Friday, April 30, 2010

Taking the weekend off!

Amy and Rex are "babysitting" Ron and I am going to KC to party. On the agenda for me...

Tonight - visiting with my mother
Saturday morning - breakfast with mom and then off to get a pedicure
Saturday afternoon - scrapbook fun at Archiver's
Saturday evening - more scrapbook fun at Archiver's

It's National Scrapbook Day (or something like that) tomorrow so Archiver's is having a bunch of free "make and takes" from 10:00 am until 4:00 pm, and then they're having a "crop" from 5:00 pm until 11:00 pm. My sister signed us up to do the crop and we plan on being there early enough to get at least two of the freebies made.

Sunday morning, breakfast with my mom somewhere.

I'm looking forward to the fun. It was my sister's idea that I come up and when I said something to Amy and Rex, he said that he thought I should do it - they would make themselves available to stay with Ron and our dog.

Woo-hoo! I ordered lots of pictures so I hope to get lots of pages completed. I will post pictures when I get home.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

If I thought my schedule was hectic before -

I was just fooling myself.

Monday, 5/3 - two appointments
Thursday, 5/6 - two appointments
Monday, 5/10 - three appointments
Thursday, 5/13 - two appointments

Those are for wound care and lymphedema - luckily at the same place. The day of the third appointment is for the surgeon - same place, but in the morning as opposed to afternoon, which is when the other two are.

Makes for an interesting month. Thursday, 5/27 we also have two afternoon appointments and I'm sure there will be some other stuff between 5/13 and 5/27. The IV infusions will start sometime in the next couple of weeks. They should be short appointments but still a time consumer because of the location.

We got the new medication and was I ever surprised. To clarify, I'm not complaining because we have really good insurance. But, I was expecting a bill about 1/4 the size that it was. $25 for the Vitamin D (I've bought those before) and $5 for the new water pill. I was not expecting $68 for the 30 day supply of the special calcium that insurance won't pay for. Holy moly! My $30 subtraction out of my checkbook became a $97 subtraction. Ouch ouch ouch! Our already stretched medical budget is going to scream at this $100 monthly addition. On top of that, the temporary crown that Ron had put on his tooth lasted about 2 days and it broke off, and took the filling with it. The fix is about $1200, of which we are short about $1200. Weighing the options - $10 to pull it or $1200 to fix it - I think we're going with the $10 option. Just as soon as I can find the open time to get him him. I'm not sure but I think June might be looking better.

That's if there's no surgery happening in June. Dr. K is supposed to decide on 5/10 if he thinks more surgery will be needed.

On a funny note...
We took Isaiah we us on Tuesday to see Dr. Moussa. I had told him that he needed to be really quiet because Dr. Moussa was really busy and he would be trying to talk to Grandpa and I. I asked Isaiah if he heard me and I got back was some whispering. I told him that he had to speak up because I couldn't hear. He said he was practicing for the "quiet doctor" so he didn't get mad at him. LOL! When we got there, he said, "Is Moose doctor going to tell me to be quiet?"

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Doctor updates

First - the bone scan did not show any infection in the bone around where his wound is. There is a spot near his fifth toe but the doctor does not believe that it is connected and does not really know for sure what it is. So, he is going to leave it be for now. We go see the wound care team and the lymphedema nurse on Thursday and go see Dr. K on May 10th. He said he'll decide at that time if the foot needs additional surgery.

Second - saw the kidney specialist today. Ron's numbers look pretty good as far as kidney function goes but he's very anemic and has very low Vitamin D. He's got to have IV iron treatments and will be on a prescription Vitamin D for eight weeks, followed by 2,000 IU of Vitamin D each day. Dr. M is also changing some of his other medications around, namely his diuretic and some blood pressure medicine. He sent some new prescriptions to the pharmacy today and we should get them tomorrow and start on Thursday. We're very optimistic that his kidney function will continue to be stable. The doctor said that he was very pleased with Ron's numbers. His potassium is borderline as far as being too high but that is something that we will always just have to watch with him. He can go up too high rather quickly. Doc told him that "I" was his best physician since I knew his body so well and what was normal for him. He told Ron to listen to me (which he does) and that I would be able to tell if he was heading into trouble.

Third - Dr. M wants Ron to lose weight, which is easier said than done but he can do some upper body stuff and I've given him the hand weights more than once. We discussed again how he needs to burn some calories. He says he'll start tomorrow.

Ron's short term memory is really suffering right now. Not sure why but I can sure tell that he isn't retaining much of the "chit chat" type of stuff that I tell him - and it's more than just a gender defect (LOL!). He does ask the same questions, or variations thereof, quite frequently. They thought he was on 10 mg Aricept three times a day, so I wonder if 10 mg twice a day would help him.

I appreciate the prayers, positive comments, and thoughts. My blogging friends have really kept me going lately and I can't thank you enough. God bless you all!

29 years ago today...

I gave birth to one of the most amazing people I know. My daughter. I don't love her any more than I love my boys - and I'm immensely proud of them as well - but the bond shared between mothers and daughters are a different kind of bond than those shared between mothers and sons.

Amy has grown into a wonderful woman, an amazing mother, and I couldn't be more proud of her. Since her divorce, she's gotten her BS degree (nearly 4.0 GPA) and is receiving her MBA degree on May 8th (3.95 GPA). She has a bright future ahead of her. She's accomplished so much with very little outside assistance, she's doing an outstanding job as a single parent - parenting a child with special needs is tough for a two-parent family and she's doing it on her own (yes, we help but he's still "her" responsibility).

Happy Birthday, Amy!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Chomp, chomp, chomp

I am chomping at the bit. Chomping at anything I can find to put into my mouth. I am not hungry - I am stressed. Food = comfort but it's just not happening. I'm not hungry and nothing sounds good. But, I'm in the kitchen grazing, grazing, grazing. I fixed Ron a couple of good meals today - brunch was double-Boca burger on thin-sliced bun, dinner was rib steak, grilled asparagus, and baked/grilled parsley potatoes.

Tomorrow, Ron will have his bone scan to see if, and how much, infection is in his foot bones. If there is infection, we will find out if they want to operate and use antibiotics or just use antibiotics. I don't know. I don't know how soon we'll find out, either. I could be on pins and needles for several days. I don't think my hips can take it. hahahaa! Bulimia? I've never tried that path, maybe it's an option.

OK, just kidding. I gag brushing my teeth; can't imagine trying to gag myself on purpose. Yuck.

Also, found out tonight that we may not be able make a move like we had talked about. I've been batting it around anyway but there's so much going on that I was really looking forward to having some of it lifted off me. I even allowed myself to hope a little bit and dream about how it would be to have less to take care of. Oh well... back to the drawing board. We definitely will (probably) be moving out of this house. Just don't know when and don't know where.

We have to address the issue of the foot first and see where that path takes us. My brother asked me last week why I would even consider a move and I told him that I didn't know how much more I could take. My mind is just really blown right now and I can't think straight. I really don't know how much more I can take and I keep grasping for something - ANYTHING - that would help me out.

I just want to cuss. Really. A lot. LOUDLY. Vehemently. With passion.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Bone Scan

Monday, the 26th, Ron is having a bone scan; he goes in at 11:30 for the injection and then back at 1:30 for the scan. I have no idea what the scan will show or if we'll be expected to be back at the hospital for further treatment. I'm stress eating, which is my method of coping. I really need a Jill-or-Bob-type of intervention, but who, how, and HOW would that happen? LOL – having them show up at my door might just scare the beejeebers out of me but right now, I can't seem to get enough time to even to go the YMCA (which I joined last month) because every time I schedule a time to go, something comes up and I have to cancel. Keith and I were going to start this past week and then we were going to start on Monday morning, but have to do the bone scan. But… I am making a promise to myself to go starting next week. Some time, some day – my rear will be there!

My future son-in-law's mother is a nurse who works with diabetic wounds in a nursing home setting. She told Rex that she believed that Ron's foot will never heal and we're really just looking at the beginning of the end. I don't want to accept that but I'm to the point where I don't know where else to turn or what else to do. Without some sort of outside assistance, I believe that his days will not have a positive outcome. She has only really voiced what I’ve carried in my heart for a long time. I don’t really think that he’s going to get any better. I just look at him and wonder how much more can he take and how much more misery is he going to have to undergo before he is “healed” or “healed” of his illnesses. I don’t want his life to end anytime soon, but I know that he is very uncomfortable right now and with the foot refusing to heal, what kind of life does he have to look forward to? I don’t know. It’s not something we talk about as neither of us wants to upset the other.

They're gone! Kidnapped! Disappeared during the night!

Something ran off with the duck eggs. There is no evidence of broken eggs, hatched eggs, or anything else. They're just gone. No babies waddling around, either.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Product Placement

Have you ever noticed product placement so conveniently present in different television shows? The one that is the most obvious is The Biggest Loser. Not only do they tout their own products but they also very conveniently "just" happen to have something in the kitchen that will make the lives of the contestants so much easier.

It totally cracks me up when they take a contestant aside and have him/her learn about either a product for portion control (like the double-lock Ziploc bags) or - and my personal favorite - a product they can eat to help them lose/maintain weight. Come on... Surely these folks don't all LOVE the taste of some of these things on the first try. The Bran cereal? It's not bad, but the first time I ate it I definitely knew it was a taste I'd have to get used to.

Wonder how many "takes" it takes them to get a contestant who can actually swallow the item without making a face that implies the stuff tastes like crap? What if they truly don't like it? LOL - swap out the contestants until they find one that can keep a straight face and not blurt out, "Holy crap! This stuff is nasty!!!"

I bet that protein drink that Jill and Bob push is just one such product. Now, if they wanted to send me some for free to try out, I'd be glad to be a tester for them.

As if...

More (lovely) foot news

After Ron's visit with Dr. K on Monday, he went for a vascular ultrasound of his legs and an X-ray of his right foot. The results to be sent to Dr. K and to Dr. H (I assume - not sure though) - and they should probably also be sent to our family practice doctor. Ron doesn't see any of those doctors before May 3.

We get to the wound care clinic yesterday and are discussing the treatment options that Dr. K has suggested and how he wants Ron to see the lymphedema nurses. They aren't available, so the wound nurses say they can give us some pressure tubing that will give him a little bit of compression and help keep the fluid from pooling in his leg/foot. First, they want to make sure he doesn't have any contraindications that would make it bad for them to put the tubing on him so I told them he'd had a vascular ultrasound the 19th. Since it was in the same hospital the records should be online for them to obtain.

The nurse started searching for the information and finds the X-ray results first. She reads "Degenerative changes noted in right foot; probably evidence of osteomyelitis at the base of the 5th metatarsal." That is not good. Ron says, "What's osteomyelitis?" so I told him that "osteo" means bone and "myelitis" is an inflammation of the covering of the bone. I conveniently left out that "itis" really implies infection because we both know that bone + infection = bad news.

Of course, when I got home I looked up the treatment options for the infection and it seems that the first course of treatment should be an antibiotic but since no doctor is even supposed to see him until May 3, I wonder if they'll call him before that. I sent a note to our family practice doctor but haven't heard back. So, I called Dr. K's office and his nurse will call me back today. We have to get started on an antibiotic to curb this before it gets any worse.

So now we are back into a situation I hoped we'd never see again. Is the bone really infected? If so, can it be cured with just antibiotics? Will the doctor want to open the side of the foot and debride the bone? Will this end up being something simple or something serious? I don't know but I think I'm mentally preparing myself for the worst and hoping for the best.

I heard a good comment the other day that has been sticking with me... It's not so much if we look at our glass as being 1/2 full or 1/2 empty; it's what we view as the glass containing in the first place. I've got to look at it as being 1/2 full of blessings because if there isn't blessings in there in the first place, then we're really in trouble.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Elusive sleep

I had a really hard time getting to sleep Tuesday night. My head was all stopped up and that makes it very hard for me to relax. I feel like I can’t breathe (even though I “know” that I can breathe through my mouth) and it almost always brings on a panic attack. I feel my fingers tingling and I feel like there is a vice around my chest. I hate it and I have had very little success controlling it.

Ron wanted me to sit down on the bed and let him pat me. That just makes things worse because I feel like I’m really being constricted and confined. I told him to just let me walk around and I’d sit when I felt better. I took a Xanax, which helped. I told him that I was very afraid and that I was so terribly concerned about the future and things to come. I’d been edgy all evening and he knew that I was stressed and on edge. He actually started it and it just built throughout the day…
He doesn't realize he's doing it and Amy doesn't realize she's doing it, but when they say "I need you..." they're not really giving me a choice. If I say I’d rather not, especially where Ron is concerned, then I feel selfish.

For instance, Tuesday was Isaiah’s birthday and Amy had school. I had planned to take him for an ice cream sundae - no biggie; Sonic on the way home. Tuesday morning Ron says he'd like to go eat Rib Crib, all you can eat ribs. I say no, I’d really rather not because I’m trying to lose weight and I'm not overly fond of their food. He says OK and I tell him what I have for him in the fridge to eat that day. Later the same day, Amy asks me if I wanted a piece of pizza for lunch, so I go up and get it. She hands me Kohl’s cash ($40) certificate that expires that day and says "here, let him buy whatever he wants with it." I say who - not registering Isaiah.

She says Isaiah and I say OK, figuring we'd stop quickly on the way home from work and I’d still have a good evening (needed to get work done). Later, Ron calls and says "I really like ribs and salad." huh? "Ribs and salad; I really like them.” I tell him I’m busy and will call him back.

On the way home, I call and tell him I really don't want to go. He says "fine" like he's not happy and just going along with me to shut me up. Puts me on the spot and makes me really feel selfish to say no because I know he doesn't get out much. So, after I ranted and raved (in the privacy of my car and where no one could hear me), I call him back and say we'll go so Isaiah can get the servers to sing happy birthday. Inside, I’m stewing because I had work to do and I know that it's not happening.

Get to the restaurant; Isaiah is cute but wound up. Get done eating (forever later) and go to Kohl’s to spend the $40 certificate. Told Ron that I really didn’t want to spend too long in the store because I really had work to do at home – for work, not even for home stuff. Ron wants to know if they have wheelchairs so I can push him around because he wants new shorts. I had just told him I wanted to get in and out quickly, so I said I’d really like to take him without Isaiah so I can concentrate on just taking care of him; it’s too difficult to push the wheelchair, push a cart, and make sure that Isaiah stays where he’s supposed to stay. He says "fine" - again like I’m making him do something or not letting him do something and I feel like a heel.

Ended up that Isaiah and I went in alone because I was on my last nerve, I snapped at the girl at the checkout (who wouldn’t listen to what I was [really] very nicely trying to ask her), and had a panic attack at midnight and couldn't sleep.

Amy said I had an option, I could have said no about going to Kohl’s but then I feel like I’m cheating Isaiah. I don’t feel that anyone really gives me an option or asks what I need. God and I had a long talk about that. Well, I mostly did all the talking – and yelling. I’m not happy with God right now. I told Him that I feel pretty abandoned and if the “sins of the fathers are visited to their children” for generations to come (the generational curse thing), just what the **** did my ancestors do for me to deserve such crap??? Isn’t it time that I had a break – a good break, and not as in a broken bone? I said a lot. Then I shut up and listened. Silence. So then I told Him that I’d decided that He didn’t give a hoot about me or the circumstances I was in.

I didn’t really mean it – I know better. I’d hate to see what my life and the circumstances around it would be without Him. I keep telling people that I would have succumbed long ago without my faith, but right now I know that it’s pretty beat down. I pray for faith, for it to be strengthened and increased. I continually pray for miracles. I know that God has had His hand on us many times but I just don’t feel it right now. I see no tangible evidence of His care. I don’t feel the warmth of His presence. I’m sure it’s there and I shudder to think how bad I’d feel if He really did turn it off.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Foot updates

We had quite an eventful day yesterday…
First, we went to have blood drawn for the kidney doctor (see him next week). Then we went to see the new plastic surgeon/wound specialist. He looked at Ron’s foot for quite a while and came up with these suggestions:

• Get the brace changed in such a way that it offloads more pressure off the wound.
• Get better shoes that provide more support and so he doesn’t roll as much to the outside of his foot.
• Operate on the wound, shave off some bone, and add a wound VAC to it.
• Operate on the wound, shave off some bone, take a flap from the top of his foot and wrap around the wound, and then take a skin graft from his hip back down to replace the skin on the top of the foot. The flap is to provide a good blood supply (unlike a skin graft, it won’t have to “take”) but since they’d be taking quite a bit from the top of the foot he’d have to have the skin graft.

No matter what he chooses as far as approach, we still have to get work done on the brace to make it offload more pressure. We saw the orthotist yesterday afternoon also and he worked on the brace some and took one of the orthopedic shoes and put it in his stretcher to see if he can expand the toe box enough to accommodate the brace. I’ll pick it up Thursday.

In either of the operation scenarios, he’d have to be non-weight bearing for at least 2-3 weeks. This leaves a big concern for me. He is unable to maintain his balance, especially if he is having one of his “shake” days. With only ½ of his left foot, and no upper body strength because of his neck injury, and since he also needs knee surgery, he would need nearly around the clock care. He is against having a wound VAC put back on his foot, and we’re not even sure they’d let us since we still owe them nearly $4,000 from 2008 (I pay over $100 per month on the bill). I’m not sure his insurance would pay for him to be in a skilled nursing facility but the doctor did say they would at least keep him overnight and maybe an extra day before they sent him home. Thinking about lifting him and getting him from point A to point B has me terrified.

Dr. Khandlewal (the new guy) sent dad right from his office over to St. Francis to have a vascular ultrasound of his legs and feet to make sure he’s got good enough circulation to even consider surgery. The test results will be sent back to him. In the meantime, he has an appointment on Thursday to see the wound care team at St. Francis and they are also going to try and get him in to the lymphedema specialist at the same time. The lymphedema nurse will teach me how to do the compression wrap. Dr. Khandlewal will see him back in the wound clinic 7-10 days from Thursday, but since he’s only in the clinic on Thursday afternoons, it will most likely be the 29th.

We’ll continue this non-invasive approach through May to see if we can get better results and healing and then consider more invasive treatment if necessary. There’s not really anything anyone can do for us but if I could have some of the house pressures taken off my shoulders that would help; there’s really not anyone to do that. I need some yard work done, I need Maisey’s area fixed so she can’t get out, I need the areas that are affected by downspout runoff turned into “river bed” type of things with rock to help direct the runoff and not create a gully in the yard. I hired someone to mow every week but I’m afraid the $35 per week charge will really add up fast. He won’t do a hit and miss type of job – it’s either all or none. I still need our downstairs finished so I can get it cleaned and get carpet ordered/installed.

Ron has at least three appointments next week – one on Tuesday and two on Thursday.

I need, I need, I need. LOL – selfish of me, eh?

I'm actually in a very good mood. Not happy about the situation we're in but definitely not letting it get me down. I am concerned, of course, about the long-term ramifications of any further surgical work on Ron's foot but I also have to be realistic and know that we've worked on this for far too long and all we get is nowhere. It's good that Dr. H sent us to another surgeon for some new thoughts and new ideas. I was just hoping they didn't involve anything nearly as drastic.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Selfish is as Selfish does

I was being very selfish yesterday. I admit it. I’m not any happier today but I’m coping better. Ron knows my spiral started with how his foot looked yesterday morning when I changed the dressing. Not only was I concerned with the ramifications for him of the setback, but I was also concerned with the ramifications for me. I know that I am exhausted and that there is only so much a body – anyone’s body – can take before stress-related illness start setting in. It’s already taken a toll on me as I’m much more exhausted and finding myself much less able to cope, I’m having more pain in my joints and muscles, and I’m having more (and more severe) headaches. I agree with Pat and Kathy – I need to get out and exercise and right now I feel like I’m a hamster on wheel – going in circles but getting nowhere. I joke about being rescued, but there is also a grain of truth in it. As much as I don’t really want to open up my emotional floodgates, I feel like I must do so in order to not lose my mind. But, who would I open up to? I don’t really know anyone who has the resources – or the desire – to help me make any changes in our circumstances. Those that I know who have the desire to see things improve do not have the resources; I appreciate their thoughts and prayers more than they can even being to imagine. The people I know who have the resources don’t have the desire to provide anything. It’s not that they have any obligation to me, and I know that, but sometimes being told they admire my fortitude and strength are not words I really need to hear at that moment; being told they have a solution to some of my issues and they are providing it would be a better option. LOL – at least for me. Those who have the resources and who offer to be of assistance – and then do nothing once their offer is accepted – only cement the fact that it’s better for me to just not ask anyone for anything. If I don’t ask, I can’t get hurt when someone doesn’t follow through. Maybe it’s another selfish act on my part and maybe it’s partly a protection mechanism.

I don’t like having everything right on the edge, just under my skin. I feel tears so close to the surface when I try to talk about anything related to Ron, how he’s doing, or how I’m coping – and I hate that. I don’t do tears. I keep everything inside and I don’t like showing myself to others in that manner. For me, tears are a weakness and one that I have never allowed myself to indulge in.

Other people can cry – I just don’t think I should.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Can I be fried?

Can you all forgive me if I'm fried today? Went to the foot doctor - again - and the side hole looks terrible. I don't know what is going on with that but it just really got to me this morning. As I was getting ready to put his shoe on, I noticed he had bled through his dressing. The new dressing is supposed to last up to 7 days but I'm changing it pretty much on Thursdays and Mondays. I was surprised to see the breakthrough bleeding this morning. The wound was wicked ugly this morning. I'd love to post pictures, but I don't want to gross people out. They're on my Facebook page but there's no way to "hide" them here for those with a weak stomach.

The doctor - Sir Chops A Lot - took quite a bit more off the surface and made it bleed. A lot... In fact, Ron bled all over the floor and the carpet and they had to clean it up and re-dress his foot. Ron's been referred to a new doctor, a plastic surgeon who is also a wound care specialist. We see him on Monday morning. We see the wound care team at the hospital every 2 weeks, the foot doctor on opposite every 2 weeks, and now this guy. April has a lot of appointments because Ron also sees his kidney doctor on the 27th and the neurologist (I think) on the 29th. I have to double-check that and see. My supervisor was a little perturbed with me yesterday because I forgot to tell her of one appointment - the chiropractor, which he also sees on Mondays and Fridays. I laughed it off and said that Ron had changed the appointment from this past Monday to yesterday (Wednesday) instead and I didn't realize it until yesterday. All truth... Said I am to the point where I sometimes have trouble keeping up with all of his appointments. I just made myself a dental appointment for the 28th but I guess I'll be changing that to some other time in the future.

I am so emotional these days. I feel everything right at the surface and just don't know when the breaking point will be. I think I'm there and then I suck it up and go some more. But, I don't honestly know how much more I can suck it up. At what point does the human actually break and totally lose it? I don't know, but I really don't want to find out, either. I'm trying to maintain a cheerful attitude, and I mostly do - even if it's all for show. I can't let "them" see me break and I can't let "them" seem me in anything less than a positive attitude. I don't want to jeopardize my job by anyone thinking I'm having a mental breakdown.

I joined the YMCA so I could go exercise - and I fully intend to get up in the mornings and go. But by the time morning rolls around, I've had such a rough night that I cannot get myself out of bed or motivated. I'm so busy taking care of everyone else (mostly Ron) that I have no time or desire to take care of me. I want to - I just don't "want" to. Does that make sense? Ron says I'm just too tired. My hip hurts, my shoulders hurt, my back hurts, my neck hurts (upper shoulders down through my mid-back). I just don't know what to do with me so I do nothing.

I know I sound depressed and I probably am - a little bit anyway. I don't know how anyone could live my life and not have at least a bit of depression affect them. Just got to keep the faith and keep putting one foot in front of the other - day in and day out. I just know know how much longer these "feet" are going to do the walking.

I really want to lose more weight and feel better about myself, in clothes and out (LOL - TMI!) but until something else in this life gives a bit, I don't see where or how I can do that. Ron's supposed to go back into the scooter and not walk for the next two weeks so loading and unloading that will maybe boost my metabolism again. Or not... He is also supposed to see the brace guy on Monday afternoon to see if he can modify this walking cast to take the pressure off the outside of the foot. I put it on Ron this morning and before I head to work, I want to see if he can walk in it and make sure that he's not bleeding through the dressing again. If he can't walk well enough in it, I'll be bringing the scooter into the house.

We're going to see Shaun and Jenny over Memorial Day weekend so he's got to be mobile by then. We're not planning on taking the scooter because of travel concerns with it. I may need to re-think things but at this point, I'm planning for a positive outcome.

I'm sure you all will get to (or have to) hear all about it in the next few weeks. LOL - sorry... You're all my sounding board as I sure can't tell Ron what all is on my mind. He already feels guilty enough that I have to do as much as I do.

Friday, April 9, 2010

And then, there were 11!

We now have 11 eggs in our duck nest. Mama duck is pretty protective (only natural) but she will let us go in and out the front door. This morning, the drake was in our garage (I had it open as I was going in and out of the house), so I started quacking at him. LOL - he quacked right back.

Can't wait to see the little ducklings once they hatch. I think it should be soon.

House Preparation

Things my house needs before we can put it on the market:

Finish the kitchenette downstairs. Rex has the tile laid for the counter tops but there are a few places where they need to have some more grout added. Once that is done, Amy and I can finish staining the cabinets and Rex can hook up the plumbing to the sink.
Clean the fridge. This has dust from the tile saw and just needs a good wipe-down.
Finish painting the downstairs ceiling. Most of this is finished but there are still some places in the middle that are not finished.
Clean up the floors downstairs so carpet can be laid. Carpet needs to be ordered and paid for, first. Hmmm… That presents a tiny bit of a problem but not terrible – just need some extra funds.
Hang the curtain at the other family room window. It’s bought – just needs to be hung. Me on a ladder doesn’t go over so well, unless I’m speaking “over” in a completely literal sense.
Add caulking to Isaiah’s window. For some reason, there’s breeze blowing in there. Got the caulk; just need to get it added.
Replace light bulbs. This sounds like a no-brainer, but let me repeat… Me on a ladder doesn’t go over so well.
Clean and organize the garage. Get things ready for the garage sale. Sort through Ron’s tools and figure out which ones are going and which ones are staying. The first pile should be the biggest. I hope. Trying to part a man from his tools is like trying to part a man from his tools.
Stretch and clean carpet. Doesn’t sound like that big of a deal to get this done; just need to find who does it and how much it will cost.
Outside beautification. The ducks probably don’t count as beautification. Mama duck is pretty adamant that I’m not getting in that flower bed anytime soon. So, will see what can be done on the other side of the sidewalk. Would like some stuff done in back, especially around the utility stuff but not sure what.
Clean stuff off the deck. Only thing I want left on there is the grill. Need to get a little table for 2 and a couple of chairs. Not sure that is in my budget, though. Wait… I don’t have a budget. I’m “stealing from Peter to pay Paul” as it is.
Touch up painting and wall repair on the inside. You know how wheelchairs can scuff up walls and doors? You don’t? Well, come on over to my house and let me show you. While you’re there, don’t be surprised if I put you to work.
Replace the sink and faucet in the kitchen. These are purchased (thank you, Amy) and ready; just need to be installed.
Paint Isaiah’s room a lighter color. Great color for a kid and it’s decorated so cutely with Cars-themed things. We love it, but as they say in the business sometimes you have to impersonalize something to make it attractive to others.

Who wants to be my knight(s) in shining armor and take care of these “little” things for me??? LOL!

Amy also has to decide on what she’s actually moving up to Rex’s. The light in Isaiah’s room needs to be replaced. It’s adorable, but not suitable for a basement bedroom. Need to get that swapped out so it can go in the garage sale pile. I know Amy has a buffet/china hutch that she’s going to sell. We have a coffee table, 2 end tables, and a sofa table set that I want to sell. I may also put my dining room and hutch set up for sale. We don’t need that big of a table and I don’t want to pay to move it. I also have a bedroom set – solid Oak – for sale. It’s a four poster bed (big headboard and foot board), triple dresser, mirror, and nightstand. It had two nightstands but Ron spilled water on the top of one so it’s not worth anything to sell. The mattress is nearly new (pillow top) and it cost $800 just by itself. I hope I can get $1,000 for the set. Amy thinks it’s too old to get that much money, but something made like that is pretty timeless and it’s still in perfect condition (I am a very careful person). We bought it in 1996 and, although we had two other pieces (a wardrobe and a tall dresser) that we have since sold, we paid almost $5,000 for the whole set. That was also without a mattress.

The garage sale should have a ton of household stuff in it. I am totally downsizing and only keeping things that really mean something to me and would be too hard to replace.

Like Ron.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

March for Babies

If any of you read blogs on my blog roll, then you've probably come across The Wilson Triplets. I work with their father and have an up close and personal interest in walking this year in the March for Babies. I'm proud to be a part of James' and Maranda's team. As a team, we're trying to raise $960. My personal goal for that is $50.

If you read my blog, their blog, or any other blog - would you please consider donating? You can donate by visiting my page and clicking the link to donate. Any amount you can pledge will help.

Thank you...

Monday, April 5, 2010

New day - return of old problems

Ron had a pretty good weekend, but by the end of the day yesterday and today, he's wiped. He doesn't know exactly why he's so exhausted but said he just doesn't have any energy to do anything. I don't know anymore.

I changed his bandage today and the hole looks odd to me. Not worse, but definitely not better. Instead of having the normal "edge" of the wound, there are splits going off of it in several different areas. It reminds me of looking at a target through a scope, where you see the circle with lines coming off of it at the 12:00, 3:00, 6:00, and 9:00 positions. He has all of the lines except the 12:00 one, but in that position the edge is rougher and not a smooth margin at all. I know he's depressed and I really try to not show my displeasure or concern over it, but I don't always make it.

It has got to be very discouraging for him. I know - you all have heard me say that many times before. Today I have to admit that I am having one of those days, as well. I'm just tired. Tired of the never-ending medical problems. Tired of never being able to make plans because he might not feel like going. Tired of feeling guilty if I leave him home alone and tired of feeling left out if I stay home because he doesn't feel like going.

I know that he doesn't want me to miss out on things and he would never make me choose to stay home - that is MY choice and one that I (mostly) gladly make. That doesn't mean that I'm not sorry that I'm missing things. That doesn't mean I don't wish that he felt like leaving the house for things other than doctor's appointments. I tried to get him to go to dinner tonight but he didn't feel like it. I've got green beans, potatoes, and biscuits cooking and he doesn't feel like eating that, either.

I know I'm whining and I apologize. But, there are some days that I just want to check out of this life and into the next. That's a metaphoric comment. You know... "Check, please!" Go somewhere else and try that on for size. Just being difficult...

Thanks for letting me whine...

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Happy Easter!

Blessings to you all. I pray this Easter Sunday has brought you peace and joy and great memories.

Ron and I decided kind of "last minute" to go eat dinner with Rex, Amy, and Isaiah. Rex marinated a tenderloin and then applied a dry rub to it and smoked it. Oh my goodness! It was spectacular! He also fixed Rosemary potatoes, sauteed fresh asparagus, and we also had fresh broccoli, bread, and pumpkin pie for dessert. Yum... I have lunch tomorrow.

I have much to be thankful for this Easter. As I think back on past years, especially those of my childhood, I see so many "scenes" that play across my mind... Kathy (my sister) trying to get an egg out of a rose bush, Dana (my cousin) pouting on the swing because she hadn't found the "golden egg" (worth a whole dime!), Jerry (my brother) toddling across the yard, trying to pick up eggs and put them in a basket, and dressing up in our new "Sunday best." Each year we always got a new church outfit, complete with hat and gloves. I remember shopping for new clothes and having so much fun finding just the perfect outfit.

My parents weren't much on going to church every week, but they did make sure we went. They went to church in their later years, after Kathy died. I am grateful that my parents made sure we went to church as children. Like Rae, I'm not a "Bible thumper" but I have deep faith and know that without it, these past few years would have been insurmountable.

Thank you to all who read and follow my blog. I appreciate your comments and your support.


Thursday, April 1, 2010

Where are Bob and Jillian when you need them?

Like a lot of people, I've been watching The Biggest Loser. I really like that show. This is only the 2nd season that I've watched. I didn't really watch more than an episode or two of any of the previous seasons. Last year, I really got interested in some of the contestants (especially Shay and Abby) and cheered for their successes and hoped for them to overcome their hurdles.

This year, I am really drawn to several of the contestants. Two have already gone home (Cheryl and Sherry) and I am really cheering for O'Neal and Sunshine. And - for Victoria, who just got her chance this week. I hope she can stay for a while. She's done great on her own but having Bob and Jillian there will really help. Her mother was so compelling, asking - no, really begging - the other contestants to vote her in. She had my vote from the minute Ali said the existing contestants would vote for one of the outcasts to come back.

Now, I wish I had someone like that at my house to cheer me on. I bought a Pilates PowerGym last summer and then LeCole and the kids moved in. I had no place to put it because the room it was going into was the room they moved into. When they left, I just didn't get it going again. Now, with Amy getting married (we're going to Jamaica), I'm back in the mood to get this excess weight off and get into shape.

I'd like to be 30-40 pounds lighter by September. Even 20 would thrill me. So, this morning I started working on the machine. I am very sore. Very. V.e.r.y. S.o.r.e. I worked for only about 5 minutes this morning but I was able to go for about 10 minutes this evening. Now, I wish I had this morning's soreness instead of tonight's soreness. Those gals make it look so easy on the video. Yeah, right - it's sooooo easy!

I also bought a Wii game called "Just Dance." I can't even do the novice moves. A dancer I'm not. Never have been able to display any rhythm of any kind. It's funny to watch me try, though - but don't count on getting the opportunity. LOL - these dance moves are for me and me alone to witness. Well, Ron gets to watch, too. We had a good laugh yesterday morning at my lack of coordination.

Tomorrow, I'll work on the machine again. I might take my blood sugar first, though. This morning, I thought I'd really worked up a sweat but come to find out, I was having a low blood sugar instead. Tomorrow, I'll be a little bit more prepared - and do it a bit smarter - to do my exercise.