Thanksgiving 2009

This year I spent the afternoon and evening at the Kelly house in Clarksville, Indiana. Rick and I decided that going to Warsaw was going to be too much for him to tackle. He's been working 7 days a week, 5 days out of town and at least 1 weekend day on a side job here in town. He's tired. We talked to Mike and Tammy and look forward to seeing them for Christmas.

Then, Rick asks me if I'm okay with him going hunting on Thanksgiving Day. Knowing that he hasn't been hunting but once this season, knowing how much he enjoys being in the woods and contemplating the issues of the day while sitting under a tree, knowing how much he want to fill our freezer, I realized that he would be a better 'Rick' if I let him go. That left me here, at home, wondering what I was going to do with myself on Thanksgiving Day. I had many options available to me, it was just a matter of deciding which one best suited me.

I could stay home - by myself - on a holiday that is best spent eating/dining/sharing with others.

I could serve meals at the local shelter - they put out a list of volunteer needs and I fit a few of them.

I could join a group of travelers and loners at a local club, meet new people, exchange interesting stories.

I could join the family of a fellow Toastmaster - she initiated the invitation to me as soon as she heard that we would be in town.

I could join the Kelly family.

I decided that I would join the Kelly family, at least those that were in town and able to gather at the Kelly house.

The Kelly's have become second family to me, and now to my husband. We've had a key to the house for over 20 years. When we lived in Indianapolis, Mary and Terry would visit with us on weekends. We traveled many times from Indianapolis to Clarksville and spent weekends at the Kelly house.

The house wasn't full this year, but was still warm and cozy. We all acknowledged the absence of Terry (Pop - died in 2008) and Jamie (Brother - died in 2004).

Mary and Erin cooked the meal. Here's Mary putting the finishing touches on the feast and not knowing I snuck a picture of her:

Dallas, Jamie's widow, joined us with her new husband (actually Kenny didn't want to join in the meal). Here Erin is frenchbraiding Dallas' hair for the evening.

Joe Heuser, joined the Marines on the buddy system with Jamie, still a Marine now stationed in Japan.

Kevin Kelly was there, with Buck, a friend and roommate.

Erin Kelly was there with her two children, Maresa and J.A.K. (Joseph Kaiser, called Jack).

We ate. We laughed. We played. Rick was able to join us late in the evening. Though he didn't get a deer, he looked calm and refreshed, so it was a good thing that he went hunting.


It's been an icky few weeks here...

Most of you know that I have Crohn's Disease, and a few of you will be surprised to learn this. Anyway, these past few weeks have been physically draining and I can honestly say - thank goodness I work at home! The hardest part of being physically drained is the mental tiredness that starts to set in.

Since I was first diagnosed in 2000, I have learned how to manage pain through mental diversion and meditation; Rick and I both have learned to be flexible with our traveling schedule, as well as simple things like accepting dinner or outing invitations; I have learned to adjust my daily activities to match my physical abilities; and in general I can handle minor flare-ups without difficulty - minor being relative, of course. Most minor flares last about 2 weeks because additional medications begun within the first few days start to work on my body. This time, though, I found myself taking the additional medications, but not getting relief until well into the 2nd week...meaning I'm just now getting back to feeling full functional.

After the 2nd week of having my body fight internal infection, reject foods other than water, iced tea, toast and potatoes, I'm tired physically. Into the 3rd week and my thinking slows down. Then I take two days to make a decision that should take an hour. Or instead of making 10 phone calls, I'm only able to make 2. Keeping organized is difficult and something I'm going to work on...meaning I'm in search of a different system for keeping my projects for work/clients organized well enough for me to stay on top of everything. I know, difficult request.

I have had a challenging project that I have been working on for almost 4 weeks now. Yep, at the beginning I have a flair, which means I'm going to be squeezing most of the project into this week. *sigh*

So, that's why I haven't updated here - I've been trying to focus on business, clients, blogs for business and additional revenue streams. Obviously not all at once - but one at a time.

Rick has been working out of town, coming home on weekends. He'll be out of town for about a year - and we're both glad of it because the pay scale in Illinois is much higher than here in Louisville and means that the stress of my making more than my initial revenue goal/week is relieved for a bit - which in turn is good because it reduces my stress.

So, that's it for now. My hope is that next week I can post something much more interesting, maybe about how excited my client was after receiving the results of the project he entrusted to me! Until then - be well, take care, and say a short prayer for me please.