Monthly Archives: December 2016


Most folks, they have boxes of ornaments they’ve had since they were kids. Dozens of trinkets with historic, sentimental value. I think those kinds of trees are special for kids. They establish tradition, and encourage storytelling. Not to mention, kids’ ornaments are often a part of the tree (I know mine were), which sparks creativity, and shows off the results… (more…)


Ray was sooooo bored. He would scratch bad things for attention, and bite our feet. Playing with him wasn’t enough. He was starting to lose his kitten sparkle. So we got him a Christmas present. Meet Rebecca Maxine Troublebutt: We adopted her from the Montgomery County Humane Society. We were so very impressed with their setup and staff! I’m used… (more…)

The Last Journal: Milk toast

Mom suffered from depression, alcoholism, and paranoid schizophrenia. There is surprisingly little evidence of the last in her journal, but here you can see a sliver of it. Her awareness of the event is unusual. I do remember her talking about this, though it may have been a similar incident.  Feb. 23 1983 Wednesday, back to routine and work. Good days… (more…)

The Last Journal: The impossible feeling

This was about the time I realized this journal came to me when I am nearly the same age as she was at the time. Yes, hot flashes are crappy. Feb 20 – 83 Zenna not PG. Wants me to do some redoing of her furniture–I ain’t got time to do my own. Need 2 me’s. Good night at work.… (more…)

The Last Journal: One big sick happy family

Feb 17 1983 Rain, rain, rain & wind. Not nice. Zenna called–she thinks she is going to have another baby & is about 6 weeks along. Sold very little food last night, but I am feeling a little better. I had bad throat, headache on way home. Ate good. S went to school–one bus late–but went. She’s doing well, but… (more…)

The Last Journal: Just plain pooped

Reading the journal has created a great confusion of names. I am Cat, but not here, but there is a cat. Took me a few mentions to realize I wasn’t the one with fleas. My brother’s name is Lane Dorn. He now goes by Lane, but then he was Dorn. And yes, I was dating someone named Lane. Again, it… (more…)

The Last Journal: Now to find my way!

The “mom” mentioned in the first line is my maternal grandmother, Elizabeth, who died about 1945. There was a lot of woo in my family, me included at the time. Feb. 11, 1983 Mom called Zenna –?– Mar call-in. Tracy south of Sacramento. Kern got it for drunk driving. They could be there a while. Lane pulling at S again.… (more…)

The Last Journal: Feathers and all

I don’t remember Mom being particularly religious. She didn’t attend church, and she thought the Bible was okay for historical purposes. Apparently, she got a bit more devout. She glued a cross to the inside cover of this journal, and mentions God several times. Feb 9 83 Mar got off 3:30. Feb 8 83 – was sick we went out… (more…)

The Last Journal: Num dead again

For the next couple of entries, I’m going to transcribe exactly as written, as it gives a better window into her life. You’ll see I’ve been editing puncuation to make things more readable. I’ll go back to editing after this, because transcribing randomly spelled words would make me insane.  Well, more insane.  I will still leave the occasional misspelling, because… (more…)

The Last Journal: 8 months, 7 days

Marlene had been Mom’s best friend for about 15 years at this point. I’ll let Mom speak for herself later as to the depth of that love. Marlene was a bass player and vocalist, and spent some time traveling on various shoestring tours. She had a fine voice. I say “had” because I’ve no idea if she sings any more.… (more…)