Daily Affirmation

The best things in life are free.
The second best are very expensive.
- Coco Chanel

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

A Mixed Bag of Newsiness

The problem with letting so many days go by between posts is that you forget some of the very things you could have posted about.  And yet, it's because you're so busy doing them that you don't post.  A conundrum, to be sure.
As usual, I've been busy with family affairs.  We got my aunt all moved into her new room - did I already tell you that?  Well, it was quite a day, so it bears repeating.  Her new room feels as much like sunshine as her old room felt dark and dreary.  There is extra space she didn't have before - so much more freedom to walk around in.  She can watch her TV from bed, from her desk, and from her couch. Her room has a lovely, sunny patio where she can hear the fountain and birds singing.  I notice that she's leaving her blinds and sliding door open more.  Her potted pansies are thriving.  We had a good talk last night about the importance of eating at least something from her meals 3 times a day.  She often forgets to eat, and doesn't feel hungry, so she'll skip almost an entire day's worth of nourishment.  And then she wonders why she feels confused, lethargic and depressed.  So we talked about just going to the table and eating at least one thing.  I figure one thing will lead to another as sometimes you don't know you're hungry until you eat.  (Well, actually I have never had that particular problem... no one ever had to remind me to eat.)  I'm also trying to talk her into a little experiment of having the staff administer her meds for 60 days.  I don't think she's remembering to take them like she should, and sometimes I think she takes them more than once, forgetting she already took them.  After 60 days of regular dosages I'm hoping she'll feel a lot better, her moods will be evened out, her mind a lot more clear.  So wish us luck with that.  Thankfully, I think she's finally reached the point where she's realizing that stubbornness is getting in the way of feeling good.

Dad's little heart arrhythmia seems to have been resolved - at least so far, so good.  He had to go in last Friday for a cardioversion for his A-fib.  He's now able to go up and down the stairs without feeling winded.  Good news, that.  If he can stay in rhythm over the next few weeks, nothing further will need to be done there.  The chemo is kicking his butt, though.  His fingernails are either in the process of dying and falling off, or they're already gone.  Eyebrows, eyelashes and most of his hair are long gone. I guess the good news is that he doesn't have to shave, although I'm sure he'd rather do that than go through this.  We spent Sunday evening at his house having a little dinner we'd brought in with Mom and Dad, and my brother and sister in law.  He was in pretty good spirits most of the time, except for when his water was either too cold or too warm.  Feeling bad takes it's toll on your patience, that's for sure.  The good news is that his numbers are going down, so at least it's not all for naught.  I'll take him to work tomorrow, giving he and Mom a nice little day vacation from each other.  Being a caretaker, as well as the one needing care is not for the fainthearted, and everyone needs a day off.

Now for the really good news.  We found out last week that Rex and Ronna are having a BOY!  We're all very excited.  Of course, they could have had a panda, and I would have been excited, but this will even out the count making their lineup girl, boy, girl, boy.  If they have a name picked out, they're not talking, so that news will have to wait.  But it was a happy conversation I had with Ronna.  She is feeling better, and is able to go back to the gym which makes her feel happy and strong.  The kids have discovered that they love doing chores - who knew!?  So they are learning to do dishes, and dust things. Matthew told Ronna that he wished he could do chores every day.  That can be arranged, grasshopper, but you'll likely change that tune before long.  July seems so far off, but before you know it, I'll be hopping a plane to Denver to meet our newest little family member.

Katie and the girls have been busy as usual.   They have started dance lessons, and they love it.  Both have dance bags filled with their shoes and other dance necessities, like a water bottle.  Hayden proudly showed her dad her bag: "Look Daddy - it has shoes in it!"  I would give anything to watch their classes, but as it turns out, I won't have to give anything but $308.80 to Jet Blue.  YES - I'm going to Boston April 16-23!  I had randomly picked those dates, and I totally got lucky as Mia will be on Spring Break AND the Boston Marathon will be on (my niece is running in it!)  I think one of Mia's wishes is to go to Cape Cod and have lobster.  Mema will not argue with that.  In fact, I'll be the first one in the car.  So some good times are a comin'.
And did I tell you that Katie is also pregnant?  Expecting in late October/early November.  I think she is also hoping for a boy (so Zach won't feel so drowned in estrogen) but Miss Hayden is hoping for two babies - one for Mia, and a "little gell" for her.  A tall order, that.  I think she'll have to settle for one.  I'm looking forward to fun that makes sense with Mia - she is almost 7 you know -  but I'm also looking forward to spending time with my little "opposite girl."  No telling what will happen with that one, but the sky's the limit.  When Katie took her to McDonalds for a snack and to play in their PlaySpace yesterday, she asked Katie where all the "little ones" were.  When Katie questioned that, she said "You know - the little ones.  The childrens."  She is my small milk drinking buddy and I can't wait to see what she'll do next.  And Mia - well, she is special too.  Such sweet and silly adventures waiting to happen, and of course she'll have to read Mema many stories.  She likes to read in bed,  just like me!

The only other hot debate raging is whether or not to cut my hair.  The winning side changes daily.  I've been collecting pictures, but you know how that goes - it's hard to picture your own face there instead of the model's.  So here, for your enjoyment and opinions are my favorites:

This one is probaby my favorite because it has bangs.  But I also like the one of Selma Blair, below, for a sort of wavy change up.  Or maybe I just like Selma Blair.

And this one I like, but I don't know if it's the hair or the sultry expression.  Hmmmmm....
Then there's this last one, but I have the feeling that it will be work to have it this pouffy on an everyday basis.  Hence my preference for the first style, above.

So there you have it.  Some days I want to hang onto my longer hair like Rapunzel, and other days I feel like shorter hair would be so sassy and perky.  What it will boil down to, in all honesty, is how I feel on the occasion of my next hair appointment.  Sadly, that is what rules these types of decisions -  pure serendipity.  Keeps life hopping though.  And hair always grows.  What are some of the daily debates you have with yourself?  Are they as silly as hair?  Or are they deeper?  I also have conversations with myself on deeper levels, (really, I do!) but I have a feeling that the answers are so obvious to most people that I'm embarrassed to be struggling with such simple issues.  Somehow, simple things are not that simple to me.  I live a lot of my life in the gray  as well as every color in between.  (Not THOSE shades of gray - although perhaps I should have let you think me spicy and smoldering, which I am.  Really.),  Alas, black and white answers don't always satisfy me.  There are so many levels of a problem to consider, aren't there?  I have often envied those who see the world in simple black and white, although I still think they miss a lot of lovely hues in between.  The trick (for me, anyway) is to strike a good balance between the good, solid life choices, that are oftentimes dressed in practical dresses and white shirts and ties, and the floaty, colorful bare shouldered choices that are sometimes best left at "Look, Don't Touch." The older I get, the more I'm able to find the beauty in the more solidly woven fabrics of wisdom, while adding my own brand of color and special frills to them.  Which is not to say I'm always wise, but I'm starting to get the hang of it.


  1. Good family news! I'm glad your auntie is feeling more at home and that your dad is persevering. Better days are ahead.

    Great baby news, and the pics are darling. I, too, like that first style. Be sure and let us know what you do!

  2. Hello. So many fun things to comment on. Where do I begin. I'm glad your aunt is settled and seems to be on the happier side of things. Your Dad (and Mom) are lucky to have you close by.

    Congrats on all the baby news!! As you know I am counting down for May when little baby boy #1 grandson will be born.

    You are like me..I think through all kinds of hair styles and then when it comes down to it..it just depends on what happens when I get there for the haircut. I'm growing my hair out right now.

    Have a good day!

  3. Glad you're dad is feeling better! Also, congrats to Rex and Ronna!! I look forward to seeing which haircut choice wins out.

  4. You said a mouthful, karen (in that last section). I think we all debate ourselves and second guess our life choices. I have always subscribed to the philosophy that you should, (heavy metal alert!) as Van Halen admonished, "go ahead and jump." In motivational seminars I was taught to get off the fence and make decisions, lots of them, even if some produce an outcome that is different from what was expected. You can learn a lot from your mistakes.

    I am thrilled that your aunt is letting go of her stubbornness and allowing others to help her have a better life. Her bright new room is so much better than the old one. Sunlight lifts one's spirits. Meds can do more harm than good if not taken as prescribed. If she will let the staff administer them she might experience a vast improvement day to day.

    I'm so glad the news about your dad is mostly good but sorry he needs to endure the side effects of his treatment program. You are a very caring daughter and niece.

    It's fun for me getting to know the cast of characters that is your large and growing family. Congratulations on the new ones that are on the way. I know you will have a wonderful time in Mass.

    I think you would look cute with any of those hair styles. Why don't you consider a shorter cut and then purchase a variety of longer wigs? That way you can put together any kind of look that suits your mood.

    Enjoy the rest of your week, dear friend karen!

  5. Many levels to problems -- someone once told me that I never answer a question with yes or no. It's because I see so many levels. I can't give a single answer. My hair is easy. I go to Sam, who cuts my hair, and I say, Sam, do whatever you want. Sam loves me because she can play around and try new things, and I love the style she's come up with for me. Congratulations on the baby news and good for you for checking in on your auntie and working with her. That's so important.


  6. My goodness you do have a lot going on! Congratulations on the new baby boy.
    Hope your week is a good one. Sounds like it will be a busy one for sure.

  7. You are a busy gal with family. It's good that your Aunt is doing better in her new digs. I hope she will learn to enjoy it more each day. I'm so sorry your Dad has to go through all the chemo trials. Hopefully he will be done with it and on to a healthy life. Congrats to your family's baby news! Enjoy your trip. I will heading out west to Ore. in a few weeks and will get to see our little Sophie in a ballet recital. She's 4 so this should be interesting! Having all boys I only know sporting events or scouting events...dance wasn't on the menu for them! I like the first cut. It's one that will grow back nicely if you decide you want long hair again. My hair will probably never be long again..just too much trouble to grow it out. It doesn't grow as fast as it did when I was younger. Have a good rest of this week!

  8. You've got a lot on your plate too. I'm glad you are getting away for a few days. It sounds fun. I love that last hair cut. I saved the photo to show my hair stylist.

  9. Great post! I'm going to be the only one to say keep it long ;-) I regret cutting mine. I like it, but I miss my long hair. I know you always regret it too! I think you had the second cut in my wedding. The first cut looks too flat, so if you do decide to do it, go with the blonde with the sultry expression. Wasn't your hair kind of like that in Rex's wedding? I remember I loved it on you. Can't wait for you to come out!

  10. Wow...life is a hoppin' for you these days! Isn't it a wonderful feeling to know you've arranged for a better/brighter place for your Aunt AND that she's enjoying the change!

    I hate your Dad is going through the horrors of chemo, but so glad he is responding well to the treatment. It is never an easy go...my prayers are with you all.

    NEW babies rock! We are going to be new again Grammas you and I around the same time this summer! Wont we have fun then???

    I always roll out of bed on hair dresser days and decide then what the appointment will bring! I do say it's only hair and will grow out as well. Can't wait to see what you decide!

    Just returned myself from another trip, this one to Richmond to visit/help my son and his lovely wife. She's preggers with twins you know and has been put in the hospital on bed rest. Wanted to hug them in real life not virtual!

    Sent you a friend request on FB, I'm Susan...the rest I hope you can figure out from the request cause I hate putting my full name out here. But I'm friends w.Shelly and Kathi on FB as well so you might figure it out from there...


  11. good stuff happening at your place!!! exciting too...good for all of you! have fun figuring out your hair!!!

  12. I like gray area people myself. Black and white is just too finite for my thought processes.

    As for your hair, it will look great any way you do it, but I think short would be fun for a change. It really might suit your personality!

    Congratulations on the grandkids coming your way. I'm only a little envious (okay, maybe more than a little), but I'm so, so happy for all of you. Especially excited for Katie.


  13. I always wonder how you do it all. You are an amazing person when I think of all that you juggle.

    Go short and sassy! It's so fun!


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