Sunday, September 17, 2017

More Doctors, More Decisions

Our dishwasher was installed on Wednesday.  Yeah!  The plumber was very nice and accommodating in helping me clean where the old one had been and taking the cleaners and things out from under the sink.  It is still hard for me to get up and down and he sensed this, said his day was coming and was happy to help.  I took his card in case I or someone I know needs a plumber again.  

That afternoon we saw the hematologist.  The PE has dissolved and between my blood thinner meds and the filter I should be okay.  The problem here is he wants the filter out.  He is not a fan of them and said they themselves can break off and hit your heart, become clogged with clots or grow onto other things.  Great!  Nothing like taking blood thinners that can save you or kill you and now we know the filter can do the same thing.  For now he agreed I should keep it in until the GYN situation is taken care of.

Thursday was my neighborhood ladies lunch.  Dana and Jeanette picked me up and we joined seven others for our monthly get together.  We were at a rectangle table so you only get to talk to those next to you or across from you.  I try to sit in the middle but that doesn't always work.  

Back to the doctor we went on Friday.  This time the cardiologist.  I thought I was going to have another Dopplar ultrasound on my leg but it wasn't scheduled.  I told her of my possible D&C, the December scheduled Dopplar and Dr. P wanting the filter out.  She agreed to wait until after the D&C and the results of the December Dopplar to address the filter.  Then I will have to decide what I think is best.  If this was an isolated incident caused by my hip surgery, I should be okay.  But we will never know that for sure.

Ted moved the trailer to the campground on Saturday.  He came home and we loaded up the Expedition and took our things over and put them away.  We returned home, got ready for church and then went out to eat.  We had to take the car back home, do a quick walk through and then drive the truck back to be ready to hitch up in the morning.  It's a good thing the campground is just 5 miles from home.  

We were on the road by 9 am.  Our stops were spaced out and we made four in the 8 hours of driving to south of Little Rock.  The entire fronts of the truck and trailer were covered in love bugs.  They are a southern nuisance we get twice a year.  While I set up inside, Ted washed them off.  They will eat the paint right off if you don't.  Then we left to fuel up.  Instead of eating out like we normally would do on a long travel day, I warmed up the ribs left from the night before for Ted and he had a salad.  I wasn't too hungry and had a few peanut butter and crackers and two tangerines.  

We did not have cable but I was able to use my IPad, Verizon MiFi hot spot and our Xfinity Starz account to watch Season 3, Episode 2 of Outlander.  Talk about a great series.  There are 8 books and I have read them twice.  Even Ted is enjoying the TV series.

We were up and out by 9 am on Monday.  There was no traffic through Little Rock and soon we were on I-40 heading toward Memphis.  We stopped three times and only drove 5 hours.  Destination, Sikeston, MO.  We had to find new pillows since I threw our old ones away last March and forgot I needed to replace them.  JCP had nice Perfect Sleeper ones at half price so that was taken care of.  We fueled up and then hit Lambert's, home of the throwed rolls for lunch/dinner.  I ordered chicken salad on lettuce, cucumbers and applesauce.  When we left I had a container of at least 1# of chicken salad.  Ted had 4 chicken tenders left.  Of course we each caught another roll to put with tomorrow's lunch!

By 6:30 I was showered and in my PJ's.  It seemed much later and it was nice to have some downtime.

Tuesday started out normally.  We were on the road a little after 8:00.  We made it into Illinois when our message light came on.  Drain Water Separator.  A call to our Ford dealer at home told us there was a  petcock under the driver's side but it breaks off easily so don't force it.  We stopped at a rest area but were unable to turn the valve.  We limped along to Marion IL where there was a Pilot.  We backed into a spot and dropped the trailer before heading to the Ford dealer.  They thought it might just be the fuel filter.  Nope!  Our fuel tank had globs of algae in it.  However, our auxiliary tank fuel was fine.  The last time we filled just the truck tank was last weekend at home but the auxiliary tank flows to the truck tank.  Maybe it took that long for it to raise the algae level.  Who knows?  It would be really hard to choose who to blame this on.  Even harder to prove it.  I think it could've been a Harvey contamination with the 50 inches of rain.  I guess we will never know.  

We were pleased with the care at Watermark Ford.  They took us right in, kept us informed, showed Ted the contamination caught in the trap of the water separator and advised us what needed to be done.  We know the damage that can be done to diesel engines from water, bad fuel, wrong fuel but algae was a new one.  They set right to work on it, drove us to a restaurant for lunch, came back to pick us up and $600 later we were back on the road.

We didn't make it to Indianapolis, just Terre Haute, but we were settled just as it got dark.  All our leftovers became dinner instead of lunch.  It wasn't a great travel day but we were never in danger, never stuck and who but an awesome God would have this happen six miles from an exit with a Pilot Truck Stop on one side of the highway and a Ford dealer on the other?

Friday, September 8, 2017

Getting Behind

Not much going on here.  Everyone is still in recovery mode, the kids are gradually getting back to school and Irma has pushed Harvey off the front page.  I didn't do anything worth mentioning other than my shopping day when I discovered an 18 inch, single strand of black shiny beads doesn't exist!   I tried the two biggees Charming Charlie and Sam Moon and then Irene and Carol's collections.  They have lots of necklaces but not what I was looking for.  I eventually bought a blue one that will do but I wanted black!

I got my hair cut and made appointments for the two wedding weekends while we are gone.  I have been watching the temps in Michigan and Ohio and getting out clothes for the weddings and our time up north.  Sure hope I get to see some fall colors.

Friday we met Gerre and Barry at Applebee's for dinner and then to the community theater to see Beauty and the Beast.  The costumes were innovative and Belle had a superb voice.  In fact, everyone who had even a small singing part was excellent.  But it was long!!  Almost 3 hours is a long time to sit.

We had received a call that our dishwasher had arrived at Lowe's. We ordered it 8/14 and it only had to come from Houston (BH - Before Harvey).  After several attempts to set up installation and receiving no return calls, Ted went there Saturday morning.  The lady who books installations doesn't work on Saturdays, just during the week.  Ted asked if she ever returns phone calls since we had been calling for several days.  He was aggravated.  Monday he is going back.  We may be getting our money back and starting over.

Saturday we hosted Shanghai at our home after we went to church.  We had a good time with Bob and Ted taking top honors. Ted shared his winnings with me because my dime purse was getting low.  

And now the shoe is on the other foot and I am watching Irma's approach.   I have two sisters (one on each coast) and a daughter in the middle of Florida.  It was hard to sit here and watch the devastation taking place and heading their way.  Now I know how they all felt when we were in the midst of Harvey.  My sister from the west coast, her son and 4 dogs came inland to stay with my daughter. 

By Monday morning Irma had cracked two trees in half that took out my daughter's fence and the pool screen of the lady next door.  Power was out but everyone, including the four dogs and one cat, were fine.  With no power it didn't take long for the heat to take over.  The company and dogs left at 6 pm when the curfew was lifted to start their trek back home.  

I went to play Canasta Monday afternoon and though I had four good games, top honors went to the team that got two wild card Canastas in one game for a whopping 5000 extra points.  It was dinner time when I got home so we went to a new restaurant that opened around the corner.  We were able to watch the start of the Monday night football game.

Tuesday our WOW group hosted a mini social to replace the Annual Social that was cancelled due to Harvey.  I had lunch scheduled with Gail to conduct Forum business but it was scheduled at the other country clubhouse.  She agreed to switch it to the one where WOW was going to meet which had us where we needed to be after lunch.  I transferred all the Halloween decorations for the party at the nursing home to her car and gave her all the paperwork she needs to make the "powers that be" happy.  I will not be here for the party but I have done all the computer work associated with it.  Of course afterwards, there will be more computer work.  

That being taken care of we both went back in the clubhouse to sign up for the activities we are interested in.  With our in and out schedule I only signed up as a sub for Mahjongg and Shanghai.  That way I am not committed but also can catch an occasional game when in town.  

We are preparing our things to be able to take off Sunday.  Usually that means more interesting posts but not this time.  We are heading to two family weddings, new furniture and a few repairs to the RV.  My nephew messaged me last night and asked me to read the Petitions at the Prayers of the Faithful during his wedding.  I told him I would be honored!

Saturday, September 2, 2017

A Long Road Ahead

Our little hurricane refugee seeking shelter under our door decoration!  Be safe Little Frog.

The devastation in Houston is just mind boggling. Something like 200,000 homes are flooded.  In some areas they predict the water will not recede for 2-4 weeks.  So much water fell that it will take that long for it to work its way to the Gulf.  The number of dead continues to rise and I fear as cars and houses are inspected there may be more.  

The response within Texas is heartwarming.  With all the statues and monuments under attack some suggested we erect one to "Average Joe and His Bass Boat - Harvey 2017."  Lots of official first responders are working non-stop but there are way more privately owned boats out there than helicopters in use.  People and supplies are pouring in from all across the nation and Texas truly thanks them all.  Everything is being done to protect them and make their stay as comfortable as possible under such difficult circumstances.

I posted a picture that said "Three things Houston can always count on - Gallery Furniture, HEB and rednecks with boats."  I already addressed the rednecks (that term is a compliment down here - we even have a Redneck Country Club), but Jim McInvale of Gallery furniture is the most philanthropic citizen you will ever meet.  He is always front and center in times of need, or if you walk into his furniture store.  There is food and drink, personal service and your new furniture at your home by end of day.  He opened his 3 stores as shelters and people and the National Guard were sleeping on $12,000 Temperpedic mattresses.  I knew buying them was like buying a used car!  Maybe I can buy one half off now.  Families were gathered in the living room venues just as if they were at home.  Meals were brought in by all different agencies.  He said he will have a Harvey Floor Sample sale when this is all over.  My chance at that mattress!!

HEB rules supreme as Texans' favorite supermarket.  Their semi-truck kitchens on wheels were heading to Rockport and Port Aransas as soon as they could get through.  They have kept their stores open and stocked due to mini-grid energy plans and made monetary donations.  Kroger has a small presence here but no one else even comes close to HEB all across Texas.  

I had a doctor appointment on Thursday for my 11 vial blood donation the week before.  Everything was okay so there is no clear cut reason for my blood clot.  I personally think it was some vascular incident after my hip replacement in Fall 2015.  After that my left leg was always a bit larger in the calf than the other, my ankle swelled more than the other if I had swelling and a new large vein appeared on the very front of my leg.  I started calling it my old lady leg.  The difference was that distinct.  In retrospect I can think of at least four times further investigation by medical persons could have found it.  This is all speculation on my part but I hope it is correct because without a clear cut reason, it is hard to decide how to proceed.

Two questions are:  Do I need to stay on blood thinners forever since we don't really know what caused the clot?  Is it safe to remove the vena cava filter before it can cause an additional problem?  Doctors are divided on this but more say to get it out before a year than those that say to leave it.  And what about a thrombectomy, removal of the DVT?

With the possibility of needing a D&C in November, all doctors advised leaving the filter in place until that is over because I need to come off Eliquis to have it done.  I will also need to come off it to have any more epidural shots.  Decisions, decisions.

Since our 4 day rally camping trip was cancelled we had no plans for the weekend.  We met Gerre and Barry at the movies to see All Saints Friday afternoon.  This is a true story about a new pastor, closing an old country church and Burmese refugees.  No dead bodies, no shoot 'em ups, no preposterous powers!  We all enjoyed it especially the epilogue featuring the real people in Smyrna, TN.  Afterwards we went to Cracker Barrel where we were treated to dinner for watching Tucker for two weeks.

Saturday Ted went to the other gun club to help out.  They were salvaging stock since the building is so damaged it will be torn down and a new one erected on a higher plain.  At Mass, the St. Martha's Society (funeral ladies) was honored at church and we all sat together.  Afterwards we went back to our newly found Mexican restaurant for dinner with Terry and Carol.  Two margaritas is one too many for me.  I could hardly stay awake until we got home.  

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

I'll Remember Harvey

By Friday morning the rain started in earnest.  Little did I know it would be late Tuesday afternoon before the sun would peek out again and display blue sky.  We were told to just stay home.  So we did.  By Saturday the rain was off and on but we saw the devastation taking place down in the Gulf.  It wasn't raining too hard so we went to church and out to dinner with Terry and Carol.  We had to use umbrellas but it wasn't too bad.  Terry and I ordered Hurricanes, the drink of the day, mostly because they were $3.  They were too sweet so one was enough!  The restaurant was closing early by the time we left.

By Sunday we were tired of non-stop coverage but it was hard not to keep up on what was happening. We realized even if we wanted to go somewhere, we couldn't get more than a mile or two in any direction.  Stores were closed and they continued to tell us to stay home.  Ted went to check the RV and found it okay.  We had read some surrounding streets were under water so we didn't know if he could even get there.  

Monday things got a little more concerning.  They were going to begin releasing water from Lake Conroe and two reservoirs so the dams would not fail.  They talked of many more homes being  flooded.  We didn't know just where this released water would go.  

I gathered my insurance policies, some other papers, my dresses and shoes for the two weddings  plus two changes of clothes.  Kara's friend invited us to their house in Temple if we needed to evacuate.  Luckily for us, the water released north of us flowed to a river that took it west to Lake Houston which flooded complete subdivisions.  People went to bed and woke up to step into water!  The rescues on Monday continued all day with some absolutely nail biting situations.  By the end of the day I think there were 16 confirmed dead.  I really dread what they find when the water recedes. There are so many abandoned cars and houses with water to the eaves that can be harboring dreaded finds.  

Tuesday was pretty much more of the same.  Ted went to the grocery for me and Carol.  There was no bread, chips or peanut butter but he got what he could from our lists.  By dinner time the sun was shining a bit and eventually blue sky was visible.  

We have not had mail since Thursday, probably because the trucks could not get into or out of the city to deliver the mail to outlying post offices.  Eventually it will catch up with us.  

I cannot begin to tell you how proud we all are of the coordination of the rescues during the flood.  So many citizens both locally and from across the country worked shoulder to shoulder with first responders from many different agencies.  My favorite photos appeared under the heading "What happened in Charlotteesville is not America.  What happened in Houston is!"

Our new sod behind the deck was damaged by sod webworms.  They sprayed it right before our portion of the 11 trillion gallons of rain came down.  Right now I don't know what is going to do it in first - the sod webworms or rot from it sitting in water so long.  I guess we wait to see how it turns out. Maybe we will need new sod.  If that is our entire loss from the storm I will consider us very lucky.

Here is one more great photo showing Houston's spirit.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Boy Is It Hot!

Every time we go outside we are reminded of why we are usually not here in August, or for that matter, most of the summer.  It was 97 at 8 pm last night.

Wise woman that I am I stayed in all day but Ted went to the gun club where they were having an open house of sorts.  He is trying to sell three shotguns to help finance his newest purchase that should arrive on Monday.  I guess trap and skeet shotguns don't hack it for sporting clays!!  This is my brother Dan's fault.  He switched and now has four couples going to Nationals in San Antonio in October.  We have gone for Ted to shoot skeet but this will be a new contest for him.  This is the belt buckle he won several years ago along with his 100 Straight pin.

I am really looking forward to their visit here the week before and then our stay at a 3 cabin resort in New Braunfels.  It sleeps 12 in all so we have plenty of room for 8 - Compliments of a business associate of Dan's!  I hope my back allows me to show the ladies a good time.  There is so much to do in the hill country.

We went to church and then out to dinner with Terry and Carol.  We took them to the newest Mexican restaurant we found since our old favorite changed hands.  They were busy and we had to wait a bit for a table but once seated the service was really good.  Ted had fajitas, I had gorditas, Carol a burrito and Terry enchiladas.  We all were very pleased with the food.  I think they will go back.  

Sunday Ted went early to shoot and I just stayed in.  It is too hot to do anything outside.  He asked me if I wanted to go anywhere when he came home but I declined.  He didn't argue!

Monday Isabelle called to say she would come at 4:00.  I know that makes me third for the day and they are all tired.  So I cleaned the office, sitting room, dining room and 2 guest bedrooms.  It was good for me and will get them on their way sooner.  Then I went to pick up my two plants from Judy.  The bromilaid isn't looking too good but there is a pup started so that may be what we will have to work with. The anthurium looked fine but dry so I gave it 5 ice cubes which is what the directions say.  They are going to Gerre's on Friday for about six weeks.  She has the greenest thumb so I am anxious to see how they are in October.  

Ted left before lunch for the gun club because his new gun was to be delivered by the end of the day.  I reminded him of our TVs 9 end of day arrival that turned into 9 pm.  After I picked up the plants, I stopped at the bank and came home to wait for Isabell who arrived at 5:00.  They were in and out pretty quickly but Ted didn't arrive home until after they left and it was late before we had dinner.  He loves his new gun!

Tuesday was a really quiet day.  In fact, we didn't do anything.  We found we have sod web worms.  I thought it was just the tremendous heat and upped the watering but the fertilizer guy showed me blades of grass chewed up and down the sides.  Plus there were little moths flying out of the grass when he walked through it.  All my beautiful sod is thinning out and turning brown.  He put down some sod web worm killer so here's hoping it comes back.  Our growing season will continue for 2-3 more months so we can hope.

Thursday was blood work and Mahjongg.  I drove to the lab by myself and they took 11 vials of blood. I think that is how many tests are scheduled.  We will see the doctor next Wednesday.  This will help determine if there is something in my blood that has affected the clotting factor.  

Ted brought the two sets of card tables and chairs in for me from the garage for my Mahjongg group.   I stopped at the store for a few items before the ladies came.  You need so little in food and drinks for this group.  I was a tile away twice and that was as close as I got all day to a Mahjongg.

I did laundry on Thursday while Ted went to the store and gathered our hurricane supplies.  If we lose power we will try to leave and head north to a campground that has it.  This is what we did last time with Ike.  No A/C or C- Pap for Ted makes life miserable!

Check back again to see how we rode out the storm.  Biggest thing is flooding.  A normal rain causes Houston to flood.  This could be very devastating for the area.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Starting To Feel Close To Normal Again

First up I have to share a heartwarming gift I received.  Remember the photo of all the handprints from the reunion that I missed?

Well here is what my brother Dan's wife Sue did with it and gave to me.

What a blessing to receive it.  It is priceless!

Monday our project was to buy a new dishwasher.  Our first stop was at Sears Appliances.  When I said I wanted to buy a dishwasher the fellow asked me which one!  No mention of features, better versus best, etc.  We moved on to Home Depot.  A young lady was more helpful but didn't know as much as she needs to.  Next stop Lowe's.  We waited for several minutes in the middle of the aisle in front of the dishwasher display.  A man was talking to an associate at the cash register and a lady was sitting with a lady going over some plans.  Ted went to the restroom and finally, just as he was returning, the associate interrupted the man he was talking to and asked me if I needed help.  No, I just stand around stores for the fun of it.  When I said yes he started toward me and the man stopped him saying he wanted to buy that dishwasher so back he went.  The lady associate just disappeared without saying a word.  Finally a man came who obviously didn't work in appliances but he was helpful.  He had to keep going back to get answers to our questions.  It took 30 minutes to get the paperwork printed - and we were in the computer already.  The icing on the cake was at checkout where the lady rang up installation and said our bill was $134.  We said no we bought a dishwasher too and the man said it would pop up when she scanned the bar code.  She flipped through it and didn't seem to know what to do and then finally she hit something and there it was.  Talk about poorly trained employees!  I had my fill today.

We ended up going to Mass in the evening.  We had planned Tuesday morning but my dr appt was 1:00, not 11:00 so we switched.  We had some much needed rain but it didn't rain long.

We spent much of Tuesday morning communicating, but not with each other. I was giving my brother the run down on Nashville Shores, the pros and the cons and answered his questions.  Ted was negotiating the purchase of a new gun.  I think it is a shotgun for his renewed interest in Sporting Clays.  

We finally had to leave for the pain doctor.  He was upset to learn of my recent episode and said the ball is in the cardiologist's court.  We talked about the use of Tylenol and Tramadol to keep me moving. I know I am at less than half of the daily limit of Tylenol and I have only used Tramadol three times since I saw him last.  He suggested half of each to see if that would keep me going an entire day.  Thursday when I work at the Thrift Shop will be a good day to try that out.

We stopped for a late lunch at a Houston institution that just opened a place here close to home.  Goode Co. BBQ.  We have eaten there in Houston once a long time ago.  The food is good but rather expensive I think.  We will try it a couple more times.  It's not like there isn't another BBQ place on every corner that doesn't have a Mexican restaurant on it!

Wednesday was Mahjongg day and we joined the established group but I played with three other less seasoned players.  We play much slower than the others but we did get 6 games done in 3 hours versus the 10-12 games good players can accomplish.   I won TWO games, Deborah one, Jane one and two Wall games.  I think next week we meet here and after that we will all play together two Wednesday's a month.  Hope I can keep up!

Thursday morning I took a 650 mg Tylenol with my morning pills hoping it would allow me to be on my feet until at least noon.  Everyone at the thrift shop was so glad to see me but they wanted to treat me like an invalid.  I managed my two hours just fine.  When I came home I boiled eggs for a funeral on Friday.  When I peeled them and made the filling my back started hurting but I didn't have much else to do so I just put up with it until I finished and cleaned the kitchen.  Then I sat down.  I was glad I accomplished as much as I did with minimal medicine.

I was up early Friday.  I needed to fill the egg whites and put them in the plastic deviled egg dish that has a cover.  When I work at a funeral I save these when people buy deviled eggs at the store.  However, I always make mine.  The store ones just don't taste like anything to me.  Ted said he would take them along with two packs of water to church for me.

I was out the door at 7:45 for the 45 minute drive to the Forum sign up.  I had four months of slots to fill.  We need 4 more for December but that's it.  We are good through February and then only have April to fill and that will get done in January.

Photo from the second floor.

Gail tending our sheets while I went off to do my own sign ups.

The meeting following was long!  I learned we spent $42,000 on social programs, gave $10,000 to a community emergency help center and 45 $1,000 scholarships to area senior girls.  Our mission is to assist.  I think we are doing a great job!

However, 2+ hours on that hard chair did my back in.  I had to lie down when I got home.  Once it felt better, Ted and I went to the grocery but by checkout I needed to sit down while he finished up.  This arthritic disc is literally getting on my nerves!  The pain can go away as quickly as it comes.  I hope I can find the magic combination of PT exercises, medicine and some don'ts like carrying heavy things or squatting to pick something up.  I immediately can feel a squashing sensation in my lower back ... and then the pain begins in earnest.  Oh happy days!

Friday, August 11, 2017

Back To Busyness

My calendar was filling up the whole time we were gone.  I left knowing I had 4 Doctor appts when I returned plus various other recurring things starting up again.  Two big things coming up are the WOW Social where everyone signs up for the year's activities in our area and the Forum sign up for volunteer opportunities for the next 6 months.  

My bunco group is part of WOW so I will be at a table answering questions and taking names of interested parties.  Once my roster is filled I will complete what we call The Infamous Sheet that lists all members of the group with their info, the new list of subs with info, and the hostesses and dates for the entire year.  Everyone gets a copy including the newsletter editor.  This way she knows each month who is hostessing and can fill in our group's info with no further follow up.  This gets changed as people come and go from the group so I have a date and time stamp programmed on it so the ladies know if they have the most recent copy.  

Gail and I are in charge of Regent Care Nursing Home holiday parties this year for Forum so we will be at a table taking names for the first four dates.  I need to prepare all the computer and paper work for this activity.  This includes sign up sheets to begin with and then entering it all so people receive a notice they are signed up, get a reminder a week before and then divide up the things needed to be brought by the volunteers and relay that info to them.  When it is over a thank you note goes out.  The hours must be entered and forms for money reimbursememt readied for processing.  Whew!  And that's before we get the entertainment set up and decorations decided.

We arrived home Wednesday and my neighborhood ladies luncheon was Thursday.  It was good to see everyone but most of our conversation was around medical issues!  At least half of us are bothered with back pain.  Merry was really uncomfortable and doctor's names were being handed out.  I have an appt with the pain doctor Tuesday but it is my understanding I can't get an epidural shot while on Eliquis so I am not sure where we go from here.  I used an ice bag the entire trip sitting in the car so my pain was under control while traveling.  Tylenol and Lidoderm patches got me through the other times.

Friday night we were invited to Irene's for dinner and cards.  Five couples in all would be there.  We had her four bags of coffee so we took that to her.  After a dinner of chicken cordon bleu, scalloped potatoes and fresh corn, we played Shanghai.  I was in second place and on track to win money but for the lack of a 10 or Jack of Clubs in the last hand it didn't happen.  Easy come, easy go.  She served pineapple upside down cake for dessert with coffee.

Ted had a 4H gun shoot to work at the gun club Saturday and I did laundry and ironing.  We went to church, then to Walmart to pick up a prescription and then to Sweet Tomatoes for dinner.  I was ready for my couch because it was 8:30 by then.  We used to go out at that time!

Sunday was a lazy day.  Ted went to a memorial service for a fellow from the gun club that passed away.  It was in Willis, TX  and wearing dark slacks, a white golf shirt and Navy blazer he was the best dressed he said. Actually he said overdressed but I put a positive spin on it!  He said he was glad he didn't wear a suit!

I did some paperwork getting ready for my busy week ahead.  I need to get my plants back from Judy, go to church Monday or Tuesday evening, doctor on Tuesday, Mahjongg on Wednesday, a 2-hour trial run working at the thrift shop Thursday and Forum sign-ups and meeting on Friday.  Life is getting back to normal.  Certainly hope I am up to it!

Monday, August 7, 2017

And The Big Day Arrives

Kelly arranged the seating at the shower and every table had a hostess so I had Diana, Kelly's friend (and mine) from our old church, Anna from Marriage Encounter (Kelly and Pat are Detroit area leaders) and her two daughters Lea and Sister Marla, a nun, home from her assignment in Italy (she comes home once every two years) and Larry, my son-in-law, the photographer.

Lunch was soup, salad, choice of an Italian entrée, bread, drink and Casada cake (three layers with cannoli filling in between each one).  Yum!  I didn't eat the rest of the day.  And I didn't eat breakfast either.

Ally received lots of nice gifts and we played some games.  I got 100% on Who Knows Them Best but I couldn't win!  Since I was the actual hostess, I guess that was right but I had nothing to do with the questions!  

Ally is 23 but is so tiny it is hard to believe.  I will have more photos when Larry gets home and shares them.

Everyone had a good time and Bidkar's parents who had driven over from Kalamazoo went back to the apartment with them to see it.  We went home where I couldn't wait to get out of my dress.  I don't remember the last time I wore a knee length dress.

Kara cooked us eggs, goetta and toast for breakfast Sunday and then we all went to Mass, including Pat's mother, and I got to visit friends who still belong to that church.  I feel more at home in that church than any other.  When I left St. Ann's in Florida I felt that way but Florida remains a very transient area and the last time I went there I knew no one.

We left and headed to Indiana.  There was no reason to leave for Shipshewana too early because the Amish town is closed up tighter than a drum on Sunday.  After checking Into Der Ruhe Blatz (The Restful Place) we backtracked to Howe to their diner.  We eat there when we are at DRV having the RV repaired.  This time we just drove by to check out the new overnight sites they have put in.  

We had 3 things to accomplish - getting coffee for Irene at Das Essenhaus in Middlebury, ordering furniture for the RV at Lambright's (Amish made) and making an appointment for some things to be done on the RV when we return in October.  Ted ran over to Middlebury while I got ready, we picked out a new couch and a pair of theater seats with a center console at Lambright's and made an appointment  with Paul Cross in LaGrange for 10/4.  Happy Birthday to me!    

We headed south and stopped at the shoe outlet where I found one more pair of shoes then settled into the same hotel in Bowling Green where we stopped on the way up.  Ted ran over to the Russell store and came back with three more shirts and dinner.  The finale of the Bachelorette was going to come on and I wanted to stay in.

What a weird ending!  How can you cry your eyes out for someone who wants to just move forward slowly and then accept an engagement ring the next day from someone else?  If she planned to do that anyway, why all the tears?  Does that guy feel like second runner up or "winning" by default?  Between that scenario and the overbearing mother, I give these two a snowball's chance in Hades to be a couple next month.  Statistics are on my side!  

We left early on Tuesday because we needed to stop at Nashville Shores and check out the venue for our 2019 family reunion.  It is a different sort of venue but I think we can make it work.  There are cabins, RV spots, zip lines park, HUGE water park, boat rentals, marina, food, drinks, concerts, private tented areas for our dinner, etc.  We need to run the numbers and discuss the pros and cons before making a decision.  

We left this area east of Nashville at 11:00 and drove to south of Little Rock and stayed in the same motel we stayed on the way up.  One more day on the road and we would be home!  We were on our way at 7:15 with a few rest stops along the way, arriving home about 3:00.  Emptying the car is a lot easier than emptying the RV, cleaning it and putting it away.

We will be home until mid-September when we will head back to OH, MI and IN for two weddings and picking up our ordered furniture.  We were so relieved to know I was able to travel without incident.  Another Doppler is scheduled before we leave to check on the DVT and the effect the blood thinner is having on it.   We feel with needed stops for restrooms, gas and eating plus my pedaling machine that I can travel safely while pulling the RV.  We just need to plan ahead.  I have an app showing every truck stop and rest area so we will use that to insure I stop for a walk when necessary.



Monday, July 31, 2017

On To The Bridal Shower

Sunday we were up early to attend 7:30 Mass.  Ron fixed breakfast for us and shortly thereafter we were off, thanking our hosts for their hospitality.  We had about a 2 hour drive to Celina which took a bit longer when I directed Ted to Dan and Sue's old house!  He told me I was wrong but I told him I took him exactly where I intended to!  😏

Soon after our arrival their son Ed and his wife Vicki came over followed by son Brandon, his wife Rachel and baby Hudson.  We were all going out to dinner!  It was such fun watching Hudson eat cucumbers and green beans!  

We slept really well and had breakfast and a long visit with Dan and Sue before taking off around noon headed to Michigan.  It was about a 3 hour trip and we hit no construction slowdowns!  Kara was working when we arrived and Bill and the kids were out so we settled in and eventually went out to dinner.  

Here are a few more shots from the reunion.

LaRosa's pizzas

Skyline Chili

Ted pointing his family out.

Kara with cousins Paul, Pam and their son Graham

Kelly with cousins Jennie and DJ

Ted with grandson Sam and younger brother Kevin 

We all had places to go on Tuesday.  Kara and Bill went to a doctor appointment, Ted took Sam to driver's ed and I took Morgan to the orthodontist.  She and I continued on to Walmart to drop off my two prescriptions to be refilled.  She picked out some school supplies and I bought two cards to say thanks for all the hospitality we received.

Usually it takes a day for my prescriptions to transfer so I was surprised when I so quickly received a text saying they were ready and were almost $600!  I estimated about $150.  Turns out the script transferred but not my insurance.  I am glad to report it was less than $100 for both.  While there Ted had new nose clips put on his glasses.  We bought some things and I fixed dinner for us all.

We watched two movies on their new TV subscription, one was good, the other stupid!  I finally turned in around 11.  

Wednesday we didn't do much at all.  We met everyone at Buffalo Wild Wings for dinner including Cameron, Cassie's latest friend and he was very nice inquiring about my health and how I felt.  I ordered a chicken wrap and ended up giving half of it to Larry.  The wings he ordered were too hot for him to eat.  

The next day Ted, Bill, the kids, Kristin and I drove to Addison Oaks to make a camping reservation for September.  They added a circle road in the large grassy area behind the old sites and made many sites pull-thrus.  Our old spot #2 no longer exists.  Our first choice was reserved for the second weekend we will be there so we opted for our second choice which is the site to the right of old #2.  It started raining really hard and Bill brought us an umbrella inside to the office.  We will be there for 11 days, two of which will be spent at a Marriott in Cleveland so we get double dinged for those two!  

We stopped for lunch at a Mexican restaurant for lunch.  I had chicken empanadas that were very good.  It was $5 appetizer specials so I gave them a try.  Just enough after chips and salsa!  Everyone enjoyed their food.  You don't find Mexican restaurants everywhere you like look like in Texas.  

Next stop was BB&B for shower gifts.  I had mine sent awhile ago but Morgan and Kristin needed to shop.  We bought a toaster, a set of jelly roll cookie sheets and a complete set of three sizes of glasses.  Then we wrapped them at the self wrapping counter.  We put the boxed glasses inside two big boxes and ended up with four packages.  

No one was too hungry but Kara started making grilled cheese for someone and pretty soon everyone but Ted and I ate a small dinner.  We did have a dish of ice cream with them afterwards.  After warming up with naps on the couch, I went to bed a little after 10.  I feel fine most of the time but seem to get tired much easier than ever before.

Friday Kara had everyone over for a Mexican buffet.  She cooks and entertains so easily.  Everyone was here except Bidkar, our future grandson-in-law, because he was working.  I straightened up the upstairs bathroom but that was about it.  I am a bit concerned about getting tired so easily.  I have never been a good sleeper and now I am taking naps and sleeping all night.

Next post - the shower and our trip back home.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

And We Are Off. 🎶🎶🎶🎶🎶

We were on the road at 9:30 with the Expedition packed to the gills!  Our first stop was a new truck stop with a Denny's.  We made our bathroom trips and shared a freshly fried peach pie crescent and Ted had coffee.  So good!  Sorry waistline.  I walked around the store a bit then we went on.  Next stop was a roadside park to have lunch, take my walk, bathroom break.  We stopped at the Arkansas Welcome Station to get motel books and free coffee for Ted (bathroom break for me) and eventually stopped for gas before finally pulling into our motel in Bryant, Arkansas south of Little Rock.  We had packed a bag just to be brought into the motel and eventually left for dinner at Brown's buffet.  We have driven past this place almost every year for 16 years and finally tried it.  They had a great selection but their fried chicken was all coating and no chicken and their baked chicken was mushy from being over baked. The salads, vegetables, sides and desserts were great though.  Ted had shrimp and pulled pork and he liked them.  All in all I would go again but skip the chicken!

We woke up on our own Monday, dressed, had a bowl of cereal at the motel breakfast room and were on the road before 9:00.  We planned to stop on the other side of Nashville but it was only about 3:00 so we pushed on to Bowling Green KY.  There is a Russell sportswear store there where Ted likes to shop.  They have some Vanity Fair ladies things so I bought some underwear and one pink top.  After checking into a motel we left for supper.  Ted wanted to go to Cabella's afterwards so he dropped me off.  When he returned the Bachelorette was coming on so we both got ready for bed to watch.  It was a good travel day.

Tuesday was another easy day.  We woke up on our own, had another bowl of cereal and headed out with a stop in Shepherdsville at the Zappo's shoe outlet.  A pair for me and one for Cassie was all we found.  There was a lunch stop at a rest area, a restroom stop in Florence KY and just a hop, skip and jump into Cincinnati.  We made it!

We were welcomed by Karen and Ron who had our room all ready for us.  We had to bring in more than we had taken into the motels but we still had lots left in the car.  When it got to be dinner time we all went to LaRosa's for our favorite pizza.  While there, Ted's oldest cousin (#1 of the 31 Keehan cousins) came in with her husband.  They are in their late 80s but still getting around.  We had a nice chat with them after we ate.  A little serendipity there.  

Wednesday started our marathon of meeting friends over lunch and dinner.  We ate smaller meals to avoid overeating and we chose local, small restaurants instead of chains.  Wednesday lunch was at Ron's Roost with old friend Marilyn and her sister.  She lives in Alabama now but happened to be in town.  She and her husband were our best camping buddies for many years.  He passed away some years ago. It was a delight to see her and she looks exactly the same!  I had a cup of turtle soup and a small hot bacon slaw, two other Cincinnati favorites of mine!

Niece Cindy put together a small family group for our visit and Karen's birthday.  I was so happy to see some of the folks I missed by not attending my family reunion.  I am on the left side at the end!

Thursday we once again had just juice and coffee for breakfast.  We were meeting my oldest friend of 67 years, also named Donna.  She and I started kindergarten together and graduated high school 13 years later.  We were inseparable in high school.  To my surprise another friend who was with us along that journey joined us and we were equally happy to see her.  The four of us had a great visit!  

Larry and Kristin landed in the afternoon so they joined us and my niece, Jill, for dinner.  It lasted 2.5 hours!  I gave her my two bags of T-shirts to make my T-shirt quilt and she gave me Gerre's latest quilt that she had done the quilting on.  So we were a little ahead in the emptying out scenario.

Friday we had lunch scheduled with our best man and maid of honor who married two years after we did.  It is such a delight to spend time with them.  It was a 3 hour lunch!  My choice?  A Kentucky Hot Brown!  They even admit the recipe is from the Brown Hotel in Louisville KY.  I know you can buy a plate at the Louisville airport with the recipe on it.  So good!

While eating, my sister-in-law's best friend Judy walked in.  After hellos she said she was coming to our reunion on Saturday.  She went to sit with a group of 8 or 10 women and we went back to chatting.  Then a lady at the end of that table mentioned to my friend she knew her from Lourdes.  In Westside Cincinnati this means you were a member of our Lady of Lourdes parish and went to school there.  They figured out maiden names and the lady said her group was the last graduating class of St. Xavier high school.  I asked if she knew my friend Diane and up she popped from the end of the table.  You just have to love Cincinnati as your hometown!

The kids all arrived in town and we opted to go to the family cookout at the swim club.  Not everybody was there but we got a good jump on most of the crowd.

Saturday was Reunion Day at beautiful Fernbank Park along the Ohio River.  The weather was perfect!

The Rogers Siblings (Tim passed away in 2006)

Tom, married 61 years in September.  Last Labor Day we were in Phoenix for their 60th anniversary celebration.  Missing is son Brian's family.  He died in 2009 joining his brother Dennis who died in 1966.

Tim, deceased 

Terry, married 56 years

 Ted, married 52 years (my black graphic blending with Ted's shorts gives me a pregnant look!)

Peggy, married 48 years


Kevin, married 45 years

Kathy, married 41 years

The whole fam damily!

It was a wonderful tribute to Ted's parents, Betty and Les Rogers.  They were two of the best people God put on this earth.  

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Counting Down

After church we talked with Jeannette and Dick for some time and then left with Terry and Carol for dinner at the Tournament course of the country club.  They had a great special on fajitas and margaritas.  The bill was so inexpensive that Terry wouldn't even let us reimburse him for our part.  I had hot tea instead of a margarita because the A/C was so cold.  I feared it would keep me awake but it didn't!

Sunday was "get my clothes ready" day.  I laid out what I thought I needed and then put some of it back.  I do have access to laundry so there is no need to overpack.  Now I have a few items to iron.

We have so much to take with us!  Two bags of things for others.  A bear for the newest baby.  I sent the initial gift but just didn't want to spend postage on the big bear if I didn't have to.  Three boxes of  dishes for Ally's fiancé to use in their apartment until after the wedding.  It's a nice Pfaltzgraf set so I think they will hang on to it. A blow up queen size bed just in case it is needed somewhere with so many coming into town.  My two bags of T-shirts to be made into a quilt by my very talented niece Jill.  Also, our carpet samples to use while picking out our new RV furniture, our Yeti cooler, my pedal machine to move my legs while riding and suitcases!!  And people ask why I drive an Expedition!

Monday was PT in the morning and then we received a call that our trailer was fixed.  We went right out to pick it up.  Turns out a ground wire that was just twisted copper at the end had worked loose.  They put a clip on it and secured it properly.  Voila!  12 volt was back!  I was able to get the carpet pads from the steps leading to the bedroom to take with us to Lambright's when we look at furniture.  

 Darker color right?

Tuesday I invited Gail for lunch so we could plan the October party for the nursing home.  We both have two trips before then and I won't be back in time to be here.  I wanted to do all I could beforehand so she has everything she needs.  We divided up responsibilities and chose items to make centerpieces.  We checked supplies and the only thing we need is orange balloons.  We also decided since we have so many red, white and blue supplies we will honor Election Day in November!  

This will be my first time using the computer training I took the morning of the day I ended up in the hospital.  Sure hope all the handouts and notes I took get me through the record keeping for our five events this year!  

Wednesday started early.  Both the PT fellow and Isabelle were due here at 8 am.  I needed to be up, dressed and house in order before they all arrived.  Vinnie was right on time.  We went through my whole exercise routine and then left to take a 10-15 minute walk.  When we got back, Isabelle had arrived and Ted let her in.  I received my second set of discharge papers having received the nursing ones the day before.  They both had said they were sorry to see me finish up because I was their best patient, very compliant.  It's those nuns again!

When everyone was gone, Ted left to get his haircut and I dressed to play Mahjongg.  But first I had to drop my two plants off at Judy's, take Gail's things to her that she left yesterday then finally to Diane's to play Mahjongg.  And I finally won a game!  It was almost 5:30 when I got home.  Ted had dinner ready.

Up again early and out the door by 9:00 on Thursday for my annual eye check up.  This doctor did my cataract surgery almost 10 years ago and I see him once a year.  There was no change in my night driving glasses and the overall health of my eyes remains excellent.  He said he would see me next year.

I was home long enough to eat a bowl of cereal as a late breakfast and headed in the other direction for a haircut, the first in 4 months!  I did a load of laundry when I got back home and Ted grilled some burgers.  Afterwards we went to Wendy's for a 50 cent Frosty.  We were introduced to this promotion last year at Grand Canyon Village.  They are just the right size.  

Friday I finally got the ironing done and finished my packing.  We took Ken and Nancy to lunch.  We were scheduled the day I went to the hospital but they had to cancel which is why I was out shopping alone that afternoon.  I didn't want to give her the mail key again still being indebted for last time.  It didn't seem much like Friday for some reason.  We spent the evening at home.

Saturday we said goodbye to Tucker.  After I mailed the lawn maintenance check, dropped the mailbox key off to Nancy, I headed north to hand off Tucker to another of Gerre's friends for his last week before they come home.  Then I hit the nail salon.  It wasn't long after I got home that we went to church and back home to finish packing!  

On the road again.  🎶🎶🎶