Random stuff

20180430_144447207071016.jpgWe picked up Tom Petty yesterday, after his long journey from England. I had ordered the canvas print of him 3 weeks ago, and delivery was scheduled for May 3rd at the earliest, so it surprised me to learn that Tom had been sitting at the post office for 5 days already. Yay for speedy service – I love it when my expectations are exceeded, which doesn’t happen too often. The picture itself was an awesome find. It really makes a cool, unique addition to our little tin can. I try to pick out decor that speaks to me in some way, and this piece definitely did. It’s a beautiful portrait of one of our favorite musicians, and one of 2017’s greatest losses. Tom’s song lyrics (especially the ones quoted here) have always resonated with me. On a side note – this is the only thing that I’ve ever bought from a shop in England, so I feel kind of “fancy” to have it gracing our hallway.  20180501_154859876416764.jpgWe didn’t have much time to hang out and admire the new artwork, as we were hitting the road to help Mom run errands. As usual, we stopped at Beaverton Fred Meyer for her groceries. Just as we found a parking spot, we saw a guy returning to his car that we would have mistaken for Dad, if he were still alive. (At Dad’s favorite place to shop, no less.) He was almost identical in appearance – height, build, hair, clothes, posture, just about everything. Bob and I spotted him at the same time and froze, as our hearts skipped a beat. Just as if we’d seen a ghost, we had goosebumps to the bone.  If I had taken a photo of this guy, and put it side by side with a photo of Dad, (like this one) it would be difficult to find differences. FB_IMG_1489255045743

It was a very surreal and haunting encounter that will probably linger in my head for a while.

We’re probably venturing back to Beaverton tomorrow, as my sister will be in town, and I haven’t seen her in 8 years or so. She’ll be staying at Mom’s for 2 nights while she attends a workshop in Salem. We were hoping we could convince Mom to go back home with Trudy,  so she could visit with her and the animals for a while.  Mom often mentions how much she wants to do that, and how it’s been forever since she has spent time at Trudy’s place. We thought that Bob and I could pick her up at Portland Greyhound on her return trip, and such could be our Mother’s Day gift to her. However, Mom is refusing, and she has thrown herself into a neurotic tizzy. She’s raving about how she’s too crippled for the trip, and has to have physical therapy for her moving related injuries to her back and shoulder before she goes anywhere. The problem with that is, she has been saying the same thing for almost a year now. She is clearly in pain and very frail, but won’t get any professional help for it. We have offered to arrange transportation to get her to PT appointments, and she still won’t go. Why? She says she’s too crippled to do it.  But yet she says she can’t do anything or go anywhere until she gets the therapy. Go figure. As usual, (and even more so lately) she seems content to complain about her issues, blame others for them, and obsess about what’s happened to her in the past. Trying to get better doesn’t seem to be on the agenda. These days, I wish I could have one conversation with her that didn’t include her ranting about the bitch manager that forced her to switch apartments and ruined her life, and how she’d beat the shit out of her if she could. Sometimes she repeats that rant several times during one conversation.  I say nothing and let her carry on, summoning up every ounce of my patience. Some days I feel a little short on it, but suck it up anyway.  I love my mom. 20180501_1944422141617035.jpgAnyway,  I guess we’ll see what happens tomorrow. (Tomorrow never knows.) No clue on that, or if I’ll post something about it, but I have a feeling I’m going to be totally wiped out by the end of this week.

 

 

Advertisements

Corner by the window

I think I’ve mentioned that I am truly ecstatic to finally get some new furniture and accent pieces for our house. It’s a long overdue treat, and just in time for spring.

Our home is currently a work in progress. I’m happy to see everything that I’ve ever envisioned for the little tin can gradually coming together. Only a few more touches for the inside, then it’s time to fix up the front porch with some flower pots, a bird feeder, and perhaps a new outdoor table for enjoying my coffee on sunny mornings.

Among my decorating plans in the 2 years we’ve lived here, I’ve wanted to put a comfy chair by the front door. It’s a great spot to kick back and enjoy the pretty ocean view. I’ve also wanted a papasan chair in particular for a long time. Pier 1 Imports used to have them, though they were always out of my budget. When I happened to find one on Wayfair that I could afford, I was thrilled. And it seemed it would be just the perfect chair for the corner by the window.

It truly is. I imagine I’ll be spending a lot of time in this comfy spot for some gloriously lazy days – reading, writing, gazing out to sea, and bird watching. My living room is divided with book shelves, so it makes the chair corner quite a cozy little nook.

My husband is lucky that I allow him to sit in it. I guess as long as he’s nice enough to share his chair, I can share mine. Well…maybe. 😉

Sunny day fun

April showers gave way to sunshine today. And after two weeks of being housebound with a bad lung infection, it felt great to get out and about for a while.

We had lunch at Surfrider, followed by a short walk on the beach. Exploring the beach access next to the restaurant/bar was fun. It was easy enough for me to climb down the stairs, but going back up was a hell of a challenge. Two stairs at a time, stop and catch my breath, keep climbing. Yes, my lungs are currently that weak, but getting the exercise was still a good thing.

Next, it was on to Newport to do the banking and shopping. I was absolutely overjoyed to finally be able to buy a new sofa, recliner, and coffee table, which we’ll be picking up in 3 days. Much to our delight, it was all on sale as well. Goodbye, broken and painful to sit on old furniture. Hello, happy and comfy us. I even bought throw pillows for the new sofa, though Bob was adamantly against getting any. (He hates accent pillows in general.) I have to say, choosing home furnishings with him is somewhat of a pain in the ass, as we don’t agree on a lot. But we found some stuff that both of us can live with, so yay. This furniture is super comfy, well made, and should last a long time. I already love the hell out of it.

I might venture back out tonight, and watch the sunset over the ocean. Then it’s time to crash with a smile on my tired face. I’d say it’s been a good day.

Detour

On our way to and from Beaverton, we’ve been taking a fairly new expressway that bypasses Dundee, and most of Newberg. That route goes by Dad’s old apartment complex, and we can see his old apartment from the road. While the short cut does save a little time, we feel sad whenever we go that way.

Dad was talking about that bypass being constructed a few years ago, and he hated the idea of it. He was wanting to move because of the extra traffic it would bring to Newberg. He also had other complaints about apartment living, I honestly think he just missed having his own house.

As I contemplate this one year after his death, it occurs to me that he got to avoid that bypass after all. Just as he wanted, he moved on to a better place. Much better than he could have ever found in this world. He took his own special detour.

I miss him dearly with every single beat of my heart. I always will.

Seagull silliness

As I was on the phone with Mom earlier today, I noticed a few seagulls had landed on our front lawn. I looked up at my neighbor’s balcony just in time to see a few crumbs being tossed. And as expected, the driveway and roof next door looked like a Hitchcock movie in 2 seconds.

The seagulls nest in the cove next to my house, so one crumb thrown on the ground will bring dozens of them into the streets and yards. I find them amusing, but I’ve refrained from feeding them from my porch since I’ve lived here. I don’t think my neighbors or husband would be too happy with me if I caused a literal shit show all over our windows, cars, and decks. I’ve often heard seagulls being referred to as “obnoxious rats with wings.” And I remember how pissed Dad would get when I fed them from inside of his freshly washed truck. I don’t particularly want to face anybody’s wrath for bringing forth feathered bomb squads from the sky.

But I do enjoy the crazy visits from the little monsters when someone offers up the occasional birdie treat. To me, it’s just another fun part of coast life.

Rainbow in the dark

20180214_1711001357848417.jpgSo as I had mentioned in my last post, our lives have recently taken a huge turn for the better.

I suppose it started with prayers, as that was all I had left besides fear and desperation. We were surrounded by obstacles, scraping bottom, and the hole we were in only seemed to get deeper and darker. Before I went to sleep each night, I looked up and quietly talked to Dad with tears running down my face. “You’ve always been there for me, Dad.” “And I know that hasn’t changed.” I told him how much we needed help right now, and how scared we were. I sent up a plea from the heart, and hoped it would be heard.

I had been telling Bob to contact Doug, the owner of Maxwell’s. I thought he should tell the guy that he’s been in a hardship situation for the past year, since Perlie took away his money nights at work. I told him he should ask Doug if she might be leaving soon, as he would like to have his weekends back. If not, perhaps he might have other positions available. Bob felt intimidated about writing the e mail, as he was at a loss for words. So he procrastinated for a while, before asking me to compose the letter. I argued that he could write it just as well as I could, using a mix of careful contemplation and blunt honesty. But he continued to drag his feet, and I eventually gave in. When I finished, I gave it to Bob to send to Doug, who promptly responded that he would talk to Jamie, the manager. After a few days, Jamie messaged Bob to say he could KJ on Friday nights again. It seemed that Jamie’s plan was to run a comparison between Bob and Perlie for a while, to see which one of them made bigger numbers on weekends. It wasn’t what we were expecting, but we were prepared to fight the great battle of the KJ’s,  and kick some ass to get Bobby Blues back on top. Surprisingly, that didn’t last one weekend.

Upon being told by Jamie that she was being kicked off of Friday nights, Perlie immediately threw the mother of all primadonna tantrums. She then went to Doug to throw her fit, expecting to be given her way as usual. Doug quickly told her to suck it up and deal, and shut her down. At her following Saturday show, she took a nasty attitude with everyone. We got a message from friends who were there, saying she had told them it was her last night – she was quitting because she didn’t like being in competition. Sure enough, Jamie messaged Bob the next morning to see if he wanted to KJ on Saturdays again as well. So far, his return to glory has been fabulous. Both customers and bar staff couldn’t be happier that Bobby Blues is back to rocking the weekend shows. As one of the bartenders put it, it’s nice for them to be making money again. Perlie is currently waiting tables at Mo’s, and is on the shit list of all of the Maxwell’s crew including the owner. Apparently, she made a brief appearance there last Saturday night, noticed the place was packed to capacity, and Bobby Blues was not accepting any new singers. She promptly got pissed and left. I suppose it’s not too gracious to laugh about that, but we do have to smile about the beauty of karmic justice.

In the process of getting his weekends back at Maxwell’s, Bob was contacted by one of his old supervisors from his last job at the hotel. He’s now the assistant manager at Shell in Lincoln City, and was looking to replace some of their deadbeat employees with people he knows are reliable and hard working. So needless to say, Bob also landed a second part time job. We found out that he probably was being blackballed by the crooked people from the hotel who said they’d give him a good reference, but were likely giving him bad ones. That would explain why he wasn’t getting hired anywhere. His new boss had to leave the hotel reference off of his own resume to get the job he has now, as he was being screwed over. The owners of Starfish Manor fired their whole crew, including Bob’s boss, for absolutely no good reason. Bob’s new boss and one of his old co-workers from the Starfish are currently seeking legal action against the owners of the place. I think I have mentioned that the sharks which lurk around the coast aren’t only in the ocean. And that’s the dark underbelly of this otherwise beautiful area, that isn’t really visible unless you live and work here.

I have to say, life feels right again. Bob is where he is meant to be, enjoying the rewards of his true calling. It makes my heart happy to be woke up again at 2:30 in the morning to the sound of a large wad of cash being counted, followed by a victorious giggle. Last weekend brought a huge crowd into Maxwell’s, due to the annual wine and seafood festival in Newport. He brought home record earnings two nights in a row, and we sat up until 4:00 am talking through the shock of it all. It felt almost as if we had won the lottery, but better.

20180224_033600388071468.jpg

I keep looking up at the sky, and I smile and say –

“I know that was you, Dad.” “Thanks for everything – love you always.”

 

Decadence

My dinner tonight was a wonderful fresh macadamia halibut and rice, and a shared slice of turtle cheesecake, over a beautiful ocean view. It was an absolutely magnificent delight, an exquisite treat which I haven’t had in a very long time.

It was expensive, of course. I felt quite guilty for indulging, and certainly not worthy of eating so luxuriously.

But there was no real need for feeling that way, as our wallets are full, and all is well. We can afford it, and it is deserved and long overdue.

I’ll elaborate on our new good fortune later, when I have the energy. I am in the process of recovering from a chest cold, which currently has me tired much of the time. But I am still very happy.