Random Jottings Of Gildersleeve

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Location: United Kingdom

Perhaps you'll learn more about me as you read my blog. For anyone who translates my blog using the translator facility, don't forget if you wish to read the comments in your own language to click on the title of the post down the left hand side otherwise they will remain in english. Also I assume that the translation is accurate but I don't know, so please allow for errors.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Leap Year Day!

What's the proper name for the 29th February?

Well, I can't say I'll remember it for anything special personally and I suppose if I had listened to the news all day some very important things have happened across the world.

However, one story broke a few minutes ago and they took off the song they were playing and substituted it with "Daydream Believer" by the American pop group The Monkees.

Davy Jones(originally from Manchester)and member of the group has suffered a fatal heart attack in his sleep.

I don't know how many of their songs he was the featured vocalist as most of those I remember, they were sung collectively or Mickey Dolenz seemed to be the main singer.

It probably is no more than any other story of losing a well known personality but in my case I suppose it touches a place in that for probably a very short time in reality(but they were only around for a short time in popular musical history anyhow)

They were accused of being a manufactured group(and they were put together in such a way)as a kind of American version of The Beatles. It was the complete package including a TV series showing them as wacky and crazy guys. And as each show included a music number and to some extent a kind of early version of a video to accompany the song, maybe that was true. But no less so than today.

They went through a period where their music was played by session musicians and they fought against that and wanted to do it themselves. When that story came out there was a period where the public might've turned against the group but they'd rode out the storm.

I guess that I was a big fan and I did have a few posters on my bedroom wall, I remember buying a few singles(well, them being bought for me is more likely)I might've used my pocket money but I suspect they were a gift. If I went on a shopping trip, I'd usually be given one as a treat.

This was in the days when the local departmental store had a record department and you could ask to hear what you were buying or might buy.

I probably only had a few of their records, I remember having "I'm A Believer" and "Valerie" I'd guess that depending on what money was coming in from the work my parents were doing finding money for a record probably was quite a lot to find.

I don't know what went wrong, they did change their musical direction and brought out a film called "Head" I think that's what it was called. And it all seemed to implode from that moment.

In recent years like many groups of the period they came back did some concert tours but again there were reports that things were not too great between them and the last tour I believe was called off.

I guess that ain't going to happen now.

To some extent they all moved on Peter Tork(had some health problems in recent years)a rare form of cancer but he has his own band, Mike Nesmith was always a musician and had his own career, Mickey Dolenz did a mixture of acting and was/is a TV producer and Davy Jones was performing regularly and doing the circuit in the States and seemed happy and in recent years seemed to be interviewed quite a lot.

Another one has gone...

RIP Davy...

Update:Might've guessed another story would break. Tragic in a different way. PC David Rathband was doing his job and almost at the end of his shift when he was shot in the face, twice at short range resulting in him losing his sight.

Over the last year or two the media and public have seen him battle to keep his independence, trying to save his marriage, keep a job of some sort hopefully still in the police force which he obviously loved. It is sadly quite apparent that he had many demons to overcome.

It seems he had been in Australia seeing his brother for a month and had recently returned to the UK in the last few days. A newspaper reports some rather downbeat Twitter messages were being posted by him. And now it appears last evening Police were called to his home where his body was found. Yet to be confirmed but it would appear that he found it all too much and committed suicide. They are not looking for anyone else.

Another life and family's destiny changed forever.

RIP David...

The link I have given gives a background to the story but therea re some sites that have some quite gruesome images of what the PC looked like soon after the shooting.

I'd love to add sound to my blog(with acknowledgement to where it has come from)There is a short interview with PC Rathband in his own words but I'm not sure that can be done with a blog...you can add video and images but...

Writing A Blog...

Almost means that you will come across as miserable, that you are always looking for the bad things in life or in people. I do sometimes wonder where all my thoughts come from and what I put down once I start.

Because in truth if you met me I am so easy going, I love comedy and think I have quite a humorous nature and most days I potter about and don't see myself as serious. I really do try to see the good in the world and in people because I know it still exists. I just enjoy listening to my radio programmes and music. I don't go looking for problems, they usually come looking for me.

I also know that my life is a doddle compared to so many others around the world...even compared to many within my own country.

I have been blessed with wonderful parents and an equally happy childhood and most of my adult life has been the same and we all have events that come along to change our lives, some we'll all experience and some are unique to us.

I pour my thoughts, opinions and views into my blog like people used to do in a diary or when they decided to write a book. And I guess I absorb what I see and hear in the news like a sponge and that influences my view of the world. But I hope that I don't take everything at face value.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

If I Was Fortunate To...

Come into a lot of money either by winning a lottery or someone was kind enough to write me into their will what I could and would do would be governed by how much I was given.

Its the only way I'll ever see any such large sums in the remainder of my life.

Number one priority would be to see that Mum gets the best care and is made as comfortable as possible. I'd like to say I'd do the same for family and friends but though I am friendly, sensitive and compassionate, I have no friends...I am alone(No, I take that back, I have some very dear friends on here)but I mean those that you can invite out for a day and perhaps have a meal with.

Family, well again they are few and are all reasonably well off so again I don't have to think of them, so I would have to donate to charity and good causes. And I would. I certainly would not want it to go to the Government if anything happened to me.

As long as I have enough to pay bills, eat well and stay warm that is all that I need. I am sure most of us have similar thoughts.

My luxury if I had silly money would be to have a music library with as many CD's as possible(knowing that I could never ever hear everything)would not worry me, it would just be great to have access to all the wonderful music there is and know I can play whatever I like when I wish. Its possible that I may be able to hear most of what I have in my music library now but I suspect if I played everything 24/7 it could take approx 29 days so perhaps I could.

This comes back to my previous post where I mentioned some of Jeri Southern's music is selling for £50 for one CD.

I can quite understand why some releases cost what they do because of the care of restoring music to a modern standard and the research into the notes and details of the music featured, copyright etc...but there are some wonderful boxed sets by specialist companies like The Bear Family(A German label)but most of their releases are £100+ and that really is a luxury.

And unfortunately many of the artists I wish to collect are on specialist label's that charge over £12 for one CD. So again you have to think before parting with your money whether that's the best choice and sometimes you might want to buy a few CD's.

That's why its welcome that some companies do issue some bargains, I haven't decided yet whether to go for it but there is a release of Bobby Vee's singles output(some stereo tracks, some "B" sides)and we're talking at least 100 tracks for approx £5. Now that is a good buy. Something similar happened regarding Adam Faith last year.

It may be that not all of the CD's contents is great but at that kind of price, it doesn't matter so much.

I still prefer to be able to hold in my hand a CD rather than have a digital file somewhere on a PC which could be lost if your PC fails and I would still always burn it to a CD or DVD so I can get it back again.

Monday, February 27, 2012

What's The Story?

I purchased some CD's from the local charity shops at the weekend and found quite a few that were of interest(more than usual)the choice is limited on a town of our size.

At the back of one with vocalist Jeri Southern was a post it note that said something like the following...

"I hope you'll think of me when you play this CD, love Pam"

Who is Pam? Who was the CD purchased for? Are they still together? Did she hope something would come of it? Just for a split second you are part of their world.

A mystery that will remain just that...

Equally it would be a nice gesture if Pam had placed that note in the CD case for anyone who purchased the CD from the charity shop.

Speaking of which Jeri Southern's music is in many cases being sold at present for silly amounts. Some are only available as imports from countries such as Japan and they cost £50 for a single CD.

As for the one I found...I paid around £1.20...at Amazon a new copy of the same title is being sold at £28. My copy is in perfect condition.

I'm Such A Kill Joy...

The Film Academy Awards(Oscars)have taken place overnight. Not only can you no longer watch them live if you want to but I am so uninterested.

It was carried on BBC Radio 5 through the night, well they had various reporters at various sights around LA trying to talk to whoever they could collar.

I heard a few minutes before the ceremony and as I write this have just heard the same person after the event.

How insightful are his interviews and questions? Not at all.

Some actor did a publicity stunt to promote his new movie by spilling fake human ashes over a tv presenter "Live" on US TV. Oh so hilarious. My aching sides. This reporter kept talking about it in such excited tones and sounded like a schoolboy who had seen something slightly "Naughty" happen. He managed to have a quick word with Steve Martin and just wanted to ask him what he thought about the stunt.

Steve had just got out of a car, had no idea what he was talking about and what was he expected to say?

Now he's caught another actress outside of some party and asked something like what do you think about Meryl Streep winning the category of Best Actress? What is she expected to say? She's not likely to say anything negative is she?

And the presenter of the programme then praised the reporter for his coverage and work. I'm happy I missed it all and I wonder if it would be as funny if he had been the centre of the stunt. But of course the victim was one America's biggest names on radio and TV and I think "Our" reporter is a long way down the line.

In the end its one big commercial for the industry and back slapping amongst themselves and the public is kind of let in on the event as an after thought and slight acknowledgeent that without the money from those who go to cinema or buy DVD's and associated memorabilia there would be no point making movies in the first place.

I always thought Streep hadn't won any "Oscar" as they always seem to be saying she has missed out or has the most nominations each year without success but I am sure I have just heard that this was her third "Oscar" and she has had over a dozen nominations.

Pedantic I know but now it seems offence is taken if you use the term Actor and Actress and most seem to prefer the term actor whether you are male or female but in an awards ceremony they still like to have a seperate category for Actor/Actress. We know if an actor is male or female so to follow their original logic, you could have two awards and still say its best "Actor"

Why not just go back to using both terms, its so much easier.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

It's Funny How You...

Go back to things of the past...

In recent years that's been Comfort Food. The dishes you remember from your childhood perhaps.

When Mum took ill why did I remember about Complan?

And now that I am purchasing Carnations and they are great value(probably the least expensive variety of flowers in the supermarket)but they don't have any plant food attached(all others do)so I went out and purchased some in the hope they'll last a bit longer(they say that they can last 14 days...so far I'd say nearer 7 days)but I purchased some Baby Bio...where you just add a few drops to water, so it should last ages.

And hopefully it will do the trick. It must be decades since we had any of that in the house...and there it is celebrating it's 60th anniversary.

Cut Flower Preservative Recipes


A letter arrived a couple of days ago from our electricity supplier...telling us they believe(Estimate)we'll use over £1,000 of electric in the next 12 months. If I was alone I could not afford that and I suspect I would go cold or start to wear more warmer clothes and hide under the bedclothes.

What has probably increased our use of electric was the insistence that we should invest in a washing machine and tumble drier. If alone I'd probably do one wash per week or every couple of weeks. At present because of circumstances we use these appliances more often.

And the silly thing is that when you use the Gas central heating, you have to use electric to pump the water around the system. I'm sure I could cut back further on the gas.

And yet as has been said by many, no matter how many ways genuine people cut back, in theory cutting the bills, the suppliers keep increasing their prices so you still end up paying the increased prices even though you are cutting back.

The surprise though is that someone had to call(by law)to check our meter and we have had the meter read by a meter reader, we've also had estimated bills but I have always supplied an up to date accurate reading myself but after he called last Monday in this letter was the news that...

We are £204 in credit! So the next bill may or may not be paid for or have a decent amount already towards it. I still cannot see how this has happened but I'll not being complaining.

Looking at it another way as virtually everything is on electric here in reality maybe our electric usage would be higher and if we used gas more for cooking etc...electric would come down but instead its been transferred to the electric bill.
Its Sunday so I'm going to do a little tidying up, a bit of cleaning but still take it easy. May have a go at doing some kind of casserole or something similar and hope Mum may manage a small portion.

And its come around to our weekly radio fest...Mum doesn't listen to a lot of radio(even though she has a wide musical taste)To be honest I don't listen to a lot of music on radio because its much the same whatever station you listen to and the DJ's all sound much the same.

I have to look for the specialist shows dotted around the schedule and Sunday is a day that offers the best choice of music not heard so much these days and most of that is on BBC Radio so it isn't interrupted by commercials and most of the presenters play a piece of music in full rather than talking over the start and end of it. So there is at least 10 hours of entertainment.

Mum has never been one much for speech radio(not sure if that's choice or because she never got into the habit)but I listen to a quite a lot of plays, documentaries and news.

I have to say though since collecting music again and putting them on the pc and listening to what I have put on Mum's mp3 player, music has taken over a little more again and its lovely hearing such wonderful music and it being so undemanding.
I can totally understand Mum's enjoyment of relaxing and listening for hours and hours.

Much as we like pop music and there are all kinds of genres on the player there is still something about hearing instrumentals by great bands and orchestras like Billy May, Nelson Riddle, Paul Weston etc...artists like Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Perry Como, Jo Stafford, Tony Bennett etc...and composers like Johnny Mercer, Cole Porter etc...Too many to mention.

In these troubled times its lovely not to be wound up or feeling miserable hearing all the terrible news in the world. Music really can make you feel good and calm you. Of course it can excite or move you, ok its patriotic but I am still affected by pieces such as Land Of Hope And Glory, Jerusalem and Nimrod.

That's not to say I bury my head in the ground and ignore what's happening. Sadly, that will still happen(world events)and some of what's coming domestically will still be a worry for many in this country economically. Few of us will be untouched. I daren't think about the future and tend to take each day as it comes.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

A Day For Doing As Little As Possible...

It is really dull outside. Wet and windy so I'm not going anywhere. Once the carer has gone, we will take it easy and all I will think of is seeing Mum gets fed and lots of drinks.

We're already up to 1,000 calories!

That's the plan but you never know if there will be a knock at the door and a visit from the District Nurse so you are not totally relaxed. I might've fancied an afternoon nap.

I like a day when I can think about very little...perhaps about what I may like to eat or just listen to some music or try and catch up on clearing the hard drive on here. Looking after Mum, it has got out of hand and I have over 3TB's worth of files to edit and burn.

I actually wonder if I'll ever succeed. But soon I will have no space on any drive.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

We're Fortunate To Have A Health Service...

But for some time we have been buying certain medical items out of our own pocket and its been expensive. Then through our District Nurses we were told that these should be supplied on prescription for free.

Yet, though this has helped and we are only allowed so many, if you use more than they allow, you are not allowed any more until the next delivery date comes around so we still buy our own between times. We have another delivery on March 2nd(Hoorah!)but I'll have spent at least £200 buying something similar in the shops.

The District Nurse promised a new jar of some barrier cream over a week ago and after scraping every last dreg out of the jar and making it last weeks and weeks, we're still waiting. If it comes and we have it for free via a prescription...fine but I got tired of waiting and bought some myself, Mum needs it and I will not let her do without.

I don't know what I have done but my right shoulder is playing up and suddenly without warning I can get a pain that stops me doing what I am trying to do. I don't know if its arthritis, frozen shoulder or bursitis(inflammation of a bursa, especially one in the shoulder joint)

I think that is the most likely reason. You feel such a softie when you think of what others suffer from, not least Mum.

Otherwise, whilst we've done nothing really special its not been a bad birthday for Mum and we've mainly relaxed, if you can include waiting for the usual visit from the District Nurse which never happened. They don't say when they are coming but usually its a Tuesday so you prepare yourself and then I had to go out and face the weekly shop.

I purchased more flowers to replace those I purchased last week and they were better value, a bigger spray for the same price but I was restricted on the colours available(there was only two sprays for sale)I don't know what colour I'd call them but they have a kind of red border and the flower heads are larger.

And for the first time ever Mum received a Birthday card from a nephew so that was a nice gesture.

Update:I'm trying to rest the shoulder but its a bit more difficult this time around as I am caring for Mum rather than just myself. Took some painkillers through the night(not really sure they helped)and maybe if it is an inflammation problem, the steroids I take for other reasons may be of more help. The trouble is I think I have some of the same problem in the other shoulder.

I won't be going on about it though and I will just try and give it a few days to improve. Indoors I can avoid using my cane and hold onto items around the house for support so that should help.

The link takes you to a great online dictonary site.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Birthday Card...

As I purchased Mum's Birthday card for next Tuesday once again it hit me how(hopefully)Mum will be here to have her special day and I guess I have always thought how fortunate I have been to have her in my life and been given another year to share that time with her. I have always felt the same at Christmas and New Year.

Today, though I did feel it more than ever as I chose Mum's card. For once I found myself drawn to one in particular, it seemed to say all that I wanted and this time had a few more words than I'd usually consider.

All being well I'll give her the card on Sunday(we usually like to have a few days before and after the day)it seems a pity just to have it on show just on the day...and Mum's favourite music programme on Sunday afternoons accepts text messages of greetings so the presenter is pretty good at choosing an appropriate piece of music so I'll get him to play a song for her birthday. And thanks to the computer etc...I can record it and burn it to CD.

Update:The DJ played Art Garfunkel's "I Only Have Eyes For You" so not a bad choice but Mum was dozing so managed to miss it...He mentioned her three times. Good job you can record things so she'll still hear it...

They'll Probably Never Be Seen Again...

The day I went into our local supermarket at that early hour I found a new salad vegetable some Spring Onions but they were called Red Salad Onions(they looked purple to me)but they had a milder taste.

Whilst there today all I could see were the usual kind.

I'd like to think its because they've proved to be popular but I suspect the truth is that those that were in store the other day were there due to an error and they'll not be seen again.

I've lost track of how many items we have liked to find them removed. Two that come to mind is Lemon Sole and the simple tomato. Yes, they had for quite some time what I thought to be value for money a carton with decent sized tomatoes but I'd say medium in size and they were priced around £1.75-£2. Now we're back to a pack of six tomatoes costing £1.

It may be these items are still available in other branches. I have heard of cases where something as simple as Peas Pudding is more popular in the North but may not be available in the South. So perhaps you do get regional differences.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Its A Luxury...

And for years we did not bother much with cut flowers(well I don't remember doing so)

Then perhaps a year or two ago I started to buy a bunch for Mum regularly and put them in our lounge to brighten it up. They lasted approx 10-14 days so to me that seemed reasonable value.

If I was alone and my budget tighter I'd probably decide not too.

Anyhow, with Mum not going downstairs as much as she used to, I kind of decided not to buy them as often as who was going to see them(though I suppose you should carry on doing so anyhow)but having managed to find a vase of a suitable size and now after buying the spray of carnations and placing them in the bedroom(they're not causing a health hazard)and hey we can open a window and all our doors are open all the time...Mum is enjoying seeing them all the time and already everyone who has called to care for Mum have said how nice they are.

It also shows that you don't have to go for the biggest bouquets to bring pleasure.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Long Day...

I was walking around Tesco's around 6am this morning. Well, remarkably I was short of bread, milk and the pants Mum needs and knowing that we usually have people calling on Tuesdays(District Nurse, Social Worker etc...)but the fact they do not give you a time they'll visit I really could not leave it until after they'd been.

We're only a few streets away and there is a taxi on call from around 5.30am anyhow.

I'd rather be in my warm bed but you know once you make the effort, its not too bad and there are only a few shoppers out at that time. So you can get around easily and most of what you want is on the shelf, later on sometimes some items are in short supply. Perhaps I'll do this more often.

And being that it is Valentine's Day I made a small gesture for Mum. I found a really, small but cute teddy bear peering out of a kind of little carrier bag and as we don't have a lot of room in the bedroom(and Mum is there more than downstairs)I purchased a small spray of yellow carnations.

Mum liked what I chose.

I am hoping that I can also manage to have Mum eat a little more than usual today and have something a little more tasty, even if its small portions, so I think we'll have some soup, possibly a little bit of fish pie and followed by some kind of desert(Bakewell tart or apple pie)with some custard. That's going to be around 600-800 calories and with all the coffee and Complans already eaten(plus a Vanilla Custard Rice Pot)we will at least have reached or just managed to go over the 2,000 calorie standard that keeps your weight constant, any more is a bonus.

Think I Was Almost Going To Be Scammed...

Some American lady obviously phoning from the States asked to speak to Mum, I said she could not come to the phone so she asked who I was.

I said rather than asking me questions, how about you telling me who you are...

All I got was that she was phoning about a computer.

So I said Mum doesn't have one and(added that Mum is terminally ill)In a way she is(you know you have something that if untreated is likely to get worse)so I added that I was not interested and put the phone down.

I hope that's the end of it. There are so many horror stories out there.

Some are opportunist and just work their way through the telephone book, others are little more clever.

You can bet that whatever they were going to do it would cost money or there would be some kind of threat.

Monday, February 13, 2012


I guess it has to be done but our neighbours have been having loft and cavity wall insulation installed today. What a noise! When you are ill and want peace and quiet(like Mum)it always seems worse. Well, once complete that should be it.

I am trying to be fair.

I don't know if I'm imagining it but some of the work sounded as though it was happening between the walls we share between our semi-detached properties rather than just the external walls front and and back.

Something is happening inside their house.

We could feel our own house vibrate...even the bedroom floors and Mum's bed!

How News Is Reported...

Whatever your opinion of the news that the singer Whitney Houston has passed away and how. Some may think the coverage is over the top especially so early in the story and when facts are are scarce and there is a lot of speculation.

However, most newspapers and media outlets have mentioned where the incident took place...

In Las Angeles USA at the Beverley Hilton Hotel. So its common knowledge. I think when I first heard the story the BBC mentioned the location too.

Now, for whatever the reason(I know that the BBC try to avoid giving publicity to particular products)to avoid being accused of advertising and often if a company is mentioned they'll issue a disclaimer that "Other similar products are available!"

So now when the story is being mentioned on the radio news they'll say "Whitney's body was found at a hotel room!" or "Whitney's body was found at her hotel!"

It just seems silly when everyone else is saying the name of the hotel and in this context it is part of the detail. I just wonder why the BBC are being so strict in this situation? Also if it has anything to do with guidelines producers have to follow.

Friday, February 10, 2012

The New Fridge/Freezer...

Of course things go wrong but it appears the appliance I purchased on October 13th 2011 has packed up. Not even three months into the guarantee. I seem fated with fridge freezers. So I guess all my food will be ruined and until its fixed we'll be living off food that is either out of a box or a can.

Not good when I am trying to see Mum is fed well...oh well...no good getting annoyed. It will awful to see all the food being thrown out...and having to start from scratch.

Update:Well, I guess I'll have to watch it this weekend...it obviously has been off for some hours but this morning it has kicked in again but still not reduced the temperature to the "Safe" area. It stopped again and a few minutes ago started once more.

I've never altered the controls since I purchased it and have never had cause to and the temperature has been constant.

Today, I have turned the control to max to see if that changes anything. They say if the room temperature drops below 14c it might be affected. I don't believe that it ever has especially with a radiator on a lot of the time keeping things constant.

At least I have a 5 year guarantee(from the shop where I purchased it)on top of the one year warranty from Hotpoint.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

Another Post I Think That Needs To Be Seen...

There are so many changes coming in under the umbrella of being called "Universal" to me its just as confusing but I do know that you will have to be almost dead to probably qulify for any help financial or otherwise...

We thought some of the changes so far were bad but it just gets worse...

PIP Criteria

I'll have to look it up but there a report issued today suggesting that Hate Crimes against the disabled in the population has increased and its been suggested some of that is due to how the Government has slanted stories and statistics as reported and the media too.

Something many of us have been saying for quite some time. The report has been put together by the charity Scope but there are around six respected charities supporting and/or saying similar things including Mencap, Leonard Cheshire Disability, the National Autistic Society, Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB)and Disability Alliance.

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Paul McCartney Sings Jazz?

I never thought when I heard that his latest CD(Kisses On The Bottom*)was going to be a jazz album, he would carry it off but allowing for the fact that he has gone for standards and a couple of new compositions, he's gone about it the right way by stripping the songs down to bare minimum.

The musicians that accompany him are mainly playing guitar, piano(Diana Krall)and drums(some light strings on some songs)and Paul sings very intimately and close to the mike so no straining or shouting.

It helps that the selection of songs are familiar and great standards.

Nice and easy on the ear. Not demanding.

It was released on the 6th February 2012, recorded at the Capitol studios in Hollywood USA and the microphone Paul sang into was the one used by Nat King Cole.

Unfortunately, my version is missing a bonus track. And I understand that there are guest appearances from Stevie Wonder and Eric Clapton but I don't have access to the booklet that is usually in the jewel case with a CD and has more details.

(*Taken from the lyrics of the song "I'm Gonna Sit Right Down And Write Myself A Letter")

Nothing To Be Concerned Over...

For Now...

The District Nurse called and did what she does and was more approachable than usual.

She seemed happy with Mum but it is heart breaking when say talking about Mum eating she says things "Let her eat whatever she wants at this stage" more or less saying its just a matter of time...hasn't it always been so, with or without cancer or dementia hanging over you but this just speeds things along I suppose.

In our favour at present we have not been presented with a time limit or been told that they can at least control it as my own condition has been over the years. That's not the word I am looking for but my mind has gone blank...

The Social Worker cried off and called me to apologise and asked if she could call tomorrow afternoon? Oh and "I have a student district nurse with me, is it ok if she comes along and visits your Mum, I'm trying to show her what she is likely to see in her work when she qualifies" I could say no but it was unlikely that I would.

That's why she did not come today, why not just admit it. There is always that element of not being totally honest. Even when it is a situation that doesn't really do any harm.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

Home Cooking!

I had plans to do such a lot today but on this cold Winter's night I think it could be we'll opt for a mug of soup.

Mum hasn't eaten much but has made up her calorie intake with lots of warm drinks, high in vitamins and minerals. You cannot always make someone eat and even health experts often say a few days without solid food is nothing to worry about.

But I had planned to make(may have this tomorrow)Salmon Fish Cakes(I have no idea if I am copying anyone's recipe)I suspect its hard not to even unintentionally.

All I'm going to do is some mash potato, flake into the mash some salmon and possibly some curly kale and a small amount of lemon juice. I'll probably make two small cakes for both of us and serve it with some buttered bread. Simple but nutritionally good I am sure.

Friday, February 03, 2012

Where Does The Time Go?

Tomorrow, it will be twenty eight years since my Father passed away. I remember the problems I had asking for time off from where I worked to look after him. We weren't busy and in reality I wasn't being missed nor was I being paid whilst not working. Then I had phone calls and hassle asking when I could be expected to return. I resigned.

I remember how eventually he had to be admitted to hospital and we were told that they could not get him better and it was only a matter of time...

How we walked down to the town centre whilst hospital staff did what they have to do and how we cried all the way, how we tried to have a cup of tea and a snack(in a kind of restaurant within a big departmental store)that's long since disappeared.
We went home in the evening to be called back almost immediately.

We arrived at the hospital and just missed him passing away.

The nurse said that he thought he was at home...he asked for a drink of water, as she left the room she turned around and thought something wasn't quite right, she went over to him and he'd gone...

I remember returning another day for his few personal possessions another sad day...you go in with a person and come out with a carrier bag of a few items of clothing or whatever.

The church was full of people and there was little if any space for anyone else to attend.

The Crematorium was having some repairs done so the service was held in an old church on the same site(Dad loved old buildings etc...)so ironically it was appropriate that it was used for him.

Mum doesn't remember but I remember her rushing to the window where the curtain closed on Dad's coffin and her being gently taken into the arms of the vicar who comforted her.

Its been a long time since I visited the Crematorium to see the Book Of Remembrance but it is a little difficult to visit and there is a very long walk when you get there. To think it will be open again tomorrow and for a few hours his name will be there for anyone who happens to visit the little room where the book is.

But we always remember what we had written in it...

My Father's name and our names of course followed by the simple words..."Resting in God's garden, Dearly loved and sadly missed"

How true that is...

I'm not sure if I mentioned it on my blog before but Mum and Dad were as much in love with each other in the final years as when they met. I'm sure as with all marriages there were difficult times but I do remember when through work he had to attend some kind of course in Derby and we missed him so much. He didn't want to do much either so he phone...he even wrote some letters to Mum and myself and in the evening he just stayed in his hotel room and read a book. He was a very big reader...he loved books.

When it was time for him to come home and he met Mum from where she worked it was remarked on how excited she was to see him.

Mum first met him after going to a local venue where most of this areas seemed to go(mainly on a Saturday night for a dance)and she'd seen him walk across the floor and been attracted but never thought she'd see him again.

Then upon waiting in the queue for a bus to go home Mum was being jostled and she felt an arm guide her back into the line(and it was him)they started talking, he walked her home and...

In those days he had a look of the film star Ronald Coleman and had a moustache to match.

When Mum was in hospital(with me, I was born prematurely)he could see Mum from a window so he park his car nearby and clean the car or whatever just so they could still have some kind of contact(visiting a hospital was very different in those days)

Also he nearly lost Mum(let alone me)and he spent all the hours you can think praying all night that we'd be safe, though I suppose his priority was Mum as he did know me yet. And he'd lost his own Mother in child birth having him so it was a little like history repeating itself.

All turned out well in the end.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Not My Work...

This is one strong post that I feel I just wanted to put up on my blog so it reaches more readers in cyber space...

Toxic Government

I Like...

A hot meal as much as anyone but with Mum eating smaller portions and sometimes we eat at different times...

Today I thought...

I need something that is good but can be prepared quickly and so for the moment I am mainly thinking of eating things like various sandwiches in wholemeal buns and meals like salads etc...as long as they have good healthy fillings(cheese, ham, pork, salad and so on)they will be as good as a meal and offer all my body needs nutritionally, fill me up and have plenty of calorific value.

And naturally there are the standbys such as soups, baked beans, spaghetti, tinned tomatoes, poatoes, mash potato, fish and chicken.

I've also loads of yogurts, fruit and other little treats I can have after a meal or at various times throughout the day.

So I should be ok! We both should(I'll always try and get a warm meal into Mum)and she cannot really manage sandwiches anyhow.

Looking at my list I'm not sure that there's much that I haven't got in my food store.

Our Home Will Never Feature...

In one of those fancy magazines but...it is home because it is lived in and there is love in it. That is what matters most.

Its not a palace and probably could do with some more decorating and I have said before the replacement of some carpets but the inconvenience of moving things around or out of a room(especially in our situation)we can do without and not knowing what happens if/when I lose Mum about staying here with changes in welfare help, I don't want to spend money on things I have to leave behind for others who may/may not keep my choice of perhaps carpets etc...

But it is clean, vacuumed and dusted especially in the rooms most used. We don't entertain(not through choice)but friends and family have either moved or passed away)and it really is just Mum and myself!

I suspect because of the Social Worker's appearance and manner she probably(and I am being judgemental here)has a house where nothing is out of place. Even the carer commentated on how she dressed and came across in general.

And I have a feeling that our carer has been "Got" at by a slight change in her manner.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

If I Hear That...

We are not a conventional couple one more time I really feel like swinging for someone. Who are we being compared to?

Dare I suggest that we may be right and others could be wrong...Social Services and whoever else are not going into every single home in the UK so how do they know what is conventional. Substitute conventional for "Normal"

What is normal?

If you are not hurting anyone and are happy why not accept that and stop trying to get "Us" to fit into a pigeon hole or a criteria that suits a model.
We eat, drink and sleep. Listen to music and the radio, watch a bit of tv, we shop. I come on here a bit. Our situation financially and because of health problems rule out some things that others do and we don't. Otherwise, I really cannot see how we are classed as being so different.

There are many people living singularly or with a parent/parents. Is it really so unusual?

They Talk Two Ways...

B***** Social Worker! I was told how the meeting went with the carer and her today.

If I divulge what I know the carer could lose her job. However, they want caring people in the profession to look after the vulnerable and sick and she has been told virtually that she is too involved.

Only in that she can see the wrong doing and how silly they are going on about things...over the top!

And some of what they want Mum to do, I know Mum has never done and will not want to do.

It's silly things such as this house is very warm and Mum likes her heating on so she does not feel the need, she never has to wear nighties(She likes shortie tops)or have lots of bedding or worrying about whether the bed linen is fancy and covered in flowery patterns etc...but on the quiet that's what they want amongst other things.

If other older people want that...fine, if Mum is content and happy and eventually when Mum deteriorates she needs more care that's fine but at this minute she wants to be left alone.

Its silly things like Mum has a chair in her room that she doesn't use and has a few creams and other personal things neatly arranged and its easy to get at what she needs. "They" want everything put in a box or us to buy a chest of drawers to store them in. Why...if we're happy as things are why do we need to do that?
Its petty stuff!

On the quiet if I don't compromise(in other words give in to their ideas)it could kick off again.

As I have said before, if you can manage to avoid being involved with the authorities, please try to do so.

Unfortunately, we had no choice. If Mum had not taken ill we would not be in the present situation.

If I ever become that ill I dread the thought that they come and try to sort me out.