Saturday, February 24, 2007

The Ten Commandments for Pets

Ten Commandments
For Pet Owners

1. My life is likely to last 10 to 15 years. Any separation from
you will be very painful.
2. Give me time to understand what you want from me. Do
not break my spirit with your temper, though I will always
forgive you. Your patience will teach me more effectively.
3. Please have me spayed or neutered.
4. Treat me kindly, my beloved friend, for no heart in all the
world is more grateful for your kindness than mine. Don’t be
angry with me for long, and don’t lock me up as punishment.
After all, you have your job, your friends, your entertainment.
I have only you.
5. Speak to me often. Even if I don’t understand your words,
I understand your voice when it’s speaking to me. Your voice
is the sweetest sound I ever hear, as you must know by my
enthusiasm whenever I hear your footsteps.
6. Take me in when it’s cold and wet. I’m a domestic animal
and am no longer accustomed to the bitter elements. I ask for
little more than your gentle hands petting me. Keep my bowl
filled with water. Feed me good food so that I may stay well,
to romp and play and do your bidding. By your side, I stand
ready, willing and able to share my life with you, for that is
what I live for. I’ll never forget how well you’ve treated me.
7. Don’t hit me. Remember, I have teeth that could easily
crush the bones in your hand, but I choose not to bite you.
8. Before you scold me for being lazy or uncooperative, ask
yourself if something might be bothering me. Perhaps I’m not
getting the right food, I’ve been out in the sun too long, or
my heart may be getting weak.
9. Take care of me when I get old. For you will grow old, too.
10. When I am old, or when I no longer enjoy good health,
please do not make heroic efforts to keep me going. I am not
having fun. Just see to it that my trusting life is taken gently.
And be with me on that difficult journey when it’s time to say
goodbye. Never say, “I just can’t bear to watch.” Everything is
easier for me when you are there. I will leave this earth
knowing with my last breath that my fate was always safest
in your hands. I love you.

(This is what I had printed with my name, cell phone and email addy on it to give clients.
I thought it was beautiful and on their worst days I could never imagine living without my furry boys. I still miss my beautiful Sandie who has been gone two years now. The intense pain of her loss is no longer fresh but her presence is sorely missed. )

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Biding Time

We found out yesterday that we should go see Rob's family next weekend instead of this one.
Our niece will be with her father this weekend and we all agree that she should have some time with us. That means being patient another week. I tried to keep busy yesterday but frankly I didn't do much although I talked to my sister-in-law three times on the phone. Her mother finds if difficult to talk about these things and I am able to so I am trying to fill that square for her.

I went to see houses this morning. We had lunch served at a few. I tried not to overeat and I feel sluggish and am thinking that some of the food might have had MSG. Not good. It is quickly approaching 3 and I have floor coverage tonight from 6-9. That means I answer phones or handle people who walk in. It's a dreary day with constant rain and many streets and yards with the melting snow look like lakes. It has warmed up quite a bit. Today would be a good day for me to have sunshine as opposed to rain. Rob loves the rain. He likes to lay in bed and listen to it as he drifts off to sleep. I have always found the rain to be depressing but I am trying to view it differently now. So far it really isn't working though.

I bought the neatest bookmarks to give out about the ten commandments for pets. I really like it and it has my name, information and picture on the bottom. Today I received my business cards that I had waited weeks for. Any day my personalized other items will be arriving. In this business you need to give things away that have your name on them. These things are not cheap so I try to put a lot of thought into them. Have any of you ever received anything from a realtor that you really liked? My financial guy told me he loves to receive recipe cards. I have seen jar openers, fly swatters, notepads and memo boards. I am currently searching for a glass or plastic house that I can use as a candy dish for my open houses.

Well maybe I will take a rainy day nap before I have to leave for the office. Rainy days and Mondays always get me sleepy!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Ash Wednesday and the feelings of the day

Normally on Ash Wednesday I work my schedule around going to a service and receiving ashes. I like the symbolism that we come from ashes and we return to ashes. I like to keep myself on track remembering what in life is truly important.

At 7:30 this morning I received a phone call from my sister-in-law Jennifer, the baby of the family. She had a cat scan yesterday and the results were shocking. She had surgery last Fall for a tumor in the nerve over her voice box. It turned out to be cancerous. They thought they had it all but later realized the "stump" of the tumor was still in the voicebox. They decided radiation was necessary and she just endured two long months of it. She was desperately ill and unable to eat because she has lost most of her ability to swallow. About a month ago she had a feeding tube put in. That has helped to control the weightloss which was holding at a mere 90 pounds. She is not a large woman but still. So, the doctors had warned that the cancer might return. Perhaps as early as two years. Yesterday they confirmed that it already has and is now moving up into her skull. I listened to her talk for a long time. Obviously, her main concern is her seven year old daughter. I made some suggestions to help them both through this rough time. She said she is prepared to have more surgeries or do whatever is necessary. This May her daughter, our niece, is going to make her first holy communion. She is very excited about that. We all are. Today I feel numb. I want to do things I am powerless to do. All I can do is try to listen for the most part. It doesn't seem like much though. We are considering going up to Rhode Island for the weekend but waiting to see if that's a good idea for them.

Sometimes little things in life seem important. Then something like this happens and you realize how vulnerable we all are. How precious each day is. I still have hope. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best. That is my mind set. At times like this the close to three hundred miles between us makes it feel a world apart. I need to hug my unicorn sister. Soon.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Ch ch changes

Before I do my entry I want to say that I was saddened by reading the post by Pennie. For those of you who journaled on AOL you will remember the blonde Pennie who did such humorous entries and stoicly dealt with her polio which came back with a vengance when she was an adult. She wrote about her love and muse, BoSoxBlue as well. I read that Pennie had a brain anneurysm and is now in a rehab. For all of those who knew her, please keep her in your thoughts and prayers and I hope that someday soon we will be reading one of her entries again.

I don't know why I resist change so much. In fact most change has been good for me. Still, I was so reluctant to change my blog to the new format. For one thing, I found it difficult, if not impossible for me to leave comments. I have solved that mystery. I was trying to sign in using my blogger name and password. It will only accept my gmail name and password which are different. After my first comment it automatically fills in that information and although I have entered my gmail addy, it shows my blogger name. Problem solved.

My neighbor I am good friends with has the flu, as do many coworkers. I just wish when people got the flu they would stay home until they were better. And when they resurfaced, I wish they would wear gloves and use sanitizer. My neighbor does all that. When you go to her house you can see sanitizer everywhere. Neither her husband, nor her daughter have the flu and I think that is partly why. Being the germ phobe that I am , I have offered to get her anything she wants and leave it on her porch for her to retrieve when I have safely returned to my own home. She seemed to think that was a good deal.

I think I have IPOD envy. My sweetheart has generously made me a playlist on his IPOD. He has the shuffle from last year that he takes to work and he leaves the new one here. When I am in the kitchen I have it in the docking station. It makes so much more sense to listen to music this way. Instead of playing an entire CD that you only like 2 songs from, you can make a play list of music you really like. It's so much more cost effective to pay 99 cents for ONE song as opposed to about 15 dollars for a CD that you want one song from. Why didn't anyone think of this sooner? I still refuse to have a cell phone that plays music though. My experience is that cell phones don't last long enough to make all that effort with. Just copying the address book is enough. My ancient cell phone had a great feature. You could put someone's HOME, CELL, BUS numbers all in one entry. I loved that. The Razor doesn't allow me to do that. I have to have separate entries for each. Much too confusing. It does have other nice features and BlueTooth technology is great when you're driving. In New Jersey it is illegal to drive while talking on the phone so for the price of less than one ticket you might as well get the ear piece. Besides, I like to be safe in the car.

My new job has forced me to learn about all the technology to make it easier for me. I purchased a GPS which I really needed and I am loving it. I found the best for me was the cheapest. For $299.00 plus tax I can put an address in and just go. There are so many new developments, it just simplifies things. Rather than reading words or a map while driving, this pleasant voice tells me when to turn. If I make a mistake or take a shortcut I hear "Recalculating..." I have an electronic key that gets me into the lockboxes. Many homeowners are opposed to having a lockbox but with this technology it's a great tool for them. The key lets the homeowner or listing agent know who went into the house and when. You can also have your same key updated for neighboring counties. It's amazing. I find I am embracing all this technology that is making my life easier. The hardest part is just making sure all of these devices get charged! Surely sometime soon they will make a device to remind us of all the devices that need charging.

This song is for Jennifer. One of my teen favorites that my childhood best friend and I use to sing......and honestly, sometimes we still do. :)

Friday, February 16, 2007

Who are the people in your neighborhood?

It takes a while to get going in this business. I need to get some listings. Anyone reading this want to sell? I have a few buyers already. That is encouraging. I have learned that real estate agents must be available about twenty hours a day. They work really hard for their money and they need a good background in psychology. Different people need different things. I love the diversity of the people that we meet. I love helping someone find the home that will be the biggest investment that they will make and also the place where their memories will be formed.
I have owned three homes now and I know what they have meant to me. Each with their own happy times and good points.

I am so happy to have a home now surrounded by caring neighbors. The other day when we had the bad ice storm followed by a few inches of snow Rob discovered that his wiper blades had shredded. He called our neighbor who works at Toyota and asked him if he could bring home two for him. Later that night, when Keith got off work he not only brought the blades over but installed them on the truck before running home for his supper. When Rob called him he told him that he could give him the money another time he was just sitting down to watch American Idol. Gotta love neighbors like this and I surely do.

My mother is making steady improvement. She has moments of weakness and that frustrates her. Her sleeping patterns are not back to normal yet. That takes weeks after a hospital stay. I can no longer look at her and not realize that she is 75 years old and in fragile health. My family was never a kissy/huggy type family. I can count the times in my entire life that my mother kissed me. Seriously. When she was in the hospital I leaned over and kissed her goodbye when I left. The other night I through my arms around her and hugged her and kissed her. She actually called to thank me for doing that and when she hung up very quietly I heard "love ya." I am sitting here crying even thinking about that. I have made it my late new years resolution to hug and kiss her more. Hugs are healing. Emotional healing. It's heard to initiate that when you have not grown up with it but I am determined that if I do it enough, it will feel natural.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Wash those hands please.....!!!!!!!

Last Friday night when I arrived at my mother's house she was so ill. We thought it was the flu.
Later the doctor said the infection was in her kidneys which looked very bad on the pet scan.
We have now learned that she became ill from an Ecoli bacterial infection. Seriously ill. The bacteria entered her blood and was everywhere in her body. She was just taken off IV yesterday and put on pills. She says she can never remember being so sick in her entire life.
Another day or so would have been too late to get her medical attention. I just read an entry by Judith HeartSong about someone trying to hand out one of the restaurant pagers which had been contaminated by the woman's hands which had just wiped her nose and touched her dirty tissues. With all the media attention and shows about this topic, I certainly wish people would be more germ conscious. I had my spleen removed at age 23 and since then I have been almost fanatical about being exposed to germs. This was heavily reinforced after my heart surgery. I carry a bottle of gel sanitizer in my purse and in my car. I refuse to shake the hand of someone who is obviously ill and when I arrive in the supermarket I use the gel or a wipe to disinfect the handle of the carriage. My doctor told me this is a huge source of bacteria.

Last night I woke up at 5 a.m. to the sound of ice pelting my bedroom window. Unable to go back to sleep, I went downstairs and began my traditional Valentine heart shaped cookies.
Got them done around 8 a.m. when I went back to bed for two hours. School was closed today. Kids were going door to door offering to shovel driveways for a few dollars apiece. Under the inches of snow lies a solid sheet of ice. I advised Rob not to go to work today but he wanted to.
When he arrived he found so many people were out and the faithful ones who fought the weather and arrived were expected to work twice as hard. He called earlier and now his back is acheing again. I reminded him he will be coming home to a wonderful dinner and some TLC.
That seemed to cheer him up a bit.

Tomorrow I have to leave here at 7:30 a.m. to attend a training seminar about 45 minutes away. I hope the roads will be clear. I just got my car back from a repair and cannot bare the thought of another accident. Neither can my insurance carrier!

It's snowy and white and a winter wonderland. I will stop now and go make some cookie deliveries. Happy Valentines Day to all my friends and their families and significant others.
Happy Valentines Day to Rob with a heartfull of love.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

OH for a boring life..........

Since Tuesday my mother has been sick. By sick I mean unable to hold any food down, no appetite and days and nights inside the bathroom. I talked to her on the phone and she wanted no part of going to the doctors. Last night I made a huge chicken and took some over there for supper. When I saw the condition she was in I could not believe my eyes. My mother is 75 yrs. old but goes to a flea market every Saturday and walks for hours. Honestly, sometimes she seems more energetic than me. She was so weak she could no longer get to the bathroom although she needed to. My 84 yr. old father and myself got her changed twice and cleaned up in the brief time we tried to get her into a vehicle. Although she resisted I told her she simply had to get medical attention. I had been up since 7 that morning and had a frustrating day. I knew what had to be done and prayed I could stay awake long enough to do it. We got her into their van and into the ER and within an hour she was in a private ER room. They had immediately confirmed my diagnosis that she was severely dehydrated. They got an iv bag of fluid into her quickly and did some blood tests. It was soon discovered she had quite an infection. I left the ER about 1 a.m. although they still had not taken her up to her room. My father was unbearable by now and insisting they both belonged in a nursing home. I think I got about four hours sleep before heading back today. She looked drastically improved and was even eating small portions of food. They are giving her two antibiotics intravenously. I shuuder to think what would have happened had I not taken her to the hospital. I think in another day or so she might not have pulled through.

Although tired I made it to the Cingular Wireless store today and got a pink Razor. This will be an early Valentines present. I got the bluetooth headset which was part of a package, good deal. After the rebate it will have cost me $89. I'll be styling. lol My old phone was so old that well you don't even want to think about it. It couldn't take pictures, not that I use my cel phone for pics.

Today I was forced (yes by cyber gun point) to change my blog. Since several of my friends have done this I have been unable to post comments in their blogs. I love their blogs and it has been very frustrating to freeze up every time I have tried. Sometimes I email the comments and other times I just am too lazy. Forgive me.

Well I need to go call and see if the doctor has shared any further updates with my mother.
You know yesterday for the first time I looked at her in a different light. This woman who I always thought would be there looked old and fragile. It hit me that there may be a day where she won't be. I saw her not as the strong parental figure but as a vulnerable and weak elderly person and it was shocking. I heard one of the nurses refer to her as an old lady and it got to me.
On the whole the nurses weren't great but one was, Jason. He really bonded with both of us and was frustrated when they sent him elsewhere for an hour but he made his way back. After I left my mother said he kept a close eye on her, even coming up to say goodbye when his shift ended. I find that small kindnesses at a time like that are worth their weight in gold. Bless you Jason.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Brrrrrrrrrrrrrr It's Cold

The temperature has really dropped here in Jersey and it's cold. I want to go back to Vegas now. Seriously. I miss my Elvis machine like crazy. The one that I won $21 on and I was never a gambler before that. Well, not with real money anyway.

My car is in the shop. On Saturday I had a fender bender. Or was it Friday? Well anyway my car is getting fixed for $400 which I have to pay. Mr. I don't park in the designated rows tells me his car will be $2300 to repair. He offered to let me give him the money and not go through my insurance company. I said no. His car is not even in his name but his company's. He apparently talked them into letting me give them the cash but no thank you just the same. I pay about $2400 a year for car insurance and they can get the tab on this one.

I had a great open house on Sunday. Lots of people and some of them are looking to buy a house. That excites me! Many people go to open houses and fudge their name, or address, or email or phone number. Often they are later embarssed to fess up to that. It's a shame because sometimes you want to contact someone with something you know they want and you can't. I have had a revelation: real estate agents work really hard for their money.

Today I took Rob to work and I must drive his truck to attend a meeting and pick up some groceries. I do not like driving a truck. Not sure if this is because my legs are VERY short or I hate being so high up. The roads were icey this morning and I had to be very careful. This truck can be put into four wheel drive but that does not help on ice, it just helps get through snow. I will never be a truck driving kind of girl I guess. Give me a car with cruise control, a great stereo and tilt a wheel steering and I am a happy driver. Once I get a car with these features I hang onto it for about ten years and it's hard to part with it. This car is pushing 7.

I woke up with a blemish on my face today. How can you be in your 50s and still be breaking out? Mother Nature is cruel. My hair is thinner and with static electricity everywhere due to the constant heat running I am a sorry sight today. It will get worse once I bundle up. My chest has the crackling sound I get from asthma which is due to the cold. I tell you I am one sexy woman today. I need to change out of my jeans with the hole in my knee and put on some professional looking slacks, try to tame my mane, cover my zit, wrap myself up warmly and drive the massive truck over to my meeting. Lord help me.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Happy Birthday my McDreamy

Today is my darling Rob's birthday.
Happy Birthday Baby!
I met Rob just about seven years ago. The first night I met him I was really taken by his smile and gentle way. Many things have taken place in those seven years, good times and bad times. I have to say that even doing the bad times Rob was never less than a caring gentlman. I am so grateful to have him in my life. Last week when my friend invited us to go to Las Vegas and be their honor attendants for their wedding Rob readily agreed, despite an intense fear of flying. He did it and had a great time. Rob is all about having fun.

Yesterday I made a run for bird seed to our local country animal food type store.
On the way out I saw a car coming in and ASSumed they were heading to park in the line of cars that all the others were in. I looked in my rear view and saw it moving. I began to slowly back up and saw nothing in the mirror when I felt resistance as in a heavy metal object. I pulled forward and realized I had hit an SUV. He was in my blind spot I guess. My car received minor damage but his rear passenger door took a nice beating. I was very apologetic to the man, who turned out to be a very nice guy. I did ask him why he had parked in the MIDDLE of the parking lot. He didn't really have an explanation for that. Now I had to call my insurance and put in a claim. I'm not trying to pass the buck. It was my fault and I should have been more careful. Still, I am somewhat annoyed that someone would just park their car in the middle of two rows of parked cars (the parking lot has NO lines of where to park.) Rob, as always, was understanding and even came home early to make sure I was okay. I always know that when the dark clouds are overhead I have a wonderful caring and loving spouse that will make it all seem better. Having spent decades of having to take care of everyone else and not getting much support, I can appreciate him all the better. When we came back from Vegas our friend Don called and asked me if I appreciated Rob. I responded yes and he said that Rob was one of the nicest people he had ever met. Even though I alrady knew that it was good to hear. I am blessed and grateful for it.