Archive for the ‘Family’ category

Mary’s of the Bible

June 16, 2017
Harold_Copping_Jesus_at_the_home_of_Martha_and_Mary_400

Jesus at the home of Martha and Mary by Harold Copping, depicting the scene from Luke 10

So this past Wednesday, we were discussing the Gospel of John chapter 12. The first few lines of the chapter tell of Mary anointing Jesus’ feet with expensive oil. The oil was supposedly worth 300 denarii which was the equivalent of a year’s wages.

So I ask Pastor Jacques, which Mary is this? I’m confused. Jacques didn’t answer my question. To get the answer, I had to go to Wikipedia,

It seems that this is Mary of Bethany, sister of Lazarus. I feel sometime that I need a score card to keep track of all the Mary’s mentioned in the Bible.  Here’s the link to the article on the Mary’s of the Bible.

So the article states that there are six different Mary’s mentioned in the Gospels. They are:

  • Mary, mother of Jesus
  • Mary Magdalene
  • Mary of Bethany (sister of Lazarus)
  • Mary of Clopus (John 19:25, present at crucifixion)
  • Mary, mother of James
  • Mary, mother of James the younger

It seems that Mary was quite a popular name for Palestine Jews at the time of Jesus. Indeed, Mary once was the most popular girl’s name in the US. It led the list of girl’s names from the 1920’s until the 1960’s when the name Lisa took over the top spot. The Social Security Administration has a web site with the list of most popular names. In 2016 the name Mary isn’t even in the top 100. Here’s the pointer to the Social Security web site on baby names.

One more Mary story and then I’ll be done for tonight. Some of you might know this but many do not. My wife’s first name is Mary and she has always gone by her middle name. There were many Mary’s in her family (almost as confusing as the Bible). Paula (don’t call her Mary) once told me the story of her mother jokingly accusing her of having two sons to avoid naming a girl child Mary.

Early Fathers’ Day

June 11, 2017

Admiral RistyToday is not Fathers’ Day. That’s actually next Sunday. But we decided to jump the gun and go visit the Admiral Risty in Rancho Palos Verde and celebrate today. We figured that restaurants would be less busy (which it was) than next Sunday. Here’s the pointer to the YELP review.

The Admiral Risty has a view to die for of the Pacific Ocean. It was a bit gloomy today. Our table had an excellent view.

Price is a bit more than our usual diner fare on Sundays but it was worth it. I had eggs benedict on a dungeness crab cake. Very tasty. I was thinking about having a Bloody Mary, but decided to pass.

Mike and Theresa were on board with the plan. Even Mary liked the plan, though I’m not sure how much she understood what we were planning on doing.

We told Mary that if she wanted to go to the Admiral Risty for brunch, she would have to get up and go to church. We also promised visits to the grand kids that she loves to see. So finally, we got Mary loaded in the Jeep and off we went. We even found an HP parking place at church.

So our reservation was at 1 pm, which was a little bit late but worked out okay. Pastor Jacques’ sermon was on the Gospel of John, Chapter 12. The service ran on to Noon (start time was 10:30 am). Once Jacques gets started there’s no stopping once he has a full wind in his sails. But, we still had plenty of time to get to our brunch date.

Jacques can’t afford to run long at the 9 am service. Got to get every one out in time for the arriving 10:30 folks.

We had all of the singing (no dancing). Jacques did a baptism of a ten(ish) year old boy. After the baptism was done the kid started swimming laps in the baptism pool. What a hoot and caught on video, too.

All done and back home. Time for a nap.

TTFN

Joe

 

Mary

May 27, 2017

2017-05-26 17.55.40Time for an update. Well Mary survived during our trip to Boston. It sure was nice to get away for a few days. We arrived Monday evening.

We spent Tuesday morning cleaning out the refrigerator. Care givers didn’t use much of the food that we left. Not quite sure why. Then we went out to do our grocery shopping.

Mary complained that the care givers wouldn’t let her have a second glass of wine. Of course, they were following our instructions. One glass of wine.

So her routine is pretty much the same these days. Up at about 0900 to eat her oatmeal and blueberries, then back to bed. We get her up in the evening for dinner. She doesn’t want to watch the news anymore. Too depressing she says.

Our son Mike and his family were over for dinner Friday night. That always perks Mary up. She loves to see the little ones.

Paula took Mary out to get her hair done on Friday. That is about the only thing that we can get her to do willingly. While she is under the dryer, Paula and I do a quick shopping trip.

Nothing planned for Memorial Day weekend. Just chill.

Funerals

April 23, 2017

Today Paula went to the funeral for the former organist/pianist from Ocean View Baptist Church. We asked Mary if she would like to go. We explained who she was and that Mary probably knew her at one time. But of course, the name didn’t ring a bell. Showed her a picture of her. Nothing.

Here’s the thing. Right now at this time in her life Mary does not like going to funerals. Doesn’t matter who the person was. She doesn’t want to go. She won’t go. Period. End of discussion.

Normally I would have gone with Paula, but I decided to stay with Mary.

So what is it about funerals with Mary? We have tried on many occasions to have a discussion with her on what she would like for her own funeral. We get nothing. We get stonewalled.

We ask cremation or not? Where would you like to be buried? The only guidance we got was that she wants Harold’s ashes buried with her. (Harold died in 2009 and was cremated.) That we can handle. So many questions.

So Paula and I are the ones stuck with the decisions. Paula is an only child. So there’s no sibling to talk to. Somehow, we will come up with a plan. That’s both a blessing and a curse. No one to argue with but at the same no one to share the load.

I found a blog a few years ago that I thought gave me some thoughts and insight. The blog is called “The Inspired Funeral“. Take a look.

Southpaw

April 20, 2017

Today was supposed to be an easy day. I had a dentist appointment at 11:10 for X-Rays and a filling. So my dentist is Dr Tulley. Dr Tulley is left handed. When I first met him I followed his assistant into his treatment room. I told her, Hey this room is set up backwards. I asked her, Is Dr Tulley left-handed? She says, yes he is.

So I meet Dr Tulley. I ask him how did a South Paw get to be a dentist? Well, somehow he did. Dr Tulley went to Tufts Dental School in Massachusetts. So, Dr Tulley is a Red Sox fan. This is getting better. Every visit, we get to talk a little baseball before we get started. Another MA expatriate in San Pedro. He’s teaching his kids to be Red Sox fans. Way to go, Dr T.

So there’s cavity is on one of my bridges near the gum line. This is not good. He was only able to patch it. That means he will have to replace the bridge. He took more X-rays to submit to the insurance company for pre-authorization. Even with insurance, it will still cost me a few $K’s. We’ll start the work after our trip to Boston in May. Time to take out some mega bucks from my IRA.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Mary was up early and complaining of something in her eye. So Paula makes an appointment with her eye doctor in Long Beach. Schedule is tight. I have dentist appointment and Paula is working at Asst League. Eye doc doesn’t find anything. Paula stops at MacD’s and gets Mary a chocolate shake.  Mary’s happy.

Mary has trouble identifying foods that we are serving her. ” What’s this?”, she says. Pizza I tell her. What are you putting on it? Hot pepper, but you probably don’t want it on your pizza. (Mary is not much for spicy.) Another time we made pork chops. Same question. Oh, and Mary loves watermelon. She loves the stuff. She would rather eat watermelon than say ice cream,

A couple of weeks ago, Mary said that she would sure love to have a “puppy dog” (her words, not mine). We both told her not going to happen. Told her a pet is a 15 year commitment. And who do think would be in charge of walking said “puppy dog” and picking up dog-poop? Anyways, not going to happen. No way, no how, not on my watch.

Mary gets her hair done on Friday. While she is sitting under the hair dryer, Paula and I will do the grocery shopping. I can get an iced coffee at the Starbucks at the grocery store. Venti iced coffee, no sweetener, leave room. They know what I want. They have a cup holder for your beverage on the grocery cart. This is one of the few times that we can get away from her without leaving her alone.

To my friends back east in the land of Dunkin’ Donuts, this is wrong. I tell them that when Dunky’s is on every corner and in many a supermarket, I might consider going back to Dunky’s. But for now, Starbucks it is. Closest Dunky’s is in Santa Monica, a 45 minute drive without traffic.

It’s getting hot here in San Pedro. Forecast in the 80’s all next week. Break out the shorts. Had the AC serviced last week. Just in time.

TTFN

Joe

Easter’s Done

April 16, 2017

We had an excellent dinner last night. Nothing left but a small sliver of apple pie.

So Grandpa (me) was the hero because I insisted that we get vanilla ice cream AND whipped cream. Paula and Mike both don’t care for whipped cream. Jonathan and Sarah however enjoyed having both on their pie.

So after dinner, Paula brings out the apple pie. Jonathan tells us we need a candle. So we get a candle so that can make a wish. So after dessert, we give Mike his birthday gift (a polo shirt). So Jonathan was helping Mike open the package. He pulled out the shirt and then the packing paper. So Jonathan looks once again in the bag and says: “IS THAT ALL?”. The rest of us were rolling on the floor laughing. We also gave him a gift card for Amazon.

We had breakfast here at home instead of going out to eat. Our favorite diner (Pacific Diner) is closed for Easter. Easter and Mother’s Day are two days to avoid restaurants. Too crowded for my taste. Waffles and scrambled eggs. Kids searching for Easter eggs. We didn’t hide them that hard.

So Sarah took a nap and Mary is down for her afternoon nap. Now Jonathan is running on fumes. He needs a nap badly. OD’ing on chocolate. I try to console him, but the only thing that will work this time is a nap.

Mary has trouble remembering what food was served.  What’s this she asks? That’s a waffle. What do I do with it? What do I put on it? Maple syrup we tell her. We did manage to get her to church services at 9 am. Parking is a lot easier when we go to the early service rather than the service at 10:30. But it does mean that we have to be up at 0 dark thirty. Two weeks in a row that we’ve managed to get her to go to church. We didn’t have time to hang around to chat after the service.

Easter

April 15, 2017
Swan Boats

Boston Swan Boats 

Today is April 15. For most people this is tax day. For us, this is our son Mike’s birthday. We will be celebrating with Mike and his family this evening. Mike got to choose the menu for this evening. He requested beef enchiladas, refried beans and home made apple pie.

On Mike’s 21st birthday, he ran the Boston Marathon. (This year the Boston Marathon will be on Monday April 17th.) After we met him at the finish line, we went out to dinner. Mike drank his first “legal” beer. He had to run back to our car to get his driver’s license to prove his age. Restaurant didn’t ask to see it.

 

Paula baked the pie this morning. We are all resting now to get ready for their arrival. My job has been to take out the trash and empty the re-cycle bin.

Tomorrow is Easter and that means we will be doing brunch after church. We used to go out to restaurants after Easter, but that got a little bit too crazy and expensive. So a couple of years ago, we decided that it would be easier all around to do brunch at home. The kids can play and grownups can talk and drink coffee. We’ll be doing waffles and scrambled eggs with ham.

Ducklings

Ducklings at Boston Public Garden

Paula is all ready for Easter bunny activities. Eggs will be hidden in all the right places. We found a couple of old children’s books, including a well worn copy of “Make Way for Ducklings”. My job is to sit and read to Jonathan. Sarah also likes to sit and watch PBS video on my iPad.

Now about Mary, she is doing well. Her memory is shot. She remembers us, but she can’t remember what she did 20 minutes ago let alone yesterday or last week. We try to control the information flow. We gave her a newsletter from our local Shriner’s club to read. She studied it every day for the past three days. Now it’s time for it to disappear.

We managed to get her to go church last Sunday. Palm Sunday is when our church does its Easter Cantata. I don’t know about getting her to go to Easter services. It’s crowded and parking is a big challenge. In the words of Coach Belichick, that will be a game-day decision. If she decides to not go, then I will stay home with her. We try not to leave her alone. We’ll see what happens.

TTFN

Joe