August 31, 2009

Day 49,50 &51

Smoke from the station fire on Friday 
Strange smoke glow in the day Friday

So you know that saying God doesn't give you more than you can handle...why do I have to be so strong! Like I need to deal with a fire right now. 

So the fire is moving in on Santa Clarita I can see it in the distance burning the hills.  The area about 20 minutes drive away in the city is now evacuated.  I have packed up the important paper and the rest I just don't care about right now - in the past I would have been packing my shoes and clothes.  

The sad news is that the Gala I was going to attend with my parents now has evacuated all the animals on the farm and are looking for a new place to have the gala.  I really wanted to be dressed up on a farm full of animals darn it. 

Here is some info from the web on the fire.  If I don't blog for a while it maybe cause I'm evacuated to my cousins in the OC. 

The 35,000-acre fire threatened over 10,000 homes, 500 commercial properties and 2,000 other structures and rained ash on cars as far away as downtown Los Angeles on Sunday, spreading in all directions in hot, dry conditions.

August 28, 2009

day 48

Yesterday was my kind of weather.  At one point it was 108 degrees with no humidity.  My crazy dog was lay outside on the patio in the sun.  I haven't told her yet we are moving back to Minneapolis soon, I'm afraid she would run away.  

Just dealt with the automatic payment to the mortgage company to get that stopped since there is no money in that account and it is to long of a story to tell you about right now. 

Have a good weekend everyone.  I have Jilaine coming to visit again for a couple day them my parents arrive for a jam packed schedule which includes a gala event with a bunch of celebrities which I will blog about later lets just say I'm really looking forward to it and the host is lets just say some one with a daily talk show where she dances and I have been there before and going again to see her on the 17th.  I'm afraid my dad is going to be chatting with all of these people and not know who they all are, which will lead to good blog stories.  

August 27, 2009

day 47

So last night I went to my first grief sharing meeting.  I have avoided it for 6 weeks and finally last week when the lady called me to see if I was going to attend I told her yes.  I really didn't want to go, I was afraid it was full of people just crying and I'm sorry but that is not what I want or need.  

Well I was half right or almost completely right.  I don't think it is for me but I will give it a try again next week.  And there were alot of people crying through the video we watched about Heaven and then afterwards when  people where asking questions. 

  You know all the things you think about when people die and how they it makes you feel better to know some of them...well last night they told us the myths of heaven.  Basically everything I have though about and felt comfort in know is wrong according to the this certain group.  For example there is no marriage in Heaven.  Joe will recognize me but we are no longer married.  You read that right we will not be together he will have a life and recognize me but we are not married.  Well this set off one lady into hysterical crying saying I want my husband to recognize me, and I don't blame her.  Then there was a question about peace at dying...well that same lady said it was terrible to watch her husband take his last breath and the pastor was telling her that is his favorite part of death and now so this poor lady is upset about not being with her husband and feeling guilty that she wasn't experiencing his death as a  beautiful thing.  I think I'm more confused now after group than just thinking Joe is enjoying heaven and I will be with him again some day.  

I also read and had to sign a rules page...some of the rules were you have to have had a death in your life to be there not just there for the sake of it.  I can't remember what movie it was where people  just went to groups to share and took part but really didn't belong there but I laughed at that rule.  The other rule was no dating member in the group.  That one I think I laughed out loud at.  

August 26, 2009

day 46

funny tidbit for you all...yesterday I was in whole foods getting a couple items and I was again hit with an urge to cook a dinner.  I say again because I haven't been able to cook every night like I use to because I don't have anyone else to eat it with me. 

How this is funny because before Joe went to grad school I never really cooked.  I had to learn how to cook fast when he started school and now I actually enjoy it however I don't like to clean up after wards and I don't eat left overs.    So when I move back to Minneapolis some of you will have to come over for dinner so I can cook. 

August 25, 2009

Day 45

This year the number 40 means a lot of different things for example I turned 40 in May, I have now been with out Joe for 40+ days and I learned that I can get 40% of the income from the guy who killed Joe for the rest of his life. (when he is convicted) 

Not that I'm a sue happy person, it is the principal of the matter.  Really if you think about it 40% of nothing is really nothing that would help me in any way except for the fact that when he opens his check in jail and sees that 40% of his money is gone he will think of Joe and be reminded why he has no money to buy things in jail.  If he ever get out I am aware that he can work for cash under the table and will not get anything.  

August 24, 2009

day 41,42,43 & 44

They say laughter is the best medicine, I had lot of it last week when Karen and I attended 2 funny tapings. 

The first one was Chelsea Lately on E!. It was good and the guest was Marley Matlin. After the taping we went to Santa Monica then drove up the coast on hwy 1 to Ventura where we had dinner at this little fish and chips place on the beach that Joe and I loved to eat at.
Friday we went to the taping of “Accidently on purpose” at CBS studios in Studio City. The set is actually the old “Will & Grace”’ set according to the plaque on the wall outside the studio.
Never being to a sitcom taping before I didn’t know what to expect. Being I have only heard bad things about TV tapings but I wanted to tried it anyway. Both Karen and I were pleasantly surprised that we had a ball at the show.  

The other talk shows I have attended all have a guy that warms up the audience and keeps you entertained during breaks. At this particular show they were giving out signed cast photo for the person who laughs the hardest or most during each scenes. While Karen and I got one and you know I don’t fake laugh, we were really laughing at the scenes. I’m not sure if some of it will make it pass the FCC but it was funny stuff. The show is really funny and I hope it comes across that why when it airs.

The time I really lost it wasn’t during the show, it was just after the warm up guy balanced a folding ladder opened up on his chin. (Yes a 6ft ladder open up) Then the DJ started to play the song “Maniac” from the movie “Flash dance” and he started to dance like the scene from the movie then poured water on his head and spit it out and shook all over the public relations rep from Beverly Hills. (She basically thought she was hot shit because Grant show invited her and he would talk to her on the breaks) I was laughing so hard (can’t remember the last time I laughed like that) during this I was crying and couldn’t stop even when the director yelled “Action quiet on the set!” Thank god when I laugh so hard like that I don’t make any sounds cause that could have been a very bad thing, but on the other hand we might have met the cast and crew as they were throwing us off the set.  

During one of the many breaks we got served pizza not sure if this happens at every taping or just because it was a special press night. It was nice no matter what the occasion. If you attend a taping of a TV just know they are long, we got in line at 4:00 and the show wrapped at 10:00. Then who would have guess there would be a traffic jam on the 5 freeway on the way home.
All in all it was really fun and just interesting to watch all that goes on behind the camera.

one more thing...the actor Micheal Rapport was visiting the set, he is from Boston Public he also played Phoebe's boyfriend on a couple friends episodes.  

Here is a little clip about the new show that airs Sept. 21.

August 20, 2009

Day 40

Saturday was busy busy busy.  I know some people think I'm sitting in the house eating bon-bon's but I really have stuff to do.  After the couple of people looking at the house to see if they want to rent it the garage guy came. 

Our garage with no door on it.

Karen waiting in line to go to the movie - at Hollywood Cemetery. Yes I'm strange

All the the other strange people waiting in line too

They show the movie on the side of the mausoleum

The scenery

On the back side of the cemetery is the Paramount studios 

August 19, 2009

day 39

Yesterday was a long day, of course it was the only night I slept and then had to get up to go to court early.
If you ever need good people watching you should go to the San Fernando courthouse for an hour. I had a half-day of entertaining people watching. Karen and I stood out like you wouldn’t believe. I sure people were looking at us and wondering what crime we committed to be there.

So back to us standing out so much in the courtroom the bailiff actually asked us after a couple case what we were doing in the courtroom. I told him what were doing then he just had this heart felt look of I’m sorry on his face and then when we was bringing Valencia out of the courtroom the bailiff was looking directly at me.
I got to talk to the DA for a little bit to get some questions answered but he is pretty confidante that will all the evidence and witness that he will be convicted. How ever after sitting in the court for the morning watching all the people get off with less than a slap on the wrist I’m not to confident in our legal system. We saw at least 6 people walk into the courtroom for their case in handcuffs, including Valencia. They were in blue clothes not the orange you see on TV incase anyone was wondering what they were wearing. I guess orange is so last season.

So after the big build up of the day it was less than 2minutes because the other attorney needs more time before they set the date for the trial so I will have to do it all over on September 29th.

After that ordeal we decided that lunch at The Grove was needed, since I don’t drink or else I would have had one. Lunch was good as always, no celebrity sightings though.

When we got close to home I had a thought that I should go by the CHP to see if the police report is finished. Sure enough they just finished it and I got my copy, which states that Valencia doesn’t think he hit the cyclist he said he drove by the accident and they were already crashed. He did admit to being under the influence and drinking at a friend’s house. The DA said that Valencia really doesn’t show any remorse and really doesn’t think he hit them.

Not too much I can say about that…

August 18, 2009

day 36,37,38

Sorry for the late blog I just needed a break from everything for awhile.  
Tuesday (today) I'm heading to court.  I will keep you posted.  

August 16, 2009

Day 35- warning disturbing video

Here is a link I found on one of our news channels.  I am warning you it is not for the faint at heart to watch so watch at your own risk of getting upset.  

August 14, 2009

Day 34

Yesterday I went and had my monthly lunch with the "ladies" I'm a part of a group called New Comers and Friends.  It was a good lunch then I ran to goodwill to drop off some junk(don't worry some people it wasn't anything of Joe's that you keep reminding me that you want something. I'm still not ready to get rid of some things. Yes after the service people already starting saying I would like some stuff, he wasn't even in the ground yet. It actually was crap I don't want to move back) in preparation for my move back to Minneapolis.  I would love to stay out here with the 100 degree days and no humidity, however California is extremely expensive.  

I also got my car washed, I will miss the hand wash and dry car washes out here.  Joe had a bunch of pre-paid car wash coupons in his wallet that I'm trying to use up before I head out on my next journey.   

Then 2 of the guys from the bike club came over to move the wood crates in the garage so Saturday they can install a new garage door.  

August 13, 2009

day 33

I spent the day trying to organize my piles of papers laying around since I'm expecting company and my landlord is starting to advertise the house is for rent.  

I'm still taking it one day at a time.   

August 12, 2009

day 32

I didn't do to much Tuesday, not that I do not have a lot to do I just didn't do any of it.

Saturday Joe's college roommate came to visit and spent the night.  He drove across the US from North Carolina on a motorcycle.  Not a fancy one either just a plain Honda bike.  He also camped at state parks on his way out here.  Not my idea of a vacation,  but I did not want him to cancel his trip because of the circumstances.  Did I mention that I never met him before 

We did go out to dinner on Saturday night and I was hoping that nobody saw me out cause I was afraid they might have thought it was a date.  That is all I would have need is that rumor going around town.  

August 11, 2009

day 31

Yesterday Foxy and I went to the cemetery/mortuary to pick up Joe's death certificates.  Then I started mailing/faxing the copies and originals to everyone who needs them.  Just waiting for the complete accident report.  It still is not completed if you can believe that.  

Yes Foxy is a car seat.  We went shopping one day for a car seat for her, and she loves it because she can see out the window as I drive.  

August 10, 2009

Day 29 & 30

Here are some photos from Friday night when some of the bike club came over. You know it has been a while since we had friends over for parties or for fun. (in Beligum it was the work schedule/vaction schedule of friends that keep that from happening often and Minneapolis it was just life in general)

I really wish I would have met Barry & his wife Joan before and Bob and his wife maria. They are so fun, and if you can belive it Barry & Joan I belive are excatly like Joe and I. When they were talking back and forth about getting another dog, shopping when is he going riding again, all I could do is smile. Then there was Bob talking about his wife for her 40th b-day wanted and got a couple $5,000 doors for the house I couldn't help but laugh. Both Bob's and Barry's comments were things that Joe would have said.

Some of the girls from the club, The lady in the black her husband died 3 years ago when he was riding and got hit by a car.  

George, Shawn, Barry and Joan. 

Shawn & Barry doing my dishes.  I was thinking how was I going to clean this mess up with out Joe, but once again there was a man doing the dishes in my kitchen. The photo is for Joan because he doesn't do dishes in his own house. 

August 8, 2009

Day 27 & 28

I had a great time with the bike club last night which I will share more with you later.  I asked by them the key word "asked" which I appreciated because some things are getting printed about Joe or people are talking about him and it is getting printed with out asking or saying hey I did this is it o.k.   If you really knew Joe you knew he was a private person and hated to be in the spot light (he never even told his parents what was going on which on some level might have been ok).  Donaldson even asked if they could put stuff in the paper and told me what it would say.  He always monitored what I put on the blog too.  He was just like that he never wanted the work and personal life to meet.  I know he wouldn't want too much attention paid to him right now either.  Thanks.

Any way back to my story...The Santa Clarita Velo is  planning a ride in silence in honor of Joe on October 3.  Me not knowing alot about a ride of silence thought they were just going to do there normal Saturday ride. No  it is a 12 mile ride starting at the Mall and going with a police escort around  and them back to the mall.  They have alot of people that are going to ride so far from other clubs.  

They actually want me to ride which when I thought it was a short ride I thought yes I can do that.  Now that it is 12 miles oh lord I'm not sure about that-they said I could start to train now...Ok you can stop laughing any time now about me training and riding 12 miles because it isn't going to happen I'm going to ride in the police car for now any way.  They actually suggested I could walk it or roller blade too.  They are really funny people and when they get to know me they will realize how funny it is that they thought I would train or ride for 12 miles. 

Even if I did ride I don't think I could be quiet for the ride, I would be to busy say complaining that my butt hurt or that I need a break  or something like that. 


August 7, 2009

Day 26

In keeping with the theme of company coming over tonight and this weekend.  I also have company starting on Aug 14Th with Karen, and the Jilaine on the 28 followed by my parents on the 3rd of Sept.  

I also have thought I should get in as many of the TV show taping as I can before I leaving in mid October.  So here is the list I will be going to in the short time I'm left here. 

Chelsea Lately - it is a show on E! with Chelsea Handler I have read her book "my life horizontal life" which is very funny.  (with Karen)

Accidental on Purpose - A new Jenna Elfman show starting this fall (with Karen) How she get pregnant from one night stand that is young. 

Rules of Engagement - It has David Spade in it (with Jilaine)

Two and a half men - with Charlie Sheen, I'm going to this one with my parents.     

And lastly I got Ellen tickets again Yippee!!! 

August 6, 2009

day 25

first so for the late post I was to tired last night to blog (haven't been getting my naps in) and today I went to the gym in the morning and now I'm avoiding the messages on my answering machine because I know it will be more work to do and I want a couple more minutes of peace before the craziness starts for the day.  

Yesterday I went to the Social Security office and they filed my claim for $255.00 for death benefits.  I also learned the crazy rules of collecting benefits.  I don't get benefits because we didn't have kids and I will not be raising any kids.  I don't get his benefits till 60 and then just a portion and at 65 full, but if I get remarried I don't get anything.  But if I get married after 62 I can get Joe's benefits and after being married for so many years to the new guy after 62 I can get his benefits too.  However if Joe was married for 10 year or more then  his ex-wife can also get his benefits.  
Now how screwed  up is that.  Like when I'm 60 there are going to be any money left.  

The rest of the day I spent with the guy trying to fix my garage door which is now totally screwed up and doesn't work so my car is outside in the hot sun.  Did i mention it is black.  

that is it for now I have to get the house ready for tomorrow when 10 or so of the bikers are coming over for dinner.  Then this weekend sometime Joe's roommate from college is coming for a visit.  Yes it was planned before the accident and there was no sense for him to cancel his trip.  It should be interesting since I have never met him.  You can read all about it next week. 

August 5, 2009

day 24

Here are some photos from the service in Minneapolis. 

The Chapel at Lakewood Cemetery

The beautiful inside of the chapel 

Scott was one of the many speakers at the service for Joe

The spot I picked for Joe

At the church basement -  where the reception was held

My relatives 

My friends 

Foxy and my nephews 

August 4, 2009

day 23

Sunday I took a break from everything and went to the Grove for the free performances of cique du soleil. It was good I only saw 3 of the 6 differnt shows.

Here are some photos from the day.

The cast of Love - the Beatles

The performers from Mystere warming  up. 

After the grove we were driving down the street and went by Jim Henson studios - the big Kermit on the top gave it away. 

This dog was at Nordstroms at The Grove - once again this is why I don't have a white pet.  

August 3, 2009

Day 21 & 22

I’m not going to bore you will the stuff I did this weekend it was all paper work , unpacking and laundry.

The hardest thing I find right now is when I see something or do something where I want to call Joe up and tell him what just happened. I use to talk to him a 2-3 times a day and I don’t know when that urge to pick up the phone and call him will end. I do know I can talk to him any time I want, but maybe this little blurb from our charades blog that Joe wrote will explain it better than I can. I also know I can call any of you at anytime but I know your responds to my crazy things will not be the same.

"I am thankful for the opportunity to have worked and lived in Belgium - for the opportunity to experience a new country, a new culture and a new way of looking at life. I can honestly say that my eyes have been opened a bit wider and that I am better for the opportunity. That said, I am most thankful for how wonderful Belgium was for Jill. I will miss the reports of who was met on the daily dog walks (we miss you Max), what European vacation is in the queue, what treasures were acquired on the shopping expedition and what "local" she engaged in another round of CHARADES.

Thank you Belgium and thank you Jill for another wonderful chapter in our life."