Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Ski! or Fly or Snooze!

(SKI!- no longer boarding like the above recycled picture from a previous post. Sorry. The pics are re-runs! I gotta start taking pictures again. Being pretty sick has made that hobby sit on the back burner. Hopefully in another month, things will be better! Until then- we will have re-run pics. Go read Leave a Trace if you wanna tear jerker, or if you wanna laugh- then read the routine I came up with for retaining water! If I could do even a little of that, phsh!)

Readers, before I forget, I have to tell you about one of my phone alarms settings.

-Since I am up with an ear ache I thought I'd blog through it. (I honestly think it has to do with the acid from the stomach that is hurting the esophagus, that puts pressure on my ear drum when I lie down. So I have to sleep in the chair. Which is hard to sleep. I am trying Mucinex tonight. So here we are. I guess I have to add this for my fellow patients and say I think the whole immune system is tied to everything. Top to bottom.

So the alarm....

Very early, every morning since a wintry trip to Targhee my alarm goes off. I scramble to find the phone and see the admonition: SKI!
eVerY. sIngLe. Day.

I sorta smile and think back to the night before we actually did do that; go skiing. And how J. was so worked up that he might "miss" getting up early. So we set all sorts of alarms. Called the front desk for a wake up call. Set my phone and their cheap alarm.

Right as I was drifting off to the sound of the groomers out our door J. woke up. Ready to SKI!

ME: "It's 4 a.m.!"

J: "I know! I am nervous!"

Snow cats are out there!

Can I go watch them?


J. was so nervous. The gutt wrenching nervous that you get the night before or morning of a BIG ADVENTURE! His automatic alarm set itself. The need for outside alarms; unnecessary

Which is odd because there are times when I have to shake him or jump on his bed to rouse him from a deep fog. Those are usually Monday mornings during school.

But, I guess the brain would set itself to spring out of bed when you are able to have that much fun...
Speaking of fun,  the other day I called a friend- they were on their way out the door to fly. That's right, fly.

Friend: "Can I call ya back? Just headed out the door to go flying."
(Future pilot. J. when he was a little boy! What happened?? Sheesh! He grew up on this blog!)

ME: "Sure, I might be busy weeding, but no worries. I can talk and weed."


Do any of you have a friend that casually flies? I know. It is rare.

So I hit snooze every time SKI! appears on my phone. And I dread the approaching school time schedule because it plays out like a comic strip of Calvin and Hobbes.  Jaden dreams he got up when really I have been telling him several times to get up. J. has it down to a science how many times I will ask and how much time he has to actually get up and get to school.

So  we are in mid Summer and Football is in full swing.

(yes, I am recycling pics I have posted in the past. He is way more intimidating now. Mowing has and hard work have turned him into a force to be reckoned with. Readers, when I look in on him sleeping he looks like a teenager. Where did my boy go??)

As I watered last night, Jaden was playing catch with himself and showing me some of his moves. Like how low he gets down to get ready and rumble. I would break my thumb in that position.

The garden is getting to the point during summer where you wonder if it was all worth it. You toil, weed, water, and you get a very a small turn out. hmm. You wonder to yourself. So Padre has created more work in the yard by tearing down trees that were getting tangled in the power lines.

The Apple Tree is Gone! That's right readers! I almost cried.

Sure I hated picking up the apples before it was mowed. And we only made one batch of apple roll in the last three years. But it's gone!

That tree had the prettiest white blossoms in spring.

And it created a Zen, lush patch of grassy area to sit. Granted it was covered each year with some sort of infestation that looked like white thrush. on its branches but still! I sort of felt like Mr. Miyagee in his back yard when I watered the hanging plants on the clothes line.

Padre even took out our lilac bushes. He had accidentally trimmed them like a tree years ago and they haven't been the same since. However we have a tower of trees in the yard behind us, and sunlight doesn't to them. So we had just the ugly, sad wanna try and look lovely lilac. However they still smelled lovely.

The ONLY thing in the garden that has a Game On! attitude: The Raspberries. They are ripe every hour. No kidding. And they take over everything. I am sure one day I will blog about our garden of Raspberries and that is it.

This year, however, the garden is full of flowers that were on their way to heaven and I saved them from an untimely death. Which was lame cause they need extra care and attention to help them out of their shock! Why do I do that to myself?

There I was outside Sunday morning trying so hard to get them in the ground.Padre had mention how good they looked and that "we" needed to get them in the ground. Bound and determined to not let them sit in the black six packs they came in, I raced outside. Bare foot. Except for a sock and ankle brace on the "impinged ankle."
J. had to help me and it took longer than expected. Finished getting ready for church, at church.
The funny thing was, when I was out front putting in some Impatiens on the shade side of the yard, Padre came out front and pointed out everything on the lawn.

Sure enough there was a rolled up pair of his Carhardt socks. ? How on earth did that happen? The only thing I could think of was that when he took them off, he put them in his back pocket and flip flopped outside to turn water off or something.

(a cute pic of J. from 09, when he started mowing. He looks like he is either bored or tired resting his chin on the handle.... so cute)

But, needless to say, he had a bit of a panic when he saw his socks outside and J. and I were interrogated. I had to laugh.

So our back yard is wide and open. We do have two good 'stool stumps' from the Apple Tree!
 You can see straight to the tires and other things that could be hidden behind the lilac bushes. I might need to plant some flowers down there!

Monday, July 28, 2014


Tire Planters
WOW Why didn't I think of this when Padre wanted to keep our tomatoes alive and put ugly, black tires around them?? Sure eclectic but waaaayyy better than the old tires. sheesh. Too late now.

No Caffeine??

"Drinking that pop will wind ya!"
Coach Guilford would shout out as he did some sort of exercise, drill jig in our weight and strength training course. Being one of his devoted minions, I totally believed that carbonation ranked next to adultery.
So I gave up my Diet Coke. Which was really a tasty drink with ice.
I even gave up french fries and McDonald's never lured me into its tight grip.
Haven't had a real problem craving pop until recently.
"You'll want to avoid caffeine." the Doctor said after a major health ordealio.
"Caffeine? " You mean go ahead with the hard stuff but back away from that?
"I don't drink cofee or pop, so it shouldn't be a problem." I thought as I nodded my head.
Readers, I had to chuckle at this "advice," I was expecting him to tell me something more serious. Like avoiding serious things. Such as the serioius nature of jay walking. Or running a red light.
Under the circumstances I expected him to give me the advice to avoid climbing Mt. Everest for a few years until I am in better condition.
Or better yet:
 avoiding Wal-Mart at a late hour.
But I had to admit that combining that with prednisone would only exacerbate the steroid.
Strangely enough I have started to crave it. I haven't crazed that in forever. Actually, ever.
Just the fact that it was suggested I stay away from it, all the sudden, I want it!
The other day I broke down and drank some Coke.
It was so Refreshing.
And it gave me a headach later.
Odd how the power of suggestion had the opposite effect! For instance, as I was sitting in church today, I listened and laughed at the clever story that a friend told from the pulpit. And then she did it.
She made the challenge of "writing in our journals."
I love writing in my journal. Especially by hand. I love hand written letters. They have a more personal feel. But when she said to do it, I immediately felt like I'd been given a huge assignment by a college Professor due at the end of the quarter, but I left it to the night before or something.
Whining in my mind I thought of every excuse possible as to why I would not write in my journal. I mean, Readers! Look at me! Okay, not the picture of me next to the post. It's a fraud photo. Cause I am chunkier now. It is like looking at plus size clothing on skinny models- just sorta not the truth.
Gotta update that.
Back to my complaint!!
My wrist and thumb are swollen!
 It hurts to write with a sprained wrist and thumb!
And why on earth is my one limb and two feet and ankles swollen up? It is making my bones and joints hurt! wah. I don't even want to TYPE on my blog. But I gotta push through. Make an effort. Keep do the writing callistenics so I can do the free lance writing.
Now just start a blubbering cry.
So that's how today's topic got started.
And I am gonna end the post now and try to rest.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Visits, Letter, Phone Calls & Texts: Thanks!

Thanks for the visits, amigasas!
The other day I had my comrades in crime come for a visit. Well, the ones from growing up. Which meant we got into trouble, got out of trouble, and now have children who basically are bound to be trouble.
What a nice visit! Thank you for cramming me into your hectic schedule. Most of the pals came from out of town and had family to take care of and vist. One even drove from Colarado, in a car with all her kids without air conditioning. She wins an award for enduring that to come back to I.F.
I can't get the letters out to ya, but thanks. And speaking of letter, I even recieved snail mail. And text messages. Thank you. I know it's hard. I can't believe I was that nervous to meet up with my childhood friends, but when your body changes into a potato, well, you are worried.
But then we started talking, and the fact I hadn't tweezed my eye brows, didn't matter! I've started keeping a pair out in my car it's gotten that bad.
Due to circumstances I hope that you can accept a "blanket thanks." ! I hope that you read this. I appreciate all the communications  and hope for the best for each of you. I have loved the long conversations while the kids have been to scout camp, those just checking in, and seeing friends I haven't seen outside of the Christmas pictures each year! It's been a good month. 
Speaking of blankets.....(here is my segue to blogging)
- I now have one that reminds me of a Great Aunt's polyester quilt. I enjoy changing things up as the seasons come and go, (that's why the bed is unmade in the picture above. ) but this particluar one is making me feel a bit outdated. I don't know why. Maybe the reason old people appreciated polyester is because it lasts a long time. My other quilts are showing wear and tear despiter the dry cleaning, etc.
Does anyone else have something go wrong at the dry cleaner's?  You take something very valuable and delicate and you get it back only to find a tear in your collectible quilt. Ah! That's why I took it in the first place.  It isn't made out of polyester and that is probably why. 
Oh, well.
 The lan line is ringing and Padre is texting me from his chair upstairs....
Him: "Who is it?" (calling on the phone)
Me: "It' just a 'Toll Free' call." I tell him after getting up and looking at the caller I.D. on the phone.
We are both bushed. Oh, and that one telemarketer from Florida- he's still trying to call me. Dedicated guy.
That's about all I have for tonight.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Entyvio, New Miracle For Crohns?

So Padre came with me to the GI.

It's fun to come here and make light of life but tonight I am thinking a lot about this new drug, hot off the press, and can't sleep cause of the infection prednisone has helped me enjoy the last few months in my esophagus. (finally got it diagnosed. And feel I lost at least four to five months of my life! Hello! Why do we live in such a modern time and still can't figure out some stuff? Sheesh. Such is life.)

Those of you not on prednisone, wondering if you may be on one day, or just plain don't find it fun to talk medical jargon; this post won't mind if you skip it. Go read one from a few years ago when I was doing a really cute garden and uploading personal pictures on a regular basis. I actually have had to do that myself (read my own past posts) and they are funny.

Okay, so like I said, Padre comes with me to the Dr. I brought him kinda like the reason why people get dogs and signs to say: Beware of Dog- it makes them feel safe. Or it is kind of a hobby to raise and breed fercious dogs. In Padre's case, his bark is louder than his bite, and he asked only a couple questions and pointed out that the Mumu I put on was inside out.

Dr. comes in after being out of town for couple weeks and not there for the camera that scoped out the infection that I requested when I had stumped all of his collegues with the pain in my throat and heart burn that felt more like a hole in the airway had been singed at the local welder's, and he says this:

A new drug is available. The name: Entyvio.


Yeh, I know. A whole slew of new medical terms that J. and I will need to learn and eventually be saying to people like we were raised in its native tongue, pretty soon. IF I decide to take it.

After some research, I found absolutely nothing. No forums telling how people feel on it, etc. Just that it is out.

I did find out why the word is so foreign and that is cause the drug comes from the biggest Pharmaceutical Co. in Japan, Tekeda.

Might want to buy some stock in it.... unless the side effects of it are bad. Which there is the usual slew of them.

Anyway, back to the GI- he rattled off that the med "addressed the genetic cascade of blah, blah, blah C3PO, blah, blah, and those who have been on, not continued to respond to the biologics, oh and (here's the kicker) had to BE ON PREDNISONE for most of their stinkin' lives were who this drug was for.

It was as if I had walked up to a medical buffet, put all my salad toppings on it and returned to my seat to eat it with out worrying about my insides not being able to digest lettuce! Meaning it was happy news and could not have come at a better time.

And a drug that seemed TAILORED for me.

Which must mean there are a lot of me-s out there that have done all the big gun drugs, have been immuno-suppressed for almost half their lives, and have the common prednisone stories to swap in order for a Big Pharm from Japan has made a break through med.

It almost seems too good to be true.

But he said that many are having the response from it that they did with Remicade- which was a ground breaking drug back in 2000 for me and many others. It took a three year flare and made me feel alive again.

However, I am not in my early twenties any more. I have a kid. And I don't know if I can continue to enjoy the same old side effects like migraines, sinus infections, other infections, and/or possibly PML. Did I mention I have a kid? Named J.? That I blog about and who I think managed to come home from his scout out with out unpacking his pack AND taking a shower. He's lucky I had a bad headached and allergies and couldn't smell.

PML....  not to be mistaken with PMS- which I thought was bad growing up and was glad for Ibuprofen. Nope, PML

It is short for one of the  new and longest words I have to now learn. AND it helped me realize that Entyvio, was the drug that I was almost in the third, double blind study for at the U some time ago. But cause I didn't want to roll the dice and pick a number of mgs. of Prednisone to stay on, * I wanted off it soo bad and they would only let you go up to 20 if you went into a flare. Which could be bad if you wanted to go to the hospital and possibly get relieved with IV prednisone. And if you were the Placebo group.... just not the odds I wanted to play. They called it Simponi.

PML - a rare nervous infection of the brain- is 99.1 percent fatal or something happy like that. The rest? 

 are vegetables.
I don't know about you, but I would rather grow them than be one. Yup, I tried to imagine myself drooling out of the side of my mouth or giggling as I engaged with my parents (the only ones who really love you and want to keep you around if you are smiling and a vegetable) when they came to the nursing home that is only slightly more staffed than the local hospital. And with no credentials. Cause you are a vegetable during a time in the world when kids want to buy Ipods and play Mine Craft rather than be interns at a vegetable garden, er I mean nursing home..

Good grief, People! I mean, Readers!

Actually, I don't know what the percentage is and you get tested for something that helps it move along every six months or so. So you can take En TV io for two years, get some great quality of life, help your kid learn some more math, and then be back to square one again. Except now you are two years older and done a drug no one knows what the long term effects are.

I guess we all face being a cucumber or squash eventually in our lives. I mean, a very healthy friend I knew had a heart attack. Some get cancer. Others get something else. Why should I think I could somehow escape something?

I guess I sorta thought I'd put "in my time" so to say, after twenty some years dealing with an auto-immune disease and figured someone else might want a turn. And my bones are really taking a beating from being on the prednisone.

Which, by the way, I hope those of you who are reading me and have health problems are not judging is all bad. Prednisone saved my life. Ruined it at times, but saved it. And it saves others. If your kid or someone needs it on a short term basis, to say, help during an allergic reaction, don't be afraid.

Yes, I have lamented its attributes on here many a post. But it is there to help. Okay. I have a headache thanks to it.

It will take days, weeks, possibly months to get my insurance to approve the drug. And then days, weeks, months to see results. So I have time to decide and think about which kind of vegetable J. would want to visit in a nursing home.

I didn't know if I really wanted to go that way. At least for a study. I was willing to let others trial that for me. BUT, they let all of Europe know in May that it is now treating UC and Crohns.

Ugh. I can almost taste the feel of a Big Gun Med coursing through my veins this early morning. Not a favorite feeliing. But my disease has progressed and I need of the toxic prednisone now more than ever.

I can't believe I have been on it and have permanent damage from it. Now that I am older, I am starting to see the side effects that I read about years ago and with no qualms, headed into the unknown for the sake of my self, having a family, and mankind. Aren't I brave? Yeh, right. I didn't even really think about my choices affecting anyone else until I had J. and THEN, knowing it could be part genetic, I prayed my actions meant less suffering for him in his life. If that was all that my  measly time spent on prednisone afforded me, then I was glad.

The molecular parent to Entyvio is Tysabri- A drug for MS patients and also some Crohnies have done it.

-- Padre is trying to tell me about how he found the cabin of my third great grandfather, so I guess I gotta stop blogging. It is really late and he's just finishing up. He should just create a blog.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Padre Packing

Well, Readers I don't know if I have blogged  much about how Padre loved preparing for summer hiking, and outdoor camping and how he passed down the love to us, or not.
(another sentence needing scrutiny by an English grad)
But he did. He did love it, and appears to love it now.Or so it seems....
His behavior on some of the latest ones is making me wonder if it has all been a facade!
Recently, when he was told about an upcoming camp out, and then the time for the camp out came, Padre sprung into action by leaving the house to run errands.
(Which is part of his preparation for camping; do things at the last minute. )
It must be when he works best cause we have had some long preparation moments the night before an excursion.

Were it not for cell phones and texting, Readers,  I would have had no clue that he was on an errand to help J. pack for the overnighter. Because we were packing and actually done, it was news to me that he was 'helping.'

J. had lugged his back pack up the stairs, through the tight place on the landing that is called The Eye of the Needle cause you have to suck in and move side ways to get past the fridge and door frame that opens onto the landing. The kitchen garbage is to the right and is a good reference point for your feet as you accomplish this difficult task. We could remove the door and gain an inch of space but grand kids fall down the stairs, so we limit that possibility with the door and just have to,, literally, suck it up.

So J. made it past the Eye, where he had to do like many travelers going to Jerusalem and that was unpack their camels, then repack them once inside the gates. scouts

J. happily had tippy -toed and wrestled his back pack through the door all because a camp out lay ahead! Anything was worth enduring at this point! He was almost home free! The only thing that held him back from the great outdoors and roughing it, was almost over!

 He placed his heavy pack leaning against the steps to wait for the leader to pick him up.
With his fishing pole strapped to his pack, we sat there,  on the hard porch, when suddenly
Padre pulled up into the drive way. He held J's tackle box, retrieved from the trailer, out the window and before he'd even put the truck into park, and before we had even stood up, he started to tell us something about how fishing poles get broken.

(this was the last hurdle standing between J. and camping. )


I hollered over the wind and his motor which was still running.
He sighed and put the truck into park.

Him: "I'm a blah, blah Wal-Mart, blah,blah fishing pole."

Me: "Wal- Mart is a fishing hole?"

Him, looking exhausted probably because he needs to use that CPAP machine in his room for oxygen, shook his head and answered a few decibels louder:
" I bet you that a fishing pole, attached to a back pack like that, and going with a bunch a boy scouts
is as likely to break as... "


 seems I have already forgotten his analogy.

(what's up with the crutch? do you see it? Shows what happens when boys get together; injuries. i.e. football)

 Either way the assemblage of boys that age, or any age, must mean that they would get horsing around, up to some sort of sha-nan-agains, and before anyone knew it, a fishing pole would be broken. Or some body's tooth knocked out.
Padre simply didn't trust that many kids together could end in anything but disaster.

Ya see, Padre has a sixth sense for bad things happening and so he prepared for them and had little mottoes for us as we went through childhood, our teen years, and adulthood.

One of those motto/rules/good ideas to live by was:

Just Sleep In Your Own Bed.

I don't think this was necessarily to keep us out of trouble for toilet papering a person's house or anything but mainly he just enjoyed his own bed, had been to Vietnam for crying out loud! He MUST have known something we didn't!

It was there that he realized that a hot shower is important at the end of the day, regardless of whether you'd rolled around in rice paddies or that there were sand bugs that got into everything, even your food. And no matter how late, nor whether you fell asleep in the car, ya needed to get a good shower before getting into bed.

And I think he had this motto so as to avoid having mom pull the car out late at night and come get us because we feigned we were scared and couldn't make it til morning in Grandma's creaky house twenty minutes away.


As you can imagine,  this motto made going, to say, girl's camp and Adventure Camp, a bit hard. 
J. is now finding it hard to earn his scout badges for overnights whilst incorporating  these life lessons or "mottoes."

Can you imagine how difficult?
There we are, camping and the stars start to blink on and the sky turns pitch black and we have back packed in at least 7 miles.
The fire has cooked dinner and the stories are getting started. Smoke is moving around the group like a clock, all the campers are sitting on fallen logs or rocks and staring at the oranges, yellows and blues of the fire. And we are wondering how to get back to our own bed.
(I say we because I have a big family that were all taught the same mottoes.)

Finally the moon appears and the realization that it is high time you start the trek back home to sleep in your own bed has come.

 Re-assuring  the leaders as I struggled to take down the tent in the pitch dark, and then  locate a flashlight to help me avoid spraining an ankle on the rocks built into the trail is tough.

Convicing them I'd be back bright and early in the morning, so not to worry!, didn't work. So they convinced me to stay.

So fast forward to when Padre was giving  me a percentage of fishing poles that could survive such a trip and not get broken......

I forget the statistics Pa raddled off to me in the drive way before he sped off.

It was

 two minutes

before his ride was to arrive.
 Padre decided to go to Wal-Mart's Fishing Hole to get a cover for J.'s fishing pole at the last minute.

"Where and what are doing again?" I'd asked futile before he scrambled away.

 Something about protecting the pole, and having to get his truck washed. It was really hard to understand.


It left J. and I some moments to have a pow wow about his gear, if we'd forgotten anything, and to say a prayer. I let him do the honors then said one myself.

"....and please bless my fishing pole... that I will be able to catch some fish this time. Oh, and bless my mom that she can endure being around Padre."

Aren't the prayers of the children so innocent and sweet?

(okay this isn't totally what he said. but close. the part about the poles is true. Sorry, J.)

The Scout Master. By Norman Rockwell
The ride appeared and I helped J walk to the car.
(can't hold much with a sprained hand and broken body)
so that left him balancing under a heavy pack, holding his tackle box, and his fishing pole.

Once we reached the curb, I asked his leader if the other kids had brought fishing poles.
I don't know why. Maybe I was worried J. didnt actually need one on the trip, or whatever.

(The Catch by Norman Rockwell)


he assured me as he opened the back of the jeep and I uttered foolishly:
"Do they [fishing poles] have covers for them?"

Confused Leader and Father: "Covers?"

he asked looking at me as if I was on prednisone or something.
Me, wearing a shirt from J's orthodontist that talks about smiles gettin' used:

"Yeah, to protect them from getting bro ...."

My voice trailed off as I gazed into the back of the jeep. There, attached to the back of several scout's packs, were fishing poles. Haphazardly bare against the unknowns of a camp out, thrown into the jaws of  unruly boy scouts on a camping trip, were the innocent and very spindly, fishing poles.

 They looked much like J.'s had been earlier; casually strapped to the bag.

Suddenly my brain recounted all the pictures of kids through out the ages from Huck Finn til now, and I could not recall covers over the fishing poles.

Even the ones made out of sticks and string....
Not one branch had been wrapped in a gun case quality covering to protect them from nature.
"...ken. Did I say fishing pole covers?  To protect their poles from breaking? Sorry, just a small relapse in the brain. Comes from a childhood of being teased by The Torment  er, uh- thanks for taking him! Good luck! "

I kissed J. good-bye and as soon as the jeep had rounded the corner,  I immediately dialed my mom's number. I had to let her know that Padre had set me up to look like I didn't know how to pack!


(I don't know whether Padre was able to pick up a cover and get to the church in time. For J's sake, it came home unbroken. And he didn't mention any kids teasing him about being outfitted and prepared. Need to do more research before blogging I guess.)

Anyway, this little exchange and preparation reminded me of my childhood camping days and how I learned the ropes of

Packing, Preparation, Preparedness, and Preparation H.

 We had a camper on the back of our truck that had a full sized, comfortable striped mattres in it -w

 'The Gray Diablo.' as our truck was knick named made for many a memory of camping.
(* see extra story included below about the truck)Boy-scouts1_11729668_tcm11-17574

 Apparently I loved camping so much by the age of TWO, that I cried when we sold a different piggy back camper on the truck, I referred to it as

 "The Campin."
This melted Padre's heart and he set out to buy the proper equipment for us to camp! (canteens, plastic cups and other kitchen necessities. Bins and basins for cleaning up afterward, black sleeping bags with the softest insides that had pictures of deer running on red material and stuffed with down feathers from some goose back east.

He still has all of his initial camping equipment. Aside from the stuff borrowed and lost. I don't know if any of the equipment is still usable. But they are in the same package and could be returned if the company that sold them, still existed.
 Padre's ability to give us the impression he liked camping was some good acting. But, it seems, that all along he was deceiving us.

Yup, Padre didn't especially enjoy camping as he just liked the part where you
to camp, hike, climb, golf, walk, and /or breathe.
And then I think he hoped that he would enjoy it. But in the end, he really just wanted to get back home, have a hot shower, and sleep in his own bed.
All the Kodak slides of us kids in the wilderness and Padre smiling as he cooked over a kerosene stove top, were a charade!
He wasn't having fun! He was torturing himself like someone who walks across hot coals or shards or glass does for a living.

 I started to pick this up as I aged. For instance, when I was of the age of 10 or so, we  arrived in a campground after a long day of packing which gave us a late start and we ended up in the campground around dinnertime.
Padre had pulled off the highway and onto the gravel dirt road in Island Park and
 (a stone's throw from I.F.)
he slowly wound  the car along the  figure eight pathway of the campground.

 I guess he  figured it would be a lot of work to actually unpack what he'd packed only to have to re-pack and unpack at home, because the car kept driving until it had slowly inched back to the entrance of the campground. With one final push on the gas pedal he pulled the sub up over the lip of dirt and highway and we ended up back at home.
It was a good thing the park is not that far from home or else the ride would have been that much more painful.

Us kids cried or whined,  cause we were under the impression we were gonna actually stay. Which would requite that we unpack. What threw me off of the fact that we weren't really going to stay and this was actually just a preparation drill like the military uses, was when Mom would say:
"Craig, that looks like a good spot."
 And Padre would shake his head that it wasn't.
 Padre was able to fool us by saying the reason we weren't staying was because us kids had been fighting in the car ride the whole way there or something.
Wha?? we would look at each other
 in surprise.

And then a look of blame toward the other person for being the worst on the car ride.
Had we only been warned that the consequence was having to load and pack everything, drive there, then drive home- we would have sat next to each other and not even acknowledged we were blood relatives!
(this photo of a family happily camping is cute. It must have been a "before" picture. It is entitled Family Camping by Joseph Csatari.)

However it was really hard to just nod your head when The Torment was, well,tormenting you.
I was smart enough or able to get him to quit teasing me by just acting like nothing was happening.
This took some serious strength. And a course in acting helped. 
Younger siblings were not so fortunate, unfortunately.
Sister  1 would immediately pull her thumb out of her mouth and shreak or bawl.

 Which was Exactly the response he was looking for. I was so gratefu that playing mute saved me from this torture.
His teasing regimen included things like poking, prodding, nasal fluids being swished around his mouth, and other forms of torture that only Heads of State know about cause they avoid using them for fear of being sued by actual terrorists from terror cells through out the world, and implicating our president.

It is all under wraps! Top notch security holding that info.
Another down side to the teasing was the bad habits it created, like swearing for instance.
Sure thumb sucking, nail biting, and slight tics were all part of most kids' child hoods. However, some of us believed that they were side effects of The Torment.

 Most of these habits  passed, except for the occasional desire to utter a swear word of course.
( when something painful or an accident almost occuring in traffic are the tipping points.)

This post is getting long. I am gonna stop now. Maybe I will get to the story about the truck and how embarrased I was one night when I took it to a basketball game in HS. I dunno.
I'm stinkin tired. Anyone else?

Gonna go to bed. In my OWN bed!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Painting the Padre Way

It wasn't until I was able to read that I learned that the First Commandment wasn't

"Thou Shalt Not Put Holes in The Walls"

Recently, (just now in fact) After watching a video on Youtube as a "Refresher" before I gauged my ability to paint J.'s room, I came to realize why putting something up on the wall using a large and an innocent looking nail, was a sin; it's darn hard to get perfection during pre-painting preparation when you decide to re-do it.

Now, Padre isn't a professional painter. But, somehow, before there was youtube, Padre learned how to do it like the pros. Or at least look like it.
 He used these amazing skills usually during a momentous event in the family,

like mom having a baby.

 Padre would learn a new skill, make good use of it while mom was in the hospital and mom would be wheeled out of the hospital carrying the newest member of the family. Instead of flowers she had some tool or piece of counter top laminate that would go in the new bathroom.

Back then he couldn't be in the delivery room cause of the notion of germs, so he went ahead and picked out the colors of the basement bathroom as a gift to mom; she could relax and just start doing her duties when she got home.
 There are pictures in photo albums chronicling the way he painted.

Wearing white painters garb he'd picked up from where paint was invented back then, he can be seen standing on a drop cloth that was carefully laid down to protect the carpet or hard wood floor. He is holding a long handled paint brush, the room's lamps baring bright light onto the glossy white sheen of paint that matched the equally shiny sheen surface of his forehead.
With a painter's hat, on backwards,  his pompadour hid and the glare off bare bulbs, was shiny.

(that sentence needs some serious editing. But, like a painter, I need to keep painting and not get muddled with commas, periods, and the need to breath between paragraphs or make any sense.)

Nope, I am just gonna type tonight. To heck with it!
 (actually, when do I edit? Sorry English teachers. I bring you such shame.)

Padre became so good at painting that he even used to threaten:
"Okay, that's it! I'm not painting the walls ever again."
We'd cry cause we were wanting a hue rather than egg shell when the trend to use dark colors came into style.

Where was I?

Oh, how Dad would do these crazy projects, buy all the gear, become successful at it, and then leave us to wonder how we can even match his abilities and manage to live with orange flooring in the bathroom for our entire childhood.

And I was telling you I needed a crash course refresher in painting and needed to ask what kind  of paint was on the walls. Was it water based? Did I need a primer? If so what and where and who?

More importantly, should I go with Stone Lion again? Totally Tan in J.'s room, or throw the color: just peachy on one wall?

In all fairness, I was asking Padre some questions that made it hard for him to explain and our phone conversation went something like:

Padre: "Ya know I like to talk to somebody that's a painter. The sales people are trying to sell you something and I don't know if the paint on the wall in your room is oil or water based. And it's kind of hard to help you while I am in Such and Such Park and trying to park the trailer."

Me: "I know. I guess I should at least wait until this infection clears up.

And 'cutting in'

 (painter's terminology for the word (s) for doing the edging with a good brush, not cheap synthetic, all the while trying to not paint over the blue tape that is protecting the ceiling, doors,

and on and on and on.
And on.
Lans sakes I hate my mental detours during a post!

I think I wass thinking about how well Padre did things and trying to recall how he did them and then calling him after youtubing and learning that I cannot do the kind of job he can. Especially while sick. Or wearing a cast. Makes painting a lot tougher than it seems.

Padre: "Shouldn't you at least wait til you get out of the hospital? "

ME: "Yeh, I guess you are right. The I.V. in my arm is making it hard to look at color samples on the wall and sides of my bed."
I don't have time or energy required for the vocational training invovled at the local college campus.

How do you learn to be as good as him?
One, he doesn't want ya using his tools, and Two, if you did get permission, you'd be so scared of returning it in poor condition that you would rather work overtime and buy him a new tool.

Or pray mom never wanted the walls repainted. Ever. Or at least a color change from surgeon coat white.

So mom would have a baby, and instead of handing out bubble gum cigars in the color of the kid (pink- for girl, so on and so forth) dad took time off, multi-tasked taking care of us and learned how to put in a bathroom in an almost finished basement.

I don't know how mom could conceal her excitement when she came home to a house full of kids who were as excited to see an American Embassy of Foreign Soil as a traveler overseas in a hostile region, as they were to have her get back to making breakfast.
 (well, actually that is starting to change. There were movies at one time that made an Embassy look like home base. And when they shut those gates- you were safe, man! i am going to go with my gut on the fact that none of them are safe unless I had a personal drone that fed into the White House that

I was in a hostile environment.

But I don't think the U.S. provides those protective services if you are putting holes in the walls- and missing studs. Then putting something too heavy for the dry wall to handle and the hole sagging.

There is a kit for this,Readers. In case you are visitng and find you want to put a hole in one of our walls.

So before the days of even The Home Depot, he managed to get all the tools needed for a project through out town. In fact, most of the tools are in the original package, their price tag has slowly faded away. Which Padre has re-tapped them the best he could but time has also caused the tape to crack.

Yup, the youtube videos at this stage of life may as well be a "You-Not-Me-Tube" video; cause I'm just not going to be able to do it. NOT that I don't want to, Readers.
I do.

I really want to cover the hap hazardous holes heaped on my walls during some late night bright idea with the white toothpaste looking stuff called caulking, and, instead of having a

"hue of lavender", a "breath of heaven" 

paint color to make my room a

little haven.

Yes, it is hard to refrain from wanting to do a Big project when you are out of commission..
But I think I will wait until something even bigger that happens in order to make things more interesting.
However, I don't know if I can convince my mom to have another baby so that Padre would get excited and got the incentive like he did when we were younger.

He just flip flopped down here and, upon seeing a box marked:


he looked in it like he checks the garbage cans for signs of us throwing out something useful, unused, or untaken care of.

I calmed him down and let him know that it was a mere organization idea so that you can come to it later. Like a first draft of  a paper. Streamlines the whole process.

:He gave me a look and the accompanying lecture,

"Be sure you don't throw away or lose anything valuable." as his eyes scanned the box's insides.

Me: Just relocating it to somewhere in the house, Padre, A mean, Pa, or er, Dad.

Padre, bending over and grabbing a remote control that has to have belonged to something we owned twenty years ago, "I'll relocate you if blah,blah, ha, ha- "

Confession- still looking for the camera component to upload photos....
I had to dig up this post from the post bin as I can't type due to a very odd and annoying injury that means my thumb and wrist are in prison. I mean a semi-cast. For Real, People. Things can't get more interesting.

Spraining some body parts

Makes it hard to type with two left hands!

* Oh, And I made up some stuff in this post. Well, I make up a lot of stuff. In all my posts.Like Mark Twain I am just drawn to telling a yarn. hmm. I wonder if that is why J. tells elaborate, eye-brow raising analogues about his adventures?

 Here is the dog gone truth, Readers-  I have been pecking out some of this old post like a beginner in typing class.

Yup. Total typing fraud.
How can a writer write or type without the use of a hand?
There has to be a computer that I could talk to and then I could wouldn't even need my hands!
Or I could get creative. Make J. do it like a personal secretary.

Oh, wait now I recall a past post about a guy whose mom strapped a pencil to his head and he typed that way.
Man, I am such whiner.
I wonder if I could at least caulk the holes in the wall....

PPS- Now that I can't type  I am getting the best ideas for free lance articles, journal entries, blog posts, newspaper editor letters with my name next to them, and writing ideas for J,
My words per minute now -- 20, using the middle index ginger to peck out ideas, makes it hard to keep tje flpw of writing inspiratiion goimh.

And back spacing; annoying.

<aking my editing really really necessary.

If J. cou;d only write short hand. Where is that kid anyway <
Oh, he's enjoying summer. Je just may end up with a brolen arm or injury like LAST summer when je o[ened up his knee!!!!


Who is laughing now?

I left this post un-edited so I could see How my worl was affected by a wrisy and thumb injury.

Ny the looks of ut, thumbs are pretty important.

I hope I donlt forget ,y ideas... jot tjis down will ua?

-alar, clock still set to ski
-friends that fkly

and something I have already forgotten... dang


Blog Archive