Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Well lived

Spouse came home Mon night and filled me in on more of the details of his mom's illness and passing.  Yesterday the arrangements were confirmed with the funeral home, church, and cemetary.

We're leaving tomorrow for the DC area, to help out with a few things and to spend some time with the family.  There will be viewings at the funeral home on Fri 2-4pm and again 6-8pm.  A funeral mass will be held Sat at 11am at the church Evelyn attended for many years.  Internment will be Mon at 10:30.

It will be a difficult few days for sure, but we will also celebrate a life well lived.  More on that later.

Monday, April 24, 2017


Late Fri night we got a call from Spouse's sister, notifying us that his mom Evelyn was in the hospital.  She was taken there after a fall in her apartment, due to extremely low blood pressure.  She's banged up her face but had not broken any bones.

Sat we got a pretty positive update on Evelyn's condition.  She was talking and laughing and seemed to be doing pretty well.  This news made Spouse & I feel much better.  Evelyn's blood pressure was still very low but they were treating it with medication.  

Late Sun night we got another call from Spouse's sister who was in tears.  Evelyn had taken a turn for the worse and was move to ICU and put on a ventilator.  Despite multiple medications to try and raise her blood pressure they doctors were unsuccessful.  Spouse wondered if he should get in the car immediately and drive to see her, but it was after 11pm and since she was on the ventilator he decided to wait until the morning.

So this morning he drove back to the DC area and met his siblings in the hospital and spoke with the doctors.  Evelyn was not conscious.  The medications were having no effect on her blood pressure.  It seemed the cardiomyopathy she'd been trying to outrun for 6 years had finally caught up with her.  Her weakened heart just couldn't pump enough to keep her blood pressure up.

Evelyn signed a medical directive years ago stating her wishes for the time when this inevitable situation would occur.  After 12 hours on life support the 4 siblings honored her wishes and allowed the doctors to turn off the machinery keeping her alive.  Within just a few minutes, surrounded by family, Evelyn's light went out.  She was 87.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Birthday girl

On Sat we went to a 1-year old's birthday party.  Our friends Derwin & Carolyn's daughter Quinn's birthday was Sat the 15th and they had her outdoor party in their yard on Sat as well.  Our friend Thad went with us; Steven had to work.

There was good food, gourmet cupcakes, and a good time had by all.
Thad holding Quinn

Friday, April 14, 2017


Work has been so busy!

This isn't entirely surprising since its spring and I live/work in a beach resort area.  There's always an influx of buyers looking to own their own place at the beach.  But not only do we sell beach homes, we also sell homes to people relocating from neighboring states who want lower property taxes and a high quality of life.  

Sorry if my blog posts end up being mostly photos and quick references.

Friday, April 07, 2017

Ooops I did it again

I have not gone bowling since I've known Spouse, so that's over 20 years. 

I belong to a real estate association that decided to host a bowling outing.  They advertised prizes for the highest team score and for the best team outfit.  Initially I scoffed this off, but gave it a 2nd thought when my friend Joey asked me to be on his team of 5.  

It turned out that no one on our team had much experience bowling so we were pretty sure we weren't going to win the highest team score.  But our bowling inexperience would have no effect on our creativity, so we decided to focus on the team outfit.

After a few mediocre ideas for our team name/theme, I remembered an episode of Modern Family where Mitchell & Cameron bowled with or against a team called Britney Spares so I tossed that out to the group.  Imagining the costume possibilities, we immediately adopted Team Britney Spares as our name and outfit theme.

At first we thought each of us would take a different Britney look, but soon realized most of them were too skimpy for our group to be seen wearing in a bowling alley.  So, we decided all 5 of us would wear the same Britney look:

Hats off to Joey's 2 assistants who did all the purchasing of pieces on Amazon and at a local teen girl store.  Here's what we came up with:
Can you find me??
And on the back of our cardigans you can see our team name:
Click the photo to expand it
Yes, we're wearing fake headsets.  We took it that far.

When the person entered our names to display our scores, they entered them as Britney Joey, Britney Mark, etc.  This prompted us to refer to each other by these names all night long.

"Britney Joey - you're up!"

And each time 1 of us got a spare, we'd high-five each other and yell "He got a Britney Spare!!!"

We had our photo taken by lots of our friends and colleagues which added to the fun.

 Needless to say we took the prize for best team outfit, but more importantly we had a super fun time.

Our bowling was okay.  4 out of 5 of us broke 100 points, but again, the intent was to have a good time.

The next day my right hand and forearm were aching, even though I only used an 8 lb ball.  I guess it was a case of using muscles in a different way than usual.  But it was my day off so I didn't have to do much typing.  800 mg of Ibuprofen took care of it for the most part.

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

I can see clearly now

I started wearing glasses when I was 12 years old.  I switched to contact lenses when I was 18 years old.  I'm 1 of 4 children and all of us wear glasses or contacts.

For many years now I've been wearing extended wear disposable contacts.  I wear them for a month (sometimes longer when I forget) then throw them away and put in a fresh pair.  I love them!

My prescription has been to correct nearsightedness (can't see distances) and astigmatism.  However, now that I am "of a certain age" I have had more and more trouble seeing things up close too.

I was able to compensate for this easily with my iPhone but adjusting the font to a larger size.  But for work I have to read MLS fact sheets that will only print at a set size in order to fit all the info on a single page.  I compensated for this by using a pair of cheap reading glasses, purchased at the dollar store.  This worked fine when I was at my desk, but when I tried to refer to the fact sheets while out on showings, I literally couldn't distinguish between some letters and numbers.

So I discussed this with my eye doctor during my last annual check up.  He suggested I try mono vision contact lenses.  This means you wear a distance correction lens in your dominant eye and a reading correction lens in your other eye.  Initially this sounded crazy as I imagined myself stumbling around trying to figure out which eye to use to see distances an up close.  

But my doctor said that your eyes automatically pick the right one to see what you're trying to see, and while some people take a day or 2 to adjust to this, most people adjust within an hour.

Still, I couldn't imagine how this would work.  So my eye doctor suggested we experiment with it.  I put my 'regular' (distance) lens back in my right eye, and then he gave me a reading correction lens for my left eye.

"Look out the window at that sign across the street.  Can you read the sign?" he asked.

"Yes" I responded.

"Good.  Now take a look at this" he said and handed me a piece of paper.  "Can you read this?"

"Yes!" I responded in amazement.

Its hard to describe how it works, but your eyes just 'figure out' which one of them to use for distance vision and reading vision.  I was sold.

So now I wear mono vision contacts and have not needed the reading glasses.  I will admit that some of my distance acuity is reduced, but its still satisfactory and is certainly better than when I couldn't read things up close.

Anyone else wear mono vision contacts?  What's your experience/satisfaction level?

Monday, April 03, 2017

Satisfying Sunday

I was off work yesterday (I try to have Thurs & Sun off every week) so Spouse & I had a nice day together.

We started by having a late breakfast at Crystal with Steven and Joe P.  On the way home we stopped at the grocery store and picked up a couple items.  I walked through the new home under construction next door to us, and Spouse made a peanut butter pie - a special request from Thad.  I did a little light housekeeping sorted the mail.

Then it was time to wash the dogs.  We let them 'go' a little too long between baths so they had begun to smell like Fritos.  Neither of them likes getting a bath but both tolerate it without too much resistance.  

Walter was 1st.  After Spouse washed and rinsed him, I took over to dry him.  We found using a laundry basket helps keep him contained while I towel dry him so he doesn't try and scamper off.

Marvin went 2nd.  He's been through this so many times in his 5 years of living with us that he barely tries to climb out of the utility sink.
I just love the way they look when they're damp and wrapped in towels!

After they ran around the house for a bit, we put them in their crates and went out for a drive.  It was in the low 60s and sunny, so we put the top down on the convertible for the 1st time in 2017 and enjoyed a nice dose of vitamin D.  It felt glorious!

Later we tried a new Italian restaurant with Steven & Thad, then came back to our house for a slice of peanut butter pie.  They left and we watched TV.

It was a nice day together.