Thursday, June 8, 2017

Birthdays

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!

Ang

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

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Happy Day....

And then there is a happy day.....one that I go to bible study and all the women that know me, and get me.  I can say anything to them and it is sacred.  We laugh.  We cry.  We rejoice.  I am a better person because of them.  Thank you Alana for getting me involved so many years ago.  I left early to be with some friends from Toronto, or TO, in Canadian speak.  I was able to meet them for an amazing lunch at a restaurant I have always wanted to go to.  We have a great conversation, including politics, but there is not getting around it with Sandy.  I love this couple.  They come and see us when we are in TO.  In the rain, on a patio, drinkin' beer.  My kinda folks.  My kids are on their iwhatevers.  The rain is coming down and flowing off the awnings, but we are good and happy and joyful.  Thank God for people we have known forever...too many to name.....so thankful for happy days.....

Happy Thursday, Ang

Monday, May 15, 2017

After 10 years, I have learned to wait.....

but I am always anxious.  Today, I did not want to know my results.  I told them, I am meeting with him next week.  I did not email Hank to tell him that I went.  I did not demand (beg for) a call.  And, somehow, without any nudging my phone rings.  "Swedish Medical Center"  It is Hank.  We chat for a moment and he exhales like, "Well, the two watch spots may or may not be 1 mm larger.  They cannot tell."  "Okay, so I am NOT dying tomorrow, but I probably will have to scan soon."  "Yes, two months.  No longer."  "I have an appointment with you next week.  We can talk then."  "Have fun....."

So, I do not have more on my list, but the watches are being strictly watched.  I can live with that.   Thank you for all your nice comments, texts, prayers, and love.  It helped while I was waiting.  I just have to string two month together and maybe I will get to a lifetime.....

Happy Monday, Ang

Funny, but not happy....be warned....

I have gone camping over Spring Break - that was awesome.  Nerf Wars with three families at Fort Warden!  One military, one hippie, and us - it was a hoot!  Singing Sweet Home Alabama on top of the trailers and dancing.  Had a couple drinks in jail!  For those of you who are really concerned, the jail was converted to a bar.  smile.   Then, I became a track coach because our real one broke his leg IN THREE PLACES.  I only had the fourth grade girls, but they had me hopping...holy cow - thank goodness time always passes.  Mason started a fight at school.  That was just pretty bad, but I get it - he was done, but Mason?!?!?!  I keep getting these calls and I am like, "Are you sure it is not Nolan?"  I continue to worry about next year and Mason going to Mill Creek.  I have been volunteering in the sixth grade class for a couple month now.  That has also been good and exhausting.  I haven't posted because, well, my faith and my mood has been waning.  I work with my Dad, but it is just a merry go round that we can't get off of.  The business is still waiting for contracts to start, so money isn't great and I have a scan today.  I started crying at school a couple weeks ago because all I wanted to do was plant some flowers, and I was called in again to go on a field trip.  "If you do not come, we cannot go."  So, I went on a all day field trip, threw trail mix in my purse for lunch, to come home, and turn around and go to a track meet, to have Nolan picked up on the side of the road outside the track meet to go to basketball.  I was at school or school activities from 9:00am to 7pm and all I ate was trail mix.  I missed bible study and my flowers.  Last week, I didn't get out of bed until I had to drop Mason at a baseball game that got rained out, but Dad got there before they called it as I was driving Nolan over to basketball.  I was in the car for 2 hours and 15 mins.  I went 20 miles, and I only took them one way.  I was told Mother's Day was canceled, but if that was canceled, I want it canceled every year.  I got flowers, breakfast in bed and an amazing dinner that I did not shop for!  One of the best I have ever had, but I have a scan today.  My last scan was in January.  Why do I have a scan today?  I don't want to get out of bed.  I need to make an appointment to see Hank too, so I will just wait for the result then.  I honestly don't want to know....I can't take one more thing.  So now, I have to go put my big girl pants, get a smile on my face, and starve until noon, then sit on the toilet and eat getting all that crap out of my system and drive Mason to a baseball game that only has a porta potty - one at that - wait for Grant to get there and then go to a PTA meeting tonight where I will use the bathroom an insane amount and I am presenting so that will be awesome.  Why do have a scan today and how will I deal with it if the results aren't good?  Check in is at 10:05.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

So, this week.....

One of my boys actually got the top "pay for performance" allowance of $7 for the week.  Not hard....do your homework, do you chore and do whatever is asked of you or maybe even anticipate what is needed. (Yeah, that did not happen.)  The other got $5 - meets standards, but he raked and weeded my garden for $5, so he did well.  You guess which.....

My Dad called me to tell me Dairy Queen was giving away free cones on Monday.  (Donation of $1 required, but I gave more.)  So, proud.  He is also helping us get a free motorbike running, but we did clear his driveway and fix his fence from the "storm".  He was all bitter, "I can do it!!!!!"  "Dad, the boys wanted to help.  You have one tree branch down there still that is too big.  Hack, cut, chainsaw (yikes), to your delight. We just wanted to give you a head start."  "BAA HUMBUG....I can do it...."

Mason called me today totally distraught.  "I got a zero on my library project!"  I am like, "What do you need your trombone, lunch, or track shorts????"  "MOM!  I did everything I thought I was supposed to do and I got a zero....we all did......"  "Mason, what do you need from me?  Just to listen?"  "YES!"  "O-k-a-y."  "Blah blah blah....blah blah blah...blah blah blah."  "Mason, there has to be more to the story, Ms. Thomson is a reasonable woman.  There is NO WAY this is really happening.  Let's talk tonight, okay?  It will be okay.  I promise."  "Okay."  "I love you. Bye."  PAUSE..........I have just taken on all the feelings of my eldest son....No, I love you, thank you for listening, you are the greatest......just, "Okay.  Bye."  I prefer he say, "Yes, mummy, I love you, I understand and I get it.  We will talk later.  Taa taa!"  Maybe in my next life.  BTW - it was fine.  Ms. Thomson is a reasonable woman and Mason will be graded on what he did.  All is well.

My Mom wanted me to buy a 2 quart pot.  What am I going to do with that?  My boys eat a million calories a day.  For example, Mason has breakfast at home, his lunch from me for snack, buys lunch, comes home for snack, has a HUGE dinner, and then dessert.  He is a 12 slim.  I hate him sometimes.  I love my Mom, but sometimes...and then she said, "Well, I got one, so you can have it when I am dead."  LOVELY, that is great to think about....I can't win for losing.....

I was driving through the hood and there was this guy that was on the corner and mildly harassing pedestrians.  I was like, "Aren't you the guy that was naked on the street when I was trying to get Nolan to Soccer Practice?"  PAUSE.  Who says these things?!?!?!

I had to pull a 6th grade girl out of track practice and say, "I do not know what I did, or how I offended you, but seriously?!?!?!  I need you to follow protocol."  Her response, "I just had to go to the bathroom and I have not disrespected you ALL the time, just sometimes."  I looked at her and said, "Well, thanks for giving me sometimes, at least you are giving me that,  and tell me when you go to the restroom because at the track meet the bathroom is outside the gates and I am responsible for you.  There is no way I could tell your parents or guardians I lost you....do you get that?" Pause. "Yes."  "So, please?"  "Yes."  "Thank you.  Now, lets get back to fun...."  "Okay."  Frick.  Really?!?!!? The part that slays me is she is so talented...

And that doesn't even touch the school issues for next year...which THIS WEEK look better!

Happy Tuesday, Ang




Thursday, March 9, 2017

Maybe I was too effective.....

Today Nolan did not go to school, but he sent his homework with Mason and sent a message to his teacher about not being able to rhyme "loose".  I tried to help, but he would have none of it.  " Ms. Take will help me."  He then panicked and said, "I can't miss track - I will get a strike!", and he tried to go to school.  I explained I was sure it was about unexcused absences, but he didn't believe me until his Coach emailed me "clarifying the policy."  OMG.  "I am not suppose to bother you or your schedule.....I am suppose to handle my own things".  He looked at me with his crazy hair and I said, "Not today."  Later, I go in and he says he is feeling a little better because he knows he won't get a strike.  As I leave the room he says, "I think I will dust later."  I trail off with, "Vacuuming would be better. "  "Okay."  I want to say, "Dude you are 10, and you are not feeling well", but I don't.  He is trying to be a man and I need to let him.  I may be forced to get him email and a phone to manage his life sooner than later though.....JEEZ....

On a side note....I was on a field trip for a strand band rehearsal this week where we shared a bus with another school.  That was interesting.  We were on time, they took forever to load, making my kids wait on the bus for 35 mins - there was only nine of them, and they made of late to the rehearsal.  My kids only had one hiccup and that was because of all the waiting on a bus.  We were perfect at the practice and when we returned and they left, I said, "Bye, it was nice sharing a bus with you."  The other kids said bye also.  When they COMPLETELY ignored us, we got a little silly like, "O-k-a-y... Bye."  And then it was over......until.....  We were pulling out and one of the nine flipped us off and LAUGHED hysterically.  I was like (in my head), "Oh, hell no!"  I yelled at the bus driver, "PLEASE STOP THE BUS."  "Yes, ma'am."  And I ran - and I mean ran off the bus (coaching track is helping!) and yelled, "EXCUSE ME!!!!!!"  Things were said, like, "That was inappropriate and, really, you are not aware when you flip people off!?!?!  What is your name?  You will never do that to my kids again."  I looked to the chaperone (who told me earlier that he enjoys going with these kids because they are not problem kids), "Are you going to handle this or should I?!?!"  I returned to the bus and said, "Thank you."  He smiled and said, "ANYTIME!"  My kids were fine, quiet and on their phones because they earned that.  When I got home, I apologized to Mason and he said, "Do not worry Mom.  All they said was, 'No one get away with anything.  Mason how do you do it?!?!'"  At the concert that night I told our teacher about it in case our kids brought it up, and they were already aware of it.  "We will handle it."  I replied, "Oh, it is handled and he is probably scared for life."  

And they keep calling me for field trips.......  

Happy Thursday, Ang

Sunday, March 5, 2017

A month later....it hurts me more than it hurts you.....

So, a month later....I have everything I want.  Mason is stable.  I understand what is going on in the classroom.  I am at peace with it.  I am volunteer at the school again.  Friday am in Mason's class and volunteer Track Coach.  The kids are truly awesome with me.  They are kids, but there are sweet. The endearing things that they do that show love are amazing.  How lucky am I?  These are not throw away kids. They are ours, mine, and I do not shy away from the responsibility.  I coach them, I discipline them, I look side-wise at them, and I praise them.  They are flawed and perfect.  They are young and old spirited.  They are mine until graduation, and then I have to let them go.

This weekend I went away with my friends - women I have been scrap booking with for a few years now.  I have done so much.  We stay at this great place in Leavenworth.  Carol feeds us, we take over the entire B&B, Mike takes care of all the big stuff (and breakfast) and makes us eat too much, but it is wonderful, amazing, and comforting.  We scrapbook, walk, talk, drink coffee (and wine) and shop.  What more could a girl want....

So, this weekend, I was sorting photos from my "Pre-Grant" years.  Literally, birth to 23.  I found some 26 year old ones, but I already scrap booked those, so I guess we never really moved into a house and it was never really empty....remember, "she who scrapbooks rules history".  I got rid of all the duplicate and triplicate photos I had.  I figured out the time period by photo shape and date, etc.  Remember the 110?  I realized the gaps and think I know where to get them.  I also pulled apart a scrapbook of all the ribbons I won for track.  I was good at track.  I was going to toss them, but then I thought, "I actually had to win a race to get these."  My boys join a team and get a trophy for "participation".  Those ribbons meant a lot to me.  I went to state in Summer Track and have EVERYTHING and my ribbons......no trophy.  Someday, I will explain it to Mason and Nolan.  The ribbons defined me.

So, Sunday comes.  It snowed all all night on Saturday.  I got up a couple times and checked with my phone flashlight to the screen - yep, still snowing.  I check the passes.  Snoqualmie - chains required unless you have AWD.  Crap.  I have all that, but that is not a good sign.  Grant is scanning the passes - my little weatherman.  I am the driver of two other women.  I take that seriously....I actually like them.  By the time we leave, all is well.  Passes are clear, no restrictions, go NOW.  We do.  I drop them and Mason's Playoff game is at 2:25.  The game before the championship - single elimination.

The plan was that I go by the house because Grant and Mason already are at the rink, pick up Nolan, and come to the game.  My parents would already be there.  What is the saying, "Plans best laid..."

I call Nolan three times at home.  No answer all three times.  I text Grant and ask him if he reminded Nolan to have the phone near him while he was gone.  Response, "No, I just told him to call you if he needed sometime."  GREAT.  I drop off both passengers.  I go through the car wash because the truck was GROSS.  I wipe down the bad parts, I call Nolan again.  No answer. .....pause....So, here is the deal....when we leave Nolan alone which is for SHORT periods of time.....he puts on his headphones and plays on his iPad.  I have complained, "disciplined", and "discussed" this with him more than a few times.  "When you are alone you need to be MORE vigilant, MORE aware, MORE careful."  Apparently, nothing stuck.  So, I stop by home.  I call Nolan's name 20 times.....and come on....my voice carries.  NOTHING.  So, I drop my things, grab the cushions for hockey and go.  I AM DONE.  I arrive at hockey.  My parents are there and they are all happy to see me and say, "Where is Nolan?"  I reply, "At home, I guess.  He is not responding to anything and doesn't care to be part of the family, so I am done."  My parents are dumbfounded.......  Wha?!?!?!  She left him at home?!?!?  REMEMBER....our rink is less than a mile from our house.  My Dad is like, "What?!?!?!  Is he sick?!?!?"  "Nope."  Mom is catching on, but like, "I can go get him."  I responded with, "YOU WILL NOT.  He has chosen not to be here.....he will be there."  Mom replies, "So, you saw him and he is fine."  "NOPE.  And if he is not, I am the worst parent ever, but I am putting my money on headphones and iPad."  Concerned looks from Grandma AND Grandpa and, "You are mean." from Grandpa.  All the while I am thinking, "No, I am just channeling Virginia (his mom) and dealing with YOUR DNA."  Then my phone blows up......Nolan is calling again and again and again and again.  My Mom is like, "Are you going to answer it?"  "NOPE."  And then she looks at me.....she LOVES Nolan and I am like, "I will answer when he is good and scared."  This somewhat relieves her which is a little disturbing, but she was a parent too.  So, I call after his four calls and he says, "Hi Mommy, where are you?!?!" "At the rink."  pause  "Oh.  Are you coming to get me?"  pause  I say, "So, now you are ready to talk to me?!?!?!  I called you four times."  pause  "I didn't hear you."  "Really?!?!?! Have we not discussed this?!?!"  "Yes."  "And what are you suppose to do......yadda yadda yadda....and it all becomes clear that he did not do anything he was suppose to and did everything he wanted to......  "Yeah, well, here is the thing Nolan.  Your responsibility is here... at the rink with your brother and you had so many opportunities to come here that I do not care anymore.  So, get on you bike with your helmet and be here in 10 mins.  NO ONE IS COMING TO GET YOU."  "Okay, Mommy, so you want me to bike?"  "Yes, Nolan.  If you are part of this family and you had three chances to get here and you ignored all of them and now you want to be part of it, GET YOUR HELMET ON, GET YOU LOCK, AND GET HERE.  And, by the way, when your mama calls you, you answer....period....because I can ignore you longer than you think."  "Okay, mama." .....pause.... and part of me died.  My Dad said, "Wow, you are mean."  I did not respond, but I thought you taught me that bears run there young up a tree and walk away.  How hard is that?!??!  I am raising a man, not a boy.  He will lead a family someday, and, hopeful respect his wife and daughters.  I probably will not be around for that, but I must prepare him for that.  God gave me this time - I have to use it.  So, I hold firm.  My mom is supporting me, but worried.  Dad just thinks I am mean and everyone around me probably thinks I am a bitch.  Ten minutes go by and I say to my Mom, "I will go see if he if having problems chaining his bike."  I leave and I meet him in the rink.  He is near tears.  I open my arms.  He shakes his head.  He says hello to grandparents and sits next to me.  And slowly, ever so slowly, we talk.  "I don't think I will use my headphones anymore."  "That sounds good.  I missed cuddling with you."  "I am sorry I missed your call."  "Me too.  I was worried."  "I am sorry."  "Me too baby, I missed you, did you miss me?!?!"  And there is was, the twinkle in his eye.....my Dad's twinkle.....so I tickled him until he said he missed me and we were back.  Later he said, "No more headphones."  And I said, "Thank you."

It hurts me more than it hurts you.....but I have to do it and I know you may be too young.....I am so sorry, but I am raising a man, not a boy.......I only have so much time.....I love you more than you know......

Love, Ang


Friday, February 3, 2017

So, what is life like now?

So, I was at a gathering with PTA members and some of them did not know my "situation".  I told them about my Stage Four Rectal Cancer, but the end game was, "Whatever I plan for my boys, I have to assume it is without me."   Pause.  How does a normal person respond to that?  I am in the worst "catchment" of Kent School District.  Grant and I considered moving, but with the medical bills to the tune of $13000 a year on average, we chose to stay where we were - imagine $1100 dollars going away every month, and getting nothing for it - other than life.  It is easy to say that is great, but harder to pay for.  Grated we built a loft.  The kitchen flooded and we have the kitchen of my dreams, but it is still in the worst line of Kent Schools.  So, I begin to look at options.  If I work for the district, I have a much better chance.  How do I do that with all the medial appointments I have?  Employees get to "get in" in February, where the rest of us have to wait until April, unless we are homeless, then we get whatever we want.  Seriously, they will even transport your child to the last school if you are homeless, but if you have cancer, you have to do all the crap they tell you to, including wait list, etc.  My argument is Mason is homeless.  Where does he have a title to a home?!?!?!!  So, I go on.  I will apply three different ways.  One  in district, one in my catchment, and one out of district.  God help them if they deny me.....I still have a bit a fight left.

Best, Ang

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Never again will I do a scan on Friday the 13th.....

To make a long story short.....everything that could go wrong did.....to the power of 4.  I didn't even get results until this morning......never again.......

Here are the results.  Cyberknife area is fine - looks great - all fried and everything.  Left lung looks great..B-U-T...the the upper right lung now has two watches.  Little spots have grown less than 2mm each.  Not fast - remember the cyberknifed area was 2 cm in three months.  This is less than 2mm in three months.

So, we watch....not the perfect news I wanted, but news that keeps me out of treatment for three more months.  If I string enough along, I could make it into years.....here is to living with cancer.....

Enjoy your weekend,

Ang

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!  Honestly, I was happy to say, "Good rid-ins" to last year!  Everyone I have ask also has said the same thing.......something was not right with 2016.  It was the year of the Monkey in the Chinese Calendar.......cancer has been a Monkey on my back.  Does that count?  I don't know....but enough research.....

Here are the holiday on recap....we went in the trailer (with the truck) to California.  Night one, we ran out of propane and froze our butts off.  Luckily, we had our pony propane tank for BBQing and used that...really?!?!?!!  San Jose, we went to a mall, with a trailer on December 20th.  Sounds crazy, but I forgot the pods to my Nespresso, and now you all get it.  I will do ANYTHING for a good cup of coffee.  Whinchester House, Santa Cruz beaches, the Mystery Spot, Hearst Castle, and then a little beach campground at Carpenteria where we spent Christmas.  Bottle nose dolphins, pozole brewing and Christmas lights run by RVs, 67 degrees and sun, and everyone asking us why we didn't have shoes on.....because it is summer!......Californian's are so spoiled.

I did this trip a few times with my parents.  I saw things I had not seen in 40 years.  I stressed Grant out on Hwy One by tailgating a tourist that got "Vista Point" and slowed down to 30 mph, but did not seem to understand, "It is illegal to have more than five cars behind you....." signs.  We had to do three point turns on the 17 mile drive due to construction.  Totally stressed Grant out.  I was fine.....once both directions stop for you, what is the worry?!?!?!!  lol.  Christmas was laundry, getting groceries and batteries, swimming in the ocean (boys), and our family which of course will need therapy because I made them all cry on Christmas Eve.  Maybe I am a horrible Mom, but I gotta say, I work endlessly to make sure their lives are literally perfect.  And when they say, "I would like my bunk a little wider." or "Well, I like being here, but the trailer is small.  Can we get something bigger to fit us????" or "FRICKING WHATEVER!!!!"  I lost my crap.

But Christmas was perfect.....so maybe it was a win....jury is still out.....which is funny......

My Dad was insistent in December that I schedule a annual meeting with their financial advisers. We booked two meetings and after the first of the year, we agreed on one.  So, I show up in January on my designated Wednesday and Dad is not there.  Mom says, "He got called to jury duty."  WHAT?!?!?!?!  So, I find out he has to show again the next week during the prescheduled financial meeting.  WHAT?!??!?!   "It is my civic duty," he says.  "Dad, you had to fill out a questionnaire to qualify.  Did you do that?" says me.  "Yes, and here is a copy."  he replies.  I look on the questionnaire, "Are you mental competent?"  Answer: Yes.  Sigh.  "So, Dad, how did it go today?" I said.  "I got kicked off for 'beyond a shadow of a doubt'." he replied.  "Really? (Shocker)"  And the conversation went on from there.  "So, when are we meeting with the financial adviser???" he says.  "I have to reschedule with him because of your jury duty...."  I reply.  "Angie, this is important, we need to see him....." he urges.  "Yes, Daddy....I know." and because he knows no better, I do not choke him, I just start all over again and reschedule.

Back to my life.....but I had 11 nights of no medical appointments or thousands of dollars in bills, no confusion, no craziness, and nails.  Yes, I found out you can grow nails.  They, unfortunately are all gone now.  Home has a way of doing that.  But I had eleven days.   I have seen Hank since...first scan since Cyberknife of Friday the 13th....I know, not my choice, but it my Mom's lucky day, so I took it.  Cross your fingers.

Happy Sunday, Ang