Friday, December 31, 2010

The Year in Review

One of the traditions I've enjoyed is the year in review blog. 

Let's have a look, shall we? 

January: a pretty ugly month, but a month of growth!  I was still recovering from the violent mugging and the bruises had yet to heal.  I kept praying for Thug Boy and keeping on.  God started using me more with the Bible handouts.  Allergic to SSRI antidepressants, I had a pretty rough battle with depression. 

February: I developed my prayer notebook with long lists of requests for just about everyone.  I spent a lot of time praying, seeking God's will, and battling depression. 

Mid-February, I realized I was no longer welcome on a message board.  Citing me for "being too personal" - when that's my every post... well, I knew it was time to move.  I moved over here and they deleted my other blog. 

God really ramps up my Bible Distribution.  Next door neighborkids vandalizing my property got old real fast. 

March:
March 6, I did my first street corner Bible handout!  The first of many!  God has me handing out tons of stuff every day.  I started work on "Where to Look In the New Testament".   A nasty depression hit.  Battled horrible nausea and other side effects from the Wellbutrin (a change to another generic fixed it). 

April: I also confronted the fact that 1.  Ron is an alcoholic, and 2.  He is an emotional abuser.  A pretty ugly month for me. 

May: Ron continues to be horrible to me.  God continues to use me.  Seems to be a direct relation!   Ron threw his back out trying to move a vending machine, and we spent the night at the ER.  The bank sends us checks with the wrong account number, creating a screwup that lasts for weeks.  Some horrible hassles at work.  I am confiding in the other vendor about Ron's drinking, and my frustration and pain at the verbal abuse. 

A typical June comment: "Today has been a rather challenging exercise, not letting Ron's bad mood infect me. Taking care of myself when it seems like he won't."  Verbal abuse.  Lots for work for God. 

I wrote a nice poem:
Heather, I need you this way

.When I was a kid I'd fall and I'd cry
I'd look at the others, I'd moan and I'd sigh
.God why am I different? It's not very fair
They can do so much, I just can't compare.

I tried and I tried to learn tying my shoes
I'd fall off my bike, and was plagued by the blues
Depressed as a child! Sure doesn't seem fair!
I hated my glasses, my feet, and my hair.

I tried to make friends, so strange and so wierd
My company? No thanks! I was to be feared!
I sighed and I cried and I leaned upon God
I took him my pain and I made him my Rock.

When others were playing, and on the home phone
I was in my room, with God, never alone.
He told me again and again, oh it seemed
."I'm going to use you, for wonderful things."

As I got older, I realized my brain
Was broken and different, a source of much pain
I cried and I raged and felt bitter inside
When I realized that I never would drive

Stuck on the bus for the rest of my life!
No man would ever want that for a wife!
My glasses so thick, and my face broken out
My bitterness, raging, at God I would shout.

God why did you ever create me this way?
Are you sick, mad or just playing a game?
I love you so much but you weren't thinking straight
Had I been normal I could have done many things.

I could have reached others and led them to you
I could have made money, not cried with the blues.
Instead I have migraines, the ups and the downs
Can't live in the country, it must be the town.

God smiled and told me that soon I would see.
He had wonderful plans in store for plain old me.
I met my true love, at a certain job.
I only got because I'm off in my "knob".

Had I been born normal we would not have met.
One moment beside him, and our fates were set.
True love had stuck hard and fast and this I know.
We'll stay together, through sun and the snow.

God took many years before His plan was revealed.
A horrible accident, pain and harsh tears.
I looked around one day, my Bible in hand
And realized the others, on Him couldn't stand.

They din't know Jesus, they were all alone!
I couldn't stand that, put some Bibles on "loan".
The others so grateful someone had shared Him.
My future was set and the pain grew quite Dim.

I asked God for others to show them the way.
He said they were busy, or quite far away.
I said I could help if He wanted me to,
He said to me, "Heather! That's why I made you!

I need you to hand out Bibles on the bus.
I need you, with candy, to show them my love
I need you at multiple bus stops to stand,
To smile at the ugly, with Bible in your hand.

When you get mugged, I'll need you to pray.
For the poor dumb kid who stumbled your way
I need to to pray and I need you to care
Because you know this world is cold and unfair.

I knew that no one else could do this job so well.
So I made you for it, like ringing a bell. .
I knew you could go with my love in your heart;
I knew that you'd go even when it's hard.

I know you will care and I know you will love
The pull to go, know that it comes from above.
I'll guide you and show just what you should do.
I need you for this, that's why I made you.

If you were born normal, you'd be in a car.
And not at the bus stop, you'd be quite far.
I couldn't use you if you made lots of cash.
I need you with time and a big Bible stash."

I told him I'd go and I have no regrets.
I scratch my head sometimes, I often forget.
I lose things, my moods change, and yet He's still there
He fills me up, constantly, full of His care.

I hope that one day sometime after I've died.
I'll sit up in heaven, a large table beside.
I'll ask God about it, and He will just grin;
That's for the souls that you helped Me call in.

I'll sit at my table, I'll feast and I'll smile.
The cashiers, bus drivers, and others beside.
We'll laugh and we'll sing and God will kindly say:
Heather, you know why I made you this way



July - I lost my debit card, again.  Ron behaves a little better for a few weeks.  I started working out for a bit.  Never did find the debit card. 

August: another depression.  The other vendor, after yet another "drunk again and treats me awful" rant about Ron, makes a move.  I decline; he gets very pushy and scares me.  Ron alternates between pleased, and angry at me for "inviting" attention.  He feels very threatened when I confide in others.  We rode with a client so obese, they broke the wheelchair lift.  When Ron got off the van, she deliberately tripped him and could have caused him to fall 6 feet and land on his head.  I get a lot of replies to that post. 

September, the new tenants move in next door with their barking, barking, dog.  A driver, working sick, infects me with his head cold.  Almost killed by a reckless driver, I realize I really don't have any regrets.  Ron starts up drinking even more, and the neighbor's dog and him seem to feed off each other's energy.  The dog barking, and Ron outside shouting at them.  He went over next door several times while drunk and lectured them on "proper dog care". 

October, another depression.  I hand out a case of kiddie Bibles on Halloween.  I get a new cell phone. 

November: Ron was pretty ill.  Turns out he is anemic and low in vitamin D.  More vile Ron moods, verbal abuse, and drinking.  I do a Bible Handout on Thanksgiving. 

December: Another Bible handout on Christmas.  More Ron ugliness, blackouts, name calling, and drinking.  I take steps to deal with the issue once and for all. 

What a completely depressing year!  Can you imagine if I didn't have Jesus?  However, God can use anything for good. 

I'm glad I did this, I tend to only look at how things are at the moment, not the track record (contrary to Ron's accusations).   UGH.  Glad I am taking steps. 

Insane cheddarbugers

I'm feasting on cheddarburgers right now. 

Ron and I went to Foodtown this morning.  I got 6 pounds of ground beef (at sell by date) for $1 a pound.  I got an amazing amount of groceries for very, very, cheap.  Thank you, God! 

We came home.  I found a zombie movie marathon, after I put up the groceries.  I called Dad. 

It's funny the things we take for granted; like my Dad works with DRUG ADDICTS.  He was very supportive and gave me some good advice.  Including "If you feel she betrayed your confidence, don't tell her anything!"  Good advice! 

Ron and I always call them when we do fireworks; so I made them a fireworks video. 



There it is.

The other night Ron got a really odd call. Someone he used to know came by on Christmas eve. I got a very strong "I was going to ask for money" vibe off of him.

He was looking around the house, it is obvious we do not have much money. The carpets are in the bedrooms and only a few hundred feet.

He called Ron and told him the carpets were terrible, and he "had some carpet" - how? He offered to install it for "only" $300. Ron laughed and told him no.

Why do people think we have a lot of money? Especially someone who has come into my home?   I told Ron, "That's about twice what a professional company would charge". 

Ron doesn't remember, but last year the man "borrowed" $150 which we never saw again.  Ron said he had chosen to make it a gift.  Fine, we didn't need it to pay any bills and it sure didn't come out of MY paycheck. 

I just find it sad that a 40-something year old ablebodied man has to "borrow" money from a blind man in a wheelchair. 

Wierd.  So, we went to Walmart.  I got some more sweats and some "hang-out-t-shirts" as I put them on the list.  I like a nice baggy men's tshirt, when I am hanging out at home.  They never pull up at the waist like a lot of the women's. 

Paired with the sweats, I'll be nice and comfy.  I don't want to change into my nightgown (I have some very old ones I practically live in) for my nap and then wear it all day... like I ususally do. 

I don't think it's a good idea when I am running depressed to begin with.  As you'll see from the video, Ron was mostly fine today.  That's what makes it so sad for me. 

I got the sweats, and the tshirts.  I got a little soda, and a little more food.  Our ride was over an hour late picking us up.  Agh.  Ron was pretty annoyed. 

I tend to be more placid.  Properly medicated. 

We went home, I got my nap.  I woke up after about a half hour like I normally do but went back to sleep deliberately.  Depression. 

When I got up, I got the coals started (one of those

[Ron's going by, on his way to another beer or glass of wine.  He was complaining he was almost out of vodka, and I told him "teasingly" "You'll have to be a good drunk and ration it"]

So, I got the coals started.. and it was one of those happy barbeques when I had exactly the right amount of coals.  I kept additional coals prepping as the originals burned down.  I cooked up over 7 pounds of meat. 

Ron even came out, beer in hand, and talked to me as I worked. 

Of course the neighbor's dog is going buggo barking and barking at the firecrackers.  Ron is barking and barking with frustration at the dog's barking and making me wish I could muzzle them both. 

Other than that, it's been a good day. 

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Damage control

When I realized my family had chosen to break my confidence, and contact Ron in direct opposition to my BEGGING, I prayed and took matters into my own hands.  I have lived with Ron for over 18 years; I know him. 

They're happy, he's happy.  Damage controlled.  Please step back and leave us alone. 

Closing the door

I am sick of self-righterous holier than thous judging and meddling in my life.  It's my life, not theirs.  I also suspect gossip. 

They have just about threatened to reveal my plans to Ron, which will completely fork up my entire life.  How nice that they can sit all nice and warm at home, feeling all cozy in their self-righteous convictions, as I lose my one chance to help Ron.  Have they PRAYED?  Have they read their Bibles and sought God's will? 

No, they have been too busy pointing fingers and tripping me up. 

What a mess.

Taking care of Heather

Well, things are moving along.  It will be a few days before I hear anything firm. 

I have 2 choices.  I can worry about details that may never matter; and let all the stress consume me - or I can choose to leave it all up to God and simply take care of myself and Ron, the best I'm able. 

I've chosen the later.  I was quite pleased.  Ron and I were planning trips and he started to ask me to help him buy liquor, then corrected himself and said he'd take a cab, instead.  I'm happy he understands I won't "help".  I was delighted I didn't have to say a word at all. 

Yesterday, all the stress and bad energy and such... I made it a point to care for myself.  I read a nice inspirational romance novel.  I took a nice hot bath with some lavender oil.  I set off a 96-count Pearl firework yesterday, and today.  It made a LOVELY display, especially for $2.29. 

I thought Ron was reckless when he bought several, but now I'm glad he did.  I am choosing peace.  I am not going to get sucked into DRAMA. 

I have a ton of emails, which I will review but not at the moment.  Either I will get my glass of water, or I won't.  Either they will sabatoge what I'm doing, or they won't.  It's their choice. 

God also laid some good ideas on me for the job hunt.  One being, get a weekend job only.  Plenty of places are desperate for help on the weekends.  All the young kids want to go out and party.  Friday night means something to them; something that's irrelevant to this "old' married lady.  He also told me to write up a job description, of everything I do.  Boy, that will take a while!  I can present that in interviews to demonstrate my versatility and flexability. 

In the meantime, I'll take care of myself.  That's the only healthy thing I can do. 

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

DON'T "FIX" MY LIFE

The nice thing about the blog, if I change my mind about something I can always edit it.  This is AFTER the edit. 

I am upset (edited).  I had counted on getting some help; they don't like what I'm doing and have balked. 

I'm very upset.  They would probably say, I assumed they would help.  I did.  Obviously that is a terrible mistake. 

Not only that, I'm getting a real "Value Judgement" vibe about their comments.  I am not asking them to approve or fix my life.  I asked for one thing only. 

Instead, I am getting comments like "Won't talk to Ron about his drinking, TODAY".  What did I ask?  I SPECIFICALLY BEGGED THEM NOT TO SPEAK TO RON.  I ASKED FOR ONE THING.  Boy, did I pay.  I gave them all the juicy, gory details.    It was shameful and embarrassing.  I can only hope it doesn't go farther. 

I DON'T WANT THEM TO FIX THIS.  I wanted help with one thing only.  If they won't help then fine.  Back off! 

If I need a glass of water, please don't offer me a salt shaker.  Don't get upset when I refuse.  If you won't give me the water just tell me and I'll go away. 

Ron is a proud man and their "solution" would have been disastrous.  I told them that. 

I am so frustrated that other people are in my business, and trying to micro-manage my life, the ONE SIMPLE THING I requested is denied, and my requests for silence denied.  They got all the gory details, now they want to fix it their way?  

He is MY husband.  His drinking is MY problem; not theirs.  I don't want anyone to "fix" my life. 

It's the kind of night where I turn it all over to God.  He has something amazing planned.  I know that.  I also know that He will work things differently than I thought.  That's fine. 

I also know, not to ask them for help.    DON'T FIX MY LIFE. 

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

One step down

I needed Ron to agree to something; so I could take more steps towards getting him help.  I have been begging God to guide me and give Ron a willingness.  He did. 

One step down, many to go. 

It has been a hard, hard, day.

Happily, I have been sleeping OK.  My mood is acceptable considering.  Who WOULDN'T be depressed?  I know I am taking the right stuff at the right times.  I am respecting my body. 

My mind is just eaten alive with all of the questions and decisions I have to make.  Buddy, I absolutely needed to read your post.  "Keep your eyes on Jesus"

Safe to say this much: I am going to have to confront Ron and make him choose.  I have been fighting, but I am facing some VERY hard choices.  If Ron refuses to stop drinking, do I refuse to help him with work?  He would probably lose the business.  If Ron refuses to stop drinking, I don't see any way clear to keeping the house. 

On the one hand, houses are a LOT of work.  I currently have tiles falling off in the shower area.  We will have to pay for that.  The siding, some of it, is old.  The people who rent next door are pigs with trash strewn in their yard.  My experience is that the "owner" is always paying, paying, paying.  Taxes, homeowners, maitaining the thing, insurance - that's a couple thousand a year. 

A cursory internet search tells me I can find apartments nearby for $500 a month.  I can afford that, when I get another job.  Happily, I have choices.  One of the places is a really grim dump.  Another offers 800 square feet. 

But I love my garden, and my cat is happy and safe in his world.  My neighborhood is, overall, quiet and safe.  I suppose, if Ron just "went buggo" and refused to pay the mortgage, I could get my own in my name and assume the house.  I'd rather do that than have a foreclosure on my credit. 

Agh.  It ISN'T fair.  Why do I have to worry about foreclosures and unemployment?  Because I love my husband and he's sick?  Haven't I DONE THIS ALREADY? 

I have a lot of hard and complicated decisons on my plate.  I need to get another job that is compatible with the vending, and start saving.  I need to work twice as hard as I am already and plan how I'm going to do this. 

It's been a hard, hard, day. 

Monday, December 27, 2010

Message in a bottle

Well, I'm a step closer to getting Ron some help. 

However, the next step involves interviewing him, on camera, about his drinking.  That is going to be difficult. 

I will need some prayer on this; for God's guidance for all of us. 

Turn your back on a customer

Whoo!  Already an exhausting day! 

Got up at 2.  Thinking hard and long about my choices.  Did my God Time, went to work. 

The other guy was there (the one who made the move, then got really angry when I refused).  He has been making a lot of "secret" phone calls.  His wife was furious all day, banging doors shut, turning her back on a customer!  I would NEVER do that! 

I hope I have never made a customer feel that way!  That's just something you DON'T DO!  They don't have to buy from us; they have plenty of choices.  They can go to Walmart, the gas station, they can go to that new donut shop down the street.  In these times, you can't afford to turn your back on a customer. 

An unhappy customer walks away and tells 10 people.  What do you think she is going to say?  It would not have been hard to stop what she was doing and smile at her.  Then answer the question; go back to work. 

Turning your back on, and ignoring, a customer is not good!  And then to turn around and complain loudly that "They are all working overtime, where is our money?"   Well, if you give them the finger, they will give it back. 

There's no law that says they HAVE to put their money in your vending machine. 

Sunday, December 26, 2010

A circular knitting video.  If you like knitting or watching people knit you might enjoy it; but I just talk about knitting. 

I am not a knitting expert as the video shows. 

Loose lips

I'm not sure what it says, that I have people posting ads for *enlargement* on my blog.  I do have comment moderation! 

I was very touched to see that I got 66 hits yesterday. 

I have made some decisions.  I applied to get Ron some help; can't say more than that.  When I can talk, I will. 

I also decided to tell Mom and Dad about Ron's drinking problem.  I know she reads on occasion; and has probably read a "drunk again" post or two.  I know they have heard Ron when he's loose. 

While it's very sad, it is not "shameful".  Ron has an illness; like I do.  I am addressing my illness; he is not.  I am going to send them an email and let them know they don't need to reply.  Dad is a bit uncomfortable with the deeper issues. 

I also intend to INVESTIGATE Al-anon.  I would certainly attend a caregiver support group; it's a group for people who love alcoholics.  I believe they have a meeting in my area.  The "trick" of course is: in my area; on a bus line, during the day.  We will see. 

The overwhelming feeling I have gotten from God recently is that I am not alone; many people would like to help.  I just need to be patient and let Him work.  If plan A comes through you will all know; and as soon as I can talk, I will. 

However, people who know Ron read the blog; and loose lips sink ships. 

Saturday, December 25, 2010

It was probably better

So, I had a pretty good time during the handout.  Sad but true, I know at least a couple people felt really sorry for me standing out on the corner.  That's not the sad part, it's the true part. 

This is both: it was probably better for me than being at home.  Sure, it was cold, wet, and very windy... but it was just me, God, and however many angels He sent.  We had a good time; I had my Diet Dr's. 

Now I'm at home, Ron is drunk again... he just took a huge swig off a 2 liter vodka bottle.  He thought it was "pathetic" that I saw a guy drunk at 9 AM. 

The man was pretty intoxicated, with an open can of beer.  But he stopped and I gave him some Bibles.  One for him, one for his companion.   I guess it seemed oddly familiar for me. 

Ron wanted to talk to Mom and Dad on speakerphone, and he was pretty loose.  It was rather uncomfortable for me; even more for them. 

It's very discouraging to see him like this; hard not to feel as though I have failed him.  Tomorrow morning I will talk to him and remind him I am not helping him buy alcohol.  By his standards, he doesn't have much left so I don't want him assuming I'll help. 

I saw a small, plastic, vodka bottle as I did the handout.  It was lying in the grass.  I wondered about the person who bought it and drank it; and spends their days begging for money for more alcohol. 

So many lost and tortured souls; even ones like Ron who are saved. 


You will need to TURN UP THE VOLUME. I was too tired to figure out the setting.

It's all God today

I forgot that the guy next door "usually" has a very loud and rambunctious Christmas party.  It never mattered that much before. 

Not only was it loud, they were all drunk and talking loudly, turning the music up and down suddenly; right as I was falling asleep.  I came this close (pinching fingers together) to going next door in my nightgown and bathrobe and saying "I have to GO TO WORK AT 5 AM TOMORROW!" 

Instead, I asked Ron (surprisingly sober) to call the police, on a couple of occasions. 

Today I mentioned that alcohol was "onboard" next door; that it turned our normally sweet and considerate neighbor into an obnoxious and ignorant fool.  Ron got very defensive and acted as if I had attacked HIS drinking. 

We will be running errands with out driving friend next week.  Most of them work errands, on my day off.  I have told both of them, repeatedly, that I will not buy Ron alcohol.  Last time they tricked me into "helping" [he pulled up outside the store, and said "I'll wait here"].  I plan to send the guy a text message and say "I am not helping Ron kill himself with alcohol.  Unless you plan on helping him buy it while I sit in the car, don't go." 

Ron had mentioned yesterday to his old friend, that he as "almost" out of vodka, as he was down to his last 2-liter bottle.  The most consistent advice I have gotten over the years re: Ron's drinking all says "DON'T HELP HIM GET IT".   I intend to be very clear on that; informing Ron and his in advance. 

It's hard to see someone who helps Ron buy booze as my friend.  He's never gone "buggo" without alcohol. 

Being the mess he is, someone has to help him get it.  It won't be me. 

He kept going on about how much he liked the ($10 for 2 liters) flavored wine mixer he had supposedly bought for the repairman.  I told him he couldn't afford to drink that stuff; and it was loaded with half an ounce of sugar for a FOUR ounce portion.  I'm guessing he has 2-3 portions at a time. 

He kept asking me if Walmart "had mixers".  I told them, if they did, they would be the sugar laden kind.  "I get tired of drinking vodka" he said.  I told him the liquor store would have sugarfree mixers. 

I will not be helping him buy them, though. 

Anyway, I got up.  I'm tired and feeling a little persecuted, what with the constant drinking and the party and all the rest of my life.  I had gotten maybe 4-5 hours of broken sleep. 

Ron started shouting that I was being "too negative" and to "go back to bed".  I attempted to tell him, that's how I feel with you.  He shouted something rude about "go take your pills" and stumbled off, slamming a door. 

It would be easy to feel like I shouldn't do the handout.  But it's not about me, it's about God reaching people while I'm around.  I just have to show up.  God's going to do all the work. 

Not only that, if I was going to be ineffective today; I wouldn't have the persecution!  Bad things must be terrified! 

Friday, December 24, 2010

I need a break from the wrapping!

Ha!  I really thought it wouldn't be "much different" to wrap a Bible.  I am used to sticking tracts in them and maybe marking a relevant Bible verse or two... but wrapping it in tissue paper, putting it into a printed cellophane bag, dropping in a couple of mini candy canes, and twisting it shut... well, I've been at it for hours. 

I didn't sleep well, but got up around 3.  We had a trip to Foodtown.  Well, we did... but the driver had to drop off the other client.  At a gas station.  Miles in the other direction.  At 6 AM on Christmas eve.  She was not an employee.  Huh! 

By the time we got to Foodtown, our OTHER ride was already there.  I ran in, got some sausage, a couple of pounds of ground beef on sale (it looked nice and red), and what appeared to be three, 6-packs of bottled Diet Dr Pepper.  Imagine my shock when one of them turned out to be regular!  I put that back! 

I could see the cab already outside, so I just paid and left.  We went home, put up the groceries.  I bagged up candy; expected it to be busy... because we were going to Walmart. 

People mistaking Ron for my father have apparently shamed him into wearing his wedding ring again.  I am not very observant; I didn't even notice he'd taken it off.   Anyway, he says it fits fine "now" and made a bunch of jokes about PMS making his hands swell. 

Well.  I think everyone looks at their wedding ring now and then, and feels like it doesn't really "fit".  Hey, I keep my vows. 

So, I never did hear back from that grocery store.  It is highly depressing to think they don't want me, even to work nights.  If God wants me "here", I'm here.. but it's hard not to feel worthless and useless when I can't get on as a night-shift stocker.  If God has another job for me, I feel like it is "better".  But, still.  [sigh]

It's Christmas eve!  I'm supposed to be eubillent.  I wish. 

So, we went to Walmart.  We had plenty of time, so I tried on sweats.  I was happy to see I am a Large.  Right now I am a solid size 14.  Ron said a couple of times he didn't "mind" if I lost more weight and got down to a "Small, like you used to be when we met." 

I told him, I was never a small.  I have always been a medium.  Oh, then I could get down to a medium, then.  I decided not to do the middle-aged metabolism lecture, or remind him that lithium causes weight gain.  Or the fact that dealing with his drinking is a huge burden on me and I DON'T HAVE ENOUGH JUICE LEFT TO FOCUS ON A WEIGHT LOSS PROGRAM!  

I just assured him I wouldn't get "bigger".  I came up with a new word.  GLACK.  Good word. 

The last time we went to Walmart he bought a margarita mixer - with the alcohol in it.  "For the repairman".  He had bought a single serving size and the guy liked it, so he decided he'd buy a larger size as a Christmas present. 

4 hours later, Ron got into it.  He talked about how he wanted to buy another one, because he felt guilty.  I told him, he should, and said it made him look like a major alcoholic.  He agreed. 

I am using the word alcoholic.  He doesn't admit he is one, but he does not deny it either.  I'm not name calling, but I will say "It made you look like an alcoholic when you drank it 4 hours after buying it for someone else".  He said he wanted to buy another one, for the repairman. 

I told him, fine.  When we got home I gave it to him and said "I don't want to take care of this".  He can fight those battles on his own, without dragging me into it.  I'm not going to hide alcohol from him. 

He got annoyed, but I said "I didn't buy it, it's not mine."  I feel like he really wants me to endorse his drinking. 

I really needed to get this out of my system.  So, I got myself 2 pairs of sweatpants ($5 each).  I don't really like sweatshirts.  I like a tshirt and a hooded sweatshirt. 

I got some foam bowls, because I (later) got my favorite sugarfree peanut butter icecream.  It makes me gassy, but I sleep alone and I'll be out in the nature during the handout.  Cat food, etc.  I spent about $20 I think.  I got the six pack of Diet Dr Pepper I hadn't bought earlier at Foodtown, and about the only individually wrapped candy available; taffy. 

Ron got a new belt, etc.  It took a while to check out, but we did.  We had a good ride home, too. 

Ron got rather an odd call from a former room-mate.  They talk every several months.  Anyway, the guy called and said he'd like to come over. 

It was "after 12", so Ron isn't a drunk.  He can drink after 12, and TRIES to have a drink every couple of hours... but his friend, whom I've never met, was coming over.  I was wrapping up Bibles, and continued to do so (still have about 30 to go).  They went outside and talked for a while. 

Ron kept offering the guy alcohol, and he kept refusing.  Apparently Ron is an alcoholic if he drinks, and the visitor doesn't.  He didn't drink. 

After the guy left, Ron slammed down enough to get pretty trashed.  Why do I say this?  He was so drunk he tried to eat the raw sausage in the fridge.  Then couldn't open a ziplock. 

When I got to a stopping point, I helped, but it was obvious I was fairly annoyed.  He went muttering off to his room. 

When the cat came home, soaking wet, a little while ago I checked on Ron, and he's snoring away. 

The cold front came in.  It began to pour, we had a squall line and it's still raining.  From what I hear, it won't rain tomorrow, but the ground will be wet.  We've had a pretty nasty drought the last little bit. 

I plan to finish up the Bibles, lay everything out for tomorrow, take my shower, God Time, and bed. 

Merry Christmas, Heather! 

Thursday, December 23, 2010

On a bus. Long day but fun. Teased $store, Ron said I bought dog treats 'cause he was a good boy. They laughed so hard they cried as i scratched his chin!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Wrapping Bibles

Busy today; wholesale warehouse, work, home, nap, and then doing up Bibles.  I only just started on wrapping them, but I like the way they look. 


{above} This is an "Invitation" New Testament, I have over 100 of them. 


{above} A NKJV Nelson Bible, whole Bible.  Yes, I put candy canes in the bag. 


Formatting got wierd on me - but this is a NIV whole Bible, I had several donated and was saving them for this handout.  I wanted a little "pretty" in addition to the wrapping, but I have to consider packing and transport.  Anyway, obviously a home effort and not professional; which is kind of the whole point.  I'm with Jesus and that's it, no other organization. 

Ron is pretty "loose" tonight.  Challenging.  I ask God to keep me strong. 

Tuesday, December 21, 2010



Better audio by far... I found and fixed it. Sorry about the bad hair.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Buggo

Well, I got up, did my God Time.  Went to Foodtown.  Came home.  Pretty tired. 

Met my aunt and uncle for lunch, had a great time.  Loved my presents! 

It is nice to know I have people who CARE.  Sometimes I feel very alone. 

After they left, Ron said I had "talked too much and she (my aunt) was just being polite".  How would he have known?  He was outside with my uncle, while I was inside with my aunt.  I realized he feels very threatened by me having close relationships with other people. 

I was all set to blog about THAT when my sister called.  She is also very supportive. 

It was nice to know I have more than one person, I could call ANYTIME if and God forbid, when, Ron goes "Buggo" again. 

Saturday, December 18, 2010

This is how it starts

I'm not going to do it, of course.  No matter how tempting, I know making that choice is a step towards suicide and I'm not going there.  I'm not going to let the demons back into my head. 

That said, this morning I prepared to turn on the computer.  I had to take some Tylenol because I'd had a headache.  That raised my lithium levels.  I feel tired, draggy, and unmotivated.  Also battling some depression. 

Yesterday, I used the stepladder to change the porch light.  It had burned out.  The ladder and I went out, and changed it.  The drivers need a porch light so they can see our address. 

I bought the stepladder back in 2004.  We had just bought the house.  The bedroom was a hideous shade of grey.  It reminded me of prisons. 

I bought some primer and the stepladder.  I was manic, and painted the whole room primer white.  Kind of bland.  Then I went out (still manic) and bought the Walmart Generic paint - rated for 7 years.  I went with "Curry Gold" which is about the color of curry, a moderately deep shade of gold. 

I painted that whole room before the mania abated.  It was tricky, because I only had one solid wall.   The other "walls" had a large closet (I hated the doors and took them off), the bedroom and bathroom door, and the sliding glass door.  A lot of doors in my room!  4 of them! 

In the process of painting (the first time I'd ever painted a room) I got some paint on the trim, baseboards, ladder, and radio.  I was a novice.  I was manic.  Once, when my mother was in a very deep depression, she painted an entire room black. 

I picked up the ladder, still speckled with "Curry Gold" and just for a MOMENT....

I miss the old manias, when I thought I could do anything.  I ran a half marathon.  I painted the bedroom.  I landscaped the yard.  I learned to knit... [sigh] 

Now I'm dragging around the house, completely overwhelmed by the idea of doing some weeding, dishes, and laundry.  I know how I could get that energy back. 

All I'd have to do is skip a couple doses of lithium. 

I won't do it.  I won't even allow myself to think about it; but that's how it starts. 

I am well aware: skipping lithium is a short step to suicide.  So I'm eating my bunless hotdogs and V-8, so I can take my pills. 

I'll always miss the old manias, the ones where I had boundless energy and the motivation do to anything.  They WERE fun.  But I'm not paying that price tag. 

Not to mention, I have always said, if anyone with bipolar disorder goes off their pills, you should throw them out.  I've fought too hard, and too long, to screw things up not. 

But that is how it starts.  "I miss the old manias". 

Friday, December 17, 2010

Not neglecting my God Time.

Not feeling very bloggy today; still trying to crawl out of this depression and "deal". 

A LOT of talking... talking, talking.  Maybe I am so talked out I have nothing left for the blog? 

I do feel, unlike every other time, that Ron has a much BETTER understanding of my viewpoint.  We'll see. 

I have the online application submitted; interesting to do the personality test.  I can say I am 1000% honest; and I will let them know about the bipolar during the interview, emphasizing my medication. 

Like I told Ron "For a night-time stocker job, they are not going to get the cream of the crop".  If God wills it, they'll see me as the best of the worst.  [laughing]

The pay is $2 an hour better than I expected. 

And, should we keep it together; I can always use my wages to make some improvements.  I have tiles falling off the walls of my shower.  Wrong drywall behind that; not waterproof, soaks up all that water.  Rotted boards, ick.  Not gonna be cheap.  Ron fell in the shower and put his head through the wall; years ago.  Good thing we did have the wrong drywall. 

I need to work on being positive; and not neglecting my God Time.  I have been doing that a little. 

I need to do laundry; I did the dishes last night, and I need to start prepping Bibles. 

Oh, and today I had to stop someone from stealing 2 bags of candy.  She asked for sugarfree, which I gave her.  She complained bitterly that it was "small" (did this last time).  I reminded her sugar alcohols are laxative. 

I gave the other lady a bag.  The first woman grabbed it out of her hand, put the sugarfree inside, and stuck it in her pocket.  I just looked at her for a second, then gave the second lady ANOTHER bag of candy.  The first one reaches out AGAIN.  "What have you got in there?" 

NO, I told her.  You already stole one bag of candy.  You're not getting another!  Then I turned around and gave a bag to the bagger. 

The next time I see her, I will tell her, you get a choice, EITHER sugarfree or regular, and no stealing! 

Thursday, December 16, 2010

What are you doing?

A store nearby is hiring.  I applied online. 

Ron came in while I was doing it.  "What are you doing?"  I told him. 

He started apologizing "I don't know what.. I got overwhelmed with fear and thought we would lose everything."  I suggested that Benadryl + Neurontin + Tylenol + excessive alcohol consumption might have had something to do with it. 

I told him he needs to treat me with respect; he basically said he doesn't know how.  He is "powerless"   Then he went into his little script ie "program" - "You will leave me, and I will end up in a nursing home" 

I also told him (this is after hours of heated "discussion" - distilled to the basics) "You need to accept that I am disabled.  It hurts me when I ask for help and you shout at me, or accuse me of  'faking'" - a concept I do not get.  Why would I "fake" being brain damaged or mentally impaired?  What is the bonus?  What is the payoff?  [truly baffled]

He wanted to know why I was "So angry".  He mentioned he had "gone buggo" last night.  I said, it wasn't last night.  Sunday night you "Went Buggo" about the dog.  Last night you "Went Buggo" about the papers.  

I also told him I felt it was VERY unkind to yell at me for hours; about losing papers, then say "You take them" when I tried to give them back.  I said it was unfair and unkind to constantly rant and rave about how I don't "measure up" to his HIGH standards. 

I asked him if I had ever said anything unkind about him being blind, etc..  He said no. 

I told him he either needs to accept me, as is, or make plans to remove me from his life. 

He doesn't take responsibility for the way he treats me.  He does admit he needs to accept that I am disabled.  He says, and I believe him, that he doesn't know how to treat me with respect. 

I believe him.  He admits outside forces are attacking our marriage, and we need to fight.  That's an encouraging sign for me. 

I think God can do anything, but if the store calls I am going in for an interview.  Considering I ONLY wanted Tuesday off, and am willing to work nights and weekends, I think they would hire me.  The pay is above minimum wage, and it's close to the house. 

I also told Ron if we separate, I will continue to help him (homecare stuff, and the business).  He said he wasn't sure about that; that he might not want me around.  [shrug] 

He is still obsessed with his little internal program that has him ending up in a nursing home. 

I told him "I'm not a hater." 

"No, you aren't" he replied "You're the best person I've ever known." 

AGH. 

You can't find orange juice in a can of Dr Pepper

I slept alright considering, and when I got up one of my hives (I had eaten a quesadilla = wheat) was driving me nuts.  I had to apply my steroid cream and then bandage it. 

We went to work for quite a while; and I did a tremendous amount.  Ron thanked me several times; but in my head all I heard was "You're a broken piece of sh!t" - which he kept shouting at me last night. 

I don't know if I mentioned this on the other blog; but when I found the papers I decided not to tell him.  1.  He was leaving me alone at the time and 2.  I didn't want to reward bad behavior if he was cursing me out. 

At one point, he said "How do I know you aren't deliberately HIDING them, making me run up penalties?"  What?  Why would he even think I am that kind of person? 

Not to mention, I told him AGAIN and AGAIN, we can print new forms off the internet; they don't care what you send it with as long as the "account number" is written on the check!  No, they had to be THOSE papers, and when, after an hour and a half of him coming out of his room, cursing and making threats, then retreating; I finally snapped and said "I have HAD them.... if you had been a decent person for one minute I would have told you!" 

He really thinks this is OK.  He really thinks it is OK to break every promise he has made regarding drinking; some within a day of making them. He really thinks it is fine to wage warfare on me. 

I left him a voicemail this morning.  In it, I tell him, in a calm voice (except for the very end, which I will italicize), I am holding a can of diet Dr Pepper in my hand.  I tell him, that's what it says on the can.  I open the can - the sound is clear.  I tell him I'm going to take a sip.  "EWww!  It's DR PEPPER!  I wanted ORANGE JUICE!"  I then proceed to curse the can, tell it I hate it, it's a broken piece of sh!t, etc... all the stuff he was saying to me.  Then I tell him I'm going to take another sip.  "Still Dr Pepper." 

I ended the message by saying.  I knew it was a can of Dr Pepper when I picked it up.  You had better decide if you want Dr Pepper, or orange juice.

Meaning, of course, you have known for nearly 20 years I have brain damage.  You have no right to get outraged when I, rarely, prove it.  And, cursing me out isn't going to to change the fact.  The funniest part of all?  We got to work.  He had made a big deal last night out of "Give me the papers".  He put them on the handcart (terrible idea).  He asked me to put up the sodas on the cart.  So there I am with the papers.  "You keep them" he says. 

Later on, "I want to mail one thing, but not the other".  I go off and find the checkbook (I know where it is).  The stamps (I know where they are).  I get out a pen.  I get out the paperwork.  I make it out and tell him the amount, write the check (including the very long account number on the check to ensure proper processing), insert into the envelope and close it.  I mail it after confirming. 

Later on, I'm in the middle of something else.  "I want you to mail the school tax."  So I do.  He thanks me, and I am dying to say something like "I thought I was a broken piece of ..."  I just put the checkbook back where it belonged, and the stamps.  Then I went back to my work.  Overall, I do great, but on occasion, especially when juggling MULTIPLE "important papers", I lose them. 

I did some calculations.  I can live nearby; close enough that I could walk to the house on early delivery days.  I would need to work about 20-25 additional hours a week to make the income required.  I can certainly manage that.  I would probably need to work nights; because I would rather work through the night than come home at 11 or so PM. 

If and when I move out; I am sure God will help "set it up".  At present, I am running depressed and I have a "No major decisions" policy when I am "sick" (up, down, or mixed). 

I don't think Ron will ever change.  I believe he will continue with the verbal abuse and the drinking.  Last night, he took (in my presence) Tylenol, Benadryl, Neurontin, and had at least 5 drinks that I saw. 

Unless God says otherwise, I intend to get another job, and move out.  I would continue to care for Ron (laundry, shopping, meal prep, etc), and help him at work.  He literally can't do it without me - I had to fix a vending machine again today.  He barely knows how to stock it. 

Last night I found some great Bible Verses during my God Time:
Ephesians Chapter 4 (HCSB Translation)
29 No rotten talk should come from your mouth, but only what is good for the building up of someone in need,  in order to give grace to those who hear. 30 And don't grieve God's Holy Spirit,  who sealed you  for the day of redemption.  31 All bitterness, anger and wrath, insult and slander must be removed from you, along with all wickedness. 32 And be kind  and compassionate  to one another, forgiving  one another, just as God also forgave you  in Christ.

That is exactly what Ron needs to do. 

Oh, by the way, recently I have been riding with some HORRIBLE drivers.  Today's was ranting about how someone "called in" on him and filed a report, as he almost wove off the road, then rear-ended someone.  "ONLY ONE?" I thought!

Yike.  So, maybe my time is shorter than I thought!  If so, don't cry, I'm in my new body and petting Frosty! 

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Wow

I did my usual nighttime things; and then did my PM God Time. 

I am filled with an OVERWHELMING sense that God is Pissed.  Seriously pissed, and He will deal with Ron by Himself. 

I don't envy Ron; the One who created the universe is mad at you....

In the meantime, I'm going to bed. 

Update

Tomorrow I am giving Ron a choice: either we get counseling or I leave. 

God does not want him to treat me like this.  It is unfair and cruel for him to expect me to be someone I can't. 

He wouldn't ask the cat to fly; he knows it's impossible.  I am tired of his ugliness when he feels I have "failed" him. 

Under the hood

Sorry about last night; I was very tired and accidentally closed "Part 2 Video Blog" before it was processed.  I couldn't get it back. 

It's a sad statement when I tell you Ron's in the next room and I'm all tense.  He has been pretty demanding today. 

It seemed like every couple minutes, he wanted me to drop everything to help him.  If I told him "I just need a minute to finish this" then I got scolded for "making excuses".  "You never help me when I ask". 

My favorite part was when a vending machine was "down".  It was the new bottled soda vendor. 

When a machine has a problem, I leap into action to fix it.  I did so. 

I got "under the hood" and began examining the interior.  I had a very nasty coin jam.  I needed something long, with leverage, that I could use to pry the jam loose.  I also needed something, a shelf about 3 feet high, as a rest for the coin mechanism.  It was wired into the board and I could pull it off, but I didn't have much slack.  I wanted to rest it on something so I could get my long, slender item, and get the jam loose. 

As it turned out, the coin mech also had an internal jam, which I fixed.  It vends now on coins and bills.  I know the "trick" for preventing further jams.  I also reprogrammed a row to $1, from another price.  Not bad. 

I asked Ron for help.  He was crushing cardboard.  He told me "NO".  "This is more important, and I'm not your 'boy' to order around!"   He actually said it was more important to mash cardboard than to fix a down vending machine. 

I told him, "Then I can't fix it right now.  I'll close it up and work on something that is making money."  I remounted the coin mech and went off to finish stocking the snack machines, which had done pretty well considering. 

I will need more candy items, and the chips I had in abundance were popular sellers.  Excellent.  I call it the loaves and fishes thing; when God gives everyone a taste for the stuff we have in abundance. 

I got to work.  At first, Ron didn't believe me.  Then he realized I had closed up the other machine and was stocking snacks.  A bunch of yelling.  How could I neglect....

I told him "You just told me trash was more inportant than fixing the machine!  So I decided to fill something that is working!"  More yelling.  He called the repairman, using the word "Stupid" to refer to me. 

People.  Wonder.  Why.  I'm.  "Devout".  I am sure people wonder why I "take it".  Well, this is where God needs me.  And let me tell you, living with Ron has me talking to God very, very, frequently.  I am ALWAYS asking Him for help. 

I used to put Ron, before God.  It's called "idolatry".  I sure don't do it anymore!  No matter what I do, Ron is never happy. 

But, God wants me here.  Maybe the fact that He gives me the "grace" to deal; helps reach other people.  Maybe people will think "Well, if God can help HER with THAT, maybe I should give Him a try!"  I like to think that. 

Ron is now SHOUTING at me because I can't find the property tax bills.  Well, sorry.  This is the world of brain damage; there it IS.  There it ISN'T!  I will continue to look but I am not worried for 3 reasons: 1.  It isn't due for another month, anyway.  2.  We can get new forms online, print them up.  3.  We can always call and ASK. 

As you can see, a challenging day.  More cursing and shouting, and a very unkind thought on my part "Why don't you go pass out!" 

Trust me, 99% of the time I DON'T WANT TO BE HERE.  I want to be alone.  I want to be with a loving cat, and that's it.  I am tired of stepping through all the broken hopes and dreams of my life.  I am tired of being treated like crap; by a man who constantly disparages me. 

And I can't even say something like "I was running depressed today, so I took another lithium".  No, that triggers major rantings and ravings at God for giving him a "Broken" woman.  It sure did today.

I remind myself: God is allowing Ron to show us all who he really is, isn't he?  And it's not a very nice person.  It's a selfish person.  He will be held accountable for every word and deed. 

He really thinks this is perfectly OK way to act, because I "Have hurt him".  A lifeflight hospital helicopter just flew by, praying for the family.  He thinks if he is "hurt" then anything goes!  Scream at her, curse her.  Hate her. 

Then when he tells me he loves me I want to scoff.  I don't.  I just say OK. 

Anyway, about the vending machine.  AFTER I finished snacks, I got a stack of milk crates, a screwdriver, a flashlight, and my sense of humor.  I opened the machine.  I rested the connected coin mech on top of the stack of milk crates. 

The screwdriver did not work.  I got a knitting needle and jabbed at the jam.  I made leveraging motions; then it cleared.  I closed it all up.  "Coin Jam" error message. 

I tried to insert a coin, and heard it get stuck IN the coin mech.  I opened it up, took it off, and freed the jam; about $2 worth of quarters.  I cleared out the error message and rebooted it to make sure.  It worked.  I test vended it twice with coins, functional.  Once with a bill.  Functional.  I forgot to pay myself back the $3.  [laugh]

I talked to Ron and verified he wanted the middle row repriced at $1.  Then I programmed it. 

Then I went and got the new sodas we bought this morning, and stocked them into the vendor. 

Broken, huh?  [snort]

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Monday, December 13, 2010

Better than expected

Today was a lot better than I expected.   Ron was alert and ready to go to work; we went and did it all.  Sales are still pretty low, but enough. 

I really seek to be God's daughter; and I want to act in a way that pleases Him.  You can guess how I would have LIKED to act; but I kept it to a bare minimum.  When Ron needed help; I helped him, without making him "Pay" for it.  I think overall God was pleased. 

I was even able to laugh at the theft of yet ANOTHER Christmas tree off the vending machines.  I'm down to 4 trees, from 6.  I can't fathom the type of person who'd do that.  I just shrugged and went on with it; whereas before I started spending all my God Time; I would have brooded and ranted about it endlessly.  I let it go; just like I let the rest go. 

I got paid.  Yay.  I also concluded my interview for the pizza, so I ought to get that check pretty soon.  That should buy a few Bibles. 

We came home, I tried to nap.  Couldn't.  Too much caffeine and adrenaline, I think. 

Talked to Ron, popped him in the wheelchair and we took the bus to a Taqueria.  We had a good lunch and then investigated a soda source.  Ron was delighted to find all the options available for us. 

He cut a deal with the other vendor to buy bottled drinks; but the drinks bought will only be sold out of the cold food vendor and not the bottle vendor.  We can do that, easily. 

Someone on the other side of the hall was scoffing rudely at the concept of Ron keeping his word.  What has he done to them?  [Heather raises an eyebrow]

I will take GREAT delight in only stocking other drinks into the machine; it's fun.  I ENJOY merchandising; and "assistant" managing a small business.  I enjoy hunting down good bargains, buying them, and dragging them into work at 4 AM.  I enjoy seeing them move out of the machine and into the hands of hungry and thirsty Postal Workers. 

That's my job!  I'm going to give it 100%. 

I think I did a pretty good job of taking care of myself today, too.  I watched "Prince Caspian" and enjoyed it.  Pretty dark for a while.

I didn't have any problems with depression today.  That's always a treat.

Tomorrow's Offday.  I will pick up some presents and go to the Post Office and mail them.  Then probably off to Favorite Dollar in search of more Christmas trees.  I might get a small inflatable reindeer to put on the machine.  

I forgot to add; Ron is initiating portion control.  It's a good start! 

Another bad drunk

I don't have time to give you all the details, especially as I will most likely be taking a cab to work. 

The family next door all went out somewhere for several hours.  The dog has major separation anxiety issues, and barked endlessly.  Eventually, they came home, that helped, and Ron's calls to the police resulted in her being put into the garage. 

It was a really cold night for Houston; and a shorthaired dog shouldn't have been left out anyway. 

Ron apparently had too much to drink; and the cursing, and the invective.  Then the threats to commit a crime. 

I told him, you can't do that.  I reasoned it out.  "Shut up" 

It got so bad, when he was on the verge of actually doing something, I had to intervene and call my aunt and uncle.  They were able to talk some sense into him; but he turned on me for "betraying" him.  A lot of badmouthing me to them.   The old chestnut "You broken b!itch" was repeated endlessly.  I think it is crazy, broken... I don't care.  Ugly name calling. 

He insisted he wasn't beating me (that much is true, but he made a threat when he found out I was making the phone call); and I had "overreacted".  If I'd put up video, I don't think you'd agree. 

Anyway, lots of banging and cursing and shouting all night long.  A huge mess for me to clean up this morning.  A truly dubious trip to work. 

Most likely, me and the cab.  If he's 1/10 of what he was last night they will ban him.  Not to mention the cleanup. 

Sunday, December 12, 2010

BIG DRAMA night. All kinds of threats and name calling. So upset I'm shaking. If you pray, now would be a good time.

Hang with You

Ugh.  Horrible depression this morning.  The only thing that woke me up was the headache. 

Both Ron, and the cat, were very sweet to me all day.  I watched a good movie or two; tried to take care of myself.  Had to get out the big guns and take extra Wellbutrin and Lithium (per doctor's orders). 

Did some organizing; moderately successful.  Could not find my bus pass, had a good hour long heart attack over that.  Finally found it. 

Currently doing laundry and avoiding dishes.  I have NO idea what I want for dinner, but I need to eat so I can take my pills. 

The whole idea of doing my God Time seems completely overwhelming, but that's when I (intellectually) know I need Him most.  God, please give me the energy and motivation to go hang with You. 

Sad. 

Saturday, December 11, 2010

You can't get cherries off a cactus!

Getting munched by depression today.  Yuck. 

Not a bad day, either.  It was lovely in Houston, warm, humid, and sunny. 

I slept in until 7:30, got up.  Ron and I talked for a while.  I feel like we have pretty good communication and understanding. 

It's really a hassle that we're being "persecuted" at work by the other blind vendor, but the Bible says "By their fruits you will know them";  meaning that people rooted in Jesus will produce good fruits; and people rooted in the world will produce bad fruits.  You can't get cherries of a cactus! 

So, you can't expect a "Worldly" person, concerned with himself and his wallet, to have Christian fruits of kindness and mercy.  Sad thing, I'm sure he thinks he's a GREAT guy! 

Anyway, kind of a battle to leave that all up to God, but we have to do it.  We have some ideas. 

Ron worries about me doing physical labor, and I find it cute.  He doesn't really understand: physcial labor is probably the easiest part of my day!  It's the mental; audio "Listen to this and understand all of it; then go do it!" stuff that gives me the screams.  Picking up cases of soda?  Nothing! 

God has blessed me with a strong, healthy, body.  Bubba just came by to say "Meow!", then he left.  He's the black cat. 

I decided it would be a good idea to go work on my garden today.  1.  It's a lovely day.  2.  Exercise in the sun, a great idea.  3.  It is depressing to view; or was.  4.  I enjoy physical labor. 

I fixed myself a large breakfast of beef breakfast patty (from Walmart, Ron loved the one I fixed him and wants more), a couple of fried eggs, V-8, and whole-fat, large-curd (the only kind I'll eat) cottage cheese.  I just love the large curds!  Sounds vile! 

Sooo, I went out and worked in the garden.  My backyard overlaps 3 other back yards.  One, about 5 feet.  They had a pitbull.  A really mean-sounding one.  It got into my yard one day.  They barricaded the fence from their side; no more visits.  I don't know what kind of animal they have now... but it sounds like the Hound of the Baskervilles.  It has a deep canine note, and some other animal sounds to it; large predator mainly. 

It creeped me out; I kept looking at the fence.  It made me nostalgic for Pepper the Pitbull. 

I cleaned up the garden beds very nicely, got rid of the huge weedy clump, and pulled out a lot of wild raspberries.  My hands look it, and that's after using the Lava soap! 

I plan to either start my own, or purchase, some greens.  I am very impressed with the Red Russian Kale.  It was given some summer shade, and literally no water aside from rainfall, and made it over a year in a really overgrown garden.  It's a beautiful plant, too.  Growing more if I can. 

I went back in and talked to Ron some more.  I like that we are best friends in addition to being married.  Well, Jesus is my BEST best friend; Ron is the best human friend.  We discussed work some more; not being fearful or feeling persecuted; just trying to focus on the best and most efficient way to run the business. 

Personally; I like what we are doing.  We are not tying up a lot of money in inventory; we are only buying the inventory needed to fill the machines.  In some cases (candy) only enough to FRONT the machines (fill up the front of the coil and make it look full).  It's a little more work, but we do work part-time.  Time, we have. 

Then I turned on my computer and ran the antivirus, went back out.  Weeding, tossing out the weeds, having a good time.  I put weighted cardboard down over the "clear" areas to prevent resprouting, and decided I will join two garden beds, and leave a path over an area I can't dig (underground phone line).  The soil all around the garden beds is fantastic, as is the garden bed soil.  I had some bags of soil amendments out there, while moving one it ripped open.  I went ahead and spread it (some kind of ground bark) over the clear beds (#5 is a mess and will take more work and possibly a hatchet!). 

I went back in, got some soda.  More talk with Ron; paid one of the property taxes online.  The other two come to about $400.  Disabled and all.  After that, some fun on the internet message boards. 

I was running depressed; I ate some cottage cheese and took my lithium.  I tried to take a nap, didn't work.  Bubba was very generous in sharing the bed.  I decided to get up, get on the exercise bike.  Did that for half an hour. 

Then this, shower, dishes (what a mess in the kitchen!), call Mom & Dad, God Time, and maybe some work on the Bibles for handouts.  I'm really working on giving all the worries to God; and just focusing on the next day.  How can I be a good daughter to God?  Wife to my husband?  That's it. 

Stressing over the rest will just give me a "nervous breakdown". 

Friday, December 10, 2010

That was interesting

First I'll describe my block.  I live on the even side of the street.  We have the gray house (rented, and the home of the Barkappotamous renters).  Our house.  The house next door.  Another rent house (but they are quiet after an initial loud and ignorant altercation in their yard), and Philip's house. 

Across the street, we have Deb's house, and several more houses.  They gray house sits on the corner, and as you turn on the street, it's the first thing you see. 

Ron was very upset about the Barkappotamous, and a review of my September and October blogs will reveal several very drunken "visits" next door to lecture them on "proper" dog care.  Oh, sweet patience! 

How I have wanted to tell them, he has a HEAD INJURY.  But they wouldn't answer the door, with us knocking, if we set the house on fire!  WHO CAN BLAME THEM? 

They are a lot better than the other tenants.  Yes, they are pigs.  They had to have someone come out and tell them to build a doghouse.  But they're not evil and they respect property lines (unlike all the other renters, who viewed the yard and house as their playground).   I WOULD NOT want them to move, even if they do bring down the neighborhood. 

Ron has called the HOA on occasion (Homeowners association), for egregious violations (full trash can sitting out by the curb for weeks on end, because it wasn't in the regulation can).  They call the homeowner, who contacts the tenants.  When done; they always remedy.  See why I'm not eager to get rid of them.  They're teachable. 

Anyway, someone rang the doorbell just now.  I almost didn't answer it.  It was the guy next door, could he talk to "Phil"?  Huh?  "The blind man"? 

The blind man is named Ron.  Oh, the guy said.  Some guy named Phil left a note on his van; and he wanted to discuss it.  I am very transparent; most people seem to like it.  It was obvious; I am clueless.  I have no idea.  No Phil here. 

I told him, Ron only had an issue with the dog, but they fixed that.  He agreed.  I also took it as a good opportunity to let him know Ron had a stroke and a really bad head injury.  OH!  I could see the lightbulb. 

I think they already could tell about the drinking; so we are on better terms now.  I shut the door, after he asked Ron's name again. 

Ron wanted to know - I told him.  "Heather, Phil lives down the street, you know - Philip?"  OH. 

Well, I told Ron, it's been a LONG day.  If I see him again I'll tell him. 

Not letting it get me down

Bullies. 

I don't like them.  My work bully-harasser finally decided to "forgive" me.  I'm glad I don't have the hatred and name-calling, but I will be extraordinarily careful.  Just a litle light chat about Bubba's latest rodent, etc. 

He is very upset that we were given a bottled soda vending machine.  He sees it as "competition" and is feeling very threatened. 

Sales are lousy, bur Ron and I have a pretty low standard of living.  Our mortgage note is between $400 and $500 a month, and ALL our property taxes come to less than a thousand dollars.  Add property tax to "insurances" and we pay an extra $250 a month.  Internet, phone, etc.. I need to talk to Ron, see if we can cut back.  All told, probably total expenses of $1100 a month or so. 

That's a good thing.  We live below our means, so that means about now we are living AT our means. 

Sales at work are grim; people are cutting corners and pinching pennies.  They are maxed out, and don't have the cash to put into the vending machines. 

The other guy is feeling very threatened and he is reacting in typical capitalistic fashion.  Today he was interrogating me about our $1 bottled soda drinks, the food cost and all. 

His wife has a good brain.  She can DRIVE!  You couldn't ask HER to look around the wholesale warehouse?  She coul.dn't TELL you?  You had to bully it out of me?  Like I told Ron, I didn't want him on the warpath so I told him.  Ron agreed. 

However, he has a bad back.  His wife is not the kind of woman who willingly picks up a case of soda.  These bottled cases, are 30 pounds.  She has a hard time with a flat of CANS (24 pounds).   She gets very annoyed if she has to pick them up.   I really don't see either of them picking the drinks up, putting them on the cart, pushing the cart to the checkout, paying, and putting them into the truck.  Then, taking them home, taking them out, then putting them back in to go to work, taking them OUT at work, putting them on the handcart, bringing them into the building, putting them up in the fridge, and then putting them into the vending machines.  Not for long. 

His brother has a bad back, and his "helper" is threatening to go work as a "Casual" at the PO if he doesn't get more money.  I venture to say they will lose him soon. 

We have fewer steps in the process, but are limited due to PUBLIC transit.  We have a friend, but he has a life.  He did help us "load up" so we just bring them to work from the house, now.   We can take a few everytime we go to work.  I also know other good places to find soda! 

So, after all of that he is done interrogating me and says he'll "Let" us sell the 16.9 ounce sodas for $1.  [blinking]  However, he continues, he will not sell US any bottled drinks from the wholesale beverage guys. 

He says it is "competing with himself" and "Times are so hard, it's just business".  I didn't understand what he was saying so I sent Ron in to ask.  He didn't want to tell Ron, but he had to because I flatly said "I didn't understand" in a truly puzzled tone of voice. 

After 9.5 years they OUGHT to understand I have brain damage; and my meds play HELL with my audio processing.  So, that ugliness over, he generously added he will continue to sell us Cokes.  [shrug]  I don't even know if they will sell us Cokes this month; he is furious about the bottled vending machine.  {Does that mean they make a lot of money?]

We didn't ask for it; our consultant decided, since our sales were bad, that he would give us a "real money-maker" - the machine.  We have the room, so we took it.  We do need more money.  Ron's Neurontin costs $80 a month.  My pills USED to be $240, but thank God they are only $30 now.  More on that later. 

So, to summarize:
Bullied our "secrets" out. 

Refuses to sell us bottled drinks - that I can understand.  Ron is really hurt, and personally I think he is making a mistake.  He needs to order 4 pallets to get a delivery.  He has to pay for those 4 pallets himself if he's not selling anything to us. 

None of us have the revenue to tie up in "Santa Cokes" (self-explanatory).  [shrug]  We'll see.  I am not going to worry. 

Chuck is a very dear friend, and if we had to we could go to the warehouse nearly every day before work and buy the drinks for the day.  That's actually a wiser move than tying up the cash in a lot of inventory.  You can only sell so much per day. 

I'm not going to let it get me down. 

We had our repairman come out and he fixed the bottled soda vendor.  I know have a better understanding of the machine, although he flatly said they are troublesome.  The more parts, the more trouble, I think. 

So, our new machine is selling what we'd stocked.  We need to put more stock, of course. 

I got up at 2 and did my God Time, praying for everyone and everyone.  I really LIKE praying for all the "Haters" now.  [raised eyebrow]  I don't generally do it by name, unless someone in particular is bothering me.  [raised eyebrow, twitches]

We went to work.  There's the delivery!  Yay!  I checked it in (mostly bottled water and chips today), and brought it in on the pallet jack. 

I had a lot of trouble at first; I always lay it all on God and beg for His help.  God has let me know I have some pride issues that need work; and allows things to happen that send me hollering for assistance.  I don't always want to ask.  I want to be able to do it on my own! 

Well, I heard a horrible crunching noise, and the pallet wasn't raising, even though the tines on the pallet jack had elevated.  I went screaming to God (in my head). 

Put it in from the other side.  But I don't want to do it that way!  I just spent a lot of time... Do you want the merchandise in the stockroom?   Oh.  I did it, and of course it worked. 

Then all the excitement of navigating the loaded pallet jack about 1/4 mile through the building.  It is really annoying, and very common, for two people going different directions to stop and talk in the middle of the hall, leaving no room to pass even walking.  It's really bad when you have two "Towmotors" ( Image of Towmotor ), each headed a different direction, stopped and obviously chatting socially. 

Here I come with the pallet jack.  I'm here to WORK.  So I stand there and wait for them to notice me.  One waves "go around" abruptly.  I tell them, flatout "The pallet won't fit"  Then they get an attitude and one guy moves. 

Do you like your junkfood, or not?  That's about when I should (but I don't think I did) ask God to take my thoughts captive and pray for them; because it's rare to see happy people at work. 

Certainly not across the hall!  One reason I don't get very angry; even when he was so horrible to me in July.  He is a profoundly unhappy man.  He really thinks everyone is out to "get" him.  Does it become a self-fullfilling prophecy when you walk around thinking that way? 

I've got pills for that; and I take them.  I'm sharing this.. I was going to say "Not to gossip"; but I believe part of it IS gossip.  I believe in complete honesty. 

A portion is gossip; yes.  A portion of it is self-serving: Look at me, the RIGHTOUS MARTYR.  The rest is to show my struggles in a realistic manner.  I could say "Sales are really bad and the other vendor is giving us trouble" but that isn't very clear.  I believe in clarity, too.  Besides, I think it all says "Shame on THEM". 

AGH.  I hate drama.  Someone recently said it was a sin to ask God for an easy life; well I'm sinning right now!  I would like an EASIER life!  I don't want to be this strong!  [grin] 

Ron is handing everything with pretty good grace, and really working on letting me know I'm appreciated.  He understands it is bad to let his anger and frustration at God, to affect me.  [big sigh]  Thank you. 

So, finally done with work.  We went home; pretty tired. 

I had forgotten my driver candy this morning, I guess I was not meant to hand it out.  Sometimes, like today; it just feels like a whole lot of work.  That is probably when God is reaching the most people! 

I needed to get my pills.  We went to Walmart.  Bad news, said the pharmacist.  Some of them would not be ready.  She is always very concerned about me running out.  I assured her I had "plenty" - I did.  I certainly have enough to get me to Monday! 

I got my antipsychotic, which is $4 cheaper.  Yay!  I got some cottage cheese, and some soda.  That's it.  The antidepressant and lithium will be ready Monday. 

I told the pharmacist, because she KNOWS - off the pills = bad bad bad.  I told her "I have nightmares where I can't find my pills!"  She let out a big grin and laughed. 

She got it; I'm completely dedicated to my cocktail.  That's what they call it.  I would rather suffer physical harm than miss a dose.  She seemed a lot more relieved about not being "able" to give me my pills. 

Then we left, came home, and naptime.  We have decided to take tomorrow off Metrolift and stay home.  It'll be a lovely day, I'll work in the garden. 

I got mugged on a Saturday, about this time last year.  I plan to avoid the bus until Handout Day (Christmas morning) on the weekends. 

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Beast

Oooh.   A long day.  Got up early, went to work.  Our ride was very late and I barely got the milk delivery.  I had 5 cartons left from the last delivery; if they don't start buying more Ron will stop carrying it.  I STRONGLY suggested he cut back on the sandwich order. 

Surprise, our "new" vending machine was down.  Just a little note, if I am trying to get it to work, PLEASE do not breathe down my neck watching me.  It makes me very uncomfortable.  From what I can tell, it has a bad coin mechanism.  So much for "new". 

I called in the order; only $350 worth.  They let me do it; thank God.  The last time some guy tried to tell me "I" had a $500 minimum order.  Did all that; more work on "The Beast" as I'm calling it (new machine).  Actually made some money stocking sodas. 

Realized I was in a really VILE mood, very irritable.  I went and got some peanuts and ate them, taking a lithium.  It made me pretty stupid, but the guys didn't care.  I was just happy my mood improved and I didn't want to bite everyone.  Chuck came; we went to Favorite Dollar.  He had as much fun as I did.  Then he took us out to lunch, then we ran some errands at the wholesale place. 

Bought a lot of drinks, put them into the truck, took them out of the truck, and then stored them in the house.  We really could deduct a few bucks off the mortgage for business expense!  Hm.  Probably about $40 or so a month. 

Ron's giving Bubba his treats.  I have to go to bed in about 20 minutes, and get up at 2.  I have the delivery tomorrow.  Happily we are all on better terms at work now; one reason I'm so diligent about my medication. 

I had to remind Ron today: my medication really messes with both my short-term memory, and my audio processing.   He had been somewhat unkind, but apologized on his own.  I did not beat him over the head with his mistake, even though I was getting awfully cranky. 

They say bipolar cycles are very similar to seizures, quiet parts of the brain light up; and active parts go quiet, when someone's cycling.  I believe it.  I know my moods can come on very suddenly; like a thunderstorm, or a gradual slow creep that remains unnoticed for probably too long.   Today was more of a thunderstorm, but I whacked it. 

I'm just pretty foggy from that extra lithium.  If anything happened to Ron or the business I would have no problem filing for disability; I really can't work like a normal person.  I could have some little part time thing; but not enough to support myself. 

It's worth it. 

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Mode Button

My favorite snapshot of the day; I am literally lying on the floor next to our new vending machine.  I ask Ron to stay away as I'm "Trying to find the mode button, while lying down on the floor, and I don't want you to run over my leg with your wheelchair." 

Yeah. 

It was an interesting day.  We went to the wholesale warehouse, it was busy.  I could not buy all the merchandise I wanted; sadly.  I made do with a few basics.  With my own money, I bought a case of "Japanese style peanuts" because they were only $3 and a very good food cost item.  If they sell; we can get more.  If not, I'll put them in the Spanish Driver Candy. 

We took the stuff to work and I got the handcart.  Since it's a 24/7 operation; we have 3 shifts.  The night shift and day shift see us frequently.  I don't like to go in on third shift. 

Why?  Because everyone in the world had a complaint.  People really still think I take care of every vending machine in the building!  They just walked up and started complaining! 

Nice to see you, too!  Ugh.  If they want to see more of me, that's a lousy way to do it.  I got more complaints in 10 minutes than I do in a week from the other two shifts! 

I stocked my merchandise and started working up the wholesaler inventory (What have we got?  And what do we need?), so I can write up and call in the delivery.  One day I'll post a job description.  Pretty detailed. 

I went to the bathroom, and on my way back I saw Ron's boss and the movers with a vending machine on a pallet jack.  Yay! 

I cannot understand verbal directions, I need to read it.  People have a really hard time understanding and ALWAYS try to TELL me, when I'd rather get kicked!  They think if they tell me enough, I'll get it, and I never do. 

I asked if it had a manual.  He THOUGHT so; but I could just ASK the other guys, and they would be happy to TELL me.  [shudder]  Ah.  No. 

They set it up and moved our old machine.  I put the inflatable Santa on the new machine, and moved the small tree with the old machine.  They had been together.  After reminding me, several more times, I could just ASK and they'd TELL, he left. 

I looked at Ron.  Ron looked at me.  "So, you're going to figure it out on your own, right?'  You betcha, Ron. 

I looked all over.  No manual.  We tried to figure out the coin mechanism.  Ron dislodged it.  I had to put it back.  OK, Ron doesn't touch the coin mech.  While resetting it; I found the "manual" a 5x7 inch sticker inside the machine. 

Various buttons are pressed in conjunction with the MODE button to set prices, test vend, etc.  Hm.  Where is the Mode button? 

I looked all over.  I finally spotted the circuit board; the Mode button is purported to be on the board.  Which is at floor level.  On the door.  Hence, I had to lie down on the floor and look at the inside of the door, to find the mode button, which was hidden very well. 

Once I had the Mode button I was pretty well set.  Of course some prayer as I'm figuring it out. 

I had to figure out how to load the change banks. 
I had to figure out how to load the machine.
I had to figure out how to set prices. 
I had to SET prices. 

I did it all.  Then I fixed the old soda machine, which they had moved improperly.  It was very tippy, I had to get behind the machine and readjust it.  Ron wanted to talk as I was trying to plug it in. 

I can't answer questions, and work.  I can do one or the other and having to stop the work and answer the questions, in Ron's words, "Makes me sound mad".  I'm not, but it's hard to just switch off. 

Yes, I know NORMAL has no problem, or so I'm told. 

Dear friends

This will probably be my only entry for the day; I won't be getting home until late, and we have to work on the accounting report.  We have to get to work, tomorrow, at about 7-8 AM, and when you factor in 3 hours to get up and travel... early to bed. 

Medication whacked me pretty hard this morning, but I had a good God Time.  I was pretty goofy by the time we got to Walmart.  Someone thanked me for the Bible, said it has brought her a lot of comfort.  Excellent! 

We got Ron's medication, and I got cat food and Driver Candy.  Well, Ron paid for the cat food.  Bubba's all cute in the bed, curled up where I'd be sleeping.  He is a very sweet and affectionate cat, on his terms.  He would never get in my lap like Frosty, but he likes to be a "nearby" kitty. 

Oh, offtopic but odd: I keep seeing Police cars.  In the neighborhood, and in the subdivision.  Quite a few!   More than I think I've seen in the last year; in the last week.  On the one hand, I think "Boy, something awful must have happened" and on the other, I think "They're just being vigilant".  Not sure I want to know the answer. 

I did up a lot of Bibles and candy today, and handed some out.  I'm glad God can use me, and I try to be obedient and listen.  Like today, on the way home from Walmart, I got a "No".  So I didn't.  He is already saved, I think. 

I had a horrible scare last night that's frightened me into reordering my medication: I thought I was out of Wellbutrin.  Boy, was I freaked.  I only had 4 tablets left... it appeared. 

I tore up the whole pantry and found them hiding behind the "Medication" box in the disaster kit.  They had  fallen backwards, behind the box, on the shelf.  I did up all my pills (I use a weekly organizer, morning and evening) for the week, making sure I had all the vital stuff properly sorted. 

About a month ago, I was running really paranoid and kept seeing frogs out of the corner of my eye.  The amphibians.  It was really a bad reminder of the days Before medication.  I seperate my life into Before and After medication.  Anyway, I went home and checked my pill case, and I hadn't been taking my antipsychotic for days!  No wonder I was getting so paranoid!  [shudder]  Did that also with the Wellbutrin a while back, got horrendously depressed, almost suicidal.  [shudder] 

And Ron wonders why I'm so happy and placid with the side effects!  I tell him "It's very black and white, one and zero for me; and I'm not going off my pills."  It was horrible!  I thank God every day that I HAVE medication. 

Ron had been a little less negative recently, but fairly gloomy today.  When I'm really side-affected nothing bothers me.  I am calm and placid regardless of my circumstances.  I'm a little more alert now but I have a good distance - it's HIS mood, not mine.  I'm not responsible for his happiness. 

Anyway, I'm off to the wholesale warehouse pretty soon, and then to work.  I'll stock what I can, and...

Oh, I forgot to tell you.  I had some small tinsel Christmas trees on top of the vending machines; someone actually STOLE one.  How pathetic!  I guess they took it home, a green tinsel Christmas tree.  I'm glad it only cost me $1.  I would love to do more elaborate decorations, but they do get stolen on a regular basis. 

I'm glad I don't know who.  So, I'll stock.  I'll do my inventory for the wholesale delivery.  We might get "our" "new" vending machine. 

I find it very funny; he just calls and says "I'm delivering a bottle vendor" and we're stocking it.  We don't get much choice in our machines, although I have, repeatedly, begged to keep my existing ones.  They are dear friends and co-workers. 

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Speaking Ron and Heather

I'm "Stomped".  Say what?  This is "Stomp", the performance group:  Stomp; Pail Drummers 

About a year after Ron's accident, our friend Chuck invited us to attend a performance.  We went.  We wore nice things, ate out beforehand, and Ron promptly slept through the whole performance.  Head injury thing; naptime comes regardless.  They were banging on trash cans, jumping up and down, and making tons of racket, and he snored away.  We tried the movies, the matinee.  Same thing.  It was a terrible movie, I wished I'd joined him. 

We say we're "Stomped" when we're utterly exhausted.  "I'm stomped tonight".  Oh, OK, go to bed! 

Today was a cold and "Oogy" day.  Cold, damp, and overcast.  UGH.  We only refer to the DAMP cold days as "Oogy".  Boy, I wonder how that will pop on the search engines!  [laugh]

We don't go, somewhere, we scur; short for scurry.  I used scurry for a while; let's scurry on out of here.  Ron thought it was a bit rodent-y, so we abbreviated to "Scur".  "Scur", on the phone, means, "I need to go; I'm going to hang up."  Ron will say it back; and then I do.  When I tell him "Scur" in person, it means "Let's go". 

People seem to LOVE hearing these definitions and then using the words BACK on us.  Kind of disconcerting; to hear Chuck say "Scur!"  [laugh] 

Today was Offday.  My next day off will be Saturday, most likely.  I meant to enjoy it.  The birdbath froze last night, and I wore my long underwear under my jeans. 

I asked God to show me what he wanted me to do; and went to bed last night.  I slept in, all the way to 7:30!  Mom used to call me her "Earlybird".  Nowadays, I'm reverting back to it!  Ron and I talked for a while, about an hour. 

I forget what I ate for breakfast; took my pills and all.  Did my God Time.  I bagged up 10 New Testaments, and 10 scripture booklets.  All in bags of candy.  I felt like I should take my handcart, with two crates; and go to the wholesale warehouse.  

I left the house around 10-something.  Ooops.  I got all the way to the bus stop before I recalled my "membership card", at home in the backpack.  No warehouse for me. 

I decided to deposit my paycheck.  Ron pays me cash after taking out my deductions; I haven't gotten a "Paycheck" in 9 and a half years.  I proved it by forgetting to sign the back of the check.  They were very nice, and took "The deposit you can eat". 

It's a small bank, based it supercenters and grocery stores.  I wandered around the grocery store.  I got some sugarfree drink mix and plenty of pop - I still have lots left.  That's unusual. 

I rolled off to the bus stop.  Rode the bus; went to my favorite Christian bookstore.  I wanted some tracts, maybe.  I had some candy just for them in my bag.  I handed that over on entry and looked around.  I found some nice Christmas tracts (don't get me wrong, Grace and Truth have great tracts, but I wanted something to use in addition to "Gifts Gifts Gifts").  Besides, I want to help their bottom line. 

I picked up a couple of blocks of tracts (if it's not Grace and Truth, I am partial to American Tract Society, they have ATS on the back of the tracts - they had great Halloween tracts) and some Scripture Candy.  I really like the Scripture Candy.  The sugarfree is DELICIOUS, generously packed at 51 items per bag (cheaper than Favorite Dollar), and the sugar candy has a great variety.  Every candy is "wrapped in a verse" printed on the clear wrapper.  I have some gum in my gum bucket (I just throw all kinds of individually wrapped gum in a Dubble Bubble bucket, with snap on lid), and some in a jar.  I had fun reading all the verses as I bagged up my candy today. 

One of the young men saw me and went in the back.  He came out holding a shoe box.  A customer asked for help, and he helped her.  He signalled me to "Stay Put".  I did.  He opened it and showed me; about 2 dozen Gideon New Testaments!  English AND Spanish! 

A quick side note: I can get a New Testament for 50 cents, in English.  I spend maybe 10 cents on a copy of "Where to Look in the New Testament", and a few more pennies on a few Grace and Truth tracts.  I have a serious tract habit.  For instance, I have "Where to look" in the front of the Bible.  Then I have a Christmas Tract marking Luke, the birth of Jesus.  I have "Debt Paid" (sin is a huge debt but Jesus pays the tab, if you let him!), in the "Romans Road" section that's underlined by the publisher.  Probably 65 cents max, each. 

Spanish is harder.  I have not yet translated "Where to Look" into Spanish.  I need to do this.  If someone is willing; I would be happy to email it to you; and then you can email it back, and I'll print them up and have them copied.  I do have plenty of tracts, thanks to Grace and Truth, again.  I ask them for assorted Spanish Adult; and they send 'em.  People enjoy them.  I was able to get some New Testaments for about a dollar each

[I just checked the custard, it looks deliciously unfinished]

I got the New Testaments for about a dollar each; that's as cheaply as possible.  [side note, World Missionary Press has Spanish language Scripture booklets for free, I use a lot of them.  It only costs them 4 cents to print each booklet.]  I can get the G&T tracts for a few pennies per Bible.  Romans Road, in my current Bibles, are underlined.   I will need to get more Spanish language New Testaments at some future point; I can still get some (new types) from Biblica for about a dollar each.  Not bad; but I'm not sure what else I get in the Bible.  I love the Bibles that have "extras"; or rather extra$! 

So, I'm delighted that some of my new, New Testaments are Spanish Gideon versions; they have all the helps inside already, they are free, and they are "cute".  Upon receipt of my "goodie box" I immediately began screeching for joy and jumping up and down. 

The employees chuckled at me; and I told them "This is 'toning it down'".  One customer gave me the fish-eye until I told her "I love getting more Bibles to hand out". 

I happily rolled off to a new office supply store.  I can check some statistics; and I know a lot of you readers are international.  At the office supply store, they sell all kinds of office supplies, and also do publishing and printing jobs for anyone.  That's where I do my "Where to looks".   I turn them in, the masters and all; and they get me good-looking tracts.  They run about 10 cents each. 

I turned in my "basic pack" - the masters, and a few finished tracts.  I explained what I wanted and she nodded wisely.  You know it's me when share this: I then told her "They go in these!" and handed her a New Testament in a bag of candy. 

I left, and went by a takeout place Ron likes.  I called him and asked if he wanted anything.  The handcart and I caught the intention of the bum guard; the security guard hired to run off unsavory people who might scare the customers.  Apparently I fit the bill.  He began idling and glaring at me as I chatted to Ron. 

Ron didn't want anything, but I was in the store by then.  I gave her a bag of candy.  Poor baby thought I was SELLING them!  She didn't know I'd probably pay someone to take it, if they'd read the booklet! 

I had to call Ron; I had cut him off abruptly and I could tell I'd hurt his feelings.  I ask God for Good Communication everyday, more often than that actually.  I called him and explained I had to go; the bum runner.  OK!  He was a lot happier when he hung up. 

I went to Starbucks.  I got a steamer with eggnog syrup.  It was really good, but {whisper] not as good as the other store!  I read my romance novel for a while and headed off to get my tracts. 

I got the tracts, and went to the bus stop.  It's a little before 2 PM.  I got home around 3 and read for a little while.  Ron was napping.  He just loves to sleep with a loud radio or talking book shouting in his ear.  His Dad was the same way!    I am SO glad we have separate bedrooms when he does that! 

I took a nap around 4, and slept until 5.  I accidentally hit myself and woke myself up.  Not sure how I did that, but it was a soft blow.  To the face!   [shrug] 

This morning I was kind of mixed, I still am, I think.  This level of fatigue says "mood" and not "ill".  Probably a little depressed.  I feel pretty overwhelmed right now; a lot of things to do and no energy to do them! 

I figure God had me do the important stuff (handing out almost 20 items) already.  I got "my" New Testaments.  I actually have obtained quite a few used Bibles.  If it's readable, I'll hand it out. 

I decided I wanted some custard; desperately.  I have milk; I have splenda, I have eggs.  Sounds like custard to me!  I got manic for cookbooks a while back; and have about 15 (after paring down).  I have an old paperback copy of "Joy of Cooking".  I found a good basic recipe:
Oven at 300 degrees
3 cups milk
3/4 cup splenda (well, they said sugar)
1/4 t nutmeg (not in the recipe but I love nutmeg)
1 t vanilla
2 whole eggs, and 3 egg yolks, beaten

I mixed everything up and poured it into custard cups (I normally use them for pumpkin pudding).  I have 2 large portions, and 2 small ones (4 Cups total).  I found a couple of oven-safe dishes, and put about 1 inch of hot water into each.  I put the filled custard cups into the water-filled-pans, and put them into the oven. 

Since it's going to freeze tonight, Ron is happy to have me using the oven.  Sounds like dinner to me. 

Tonight I will eat, take my pills; shower.  Figure out what I want to wear tomorrow and put it out, do my God Time.  If I'm feeling ambitious, I'll do up some Bibles and candy for tomorrow.  It should be busy. 

Oh, I forgot to mention, we're getting a new vending machine tomorrow.  That's the wierd thing about the State program; the machines belong to the State.  New ones arrive and old friends depart at the whim of our "Consultant".  He's eager to get rid of our refrigerators because they are "old". 

We tell him, they work fine.  We LIKE them.  Nope.  At the whim.  [laugh] 

He also has his eye on 2 snack machines, the coffee machine, and seems inclined to let us "keep" the "Oldest soda machine in the program".  Hey, that rascal made enough to cover one of my paychecks, last month! 

He is bringing a fancy new bottled soda machine.  OK. 

I hope it has a manual. 

Spanish Bible Handout

Today was my all Spanish Handout.  I thought it would be interesting, but never could I have dreamed how odd it would get.  I had trouble ...