baasheep: (Default)
Taking a break from the endless cycle of study, write report, study, rip my hair out and so on I'm starting to cast my thoughts towards christmas. More specifically what to get friends/family. This year I'm going with the trinket theme. This is mainly because I have asked friends/family what they would like and they say oh I don't really mind, don't go to any trouble. So I'm not.

Forgive me if I sound a little heartless but with Mam's passing the familyness has kind of gone out of christmas for me. Dad and I have decided not to decorate this year because neither of us are in the mood for celebrating. We are still doing the present and fancy meal thing though. When I asked him what he wanted for a present he said something practical and a book. That's the kind of response I like! I'm thinking a hat and scarf set and if I can find them manly fingerless gloves and some autobiography (I'm thinking Michael Palin's one) plus a selection box. Relatively inexpensive but practial and just what he wants.

For my girlfriends I'm thinking a selection of pyjamas, fleecy socks, scarfs, picture frames etc. I have a favourite little shop which has all sorts of trinkety things. For their other halfs I got cheap selection boxes and calenders. Family will get things like scarves, soapy set stuff and boxes of candy.

I get paid next friday and am planning on driving into town early on saturday and blitzing the shops getting all my xmas presents in one go.

Is it just me or is all this christmas stuff overrated?

Really?!

Aug. 10th, 2008 01:26 pm
baasheep: (Default)
Yowza so the countdown for crowfest is on! What better time for things to go wrong. I spent most of yesterday in casulty with my Dad. His face has swollen up hugely on one side to the point that his speech is slurred and it looks like he's been given a black eye. After a six hour wait (apparently Saturday's are popular for all sorts of accidents)he was seen by the Docs. They think its a problem with his teeth. He hasn't been to the dentist in over 15 years and the doc said he could see a huge hole in one of them. He thinks air and bacteria have gotten in, which has caused infection in his gum which has spread. He's been prescribed some powerful antibiotics and was told if the swelling hasn't gone down by tuesday he will have have to be admitted to hospital for iv antibiotics. Tuesday of course is the day I fly out. Thankfully it looks like the swelling is starting to go down. The doc said once the swelling is gone he has to get to the dentist. My Dad is more phobic then I am about dentists. I have a feeling I am going to be racking up quite the phone bill when in NY nagging him about booking an appointment. I am also mindful of the fact a lot of heart problems are caused by dodgey teeth and gums. When you take into account he is on heart medication anyways its pretty worrying.

He is adament I'm going to NY though, actually got quite annoyed when I broached the subject about flying out later on in the week. I know he's a fully grown adult but I can't help worrying. I've never seen him sick sick. He's in a fair amount of pain but refuses to take pain meds and is feeling understandabley self concious about the way he looks. So lucky me has had to run all his errands as well as my own. Its all cutting into cleaning and packing time but there's no point in worrying. I've taken the stance that everything will unfold the way its meant to (well its a better strategy then getting stressed and snappy).

One good thing to focus on I changed my euros into dollars on Friday, not to nitpick but the 20 dollar bills are teeny compared to a 20 euro note!

Crumpled

Apr. 2nd, 2008 11:05 pm
baasheep: (Default)
Today was tougher then I thought it would be. Too tired to talk about it now.

I took photos on the way there though to distract me and test my iphones cam. Not bad, although dublin traffic does not an easy photo make.

More tommorow, must sleep.
baasheep: (Default)
Thank you for your comments in the last post. The funeral is tommorow and work have given me compassionate leave. That alone makes me love my job, the fact I don't have to go asking for these things. Auntie Ev is being cremated. It's a decision she made which is causing some consternation among the family. We have the ultra catholics who believe cremation is wrong and the right thing to do is to bury your loved ones. They will not be attending the cremation just the mass. Personally I find the idea of cremation rather comforting. Not the act itself but the fact you can take something of them home. Going to the cemetary usually upsets me. So much death in one place, lives that have been cut short, live's that hadn't even begun. It's not that I am in denial about death far from it, as I get older I am more aware that our time here is finite. But sometimes memories of my mother are not enough. Photos help, but the things that bring me comfort are the things that initally made me quite upset. Her scent, her handwriting, her unfinished knitting even the bin which we have not cleaned out since the last time she used it (nothing gross a few tissues). It gives the feeling that her presence still lingers. Auntie Ev's daughters have not decided what to do with her ashes. Apparently Auntie Ev said they could either share her out between them or scatter them in the place they used to holiday in beside the sea. How wonderful it would have been to take my Mam's ashes home. Well, I feel that, however my father while not in the ultra catholic camp is still against cremation. He won't be attending it.

Keeping with the death theme, while doing my daily stalking on dooce ,I noticed she had linked to this. It's a portrait of people in life and in death. I find it quite fascinating and at times heartbreaking (especially the lady who said she felt she had been rejected by life). I think it's worth a look though.
baasheep: (Default)
The last time I wrote a journal entry with the above title I shared a little about my Auntie Evelyn. Her health has deteriorated over the past few weeks and yesterday she had a heart attack. She passed away in the early hours of this morning. I just feel so sad. Her funeral is on Wednesday. It's the first one I've been to since my Mam's.

I was going to bitch some more about the hen's party but really this has stopped me short. Life's just too short to moan all the time. In spite of the crazyness it was fun to catch up with my girls.
baasheep: (Default)
So I sucked it up and sent cards out. It was my Aunties card that did it. Evelyn is suffering from alzheimers and sent cards. She didn't remember our surname and just addressed it to AnneMarie & Eddie with our address and it reached us. What killed me the most is that Evelyn is renowned for her fabulous handwriting. Its the kind that people are always looking for when they send out wedding invitations. As a matter of fact after her babies were born and she was a stay at home mum, in order to get a bit of extra cash she set up her own business, teaching people how to write like this and also taking in invitations to write for weddings/christenings etc. It wasn't millionaire making but she made enough to bring her family away on holidays to the sea each year.

However her handwriting this year made it clear that she's getting sicker. It was wobbly and sometimes illegable. It was written with love though which is the main thing. When I was writing the cards I made sure to write hers in the style that she thought me to. I wonder if she'll remember?
baasheep: (Eyebaaaaaaall)
Today was Dads birthday. I wanted to make a bit of a fuss of him seeing as it was the first one without Mam. In the morning I gave him his first set of presents, some dvds including The beatles Help! and Queen live in Montreal. When I got back from the shops in the afternoon I gave him the next one, a tray of guinness and made one of his favourite dinners, roast chicken with all the trimmings. After dinner the last of his presents a satirical book. We then watched tv and came upon a Queen concert. Queen is one Dad's favourite bands, the other being the beatles. I got my love of Queen from him. I think Freddie Mercury is one of the greatest showmen that ever lived. He had the entire package, the voice (oh the voice!), the looks and the ability to entertain. All of my male friends love Queen even the more homophobic ones. As a matter of fact anytime Queen comes on in a pub you are guareenteed to see at least one man up dancing :)

Today as well as being Dad's birthday is also the day Freddie passed away. I remember Dad's birthday in 1991 as being the only time I have ever seen my father crying. I hadn't seen him that morning as he was in work before I got up for school but I remember running home so I could give him his card. When I got in and ran to the dining room I saw him sitting on the ground in front of our hulking old record player wiping his eyes. Beside him were all his Queen records. I remember asking him what had happened and he said one of his friends had died. That night Dad, Mam and myself all sat in that room listening to those records. That marvellous voice soaring and dipping, hitting all the notes. Tonight when we were watching the concert Dad mentioned at his funeral he would love if "these are the days of our lives" was played. Well what can you say to that? That particular song was one the last videos of Queen together. Watching it on youtube it was clear how near to the end of his life he was, how much that terrible illness was taking its toll on him. Out of respect to him it was agreed that the video should be in black and white so as to hide the thick makeup he had to wear. I noticed how alive and sparkling his beautiful eyes were. You could tell this was his great passion in life - performing. It was quite the swansong. It was freddie through and through.

Come to think of it, its a great song to go out on both for freddie and my Dad. Now if you don't mind I'm off to dig out those records :)
baasheep: (Default)
They really are you know. Well mine are. Tonight we had a mass of remembrence. As well as being stunningly long (over an hour in length, on a midweek, people have work dammit!), the choir of questionable talent (Simon Cowell would have a field day with these people)plus the priests (four of them in total) all got to do a speech. All saying platitudes, the type of which makes my blood boil. My whole family turned up, even the crazies on dad's side (bar the alcoholic brother and the drug addict brother, but they haven't turned up for stuff in years). There was candle lighting then arranging the candles in the shape of a cross on the altar. Then more platitudes. And hymns. When it was all over my auntie (the one I mentioned in a previous post) turned to me and said in a sotto voice "that really was a load of shite". In my twenty six years I have never heard her swear. I nearly spat out my tea (there was tea and chats after the mass)with the shock. She then smirked and walked off to my other auntie who was going on about how nice the mass was :)

My lovely cousin then came back to the house with me and fixed my broadband connection. Thats right I have broadband again!!!!!! God I've missed it. It took much longer then he thought it would and he's only just left (its a little after 11pm now) plus the poor guy has a miserable cold and has been working since six this morning. His wife is pregnant and due next febuary and he was telling me how much they are looking forward to it. I really have to get him and her a fabulous xmas present. Yay yay yay for broadband!

Oh remember my friend with cystic fibrosis. He was waiting on a double lung transplant? Apparently his consultant has told him he is now top of his bloodgroup for the next set of lungs. Yay. Well not really yay because of the fact he has to wait until one life is over so his can begin but its something. Plus our national television station has asked him would he be interested in participating in a documentary. Oh and he's gotten engaged. Go B!

I know I'm going to be exhausted in the morning but I will be surfing the www for the remainder of the night :)
baasheep: (Default)
Erg so enough of the looking back, time to focus on the present. I got my first college project last week and its a doozy. I have write a report with a minimum of 2000 words. Basically I have to have to pretend I am working for a company who is considering opening a new location/outlet in another country. I have to take into account all the various factors involved, costings, infrastructure, language barriers plus write a summation at the end giving my opinion on wheter this is a good idea. I have five weeks to do it. I plan to get it done in three if possible. My other college lecturer has decided to give us "a small" project as well as an essay type exam and knowing him his idea of small won't match mine so I would like to keep some time at the end to concentrate on his project.

We've been given a sample report and our main lecturer wants our report structered this way. I've never done anything like this before so am feeling a little overwhelmed. I'm taking today off to relax after a somewhat stressful week in work. This is a long weekend for Ireland (yay halloween) plus I've taken the tuesday off so no work til wednesday yay!

**********************************************************************************************

Dad and I are going to dinner in my aunties tommorrow. She's celebrating her 80th bday this weekend and wants to have the family over to hers instead of going out for dinner. I'm thinking a nice bottle of wine and a fancy scarf and glove set for her present with a big bunch of flowers? She dosen't look like shes 80 and certainly dosen't behave like a typical 80 year old. She's the posterchild for living a moderately clean lifestyle. She's never been the type to like junk or microwave food preferring home cooked meals accompanied by a glass of red wine. She still goes for her daily walk and after her hip replacement outwalks most of us. She lost her husband when her kids were still only kids and raised them as a single parent while working a full time job. She never remarried or had another relationship, her husband was the love of her life. She's not bitter though, she told me she would have rather had the 15 years with her husband then to have never met him at all. When he passed she found the church and her faith to be a great source of comfort and to this day is very active in her local parish. When the priests home burned down due to a problem with the wiring she took them in until their home had been fixed. She became great friends with a young priest and they are still in touch today even though his parish is now in Atlanta, Georgia. He comes home to perform family weddings.

Shes been such a rock of support for me and Dad in the past few months. When we were in pieces it was she who worked out the details even though her baby sister had just passed. When Mam was in the hospital and we were exhausted from a full day in work then spending a few hours in the hospital each night, we would come home to find she had cleaned the house, done some washing and left us a home cooked meal to heat up. She is the living embodiment of what her religion teaches but more then that she is a good and caring woman. She has been through so much in her life but her heart is still big enough to share love with everyone who comes into her life.

Happy birthday Auntie P!

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