Monday, June 30, 2008


Today's the anniversary of my mom's death. She died in the hospital one year ago today. I remember it was pouring rain most of the days in June last year, and every day that we visited her in the hospital we brought our umbrellas.*

The day of the surgery they told us it went well. Maybe it did, but she didn't get better, only worse. One of the techs at the hospital who took her out of the room for some tests told us she'd tried to slap someone the day after the surgery, so we all thought she was improving. I feel like if I only knew what had gone wrong, that I'd feel better. Intellectually I do know that's not true.

I wish that I could talk about her without crying. Not because I'm ashamed of or mind the crying, but because it's so much harder to get out all the things that I feel I need to say about her and how much I loved her if I keep interrupting myself.

I used to ask her to tell me stories about her life before she had her four kids. Most of the time she'd say something about how it wasn't all that interesting, but she'd tell me a story anyway.

My dad found me reading one of her diaries a while back, and asked me why I felt the need to read them. It took me a little while to formulate the answer to that one, but now I know. I can't get her to tell me any more stories, and reading her words is a little like that. Being able to listen to her stories again.

Anyway, if I believed in the afterlife I might take comfort in that thing people like to say to you after someone you love has died. You know, "She's in a better place, she's looking down at you now." But I don't.

My mother's legacy exists in the people that she touched, and the children that she raised. And we're all good, because of her. We're good, and I'm glad that she knew that we loved her.

*If you know anything about North Texas in the summertime, you know the odds of rain for the entire month of June. It even rained on the 4th of July last year.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

My New Bunny

I originally bought a house because I had some annoying neighbors. Yippy dogs on one side and an idiot with a very loud car stereo and a penchant for Poison (in 2004!) on the other side. So I looked in the same neighborhood as my relatives for a house that I could afford. Turns out that I really couldn't afford it, but that's another story.

I found a cute little three bedroom house, about 1300 square feet and got a loan (though, let's face it, everyone got a loan in 2004) and moved. It was great, until the dog started barking on one side and the neighbor on the other side with the really loud car stereo worked on his car at all hours with his music blasting.

I know, getting to the point. So the neighbor with a dog moved out about a month ago. Yay, not as much barking! Unfortunately the dog dug a big trench under a part of my fence. So yesterday I went out to look at my horribly maintained backyard and had a need to trim the dead branches of the crepe myrtle RIGHT THEN. And something moved in the brush at my feet.

I looked a little closer and saw the tiniest bunny ever right next to my elm tree. I told my sister months ago that I don't have bunnies, and I didn't. She called me a liar, but I know that they not only did not have a way into the backyard, but I had a horrible large loud dog right next door to scare them away.

I took about six photos but in most of them the auto-focus chose the leaves instead of the fur. This one turned out the best. And he's only about four inches long.
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Friday, June 27, 2008

Cicada Killers

There's a very large wasp here (probably other places too) called a cicada killer. The female wasp paralyzes a cicada with her sting and lays an egg on it in a burrow. The egg hatches and the larva feeds on the cicada.

With all the noise around here lately, I'm wishing for a few more cicada killers. Unfortunately for me, each wasp only kills between 10 and 20 cicadas, which won't help me stave off insanity.

I was over at my Dad's today and caught one digging her burrow. Maybe I can get some closer photos tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Famous Photos

I found this via Wil Wheaton. Coolness.

Take a look:

It doesn't hurt that I got a set of Lego's for my 22nd birthday.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

More Bad Camera

Here are a few nice abstract shots from my car.

Bad Camera

In January I bought a small pink camera for a class that I was taking. I was supposed to use a cellphone camera, but since I don't have a camera in my cellphone and I barely use the cellphone, I decided not to buy one. Rather, I picked up this little Disney model for $20. I should have bought this one because it says "forever a princess" on it.

Anyway, it takes really crappy but fun photos like the one from before of my cat. Here's a slightly more cat-like version of said cat.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Plans for ComicCon

My brother Brad and I are going to Comic-Con in San Diego in July. We're renting a house on the beach, which I'm almost more excited about than the actual Con.

Mostly I'm a giant comic book fan, and I can't wait to meet Paul Chadwick, Bill Willingham and Bill Sienkiewicz. Paul Chadwick wrote and drew Concrete, Bill Willingham wrote and drew Elementals and now writes Fables, and Bill Sienkiewicz did a stint on the New Mutants way back in the '80s and has some really great surrealistic art. I wish that I could meet David Mack or Jill Thompson or Charles Vess or Neil Gaiman. Not on the lists though. *sigh* If you're at all interested in the line-up of artists, you can look at the list for Artist's Alley.

Brad said he's going to bring his laptop, so I'll try to take lots of photos and post from there. There should be some great people watching, and my niece if even making a costume.

I guess I won't have any way to deny geek tags ever again.

My Dad

If any of you have read the main page here, you know that my mom died last year. I'm still dealing with that. I know that I've not DEALT with it because I still talk about her in the present tense. How long does it take? Not a real question btw.

They probably have a Grieving for Dummies book, right? Of course they do.

To continue, in March my father fell down. Wait, maybe he tripped in the garage. Or, maybe, he had a stroke but lied about it and continued to lie about it for two weeks, during which he didn't tell any of us that he could no longer use his right hand or walk with any coordination or drive.

I spent Spring Break taking my dad to various doctor's appointments. We went to the GP, the hospital for an MRI, the cardiologist and the cardiologist again for two sonograms.

Turns out my dad's mostly fine. Did you know that if you don't get to the hospital within an hour of having a stroke that it will do all its damage, but if you get there sooner that medication can lessen the severity? Apparently the left side of the brain controls speech, so he got lucky there.

My dad's regaining fine motor control, if slowly. He can drive now, and started cooking again, which he loves but can't do as well without control of his right hand. He still can't write, so sometimes I help write checks and things. He's changed his diet and has lost more than 30 pounds.

The anniversary of my mother's death is coming up. My sisters are divided about how to spend the day, and my dad said to me today that all things considered, he'd just as soon his house smelled of my mother's cigarettes.

I totally understand the impulse to be alone, but maybe that's not a good idea. Maybe we should be together to support each other and not feel both sad and alone at the same time. I'm pretty sure that my mother would tell us to quit being stupid and spend time together, and to make sure and use her camera and take lots of photos of her grandchildren. And then she'd say to leave her alone and let her finish her book and her cigarette in peace.

The book she started but never finished? "Love Kills" by Edna Buchanan.


Hi. It's been a while. A lot has happened since I was posting regularly on this blog. I've missed it, but been unable to get myself to write or do much of anything in the past year other than things which seemed unavoidable. Like paying bills and going to work. Or, since school's been out for a bit, sleeping a lot.

But, I want to do more, become engaged in the world, at least the online world, again. So, diva, chris, Carmi, and any one else who may still be paying attention, I'm back. Talk to you soon.