Wednesday, January 30, 2013

I am going NUTS...

and no amount of pharmaceuticals are going to bring me back to a normal place.

I have given up the fight of getting Mom to do anything and therefore now she doesn't.  She only dresses 3 maybe 4 days a week.  She does no exercises or PT for the bad shoulder and regularly gets stuck in her clothes and I have to pull them off of her.  I wash her clothes, cook her meals and she comes to the table, eats and puts her dishes beside the sink.  On a rare occasion - when I ask she will load the dishwasher however she never really cleans the kitchen, just puts the dishes in the machine and turns it on.  She never washes the few dishes that I don't allow in the dishwasher or wipes down the counter tops.

The thing that drives me the most insane is the incessant chatter and noise.  We put a TV in her room which has been quite helpful as she was mad we wouldn't let the kids watch shows like CSI.  The problem now is it runs all the time at a fairly high volume.  When it's not on she's chattering to the dog, herself or trying to make inane conversation. 

Social Security sent a letter last week and they are sending her to her their own doctor for evaluation on Feb 11.  It will not come soon enough.

The ONLY thing she's handy for is a body for a babysitter, but she just lets the kids play video games, or watch TV till their eyes bug out.  Honestly they can manage that on their own.

Sonny boy is in a spell where I'm ready to strangle him.  He is so disrespectful of me and no amount of grounding is working.  I called Hubby this morning and said we have to come up some sort of punishment that gets through to the kid.  He's also had some problems at school as well and I am not amused.

Well I better get up and do something.  I spent most of the day hiding in my room sleeping as that keeps my stress level at a minimum when I'm not looking at a person who does less than the dog sit and watch TV all day.  We got a little snow this morning and I need to go clean that up.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

A Guest Post

I thought a tongue in cheek post by Callie might be fun.....

Hi blog readers I'm Callie.  I've been back living with Mom & Dad for about a month now and I can say it's not so bad, though I do have to say the eating is not near as good as when I lived with Grandpa and for some reason nobody lets me sleep with them or on the couch either.

I'm adjusting, the short one - Mom told me to call him Igor here - and I have finally made friends and  has quit acting like I was going to eat him every time he came near and since then he doesn't make me so nervous anymore.  I don't like the short one an awful lot, but he's OK I guess, he doesn't do anything mean to me and he's all about giving me treats so it's fine. 

The bigger kid - Sonny Boy - is really fun.  He plays All. The. Time.  I really get kind of tired of it, I'm not the young pup I once was.  I'm never bored when Sonny Boy is home.

Most days I sleep a lot.  Mom got me my own cushion and told me that was my place and won't let the kids play on it.  The cushion is really comfy and the calluses on my elbows are starting to look better.  The other day Mom gave me a REALLY BIG ham bone.  IT WAS SO GOOD!!  I chewed on it for 5 hours straight and Mom said my teeth are looking better already.

Mon thru Fri is pretty calm during the day, the kids go to school, Dad goes to work and it's just Mom, Grandma and I.  Grandma is pretty Ok, she takes me outside often cause she's going out to puff on that smelly stick a lot.  I run around the yard and she yells at some dog named Winnie to come in, but I just ignore that because my name is Callie after all.  Grandma gets mad and fusses at Winnie - whoever the hell that is - and I lie down on my bed.  I really like the afternoon as Mom lets me ride along when it's time to go get the kids from school.  Friday we went to a place where a woman was behind a big window, I "woofed" at her and Mom told me to "hush" and then the lady in the window sent me a cookie in her slider tray thing - I want to go back there.

Mom fusses after me.  The other day she took me outside and stuck little flags in the yard and every time I went past one the black box on my collar would beep.  I think Mom was making the box beep but it's clear I'm supposed to stay inside the flags.  I hear her say she's gonna put the shocker things on the collar in a day or two whatever that means.  About once a  week Mom makes me sit down and she brushes me and then sucks all the hair off of me with a really loud machine with a hose.  I don't like the sucker machine, but like most things here things may be a little scary but they don't hurt.

I keep hearing I gotta get used to people.  There are a lot of people here, they walk by the house all the time and I can't figure out why.  Sometimes they even have dogs with them!  How dare they come near my turf,.  I bark and bark and everybody always tells me to "hush" and "knock it off".  Doesn't everybody see these people next to the house?

Anyway I guess it's Ok here.  Not that I have much choice anyway, at least I'm someplace I know and I get lots of attention even if the grub isn't that good.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Back in the Saddle Again....

Well I suppose we've returned to a somewhat normal schedule with school, work and activities.  The dining room table is still somewhat of a mess as Hubby has decided to type out all the letters his father wrote home from basic training and Vietnam.  Hubby sorted them all out by date, and what he's translated (FIL had awful penmanship) scanning some items as he goes to add to the record.  A big project, but I think it's cathartic for him and helps him understand the emotional trauma that was inflicted on his dad at 19 years old.

Sonny boy is in full fledged wrestling season.  Last Sunday was spent at a tournament and the next two Saturdays are booked and more will likely be booked.  Sonny Boy wants to attend regional competiton this year but he really needs to make huge improvements in the next month.  The kid that won his bracket pinned him in 23 seconds and pinned another in like 30.  I hope we don't come up against that kid again but it's a real possiblity as it seems most people show at the same tournaments.

Callie has settled into the household routine quite well.  She was a little mopey for a week or so but has adapted.  I believe Sonny Boy has taken the place of her canine playmate that was FIL's other dog.  Igor is becoming less scared of her and that in turn has made her less nervous of him.  Our biggest hurdles now are her crazy need to go pottie in the middle of the night and the fact she barks and growls at all the walkers she sees going by the house during the day.  I don't really think she needs to go pottie so much as that she wakes up and realizes we are no longer hanging out in the living room and she thinks we should be.  Last night I stayed up very late reading -1:30 - and let her out just as I went to bed.  An hour and half later she was in our bedroom pacing, waking us and Sonny Boy up like she needed outside.  Hubby yelled at her to go lay down and she did and we didn't hear from her till morning.  We've even gotten to the point of not refilling her water in the late evening but that has had no effect.  She keeps her middle of the night wake-up calls going she's going to find herself in a kennel at night.   I believe she'll start adapting to the walkers soon, it's a good thing she came in winter when there is much less foot traffic by the house, but I had to go chasing her through the yard in my slippers the other day as she had her hair all up at one our regular canine passer-by.  Luckily Panda (the other dog, do not know the person) was kept on a short leash and I got to her and grabbed Callie pretty quick.  We are discussing some fence stuff soon.

Well Hubby just walked in, no supper is even thought about and I'm hoping he'll say " Honey don't worry about it I'll get"  but I doubt I'll have that kind of luck.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Christmas by the numbers

2 Funerals
2 stashes of drugs
1 call to the county sheriff
20494893 curse words
1 rude t-short worn by me
34 day notice to vacate
1,000 miles on the mini-van
1 90 lb dog
1 huge TV
1 u-haul trailer
LOTS of taxidermy (some still to be stuffed we learned)
21 gun salute
30 hairy bikers
too many rounds of ammo
2 nerf hail fire guns
2 new games of farkle
1 birthday party

and a stuffed partridge on Grandma's wall.

The last two weeks have been a nightmare blur.  After getting the call that father-in-law passed I loaded up the kids and Mom and we went North.  We weren't even an hour from the house yet and it started snowing heavily and the radar on my phone looked like we were in for it for a while and the radio was predicting large amounts of snow in the next few days so I decided we would drive till we just couldn't go anymore.  Luckily the snow while quite heavy at times decided not to muck up the interstate and we cruised along at happy pace through the flakes and came out the other side several hours later to don our sunglasses the last half of the trip.

While I was driving Hubby and SIL made funeral arrangements setting the funeral for the Saturday before Christmas.  The next day or so Hubby and SIL started packing up the things that were in FIL's room.  - Here is where I must digress and explain FIL's living situation.  FIL had been living with "G" for about 18 years.  It had started out as romantic relationship that went very dysfunctional in the last 10 years or so.  G is a hoarder, like the kind of hoarder you see on TV, and had basically managed to squeeze FIL into one room of his modest home.  Couple this with the fact that FIL had a shopping thing, buying every gadget and gizmo for hunting, fishing or tool known to man and you know what kind of mess we were facing. - Between FIL's passing and the funeral Hubby, SIL and I went in nicely simply packing up the things that were obviously FIL's in the room and garage but knowing there was obviously things around the house we would need to be separated from G's stuff as she moved out.  The day before the funeral I went over with Hubby leaving Mom with the kids at the house we were staying at (MIL is in selling her house and moving into Grandma-in-Law's house, Grandma moved to assisted living) and unloaded the ammo cabinet into boxes - we will never need to buy shells for any gun again - and generally packing up trivial stuff left around the room.  I emptied a junk drawer with reading glasses and key chains, pocket knives etc, found a chicken rotisserie (???) that G asked me for 6 times but I declared she must speak to Hubby or SIL as I was simply a laborer, and just general junk we all have floating around.  The end of the day came and my van was stuffed to the gills, FIL's truck that Hubby was driving around was stuffed and it was late so we left a few boxes stacked in his room and left.

The next day was the funeral.  It was a very nice service and it seemed half the town and large contingent of bikers took up one section of the church.  The pastor got a little long winded, so much so that many of us paid way more attention to the woodpecker and the black squirrel playing in the large windows behind the alter than what he was saying.  A couple of Hubby's uncles spoke, a cousin in his Air Force blues and another cousin that had become close to FIL in the last year as he had seen combat in Afghanistan.  Lunch was served and there was a quick prayer (thankfully, it was around 8 degrees) and an honor guard folded the flag, taps was played and shots were fired.  After the funeral SIL brought pizzas over, a couple of uncles showed up and all the cards were gone through and people were identified.  It was late by the time the house settled and we were exhausted both physically and emotionally.

Sunday dawned and Hubby and I went back to his father's place.  When I arrived I opened a box I had not quite filled and the chicken rotisserie was missing along with an old wooden fishing lure that was in the box of keychains and pocketknives etc.  I thought I must be getting senile.  I decided though I better take a gander of the nightmare that awaited upstairs and snuck up the partially blocked staircase without turning on a light when G wandered out to the garage to harass Hubby.  I didn't have a flashlight so I used the flashlight on my phone and the first thing I spotted were some camo duffel bags that I knew belonged to my FIL - I had actually purchased one as a Christmas gift a few years ago.  I suddenly saw bloody red, grabbed the bags and confronted "G" who declared that FIL had given her the bags.  I knew she was lying  and told her so without mincing a word as BIL was walking in the door.  BIL called his wife - Hubby's sister - and she arrived as I was telling G we were going to clear the steps because we "ARE GOING TO GO IN THOSE ROOMS" that were blocked and I wasn't going to break my neck trying to go up a stairwell that was half covered in junk.  SIL then stood at the bottom of the stairs as I was ahead of  G and we unearthed the wooden fishing lure I had packed, a checkbook with FIL's name on it, a bucket of change that had been in FIL's room, hunting decals, a pegboard I had packed, little stained glass window hangers and assorted other junk we all recognized as being FIL's personal stuff.  I won't go into all the details of the things we found hidden because you don't want to read an itemized list but I promise it was enough to make you lose all trust you might have had in a person.  Highlights of the day included finding a 27" flat screen TV covered with a blanket hidden on the couch (we agreed she could have the 36" TV that was set up in the living room) and my SIL counting her down like a child to make a decision on which TV she wanted since she was hiding the little one.  When we finally managed to get upstairs into the rooms they were UNBELIEVABLE.  There is a bed under there.
We managed to squeeze around junk in the room that G declared was all "mine" and I found a cleaning caddy full of tools, this after we agreed we would give her some basic screwdrivers, hammer etc.  The closet still had tons of FIL's clothes hanging and as I worked my way around the room I found three large plastic envelopes of pill bottles prescribed to FIL full of heavy duty narcotics.  I did not know my SIL could swear like that!  With that find SIL called the police and a county sheriff showed up.  I must back up here again and tell that after FIL passed SIL specifically asked G where all of his drugs went because she planned to dispose of them and G told her she had thrown them in the woodstove.  I sacked up the drugs in a plastic bag and turned them over to the sheriff while G explained that she was going to "give the drugs to other vets who were taking the same thing so they wouldn't go to waste".  Yeah, and I'm tinkerbell.  While the sheriff was there we came to the conclusion that it was late and there was no way we cold get all of FIL's stuff out that room so we would lock it up so G couldn't get in there.  G declared that all her clothes were in there and that's where she got dressed etc etc so I handed her a box and told her to pack herself a couple of days worth of clothes so the sheriff followed her up the stairs and watched her pack clothes.  After the sheriff left BIL came up and put a lock on the door, he was having a hard time of it and needed a different tool so I unearthed to tool bin G had stashed and he recognized it as coming out of the ice fishing house that had been moved BEFORE  FIL had passed.  She had been stealing BEFORE he was even dead yet! 

I think what upset the very most was what happened next.  Few things have made me say I hate a person since I've been an adult but this really moved me to the sphere of hate.  When we went up Thanksgiving we had G unearth a box of old family pictures because we knew we wanted to make a slideshow for the funeral.  G did unearth a box that held a fair amount of old pictures but I thought it odd that no more pictures of FIL existed when he was a child, if you watch the slideshow in the previous post that is literally all we had.  FIL went through the pictures with Hubby and SIL and his brothers and memories were shared, it was a nice family time.  FIL kept insisting that his father's WWII footlocker was upstairs and it contained his father's Navy uniform but G kept saying it wasn't and Hubby went and dug around in the garage finding an old chest that contained other junk.  G said she remembered the chest but didn't think it really had anything in it.  So back to the evening of Dec. 23rd as BIL was fighting the lock on one bedroom I see G slide by and go into the other room and dive to the bottom of the closet.  I go in behind her and lo and behold she's got the damn trunk.  She fidgets and fusses around like she can't get it out.  I all but shove her out of the way and yank the trunk out.  The door was so blocked with crap I had to lift it over my head and scream for BIL to come get it from me but I got it out.  After that the guys got things locked up from G, SIL went to the house where Mom and the kids were and unloaded our vehicles and cursed G.  SIL then went home to mind her brood that she'd left her 13 year old of in charge of all afternoon.  Hubby popped in, unloaded the trunk and some other stuff and then went to move stuff into an uncle's garage.  I couldn't help but look in the trunk and waves of nausea broke over me.  The trunk was stuffed with family pictures from when FIL was a child, letters and pictures he'd written home from Vietnam, and his father's WWII Navy uniform.  I literally bawled so hard I was gasping for breath.  So many memories and stories that bitch stole from Hubby and my children.  I hate her.

Christmas Eve came and went with lot's of snide remarks made about G and discussion.  A nice meal with shared with SIL and her family, MIL, grandma-in-law, Mom and of course us.  SIL and I took Sonny Boy and a her two oldest to the 10:30 nativity service at their church which is always very nice.

Christmas Day came and after Santa had done his duty bringing Nerf Hail Fire guns,  frankly we didn't have any plans.  Grandma-in-law came over to supervise Mom and the kids.  Really she just wanted to play with the kids, at 92 she still has a magical way with young 'uns.  MIL, Hubby and I went over to FIL's and started boxing stuff.  MIL was amazed at the amount of stuff hidden away.  While MIL never called G a lying lazy bitch - something SIL didn't hesitate to tell her to her face - she did yell at her and I've never seen my MIL do that.  While G was preoccupied with MIL going through one room I went at the other room unearthing more gems that belonged to FIL.  Hubby and a family friend worked in the garage and did the heavy lifting and we managed to clean out some of the junk in the rooms so we could actually move.  By the end of the day we no longer felt the need to lock her out of the upstairs rooms.  During the day I found a T-shirt I planned to wear the next trip over.

The next day I went back taking Mom along to pack the last of stuff.  I wore an old T-shirt of FIL's that said " Caution, Don't Fuck with me - I Fuck back", of course under a zipped up hoodie while the kids were around, when I got there it was hot as hell because the pipes had frozen overnight and big heaters were rolling so I had ample opportunity to point it out to G.  I planned on hitting two closets that were packed.  One of the closets was FULL of boxes that G had ordered off of E-bay and never opened.  ALL of the boxes were addressed to FIL.  G claimed she had used his paypal account and then repaid him, hard to believe because she only held a job for about 8 years of the 18 they lived together and never paid for anything.  We figured since the boxes were addressed to FIL and unopened they were legally his and therefore belonged to his heirs.  Mom got an earful as G and I argued over the contents of the closet but I just pointed to the T-shirt and took the boxes to the van.  Later SIL I opened some up, postmarked 2003 mind you and found outfits like this:
I couldn't resist putting that on.  SIL had some girlfriends over to open the rest.  I had planned on attending that little event but that day had dragged out long and I didn't make it over to her house. 

After the last day of loading E-bay and a supply closet that contained huge amounts of cleaning supplies that had dire need of use in the house I concluded that there was nothing else left in the house worth the argument.

Friday, Hubby did some chores related to securing stuff and attended the funeral of the FIL of the best man at our wedding.  Saturday was spent picking up the dog from G and getting her groomed, renting a u haul trailer and packing. 

Sunday we drove home, emotionally and physically exhausted with a huge new flat screen TV, misc stuff, and Callie.  If you look back far enough in the blog you might find a picture of her as she lived with us the first 18 months of her life.

For now we have served G with a Notice to Vacate and pray she will get out without further action needed.  Our house resembles FIL's tornado mess after coming home and unloading.  We still have tons of stuff to sort through, yard sale, and the like.  For now things will be in storage here and there until spring when we can sort it and get rid of it.

Well I must make like Callie, she's honestly snoring pretty loudly, gosh get Hubby's nose fixed and ad another snore to the night time noise.

If this wasn't a Christmas to remember I don't know what was.  With all the stress not one picture was taken Christmas morning, in fact we didn't even take the real camera with us on the trip.

I hope your Christmas was better than ours and I hope the new year brings us all some peace.