Saturday, July 11, 2009

Al's Bonfire

I've been behind lately, and a little short on words. Hopefully pictures will be worth at least a couple.

Monday, July 6, 2009

4th of July Weekend

On Wednesday, Angie spent the better part of her birthday driving us to Bismarck. I'm not as flaky as I used to be in the vehicle, but she still insisted on doing all of the driving. We got off to a later start than we'd wanted, but of course she made good time. The cottonwood tree behind my folks' house was shedding cotton; Heather spent a little bit of time playing in this little bit of "Christmas in July". Angie dropped Brooke off for her summer visit to her dad's.

On Thursday we had a little bit of unfinished business to take care of. When we were back for Easter, we had gone "cemetery shopping". After some driving, we decided we preferred Fairview, but all we had done was a drive-through, more or less.

This time we needed finish what we'd started, which was actually buying a plot. I suppose it sounds a little strange, but it is a bit of a load off to have such things taken care of. I haven't been to many funerals, but I liked the view here and the grounds; I thought it was a nice peaceful place with a nice view.

I've been telling Angie that if I go soon that she can expect a long life and might fall in love again and prefer to be buried somewhere other than beside me. But she insisted and we went with the his/hers plots. After that, we ventured to a place east of town a little bit to shop for a headstone. Again she convinced me to go with a shared stone. So that stuff is more than half covered (I still have to have a foundation poured at the cemetery. And someday the final dates need to be handled.)

With that stuff out of the way, Angie got her Kroll's fix, and we got our knoephla soup. And a little bit of "oops, I forgot" remedy from Target. And by then I was pooped. We stopped home and I stayed back while Angie and Heather did more visiting in Mandan. After some rest, Dan and Sandy called and picked me up for a few beers at O'Brien's (I'm still drinking placebos.)

Friday got off to a bad start: Dad was having one of his "Mr. Hyde" episodes with his Alzheimer's, and he was pretty pissed about the person who had come by to help him with his lunchtime routine. He was pretty mad at me for a while too. Mom came home from work to help restore order.

That evening, we went to Flasher, ND to visit with Nicki Noonan's family. I even drove the 40 or 50 miles or whatever. It was the first time I'd driven much of a distance outside of the metro in quite a while. There, Heather played with Nicki's kids while the adults caught up a bit. I had to find a recliner inside a couple of times because I'd gotten pretty tired by nightfall. But we had a good visit and lit off some fireworks for a little while.

Saturday was the big day. We managed to get up at a reasonable hour to head to Mandan. Dan and Sandy had invited us to join them at her folks' place on 8th & Main in Mandan. It was a very nice location to see the parade. It was also nice to visit some more. Nikki and Mariah joined us later on, as did Jodi and Darin.

The parade lasted until a bit after noon. We ducked out of Sandy's family's get-together about then because Nikki and Angie wanted to take Mariah and Heather to see Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs. Angie doubted my traffic-navigating abilities, but I was able to get us home in time to drop me off.

Even though I was mostly just sitting at the parade, I was pretty tired by 1:00. The girls continued on to the movie, and I took a nap. I was asleep shortly after I flipped to a show on the History Channel. I slept for about an hour, but I was still groggy and slow for another couple. I believe I did manage to get Mom set up with a working cordless phone and a new digital converter box for a TV in her computer room. The girls all seemed to have enjoyed the movie.

After some supper, the three of us went to Darcy and Harley's to watch some fireworks. The view of Bismarck-Mandan from their place is quite spectacular. And this year a lot of their neighbors, as well as a lot of the town, had a lot of fireworks that they were shooting off. We could see the displays from the Capitol Grounds and at the Mandan Rodeo Grounds, but from quite a distance.

And again -- whoosh! The several days back were over quickly again. We did a lot of visiting and got things done that we needed to do.