Saturday, July 27, 2013


There is a reason this blog is called "Creating memories".  It's because when I was first diagnosed with Alzheimer's the first thing I realized was that my "memories" would fade over time. So, I set out documenting things like the boxes and boxes of photos we had accumulated over the years.  I re-evaluated my "bucket list" to see how many things I could accomplish and realized that I had short time to "create new memories" for my family.

This all came to mind when I was with my son this week.  I shared something with him that I thought I had told him long ago, and his response was "you never told me that".  Then he started to laugh as he recounted all the times in his almost thirty years that he had said that to me.  You honestly don't think to tell your children everything that happened in your childhood.  And, since we don't live near relatives there are not many people around recounting stories of what I did or did not do growing up.

When I look back at my life growing up I realize a lot of it surrounds sports.  My oldest brother was an athlete in high school playing football and basketball.  I don't remember a lot of that because he was so much older than I was (I was in kindergarten when he went off to college), but I do remember some of his broken bones from football.  Long after my brother was out of college he returned home and by then I had taken up many sports including figure skating, tennis and golf, to name a few.  My brother played golf on his college team so when he came home we started playing golf together. When I started working full time, every morning at 5:00 a.m. we would meet at the golf course and play nine holes before we would go off to work. That's how I really got to know my older brother.

My other brother who is two years older than I am was always playing baseball, bowling, basketball or golf.  I was a tomboy and always wanted to be out in the school yard next to our house to play with the guys.  He would put me in the outfield (knowing I hated it), and then would complain to my mom that I was out there turning cartwheels instead of paying attention to the game (which I was).

My dad loved to fish.  He fished almost every day of his life.  He was really into tying his own fishing flies.  My brothers didn't like to go fishing -- they said it was boring.  I wanted to go with my dad, just because I wanted to spend time with him.  He worked nights and would come home and make himself some breakfast, go fishing, come home sleep, get up and start all over again.  So, when I was in school he was  fishing or sleeping and when I was home, he was at work.  So weekends were my time to go fishing with my dad.  He also accompanied my brother and I out on the golf course. Since my dad passed away over thirty years ago, those memories of just the two of us in the boat on hot summer days are precious to me.  I hate to think I will lose them.

My sports were figure skating (and the competitions that went along with that), tennis and golf.  I played an occasional summer league of softball every now and then, but girls were not encouraged into sports when I was growing up.  I loved to be outside so sports is what I was doing, whether on a frozen pond in the winter, or a tennis court in the summer (plus indoor tennis in the winter in Illinois).

The reason I went into this is that many of my "memories" of growing up revolved around sports.  (I was also heavily involved in theater and music but that is for another blog entry.) On my bucket list there are many sporting events that I still want to see and experience with my son.  I'm only reminded of this as this week I received my annual "you did not get tickets in the lottery for the Master's tournament" again -- I've been trying for a long time.  I want to experience that with him as well as my brother -- and although we all enter the lottery every year we don't get tickets.  I also put in the lottery for tickets for an NCAA Final Four men's basketball tournament.  I've experienced a Final Four women's tournament with my son, but the men's side is more exciting.  So, we will keep trying and hope that those items come off that bucket list while I am still able to enjoy them.

When we think of "memories" it is mostly about experiences.  My husband doesn't enjoy "experiences".  If I could spend my money any way I wanted I would travel and experience some of the things the world has to offer as well as those sporting events I would like to see.  My husband enjoys "things".  He wants to be able to look at something, hold it, and cherish it.  He didn't have a lot growing up so this is important to him.  We didn't have a lot growing up either, but we had tennis rackets, ice skates and baseballs!  So, we argue a lot in our house about vacations versus things. Making memories is not that important to him.  Fortunately (the way I see it anyway) my son is on my side when it comes to experiences -- he tries to buy gifts for us like tickets to a show, sporting event or to an event we would like to see.

So, I will try to experience what I can and hopefully my son will have fond memories of some of our experiences together -- long after I will be able to remember them.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Weird Week

It's been a weird week.  I seem to be about a step behind in everything I do.  I'm very unsettled and I don't do well when I am.  And, I can't pinpoint the problem, it just happens.  I have a lot on my mind and since my mind doesn't function properly, it's like these things get stuck in my mind and there is no room for everything else to go into it. The things on my mind are weighing heavily on me right now.  I used to be able to let things go, but that is more difficult for me now.  I focus on them so much that they eat away at me.  My patience wears thin and I can get pretty cranky.  When I was young and someone would tell me that I was cranky I would go take a nap and that seemed to help.  Taking a nap these days doesn't help so much.

I just re-read this and it rambles -- sorry about that.  Can't seem to capture the words the way I want them today.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

This and That

I have lots of things to write about but I'm having one of those days where I can't get what is in my brain to the keyboard.  So, probably most of it will have to wait.

But, I wanted to tell you that you may be seeing lots of information in the next few days about Alzheimer's research.  The Alzheimer's Association is hosting their annual Research conference in Boston and it brings people from all over the world together to talk about what is being done to find a cure for Alzheimers.  I attended one of these meetings once and was blown away by how much is being done internationally.  For updates on the meeting you can go to

Promise to be back soon.

Tuesday, July 09, 2013


thanks for everyone's comments and emails I have received about the PRR.  Robyn --I would kill for your finishing time.  Good job!

Friday, July 05, 2013

Photos from Peachtree Road Race

I look pregnant in these photos because I have my "fanny pack" in front.

Reflections on the Peachtree Road Race

I promise that other than posting some photos later this is the last you will hear of the Peachtree Road Race from me this year!

Thanks to all those that encouraged me and had to listen to me complain about doing this Race.  Thanks to Katie and Robyn for the running tips. Thanks to my son and daughter-in-law for including me in the race with them.  Thanks to the rest of my family and friends for having faith in me for knowing that I could do it when I wasn't sure that I could.

I would have never put this event on my "bucket list", but I am glad I did it.  Will I do it again?  Maybe.

I'm not one of the flag waving Americans that tout my freedom all the time.  But, as I was walking/running yesterday I was proud to be able to do that knowing that our freedom is many times taken for granted. I was so humbled by many that I saw walking and was proud to have been among them.

Here are some things I observed during the day and things I will remember for a long time:

  • The Giant American Flag at the beginning of the race (television doesn't do it justice)
  • The friendliness of all the runners
  • The many funny slogans on the backs of people's shirts
  • The families watching with their young ones along the way
  • The men running in their kilts
  • Running through "holy water" at one of the churches and having a priest throw "holy water" on you
  • The bands that played along the route
  • An older man stopping me to ask me to dance in front of a dixieland band (which I did)
  • A radio station booth along the side of the route playing "frosty the snowman"
  • Couples holding hands as they walked the course
  • A 92 year old man walking the route with help from friends and family
  • The little girls and boys along the route wanting to give you a high five
  • The colorful tutus that many of the girls and women were wearing
  • The two firemen that were dressed in full fire gear to honor those fire fighters recently killed in Arizona
  • The Shepherd Spinal Center patients in their wheel chairs out high fiving and encouraging us on -- very moving
  • the hunky firemen that were in one spot and all the pretty girls wanting their photos taken with them - I'm not sure who had the bigger smiles!
  • The mud at Piedmont Park at the end of the race -- I actually got stuck in it
  • The sweet and juicy peaches at the finish line 
I didn't do my personal best as far as time is concerned, but I was fine with my time.  My coveted Peachtree Road Race shirt will now get framed!