Friday, August 31, 2007

What a Morning!

When I woke up this morning I knew it was going to be my day. I had slept through the night for the second night in a row and woke up feeling amazingly rested.

Then I went online to check my email and lo and behold what did I find?

I am the winner of three (count them 3) European Lotteries totalling 10 million Euros, which I am guessing is a whole bunch of money. All I have to do is email back and give them tons of personal information and they will transfer the money right into my bank account. Dang I guess it is about time I set up one of those bank accounts if people are so anxious to give me money.

Then I had at least four people who were concerned with whether I am satisfied with my, ahem, well, intimate activities. I tell you I nearly blushed when I read those emails. I was a little confused though because two of them told me that I could increase the size of, well, a piece of anatomy that I don't personally have, but I am sure they were being sincere.

I also received an email from someone who wishes to date me, only I hate to break her heart, but I don't date women. The poor girl, she sounded so needy and desperate. I guess she must be if she is emailing women for dates. Besides that, mrangelmeg would really frown on my dating anyone.

Then I was told that I could make tons of money on some stock that is coming out soon. I hate to turn that one down, but we just don't have the room in our back yard for any stock. We barely have room back there for our puppy, I can't imagine how we could manage to make that back yard a stock yard.

I also got four e-cards from 1) a colleague, 2) a schoolmate, 3) an admirer, and 4) a close friend. None of them had names on them though, so I didn't open them. Besides since I am not working I don't have any colleagues, and I hated high school, so I can't imagine anyone from there who would be sending me an e-card. I don't trust admirers who won't tell you who they are, and the only close friends I have would use their names on e-cards. It sure is nice to be loved though even if it is by strangers.

So you see, it isn't even 9:30 in the morning and I am already rich, have tons of friends, and people who are concerned about me.

I am truly blessed.


Sunday, August 26, 2007

Sunday is a day for Prayers, Reflection and Wind in my Hair?

So mom got put into the hospital last night because she was in a violent rage (not the first since she got to the nursing home) This one was so bad that for her own safety they had to restrain her to keep her from injuring herself and others. So we are back to square one, she is in a Geriatric Behavioral Health facility where hopefully they can address whatever it is that is causing these rages and get her back to her easygoing self (well as much as her disease will allow of that) and get her back into the nursing home as quickly as possible.

Mrangelmeg and I drove up to get her signed in and see if there was anything the hospital needed for us to know. Mrangelmeg was as excited as a 16 year old kid because I agreed to let him drive the Jeep (without the soft top). He loves his jeep and to get to take it out on the highway was a thrill I guess. I didn't mind all that much except for the tangles I got from having my hair whip around for three hours or more (in three drives not all at once).

Oldest daughter came back to pick up more of her clothes and regale me with stories about apartment living (still no working dryer in their apartment, half the complex was without power for most of the day, She and her roommates are getting along great.)

She has an interview at Staples tomorrow for a new (second) job. If they hire her she is going to work both jobs for a while to save money and then when she decided that she can live on her Staples salary she is going to quit waitressing altogether.

Mrangelmeg left right after dinner to visit with his mom. I think that spending the afternoon with my mom was a great wake up call that he needs to be more attentive to his mom while she is still alive and capable of conversation. My mother-in-love is a wonderful woman, she still washes and irons mrangelmeg's dress clothes (since she retired anyway) Me being the wonderful daughter-in-love that I am takes a load of dress clothes over to her house every week (What a sacrifice for me).

Please pray with me that things go well for my mom and my daughter.


Saturday, August 25, 2007

It Starts . . . (again)

It is so much easier to raise boys than girls (at least in our household our son was so much easier than any one of his sisters).

After three days of fifth grade the angelbaby informed me that she has a BF (for the other parents out there she means boyfriend). She swore to me that this relationship was going to last. She was so earnest about the fact I tried not to laugh out loud.

When I asked her what exactly did it mean in terms of relationship to have a "BF" in the fifth grade she said that they sit at lunch together and "hang out" at recess together.

When I informed mrangelmeg of the new social development in our angelbaby's life he got that scary dad-of -daughters look that can only mean "where did I put my shot gun shells". This being his fourth daughter, I have seen that look before.

I wanted to tell the angelbaby to slow down, she has plenty of time to have BF's when she gets to college, but I remained silent. I am the mother of four girls, I have learned the hard way when to give advice and when to shut up.

Our oldest daughter went through a relationship last year with a guy she really liked, and for a while they were inseparable. Then he decided that he wasn't ready for a long term commitment and they broke up but "remained friends".

They saw each other just as often as before, but with no messy commitment between them (and she had to start paying for her own movies and food and such). This lasted for nearly the entire summer until he told her that he "couldn't move on until she got over him because he didn't want to break her heart." Her response was WHATEVER and she promptly went out and began dating other guys. Good for her.

One new guy seemed particularly compatible. They both like the Red Sox (go figure she spent less than a year in Boston when she was 2 and suddenly the Red Sox are her team.) They both liked the same kind of music and movies. They spent nearly 8 hours together on their first date (do they still call them dates?). A few days later he text messaged her and said that he was just looking for sex and see ya! Good for her for having the presence of mind not to give him what he was looking for on the first date.

Our Middle daughter, who is a senior in High School this year has that look in her eye that this is the year she is going to get a BF. My little speech about having plenty of time in college isn't going to work on her either.


Maybe I should help mrangelmeg find his shells.


Friday, August 17, 2007

Stick a Fork in My Philosophy Studies . . .


Just a few minutes ago I completed the last assignments for both classes and am leaving this afternoon to sit through my last two days of lecture in Medieval Philosophy. The lectures this weekend are really superfluous because our professor sent us the final about a week ago, so we can turn that in on Saturday and just coast the weekend.

I will probably continue to take notes on anything I find intriguing, but I am so glad that I never have to suffer through take another philosophy class as long as I have a rational psyche and a rational appetite to avoid that which is not good.

You see I did learn a thing or two over the summer, despite my lack of enthusiasm.

Now, on toward fall when I will have to write my final.


It can't be any worse than the summer I just completed, or can it?


Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Introducing: the newest member of our family

The angelbaby got a puppy while we were at my sister's house. She is a lab mix and is very cute. (the puppy in the picture isn't her, but looks a lot like her). She was 8 weeks old and hadn't yet been weaned when we brought her home but she isn't having trouble at all transitioning to solid food. By next week she should be eating hard puppy chow.

When I figure out why my camera isn't working I will take a picture of her and post it here.

The angelbaby has wanted another puppy to replace the two dogs that we never found and we have avoided getting her one for this long, but this was just too good and opportunity to pass up.

As if I really need any more stress in my life, now I have a little puppy to take up my time. I am trying to get the angelbaby to take care of her needs since she actually does belong to the angelbaby. I end up taking care of her about half the time though.

Oh well, this too will teach us great lessons and should be a positive thing for the family.


Monday, August 13, 2007

A Little Translational Humor

Adoro te Devote suggested this fun little activity.

Go to Google Translator have it translate your blog into another language and then translate that page back into English just to see what gets mixed up in translation.

I did that first into German then back into English:

Here are the results:

I was labeled: 8 things meme

Gashwin labeled me with meme

I cannot remember honestly, if I made this forwards. And there I even a special E-Mail invitation received to make it (I that he tries, think for receiving my mind off from my difficulties by sending me things, to make, complicated either or thinking philosophy of my mummy one while. I am so gratefully more reliever to him for the tension.

„The rules are simply… each player specify 8 facts/habits around itself. The rules of the play are set up at the beginning, before the facts/habits are specified. At the end of the post the player labels then 8 people and sets up their names, goes then to their Blogs and leaves her a remark, which leaves her to know that they were labeled, and pleadingly them to read your Blog “.

1. I am from nine children (6 girls, three boys). I have one brother and three sisters, who live her in the middle west with me, but the remainder of my family is spread over the country from Arizona to Florida after Pennsylvanien and then ours a brother lives at present in Spain. I wish that I spoke all more with them, but I am not the best at keeping in contact.

2. I write in journals. This is just as long a characteristic, which I have received from my nut/mother those always a journal for kept, as I can remember on. I went through some from its papers the other day and from their journal entrances on the back something advertisement found. It retained carefully it. I think of transferring him here on my Blog, because she is a marvelous writer, and this special entrance is filled with view, up like to live for the moment and not second the past guessing, or caring itself for the future.

3. I take still piano lessons. I do not play well however I only it for around one and a half year took. At least now I can now read the bass key scale, if I could receive only my fingers to play the notes which I read.

4. I am something learn-handicapped. It appears to a large extent as discalculia to the means which I often exchanges numbers, not the best thing to have happens with adjusting a cheque book.
It often happens, while I tap likewise, but thanks, to spell control which my efforts do not go off as completely incomprehensible.

5. I had played gulf with my father, when I was small -- importantly that it me from the T and then the impact twice on the channel and strike to let, if I were still not on the green I have mean ball fetched and on the green let it fall. Then I came to Putt three times. If I did not make it in the hole I, ball would fetch mine again. It was a large way to learn gulf but I had not played in years, when I had met mrangelmeg, and umlernen to play had, if I wanted to spend any time with him in the summers months. I am not too bad (as you might have read this summer) for someone making, which never actually took a lesson. I enjoy the play. I might actually as often have played as mrangelmeg this summer. It does not receive as much play time, when it had received.

6. Sadly I cannot speak another language. I could step myself for taking no language into university or secondary school however I other priorities then had. Now I do not try to learn Spanish and become very far even.

7. I try to notice still, what it is God of desires, me to make with mine soon master conclusion to be earned. I have for „some movement of the spirit “listened however up to now I much in the way of the direction did not hear. Thus I wait and pray and hope that if I feel the spirit movement which I will be ready to make whatever I am in demand. Until then I wait, and prays. I often said that in the words of that large theologian Tom Kleinlich “of the control rooms is the hardest part “.

8. In only over one month (on 10 October to be over exact) mrangelmeg and I become the 25. Anniversary of our first date celebrate. I told someone the other day which I can of me remind clearly the night I have recognized that I was in love in him. It was, when it was away for the weekend, and I did not want to see it, until Sunday evening or Monday depending on it like late a beginning, which he received from home. There I looked at its presence around my dwelling and was; a Flanellhemd which it had abandoned there one night, because the weather had turned unusually warmly; that mountain rope in the refrigerator; a sheet paper, which was fallen from a note book of its with its handwriting on it (class notes or laboratory notes or something). I did not begin to think itself about the future and could future for me imagine, which does not have him closed. Look back on which we have through-lives I can not to me be presented was made some from the things which I have made in my life without it by my side (including my master conclusion) to have. Therefore here is to being issued itself in memories around the past 25 years together and planning for the next 25.

I know who not to label so if you want to play along go right ahead.


Check That One Off my To Do List . . .

I placed my mom in a "memory care" unit of a nursing home today. We got her settled into her room and just about the time she realized that she was staying and we were going to leave she got a bit upset with us.

I made sure that they have her down as Catholic and the next time the EMHC from the local parish comes through she will be reminded to receive, which will make her happy. There were quite a few Catholic members of the staff so that was nice as well.

We met her new Dr. and I like him. He is very gentle with her and does a wonderful job of making her feel as though she still has worth even if she can't remember how many of her kids were boys and how many were girls (3 boys, 6 girls).

When he asked her how old she was she said that she was too old to live and too feisty to die. That is pretty much my mom.

Anyway about ten minutes after we met with her Dr. the Nurse on the ward distracted mom so that we could leave. I was sad on the way home, but I know this is the safest place for her.

Now I just have to figure out how to keep her there, the place is darned expensive and she has very little ready cash. I will have to decide pretty soon if we should sell her house. I have one other alternative, I found a whole life policy in her things, so I may be able to cash that in for the cash value and use that for about a year while I try to find someone to help us keep the house for my sister who has lived there as long as mom (going on 34 years).

It is all so difficult. I want to thank you all for your prayers.


Sunday, August 12, 2007

I've Been Tagged: 8 things meme

Gashwin tagged me with a meme

I honestly can't remember if I have done this one before. And since I even got a special email invitation to do it (I think he is trying to get my mind off of my troubles by sending me things to do that don't involve either Philosophy or thinking about my mom for a while. I am so grateful to him for the stress reliever.

"The rules are simple…Each player lists 8 facts/habits about themselves. The rules of the game are posted at the beginning before those facts/habits are listed. At the end of the post, the player then tags 8 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know that they have been tagged and asking them to read your blog."

1. I am one of nine children (6 girls, three boys). I have one brother and three sisters who live her in the Midwest with me, but the rest of my family is spread across the country from Arizona to Florida to Pennsylvania and then our one brother is presently living in Spain. I wish I talked to them all more but I am not the best at keeping in touch.

2. I write in journals. This is a trait I got from my mother who has always kept a journal for as long as I can remember. I was going through some of her papers the other day and found one of her journal entries on the back of some junk mail. She carefully preserved it. I am thinking about transcribing it here on my blog because she is a wonderful writer and this particular entry is filled with insight on how to live in the moment and not second guessing the past or worrying about the future.

3. I am still taking piano lessons. I don't play well but I have only been taking them for about a year and a half. At least now I can read the bass clef scale now if I could only get my fingers to play the notes I read.

4. I am slightly dyslexic. It shows up mostly as discalculia which means that I often transpose numbers, not the best thing to have happen when balancing a checkbook.
It often happens as I am typing as well but thanks to spell check my efforts don't come off as totally incomprehensible.

5. I used to play golf with my dad when I was little -- meaning he would let me hit from the T and then hit twice on the fairway and if I wasn't on the green yet I picked up my ball and dropped it on the green. Then I got to putt three times. If I didn't make it in the hole I would pick up my ball again. It was a great way to learn golf, but I hadn't played in years when I met mrangelmeg, and had to relearn to play if I wanted to spend any time with him in the summer months. I am (as you may have read this summer) doing not too badly for someone who never actually took a lesson. I do enjoy the game. I may have actually played as often as mrangelmeg this summer. He doesn't get as much play time as he used to get.

6. Sadly, I can't speak another language. I could kick myself for not taking a language in college or high school but I had other priorities then. Now I am trying to learn Spanish and not getting very far on my own.

7. I'm still trying to discern what it is God wants me to do with my soon to be earned Master's Degree. I have been listening for some "movement of the Spirit" but as yet I haven't heard much in the way of direction. So I wait and pray and hope that when I do feel the Spirit move I will be willing to do whatever I am asked. Until then I wait and pray. I have often said that in the words of that great theologian Tom Petty "the Waiting is the hardest part."

8. In just over a month (October 10 to be exact) mrangelmeg and I will celebrate the 25th anniversary of our first date. I was telling someone the other day that I can remember clearly the night I realized I was in love with him. It was when he was away for the weekend and I wasn't going to see him until Sunday evening or Monday depending on how late a start he got from home. I looked around my apartment and his presence was there; a flannel shirt he had left there one night because the weather had turned unseasonably warm; the mountain dew in the refrigerator; a piece of paper that had fallen out of a notebook of his with his handwriting on it (class notes or lab notes or something). I started to wonder about the future and couldn't imagine a future for myself that didn't include him. Looking back on what we have lived through I can't imagine having done some of the things I have done in my life without having him by my side (including my Master's Degree). So, here's to reminiscing about the past 25 years together and planning for the next 25.

I don't know who to tag, so if you want to play along go right ahead.


Intense? Who, me?

You are Dark Chocolate
You live your life with intensity, always going full force.You push yourself (and others) to the limit... you want more than you can handle.An extreme person, you challenge and inspire the world!
What Kind of Chocolate Are You?

I suppose on further reflection even mrangelmeg would agree that I am a pretty intense person when it comes right down to it.

I do love dark chocolate.

My Motto is:

A day without sunshine is cloudy, a day without chocolate is unthinkable.


Thursday, August 09, 2007

Detachment as a Spiritual Discipline and Way of Life

I have been thinking about detachment a lot in the last few days. It might be because I am going to have to place my mom in a dementia/Alzheimer's ward of a long term care facility and who in their heart wants to have to place someone they love behind locked doors for what is essentially the rest of her life?

I realized that when it comes to making decisions about mom and where she is I have always tried to take my cues from her. So long as she realized that she was at home in her house that was where I wanted her to stay. Now that she isn't even aware that it is her home most of the time and can't find her way around it anyway, it is time to move her out of there and into a place where she will get round the clock care and take that burden off of my sisters' shoulders.

So, in the way that we do as a family (everyone trying to take credit for doing the most) we are moving forward to get mom placed in an accredited, well run facility where she will be safe and hopefully my sisters will be able to sleep better knowing that skilled people are looking out for her needs and they don't have to stay up all night with her because she can't sleep and might wander out of the house in the middle of the night.

I have kept as my mantra through the last three years:

Do the next right thing,
make the next right decision,
live in this moment,
that is the best you can do.
Not everyone has agreed with my decisions when I have made them, but I do believe that at the time that I made them they were the right ones for that circumstance. It is so hard to say goodbye to mom. It is hard to think of her not being there in her house --the one I lived in when I was in high school, and the one where I was introduced to mrangelmeg and we spent many happy times. I still have all those memories, but to think that the woman that was the center of those memories still exists is wrong.
I said goodbye to mom in 2003. I remember the exact day, I had had an absolutely horrible morning at work and really needed to talk to her and I called her on the phone. I was beginning to pour out my heart, hoping she would help me make sense of where I was and what I should do in this particular situation and the response I got was a cold hard woman who didn't have time for me and my trivial issues. I was devastated at the time but after I hung up the phone it occurred to me that she probably hadn't even realized who I was when I was talking to her and she had gotten very confused so her reaction was anger, not at me but at her disease.
I sat in my car on the street in front of my office and cried for two hours because I realized then and there that I could never just expect to call mom's phone number and get mom on the phone. Sometimes when I called I would get Mrs. Alzheimer's instead. I made a conscious decision on that date to say goodbye to mom so that no matter how Mrs Alzheimer's treated me I would never be confused into thinking that I was being verbally abused by my mom.
I think it is because of my level of detachment from the disease and my ability to not let it affect me that I have been capable of dealing with her behavior changes and my having to take over more and more of her banking and household management issues (two things I leave in the capable hands of mrangelmeg in my own house).
I can go up there and visit her and it doesn't hurt when she makes a scene when we are out in public, because it isn't my mom that has made the scene it is Mrs. Alzheimer's. I can leave her in the capable hands of the staff of the hospital and nursing home and breathe a sigh of relief that I am not the one who has to worry anymore because she will be in a safe environment and they will take care of her needs. I can visit her there and not expect her to realize who I am, I can share my world with her and try to live in her world a little too, and not feel torn up inside that life isn't fair.
I feel blessed that I have been given this gift or that I learned about it just in time because it is very new to me in terms of my spiritual growth. Interestingly though even before I realized that detachment was what I was actually practicing, my heart was already preparing to be detached.
It is nice to realize that I am growing too, though.

Just the Laugh I Needed

So most of you know that I have spent the summer immersed in the study (I hope) of philosophy. I have certainly whined enough on these pages about it.

Just when I think I can't possibly find anything to laugh about when it comes to philosophy, The Ironic Catholic comes up with this great post on misplaced youthful zeal and Post Raisin Bran.

Young Fans of Benedict XVI Boycott Post Raisin Bran

Why just last weekend I actually had to endured a rant lecture from my Ancient Philosophy professor on the horrors of Post Modernism and then she goes and makes it all funny.

I love her.


Wednesday, August 08, 2007

One of us Got to Go Home

I am back at home for a few days. My mom is still in the special ward of the hospital where they will take great care of her until we find her a long term care placement in a dementia/Alzheimer's Unit.

She seems to understand that she will be in a place like this for the duration and has accepted it. I need to get back to being mom to my kids and wife to my husband as well as being her Power of Attorney, so now that I know that the place where she is in the hospital is taking good care of her I came home to do the sorting out of finding a long term placement for her. Tomorrow I begin to call facilities to see if I can find a bed and what I can do to get her squared away. I may have to go back up there as early as next week to get her settled in a new place but I am hoping that we can avoid placing her somewhere temporarily while we try to find a more permanent placement.

On the home front, mrangelmeg is back for five days before his next trip. This will become the regular pattern with his new position, the short hop travelling every week or so. I suppose now is as good a time as any to get used to it. I came home because I needed to have him as a sounding board and to help me make these decision in person because there is only so much I can talk over with him via cell phone.

It will be nice to spend a few days with him before I head back to deal with mom again. Besides that we are going to try to take a one day family vacation, all seven of us, on Saturday to a nearby theme park. Between now and then I have a lot of phone calls to make and stuff to deal with.

One whole day of vacation this summer. How did I get so lucky?


Sunday, August 05, 2007

Prayers Please

My mom is going into the hospital tomorrow for a battery of tests. The Doctor is thinking that it may just be that her Alzheimer's disease is progressing to stage 4, but wants to make sure that there isn't some underlying infection or organ failure that she is having and can't tell us about because of her difficulty communicating.

She will be in the hospital for about a week in an Alzheimer's unit where she will be getting the best care she can but please keep her in your prayers because this will be a change in her normal routine and she has come to live by that routine.

Thanks so much.


What Doesn't Kill Us . . .

often enough makes us wish we were dead.

Can you tell from that opening that I have just returned from another weekend of grueling philosofrication? This one was worse than the last one, because this is the professor who all along says that if I am having trouble "doing philosophy" it is because I am not trying hard enough.

What was worse, he used my paper as an example of how not to write an essay answering the question (of course anonymously, but I knew it was my paper the minute he began to read). When he handed back the assignments he said that if the paper didn't have a grade it meant that the person might want to rethink and rewrite the essays before he actually recorded the grades. Of course mine was one that didn't have a grade. It also didn't have any indication as to what he did or didn't like in the three essays so I immediately assumed (wouldn't you?) that he meant I had to rewrite all three answers.

When I finally was able to speak with him in private he looked at my essays and told me that it was only the first essay that was the difficulty and the other two were fine. If I left the first one the way it was my grade would be a C. If I corrected the flaws in the first one my grade could be raised to an A.

He then proceeded to ask me what my motivation was for getting a Masters Degree, and did I want to continue on to do more post graduate work, because if I did then a C in his class was disastrous.

I would dispute that getting a C in one class over the course of 48 credit hours would be enough to keep me out of every Doctoral program in the entire country, and asked him if the work I had done was at least passing. He said that yes it was, but he refrained from giving me a grade of C because he didn't want to "hurt my feelings" . I was stunned, did he think the way he handled this was more pastoral?

Anyway, the Mass today was about letting go of all irrelevant stuff, and seeking the higher goal of peace and joy that comes from above. I know that after this course is over my life will not be centered on how much Platonic and Aristotelian Philosophy I actually learned in gradual school. In fact this little episode will be a mere footnote to my experience.

The final assignment is to write a two page essay stating what in the course was the most important thing I learned and why it would be important for someone (not me personally but someone studying philosophy) to learn this. This I can do because there was a section on the first weekend that I actually understood and could relate to and thought would be of benefit to anyone studying theology.

On the way home the woman I carpool with helped me to understand the question for which I wrote the essay wrong in a way that actually didn't make my head explode (which was a good thing because she has a very nice car). I now think I have a framework for writing the answer to that question in a form that will satisfy his need to ask it.

So, all in all, although it was a very trying weekend I did survive. I cried, I laughed, I ate chocolate and tried to keep my mouth shut, when I could. I might even actually get a decent grade in this class after all.

One more philosophy class to go. I can almost smell freedom.


Wednesday, August 01, 2007

What Background Music Goes with Desperation?

So I am sitting in the library working on my Marathon assignment of questions on Augustine and Aquinas (I figure if I do five a day I will have them done by the time I have to turn them in. Since I won't be able to do any on Saturday or Sunday I am getting some done to get ahead).

Then for my other class on Plato and Aristotle I have to read 300+ pages before this Saturday so I have marked off 100 pages that I have to read today (as if, I mean seriously).

Older daughter is doing volunteer work here at the library and the two younger girls are checking out stuff. We may be here for a while.

Anyway I was searching through my Ipod for some music to listen to as I do all this studying. I actually set up a study mix of instrumental music so that the words won't get in the way, but I just don't feel like taking the chance of actually listening to music that might be upbeat, so I decided against listening to that today.

What did I choose? Well, considering all of the factors, my mood, the level of attachment I feel in the subject matter, and wanting to assure that I stay awake I decided that there was only one choice. This was what I chose.

Come on, you have to agree with me, the music is wonderful, but the lyrics are so nihilistic that they fit my current mood perfectly (especially girlfriend in a coma).

btw: the review in the link was written by my brother. I suppose I should come clean and let him know that I was actually a Smiths fan back in the late 80's too. But then I doubt that he would believe it, he thinks I am totally uncool.