sitting here thinking about all of the corporate groups that have made a kazillion dollars off the sweat of my back and the ache in my knees and that pisses me off big time. DPG..ya'll listening..Poops needs a bonus.

Tomorrow's court decision is one that could make a big difference in the way medicine is practiced in this country. The GOP is using their usual birther mentality, attempting to sway public opinion away from funding for basic preventive health. The most valuable thing I learned in therapy is to act as if and expensive tests and treatments are not what that's about. Hospice benefits are enormous and I remember distinctly the day that I stood watch with my dying aunt as the HH nurse popped in a catheter while I held the lamp so she could see what she was doing.

If the people don't stand up and say "amen", we're all screwed ^j^

Saturday, March 24, 2012

patient advocate

Who among us has not felt the joy of being at work for almost 24 hours straight? We headed out behind the ambulance (again) to the ER with mom in tow. Her arthritic knee quit supporting her itty bitty weight and as it turned out, she has a massive infection in said joint which has gone systemic. Oh, hell. We finally made it to a room after midnight and I napped on the futon or whatever the hell it is for a couple of hours before reporting to work at 6AM. She's getting IV expensive ass antibiotics and enjoying the quiet time. If you look at THAT as peace, bless your heart hon. Daddy's staying on schedule at home and just reciting it to himself instead of to her. With bullets.

I'm beyond tired to the point of being stupid. And to top it all off? I pulled out a legal document that proves without a doubt that the evil money grubbing bank named Capitol One who gave me 1500 bucks worth of credit on plastic TEN freaking years ago, is still on my ass following a judgement and and many many payments to a lawyer mill. *sigh* Little black cloud, hanging over me! Needless to say, that lender is equivalent to DirecTV in the area of predatory business practices. Watch your ass consumers. And open up your trap and yell when there is injustice. I can honestly say that if I had not been in the hospital as my mother's advocate today, her treatment would have been much more complicated than it had to be just because of everybody consulting with everybody else. The "in house" doc showed up sometime after lunch to review her case which had been on an IV drip for 12 hours following her treatment in the ER. My heart goes out to those who don't either know something about healthcare themselves, or have someone who does.

Gotta stretch out my own arthritic knee and get ready for another early day at the sawmill. It gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "treat every patient like your mama'n'them"


Thursday, March 22, 2012

the devil wears snakeskin

I can tell right now that this summer will be a doozy because of the sheer number of early reptilian creatures scaring the shit out of me. Gone are the days of walking across the yard without looking ahead on the ground. I went to pick flowers for a centerpiece yesterday afternoon and came face to face with a big mama jama all curled up in the bush. It about made me run for a nerve pill! The puppies are out there with an ottoman and old tv blocking their progress down the steps because frankly, I can't deal with it anymore. They're cute as hell though and a waterhose will clean that stuff right up.

Since we are too poor not in a financial position to buy tires at the moment, and there are literally LAYERS of drama floating around us daily, BG and I spend a lot of time trading cars and buying fix-a-flat then hittin' up free air. You'd be amazed how quickly folks will drop 75 cents into a machine for air when we know who gives it away, complete with free advice. Thanks dude at Patterson Bros!!! Hers are 14 inch and mine are 15, both of which are hard to find at service stations now. Remember...the trusty Camry is 11 years old! Her Neon is only an 05, but has a kazillion miles on it from commuting to college for three years. For that BSW that has somehow failed to land her a decent job, because everybody knows it can't be fixed. Meanwhile taxes and fuel go up, the politicos argue and bitch and sling mud, and the rest of us bust our asses trying to survive. Not cool.

The guy in France scares because of his youth, and two because our two countries weren't sharing information when it was plainly out there. As for the shooter in Afghanistan, he will lawyer up and in the end it will be shown that he did what he did because he had done what he had done for so long and been treated like shit and put back into duty when he was clearly mentally unfit. Dude's whole life was coming unglued and when he asked for some relief he got a fourth tour. Tell me somebody ain't talking to somebody else..seriously.

My dear friend's husband just returned from Germany following discharge from the army which included a tour in Iraq. They took off on a family vacation and narrowly missed being in a wreck on a busy city interstate. C said that he was so freaked out that he couldn't drive anymore after that and was just totally losing it. PTSD, untreated, will spread into a soldier's life and eat away at relationships and potential to heal and return to civilian life. Then there's the stress of trying to find a job in this lovely economy. For what it's worth, I blame Dubya.

I'm home and settled and not going out again because I've got the Neon, which shakes like a mofo ,so that BG will have a way home from work. Any questions? Leave them at the beep cuz I'm on a mission to have at least half a day off from the fun filled reality that is my life.

Peace and love ^j^

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

now, where was i going with that?

Oh about your March madness. The days are running together to the point where I'm never exactly sure where I'm supposed to be at what time and then I get a call from the wilderness that mama "isn't feeling well" meaning she's having a meltdown from listening to daddy recite his to do list fifty times in a row. It's enough to make a preacher swear so you can imagine what a helpless captive she is not being able to see well enough to even change the TV channel by herself. It is a very challenging home situation even by modern standards, and we are constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop. Thank the lord my new FNP understood and adjusted my meds accordingly. My BP has been running high in spite of dyazide so she changed it to another one that bottomed me out today. I wondered why I could barely put one foot in front of the other!

The puppies are getting messier by the day as Faith tires of cleaning up their poopie messes. They're chillin' on the porch in the sun right now, cuddled up like litter mates do for comfort. Meanwhile, their mom is sacked out on the cool hardwood floor taking a break. To be so old, she has really been a trooper. We had all kinds of kids out here yesterday who held them and even dropped one..oops! The three boys promptly climbed into the barn after being told not to, only to be screamed at by their Aunt Brandi telling them about the magic HOLE they were gonna fall in and never be seen again~ BG hasn't had a day off since she started her current job, and yesterday was the day. We had a blast, walking around in our underwear jamming to Adele.

Several times, people have indicated their disapproval of the way I have raised my daughter and our friendship. I spared the rod, and that really IS the hardest way to go because I never believed in using fear as a parenting tool, choosing instead to teach. I've told her many times about what a spoiled brat she was as the only child and grandchild for 20+ years. I paid for that with a lot of soul searching and meeting her more than in the middle. But, ya know? I wouldn't have it any other way. I can truly say we are friends and that when I am proud of her she knows it. Same for me. We have forged a bond that is based on trust and truth because that's the only way to fly when you're struggling together like we are now. She happily announced yesterday that my last ex's girlfriend looks skanky and I'm much prettier. Who loves ya baby?

Anybody who knows me will tell you that I tend to procrastinate put things off in avoidance of the reality of a project, whether it is balancing the bank account or writing a book. That's precisely why I've invited others to become a part of what I think will be a really nice history of Dyer county loosely, and this farm in particular. I didn't just go digging through deeds and funeral records for my health.

Asparagus is popping up nicely. Straw bales are priced and transportation acquired. I may end up with 75 bucks worth of straw doing nothing, but at least I won't have to mow that part :)


Friday, March 16, 2012

pile of puppies

We have three survivors from Faith's litter and they are growing like fat little pigs and getting mobile. Some of our AC vents aren't covered so we have to keep a current head count, though I imagine we'll hear he or she when they squeal dropping in the hole! I've almost lost toddlers that way too. We had no air for several warm and humid days and my allergies are in overdrive. Sometime during last night, there was a thunderstorm and our transformer got hit by lightning. It was interesting getting ready for work by candlelight.

I proceeded on up there to be me with the biggest shitstorm you've ever seen after tromping in with a bedsheet over my head as an umbrella. Yeah, I know. Redneck to the core. Yesterday I visited with a farmer friend for some quick lessons on straw bale gardening and how I need to get started. She had pictures of the gardens she's built on the Gulf coast in housing for survivors of Katrina. The technique is pesticide free and not nearly as labor intensive as digging in the ground. I will, however, have to haul about 50 bales to the yard and scoop horse poop for compost. Our hope is that if this demonstration garden is visited by some locals over the summer, the powers that be will notice and allow us to pitch it to the under served within our community. It's a work in progress so we'll see how that goes. I may break a leg or something and not even be able to scoop poop!

Asparagus is beginning to pop up more and more. My teacher in that trade says the rule is "never pick anything thinner than a pencil." It sure is tempting though because they're the best! The whole place is awash in spring color...lavender redbud trees, yellow forsythia and buttercups. Red tulips. Saw my third snake of the year wrapped up in an azalea bush and it's only March. I wonder if the old moth ball trick really works?

My 48 hours away from the interwebs has been surprisingly calm and I find myself with more time to devote to peaceful things. BG called me at work to announce that I had received yet another package from my anonymous donor, this time a box filled with lots of fun items that we chosen especially for me. BG helped me rip it all open and we've been in heaven ever since using high end skin products that we could never afford and eating on gift cards! Whoever you are, just know that you're the best thing that happened to my karma in a looooooong time!

It's been a very long week as in the kind where you never quite know what day it is and then Friday finally comes along and says "hey bitch, settle down." And that's exactly what I'm about to do. Peace and love and rock'n'roll ^j^

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

for this i went to college

Well, today was a good one from beginning to end. We got free breakfast and I get to pick a nice prize from the book and it beats the hell out of a kodak digital which I was mighty proud to get at THAT point in time. I'm pondering the merits of several favorites including a nifty set of pots and pans and or a nice sound system. I don't even have a radio anymore, which is not good when you live on a hill during tornado season. Just saying. It was short, informal and sweet with our pictures flashing on the screen, the ones marketing gal took as we came in. Our childboss is steering the ship now while corporate makes a strategic decision about where to send him, per their usual routine...and who to send us. It's like having to adapt to different parents or something!

We continued our slow work day by reading the news peeling individually wrapped plastic pipettes for specimen transfer. Normally they come in boxes ready to grab but there's some kind of shortage that created a back order so there you go. I looked up from the floor where I was making piles and grinned at my friendboss. "How I spent my 35th anniversary!" We squeezed in lunch with another one who's not around much so that was even better. I look at these co-workers and friends, and some of them just tolerable team members. I can remember the names of most of their children and a few grands and there are stories that nobody will ever know except for us because we lived it. Beginning as a county hospital when it was very apparent that the county couldn't handle managed care, we were sold to a not-for-profit There are layers of people who have come and gone with these sales and transitions. Some of them come back as our patients. That can be really sad.

My friend Big John met me smiling in the lobby today with a big hug as he waited for the little General to get her business done. We didn't talk much which is normal for us. I just looked at him trying to figure what was different. He is peaceful, and we all pray for that peace to continue to follow he and his family on their mission. I seem to be an honorary sister in that family as well since the real ones live away. They are a very cool Quaker family from Illinois who raise golden retrievers. Here's a shoutout to all ya'll Sammons's...leave room for the spirit to work.

Oh..and speaking of sisters. It's almost pool time at Gigi's!


Monday, March 12, 2012

an addict without a cause

Somehow I have managed to mangle the USB cable that I use with my super freakin' nice camera so I can't upload until the new one comes. Bummer. I'm one of those who will shoot a bunch of pics and immediately sit down to cull the bad ones. There's at least a week's worth waiting for review and edit while I plug along at the sawmill. Had lunch out again today, which is always good. She got to have a margarita and I didn't but she had just left court and I was working so there ya go. Plus I did it in front of her about a month ago while she was on duty.

Yesterday afternoon my farmer friend and I talked at length about what will be required for a straw bale garden when the horse goes bye-bye. Not much $$ wise, and much less labor intensive than the traditional till 'til you die method. Plus you just keep building on it as it breaks down and it fertilizes itself. How sweet is that? She's even gonna donate seed and her time to organize the whole thing. After I become familiar with the technique, she has other ideas for partnership within the community which I am all over like stink on poop. My faith tells me that the only way we will survive this mess is to go green and help each other out, kinda like the first Americans did.

Excuse me for being a screaming liberal once again, but I say let's cut the guy some slack over there that killed those people. This man had done multiple tours and was brain dead from PTSD by many estimates. The things that these soldiers have seen and dealt with are something that we as baby boomers have never thought we'd have to worry about. Going global isn't always better. When a man who has spent his entire career reporting on world news and these wars in particular says "Please..stop" somebody should listen. Right Mr. Yon? The only difference in this killing and the mass murders that are committed daily in our country because of insanity is because he was a rep of our government, fighting our war, in vain if I may add. Stop it dammit! Move on to something constructive like improving infrastructure and homeland security. We do not belong there and never did. They the infidels were able to perfectly plan and execute their plot killing innocent citizens cannot be changed. They flew under our radar in a time when money was king and everybody was trying to get fatter instead of take care of each other.

It takes a village.


Sunday, March 11, 2012

what is a blog?

Loosely defined, it is an internet based tool for writing and sharing. Some are profit driven, though somehow I missed the boat on that one and end up tapping away for my own well being, releasing thoughts that folks are welcome to read if they want to. They're not all right or politically correct, but they are mine and in this time of increased government security, that is like gold. That I have the freedom to do that is a blessing and I thank all service people the world over for fighting to keep that simple right which is totally guaranteed by the constitution.

In this country, I can vote for a GOP candidate for the first time in MANY years, just because I know that if he or someone like him were to be our leader? Things would change. As it is we'll get some pretty boy with a plastic wife and a lot of christian based support. And Barack Obama will be our president again. During his first election the race thing was held to a minimum but did include the birth certificate thing. Since then, a growing hatred for our government from within the citizenship has alarmed me. In my opinion, things are no worse than they were when he inherited two wars and a whole bunch of pisssed off baby boomers. That means he's doing something right, in spite of a spoiled ass congress. I want to see them take a cut in benefits to balance the budget. They have been entitled for years and years while the US postal service goes broke and shuts down processing centers. They failed to "revise" their goal in light of electronic media and FedEX planes.

I woke up this morning about seven when the sun was coming up and dozed off again to find myself scrambling to get to church on time. Daddy was a little pissed because we had to pass on waffles but the drive thru at Sonic worked out. I also made a run to Lowe's for them, dog food and some snacks. We travel light around here now, but we do so love to cook when groceries and time allow. My ethereal Botwinesque friend visited yesterday and we did yoga on the concrete steps chatting and basking in the big shot of natural vitamin D. Good times, girl.

Things have been so crazy nobody has had time to bury the last puppy, Chance. He laid wrapped in a towel for a couple of days and I finally picked up the shovel and did it. He lies fairly close to Butterbean and our other late pets, scattered through the yard in a somewhat reverent fashion. The puppies have visible eyeballs and are walking now so it's going to get interesting in BG's room/kennel. These babies are so damn cute! Their little faces are wrinkly like a bulldog and they have webbed feet.

I think there's a spider bite on my right arm (of course) so it looks like I'm headed to visit somebody at the sawmill tomorrow. Tuesday is the day of our being honored for years of service....35 for me. I feel so loved ya'll ;) I can truly say that I've given them the best years of my life.


Friday, March 9, 2012

living as if

Yesterday was an absolute gullywasher of monsoon proportions around here and there's more on the way, but for today it's cooler and the sun is out and halfway warm. This time of the year always reminds me of the time I watched March Madness from a step-down ICU room after my husband's heart attack. Following an EKG picture of "tombstones" he was given a super duper clot buster and it returned to normal before he ever got flown to the cath center. He was 39, and I almost didn't go home to check on him that day until I talked with an ER nurse who said "Nobody with chest pain should be left alone." By the time I got him into the middle of town, he was kickin' the dash and telling me to run red lights like an ambulance. Sometimes you just gotta trust your gut.

I got to spend lunch with some friends today that I haven't seen in awhile and it was nice to catch up. The staff there knows everybody and their mama'n'them so it's just a big old laid back gabfest with cute waiters and waitresses who know how to please customers. Even in the lean economic times that our community is facing, there will always be a need for something like that. You gotta eat. We tend to eat quickly in the break room rather than taking the time to get that real "break" from work. The phone still rings and questions still get asked even if you are eating!

I got a call from a friend early today who had been involved in a wreck and needed somebody to meet her in the ER, which I did. Her parents and daughter were all out of pocket and she was pretty shook up with a good case of whiplash in the making. An elderly driver plowed into her at a stop sign and tore the hell out of her car. I remembered as I was sitting with her listening to the monitor beep that I had been pissed on the way in because I couldn't get the freaking chap stick open I had just bought. "Why does everything have to be so hard?" I said to myself. Pretty damn quick, I gave myself a little tap on the ass and put the big girl panties on to face my day. It's either that or lay down and quit trying, and I'm too stubborn for that.

TGIF and I have beer and nowhere to go.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

puppy hospice

Faith's delivery has been anything but ordinary considering her age, and of the four pups left one has struggled from the beginning. The runt, so to speak. His right paw is deformed which caused him to use his elbow to get around and there was a raw spot there from her constant struggle to keep up with those three fatties. She rallied after we warmed her and mama fed her, but her progress has been slow even by dog standards. Mostly she just laid around on the yoga rug apart from the bunch, separating herself for the journey. Last night there was a strong storm system moving in and Chance took a turn for the worse. Faith was whining over both of these things and I honestly didn't know what to do except help her comfort the dying baby. BG came home to find us snuggling. Very VERY sad.

Eventually she got in the bed with us and let the pups fend for themselves. When I left in the pouring rain this morning, she was still alive and squeaked at me when I rubbed her head. BG found her later and she's ready for burial, that is if the damn rain ever stops. The farmer's daughter in me says to be thankful for that spring rain. I'm just praying that we don't get a third year of record flooding around our parts. That would just about kill what's left of the spirit in our county. Or? Maybe not. They say that what doesn't kill us makes us stronger and I truly believe that. If you have learned a lesson through hard work and faith, teaching that lesson to someone else in the name of self sufficiency is truly the way Big Ernie intends it to be.

I had a scare last night when the batteries on the remote went dead and I accidentally unplugged the monitor and couldn't find the common sense to put plug a into port b. Didn't really care! Besides, that means I got to watch two episodes of my favorites today.

Happy ladies night ya'll. I'm having one for all of us ^j^

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

the muse

She has been silent lately, allowing me to spend time on stretching and relaxing and enjoying the sight of a pile of puppies every day. Soon enough, they'll be grown up like all kids get to be, and out of her way. She has bounced back from a very difficult 48 hour delivery like a champ, not seeming to notice that she's almost 70 in dog years. The reason that I stretch so much these days is that my muscles are contracted on the right side of the body so that nerves are pinched in the neck area and that is wreaking havoc with every muscle on that side. The ex roommate provided temporary relief when he was here, but it's been tough going for a month or so. When the budget allows, I'll schedule a massage and then visit the chiro to get that shit out of a knot!

My friend visited another surgeon today to map out a diagnosis and treatment plan for his cancer. Time and CT will tell. After a slow morning at the sawmill, we got slammed in the afternoon and that caused the knots to tighten up some more on the right shoulder. Yowza! More weather coming, this time with heavy rain for the crops. It's so dry and windy here that there was a burn ban on the day I torched the couch (hey..i didn't know 'til after!).

Yesterday was the unusual one where BG and I got to chill and visit while watching Chelsea and Weeds and cleaning, all at once. We get into a rhythm with the chores and it makes much lighter work of it. I guess that's why cleaning ladies always work in pairs...right Vick! Santorum took TN which is no surprise and nothing that I had a part in. At this point, I don't even care. Seriously.

Daddy came barreling up the driveway yesterday to get BG to fix his watch, which MUST always have the correct date and time or else the world will end. I don't have the patience for it, but she sat there and played with it til she got it done with watching the hands move the entire time. Mom was playing bridge, so that was his outing for the day.

As the days pass, I feel more and more of an urgent need to do something that will be not motivated by excess profit and help to preserve what we have here on Earth. Not for me, or for my children and grandchildren. But because it's all a gift and shouldn't be wasted in the name of capitalism. That would make Big Ernie real mad!

Yoga time. Peace out ya'll.

Monday, March 5, 2012

mental health day

Usually, it's never any one thing that takes you down, just a big fat combination of fatigue, stress and worry that eventually says quite clearly "Take a day for yourself, you silly wench!" My body hurts and I've got a sore throat. No fever though, just need some chill time to recover. My heart is heavy with the news that a dear friend has been diagnosed with cancer. The irony? His surgeon is a cancer patient himself. I see a big friendship coming up ya'll! Big John was an English teacher/coach/administrator for many years in nearby schools prior to his retirement a few years ago. A smartass like myself, we played pass-the-fruitcake for years until one of got tired of the game. His wife the little general has been my friend and co-worker for like..the whole time I've been at the sawmill. Raised in the Quaker faith, she quietly converted to Methodism after we met and still doesn't miss a chance to sing in the choir. Big hugs and much love ya'll.

I found the first tiny asparagus spear yesterday and as I type Pride is grazing precariously close to the bed. His roaming days are about over as the crops will be put in soon and that's about money rather than his ornery attitude. I guess it's kind of like having a goat...keeps the grass down. Maybe we could just fence him IN my yard. All dogs are napping at the moment, including the four puppies who can't see yet. Faith has rebounded and is taking more frequent breaks, checking in often for naps and milk. The run with the gimpy foot is wearing a spot on his elbow trying to get around but seems to be doing fine otherwise. I'm talking a couple of big FAT puppies ya'll! Since daddy is a boxer their heads are pretty solid too. Too cute.

As for super Tuesday and taking on Iran, I'm having a break from all that as well. Fifty years ago it took awhile for news to get around what with no teevee or interwebs. I figure whatever the disaster du jour is, it can wait 'til tomorrow for processing. With my luck, I'll be one of the "left behind" ones trying to figure out what I did wrong when I tried so hard to do right! My friend Mahala did a post the other day about saving up change and giving it randomly to somebody when they need it, or even if they don't. Just to see the look on somebody's face when you give them a gift. Pretty cool concept, dont'cha think?

Pride has moved into the pine grove where the peonies will be and the boys are running him back to the barn just for the fun of it. A small plane is overhead, making circles in the sun against a brilliant blue sky. I hate flying, by the way. I've been in the air exactly two times...once in a helicopter with my brother as pilot and once on a snow to tropical run down to Miami for some lab training. Talk about a country girl lost as a goose! But that was then, and this is now. In those days, key operators of lab equipment were sent here there and yonder to learn the basics of operation and troubleshooting. That has gone by the wayside for the most part because of the cost involved. More companies do on-site installs with trainers for everybody, not just the one in charge. With managed care contracts in place, there is often very little competition among vendors. End users like myself know the realities of dealing with their machine.

All is well for now. And I'll take that ^j^

Saturday, March 3, 2012

that contraception thing

Okay ya'll. Maybe I'm dense and all but it seems to me that abstaining from sex, while a very worthy and pure way to be, is not realistic for most teenagers. I was eighteen before I lost my virginity, but it was nothing but the grace of God that saved me a few times before that. It will happen, whether it's at home or in a '55 chevy convertible or at church camp. Surprised? Oh, please spare me naivete just because I've put in a long day at the sawmill. This fight has been brewing since the dawn of man(and woman)kind and it only makes sense to me to make affordable birth control options available to those who wish to get off of the government payroll where they get paid to pop 'em out. Some might say that is a racist remark, but I know those people of every race and nationality. They're the ones who sit back and take while the rest of us bust our asses.

That being said, I think it is the ultimate in arrogance for a bunch of highly paid politicians to make decisions regarding womens' rights without some (more than random or forced) input from the women whose bodies' are being regulated. These idiots think if they don't pitch a fit about the birth control everybody at the church is gonna talk about them. Kiss my ass guys. Before abortion was legal, I knew several who traveled to other countries for that procedure. Many were done unsafely and resulted in a lot of pain and suffering. All of that was because it was against the law. And now we want to go backwards with that? Somebody just shoot me now. I never in my life thought I'd see the day. I have given tribute to Planned Parenthood before because they kept my sexually active college student self to NOT get pregnant before graduation and the big breakup with the love of my life. I paid for it, but it wasn't much. Affordable, that's all people need. If it's a priority, they'll get it. If not, cut 'em loose.

Our federal coffers are drained from decades of racketeering and war and it's time for somebody to start simple and try to break the cycle that is hatred and violence, most especially based on gender, race or sex. I have two beautiful friends who are quite mystical and their place in my life has become helping me to see that even though I missed some chances at different things earlier...put off moving or traveling, positive change can still happen if you want it bad enough. When your soul is screaming and crying out for a voice and nobody is listening, just remember what my daddy says.

"Janie, it has always been thus and so."

Friday, March 2, 2012

ladybugs and high winds

At least once a year, the ladybugs take over our house and scatter their red speckled bodies all over the place. Wasps live in the sills and windows, waiting to hatch and get their asses kicked with my handy dandy swatter. We also already have flies and 'skeeters. There's a big storm system about to move through, with the greatest risk of severe forecast for middle TN. You never know around here though. The Mighty Mississippi has some kind of devil juice that a cloud can pick up on its' way over and turn into the a monster tornado. I have witnessed the aftermath of several and it ain't pretty.

Sitting on my front porch in the rocker, I pondered about the beauty that is at my feet every time they hit the floor and I look outside. Right now there are flowers everywhere...splotches of color against an already green background. The coolest thing of all to me is to watch the shadows of clouds moving over the fields. That sort of thing has become a ritual for me now, a chance to be quiet and reflect....enjoy time, rather than just passing it like my poor daddy does. He came on his gator to see the puppies yesterday, nodded his head at them, held one and took off for home. Gotta stay on schedule! I could hear him as he walked across the yard reciting to himself every single thing he'll do before bedtime. Very sad. Mom got her hair did and I had the chance to visit with the girls there at Angel's for a few minutes. They always decorate seasonally and the salon is now decked out in purple, yellow and green for Easter. Think Steel Magnolias and you've got the picture.

Since Faith refused to give birth on the floor or even close to the box, we've had to get rid of the couch that was her birthing bed. Tried flipping it, but no can do. Yuck and yuck. BG's entire room has been given to she and her babies. They're only four days old, but beginning to sleep and crawl a little more and eat less. She's a good little mommy but very tired. Girl, I sure do know the feeling! The older I get, the less I can do without trying really hard physically and I'm in pretty good shape. Just a few extra pounds, which will come back off once I'm busy outside. It's high allergy season for me so I laid down my driver's license and stocked up on real sudafed. I get pissed at meth heads every time I have to do that extra step. Idiots.

I'm excited about gardening this spring and summer because I am much more aware of the dangers of preservatives and whatnot that food producers use. I was raised an "every meal must have at least one fried thing" southern girl and tried to cook like that for years. Now it's whatever is easy and halfway good for you, like cheese. And LOTS of water. I was a witness to a tense little event at the grocery store yesterday that I thought was gonna turn into a smackdown. This very large greasy haired lady in a motorized chair and an "assistant" pushing a second buggy decided they would barge on through where a guy was stocking the freezer. Rather than go around, she made a big deal about making him move and then acted like a smartass after he let her through. As I left I saw the two of them loading up 500 bucks worth of groceries as she sat on the chair with a cig hanging out of her mouth. Some people's kids.

Ya'll stay safe out there and take to the storm cellar if need be^j^