Hanging In There

The full moon morning of last week was so peaceful. Things change. Our doctor spent a few hours with Lee and sees the paranoia creeping in. Lee thinks people are taking things, he is easily saddened and just wants to go home. Today he has a rather low energy caregiver while I am downstairs writing this and hoping to get back to the sewing I abandoned Friday to send the caregiver home after Lee became upset. I hope the one today can be cheerful and help him arrange rocks outside, but as usual I trust nothing to go as planned.

Keeping up with my marks book. Easter!

chocolate rabbit bits and black jelly beans.

I love the intricacy of a dandelion. Very hard to draw…maybe next year. I am hoping to tour an assisted living home for Lee this week but now want to see how this caregiver works out before being gone three hours..

I also photographed some other things in the house I will need to take care of before selling the house in the not so distant future. My collection of foundry molds. I love them!

I like this one that looks like a dog around the corner from a fire hydrant mold. There are several more tucked around the house. I will take them with me.

Okay. Update. I just released the caregiver 40 minutes in. I called her employer and asked if they could send people who can talk, walk and at the very least listen to Lee and smile. Of course she was on the schedule twice more this week and I said that was not going to work. And also of course, they may not be able to find anyone to fill in. So like I say, trust nothing…especially if you are counting on some time of your own. He is now napping in his chair with cop shows in the background.

He and I will work on rocks later.

The good news is a friend from Michigan has completed her shots and two week wait so will be coming down next week to spend time helping me cope with all the things that need packing up here. The following month our daughter and partner will be able to get here with our son arriving with a trailer the month after that.

Not sure when I will be able to get to the assisted living home and Friday’s person is only good for three hours. Seems many are vacationing the week after Easter.

This is the second Covid Coping book and has enough pages for the labels of all of us until the stop date of the 20th of this month….the last of the shots and wait times.

So that is about it for now.  I think I am beginning to sound like the old poet’s duck in Louise Penny’s Gamache series….all it says is *uck, *uck, *uck!

But it is still a beautiful day. The yard guys come again Wednesday. Our Tuesday friend will hopefully show up tomorrow for lunch. I have sedatives now for Lee if he sinks into hidden fears. And at least three bottles of scotch in the cupboard. Close to a state of “high cotton.”

Til later….


Getting Some Control

I look out this window each morning when I draw in the marks book or stitch. It helps.

Still using the same black ink pen….it seems to have an endless supply of ink in its barrel.

Not too many more pages and the Marks Book will be filled. Still thinking stitched pieces added to the next Marks book. They could be tied onto the blank pages. Maybe words/drawings…maybe not.

Speaking of stitching, all seven of my night critters are finished with the bat this past week.

Now what in the world do I do with them?!

This week I had my annual physical…more of an emotional breakdown than physical. I told the doctor not to be nice…nice just opens up a flood. But it was good. I am healthy, just stressed at times with having to deal with daily life and Lee. I was assigned the responsibility of at least checking out possible places for him to go next. And it helps talking to those working at assisted care homes for memory problems. Next week I will try to tour at least one.

I want our kids to be able to visit him here when their Covid shots are complete. We live in an area of no small amount of ignorance combined with arrogance so mask wearing seems optional for many even though the virus is on the rise. What used to be a fondly called Clays Corner here in Brasstown is more of a QAnon Corner now with their Trump signs still proudly on display. It is creepy to say the least whenever I drive by.

Yesterday I received a note from a total stranger out west who reads my blog. She just wanted to say she finds my patience and strength amazing. Thank you. I don’t feel very strong this week but it is coming.

I also think I need to pare down my belongings. So much of what I have could be better put to use with those still more active in the arts. First I toss out the completely useless, then have my kids take what they want and give what’s left away or have it dumped into recycling or just the dump.

Why do we think we can just keep on the way we used to?

I will likely sell my home and find a simpler place to live. But that is further down the line. And this house is extremely far from being “showable” as nowadays the realtors want it looking like a blank slate when they show it. Thank god I have an offer to climb the ladder and clean the shelves of treasures of travel and craft items. What was I thinking?! But it was the focal point of a western North Carolina living magazine a few years back.

Good grief! And just think of what my closets must look like. I need to get busy.

I did start another short story that I have no idea where it is going but the first five hundred words were fun to write. Here is the opening paragraph of The Blue Collector.

Sara is quite sure it started on her eighth birthday. One of the candles on her cake was blue, bright blue. She made her wish, blew the candles out and quickly pocketed the blue one. Later she would wash off the frosting, trim the burnt wick and place it in the secret drawer of her music box. This was a very good color this blue. It wasn’t the baby boy blue, all powdery looking, and darker than a clear day’s sky blue, but not a blue like the sea. It was somehow brighter. It dazzled. This blue was a blue to watch for.

Til later….

Moving On

Spring is here ! Our yard this past two days.

We lifted the snake out of the sunken ground so he sits up on top of the Spring ground.

I am working at getting the grounds all finished off for when the time comes to maybe move some place else. When family arrives after their covid shots, they will help pack up some of the things that just seem so very unnecessary. My god, why did I think I could not live without them!!

I dream of blank walls with only the the artworks and artifacts that make me smile and happy I have them. So much is just there because it always was.  Not “clutter” but getting very close. When cooking at the stove I look across the living room and see that huge bowl full of Christmas cards from the last ten years or so…why? Good Grief! Throw them out! And those things that you have because you actually thought an old friend was thinking about your tastes…not because she was simply cleaning out her own closets. Another Good Grief! Time to purge. Time to get some control.

Anyway I am still trying to get to the end of the sketch book.

The heating pad! Why? Nothing else within reach.

Cats…out of reach!

I am thinking the next book should have stitched scraps in it. I can stitch pieces to then stitch into the book…add some writings, maybe. There is so little time to work in the books early in the morning. Lee is busy getting dressed to go outside and then back in because it is cold, then ten minutes and out again. I need something I can do mindlessly and drop at a minute’s notice. I will need to bring more fabric scraps upstairs. It seems I am getting so removed from my studio….

I finally finished working over the second short story…The Ferryman. I need to keep reminding myself that it is just a story told over a beer to someone hardly listening so why worry!

Charlie, the ferryman, told me to just let him go….others might be waiting their turn, he said. I hope he is right. I like dipping into their lives for a bit. It helps….his story is under short stories on my website.

Til later…

Better Now

Today is a beautiful day. The men are back with several Arizona cypress and are putting them in the many holes dug along the top of the rise in the other side of the driveway. They are a nice size and will grow quickly. I will add more pictures as more plantings are put in. A massive load of mulch came two days ago and improved the site quite a bit. More pine straw also came today. The place will be looking very nice by the time they finish.

Lee is with the caregiver today. He seems a  bit more lost this week. We moved some folding camp chairs up to the garage for him to sit and watch the activities in the yard. Any changes are problematic for him so we will see how it goes.

I have gotten a bit sloppy with the drawings in the marks book. I think I am bored with it and just want to finish it up. It is also hard to not have interrupted, constantly interrupted, time to do more than I am doing. I will have to make a plan before starting the next book. I might add stitch to the next one.  It is true how calming it is to thread a needle and poke it in and out with a string trailing behind. Anyway…

We found some lettuce the other day and put it in some pots on the deck. Planting something also helps. When I can get nasturtiums to put with the parsley, sage and lettuce I will be satisfied that that is enough. The potted ivy from way back has gone nuts out there. Frost does not seem to bother it one bit.

I think my second short story is finished. It was hard getting time to get back to it.  A single porter beer should do it.  After rereading it a few more times I will put it under short stories on my website.

One thing I found most interesting was, when out of curiosity, I wondered if the childhood camp I was sent to about seventy years ago was still there. Yes, and with the mission of, “to improve and elevate the character of manhood.” So strange that it is still operating and has such a motto/mission that fit into my short story so well. I am not sure I liked going to summer camp. I only remember the leather lanyard making that seemed useful. But like most craft lessons with prepared materials, if you don’t have them why bother.

The cards and letters arriving this week are most appreciated. I am touched by how well the Tether Line book has been received and shared with others going through similar difficulties. Thank you.

Now maybe a glass of wine to watch out an open window the men planting trees.

Til later….