I got up early yesterday to drive up to Bellingham for the A.L.S. walk. Erin rode up with me, and we picked up my grandparents as well. I know I write about my mom a bunch, but I should mention my grandparents more too. My grandfather is my hero. He’s pretty much the coolest guy I know. He was a firefighter for Seattle for years.

Anyway, when we got to to walk site, I pulled in to the lot, coincidentally right next to where Erik, Amanda, and Jason had locked themselves out of their car. My mom was trying to herd cats at the starting line. She’s never been very good at it, and being unable to speak frustrated her. But she did have red visors (my head was too big for it though) and I Support Dorinda stickers for everyone.

She was selected to cut the ribbon. I was trying to take photos of the start, but my mom and the people with her walked off like it was a race. It may seem like an easy job, but y’all should give some props to the sports photographers out there. My shots at the start sucked.

I walked with Gramps. He’s got a bad ticker, and not a lot of strength. We trailed most folks, and had to turn around well before the end. I got some decent photos while sitting at the spot we turned around at. On the way back, there was a fire truck parked for a local boat race. Some sort of medical assistance call. He went over to see if he knew any of the men, and I headed all the way back.

I took a few photos of my mom dancing in celebration. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it here before, but one of my favorite experiences was living in Boise when my parents came to visit. I took them to a German association Octoberfest, and they danced to the polka. They were way better than anyone else dancing, and that included some people who looked like they competed. My mom’s team won the top spot for most donations collected, and my mom should have one for most collected by an individual, but we think they messed up.

Afterward, we all headed to my mom’s place in Lynden for obligatory food! Joe did most of the food planning. Ask him his secret meatball recipe sometime. Also, his grill is very important to him. As soon as the last food is off the grill, he’s cleaning it. Then he eats.

Then we messed around with the cornfield for a bit.

I got home and nearly went to bed then. But Jason got me to go drag Keenan to the hospital. By the time that was over, I really was tired, so I went to bed.


From mom:

I had trouble Thurs. opening the rotary cutter. I had to use two hands to push the spring loaded button. I have had trouble pushing the button on the Sonicare but I thought that was because mine is old and the contacts might be a problem on that button. Andy’s gave up the ghost so we got him a new one. Anyway my typing days might be much less in number than I am hoping. See you Monday.

Need help

So my mother has a problem. And while talking with the respiratory therapist with her today, it occurred to me that someone in my crowd might be able to help in a way that won’t occur to the therapist. When I ran the idea past him, he said to go for it because he’s into territory that he hasn’t covered before.

Here’s the problem: my mom can’t close her mouth or lips. In order for her CPAP machine to work, either she needs to use a full face mask or be able to keep her mouth closed. The full face mask isn’t working for other reasons, for which we’re looking for solutions.

But in the other case, I was wondering if anyone in this crowd would have any experience making rubber or latex face masks that could be altered to keep her moth closed? Or if there’s anyone who has experience with breathe play that could have other suggestions? Any solution would be run by and approved by her doctors, so please don’t hold back responding because you are afraid that it might be dangerous. Anything we finally decide on will be doctor-approved before put into use.

If you know of someone who might have such expertise, I love to be put into contact with them.

What I did today, by Philip Weiss

Drove to Lynden
Hung out with my mother.
Chatted with Angie.
Called places for mom.
Played gin rummy and won.
Drove home.
Hung out at the pool with Daniel, Amy, Keenrad, and was surprised by getting Melissa and Levi to come by from Helena, Montana.
Went to the Zoo. It was closed.
Went to the Roanoke. It was open.
Came home.

Conclusion: Melissa is the cutest thing and has awesome tattoos. But I knew this before.

Gin rummy

I beat my mom in two games of gin rummy today, even though I think it’s the first time I’ve ever played.

You might think that it’s cruel to win at cards against a dying person. To you who think that, I say nyah nyah nyah! You are dying too!

Home from Ocean Shores

I am home. I am drinking a cold Coca-Cola. Ocean Shores was pretty decent, considering hanging out with 7 to 10 other people is not exactly my bag. I spent some quality time with the family. We didn’t kill anyone, particularly me. My family likes Erin. I like Erin too. I got some sun. And I got 5 books read.

Oh, and I didn’t get sunburned yesterday.

Now, what to do for the rest of my birthday.

Ocean shores day 5

I sat out on the beach in the sun for about 2 hours today without a
shirt. Can you guess what happened?

I got a few pictures of a bald eagle though no closeups cause a gull
started dive bombing him before I got near and he flew off to save his

Made chicken adobo for dinner. Decent, but too salty and I
overcompensated for my undercooked chicken from a couple of nights

Heading home tomorrow. Should be back in the afternoon.

Ocean shores day 4

The weather continues to be mostly dry and cloudy. Last night I was
nailed by a good allergy attack, but the loratadine seems to be
working. Joe wants to rent scooters but the idea of riding scooters
up and down a flat beach on a scooter doesn’t appeal to me. I do want
to explore the nearby state park and recreation area. Yesterday I
drove my mom and Erin to the beach for them to fly kites. I did as
well for a bit but there was little breeze so I sat back and watched.
Got a few pictures of Erin being cute blowing bubbles. She looks
particularly fetching today.

I’ve started on “the coroner’s lunch”. I’m really liking it. Gonna
try to finish it and get a good ways into “the vengeful virgin” today.
After that it’ll be only the thick slow books.

Ocean shores day 2

About half our troop is off on a guided horse ride down the beach.
Not my thing, so I’m sitting on the dunes reading “walla walla suite”.
I took a few photos as they began their journey. Jason and Joe decided
to be the coolest and wear helmets. This part of the beach saddens
me. I can see more vehicles than people, though a bit to the south a
moderate number of kites dot the sky. To me a beach is little fun if
it resembles a parking lot.

The go-karts earlier were fun. Erin got some good photos of me and
Jason. He’s got the dale earnhardt sunglasses look going on though
not really the killer instinct. Amanda had that.

Joe wants to ride scooters on the beach but that looks pretty
uninteresting to me. I do want to do some canoeing though. Waiting
for a sunny day for that.

Jason was unable to find a strip club.