Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Christmas 2017

Christmas Eve found us still wrapping presents and making sure we had everything we needed for Christmas dinner the next day.  About 4:00 we took off for Olive Garden where we had an alcove table all to ourselves which was nice.  They served Bidkar regular spaghetti instead of gluten free pasta so he ended up needing to take his replacement dinner with him to have after church.

Because the earliest Mass was held in church, the gym and the fellowship hall, over 3000 people were able to attend.  So our 6:30 service filled the church but was not a crushing SRO crowd. The new parking lot provided enough additional parking so even that was not a problem.  Fr. Tom's sermon was so inspiring he received a round of applause.  

We arrived back home to a monument of gifts and it took to the wee hours of the morning to finish opening them all.  

Larry with his Aloha shirt for our Hawaii Christmas trip next year.

Ted with a bucket of bullets.

Ally and her Apple Watch.

Larry and a new camera.

The best mess ever made is the one created by Christmas wrappings being undone.

 I received a Roomba, Echo, hand mixer (my girls said my old one sucked!), a new Waterpik, and NuWave induction burner for the RV and pans to use with it.  

A new packable down jacket will come in handy for plane trips up north when a bulky winter coat is hard to deal with.  It folds up to a very small package.

It was a fun time for all.

Despite the late bedtime, we were up early to start preparing things for our Christmas dinner.  First up was three pies and Kristin did the mixing while I did the crust and fluting.  Our menu was ham, sweet potatoes, scalloped potatoes, carrots, corn, fruit salad and rolls to go with all that pie.

Gerre and Barry arrived and we had dinner shortly after with everyone sitting around the table until late evening. When they left most everyone went for a walk but my back was acting up and I wasn't much use to anyone so I ended up on the couch with my ice pack.  

I woke up with a terrible headache with my back still giving me fits so I gave in and took the first Tylenol 3 the doctor prescribed after my surgery.  It did the trick for my head and dulled my back.  My best Christmas gift was still to come.  The grandchildren left for home in the morning so Kristin, Larry, Kelly and Pat left for the container store to buy pull out baskets and shelves for three of my kitchen cabinets.  I simply cannot get down to reach the back so I can only use the very front.  And keeping them neat has been next to impossible.  Pat installed them while Larry cleaned and replaced everything.  Now I can pull them out, get what I need and put things back neatly!  In my book this gift is way better than any perfume, jewelry, nightie, etc. you can buy!    

While they were gone, I very gingerly put away the Christmas dishes in the bookcase bottom cabinet.  In the back I found VCR tapes of our first Ruhe Reunion in 2001, a tape of Ted I made for his 60th birthday from a baby until we moved to Texas, Kelly and Pat's wedding video and a tape of grandson Sam as a baby from 2000.  We are going to have them made into DVDs because VCRs are no longer in use.  We have one in our bedroom still but it wasn't hooked up.  Pat fixed that so we could be sure of what we had.  Another priceless gift!

I had a follow up appointment with the GYN on Wednesday and he said he removed a row of polyps from the "floor" of my uterus and everything removed was benign.  What a way to end the year!  Kelly and Pat left for Dallas and Kristin, Larry and Maureen went to the mall.  I very gingerly (again) started gathering up decorations and put them in boxes and bins.  I couldn't get into the guest closets to put things on the shelves nor gather the things that need to come out and be put back due to the luggage and things in there from our company.  That had to wait.

Thursday we took down the decorations, did laundry, cleaned (love my Roomba) and had pot roast for dinner.  Terry and Carol came over to visit after returning from Chicago.  The kids packed their clothes for their flight home on Friday. 

Larry hit the ground running Friday.  He scrubbed everything in sight whether it needed it or not!  By the time we left for lunch at Spring Creek BBQ the bedclothes were laundered and back on the beds, the house cleaned and the bathroom they used was just this side of sterile.  Plus all Christmas decorations were down and stored!  

We went right to the airport from the restaurant and they arrived in plenty of time.  I received a text when they landed so all is well.

And Christmas 2017 is a wrap!  


Tuesday, December 19, 2017

The Final Stretch

 Ted went shooting and I enjoyed my coffee Sunday morning.  I had lots of time before heading to the shower to dress for a late lunch with John and Irene.  Ted had gone shooting early so he would be back in time to dress for lunch too.  

We were meeting at Cheesecake Factory that doesn't take reservations but they arrived before us and it wasn't too long before we had a table.  We were celebrating Irene's birthday and Christmas.  Despite the crowds we were not rushed and had a delicious and leisurely lunch.  

From there we drove to Gerre and Barry's to deliver two toys for their church project and drop off Gerre's gift.  We had a really nice visit and we encouraged them to stop by Christmas Day for dinner after their son left. They are planning to visit us in Mission in February as are John and Irene as well as Tommy and Susan.  We are looking forward to all the company!

My bunco group's Christmas lunch was on Monday.  I am proud to say the ladies filled the back of my Expedition with groceries for the food pantry.  

Mary's table was exquisitely set in gold and green and her food was terrific.  Afterwards we played a game to distribute gifts.  Lots of passing right and left, stealing and unwrapping involved!  I ended up with the softest throw that matches our new RV furniture.  I used it that night and it is so soft and warm.

I had my cardiologist appointment on Tuesday.  We got the best news!  Dr. D said the most recent Dopplar shows the DVT is GONE!  The "old clot" Dr. P referred to, she said is in a surface vein and is more of a phlebitis situation but nothing to be concerned about with the Eliquis.  She also agreed the filter should come out.  Since it can't be done until some time in January, we all agreed it is okay to leave it until March when we return near the end of March. A new lease on life!  I will continue with Eliquis since no cause was determined for why I developed a DVT in the first place.   

We were expecting our granddaughter and her husband late that night but they had stopped overnight in Ohio so we went to bed figuring everyone would arrive on Wednesday.  When I got up in the morning I had a text that they were in our driveway sleeping!  They had arrived at 5:45 but didn't want to wake us.  The garage door going up woke them up and I hustled them right off to bed.

Kelly, Pat and Cassie arrived mid afternoon having spent two nights on the road.  They all unloaded more presents around the Christmas chairs and we still have 3 more people arriving Saturday!

 I made taco soup for dinner, with and without meat, both gluten free.  I had also made gluten free corn muffins and I think all were eaten.  For the rest of us I served crusty French bread.  With toppings of sour cream, shredded cheese and tortilla chips, everyone enjoyed the soup.  I broke out my Christmas butter cookies (taste way better than they look) and Blue Bell peppermint ice cream for dessert.  

Everyone was tired so it wasn't a very late night.  Cassie chose to stay with us in the twin bedroom rather than listen to her father snore in the hotel room.  

Thursday was a lazy day.  Everyone was tired from the long road trip and slept very late.  We decided to play Mexican Train, have dinner and then go see some lights.  

I fixed an easy dinner - two meat loaves from the freezer, baked potatoes, green beans and salad.  After loading the dishwasher we took off and checked out what are advertised as the best lights in our area.  It was late when we returned.  Kelly and Pat returned to the Hyatt and eventually everyone else drifted off to bed.  Just one more day until the next three arrive!

Everyone has been pretty low key since arriving.  They sleep in very late, have a little breakfast and then take their time getting dressed.  I had suggested taking the trolley ride and visiting the dancing water fountains but it never happened.  Kelly made three different kinds of cookies and when she finished I produced another meal - Roast pork loin, wild rice, fried apples, mixed vegetables and salad. Bidkar opted for the black bean tamales.  When we were finished the kids figured out how to get their wedding pictures from the photographer's website to our TV.  We saw all of them up to the ceremony before it all froze.  The TV was not responding to any remote command and we couldn't even turn it off.  Ted and Pat finally unplugged it and all was good but so much for the rest of the pictures.  I finally went off to bed around 11 but everyone else was still up.

Saturday the three from Florida arrived and our current guests moved on to other accommodations since this new group had planned their visit here first.  Once everyone was settled we all headed to church and afterwards had pizza for dinner!  Yeah!  No cooking for me.

Afterwards, Cassie opened her gifts because she was leaving in the morning and then there was a mini village gingerbread house building extravaganza.  

Cassie won but the others managed to stay together at least.  

Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Final Week Before the Onslaught

Sunday found us at church at 9 am again.  We are so used to Saturday evening church that getting up and dressing on Sunday is almost foreign to us.  The Knights of Columbus were selling tamales after church so we bought Bidkar 6 black bean vegan ones, also gluten free.  Cooking for a vegetarian, gluten free eater has me scouring grocery shelves and recipes on line.  

We hurried home afterwards so Ted could go shooting and return in time for a 2 pm open house here in our neighborhood.

Having been gone all day Saturday I had lots of straightening up to do and then made some crostini to take with us.  I also threw in a few lemon tarts too.  There was so much food we actually brought most of it home!  There was an interesting mix of people - some luncheon ladies, some old neighbors, some friends of theirs I didn't know.  It was a pleasant get together and we were home before dinner time.

Monday was Canasta day back at Kathleen's.  I took her a small gift since I was there twice in three days time.  I had decent cards but came in third, out of the money.  Another $1 lost!

My big day arrived Tuesday and we were at the hospital at 10.  About 10:40 I was taken back to get prepared.  At 11:15 I was taken to the operating room and was finished by noon.  Then I waited in the recovery room/discharge area until 3:45!!  I was fully awake, had eaten a big glass of ice and drank a big cup of water.  They asked if I could use the bathroom.  No problem!  I got dressed, Ted got the car and home we came.  He fixed me soup and a sandwich before I plopped on the couch and stayed there.

Wednesday Ted went on some errands for me while I dealt with Christmas cards and stacks of paper on my desk.  By the time he came home I had the cards ready to mail and my stack of paper depleted.  Great feeling.  Then we went to the grocery one more time.  I think we will need to go at least once more.  I had to clean the pantry and refrigerator to be sure everything would fit.  He fixed dinner and we watched Survivor plus other shows.

Our neighborhood ladies lunch and party was Thursday.  Dana drove me and Merry to the restaurant.  It is a higher end one in our area but for Christmas we go a bit better than normal.  After lunch we went to Jeanette's for drinks and dessert.  Then we had a gift exchange.  Half way through, Isabelle set off our alarm and I got a call.  I had to walk home to get things squared away with ADT.  Ted was due home at 3:00 but she came at 2:45.  Always something!

Friday was all mine!  I didn't even get dressed.  I did four loads of laundry, finished wrapping presents, wrote out a few more Christmas cards I had missed AND made one of the three reservations we need for condos in Hawaii next Christmas!  Kara's family and we know what our plans are on the Big Island and Oahu so we felt confident in choosing the two King bedroom and one twin bedroom townhouse.  When the others get around to choosing their dates, I will make the rest but not until then.  I hope what they want is still available.  Dealing with this family can be like herding cats at times!  

Saturday after church Terry and Carol took us to Landry's for dinner since they are leaving for Chicago on Wednesday.  We exchanged gifts and had a great meal and visit.  It was raining really hard when we left and all the umbrellas were in the car!

Here are a few photos from the nursing home Christmas party that just now were posted on the Forum website.

Three of our eight helpers preparing balloons that are tied to residents' wheelchairs.

Gail, my co-chair, and I.

Jim, the former organist for the Astros who now plays at our church too.  He did an awesome job!  

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Doctor Week

Ted had to be at an Exxon Mobile gun outing all day Sunday.  I took the time to do some paperwork and get our supplies for the Regent Care Nursing Home party on Thursday all in order.  A lot of computer work goes into keeping numbers which are then used in applying for grants.  Who worked, how many hours, preparation time, drive time, expenses for supplies and entertainment, in kind donations contributed and how much.  I will not be here for the Valentine's party so I had to get that ready too.  After red/white/blue in November and red/white/green for Christmas, Gail will need to shop for Valentine red things but she now has the necessary paperwork and entertainment all lined up.

I had my Dopplar ultrasound on my leg Monday.  On the calf I could hear swish, swish, swish but on my thigh it was just shhhhhhhhhh with no beat evident.  Not sure what that means but we will find out Wednesday.

Tuesday I worked as a dresser for our Petticoats and Parasols fashion show.  I was responsible for the Wave, Wac, Twiggy and Flower Child!   The Wave and Flower Child costumes were both worn by Mary Lea so I had a quick turn around on that one.  Afterwards, you have to undress them and get all the items back in their case and into the bottom of the garment bag.  

Our Lucy and Ethel

Our Jackie O.

Audrey Hepburn

Four of us had carpooled so we dropped off many costumes back at the office.

Wednesday it was off to the hematologist.  He said there is blood getting through my vein but the lack of heartbeat sounds probably is damaged valves that don't work as well as they did when I was younger.  There is also an old clot that has attached itself to the vein wall and is nothing to worry about.  I can travel, including flying, without doing anything more than what we all are advised to do - sitting in place flexing our ankles and feet, walking once every two hours, and do not sleep in one position for a long period.  I told him I don't sleep in one position in my own comfortable bed!  I flop around like a fish out of water.  It doesn't bother Ted though.  So now we get on with life!

Not to sit on my laurels, but Thursday was the nursing home Christmas party.  Once again Gail and I had to wait for the lady with the key to come to work!  She must be on flextime!  Our helpers showed up early enough to help us get ready.  Our entertainment was terrific!  He had my heart with Mele Kalekemaka!  I did a bit of a hula to the delight of the residents simply because we have been in Hawaii several times for Christmas and I have seen it done a lot.  There was a special excitement in the room, a real boon to us who try so hard to reach the residents.  

When I left there I headed to the hospital for my pre-op paperwork and tests.  It took 1.5 hours to give four vials of blood, have an EKG taken, and answer a million questions for paperwork.  I am wearing a red bracelet now to indicate my blood tests have been done.  I had been gone for 8 hours and felt like I put in a full day's work.  We went to Mass at 6:45 for the holyday and grabbed a bite afterwards before heading home.

Friday morning brought us only the second snow we have seen in our area over the last 16+ years.  

It was 36 degrees.  The temp never went up much all day but the sun came out and melted the snow.  I had an 11:00 nail appointment and streets were dry when I drove north.  I had a bit of down time that afternoon because Ted was gone.  

Saturday I left the house at 7:15 to meet up with the Willis gals.  We were heading to Coldspring, TX for their town square Christmas bazaar.  I had on socks with my shoes, jeans, a sweater, my winter coat, gloves and hat which gave me a terrible case of "hat hair" during lunch!  We all walked around viewing the vendors' goods but I only bought a jar of home made salsa the girls raved about.  Lunch was at The Hop, complete with jukebox.

I arrived home in time to put my sweet potatoes in the oven, I had prepared them before I left.  Then I had to get dressed again and freshen my make-up and try to fix my hair!   Our Shanghai Christmas potluck and card game started at 6:00.

Poor Connie who handles this group was sick and couldn't attend.  What a shame.  We had a lovely dinner but I had terrible cards all night and ended up second last! You win some, you lose some.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

A Little Break

Sunday Kristin and I went shopping but I was dressed in a sweatshirt and she in a sweater and we eventually were too warm and also hungry so we came home before we finished.  She continued wrapping the gifts that need to stay here for Christmas.  We have a Christmas chair instead of a tree!  There are many behind the chair to conserve space.  By the time the other nine folks arrive for Christmas, you won't be able to get near it.

Ted had gone shooting and I made dinner using one of my frozen meatloafs and leftover mashed potatoes turned into potato pancakes along with a salad.   It was a good day of not doing much.  

Our sprinkler guy came Monday early and found a cracked one inch pipe in our system and fixed it.  Then we drove to Brenham to have lunch with old friends, Gus and Melissa, in Texas visiting their son in Austin.  After we left them we stopped by Blue Bell to see their Christmas schedule and availed ourselves of their $1 generous dishes of ice cream.  Rocky Road for me and Cherry Vanilla for Ted.  Here is their tree but it was too big for a full picture and still be able to see the ice cream container decorations.

Kristin had accomplished what she stayed behind to do and was packed and ready to go.  Both bedrooms had clean linens thanks to the girls and the floor vacuumed.  We drove Kristin to the airport and almost immediately she texted she was through security and heading to her gate.  Much later she texted she had landed.  It was a nice Thanksgiving with Kara, Bill and Kristin here.

Tuesday I putzed around getting things back where they belong, laundered our bed linens and did a bit of paperwork for my bunco group and Regent Care Nursing Home Christmas parties.  I can't believe how quickly November is passing!  Late afternoon I dressed for our Forum Christmas dinner - in November! - and was picked up by my friend Donna.  There were 110 in attendance and was an enjoyable event.  I wore black pantyhose under a black and silver dress, a first in a very long time for both items.

Wednesday I spent a good part of the day Messaging with Kristin.  We are trying to rent a 7 bedroom, 7 bathroom house in Kona, Hawaii for next Christmas.  It took a lot of looking and reading to zero in on the one that would work for us.  There are 5 couples plus 3 single girls and 1 boy.  Makes for a lot of detective work on sleeping arrangements.  We have a message in to the one we want and now we wait - again!  This sounds far out in time but half of the ones we considered were found to already be rented.  

But my waiting is over in setting up my GYN surgery.  Everybody is on board so I am scheduled at noon on 12/12.  It will be out patient with just a two day recovery.  Now as long as they don't find anything in what they remove, I can move on from that.  It will then turn to the question of removing the vena cava filter.  The Dopplar being done on the DVT in my left leg on 12/4 will hopefully give us the info we need.

Thursday we continued pursuing our Hawaii house but responses are slow in coming.  I found an awesome one at a bit higher price but we can make it work so again we are waiting.  My first thing to check is the cancellation policy.  Some want half the rent now with no refunds.  And we are talking thousands of dollars.  I am not going there!  I already lost two plane tickets to Vancouver this year because of my medical issue so I am watching this carefully.  

I did the ironing, just about six pieces, and made a turkey pot pie for dinner so it was Adios! to our Thanksgiving turkey.  We really made good use of the leftovers and the only thing left was gravy.  The Hallmark Christmas movies continue.

Friday was our community theater night and we saw the longest presentation of Little Women ever!  Everyone looked somewhat dazed at Intermission!  It was after 11 when we got home but we enjoyed our dinner with Gene, Jennifer, Gerre and Barry and the play, for the most part.

Saturday we did absolutely nothing all day except Kristin and I continued our Hawaii search and Ted watched sports.  We finally gave up on a house.  The few we found with acceptable sleeping arrangements were unavailable - already!  The one I really wanted, advertised as sleeping 14, didn't mention 2 of them had to be children under 5!  I wrote that our two youngest will be 14 and 16 and her answer was a simple NO!  Others had 10-14 day minimum rentals over Christmas.  

We eventually tuned our eye to a lovely townhouse complex. The availability in the townhouses is limited already.  There are lettered buildings and numbered units.  I can only get one unit in each of three buildings next to each other.  But they are beautiful with King, queen and twin beds in the 3 bedrooms, tile and granite in the 3 baths, granite counters and stainless steel in the kitchen as well as a washer and dryer.  Kristin, Larry and Maureen will be with us.  Kara and Kelly will have their families with them in the other two units! 5-5-4.  Woo!  That took some doing.

We went to church then out to eat with Terry and Carol.  Next week is a lot of doctor appointments!  Wish me luck.  It would be nice to wrap up this incident and move forward.  

Monday, November 20, 2017

Kids Are Coming!

Saturday and Sunday were fairly quiet days.  The most we did was go to church, Ted shot and I washed all the things for Thanksgiving Day and set the table.  Of course that entails leaves, pads, cloths, napkins, etc. before you get to dishes and things.  

On Monday Ted bought his brining bag, a new slicing mandolin, and two Christmas gifts.  My old mandolin is at Kara's and the new Pampered Chef one is impossible for me to figure out. If it only slices one thickness, I got it.  If it does more, I don't know what it is.  Ted also brought home a rotisserie chicken so he made Stove Top while I steamed asparagus and set out applesauce.  Easy dinner!  

Tuesday I was going non-stop.  Up at 7, we left at 8 for the airport.  Kristin was arriving shortly thereafter.  A situation in Larry's family had him heading south in Florida so she opted to come see us.  They will both be back for Christmas.  We barely made it home to drop off luggage before leaving to pick up Jennifer.  We were meeting Gerre at the Whistle Stop Cafe for lunch and a little shopping.  Since I was already going to be in the area, I had booked a haircut for 2:00.  Jennifer had PT at 4:00 so we immediately took her home when I was finished and we made it back to the house but didn't stay long.  It was another run to the airport to get Kara and Bill.  We stopped at Sweet Tomatoes for dinner since it was past dinner time.

It was a whirlwind on Wednesday.  Ted and Bill eventually went shooting and Kara and I spent most of the day in the kitchen.  Before he left though, Ted set his turkey in brine in preparation for baking it on Thursday.  I was the sous chef for Kara. I had shopped for all we needed and set up little stations for her to work in.  I also chopped the onions and celery for the stuffing.  Kara hates to make mashed potatoes so I peeled the potatoes using my handy-dandy rotator potato peeler.  She made Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes, stuffing with bread I pulled apart and dried in the oven and three pies.  She did use all my recipes though.  

 She added a double batch of brown bread, a traditional holiday treat in our family.  Aunt Carol was bringing the sweet potatoes and cranberry dish.  I filled and emptied the dishwasher several times.

Bill, Kara and Ted ran over to Carol's for a bit and when they returned we headed out to our latest Mexican restaurant for margaritas and dinner.  Everyone was tired when we returned.  We watched our recorded Survivor and everyone drifted off to bed.  

Thursday was not too much hustle and bustle.  Ted got his turkey into the oven.  The potatoes and stuffing were all ready to go in the oven, the salads, veggies and rolls were ready to go and the serving dishes and utensils were at hand.  Only the gravy needed to be made but we needed to wait for the drippings.

It didn't bother us inside, but the landscaper chose Thursday morning to lay the new sod, replacing what was killed by Harvey.  They also found a leak right next to the deck so a sprinkler guy is coming Monday to take a look!

Terry and Carol arrived with their contributions and several bottles of wine.  I think there were a half dozen bottles at the end of the evening waiting to go into the recycle bin.  We are a sit around the table family and that's what we did until about 9:30.  

But the last thing we did was bring Sam's full orchestra performance up on the TV through You Tube (learned something new!) for everyone to see.  If interested, and you know how to bring up You Tube on the computer or TV, search Orchestra Association of Troy High.  It is the 2017 Spooktacular performance.  Sam is the cello player on the right side, second row, behind and one to the right of the girl in the princess dress and tiara (who later was in a skit).  This is the entire orchestra with members all up and down the stairs playing without a conductor and no music!  Truly awesome.  

Right after our company left. Kristin, Ted and Kara took off for the mall to buy a few Black Friday specials.  I, on the other hand, hit the couch and fell asleep.  Bill emptied the dishwasher and refilled it while I slept.

Friday found Bill and Kara back out shopping and Kristin and I started taking down the fall things and getting all the Christmas stuff out of closets, garage and attic.  I was determined to get rid of everything except just what I use.  We have never put a tree up here in Texas so I had no need for ornaments but it broke my heart to give away my travel collection started back in the early 80s.  But it was my travel, no one else's, so out they went except for a special ornament case storing the round glass ones just in case I buy a very small tree some day.  All in all, about 7 boxes went to the resale shop.  They indicated so many lost their things in the flood that there was a big need.  I had already sent a huge box of lights to my niece for use in her volunteer fright house.  

After two days of turkey, we opted for pizza at home for dinner.  Everyone was pretty tired and went to bed before too long.

We all were invited by Terry and Carol to lunch at the country club on Saturday.  We ate in the bar area so we could watch the Ohio State versus U of M football game.  

It ended just in time for us to return home for suitcases and off to the airport we went to drop off Bill and Kara.  Then it was back home to church where we ran into Terry and Carol again.

Once we made it home, it was "whatever" for dinner and more Hallmark Christmas movies!

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Almost Time For "Over the River and Through the Woods"

We are having all of our kids here through the holidays at one time or another.  Kara and Bill will be here for Thanksgiving.  Sam and Morgan will be at Disney World with their Dad.  Kristin, Larry and his sister Maureen will be here over Christmas.  The Duda/Acosta families will be in Texas over Christmas but there are others to see so I don't know just when they will be here.  And Ted wants to leave 1/1 for the valley!  No pressure!

Saturday while I had my nails done, Jody stopped by.  She had ended up with one of my spoons and was dropping it off.  This is what I found when I got home!  A bottle of Riesling which she knows is my favorite in a beautiful bag with an F tag, her last initial, holding up my errant spoon!  She has such beautiful ideas that make gifts so very special!  I would have wrapped the spoon in a paper towel and put it on the porch chair!!  I so enjoy my creative friends. I know she reads this so "Thanks again, Jody!"

I remembered to take the HEB gift cards to church but forgot my card holder for Shanghai later so we went back afterwards for it.  We played cards at Pam and Wayne's and I won!  It has been a long, dry spell and my dimes certainly enjoyed getting replenished.  I had good cards all night.  Two couples that aren't usually there came and it was a fun night.

I tackled two jobs on Sunday while Ted went shooting - cleaning the pantry and the linen closet in our bathroom.  So many things hiding in the shadows.  It won't stay straightened for long, but it's a start.

I had a doctor's appointment for Monday morning and then Canasta at 1:00.  Ted had left for Beaumont so when I arrived home I had some leftovers and then was picked up by neighbors to go to our Painting With A Twist outing.  

Van Gogh I am not!  It was a fun night and my deer didn't look like elephants but that's the best I can say!

I had to go for bloodwork first thing Tuesday morning, then meet Laura at 11:00 to pass her my card table and chairs to use for bunco next Monday.  Ted was home from Beaumont when I returned and we had a few hours before going to the GYN.  He did another ultrasound and another biopsy and told me to come back Friday morning.  And so we wait!

Wednesday was errand day.  First up was picking up my scripts from Walmart and a few groceries.  Then we bought a keypad garage door opener at Lowe's for Bill to install next door.  The problem of garbage cans needing to go in and out in their absence will be solved!  We dropped off a check and the women vet toiletries at Donna's.  Since I have to miss the meeting Friday when I go back to the doctor she will take them for me.  Dr. C called and said ALL my bloodwork was perfect and he had ordered more tests than usual.  He wants to know the outcome of my GYN issue and also the results of the Dopplar on my leg but that isn't until 12/2.  

Last stop was HEB.  We did the bulk of our grocery shopping just passing on four things that need to be bought closer to next Thursday for freshness.  After putting the things away we watched two Hallmark Christmas movies.  After a light dinner, we hunkered down for the evening.

I played Shanghai with the girls on Thursday and I won again!   My dime purse runneth over!!  I received notification that my last biopsy was again benign.  Hopefully we will get the procedure moving along now.  It is such a busy time and not being able to commit to things is getting old fast.

We arrived at 9:45 for our GYN consultation and just as we were given a room we were informed Dr L had emergency surgery and would be an hour.  They put us in at 11:00 and we took off to find a cup of coffee.  We ended up at Starbucks where we seldom go and sat outside in a beautiful morning with sunshine.  I saw a friend Janet but just waved.  A young man was there with a photographer and eventually stopped at our table.  He is running for the US House but not from our district.  He spent time with us anyway and asked if we would allow a photo with him.  Lord knows where they may end up!

Dr L saw us about 11:40 and agreed the D&C is still advised because of the problems that could develop if left alone.  But ... we need agreement of both the cardiologist and hematologist plus Medicare (first time anyone has said that) before we can schedule.  I had my calendar in my lap!  I am busy!!  We took the script to the cardiologist office and she is gone until 11/27!  They would check with the doctor who inserted my filter but if he would not sign off I need to wait.  We had better luck at the hematologist, they said they would fax what was needed Monday since he was gone for the day and call me to let me know it was done.  And so we continue to wait!

I did three loads of laundry when we got back home, had dinner and watched more Hallmark!  It is like reading a Danielle Steel book.  You know the middle and end as soon as it begins.

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Glad That Week Is Over

What a busy week!  Here is a group REACH photo from the Halloween party.

We had four couples come for cards Saturday night and the food just piled up.  I had jumbo shrimp, summer sausage and crackers, apples and caramel sauce, lemon tarts, candy and nuts to go with Jody's guacamole and chips.  Irene brought stuffed celery and deviled eggs.  No one went home hungry I don't think.

We played two tables - men in the DR and ladies in the kitchen.  It worked well except for the full glass of red wine that John sent flying sending a three foot wave of red wine onto my very light beige carpeting!  I gave him a two quart bottle of club soda which was poured on to the stain and soaked up with a terry cloth.  Then he used Spot Shot and was on his hands and knees rubbing the stains.  I got the carpet cleaner out of the garage and Ted put some water in and went over the area, adding a bit of water and then vacuuming up all the liquid.  Surprisingly it looked really good this morning.  Or, it could be a reason for new carpeting!

We were glad for the extra hour Sunday morning because we attended church at 9:00.  We spent the afternoon at Gerre's for the Texan game party and stayed afterward to talk about the Greece cruise with Mike who is spearheading the trip.  Ephasus, Turkey has been taken off the itinerary and replaced with Rhodes, Greece.  I saw a report about visas not being issued between Turkey and the U.S. and wondered if we would be affected.  Apparently so!  I wasn't even sure I was going to do more than walk down the gangplank, put two feet on Turkey soil, and then go back up!!   I wonder if the Colossus of Rhodes is still there? (Just asked Siri and it was destroyed in 226 BC!!).  I did learn Rhodes is a Greek island.  I spent a lot of time on the phone with Kristin about plane flights and hotels on Monday. 

Ted went to Dallas and I had a quiet day.  There was a very long phone call with Go Medigap about our Supplement insurance.  Because I am still under doctor's care, I told them to not look to move my policy.  I don't want to ever be denied by underwriting.  Maybe next year.  But they found two other companies with cheaper premiums for Ted so he is looking to go back to Mutual of Omaha.  When you buy a Supplement it is the exact same coverage regardless of company, only the prices vary.

Ted spent the night in Dallas so I was able to get the bed made and the few things out of place put back where they belong before I headed out to Good Shepherd Church for the Senior Day Out.  I had to stop to buy a pumpkin pie and as bingo prizes I took two boxes of Keurig K-Cup coffee.  For the record, the biggest pie at the best price came from Costco.  There were all sizes and prices represented.  

We welcomed our guests, got them settled with coffee, juice and bingo cards!  My table did well with 5 out of 8 winners!  

Then we were all entertained by the Old Geezers, a group of four that are tremendous!  We had lots of folks up dancing.


Lunch was chicken and dumplings, cucumber salad and applesauce plus pumpkin pie!  I ate afterwards and it was delicious.

Ken power washed our driveway and walks while we were both gone.  The landscape guy came by to see what needs to be done about our Harvey damaged grass.  He said the area behind the deck needs to be resodded.  We need our crepe myrtles trimmed and one more limb taken off one of the Live Oaks. Also, pansies will be planted out front to replace the dead impatiens because they will live through the winter.  I swept out the garage and took a nap!  

On Wednesday, Isabelle came early so Ted slept in the twin bedroom so he didn't have to get up at 7:30.  Since the bed was unmade I stripped them both to freshly launder the linens since we are having company come.  I still have to do the queen bed linens since they were slept on but we left for New Braunfels so early I told Sue to just make the bed and I would do the sheets later.  

I did lots of computer work.  I switched my Medicare D to Silver Scripts to better accommodate my Eliquis.  Ted keeps Humana Walmart. My Supplement stays the same and he switches to Mutual of Omaha.  I was able to bring our Greece cruise plane reservations up on Delta's website despite having purchased them through RCCL Air N Sea.  I picked two aisle seats, one behind the other, on all four flights.  It was an extra $116 but gave us a free bag so it was almost a wash!   I sit in front of Ted so no one leans back into him causing him to sit spread eagle for 9 hours.  And I can stand every hour and walk a bit without bothering anyone.

I made our hotel reservation in Rome and found a company that can transfer our group from FCO to  Rome and then Rome to the cruise ship.  It is all coming together very well.  

Thursday was my neighborhood luncheon to celebrate November birthdays.  

Jeanette always goes all out when it is her month to pick.  We all had a dish of candy with a "turkey" cookie and a turkey centerpiece using a pineapple as the body.  The restaurant cut it up and served it to us!  We always have a fun time.

I have caught up on many little things I had to do.  I bought two presents for my bunco and neighborhood luncheon Christmas parties.  I also have a small gift for each lady in my bunco group.  When I bought the pumpkin pie and Keurig coffee I also bought two HEB gift cards for our church Thanksgiving drive.  I already have two big Teddy Bears for our church Giving Tree and Forum Giving Tree.  And our forum chapter is making up boxes for homeless female vets so I bought a bag full of toiletries that I will deliver at my next meeting.

Then ... I bought new Thanksgiving linens.  My Lenox China is pastel and doesn't do well with fall colors.  Last Christmas I received a white Fitz and Floyd set so I am going to use that instead.  The small plates are a bit big to use as bread plates so I bought the small appetizer plates to use.  And I bought new sheets for the queen bed.  I could not get the fitted sheet on and Ted was barely able to so I just bought a new set.  So now both guest rooms are all set for our company!

Re-reading this I realize my life is back the way it used to be!  Keeping busy like a duck, calm on the surface and paddling like hell underneath!  It feels really good and I look forward to our company, the holidays and our three months in the Rio Grande Valley.