Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Well, last Monday's scan

was cancelled because insurance denied the my preferred location that I have been going to for 11 years because it was out of network all the sudden.  It is four floors down from Hank and in the Swedish Cancer Center?!?!?!  So, it was rescheduled to Hospital Radiology which is fine - been there before.  They were like, "Do you know where we are?"  "You are next to IR 4th Floor and, let me guess - SW elevators?"  "Yes, just past IR."  The nurse that preregistered for me was like, "Angela, I know you.....just bring your insurance card and id....the rest of this is redundant...."  I laughed to myself.  Really?!?!?  After 11/12 years, someone FINALLY said that out loud!

Good news, everything OUTSIDE my lungs is stable.  Okay news, three spots that have been on watch are a bigger and we need a PET.  Need to know if they are inflamed or active cancer.  The PET will be a fight, after all, I am now 25 over the lifetime max, but it anyone can argue it, it is Hank.  He just wears on you with his nagging quiet perseverance.  In truth, I was particularly nervous about this one.  In perfect time (every 18 months or so), I seem to need treatment.  I asked if he could guess what I would do ablation, cyberknife, or surgery (this one is unlikely).  And, of course, he did not answer, but said, "Well, you have done it all, so it won't be new if it is anything at all.  Talk soon." "Yep, thanks Hank."  That was 6:37am this morning.

So there it is, more tests, to see if we need to do something.  It seems mild in comparison to two of my dear friends.  If you could add Robin to your prayers, he is in chemo now and the chemo is working, BUT he is the great fun of all the side effects.  Also, Barb.  She is the hockey Mom I met.  Not going great and in the hospital for the foreseeable future.  Having trouble with chemo.  Retaining fluid that must be drained off.  So, you see I didn't say, "Bad News" anywhere in my post, because I am not the one with it.  Pray and worry for them.  Now that I know what we are doing, I got this one.  It is like an old winter hat you never liked but your Mom made you wear.  You just WAIT for spring.

Be well, Ang

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

New post and a new day.....

Life moves along as it does.  Mom and I finally agreed on an obit and we submitted it.  Things are a lot different these days than before and, sadly, the Spokesman Review is the most technologically  advanced program there is.  LOL.  So, it will run this Sunday in the Spokesman Review, but it is super questionable in the News Tribune or Seattle Times.  The most important stuff is that his service is April 26th at 10am.  There will be an "after party" because that is how my Dad would like to say it, but it will not be given out until at the ceremony.  The service will be at Tahoma, so arrive early.  It is a quick ceremony.  Be late and miss it.  That was actually my Dad to a tee.  We showed up early to every party, funeral, celebration, wedding, baptism, etc. and we were the last to leave.

I clearly did not look at my own schedule.....I have super busy that week....but I will be there fully. Dad knows that.  Everyone has been wonderful.  It is so hard to plan this especially on your own, but Tahoma has been beautiful.  The Army has walked me through what they will do and God Bless them.  I cried, but I wipe the tears and move ahead.

A long time ago, I was almost out the door to go to the bar at Gonzaga.  It was Thursday night after all and the phone rang.  One of my roommates said, "Ang, it is your Dad - you got to take this......."  I did, of course, and I told everyone to go on.  Of course, in Catholic Tradition, one BIG BOY (Basketball Player), stayed behind to escort me to the bar.  My Dad was on the phone.....sobbing.....he had been on a hunting trip and they found an overturned car with a dead body inside.  He went to the closest house and it was their son.  Their only son.  He not only broke horrible news to them, he knew how precious life was.  Mom was in Mexico.  I was at school in Spokane (surrounded by his extended family).  I was 21 and probably didn't handle it well, but I was like, "Daddy, I am good.  I have good friends.  I even have a friend here to escort me to stuff tonight.  I am good."  And I always was.  My Dad had prepared me for many things - this too.  Poor Aunt Donna, she called me the next day and was like, "Is your Dad having a breakdown?!?!"

So, here is how my life is going.  On the way back from skiing in BC, I played out road trip list and when Tim McGraw sang, "Be Humble and Kind" he referenced, "Visit you Grandpa as much as you can"....SERIOUSLY. I sobbed.  No one got it so it was fine, but crap, REALLY.

In any case, Science Fair is going on at Nolan's school.  He has been accepted into the hi-cap program.  Mason is doing well...so smart and independent.

I promised you a Mason story, so here goes........Mason has been thrown in "like" a couple times.  Luckily, he talks to me about it.  I know that will end, but I am so thankful for if it now and so fearful when one of his friends googles my name and finds this......  In any case, I have given him advice which I think is real and good, but he has to live it.  And then there was this one moment that I will not give too much detail, but a girl that Mason likes hugged him.  It wasn't a normal hug.  It was a hug that showed that Mason could care for her and she would trust him.  My Mom was there and we have traveled a fair ways to see this game and I said, "Mom....."  "Yes, Angie, I miss a lot, but I am not missing this.  He is turning to a man."  Part of me died, but part of me was thankful.  I had done it.  There was a good girl that cared for him and he would care for forever.  That is a tough thing to see as a Mom, yet my Dad always said, "Bears runs their cubs up a tree and then walk away.  They hear there cries, but the continue to walk away.  How hard is that?!?!  But, I guess, it is the only way they can learn."

Daddy this is hard......thank you....I love you....and I miss you......


Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Yes, I am still on this side of the grass......

Many people have left me messages - especially those not on Facebook, to say.....You okay?  You still on this side of the grass?  Well, yes, I am......unfortunate for you....

So, life was goin' along and the boys were adjusting to new schools, and I was adjusting to driving and in the car 3 hours a day.  Grant's business was doing better, we were going on a family cruise in December since the Alaska Cruise went so well and then, my Dad started coughing during meals. Mom and I thought it was weird and she scheduled an appointment with the doc.  One thing lead to another and, when one of my appointments canceled I decided to show up to my Dad's appointment.  I had a weird feeling.....my Mom has not had to take care of many old people and I thought.....what if they bring out the DNR form???  She had never dealt with this.  I had a few times.  And there is was, "He cannot take anything by mouth."  DNR form in tact.  Doctors covering the butts and trying to help us at the same time.  My Mom was stunned.  I had to help her through every question and I also challenged all the docs.  I was never putting my Dad in the hospital the day before Thanksgiving with this.  That is crap.  He was able to eat.  So we changed his diet.  Doctors did not comply but they let me.  Dad went home.  In December, he got a feeding tube.  He was treated at Judson Park for a while and then Mom and I got trained on the feeding tube and we took him home.  It was exhausting, but he loved being home with the dog.  Then one Friday night he pulled out his feeding tube.  THIS WAS ACTUALLY weird.  He was so careful with it for a month.  We went to the ER at 6pm on a Friday night.  They saw us at 11:00 pm and started firing off questions to us.  CLEARLY, THEY DO NOT KNOW WHO I AM.......I gave them a look and started to speak and they were all quiet.  CLEARLY, THEY ARE TEACHABLE.  My mom had put the tube back in at the house, but unfortunately it did not go where it needed to.  Talk about a trouper!  At that point, my Dad never left the hospital.  He was too weak to do another feeding tube surgery.  They met with him and that one thing that God gives us all is that one moment of clarity......he had it then and they explained everything to him and he said, in his pre dementia state, "I am done."  He knew I didn't want that to be the answer.  We would have had the same chemo, but his would have been easier.....new developments and all.  I had to respect his decision, but I gave all the doctor's a bit of hell for taking so long...  It would not be me if I did not.  My Dad was cared for at St Joe's in Tacoma until he went to Hospice Care in Tacoma. He passed on the 16th of January.  We got to have a great weekend with him and Nolan watched Ride Along II with him the weekend before he died, in his bed, with all the favorite foods (which he coughed up), and my Dad loved it.  Mom was with him the rest of the weekend and when they said my Dad would probably be gone in the next 24/48 hours, I spoke to him from my Mom Cell phone because Nolan was sick and Mason and Grant were at a Hockey Tournament.  I said things to him I had never said.  I said, "I was proud of him and that is why I kept his name.  It wasn't out of disrespect for Grant, but respect for him."  Mom said, "Ang, he heard you.  He tired to get out of bed.  He heard you."  Nolan, my brave second boy, spoke to him too.  I ended with I would be there in the morning.  Morning never came.  At 5:30am on January 16th, he died.  I am sure he did it because he did not want me to come.  His Mom and him were very into, "This is YOUR life.  You take care of your own."  What they don't get, they were my own.  Life has been interesting since......planning a funeral for him is hard and easy.  I think I have it down.  Mom doesn't want to deal until the day.  I know we need to wait for the roads to be clear to Eastern Washington and all that plays in in my head is, "Prop me up against the jute box, when I die....."  The funniest thing that I think has happened is that when Mom, Donna (Mom's sister), and I were all together after his death we talked about our most vivid memory.  Mine - I was turning 10 and he and I LOVED the San Juans.  We went up to Anacortes and there was a small craft advisory, but my Dad turned to me and said, "Let's go now!  We will get out favorite camping spot!"  I was like, "Sure!"  Let's remember....this is how my family rolled....I knew NO DIFFERENT!  As we were going, I was hanging on to the seat, my dog was barfing in his kennel, we were taking on water and Dad was actually getting the life preservers out.....  I thought, "Nine years, that is a good run.  Didn't think I would make it this long...."  My Aunt made mention of a time on our trip IN THE SAME BOAT TO.  ALASKA where she thought we were all going to die...FYI - I was 2 and potty trained for the trip........there was no toilet.....Mom flew us home when we got to Alaska.......and then my Mom said, "I was never really afraid.  I never though we would die......"  Donna and I were like, "BECAUSE YOU FLEW US HOME FROM ALASKA!!!!"  Dad came home by himself.....

So there it is, I am digging out from ignoring EVERYTHING during my Dad illness.  The boys and Grant are doing well, and Mom is adjusting.  Insurance for the cruise was amazing and kind.  We will rebook in the future, after all, "Dad wanted us to go....."

It sure was nice to get away for skiing to Big White.  My family needed it and we found out again, how amazing life can be.

Next time....Mason and moments....

Friday, September 29, 2017

Test results in 10-14 days....or 3.....

I got a phone call today from Kyle, my docs nurses assistant.  He said, "The doctor is not in today, but he sent an urgent message to you and Dr. Kaplan (my oncologist)."

I pull over the car.  I just dropped the kids.  SHIT.

"Good news!  The polyp was precancerous.  He said you would want to know TODAY, so I am calling."

I wanted to say, "Kyle, could you deliver good news any worse?!?!?!  Start with precancerous and then tell me everything else."  BUT, I didn't.  He is young, I will learn him.  We scheduled a follow up appointment, I told him to have a good weekend, and we hung up.

I exhaled and then I cried like I had wanted to all week.  Well, not entirely because my chest is still a little sore, but I still looked like a hot mess, so I think it worked.

PRECANCER.  We got it in time.

Happy Friday,

Thursday, September 28, 2017

End of summer and other loose ends....

My summer concluded with a nine night camping trip where I was in Peshastin (sp)  for two nights, then the Disneyland of KOA's for four nights (that is where I ran over the sign that said, "Drive like your kids live here" and did donuts on the beach with the same truck!!), and then went to the BLM land for the eclipse where my kids picked up so much liter and shot gun shells that they earned $41 and $19 from everyone staying there.  The eclipse was totally worth it.  Would do it again and again...truly. 

I returned to a busy schedule and one more camping trip with friends before school started.  Lots of doctor appointments and a routine scan.  I know, I didn't blog it, trying big girl pants.  Anyway, if you read the report they have grown .1 cm, but that could be scan error.  Neither doc was concerned.  So a six week check up and a three month scan and I am good.  Hank is happy so I am happy....my platelets continue to go up.  97 now.  The normal is 150 to 500, and I have been at 67 for years, but 80 last appointment and 97 this.  Could I be turning a corner????  Yes, maybe no....another appointment was coming up also.  I visited my Gastro Doc and said, "I think something is going on down there....."  We reviewed everything and he said, "Well, I have not seen you in a while and you have not a a colonoscopy in a while, so lets to that and an endoscopy (translated..camera up the butt and down the throat).  "I know doc.  I would have come sooner, but I can only do one cancer thing at a time."  His response, "And here you are 10 years later.  It is working for you."   It was Tuesday.  But let's back up just a bit......

The boys started their new schools and are doing really well.  The first weeks were rough, but Mason has settled in.  He does not want me on campus until after the buses leave in the afternoon.  We are working on him solving his own confusing situations and asking questions.  He is mixed things up a bit, but we have worked them out and he is learning to ask "clarifying questions" because they are not going to tell him everything and it is his responsibility to learn their way.  Middle school is different, but not a terrifying as I remember it.   At first I was hurt that I was not "allowed" on campus, but now I get it.  Mason is enjoying being Mason Hainsworth.  He is not "Angie's son, Angie's eldest, the PTA President's son....", just Mason Hainsworth.  I have to let go a little so he can grow up....

Nolan cried a few times and then threw himself into every extra activity he could.  He is now a crossing guard and said, "Mom, I violated the first rule of crossing guard already, but someone had to do it!"  He directed traffic.  I asked if they fired him yet and he said, "No.", so I said, "Must have been okay then. Nolan, life is about getting done what needs to be done.  Sometimes that is a risk, but when done out of necessity and safety, you will probably never been punished."  He looked at me like, "O-k-a-y....I think I get that...., so should I do it?"  Queue eye roll.  This school is a different beast than my previous.  Children play without limited supervision because they just play.  If they have a problem they go to a teacher or the office which I have NEVER seen happen and I am there EVERY morning.  Nolan ran for Student Council so we wrote a speech.  Then he withdrew because I didn't send him with posters, pins, and donuts.  WOW....I may have to step up my game.

Grant is super busy at work and everyone is happy about that.  The boys want a dog, the cats went through a thing of peeing on our bed, I need to clean up my study, so you see, everything is normal (cats are doing great because if they were not, well, that would be sad for them).

September 26th, 2017.  I had a 1:15 check in for my colonoscopy and endoscopy.  I have prepped, starved, etc. and am ready to go.  It took FOREVER to prep and finally at 3:45 we were rolling.  The anesthesiologist came in and introduced himself to me...I had not worked with him before, but he said, "So you have had two different protocols over the last three procedures."  I looked at him and said, "Well, the last couple procedures have been good, so lets follow those."  He then said, "So, you don't know which protocol was with which procedure?"  I said, "I do, but not by date, by procedure, can you tell me of which you are speaking?"  "No."  My eyebrows go up and he shuffles through paperwork, "Here is what we are going to do...we are going to do a hybrid of yada yada yada."  I ended with, "The last two procedures had been great, to get as close to that would be great."  "Yada, yada, yada, yada."  SIDE NOTE: You know, I have been around this block a few times and when the anesthesiologist starts telling me in what order the procedures are going in they are WRONG 100% of the time, when they come in tell me how my body is going to react they are WRONG 100% of the time and when they bark at nurse right before the procedure they are just assholes.  I said a little prayer right before I went to sleep.  They did not place my mouth guard BEFORE the procedure which is always bad with me.  Here is what happened.....the procedure was supposed to be 35-45 mins.  It was over two hours.  It took FOREVER to get me out and FOREVER to get me awake.  I woke up totally nauseous which never happens to me.  More drugs for that and it takes longer.  I wake up with a huge top lip (they really should have set my mouth guard) and I am in pain - level 7.  I am rarely at a 4.  They keep asking me if I need anymore medicine.  I say no because all I want is to get out of there.  We need your vitals to get good to move you on.  FINE.  Mentally go to my happy place, slow my breathing, slow my heart rate, and BOOM, I am out.  Don't think we do not know how to manipulate that system....seriously, if you can't, your not a frequent flyer.  Next room, I can barely get dress because my body is so sore.  My calves are like rocks, but rib cage hurts so much I start to cry, but I can't cry because it moves my rib cage.  My lip feels like I have been hit in the face which hurts and I think my bar fighting days will never begin.  "Here is some juice.  Take a moment, and I will do your vitals."  REPEAT.  "Your vitals are great.  Here are your instructions.  Doctor talked to your mom.  Can I get you a wheelchair?"  "No. I will walk."  But I could barely walk.  "You sure?"  "Yep."  (I am getting the fuck out of here and you are going to watch me go...)  Home.  Can't eat.  Throat closes up.  Can't cough that is a pain of 9.  Look in my papers for pain med options.  NONE.  No pills tonight.  Grant is coaching Mason tonight.  Dawn has Nolan and her son at Flag Football.  Nolan gets home.  He tries to get me to eat jello.  I can't.  I am just in a ball on the bed, so he reads to me and I calm down.  Grant brings me a milk shake.  I get 1/4 of it down and I fall asleep.  To get in and out of bed is a nightmare, my rib cage feels like it just got out of lung surgery on both sides, my calves are still rocks and my neck is sore.  My lip is oozing all night.  The next day, my Mom takes the boys to school, Grant has to work (he worked from home on Tuesday to drop off and pick up the boys) and had a meeting that day.  It was early release also.  Mom had to take Dad to a doctor's appointment.  I picked up the kids.  I got Mason late, and then got Nolan.  On the way home, I had a coughing attack that when it stared, I slammed on the brakes.  Luckily, we were on a back road and I got to the side.  Pain 9.  Still no call from the doctor, I had taken nothing for the pain.  I got over it.  The boys were checking when the next one happened and I got to the suicide lane for that one.  Not very safe but we got home.  Called the doc.  He has a new assistant so that if you get the voicemail, you have to call back and get the main desk to find him so that he can get the message to my doc.  I have almost had it.  My doc passes by and realizes it is me.  He said, "Tell her I will call her in 10."  He does.  We talk about the procedure.  Upper GI had a couple varies.  He banded them.  Lower I had an "angry" polyp.  That is where the blood has been coming from.  Same location as all the other "tumors in my past".  He took as much as he could and he believes we got it in time.  I said, "Because we all know what it is."  "Yes...but we got it."  I tell him that I feel fine from what he did and explained everything else.  He listened and said, "I want you on.....etc."  I said, "Dr., lets face it, we are going to be doing this again, but if that anesthesiologist ever show up.  I will not let him touch me."  "That is fine and I will back you on that.  Clearly, whatever combination he chose was not the right one."  "Yes, and I am going to my High School Reunion with a FAT LIP.  Thank him for me." and he said, "Angie, with your personality, everyone will see you just as you were in High School."  I said, "I was pretty then."  He said, "That is just want I said."  We ended the conversation.  I adore him but I am making a voodoo doll of the other doc.....

Yesterday, on Facebook, did a game of "Which sentence describe your life best?"  I do all these things, and I rarely post them, but I pushed the button and it came back with, "Be the Reason Someone is Smiling."  There were pictures all the way around the sentence from my page, but what made me cry is one of the pictures was of Shelly Bulter and her family.  Shelly was one of my cancer buddies.  She passed in 2013.  All the other pics were more recent, but that one showed up.  I couldn't give it the cry it deserved because my chest hurt so much, but she was there and I needed that.  I miss her.  If you have a chance, look at it.  She had a beautiful family - still does.  Neil and the kids are doing well I have heard and I am so happy for that.

Anyway, today is better than yesterday and certainly better than two days ago.  Mom took the kids to school.  Nolan asked to go with Dawn because I think he likes her better and he has football tonight with her son, Owen.  I just have to get Mason which I think will go a lot better than yesterday and I am going to ice my frickin' lip and show up tomorrow for as long as I can handle it.  The pain is still bad in my rib cage, but I am walking fine now.

Back to Voodoo Doll Making,
Ang ;)

Thursday, August 3, 2017

My summer in a nutshell....

I have been having a great summer.  Grant's business is back on track, the boys got into the schools I requested, there have been lazy days, there was one sad, sad, thing, but I am not ready to talk about that yet, and then there was my parents garage project.

This summer the boys, my parents, and I decided that we would clean out the three bay, two carport garage.  Last summer, we sold the Camper, Trailer and Lexus Sport Coupe so there was room finally to do this.  This garage was full of my parents entire life, some things from my Dad's Mom that you just can't separate from, contents of both the Camper and the Trailer, etc.  Cat food (has not had a cat in 7 years), bird food (hasn't fed a bird in 10 years), you get my meaning.  So, let me sum this up for you in a 30 minute moment I had in the garage with everyone........

Background....my Mom and Dad had purchased selves to store things on.  It all looked okay on the shelves, but......not one box that was from a product that was that product.  For example, an electric smoker box was filled with books.  An inflatable mattress was actually a juicer.  According to my parents, these were good boxes, so they kept them and used them again.  Oh, yes, and there were Christmas ornaments in a IBM computer box.   When they could not find the ornaments last year, Mom went out and bought more.  (Queue eye roll.)

Now, all of that seems fine.  People do this.  I usually LABEL the box, but I get it.  That is why I am here helping.  BUT, I did find some boxes that were what they said they were - STORAGE BOXES.  You know the clear plastic boxes with lids that you can put things in and label them.  They were still in the correct boxes, stored on the storage shelves, right next to the "inflatable mattress" and the "electric smoker".  Really, they bought and assembled storage shelves to put storage boxes OF STORAGE BOXES on.  I just closed my eyes and shook my head, as my Mom is saying, "Well, I don't know where you got this organization thing from, really no one teaches you this stuff and you have been giving away things for years!  It was astonishing when you were a child.  Really what eight year old does that?!?!?!  (My kids.)  I was part of the war era where you kept everything just in case.............."  (Fade out.)

My summer in a nutshell.  They will NEVER live that down........

Happy Thursday,

Thursday, June 8, 2017


So, a long time ago in a far away land, one of my best friends said to me on her 40th birthday while she was taking me to disconnect from my pump, "What do you want to do on your 40th?"  I said, "If I make it, I want to go to Canyon Ranch."  "And I will go with you, she said."  That is not a easy promise.  And we did.  We met a great friend that I still see in Toronto.  Karissa has been with me through all of it.  On my worst days, with my head literallly in her lap, she has driven me, advocated for me and held me.  She has told me I can do it sometimes on two mile walk that I did not think I could or on a lap swim.  She has made me run to a play because we are late two weeks after bilateral lung surgery and said, "Frick, I am so sorry!"  She HATES BEING LATE and I just went with it because that is her and I probably would survive,  I was in down town Seattle after all.  And then she wanted to kill the staff for being 15 mins late on the show.  Although she did brake for a squirrel once and I was like, "Are you kidding me?!?!  I have a neddle in my port.....run it over...". Luckily that never happened again, cause she wouldn't.  She made me go on outing with my kids to show me I could.  How do you thank someone for that?  Anyway, we leave tomorrow.  We are both broke but she has time share.  We will have wonderful breakfast and coffee and walk and talking and female crap.  We will watch a movie and chill.  She has always said that I have to be on the old folks home with her so we can have fun......I think we are going to break the place.....thank God for Friends.....she is one of the best.

Happy Thursday, Ang

Friday, June 2, 2017

It's my birthday!!!!!

I have been running around and things have been changing on me nonstop for months.  I have been working extra and cooking EVERYDAY to keep cost down.  Mason now eats his lunch that I make at 10:30 (even though there is a new rule that NO PARENT knows about that your student cannot eat in class - interesting they have been doing is all year, who missed it?) and then he buys lunch.  He calls it Lunch #1 and Lunch #2.

So, today I wake up.  Tons of Birthday wishes...thank you.  I am grateful for the 10 years that I have had since my diagnosis and I also remember being sicker than a dog right after my birthday the first year, getting stitches out of my back on the 9th year ON MY BIRTHDAY, etc etc etc.  So here is what I did.....

For almost a year now, people have said to me, "You haven't been to the Covington Costco?!?!?!"  And I have been, "NO.....is it that special....I was at the loading dock once.....does that count?!?!?!"  OR, "You go to the Southcenter Costco?!?!??!  You are so brave!"  "Really?!??!" rolling my eyes.  So, today I did all the things I wanted to, like pay my bills, balance the Neely PTA account (sorry KAC you are tomorrow), talk to friends, and text a bunch of people.  Lunch.  Then off to do errands...UPS, mail something, Staples, pick up shoes, drop off shoes, etc.  And FINALLY Covington Costco.....first impression - parking stalls are HUGE!  Like you could get two cars in each one.  Approach.....nobody is there....it is like empty.  And as I approach some little kid is like, "Mommy, I think this is a busy day, we should come back."  SERIOUSLY - if you get to the door at Southcenter - you GO IN.  Bathroom....small.  And then I go up and down the aisles.  Pharmacy...same.  Dried foods...same.  Kids snacks - UNBELIEVABLY GIGANTIC.  Good if my kids were four.  Seasonal....small.  Clothing...small.  I have thrown somethings in my cart that I need, TP, etc.  I buy a couple gifts for Grant for his birthday and a Cooks Magazine for me (BEST COOKING MAGAZINE EVER!  It was for my birthday!).  And then I go to fresh food and booze.  Booze is split.  Beer on one side and wine and alcohol on the next....same.  But wine is next to Mattresses.  Kitchen is next to auto and batteries.  Little weird.  But here is the big difference.  EVERYONE was white and the one Asian had a T-shirt on with the continent of Africa on it - all my stereotypes were confused on that one.  Also, OLD, OLD, OLD people were there with canes......at Southcenter they would have been picked off for dead by the seasonal and adsorbed in the floor.  Also, all the Moms were sparkly with their hair done.....wha?  I ran into some friends of mine.  I was going to the bathroom and I saw this older gentleman with and "IDAHO" sweatshirt on saying, "Well, my other Granddaughter is involved with Basketball and Soccer!"  I was like, "Better say hi on the way back...."  When I returned, Arlene was there and I was like, "OMG, I heard you and saw the sweatshirt...."  He was like, "I knew it was you from the T-shirt!"  Yes, Zags again....I am in a rut.  Arlene is like, "What you doing up here?!?!?!"  "Two things....wanted to see the Covington Costco and Grant is going to get dinner tonight which will cost $300, so I am texting him, things like Salmon? Asparagus?"  We are not out of the woods yet!  So, Covington Costco....you are special and you are right next door to Fred Meyer.  God help me if I shop in Covington forever more.

Boys are off to find me crab cakes.....spoiled tonight and forever grateful.

It's my birthday!


Wednesday, May 31, 2017

And then there were four.....

So life has gotten easier and I am slowly catching up.....still have to do three things for KAC PTA, and I will get there.  As I mentioned before, Sunday before last, a friend of mine stopped by my house with 4 kittens and I mean BABIES.  Less than a week old and I learned she their foster mama.  They are to be feed every three hours by syringe.  I was SO excited.  I used to feel lambs.  These guys were so little.   Fast forward to Memorial Day weekend.  We see each other again and we feed them copious amounts of food because Trina comes over and sees them and we have to go to her house and feed them all again.  I am on for Kitten-sitting on Tuesday.  I pick them up at three and I she will text me when she is done.  "Okay, but you sure you don't want me to keep them the night?"  "Nope."  Wow, lots of confidence there!  I keep the offer open because I am pretty darn sure after she sees what I can do, she will accept.....mouahaha...  I pick them up.  EVERYONE in her school knows that I am the kitten sitter....and they all want to see.  Of course, I show them, but no touching.  Within an hour I have them feed, pottied, and bathed.  Stinky blankets in the wash.  If their eyes were not open before they were now.  They were pissed to hit the water......like, "What the hell just happened and who the frick are you?!?!?!"  I put them in the upstairs bathroom with a space heater while they dried (hard to dry those little suckers) and they slept soundly for the three hours.  Six o'clock, Trina came over and helped, we discussed how to get cat pee out of fleece blankets (solution later...I know EVERYONE wants to know that!), how Kelsey (foster mom) needs to give up bottles rather than syringes because they are getting aggressive, and how big and cute and amazing they are.  They now look like tiny babies with BIG bellies.  Kelsey has told me a few times, "They don't wake up when then are hungry....."  FALSE.  They do.  Story to follow.  So, 9 o'clock comes and I feed them.  We change rooms to our bedroom bathroom.  Space heater follows.  I only have it on while I am feeding.  9pm goes great, midnight goes great, still experimenting on the cleaning combination for cat pee removal, and then 3am.  Yeah.....I am not great at three am.  You have read my posts.  I forget words like, "not dying" and say "dying".  I spell words wrong...wait that is every post...but I am not great. At this feeding there is no laundry being done, I do change my clothes to kitty clothes, I have to heat up their heater for their box, and I feed and potty them.  I am also pretty aggressive on the wiping them down like a mama kitty.  They seem to like it.  I remember my parents let me have kitten once and while our mama was great, she was a clean FREAK and pretty aggressive.  Plus, they started purring while I did it, so I figured it was fine.  HOWEVER, there are two that I cannot tell apart to save my life.  And I was looking at them with my crooked ponytail and saying, "Do you have milk on you?"  "Yes!"  "Opps, NO!"  After a couple looks, I picked one.  Feed, pottied, bed for both of us.  I could not get to sleep so I watched some tv, had a hot chocolate and then collapsed.  I didn't wake up until 7:40 but, get this, it was to a kitten very similar to the one that I was choosing from for eating last night with his body attached to the front door of the carrier in a star shape SCREAMING in a kitty scream way.  I was like, "S%&t! I overslept!  I feed him/her more than double the amount, potty, and then put them on the towel in front of me.  I continued with the others, but the one that looks similar was like, "OMG!  You are choking me with food.  You wench!  You CLEARLY have not done this before."  Yep, feed one twice and then other zero.  OPPS.  I was feeling guilty until the one I missed, scooted all the way across the towel, climbed up my leg and fell asleep on it.  Okay, well, I didn't kill him.  Nolan came in shortly after and said, "Is that the last one?"  "Nope, the second."  Pause.  "Wow mom, you look like you had a rough night."  "Thanks, son.  Get your breakfast and lunch together and you will have to see yourselves off to school."  "Okay."  It was okay except Nolan hadn't gone to school because he was clobbered in the face on Sunday by a rope swing with a 150 lb cousin on it.  I look at Nolan's face.  Okay, one more day.  Mason, you are on your own.  Continue feeding.  Mason off, us off, babies sleeping and dropped off.  "Mommy, do you need a nap."
"Yes, baby I do."  Okay....as promised, I tried every combo - baking soda, vinegar, lots of detergent and the one true blue combo is.........rinse, followed by a very little amount of soap with baking soda and vinegar, presoak, and extra rinse.  YES, I CREATED A BOMB IN MY WASHER, BUT HONESTLY IT IS CAT PEE.  IT NEEDS A BOMB.  Other fun fact, is that when you potty a kitty I think the boys like it a little too much.  "Peanut", as they call him, starts to purr, and his eye roll back and I am just like, "Seriously!  Gross!"

After reading this she may never let me near the kittens again!  It was fun, but it was better to give them back...but I would take them again....

Happy Wednesday, Ang

Thursday, May 25, 2017

My life in the last seven days....

Today is Thursday and yes, it is 3:16 in the morning.....a week ago, I spent the day with Bible Study and friends, then I got home and spent the evening with my boys, Nolan went to Basketball with his buddy.  Here is how it went from there...

Friday - Nolan is sick, no volunteering in the classroom for me.  Yearbook emergency, so better that I am home.  Have to call someone in Boise by 1:00 our time.  I do, it works, and we are good.  Yearbook back on track.  Get ready to go to Founder's Day Dinner which I have never been to as a guest.  I go and work, so I can go.  BEAUTIFUL EVENT, but the Treasurer has to do a lot that day.  Home at 11:00 exhausted.  BUT GET THIS - I won the 50/50 raffle.....in a weekend I really did not know if I could afford....keep reading...

Saturday - Up, but tired.  Start making Banana Cream Pie for my Dad's birthday.  Dinner tonight at our house.  Tidy up as best I can, but at some point you have to really clean your house.....the scum wins.  Oh well, they are old, hopefully they can't see what lurks in the toilet.  My toilets are white - who am I kidding?!?!  You can see everything in my toilets.  Try to make an online rib order at Dickey's, but I do not have the code for the online coupon.....okay, price out Pete's.  Get this...here are their pre order rules.....ALL ORDERS MUST BY OVER $50, MUST CALL OR FAX (What the heck is that these days?!?!) IN ORDER FORM (which honestly look like a military maneuver), MUST HAVE PICK UP TIME THAT IS AGREEABLE TO PETE'S.  Really, I have to spend over $50, call, have them be happy with the time I pick it up and I AM PAYING FOR ALL THIS?!?!?!  Okay, so I call and by the time I talk to someone, I have been reminded of all these rules by prerecorded message TWICE.  Finally, a nice young woman answers and I start the conversation with, "Hi, my name is Angela and I trying to see if I qualify for a pick up order...."  We laugh.  I did.  Pick up at 5:30.  Go to Mason's baseball game with my parents, leave at 5:10 in complete fear that I will not get the order because I was a minute late.  Go home, eat, eat pie, and Dad is happy.  He loves Banana Cream.  All paid for by 50/50 raffle.

Sunday - Up and still tired.  Go to Carpinitos (local seasonal store) with a coupon, of course.  We have been waiting for this and added everything up that we need for the summer.  Buy bark, topsoil, starts and seeds.  Load up the truck and go home.  Paid for by 50/50 raffle.  Go to Fred Meyer for weekend groceries with my military maneuver list, coupons and phone.  Paid for by 50/50 raffle.  Have dinner with Wahoo! items and chicken that was on sale for 87 cent a pound.  Oh, and I friend stopped by with her foster kittens and didn't know what to do with them.  So, we feed them and when they went to sleep, I was like, just like a baby, you have 90 mins until they are up again.......GO GO GO!

Monday - spend seven hours in my office getting ready for my meeting that night that goes over the budget for 2017/2018, get all the receipts out for Founder's Day, add up all my numbers for Founder's Day.  Get several requests, try to get to them all, but do not.  Still have three to go. Forget to eat lunch and do not realize it until I get snack for the boys when they get home.  Yearbook proofing.  Shower and throw on clothes.  Mason has a baseball game and Nolan's Basketball in Timbuktu Kent has been changed from Wednesday night to Monday night.  Drop Nolan off (after I call the cops because some crazy guy is wandering in and out of traffic begging for money, and flipping them off.) This is rush hour.  Get back to my meeting and set up.  Literally, have two brain cells left.  Get through my meeting is a Zags T-shirt, yoga pants (when is the last time I did yoga???) and a baseball cap.  Before the meeting is over, I pack up, and leave to, yes, go back and get Nolan.  Home a 9.  More proofing on the Yearbook.  Bed.

Tuesday - Boys doctor at 9:30, so the boys and I started cleaning the house.  They did their stuff and vacuumed for me.  I got the kitchen and two bathrooms done.  Go to doctor's.  Go to school.  Come home to do a little Yearbook proofing again.  Get bank deposit for Neely's PTA this time and then go to the bank, and Staples for cartridge recycling and finish at Hank's office.  Oh, and reschedule and pay for Mason's Guitar lesson - yes, paid for by the 50/50 raffle.  I go over the scan with Hank and he has called my scan reader that I adore and they discussed.  I like this guy because he doesn't just read it.  He give me a judgement and he has been reading my scans for 10 years.  In his opinion, based on my cancer patterns, he does not see this a significant or cause for concern.  Just watch.  Exhale good.  I ask Hank if I will ever by able to take off for a year and just travel with my boys.....he smiled and said I could fly him in....I said, "Seriously."  He said, "I don't know if I am comfortable with that....."  Exhale bad.  Back home I make dinner - burgers on the grill and am quiet.  I stay up too late, talking on the phone, making finger jello (paid for BEFORE 50/50 raffle) and thinking (let's face it, I was feeling sorry for myself).

Wednesday - we are almost done...hang in there.  Boys to school, shower, put on what I just got out of the laundry because I do laundry EVERYDAY.  Yep, Zags shirt, yoga pants (still haven't done yoga), and my Nike cap.  Get in the car to go to my parents, take a short cut based on lights and cut through this street in Kent that always is risky.  There is a two year old on the sidewalk.  I start to slow down, "Where is her Mom?"  She is coming into the street and I say, "Sweetie, no stay on the sidewalk" and then another darts out from between to cars at my front left tire.  One is wearing a diaper and tank top the other has on leggings and a t shirt.  That one has a bloody toe.  I stop the car, turn on the hazards and get them out of the street.  NO ENGLISH, but the older one keeps saying, "Mommy's here" over and over and over again.  An older gentleman stops and asks if he can do anything, "Call the cops.  I will stay here until they get here."  So, I spend the next twenty minutes herding them on the sidewalk until they show.  I get the one has to go to the bathroom, and the other has NO CONCEPT OF CARS AND DANGER.  There are not scared, they are not upset.  "Mommies here."  They point to cars and try to get in.  My heart sinks.  A police officer shows up and quickly determines he needs another officer.  They take my info and start walking through the apartment complex with the apartment manager trying to find a parent or someone that knows them.  Exhale F*(k.  Why?  Go to my parents, arrive late, pay bills, and my Dad is not right.  He had a minor operation last week on his foot and says it is hurting.  By lunch he is shivering.  No fever.  Mom wants to take him to a walk in clinic because the Doc that did the procedure is in Hawaii.  But, he can't walk into the clinic, Mom.  So, I read the discharge papers which on still in the car because they are useful there....I am gonna pay for that one.  Basically, my Dad was not doing anything on the list EXCEPT he started taking the pain pills on Saturday.  Five days AFTER the procedure.  BTW - the dosage would put down a bull.   No crutches, no elevation, no ice, no rest, but he says in the morning is has a little relief.  DUH.  So, I call the doc taking the patients during her absence and an hour later they call back.  I explain I think he just needs to rest and follow the instructions and if it gets worse or he gets a fever to go to the ER.  She agreed.  I tell Mom and we put Dad to bed.  Go home.  House is only half clean.  Check in on the other place of my employment - they are out of town until today Thursday - have to get in there and open the mail etc.)  Proof Yearbook one more time, talk to Michele and have to get it ordered.  Supposed to go to Math Night at School, but Mason has a make up game.  I twisted my knee on Sunday gardening and today it is bad.  So, I skip Math night and feel horrible because I think Karen (a new employee who planned it) is going to get eaten alive - they are serving pizza, but I get the yearbook ordered, and I rest my knee.  I bail on Bible study to work at my neighbors tomorrow and get the rest of my house clean, because I am out of money and then Grant's gets the mail....a card shows up.  No return address, no signature, just "To Angie and the Boys, You are loved." and in it is a $100 gift card to Fred Meyer.  Pause and bow my head.  In a world that I really do not know what will happen day to day, my health, my health care, my kids, kids in general, my school, schools in general, somethings always seem to break loose and remind me that sometimes you have to just be quiet, listen and have FAITH.

Thank you for reading.  Going to bed.

Grateful and quiet, Ang