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Home > Spring finally is here (and family matters)

Spring finally is here (and family matters)

April 6th, 2013 at 05:35 am

OK, this photo was not taken recently, but my daffs are springing up quickly, so what the heck!

The temps here will be getting into the 70s by Monday, thankfully a day off for me, so ee-ha!

My left wrist is positively killing me. On Thursday night, it was still relatively mild, so after work I spent a half hour or so picking up heavy logs (the remains of a few trees that came down in winter storms), putting them in my wheelbarrow and unloading them in the driveway, where I'll then be able to put them in the trunk and to the landfill.

There was one log that didn't seem like the heaviest I'd ever picked up, but I must've bent my wrist a certain way because by Friday morning at work, it was really, really sore, and still is today. Using the mouse and typing probably aggravated it. I got some aspirin there at the office and that made a huge difference, but today the pain is still intense. I hope it will heal without the need for any more doctor's visits.

It's taught me a lesson...I'm not 30 anymore and have to be careful lifting things like this. I'm always very good about lifting things with my back and have never had back problems, but I happen to have very thin arms and narrow wrists. I act like I can do just about anything and that's simply not true.

A while back I spotted an ad in the Sunday paper that seemed like it would suit my neighbor to a T. A local synagogue needed a bookkeeper. My neighbor used to work as a bookkeeper for another temple. How many people could say they've done that? I told her about the ad, she applied and now, a few weeks later, she called to tell me she'd gotten the job!

She's thrilled becus she'll be making double what the other temple paid her and also quite a bit more than what she was making at another job she'd picked up to get some money coming in while she and her husband prepare to sell their house and move out of state. Her husband lost his job.

So I'm very happy for her. I wish it were so easy for me!

I have another small freelance writing assignment. Also am expecting, at some point, a roughly 35-page court report that will need editing. I want to stop at BJs, deposit a check, vacuum, and check out bulk bin grain prices at the health food store.

I've been trying to find a reasonably priced estate attorney who can name me durable power of attorney for my mother should she become unable to handle her financial affairs.

I explained to my mother the importance of having this in place, but she balked when the few attorneys I called quote prices in the $300 range. I told my mother I would split the cost with her if I had to, and couldn't help but feel annoyed when she said that was very generous (considering I'm not working full-time and my mother can afford it, she's just frugal). But I was afraid if I didn't, this would never take place.

I also wanted my mother to name me executor rather than my older sister, who I've mentioned before has distanced herself from the two of us and doesn't have much to do with us except for major holiday dinners. My sister has a high school education. I went to law school (though I didn't graduate) and have worked many years as a financial/personal finance writer, so who would you think is better qualified to act as executor? Plus my sister complained a lot when she was executor of my grandmother's estate and really didn't like having to do it. My mother's response, when I explained all this, was to say well, if your sister doesn't want to do it, then she can just have you do it. Then you two can split the money you would have otherwise paid for the attorney to draw up the paperwork. Umm, mom, it doesn't work that way. If she is legally named executor, I can't simply trade places with her and do it.

I am worried that my mother will never come around to doing this. Now that her sciatica and arthritis have eased up a little, she's back to focusing on her next art show. The whole power of attorney thing is just not a priority for her. It's hard for me to schedule an appointment becus she always has doctor's visits or other stuff going on.

Next weekend, the 4 of us kids and assorted significant others are meeting at a restaurant at a mall to celebrate my dad's 80th birthday. I know he thought he'd never make it this far becus I remember him saying something to that effect years ago, probably because his father died relatively young, of a stroke, in his late 60s.

I'm concerned about the hit I'm going to take money-wise, because both my half-brothers are bringing their wives, and they can't be expected to pay, plus we're treating my dad, of course, and I know everyone likes to drink and have a good time. It might be tacky and tedious to ask the waitress to make up separate checks.

At the same time, I guess I should be grateful that the older of my two brothers (who's actually 10 years younger than me) thought to include my sister and me in my dad's birthday celebration, because we've never really spent much time together. The two "boys," as I still call them, were from my dad's second marriage, after he and my mother divorced when I was very young. I drifted apart from my father in those years when they were growing up, and while I would have loved a closer relationship with my brothers, the gulf between us has never really been bridged due to so much non-contact in those critical early years.

That brother will have his two-year-old and wife with him; she's already pregnant with her second child. And the other brother I believe is getting married this weekend in a justice of the peace ceremony. I think they're getting married becus she finally conceived through in vitro. They were already living together but I understand the relationship is not a perfect one. I heard all this secondhand; my dad tells me about it sometimes, and I also keep in touch with my dad's former girlfriend, K., even though they broke up a year ago.

She is still upset about the breakup, which my dad initiated, mainly because K., his ex, just has a very pushy, in-your-face kind of personality. While I really like her, I like her in small doses, and I know she would drive me nuts if I had to live with her. My dad (and my sister and I) are much more laid back in the way we interact with others.

So while I understand why my dad finally broke things off, after they were together 15 years, I worry about him more now too since she moved out and he's on his own. He was very attached to her two dachshunds, and shortly after they left, his old cat had to be euthanized. So the house must seem very quiet.

I'm not sure how he spends his time these days. I know he goes to the local diner for breakfast every day. It's an important social thing, as he meets at least one buddy there. There were more, but I know some of them have died. K. says he watches a lot of daytime TV and falls asleep in the chair. He used to be involved in a Reclam the Bay thing in his area that involved growing baby clams for "release" into the Barnegat Bay.

K., for her part, spends a lot of time with her dogs. She got both of them trained and certified as therapy dogs and takes them to area hospitals, nursing homes and hospice to see the patients. (She's a former nurse, so doing this kind of thing does not upset her, as it would me. In fact, she gets a lot of satisfaction from doing it.) She always enjoys telling me how her dogs react in different situations, and to different people. She's a breast cancer survivor and I think she also had/has thyroid cancer and is pre-diabetic, so she's certainly had her share of health problems.

I saw a really fascinating Netflix movie last night called The Class. It was about a French teacher and his students in a really rough neighborhood in Paris. The film stars the real-life teacher, who evidently also wrote a book about his students. The students in the movie are not actors; they're real-life students. You see these kids constantly test him, and it often seems like everything is on the verge of collapsing into a state of classroom chaos. He just barely holds the kids in line even though they would probably push the average person over the brink. I gave this film a rare 5 stars (the max).

2 Responses to “Spring finally is here (and family matters)”

  1. Looking Forward Says:

    I hope your wrist feels better soon. Do you have a brace for it?

    Enjoy your dad's birthday celebration. Smile I would bring cash and just contribute to the total. I'd say something like "Here, I've got mine and dad's."

  2. snafu Says:

    Enjoy dad's BD celebration and agree paying your share of the tab with cash to brother who organized/invited the event is a good solution.

    Perhaps clarify your symptoms/pain/discomfort/problem via on-line information. Would you have pulled ligaments in your wrist wrestling logs? I suggest first discussing your symptoms with your pharmacist to ask his suggestions to try before incurring doctor/x-rays/ physical therapy costs. Experience taught me this can be a long s-l-o-w healing process often helped with OTC anti inflammatory meds and support via gel wrist 'bracelets' or old fashioned, wrap Ace Bandage.

    How kind to have made a neighbour become aware of the job she obtained. Paying it forward always helps in unexpected ways.

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