Sunday, April 23, 2017

We Used To Have Block Parties

Here is the newest visitor to my neighborhood.  We have NEVER had a Red Headed Woodpecker visit our feeders...ever.  Now I hear him in the trees somewhere and he comes to visit all day long.  Now I proudly feed a variety of woodpeckers including Woody, Downy, Red Breasted and Read Headed.  Every visitor is a Blessing from Mother Nature.

One of my blog friends Dawn  posted this morning about one of her neighbors.  We moved in our house in 1976.  The neighborhood is 3 blocks by 3 blocks and most of Terry's family lives within the nine blocks.  Children of those that lived here when we moved in tend to find a house in the neighborhood when they leave the nest. At one time, my daughter fulfilled her dream of buying the house next door to us.

Back when we first moved in, we already knew some of the people that lived here.  Most were our age, but we did have some neighbors that were the older generation.  We used to have Block Parties a couple of times a month.  Really, someone had a party and most of the neighborhood came.  It was always Bring You Own Bottle, liquor or pop, and something for the grill or a dish to share.  Those parties happened for about 7 years.  We were a really close group of friends.  I don't know why the parties ever stopped.  I suppose some of our friends moved on.

This is still a pretty good neighborhood.  Some of the kids Laurie grew up with still live here.  Even some of THEIR kids stayed in the neighborhood when they flew the nest.  Here and there a house has gone to rental and the tenants lack concern for others that live here.  Loud cars and loud music.  We've even had a meth lab that was busted.  It is a different world today and I do miss the neighborhood as it was back in '76.

My grandson moved out last week.  New truck and new apartment.  If it weren't for the dogs we'd be empty nesters, lol.  I am enjoying a slower pace...a lot.

Today I am grateful that my grandson is able to earn a living that is sufficient to support himself.

What kind of neighborhood do you live in?  Are you friendly with your neighbors of just wavers?

Monday, March 20, 2017

A Witch Lives Here

This home is located in one of the oldest neighborhoods in South Bend Indiana.  I have visited many times.  I don't know when it was built, but I would guess around the turn of the last century.  The inside is what you might imagine it would be if someone told you a witch lives there.  For the most part, it's dark.  There is an office that looks like you walked into an antique shop decked out for Halloween.  The parlor is magnificent AND it has a coffin as part of the decor.  The rest of the house is pretty much what you would expect.  The rooms upstairs are bedrooms and decorated in Victorian style.  There ARE creaking doors that open and close for no reason.  If ever there was a house to draw unseen visitors, this is the one!

Barbara is a Gray Witch and if you want to know what that means, you can find out on Google.  She's not a bad witch.  She has led an interesting life.  It would surprise you to know that she was born Amish.  It would NOT surprise you to know that she was shunned.

Barbara is 74 and has been reading tarot cards for 50 years.  She has a dog that actually DOES say "I love you".  She remembers that the first time she met my grandson she gave him a hamster.  I don't know all that Barbara does, but I know she believes in what she does.  She has made a good living reading tarot cards and has been "entertaining" at various conventions and other events that would surprise you.  For about 8 years she had a spot on the local radio station.  Silly people would call in asking questions and think they were getting Psychic advise.  To my ears, all I heard was common sense answers.  The kind smart parents would give their kids and probably do, but somehow it sounds smarter from someone they think has the inside scoop.

Our family loves her. She is straight forward.  She can entertain you for hours with stories about things she has done and people she has met.  Well known people in this town come to her for readings.  She will relate their story, but NEVER tell you who they are.  We would NEVER prod her to do so.  She has given many volunteer hours to various causes in town and is very well thought of.

The first time I met Barbara she wanted to do a reading for me.  I said ok on a whim.  She knew nothing about  me..there was no way for her to.  But she told me 3 things about me that NO ONE could possibly know.  Not Terry..Not anyone...Nada.  Not future...past.  HOW?  Doesn't matter.  She's Barbara.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

It's Entertainment - kinda

Lots of my friends have been mentioning that I haven't posted in a while and want to know how things are going with my foot.  With that in mind, I thought I should post, but honestly, about what?

Well, there just is not much to talk about.  I don't need to keep my foot elevated, but I do still have to wear the boot and can't put weight on it yet so I still have the scooter to move around the house and use when I go out.  Honestly, I don't go out much and I do keep my foot elevated because unless I do, there is still a certain amount of pain...small though it is.  My choice of pain reliever is Ibuprofin, but because it is an anti-inflammatory, I am unable to use it, as it would prohibit the fusion. Tylenol is what I am able to use but it has side effects for me that I just don't want to deal with.

So, I spend a lot of time looking out the window at my feeders which Terry has graciously kept filled.  I never tire of watching the action out there.

I have been doing a little reading.  A very little FB.  A small amount of cooking.  Of course, I am still stitching cupcakes on the quilt.

Then, there's the TV.  Terry has a routine of shows he watches and I listen along while he watches.  I don't have much interest on daytime TV, but I do have a few shows I watch at night.  I can't get him to switch over to Netflix, but I'm working on that.

I go back to the Doc on the 22nd.  I expect him to allow me to walk using my own shows as long as they don't put pressure on the fusing joint.  I have read that it takes about 6 months to actually fuse and that you can have the plate removed in the future.  I'll ask him about that.

The xray of my foot shows that when I thought I broke my foot about 8 years ago and didn't go to the doctor, I really DID break it.  It shows the break pretty clearly.  Now, it only have pains me when the weather changes.  I'm thinking that's not bad if I had gone to the ER, had a cast and went through THIS.

Thankful:  Today, there are so many things to be grateful for.  At the moment, I'm happy that when I turned 65, I took the time to look into an insurance policy.  It's NOT a supplementation policy. It's a policy you buy and use instead of Medicare.  The cost is the Medicare premium plus $39 a month,  So far I have paid very little for Doctor appointments, lab work, xrays and this surgery.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Cupcake Quilt Update

Hi Friends.  This is what I have been doing to keep my sanity while I have to keep my foot propped up.  I don't really have to KEEP it propped, but it's the most comfortable way to sit until it heals a little more. (It's ugly, black and blue and still swelled a bit.)

  This is Laurie's cupcake quilt.  I am stab stitching a cupcake on each block.  So far I only have a few blocks done.  It took me about 2-1/2 weeks after surgery to gather any creative energy to work on it.  I had a couple of false starts on the stitching.  I wanted the threads to be kind of prominent so I "tested" a couple of different weights.  Robbie Porter suggested #5 perle cotton and it was perfect.

One thing I miss a real lot during this recovery is playing with my dogs.  I'm pretty sure they are missing it to.  The weather here has be unseasonably warm, like a lot of the country which makes it hard not to be outside checking out the pond.  But it has thawed and I can see the fish through the window.  I always hold my breath until the ice melts to see if they survived the winter.  Blue Birds and Sparrows are vying for the bird houses. Means an early Spring to me!!  So that's what I have been up to.   How's the weather where you are?

Thankful:  I am so thankful that the winter was mild and my fish survived it.  A couple of years ago we had a harsh winter and lost them all.  The fish we have now are the ones that we bought to replace them.  Funny how even a fish can become special to you.  My favorite is a big blue calico Shebunkin.  By the time my foot is healed I'll be looking for my frogs.

Be well.  Love life.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

An Update on my SIL.. and thank you

See how mad Snoopy is?  That's how I am feeling about several things right now.  I have been mentioning My SIL Marcella on my blog.  A lot has happened since I last posted about her just a week or so ago.  Remember she went to IU Medical Center for a second opinion on her cancer treatment.  Let me back up here just a little.

The doctor that WAS treating her is the same one that treated my FIL.  Terry and I never agreed with the treatment he recommended, as other family members did or didn't.  It was not our decision, it was my FIL's.  When Marcella was first diagnosed, she went under the care of that same doctor.  He owns a cancer treatment center here in South Bend.  Chemo, Radiation and meds are all received through his Center.  Somehow that does not seem correct to me....but I'll move on with this story.  The Center removed a cancerous spot and lymph node...oh, so she thought!  She went on to receive radiation.

When she went to IUMC for the second opinion, she had tests and saw a Doc who told her they would be able to give her medication to keep her comfortable.  They found sources to pay for the treatment.  That doc took Marcella's case to their board after so they could review the tests etc they had taken.  There are several things that are still in review.  Let me tell you...the first doctor did not remove the cancerous lymph node and it was broadcasting cancerous cells to other parts of her body.  The Chemo doc didn't catch that and he SHOULD have.  What a fiasco.  She is so joyous I didn't talk to her about if there were something legal they should be doing about THAT.  Anyway, she is going to have surgery as soon as it is scheduled.  I'm not sure what exactly they will remove.  She is on medication that will encircle the spots that won't be removed but will keep them from growing and should reduce their size.  We have always heard that IU was one of the best places to go for cancer treatment.  Our hospital in Goshen's cancer treatment is affiliated with IU.  We wanted her to go there from the beginning, but she had faith in Dad's doc.  She went through a lot of pain and suffering both physical and mental only to find out she was not getting proper care.

I have no further comment about what I shared with you above....frankly I don't know what to say or how I should be feeling about it.

Now, for the thank you!!  I am using our laptop to type this post.  It drives me crazy.  Sometimes I don't touch anything and the curser jumps somewhere I don't want it to be.  It is so annoying.  Not sure if it's to do with windows 10 or the laptop.  I have received and read every one of your past comments.  I usually like to respond to each one.  That is so easy when I receive a notification of your comment in my gmail.  But when I have to read them from the comments section of my dashboard, I would have to go back to gmail to type the email to you and this danged laptop does not cooperate too well.  So THANK YOU so much for all your comments and well wishes.  If you didn't receive a personal response, it was NOT because I didn't care.  I appreciate all that read my posts, whether you comment or not.

Be well.

Thankful....well so many things, but today I am especially grateful for my two doctors...Dr. James Reidy and Dr. James Flynn.  I love those guys!!

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Day 4 and I Got Wheels!

This is the fouth day afer surgery.  To say I am bored and tired is the truth.  My foot must be elevated and I have to keep this boot on until I see the Doc in a couple of weeks.  I have a choice of putting ice on my leg...20 minutes on, 20 minutes off.  Or I can keep ice on the boot 24/7 which is my choice.  I do not do well with narcotic pain pills and the ice keeps the pain down and allows me to go without meds so it is an easy choice for me.

Before I had surgery I practiced walking using crutches and thought I had that down until I came home and almost fell twice.  Then I figured I could put my leg on a stool and scootch around and that worked ok.  Since I thought I would be ok with crutches I opted to get a scooter after the two weeks that I am not supposed to get up except to use the bathroom.

That lasted less than 24 hours and off Terr went to pic it up the next morning.

This scooter is a blessing and makes moving around so much easier.  My insurance did not cover it, but a $68 per month rental I don't know why I hesitated to get it.  I am really antsy to stitch something.  Maybe tomorrow I'll try to stitch cupcakes on Laurie's quilt.

Lots to be thankful for today:
Modern medicine, Terry's wonderful nursing skills, Corey who is helping Terry take care of the house, my scooter and my DOGS who come to visit me and check to see that I'm OK.  I guess my laptop too which I am using to post this, and my blog friends.

Be well, be happy, stay healthy.
xx, Carol

Monday, January 23, 2017

The Crud and Other Stuff

Oh Geez.  Corey brought it in the house.  You know, that BUG.  The one that sneaks down your throat and makes your throat feel like it's been slit with a razor.  Then it moves on up to your sinuses and makes your head and face feel like it's stuffed with cotton.  I won't even mention what it does to your LUNGS!

Thank you Corey.  Luckily your Papa put some kind of shield around him...or maybe that's garlic around his neck!!

So before I got this visitor, I sandwiched Laurie's quilt.  I made a stencil of a cupcake.  I'm going to try to stitch a cupcake on each block.  We'll see how that goes. I didn't feel like taking a pic of the backing I stitched.  It is blocks the same size as the top.  I used a few of the leftovers from the top and cut more from the pink cupcake material.  I also have that material in brown so I cut blocks from it as well.  I'm not sure when I will commence the quilting, but probably while I am recuperating from surgery.

This week I have several appointments.  I haven't mentioned that I will have surgery on the "Giant" toe on my right foot.  That's what they call your big toe when they order xrays.

Basically I am having a lot of pain in the joint of my big toe.  If you have seen a bunion, what I have looks like a bunion growing on TOP of that joint AND between the 1st and 2nd joint.  There are also two little bones on the bottom of that joint that have arthritis and are causing pain and my toe to grow to the right.  It is a hereditary thing and usually only effects one foot. The pain causes me to walk on the side of my foot which is causing even more pain in my ankle and knee.  So next Tuesday I am having surgery to remove the growth on the bones and to make the joint immobile which will keep the toe from growing totally to the right.  My sister has this condition.  I'll tell you it's painful and darned right painful to look at too. After surgery I will have to keep my foot elevated higher than my heart for two weeks to control swelling that could break open stitches.  Then I will be on crutches for another 4 weeks.

Today I am thankful that I have insurance and am able to have this surgery.  My SIL who has cancer was told my her insurance company that they will NOT cover the medication that her doctor has prescribed to keep her cancer in check.