Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Alzheimers at 54!

I have a good friend who was just diagnosed with advanced stage Alzheimers! She is 54. Yes, I definitely knew...so it wasn't surprising to hear the results of her skull/brain catscan confirming all this. I've had that feeling for a while. Yet, when you have confirmation, it makes it all much more real. She helped take care of her elderly mom when her mom started having some dementia (before cancer was found shortly before her death.) My friend's sense of humor and funny blunt quips were the first things that I noticed that I liked about her. She is the sister of a very good friend of mine. We've become close friends in the last several years. I'd invite her to my short jaunts out of town and she loved going with my boys and I to the beach and waterparks. When I got a restaurant or movie giftcard, I'd invite her to go eat or watch a movie with me (it was always a good excuse to get her out of the house)and we like the same kind of movies. This still happens and I'm sure we will continue doing this. Of course, in the last couple of years, I've noticed that she's been less sociable and forgetful. She has really bad anxiety and when she becomes really tense, she'll tend to go blank so it was initially difficult to determine what was happening with her. But when she couldn't remember her kid's names (or birthdates,) it was getting clearer. When I took her to get her license renewed last year, she got so confused reading the lines that they couldn't renew it. The list goes on and on. She had been separated when I met her too but since then, her hubby moved back in and they've reconciled. Blessing in disguise. Just like my MIL, I'm going to hate yet watching someone else I really care about slowly lose all her memories. I've said it before and I'll say it again...Alzheimer Sydrome sucks! I think it's even more cruel that someone who is much younger than the typical elderly person be stricken with this absolutely slow and horrible death sentence of sorts.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Dressing up!

I went to my first play at age 17 with my Great Aunt Roey. I don't even remember what it was but it was awesome! Throughout the years, I've seen one here or there. I was able to see a Broadway play years ago (Miss Saigon) with my friend Janet and it was awesome! When my friend Betty's husband died about 6 years ago, she tried to do activities to keep her happy (and that didn't require food like eating out.) She invited me to go to a play with her and I went. I then attended many with her over the next several years.

I didn't really think about inviting my kiddos. That is, until last fall, when my second grader insisted I buy tickets to the school middle-school play, Fiddler on the Roof. I did and saw the sparkle in his eyes as he loved every second of it! Of course, I started searching local communities for upcoming plays and we went to see one called Treasure Island. Of course, when you have a play that had sword fighting and guns going off, I think every little boy would be in heaven. They were nice enough to take him seriously when he started asking questions during intermission and the lady actually went out and got her hubby (who was an actor in the play) to answer some questions (and let him feel the sword.)

Last night, we attended another school play and I brought both my boys. The four year old did well (better than expected.) My second grader had been looking for a reason to wear his nice suit (that Santa brought him for Christmas.) He wore it to church last Sunday when he attended with his sister (and her family.) So last night, he was able to wear it in public a second time AND see a play, which, at times, he laughed really hard! As soon as we walked out, he started asking me what my favorite part of it was and even my younger kiddo got in on the conversation. My friend Devyn is incredibly thoughtful to pass on some clothes from her boys. My younger son is wearing some from her boys. Let me tell ya, my bigger boy practically wears them out so there are few to pass on to my younger one so I am extremely thankful for her generosity. Overall, we all dressed up and enjoying going out. It was a nice evening.

Of course, I had to take pictures to catch all the handsomeness!


Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Tasty, Funny and Sweet: Pictures

One of my favorite smells in the world: ground beef being cooked with onions and green peppers! I used to love coming home from school and watching my mom cook dinner and to smell the aroma of this combination! I found something I can make that is kinda good. My cooking skills have a lot to be desired but I went to a friend's house on New Years Day and she made a black eyed pea casserole which was delicious. It has cheese, rice, rotel tomatoes, ground beef, lots of tasty things...even the black eyed peas I don't particularly care for but you can't taste them much. Each New Years Day, she does what her late mother used to do: make black eyed peas, cabbage rolls and invite all her friends over to eat. If I'm in town, I go by there, eat a little and enjoy the great company. She used to be my supervisor when I worked (before resigning to have my 'lil ones) and I look forward to visiting with Katie each year if I'm in town on that holiday. I asked for the recipe and made it at home. Since my family loved it, I decided to make it for a friend (she's out of town a lot going back and forth for chemo.) As it turns out, they loved it too so and asked for the recipe as well...so I passed it on.


I was walking through the kitchen of my daughter's boyfriend's house (the daughter who had a baby recently.) I glanced at the refrigerator and noticed her shopping list. I just love smartphones with cameras! LOL!


One morning, my older son went to wake up his younger brother. He came back into the kitchen and told me to hurry - I had to see something, which I did! I saw my preschooler's "birdie" sleeping soundly on his ear. This little birdie is actually a pencil topper but he loves carrying it around because it's small and squishy. I thought it was definitely a kodak moment. Each night, he sleeps with his monkey, a velveteen rabbit sort of stuffed animal and, at times, something else. Sometimes, though, 'birdie' falls down from his bed in the dark and he has a difficult time finding him (and calls for assistance, lol!) Luckily, that doesn't happen too often. I still smile as I glance at the picture. (And, for the record, it was sleeping 'on' the ear and never goes 'in' it...just sayin.')