Monday, June 30, 2008

Summer Holidays

I ended the month of June on a sad note. Sneaky, my male ferret, died on the 26th. It was all of a sudden. I had commented on his slight weight loss and chalked it up to the heat. 'Neaky was not chewing up his raisins completely. I opened a new can of raisins and he would eat all of those. So I threw the old can in the trash. Even Milo, Luke's cat, had lost some weight. But Phoebe and our new family member, Buttons, have been gaining weight. I didn't get much sleep that day and should have stayed home, as I came home sick after an hour and a half at work. Sneaky's death really hit me harder than Rascal's death. Rascal was Rebecca's ferret (our first) and was 7 years old when we had to put him to sleep, so we had time to say our goodbyes. But Sneaky just laid down and died before I got home that morning. Stupid me for not taking him to the vet when I noticed the weight loss and then afterwards to see why he died. Now I will never know as I dug a hole as fast as I could with the Big Red Beast as I kept saying, "Oh Sneaky", over and over and over. Today I got his permanent cross made. Christina and I put it on his grave this evening. Sneaky was a ham when it came to posing for the camera. We will sure miss you Sneaky.

The eviction hearing didn't go much better. My brother produced a hand written paper that Dad signed not really knowing what he signed. My brother's wife and friend signed on as witnesses. The judge took this paper and my Power of Attorney letters and stated he needed more time to look into it. I mailed him a letter of the notary in the nursing home that refused to sign my brother's letter. Mom and Dad also send a notarized letter, stating they wanted me to sale their house, to the judge. So I will call him this week if I don't hear from him.

The 4th of July found me doing something I usually don't do. I mingled with about 17,000 other folks at Chevy's Freedom over Texas in Houston.

We went to see (and hear) Sara Evans sing, along with Jo Dee Messina and Maranda Lambert. Now, the older I get, the more I do not like to be around crowds. But a Sara Evans concert for $5 was just too much to pass up. Jo Dee and Maranda just made it better. We even found folding chairs there to buy for only $10 each. I was kicking myself for forgetting my lawn chairs and was thinking we would have to sit on the hot pavement. We left just after Sara finished singing to get back up the hill towards downtown and our vehicle before we stopped to watch the fireworks. It was very hot and the sun shining down on all that pavement in the afternoon. But my Tularosa palm leaf hat's 5 inch brim kept me in the shade. The singing group, The Shirelles sang before the Country Gals and also got to salute the Military.

The lawyer's assistant and I did get Mom and Dad's Medicaid applications finished on the 1st. The lawyer had it signed and emailed to me and faxed to the nursing home and Medicaid the next day. That was a big relief. Now the next hurdle is wait on Medicaid and see if they will pay the $4435 I paid for Mom for June nursing home care. That will be the biggest relief, as I will go under financially if they don't reimburse me. So a lot of the stress is over, but we still have a ways to go.

I had to chain Booger up today as he was in the neighbor's back yard and they were shooting at him. Come to find out they have 3 baby goats over there and they were assuming Booger was coming over to eat them. The fence Booger is going under is just a temp fence and it isn't even on my property line. But my neighbor is hollering for me to fix the fence to keep my dog out!

So come back later to hear the outcome of Booger's wonderings. Check out the new photos I uploaded here. Have a wonderful July and stay cool.

hugs, Brandi

Monday, June 16, 2008

Mom and Dad's new home

I didn't pay the lawyer $1500 to assure Mom's Medicaid application and finances were done right. I paid them $3700 for both Mom and Dad's Medicaid application. Don't ask where I got the money, as I am still sweating that payment out. Now I find out that I have to pay upfront for Mom for the month of June to go into a nursing home. I thought the nursing home would get reimbursed, but I was misinformed. I was very thankful that Mom and Dad's bank, Chase, loaned me that money. So now I have around $400 a month more in bills and with diesel increasing like almost daily, I will be going under if I don't get reimbursed by Medicaid in July like the lawyer promises me. Mom was admitted on June 10th. The cost until the end of June is $4435. That is almost $222 a day just for Mom! She had a room mate for 2 days. Then the joint room for them became available. Mom and Dad moved into their room on the 12th. On June 7th, three of my friends with Luke, along with Mom and I moved Mom and Dad's furnishings into a storage room. That was eventful, as my brother's cohort (I guess my brother was too chicken to call) called the sheriff and stated I was stealing all of Mom and Dad's stuff. Imagine the surprise of the deputy when Mom and I greeted him! Later that day another deputy came out as I called to tell him my brother kept driving by. Oh yeah, on June 2nd, I had the 4 abandoned dogs my brother left there hauled off by animal control officers. The female officer says she knows my brother, as she has had past dealings with him and his dogs. On June 9th, Mom and I filed eviction papers against my brother to vacate Mom and Dad's house. The hearing is set for the 25th, two days from now. I already have a buyer for the house, so hopefully I can get my brother out and clean up his mess and sell the house to pay off the new loans and existing bills in July.

Luke turned 27 on May 20th. Seems like only yesterday he was in diapers! In all of this mess of family problems, I have met a new friend named, Christina. Mom loves her and even Luke gave her the thumb's up. Dad didn't like her much the first time she met him in the nursing home. Christina was wearing a University of Texas t shirt and Dad told her she could come back, but the shirt couldn't. The next visit, Christina was wearing a Texas A&M t shirt. Christina has really been a big help in teaching me about taking care of elders, as she took care of her Aunt for three years.

I guess the best news of the month is that I adopted a ferret. Rebecca's friend, Ashely had him for two months after her grandmother became allergic to him. He is a four year old like my two ferrets, Sneaky and Phoebe. Check out the photo of the 3 of them here. His name was Critter, but I changed it to Buttons, as he has a cute button mark on his nose. Luke calls him Mister B. I immediately fell for him when I saw his cute nose.

But Sneaky has been giving Buttons a harsh welcome. Buttons was raised around elders, so he is constantly at our feet and dancing around them. Buttons didn't know how to play rough as a ferret and Sneaky showed him real quick. Buttons is really a lap ferret, as he will lay in your lap and go to sleep. Luke let it be known the other day that when he moves out, Buttons is going with him! Buttons gets along well with Phoebe and has even been playing rough with her, but Sneaky really puts the hurt on him and poor Buttons just doesn't understand why as he scampers away, squealing.

I did get some time on the Big Red Beast. My neighbor gave me $50 for diesel fuel when she helped me move Mom and Dad. They wanted a hole dug as deep as I could get it and about 20 x30 feet. I asked.........just dig a hole? She said yes. So over two afternoons, I dug the hole and filled it with trash and junk. I had the hole down to about 11 feet deep. At that depth, the clay was really packed in hard, but the Mahindra's 511 backhoe took it in stride. The only thing I forgot to do was take photos of the hole. It took me about 5 hours to dig. Now I know about how long it will take me to dig my pond(s?) when I am ready. The only other time I used the Mahindra recently, was when I changed mower blades on my Hustler Fastrac. I lifted the front end off the ground to reach the blades. But the blades I bought a couple of weeks ago are 3/8 of an inch too long and hit each other. So now I get to return them and do it all over again later in the week. My 6520 is now at 250 hours which means I get to buy some neat Mahindra filters and crawl around under her.

I made it back to work last week after being off 4 & 1/2 weeks. It was a huge relief to be back working on airplanes and sweating, as I haven't been able to work out much with Mom staying here and the pounds were starting to increase! I was able to borrow two weeks of vacation from 2009, so that really helped. I will say good bye now as I am getting sleepy. Stop back in later to hear about the eviction hearing and more about Booger!
hugs, Brandi