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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Turkey day prep and freebie

Imagine that most of you are busy with do-ahead Thanksgving preparations and, perhaps, guests. You will get to this post when you take a little break, right? We are keeping it simple this year as it is just the two of us. Dad doesn't eat turkey or the other items we are making so no point in putting aside goodies to take to him. Grandson, Tyler, got in from USC last night and it looks like we might see him tomorrow in time to watch the Redskins game with him. Like most young men, I'm sure he will find room for a little snack with us. I don't plan to post tomorrow, taking some time off from everyone except my husband, to reflect and be grateful for our blessings. Let me sincerely wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving. For those who don't celebrate as we do in the US, I hope you will just take a day to be grateful for your blessings.

Here is today's installment of Fall In Love:
It was the most beautiful autumn she could remember.But then love makes everything look better, doesn't it? All seemed to be going right. He was settled in his new office and very happy to be working with troubled adolscents. Her classes were going well with most of her composition students in the A-B range and her fiction workshop included two students with serious potential. As for her own novel, after months of stagnation, she was again making good progress. Love gives you wings! she thought as she doodled a winged heart in the margins of her date book. And more and more both alluded to a shared future. Yes, her world was as sunny as the vase of sunflowers gracing her table.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Monday again? More from Fall In Love freebie

Cleaned out a lot of paperwork over the weekend - but that was just ours. Have a stack of stuff to file for Dad. Never ends. Did a major job of cleaning the master bath and rewarded myself with a bath using one of those bath fizzies. Smelled so good! Got to try to make some of those. Paid bills and did a few more things. Always seem to be behind on my to-do list. Today its laundry and some cooking.

You have probably noticed that sometimes I get carried away and create large zips, while others times just a small amount. Today is another large one - in 2 zips. The previews are not indicative of element sizes, nor do they reflect what is actually in each zip. I just divided the items into 2 zips. That being said, here is today's vignette.

They had made plans to drive to a nearby state park and walk around to admire the fall colors and after, stop at a historic inn for a late lunch. That morning when he came over to pick her up, a drizzle had begun. Was she still up to going to the park? She produced umbrellas and put on her boots. No way a little rain was going to spoil their time together. Some of the trees had reached their peak and dropped their leaves but others were blazing with color. Due to the light rain, there were few people walking the paths through the forest so it was quiet except for the sound of leaves scrunching underfoot, raindrops and an occassional scurrying sound of small animals seeking shelter. They were so comfortable with one another now that silences did not bother them at all. They were happy to walk along, exchanging affectionate glances, or pointing out sights. The rain ended soon and they were able to fold up their umbrellas. Birds left their hidden perches and flew about. A fox took a leisurely stroll before perching himself upon an old tree stump where he proceeded to groom himself, unaware he was being watched. Just as they were turning back to head to their car, they spotted a fawn at the edge of the woods, daintily chewing some grass.


Have doctor appointments tomorrow so don't know if I will get a post up or not.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Since I was late posting Thursday & Friday (freebie)

such that the timing pushed them into the next day, I'm posting again.

Skipping ahead to December, here is what I've decided to do. Most people want Christmas kits, no matter how many they have. Since it's going to be a busy month for everyone, rather than starting from scratch I'm going to use 4 starter kits I previously made under my Sher Scraps 4 CU line. Each includes a doll (Poser figure), a couple papers, and some elements. Each package will be my starting point; I'll add more papers and elements to make a mini kit from each. Below is a preview of the starter kits as I sold them to give you some idea of what is coming.

***Oops! Thata preview should have read 7. Thought I'd changed that.

Today it's a road trip in Fall In Love freebie

Today we did a couple errands, dropped in to our favorite pizza place to get a couple slices for lunch and went across the street to see Dad. Oddly enough the little shopping center that is home to New York Pizzeria is on Newtown Rd and just across on a side street is the nursing home. John went on back to see Dad while I exchanged a few words with the social worker. She had told me last week that she would arrange a haircut for Dad. He doesn't have much, like a low halo above his neck that is now duck fluff, but he does have some beard that needs to be trimmed. Turns out the barber went to get him and found him in bed. When he told Dad why he was there, Dad just pulled the covers up over his face and ignored him. Getting child like. Today he was in the wheelchair refusing to eat his lunch sandwich of chicken salad. He doesn't like chicken, fish, so many things. Instead he was slowly munching on some Pringles from the can I brought him last week. He did seem to recognize us but didn't say much. His hearing aid wasn't in and he didn't know what he'd done with it. I brought him the small bag of peanut M & M's he'd asked for and he had to get into those. We thought he'd try to eat the whole bag but he only had one then carefully folded the top of the bag and stored it away. When we left, I bent down to kiss him goodbye and told him I love him (I always do) and he surprised me by saying, I love you too. Dad usually doesn't engage in emotional responses.

Once home I didn't do much but fix a light dinner and work on Fall In Love. I'm happy to hear you are enjoying my little experiment. I think of each installment as a vignette. Today's took a bit longer and ended up being too large for one zip to be comfortably downloaded, so I split it in two. Tomorrow's graphics are ready, just need to do some text. Then I'll get busy doing housework - a lot - so Sunday I can bake fruitcakes.

I made an error in labeling these a and b in that b fits the first part of the story and a is more for the second. But you will figure it out.

Until tomorrow.

Friday, November 17, 2017

More of Fall In Love

Sorry I missed posting yesterday. You've heard me mention my Aunt Sissy and her boyfriend, John. John had called a couple days ago with some bad news about Sissy's health and also that of her son. We arranged a dinner with them at a place that's about an hour and half away. Picked them up in the afternoon and headed out. But almost dinnertime isn't a good time to be on the roads, especially when there is construction going on all over lately. Took us over two hours to reach our destination. The trip and dinner gave us time to find out more about the health problems and offer support. Sissy had a knee replacement over the summer and had continued to have a lot of pain. More tests and x-ray studies were done and, as she put it, the hip on that side was "all eaten up with arthritis." She will have hip replacement done in February. Around the same time she had that diagnosed, she heard from her son and learned he will be having open heart surgry next month to replace a valve. It seems that when docs were giving him chemo and radiation a few years back for a mass on his chest, it damaged his heart. Last night my son called and in talking to him I learned his MIL is a candidate for a lung transplant. When it rains, it pours.

I think there are periods when my father doesn't recognize people. You know how babies smile as a defense? Several times now I've gone to see him and he smiles at me like that. Not my Dad's smile, not like he knows me. He doesn't speak until I do and then it's a general response.The other day when I went over to take him some things he'd asked for, he was asleep with the tray table across his bed. Woke him gently and he had that expression he gets when the nurses wake him for meds or vital signs. I spoke to him but he didn't reply so I just started putting the items on the tray table, talking like everything was fine. I'd brought him a couple drinks, chapstick, and some Pringles (doc said okay to give him a little of what he wants now and then). I was putting things away and only when I touched the Pringles can did he speak: "Don't go away with that." His fine motor movements are failing so I opened tha can for him and he began happily to munch and stare at the TV. So we watch Frankie and Johnny together without another word from him. Eventually he snuggled down in the covers and went back to sleep.

It was the middle of the week and it was supposed to be a quiet evening. The plan was to go for pizza, then just hang out. But when he arrived at the apartment, she was standing in the open doorway looking upset. She had her cell phone to her ear but shut it down when she saw him approaching. I've been trying to reach you. Have to cancel, got to get to the hospital. She reached in to grab her purse off the table the girls kept next to the door and yelled back to Sammi. On my way. Be sure to lock up. He followed her to the elevator. Are you alright? Whats going on? On the way down, she told him about the call she had gotten from the roommate of one of her students. The girl had tried to commit suicide. As the EMTs were taking the injured girl out, she had asked the roommate to call and say she couldn't attend class next day. You must mean something to her, he said and let her know he would take her to the hospital so she wouldn't have to worry about driving. Why me? Because she has no one else, she answered for herself. The student had come into her office one day on a pretext, cried and told her she had been raped at a party. The girl was at odds with her parents and at nineteen could say no to them being called. She'd listened, consoled, and helped the student get the care she needed, even personally taking her for her first appointment with one of the school's therapists. She thought things were going okay.

He listened intently, told her she had done all the right things. But he knew she was feeling she'd missed something and was somehow at fault for what was happening now. At the hospital, they had to wait for permission to see the girl. When the doctor learned who they were, she was allowed to visit for just a few minutes while he waited outside for her. When she came out of the room, her posture seemed a little rigid, her face tense. She shook her head when he started to question her and they left the floor in silence. In the elevator on the way down to the parking lot, tears began to stream down her face but still she waved him off. It was only after they gotten into his car that she reached for him. He let her sob for awhile until she regained control and explained what she'd been told. Her student had been going to therapy, doing all that was suggested; had been holding up. Then she got a call from Student Health Services telling her she had contracted a sexually transmitted disease; that triggered her suicide attempt.

What can I do to help? she wanted to know. We need to eat first, keep you healthy or you won't be able to help anyone. Then we will discuss it. They gave up the idea of pizza and stopped at a sub shop instead, getting him a sub and her a container of cream of broccoli soup to take home. Back at the apartment, Sammi wisely stayed out of the way. They ate and then talked for hours until he insisted on making her a hot toddy to drink before she headed off to bed. At the door, she sat the mug down and threw her arms around him. Thank you! For what? For being here, for helping me, but mostly for being you. A long, tender kiss ended the night, leaving her outlook a little brighter.


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Tuesday freebie - late

About a week later, he picked her up to go to dinner. On the drive to the restaurant, she thought he seemed cool and distant and she wondered if he was about to say goodbye. Conversation just wasn't flowing as naturally as it had in the past, so while they sat sipping wine and waiting for dinner, she decided to ask what was going on. What? he asked looking befuddled. Something is wrong. Are you trying to find a way to tell me you don't want to see me any more? Because . . . . Before she could say another word, he reached for her hand, looked directly into her eyes and said, Nothing could be further from the truth. But there is something on my mind.
When she encouraged him to talk, she learned that he was struggling with a decision about a career move. When he'd completed his training as a clinical psychologist, he'd taken the first job that came along in his field. He had a lot of loans to pay back and thought it the best decision at the time. But he wasn't really happy working for a state run program for addicts. He felt the majority of the patients he saw were there because therapy was required for them to receive methadone to replace the street drugs they had become addicted to. I want to work with people who will sincerely work to improve their issues, he explained. He had just received a couple job offers and was trying to decide what he wanted to do.
Talking over the pros and cons of the offers, he realized he did not want to take the one out of state. While the working conditions and positions were about equal, the one out of state would pay better. But money wasn't the main concern for him; he realized he didn't care about making less if he could remain in the city and have her company.


Going out of town on Wednesday (today) so not sure if I will be able to post or not.

Monday, November 13, 2017

I'm short a few spoons today

Are you familar with Spoon Theory? Those of you who have chronic pain conditions probably have heard of this. For those who have not:
My apologies but I was in bed most of yesterday and some of today. I've run short of spoons and will have to postpone today's post of zip 4 Fall In Love.
Thank you for understanding.