Friday, February 24, 2012

That's OK

It is Friday. Do you remember what I told you was supposed to happen today? you?

Mr. Repair Guy (MRG) was supposed to call today, and come by to fix my refrigerator. What time do you think he showed up? Take a guess...

He didn't.

Yes, folks, that is right. He DID NOT show up. I stayed home ALL day for nothing. I desperately needed to go to the grocery store too, to buy.....well.... groceries.

Quick question for all of you: Do you say "grosseries" or "grosheries"? I say it like this: grosheries. I am probably wrong. However, I don't care. It just sounds weird if you pronounce it "grosseries".

Anyway, I did not receive a single call from MRG. And, as luck would have it (not that I believe in luck, it's just a saying y'all) my freezer is now flashing "de" again, which I now know means that something is not right with the defrost heater.

If I have to throw away any more food, MRG, I am going to be one mad woman!

I probably won't actually yell at him like I want to, and ask him WHY he couldn't just call and say that he wasn't coming today. From our last conversation, he made it sound like the part would be in on Friday, and he would be over to install it on....Friday.

Since my Mama taught me to be polite, I will probably just smile sweetly at him and say,"Oh, that's OK", when's not. Do any of you do that too? Tell people it's OK, when it's really not? Or, am I the only one? I don't like confrontation. I avoid it like the plague.

In other news, I am going on day 3 of a horrendous headache. Now, headaches are nothing new to me. I have had them all my life. However, I have not had one this bad in a long time. It is a tad bit better today, but yesterday, it felt like my head was going to literally explode.

Whenever I have a headache that is that bad, I am always afraid that I am going to have an aneurysm. My dear friend's mother died from one when she was around my age, and it just freaks me out. I have taken so many Excedrin and ibuprofen that it is just ridiculous. And still it lingers on. Sigh...

It could be from the humidity that we are experiencing now here in Florida. Even though I haven't left the air conditioned house, I guess my head can still feel the difference in temperature.

So, I stayed home instead of going to Hubs' softball game with him and the girls tonight. I told him to hit me a homer. For all of you non-sports folks out there, that means I want him to hit a home run for me. He can, and he has many times before, so I know he can do it :)

I also made him out a list so he could go grocery shopping for me. I just gave him a short, abbreviated list, because it would take him a sweet forever to get EVERYTHING that we need.

Since I am the one that normally does the shopping, he is just not that familiar with where things are located in the store. He also likes to get brands that I do not buy. I am kind of a brand snob when it comes to food. I will wear non-name brand clothing, but DO NOT buy me generic yogurt or peanut butter.

Also many of the generic food contains some form of gluten. Case in point, generic chicken or beef broth. It contains wheat! Wheat is of the devil....well, it is if you have Celiac disease anyway. Wheat + Celiac disease = Misery.

So, I am laying down on the couch at home, praying for some relief from this horrid headache that doesn't seem to have an end. Since we have a busy weekend planned, it is not a good time for me to not feel well.

For us, this will be a weekend of goodbyes. We are headed home next weekend. Though it is sad to have to say goodbye to family and friends, we are all ready to be home. Two months is a LONG time to be away.

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Ice Ice Baby

I know that you all have just been dying to know what is wrong with my refrigerator. Well....not MY refrigerator. As far I know, MY refrigerator is still fine and dandy, just like the day I left it almost two months ago. I mean the fridge in this rental house. But, since it does contain my food, I consider it to be MY refrigerator. I just don't have to pay the repair bill.

After Mr. Repair Guy showed up, we found out that the defrost heater is broken. I didn't know such a thing even existed. He mentioned that I was probably too young to remember when we had to defrost them ourselves. Oh, you flatter me MRG (Mr. Repair Guy). He thinks I am younger than I actually am.

For your information, MRG, I in fact DO remember when we had to defrost them ourselves. I have scraped a freezer or two in my day. Good times.

He told me that I would have to "manually" defrost the freezer, and by that, I just had to move the freezer button all the way down, which would put it into defrost mode. Certainly beats the old days, where one had to take a chisel to scrape off all the ice!

Apparently, there was an ice blockage since the freezer had not been doing its job, and defrosting itself. Who knew? It's not like there was a gigantic build up of ice covering every surface of the freezer or anything. The fridge just stopped working. Period.

MRG told me to go and buy big bags of ice, and transfer the food from the freezer to the cooler filled with ice.

I was to keep the freezer in "defrost mode" for 3-4 hours, and then flip it back on. This is just a temporary fix, until the new defrost heater comes in.

So, off I trekked with my oldest daughter to the local gas station to purchase two bags of ice. This is the same gas station where I went with the same daughter a few weeks ago to purchase some pop for a party we were going to.

At that time, the adult male Indian cashier asked me if "she" (pointing to my oldest daughter) was my daughter. I said "yes". He then proceeded to inform her and I, that she was so beautiful and that she looked just like an angel! He told us that in his country, she would be a movie star.

While very flattering, this totally creeped my oldest daughter out.

Hello...she IS only 15 years old.

It sort of scared me, because I have watched too many movies about what can happen to beautiful girls. Ever seen the movie, "Taken"? I have! THAT is precisely why I don't watch those kinds of movies.

I may never allow her to leave the house again.

Anyway, since we had to go back to this gas station, my daughter informed me that she was leaving her sunglasses on, and I should do the same. That way, they may not recognize us. Since I am not a movie star, and therefore can't see very well indoors with my sunglasses on, I took mine off. Lucky for us, Mr. I-like-to-compliment-underage-girls-and-creep-them-out, was not working that day.

So, we trudged home with our bags of ice, and proceeded to empty the freezer of all of its food. I tried to keep the ice cream and popsicles cold, but since I only had one cooler, I could not. Alas, I had to throw away the girls' cookies and cream ice cream. My daughters wanted to keep it, but since I could squish the carton, and the contents inside almost resembled a milk shake, I thought it would be best to just throw it out.

I also had to throw away an entire package of hamburger. It may have been all right to eat, but my motto is, if in doubt, THROW IT OUT! I would rather accidentally throw away something that might be good, than suffer the consequences of eating something that has gone bad. Have you ever had food poisoning? No? Well....I have. Not pretty, folks. Not pretty.

The fridge is now working, temporarily at least, until tomorrow when MRG comes back with the new part. I'm sure it will be sometime between 8 and 5. This means that I will get up at the crack of dawn, and wonder all day just exactly when he will be arriving. I will spend all day worrying and waiting, afraid to even go to the bathroom, for fear he will arrive at that exact moment.

Only for him to arrive at 4:45 p.m.

Monday, February 20, 2012

When It Rains, It Pours

As Hubs was getting ready to go away for business, he told me to make sure that there weren't going to be any problems while he is away.

What made him say that? seems like something ALWAYS goes wrong when he is away.

Here is a short list of things that have happened in the past while he has been away:

*Transmission went out on the van

*Toilet broke

*Dog became sick, and had to be put to sleep

*Bunny died

*Water damage to the basement

*Problems with the furnace

*I had to have surgery, and he was required to come home early

....just to name a few

Now, we can add to this list, the phone doesn't work, and neither does the refrigerator.


I tried, Hubs, I really DID try. It just seems like everything waits to go wrong until you leave.


Saturday, February 11, 2012

Honeymoon Island

Every weekend while we are here is sort of like a vacation. So, we try to do something special with the girls that we wouldn't normally do while we are at home.

Last Saturday, we went to Honeymoon Island.

Sounds romantic, doesn't it?

It used to be a place that was perfect for weddings and honeymoons. Now, it has been turned into a state park.

There are many things to do on Honeymoon Island. You can rent bikes, pedal cars, canoes or kayaks, or even take a guided tour around the island.

Or, you can do what we did, and go to the white sandy beach, and venture off exploring on your own.

It was a perfect day to go the beach!

The water was a bit chilly, so we just dipped in our toes.

We saw many interesting sights, like this. See that man under the striped umbrella? We like to call him, "Speedo Grandpa". Ha! We also saw some women wearing bikinis who should have just stuck with a nice one-piece. They definitely could have been featured on the show, "What Not To Wear". Where are Stacy and Clinton when you need them?

Here are the girls working together to build a sandcastle. Awww....isn't that sweet? Lucky for me I didn't take a picture of them fighting, and then soaking each other with water. The youngest did not have a bathing suit on, so she had to walk around in wet jean shorts the rest of the day. Of course, this meant that we had to listen to her complain about how uncomfortable she was. That would have been a real Kodak moment for sure. Sorry I missed it. Just keepin' it real, folks...

Hubs took the girls to walk on the walkway. Where is Mom, you ask? Why, she is sunning herself on the blanket while reading her Nook, next to Speedo Grandpa and two (very loud) giggly teenagers in teeny tiny bikinis. They were nice enough to play music for all of our listening pleasure. Their favorite song was, "We Found Love" by Rhianna. Ask me how I know...

Love this shot!

The girls walking on the beach, looking for shells.

This picture reminded us of Maine.

They have a "hands on" nature center that you can visit for FREE where you can learn more about the island.

Here is a picture of one of the pelicans we saw. I didn't take a picture of the other one, because, was dead. I didn't want to traumatize any of my readers....

We walked on one of the nature trails, and learned that wild cactus grow in Florida. I thought cactus only grew in the desert? Guess I was wrong. These were all along the trail, and if you weren't paying CAREFUL attention to where you were walking, you may have accidentally stepped on one. Since we were wearing flip flops, I turned into the nagging mother, warning the girls every so often to PLEASE be careful. I didn't want to ruin our trip by having to stop and pick cactus spines out of their feet.

Here is a lone kayaker out in the water.

There was an observation deck, complete with a telescope, where you could look out and observe nature.

Before we left, Hubs and I had to sneak in a quick kiss

After all, we were at Honeymoon Island.....

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Hundred Acre Wood Hodgepodge

1. What is something you are loving right now?

I am loving that, because I have lost some weight, some of my clothes are starting to fit me better!

2. Paris, Venice, New York, and Rome are considered four of the most romantic cities in the world. Which one would you most like to visit?

Paris! I have always wanted to go there. Then, I could practice my rusty French that I haven't really used since high school.

I would love to go the museums, see the Eiffel tower, and eat at one of those cute little outdoor cafes.

3. Are you a romantic?

Oh boy, am I ever! I love hearing how people met their spouses/significant others. Stay tuned for the story of how Hubs and I met, coming in March. It's a good one :)

4. What's your favorite love story made for the Big Screen?

Notting Hill. Even though the woman (Julia Roberts) is a celebrity, she realizes that she CAN find love with an ordinary guy.

There is also a very sweet couple in the movie. They are still very much in love, even though a tragic accident left the wife paralyzed, and unable to have children. Reminds us that marriage is for better....or for worse.

Two of my favorite quotes from the movie:

“Anna: "I'm just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to love her."

"Anna: Can I stay for a while?
"William: You can stay forever.”

Awww ♥

5. Everyone loves Pooh bear and friends...which character are you most like and why? Click here for help in answering this question.

I took the quiz, and found out that I am Kanga. Frankly, that didn't surprise me. I was totally expecting to get her. I tend to be a very nurturing person, and I enjoy taking care of my family. I love being a wife and a stay-at-home, homeschooling mother.

Want to see which character you are? Take the quiz!

6. What's the best chocolate something you've ever eaten?

Turtle cheesecake.

7. Share a favorite quote about love.

Love is the condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own. ~Robert Heinlein

8. Insert your own random thought here.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Friday Night Lights

The church we are going to here has a softball team. Since Hubs is on two different softball teams back home (church and city league), he thought it would be fun to join the church team while we are here.

So, last night, being the supportive family that we are, we all went to the first game. Since it was a balmy 73 degrees, we went in short sleeve shirts and jeans. My one daughter was going to wear shorts, but I convinced her that she may possibly want to wear jeans, just in case.

We did not bring any sweaters because, after all, it WAS 73 degrees. WRONG!

We froze our butts off! The wind picked up, and even though it was technically "warm", it was very chilly. My middle daughter, who is a very petite person, was huddled up against me, her lips turning blue!

Next time, even if it is 90 degrees, we are STILL going to at least bring a sweater. Of course, since we will be prepared, it will probably be hotter than blazes. Ha!

The team ended up winning, which was apparently a rare occurrence. I like to think it was because Hubs was playing this year ;)

He only got to play half the game because there were so many players on the team that they had to take turns.

But still....

We came home and had popcorn and movie night with the girls. We take turns letting them pick the movie.

Last week, my youngest daughter chose "Mars Needs Moms". Have you ever seen that movie? While we were watching it, I kept thinking to myself, "Self, doesn't this movie seem a tad bit scary for the younger crowd?"

My fears were confirmed when my youngest daughter started bawling when the mother in the movie was about to die. Yes....I did say she was about to DIE.

If you haven't seen the movie, this is a spoiler alert. Look away if you plan on watching it in the future!

Towards the end of the movie, the mother gives her space helmet, that allows her to breathe, to her son. He had lost his, and is gasping for breath.

She unselfishly gives her helmet to him, and locks it so he can't take it off. She is slowly dying of suffocation.

This was all too much for my daughter. She had tears streaming down her face.

While this was a good movie for learning to appreciate your mother (and really, what mother doesn't want to feel appreciated?) it seemed a bit heavy for a small child to deal with.

This Friday, it was my oldest daughter's turn to pick the movie. Since she loves mysteries, I suggested the TV show "Monk". (We have Netflix).

It was my girls' first time ever watching that show, and they loved it! It was very funny to watch Monk in action, as he is extremely OCD about everything. If you have never watched it, I highly recommend it. It's kind of like a more modern day "Perry Mason". I used to love watching that show.

I think we have found a show that the whole family enjoys watching, and is entertaining enough that even the adults like it.

It did fail to keep Hubs awake, but that is nothing new. Unless there is lots of action, and I do mean *ACTION*, movie night is key word for "nap time" for Hubs.

But, I enjoyed it!

And, at least in last night's episode, no mothers were killed off....

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Goodbye, Bitty

Yesterday was a very sad day in our household, y'all. (I feel the need to talk "southern" since I AM in the south.)

We had to put our beloved cat, Bitty, to sleep.

Let me back up a bit, and tell you the rest of the story.

I believe I mentioned that while we do have other pets, only my Yorkie comes with us to Florida. Our cat stays with a dear friend, Howie the cockatiel stays with my parents, and Derby the gigantic goldfish stays with my sister.

So, Bitty, our cat of 11 years, was staying over our friend's house. She LOVES it there. She is the only pet in the house, she doesn't have a pesky dog to deal with, and she is treated like a queen. I think she was secretly sad to come back to our house when we came home last year. Back to the house.....with the dog.

Anyway, she went to our friend's house, and my friend emailed me and said that she wasn't eating very much. We thought that she just needed to get adjusted to her new temporary home. She is an animal, and sometimes changes can be hard on them.

Then, she told me that she was starting to eat more, but she was not her normal piggish self. This cat was not small by any means. She weighed almost 10 lbs. For her not to eat much is very rare. She will usually sit by her bowl and "meow" for more food.

My friend contacted me a couple days ago, and said that she thought she had a hairball that she couldn't cough up. She was trying to, but she couldn't get it to come out. So, she put some Vaseline on her lips. I guess they will lick it off, and it will coat their digestive track and help lubricate it so the hairball can slide out more easily. I know.....Eeeewwww!

She said that since that didn't work, she went to the store and bought a special medicine made specifically to get rid of hairballs. She gave that to her, and although she was trying and trying to get it up, it just wouldn't come out.

She told me that she heard a noise that sounded like a man was in her house, and since she lives alone, this totally freaked her out! She then realized it was just Bitty, trying to hack up that darn hairball.

Yesterday, she told me that she was starting to get really worried about Bitty, as she was just lying in a ball, and not really moving around very much. There also hadn't been any poop in her litter box, which meant she wasn't eating.

So, we made arrangements for my parents to take her to the vet.

I started googling how to get rid of hairballs, and discovered that sometimes, hairballs can grow to the size of a baseball, and then the cat cannot get them out, and surgery is required to remove them. I fully expected that while this hairball situation could be serious, it could be fixed with surgery.

My parents took her to the vet, and then had the vet call me after she had checked Bitty out.

The vet told me that Bitty was in very bad shape, and that she did not think that she had a hairball. She was in liver failure, and her body was shutting down. Her temp was 10 degrees colder than a cat's should be. She could barely hear her heart because there was too much water around it.

She told me that we could spend thousands of dollars on testing, and trying to possibly treat her, but that she really thought we were dealing with a tumor in her chest. All the money that we would spend would simply prolong her life for a bit, but in the end, she would most likely not survive, and her quality of life would be very poor. With her being an "elderly" cat, and being so far gone already, her prognosis was not good.

Talk about a shock! I was expecting to hear that she had a hairball!

My daughters were already starting to cry as they heard me on the phone. The vet told me that she thought the best thing would be to euthanize her, and explained the process to me.

She kindly told me that by euthanizing her, they would just give her an overdose of a sedative. Since I have recently been sedated for my heart cath, I know what that is like. Only, instead of waking up, her heart would stop, and she would pass away.

We made the decision to euthanize her, and I proceeded to tell my girls, who had already heard some of what I was saying on the phone, and could see that I was crying.

I explained what the vet had told me, and how even though we were sad, it was best for Bitty, and that she was currently suffering. She deserved better than that.

I felt horrible having to make the decision to end her life when we weren't even with her. We would not get to say our last goodbyes. We couldn't pet her soft, silky fur one last time, and tell her how much we loved her, and how much we would miss her.

I suppose it was better this way. We didn't have to be there when she died. It would have broken our hearts even more.

She was our cat for 11 years. She was a stray that we found on our porch, in the middle of a blizzard. We had seen her and her cat friend around the neighborhood when the weather was warmer. Then, when it got cold, she camped out on her porch.

I was NOT a cat lover. I tolerated them, but that was all. I did not want a cat in my house. My middle daughter was 2 years old at the time. I felt sorry for the cat, who was just skin and bones, and brought her into our house. I figured that if she could hold her own with my 2 year old, she just might get to stay.

And she did.

She was so gentle and loving with the girls. She meowed her way into this dog lover's heart.

She was the best cat that a person could ever have. She didn't get on my counters (BIG pet peeve of mine!) she went potty only in her litter box (except that one time that Hubs closed the laundry room door and forgot to open it back up, so she went in my plant. Hey, a girl's gotta go somewhere!) and she took turns sleeping on my girls' beds. They adored her. We all did.

She wasn't overly social, and hated to be picked up, but she was loving in her own way.

Towards the end of her life at our house, she was starting to become more social with us. She would let me pick her up and cuddle her for a few minutes. She would risk "the dog" so that she could be by us. I think she knew that her time with us was growing short, and wanted to squeeze all the love she could into her last days.

She made our lives fuller, richer, and more lovable. And for that, we will always be grateful.

Goodbye, my Kitty Bitty Baby. We hope you know how much you meant to our family. Our house is going to feel emptier without you in it.

Forever loved.....

Forever missed....