Saturday, June 28, 2008

June Gloom

A lot of little things have happened in the past week. Chris started his internship at a new hospital, and at first, HATED it. He describes it like this "You don't do anything for three hours, then an a few Xrays will come in all at once (like, from a car accident) and everyone panics. It sucks." Luckily though, he is adjusting to the very different atmosphere of the new "ho-ho" as I call it and is even reading a good book I loaned him 2 years ago by Chuck Palahnuick. (Did I spell that right? oh well.) It's the guy that wrote Fight Club. 'Nuff said.

Bailey's potty training is going well. We still have a few accidents here and there- but I'm finding less and less "surprises" behind furniture or puddled in the middle of the floor in my path of travel. I don't know if she's getting better or if I just know how to watch her "I'm gonna go!!" signals. Hmm.

Gram finally got her LAST wrist brace off and is enjoying life with a free left hand. I'm still weighing the pros-and-cons of her coming home vs. staying at the Assisted Living Facility. It's really something I'm struggling with. I know she would like to come home, but at the same time, I think that when she adjusts to life over there, she will LOVE the field trips and activities. She is already socializing and I enjoy hearing about it. When she was home, she would spend HOURS watching CNN- and you know how they loop the same footage and stories over, and over, and over and OVER again? Well, that's how our conversations went when we got home.

She has been reading the newspaper, talking to other residents and roaming the halls pretty well. They have activities, a library and a salon which she has been getting into...that makes me happy.

Now, she has said "I'm self reliant now, I'm okay and wouldn't need a nurse." But when I asked her the other day if she'd like me to bring a cat over to permanently stay with her (to make it feel more homey) she said she couldn't take care of it. My boss and I talked about it and she made a good point- if she can't imagine caring for a cat, when everything else is taken care of (food, cleaning, laundry, etc.) how will she come home and do things for herself? Any thoughts? Like I said, I'm really struggling with this.

Today I'll be having a Very, Very small Open House and Tuition Fundraiser at mi casa. It amazes me how many people don't RSVP. Typically, when you get an invite to something, you should call or email to say you are, or are not coming. People don't get this.

We are more connected as ever as Americans- we are constantly on the Internet, Home Phone, Cell Phone, PDA, etc. but why has this common courtesy gone out the window? It's easier than ever to get ahold of someone, but yet, we have become commitment phobic. It won't hurt my feelings if someone can't make it, but it really pisses me off when I assume they aren't coming, and I have food made up, or other goodies, and they just show up assuming I have enough for them. This hasn't just happened with Mary Kay, otherwise I would just shrug it off, but I have heard it more and more with other events.

My birthday party last year was a prime example. Friends ASSUMED I knew they were coming- UHhh, NO? You don't call me for the three-week-gap from the invite being sent to the "day of" and you could be dead for all I know. But what's really bad is that my boss was telling me that her niece got married about a year or two ago. The numbers had to be turned into the caterer about two weeks before the wedding. She actually had to CALL her family and friends because they never sent the pre-stamped RSVP cards back to her. That really sickens's a WEDDING! Could you imagine being a bride, and two weeks before calling your cousins, and siblings if they're coming and what they want to eat? Yikes.

Sorry- that was my little rant. There were a lot of people out of town or busy this weekend- which is totally understandable. But what irks me is the fact that I would call someone, they would want an email. I'd send them an email, and they STILL didn't respond. Lord. To a few of my guests, I sent them a postcard, an email and a call....still, no response. I'm trying not to be a pest, but I wouldn't have to resort to the phone call if you woulda responded to the first two trys!

Oh well, people, as I take it, are commitment phobes who are "too busy" to take five seconds to hit the "reply" button. I hope I'm not like that rude.

(and to anyone reading this, no, this blog is not directed at you!)

I guess I just don't get it.

I did though, order two dog collars for bailey from (cute handmade goods) Beth has her "giddy giddy" and I have my "lucky fiona." hahaha.

Aren't they adorable? I seem to have a slight affection for dots. I also seem to have a slight affection for sales- seeing how these both were!

But speaking of good deals- I went to Dollar Tree yesterday- IN FALLBROOK! Why is this exciting? Not only do I love Dollar Tree (I know, so anti-tree hugger) but it's the first real chain, other than a grocery store, we have in Fbrook. We don't even have a Starbucks, aside from the sucky one in Albertson's. While it's great to have that "small town" vibe- it's not great when you need to pick up a birthday gift and the bookstores close at 4 p.m. Or, if you want a coffee drink for a late night study break- and they all closed at 6 p.m. (aside from the icky fake Starbucks in Albertson's)

Well, I thought I really went "crazy" at Dtree, and I only spent 11 bucks! I got some stuff for my Pirate themed Birthday Party and some other stuff for around the house...11 dollars. I was in heaven. So ya, that's my splurge for the week- two dog collars and Dollar I need to get out more. haha.

But you know, this is the life of a college student who is now paying for a lot more herself. I did finally get reimbursed for all of Grandma's shopping, pills and snacks. It's weird...I'm giving her spending money now. Holy cow. I feel like a big kid...and it freaks me out! haha

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

To Be Honest

You know, to be honest with anyone reading this- I really wish that things would be consistently copeable. I have been doing pretty well, and it seems life throws me curveballs that derail me from my quest for zen.

My sister showed up yesterday. Haven't spoken to her since my birthday last July. She literally just walked through the door. I was home sick, and she seriously, just opened the door. No phone call, no knocking- just barged in. She then proceeded to gross me out in ways I don't want to vent publicly and stole every last avocado on my tree. I am trying to get over my anger about this.

Grams has been asking everyday when she can come home- and it kinda kills me inside to have to go through this everytime I see her. We had a talk and whenever I ask her questions she gets upset and thinks I'm picking on her. Honestly, asking "well, what do you want to do?" is not a mean question, but it puts the problem right where she can see it.

Grams bill for this month at Regency will be about $2,600. Next month it can either go up or down depending on what services she needs (she will have some taken off, and some all of her "extras" like the hair salon are added on that bill. I came home and did the math to see if would be cheaper to have her come home.

This is what I came up with.
$900 for rent (she pays my dad because she feels it's fair to pay for his house)

Now- here's the kicker- to have a caretaker come in for $18 an hr. (average/below average price) for only 5 hrs a day (10-3 p.m.) to watch her 5 days a week (so, 25 hrs per week) it would cost a whopping $1,800 a month.

This doesn't include food or housekeeping.

So that's right, the grand total is $2,700. $100 MORE than what it would cost to live at Regency. Doesn't that make you sick? It makes me sick.

When I saw her today and we talked about coming home I told her that I would need a caretaker to come in for at LEAST that amount. If something happens to her- stroke, heart attack, a bad fall, etc. She will be incapacitated again- and we will be back at SQUARE ONE. Now that I'll be attending CSUSM this fall, I can't miss class or fail a test because I am taking care of her. I'm sorry- but I will never go through that again. It was so stressful and exhausting to be a "single parent" of an 89 year old. It has made me slightly bitter and resentful- and I'm still trying to put it behind me.

Grams is not covered for "caregivers" with her insurance. When we spoke today she was really upset because she was going to have to spend her savings. I asked her- "What did you think would happen if you got ill? You knew your insurance didn't cover it." I don't think she, nor my father understood healthcare costs. So they leave it to the 21 year old to FIGURE IT OUT? Now I'm irritated again. ugh. I remember when Grams had to leave the Nursing Facility because her insurance stopped covering it- Dad said to try and find a place for $50 a day. I hadn't even done the research yet and I laughed in his face. What is he thinking? I get paid more than $50 a day- a nursing home is more like $100-$200 a DAY.

But anyway- sometimes it baffles me that she didn't think that eventually she may need assistance. What did she think would happen? I try to be sympathetic in thinking that many of us don't imagine ourselves with a disease or disability in the future- it's unfathomable. But aging? When you buy "old people's" insurance isn't that one of the things you think about? People get old....duh. You break hips and stuff...that's life.

I think that Grams thought that being home would save her money. She was upset and said that she would be dissapointed that the money she saved for Dad and I would be spent- but again, I had to ask her, "what did you think would happen when you got older? How would you take care of yourself?" I think, in her mind it was easy to hope that she would have a quick and easy death, that insurance would cover everything, and it wouldn't be so expensive. Life, as we know it, is expensive. It is not cut and dry- nor does it ever happen as we plan it.

I am a firm believer that everything works out the way it should, but I am not so blindly optimistic to believe that everything wraps itself up in a tidy little package.

I know this because it never does.

Saturday, June 21, 2008


This has been a good week- a very good week indeed. Last night Chris and I saw the Love Guru at our old haunt- the Galaxy Theatre (where we reunited). We had free passes and it was cool inside- that is the only reason why we went. Seeing a movie nowadays means like, $6 for popcorn and $4.75 for a drink + the price of admission. Ridiculous. We brought candy and had free passes, but I had to splurge for the rip-off Pepsi (we got free popcorn too because his friend was working!!) If you liked Austin Powers, you will like this movie. If you hated that trilogy, you will hate this movie. It has the hallmark penis and fart jokes, and plenty of funny play-on-words that you will remember. It was funny though, and yes, it was all centered around CANADA.

My favorite part is when Jessica Alba's character says "You can kiss my Canadian A**" and I wanted to cheer. I didn't though. Canadians don't cheer.

The 4th of July is around the corner and this year, Chris has the day off. Since it's a Friday and he'll be working at the Hospital, the school mandates that since his internship is also a class, he gets the day off. Okay, so 40 hrs. a week that you PAY FOR really sucks, but this is nice. Last year he was workin' at the Depot, and we had to book it on over to Vista to see some fireworks, this year, we may have it easy!
We have deemed that this dog is of American Origin. He poops in his own food bowl. No joke.
Bailey doesn't have a bow- she would probably eat it off. I think she's more Canadian.

This is how you decorate on a budget, just put a bunch of stuff together that works. Boo-yah.I love how JoAnn's has really expenisve home decor but it's always 40-50% off....why? I had to get this though....loooove it!

We went to Disneyland on Tuesday and it was a total bust. We got up early and tried to get there when Cali Adventure opened so we could get in line for the new ride, Toy Story Mania. Little did we know, that the line started forming at 8 a.m. and by the time we got there it was a 4-7 hr. wait in the sun in 95 degree weather. Uh, no. And guess what, there was no Opening Day Surprises (sometimes they give out stuff for the first people in line). We shall return in the Fall when it's not so flippin' terrible. For serious.
This is me outside the Disney's Dream Wedding advertisment. I can only dream of that kind of corniness.

On Chris' one week off- we also went to San Diego and roamed around. It was 90 when we got there, then cooled off to about 85, and it was bearable. We went to Urban Outfitters (a thrift store looking place that charges like, Abercrombie prices) and roamed around. The clothes are pretty stupid and very, thrift-ish but soo expensive. I always make it a point to stop there though because they have great novelty stuff...and funny books. We do a lot of window shopping in SD to say the least... but at least we got to have an affordable lunch at the Rock Bottom- one of our favorite places to eat. Yes Andy, I had Seared Ahi..yum! We even got to join the "Mug Club."
Chris entertains me and my picture taking at the Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery.

But one thing I DO purchase is stuff from Sanrio. I LOVE that store. I have been a Sanrio fan since I can remember, because I just find that stuff addicting. Most of it was better when I was 9, like the Hello Kitty plastic wallets that no longer hold my loads of cash I have as a young adult, but they do have some good stuff...Ya, I'm soo nerdy.

Well, I'm gonna take it easy today because my allergies have returned with a vengeance. No matter what the drug companies say on their medicine boxes-it DOES make you drowsy. I have been channeling my inner-sloth for the past day and it's been weird.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Cutest Family EVER

For once I'm not talkin' about my garden- check out these little sprouts! Seen above is baby cousin Ryan and below is the gang with baby cousin Jennah. See? Babies don't spontaneously combust when I hold them...

I have the world's cutest family ever, and this isn't even the whole gang! Thank you Beth for sharing the pictures!

As for tomorrow, guess what? We're going to Disneyland...AGAIN! As it turns out, June 17th is the Grand Opening of the Toy Story Ride in California Adventure. As it also turns out, tomorrow is NOT a blackout date for Annual Passholders- we are SO THERE.

Why you ask? Well, after I spent a good portion of my Sunday afternoon researching things to do in San Diego County on a budget (that have not already been done before) I couldn't find anything.

Downtown SD prides itself on being a refined area with lots of shopping, dining and baseball games at Pet-co Park. While this is awesome...I can't afford to "Wine-n-Dine" much less the Valet Parking. Anaheim it least we KNOW what kind of a rip-off it is! haha.

Chris and I are very creative in our cooking- tonight I whipped up Nachos with all the fixins, including faux-ground beef. I know you're probably squirming at the thought, but trust me, with quacamole and all that other stuff, you wouldn't taste a difference! It was gooooood.

I was looking at a calendar last night and much as I'd like to be a May or June bride- perhaps October in 2010 would be a good date? I mean, that'd give me plenty of breathing time after I graduate (and Chris does too!) and perhaps 10-10-2010 would be easy for hubby to remember? Hmm- now to just discuss this with future hubbs.

9-9-2009 would never happen so let's be realistic.

Well, Chris hasn't run away screamin' yet, or spontaneously combusted, so I think I'm doing pretty darn well.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

To Find It Again

Those are my GORGEOUS hydrangeas- made pink by coffee grounds!

I just wrote this whole blog about my life, and I don't think I'm going to post a word of it. Here are some pictures of my garden instead. I will save you the confusion and just refer to my horticulture love.

In addition to spending time in the garden it seems that my carpets have recently experienced an astounding increase in the messes laid upon it.

This is how my day goes:
-Clean kitty litter of poo.
-Clean puppy pad of poo.
-Clean stupid dog's crate of poo. (I need to retrain my older dog of his previous owner, but it's hard!)
-Clean random spots on the carpet...of poo.

There is a lot of "piling" in my house. On Thursday, it seems the "output" was never ending- and then Dad shows up on Friday and scolds me because I missed something. Haha- that was funny. At least I haven't lost the ability to roll my eyes and laugh about it. Now, if I really wanted to get him I could leave it all for him to do- then perhaps he would know.

You know your life is exciting when it centers around poo in your house. I am the epitome of cool.

Well- today is Father's Day and I got Dad a CSUSM Dad sticker for his truck and a Cup. I would have purchased him a shirt but they didn't have any sizes over Medium (how dumb is that? I don't know many Dads that are Mediums!) I also got him a Home Depot Gift Card. I have previously been very frustrated by the fact that each holiday I would go out and put some thought and time into my gifts to him. He would open them, and leave it where it was received and not even throw away the wrapping or put his gift in his room. Well, I got sick of it. Now I go to Home Depot (but I'm thinking Target next time) and get him a gift card. Sure enough, like a lunar eclipse, it's reliable that he leaves it laying out. That is when I snatch it and save it for when I need to fix something around the house. We all benefit and I save myself from becoming an even more bitter daughter? See- it's the gift that keeps on giving!

When my cousins send me pictures of this weekend I will post them because my family is beautiful and I love to share. :)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Summer Time, and the livin's ...crazy

Isn't that the cutest puppy you've ever seen? It is. And she's MINE! Yes, I got a puppy, well technically, Dad got me a puppy, and my life hasn't been the same since. Why did he get me a puppy? I'm still figuring that out.

A few weeks ago, after a friend of mine got a pug puppy, I had looked into Pugs that needed homes on I wasn't overzealous of the thought of a puppy per-say, as I knew how much work it would be, with the cleanups, the training, the boundless puppy energy. Well, when I suggested we get another dog to dad, he said no. I said "OK." Was I dissapointed, not really. Well, apparently, a few weeks later, Dad noticed a flyer that pug puppies were for sale. "Pug puppies for sale? Really? BRILLIANT! I will get one, I have fantastic ideas." As you see, now that it was HIS idea, we HAD TO HAVE a pug. hahah. So, that's how I ended up with a puppy. It has been a whirlwind since I got her a week ago. The only reason I'm writing this now is because we have cleaning ladies over and the noise from the vacuum, and the commotion is keeping her occupied. Occupado?

Last week was intense to say the least. I donated blood the previous Thursday and didn't bounce back very well this time. By Monday I was feeling like poop- with random symptoms that made no sense- muscle aches, nausea, migrane, fatigue, dizzyness and get this, EYE pain. Ya, no joke. On Tuesday though, I had to suck it up and serve as a Poll Worker from about 4 a.m. (to get up and get ready) to about 9:30. It was a long day, but I finally finished "I know Why the Caged Bird Sings," and started both "Fun Home" (a Comic Book Novel- weird I know) and "Naked" (by David Sedaris)

Wednesday, I still felt like poo. I forced myself to eat Oatmeal and coffee with a Maloxx chaser because I just wanted to keel over and make a mess of myself. Yikes. I had to get up at the crack of dawn and drive over to San Marcos for CSUSM Orientation. I felt so horrible, but I was still very, very excited. What really sucked though, was that they had a FREE breakfast cart full of juices, coffee, GOOD breakfast food and other joys- too bad the thought of eating anything repulsed me. I sat in the back of the room just in case the Oatmeal wanted to make a second appearance. Needless to say, it wasn't as fun as it could have been.

That day I registered for my classes, and wow, I am pretty scared. Why did no one tell me how scared I'd be? I'm in the big leagues now, and I am trying to take some power breaths to even type up how freaked out I am! I only registered for 12 Units- 3 classes of my "core" classes for my major- Sociology. The other classes I need to take overlapped each other, grr! Sociology is an impacted major, especially now because of the insane budget cuts and a lot of the classes I needed weren't offered at times that worked. I would like to take 15 units- but for my first semester, I will take it easy and maybe make up some classes next summer. I really want to do well.

I have gotten a few scholarships, and am waiting for the word back about my financial aid from the state. I got a fee deferment until July 11th, so by that date I need to come up with the cash- $1,800 something worth the cash. Good God. >>More Power Breaths<<

I feel very fortunate though, as a 1st Generation, Low Income student, I got into the EOP Program which means, PRIORITY REGISTRATION FOREVER! It doesn't really matter that my major is impacted because I register before the masses. Plus, I get a yearly grant to pay for my outrageous parking permit and stuff- pretty cool eh? I'm not sure if the fact that I'm a 1st Gen American has anything to do with it, but I'm pretty stoked EH. Hey, I think those immigrants from the North need some perks too...haha (Ya, ya ya, I can hear you groaning now).

In other news- Gram is doing MUCH better. Perhaps, too well. She's still over at the Assisted Living Facility- and yesterday we took her off Nurse Assistance for bathing, dressing, bathroom and getting to meals. I wonder if she's overcompensating though because she wants to come home. She said "Can I come home by August" yesterday and I said we'd have to wait and see....Yes, that's just jolly, let's move you back in as I start classes. Quick Gram, I need some of your Depends. I know it will all work out- it always does. I love her and want her to be happy...I just need some guidance on how I can keep myself from getting overwhelmed and depressed in the process. Oy vey.

In other, other news- I'm going to Mary Kay Seminar in Dallas, TX this July. I am really bummed because I won't finish my last quarter of the year as a Star. I had done really well, and was so excited to go to Dallas with honors- but this quarter I fell far behind. While my failure is justified, I am really bummed that I couldn't finish what I had been working on for 9 hurts to fail now.

I'm going to try and work it out today, and see what I can do. I just pray that God will take the dissapointment and worry of so many things off of my shoulders and make it a little easier. I know it will work out.

Much love to the Normans and Faveros- I love your babies for me- just puppies.