Earthquakes, Dementia and other stuff

01/24/2018 Home alone and left to her own thoughts. Will she go stir crazy or not? Answer is, NOT. I’ve kept myself busy, getting some things done that I’ve wanted to do but was too lazy and reveling in the fact that my kitchen and house can stay clean for days on end. It’s amazing. You’re wondering why I have a clean house?? Bill is in the states, he’s been there a week so far and isn’t sure when he’s returning. He’s going to help a friend with a project, but first, he got to spend some time with Trace in Seattle. They went to Everson, where we moved here from, and Bill visited a friend and also went to see our 3 legged dog that Teri adopted. Frito didn’t remember Bill and he was sort of hurt by that. I get it, but I’ll take it to mean she’s happy in her new life and has forgotten the miserable life she had until I found her and had her leg removed. Not really as gruesome as it sounds, if she hadn’t had the surgery, she would have died and the 7 pups she was carrying would have died too. Then I wouldn’t have the dog loves of my life, Barrio, Gringo and Max.

Speaking of dogs, they know Bill is gone and are overly attentive to me. They wait for me to come upstairs when it’s night time, they lay outside the door when I go in the bedroom. They are tuned in. Pretty amazing creatures.

The day after Bill left, the hot water heater stopped making hot water. I am so not a cold shower girl. I went to ACE and bought new batteries for it and changed them but I could not get the door that holds the batteries in to latch. I had to have Kevin come over and do that for me. After several tries I finally got the igniter to light and voilá, hot water! Later that day I dropped my favorite sweeper in my whole life and broke it. It still works but doesn’t stay together. I used some green masking tape but that didn’t hold for crap so Bill said to get some GORILLA tape. That shit works. I think I can live with my McGyver fix.

Other than a few outings, I’ve been at home. The day I took Bill to the airport I stopped at Mega Paca and bought 2 new mattresses for Miguel’s kids. You should have seen the guy and I getting them in my car, hysterical.

Miguel came to get them on Tuesday, on his motorcycle. It was windy out, not just a breeze. WINDY. He tied the mattresses (that were wrapped in plastic so they were slippery) together and wore them home like a back pack. Now, this is not a normal feat accomplished by anyone.

Never saw anyone wear two mattresses as a back pack.

He had to go down our steep drive, get on the main highway for a short distance, then go down a 2 mile mud/dirt road that we can’t get down because we don’t have a huge 4X4. He called once he got the mattresses unloaded.

You have to be a “badass’ as my friend Sue said. And he is, but in the nicest way. We both feel very lucky knowing Miguel, he’s a good man.

He already built his kids bunk beds for the mattresses. The kids were thrilled and so was Miguel, he didn’t have to sleep on a lounge chair any longer. We are waiting for him to get their school records so we can get them enrolled in Marlon’s school, Froylan Turcios. It’s one of the more productive schools I’ve been to. Marlon, the principal and soccer coach is a good guy. He tries and he cares, that’s a pretty big deal. You’ll see pics of Miguel’s kids when the weather clears and I can get down there and go snorkeling with them. Kimberly, Michelle and Miguelito. We’re beyond excited he got to have them for a few months, it’s been years, they are really happy with him, spending every nice day on the beach and in the water. (those nice days have been very few, it’s still ugly here)

So, earthquakes. Yep, on Tues Jan 9th, at 8:53 PM I posted on FB, Umm, Earthquake?? We were all in the living room, Bill on his chair, me on the couch. The boys were all sleeping, Lola was pacing. I leaned over my laptop to do something and all of a sudden everything was undulating. Weird freaking juju..the cool thing is, it lasted so long we were talking about it while it was “quaking.” I had quite a long response to that post as the island felt it but had no damage. The quake itself was very shallow, which is what saved us because it was a 7.8, which is a pretty good shaker. Lucky this time.

We are the blue dot on the map.

I know I’ve spoken about the increasing difficulties my poor sister and brother-in-law are dealing with keeping an eye on my parents. In less than a month my Dad will be 97 and he still dresses as sharp as he did 40 years ago, always a well dressed man. His mind is failing him and he is aware of it and it bothers and angers him mercilessly. Mom on the other hand is 92, 93 this summer, and she is not a picture of health, she has lung issues and a bad knee and certainly not a candidate for surgery, a live with it kind of pain. Her mental acuity is failing also. Not a real capable pair. I was worried about my dad and him not being the man he wants to be. I can’t imagine how he must feel, he was always such a proud but quiet man, this is a terrible thing for him to be going through, and for my sister and Mark.

I recently started watching a show on YouTube called A Mother and Son’s Journey with Dementia. It’s so good, I binged 53 episodes of it. The woman in the show, Molly, is younger than I am and she is way way worse than my Father. He is 30 years older than her. I have been pounding that into my head consistently because I worry so much about them, me being here, them in MD but then I realize, holy shit, he’s almost 97. He can be crotchety and nasty if he wants to. Still doesn’t make me feel any better about my sister and Mark having to do so much for them. After seeing that show though, it really put things into perspective for me. If anyone is dealing with dementia check out the videos, they are very well done.

While Bill is gone I have been watching movies. I was without internet all day one day so I watched a few. I have seen, The Florida Project, The Greatest Showman, Lady Bird, Call Me by Your Name, The Grand Budapest Hotel, and Hacksaw Ridge. I’ve also watched Little Big Lies twice. I’m almost caught up on Modern Family and This is Us, the only other TV I watch besides HGTV HHI, and Netflix. I enjoyed all the movies except Call Me by Your Name, it was confusing to me.

Bill took this pic of the pack, L to R Gringo, Highway, Max, Barrio and Lola. What a crew.

Gringo hovering on the corner, Max zzzz’d out.

Chance took this photo of my parents on January 4th, he had such a good visit with them. It meant a lot.

We finished the counter tops in the kitchen. I am in love with the sink, turned out really well. We want to do our bathroom and the kitchen downstairs. Maybe the back porch too.

My camera takes crappy indoor photos. We had everything covered, or so we thought.

Doing to the L of the stove. First some black and white

Smear it around

Mix a little more

Never sure what it will look like. I’m sure with practice and developing a technique, you could somewhat get what you want.

Then you torch it. After it’s torched then you can start spraying 90% alcohol mixed with different powders. Then after you do that you can torch it again. The alcohol makes all the strange effects. It also makes air bubbles, not cool.

We had no clue how to do the sink but wanted it to look like a whirlpool sort of. It turned out awesome.

In the process of doing the sink, drain and garbage disposal were pulled. Bill thought he had enough covered area under the drain hole. Not so much, epoxy resin everywhere under the sink.

It turned out pretty cool.

My favorite part of the kitchen is the sink.

We took the boys swimming early one morning to a beach nearby. They had a blast.

But it started raining

Dog butts

We need to take them swimming more often, not so much to swim but to run. Once the road to Miguel’s is fixed we’ll be going down there with them.

There is a new recycling initiative on the island. Many restaurants have stopped selling single use water bottles and plastic straws are becoming a thing of the past. I cut up 6 yogurt containers and stuffed them all into one bottle along with a big plastic bag and 3 laundry detergent bags. Bill made the stuffing stick for me, helps to really cram the bottles full.

A lot of single use plastic can be stuffed in to a bottle. The SOL Foundation is building a wall with the stuffed bottles.

With these well stuffed bottles and some concrete they are building walls, flower beds and other things. They also are cutting wine bottles and using the bottoms in concrete to make a wall. The tops are then broken up and used as colorful drain catchers at the bottom of drainpipes.

So my 4 year old Google Nexus tablet died a slow death. It won’t recharge. Sad because it was almost an appendage on me. I broke down and bought a BIG 9.6″ Samsung tablet, I love it but hate the cover I got for it and have ordered a different one. Bill bought a new battery for the dead tablet, if it fixes it we’ll either hang on to it or sell it.

When we still lived in PA the boys and I spent a lot of time on the Loyalsock Creek. Almost every day (before we got a pool) was spent there. On my high school class page they posted a contest to vote for the favorite creek. Loyalsock creek won, but it wasn’t for the best creek in PA, it was for the BEST RIVER. How can a creek win the best river contest? So insane. Only in PA.

I’m planning to call my parents this morning. Every single time I call and Mom answers she hangs up on me, usually 2 or 3 times before we actually connect. She says the on off button is on the side of the phone but I don’t think it is. Kind of funny. My neighbor Mr John called me on Friday and wanted to know what time it was. I told him, then he asked what day it was. Then he asked me to call him at 9 AM the next morning so he would know when to go somewhere. Obviously he only has a watch for a clock and the battery must have died. Poor guy.

There are political marches on the mainland as the President prepares to take office. He is hated by many and loved by many. I just wish they would get their crap together and quit fighting so I could go to the mainland and get tile for the kitchen back splash. I’m hoping the madness will soon be over.

Just an FYI for those of you who get email notices for my blog. GMAIL has changed their sorting of mail and it may go in your promotions tab. Part of the new algorithm they are using. Why can’t they leave well enough alone?

It’s a sunny day which is a rarity here, I’m going to head outside and read for awhile. I’ll leave you with a few pics of the bed with all 5 dogs on it. It rained really hard one night so I kept them all inside.

Barely enough room for me

Max is upside down on the right

L to R, counterclockwise. Barrio’s ear, Max, Highway, Lola and Gringo. The cat jumped up, looked around, hissed, said OH HELL NO, and left.

Off to hang by the pool, have a fabulous day wherever you may be.

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I’d rather dodge bullets than potholes

 

 

1/4/2018 First time typing or even thinking 2018. It’s here and I’m already another year older (yesterday)! I haven’t been doing much except for a few Christmas parties for the kids and a couple get togethers with friends so I thought I would share some island revelations. Instead of NY resolutions, I mean, really WTH are they? Does anyone REALLY do them? I think not.

Revelation #1. So, how many of you check the toilet before you sit down on it? We are a lid down family. Always down, I like it that way except for the one or two times in my life that I had too much to drink and forgot. I lift the lid and I check the bowl. Every. Single. Time. You ask why? Well, I’ve read about snakes coming up the pipes and being in toilets and I read about a lady that sat down to pee and a frog jumped up and hit her in the butt. I’m telling you if I ever saw a snake in my toilet or a frog touched my butt, it would be the last time I ever peed. EVERRRR. I would just blow up in a weeks time and explode all over creation. I did not make that a NY resolution. Actually I don’t think I ever in my life made one (well, one that I kept anyhow).

Revelation # 2. I hate, detest, abhor Geckos. I don’t care how cute anyone thinks they are, I hate them. Honest, given my choices and I know I’ve said this before, I would prefer a 4′ iguana in my house rather than a 4″ gecko. They give me the major creeps. They can all die or relocate to a different island and I’ll be cool with it.

Revelation # 3. I do not handle having no internet or a non or poorly functioning laptop/tablet well. It’s my boiling point. It makes me crazier than I already am.

Revelation # 4. I no longer am a shopper. Living on Roatan has put an end to that. My needs are little, my wants are nil, it’s so simple and easy. I never was one for designer handbags, personally don’t like them, just not my style. My handbag is a Keene that I got at Mega Paca for $3.00 and it’s perfect. It’s waterproof and I can wipe the mud off of it with no worries of stains.

Revelation # 5. I wear my day clothes to bed. ALL THE TIME. Usually a dress and undies, that’s my go to at home wear and many days I crawl into bed in the same clothes I wore all day. The epitome of laziness. That’s me.

and last but not least: #6. I blow dry my razor. If I don’t it’s good for one shave only. It turns into such a rust heap that it’s a definite source of lockjaw. So towel dry, blow dry, cover and store out of the shower.

OK, done with revelations, I could go on but it may get disturbing to some so I’ll quit while I’m ahead.

Nidia and I did 2 Christmas parties for the kids this year, back to back. The first was in an area we went to the very first year we helped Nidia, in 2014. It’s called Brass Hill but Bill thought she was saying Brazil so we now refer to it as Brazil. It is a very very poor part of the island. The majority of the children do not go to school, most of them don’t have shoes.

Our very own tropical flip flop wearing Santa, AKA Sully.

Everyone got a Santa hat

One of the local homes

Fridge/ bench, it’s versatile.

The Queen Bee, Nidia, getting the group organized. Sort of.

These children are so beautiful. This one loved Santa, she was beside him all day.

Checking the list..naughty or nice. Not really, we had a list of kids that would get gifts.

Happy kids, toys and candy

My idea of a selfie.

Our motley crew, Nidia, David, Nicola and Charlie (David’s sweet kids) Sully and me. And my antlers light up!

Me with a sweet young girl. Francie, I have on our top.

Santa going back to his sleigh, errr, truck.

This was on a Friday and the next day we were having the big party in downtown Coxen Hole. It was held at The Merry Inn Seaman Club. I had seen the signs but never been inside the building. I had to park a couple blocks away and luckily brought my rain coat, even though it was a sunny day. It was a wise move on my part. Usually I let things like that, or my umbrella in the car.

At one time this was a well known and busy establishment. They are still open, random hours though.

The inside was a museum, the artwork was amazing. I couldn’t believe it. It saddens me that it is being destroyed by the elements. It really should be preserved.

The Pirate history of Roatan was painted on some of the walls. I met the lady who’s uncle did the artwork, he has since passed.

There were 2 cruise ships painted on the walls, fantastic details on them.

Roatan has a huge pirate history.

The bar had all kinds of fish painted on it.

Don’t know what the hell this fish is but I don’t want to meet it.

These were some homes along the building. The far one has an outside sink, which is very common.

There was a cruise ship in port that day

We blew up balloons to make streamers and sliced all the hot dog buns, got the toys ready, waiting for the arrival of Santa. Word got out that he was there and he was mobbed before he even got in the room.

The kids were very excited.

More Santa hats

Santa was swarmed like bees on honey

He could barely walk

This face

Santa gave everyone toys and candy

Me and Nidia

It was getting dark and was pouring buckets and I had to walk to my car. I put my raincoat on, hood up and left the party at 5. It’s an hour drive home, even more in the rain and my windshield is very tinted, making it difficult to see in the dark, I was so exhausted when I got home that I just vegetated on the couch before I went to bed.

The kitchen view on Thanksgiving day.

Newly re-upholstered couch. The ottomans have covers on top of it (it looks wrinkly) to keep the dog hair off of the new upholstery, I can take the cover off to clean it.

I took my curtains down and gave them away. I hated them. I don’t want curtains but Bill does. I haven’t taken the brackets down yet but will before we paint. Once the counter tops are finished, we’ll do the tile back splash and then I’ll choose a color for the walls. One thing at a time.

On Christmas Day we went to our neighbors (a mile away) and had Christmas dinner with other friends. They had their tree decorated.

My friend Yvonne being bartender. Not really, I think she was just getting something to drink.,

Part of the group

Lots of excellent food, turkey and ham and every side dish imaginable.

Dessert table, chocolate rum cake, Italian Cream cake, key lime pie

And Yvonne’s decadent Reese’s bars. I think I ate 8 of them.

The parrots have been around a lot lately. Just the other night a flock of them flew overhead, so noisy. It’s the first I ever saw a flock of them around here.

These two perch in this tree often. They are wild yellow naped parrots.

These two are babies, no yellow on their necks yet.

This is why I can’t have nice bedding, the dogs and the cat. The cat has a thousand tiny holes in the spread from jumping up on the bed a zillion times a day. And the dogs, well, hair..

A friend noticed this dog down by the abandoned pirate ship, she had been feeding her. I went and fed her a few days and started looking for a home for her.

Found out the second day she has an owner and she’s not covered in fleas or ticks so maybe she is OK.

Mom and Dad with the Harry and David cookies I sent them for Christmas. It’s so hard to buy for them at 96 and 92. I just sent them 100 photos of things around the island via Walgreen’s. I type on each photo what it is so they know what they’re looking at.

Currently Chance is visiting them. He arrived last night and is staying with my sister. They are very excited that he is there.

Our eating space the other night for pizza when our friends came over. It didn’t even rain until the rum cake dessert was finished. Lucked out that night.

The other evening the power went out around 6:20. My friend Ann messaged me and said she wonders what the cruise ship people think. They are leaving the island around 6, just getting mid island and the whole island goes dark. Maybe they think we turn the island lights off after the cruise ships leave.

Life has been pretty much stay at home, I honestly do NOT want to go anywhere because the roads are so bad. I have never seen them like this and with the rain we have been having they continue to deteriorate. It’s just not worth it to even go out. Today I’m going in to town because Nidia is finally getting a vehicle and I’m going to meet her at Island Shipping when her new to her car arrives and take photos. She is 40 and has never owned a car and if anyone needs one, she does. A Go Fund Me was started by a friend and raised enough money to buy her some wheels. She is beyond excited, she said never in all of her life did she think she would own a car. I hope she can avoid the damn potholes for awhile until the new Mayor takes office and things change around here.

I’ll end this with a video of an every freaking day occurrence at our house. Barrio always takes this toy and shoves it in Highway’s face while whining, crying, singing, who knows. Watch Gringo’s face (bottom right) at about 20 sec. Highway is the one laying upside down on the dog bed. Click HERE.

Happy New Year everyone.