---Alice Abrams

Monday, September 16, 2013

And a year later...

Wow!  Wonder if I can remember how to work this thing!  I've never tried to post using my iPad, so I'm gonna just write a sentence or two and see what happens, and whether or not I want to continue.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Porker Cat

This little porker is Tango, one of the feral cats we rescued.  Mom had decided to go underneath the house and declare it a maternity ward.  We were able to save four; two of which went to live with my daughter, Tango and Cash.  The other two went to Pets Smart for adoption - which was successful!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

I'm Moving On...

I've got to move on... I keep looking at this same page and know I need to move on and not keep stuck in the past.

We have a new little man in our family. He would be Robby's nephew so his sister is very happy to have his namesake (although I find it a bit confusing). He has a rare syndrome - Dutch Kentucky syndrome - that will require some surgery in the future, but nothing major. Some of the tendons do not stretch properly but retract. He currently has a cast on one leg. His dad and most of the male members of his dad's family have it also. But dad has done just fine, although he's a little shorter than he might have been... No biggie.

You all know I took a header off of my porch and fractured my hip. I fought tooth and toenail to come home when I was released from the hospital, but I was shoved into a nursing home for rehab. I found out that I was the only one there who had all of their faculties. It was, without a doubt, the most humbling and frightening experience I've ever had.

I was treated as though I was suffering from more than a fractured hip. One after noon two staff members came in to straighten up the bedclothes and informed me that it was time to get ready for bed. It was 6:00 pm! I said, "Oh no, I think not!". They were two little girls from India, and I still don't know if they understood me, but I made it perfectly clear I wasn't hitting the sack.

There were no TV's in the rooms but you could hobble or wheel yourself down to the TV room and watch what was on, along side the blank-eyes staring at the screen. Or you could go to the dining room and play bingo or trivia, the Alzheimer's editions. One of the staff chastised me for eating in my room and not going to the dining room. I was not being social. No, I wasn't. Not in the least. I did my walking up and down the hallway on my walker, but that did it for me. I tried to speak to some of the ladies but there was no one home. The woman in the room with me kept yelling at me - I ignored her. She kept setting off the emergency doors and the alarm she wore to let the nurses know if she fell. It drove me nuts!!! The alarms were loud, the first time I about had a heart attack. She was a real pill.

I asked when I could have a shower and was told twice a week, which meant I had one on Tuesday, after arriving on Sunday, but was told I had to wait until Saturday because Medicare had changed the rules - only two showers per week!

I crabbed to the social worker and the head nurse and got conflicting answers. The doctor told me I needed to stay for two weeks, and I told him flat-out that I was leaving on Friday whether or not I had to take a cab. Wally was afraid of me coming home too early, but I threatened him with the cab, too, and he finally got it.
I told the doctor that the lack of communication between the staff was horrible. I had to go before the department heads to assure them I was capable of returning home, and at that point I played my axes and told them that my daughter is a CNA and would be on call. In fact she played go-between the whole time I was there.

Again, I said if they didn't release me I would leave AMA if necessary.

You have to realize that I have ALWAYS been little Miss Submissive, and this was totally out do character for me to be so adamant about something.

I feel for each and everyone of those poor souls stuck there, I really do. Just finding myself in a place like that was like being sentenced to time in jail. And laying in bed thinking how horrible it would be to live out one's life warehoused like that. I was sent there under the guise of it being a nursing home and a separate rehab facility, which was not true. I feel that this was a way to bilk Medicare out of funds that could have been used more wisely. And I have Kaiser Senior Advantage!

Okay, I've told my tale.... I'm now getting around by a cane, the kind with the four prongs. I'm still wobbling and scared to death of falling again, really! If I'm ever in a dark place where my eyes cannot focus on the TV, and I am no longer myself, I'll be ready. But not until then....

Sunday, May 20, 2012

A Very Hard Year

Photo 1.  NASCAR car driven in honor of Robby's service
Photo 2.  At high school graduation
Photo 3.  Back from training
Photo 4.  March, 2011, with G-Ma

One year ago today, March 21, 2011, we lost our Marine, Robby Rawlins.  I have been thinking for days how I could do something to honor him, but I have been empty in spirit and in heart.  I'm crying as I write this, but I've decided just to celebrate his life - that's what he would've wanted.

Robby had behavioral issues when he was little.  One day, mom and dad came home only to find that Robby had decided to remove a few light bulbs with his BB gun.  He also redecorated the mirrors, thinking they looked better with a few scattered holes. 

I remember one Sunday in church, as the congregation stood to sing, he took off running on the pews that were now minus their occupants.  If I remember correctly, it took a couple of us to corral him. 

It wasn't until later that he was diagnosed as having ADHD.   After receiving some help in the classroom, and getting involved in sports was he able to work off some of that excess energy.  He graduated from high school and went immediately into the Marine Corps, a longtime dream of his. You can understand why we were so very proud of him.

He served one tour in Iraq, was stationed in Guam, participating in the ceremonies commemorating the battle of Iwo Jima.  When he came home, he brought me a baggie with some pieces of sea glass and shells.  He couldn't have brought me anything better since I've always been on the hunt for bits and pieces of treasure like that - and I don't believe he even knew it.

Shortly after his death, his sister, Ashleigh, discovered that she is pregnant.  And yes, it is a boy.
Robby's full name was Robert (named for his dad, grandfather and great grandfather), William (named after my husband and Leah's dad), Rawlins.  His nephew's name is Robert William Smith.  His legacy and those of the men who passed before him will continue.

The above photos are the memories I keep close to my heart:  The boy he was and the man he was becoming.  The last photo was taken in March, 2011, and was the last time I saw him.  The disarming smile and mischievous gleam in his eyes is how I hold him in my heart.  

I love you to the moon and back, dear Robby, dearest grandson....

Monday, May 07, 2012

Something About Nothing...

I guess it's about time...  I keep jinxing myself by saying I'm gonna start blogging faithfully; but, it just isn't happening.  Since my laptop is not working, and I have yet to figure out to to post from iPad (yes, I know - I'm dumb), I need to sit at the PC to update.  Even with a good chair my back aches like mad sitting here.  Whining.  Sorry!  But I really love the concept of blogging and miss the good ol' days. 

I've found a new hobby:  embarrassing myself on Facebook.  My grandson-in-law, Jim, got a ticket this a.m for driving his MOTORCYCLE 116 mph.  If you all remember, my grandson, Robby died on his motorcycle almost a year ago (21st of this month).  Jim and Ashleigh are going to be parents next month, they already have a beautiful little girl - and he's out acting the fool on his bike.

Well, I tore into him on FB, where he had posted the ticket, and told him his father-in-law needed to kick his butt.  Well, I thought I said "kick."  Uh uh.  I typed "lick."  So the kids (and their friends) have had a lot of fun teasing me about that one!

Life is moving at such a rapid pace it's unbelievable.  We've jumped from a very nice, cool spring into a very warm beginning of summer.  We took out a big orange tree - neither of us can eat them - and various and sundry other old woody bushes.  The yard looks a lot bigger!  I'm going nuts putting in colorful perrenials to disguise that ugly grey stone wall.  Hopefully, it will look really nice in a couple of weeks.

Something of interest:  My brother performed a wedding at which he received a rather large gift, so he is using that to enter the National Geographic DNA "Tree of Life" project.  It will take our DNA back 30 generations!  Can you believe it?  He's thinking middle Europe, possibly Hun/Visgoth/ - you know, the "swarthy" people.  We're telling him women do not have asperations to be "swarthy!"  Anyway, it will be extremely interesting.  Both my brother and our grandfather have our lineage (dad's side) going back to Austria.  My mom's lineage is English and Welsh,and possible French. 

Now, I'll know what to call myself! 


Monday, January 30, 2012

A Sad Day

For My Friend Sarge

As most of you know, Charles "Sarge" Cordle has gone home after fighting the valiant fight with cancer.  His many bouts of cancer were caused by the infamous Agent Orange that he was sprayed with, as were so many others, during the Viet Nam war. 

I cannot begin to put on paper what I'm feeling in my heart, but so many, many people have done so eloquently, I'm thankful it wasn't up to me.  As I've said before, I never knew it was possible to love people you've never met, such as Sarge and his beautiful bride, Bonnie, or Miss Bee, as she's known by affectionately.  I guess it's because we all feel safe amongst each other, and have shared our thoughts, hopes, dreams, and disappointments, sorrows and griefs.  When you let someone into your life in this manner you become vulnerable.  But Sarge?  He called it as he saw it, never shirking from opposition, whether it be politics or a enemy armed with a gun.   

He fought for our country and was vilified for it.  When you see a vet, please thank them and let them know you appreciate them.  Sarge, once again, thank you, my friend.

Thursday, January 05, 2012

It's a New Year...

This has been floating around, and I think it is too cool!!!  If you haven't seen it yet, be sure to enlarge it to get the full sense of what the photographer was doing! 

Well, today I am the proud owner of an iPad 2.  Hallelujah!  I had a couple of gift cards, enough to get a Kindle or Nook.  I got to thinking that I have a lot of "junk" gold (that sounds goofy!).  Broken chains, one earring of a set, stuff I don't ever wear, so we went to a reputable pawn shop to sell it.  I figured I'd be lucky to get $150, maybe $200 if I was extremely lucky.  Would you believe just how lucky I was?  $553!  So, I am now the proud owner of an iPad 2!!!  Miss Bee, I hope I have as much fun with mine as you do with yours.

I know it's been a long time since I've blogged much, but I truly miss all of you, especially the ones I don't visit on FaceBook!  I am not going to say one blooming thing about blogging frequency, since that always gets me in trouble.  Let me just say that I really enjoyed visiting you all and getting caught up, somewhat.....

I tried to link to Miss Bee's blog - and I can't remember how to do it!  I know they've changed stuff around a lot, but good gravy!  Please forgive me, Bee.  I will try to get back up to par.  Sheesh.  Scary.
Which reminds me, I finally went to the doctor today.  I've been without my thyroid meds for a couple of years now...remember my doctor who died in her boyfriend's chimney?  Anyway, I saw her replacement.  Wow.  What a doll!  When I explained that I didn't have insurance she reassured me that they would work with me, and if I needed anything at all, she'd do her best to get it done, and I really believed her!  I turn the big 6-5 this year, and will get Medicare (if there's anything left by November), and will go with Kaiser like Wally has.  He really loves the Senior Advantage program, and their services are really close to us.  So I will become a real, honest-to-goodness fogie! 

I don't want to use up all of my thoughts now.  They will have died by loneliness by the time I post again if I'm not careful....

Love ya!

Friday, December 30, 2011

The Old Homestead

The House That Dad Built

This is where I grew up.  Imagine a row of eucalyptus trees (a wind break) going down the side of the property, and instead of tract houses, fields of alfalfa.  We had an acre behind us, with some chickens, and then orange groves all around.  I know I wrote about my pet hen, Nancy, well, this is where we did our roaming.

The house was built in 1951.  My brother came in 1954.  Even though I was a very young bride (17), this is the place I still call home.  My roots are here and I feel close to my parents when I visit.  My brother and his family still live here and it looks great!  My mom and dad planted the huge Sycamore tree in the front yard that is showing off by thrusting it's roots through the driveway and sidewalk. My brother planted the liquid amber that is the only sign of autumn in Orange County.  It hovered aroud 75 degrees this year at Christmas.   

I don't miss the traffic, but I sure miss this house.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Veteran's Day 2011

  Brennan Newberry's NASCAR entry

I guess every person in military who's had the opportunity to do this has!  Robby looks so young here, it was about two years before his death.  Never would have thought when he was a little guy, that one day he'd be sitting in the palace of a despot!    For all of you who have served, enjoy this photo, because without our troops despots would be reigning all over the world!