Sunday, April 11, 2021

My Sleepy Little Life

I don't have much to say this afternoon. I took a ride to Williamson yesterday and then went back to Webster Park, because it's still my favorite spot to relax. Searched for beach glass, watched some people, took some pictures. The lake levels are very low this spring. No flooding. Such variety from year to year!

 

I'm enjoying the longer days and gorgeous spring weather as much as possible. I've taken some fabulous naps in my car during my lunch breaks and soaked in the warm, sun-filled  drives home after work. I'm back to a somewhat normal schedule of  7:15 am to 4:15 pm. Enjoying the toddlers in the morning and the babies in the afternoon, and loving my time in the kitchen too.

It's time to firm up my summer vacation plans. I need to make a reservation or two. I'm pretty excited.

(Pictures from my stop at the lake yesterday,)

Tuesday, April 06, 2021

Easter and Stuff

Both Sunday morning Easter services were already at capacity by the time I attempted to reserve a seat, so I attended the 9 am service online. I was a little disappointed to find there was no communion at the end of the sermon (I was prepared...) but God knows my heart. I nibbled some crackers and drank my grape juice anyway, and was thankful. 

Easter dinner was spent with my friend Gail and her parents. It was a very nice, relaxed afternoon. When the day was far spent and the conversation waned, Gail and I took a ride to the lake to hunt for beach glass and both came home with a fine collection. We're planning a weekend getaway to a Sea Glass event in the not too distant future. (I'm feeling adventurous. Ha ha!)

This week I've managed to all but empty one of my savings accounts. I'm putting money into an IRA so I can continue with my affordable NY State health insurance, that I didn't use at all last year. I feel poor until I remember that my savings isn't entirely gone, just temporarily inaccessible, and hopefully growing. The good news is I DO know how to save money, and every time I've needed a chunk (for car repairs, a new camera, more car repairs, etc...), it's been there.

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Oopsie

 Funny story.

I've been stressing for weeks about my health insurance and the income limit for the past few weeks and caught up with my financial advisor a week ago. Last night I wrote a check to pop into the mail this afternoon, but found I had a couple more questions for him. I shot him a text after I pulled into the parking lot at work.

"Do I need an account number on the check? And do I make the letter to your attention? Or doesn't it matter?" (Totally official. Ha ha!)

As soon as I pushed send I realized I hadn't sent the message to the finance guy, but someone totally different. LOL! I shot off a quick, "Oops! Wrong person. Ha ha!" but not before my friend Dan, who is also my chiropractor, saw it on the other end. He thought someone from his office had sent me a bill. Ha ha!

Oh, my! I must be more careful.

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Sunset at the Lake

 I'm tired, but I'm on a blogging run, so here it is...

It was gorgeous today! We were blessed with a summer day at the end of March. I had to work late, of course, and was tired when I got home. I thought about going up to my bedroom, but by April 1st, in not so unusual NY fashion, the weather is forecast  supposed to be cold and blustery, with snow! Winter has not given up quite yet. No surprise there...

Since my people had gone out, presumably to enjoy the beautiful evening, I went out too. Where did I go? I went to the lake. (No surprise there either.) The parking lot was full. Multitudes walked the pier and gathered to watch a much anticipated glowing sunset. We were not disappointed. 






Monday, March 29, 2021

And Then It Was Monday

 I didn't sleep well last night, but tossed and turned instead. It could have been the little bottle of grape juice I drank just before turning out the light. Or the half a box of Stoned Wheat Thins crackers... I have enough on my mind to keep me awake, but it typically doesn't. Normally, I sleep, unless I ingest too much sugar. Good thing I got enough sleep on Saturday. Ha ha!

I made it through the work day, passed out and received a bazillion hugs, made lunch, and changed a few stinky diapers. Sounds just like what I done for most of my life and I like it.

I had an appointment with my favorite chiropractor at six and from there I went directly to the pottery studio. Someone had left some pots to dry on my new shelf. They were removed to a nearby table and a note was left to explain why. I had a small amount of clay in my possession, so I wedged it up and tossed a couple of pots myself. The clay is soft, very soft. The first one flopped, but the second one looked pretty good until I tried to take it off the wheel head. Maybe it will be okay. It looked alright once I got it onto a board to dry. (I'm so not ready for an advanced class. Ha ha! Someone encouraged me in that direction and, well, here goes nothing. I'm a little nervous though.)

I arrived home this evening just in time to give Number Nine a hug and kiss before he went to sleep for the night. Perfect timing.

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Bits and Pieces

* I haven't kept up with blogging well lately. I've been distracted. By my own brain.

* Baby shower yesterday for Number 16. Her arrival is expected to be around the end of April. The rarity of granddaughters makes them a little exciting.

* I had an entire week of going into work at 7:15 am, but this next one is spring break and I'm back to 9-6. I can do this. One day soon we will be back to normal again. I hope.

* Last week was emotional. I wasn't teary or sad, just feeling off. Not sure why. The weekend has been good. I met two friends for coffee at Panera Bread on Saturday morning, went to the baby shower, took a very long nap, and stopped at the lake just before sunset.

* Church this morning. I considered going to the pottery studio this afternoon, but decided to stay home and sort through junk in my room. I even vacuumed. Ha! I am releasing belongings a little at a time. This is hard. But not as hard as it used to be. 

* Planning to hit the pottery studio after the chiropractor tomorrow evening. Got the stuff in my car. 

* Maybe I'll write a couple of blogs this week. Maybe.

Sunday, March 21, 2021

This Weekend

 The weather has been absolutely gorgeous! What a weekend! It was so beautiful today that Sergio and I opened up the garage and dragged the picnic table out into the driveway for today's gathering of my kids and grandchildren. (It's my birthday tomorrow...) The afternoon was filled with food, fun, and action. They are loud, they are crazy, and they are wild. They are also mostly boys. Ha! It was beautiful and I am blessed beyond measure.

Yesterday was also lovely. My friend Gail picked me up late in the morning and we drove toward Syracuse to take part in a Quarter Auction fundraiser. There were plenty of lovely things to bid on, and we bid on plenty, but the drawings for the winners were random and we didn't win a thing, Ha ha! It was still fun and I would definitely do it again.

Back to work tomorrow. I stocked up on Birthday Cake Oreos to bring in for a treat.  I'm still counting birthdays backward and I'm all the way down to 33 again! It's quite fabulous!!! 



Monday, March 15, 2021

Bits and Pieces

 * We had some unseasonably warm weather last week, but by the weekend the temperatures had dropped back down to normal. I could be disappointed, but I know the fruit farmers are relieved and so I am too. Saturday was cool but sunny. I went for a long walk along the Cayuga Seneca Canal with my sister Priscilla and her brother and sister in law. Then Priscilla and I went to Sauder's, ate a late lunch, and bought some treats.

* I stopped at the lake Sunday afternoon and found an icy wind blowing, but the lake ice had melted. Cold wave battered Only the shore and pier were still dressed in ice and snow.

* I changed my clock early Saturday evening and woke late for church. On Sunday night I set my alarm to rise early this morning, and then woke up with barely enough time to squeeze in a shower. (But I did anyway.) I was so tired at work that I went to sleep on my break, and didn't hear my alarm then either. Thankfully I was not late getting back in.

* Summer is on the way and I am making vacation plans. (I'm kind of excited.) I've never planned a real vacation before, especially not a solo vacation. This one will take me back to a piece of my childhood. It's a rare and beautiful opportunity that I don't want to miss.

Monday, March 08, 2021

Working and Weekends

Last week was exhausting. Who knew two year olds had so much tenacity? I hit my limit when I "lost" a child about ten minutes before her father was due to arrive... I was sitting against the wall with my back to the half door gate that leads to the preschool lavatories while one small child was playing with the latch. I shooed her away and told her to stop playing with the door. As I stood up, I glanced over the door and saw a wet diaper abandoned on the floor beside the closest toilet. I found it odd and wondered if the preschool teacher still had a child in her classroom or if one her little ones had left something behind... I followed my own little ones to the opposite side of the Older Toddler room, but instead of three small friends, I could only see two. I returned to the bathroom and called out for my missing child, a little bit of panic welling up inside, and at that moment she appeared from around the corner of the third stall. Ugh!

Working full time makes weekends precious. I often enjoy spending time with friends, going for walks, stopping at the lake, or taking a drive on Saturdays and Sundays. This past Saturday, aside from taking a short trip to Walmart and Target with Hannah, I stayed home. It was a wonderfully lazy day. 

On Sunday after church I filled my gas tank, did my grocery shopping, and took myself down to the lake. It's still cold and icy, but the little area where the creek empties into the lake is finally visible. I took some time to check the rock covered beach for beach glass. At one point I wasn't paying attention to where I was going and walked smack into the side of the little footbridge over the creek. Saying I was stunned is a little bit of an understatement. Ha ha! I put a nice scratch on the bridge of my nose. Mostly I was totally embarrassed, although I don't think anyone actually saw it happen.

Late Sunday afternoon I met a friend for something to eat. We spent a couple of hours sitting in the local Panera Bread eating and talking. It turned out to be a rather nice weekend after all.

Wednesday, March 03, 2021

Linda

This evening I learned that one of my blog friends passed away on Monday. Not everyone knew that Linda was ill, but she had told me in a private message a year or so ago. She and I have both fought completely different, but unseen battles. We are warriors.

Tonight my heart is sad. In one way or another time eventually takes everything we hold dear and until it takes us, all we are left with is memories. Tonight I treasure the memory of Linda, her blog, her Instagram account, and the afternoon visit we shared at her house one September day a little over four years ago...

Tuesday, March 02, 2021

I Stayed Home Yesterday

It was a tough weekend. 

 Saturday marked seven years since my mom's passing. I didn't cry much at the time. I was mostly numb. Being her primary caretaker during the final three years of her life had been a challenge, not because she was difficult, but because untraveled roads and unfamiliar territory come with fears and failures. It wasn't easy losing her to dementia a little bit at a time...

Sunday brought a different kind of stress when I woke to a message from someone I love dearly. We are on opposite sides of the same trial and meeting in the middle is pretty much impossible. I'm not sure what this will mean in the future, but I pray we are one day able to do what today looks to be unattainable. 

Since I've not yet mastered the ability to hear another person's words without my body overreacting, I'm afraid I went into full alert. After a week of little to no sugar, I found myself buying a big slice of chocolate cake from the Wegmans Bakery. (A friend told me cake has no sugar. I knew he was lying, but decided to take his word for it anyway.) I don't know how chocolate, and especially chocolate cake, help in times of dire distress, but it was all I could think of to help in the moment.

I woke up between Sunday evening and Monday morning with a horrific headache. I considered getting up to find a pain reliever, but couldn't drag myself from the bed and went back to sleep instead. By morning I had a full-blown, throbbing, tension headache. I hauled myself out of bed and down to the shower where I stood trembling in pain, waves of nausea washing over me. I knew I couldn't go to work and function. Even driving would be dangerous. I sent my boss a reluctant text. I had never called in sick. 

As I showered I also filled the tub with hot water and let myself have a good long soak before getting out and putting my pajamas back on. Upstairs I brushed my wet hair, put a towel over my pillow, and crawled back into bed. The pain killers I'd taken before getting into the shower slowly began to work. Although they took the edge off and I stopped shaking and feeling queasy, the pain in my neck and shoulders remained. By early afternoon I sent my favorite chiropractor a text. He gave me a hug, adjusted my neck and upper back. When I came home, I took some Benadryl and turned the light off early. I heard my phone chime a time or two but didn't even look until morning when I saw he'd sent me a text at 8 pm asking how my headache was feeling.

I woke this morning headache free with just the sore muscles of a previously knotted up back and shoulders. I was assigned to the older toddler room for most of the day. Five little girls, all two years old. I haven't spent an entire day in the older toddler room since I first started at the daycare almost four years ago! I'll admit, I felt a little overwhelmed to start with, but we did just fine.

Now if only I can remember tomorrow is Wednesday and not Tuesday...

(I needed a photo, so you get one from last week when they all decided to sit along the outside of the building. I don't think anyone's really looking at the camera...)

Monday, March 01, 2021

Loss

Every direction I turn I see loss. Today it feels hopeless all over again, but I know that once the tears are done falling, the sun will shine again. Somewhere in all of this mess there is something good.

I've been scolded for what I post, but I didn't get us into this mess. I simply happen to be included in it.

Sunday, February 28, 2021

Back to the Lake

 I took my camera down to the lake again yesterday...






Ever changing and always beautiful.


Wednesday, February 24, 2021

It's Not a Job, It's a Party!

 Did I tell you things are not running as usual at work? We're slightly short staffed and I've been reassigned for the week, and maybe next week as well. My boss (she's the site director) is doing the cooking this week. I've become an assistant teacher instead. I was in the infant room on Monday, but yesterday and today I spent the better part of the day with some of my favorite toddlers, and then the last couple hours of the day in the infant room.


 This morning we played outside for a bit. The snow is thick and icy. And it's melting. After about 45 minutes (maybe it was 30...) the kiddos were tired and cold, and their mittens were wet. I couldn't resist snapping a cell phone picture of this little sweetheart who climbed up on the the Little Tikes truck for a rest. (I can post the picture if she's not looking at the camera, right?


Monday, February 22, 2021

My Little Brain

The meme said- "Many people think the grass is greener somewhere else but the grass is green where you water it. Remember that."

 Me- "I can't even see the grass."

Friend- "That's because of the snow."

 Me- 🤔 

Friend- "The grass is there, just keep watering."

Me- "Right now I'm just going to wait for the snow to melt."

I am way too easily amused, especially when there are metaphors involved.

Sunday, February 21, 2021

Perfect Day

 My sister and I met up with a childhood friend this afternoon at Webster Park. We hadn't seen him in several years so it was nice to catch up.


 


 

It was a gorgeous day! (Yup, I still love the lake.)


Saturday, February 20, 2021

I Don't Blog Much Anymore

 I don't blog much anymore, but our baby went home Friday and that is pretty incredible. Totally blog worthy! I popped in to visit for a spell late this morning and a little into the afternoon.

He was looking chipper, crawling about, and even practiced a bit of free-standing.

I took him a stuffed doggie that I picked up at Walmart mid-week on a lunch break. This morning I hunted down some wide-eyed needles and a bit of black yarn, and I stitched a zipper scar on that puppy's chest.

It was a beautiful, snowy day. Colder than cold. Typical February in upstate NY.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Oh, My Heart!

 A week ago my little grandson had heart surgery. He was born in April with two holes in his heart, and although the doctors were hoping they would close up on their own, they did not. As scary as having the surgery was, not doing it was more frightening.

Henry was a champ and the surgery went perfectly. The trouble cam when he was being weaned off the sedative. Apparently one of the rare side affects of this particular sedative is seizures. Thankfully, his watchful mom noticed and alerted the doctors.

It's been quite the week for Bethany's family. Not only has Henry been away, but Bethany has been away with him the majority of the time. (I've encouraged her to be there for Henry, just like she would for any of the others should they have to be hospitalized.) Adam has been holding things together at home and I'm sure has a renewed appreciation for all Beth does around the house. 

Henry is sporting a great new souvenir; a fantastic zipper scar! He looks just like a stuffed doll now, only much cuter. 

Today he's feeling good. Good enough to pull himself to a standing position. Just look at that smile! He'll be going home in no time. This picture makes my heart happy.



Sunday, February 14, 2021

It's Valentines Day

 Valentines Day.  It's a tough day to spend alone.

The early morning bathroom call came at 4 am. I crawled back into bed immediately after and tried to sleep, but thoughts of my pottery shelf invaded my mind, clutched my heart, and left a knot in my stomach. Yup, it's that bad... *deep breath* Needless to say, I had a hard time getting back to sleep and when I finally opened my eyes in the morning, I found myself a little short of time to get ready for church. I made it there for worship, but just barely. 

I've been on my own long enough to know there are certain days of the year when I need a distraction. Last Tuesday I sent a message to my friend Laura. "Are you busy on Valentine's Day? I was wondering if you might want to get breakfast together," and she agreed. (I love her!) So on this very chilly Valentines Day, we met at the Coal Tower Restaurant for breakfast. It's so good to have friends.

Tuesday, February 09, 2021

Stuff, Just Stuff

Emotional. Not sure if it's because I've drastically reduced my carb and sugar intake, the lack of sunshine, or something else weighing on my heart and mind. There are certainly a number of things it could be...

Tomorrow morning I will rise early and head off to Bethany's house like I did in November when she was sick in the hospital, but this time she is not sick. Our sweet Henry is scheduled for surgery tomorrow morning and I will go to stay with my other grandchildren while Beth and Adam are together at the hospital waiting for Henry. (Prayers are appreciated.) I haven't been to Bethany's house since Christmas and am feeling a little out of the loop.

I'm also grieving the loss of my shelf at the pottery studio, even though I haven't been there enough to warrant paying the rental fee. This tells me I will be back in the studio one day, and probably not too very long from now. 

Sunday is Valentine's Day. This could throw me off a tad too, so I just connected with a friend and we have plans to meet for breakfast after church. I feel better already! Ha ha!

Saturday, February 06, 2021

I'll Always Love You, Clay

 I broke up with Clay. Turned my pottery studio key in today. It was a sad day. In actuality, it's been a tough week. I'm feeling off emotionally,perhaps partially due to a change in eating habits. Here's hoping my moods level back off at settled like they usually are. I'm tired of feeling cranky even if it does give ample opportunity to act pleasant in spite of how I feel under the surface. I'm hoping to take another class when, and if, things ever really open up and relax again. In the meantime, I'll have an extra $75 a month to drop into my savings account.

Friday, February 05, 2021

A Loud Silence

It's been five and a half years since the pieces clicked into place and my life fell apart. (Yes, I do know that sounds like two opposite things, but it happened simultaneously.) It's taken this long for me to realize that complete silence doesn't help anyone, myself included. So I posted a meme on Facebook and got a little flack. 

One friend said, "This type of public outing is one of the problems with Facebook - very sad..." and another couple agreed. 

Thankfully, many others were supportive, with the biggest supporter saying, "How about if you don’t like the post then keep scrolling and keep your uninformed opinion to yourself. Because I am sure in order to make these kinds of comments that you are gravely uninformed on the situation."

Our situation, though heartbreaking, is far too common. It is the silence surrounding it that is most damaging. And it's not as though I put all my cards on the table... The most interesting thing to me about the reactions is that the meme is all about me with only a somewhat vague reference to the actions of the other individual. It really could have referred to any number of things. *sigh*

Sadly, there are repercussions to abuse and one of them is that the secrets won’t be silent forever. And that is almost as frightening to me as anyone.

Sunday, January 31, 2021

Out and About for a Bit (Post #2)

 It's been a frigid week. Before going off to church this morning, I took a hammer and knocked the chunks of ice buildup behind my front tires off into the driveway. My sister Rachel was excited about the ice she knew was collecting along the lake shore and wondered if I would like to go out and take some pictures with her after church. 

We started at Webster Park where just two weeks ago I collected a handful of beach glass. Today any beach glass was buried under a layer of ice and snow. 


We had also planned a trip to see our brother and take him out for a ride. Because he has difficulty getting in and out of vehicles, we took my little SUV. It was a disappointing ride. He gobbled down the snacks we brought and promptly went to sleep. He didn't even complain when we stopped for pictures of the bison.

Before heading home, we took a ride to Sodus Point and were surprised to meet up with Tom The Backroads Traveller. Rachel had already struck up a conversation when I came around the front of the car. "I know you," he said, and he was right. It's been a while now since we fashioned Christmas wreaths in his barn and I almost didn't recognize him, which is funny because I am often running into people I know. This is the first time Tom and I have chanced to cross paths whilst out gallivanting.



Sodus Point did not disappoint us this afternoon. It was also robed in ice and snow and quite enchanting.



A Brighter Path

2021 has been a deep and thought provoking year so far, not unlike the past few. I am learning to be Martha again. It's been a long, slow, and sometimes painful, but beautiful journey. I am entirely grateful to those who have loved and encouraged me along the way. 

❤

Five years ago I never imagined myself in this position. I saw only darkness then, but today the darkness is gone. It isn't because I know what the future holds, but the One Who Holds the Future has proven Himself over and over again. It's still hard to imagine being alone (single) for the rest of my life, but I know that even if that is true, He will walk beside me all the way. Either way, He has a plan and I trust His plan is good.

On another note, my daughter's family experienced a heart warming reunion on Friday evening. Three years of waiting and finally an evening full of tears and warm embraces.

Saturday, January 23, 2021

The Tapestry Has Two Sides

I've been watching adoption reunion videos this past week or so and feeling an incredibly real piece of the pain birth moms face when they decide to give their child away. When I first learned I was pregnant at seventeen, I had no clue what would happen to my baby. The only thing I knew for certain was that I would grant him the gift of life. I didn't know if I would be granted the gift of keeping him, and I can still feel the pangs of panic deep inside when I remember the thoughts of letting my baby go. No knife ever cut so deep into my heart. I am forever grateful for the gift he is, for our life together, and for the man he has become. Jim, you are loved more than words can tell.

❤

 
This is my brother Dan. When I was a little girl I thought being adopted was the best thing in the world, except I wasn't adopted. My mom often told the story of the night a six day old baby was placed in their arms, how they'd had to borrow clothes, diapers, and bottles because his arrival was so unexpected. The story was amazingly wonderful, but it only told one side of the story. When I considered placing my own unborn child for adoption, the heartache of my brother's birth mom became painfully obvious. "Don't you want him?" my mother had asked, and she had answered, "Yes, but I have nothing to offer him.
 
Years after my brother's passing, I took my own mind back in time and grieved my own loss of him. Although I knew he loved me, we had never been close. Perhaps I had been just as much a source of competition for him as he had been for me. By the time we had something in common, our sons, he was too far away to reach, and then he was gone.
 
It wasn't until about 1998 that my experience with a teenage pregnancy and my brother's adoption story came together in an unexpected turn of events. A stranger in my town lost her father to cancer. My aunt had come upon the obituary in the local newspaper and shared it with my mom. The man's mother was still living, and she was my brother's birth mom. 
 
I remember mulling the information over in my mind, but I've forgotten exactly how it all played out. I knew there was a family out there missing my brother. I couldn't help them find him, but perhaps I could help give them answers. I don't remember how long I waited before making a connection. I do remember being scared to death, and shaking on my end of the phone.
 
The conversation resulted in us being able to share photos and stories with a sister who had been looking for her baby brother her entire life. She couldn't have known how brokenhearted I was for her, or how deeply I felt her pain and disappointment. I so wish I'd been able to give her more than stories and old photographs...