Sunday, May 21, 2017

Another busy, busy week. We went to Brianna's awards ceremony Tuesday and Bill made it OK. Sitting on bleachers in the gym about killed both of us and people are so rude. He finally just ran over someone with his oxygen tank when they stepped in front of him and then stopped. There was one kind man who directed traffic a little bit to get us through the mess. There was also an announcement made during the ceremony that really offended me and things only got worse the next day.

There's going to be a special election to build a new fieldhouse and sod the football field and give teachers a raise. It will raise property taxes a little over $100/year. This is coming on top of just approving an increase in sales tax for police and fire and to build a new police station. It was announced during the awards ceremony that if we voted for the millage increase then we wouldn't have to suffer through another program in a hot, gym with no air conditioning. That was not the venue for that and that's why I was offended. I also didn't appreciate that flyers were passed out before hand.

Wednesday it was announced that graduation would be moved from the football field to the gym because there was a 50% chance that it would rain. That is standard, but the call has always been made the day of graduation. This created a firestorm because students were each issued 7 tickets. Our family had several coming from out of town and other relatives, on the other side of Brianna's family, thought that she should give up one of her tickets so that their family could use it. That wouldn't have been a problem if she was the only one graduating, but her cousin, on that side of the family was also graduating. It was then announced late in the day that it would still be held on the field unless the weather did get bad.

My sister and niece arrived Thursday night for the graduation and it was still up in the air as to where the ceremony would be held and who would attend if it was inside. Bill had decided that he would not go at all. He doesn't like crowds any more. That was one reason I wanted him to go to the awards ceremony. He at least got to see her walk and get several awards and scholarships. I had decided that since Ronna and Brooke had come from Illinois, they could go in our place.

Friday it did start raining in the afternoon and the school announced that if it rained they would hold off making the decision until 9 pm, just pushing the time of graduation back until then, and then if it had to be moved it would be moved then. We had several family members in to eat. Emily provided all of the food and paper goods, I just provided trash bags. Our house is bigger than hers and could hold everyone. We got some pictures taken with Brianna and then everyone took off for graduation. Ronna ended up staying at the house with us. We had both done too much and our backs were killing us. Plus, we had stayed up very late the night before so we were really tired. When everyone got back to the house Em said it only lasted 1 1/2 hours. They practically ran the kids across the stage. But, they graduated. Brooke came in with the "official" graduation fan...advocating for the millage increase! It's just about lost my vote, and it won't affect us because Bill is exempt from property taxes as a 100% disabled veteran. It's all just the way they have done it.

We hit the road about 8:45 Saturday morning after leading Ronna to Emily's house. We had rain most of the way and in Montgomery AL, it was raining so hard that I could only see the semi in front of me. It got dark enough at 3 in the afternoon that my headlights came on automatically! It rained that hard again 2 miles from our hotel for the night and I had to pull over. I told Bill that I just couldn't do it another time. I got soaked getting things out of the car and then getting us dinner. I was in bed before 8. Heard thunder several times during the night but slept pretty good. We got up a little before 8 so had a good long night.

We got into Jacksonville about 3:30 and got checked into the hotel. We've already had dinner because Bill couldn't eat anything after 6. His appointments start at 6 tomorrow morning.

We weren't able to get the portable concentrator but we were able to get 3 extra large tanks. We are also supposed to get re-supplied either tomorrow afternoon or Tuesday morning. I told Bill as we were switching tanks around today that the powers that be that make decisions on the types of oxygen people can use should have to travel with an oxygen patient and see what it entails. We used 2 large tanks yesterday and 1 today. We have 1 left for tomorrow. We do have 5 small tanks left, because we were switching between the large and small when he gets out of the car. I will take small ones tomorrow also because he's going to be at the outer limit of the large tank. He'll be able to get by Tuesday with small tanks and Wednesday he will be connected to Mayo air for his heart cath.

So, there you have it, our busy week. When we get home from here we'll be ready for a rest!
I don't know if I will update daily or not, but I will after the heart cath on Wednesday. See you then!

Friday, May 12, 2017

This has been a challenging week, at least for me and electronics. Healthwise there was nothing new going on. I have noticed that Bill's memory has not been good this week, but I think he's just dry. I've had to make him drink more.

My laptop crashed Monday morning so had to get a new one. It came in Thursday and I'm still working to get it set-up. I finally made some progress with it today. I wish they wouldn't come pre-loaded with apps "they" think I want. I've spent a lot of time going through everything to uninstall some of them. I'm also trying to remember what I had on the laptop that I want to put back on. Luckily I save everything to "the cloud" so I didn't lose much. At least I don't think I did.

I did a little experiment with our internet service. I don't remember if I said anything about AT&T dropping the bandwidth which doesn't let us watch baseball through our Roku device. I noticed that during the day we didn't have any trouble with it dropping...until 5:05. I was even checking facebook on my phone periodically. Yet, in the evening we can hardly get a game started when it starts reloading it because the bandwidth has slowed. I'm pretty sure that after we get back from Mayo we're switching providers.

I got pretty short tempered with Bill about his oxygen the other day and that isn't like me. I was having trouble changing tanks and he said something about it. I told him he should learn to do it himself. He also disconnected his tubing from his concentrator by yanking the tubing when it gets caught on something instead of looking to see what it's caught on. I don't know if I was just tired or what.

We've had another round of storms this week. The cat was really unsettled with the storms Wednesday night. There was a lot of lightning and she was very agitated. She also
got into things before it started storming that she hadn't gotten into before. I don't know if it's because she's feeling better, or if it was the storm. She has finally just about stopped sneezing and her eye that was so weepy has cleared up and is open most of the time. Now if she would just poo in the litter box!

We've been busy getting ready for Brianna's graduation and then our trip to Mayo. My sister and niece are coming for the graduation and I feel kind of bad that I have to kick my sister out so early the next morning for us to leave. We are going to leave later than I normally would so we'll have to go through Memphis instead of the way I prefer to go. But the extra hour that adds would make it too late getting to our first stop. I would really be tired.

I'm trying to find out if we can get one of the portable oxygen concentrators from our supplier. They've been working on it all week. With graduation and then 2 days in the car, all of Bill's tanks would be empty and we need at least 7 hours of O2 for the first day of appointments. Hopefully I'll hear something Monday. There is a place that rents them for travel but I don't know how much lead time they need. Just one more thing to stress about.

I'm sure there was more going on this week than I've remembered here. I may have to start writing and saving it as a draft as things happen! I know I don't cover Bill's health much anymore, but that's the beauty of generally go back to leading normal lives. But, I keep this up for my mother who lives in another state. And, even if our normal lives give people some hope, or a laugh, then my job is done.

And speaking of mothers, Happy Mother's Day Sunday to all of the mothers out there, especially mine. If you still have your mother, at least give her a phone call. I know I'll call mine!

This may not get updated until we get to Mayo next Sunday afternoon. Hope everyone has a good week!

Saturday, May 6, 2017

What a wild weather week! Last week I told you about the tornado that blew through. Saturday night/Sunday morning the storms started in again and a tornado embedded in straight line winds came through. I heard the wind and then the power went off and back on. As I was trying to get Bill's tank ready the lights went out for good and then Emily called to make sure we were up. I think I told you that the emergency sirens didn't sound during the last storm and they were supposed to be fixed but again they didn't sound. I did get an alert from the newspaper by text, but the weather alert from the storm center didn't come until 30 minutes after the warning. I got us into the pantry and then got a text from Ryan to make sure we were OK and he had the weather on and said that the tornado threat had moved across the river. So, back to bed we went.

At daylight, in between storms, I started the generator and got us back up and running. The power came back on around 10:30 so we were only without for about 8 hours. Some were out until Tuesday and one of the local schools cancelled. Most of the towns around us were affected, along with the old air base which is a housing complex for retirees and lower income families. Some folks were mad because businesses that were running on generator and were open couldn't do some transactions because their computer systems wouldn't work. We were also quite popular that day. Joe and Barb came over for coffee in the morning, another friend came over later in the afternoon to charge her phone and another needed to shower before having surgery the next day. But we were glad that we were in the position to help out, and had some good visits with friends.

We finally were able to bring Miss Kitty home Thursday. She has settled back in, although she's not pooping in her litter box again. She's going in the same place on the floor so I don't know what I'm going to do about it. At least she pees in it.

The weather has been crazy again, tornadoes aside, hot then cold then hot then cold. It's also been windy. We had to turn the heat back on but I turned it off this morning. It's a beautiful morning, in the 60s with a light wind and pretty blue skiess. I'm doing laundry and if I had a clothesline I think I would hang some out, but since I don't it's a moot point.

Bill has been coughing more again lately, but only in the night and right after he gets up. I think he didn't use his inhalers his inhalers yesterday and he was very winded all day, breathing very hard on very little exertion. I also think that's it's a natural progression of the COPD/emphysema.

I had one day this week when every part of my body hurt. It was another of the damp cold days and I hope it was just from that. But from my toes to my head with everything in between aching, I was miserable until the Aleve kicked in. I also have a strained Achilles in my left ankle and it was quite sore for a few days, which made my entire leg hurt since I sit and walk differently. I have a compression brace and it didn't help any.

So, there's our week in a nutshell. I know a lot of my friends and family in Illinois and Indiana are dealing with a lot of water, along with parts of Arkansas and Missouri. There was one levee breach that caused a lot of flooding and road closures. We are supposed to be far enough from the Mississippi (9 miles behind the levee) so we should be OK when the flood waters get this far downstream.

If you're dealing with water and storm cleanup, stay safe. If you aren't but know somebody who is, or who is dealing with something else, help if you can, even if it's picking up lunch for them. It will be appreciated! 

See you next week!

Friday, April 28, 2017

Posting a day early this week. We've started spring cleaning and I'm going to be busy tomorrow. Or, at least I think I'm going to be busy!

We had to take Miss Kitty back to the vet. She started sneezing over the week-end and got very lethargic Monday. The vet was dismayed that the antibiotic wasn't working (and I had been giving it to her twice a day). She was very close to pneumonia. She's still there and is improving, but will be staying at least through the week-end.

We had the edge of a tornado go through Wednesday afternoon with no warning. We later found out that the siren warning system wouldn't work when they tried to sound them. I was standing at the front door when it went through and it was over in 10 minutes. But in that 10 minutes all of the transformers around blew and there were sparks and flames everywhere. Of course the power went out. So, switched Bill to one of his big tanks and waited until the storm had passed before going out to start the generator. The power came on sometime in the middle of the night, but I didn't switch back over until daylight. The other side of the street didn't get power back until sometime in the night last night and one house was still waiting on the building inspector to come. Their meter was pulled from the house. Not only that but it left a huge hole in the house! But, everyone was safe and there were no injuries and only minor property damage that I have seen, mostly tree limbs.

The trees we planted before we went to Florida for Bill's transplant have flowered. We bought flowering poplars because they grow fast and this is the first year they have flowered. The flowers are yellow "tulips" an really pretty. All of the flowers of course blew off in the storm, but there are more blooms out now...just in time for more storms this week-end.

These storms are supposed to be stronger than the ones we just had and we are supposed to get 4-6 inches of rain. So of course we have a flood warning through Sunday night. We will just hunker down here.

Our allergies have been better and Bill isn't coughing quite as much. I'll have to see how they do when the cat comes home. We may have to find another home for her.

We're getting ready to be busy with Brianna's graduation then leaving for Mayo the next day for Bill's check-up. Time will fly by probably.

That's it for today. I need to get back to my knitting and get the baby sweater finished so I won't want to sit and work on that instead of working like I need to. All I have left are the sleeves. Have a good week-end!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Bill and I are feeling as exhausted as new parents! Sometimes we have wondered why we ever let Miss Kitty Cat into the house!

She came home from the vet Tuesday afternoon and made herself right at home. She used the litter box and hasn't gotten into anything she shouldn't. She did try helping me cook the first night and I don't think she's been back onto the kitchen counter. She's made a couple of trips on top of the dining room table but only once while we were getting ready to eat. I was pleased when she used the litter box for both, but Thursday morning she didn't use it for #2. She went in front of the dryer, far enough away from the box that it wasn't an accident. I took it that she was just going to be very picky and needed to have the box emptied every time, but she hasn't used it for #2 since. She always goes in the basic same place, even if the box is clean. So, more research on what to do about this and if any of you have cats, any and all advice is welcome.

The first couple of nights she was not happy when we went to bed and if we get up to the bathroom it takes quite a bit to be able to get back to the bedroom. Last night she didn't even move when we went to bed and I was up once and she didn't even move, but when Bill got up at 4:30 for the bathroom, there she was. I think it's because he closes the bathroom door loudly and I just pull it closed. She was also meowing at 4:30 the morning before. It's hard to go back to sleep, especially since the birds start in about that time. I think that is also why she starts in, that signifies something in the feral cat world. So that's why we're feeling sleep deprived like new parents. It also didn't help that Bill wanted to talk when we got back to bed! I finally told him if we were going to talk we were getting up so he quit and went back to sleep. I got up about 7:30, when I heard some meowing and a bell jingle, but feel very tired and headachy.

We don't seem to be suffering from any additional allergies. We're both stuffy this week, but the pollen has been bad and now it's turned very cool from the front that came through last night. Bill has had a harder time breathing and has been coughing more, but I don't think it's anything to be concerned about. 

That's it for this week, didn't have anything else going on, and next week is looking to be pretty quiet too. Hope yours goes well too!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Our electrical problem from last week turned out to be a fairly simple fix and we could have done it ourselves if we had been given the correct information 8 years ago when we had a lot of electrical work done. We had been told when we installed the generator that the apartment, garage and air conditioner were on a new separate panel and not on the panel in the house. The electrician who came Monday tried and tried to find the problem and finally decided to look at the panel in the house. Lo and behold, there was one tripped. It didn't look tripped or even feel wiggly, but that did the trick! He has given us an estimate to have the generator changed from manual operation to automatic. It will kick in within 20 seconds of the power going off. We will also have that breaker changed because it tripped again yesterday just opening and closing the garage door.

We've had a good week otherwise. We took McKenna to counseling again last week and then out to eat. She's our chatterbox and talked the whole time...even after an hour of talking to her counselor! We got home just before dark.

When I went out to feed the cats this week, there was a new one having a drink. This one was a little skittish, but not like the others. It also "talked" to me. I've not heard a sound from any of the others. This same cat was laying on top of the trash can Friday night when I went out to take some fresh water out, and it came to me and let me pet it. Yesterday it was waiting by the back door for breakfast and then came around to the front door and meowed all day. We let it in and it was not scared so it has been around a house before. We've decided to keep it and took it to the vet this morning. It is a little girl and weighs a little over 7 pounds. She has a couple of sores on her and I think she's missing a tooth, but whether it is just a milk tooth or as a result of a fight we don't know. The vet wanted to keep her because she seems to have a little upper respiratory problem. One eye and her nose were a little drippy, just like us! So, she's staying the week-end. She has been taken care of because she got it the carrier willingly and was very quiet and content and let the vet check her out. Once she is well then she'll get started on her shots and get spayed. I had thought that I would name her Reese because her coloring reminds me of a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup, but I didn't put any name down and they just called her Cat, so that may be her name. We'll have to see! 

So, that's been our week for the most part. I printed/stuffed/labeled/stamped 107 flyers for my 45th class reunion. They still need taken to the post office and I was 3 stamps short so need to get those. Hopefully there will be more of a response to this than the email/facebook class page posts. We'll just have to wait and see. 

I hope everyone has a Happy Easter! 

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Welcome to our wonky world! When we were in Florida waiting for Bill's transplant and then during his recovery, I often wished for a "normal" life. And after we got home, we got a mostly normal life, and that gets boring. This week started as normal but it is ending with a bang.

As far as Bill's health goes, everything is normal. No problems at all. That's a good thing! I've had a headache most of the week and yesterday my eyes felt like I was really straining to do anything. I thought that it might just be allergies, because I can tell they are really kicking in, but I'm concerned that it might be my new glasses, although I've worn them for a few weeks now with no problem after the first couple of days. I know our allergy meter is high right now so maybe that's all it is.

I had to take McKenna to ball practice Monday and while we were in the car she pushed the seat all the way back to put on her cleats and....there was Bill's wedding band! He was quite happy to get it back and is wearing it along with the old one that fits so that it won't fall off again until we can get it sized.

Amanda spent the week-end in the hospital and they determined that it was just a nasty virus. At one point they said she was on the edge of becoming septic, so we were relieved that it was just a virus. We saw them Tuesday. They had some paperwork that needed notarized.

We've notice this week that our thermostat has been acting up. It would reset back to the factory settings at different times of the day, usually in the middle of the night. It's been cool enough that we still need the heat at night, although we had a really warm on and had the air on one night, them back to the heat.

Yesterday Bill went out to walk and I was working on some paperwork on the computer and had to reset the thermostat again. Bill came in a little later and asked what happened with the power. Everything was fine in the house, but there was no power to the garage or apartment. We check every breaker and couldn't find anything and Bryan came after work and checked a few other things with no luck. He's coming back today with his meter to check some more. In the evening it got cool in the house and I kicked the temp up a little, but the furnace kicked on. I remembered then that the furnace and air conditioner were on the same panel as the garage and apartment. So, no power there, no power on those. It's still a little cool in here this morning, but bearable. It's going to get pretty warm today, so the house should warm up soon.

If Bryan can't find the problem then I'm calling an electrician Monday morning. Not going to call today, don't need to pay the week-end rate, especially since it's not really affecting the house itself.

We took McKenna to counseling Thursday. Her session was from 4-5 and she had a softball game at 6. It takes an hour for the drive, but I got her to the ballpark with 5 minutes left for her to get to the dugout. She had her uniform with her and she changed in the car, after making Pa promise not to peek! After we got home our neighbors Joe and Barb came over for a bit. We noticed as they were leaving that the handle on the security door was very loose, but none of us could figure out how to get to the screws! So, I had Bryan look at it last night too, and he slid one piece down and there they were! We had all tried to get it to move with no luck! So another honey-do for him! I guess that's what these sons-in-law are for. 

We have recently found out that we had a great-grandchild born last week, and we have 2 more due before the end of the year, one in early October and one in mid-November. I think these will make 18 great-grands!

So, that's been our crazy week. But, baseball has started so that makes it all better! The saga continues and I'll let you know how it all turns out! Have a good one!