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Carine’s Blog

  • Another Year Older...

    Posted on Friday, November 13, 2015

    I actually didn’t realize it until the “birthday” meals started popping up in my inbox.

    We’ve been so much on baby watch for Bryce that the little fact about I’m turning yet another year older wasn’t even on my own radar.

    Now I’m just hoping that Bryce comes before or after-everyone deserves their very own day of celebration-even if you don’t want to do anything about it, personally.

    Yet here I am about to turn 58.  Hmmmm, not much I really want to say about this fact.  It’s not a “milestone” year, but I’m glad to say that I have another year under my belt.  It is pretty special that our grand-daughter’s arrival is eminent.  That would be the perfect gift! As long (again) as it’s either before or after and not ON the same day.

    Speaking of birthdays, I’ve received a lot of attention from the following food emporiums:

    Denny’s-free breakfast grand slam for me (only on my birthday)

    Jersey Mike’s-free regular sandwich and a drink (only on my birthday)

    True Food-dessert for me (only on my birthday)

    Notice a trend here?  Denny’s we’ll probably manage since it’s Steve’s day off.  We might make the 12 mile trek to JM’s and then Steve can eat it for one of his lunches at work the next day.  True Food though?  Fox Inc., would love to go except I can’t afford to actually eat at your restaurant except for every once in a blue moon.  Thank you for the thought though.

    That all being said it’s been a bit of a rough week here in some aspects, poor Jackson came down with strep throat.  Even with that out there he’s always a pretty happy little guy.  Steve came down with a cold, so I told him to get rid of it ASAP!  Who wants to miss Bryce’s arrival because of a cold?????

    I’m sorry this hasn’t been the best of blogs but I think once I realized how old I’m getting to be I wasn’t up to being either funny or interesting.

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  • Hello?

    Posted on Thursday, November 5, 2015

    Hello, Helloooo, He-ll-ooo, are you there?  Did I lose you again?????

    This has been our lives since moving to Arizona.  I’m talking about that revered and possibly passe thing called a “landline“.  Steve and I have kept it and our Orange County number for many reasons but once we got here we started having a multitude of annoying, frustrating and just plain maddening problems!

    What problems you ask?  Let’s see:

    The quality.  Either we feel as if we‘re talking to people who live underwater, are being electrocuted or just in general can’t hear us.

    Here are just a few of our typical phone exchanges as reference:  I was trying (literally) to chat with my mom and the phone would go dead, they pierce my ear with a high-level shrill and then hang up.  This happened 4 times in one conversation.  Next morning, the same thing happened several times while talking with Adam, our son.

    The week before I was (again) trying to interview someone for an article and the same thing kept happening.  Makes me feel extremely unprofessional to keep calling the same person back over and over again.

    It’s not a new thing, as I mentioned.  At first we thought-well we do live on the outskirts of society, maybe it’s the same power grid problem as our electricity that’s causing the problem?  Steve went to Sprint (they supply our landline) and they suggested a booster.  That was supposed to cure the problem.  Obviously it did not.

    Then we rationed that it must be our phone batteries-after all, we had had the phones for a number of years so maybe new batteries would help.  They also did NOT.

    After trying the booster and new batteries, we decided to try buying new phones.  

    Nope, in fact then we had an added little snag-if someone called us while we were on the phone (otherwise known as call-waiting) the receiver went into a high-fevered pitch of a squeal that immediately cut off the person we were not only talking too, but the one calling us as well!

    After almost 3 years of this nonsense, we unplugged the booster and the Sprint box and we took it to the “tech” store for new equipment.  We figured this could be old stuff and maybe the new generation of torture would let us make and receive phone calls normally once again.

    Well, the nice man named Victor tried for 2 hours to activate the box.  He suggested we go run our errands and come back.  We returned and he said that the main tech support people didn’t know what was wrong but told him the box was defective and try the last one they had.  We let him know that we had to drive 30 minutes to pick up our grandkids at 3 p.m. so he had until then.  We all laughed since it 1 o‘clock.

    We shouldn’t have laughed.  At 2:35 we were still there, waiting.  Poor Victor was still holding for more ideas to try.  Finally, we left everything in his care to go get the boys.  He promised to call us when they figured it out.

    After we got in the car I texted our immediate world and let them know that until further notice they could only reach us via our cell phones.

    8 o‘clock that evening Steve got a call from Victor letting him know that the system finally had been started up.  With that knowledge out of the way-Steve left early for work the next day so he could pick up our new equipment.

    Now comes the real challenge-will it make this landline work?  Will we be able to hear, speak, call and receive phone calls?

    That my friends is fodder for another blog!

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  • Just Wondering

    Posted on Friday, October 30, 2015

    Ever had “one of those days“?  When you just shake your head at the nonsense that is happening around you?

    Sometimes I feel like that photo that’s been floating around on FaceBook of Lucille Ball in one of her Lucy Ricardo shots where the caption reads:  That horrible moment when you realize that “these are my monkeys and this is my circus!”

    We've probably all had them.  There the ones where you find yourself talking to yourself about how you could have handled a situation much better than you did.  The ones where you think, "Why did I get mad at for doing ?"  The days where just absolutely NOTHING seemed to go right.

    Those awful moments when you look at the actions of a family member (size and age do NOT matter) and just shake your head at what they were thinking and then realize you did just as stupid an act not that long ago yourself?

    This past week our oldest grandson came out of school with a lot of bruises up and down his legs and was complaining about how his “nerves were hurting in my elbow“.  As in most situations, I asked how he accomplished this-leading him to an answer by asking if this happened during either La Crosse or soccer practice.

    “No grandma, I did nothing I just woke up like this.”  He caught me shaking my head.  “Grandma, I’m telling you the truth, these weren’t here until this morning“.  

    After a few more suggestions from Uncle Adam, Auntie Sam and Grandpa we finally wormed it out of him that he had been on some kind of a ride at our AutumnFest that must have been run on “centrifical force“.  

    Now it all came out-he had been thrown into the sides and some of the other kids legs and feet got tangled up with his limbs.


    Dylan was still maintaining for the rest of the afternoon how that couldn’t be the problem as he was having fun.

    I pointed out that even when you‘re having fun you can still get hurt.

    For a brief example, about 5 years ago I’m sure I was having fun during a power walk until I tripped over a block of sidewalk that a tree root had pushed up.  I’m still not sure that I said it out loud, but I remember thinking (screaming) “Don’t fall you idiot!“.

    But I did.  Tore my sweatpants and my knee up, bruised my cheek, wrecked up my “good” shoulder and (wait for it) broke my dominate hand in 3 places.

    It was the one and only time I took a walk without my cell phone too.  I had to get up and walk to my destination (a pharmacy to pick up meds) which was about a 1/4 of a mile away.  

    They called Adam (Steve worked 30 minutes away to Adam’s 10).  He took me to the urgent care.

    Try explaining that you can get this hurt while walking...

    What are you wondering about?

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  • Affluenza-Shameful

    Posted on Friday, October 23, 2015

    Affluenza-or “How to get away with Murder” in real life.  I’m wondering, do you think the writers on that show will somehow create an episode with this poppycock theory in mind????

    For those who haven’t heard of the term or what it is:

    A 16 year-old drug-addled, drunk teenager with parents who should also be in jail for stupidity, all “got off” of the kid spending the rest of his life in prison for driving in the previously mentioned state and killing 4 people and injuring numerous others.  Yes, it was determined (I kid you not) that he was too “spoiled” to be sent to jail!

    His rich parents admit that they should’ve been better parents and not given him the vision that their having money meant he’d never have to follow any rules, anywhere at anytime, but that didn’t mean “he should have to suffer and go to jail“.

    The judge, who has since retired, deemed that his (parent hired) psychologist was correct in saying he suffered from “affluenza” and should just be forced into re-hab and be on probation for 10 years.

    When I heard the news report, the journalist was doing a special hour-long piece on the absurdity and horror of this entire debacle on a weekly news show.  I had to tape it and find out the entire “scoop” for myself.

    That is the reason for this particular rant.  I’m horrified by Texas (of all states!) allowing this kid to get nothing but a slap on the wrist for what should amount to nothing short of first degree murder!  The families lives he changed forever, the pain and suffering he caused and the knowledge that even now, neither he or his parents have EVER apologized to the victims or shown the slightest bit of remorse.

    The details of the parents absenteeism and bad parenting and the lack of moral code from all 3 are just plain appalling.  Truth is, an older 1/2 sister even told their mom that the kid was in trouble and the mother ignored her- that was  only a mere week before the kid got into his fancy expensive truck late at night and plowed into 4 innocents, slammed into on-coming cars during his self-declared “game of chicken” and even rolling his own car into a ditch.

    Shame on the parents, shame on that kid and shame on the judge, defense attorney and therapist who felt he should get no time behind bars.

    I’m all for kids making mistakes and learning from them, how else will they learn?  However, this is taking it to a whole new level and worse, the kid has only had his horrible upbringing confirmed.  He isn’t privy to dealing with consequences because he’s rich.

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  • The Spoon Theory

    Posted on Thursday, October 15, 2015

    Our niece, Morgan-Brooks Institute graduate, former Miss Bel-Air and all around great person also has celiac’s disease and fibromyalgia.  She found an article entitled “The spoon theory” to explain what it’s like to live with chronic disease.

    Perfect and effective.  I have:  RA, OA, RSD, degenerative disc disease, scoliosis, severe osteoporosis, ankylosing spondylitis, dupuytren’s contracture, fibromyalgia and have been literally hit by 2 trucks that then gave me concussions, frozen shoulder and more.  However, I LOOK in excellent health.  Hell, my husband lives w/ me and gives me my humira and has taken me for countless epidurals and he probably doesn’t realize what my “life” is like.  

    Instead of my usual weekly musing-I’d love for you all to read “The Spoon Theory” and what life is like for those of us with unseen “challenges“.  I’d put down the link which I found (believe it or not) on MTV.  But since I can’t put links on here-google Selena Gomez and her finding of the blog, The Spoon Theory.

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  • Finally, Time to Get Outdoors

    Posted on Friday, October 9, 2015

    It rained over the past week, several times.

    Funny because monsoon season is officially over and we shouldn’t have any.  Living on the face of the sun shouldn’t have so many “caveats“.

    Here we are almost in mid-October and Lucky and I are doing our best to enjoy the fall weather.  My favorite time of year in Orange County, CA was mid-Spring through mid-Autumn.  It was warm, easy to walk any time of the day and we only had maybe one uncomfortably hot week in August to endure.

    In Arizona it’s almost the “flip” situation.  Lucky and I are avid walkers.  As soon as these rather compromised joints can move I get dressed, hook her up and we get outside and enjoy the solitude of the Sonoran desert that surrounds us.  This is our life from (usually) mid-September through mid-May.

    Now while all the local weather people around here were saying that this year was our “coolest” since 1999, I must say-it’s been the hottest for dogs and people.  Smart cat parents do NOT let their felines outdoors any time of the year!

    Starting in January this year, we had about 2 weeks of 32 degree mornings.  But the days pretty much evened out at about 80 and then dropped down once sunset hit the area.  Our nights in December and January can be very “brisk“.  But the days are gorgeous!

    Lucky loves to wear one of her sweatshirts or her fleece jacket during those few weeks.  She’ll even wear it inside, even though our home never seems to drop below 78.  

    Back to the subject.  This year Lucky and I adjusting our walking schedule to meet up with the comfort zone of daily temperatures day by day.  But we walked no matter what.  Until monsoon season hit.  Oh my.  By mid-May the temps were firmly in the 100-115 range.

    This means it’s too hot for Lucky’s feet, even at night.  Let’s face it-just because the sun goes down, the heat in the cement or asphalt doesn’t drop AT ALL.  Plus, evenings are still over 100 degrees.  Our overnight “lows“?  At least 100.

    So poor Lucky doesn’t get her daily exercise all summer.  Yes, even when a monsoon hits (or a micro burst), the temps don’t lessen, just all high humidity to the misery and you’ve got our lives.

    I wind up using the treadmill in my office-but even that is rather uncomfortable in those high heat/humidity days.

    Then comes the end of the ‘season‘.  This year we celebrated by having a 3 day event marked with flash flood warnings, lighting and thunder.  Obviously the monsoons didn’t get the memo that they were supposed to be gone until next June!

    Yet, our temps have dropped into the 80’s during the mornings making it perfect for my tiny walkmate and I to get outside and once again enjoy the solitude of the desert while getting our needed exercising done.

    Yesterday we say a bunny family.  Today, some chipmunks, a roadrunner (beep, beep) and a couple of hawks.  Lots of burro leftovers too.

    I’ll take it.  I think, I wonder, I sometimes take a few photos but whatever happens, I’m just so happy to be able to get outdoors!

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