Thursday, January 31, 2013

Just a quick post

Hey, it's me again.  Just a quick post to say hello and to let you know that I'm OK.  Life is moving on, I'm taking care of the things I need to do.  I'm trying to stay creative, remembering to feed myself and going to the rec center when I feel like it.

Yesterday, I got a box cake mix from the store and fixed it.  It is a pound cake mix and surprisingly it was pretty good.  I didn't want to get out all the ingredients to make something from scratch and this caught my eye on the shelf at Food Lion.

I made a glaze from lemon juice and powered sugar and drizzled over it and it's not bad.

I went to the gym this morning and participated in a group exercise class that is mostly folks my age.  It is called Back in Shape, and since I hadn't been to this particular class for several months (more like six), the exercises seemed a bit hard.  It  originally was an exercise class for those that wanted to strengthen their back and core, but over the past year the instructor has "sneaked" in some movements that are a bit more challenging.  There is warm up, stretching and cool down so it really is a pretty good class.  I think I'll continue to go.

After class I needed to run to Target to get a few things and while I was there I saw this pea coat on a sale rack.  Originally $50.00 on sale for $15.00, I couldn't pass it up.  I took the picture before steaming the wrinkles out, but you get the idea...

The color looked good with my hair and while it's a bit shorter than I would normally buy, I'm trying to step outside my little box a bit.

Well, that's it for me today.  Hopefully when I come back I'll have something a bit more interesting.  Till then, stay safe and always stay creative!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

A short video from me...

The snow hasn't melted completely from our neighborhood of hills, so I thought I would make a quick video while I'm in for a while.

It's funny how the thumbnails from a youtube video are never flattering, but hey it's me in all my glory.  Hope you like it. 

Take care and keep those cards and letters comin'!!  (You have to be really old to get that one).

Thursday, January 24, 2013

New furniture...

Well, last post I told you that I would discuss my young friend Adam, age 10, and the closure that I was able to get from his curiosity.  He and his sister Sierra were visiting me Monday before returning home to South Carolina.  I mentioned Tim's urn and that it helped me know what had happened was real because I have the ashes.  He didn't know what I meant, so with his dad nearby to help explain, we started a discussion about cremation.  He said to me so you mean there are actual ashes in that box, and I assured him that there were.  He hesitated only seconds and said can we look at them?  Well, I wasn't actually expecting this question, but it made me realize immediately that I wanted to look at them myself.  So we got the urn and I let him feel how heavy it was and we then set it down on the coffee table and slid the top off and saw the ashes were in a sturdy plastic bag tied up with a twist tie.  We each took our finger and pressed on the ashes through the plastic bag to see what they felt like.  This seemed a perfectly normal way to end the discussion.  It was closure that I didn't even know I needed.

As you can see from this picture, he was fine with everything we had discussed.

Well, the kids have gone home and my new furniture was delivered the next day.  I may have mentioned that Tim and I were planning on getting a new sofa this year, so I decided that there was no time like the present and I went to Grand Interiors and picked out a La-Z-Boy sofa and chair.

This fact leads us to the theory of six degrees of separation.  Brook Shields played a character on the television show Suddenly Seeking Susan.  Her character's name was Susan Keane.  My name is Susan Keene.  Brook now is the spokesperson for La-Z-Boy furniture, and here in lies my double connection to Brook Shields, as I just bought this furniture.  Taaaa, daaaaa!

Seriously though, here is the new living room furniture...

When you walk in the door it looks like this...

Sorry for  the solar glare produced by the lamp.  Put you had over the light and look a the furniture only.  My next step will probably be deciding what type of art to do as accent pieces for the new look.

Well, that's all for me to day.  I've taken you from ashes to a new beginning. I kind of like that.  I'm getting stronger and gaining more understanding as each day goes by.  I want to continue to thank you all for your prayers and support.  God is good and He has plans for me, this I know.  This is all just part of my new journey.

Until later...

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Water ring

One of the perils of having people in your house is water rings.  Usually, I don't fret too much about this kind of thing.  Someone was sweet enough to bring me a nice plant and didn't think about sitting it on the table. The fact is this, the piece of furniture is a vintage end table that is one of a pair that was in my uncle's house for years and he was soooo careful with his things, that I really wanted to fix it.

 In my world, it really wasn't that much of a big deal, buy hey...I've currently got time on my hands and I firmly believe an old dog can learn new tricks.  So I'm off to the internet for the solution.

The instructions I found said to use mayonnaise and let it sit for fifteen minutes and then wipe off.

If you click in on the picture, you can see that it really did quite well with the first treatment.  The instructions said to repeat the procedure until you were happy with the results.

I did just that and the second application of the mayo and waiting another fifteen-twenty minutes did the trick.  I am pleased with the results.  I'm sure this is an old tried and true technique,(was probably in Hints from Heloise years ago) but these days I really do feel like I'm learning new things, so I'm giving myself an "atta Girl".

I'll give you all a break from funeral stories and such for this post, but next post I'll tell you about my little friend Adam and how he helped me with some closure.  Be back soon.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Pulling out the art supplies

I have been secretly planning several portraits for Tim, and as you know, now I won't be able to surprise him with them.  I'm not usually very good at portraiture, but I found a lovely blog called Grow Creative, and using a wonderfully easy tutorial supplied by Elise at that blog,  I came up with this.  It's the first time using this technique, so I expect the next one will be better, but at least I'm testing the waters again.

Hope you like it, I know he probably would.  I also uploaded (to my youtube channel) a very short video of him that I took while in California.  He was in this same chair, but slapped a hat on for the video.  I'll post it soon.

Thanks again for all the support I am getting from you my blogger friends.  It really is helping tremendously.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

The urn...

I really hope that this doesn't upset any of my readers, but I just wanted to share this last experience.  Looking back on it now, I probably shouldn't have gone back to the funeral home by myself.  I have been waiting two weeks for them to call and tell me it was time to pick up the cremains.  I started getting a bit antsy because it is supposed to snow here tonight and I needed to know what was going on.

I was called last week to pick up the death certificates which I did.  It took fifteen to twenty minutes to find them, sign papers, make a copy of my driver license.  At no time did anyone even mention that Tim's urn was ready to be picked up.  So apparently, I could have picked him up the day after the service and didn't know it.

So after finding out that I could pick him up.  I just hopped in the car and drove myself.  Actually I was a bit peeved because no one had let me know, so once again I'm running on adrenaline.  After I got there and they felt awful about me not being called and really didn't know what to say.  I'm standing there gently crying. The gentleman brought him out in a nice little tote bag and I had to sign some more papers.  They offered to take the tote bag to the car for me, but I said no.  It never occurred to me that it would be heavy, I thought he was just being nice.

Well, I went out to the car, buckled the tote bag in the passenger seat and headed home.  I figured I should try to eat something so I cried at the drive through and when I stopped to get a newspaper and when I rearranged to shelf to put him on.

I cried while I ate and I'm crying as I type.  I am just so much sadder than I thought I would be.  My dear husband would have been devastated if he had been doing this.  I'm so glad he didn't have to experience these feelings.  I'm so blessed that it is he that is in heaven and feeling no pain or sorrow.  I would not want him to be sad and lonely.  He would be so sad here without me.  God knows what He's doing and makes no mistakes.

Anyway, if you are still wading through this tale of tears and mourning with me, know that I really will be fine.  I know that I will be.

Here is his final resting place...

I placed him on the shelf next to our picture and surrounded by the crazy, bad movies that he loved to collect.

RIP Sweet Timbo, rest in peace.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Two weeks have passed...

Yes, friends, two weeks have passed now since Tim died.  I'm finding new ways to do things, staying as busy as I want to be, going on about my daily life.

I went back to the gym today.  I went at our regular time (a little bit later than usual) so I could speak to the usual friends.  I talked for about half of the time I was there, but I did walk seven or eight laps and used two weight machines.

Folks at the gym didn't know about my haircut, so some of them didn't even recognize me at first.  I remember when I changed my hairstyle right before going to see my sister in CA and they couldn't find me in the airport.

Anyway this is my new hair cut.  This picture is somewhat better than a previous one, since I'm not puffy-eyed from a cold or being a bit weepy.

I know that I will be alright in my new life.  Things will be different, things are different.  Today I went to the post office and the grocery store and then went to the bank to tell the girls that Tim used to see whenever he went in to do his banking.  I usually stayed in the car, but I went in and introduced myself and they were all so sweet.  I did the same thing at the dry cleaners and where we get our gas.  My last stop was at a nearby convenience store where Tim would often run in and get sodas or water while we were out.  The gentleman remembered Tim and said what I think really grabs the essence of my husband.  He said "he was so kind-hearted and friendly".

I'll always remember that.  He WAS kind hearted.  It really came natural to him.  He was a good guy and I will miss him.

I will be fine.  I have family and friends that are really concerned for my welfare and are sincere in their requests to help me when I need it.  I will take them up on it.

My blogger friends have been so gracious and supportive.  I really do want to thank you for all your kind words and prayers.  I appreciate them more than you can know.

Thanks again for being there for me. I heart you.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Dream a little dream....

Well, that didn't take long.  Last night I had little dreams about Tim in which he was doing exciting things that all ended with his early demise.  I think one if them he was a spy running from bad guys.  There were probably about eight little vignettes, and in each one he was playing a role.  For some reason I woke up thinking "The Life and Times of Tucker Thompson".  Anyway, the one that is still so clear to me, he was hanging on for all he was worth to the side of a gangster style car, as it was careening around a ridge.  They were obviously running moonshine.  He was hanging on to that car and when he passed by (either me or the camera, I'm not sure which) he flung his arm out and in it he had this beautiful white fedora that he seemed to be waving at me.  He had the biggest, toothiest smile on his face and I  could tell it was the most fun he had ever had.

I'd like to think that is truly the way he went to heaven.  Lickety-split, no stops, enjoying the journey with a huge smile on his face.  That's how he lived his life.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Get your tissues...

A childhood friend sent me a condolence card that contained this poem.  You may be familiar with it, I was not.

Gone From My Sight
  I am standing upon the seashore. A ship, at my side,
spreads her white sails to the moving breeze and starts
for the blue ocean. She is an object of beauty and strength.
I stand and watch her until, at length, she hangs like a speck
of white cloud just where the sea and sky come to mingle with each other.

Then, someone at my side says, "There, she is gone"

Gone where?

Gone from my sight. That is all. She is just as large in mast,
hull and spar as she was when she left my side.
And, she is just as able to bear her load of living freight to her destined port.

Her diminished size is in me -- not in her.
And, just at the moment when someone says, "There, she is gone,"
there are other eyes watching her coming, and other voices
ready to take up the glad shout, "Here she comes!"

And that is dying...

Even though I am a strong, independent woman,  a pretty tough chick when need be... this poem allows me to bring forth the tears that I know will help deal with this new normal.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Not everything has changed...

I mentioned on my Facebook status this morning that I'm gaining comfort in ways that are surprising to me.  The warmth of the hairdryer (as I dried this massive mane of hair this morning) was the same as always, and I was comforted by that.  The taste of the honey on the spoon as I made my hot tea this was the exact same taste as before.  Little things like that serve as a subtle reminder that not everything has changed.  My husband died, that is what changed.  The things that he took care of while running the house they will remain the same, that has not changed.   Right now, for today, thinking about things that haven't changed will help me a lot.

You may already know that twice a year, for birthday and Christmas, Timbo would make a polymer clay sculpture for our sister-in-law in California.  This came as a surprised to folks that knew him.  He had a very artistic side to him.  Not only in being a musician and singer, as seen on his YouTube channel, but also being a carpenter and furniture builder. Nobody expected him to make cute little figurines.

Here he is with the last little bear that he so, lovingly made and remade, until it was just so.

Here is the close up version of Little Bear...

He was so proud of the finished product. I was proud of him.  He did wait until the last minute to make it, as he did sometimes.  Make it he did and got it shipped out in time for Christmas.  Peg just loved it when she got it and he was so happy about that, I just can't tell you how happy he was. 

Well, that's it for today.  We'll see what tomorrow brings.  Thanks so much for listening.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Life goes on...

We had such a lovely service last night for my darling Timbo.  His best friend officiated and did a wonderful job. He spoke lovingly and sincerely about Tim.  He told not only of their friendship as musicians, but of Tim's love of God and how faithful he was.  Not everyone knew that. Our little friend and trainer Chelsea also spoke of the many sweet things Tim (and I) have done for her over the past several years.  Little things that I had forgotten about.

People have just been wonderful.  Flowers, food, errands and chores have been done for me.  I'd like to post some pictures of the past few days, but for now I'll just show some of the flowers that are filling my house with love and beauty.

Thank you dear friends for being there for me, this is so different.  Bear with me as I learn what to do without him.  It just occurred to me yesterday that I hadn't seen any mail, because it always just appeared on the table.  He always got the mail.  Now I have to get my own mail. I have to get my own mail...

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Day 3

I just want to let everyone know that I will be OK.  I know it takes a different kind of person to be the spouse of someone as outgoing and energetic as Timothy.  Sometimes when we were together, I would just step back and let Tim bask in the love and limelight, that always seemed to follow him.   I suppose that sometimes I forgot that the folks that loved Tim loved his wife also.  If they didn't, Tim would kick them to the curb.  We were a package deal.  With that being said, I thank you all so much for your prayers and words of encouragement. 

This is still so fresh and new, but it is final and for that I am bound to mend quickly. There will be no difficult choices to be made, no sad trips to nursing homes, no exorbitant hospital bills.  That is the way he wanted to go and God, in His infinite wisdom, gave Timbo just he wanted.  Like we all did. We loved Tim and wanted him to be happy. He is forever happy.

Here is his obituary...

Please click on it and read about my love.  My one and only, EVER, love.

Thanks again, so much.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Saddest day ever

New Year's Eve will never be the same for me.  My hubby, the love of my life, my soul mate and favorite person...suffered a massive heart attack yesterday morning and was unable to be revived.  I did CPR on him until the crew got here and they took over and continued in route to and at the emergency room and it was just too late.

Tim's body will be at: Oakey's North Chapel, 6732 Peters Creek Road, Roanoke, VA 24019.

If you are local, we will have visitation from 2:00-4:00 Thursday and again from 6:00 to 7:30.
At 7:30 after a brief prayer friends and family will have the opportunity to speak about how they knew Tim, tell a story or two, or just be there with us.

I'm holding it together for the most part (that's just what I do), but I have moments when I feel like my heart is just broken.  Those moments are few, blessedly followed by gratitude for the swiftness of it all.  We were absolutely crazy about each other and everyone knew that.  For his obit, I submitted a cropped version of the picture from my last post, showing the two of us together.

Funerals are for the living and I want to send him out as enthusiastically as he lived while he was here.

Thanks for everything.  I'll be back soon, I  think.