Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year!

In about 10 minutes we're leaving to go pick up Lindsay and Kyle from LAX. Spiral will be glad to see his daddy.

Oops, Jim says we need to leave now. See y'all later! Tonight we're going to Kevin and Mary's for nosh and music. Later we'll probably goto Ken's. Don't know about that one yet.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Ah, the day has finally arrived! Tree season is over! Oh yeah, Christmas is here, too. Hey, Christmas.

Didn't get all the shopping done but I just couldn't allow myself to get uptight about it. Staying away from the shopping madness was my way of being kind to myself. I'm really hoping that one day I'll be able to enjoy the whole Christmas scene again. If I'm selling trees next year someone please shoot me.

Today we drove to LAX and dropped off Lindsay and Kyle. Tuesday Paige leaves for Paris and Jim and I drive up to the Leece's. I do enjoy that part of Christmas. Hanging out with the sibs in SLO is always enjoyable and the post-holiday shopping is fun.

Lindsay and Kyle get back on the 31st and Paige comes back on Jan 2nd. After that I'll settle into my usual post-holiday happy time. I can't wait! I'm going to set up the painting studio and get to work.

It's nice to have somethign to look forward to!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

A quick one

The Trucker show was really great last night. We took them a Christmas tree which we decorated with Trucker-esque trinkets. There were official Naked Trucker And T-Bones paint sticks, blue balls, American flags, snakes on a tree, toy trucks (one of them had a trailer that was "haulin' wood") and some large fake money. I made a star out of paint sticks and tinsel pipe cleaners. It was pretty cool and they all loved it. Andy took it home!

Stacey just called and filled me in on the happenings of last night's Dad fiasco. Hoo boy. She said he was in full form. He had just eaten so it wasn't ablut his blood sugar being low. Too high, maybe? She thinks he was showing off for Aaron. He just got here yesterday. I think she could be right about that. He has to show Aaron he's still in charge around here. She said Dad and Scotty drove up to the top of the hill and parked for a while. Dad was totally out of control and went off about all kinds of things like how none of us has any business sense, that Jim and I are evil, stuff like that.

So, it looks like we've reached the point of random triggers for crazy behavior. He goes off on a ragefest and there's no good way to predict it or abate it. I'm just glad none of us has to handle it alone. Much of it will probably go away once tree season is over but that might be a short reprieve. If he finds something to get mad about he'll get mad and it'll be out of proportion and hard to stop.


Monday, December 18, 2006

Congratulations, it's a Kyle!

Our dear boy got hisself eeevicted the other day. Not his fault. The landlady, who lives next door to the house where he was renting a room, just noticed that Kyle was living there after 4 years and decided she didn't want him there. So, she got her lawyer to write a letter wishing Kyle a Merry Christmas and oh by the way, get your ass outta there.

Sunday we drove to Van Nuys and moved him out. We have his stuff stored in the Timio apartment. Lindsay is working on getting some of her stuff moved out of her room so they can cozy up in there. We don't know how long Kyle will be with us. Right now he works in Calabasas, which is a 2 1/2 hour drive (a completely shitty commute). He'll try to find a job a bit closer to Riverside.

So that's where it stands for now. We're happy to have Kyle and his kitty with us. They're fairly low impact/high entertainment roomies. Now that Spiral is living here full time he just might get Katie to warm up to him. Not.

By the way, don't tell Dad that Kyle is living here.

I got some fresh inspiration last night. I made Jim wake up so I could tell him about it. I'm going to set up a big easel in one room of the apartment and start painting. I'm also going to add my portfolio to the Rancho Curioso website and put it on disc so I can easily hand it out to people. I want to start painting wall murals in people's homes (already have a customer for that one). After Christmas we're going to redo the front bathroom. The floor is badly damaged and needs to be repaired before the toilet falls through. I'm going to paint it ultra cool and add that to the portfolio. Tra-la-la! I'm ready to get to work! Oh yeah, I'm also going to start painting furniture again. These pieces will be sold through the Rancho Curioso website.

This morning Dad was pretty foggy. The only thing he had available for breakfast was some leftover potatoes and a piece of cake. I came back home and made him some eggs. I think I'll add that to the morning routine. Make him a couple eggs and take them over so he has some protein for breakfast.

Naked Trucker and T-Bones on Wednesday. This time we're dragging Paige and Ben along.

Man, it's cold!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Oh boy...

Dad really went off tonight. Really, like, off.

Stacey and Drew were here. When Dad was in the sales shed Stacey noticed that he was wearing her glasses. She said, "Dad you're wearing my glasses! No wonder I couldn't find them at home." He insisted they were his glasses, that he'd had them for two years. Now, I saw him wearing them a few days ago and I knew they weren't the ones he had gotten after his cataract surgery. I thought it was an old pair. They just looked wrong on him. Stacey figured out that he had been at their house a couple weeks ago watching a game. He must have picked them up and put them on and then wore them home. After a brief argument she took them back from him.

This conversation took place just after Drew and Dad had come back from getting everyone dinner at Taco Bell. He took his burrito up to the house. After a while he came back down and started griping at ME about his glasses. He said (to me), "Those are my glasses and I want them back!" We tried to explain it to him again but he just got more agitated. There were customers around so Stacey took him out to her car so they could talk about it. After a few minutes I went out there.!

Dad's eyes were wild and vacant. She kept trying to explain about the glasses and I was trying to help her. He would have none of it. He was seriously out of control. It was the weirdest thing! He started making wild accusations, mostly about me. Like, I'm in his house all the time and I'm taking things and messing with his mind because I want him to die so I'll get three million dollars and blah, blah, blah! He was over the edge.

I went to the sales shed and called Jim and told him to bring a pair of my glasses down. I figured he could use them until we found his. Earlier Dad had been complaining about his glasses not being good enough. Of course they weren't! They weren't his! My glasses are a bit stronger than Stacey's so I figured they'd work better for him. I took them over to Stacey's car. Dad was still wild-eyed, still spewing venom, aimed mostly at me.

After a while I couldn't deal with it anymore and walked up to our house where I unloaded the story on Jim. I stayed about 10 minutes and then went back down. While I was gone Stacey had tried to get Dad to go back to his house. He refused to go and actually hit her on the arm! Then he wanted to drive his car back but Drew didn't let him. Drew drove the car up to Dad's house and went inside with him to look for his glasses. Dad's burrito was sitting untouched on the table! We thought he had eaten! What happened was he had gone up to the house to eat, started looking for his glasses, got pissed off and came back down without eating his dinner. So this whole thing was a big, fat, fucked-up, low blood sugar moment. Man, it was awful.

Drew made sure Dad ate his dinner. He looked on Dad's nightstand and his glasses were right there. While Drew was up there I asked Stacey to call him and tell him to make sure Dad took his evening meds. Dad had calmed down by then and asked Stacey to come up to the house so he could apologize.

Ok. I said in an earlier post that I don't like Dad being in the sales shed even when he's in a good mood. One reason is he snacks on candy canes way more than he should. He gets all cute about it (which makes my skin crawl) saying, "Oh here's a BROKEN one, better get rid of it!" and pops it down. He does this a lot and usually in front of customers so you can't tell him to stop. I think today he was riding on a cheap sugar high and then crashed. I'll have to ask David about that.

This was the worst episode I've seen so far. Dad seemed completely insane. Last year his doctor prescribed an anti-anxiety drug that we decided not to give to him because it has some nasty possible side effects. Jim thinks maybe we should start him on it. Oh yeah, that'll go over just great. Dad already thinks I'm out to get him. Introducing a new pill isn't at all suspicious, eh?

Eleven days to go.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Lunch with SpongeBob

On Sunday Lindsay, Kyle, Jim and I went to a book store in LA to see a... kind of a show, I guess. It was Tom Kenny and Andy Paley with Jillinda and Ben and a bass player, who's name I can't remember. They were playing songs from the Best Day Ever album. Tom was singing as SpongeBob. There were about 30 to 40 kids there. It was pretty cute. The kids had a great time. Afterward Tom sat at a table and signed autographs. I bought 3 copies of the cd and had him sign them.

Tom invited us to go out to lunch with the crew. His wife, Jill Talley (another voice actor, got started with Second City), and their 2 kids were also there. Cute kids! We all walked down the street to Art's Deli (the best pastrami I've ever had). Jim and I sat right across from Tom. He was very nice and we had a good time talking with him but I couldn't help thinking we were maybe boring him just a little. I felt like maybe we really didn't belong there. We really didn't have much to offer the guy. We talked about living in Sonoma County. He had performed in Santa Rosa and Petaluma a few times so he was familiar with the area. I remember seeing him on tv in the 80's. He had awesome 80's hair.

Anyway, my discomfort was entirely mine and had nothing to do with Tom. He couldn't have been nicer. I think eventually we'll get to know him a little better since it looks like Kyle will be working with him from time to time.

It's always fun being with Andy and Jillinda and Ben. I hope the TV's Kyle band can get together with Ben for band practice soon. I want to hear what we sound like with a good drummer!

In my last post I said I'm not going nuts yet. Scratch that. Dad is back and in full meddling mode. Last night he was at the sales shed telling Jim how to handle every transaction. I had to run around with customers so I couldn't rescue him. Towards the end of the night Dad got into an argument with Drew about closing at 7. He wanted us to stay open until 10! Drew told him no, we close at 7. Dad said he'd stay there by himself and sell trees. Drew said ok but the gate will be shut and the lights will be off. (heh!) Anyway, Dad gave up the argument after a while. I think it's because he was hungry and Drew and Mindy were taking him out to dinner.

Stacey is giving us a little break this afternoon. I don't know if Dad is down at the shed. We'll be heading down there in a little while. Man, I'll be so glad when this is over.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Not going crazy... yet

You may have noticed that I haven't been posting any entries about wanting to tear out all my hair or getting the urge to start cutting myself. Well, so far, this tree season ain't so bad, thanks mostly to the presence of the awesome and brave Dede who spent last week down here living with Dad. She kept him company and kept him busy and kept him out of our hair. There were just a couple of minor incidents where it looked like he was going to stir up some trouble in the sales shed but nothing spectacular happened. Not like last year.

But towards the end she started showing signs of wear. Yesterday she left and took Dad with her back to San Luis. David and the boys will help dilute the Dad energy. He's coming back on Sunday. Thank you, Dede! Your being here really made a difference.

Another thing keeping me sane has been going to LA for some live entertainment. We saw Julia Sweeney and Jill Sobule, Tally Hall and we went to the taping of Comedy Central's Last Laugh. This Sunday we're going to a live SpongeBob show. Andy Paley and Tom Kenny will be performing songs from the SpongeBob album (in a book store or a music store..?..). A pretty mellow show, I think. It's always fun seeing Andy and we'll finally get to meet Tom (the voice of SpongeBob and many other cartoon characters).

Aaron is arriving on the 20th. It'll be great seeing him AND he'll help out with Dad. OH, this year is soooo much better! Even if we do have to handle some Dad blow ups I think it'll be easier to deal with. He still throws his weight around but he seems to know on some deep level that he doesn't really have it together anymore. He's quicker to give up a fight. Also, we're getting better at recognizing his low blood sugar moments. Give him a snack and he usually calms down.

Last night we went to a Paris meeting at Ramona. Woosh! That's coming up soon! Lindsay and Kyle are going to New York just before Christmas. So much shoppinbg to do just for those two trips! We'll be taking care of Spiral so I'm not sure if I want to get a Christmas tree. Our pretty glass ornaments will be way too tempting for him to resist. I have an idea for that. I'm going to set a dead branch into some plaster of paris, paint it silver and decorate it with paper ornaments. It'll be a fun change and it won't matter if the kitty kills it.

Today Jim has an interview with job placement company. We bought him a suit and everything. He looked pretty good this morning! Gotta get that boy some more snazzy clothes.

So yeah, I'm doing so much better this year.