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4 hours ago, Marg M said:

I can't do it even yet Dee. Brianna makes fun of my many plastic boxes, the biggest ones, piled in my closet, at the end of my bed, and against the wall.  She wants me to get rid of them.  I opened the first one and so much of Billy jumped out at me I had to close it and still won't open it. 

Marg:  I understand totally about your saying "Billy jumped out at me."  I have reacted in the same way so many times.  I am beginning to feel the delay caused by the virus, etc., delaying my plans, is supposed to be this way since it is so hard for me to part with so many reminders and memories so quickly.  I have needed the time to let 51+ years of memories go.  It took me close to two years to begin to let Bob's clothes go.  I still haven't parted with all of them as I am comfortable wearing his sweatshirts and big old comfy knit shirts.

I would have loved to have stayed in our home until my time came, but after over 5 years of living alone I am finding I am not able to work outside to maintain the yard.  My old 79 year old body is rebelling louder and louder.  And since my son lives about an hour away from me I have very little contact with my 2 grand kids.  They are growing up so fast I can't believe the years are flying by.  You were smart to move back to your little hometown and blessed to have your family with you.  Their being in your life gives you the purpose to make the decisions to live a life the best you can without your beloved Billy.  Your packed and stacked boxes are giving you comfort and are your way of showing your family how much you care about them.  Part of my motivation to make my move was to eliminate a good amount of my belongings so my kids wouldn't have to deal with it some day.  

We each have a different path we must take, don't we ?   Dee

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Hey, I can start a new topic, they are usually not of much substance and they don't last long, but I listened to the radio this morning on the way to local "Dollar Gentral." (If you have not seen the

Today would have been our 20th wedding anniversary. I was married 3 times.  First one ended in divorce after 31 years. Second one ended in a suicide. THEN I met Al, the love of my life.  M

One of my favorites for Billy the Kid.  Two Christmases before he left.  

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I was in a fog.  I let Billy's fishing tackle and equipment go or be stolen and it was expensive stuff.  I had Scott with me, but my head was in the pine trees surrounding the house.  Now, I would have guarded them with my life.  Then, I wasn't even there, and that is why the rules say, don't do anything the first year (I think that is what it says).  I can see why.  But, I could not stay in that house another night, even with people staying with me.  It was like it was the house's fault he was gone.  I had to get away.  I absolutely had to, and that was why the 50 morphine pills sounded good.  I guess I go insane when I don't want to face something.  

NOTE:  Just had a note come across my screen saying "real estate business is booming because of the pandemic.

I find that so hard to believe other than people cannot pay for their houses.  

Dee, it is hard (impossible for me) to take care of my own house.  I don't want to.  I know it is crazy, but even at 5:00 a.m. every morning, hearing that bed making noises in the apartment above me, it is kind of comforting.  Been there, done that, y'all have fun.  That quiet, beautiful country, wildlife surrounded, flower surrounded home was prison.  This apartment house where I don't know any of the people, but the manager, David, the "fixer" and my sister, and I talk to my friends quite often, either on here or on the phone.  We shy away from politics as I am a poly-tick hater and all of these people, me included, live in a red state and it should be purple, my sister wishes it was blue.  

It is past 1:00 a.m. and I want to go read and I am daffy anyhow, but more so after the witching hour.  As long as we can just throw the stuff in big boxes, close the top and sit on them, we will be okay.  

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I read both your posts and wonder where it am going to wind up.  Having read so much of your 'nomad' history, Marg, I understand your not liking having a house.  Dee, you have one and having to decide what to keep or not is something I don’t know if I could face voluntarily.  A-small example is a set of crystal glasses he bought me just because I admired them, showing me he noticed.  I will never use them again, but seeing them is a part of us.  Those little things take up space.  There’s so much in this house I’m just so used to being there.  I may not consciously notice it now, but if they were gone I would.  It’s like since losing Ally.  I so took for granted she would be a part of daily life.  I never took her for granted, she was just a part of the energy here.  Objects aren’t entities, but they’re all powerful.  

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I can sure identify with noticing that things are gone. For financial reasons, I sold so many of our collectibles, the most noticeable being his huge gun safe. My china cabinet sits there now holding what remains of my Madame Alexander dolls. The display cabinet that was their home is gone. Two thirds of my Hopi kachinas are gone. My beautiful delicate Chinese figurines......I know they were just "things", but they were OUR things and it hurt as each item went to a new owner. Each item took another piece of our life out of this old house. Of course, everything about this old house has changed with the guys living here. The dynamics, the atmosphere......I just go with the flow. Life is too short not to.

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It's interesting you all are discussing houses, homes, downsizing, and moving/not moving.  I've been purging slowly and downsizing and considering leaving this area after 21 years, as it's getting rowdy and dangerous, with the city being mismanaged to a very serious degree, with people acting out, violence etc.  I fear a repeat of Summer 2020 next year.  Yet part of me wants to stay as this place is mine and has a lot of memories.

Marg, I can relate to the stuff being taken from you in the early days of fog.  Someone who was in the house at the time stole all my power tools and various odds and ends but I didn't notice until after they had been made to leave.  Didn't even leave me a damned cordless drill for minor repairs, the creep.  🤬

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We have a wonderfully beautiful assisted care right around the corner in front of the elementary school.  In Mount Ida, they built the assisted living next door (connected by walkway) on a small mountain with the same mountain ridge that ran behind our house.  The view was the valley, the town, the river.  I wanted so bad to make Mount Ida my home, the rest of my days, but I didn't count losing Billy in that town and any pain of returning would be so agonizing.  All in my head, but the rest of my five feet went along with my brain.  Kelli informed me I would not be in any of them and I'm sure she would take good care of me, she is/was a nurse, mostly for the elderly.  We don't know how we will leave this earth and it will happen, when it happens.  If you can't leave your house.......don't.  If you need more help than you can pay for, now that is a problem you will have to face.  My friend Hettie lives in a triple level.  I saw her little "for sale sign) on the street when I was paying my property taxes in October.  She lives in her washroom, kitchen, her dining room, her den/living room, and her bedroom.  But she was a flower person and she cannot keep up with her beautiful bolder laden home with all the trees and flowers.  She cannot mow the big sloping hill in back, and she wants to leave, cannot afford to keep house upkeep, her husband built it though.  Mount Ida is her home, forever.  Her two kids are there and getting too old and busy to really take care of their things and hers too.  This is not a little yard, it is acres.  I think I would have my front steps, all the smooth rock steps weed eat all around her walkways, a light electric weed eater will do this.  If I could not leave, and some cannot, then live in the part of your house you can without using the rest.  Make your own apartment inside your house.  Don't like it that way?  Which is better?  We are so individual.  Cannot pick up all the limbs.  Keep enough pushed out of your way to be able to get through.  Not up to your expectations?  Then find someone who you can hire, if you have the money.  

There is one stream that flows through most all of us.  We are getting old and unable to do things.  My heart made me leave.  Yours makes you stay.  It does not work the same way for everyone.  

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I think of my aunt and two cousins.  Their hobby was antiques and they drove for miles to pick up pieces.  My aunt had the cutest little house built beside her big one (a house I could have lived in comfortably the rest of my life), and in it she kept antiques that she could not keep in the big house.  My boy cousin wanted my solid oak claw tooth table and chairs.  I didn't care about material possessions, still don't, but I  had bought that table alone at unpainted solid oak furniture store, chairs too.  With my wonderful designing mind, I picked dark pecan stain.  It was so ugly.  Kelli took it, stripped it, and now it is oak color and she is saving it for Brianna.  Kelli has my great grandmother's sewing machine, an old Minnesota treadle, will only sew forwards.  It serves as a piece of furniture.  She has the 1928 dresser and chest of drawers..  I let rain ruin the bed frame.  My cousin has three floors and a Michigan basement full of collectables and antiques.  When he was well, they sold them at an antique shop.  I had noticed a collection of ancient butter molds.  I told her I appreciated them.  She knew I was not asking for them, they all know I will use lawn chairs for living room chairs.  But, she had forgot all about them and wondered what box they might be in, in the basement.  Both are in ill health, late 70's.  Hire a gardener to care for their property.  

I remember seeing a native american graveyard with the deceased most prized possession as their monument.  I remember seeing a sewing machine for one woman. 

That is about as close as we can get to "taking it with us." 

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On 11/19/2020 at 1:24 PM, Gwenivere said:

It’s very expensive owning a home.

Tell me about it!  I just found out the entire back of my garage is rotted through and about to cave, it won't withstand a storm, and the building on it houses my water tank and pipes, freezer...it needs replaced.  I don't have that kind of money but what do you do?  Getting measurements & bid next week from the only local builder I trust...keeping fingers crossed, prayers said, smoke signals going up!  Praying for wisdom on how to handle this latest challenge...lumber went up more than double this year, not good timing!  Oh and did I mention there's a lot of stuff in the way of where they will need to work?!

Kieron, I'm sorry you also went through theft at the beginning of your journey, me too.  Our generator, tools, so much, now the mice have taken over the shop and I'm feeding them a tablet of poison/day.  Tried electronic mousetraps but they quit going for them, they were more humane, but they can have it their way.

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This is why I cannot handle a home.  I cannot afford to have it fixed every time something goes wrong.  If it goes wrong here, I call manager, she sends David.  I don't miss my other house.  The difference in four families to an apartment building, smelling what they are having for dinner (sometimes that turns my stomach), but we don't all eat the same thing.  Brianna would rather be in London or NYC.  I hope she makes it one day.  She is not aiming towards her goal.  We have so much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving, so much to worry about, so many to miss.  

I remember one ice storm holiday.  We had come down from Arkansas.  Electricity went out in Mama's house.  No problem for her, she switched everything to the fireplace.  Country gal can survive.

We grow good-ole tomatoes and homemade wine
And a country gal can survive
Country folks can survive  
(with apologies to Hank Williams, Jr.)

Mama did make homemade wine sometimes.  That stuff was GOOD.  You put a balloon on the top of the big bottle (big), keep air out with rubber band around balloon.  One year she didn't have a balloon so she used plastic glove.  When those five fingers were standing erect, time to drink it.  

Mama was mental, but I think most of the mental was when she had walked on top of that line she always talked about being the difference in genius and insanity.  Mama walked on top of the genius line sometime.  

No, we didn't grow "smoke" but if she had thought about it, we might have.  We had the whole back field empty.  

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On 11/20/2020 at 1:12 AM, Gwenivere said:

 Dee, you have one and having to decide what to keep or not is something I don’t know if I could face voluntarily.  A-small example is a set of crystal glasses he bought me just because I admired them, showing me he noticed.  I will never use them again, but seeing them is a part of us.  Those little things take up space.

Gwen:  Your crystal glasses have sentimental value of a beautiful memory of your Steve's love for you.  I totally understand your feelings and shed tears reading your pain. 

These past 5+ years I have struggled with leaving our home but was not at that point for different reasons.  The second or third year that I was alone I looked into an over 55 community closer to my son but would have had to give up Maddie due to restrictions on pet sizes.  Maddie was 70 pounds of love and gentleness.  She was part of my life that I couldn't give up.

Fortunately, or unfortunately, my new home will be considerably smaller in size which will be easier to clean and will be less worry on my son.  Through the years I have been eliminating items gradually to my kids.  Just yesterday my daughter sent me a picture of her ongoing bathroom remodeling.   I had to laugh, as most of the items displayed were items I had given her.  She is her Father's daughter; her decor is fishing/nautical.  She plans to hang a fishing pole her Dad used as a child on the wall.

None of this is easy to do, but being alone without our loving partner magnifies our inability to make any kind of decision for what would be best for our future.  

On 11/20/2020 at 12:02 PM, Marg M said:

Kelli informed me I would not be in any of them and I'm sure she would take good care of me, she is/was a nurse, mostly for the elderly.  We don't know how we will leave this earth and it will happen, when it happens.  If you can't leave your house.......don't.

 That was my kid's reaction when I suggested moving into a retirement or assisted living situation before the virus set upon us.  Now that the virus is ruling our life right now, it was probably the right way to go.  My husband's 92 year old Aunt is in a beautiful A.Living and is really struggling cause her kids aren't able to visit her.   Each time I call her, she breaks down in tears she is so sad and lonesome for human/family contact.  She is allowed to go into the dining area but not able to have close contact with anyone other than the caretakers who work there.  The wet winter weather has eliminated her walks outside for now.  So sad.

I agree with you, "If you can't leave your house....don't."    Dee

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26 minutes ago, widow'15 said:

None of this is easy to do, but being alone without our loving partner magnifies our inability to make any kind of decision for what would be best for our future.  

This is what I miss the most being alone.  Big decisions were always made as a couple.  Someone would catch something the other didn’t.  We’d pretty much discuss everything not related to our individual pursuits unless a conflict arose with people we dealt with or sharing anecdotes.  I’ve made decisions that get results, but later see there was maybe a better way Steve would have been more attune to.  I’m at the mercy of those I hope I can trust.  Losing that makes this so much lonelier.

I’m glad you have your kids do you can still see your and his stuff.  I lose it thinking ours have no one to go to.  It will be an estate sale or whatever, but strangers and that brings tears to my eyes.

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I don't kid myself, my kids don't want my stuff.  I tried giving my DIL my china when they got married but she didn't want it, I heard her talking about it to her mother...my china is beautiful!  Took me 17 years of waiting to be able to get it, now no more family dinners.  I miss using it and cooking for a family.  Same with crystal.  George was also the kind, Gwen, if he saw something he knew I'd like, he'd get it, gives me warm fuzzy feelings to think about.  My DIL uses polka dot Corelle ware instead.  My daughter uses avocado green print Correlle.  Both clean & stack nicely but...I get that my daughter doesn't have room for both, nor the time/lifestyle for washing dishes by hand.  Oh well, different strokes for different folks!  I love my everyday stoneware, don't plan to ever get rid of it even if I have to pare down someday.  
It's hard living alone here but I don't want Kodie in an apt and I would miss the wildlife and neighbors...all the beauty here.

 

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I use paper plates.

And there you have the "minus" for apartment living.  With pets it is more expensive and their outside time has to be on a leash.  So, fur babies are a detriment to apartment living.  

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Yup, paper plates are a staple around here. Like them for lunch and take out.  Hopefully getting my plumbing leak fixed today to the dishwasher so I can go back to my real plates and not have to wash bowls.  

You have to be a young person to do a dog in an apartment with walks having to be part of daily routine.  Here, I just have to open the sliding door to the back yard.  If only I could train Mel to close it when she comes in.  

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Bri washes dishes here.  We have a dishwasher but neither of us ever used one.  Billy relied on that dishwasher.  Bri will fuss and fuss and they are her dishes but I tell her to just leave them, I'll do them in the morning.  "No, I cannot stand leaving dishes overnight."  Where has this kid been all my life.  I remember company coming and hiding the dirty dishes in the stove..  (It was not hot).  

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That’s why they made dishwashers.  🙂

i only run mine every other week when I run out of plates, utensils and drinking glasses.  Always washed pots and pans by hand as they took up too much room.  Another task that used to be a weekly one when Steve was here.  And I could make him wash the pots and pans.  

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I'm with you Gwen on teaching Marley how to close the door and open it. I can't leave it open for her when she's out because Tatum can't use the backyard because of the Chow next door. It's complicated but she's not allowed to try and run the fence since the last knee surgery. Because of her age and arthritis, her knee will never allow her to be the rambunctious dog she once was. There's nothing more that can be done. Robert or David have to take her out in the front yard on a leash. She doesn't understand all this of course, but it takes almost nothing for her to start limping and in pain. I feel so bad for her.

My dishwasher is kind of right up there with the microwave, although I certainly remember having neither and I survived.  lol

Now every time I see that commercial for sturdy paper plates where the guy dumps spaghetti in the girl's lap, I'll think of you guys. Don't use them for spaghetti😁

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I used to use basket holder things for the paper plates, but haven't used either in years.  Just as easy to rinse off my dish.  Besides it isn't easy to clean egg yolk off the rim of the basket.

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Scott fusses if we don't have paper plates.  He uses them to fold to roll the food onto the fork or spoon.  Folks, I don't make this stuff up.  I totally love my family.

As an addendum, I don't like to wash dishes and damned if I will wash them to put them into a dishwasher to wash again.  At least Brianna sees this the same way I do.  Now Billy, he purposefully washed his dishes, then he piled them carefully into the dishwasher and washed them again.  One good thing, I did see that the final rinse possibly sterilized the dishes.  

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Reminds me of a commercial a kid is asking if her mother washes the dishes, what does the dishwasher do?  I just rinse mine because it could be a long time til I run it.  Then stuck stuff is rock hard and I can’t blame the DW.  Speaking of which, just had a plumber out for mine as the appliance guy said it wasn’t the DW.   Plumber says yes, found no leaks in basic hookup.  Now I have to have them talk to each other.  Nothing ever goes smoothly anymore.  Then I had my medic alert send a paper bill because my Visa expiration changed.  Had to call them.  Want to drop a goodie ag at the nursing home for a resident friend but can hardly walk from rearranging the freezer last night and sleeping on the strain.  This is a definite Monday like back in the old days of 2019.  Problem is, the rest of the week will be too.  My birthday is Wednesday and then Thanksgiving alone.  Community center handing out meals.  Have to decide if I want to join the other lonely ranks or hit Jack in the Box, only place that will be open.  Guess I could get something the day before, but it’s all depressing.  No Steve cooking the turkey, dogs going crazy with all the food goings on and candles and cloth napkins anymore.  7 years and I still miss it.  

Is it just me, but I’m sad they have made a Black Friday Black Weeks now.  Twas traditional it was one day.  Now we have Cyber Monday.  And Xmas commercials are on already.  One cable channel has been running movies all day that are Xmas since October 1st.  Guess I’m old fashioned.  I never did Black Friday, but got a chuckle from watching people participate in that madness.  And stores didn’t open at ungodly hours or the night of Thanksgiving.  The words all upside down in so many ways.  If anytime we could use tradition it is now.  Aren’t people stressed out enough with change without heaping more on it?  AND how’s it a deal if you don’t have to sacrifice for it!

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I remember one black Friday.  Mind you, I've only been to about three.  It was a bicycle at Walmart I was determined to get for Brianna.  Me and this man reached for it, it was no "ladies first" kind of thing.  But, he hit my wig and it shifted.  I think the horror of maybe scalping this woman, (about 16 years ago), he pulled his hand back fast.  I got the bicycle.  I think that was the last one I went to.  

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14 hours ago, Gwenivere said:

The family only used paper at gatherings so spaghetti wasn’t traditional fare at holidays and BBQ's.  

I was in an Italian family for 22 years, we got together at my house often!

13 hours ago, Gwenivere said:

I’m sad they have made a Black Friday Black Weeks now.  Twas traditional it was one day

I got an email telling me all month is Black Friday now, I think it was Sears, IDK, I deleted it.  Not into shopping, I send my kids checks & $ to my DIL to get whatever she wants for the grandkids, I can't keep up with their myriads of stuff.

13 hours ago, Gwenivere said:

My birthday is Wednesday

 

HB.gif

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I used to be done with my Xmas shopping by Thanksgiving except for little things I might find when we still did gifts.  Then gift cards came along, online ordering and finally we all got older and needed nothing or bought it when we did.  Steve and I got down to one preset only.  We were all exchanging gift cards so much we were evening out.  Missed the present filled mornings of yore, but so much changed.  When we did order things for people it was edibles.  Everyone just ran out of room for 'stuff'.  I can see having grandkids would be a presents thing.  

Thanks for the birthday banner.  I may be spending it in the ER tomorrow as I’m having another day of excruciating pain.  Supposed to call the intake nurse this afternoon.  This doesn’t solve the fact I don’t want this surgery and all it entails.  I’m losing it about how trapped I am.  Can hardly function with the pain and terrified of being cut open and my spine being forever altered with hardware.  If only I weren’t alone.  So much to organize but maybe with no time.  Dog, house, birds, mail, bills.  Other conditions they will sideline.  I’m so alone in this.  I just sit here.....paralyzed about what to do.  

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