Archives for March 2012

Mojitos Are Great

Having a wonderful time with the girls.

Mojitos are awesome. Chocolate Martinis are too strong.

Wonder how long I can stay up.

How are you doing?

Screw it. I’m going to see a movie.

What I should do: finish a job I wasn’t able to finish at work; sleep; find a new person to interview/lounge with.

What I’m going to do: see a movie. Because I wanna see it. And I’m going to go all by myself. Because I wanna see it now and don’t want to wait for someone to maybe want to go see it with me.

So there.

A Change of Pace

So. Today I be published the newest Lounging with LannaLee episode. {And it is AWESOME.}

So you guys should listen to it. And stuff.

Not talking about that elephant in the room today, it’s all about the podcast, people.
Don’t miss a beat, sign up for the Lounging with LannaLee mailing list today!
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Suzy and Company

Suzy and Company

Mom and SuzyWhat a weekend we had. All last week we were gearing up for a move, Mom and Dad were moving to a smaller home and selling their large house. The big move was on Saturday. Bill took work off last week and helped Mom move smaller boxes and set up the new digs. I stuck around the house and hung out with Dad – fortunately I was able to work at the same time too.

I’m still not ready to detail exactly how the weekend panned out. But I wanted to point out some people outside our small circle (Me, Mom, Bill and Edmund) who helped enormously throughout the move and Dad’s vigil. Aunt Barbara Robinson spent the week helping Mom pack and keeping us in line. Cousin Jim Morin and his wife Tracy came down on Saturday to help us move and eventually to sit with Dad as he passed. Bill’s friends Timmy, Carl and Peter helped Jimmy and Billy move stuff from the house to the new mobile home or tractor trailer (for the stuff going up north to Camp Cull.) We wouldn’t have been able to make it through the weekend without these folks.

And then there was Suzy. Who arrived on Friday to help Mom and Aunt Barbara finish packing and set up the new home. When Dad saw her, he told her “I’m going to die today.” And, when it was clear that Dad was on his way out, she took a day off work to stay in vigil with us. Suzy helped us keep Dad comfortable, and orchestrated everything so we didn’t miss a thing. And we laughed. And we cried. And Suzy knew what to do. I am not sure if it was because she’s been there before or because she has some sort of gift for it, my suspicion is that it’s a little from column A and a little from column B. It was Suzy who gathered us together to hear Dad’s final words on Friday night and Suzy who gathered us on Saturday at the end, when Dad’s breathing changed. If it weren’t for Suzy, Dad would not have been as comfortable as he was. And I bless her for it.

And she kept us laughing – which is what Dad would’ve wanted. The hospice nurse was in on Friday and after hearing what was happening with Dad, she ordered a bunch of drugs and gave us some instruction. If there was a fever, the hospice care kit had Tylenol we could give as a suppository.

Since Dad was doing so poorly Friday, we decided, Me, Mom, Aunt Barbara and Suzy, to sleep in the living room with Dad. It was a regular slumber party. We all tried to fall asleep, but Dad was having difficulty breathing. So Suzy and I sat next to him for a while to make sure he was okay.

Every few minutes, Suzy was checked/felt Dad’s forehead. I didn’t realize what she was doing until she said, “The nurse said to watch for a fever, but I’ve never heard of a cancer patient getting a fever.”

I look at her. “You just want to give him a suppository.”

“You’re right,” she says.

And we burst into laughter.

What I guess I want to say is that because of Suzy, we were free to give Dad a beautiful send off. With laughter and tears. And a feeling of rightness.

Don’t get me wrong, I’d much rather have my Dad alive and kicking. Driving my Mom nuts because he refuses to wear his teeth. But if he had to go, this was as it should have been.

Last Picture Show

Last Picture Show

Dad Last PhotoThis is the last picture taken of Dad. It was taken on February 28th, while he was still in the hospital. There was no opportunity to take another one. Funny how that happens. You always think there is more time, until it slips away.

And now we are left behind to figure out how we can live without him. Life seems a bit duller. He was supposed to live forever. Didn’t God get the Memo?

I suppose we’ll survive. We’ll get by on firsts. The first Easter, first Mother’s Day, the first Father’s Day, the first 4th of July, the first Thanksgiving, and the first Christmas without him. We’ll have some practice. Right now I’m working my way through the first Tuesday without him. So far, so good.

I miss him.

I don’t see this getting better for a long time.


My DadI want to write about what happened this weekend. But I just can’t. Not really. Not yet.

If you don’t already know, my Dad died on Saturday. He had stage 4 small cell lung cancer. We found out he was ill in February. It was very fast. Too fast.

Here is what we posted on Dad’s Facebook page:

3/24/2012 – We are sorry to report that Walter Maheux passed away peacefully this evening at 8:10 p.m. surrounded by family at his home in Westbrook.

Last night he a moment of clarity, also surrounded by his loved ones, and he told us, “Don’t think I don’t notice all the angels around me. Family, that’s what’s important.” and “I love you all.”

We were blessed to have Walter/Dad/Uncle/Friend in our lives. Thank you all for your kind words and prayers. Love to you all ~ Lanna, Dottie, Billy, and Edmund.

It hasn’t quite sunk in yet. I haven’t broken down. I’ve cried, but I fear a melt-down may be in order. And that’s okay. Dad deserves a melt-down or two. He wouldn’t want us to be unhappy, but tough.

The Day after

Not feeling much like writing today. In fact, don’t feel much like turning on my computer, even. Have much to write about, for sure.

So I’ll do another phone post and get some more sleep.

Nighty night.

No Post

My Dad died today. I’m doing okay, surrounded by family. I’ll post more later. 


We are sitting in vigil with Dad. He seems to be in some distress, and we’ve started giving him more medications. This might be it, or not. We aren’t sure. Instead of taking things a day at a time, we’re going on an hour at a time. We’ve all been assured that this is a natural progression of dying. Whatever.

We’re still moving Mom and Dad to the mobile home tomorrow. Dad would want us to do it because he’d want Mom to be all set. It’s just another glorious day in suck city!

Aunt Barbara and Cousin Suzy are here with us. We’re all going to have a slumber party with Dad tonight. Bill’s going to go up and sleep in Mom’s room, he’s running this rodeo tomorrow and will need the rest.

I must say, in spite of what is going on, we are fairly upbeat. Having Suzy here is a big help, she’s a firecracker and helps lighten the mood. And she laughs at all the wrong jokes Bill and I tell – and then she makes her own.

Lounging with LannaLee #004 Orion Foxwood is live!

Lounging with LannaLee #004 Orion Foxwood is live!

Orion Foxwood Lounged with LannaLee and he got a couch! And he likes it!

Orion Foxwood Lounged with LannaLee and he got a couch! And he likes it!

Hey. What are you doing? Just hanging? Have about 36 minutes to chill and relax and listen to an awesome conversation? Well, sidle over here to the Lounging with LannaLee site to listen to the newest podcast awesomeness, episode #004 Orion Foxwood Conjures up a Good Time.

You know you wanna.

Watch this:

Now listen.

My Grumps, My Grumps, My lovely lady grumps

My Grumps, My Grumps, My lovely lady grumps

It's a big schnozz, but I like it anywayThis picture is of me in a better mood. You will thank me for not snapping a self-portrait right now. For I am grumpy. Oh, so grumpy.

I probably just need some sleep. But this whole thing we are going through really sucks. And my positivity has taken a nap (a dirt nap, if you will.) [gallows humor. gotta love it.]

So I be grumpy and whatnot and you can’t stop me.

BTW: The internet is made of cats.

[Okay, now I’m slightly less grumpy.]

Big Doings with Lounging with LannaLee

If you follow the blag here, you know my family is going through a lot with my Dad being sick and all. And you also know I started a crazy project, Lounging with LannaLee, that launched in March.

Fortunately, I recorded 5 episodes in late January/early February, so I was able to start on time even in the midst of chaos. Next week, I will run out of episodes. I have a plan, though. If everything goes well (Dad is still kicking, etc.), I’ll be recording a new episode with a friend this weekend. I am a superstitious sort, so I don’t want to name names, but rest assured she is super awesome, and you will love her. Totally.

Once I get past this weekend, I’m going to book another one. And I am going to try my damndest to keep up with my once-per-week podcast production schedule.

I am really pleased with the response I’ve had with the 3 episodes that have run already. Just last week, I signed Lounging with LannaLee up for iTunes. And the guest for this week is Orion Foxwood. Here he talks about his experience recording his episode:

Curious? Why don’t you click on over to Lounging with LannaLee, and listen to an episode?

Don’t miss a beat, sign up for the Lounging with LannaLee mailing list today!
Or subscribe to Lounging with LannaLee on iTunes!



BillThis is my brother Bill. I took this picture of him, and it very well captures his smart assery. We call each other Brat. It’s a term of endearment. I don’t talk about him much here because I think he would hate it. Well, I’ll find out now. Cause I’m gonna talk about him.

My immediate family is very close. Me, Dad, Mom and Bill. We might not talk every day, or see each other a lot, but every once in a while we’ll get together to get a dose of family.

Things have changed a bit since Edmund and I moved back to Maine, now I have a long-standing weekly dinner-date with my parents. And more change since Dad got sick, we’ve either seen or talked to each other every day.

So while I look all fancy because I talk about it on my blag, just how much time I’m spending with my parents, blah blah blah. I want to be clear that Bill is just as awesome, if not more so. When Dad was in the hospital, Bill took a week off from work and helped Mom out at the house so she’d feel comfortable staying overnight with Dad. [Keeping the wood fire burning, watching the dogs.] This week, Bill took more time off at work so he could come down here and help my Mom get the new place ready for the move (which we are doing on Saturday), furthermore, he’s coordinating the move. Getting a tractor trailer, a driver for it, making sure that we have smooth sailing on move day. He’s arriving tomorrow.

If there was one thing our parents taught us, by their actions, is that part of life is just showing up. And Bill has done that in spades. He lives 2 hours away and the first week Dad was sick, he drove down and back twice. He has been down every weekend, and if he’s not down here, he calls Mom and/or me every day.

I see so much of my father in him. Fixing things. Making sure my Mom has everything she needs. Making sure I have a working blinker on my car. Taking care of Dad (better than me) with such love. Trying to maintain a sense of humor about this whole thing. And being there.

Last Saturday I told Bill, “Well, it could be worse.”

He looks at me, half smiles, cocks his eyebrow and says, “How?”

I didn’t have an answer.

And ladies, yes, he is single. So if you have a hankering for a shy, smart-assed blue collar dude, he might be your guy. If you’re good enough for him, that is.

Beddy Bed

So tired. Going to bed.

Dad was better today. That’s a good thing. Crazy-ass week ahead.

Super Trooper

Super Trooper

Mom with a Frosty BeverageMy Mom is the best one. The super best Mom ever. Don’t get me wrong, she’s no push-over, & she is intimately familiar with how to administer tough love. But when you’re sick, her mom-mommy-ness goes in full force. She’ll bring you things. Pat your head. She makes you feel better. She is so good at the nursing part of mothering that, when sick, I didn’t stop calling for my mother until I was in my 30s.

Now Dad is sick. And she is right there, getting him to do things and helping him feel better. There may come a time where his care might become too much for her, and we have a plan in place for that contingency, but right now Dad is at home where we all want him to be, getting the best care he can get.

Mom and DadMy parents have always had a close marriage. They are best friends, lovers, and partners in crime, and if you were to look for a relationship to emulate, you couldn’t do much better. They complement each other, and back each other up. They communicate well. Very well. When I was a kid, my parents would sit in the kitchen after dinner and talk. Sometimes for hours. In their later years, they talked in the morning. Up until Dad went in the hospital.

Mom and Dad have been married 45 years, and they were looking forward to going many more. So, while Dad’s illness has been a big blow, it has been devastating for my Mom. But she has been putting her “big girl panties” on, and fighting the good fight. Packing her house up to move, tending to Dad, keeping lines of communication open with our extended family. Right now her focus is Dad and his care.

I give Mom props. For her loving and understanding care of my Dad. For stepping outside of her comfort zone and taking care of things that Dad used to do. And, most of all, for keeping a sense of humor throughout all of this.