Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Did you see?

Did you watch PBS tonight?  The program, E. O. Wilson: Of Ants and Men, was a PBS special tonight.  It's fabulous!  I hope you can find it on your PBS station, or watch it online.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Busy Tuesday

Another busy day - at least this morning. I went to the courthouse again this morning - this time to transfer John's car title. Turns out I don't need to do that to sell the car, since I'm executor. But I did get lots of other good information.

Then I took a couple of bags of stuffed animals to the fire department (to give to kids to comfort them after fires, wrecks, etc.). I had a big basket of mostly small penguins and flamingos that have "flocked" here over the years.

Then I went to the credit union (our bank) to set up an estate account (as advised by the lawyer for the probate). That turned out to be about an hour's worth of looking things up, filling out forms, signing stuff, with eventual success. AND again, getting lots of other valuable information re what to do with renaming and changing the address on the existing account. And I even got in a short trip to Walmart.

And I finished up by getting some clothes out of the closet ready for transport.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Monday haiku

So much to be done.
Moving, getting affairs in
Order. Soon calmer.

I hope.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Moving stuff

I made the first trip to take stuff to the new apartment this morning. I picked up Tina to show her the place (and to let her help me carry the few things). It feels more like mine now - with familiar things there. They’ve put in a new refrigerator (yea!), but maintenance still needs to move the hinges so it opens the right way.

It’s rained off and on all day, and I got through a few more cabinets.

Friday, September 25, 2015

And more

Another busy day today. The rain made driving and walking an interesting exercise, but the time in the courthouse was short and uneventful. I was back home about 9:30. I ran some errands, even including Walmart. I picked up some things I need for the new place - a lockbox for my medications (required), some dividers for the kitchen drawers, shower curtains (the huge shower will take two), and that always necessary item - toilet paper. All this remains in the trunk of the car. I'm planning to drive over tomorrow and take a load. That will certainly give me a sense of possession.

I’ve checked with the insurance company about renter’s insurance and the insurance on the house for the time after I move out and the time it’s sold. And, I've booked the movers and signed up for cable/internet/phone with Comcast.

Now, I'm getting really eager to get moved in.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Things are moving quickly

I got all my chores done this busy day. I went to the rheumatologist for blood work (to check on the changed medication) and to get my flu shot. Then I met with the financial planner. She's great, and I'm sure we're going to get along fine. She went through the papers like a house afire (and really appreciated the work done by Margaret and Alison). She’s going to get things lined up for me. I'll go back in a couple of weeks to finish signing and mailing in appropriate papers. Then we'll talk about how I want things structured, monthly income, etc.

This afternoon I met with a Comcast rep to find out what my options are for cable/internet and possibly land-line phone at the new place.

Margaret called and she’s going to come spend the day Sunday to get more things done to help me move - getting furniture ready, etc. I’ll get on the phone tomorrow and set up a date for the move, for hooking up cable and internet, etc.

I had dinner at a local eatery with Missy and Renna. Missy's mom has been in and out of the hospital since a broken hip last November, most recently with pneumonia. Today, she's being sent home with hospice care. So Missy needs some TLC, and we'll see what we can do to help.
Our weather has been gorgeous, and is definitely turning into autumn. Leaves are starting to fall, although our peak color isn't usually until midOctober.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

The week continues...

I've gotten more done this busy week - mainly today, I got a much-needed haircut!

My art teacher came by and picked up a lot of art supplies that I know I won't be using any more, and about half of my art books for her library. She's going to mention the others to some in her class. Any books that are left will be going to the library book sale.

I've talked to two moving companies (Two Men & a Truck and another small local one) to get estimates. Each says they don't need to come by - just took my info about furniture I'm taking and quoted me an hourly rate. Both deliver to The Terrace and just need a few days' notice to set up a date. So now I have to decide on a date.

And I talked to the contact guy for Comcast who was recommended by The Terrace. I'm meeting with him tomorrow to check on the package I might want. I'll have to use them for cable and internet - we'll see how the phone works out.

After I meet tomorrow morning with the financial advisor and Friday with the attorney, I'll consult with the daughters and decide on a date to physically move. Whew!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Well, I did it!

Well, I paid money today and got keys - so I now have an apartment!

They were laying the new carpet this morning when we were there. Jean and I pointed out a few other things for the maintenance guys to check. I guess I'll start moving in some small things in another day or so - just so I can really feel some "ownership". Jean left this afternoon, and so I'm here by myself now. They've all assured me that somebody will come back quickly if I need it, but I'm pretty sure I'll be okay. There's still SO much to do. I haven't set up a definite moving date, but will try to figure that out soon. I think the girls have agreed on the first week in November to come here to get things they want out of the house.

All scary, major things going on.

Monday, September 21, 2015


Things have been relatively quiet today. I had my regularly scheduled eye appointment - all okay there. Jean and I went to visit Vicki, and I took her some lamb out of my freezer. I know I won't be using it now, and they love it. Plus I know they'll invite me to dinner sometimes when she cooks it.

Tomorrow, Jean will go with me when I go to The Terrace to sign papers and pay the first month's rent. Then I can start taking things over and set up an actual moving date.

Sunday, September 20, 2015


Jean and I have been through a lot of stuff, packed up some stuff that needs to be moved first, and set aside a lot that doesn't. There’s lots of stuff to give away. We’ve thrown away lots of stuff. Lots of art stuff will be going away on Wednesday.

I see the financial advisor on Thursday morning, and go to court with the lawyer on Friday morning. I sign papers and pay rent on Tuesday morning, so can start moving things then. After that we will talk about when to move ME.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Saturday haiku

Cleaning out old stuff.
Downsizing is always hard,
But we make progress.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Learning curve

So now, I'm not only going to have to learn to live a new life, in a new place, I have a new laptop, with Windows 10.  OMG!!!  At least the laptop isn't quite so life-changing.
Jean and I have gone through an amazing amount of stuff today.  We've been through yarn stuff, painting stuff, shelves and the desk around the desk-top computer, etc.  There are piles everywhere, but there IS a modicum of organization involved. And it looks like we'll be able to start moving some stuff into the apartment toward the latter part of next week.

Thursday, September 17, 2015


Jean and I had a productive day. Plus the cleaning lady came - so that always does some good.

I got some paperwork done. We got copies of the death certificate made, so we have those ready to go with forms to be sent in. We got some plastic bins for paint supplies. We emptied the knitting cabinet and did some sorting in that. And, wonder of wonders, I actually worked about an hour sorting through my art supplies and other stuff in the office/studio. It’s a good start.

The attorney has made an appointment for us to start the probate process for 25 September, so that’s underway. And I have an appointment with a financial advisor on 24 September. I’ll be paying my first month’s rent early next week, and I can start moving things in anytime after that.

We finished off the day at dinner with Tina at Noodles & Pho. A good day.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

"Daddy's home!"

There was a soft knock on the door this morning. Kate went to the door and I heard her talking. Then she called out, “Mom, Daddy’s home!”

The ashes and death certificates were delivered by our regular carrier today. Of course, John never did anything the easy way, and the box had gotten bumped and had sprung a "leak" somewhere in transit. The packaging was torn and had been wrapped in plastic - and there was a small amount of ash over everything inside of that. The poor letter carrier was devastated that she had to bring the package for delivery. Kate heard this explanation before she called me. The carrier was all but in tears, and Kate and I were joking about John’s having continued his travels and taken the scenic route home. Oh, dear - we’re so irreverent. But I think we did make the carrier feel better.

So now the ashes are here, and eventually, we’ll decide how we want to honor him.

But now I have the documents, and I can get started on paperwork. I've talked to the lawyer, and a court date is to be set up for sometime next week. I'll get originals and copies sent to various locations as soon as possible, and we can get things going.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015


It’s been great having Kate here the last few days. I took Kate and Vicki to see the apartment yesterday. The painting is underway, and then the carpet is to be replaced. We got a good idea of what furniture I’ll be taking and where how the rooms will be arranged. Looks like this is really going to happen.

On her way home tomorrow, Kate is going to meet Margaret for lunch - maybe with Jean. And then Jean is coming here for a few days. All our girls are taking such good care of me. I don’t know what I’d do without them.

I have a doctor’s appointment tomorrow, and then will have a meeting with the Wellness Director at The Terrace. I have a meeting with the financial consultant a week from Thursday.

I guess my new life is getting under way.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Sunday Stealing

Mac'n Cheese Meme

Stolen from: Love me some surveys

Can you ever get enough of mac ‘n’ cheese?

Don’t really much care - not one of my favorites.
Are you allergic to nuts or dairy products?
Do you think age matters in relationships?
Not necessarily
Has anyone ever called the cops on you?
Did you talk to someone until you fell asleep last night?
What’s the connection between the last person you texted?
Vicki is my friend.
Are you in a good mood?
It’s been better.
Excited for anything?
Not really
Do you have a hard time controlling your emotions?
Not usually
Do you like your height?
I liked it better before I shrank 2.5 inches.
How long have you lived in your current home?
29 years, but not too much longer.
Could you go a week without brushing your teeth?
Oh, yuck! I hope I never have to find out.
Have you ever given any amount of money to the homeless?
We contribute to the homeless shelter here in town.
Own anything from Bath & Body Works?
Have you ever had your nails so long that they curved down at the ends?
No, and I think that’s kind of yucky, too.
Have you ever swallowed a bunch of salt water by accident?
Probably, but not recently.
Does it take you over an hour to go to sleep sometimes?
Very rarely, but then I get up and read or work puzzles for a while, then try again.
When you get home from school/work do you change into your pjs right away?
No work or school any more, but as soon as I know I’m in for the day, I change into “soft clothes” (not necessarily pjs).
Have you ever stayed up all night and the whole next day without any sleep?
I’m afraid so.
Has anyone ever told you that you have pretty feet?
Oh, this IS funny - I have the ugliest feet in town.
What is the temperature currently in the town you live in?
67* F
Do you ever actually drink milk alone?
No, only over cereal or as hot chocolate.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Dear Readers

Dear Readers,
I just want to thank you for all you kind comments and good wishes over the last couple of weeks. It's obviously been a tough time for all our family. It's been comforting to hear from you and know my computer community is out there and caring.

Love to you all,

Friday, September 11, 2015

Some routine

It felt so good to get back in the water and have "wet hugs" from all the gals. And coffee was good, too. One of the cashiers there gave me a big hug - John had always joked with her when he placed the order. I was going to get a haircut and go to the store. But, for the second day (I tried Wednesday, too), Great Clips was too crowded, so I put it off again. I got some Rx filled, and did a quickie WalMart trip. I decided to get a single-cup coffee maker for the apartment. There's probably no point in making full pots once I get moved. We'll see how it goes. It's a Mr. Coffee brand, not Keurig. I will get some of the refillable cups for it, though.

I got a little nap this afternoon. Tina came over and we ordered pizza for dinner. Sarah and her friend got here about 7:30, and then settled in to watch some football.

Thursday, September 10, 2015


I saw the rheumatologist this morning. He's such a nice guy/good doctor. He was so concerned about me - even giving me a short session of grief counseling - mainly just good common sense advice. He took an x-ray of my ankle to rule out a stress or chip fracture for the sudden onset of pain, but expected to find that it was tendinitis. The x-ray was normal, so I'll just have to wait out the duration of the tendinitis. I'm to keep wearing the elastic ankle brace, and take pain meds when necessary. Also he's changing my NSAID from DayPro (generic) to another oldie - Naprosyn (generic). We'll see how that does.

I called the crematory in Calgary. They tell me the ashes and death certificate are on their way, so we should be able to proceed with other things before long.

Jean's job will be over the end of this month. I'd been talking about her getting me a new laptop with her employee discount. So she ordered that for me while she was here. So I have another new learning curve to deal with - a new laptop with Windows 10.

Alison & Joe, Jean & Leroy are all back home safely. I can’t begin to thank everybody for all the help they’ve given me. I don’t know what I’d have done without it. And there’s still more to come. What a great family we have!

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

A busy day

Alison and I got more stuff done today. I met with the attorney this morning. He looked over the papers we had (as beautifully organized by Margaret and Alison), and told us, the estate will have to go through probate. No big glitches - just the way it is.

When we got home, I called The Terrace and told them I wanted to reserve the apartment we looked at last week. When Jean gets here tomorrow, we’ll go over to pay the deposit and let her look at it. Click here to see their web page.

The one I'm getting is a 2-bedroom apartment. I'd probably rather have a 1-BR suite, but this is what was available, and the bathroom made it perfect for me. A previous tenant had modified the two bathrooms, combining the bathtub in one with the shower area of the other, making the two bathrooms into 1.5 baths, one with a double-sized fully tiled walk-in shower - actually wheelchair accessible. I don't need that, but certainly love the idea of the big walk-in shower.

Alison's husband, Joe, drove down from Annapolis today. They'll drive back probably on Thursday. She has been such a great help.

Monday, September 07, 2015

Labor Day

Alison, Tina and I went over to Margaret's today. Some of our oldest friends from Nashville came, too, and it felt so good to be able to spend some time with them and get some special hugs. Plus getting to see Margaret and get some of her good food. The drive home took about 45 minutes longer than usual - never did find out why the slowdown, but at least it kept moving.

We have an appointment with an attorney tomorrow morning, so I guess things will get underway then.

Sunday, September 06, 2015

One week

It was a pretty quiet morning.  But lots going on this afternoon.  Matt and Jesse and his girlfriend, Caroline, came by.  They stayed for lunch and to talk for a while.  Jesse loaded up the old recliners to take to his house (the new ones were delivered on Thursday).  Matt left to head home.  Before Jesse and Caroline left, the rower who had loaned John his rowing machine came to pick it up.  It was good Jesse was still here to help him.  Then J&C left to go back to Hillsboro. Alison left to go visit her other grandparents  (about 30 miles from here).

There were lots of phone calls this evening.  It was good to talk to Anne and Sue and Ann and Margaret.  And then just some TV watching.  Not really "normal", but not chaos either.

Saturday, September 05, 2015

Just taking a break with mindless trivia

Making a list Meme

Stolen from: Love me some surveys

1. Do you like making lists?

I do make lists, but it’s not because I “like” them.
2. Do/did you play sports with your siblings?
3. Would you rather go to a University or a community college?
It would depend on lots of factors - it’s not an either/or choice.
4. What’s your favorite kind of bread?
Rye or sourdough
5. What toppings do you like on your pizza?
Mushrooms, onions, olives, pepperoni, tomatoes
6. What color or design does your shower curtain have?
Wavy blue and white stripes
7. What kind of car does/did your mom drive?
Chevy II
8. What’s on your cell phone’s home screen?
A picture of John
9. Do you like to watch the National Geographic channel?
10. Are you the type of person to correct a survey maker’s grammar and/or spelling?
Maybe not grammar in a phone call, but definitely spelling on a questionnaire.
11. What color is your microwave?
12. Do you have a fan in your bedroom?
A ceiling fan
13. Mountain Dew or Sprite?
Neither. I generally don’t care for carbonated drinks.
14. Does it rain a lot where you live?
Just the right amount - we’re lucky that way.
15. Do you shop at Walmart regularly?
16. Does it bother you when animals lick themselves?
No - why on earth should it?
17. Have you ever been to a Trader Joe’s?
Once or twice when visiting in California. I wish we had one in our city. But we do have Aldi (which is a sibing to Trader Joe), and I really like it.
18. What’s the longest time you’ve ever been stuck in traffic?
Five hours
19. Do you wear black a lot?
Not a lot, but sometimes.
20. Are there stairs in your house?
Yes, but I don’t use them any more.
21. Have you ever held $500 in cash?
22. Do you like onions on your burger?

23. Could you ever give yourself a shot?
Yes, and I have.
24. Do you wear shoes in the house?
I’d rather not, but with my feet, I do most of the time.
25. Have you ever worked as a cashier?

Friday, September 04, 2015


John Zelle, 80, died August 30, 2015, in Calgary, Canada. He is survived by his wife, Mary, daughters Sue (Randy) Cawood, Margaret (Bobby) Smith, Kate (Wayne) Fuller, Jean Zelle, and 6 grandchildren. He loved his family, rowing, the Riverwalk, and travel. No services are planned at this time. Memorials would be welcomed to the Chattanooga Junior Rowing Program, Chattanooga Room in the Inn, Chattanooga Food Bank, Northside Neighborhood House, or the charity of your choice.
Things have moved so fast. I don’t know when or how to pick up and start writing again. I want to document the past two weeks, but don’t know if I’ll publish it all or not.

Margaret and Alison have been here going through papers and getting things organized. We’ve looked at an apartment in a retirement complex. There aren’t many choices in the area where I want to be, but the one we found is a definite possibility. I’m still getting my head wrapped around that, though.

Our girls have been magnificent. The swimmers and neighbors have kept us fed. You great folks across the internet have held me. And everybody has surrounded me with love. I’m grateful and humbled.