Saturday, March 29, 2008

Well, I do care, do you?

I was listening to the car radio a while ago and a country (?) song was on, something about "I don't give a d$$$ what other people think about me", or something like that. He didn't care what other people think? Well, I do. I have known a few of those "I say what I want, I do what I want, no one can tell me what to do, I'm my own person, no one owns me, etc." You know, those people who get outspoken mixed up with rude and hurtful. Well, I'm a professing Christian and I want people to see that in me. I absolutely do care what people think of me, not in an egotistical way, but because I don't want to smudge my Savior by my behavior. Does that make me egocentric? I don't think so. I don't care so much what people think of ME, but I do care what they think of HIM, and I am supposed to be representing HIM to THEM.

Is it Coming????

Here it is people! Just what I was talking about on one of my blogs. Check it out.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Being thankful

Are we ever as thankful as we should be for the unobvious things?

1. When we trip and don't fall

2. When we pass a car and don't get in a wreck

3. When we wake in the morning

4. When our kids come home safely from school

5. When we find our lost kitty or dog

6. When someone does a random act of kindness toward us

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Meme from the Spinster

Inner Voice of a Spinster in the Making tagged me with this meme.

The rules of the game get posted at the beginning.
Each player answers the questions about herself/himself.

At the end of the post, the player then tags 5 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves a comment, letting them know they've been tagged and asking them to read your blog.


Dealing with my sister's death in Dec. 1997

Dealing with my mother's death in Feb. 1998

Dealing with the death of that sister's husband, in Mar. 1998

Dealing with my daughter's divorce and helping her get back on her feet

Working at a job I absolutely loved, with people who got me through the above.


Hopefully have a visit from my daughter and her kids if all are well.

See my sister, her daughter and her granddaughter who are travelling here today from Kansas City area.

Go watch "The Passion" at our church tomorrow night.


Anything ice cream, with potato chips

Chocolate Zingers

Cherry pie

Anything chocolate pretty much

Popcorn and apples


Give mucho bucks to church missions

Set aside some for each of my daughters

Send all of my five grandchildren to college

Let my husband buy as many trucks as he wants

Put aside some in case of nursing home needs


Throwing newspapers on the floor

Using the coffee table as a desk

Taking long naps

Being really slow to get around in the mornings, unless I have definite plans

Watching too much television


Colorado (though FIVE different towns)




Concession stand in theater

transcriber at a welfare office

transcriber at an insurance company

teller at financial company (hated it, hated it, hated it)

transcriber at state mental facility

caregiver in group home for mentally challenged adults (hated the politics)

activities director at two different nursing homes

transcriber at family doctor's office

I don't know anyone to tag except Kay, QOTW, Julie, Mel, Robin, and I think they were already tagged. If you weren't tagged, then you are tagged!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Some Things I Like

There are actually some things that I like.

I like animals
I like clouds and sunsets
I like spring breezes
I like old people
I like strange people
I like bluegrass and western music (not country), hymns
I like rhubarb
I like onions, cabbage, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, almost all veggies
I like mountains
I like trees
I like books
I like to draw
I like to take naps
I like to sit outside either in the sun or in the shade, depending
I like just barely glimpsing some laugh provoking thing as I drive, something no one else sees
I like corned beef
I like to daydream

Saturday, March 15, 2008


Boy, too numerous to list, I’m afraid. Of course, maybe some are merely things that annoy me, others are things that aggravate me, and others are things that amaze me.

Ring, ring. Hello. Oh, you’re home!

Ring, ring. Hello. Oh, I thought you were gone.

The house is still burning with three bodies inside. News Lady with microphone; "Excuse me, Mrs. Jones. Can you tell us how you feel about losing your husband and two children in this unfortunate fire?"

Babies sitting on laps in cars.

Dogs running around on a flatbed truck, which is going highway speed.

People who blame everything on someone else, or on a circumstance. Never admitting their part.

People who say, "don’t make me hurt you." Or "see what you made me do!"

People who hang onto every little slight and hurt feeling from day one, and who bring it up forever.

Motel pillows. That’s why I take my own pillow.

Perfect people. You know the kind.

People who mumble.

People who won’t shake hands under any circumstances, for fear of germs.

People who tailgate too closely to see my brake lights and turn signals.

People who paint gang speak on people’s property. You know, graffiti "artists"

Gangstra rap.

"I’ve lived here all my life." Duh, not yet!!!

Carl Jr.’s commercials

Commericals by drug companies

Commericals by lawyers

People who wear too much cologne or perfume, especially in a crowded place, like church or a movie.

Laundry detergent aisle in stores (the fumes).

Bullies. Bullies, and more bullies. All kinds, human or animal.

Business meetings without an agenda to follow; or not sticking to the agenda.

Children who are disobedient to their parents.

Parents who haven’t taught their kids to obey.

Biased reporting

People who drive while talking on cell phone, especially with little kids in the car.

People who talk on cell phone loudly, in public, next to me.

And finally, People like me, who have lots of pet peeves.

Friday, March 14, 2008

My appreciation

I never knew having a blog and blogger friends would be so much fun! I really enjoy reading about other people's wishes, desires, aspirations, funny stories, frustrations. I can certainly understand why it can become an absolute time-consuming hobby. Thanks to all of you.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Moonsweeper, a repost

This was written by my Flower of the Family, Julie, about Gaylen.

Once upon a time there was a man who loved the moon
He loved the big, full, orange moon of the fall, the pale white moon of winter,
and the yellow moon that came in summer.
During new moon he would quietly mourn the absence
of his round-faced friend,
and when the full moon would reappear he would befilled with joy,
as if seeing it for the first time.As this man who loved the moon grew older,
an amazing thing began to happen.
His body was aging, but his mind was not.
He could still look at things with true wonder in his eyes,
and be happy just to see them.
The people around him changed.
Some of them grew up and moved away,
some just got older, and others died.
But the man who loved the moon remained the same.
He greatly mourned the loss of his friends,
but the moon could always cheer him.
As time went on and his body aged he was moved
from what friends he still had to a place that could care for him better.
But they did not know how he loved his moonand,
not being with his loved ones and having a new moon
to look at was more than his heart could take.
Go outside on the next full moon.Look at it. Really look
.See the texture and how the shadows fall to make a face.
Notice the color, the roundness and the size.
People don’t become angels and Heaven is the home to God’s saints,
but I think that once a month for a day or two God
lets one man take care of the moon,
the moon that was such a friend to him while he was on this earth.

Gaylen, a repost

For many years, I’ve heard the expression "special" applied to developmentally disabled persons and I always felt it was rather patronizing. But then Gaylen came into my life. He was indeed "special". My heart still tweaks when I think of him and it’s been many years since he went to be with his Lord.The beginning of our relationship is a little vague. He was residing in a nursing home near our church and he began attending, usually walking to and from and occasionally allowing us to transport him by car, van, and, later by bus. Somehow we thought this was a privilege! At some point it became his "job" to empty the trash cans in the church and adjoining Christian School. He was never asked to do this but took it upon himself, probably because that was his job at Developmental Training Services where he went daily. Upon arriving home he would walk the block or so to his "other job". One late evening he was found sitting outside the pastor’s study window, apparently waiting for the opportunity to empty the pastor’s trash can.Gaylen had a wonderful relationship with the children at the school. They loved him and learned much about feeling comfortable about "different" people. Although Gaylen was in his early 40’s he was very much like a child in his feelings and thinking (he had Down’s Syndrome). One day he came to the school wearing the medal he had won in Special Olympics. While playing ping-pong, one of the boys began teasing Gaylen about getting a necklace from a girlfriend. Gaylen put up with it for a while and then he took action.Joe had hit the ball astray and, when it stopped rolling, Gaylen casually walked over as if he intended to pick it up for Joe. Instead he very carefully stepped on it and smashed it. Joe reported it to the teacher who came and questioned Gaylen about it. "Gaylen, did you step on the ping-pong ball?" "No." "Gaylen, let me see what you have in your hand." Gaylen opened his hand, saw the smashed ball and exclaimed, "Oh! THAT ping-pong ball!"Gaylen was the only one besides the pastor’s wife who was allowed to address the pastor by his first name.Gaylen was the perfect church member. He was so devoted, however, that he would come to church sick. One time he passed out and we had to have someone from the nursing home come and get him. He was in bed for a week with the flu. They had to use safety devices to keep him in bed long enough to recover. He also listened attentively. On many occasions, when I would go to the nursing home on Sunday afternoon, I would find Gaylen standing in front of his mirror preaching, using the same words, expressions, and inflections that the pastor used that morning. Gaylen had his own "sitting place" at church and woe unto the innocent who sat in his place. One occasion stands out in my mind. A couple (who probably knew better but were displaced when someone sat in their place) sat in Gaylen’s row, at his end of the front pew. When he saw this, he snapped his fingers loudly, pointed at the couple, and motioned them out of his place. Of course, who argues with such authority? They moved.This wonderful fellow always wore his cowboy hat and carried his "banjo" (which was actually a cheap guitar). He would strum and sing songs for the children. It sounded terrible but he was so full of love for everybody that it didn’t seem to matter somehow.Gaylen loved Jesus and knew he would go to Heaven. He loved the moon and talked about visiting it when he went to Heaven. On day at church he kept trying to tell me something. As he was somewhat difficult to understand at times, I didn’t think too much of it. He kept saying he was going to Salida, a neighboring town. Going on outings wasn’t unusual at this particular nursing home so I thought little of it. Later that week I learned that he was being placed in a group home in Salida where he could live a "more independent" life with other developmentally disabled persons. Before a week had passed, my dear Gaylen got to go to be with the Jesus he loved so much.Later, I learned that the people caring for him wondered about the church and school he repeatedly asked to go to, and that they had no idea who "Carl" (the pastor) was that he kept asking for. My heart breaks when I think of that week. I wanted to go see him the very first weekend he was gone but convinced myself I should let him make an adjustment first. Before the next weekend came, he was gone. I know in my heart that he didn’t understand what "going to Salida" meant. I don’t believe he had the capability to understand what "moving to Salida" meant in terms of time. He didn’t know he was going to stay there. I TRULY BELIEVE THAT GAYLEN DIED OF A BROKEN HEART. In my head I know that Down’s Syndrome people reach a peak in their 40’s and then start a decline which ends in total dependency. We know now that it is the same as Alzheimer’s disease and it would have been terrible to see Gaylen go through that. I also know that heart abnormalities are common in people with Down’s Syndrome and that it was a massive heart attack that killed him. But I truly believe that he died of a broken heart because he couldn’t find the church and his beloved friends.It was the sweetest funeral I had ever attended. All the children from the school and Gaylen’s friends from DTS were there. Gaylen is buried where there is no perpetual upkeep but his friends from DTS keep his grave clean and decorated. I was concerned that he would never have a headstone, but someone has made him one out of concrete, a simple one but one made out of love. The important thing is that Gaylen is in Heaven and probably is the moon-keeper or something. I think of him absolutely every time I see the moon, especially a full moon because that’s the one he especially loved.Knowing this man was such a blessing to our church family. Thank you, dear Lord!

The Break-up, a repost

The Break-up
A retired colonel resided on an Alzheimer's unit where I worked. He was early stage and knew something was wrong. He was so kind and courteous to everyone. A real gentleman. One day he asked if he could talk to me. I said yes and we went out into the courtyard. He sat us down in the gazebo and then he took hold of my hand. He started telling me that he knew something was wrong with him and that he had something he needed to take care of before he became unable to do so. We walked around the courtyard holding hands, while he talked softly. I soon realized that he was trying to break up with me! He was so gentle and apologetic and didn't want me to be hurt. I didn't use "reality orientation" with him because it would have embarrassed him beyond belief. I told him that I really respected him and his decision and said it was okay, that we could still be friends. He thanked me and he seemed extremely relieved. We walked a little more but we talked of other things and he never said another word about it. So, was he doing something that he hadn't been able to take care of because of his illness? Or was he reliving something from his past? Regardless, it was one of the strangest and sweetest incidents I had ever experienced working with dementia patients. I later got to share the Gospel with him and he prayed for salvation. (Had to be sneaky because I was on duty at a government facility. Thank God for that gazebo and the Gideon New Testament). He died of heart failure about three weeks later. God spared that good and dignified man the humility of the downward spiral he would soon encounter.

A Duh Moment, a repost

A Duh Moment
When I worked in activities at a veterans' nursing home, there was one black fellow. He was probably in his early 80's and had grown up in the deep south. His "problem" was discussed at a care planning meeting one day. The "problem" was that sometimes he would raise such a ruckus when it was time to get his bath. By the way, this man had Alzheimer's disease and his memories were probably 30 to 40 years in the past. Lowly me, I spoke up and said, "Do you realize what would have happened to him 40 years ago if he had been caught naked in the same room with a white woman?" Duh was the expression on most of the faces, including social workers, R.N.s, etc. So, good idea! The black female nursing assistant and the men were to bathe him from then on. Well, guess what? He never threw another ruckus about it! Isn't it amazing what can happen when one stops to think a little bit.....

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Going to do it again

I went back and read my past posts. Most of them have no comments or maybe one, maybe two. I am considering reposting some of them now that I have a few regular readers who might not want to scroll backwards. Am I showing too much humility or not enough? If I can figure out how to do it.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Check out this blog

I went to the blog of sd sue and found it really interesting. She has some lovely poems also. She has another blog called SD Sioux Lakota Connections. Click on her sd sue blog. I don't think this one works.

Sometimes a good thing

The comment on Monday through Sunday by sd sue struck a cord. After I commented on that blog, I decided to elaborate on it. People are fearful of nursing homes. Our older generation remembers what nursing homes used to be, a place where you go to die. Like Sue's relative, some people go from wretched conditions to a happy home. In one nursing home a lady was admitted who was literally covered with bed sores. Her disabled husband was trying to take care of her but he needed help himself. Another elderly couple took care of each other but finally had to come to a nursing home, I believe after a welfare check made by social services. They were ambulatory but both somewhat confused and they were really hungry! Her hair probably hadn't even been combed for months, let alone washed. She had it up on top of her hair in a large bun. It took the hairdresser a couple of hours to work that matted hair far enough from the scalp to make room for scissors. She cut it and was able to perm it. That couple did extremely well. They were getting their medications regularly and properly, they were kept clean, had clean clothes, ate regular meals, and had plenty of socialization. They didn't seem as confused either on this regular schedule. So sometimes going into a care facility should not necessarily be the last resort, but one of the first considerations.

Monday, March 3, 2008

For Dr. Seuss fans

If you're a Dr. Seuss fan, try this quiz. Go to Don't cheat by looking at the answers first.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Aunt Ada

QOTW was asking about our Aunt Ada on her comment under Lift them up. I thought I'd answer here instead of on a comment.

Aunt Ada showed signs of mental illness when she was a young mother. First she probably was anorexic as she used laxatives and hid food under her plate. At least during a time when she lived with my mom and dad. Ada's mother was pretty fanatic. She made Ada fast and pray for sick chickens, etc. A mother with little kids. There was an occasion where she was running down a street in La Junta I think, yelling and screaming. If she had needed help these days she could possibly have been more independent. They put her in a nursing home a couple of times but she was so completely institutionalized that she acted out and they took her "home". She was in the state mental hospital for 40 years. She experienced it all, electric shock, restraints, etc. There were stocks in the basement of the state hospital. You know, chairs with arm restraints. She got very agitated when I told her that I had seen them one time when some of us went into the tunnel. The tunnels ran underground from the south unit to the north unit. Anyway, she apparently experienced it all. We need to just remember the times when she came to the house for Thanksgiving or Christmas with all of us. My hubby visited her quite often and said she would stand up for herself. That probably got her into trouble, too. Bless her heart. She's now free. On her tombstone we put "Free at Last".

Lift 'em up :>) uu

Reminiscing about working at the state hospital, I thought of an extraordinary woman who worked there. She was a social worker, a tall, lanky single lady from Chicago. She was way ahead of her time, believe me. Remember that this was in the very early 1960s. The women on the wards wore clothing from the clothing bank. Granted, clothing was purchased for them but no one really had "personal clothing". Any personal clothing usually never returned from the laundry. The women did not have bras to wear and many were having pain in their shoulders and neck because of it. Miss C. insisted that the facility provide bras and they did. After the women got the bras, they changed in a remarkable way. They began asking for perms, haircuts, makeup, etc. They held their heads up and even strutted a little. What an amazing thing that was! What a boost to self-esteem! Another story relates to a nursing home which had a male ward and a female ward. The day they admitted the first man onto the previously all female ward, all the ladies, that were able, got their hair fixed, put on makeup, and put on their finest. They were waiting for that man when he got off the elevator!