Entertaining Mom

Hello friends. I may not be on here too much this week, and I thought I'd mention it in case I miss something. Feel free to message me if something needs my input (are there any Valentine's Day songs or poems we could tweak for anyone special?)

Not looking for sympathy, just need to share with friends.

My 83 year old mom is staying with me for a week while my sister attends a 4 day class in Knoxville, TN. (Susan is an LPN and got into The Patriot Nurse's Medical Prep 101,201, and 301live class. Link at end). Since they live 40 minutes away and neither Mom nor I drive any more, we decided that Mom would come stay with me.

I've lived alone for a really long time and I'm not accustomed to paying attention to whether someone else has eaten or it cold or just needs attention. Mom is accustomed to Susan paying her LOTS of attention. And it's snowing pretty good this afternoon, so sitting out on the patio is not a good idea.

Susan and I did a lot of planning. We have lots of food and drink. (Mom is a picky eater, and also won't just tell me what she will or won't eat.) But we are going to do well in that regard. Mom packed a huge bag of snacks - just in case. I think she worried that I would just leave her to her own devices. But we are figuring it out. Turns out that the jalapeno jelly I mentioned earlier is really good on pork egg-rolls, and Mom LOVES it.

I'm comfortable sleeping on the couch, and the 2 cats spent the night moving between us. We all slept cozy last night.

We are all big readers, and if she finished the 3 books she brought with her, I have a room full of bookshelves for her to choose from. I also asked her to bring her old photo albums to do a family history project. I'll pay for a month of Ancestry.com if I need to! This could very well take all week.

One big thing that I hadn't fully appreciated until just this afternoon is that Mom and Susan don't have internet access, and no TV reception. The watch DVDs. I, however, have good internet and an Amazon Prime subscription.

Mom is binging on the first season of The Beverly Hillbillies as I type this. Being that I was born just north of the Ozark Plateau and that we now live in the middle of the Ozarks, it really does make for good entertainment on a winter day. That Prime subscription is going to be worth every penny by the end of the week.

Mind you, I love my Mom. She's been married 6 times, and there's a lot of chaos that comes with growing up in those circumstances. Our history, while not contentious, has been mostly independent of each other for most of my adult life. I feel like the family history project is going to be worthwhile and I'm glad I thought of it. I also expect some personal feeling to come up. I'm going to try really hard not to let her see how much some of her history hurts to this day. My primary reason for returning to Missouri was to help my sister out, and God bless her, she's a saint. She's also 8 years younger and does not recall things that my brother and I do.

I'm going to try typing her answers into a Word document in hopes that acting as a stenographer will distance me somewhat from the story. I found a book with pages for her to fill in, and I can scan her photos in and print off for the pages. When we're done, I can then scan the entire project in and make copies for my brother and sister and I.

Anyway, the classes Susan is taking this week include 2 days of nutrition, herbs, and old time diseases that may make a comeback if, well, you know. Plus, she gets a week away from home responsibility, gets to stay in a nice hotel (where the classes are held) and pamper herself a bit. I hope she remembers to come home... Thanks for letting me share. No response necessary.

Here's the link to the website. Her list of books is a good start on a prepper library, and she has a bunch of You tube videos.


  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,210 admin

    @Mary Linda Bittle, West Plains, Missouri It sounds as though you are well prepared in all aspects. If you need a place to "escape" to if anything gets too difficult, we will be here.

    I'm glad that you can give your sister a break.

    I don't know any Valentine's songs, but the idea is fun. My poems are not very complicated. They are in the simple realm of "Roses are red..."

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,396 admin

    @Mary Linda Bittle, West Plains, Missouri I hope you enjoy your week with your mum regardless of any difficulties or not such good memories.

    I would be very interested in hearing some of what your sister has learned from these courses. I checked out the website and could access everything except for the "Medical Supply Stash" link. If she has any suggestions for a list of medical stash essentials, it would be awesome to have it posted here.

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 1,938 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Mary Linda Bittle, West Plains, Missouri Though it can be trying when there are bad memories, Now that you are both adults It is a good time to make new and better memories with your Mom. It can be hard to do but can also be very much worth it.

    torey I was able to get to part of the "Medical Supply Stash" page using the "Way Back Machine"

    Here is a link to the page it brought up.


  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,469 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Hanging in there, y'all. We went through 5 miles wed photo albums today. I removed the ones I could and hauled the mess out with the trash. We identified everyone we could.

    Got a sad answer to a question about how mom and dad met. Kind of wished I hadn't asked, but it did clear up a lot of confusion. Seems that her parents would not let her get engaged to her first love when he joined the Army. She met dad, from a neighboring town, on a blind date and he basically stalked her until she agreed to marry him, apparently with her parents approving. 3 kids and11 years she divorced him.

    The big trouble I'm having is that she refuses to eat butter and I will not eat margerine! So I'm making 2 versions of scrambled eggs, grilled cheese, etc, and cleaning the pan in between.

  • Cornelius
    Cornelius Posts: 872 ✭✭✭✭

    I hope everything goes well and that you get lots of pictures for your book!

  • Michelle D
    Michelle D Posts: 1,356 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Mary Linda Bittle, West Plains, Missouri I'm glad that you are getting answers to your questions. I'm sorry that they are hard. You are obviously a very strong person and I admire you for that. After my dad passed I got answers to a lot of questions that I also wish I never found out. It helps me to better understand why certain things were the way that they were. Hang in there! Enjoy your mom and try not to stress about the butter. (To say that is somewhat hypocritical for me because I would too even though I know I shouldn't!)

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,469 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Another day, another revelation.

    Had to tell mom that there are some conversations that I just can't have with her about dad. Some things you tell your friends, or your therapist, but adult children do not need to know the details about some marital problems.

    I'm starting to wonder how my brother and sister and I turned out reasonably well adjusted...

    I'll share a funny story, too.

    In one of the albums we found pages of school pictures dated 1954-1955. Several are of mom's cousins, and she could put names to them pretty easy. I pointed out a dapper looking fellow and asked about him.

    Mom: "I don't know who that is."

    Me: "Mom, it's signed Love, Oscar."

    She's not being forthcoming about Oscar...

  • nicksamanda11
    nicksamanda11 Posts: 713 ✭✭✭✭

    Beverly hillbillies is awesome

  • RustBeltCowgirl
    RustBeltCowgirl Posts: 1,403 ✭✭✭✭✭

    How are you holding up? Any new tidbits that you really didn't want to know?

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,469 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Holding up. Yes, I have realized that Mom is jealous of me. She "hasn't got to do anything." That also explains a lot.

    Susan will home this evening or tomorrow. She is a saint.

    I'm so accustomed to peace and quiet. Mom talks ALL the time. We do interactive TV which means she repeats all the funny lines...

    But, we are getting through. Thanks for checking.

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,469 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited January 2022

    My sister picked Mom up a couple of hours ago. We did OK. Not great, but OK.

    We stopped working on the family history project. I have enough info to search online for the details.

    I cooked 3 meals a day for her, and we had snacks and warm beverages. The 2 cats seemed to enjoy sleeping with - or on - her at night. We watched LOTS of TV. Thankful for good internet access and a subscription to Amazon Prime!

    All in all, it went better than I thought it might. My sister came back rested, and says that the 4 days of class were well worth the cost. Says its like getting force fed knowledge with a fire hose!

    @torey, she won't be able to share the handouts as it's requested that they not do so. She did tell me that she learned more about acid balance in half an hour than she did in her entire LPN school, and now she understands it...not sure exactly what that means. Sounded like you really need the medical background to get the greatest benefit, but it's not required. She had a full day of nutrition, and one of herbs and old-fashioned remedies. She recommends books by Dr. John R. Christopher. I picked up a few on Kindle, but the nursing book is out of print, and very expensive if you can find it. Here's a website


    Another thing Susan said is that for emergency food supplies, we should look for nutrition rather than calories. Don't know any more than that now, but will share what I can.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Posts: 7,210 admin

    @Mary Linda Bittle, West Plains, Missouri 👏 It's good to hear that you made it through to the end. 😄

  • water2world
    water2world Posts: 1,046 ✭✭✭✭

    @Mary Linda Bittle Glad your weekend could be called progress! I know exactly how you felt going into this---I'm thinking about moving my mom to our house. No siblings will help and mom is use to getting to select what she wants for her 3 meals a day and she expects a different dessert each meal. I don't cook that way and we love leftovers--mom does not! lol She is living in assisted living in another state, but I can tell she is going to need more care. Lots of things to consider!

    You had some great ideas!