Monday, August 06, 2007

So...this is where I've been:

I'm trying to remember just when I last spoke with any of you...I know it was long, long ago and much has happened. Like most of the things in my life, I think I have to keep working something until it's perfect before I let you see. I realize now it just ain't going to happen. There will be no perfection here in this blog anytime soon.

Just to catch you up, I'll tell you what has been going on here, in this dusty house on the hill. Photos are always available, but you have to ask...

Since my last REAL post:

  • Mark took my mother and me on a luncheon cruise on the gateway clipper for mother's day. The weather was perfect, the lunch was wonderful and we did not tussle, spar or throw each other overboard.

  • Andy and Kailyn got engaged. I am not looking for my mother-of-the-groom dress because they are looking at a long engagement and everyone knows I'll be skinny by time she graduates from college.

  • Tony graduated from high school. I was certain that I was going to be a basket case, after all, this is my baby, but I got to mother-of-the-student stint was 33 years long and I was READY to retire my PTA badge. By time they announced his name, I was feeling rather smug and very victorious!!!

  • Although I was feeling smug and victorious, I was heartbroken. I love his name...his first name was my father's name, his middle name is Mark's grandmother's maiden name. These names were carefully chosen and a source of pride. I couldn't believe it when they announced him as TONY-middle name-last name. TONY???? When I asked, he said they were given the choice and since they would not announce him as Conquistador, he chose Tony.

  • We finally had our driveway paved. We probably would have been better off to invest the money in medical school for all four children. It was expensive. It took forever. I hate it. The paver is coming next week to make me happy. Tune in for another chapter...

  • We had our annual July 4th picnic on July 7th this year. Two days before the picnic, when Mark mentioned he had invited yet another person, I forced him to sit down and take a count on just how many people he expected since we supply the meat, buns and beer. He said not many, that means he had invited about 65 people. We were blessed: only 53 were here to eat.

  • Last year's party was memorable because one of Andy's friends is a licensed pyrotechnician and we had fireworks. This year Mark's brother and his wife brought their Moon Walk (yes, one of those inflatable rooms that you jump in). I think the adults had more fun than the kids.

  • We took our third annual 'last family vacation' this year. Every year we say that the boys are growing up, finding new thing to do, working, going to school...surely next year they won't want to go with us. This year we not only took them, but we took the girlfriends/fiances as well! I was thrilled since the girls could not understand the boys until they had seen Thousand's just a part of who we are.

  • Patricia and Sandro, the owners of the houseboat that we rented for our island vacation since Tony was 12, finally retired. We had to find another way to see the islands.

  • We did...a wonderful, small, family run motel that was quiet, attractive, immaculate, reasonable, and right on the shipping channel. I think we rented half of their rooms. Imagine sitting on the lawn, eating breakfast, and seeing a freighter slipping past!

  • This was the first time in 4 years that Mark and I were in the same state on my birthday. Not only were we in the same state, but we were on vacation. I had gotten used to celebrating alone, but this time all 6 of us plus Patricia and Sandro celebrated...makes getting older much easier!

  • On the first day of my vacation, I got the message that my dear and brave friend, Dave, in Washington state, had died. Dave was a parapelegic who was confined to his bed for the past 4 years. RIP, Dave!

  • Both boys enrolled in college. Andy's company reimburses his tuition so he's a part time student and works full time. Tony's job slows down in late October and will come to a temporary halt in January, so he's going full time and working part time.

  • Andy took us for a tour of his company and to see some of the work he's doing. I don't have permission to talk too much or to show photos, but let me tell you, they are engineering marvels...he has much to be proud of!

  • Mark is finally scheduled to have foot surgery in two weeks. Although we are not looking forward to his recuperation (if men had the babies, we would have remained childless, he would not have made it through morning sickness), we are hoping it helps. He has a bone spur on the tip of his toe and his baby toe needs to be pointed in a more appropriate direction.

  • Two weeks ago, early on a Saturday morning, my 75 year old mother called to tell me that she had fallen off a ladder while cleaning gutters. I asked if she was okay, she said yes. I asked if she needed me to come, she said yes. When I got there, I found that she was sitting (the neighbors had carried her into the house) and couldn't get up. We called the ambulance. Final tally was a broken pelvis in 2 places, a broken rib and a broken elbow. She is now in an assisted living facility until she can get around better. They are saying another 2 to 3 weeks.

  • We are selling her ladder. She is grounded.

  • On August 1, I lost another old friend to complications of life with diabetes. I think it was a wake up call. My fasting blood sugar this morning was 146. I need to slap myself around.

  • I am knitting every chance I get. I have given out a few pair of socks that were supposed to be Christmas gifts. Not sure that I'll hit the 20 pair target, but I'll be close!

And that, my dear friends, is my life up to now, in a nutshell.

What? You need photos? Here's just a few:

The Happy Couple

The Ring! The Graduate!
The Chow Line, 7/07/07The view from our room
Thousand Islands

The guys on 'the rock.' I take a photo of the three of them, on this rock, every time we go there since Tony was two!
The kids at Boldt Castle

Sunset from our room!

Till next time!


jill said...

Wow! And here I thought you were out stocking up on plastic forks for a night when boredom hits.

Congrats to both the boys...and a smack to Conquistador for me. Breakin' his mama's heart like that.

ColorJoy LynnH said...

Wowie, you have been busy.

Definitely take away the ladder. My dad fell off one when he was merely 40, my mom will be 74 in a week or two (I think, I may be off one year) and she has given up high heels and had her driveway cement re-poured so she won't trip and fall. Go, Mom!

Socks. The ultimate project. Portable, simple in many ways, repetitive, easy to finish. Good for you, in this otherwise busy-busy-busy time.

Great to see you post again!

Mary Anne said...

hey, you've been busy as all get-out this summer! It was fun to read your story in this way.

Anonymous said...

What a great post! Congrats to the engaged, the graduate, etc. Sounds like you had a fantastic vacation. Hope mom recovers quickly!


Unknown said...

Jan, You sound like a very busy Gal..
What a lovely comment you left on my blog.. how it touched my heart! Bless you :-}
Yes if you can knit socks (something I have not a clue how to do) you can make these charms. Have fun!
My 10 year old Granddaughter just started to knit. She is making a scarf. She's been working on it while in the hospital..This is not easy for her becuause she has arthritis in her wrists & hands..I'm so proud of her!
I hope your Mother is feeling better. I'm so sorry to hear she feel off that ladder. I could not get over that she was cleaning out her gutters! She sounds very active. Good idea selling that ladder.
Have a lovely Sunday!~Mary~
PS hope you find the yarn for the red socks.

Kare said...

What a nice surprise to see your posts! I was hanging on for a long time.

You certainly have been busy. What's wrong with the driveway? I hope your mom is ok. I can't believe that she was up cleaning out gutters! Good for you for grounding her. ; )
Congrats on the engagement!
I drove by Thousand Islands once and was totally awed. Some day I'd like to visit there.

Julie said...

Oh my goodness, you've been busy! Sounds like, overall, things are doing well. Congrats to both of the boys, on graduating and on the engagement. How wonderful!

I think the vacation you took sounds marvelous - how awesome to be able to take the boys and their girlfriends. You know you have a good family when your grown kids still want to hang out with ya. :-)