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Old 11-02-2015, 08:50 AM   #1101
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Thanks, folks.

The meatloaf et al was delicious, but brought a tear to my eye putting it together on my plate, as I had done so many times for Doug.

It's just all part of it....piece by piece, bit by bit....you just get through it.


I also could not fail to take note of the fact that I very rarely prepare and consume an entire, balanced meal all at one time these days. I balance out my day...most days ...but it is rarely all on the same plate at the same time.

And, that's okay. He needed that, but I don't.


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Old 11-02-2015, 02:01 PM   #1102
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Maggie, I can relate. Joe loved my lasagna....he said he preferred it over ones made by his Italian mom and sis! It was a joy to make it for him. I made the last one for him...doubt that I'll ever make it again...just would not seem right. We all find our way through the grief...in our own way...in our own time. Evelyn.
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Old 11-03-2015, 11:21 AM   #1103
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Got to trimming flowering shrubs yesterday and, about 1/3 of the way thru, I nicked my electrical cord and that was the end of that. Tripped the breaker switch and destroyed the cord.

Doug would have looped that cord over his shoulder to keep it well out of the way of the way of the blade.....I will try that next time.

Finished them by hand, with snippers and a hacksaw .....a much more arduous and time consuming task, but I was sweaty enough that a trip to the store for a new cord would have required changing clothes and cleaning up. In addition to the fact that the debris gathering guys from the city would be by yesterday morning, and I didn't want stuff sitting til next week.

So, snip and pull and cut and gather up into my Gorilla Cart to haul to the street I did. I really love that Gorilla Cart.

I really need a small chain saw for some of these, but don't really trust myself with one. When my yard guys come in a couple of weeks to rake and haul to the curb the mass of leaves that is gathering in my back yard, I will have them use theirs to give a cleaner trim, as my older shrubs look a bit as if a runaway lawnmower went over them.

Dropped three prayer shawls off early this morning, bought a new outdoor cord and got the fingerprinting and TB test done that is required for me to be a certified hospice volunteer.....needed so they can get 12 volunteer hours of credit for each shawl donated. .

Going to get at least two completed per month for them, is my plan. Something productive and meaningful to do, and maybe at some point I will be up for visiting hospice patients.....but not any time soon.


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Old 11-03-2015, 11:25 AM   #1104
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Old 11-04-2015, 08:41 AM   #1105
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My prayer shawls were well received .....I hope their hospice recipients find comfort in this small bit of something done for them by my hands, to help them thru the final days of their lives.


Had an email from a fellow Airstreamer from the recent Moraine View rally....a newbie, who had a local friend who came by who he wanted me to meet. A Culpepper, also a minister, and from Southeast Georgia.

Those of you who followed the Pray for Doug thread, and my first Different Life thread, may remember Dr. Wright Culpepper, the hospital chaplain and outstanding human being who helped me and our children thru Doug's hospitalization and death last year.

It was the Faithworks Ministries he headed in Brunswick, GA, that received memorial donations in lieu of flowers....about half of which were used to purchase a memorial bench, the remainder put into a Stranded Travelers Fund for Faithworks to dole out as needed.

At any rate, when this man mentioned his friends name, my ears immediately perked up.....how many Culpepper's could there be from SE Georgia who are not related in some way?

As it turns out, Bill's friend....also a minister....found my Dr. Culpepper on his families' website....they are in fact, distant cousins.

When I met and spoke with this man a few weeks ago, I could see distinct facial similarities.....in addition to, what are the odds? Small world.


New cord in place, will try to clean up a bit at least my shrubs that face the street. Grands will be here next weekend for their annual wild leaf romp, fire in the chiminea, hot dog roast, etc., in the backyard.... then the yard will be put to bed for the winter.

A rite of fall at the little house, and a time limited experience as these kids grow up.

I love those grandbabies.


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Old 11-05-2015, 03:40 PM   #1106
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I have had a busy week, and Lily and I are doing an Iowa run Sat-Sun, so it is just going to be one of those.

I had a headlight and a fog light on my Matrix out, so went by AutoZone....where the employees will do the dirty work of removing the old ones, sell you new, and put them in place at no extra charge. I like. . The sweet young woman who helped me was there the last time I was in, for wiper blades.

Putting herself thru ISU working behind the counter at AutoZone, and taught by her supervisors everything she knows. Majoring in Criminal Justice, she will graduate in December, look for work in her field and start saving for graduate school. Good for her.

Too much trying to do it all at once going on, and graduating up to your eyebrows in student loan debt, in my opinion. Back in the day, if your parents couldn't or wouldn't put you thru college, you worked full time and went to school part time, and most every full time student I knew....including me....had a part time job to help out. It's just what you did.

A nice young lady, solid, capable, and emanating personal strength, I predict she will do well.

We've had a nice run of beautiful fall days this week, tomorrow cold sets back in and will likely stay for the duration.

A bit more yard work and hauling of wood, and I am ready for winter.


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Old 11-05-2015, 05:01 PM   #1107
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Suggest you look at a small electric chainsaw. I find that they are much easier to use than the gasoline powered versions.
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Old 11-05-2015, 05:55 PM   #1108
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Thanks, Mimi.....I have been looking at electric saw type things online, but haven't seen anything suitable. Maybe need to google electric chainsaws.

I have just been watching on the NATIONAL NEWS the unfolding story of the Fox Lake, Il, police officer who staged his suicide a couple of months ago to look like a murder..... as his 7 year long embezzlement of funds from a youth program he headed was about to be exposed.

His wife and adult son are under investigation as accomplices and text messages show he tried to hire a hit man last summer to kill the administrator looking into his program.

A 30 year veteran of the police force, well respected and above suspicion.....until it all began to unfold.

They really do walk among us.


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Old 11-05-2015, 11:32 PM   #1109
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Maggie,
I used a chainsaw till I began to be concerned about self injury, (gave it away). I found a reciprocating saw, with a variety of different length blades to be safer and more efficient for many tasks. An 18 volt battery powered one works well. Evelyn.
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Old 11-06-2015, 02:16 AM   #1110
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Dittoes on that. A chainsaw of any size is very dangerous unless in trained hands. A battery-powered reciprocating saw is easier to handle. I suggest a 20 volt battery one such as Dewalt or similar decent brand. Look at a few at your local big box home center and heft a few to see what makes sense to you. Pick one you can easily wield.


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Old 11-06-2015, 06:33 AM   #1111
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'Too much trying to do it all at once going on, and graduating up to your eyebrows in student loan debt, in my opinion. Back in the day, if your parents couldn't or wouldn't put you thru college, you worked full time and went to school part time, and most every full time student I knew....including me....had a part time job to help out. It's just what you did.'

OR, went into the military and if one came home, lucky for me I did, went to school on a full "scholarship" - The GI Bill. Plus worked full time while in school. No regrets.

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Old 11-06-2015, 06:57 AM   #1112
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Hmmmm.....reciprocating saw.

Thanks for the suggestions. I'll have to look for one of those.

I did see a little Black & Decker electric saw online, with carry case, that looked manageable, too. Don't want anything too heavy nor unwieldy, lest I take a chunk out of my leg.


Yep, Bud, that GI bill put many a Nam Vet thru college back in the day.

It's the "I want it all....now" mindset that cripples many of our young folks financially these days, along with the ease of getting those student loans. You seldom do get something for nothing.

There is, apparently, a means of forgiving student loan debt if one works in a nonprofit for 10 years, I think, which can help both ways. I know some who are working toward that.


Doug's mom is starting to fail from the chronic blood loss. She is still in no pain, thank goodness, just fatigued and sleeping most of the time.

98 next month. A good woman, who raised a good man.

Glad I am seeing her tomorrow.


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Old 11-06-2015, 07:45 AM   #1113
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Thanks, Mimi.....I have been looking at electric saw type things online, but haven't seen anything suitable. Maybe need to google electric chainsaws.

The two we have are Stihl brand and have been very good. Safety precautions are always necessary, of course.
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Old 11-06-2015, 07:57 AM   #1114
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This is my thread, so I can write about what I want....as long as I stay within Forum rules .....so I want to speak a minute to personal strength. This has been nagging at me, begging to be written about.

Some people are personally strong because that is born within them from a loving, solid, supportive, nurturing, informative, tutorial, educational, etc., upbringing.....most of the proper elements for a really good life, imprinted on and cultivated within them by parents, family members, other caregivers/support persons, etc., within their life circle. They seem to live a charmed life, born of the essential elements that make it so.

These people learn to roll with the punches because they have had all these required and critical elements, plus that unwavering, rock solid foundation beneath them and behind them....to catch and upright them when they stumble, trip or fall, and to help them learn constructively from their experiences.

Others.....are strong because they have survived, absent many or most of those essential elements.....pulling themselves together and going on, but without that rock solid, ever present, foundation.

This is the reality of life for most people, to a greater or lesser degree.... and, if you spend any time at all talking intimately with others, you know it.

The latter folks often function pretty well but tend to be held together with varying amounts of sturdy safety pins and super glue, as I used to tell many of the mothers I worked with.....most folks are overcoming whatever, trying to go on and make a better life.

They are scarred internally, tho, often deeply.... their personal strength being more reactive than carefully cultivated over a lifetime, and they can be a bit frayed around the edges. When they fall, they get up and keep on going, but that doesn't erase the scars nor the experiences that created them.

A lot of the mothers, particularly, that I worked with were more open wounds than scars.....and believed most everyone else had had a near perfect life, and that is why their lives were better, they had jobs, a home, good relationships, etc.

Not so. These mothers believed their destinies were attached to and dictated by their wounds. Not true. Safety pins and super glue. Healing for them in large part meant knowing those were there, that there was a way up and out.

Be aware of emotional scars....some deep, some not so much. Because you can't see them does not mean they aren't there and affecting those that carry them.....you see them in the frayed edges that appear sometimes on the surface.

Be kind, and be compassionate.


There, I said it.


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Old 11-06-2015, 08:13 AM   #1115
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Like this....
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Old 11-06-2015, 09:31 AM   #1116
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Safety pins and super glue...that is me. I survived a mentally and physically parent, and have the scars to prove it. To this day I have no regrets, life is what you choose to make it. Your choice. Don't blame others, because ultimately you make choices, and you live with the results.

One of my cures was to live in beautiful places, where the beauty of nature became a part of my soul. I am still doing that fifty years later, in my Airstream.

Like I said, choices.
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Old 11-06-2015, 09:39 AM   #1117
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Hi, Vince!

And, I agree.


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Old 11-06-2015, 11:41 AM   #1118
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very well said Maggie...
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Old 11-06-2015, 12:03 PM   #1119
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Hi Gail!

And thanks......the social worker in me never really shuts down. The good, the bad, and the ugly of it.

Some people see vulnerabilities in others, and pounce with their claws out, teeth gnashing wildly, and tails wagging in delight. I despise that.


House is cleaned and pasta bake put together and in the frig for dinner tomorrow night with the Iowa grand and hers.

Planning ahead is what I do.


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Old 11-06-2015, 01:47 PM   #1120
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Maggie, I do so look forward to actually meeting you one day, hopefully next year at Grand Tetons! I admire your strength and fortitude, but, also...your compassion for those less fortunate. You have a very nurturing soul, common among the 'caregiver'!

I came from a large family, 7 siblings...(Mom and Dad really loved each other...good catholic types)! Depression era...no money for college. I was the first to go to college in my family...showed some of the others it could be done...with the strong work ethic we were raised by. We were taught we could be anything we wanted in life ...if we were willing to work for it! And that I did! 18 hrs a day ...half in nursing school and on wards as a student nurse...plus half that evening as a tech on the wards, then study at night and during breaks.

Was it hard? Of course , but worth every second of it! My education meant so much to me...because I worked hard, earned it. Nothing was handed to me. No student loans to repay, either.

Many kids today are not willing to do what we needed to do, instead, looking for the easiest way through. I think they miss out on the value of actually working for what you want from life....learning the value of a strong work ethic...the self confidence of earning it on ones own.

Those who take advantage of weakness or vulnerabilities in others...I think there is a special place for them...in H..l! I don't like creepy crawly things...spiders or snakes...especially of the 2 legged variety! Spiders, if inside are destined to be smashed. Snakes need to get out of my gardens quickly. Their 2 legged cousins? ....well, a higher power will deal with them, eventually. Reap what they sow!

DeWalt makes a reliable brand of reciprocating saw. I found a set at Lowes, drill, recip saw, 2 batteries, work light, all in a heavy duty canvas zip bag, at reasonable price. Though I lack strength I once had, I can handle them without difficulty.

BTW, I will be 77 in 2 weeks! Yeah! Still chugging along! Now,if my body would only agree with my mind... I will be more successful in my physical endeavors! Evelyn.
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