Steelers Lost and I’m Sad

Amazing how a little thing like a football game can bring you down, isn’t it? I just saw the Steeler drop their first game this season. I’m sure my niece’s husband is thrilled about it, though, since he’s a Ravens fan. Of course, I was pretty thrilled to see that the Ravens lost to the Browns, so I guess we’re even.

Not a lot to report today except that I’ve started writing for another blog, steelermaniacs.com/wordpress. There I’m known as “bglozik” if you want to check it out.

Published in: on September 30, 2007 at 7:17 PM  Leave a Comment  

Today’s News

Just on the off chance that anyone is actually reading this, we decided to take mom to assisted living tomorrow. That meant that after we visited with her this morning, I had to take dad home and make his lunch. Then, while he got ready to go golfing, I ran to the local K-Mart to pick up the stuff that mom will need in her new digs. I got the shower curtain, but forgot the hooks, so I’ll have to run back there tomorrow. After my shopping trip, I went back to their house, cooked up some dinner for dad and packed most of mom’s things. The stuff is in my car right now since I was too tired to drop it off at the residence.

In case I didn’t mention this, I suffer from Fibromyalgia Syndrome, a chronic pain and fatigue condition. And, boy, am I fatigued! The cause of FMS is not known, nor is the cure. It can be treated in a number of ways including with acupuncture, by traditional Western medicine (meaning drugs for the symptoms), with herbal remedies and dietary adjustments, or with chiropractic treatments massage. Or, a combination of all of these, which is pretty much the way I’ve gone. Mild exercise, especially in the water, also helps. A number of different organizations are doing research into the cause and cure for this condition, including the Arthritis Foundation.

I just noticed that I had my time set incorrectly. I was going 5 hours ahead of GMT, not 5 hours behind. I am not really writing this in the middle of the night, but rather in the late afternoon/early evening. I plan to be sleeping in the middle of the night. I wonder if the time will change now that I’ve changed the options? One way to find out.

Seems that this post disappeared into the ether, but it’s also still here. I don’t really understand it, but, heck, I’ll just trust that it’s out there, somewhere, floating around. Kind of like my brain is now.

Published in: on September 21, 2007 at 3:35 AM  Leave a Comment  

Darn, must have lost the last thing I wrote

I just tried to change some stuff on the post I just finished writing and it’s now gone. At least it looks to be gone. I wonder what I did?

Published in: on September 20, 2007 at 5:43 PM  Leave a Comment  

Life’s Been Crazy!

Things have been a little crazy for me the last few days. Dad was notified by his insurance company that mom has exhausted her coverage in the nursing home and he’ll have to start paying. So, yesterday, we scrambled to find an assisted living facility for her to stay in. But, we couldn’t make a definite commitment because we are waiting for the results of her latest medical tests. Those finally came in and she’s got yet another infection. The nursing home is suggesting that she stay through the weekend, but dad’s put down a deposit on a room at another facility. There is no guarantee that the room will be there next week and I know he won’t want to spend another $300 or $400 for an empty room. I haven’t talked with him about this yet. I thought I’d wait till tomorrow morning to discuss it with him and then we’ll make a decision. Plus, I’m too tired to worry about it myself.

Published in: on September 20, 2007 at 3:38 AM  Leave a Comment  

Sunday Morning Weather

Brrrrrr! That’s about all I can say, which is kind of funny if you knew me. I am a cold weather girl. Dislike heat and especially humidity. But, going from nights in the mid-50s to nights in the high-30s in one day is a little extreme for my blood. No, I didn’t turn on the heat because it’s just going to warm up again. It’s not really fall weather, just a quick chill. At least my little garden didn’t freeze. The flowers still look pretty. I may bring a few in later today so I can actually enjoy them before they do die out on me.

Because it’s chilly, I’m actually going to wear gloves this morning as I drive to church. After all, my hands are the important part since I am the organist and I can’t have them freezing on me now, can I? I love playing the organ for church, but I don’t like accompanying choirs or soloists. I like to lead the singing not take a back seat. Ever since junior high when I had to fill in and accompany the choir on the song Sleigh Ride during the Christmas concert, I’ve hated doing that. I was the back-up for my pal Meredith, but she was sick that week. Of course, I hadn’t really learned the music and I had never played it with the choir. I got lost and just stopped playing. Boy, was the teacher mad. I made a deal with myself to never accompany a choir or anyone ever again.

That’s why I didn’t go out for choir in high school. The high school music teacher was very temperamental and I just didn’t want to deal with that. When I had to take a music test for my first college, she was stunned that there was someone who knew how to play an instrument and she didn’t know about it. That’s the way I wanted it.

The only other time I came close to accompanying someone was at my friend Al’s wedding. He asked me to play and I was honored. I told him I didn’t want to accompany the soloist and he said he’d already arranged for someone else to do the honors. Then, he let me know that I’d be playing the first hymn with a brass ensemble. Little did I know that these guys were part of the Air Force band and were professional musicians. I didn’t find that out till 45 minutes before the wedding when we finally rehearsed together. Good thing they weren’t at the rehearsal the night before because I might not have shown! I managed to get through it all with minimal problems and it was one of the high points in my musical life.

Well, the clock on the computer tells me that it’s just about time to head out the door and down to Braddock for church and the beginning of my long day which includes lunch with dad, a drive to see mom at the nursing facility, and the Steelers-Bills game. Go Steelers!

Published in: on September 16, 2007 at 5:04 PM  Leave a Comment  

Fireworks

So, I’m sitting here just sufin’ the ‘net and someone in the neighborhood starts shooting off a bunch of fireworks. I’m thinking it’s kids just playing around with leftovers from July, but it continues. It looks like it’s something organized. Now I’m wondering what kind of holiday or celebration takes place on September 15. The Ides of September? What would Julius do?

I’m just passing the time till 9 p.m. so I can watch Torchwood on BBC America. It’s this sci fi program based on a character that was originally on Dr. Who, which I don’t watch.

Not much to tell, really. There was a first person article in the paper today about having a garage sale. Seems these people decided one week to have a sale and then held it the following weekend. That’s all the planning they did. Then, they complained about not making much, $60 I think. Well, duh. A garage sale takes a lot of planning, starting with weeding out all the stuff in your house, figuring out when to hold it, where to advertise, and how much to charge for what you are selling. I held one when I moved from Maryland and make a couple of hundred bucks.

Last year, I ran one for my church and we earned about $500 which was matched by Thrivent for Lutherans fraternal benefits society. We added that to the $300 or so we made from a cookie sale earlier in the summer and ended up bringing in nearly $2000 to help pay for our church anniversary celebration. It was quite an experience trying to haggle with the customers who wanted everything for nothing, including one lady who told me that no one would pay the prices we were asking. Well, most people did and it was a rousing success.

Published in: on September 16, 2007 at 5:57 AM  Leave a Comment  

It’s Thursday Already!

Where has this week gone? I can’t believe that it’s already Thursday and I’ve accomplished so little, except having a hair appointment, a pedicure, and a major shopping expedition. That’s what I did today. I decided it was time to get a few new things for fall and winter and I ran to the mall for what was going to be a couple of hours. I left at 9:30 a.m. and got home at 3:00 p.m. But, I got a free lunch out of it.

You know those people that always conduct surveys in the mall? Well, I try to avoid them because I usually don’t want to be bothered. This time I gave in and ended up doing a test on a new frozen entree. I had to answer questions about the packaging, the look of the product frozen, and how it looked and tasted once heated up. Since it was lunchtime and I was hungry, I decided to eat it all. It wasn’t the best frozen entree I’ve ever had, but it wasn’t the worst, either. I also signed up to be on their list of people to call for focus groups. Who knows? Maybe I’ll earn a few bucks for giving my opinion on stuff.

Published in: on September 14, 2007 at 1:42 AM  Leave a Comment  

Rested and Ready to Write

Just got back from my pedicure. I decided to go with a Pittsburgh Steelers theme. So, I now have what amounts to a French manicure look, but done with a black base, yellow tip, and the number “43” painted in white on the big toes. For those of you who don’t know, that’s Troy Polamalu‘s number. He’d be appalled to know about this because he isn’t, or at least doesn’t come across as, a glory hound. But, it’s fun and that’s what counts. Not too many people are going to see my newly painted tootsies unless I end up taking a picture and posting it on the blog, which I may well do. The weather has taken a turn towards fall and I probably won’t be running around in sandals much longer. But, I know they are there.

Now that it is cooling down, I’m wishing I’d signed up for a class at the University of Pittsburgh this semester. I didn’t because I don’t really have time what with all the running around I have to do for my parents. But, I do enjoy taking short classes and auditing regular university classes. Those are the most fun because I get to interact with the kids and learn what they think about stuff. Pitt’s got a great program for people 55 and older. They offer short classes on a variety of topics. These run for 5 weeks at a time and can be about anything including the weather taught by one of the local TV weather guys or reinventing yourself in retirement, taught by a career counselor. The latter got me to do more than think about wanting to write. It got me excited enough to contact a local community magazine and pitch a column. I was thrilled the first time I saw my by line. Nearly everything I wrote while a government employee is classified and can’t be read by the general public, which now includes me.

So, are you bored with this drivel yet?

Published in: on September 12, 2007 at 8:02 PM  Leave a Comment  

What’s This Blog About?

Who knows? It probably should have a point to it, but I’m not sure what that point should be. I figure I’ll just keep writing, producing the journal I’ve never kept, only sharing it with the world.

Some days, my entries will be about helping my elderly parents. Man, that’s harsh on my ears. I don’t have any idea when they went from “aging” to “elderly”, but they did. Of course, my dad doesn’t see it that way. He’s always talking about these “old guys” he sees when he goes to the VA hospital for medical care. Maybe he looked in the mirror?

Thinking that they are now “elderly” (83 and 85) means that I’m beyond middle-aged. Even though I like to think of myself as still middle-aged, I don’t think I’m going to live to be 116 years old. So, what’s 58? According to Oprah, it’s two years away from the “new 30” or the “new 40”, I can’t remember what she told David Letterman, who is 60, but it’s “the new something”.

Well, this certainly took a turn I didn’t expect. Just so you don’t think I spend my days watching Oprah, that’s the first time I’ve seen her show in years. In fact, the last time I remember actually sitting down and watching was in the fall of 2000 when she had Al Gore and George Bush on for an hour each. I wonder if she’ll do that again next year, especially with her endorsement of Barack Obama?

See, now it’s about politics and celebrities. I’m going to try to avoid talking politics because I don’t want to get into shouting matches with people. I have strong opinions and I know others have strong opposing opinions. The way this country is divided right now makes it hard for someone who wants to have a civil conversation about politics and politicians. No one wants to be civil anymore. They all want to be Bill O’Reilly or Chris Matthews, not letting the other person get a word in. So, I avoid the subject.

Let’s try something a little different. Today is going to be another girlie day for me. I am getting a much overdo pedicure. I love being pampered like that. I also love having the nail artist unleash her creativity by doing wild and crazy designs. I may go a little conservative today and have a French pedicure, except in black and gold to celebrate the Steelers home opener this coming Sunday and their 75th anniversary.

Even though it’s a girlie day, I do have non-girlie things to do. Stuff like laundry, cooking, paying bills, grocery shopping. Nothing really fun there, but, at least I’ll be doing it with freshly painted tootsies.

Published in: on September 12, 2007 at 2:53 PM  Comments (3)  

Random Thoughts on Starting My Blog

Welcome to my blog, something I’ve decided to do and have no idea how to go about doing. So, I’ll just start writing and see what happens, OK?

I opened the blog on Monday, September 10, but let 2 days go by before actually starting. Why? Good question. Naturally, I have an answer. And it’s not that I’m lazy. Nope, I was busy. I had a hair apointment to keep. I mean, a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do, even if the girl is a 58-year-old retired National Security Agency intelligence analyst trying her hand at free lancing.

But, that was Monday.

Tuesday, September 11, was spent running all over town with my dad and a placement agent. We are trying to find a suitable assisted living facility for my mom who’s been in a skilled nursing facility on and off since April. Since dad’s going to have to pay for this, we have to find one that’s in his price range and one that’s also a reasonable distance from their house, which isn’t easy. Dad’s plan is to stay in their house till he dies, which is not helpful to the situation. I wish I could get them back together in a senior apartment setting that has assistance. That way, I wouldn’t worry so much and they would be together and keep each other company. But, the nursing home staff tells me that, realistically, mom will never be able to go back home with just dad because she needs someone in the house 24/7 in case she falls. I am not that person and they both know it and understand it.

Published in: on September 10, 2007 at 11:44 PM  Leave a Comment