Thursday, October 15, 2015

Sad Sad time for our family

It is a sad time. On Tuesday our 100 year old grandfather passed away. Here he is with my hubby and brother in law.

Some people may think "Wow, he lived a long life" or "It was his time" or any of the other thoughts that come when you hear someone of his age passes away. The problem with all of this is, other than an achy knee, he was healthy and his mind was perfectly intact. This was a complete shock to us when we got the news.

PawPaw was a very good man. Of course, he had his moments. We all do. But he lived a life that most only envy. He was friends with presidents, local politicians and more.

He had many jobs and never met a stranger. His personality was infectious.

PawPaw was my son's best friend. Nate even lived with him for a while during a summer internship.

He traveled the world and was a very influential man in the Washington DC communities. He will be missed by so many.

We bury him next week and it will be a sad day for all.

RIP PawPaw. You are with Nanny, Dad and your sisters now. Heaven is rejoicing with you.

I will see you the blink of an eye.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Happy 24th Anniversary to my hubby

Happy Happy Anniversary to my husband.

It has been an interesting ride. People never thought we would last. We were told not even a year. His family has never really accepted me or welcomed me in a way that would make me feel like I am a true member of this family. Here we are 24 years later and still going strong.

We had a small wedding. It was on a Thursday afternoon. Only a few guests attended. His grandfather, mom, dad, brothers and their wives, one of the church members, my best friend Bob and my son. Our pastor performed the ceremony. Shawn's youngest brother and wife acted as our witnesses.

When we finished our vows and the pastor announced us as Husband and Wife, my new sister in law ran up to my husband crying and said "I think you just made the biggest mistake of your life".

How is that for a great big "Welcome to the family".

Well guess what? We didn't make a mistake. We are still going strong 24 years later. But guess what? Both of his brothers' marriages didn't last. I believe that the reason is - we started our marriage with God as the center. We acted on His desires. Neither of them did. They rushed into marriage. One because they were expecting, the other because they were encouraged to have a double ceremony because one wedding was cheaper than two.

Shawn and I didn't have a huge wedding. We didn't spend a lot of money. We did it on God's time and honoring our commitment to Him. I didn't even wear a wedding dress and Shawn didn't wear a tux. We didn't care. We don't even have a picture of us on the day we married. It's not important. What is important is that we love each other and make it work.

We haven't always had the best of times. There have been some hard times, some fights and some times we felt like giving up, but we didn't. We hung in there. God knew we were supposed to be together and be able to help others through our experiences and endurance.

Anyway....I am a very happy woman...I am still in love with my husband....I will be with him as long as God allows.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

They need to be educated

Once again, I have had to educate someone about the rights I have because I have a service dog.

It is getting tiresome.

We are going on a short little vacation tomorrow. Yesterday, I called the hotel to confirm our reservations and to make sure the hotel staff was aware that I would be bringing my service dog with me. I was told that it was noted and I would be fine.

Today I get a call from the hotel front desk employee telling me that I would have to bring my dog's certification and papers before he would be admitted into the hotel. I politely informed her that I would not be bringing his papers because it is not a requirement for me to have them.

Of course an indepth conversation ensued. I educated the employee that I do not have to provide them with papers and quoted the ADA's requirements for a service dog. The employee then transferred me to the hotel front desk manager. I again explained that I would not be bringing documentation with me and I was not required to. Again I had to explain the law to her. She insisted that I would need to bring documentation. She then said that she would contact the hotel manager and have him call me.

I got on the phone with the company I booked my trip through. I was explaining the situation with the representative. (We belong to a vacation plan program). She was very understanding and said she would do whatever she could to fix the issue. As we were exchanging information, my call waiting beeped in. It was the vacation plan supervisor and the lawyer of the hotel chain.

I was surprised to know that the lawyer was on the phone. Well, I explained what had happened and quoted the law to them. The lawyer for the hotel confirmed that I was, in fact, correct. He stated that the only issue with the reservation is that my room was booked on a ground floor and those rooms were set aside to be allergen free. I understood that and agreed to have my room changed as long as I received the same amenities that I was promised when I made the reservation. The hotel lawyer then got the hotel manager on the line as well. All the arrangements were worked out and I am satisfied with the results, so far.

When I get to the hotel tomorrow, I will know for sure if everything has been handled when I check in tomorrow.

I took a moment today to make a little PSA about service dogs. Of course, Eclipse had to star in it. I have been trying to show the PSA here but for some reason it won't post.

I wish people would ask if Eclipse is a service dog instead of instantly assuming that I am trying to sneak my dog into a place where he is not allowed.

And I wish people would know that I don't have to carry any documentation, certificates, or tags. My dog is NOT required to wear a vest or have a leash that says "Service Dog". I also would like to see people acknowledge that service dogs don't always come in the shape of a German Sheppard or a Lab. They come in all shapes and sizes.

I am aware that some people do lie to be able to bring their pets with them, but I assure you, I am not faking it or lying.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Palmetto Tat Days is over

Tat Days has come and gone.

I had so much fun again this year. I drove down to Georgia by myself. Eclipse was with me. It was a long drive down and back, but I made it safely both ways.

I had a really great time. I got some nice classes. I met some new friends and reestablished some existing friendships. It was so good to see everyone who attends Palmetto Tat Days. So many people came and had a great time.

There were a lot of husbands who attended this year also. It was nice to see some males tatting and helping the teachers or just hanging around keeping each other company.

I had a vending table again this year. I did pretty good, but not as well as I wanted to. There were a lot of venders selling shuttles this year so I think that was a little bit of a setback.

Eclipse was so good and helped me so much while there. He kept my busy at times when I would have felt awkward or out of place. He was the hit of the conference. I was asked over and over again to make sure I bring him next  year as well.

It was fun to go, but I am happy to be home. Next week we decided to take a little trip up to Deep Creek lake for some relaxation and rest. I am staying for a week. Nate and Naina said they can come with us for a few days and Olivia is staying the whole week with me. Not sure yet what Shawn will be able to swing as far as days off go. I'm sure he will be able to spend some quality time with us.

I hope to have a really relaxing time and be able to recharge my battery. I want to come home with a renewed sense of self and the energy to get the rest of the year's worth of activities completed.

My birthday and anniversary is this month as well. Shawn and I will celebrate 24 years of marriage and I will turn 52. I can't believe we have been together for 24 years. No one expected us to last a year. I think we have proven them wrong.

Off to get some stuff done so I can go on vacation. Have a great day.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

It's been a while

It sure has been a while since I've written an entry here. So much has been going on.

July was a crazy month. Grandma Dex turned 101. What a blessing to have her around for so long. She is finally home and resting after being in the hospital and then a nursing home.

My son turned 30 at the end of July. I can't believe it's been 30 years since I first discovered real love. He is an amazing person and I am so proud of him. We had a Nerdy 30 party for him on August 1st in Pittsburgh. It was so much fun. We all dressed up and had a great time.

Shawn has been working a LOT. I hardly ever see him anymore. I know there is a light at the end of the tunnel and he will be able to have time off soon, but for now, we just let him work and rest. I am trying to do all the housework so he doesn't have to think about it.

Some bad things happened as well. My friend since grade school lost her husband to cancer. It is a terrible time for her and I feel so bad for her. I wish I could take her pain away. Then another friend lost his wife this past week. Also from cancer. It puts so much into perspective.

We had to give our cat away. My service dog and the cat didn't get along and it was stressing the cat out. It is hard for him not to be here. I miss him a lot. He just left yesterday. The new family is going to take him for a 2 week trial to see if he gets along in their home. If it works out, they will keep him, if not, he will come back here until I can find a proper home. He was so stressed out. He was urinating outside of his litter box about once a week. Mostly on my things. He ruined my laptop bag, clothing, and even on my bath towel. It stinks because I've had him since he was 4 weeks old. I gave the new family all of his things to make the transition a little easier. The last report that I got was that he was hiding in the corner, but made sure he was facing them and purring loudly. That's a good sign. It means that he wants attention. I told them that and hopefully they will shower him with love until he gets settled in.

I have been working on some beading projects and am taking a loom class this Saturday. I have some pre class work to do. Trying to get that done.

I already signed up for the Palmetto Tat Days conference in September. I will have a vending table again and I've even been asked to assist one of the teachers for her class. I am excited about that. Shawn and I need to get some shuttles made to sell and I need to get some thread dyed. I also want to make some more tote bags, but a different design this time. I will get it all done. I always do. I am bringing Eclipse with me and have that all worked out. I just need to send in my payment for the conference. I will be mailing that soon. I'm expecting a large check soon and will be using that money to pay for my trip. I hope that I make enough money to cover my trip. I'm pretty sure that I can make some money with the new shuttle designs that I didn't have last year. I will be unveiling a new design at the conference. I hope it's a nice seller. Shawn is amazing with his designs and I really love to watch him make them.

I have a bunch of projects that I want to get done in the next few weeks. I have too many unfinished projects laying around. It bugs me that I am not finishing things.

I have had a really bad sore throat and have not been able to speak for the past 3 days. I am on voice rest as much as possible. I am hoping that I get better soon. I almost feel like I have bronchitis. That's not unusual for me to get it, but not this early in the year. Meds are not working, so I think I need to make a doctors appointment. UGH, I hate going to a new doctor. All the medical history I have to give just depresses me all the more. I don't like to remember most of the things that have happened to me. I may have to just type a document and print it out to bring with me. That way I'm not sitting there trying to remember it all.

Oh, Olivia got a job at a liquor store. She really likes her job. It's part time right now, but they are giving her more hours each week. I'm happy for her.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Went to the Bead District in NYC yesterday

I belong to a bead society group and yesterday we took a planned trip to NYC to the bead district.

I did some research and found a bunch of bead stores that I wanted to go visit. Two of my friends and I partnered up and hung together for the day.

We all had places we wanted to go. We started out hitting a few bead stores. There was something to see in each one, but basically it was the same thing in each store. I got some discounts some places and that was thrilling to receive.

I got to take Eclipse with me. He was so good. He was the best companion I could have had. He kept me calm in the stressful situations and didn't have one accident the entire time. He was funny when I ate. He got to eat steak for two meals and he even ate part of a bagel. The city was a new place for him and there were so many things to see and smell.

I didn't get any questions about him the entire day. I guess in NY, people are more used to dogs being with their humans.

I got to walk on Broadway (but not near the theatres. I got to be in Harold's square. I was even in Hell's Kitchen. I saw Madison Square Garden, the Empire State Building, and so much more. It wasn't my first trip to NYC, but it was the longest time I've spent there walking the streets and seeing everything.

We stopped at Chelsea Market before we left the city. That is a really neat place. I went into a lot of the shops and even got a Christmas gift for someone there. I ate at a small Mexican stand. Boy was that disappointing. I ordered a quesadilla and it turned out to look like a soft taco. And it was very small. Eclipse ate more of it than I did.  

I toted a large bag around which got heavier and heavier as the day went along. One store had packages of beads for $2 a bag (about a half pound). Of course I picked up a lot of them. They aren't the best beads, but they will work perfectly for some projects I have coming up.

The bus ride was very interesting. Our bus driver, Cameron, was a really nice guy. He took care of us and got us there and back safely. If we do this again, we are requesting him as our driver.

We had to be on the bus at 6:30. I got up about 4:15 to get ready. I was driving several people so we didn't have to keep as many cars in the parking lot. One person stayed at my house and we hit the road about 5:15. We picked up Lisa and her daughter, then off to pick up Patti. We got lost because I mistyped her address and I had the wrong phone number. She finally called and we found her in a minute and off we went to the pick up location. We got there about 6 and got right on the bus.

We were treated to bagels and muffins with coffee and drinks. That was a nice surprise. We laughed and enjoyed each other's company for the entire ride. We had prize drawings (It worked out that everyone got a prize). Then before we got off the bus, we were all given a little snack bag to take with us. It held a few snacks, some water and some chocolate. That was a nice gift.

On the ride back, a few movies played and we got a little silly. There was some wine and drinks shared - not by me tho - and lots of snacks. Everyone was kind of tired, but that didn't keep us calm or quiet. Some people slept on the bus, but some of us stayed up and talked. Eclipse slept the entire ride home, except for the one bathroom break the bus driver stopped for. (The bathroom on the bus had an issue and we couldn't use it on the way home.)

I didn't get to sleep until after 2am. I woke up at 11:30, then took another 3 hour nap on the couch. Boy was I exhausted.

Over all, it was a great trip. I enjoyed myself and plan on going on the next one.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

So freaked out right now

I am so freaked out right now.

I was just chatting online with a former neighbor. She told me that before her family moved, that their home was broken into. She told me that her back sliding back door was smashed and they lost thousands and thousands of dollars worth of property.

The thieves pawned her jewelry and that's how they found them. Well the thieves are one of my other neighbors. The police broke their door in one Sunday morning at 5am and found their laptops and some other property. The police also found 23 illegal guns in the house. The house is a rental property and is rented by an elderly lady. She had her  handicapped son, and his two adult sons living with her. The two grandsons are the thieves.

I am so freaked out. The grandsons and I had a conversation one day and they told me that they were criminals and would take anything that they wanted, but would never steal from me. I thought they were joking. I guess not. And I wonder if they told me they would never steal from me because we are really nice to them and their father. Or because we have God to protect us. Or because we have a retired cop and 2 pit bulls living here.

They guys pawned $6,000 worth of jewelry for $87. How dumb can they be?????

I am so upset by all of this. My former neighbor had their house on the market when this happened and they took the first offer they got, just to get out of our neighborhood. They didn't tell anyone about the break in because they didn't want it to effect the sale of their house. I can understand that. But I wish we had known that there were so many illegal guns 3 doors down from me.

I'm not a gun hater. I actually love guns and love to shoot. I don't own a gun but would if I had the chance. I am just wigged out that they had so many and in the hands of these two irresponsible young males who are criminals. Thank God that they are off the street - the guns and the thieves.