Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Weekend Open Thread

thank you on blackboard

When this post goes up, I’ll be boarding a plane back to NYC after spending two days in Missouri to attend my grandfather’s funeral. I’m grateful I was able to get back and pay respects to the man who meant so much to me, as well as seek and offer comfort from my family as we all said good-bye to Jack Bonser. It was a touching service, and I was especially moved by essays my grandmother and aunt wrote, as well as a poem by my uncle, and then at the cemetery, the five-gun salute and the playing of Taps (my grandpa was a WWII vet) totally brought on the water works. But it was all nice and moving and just what he’d have wanted, really.

My grandpa always told us to call when we got home so he’d know we were safe. At his funeral, my aunt told him he didn’t need to call; we knew he got home safely. Right after the funeral, we found a penny on my seat in the car (it wasn’t there before the funeral, and the door was locked). The year on the penny was 1988. Grandpa’s birthday was 8-8 and his favorite number was 8. I think he wanted us to know he got home safely, after all.

This was an emotional and tiring week, but all of your kind words brought some comfort. And though I didn’t plan to do a donation drive the week my grandfather died, your contributions certainly helped ease whatever financial anxiety I had about the expense of flying to the funeral and paying our babysitter for so many extra hours this week. Your donations have also made a big dent in the site overhead for the year, and I can’t tell you how thankful I am for that. So far, over 75 of you have made donations, totaling over $1400! I am floored by your generosity and the sense of community I feel from this site.

If you would like to make a donation, this is the final day I will explicitly invite you to do so until next year’s drive. You are always more than welcome to hit the support button at the top of the site, but this is the week that your collective donations really add up – even, and especially, the smaller ones. From the bottom of my heart, thank you, thank you, thank you!

We’ll be back to normal on Monday, with no more annoying donation drive messages, I promise. Until then, have a wonderful weekend. It’s mother-fuckin’ fall!

29 comments… add one
  • avatar

    bethany September 20, 2013, 4:30 pm

    That’s wild about the penny in the car!! I’m a believer in things like that, for sure. I’m glad your grandpa was able to send you that sign to let you guys know he’s ok.

    I’m so sad the summer is over. Fall is so depressing to me. I think the only thing I like about fall is my sweet Fall Jacket and getting to wear boots again. That said, when can I start wearing skinny jeans and boots again? Is it still too early in the season?

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    • Fabelle

      Fabelle September 20, 2013, 4:39 pm

      I usually courtesy wait (for boots & skinny jeans) until ACTUAL Fall begins (so… tomorrow πŸ™‚ )

      With that said, I need new boots. My go-to pair is from 2011 I think, & all worn out in the heels.

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      • avatar

        bethany September 20, 2013, 4:44 pm

        If you like them, you should just get them re-soled! You save a ton of money!

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      kerrycontrary September 20, 2013, 5:02 pm

      I love skinny jeans and boots, and north face jackets, and scarves. Fall is my favorite! But, I absolutely can’t wear boots until it’s below 55. My feet get too freaking hot. I actually feel panicky when my feet are hot and I can’t cool them down because I have boots on.

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      • avatar

        lets_be_honest September 20, 2013, 5:06 pm

        I just got my first patagonia fleece yesterday from my darling sister. I’m throwing away all my clothes and living in a uniform of these. They are amazing.

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    • CatsMeow

      CatsMeow September 20, 2013, 5:37 pm

      I need new fall clothes, and boots especially. I wish I had more money!

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  • Lianne

    Lianne September 20, 2013, 4:44 pm

    Um, that essay is mother-fuckin’ brilliant.

    Glad you could get home and be with your family, Wendy. And that penny was totally a sign. I so believe in that stuff! So comforting πŸ™‚

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  • avatar

    kerrycontrary September 20, 2013, 5:03 pm

    I’m glad you had safe travels and could say goodbye to your grandfather, Wendy. I’m also glad the donation drive raised so much money! Hopefully we can all pull together to treat you for the holidays πŸ™‚ Or atleast use your affiliate links a lot!

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  • avatar

    GatorGirl September 20, 2013, 5:13 pm

    “Check out my shellacked decorative vegetables, assholes. Guess what season it isβ€”fucking fall.”

    I’m really embarrassed to admit part of my weekend plans are digging out our fall decorations and arranging my decorative gourds. Hahaha. Sadly it’s still in the 90’s here in FL. It’s fucking hot. I’ve started saying September is the worst month of the year to be a Floridian…most of the rest of the country is transitioning into one of my favorite seasons, while we’re still stuck in the “It’s hotter than the face of the sun” season (as opposed to “it’s just normal people hot” the other season). How can I make chili and wear boots and a sweater when it’s so hot my skin melts off when I leave the AC??

    On an unrelated note, I’m so over football. Bring on hockey. (We are going to the UF game tomorrow but it’s going to be so damn hot I don’t even want to tailgate. My problems are so lame.)

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    • avatar

      starpattern September 20, 2013, 6:40 pm

      Ugh my sympathies on the heat. By the end of summer I am SO sick of the heat and humidity. We finally dropped below 90 for avg highs the last week or so in AL, so maybe your cooler weather is coming soon!

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  • CatsMeow

    CatsMeow September 20, 2013, 5:19 pm

    My grandma has vascular dementia (she has had 3 strokes) and possibly Alzheimer’s on top of it. On Monday she fell flat on her face – she has a goose egg on her forehead, 2 black eyes, a chipped tooth, busted nose, and lots of swelling. They discharged her from the hospital because she didn’t have a concussion or anything, and now last night she fell AGAIN and broke her hip. She had emergency surgery this morning to fix it so I’m at my mom’s right now. It will be a long recovery and we’ll have to find her somewhere else to live since she obviously can’t stay in her home by herself. I think this is the beginning of the end for her. πŸ™

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    • theattack

      theattack September 20, 2013, 5:23 pm

      I’m sorry, Cats. πŸ™ That is so hard for everyone involved. Does she live close to your parents?

      I’m leaving for my hometown (again) tonight to visit my grandfather. We think his end began a week ago, and every time we take a step forward, we take another one back somewhere different. I hope we’re both wrong about what it means, and I hope your grandmother can get as close to normal as possible.

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      • CatsMeow

        CatsMeow September 20, 2013, 5:27 pm

        I’m sorry ta. πŸ™

        Yeah, she lives really close (like, walking distance) to my mom and also my uncle. Her mind has been slipping and we’re finding out she’s been worse off than we originally thought as far as her daily functioning goes. She had a sudden change in mood and orientation (she’s a lot more confused than usual) at the beginning of the month, and now she has fallen 3 times. I’m not sure what’s going on, they said she hasn’t had any more strokes. Getting old is so shitty.

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    • avatar

      GatorGirl September 20, 2013, 5:25 pm

      πŸ™ I’m sorry cats and theattack. You’ll both be in my happy thoughts this weekend.

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    • Fabelle

      Fabelle September 21, 2013, 2:20 pm

      Aw, Cats & TA πŸ™ That’s so tough, you’re both in my thoughts <3<3

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  • TaraMonster

    TaraMonster September 20, 2013, 5:40 pm

    First of all, I’ve been meaning to post my condolences, Wendy. Your grandfather sounds like he was an awesome dude. I loved your tribute post to him. It was so beautiful. I was tearing up.

    And second of all, I want to wish everyone a nice couple of weeks. I won’t be able to be on DW much as I’ll be traveling (Eurotrip!). I will miss lurking and DW stalking. You all better be on your best behavior while I’m gone! Because I will be doing enough misbehaving for all of us (and probably then some).

    Cheerio! Doei! Auf Wiedersehen! Au revoir!

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  • rainbow

    rainbow September 20, 2013, 8:51 pm

    It would be pointless to send third world money your way but I totally would if you were local, so thank you for this place and I hope the drive goes great.

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  • MELH

    MELH September 20, 2013, 9:18 pm

    When my grandma was getting ready to pass, she had been unresponsive for a few days and we had someone in our large family with her 24/7 so she wouldn’t be alone when it happened. After a shift, my cousin had a dream where my grandpa, who had passed away a few years before, was sitting in the room with her and my grandma. And he told my cousin not to worry, because my grandma wasn’t alone. At her funeral, my Dad spoke and said he imagined when it was time, my grandpa took her hand and brought her home. That dream gave us all a little bit of comfort during a hard time, and I really think it was a sign, just like your penny.

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  • avatar

    NavyWife September 20, 2013, 9:44 pm

    Every now and then, Dear Abby will publish “Pennies from Heaven” stories, where readers write in and share stories of finding pennies following a loved one’s death. Similar to Wendy’s story, the date is usually a symbolic number (an anniversary, birthday, etc). I think it would be very comforting to experience something like that and Wendy, I’m glad you got to!

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  • avatar

    quixoticbeatnik September 21, 2013, 6:05 pm

    With all the rain that we had yesterday, it’s actually COOL in Houston! Felt like fall/winter this morning. Although it was nice it just reminded me that I will have to start shopping for pants/warmer layers soon, ugh. Although I will start working at White House Black Market soon, yay!!!! Finally got a part-time job to do while looking for/applying to full-time ones. Gonna use my super sweet discount to buy so many clothes. Fuck yea! I’m actually excited about working there. Hopefully it will make me a lot happier.

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  • katie

    katie September 21, 2013, 7:23 pm

    oh my god everyone tell me that its a terrible idea to adopt another cat !!!

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    • avatar

      rachel September 21, 2013, 8:24 pm

      Are you gonna get Leo’s twin?? The only downside I see is it making it harder to find a new house, if you’re moving. Otherwise, I think it would be adorable.

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    • rainbow

      rainbow September 21, 2013, 9:25 pm

      There might come a time when all your cats are dead except for this one, and if you then feel like moving to a scientific base in Antarctica you won’t be able to and maybe sort of wish you adopted a senior cat or something and you’ll realize you’ve just indirectly wished the cat was dead and feel terrible about it.

      Is it working?

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    • theattack

      theattack September 21, 2013, 10:19 pm

      I’m no help to you because having three cats is awesome. When one wants to play, they can more easily find a willing playmate, and it’s easier for them to get away from each other. The downsides are that they have more territory issues unless you move into a bigger place; the older cats will feel encroached on until you move into another place. And like Rachel said, it’s impossible to find apartments that allow three cats. We had to go to a luxury apartment that has several empty apartments they’re dying to fill because they’re so outrageously expensive for this area that people won’t live there. They only made an exception because they were desperate, so we’re pretty much stuck here until we’re ready to buy.

      But yay kitties!!!!

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    • avatar

      quixoticbeatnik September 22, 2013, 1:29 am

      Adopt a million. That’s how I feel every time I volunteer at the no-kill shelter that I volunteer at. I want them all!

      Barring that….try to be as pragmatic and reasonable as possible? I know, impossible.

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    • katie

      katie September 22, 2013, 10:10 am

      ok, apparently DW is not the place to be talked out of a cat (although, valiant effort, rainbow!). who knew, right? haha

      ok, reasons i cannot get her:
      1. i would be picking her up at noon today, and then promptly leaving for PA on monday.
      2. i travel almost every week anyway, and jake works a lot as it is, so my cats are alone a lot during the week
      3. it took me like 3 months to get zoe to accept leo. she has gotten better, i think, even my mom said so the last time she was here, but that is going to be a whole other thing potentially, and if im not here to help…..
      4. more money- it would be a lot ($20 a month for her vet stuff, and whatever in food and litter), but still an increase
      5. ….?
      6. i feel terrible adopting a “perfect” cat from the shelter. she is young, about 6 months, and sweet and loving. she shouldnt be hard to adopt out, and so i feel like i should give a cat a chance who wouldnt otherwise have one.

      buutttt i want her! and she is leo’s twin. and jake already named her Cleo. and he just keeps saying, “you know you can have her, right?” and now he has gone into “you know, you must have a great boyfriend who encourages you to get things that you love” bla bla bla.

      i cannot get her. i cant.

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      • avatar

        AliceInDairyland September 22, 2013, 2:24 pm

        Keep my industry alive, Katie!! We need crazy cat ladies like you out there…

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      • avatar

        Addie Pray September 22, 2013, 4:50 pm

        say no to the cat. cats are evil! sure, they look all cute sometimes and they purr sometimes and they snuggle up against you sometimes, but that’s just so they can attack you later, you know?

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      • avatar

        MissDre September 22, 2013, 8:17 pm

        I have 4 cats now and I love them all to pieces πŸ™‚ just get a Cat Genie (it’s a self flushing cat toilet) and you’re good to go! I never have to clean litter, I just get to enjoy my 4 babies πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ I can’t even roll over in bed at night because I’m covered in cats. I love being a cat lady!!

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