Friday, April 13, 2012


Well the family is now safely back in Ohio and I am again adjusted to just me and the critters. We had a really great visit though my back did not co operate and it went out the second day. Such a drama queen that herniated disk is.

I had washed the outside of house before they came and knew I had sprung my back but it took it a day or so to go all the way out. Then it took just one quick twist. It wasn't really bad and as long as I kept liquored up with Ibuprofen and kept moving.  I was in manageable pain during the visit.

Besides bringing their own house in the form of an RV, my brother Jim and  SIL Shirley like to make them selves useful. Shirley was quite helpful with food prep and such which really helped with my bad back problem. Jim has always been fascinated with fixing things and is really good at it.

When I lived in Florida they would come to visit and I would have a list of “to-dos” for Jim. He would have been really hurt if I hadn't. He is the only guy I know that when a repair might prove more difficult than first thought would not get frustrated but would smile and say, “Now it is getting interesting.” Problem solving makes it a sport.

I only had one chore for him, the door on my storm shelter was old and suspect. It needed rebuilding.  He took care of that right away using the lumber I all ready had. I only had to buy some anchors and screws. Then since my house is relatively new, I just didn't have any other problems---or so I thought.

Sometimes we adjust unconsciously to home failures. Once coming through the front door, Jim said “That's it. I've got to fix that.”

'Fix what?' was my thought for I did not realize something wasn't right.

It seems through the years here, the closer on my storm/screen door had gotten loose so that the door slammed quickly. After Jim adjusted it I was surprised to realize I had learned to hesitate slightly and stick out my butt when coming in the door so the storm door had a soft landing. It was a mindless action on my behalf. 

Now that it is fixed and closes slowly, I am having to break that habit of sticking my butt out to catch a door that no longer slams. I am still sticking the butt out but now quickly realize that it is no longer necessary. Lets see, it takes three weeks to break a habit. I should be butt normal in two more weeks.

He fixed a rather long list of things like that that I wasn't aware of being broken but the last thing he did really made my day. For safety reasons, my riding mower will not back up with the blade engaged. It was truly annoying and often kept me from making clean corners. Thanks to Jim, that is no longer a concern.

Now we didn't spend all the time working, we also played so don't feel too badly for Jim and Shirley.

A lot of you are married to a Jim, some of you are Jim or some of you like me, are related to one or have a Jim-like friend. If you don't have one in your life, I hope that is temporary for they are very valuable.

Well I have been away from blogging a long time and will try to catch up. Can't wait to go visit you all and see what had been happening.  I was just about one week away from breaking the blogging habit. Phew, that was close.


  1. Nice to have a good visit with family.

    I for one am soooooo glad you did not break the blogging habit!

  2. Sorry about your back; happy you have a Jim (and envious); howled at your unconscious butt compensation for storm deficiencies. So happy you didn't cross the line into blogging oblivion. Our lives are so much richer due to your observations.

  3. Lucky you. My dad was the Jim type always "fixing." Of three boys I was the prodigal son never to interested in learning mechanical and fix it skills. Oh well.

  4. Nice that you have guests that like to pitch in! I don't have to look far to find minor issues that could be replaced, fixed, adjusted or otherwise tinkered with to make them better. I cringe at how long that list could be. Somehow the little things get ignored, until they can't be.

  5. I too am glad you didn't break the habit of blogging! I don't have a Jim or even a friend. The way I get around it is to rent an apartment and when something breaks, I call the landlord. :-)

  6. I recognize the butt thing! I am married to a problem solver. I am definitely an adapter.

  7. Missed your blogs, welcome back. You are right we all need a Jim to get things running like a well oiled machine.

  8. My computer is sick and at last i am fixed up with my daughters lap top ...not the same as my trusty old stead though ...I have so missed it all but my back has been better ...I think that is something I didn't want to know.

    Love your post ...sadly I have never had a 'Jim' but always dreamt of one ....does he need a holiday in Scotland lol xx

  9. I am married to a Jim and did not know such people existed until I met him. Very handy!

    Sorry about your back. Discs are such a pain.

  10. Both of my dad's "kids" like to be Jim's. It's fun, but can get very interesting when the two of us are together. I'll do it...naw...I'll do
    Hope your back is better soon. Welcome back!

  11. We had a very popular programme here in the UK called "Jim Will Fix It" or spelt something like that anyway.

    I'm a bit of a Jim, maybe not as talented as your Jim though, but I try my best to fix anything I can.

    Glad you are back!!

  12. Sorry to hear about your back, but what a great visit you had with your family! Sounds wonderful. Yes, I have a "Jim"-- his name is Roger! Likes to fix anything and everything.

  13. Take care of that back. We too have a "Jim" and are so grateful to have him.

  14. I would love to borrow Jim for a year or so!

    There are a lot of those kinds of things here, but I get tired of trying to get someone to help me fix them and I have no mechanical ability whatsoever, so I just stick my butt out!



  15. We have a "Jim" who does repairs & also a son who is a "Jim" for our computers. Couldn't function without either of them!

  16. Hi Patti, whope your back is feeling better. I have a "Jim" who in Grenville and he really is great at fixing everything from electrical to plumbing. Glad you got some of your projects done by Jim. We were away for about a week and during that time I did not blog once and while I missed it, a break is always a good thing. But I did have my iPad on the trip and read lots of other (and some new) blogs.

  17. so Jim has multiple wives? (I couldn't resist...) and perhaps you threw out your back because of your butt problem-did you ever think of that? ...just throwing out options there my dear...
    I do hope your back feels better-back pain is a terrible thing!

  18. How great that you have a "JIM" in your life....I wish I had one. He sounds like a "Gem Of A Jim", in that he can fix anything and LOVES the challange....!So happy for you that you all had a such a GOOD time 'plsying' as well....! A wonderful visit all the way around!

  19. I really missed you! I'm so happy that you guys had a great visit and that you are feeling better, Patti. That is awesome that things are just how you want it and that you will be safe in your storm shelter. And that your lawnmower minds now. Welcome back to the grind!

    Kathy M.

  20. You are a lucky woman to have a brother like Jim. I'm glad you had a good visit and I hope your back will be OK.

  21. smartcat
    Thanks, it was a close call but I did miss posting and visiting.

    Aw, thanks so much. This really is addictive, not sure I could quit all together.

    Ah, but I'll bet they don't know a roadrunner from a hummer.

    Jim admits it is more fun fixing things for others than doing his own chores.

    Sometimes when something big breaks, I wish I rented. Not a bad move at all.

    You and me both. Lucky you to have an in house "fixer".

    Thanks so much. Some people just are good at those things. I need all the help I can get.

    Ha ha, I'll let him know. He works for food and lodging.

    I had a feeling John was one of those. Lucky you.

    That could be a problem. Better that than two slackers.

    LL Cool Joe,
    Thanks Joey. Good to hear you are a dabbler in the fix it trade also. I'll tell Jim about that UK company.

    Way to go Roger. He really is a handy fellow to have around.

    NC Mountainwoman,
    They are worth their weight aren't they? Enjoy yours.

    Hay, that butt thing works. I'll let Jim know since he works for an RV site and food:))

    Lucky you, you have a Jim for all occasions.

    Beatrice P. Boyd
    I agree, sometimes we need a break to charge our batteries. Ipads sure are handy.

    You know, it did kind of hurt when I stuck out my butt only to not have the door hit it:)) You may have a point.

    He is worth his weight in the good stuff all right. Hard to believe we fought like cats and dogs when younger.

    Had to laugh at your reference to the "grind". Sometimes it is though most often just fun.

    Thanks so much. It is much better today. Hopefully tomorrow will be pain free.

    Chatty crone
    Thanks sandie, it is good to be back.

  22. I agree with you on that. My husband, named Jim, would be the first to admit that he is not very handy. We need a handyman; I don't care what his name is. :0

  23. Hi Patti, Sounds like you all had a marvelous time. My brother (RAY) used to fix things in our house when he visited...Unfortunately he died a few years ago... BUT--my youngest son is like your Jim... He can fix most anything... He loves it.

    My sweet hubby is not very gifted in this area and neither am I--so the next time your brother is in TN, please send him to visit us.... ha ha

    Take care of that back.

  24. Butt Normal In Two More Weeks....sounds like you might have the beginning a book here. lol
    Dang Patti you are just too darn funny.
    Your so right about all of us needing a Jim in our lives. Now where oh where is my Jim. Please if your out there I am on the North Forty ready for your help.
    On a more serious note I hate you had to deal with your back while they were there. You know honey not to over do it before the come the next time right?
    I too feel like that sometimes about the habit of blogging. It seems my good intentions of posting more and visiting everyone is not working out so well.
    Glad your back

  25. Sometimes I need a Jim too! Great post, Patti!

  26. My husband is a pretty good Jim, plus we have a pocketful of friends who often join him in solving problems, especially those I categorize as "I don't know what is wrong with this."

    It sounds like you had a really good visit. Much better than the visitors at our house right now--husband has respiratory distress and I have had an intermittant earache since December. Both of us visited medical facilities this week.

  27. I thought I left a comment here yesterday, but I guess not. Sorry. My hubby can fix a lot of things, but when he can't, I call a friend of his, named Robert, who is a very nice handyman.

  28. When our parents were still alive, Denny and I would call well in advance of our return to Ohio and tell them to have their "honey do" lists ready for us and we would spend our 2-3 week visits doing repairs. It helped them and made us feel useful and kept us out of trouble.

    Since our sons handle their own repairs, we now do the same for Denny's sister who after years of renting has purchased a house and thus needs some occasional assistance. And she introduces us to great Albuquerque restaurants as payment. Win-win!

  29. David hurt his hip again this morning. So, I have one thing to say to you. Tell Jim that we have some really great RV parks in the Washington area. Dianne

  30. You best fix that butt habit quickly- I've heard that can lead to all kinds of problems! (snort)
    Glad you had a great visit and got many projects taken care of- but I did miss ya!

  31. Retired English Teacher,
    A handy man by any name is worth his weigh in good things. Hope you find one.

    Aw, and here I thought George was perfect. I guess darn near still counts.

    You are right, either a book or a country song:))
    Yeah, I did over do it, I tend to do that with company but it was also spring and things needed done.

    Reader Wil,
    They sure are handy to have around. Wish mine was around more often. Oh well---

    Gosh, I am so sorry you are both sick. Makes it hard to decide who will be the nurse. Do take care and both be well soon.

    Always good to have a back up plan. Guess I need to look for a Robert.

    RV Vagabonds,
    Hum, wonder if it is an Ohio, RV'ing trait. You all are just like Jim. Way to to. You will always be welcome wherever you go.

    I am so sorry about David. I'll add your place to Jim's list. He works for food:))

    Coloring outside the lines,
    It sure looks strange also. Sadly I am still sticking it out there.
    It was a fun and productive visit.

  32. I have Jim nephew and he is wonderful! He is handy and helpful and eager to fix anything. JIM is a great name and most Jims are awesome!! I'm popping in from the a-z challenge. Your writing is great!

  33. Well, I have a Jim, but he is useless at that sort of thing. My dad was a jack of all trades and could fix anything. we miss having him around here!

  34. Yes you are so right about the help but these days it can be a Julie too. Sorry that your back got bad again and am hoping it'll feel better soon.
    Been away from blogging too.

  35. Wish I had a Jim. I'm afraid I have to either do it myself or hire someone.
    Hope you back is better.

  36. Yeahhhh! we have a door like that too!!! i just thought it was supposed to be that way!!! Now i will have Bastiaan check it so i don't have to stick out my butt either!!! haha

    Thank you Patti!
    Big hugs from Indiana

  37. Wow, lucky you - yes Jims must be treasured!! :-) they make life easier for the rest of us nitwits.

    I recently moved to California and although I do have friends and family here, every time I hear or read anything about Arkansas, you are the first person that comes to my mind!!

    Gosh I have missed so many months of posts. What was I thinking by taking such a long unnecessary break ?!

  38. mare ball,
    Welcome to TNS. So glad you stopped by and thanks for the lovely compliment. Keep your Jim happy, they are sooo valuable.

    Ha,ha. But then your Jim can get by on his looks.

    Heidrun Khokhar
    Yes, Julies are rarer but can just as handy. Back is all better now, thanks.

    Sweet Virginia Breeze,
    Don't feel badly, I am back to hiring again myself. Hopefully I won't have to for a while now.

    It really is a simple adjustment to the closer but learning you no longer have to pooch out your butt takes some time:))
    Be well my friend.

    Lynda G.
    Thanks, I have missed the daily give and take a lot.

    Well, that certainly was a big move. Hope the US is treating you perfectly.
    You certainly picked a pretty state with lots of choices.
    So glad you are once again back in the mix.

  39. I wish a Jim would visit me. I can't even find guys that I'd pay to fix things. I haven't been in the blogging circle much lately either. I'm trying to get the ranch back in shape and I can't find any Jims. I'm now doing the A-Z and I am REALLY behind.

  40. Oh I am so sorry your back went out before your family got there, but glad you enjoyed their visit anyway, thank goodness for your wonderful family. Glad to hear you have a storm cellar too, been hearing about some terrible weather crossing the country.

  41. Glad your back. It must be great to have someone so handy in the family. All the men in my life are mechanically challenged. Take care of that back!

  42. Happy to see you again! My sweetie is a "Jim" except that he is so busy and we have so many things right now that want to break it's been very frustrating for him.

  43. I'm so glad you're still here, I love your wonderful stories! You would be greatly missed should you ever decide to give up blogging.

    I could use a Jim. Hubby is pretty good at fixing most things, but he doesn't especially like to and is a procrastinator. Not that I would know anything about that! ha!

  44. Luckily I have two sons nearby who are both in the home remodeling business. It's been a God-send at times.
    Glad you decided to stick with blogging. We'd miss you !

  45. Glad you are still blogging!! I've never had disc problems, but have had sciatica, and know how painful that is..I hope this clears up for you. Love your posts!

  46. Manzanita,
    I wondered where you went. I wish Jim lived closer. He does much better work than the fellows I pay.

    Linda Starr,
    Back was bad but at least my allergies waited till they left. I am feeling lucky there.
    Yep, it is that ugly time of year weather wise.

    I would have thought Ron would have been Mr.Handy. Oh well, he is cute and sweet which counts a lot.

    Mom of 12,
    Thanks. So glad "Sweetie" is handy but can see with both your schedules that it would be hard to keep up.

    Hopefully you are a tactful nagger to that talented procrastinator.

    Thanks, and are you ever lucky to have TWO such fellows available.

    Thanks, I have had the ugly S also. I am 100% now. We both need to do our back exercises.

  47. Thanks for your always welcome comments and visits, Patti!