Sunday, March 1, 2009

Just when you think she's calmed down...

Mother called last Friday night quite late...we were just brushing our teeth and getting ready to turn on the sound machine and go to sleep.

You'll need a little background information to help you get through the post. Ann, a lovely ANGEL of a lady, has been helping us with mother and Ned since January of 2008. If we had not found Ann, we would have had to separate them at that time. They had to have help at home...Ned had practically become the responsible one in the house and that was not going to work. So...along comes our angel of mercy, who has become and will always be considered a member of our family. I think it does bother mother some though, that Ned seems to like Ann the best. Ann is fun...mother is generally not all that much fun.

I manage all financial matters for mother and Ned. For some odd reason, she has three checking accounts...Ned has one. Mother still receives her bank statements but rarely looks at them. I pay Ann $325 a week, which I think is a bargain considering she lives just five minutes away and will come running anytime mother calls, even after hours. I'd pay her more if she asked for it! I rotate the accounts I pay her from, so one check gets written from each account each month. I gave her a generous Christmas bonus from my own funds...thank'll understand why I say that as you read on.

Back to Friday night...PHONE RINGS...I answer...

Mother: Belle, I'm looking at my December bank statement. What is this check for $325?

Me: That's where I paid Ann.

Mother: You are KIDDING me? She makes $325 a MONTH?

Me: (stupid stupid me): No, she makes $325 a week.

Mother: A WEEK....YOU ARE JOKING!!! I'm getting rid of her. That is ridiculous. People don't make that kind of money. I bet she's just LAUGHING at you when she takes that check to the bank. She is taking you for RIDE!!!!

Me: She's not taking me for a ride and she isn't laughing...It isn't ridiculous and you can't get rid of her. (Hank is listening...shaking his head) She's worth every're moving in a month and you need her to help you get ready.

Mother: I know I'm moving in a month....golly what did I call you for?

Me: (getting smarter) To ask about a $325 check on your bank statement

Mother: Oh yes...what was that for?

Me: (brilliant me) It's what we pay Ann every month. (Forgive me for "storying" but I'm in survival mode here. Even if she looks at the other bank statements she won't make a connection...I don't think...)

Mother: Every month?

Me: Yes ma'am. I know that seems like a lot to you but it really isn't. Some people make that much or more per HOUR. When Legare gets out of law school he'll probably bill quite a bit more that than per hour. (See what I did here...the old switcharoo...redirect to the grandchildren, who can do NO evil!)

Mother: I guess I'm just out of touch with how much things cost...How ARE Legare and Lorelai?

We chatted for a few minutes about the kids...then mother said...

Golly doodlebugs (This "golly doodlebugs" thing is new) Now why did I call you?

Me: Just to say hello and ask about the kids...

Mother: Oh...OK...well...good night.

Me: Good night...

I ask it any wonder that I didn't sleep well?


  1. Oh my goodness! That was some quick thinking on your part!

  2. Hang in there. I can so relate to this, but my mom would start on me when I visited her & not on the phone. Congrats on being able to divert her attention away from the original question. ♥ Diane

  3. Aww bless your heart! This sounds like a terribly stressful situation. I am so glad that you have Ann to help you out!

  4. Oh honey. You are such a good daughter. Your mom is one lucky woman to have a family - especially you - who love her so much! Won't you be glad when she gets moved and settled in to her new home. . .

  5. I assume you just shake your head and laugh after a phone call like that? Otherwise, you're going to go nuts. And "golly doodlebugs"? Where on earth do you think she picked that up? Your Ann sounds like a peach, I'm so glad that you were able to find her. The comment about paying her too much - I don't think it's possible lol. Kathy

  6. Awww....such a cute conversation. But, I know it must be very stressful!!!

  7. I know it is not funny at the time but isn't is funnier when retold?
    Golly doodlebugs.....I am laughing but still praying for you.

  8. Oh sweetie! I am truly impressed with the life you lead. You are remarkable woman and I am so glad I fond your blog.

    By the Texas mother-in-law still calls my husband doodlebug...yep...he's almost 30 :)

  9. You are so blessed to have someone that wonderful to take care of your folks. It is so sad to see our parents get to that point in their lives, isn't it? Hang in there. Love & blessings from NC!

  10. It's so awful when those we love loose their grasp on grandmother has early dementia, and it's such a challenge.

    You dealt with this situation with much grace & poise!

  11. Golly doodlebugs is such a sweet expression. You have more patience than you think. Hang in there, Belle.

  12. You are too funny! You should have slept great because you were thinking on your toes and put a whole bunch of energy into that conversation...hopefully, the rest will come! It is certainly deserved.

  13. What a smart cookie you are!! Very smart!!

  14. Golly Doodlebugs! Love that, isn't it great that she can still relate with the grandchildren. I am praying for you. The Bumpkin has been here, only with a mother, not a brother too! I am praying for you double!

  15. Sounds like you have your hands full. Best of luck to you. I think older people lose track of inflation and don't realize what things cost these days.

  16. Great thinking on your part..and quick! I was never quick with the answers to my I always dealt with her wrath!

    Have a great week!


  17. belle, belle, belle. you are one smart cookie. that's southern belle thinking for SURE. quick on your feet.
    and i'll say it again, you're a good daughter.

  18. Golly doodlebugs. That's cute.

    You are brilliant.

  19. That was some pretty quick thinking there. I don't think I would have been that brilliant right before bedtime.

  20. Cute story. You are a clever one!

  21. Oh my! Hang in there. Maybe it will be better once every one is moved and settled.

  22. I totally understand your stress...bless your heart! You are cordially invited to attend my Lilly Fashion Show next...check my site for today's post. Hope to see you there.

  23. You are brilliant and should be a hostage negotiator!!! LOL!

  24. I wish she had asked the question several more times...I'm dying to know what the story would have been at the end. You should do this professionally! You could negotiate for everyone who has an aging parent!


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