Monday, October 31, 2011

What the HECK?????

She hasn't blogged it yet, but I gotta say, I think that Bush Babe has lost her ever loving mind. Truely. On facebook, she showed a picture of a very large snake in a crock, which is being held by Mr. Incredible.

She has shown us all manner of wildlife in Australia. She even takes photos of goannas and snakes. However this snake was a seven foot python. It was on the top shelf of her pantry. In the house.

She points out that the snake is not venomous.

I point out, once again, that it was seven foot long and on the top shelf of her pantry. In the house. INSIDE the house!

She pointed out that it was pretty placid.

I'm starting to worry about her mind people. I will point out once again, that it was seven feet long and on the top shelf of her pantry. Inside. the. house.

There are little details of this story which are disturbing to me. Now BB is a fairly tall drink of woman, but my question is, can she see the top shelf of her pantry, or is she like me in that she gropes blindly, locating what she's looking for by feel? And if you, in the course of grabbing the tumeric or the coriander, grab yourself a seven foot python, I want to point out that python is not listed as a substitution for any cooking ingredient that I am aware of.

Allow me also to say that if I ever reached up on the top shelf of my pantry and grabbed a seven foot python, I would have immediately peed my pants and then dropped over dead on the spot. Yes. This is correct. I am sure that at some point there would have been the scream heard round the world, but then I would be history, on my way to meet Jesus wearing wet pants.

Another little detail of the story is that apparently he made quite a mess up there, knocking things over and such. But it also is pointed out that the placid little fellow was not housebroken. Now that brings up another picture. Seven foot python...just how big...oh...never mind...

Anyways, I think that you want to hie over to her blog right now and demand that she post that story with its accompanying pictures. Demand it I say!

Sunday, October 30, 2011


We went to church today. Our minister's wife is dealing with cancer, brain tumors. This has come as a shock to our church. Our little church seems to have had more dealings with this disease than you'd expect. Ray and Sallie sit in front of me, and they were not there this week. I was grieved to find that their 20 year old grand daughter has just found out she has ovarian cancer. It's everywhere, really. All you can do is send out encouragement, or volunteer to cook a meal, or pray. It doesn't seem like nearly enough.

After church, I went to work. We were busy today decorating for Christmas. (Yikes!) Despite my misgivings about the earliness of all of this, I still wore my Santa hat.

A couple from down the road came in. He likes to give me grief. Once last year, I priced a pink Carhartt coat for a woman, and stupidly forgot to void the thing after I priced it. Lo, he was my unfortunate next customer who was a bit startled to find himself being charged for a pink coat. He's never let me forget my mistake, and I've never ceased to tell him that I think he just ought to give in and buy himself that pink coat, because I know how badly he wants it. His wife is a hoot too, and we generally get kind of uproarious when we get a chance. Today, we were out of the drill bit he wanted, so we took one out of our store drill, told him to bring it back when he was done. He was a bit surprised by that.

"That's how the store makes up for having cashiers like me," I quipped. He laughed, but his wife said, "ALL the cashiers should be like you," she said. I cocked my head and said, "Are you angling for more free stuff?" We all laughed. We have some pink TSC hats. If those things ever go on sale, I swear I'm going to buy one and hang it on their front door. They will know exactly where it came from.

So it was a busy day, and a nice day, as usual, shooting the breeze with everyone.

It's 11 now, and my homework is done. I'll leave you with a question: Who do you think the ninny was that forgot to buy more computer paper? Who do you think can't print out her homework? *sigh* Never fails. There's always some stinking stupid thing...

Saturday, October 29, 2011

The people I meet.

Today, after I got off from work, we took a washer and dryer up to Buddy and Brianna's new home. Coming back, we saw an older guy pushing a bike uphill in the wet snow. My own feet were cold and wet, and I could only imagine how cold he was. It was also getting on towards dark, and he was wearing a khaki coat. Not highly visible.

"Tim," I said, "we should ask the guy if he wants to throw his bike in the back of the truck."

Tim turned the truck around, and we drove back. I rolled down my window. "Hey," I said, and when I asked him, he flashed a big grin. "Yes," he said.

So I hopped out of the truck and helped him load his bike. He told me where he was headed, and said, "but you go to where you need to go, and just drop me off."

He seemed surprised when I said that we were headed the other way, that we'd turned around. "Well, that's really nice!" he said. And he clambered up into the back of the truck. He didn't need to ride up front where it was warm, he told me. He was fine and grateful for the ride. So we drove him where he was going, and I got out once more. He was standing his bike up, and I reached for it. "You hold it for me, till I get down. I'll lift it out," he said.

But I lifted it down, and waited for him to get off the truck. Really. He was about our age. His old coat was tied with a piece of rope. His boots were old and worn out. He thanked us again for the ride. Dylan has a blaze orange hunting suit, warm. I offered to get it to him.

Nope. He was fine, he said. I pointed out it would make him a lot easier to see at night. He thought it was a very nice offer, but no, he said, once more.

You know, we are surrounded by people having a hard time. I saw an elderly couple. Probably in their nineties, pushing his and her walkers. He struggled to open the door for his wife. "Oh, gosh!" I thought, and I darted over. It was a bit of a struggle, because he could not back up his walker because she was behind him, but I squeezed by, and held the door. I got them to step to the side, and then I opened the second set of doors for them.

As they walked out the door, his wife said, "We've both got neuropathy."

I was sympathetic. "That's a horrible thing," I said.

She said, "Oh, I've only got it in my feet, but my husband has it in his lower legs. I can't imagine that," and they slowly made their way out the door and to their car parked in the first handicap spot. "Do you need any more help?" I asked.

They assured me that they were fine. I watched them from the door, just to double make sure. He opened her car door, and she got herself in the driver seat. He walked to the trunk of the car, which she opened from the inside. He was pulling her walker. He folded it, and put it in the trunk. He folded his, and he put it in the trunk as well. He shut the trunk and leaned on the car for support, making his way to the driver side rear seat. He opened the door, and got in with much difficulty, at one point, nearly lying down. I was just about to go out and shut his door, but his white head popped back up, and he shut the door. Carefully and slowly she backed the car out, and away they went.

I also saw a woman waiting in front of me. You see some mighty rough women. This one had a bandanna on her head, and carried herself like she was a bit of a bad ass. As much of a bad ass as a woman my age can be. But she turned to me, and with a shock, I noted the lack of eyebrows and the bloated face. I realized that the bandanna was not covering hair.

This will not make sense. Cancer seems to lurk around in the back of my mind, but at the same time, I forget sometimes. I forget, and I see something that triggers the memory, and it comes almost as a shock..."Oh, yeaaaaaah....I remember..." I can't explain it any better than that.

I wanted to say something encouraging to her, but as always, I found myself without words. I stood there awkwardly. She stood in front of me, her back toward me. Neither of us said a word. I remembered what it was like to have no hair in the cold. I thought about how I could have never gone out in public with my bald head exposed through the back of a bandanna. She was a far tougher woman than I, far braver. I stood there waiting, and trying to think of encouraging words that never came, but before she left, it did occur to me that she probably was a bit of a bad ass, and that it probably was serving her well during this time.

The past two days, I've been really aware of the misery in this world. It surrounds me. Probably surrounds you too. Maybe if we all just reached out to do what we can, maybe it would make a difference.

Let's try.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Dog Stories

Today at the store, I heard two nice dog stories. A fellow came in and bought some premium dogfood, and toys, and a collar, a leash, dog treats. I said, "Did you get yourself a dog?" and he said no, that he'd had one for a few months now. He rescued it, a dog his in-laws had. The dog turned out to be too much for them, and they just kept it in a crate. His kids couldn't stand to see it, and begged him to take the dog home. He caved.

Now that's interesting. I asked him how the dog was doing. It's a pit bull. Sometimes an animal just doesn't recover from treatment like that, and it had spent most of it's three years in a cage. "Oh, that dog is wonderful. She has two acres to run on, and she is the biggest baby you ever saw. When I get home from work, she's so glad to see me. She jumps up on my lap and leans up against me." I told him I'd like to meet her sometime, that he should bring her in. And he went out the door with nearly $100 in dog supplies, and it made me glad.

Another fellow came in and he bought a big bag of dog food and cat food up to the counter. He paid with a check. I noticed the address on the check, that we lived on the same road. He lived some miles away though. I thought. I said, "Are you the folks with the Australian Shepherds?" He wasn't, but they have rescue dogs. They collect dogs from humane societies, dogs that nobody else wants. Old dogs, handicapped dogs, abused dogs. They have an electric fence system set up, and the dogs are free to run. One of the dogs is blind, and they've set it up with gravelled boundaries, so that the blind dog can tell where he's at. They have a rescue cat, and they have horses too.

I like that. I like knowing that there are people in the world like that. I also like that I work at a store where I meet folks like that on a regular basis.

Oh. And I had a test today. I think that I rocked it.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Interesting: when I was freezing to death because there was no fire, my beloved husband told me that it was not cold. I disagreed. A lot. I said that I wanted a fire. He said he needed to clean the chimney. He'd get around to it. I said I was cold. He told me it was not cold. It's been going on like this for a couple weeks. Our only source of heat was the ventless propane heater in the livingroom. When the sun went down, I was freezing. Unless you talked to Tim. Then I wasn't cold at all.

Well, my beloved 'gimpy' has been home since Wednesday.

We have a woodfire going.


I do not think so.

Oh, and PS. It is snowing today. Bill posted a picture of Kalib on his daddy's shoulders in the first snow. Look at the wonder and joy on that child's face. Adorable.

The look on my face contains no wonder. No joy either. Just saying.

Unless of course, you are talking about the fire.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

No Doubt

I do have to say that the conflict with my teacher has been on my mind. I find myself wondering if I am a professional? School's been hard, and I do get discouraged from time to time. So lately, I've been discouraged and wondering about myself.

I am about to do my first round of field work. I was lucky enough that I was picked for a position very close to home. As a matter of fact, the facility is next door to one of our rentals, on the same street as the new house. I had the name of the occupational therapist there, and I was supposed to contact her. Coming home from school, I dropped off a bag of dog biscuits for some friends, and then headed into town to meet Tim at the doctor's office. I had about 15 minutes, so on the spur of the moment, I decided to drop in to the facility, and leave my home telephone with the reception desk. That way the occupational therapist could call me at home, and we could set up a meeting. The receptionists told me to wait, because they were very sure that she'd want to see me.

And so I did.

A wheeled cart came by and I stepped out of the way. I looked up and into the smiling face of 'Goof' a guy that Tim and I used to work with at the factory where I was a janitor when I moved back to the area 15 years ago, during my family's hard times. It was great to see him, and we blabbed a while.

A smiling woman strode towards me saying, "Debby?" and I turned and saw a familiar face, a regular customer at the store. I was shocked, because I did not know what she did for a living.

She looked surprised too. "Where do I know you from?" I told her.

She said, "Of course!" and she was so glad that I was a little speechless (not a common thing for me). She looked at me and she said, "You are going to be perfect!" and she told me that I was funny and friendly and adaptable. She'd noticed this from watching me interact with people at the store.

You know, some days are discouraging. Other days are encouraging.

I felt as if, today, that all my yesterdays came together. As the three of us stood talking, Goof talked about our days at the factory, and of following my column to keep up with us. My new temporary boss was so excited to be my mentor that it just made me glad. At the end of our short visit, she gave me a hug. This woman doesn't know the doubting of my heart, but she tells me that 'I have what it takes'.

Know what? I believed her. I looked at her, and I had no doubt that I have what it takes.

I left there, and went to the doctor's office with Tim.

As I write this, PBS' Independent Lens comes on. Much to my surprise, I hear names I recognize, and I turn to see Cara's friend on TV. How strange is THAT?


Tim made me mad yesterday at about 3 AM and I really got my dander up. He's in pain. Serious, serious pain. Sometimes he can't walk, but he ignores things. Yesterday, the alarm went off at 3. Freight day at the store. I lay there trying to wake up. I became aware that Tim was gasping in pain on his side of the bed. I started asking questions. He did not answer me.

Then I got a little ornery.

I was still a little ornery when he came to the store at about noon. "You can't just ignore this Tim. Something is really wrong here, and Physical Therapy is making it worse, not better. You need to..." and he interrupted to say, "I'm not going to work today, and I'm going to make a doctor's appointment. I think that I'll wind up taking temporary disability until we figure out what this is."


My temper tantrum worked. (Payoff?!!) It usually doesn't go like that.

You know, I think that I have reached a turning point at school. I've been struggling to get a handle on Bobath and Brunnstrom and Rood and PNF and NDT and last night, going over the stuff yet again, I began to see it. I found videos on line, and watched the therapies on actual patients. I felt as if the pieces had begun to fit together. For the first time, I realized that I was going to graduate from this course. I mean, that's been the goal, always, but I always felt as if that could be snatched away from me at any given moment.

But it can't.

I've worked hard, and it is coming together, and in May, I'll graduate.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Yesterday, riding along to church, I was mesmerized by the sight of a naked tree against the sky, and suddenly it occurred to me: where did fall go? Summer, for that matter? I'm so busy!!The holiday season will be begin NEXT MONTH!!!! We're between two houses. Tim can't move furniture because of the sciatica issue. (At this point, it's pretty bad, and he is receiving physical therapy, which seems to be making matters worse, not better). I began to panic a little. How is this going to work out? How is this possibly going to work?!!!!!!!!

I said, "Tim, really, we need to hire professional movers. There is just no way to get this all done. Thanksgiving is coming, and it's chaos, just chaos, and what if it's Thanksgiving and I(gasp of horror) DON'T KNOW WHERE MY TURKEY ROASTER IS?"

*wild-eyed look*

Of course he looked at me like I'd sprouted an extra head. "We don't need to worry about that right now," he tells me.

Our livingroom outfit is in the new house. The dining room set is here. The stove is here. Most of the dishes are there. I've taken all my office books there. My desk is here. You get the picture, right?


It's kind of like school though. I worry about every assignment. I worry about every test. I feel stupid, and I worry. Sometimes, I am actually sick with fear. But when it comes down to it, well...I do okay. Usually, I do better than okay.

A woman is dealing with cancer, and the husband said, "We'll have to make a decision about chemo, and we have to..." I recognized the disbelief and the 'deer in the headlights look', the look of someone just coming to grips with the whole concept. I wrote him a little note. "Don't look at the big picture," I said. "You can't. It's overwhelming. We are not designed for that. The big picture is God's perspective. Just look at things one day at a time. The worries of the day are sufficient. One day at a time, you'll get through this."

Sounds pretty wise, doesn't it? One day at a time. Don't try to look at the whole thing. I'm a fine one to be giving advice, don't you think?

So tonight, I took another load of stuff down to the new house. I put the dishes away. I brought the empty boxes home. I'll fill them up again before I go to bed, and tomorrow, Tim will haul another load down, light stuff. A carload at a time, we'll get it done. One day at a time, I'll get through school.

Maybe, before this is all over, I'll learn to walk the walk, not just talk the talk.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

At the Tractor Supply

Yesterday at work, it struck me the sheer number of 'characters' that I meet there. Lots of them.

I met a tall rail thin man with long white hair and a beard. Probably in his nineties. He was headed home to partake of a walleye that he caught. It was a big one too, he said, and he was very happy with himself. Of course, fishing around here is nothing like it used to be, he explained, and he told me that he remembered a time when he would tell his wife that he was headed out to get supper, and he would go ahead and do just that. There's no guarantee of that, not anymore. Sometimes he comes home empty handed. But he'd caught a walleye, and he was headed home to cook it, happy as could be. He was still talking away as he strode to the door in his raggedy old jacket torn through in several places. He doesn't freeze his walleye, not ever, he tells me. He cooks it and eats it fresh and there is no finer eating. "Well," I told him, if you ever get too many to eat all at once, you just remember where I work then," and he laughed hard. He can put away some walleye, he lets me know. When he was a younger man, he'd go fishing. He'd come home with his catch, and he and his wife would cook it up and people would come in, and they'd still be eating fresh cooked fish at 2 in the morning. That is one truly, truly contented man, and I was pleased to meet him.

Not long after that, another man came in, and here's the funny thing. He looked sort of like my fisherman friend. This man worked on a dairy farm, and had probably come straight in from the barn. (Lots of folk are busy.) We're supposed to greet customers as they come in the door, so I called out 'Hi!' as he walked in. He swept by without a word. Without even a look, for that matter. He came back up with a pulley, and he paid for it, without a word. I thanked him, and wished him a good day. He never looked, he never spoke. Out the door he went. It made me wonder what sort of a life he'd had, to be like that. I also wondered how long it had been since he spoke at all.

A big burly fellow came in. Red faced, blue eyed. Probably 60. He was thanking us for a donation we'd made for a fundraiser he and a horse group had done for St. Jude's. He had a certificate. They'd raised over $3800 and he was glad. He was just as quick to say that it had been a group effort, that it was a result of many people working together. I told him, "Don't hesitate to stop by the next time you do something like that. Tractor Supply prides itself on being a store that gives back." I pointed out the manager to him. He was a bit nervous because he had a very expensive saddle in the back of his pickup that he was repairing for someone. He was afraid it would be stolen. I assured him that I'd keep my eye on it. So off he went. Soon he was striding back up to the front of the store. His boots stopped at the Leanin' Tree card display. He looked through them and then he was back at my counter with a wedding card. "Going to a wedding?" I asked him. And he said that he was. I can't remember exactly what he said, but I mistook it to mean that he was getting married. I congratulated him, heartily, and he said, embarrassed, " Not me! He paused, flustered. "I'm not married...I mean...well...I don't know what I am, exactly, but maybe one day...I'd like to get married one day." He tucked that card inside his Carhartt, pulled his hat down, and out the door he went.

Early in the morning, fellow came in, quiet guy. Things were still slow. I was stocking candy and we got to blabbing too. He said it was his birthday. "Really!" I said, "Now what are you going to do about that?" He didn't know exactly, but he'd decided to buy himself some warm socks and a new Carhartt sweatshirt, because he works outside and it's getting cold. But joking around, he said, "So, because it's my special day, you're going to sing happy birthday right?" Just kidding around. Little did he know. He took his good old sweet time shopping and the store was a bit busier by the time he got up to the counter, but I sang him the birthday song. He wasn't expecting it and he stood there a little surprised. The other customers looked amused. He thanked me, and said, "You know, I honestly don't think that anyone has sung happy birthday to me since I was a kid." He stood there thinking. "No I really don't think they have." He walked out the door saying, "That was sure nice!" and he was happy too.

I met three couples traveling together, and they were well to do. Not rude, but definately aloof. They were looking around the store. I think that we were a bit of a novelty. They were having fun looking at the Christmas decorations and things. They bought quite a bit, between the six of them. One man was buying a Schleich dragon, for his daughter who had just begun college at Drexel. He and his crew were definately from a different world than me, but in his world, just like mine, they are proud of their kids, and inside, I smiled to know that we had something in common.

All day long I met people and talked. The dogs came. Scooby the Newfie. A mastiff. Thor the Great Dane. Greta the golden, all mudded up. I petted dogs and gave them their cookie. I called kids 'pippersqueakers' which almost always makes them laugh. There were young folks, and old folks, and middle aged folks like me. One of those customers walked out the door, and he said, "God love ya. I hope you don't EVER change."

I do like my job. It doesn't matter how dumb I feel at school, or how overwhelmed I feel at the busy-ness of my life, I can go to work, and it's almost always like a break, a breath of fresh air. I do so love that job.

Saturday, October 22, 2011


The other day, Matt called from work. A set of keys was missing. Did I have them?

And I answered, "No. Remember? I just borrowed yours when I needed them. I'm afraid to sign keys out anymore, and if I have to, I note exactly which ones I took, because I'm afraid that people will think that I did something stupid." Which is valid. Keys come up gone on a regular basis there. They're gone, we do a major search, we find 'em. But it's driving our poor manager nuts.

Anyhoo, Matt said, "Oh, yeah. You were using mine. Let me talk to Pete." And that's the last I heard of it.

I walked into work the other day, and saw the manager, and called out, "So did they find those keys?" and he said, in a very unhappy voice, "No. They did not." But it turns out that the other set of keys which had been missing had been found, in another cashier's apron. Good news. Good news. I pulled my apron out of my locker and said, "I did not sign out keys on freight day..." and lo. My apron felt heavy. With a sick feeling I reached in the pocket. Yep. One set of keys. Oh, the boss was a happy man.

I'm glad I could make his day, but this still boggles my mind. I have not the foggiest clue how those keys ended up in my apron pocket, because I did not take keys from the key box. That was mortifying to be running my mouth. "No, I don't have keys. Not me..." and then pull the stinking things out of my pocket.

Oh well. It makes a good question for the Tractor Supply Trivia Game I am putting together for the Christmas party.

Friday, October 21, 2011


I usually wake up about 5:30. I've begun to set the alarm for 5:30 even though I don't really need to. My oldest friend Mary and I have a pact. We pray for our children at 5:30 every morning. I pray for hers. She prays for mine. It is hard being a mom. Your emotions tend to cloud things sometimes, but whenever we talk about our kids, she always sees clearly what I can do, or what I should do. It works vice versa too.

It was her idea, actually, and I think it's a good one. I like the idea of starting the day with prayer, knowing that my friend is praying from her little house on a whole 'nuther hill. She's strict too. You have to get out of bed and on your knees. I'm generally a 'pray where I'm at' person. But I get out of bed and on my knees and I pray. Because I love my friend.

That's one heck of a sacrifice too, getting out of bed. We still have not lit the woodstove and it is cold in here. Unless you talk to Tim. He'll tell you that it's not cold in here, but let me tell you that man is full do you start a post talking about prayer, and then have it take a turn like that? You don't. And so I won't. But I'm darn tired of being cold, let me tell you true. It is in the 30s outside, wet and raining. I'd just start a fire myself, but he wants to clean the chimney first, and sure as tooting, about the time that I stubbornly go on and start a fire, something terrible will happen.

Did I ever tell you about the time we did have a fire?

I'd headed down to pick up Dylan from wrestling practice. He was 16 and just got his permit, so he was driving. We watched the firetrucks go speeding past as we waited to turn right at the stop sign at the top of the hill. "Oh," I said. "Somebody's got a fire. We should pray for them, whoever they are." And Dylan turns right, and we are following the fire trucks. They begin slowing down where we'd be slowing down. Much to my shock, the firetrucks pull in our driveway. There is a flagman standing in the middle of the road flagging us through, and getting a bit impatient because we had just stopped. He angrily snapped his flashlight, motioning us to get going. I leapt from the car, and said, "This is our house!" to the flagman and ran through the front yard.

All I could think of is that I had thrown wood into the stove before I left. I was horrified to think that maybe I hadn't shut it properly or something, and set our house afire. I left a boy with a learner's permit in the road with no responsible adult in the car, too, but that never dawned on me until later. So I'm bolting through the yard in the dark, praying "Oh, please, oh please, oh please!"

Suddenly I notice that the activity is taking place in the driveway. I also notice that Tim's truck was a smoldering heap. He was standing there studying it with a herd of volunteer fireman. I was so relieved that I burst out with "Oh, thank God it's your truck!" Which sounded kind of crappy.

Turned out, Tim had arrived home shortly after I left. He parked his truck, walked into the house, picked up the newspaper, and sat down in his recliner. He said, later, "I don't even know what made me get up and go to the window, but I looked out and my truck was on fire."

Cara picks up the story. She was in the bathroom, had just stepped out of the shower. She heard the front door open. She heard the front door shut. She heard various cars being moved. (We had at least four other vehicles out front.) As she was heading out of the bathroom, she heard the front door open again. She heard the front door shut again. From her bedroom, she heard Tim talking to someone on the phone. She then heard the front door open once more. She then heard the front door shut once more. She didn't pay any mind.

The phone rings, and she takes the call in her room. Her grandmother says, "What's on fire?!!!" in a frantic sort of voice. Cara says, "Nothing." Her grandmother said, "Well, a call just came across the scanner that there's a fire at your house." Cara said, "OUR house?" Her grandmother said, "Cara? Where are you?" and Cara said, "I'm in my room." Her grandmother suggests that she look out the window. Cara does and sees firetrucks. "Ummmm. Grandma? I gotta go. Right now," and she hung up.

Later she complained, "Tim needs to learn the proper use of an emergency voice!" It's the truth. He never gets rattled. His voice is always careful and quiet. He would tell you that your head had exploded in the same calm voice that he would ask you to bring the ketchup from the refrigerator please.

Anyways, Tim's truck was a total loss. We never found out for sure what started the fire, only that it was electrical in nature.

Now, where was I? Oh. I was talking about how cold I was.

Tim and I are going to have a long discussion about fires tonight. It's cold.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Nothing else to say.

Foiled Again

I managed to get my column out this morning. Last night I spent wasted 5 hours trying to make it work. I should have just given up earlier, worked on homework, and then went to bed, because the column wrote itself in my head while I was sleeping.

I've been doing homework all day. Yay! Definately got a lot of homework done.

I've got to get the house squared away for when the new owner's insurance guy comes to look at the place.

I'm still in my bathrobe and nightgown at 6 PM. (But I did shower at 3, which is an improvement).

So why am I still sitting here at my computer?

Because in 'treating myself' to 15 minutes of blog surfing for all my hard work, I read The Pioneer Woman. Now I'm googling bunny scene Fatal Attraction.

I gotta know. Somebody tell me the story behind the bunny scene.

And dagnabbit! while blog surfing, I discovered that THE WORLD IS ENDING TOMORROW. According to Nanny, Harold Camping has refigured his calculations and decided that his original date of May 21st was incorrect, because the world was actually going to end on OCTOBER 21st. Why the heck was this not publicized?!!! That's irresponsible media right there. I have spent my last day on earth hunkered over a computer keyboard doing homework. Luckily I know about it now, and have saved myself from cleaning house all through the last night on earth.

I don't suppose God will mind if I show up there in my nightgown and bathrobe, right? I did take a shower at 3.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


Got a lot done today, even though I don't feel as if I got enough done. Hard to believe that I am half way done with the semester already. I don't know what will happen with field work next semester, after the conflict with the teacher. I had straight As at midterm except for one C+ (wince). I'm not sure what is the right approach to take here. Normally, I'd just meet with her, set out my misgivings and have a discussion, but I'm a little leery. The last meeting was not a discussion. She did not listen. She spoke, and she made it clear that I had no right to be critical of a teacher. I believe that if I disagree with anything she says, it might well be construed as being critical of a teacher once again. I think that the only option here is to keep my head down, and my mouth shut, just maintain a professional distance, and study harder. The other students are supportive (privately) but they also are keeping their distance from me. That's okay too. We'll just see the way the cards play on this one.

Today, I visited with an elderly woman. She told me about the house that her grandfather built. She said, wistfully, "I'd just like to drive past that house and see what it looks like now." The house is a simple 15 minutes away. I talked to the people there, and asked if it were possible to take her out for a couple hours on a Sunday afternoon, and stop for ice cream on the way back. They thought it was an excellent plan, and thought the daughter would approve. I gave my phone number to them, so that the family could call.

I walked out into the fall day. I saw a bumper sticker. It said, "Be the change." You know, there are a lot of things which cannot be changed. Sometimes, it seems like the smallest changes are the ones that make the real difference though.

Well. I've pondered stupid stuff long enough. Time for bed. It's been a long day, and tomorrow is even longer.

Tractor Supply story: Today I was working away at the store, and a elderly fellow comes up, big white beard, and a shock of white hair. He says, very seriously (but with a twinkle in his eye), "I've been thinking to take up a new crop. Do you have any books about getting started in marijuana farming?"and he gestured at our magazine/book rack. I knew he was joshing me. I like to josh too, though. My eye caught a magazine cover, and I looked right back at him and said, very seriously (but with a twinkle in my own eye), "Yes sir, we do." He looked a bit startled. I reached down and said, "Here's a magazine called 'Mary Jane's Farm'. Seems like you'd be able to find some good information there." I had him, and he burst out laughing, a big bellow of laughter. He went his way, and I went back to stocking.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Hearing problems.

Tim's been saying he's having trouble hearing, and I've been thinking, 'well, he doesn't want to hear sometimes...' and all that. Then yesterday, he came home with an earwax removal kit, and promptly removed a wad of earwax from his ear that scared the crap right out of me. I thought it was a beetle, and I figured that if a bug could crawl into his ear, it could crawl in mine as well. I nearly ran screaming from the bathroom in horror until he explained what he'd done.

Well. Shut me right up. Of course the man had trouble hearing, and here I was convinced that he was simply ignoring me, and I felt pretty bad about myself and my wife-liness. Or lack there-of.

Last night, I put together a strata which has to refrigerate over night before you bake it, and I used a lot of onion and green pepper and some nice venison sausage and eggs and cheddar cheese. I got up this morning and baked it while I was getting ready for school. I said to Tim, "This is finished, and all you'll have to do is warm yourself a slice of it up in the microwave for lunch. I can't put it in the fridge, because it's too hot from the oven. Don't leave it sit out all day. Put it away once it cools down enough..." and he said he would and out the door I went.

I got home tonight, and half a strata was sitting on the stove where I left it.

Don't feel nearly as bad about myself and my wife-liness.

Tim? You need to do some more work on that ear.


I worked like crazy at the store yesterday. When I came home, I had homework. My feet were killing me, and so I got the bright idea to plug in a vibrating heating pad, and rest my feet on it as I was typing. However, when I plugged it in, the computer shut down. I didn't take the time to figure out why, having more concern about the document that I'd been typing. I was very relieved to see it there in the autosave. I sat down and finished typing it. The vibrating heating pad felt great on my feet.

When I was done, I reached under the desk to unplug the heating pad, and the computer shut off once again. This time I saw why. The big plug of the heating pad was touching the switch on the power strip. The computer shut down once again as I unplugged the heating pad. I thought grumpy thoughts and turned it all back on. However when I went to the autosave, I was horrified to see that the document it saved was only the original first two paragraphs from when I plugged in the heating pad the first time. My work had been lost.

I'm actually surprised that the shriek was not heard in Australia.

Good news? My short term memory is not as bad as I thought.

Sunday, October 16, 2011


Yesterday, I worked. It was a busy day, raining like crazy outside. I feel partially responsible for this. As soon as Tim and I decided that it was time to begin moving furniture, the skies open and it has not let up. In fact, in the weather forecast, it shows the only clear day this week being Monday. And I spend that day in class.

In any case, I was working away between customers trying to restock the candy. We are selling a new candy. I carried the box over. It had a map on it. Queensland caught my eye, and then New South Wales. I recognized city names. Darlington Downs is where BB went to university. Alice Springs. We sell Darrell Lea's Soft Liquorice. It made me laugh that these names were familiar to me, that there is a orphan poddy that I have named from there, that someday, Tim and I will be driving these roads, reminding each other to drive on the other side of the road. I did not have time to make out the rest of the names on the map, but I broke those boxes down carefully, and put them with the boxes that have been set aside for me to take home for moving.

I had my review yesterday, and it was a nice one. The manager told me once again, that if I ever decide that the life of OT is not for me, he'd take me on full time in a heartbeat. It's nice to hear that you're well thought of. I'm a self starter, takes initiative, attention to detail, volunteers for special projects, quick to see what needs doing, always busy, excellent customer service. I got my raise. I signed the papers and stood to leave the office. "If they ever drop kick me out of the program, I'll be in to talk to you," I laughed. And Mark said, "Let me make a few calls."

After work, yesterday, I headed home. I had exactly one hour to spend with Cara, before she was headed back to school. She'd unexpectedly come home Friday night. She needed to drink wine and have a deep philosophical conversation with her lucky mother. I stayed up later than I should have, because I had volunteered to go into work an hour early. I tried to set her self doubting to rest, but felt as if there wasn't enough time to do it properly.

Then Tim and I went down to the house, to begin work on the upstairs bathroom. The surround needs to be replaced. I was downstairs, and I heard a knock on the door. I looked, and saw no one. I walked to the other door, but saw no one there either. The kitchen door opened and Justin came in laughing at my confusion. He'd knocked and then stepped off to the side, so that I could not see him. I get a kick out of that boy, that he's comfortable enough to tease. And to be teased back~ as Tim and he were ripping out the bathtub surround, a piece of molding broke. Tim knew it would, and had no intentions of salvaging it, but when Justin ripped it down, and it broke, Tim said, in a mock stern voice, "What are you doing?!!!" Justin looked horrified for a moment before Tim and I burst out laughing. And later, Justin and I played a prank on Tim. I miss having teenagers around, and I didn't realize how much until I had one around once again.

Underneath the bathtub surround, there was glue that held it to the wall, and that glue was done in a wild zigzag pattern, but in the middle of it, it said, 'Melissa (heart) Joe'. These people did the original rehab of our beautiful home. They owned it and loved it and took great pride in it for several years. A divorce led to the sale of the home to the people who did not care, and the people who did not care about the house were the reason that Tim and I were able to get the home so cheaply. It made me sad to see those words there. 'Melissa (heart) Joe'. They did, for a time, and that love made things beautiful, and now it is no more. Things change.

Tim and I went to Lowe's once again, made a decision on a new surround, picked the knobs and the drawer pulls for the kitchen. We looked at bathtub reglazing kits. We ambled through the store, secure in the knowledge that our love makes things beautiful...and that this is a thing that won't change.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Ay yi yi.

So, you know how sometimes on facebook, somebody will make a smart comment, and then you'll come up with another smart comment, and it sounds really funny rolling around your brain, and so you rapid fire off a response and hit 'reply' and the thing is up there for the whole world to see, and then (and only then) do you realize that the words could be taken a whole 'nuther way. Furthermore, if the words are taken that way, you have just posted what amounts to pornography on facebook? You know how that happens sometimes?

*waits hopefully*

Nobody? This has never happened to anybody at all?

Darn it. Hey? Doris? Wanna send me a little instruction about how to delete comments on facebook? Oh...and thanks for deleting it.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Thinking Twice

My friend Mary feeds the birds. Black oil sunflower seed is pretty darn expensive these days, over $30 for a 50 lb bag at my store. Our latest sale began Wednesday, and those 50 lb bags were on sale for $24 dollars. Unfortunately, Mary is busier than a one armed paper hanger up on her mountain, and wasn't going to be in town, so I stopped in to pick up a hundred pounds of bird seed and a dozen suet cakes for her.

Ryan, the expectant father at our store, greeted me cheerfully, and said, "You're a little early aren't you?" I said, "I'm off today. Work tomorrow." He looked doubtful. Which made me doubtful. "Maybe I better go double check that schedule," I muttered.

Gosh. I am sure glad that I stopped in to pick up Mary's birdseed. I had a good night at work.

We have begun to move stuff into the house. I'm being kind of ruthless about what we keep and what we get rid of. My sister Anna said, "Oooh. These dishes are pretty." I said, "Want 'em? Somebody gave them to me for Buddy and Brianna, but they don't need them. I was going to take them to Goodwill." She admired the pretty china pattern, dainty little pastel flowers, turning them this way and that. "No," she said reluctantly, and set them aside. Half a minute later, she said, "But these really do match your house...."

I looked at them again. They are beautiful. Suddenly I could seem them in the cupboard. I could see the family eating holiday meals off them.


They fit pretty nicely up on the top shelf of the dish cupboard. I still have plenty of room for the everyday stuff.

You know, yesterday, in the paper they critiqued a movie, a full quarter page review of a movie called 'The Human Centipede'. I glanced at it, briefly. We don't see a lot of movies here, not until later, when they come out of DVD, but this movie was such a disgusting and gross concept that I was, plainly and simply, shocked. Why was this movie made? It was described as 'artistic'. I tried to imagine how a story like that could be portrayed artistically. I went on line. Big mistake. The movie is not art. It benefits no one. Some of the comments left were the work of sick minds. There were video links to other disturbing stuff.

We live in an ugly and twisted world. I knew that. But seeing the proof of it has disturbed me more than I can say.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Voice from the Other Room

So, today, we got four (count 'em) FOUR credit card offers in the mail, including one for a card that we already have. They were offering me a unique opportunity to get one in my name. Throwing the stuff away, I said to Tim, "So why would ******** think that we needed two cards?"

Voice from other room: "So we can get more stuff."

After some thought, I said, "You mean right now. Without waiting. We could have everything we want?"

Voice from other room: "Yep."

Me: "We could buy everything we wanted for the house right now, all the rugs, the livingroom furniture?"

Voice from other room: "I suppose."

Me: "Tim, we DESERVE to have everything we want, right now."

Voice from other room advises me to throw the stuff away.

You know, I was just goofing around, making a joke. I would have thrown the crap away anyhow, but it bothers me to think of all the people who receive these offers and don't throw the stuff away. To all of you people, let ME be the voice from the other room, the one that advises you to throw the stuff away. If you can't pay for the stuff right now, you're not going to be able to pay for it next month either.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

This is the key to our house.

The old brass hardware was taken off the door, and padlocks placed on it when the place was foreclosed up. The locks and knobs were all placed in a pile. Looking around, Tim found a ring full of skeleton keys. He had a hunch, and his hunch was right. He painstakingly took the lock all apart, and reassembled it, and it worked. Only problem? This isn't a key you can get duplicated by walking into Lowes.

Just seems really real that we are moving. My sister came up to help pack, and we went from one room to another, boxing things up, taking pictures off the wall, finding memories tucked away in drawers, sealing these things up in boxes for their trip out of the woods, I was surprised to discover that for all my excitement about the move, I was feeling a little sad, too. I was glad for the company of my sister.

Monday, October 10, 2011


Justin is our neighbor at the new house. We like Justin a lot. He is an amiable kid, very good natured, a hard worker. He has been Tim's right hand man for the last few weeks, and this is a good thing. Tim needs him badly.

Tim is really in quite a bit of pain now. His sciatic nerve is giving him trouble and he can barely walk. I suggested that he go to the doctor today, and he did not answer me. That is what he does when he doesn't want to do what I want him to do. He pretends he doesn't hear me. So I whipped out the big guns. I said, "Tim, you just never listen to me." That's a bold face lie, actually, because he's pretty good at listening, except for when I want him to do something that he doesn't want to do. And then he pretends he didn't hear me. So he ignored me for a couple hours, but I could see that the pain was getting pretty bad. So bad that when I suggested, once again, that he stop in to see the doctor, he didn't pretend he didn't hear me. He said, quietly, "Yeah. I can do that."

Long story short, Tim is off work for a couple days, and on some pretty powerful steroids and muscle relaxers and pain killers. He feels better. Or at least he feels numb enough that he thinks he feels better. Hard to tell.

Anyways, while Tim's been pretending that he can't hear me, refusing to go to the doctor, and suffering in (sort of) silence, Justin's been an enormous help to him, and we are grateful. He tickles me with his little stories of the neighborhood. Like Booker C. Now Justin calls him 'Buttercup'. He doesn't know if Booker C./Buttercup has a home, but he does know that Buttercup doesn't like pumpkin seeds. He was sitting on his own front porch eating pumpkin seeds and when Buttercup ambled over, being a generous boy, he offered him one, and the cat said no.

Now, Justin's a veritable font of information. He knows our neighborhood. Saturday night, I heard a horse clopping down the street, and I looked over to see a horsedrawn trolley go by. That was kind of cool, and I figured that the Historical Society was having some sort of event. I mentioned this to Justin, that their Halloween walking tour was quite interesting. Trying to catch his attention, I said, "Did you know for instance, just one street behind us, there used to be a cemetery? They moved it, dug up all the graves and moved it out along Dorcon."

Justin says, "Oh, I know all about that." He pointed to the house that butts up to our property. "Joanne found a casket in her basement wall."

I stared a little. Joanne's house isn't any newer than our house. That little walkway in our back yard, the one that goes to no place? I'd been wondering if it used to go to that old cemetery. Tim pooh-poohed that one. He thought the cemetery was too far away from our house. I thought that it was completely possible that the cemetery had extended the length of the block. This is interesting, and it makes me all the more curious about the large piece of sandstone that lies at the end of the lot. It had been buried under about six inches of dirt.

Justin talked on. "I don't know if it's still there, or whether she had it removed or what..."

Late edit: I don't actually believe that our property was part of the cemetery, but it would be interesting to know where that old sidewalk went to, because we live between 4th and 5th St, one street in front of where the cemetery was, which meant that side walk would have led to the east side of the cemetery.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Words fail I made some up.

Gratuitous grandbaby shot.
He's dribbaliscious

Remember this ooogly light? The one that I said I was glad was broken, because it saved me the trouble of breaking it myself?
I would have too, and I would not have bothered to make it look like an accident either.
Anyways, this is the light that we got to replace it.
That price tag?
We didn't pay it. It was on sale.
And see how beautifully the floors shine? We have two stories of beauteous, sparkalous hardwood floor. I do so love those floors. Tim did a good job. This is the guest room for when you all come to visit us. Fresh new paint. Nice little gas fireplace for ambience. I got a house where you can use the word 'ambience' and not sound like an id-jet.
(Oh. I do sound like an id-jet?)

This is one of the two sconces we got for the far end of the foyer. The picture is not a good one.
These are gran-jus too.
Sigh. The windows just are so reflectful and brightsome.
There are 26 of them. Plus the french doors and the glass fronted book cases and the heavy wooden entrance doors with the huge glass panes. I am so happy with this house, but cleaning windows today, all day, I started having a few misgivings.

Justin here risked life and limb to capture a ferocious predatory cat. This picture does not show the bloody scratches. You'll note that the boy does not have fingers on his left hand. He did. Until he tried to pick up this vicious cat. It was horrible.
Okay. I made that up.
This is the long awaited picture of Booker C.
Happy now, Bill?
This is a short post, and I apologize, but Tim is having a pretty horrible time with sciatica right now, and I need to get back to him.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Today at the Tractor Supply

'Bunny lady' was back at the store today. She was returning the cage she bought for the bunnies. "Oh no!" I said, but she assured me that the little bunnies were doing just fine. She just wanted to buy the other cage.

We were busier than heck today. We had a woman in there with a thick Italian accent. She was buying Carhartt stuff for her grandsons back in Italy. Apparently a Carhartt jacket runs $350 over there. That's kind of neat to think of, bagging up clothing that was going to wind up half way round the world.

A couple came in with the sweetest baby, just a few weeks old, so wee, with a head of black hair. Just adorable. The woman said, "The last time I was holding something like this, it was that baby goat, remember?" I did. She'd come in the store with the tiniest orphan baby goat tucked inside her jacket, his little head peaking out. It had made me laugh hard. "Both of 'em are darn cute!" I said.

A mother from Eisenhower school came in. This football rivalry crap is getting out of hand. Youngsville High and Eisenhower have been rivals for some time. They beat us at our homecoming game, but if that wasn't bad enough, tires were slashed, and then later, the kids came back to our school and broke windows. I really think that if kids cannot behave any better than that, they should not be allowed to play.

Two fireman came in, pricing snow fence. I gave them the price, and they sighed, "Well, it's back to Lowe's then." Their price was three dollars lower, and every dollar counts for the small volunteer fire departments. "Stop right there," I commanded. "You're not going anyplace. We do price matching." And they stayed put and bought three rolls of fencing and blabbed a while too.

A little boy, came up to chatter away with me, and another customer sighed that we did not have a German Shepherd calendar 'You have all kinds of dog calendars, all kinds of horse calendars, even outhouse calendars...just everything. Why not German Shepherd calendars?' she wanted to know. "We do," I said, and I dug one up. I fed biscuits to dogs, and talked to little folk about how school was going. I saw an old farmer I knew from when I worked at the Conservation District. He was buying his wife a lawn mower. "Aw!" I said, "You are the romantic one!" And he laughed.

I like that, being in a small store where people know my name, and not just because it's written on my apron. I like that I know them as well. I like being able to visit with folks. An elderly woman said, "I always thought this would be a fun store to work in."

It is. It really is. It was nice to be finished with practicals at school, to be able to relax, to have a moment to breathe deeply and enjoy myself, and today, at work, I enjoyed myself a lot.

A Big Weekend.

Today, after work, I'll go to the new house, and we'll put the heavy front doors on again. They'd become swollen and twisted from the water damage. Tim took them to be planed. We'll replace the french doors which he took down while the hardwood floors were being sanded and refinished. He's done a lot of work on that house, and he has done it alone. I've either been at school or work, it seems like.

This weekend, I have Sunday off work. I've determined not to even look at a school book this weekend.

We're going to begin moving things into our new house.

I really do have to take some pictures.

Maybe I'll even get a shot of that cat.

I'm very excited.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Today at the Tractor Supply

Yesterday, I went into work to begin setting the Christmas area. (Yeah. I know. It is not even close to Halloween yet.) It was voluntary. Everyone has been working so hard. We've lost a person. We have two people out for surgery. A rotten cold has been going around. The people that are left behind are working their hindends off and need a break. I, on the other hand, have people working around my school schedule and basically being like the little queen of the Tractor Supply, which makes me embarrassed.

So when the manager said, "We're just going to have to pull an all nighter and get that display set up," I looked around the room, and I saw some weary, weary faces. "I can do it after school on Wednesday," and the boss took me up on it. The new girl, Sam, volunteered to help get the 5 pallets of stuff up on shelves too.

I went dragging into work last night at 7 PM. I was tired. I'd fallen asleep on the couch after coming home from the practical and getting Tim off to work, and it had taken everything in my power to get up and moving. Bob looked at me. "Are you okay?" he asked. "Why?" I mumbled. "Your eyes are bloodshot." I assured him that I hadn't been drinking or doing drugs. "I just woke up," I said.

Anyways, a woman comes along. She's a tall, skinny woman, a good looking woman. Kind of scary looking, tattooed, doesn't take any nonsense. She admires me greatly, because she was there at the store the day I told an ignorant, loud, and vulgar customer to get out of my store or I'd call the police. She liked that a lot. I think that she thought when I tore out around my counter after him that I was going to kick his butt. I wasn't. I was just making sure that he did not lay a hand on that boy of his.

Anyhow, I digress. She motions me over, and I burst out laughing. There, nestled in her cleavage, were two of the tiniest bunnies you ever saw in your life. They looked content, half asleep. Their little ears twitched when I spoke, and their eyes opened a moment or two. Turns out she'd stopped to make a purchase with some Amish, and they had these bunnies for sale. She was sure that they were not old enough to be weaned. She felt so sorry for the tiny things she took them on the spot. She stopped by the store, and was buying all manner of things for bunnies. I helped her load up her cart.

Anyhow, she pulls her cart up to the register, and she's standing there at the front of the cart. There's a tiny old lady in front of her standing behind hers. The old lady squinted, and then peered closely at the woman's chest. She exclaimed, "Oh my goodness! Are those real?"

There was a guy passing by whose head just about pivoted off his shoulders.

I about fell on the floor laughing.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

...and the good news is:

...I'm way too tired to be nervous about part two of the practical. (Thanks, Cara.)

Hey, did ya know, I named a calf in Australia! The interwebs are a beautiful thing!

And Mikey's got javelinas.

This blog is getting deadly dull. Thank goodness there are people with exciting lives to keep me entertained.

Coffee is done. I need to heist up and get myself going.

LATE EDIT: Practical done. I was nervous. But I think that I did okay. One of the teachers said, after my partner and I had completed our portion, that it was good to see that some students had studied. Good sign, right? I hope so because driving down the road, I realized that I had answered one of the questions wrong. Knee flexion? Prime movers? I said gluteus maximus as opposed to the sartorius. How could I make a mistake like that? The longest muscle in the body?

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Cara Yelled at Me.

I've been working on these muscle cards for some time now. Two weeks, maybe three, a little bit every day. I carefully went on line and compared pictures of teres major or rhomboideus minor or flexor carpi digitorum etc until I found the picture that displayed the muscle best. This was a tool for us to use, index cards with the joint movement, the muscles responsible, goniometer tips and manual muscle testing, against gravity, and gravity minimized. So I've been collecting the information over the weeks.

Imagine my horror to discover that we needed a 'works cited' page. It did not say that in our written instructions, but she had told us, and somehow I missed that. I did not think of it in term of a paper were were handing in, but a tool for our own use. One that was going to be graded. There was no way to figure out where all of those pictures had come from. Not at this point. I was pretty upset at myself.

Yesterday, I worked on those cards and I knew that I would get a poor grade on them, despite my hard work. It was my own fault, but I'd been studying too hard to go back and do them all over again. Cara IM'ed, and I told her about my project. About the poor grade I was expecting to receive. 'I didn't care,' I said. I'd been studying for this practical, and I had to be at work at 5 in the morning. 'Too late to change it now,' I said.

Cara proceeded to read me the riot act.

Long story short. I got up at 5 AM. I worked until 1. I came home and the two weeks of work? I did it ALL over again in one very long night. I redid all my pictures from one website online, and just for good measure, double checked my measurement information. It's midnight. Tomorrow I'll get up early, run to Walmart to get laminating sheets, and then I laminate it all before I turn it in tomorrow, while I'm waiting to take the second part of my practical.

I'm tired, but I am not too tired to point this one out: Cara? I have never read you the riot act about your school work. Just saying.

Monday, October 3, 2011


I got to school early today, and I studied in my car for a time. It actually scared me, because that study session almost seemed to be muddling everything up in my mind. I took a deep breath and I closed the book. Shut it. Put it aside.

I began to look things over at lunch time, but again, it felt as if the last minute studying was making me more nervous. Again, I stopped. I closed the book. I treated myself to a salad for lunch. I worried about things as I ate, wondering if I was making a big mistake not trying to cram for the last few minutes.

I was just about sick sitting there waiting for the tests to be handed out. I shut my eyes, took a deep breath, opened them back up, picked up my pen and resolutely began the test. Question by question. It did not seem hard to me. I think that I did better than okay. I'm afraid to say that I did well, because some of the questions were wide open, create your own answer type things. I think that I got everything, but you can never tell for sure, at least not until you are holding the returned papers in your own hands with the teacher's grade marked at the top of it.

On the way into school today, I mused about Friday's confrontation. In the end, I decided that, number one, that professor's response does not reflect the attitude of any other professor I have ever met, and it certainly does not reflect the attitudes of my college as a whole. Number two, I know that she does deal with some insecurities based on some anecdotes that she has related during class. Number three, I am not insubordinate. I take school seriously, I take my assignments seriously, and I do the work required. In the end, I decided that her response revealed more about her than it did me.

Tonight, I am drinking coffee and finishing up one last assignment. Tomorrow, I will be at work at 5 AM, and I will spend the afternoon studying for part two of my practical. Wednesday night, it will be done.

I have decided to spend this weekend with Tim. I'm not opening my books at all. I feel like I've had my nose in one book or another for just forever, and I think that my husband needs a wife. I know this wife needs a husband.

*gak* II

It always amazes me how a good night's sleep can change things all around.

F'rinstance, it is still cold and rainy this morning. It looks as if there is wet snow mixed in. The house is cold. We do not fire up the woodstove this early in the season. It's that uncomfortable season when it is not quite cold enough for a day long fire, but not quite warm enough to go without heat at all. We go through this period every spring and every fall. I'm drinking my second cup of hot coffee and contemplating getting up to begin this day. I'll wear a warm sweater today, and everything will be fine.

The appraiser will be coming this morning. The house is fairly squared away, but I haven't had time to do more than a lick and a promise, because I've been studying my hind end off. (Although sadly, it is still there.) I'm glad that I do not have to deal with her. She is a loud woman. I actually had to hold the phone away from my ear when she called. She is pushy and will have her way. I'll be somewhere else and that is good. Tim can handle her.

Our apartments never stay empty long.

The practical, part 1, is today. By the end of today, the practical, part 1 will be over, and I am grateful for that. I will walk in there and I will take the test. I know what I know, and I am sort of confident that I know enough. Kind of. Pretty much.

In other words, just ignore yesterday's comment. It was written after an entire day of pacing about the house flexing various joints and calling out muscles and muscle range and goniometer placements. By the end of it, I was weary and cranky and not fit to post on a blog.

But about that kimche, Cara...

Sunday, October 2, 2011


Sing it with me peoples!...'Mama told me there'd be days like this. "There'll be days like this," my mama said...'

Today, it snowed. On the second day of October.

And Cara, I have a question? Just what the flip am I supposed to do with the half gallon of spicey kimche taking up most of the top shelf of the refrigerator?

I spent the day studying. I'm burned out. Tomorrow is the first day of our practicals.

Discovered this weekend that we are losing not one, but two tenants. *eek!*

The appraiser is coming tomorrow morning. Tim will have to handle that one. The house is semiorganized, sort of tidy, sort of vacuumed, and sort of ready.

I will admit. I am just the slightest bit edgy. Okay. I admit it. One misstep, and I topple right over the edge.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Today at the Tractor Supply

Today an older couple came in. I said, "Would you like to donate a dollar to the 4H today?" and the woman quickly replied, "Do you want to donate a dollar for hospice?" I told her that she ought to come in and talk to our manager. We do stuff like that sometimes.

Anyhow, I was ringing stuff up, and I commented that the husband looked kind of ornery. The wife burst out laughing. She said, "He hates to shop." I leaned forward and said, in a confidential kind of way, "Yeah. It shows." She laughed again. The man rolled his eyes and made impatient noises. The woman said affectionately that she wouldn't trade him. I said, "I wouldn't trade mine either. I'm pretty lucky. You know, I really do believe that the best thing you can bring to a marriage is a sense of humor." She agreed quickly. I said, "As hard as you two are laughing, well, I think you're going to make it." The man said, "We've been married 40 years. I always say that I wouldn't trade her for a million dollars. I also say I wouldn't take another one like her if they were giving 'em away." The woman laughed again.

Well, they left and I thought how folks like that brighten up a day. Next thing I know the woman was back. Her husband had forgotten to bring the 10% coupon in with them. "Oh, that man!" I said. "I see he didn't even come back in with you." "No," she said, laughing once more. "He's hiding out in the car."

While I was adjusting her bill, my nephew came in and called out to me, some sarcastic thing. I snotted back to him. I said to Virginia, "That's my nephew there." She called out "Where's de-niece?" and he looked confused, but stopped. That was his first mistake. It popped into my head to have a little fun.

"Jim," I said, "Do you remember cousin Virginia?"

He looked closely. "No," he said.

"You don't?" I said. "Really? Well, she's a relative...Virginia? This is Anna's oldest. You probably haven't seen him in years."

She exclaimed, "Oh, my gosh! Really. This is Jim? How is your mother?"

Jim stood there looking gobsmacked for a minute, but then Virginia blew it. "She still sing in the church choir?" she asked. The gig was up. She doesn't sing any better than I do, and is definately not now, nor has she ever been in the church choir. And the three of us burst out laughing.

It felt good to be goofy. Even 'cousin' Virginia said so walking out the door. She really enjoyed shopping at such a cheerful store.


This is the first day of October, and it is downright chilly here. (The dreaded 's' word is being used in the weather forecast, unbelievably.) We heat with wood, and so we do not fire up the woodstove until it is good and cold. Chilly is not good and cold. Chilly is something that you are for a time until the sun comes out. Chilly means that you fire up the little propane heater we have on the wall of the living room. Chilly means you wrap yourself up in an afghan, sipping hot coffee while you type on the computer. Chilly means that you wish you had a cat, because a cat would be curled up on your lap under the afghan, generating heat which would warm you. The cat would also be purring, which would soothe your soul.

My legs are bad today. Very bad. I can scarcely walk. Cold does seem to make things worse, so I am hopeful that things settle down before I have to go to work.

Today's a new day, one step farther away from the chaos of yesterday. Apparently being sensitive to the differences applies only to OTs and their patients. It does not apply to OT professors towards their students. My note was designed to not call attention to myself or my position in a classroom setting. She read it on the way up front, and she was angry. I knew that much. So did the rest of the class. The session in the office was not good. I am insubordinate, she does not like my demeanor, all the professors have noticed it, and she doubts my fitness to do fieldwork, anticipating that my superiors will have problems with me and my attitude. I was proud of my behavior in the office, anyway. I did not cry, although I very much wanted to. She could not provide any examples of my insubordinate behavior except one: A professor was having problems with the class, and I put a note on the test we were taking saying that her rules were different than Heather and Sarah's rules, and that she needed to let people know what she expected from them. "Who do you think you are? What gave you the right to speak to this teacher directly?" The hierarchy is that I need to bring all situations to the attention of the department heads who will address that teacher. I listened. It was not my goal to embarrass the teacher professionally. I did not think it was important enough to bring her superiors in to counsel her. I tried to explain this, but it was explained to me that I am a student and have no right to counsel my teachers. That is not my place. That is not my position.

After leaving, I had a good cry. But I know how it is now. There will be absolutely no more differences of opinions with my teachers. I will keep my mouth shut, and I will do the work. I will graduate.

But they will not mail the letter. That is my choice.