Friday, July 12, 2019

She Got a New Boot

Friday K had her appointment with the Podiatrist.  This is approximately 4 weeks after the surgery on her heel.  We were hoping she would get put into a walking boot.  She did get one and we are glad of that.  So she is progressing on schedule.  This boot is taking some getting used to.  There is pain now when she walks and she is very unsteady on it.  They also cautioned her to be VERY careful and not to fall.  They made her somewhat fearful so they must have really stressed that.  She has been very tentative in doing anything at all on it and is still resorting to her knee scooter.  I just need to be patient and let her do what she wants and not try to push her beyond what would help her get back to normal.  

My newest Granddaughter turned 5 months earlier this week.  But she is in Arizona with the other Grandparents.  They have not seen her since she was born, well except for Skype.  I had suggested to them that we would keep her with us while they went to Arizona so they could relax.  They weren't buying it.  So I am missing my weekly visits with my little nugget. 

I told y'all about my closest cousin and his episode with prostate cancer a while back.  It turns out now that he has pancreas and liver cancer.  I am having a hard time wrapping my head around that one.  I am very concerned.  We had spoken a couple weeks ago and he told me that the doctor told him it was not cancer.  I only heard this latest news in a text message from his wife.  I don't know what to make of that.  I am sure it was pretty devastating.  I am trying to get the courage to call him.

Also, a fairly close friend had a one car accident.  Apparently he had a seizure.  They took him to the ER and found a naval orange size tumor in his brain.  He had surgery this week and is on the mend.  However, this tumor was cancer also.  They knew when they took it out that it was malignant.  They had to take him for an MRI before they closed him up to see if they got it all.  They had to go back in.  I am very concerned for him and his family.  

My Dad is supposed to be released from Rehab Monday.  Mom has been looking for a facility to place him in.  She won't be able to care for him as he hasn't progressed in the rehab.  At 3500-4500/month, she was frantic over what she would do.  She happened to mention it to one of the nurses at the rehab facility and the nurse told her about a Medicare program that will pay for most of an in home care program  It's like a hospice but without the impending death that we all know about.  It's still not cheap at 1800/mo but this is a better option than anything she has found so far.

Lots of prayers have been offered this week.  And they will continue.

Happy Trails

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Busy Week

The roofer started Monday.  All day of that pounding on the roof K had to endure inside since she is still pretty immobile.  It was hard to even hear our own words at times and much less the TV, which is K's sole outlet.  Today they are back and will finish up.  It shouldn't take as long as yesterday.  They were here 12 hours hitting it hard in that heat.  Getting this done will be one less thing to have on our plate.

Today I take K over for a needle biopsy.  The closer it gets the more prevalent it is in my mind.  No, not worried, although I am concerned for the pain she will endure.  I hear they are extremely painful.  Luckily we have some good stuff left over from her surgery.  She isn't worried too much either but it is there.  Why wouldn't it be?  Her Mother passed from breast cancer in her early 50's.  

I have got to get to the grocery store today.  We have needed to go for some time but with everything going on I haven't been able to take the time to do that.  I don't want to leave K here alone too long and especially with the roofers here.  They come ask questions a few times and she can't get up to answer them.  I did sneak out for a little bit yesterday to look at the lawn tractors I had in my sights.  Research can only do so much.  As it turns out, the one I had initially thought would be the good choice is much less desirable than I thought.  The Home Depot employee just happened to be a friend I worked with before I retired and he gave me the low down.  Lowe's was next.  The employee knew even less than I did about the one I was considering there after the one at Home Depot was eliminated.  I finally eliminated that one and picked a cheaper model that is almost identical to my current one.  I am pretty sure that will be my final choice.  I just have to find the time to go back and purchase it and then have it shipped.  It's much to heavy for me to try and get it home now even if I did have my truck still.

I've got a couple appointments with the docs tomorrow and then one next week with my surgeon.  I am hoping that will be the last appointments for a while.  Oh, and K has one with her podiatrist Friday.  We are hoping they will put her in a walking boot then and get her more on her feet and off that knee scooter.

My Dad is still in rehab and from what I hear it is starting to wear on him quite a bit and is pretty grouchy.  This just makes it harder on my Mom and adds to her worry.  He will probably be out of Rehab before we can get over to see him.  WE just can't do it all.

Happy Trails

Friday, July 5, 2019

Friday and Almost Yard Work and Roofer Coming Finally

Friday, the day after our 44th anniversary.  Yes, we got married on the 4th.  We had a very quiet July 4th except for some fireworks from the neighbors.  They are a younger crowd and don't to care about the quiet we have learned to love living out here.  Since K is still mostly immobile with her foot we didn't go anywhere to celebrate our anniversary.  We usually will go out to a nice restaurant or steakhouse and back home, usually at noon or shortly thereafter.  We couldn't leave Buster alone with the fireworks going off.  They made him very scared.  That is no longer an issue.  So I had picked up a couple ribeyes and threw them on the grill.  I have to say they were perfect.  As good or better than I have ever cooked.  It made things pretty nice for our anniversary despite staying in.  Son#1 and his family came by for a few, and then headed over to his in-laws.  That made things even better.

With all the wet weather we have had my grass has gone absolutely nuts.  I felt a need to get it cut ASAP since I had been notified that the roofer will start on Monday.  They clean up after themselves pretty well but with the grass as long as it would be by Monday, it would make it easier for them to miss the things like nails I want picked up.  Plus it's supposed to get much hotter this weekend and into next week.  True July weather is finally arriving after several days of not reaching 90.  

OK, back to where I was going with this yard work thing.  Everything was going fine until...I hit a low stump I know was there and have gone over many times without incident.  Not this time.  Bent a blade on my riding lawnmower.  Frustrating since I knew it was there and still hit it.  GRRRR.  Flipped the mower over to remove the blade and see a bigger problem.  Those blades fit on a shaft that has a star shaped pattern.  All those little star points that keep the blade turning were sheared off.  OK.  I can't fix that.  Called a neighborhood guy that will come out Saturday.  First time ever having to pay someone to cut my grass.  Oh, I am shopping for a new rider too.  So if you have a suggestion I will add it to my research list.  I am leaning toward a Troy Bilt ( it has an automatic transmission-I have concerns about that) and another Craftsman that is sold at Lowe's.  Troy Bilt sounds great and most reviews are very positive, but a few reviews all had a recurring problem with a shaft and bearing burning up and their service for warranty repairs appears nonexistent.  I am familiar with Craftsman and the one I have has always been very reliable.  The old one has been showing its age lately and it cut unevenly so replacing it was not too hard to decide.  Plus it is about 15 years old.  Time to say goodbye.

Happy Trails

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Busy 2 Weeks Ahead

Things are going pretty well with us this week.  K got her stitches out Friday and it has caused a little more discomfort than she has been having.  She thinks the doc wrapped it tighter this time and it has caused some of that.  We have re-wrapped it so we will see.  The cavern in my chest is closing noticeably.  We have reduced the nurse visits to twice a week and then just so someone that knows what they are doing can look and see that there is no infection and it is still progressing.

The next two weeks are filled with appointments.  A lab for a blood draw, my surgeon visit., dental visit.  Then the following week my urologist visit, K will have a needle biopsy of the area they are suspicious about from her mammogram, and finally my twice yearly eye exam and then K's visit to her surgeon.  Hopefully she will get a walking boot then.  All this along with nurse visits for my wound.  Then we should be good to go and K will hopefully start getting her foot back in shape.  

K's recovery will determine whether or not we take a road trip to Colorado come October and then maybe over to the Grand Canyon.  She has to be able to walk well enough as there will be some walking if not hiking.  We certainly don't want to undo anything that has been done to her foot.  But we are hoping that it is far enough along in the future for her to be near normal.  I am really looking forward to this trip.  It's been way to long.

My Dad is still at the rehab.  I have not been to see him since he went there earlier in the week.  Apparently he has been grouchy and the rehab is adding to that since it causes him pain.  At 92 he has been very immobile for some time so any sort of exercise is hard and he doesn't want to do it.  Consequently the grouchiness plu snot being at home and having my Mom at his beck and call every second.  He still is getting confused about things too, but from previous experience that is not unusual and may continue off and on for a bit.  

On a brighter note, we had a chance to keep the baby for most of the day Thursday.  I went and got her and brought her home and was very happy to do so.  They were happy to send her off for awhile, she was demanding their attention more than what my Son#2 was able to give at that time.  He was very busy working and needed the break.  It was a nice treat for us and gave us something else to focus on and raised our spirits considerably.  She is a very easy baby and is in a great mood every time we have her.  

How could you not love this face...and those huge eyes?

Happy Trails

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Wow-What a Storm

Monday afternoon we had a very quick but violent storm hit our area.  It dumped 3.3 inches of rain along with some very high winds.  Quite a few branches were knocked out of my trees.  Behind us is a vacant lot and there is one tree that is about 10' from my back fence.  It s Huisache and is full of thorns.  Some of the deer in our neighborhood were hiding out under it during the storm, that is until one of the main beams split off and laid across my fence.  Great.  Add this to my growing out of control grass I haven't been able to mow yet.  

Tuesday I figured I needed to do something about that large tree limb on my fence.  I have no access to that property without climbing my 'no climb' fence.  So I grabbed the electric pole chain saw and reached over the fence and proceeded to cut the limbs and just push them back on that property.  That is until the chain got stuck in the branch I was cutting.  Nothing I did could get it loose.  Grabbed a ladder and climbed over and finally got the chain loose.  Quite a sight watching and old man climb a fence I'm sure.  Yes, I finally got it off my fence but it is stacked up right next to it.  I won't do anymore than that as I hate to trespass and I can't do anything with the branches anyway.

I did get to mow, some Tuesday morning.  Until the mower dies on me for no reason.  It smells like it flooded.  It's a lawn tractor that has never not started on the first crank.  So I'm not real sure what to make of this.  Checked the air filter and it was good to go.  So I am letting it sit until tomorrow and see if it will have cleared enough to start.  I suppose part of the problem is the blade cut off.  It doesn't work.  I have to shut the engine completely off to stop the blade.  I am guessing the extra blade turns when I shut if off caused something to get out of sync with the carb/gas.  It had backfired the last time I did that just a few minutes before.  I am going to have to figure this out so I can get this jungle under control soon.  If it won't start tomorrow, not sure what I will do.  I have no vehicle to haul it to a repair place anymore, not that I could lift it like I used to anyway.  This is not fun when you have crater in your chest.

My Dad got moved to a rehab facility nearer my Mom's home than she had originally planned.  No, I didn't say a thing.  But she doesn't like it, surprise.  Dad called her at 7:30 AM complaining about her not being there already.  He claimed that no one came by at night to check on him.  Not sure how they do things in a rehab facility, but it's not a hospital that checks regularly and on shift changes.  People in hospitals always complain how many times they get awakened by the nurses checking on them.  This is a first to hear a complaint that no one woke him up.  I know he forgets things and gets confused for quite a while after anesthesia.  So who knows if anyone came or not.  Regardless Mom is already looking to move him to another facility because she didn't have a 'good feeling' about this place to begin with.  She will get no comment from us.

Happy Trails

Monday, June 24, 2019


It's all I can do.  SMH.  K needs a needle biopsy since they found small abnormalities during her mammogram.  Getting it approved by the insurance is becoming a chore also.  They say they won't allow the OBGYN that ordered the mammogram to order this.  It has to be done by her primary care doctor.  Of course this makes no sense at all.  The biggest issue is getting the primary care doctor to actually do it.  It isn't the doctor's fault for the most part, his staff seems to be incompetent when it comes to returning phone calls or letting you know they did what you requested.  These are for things they don't want you to come in for.  

K is doing really well and it makes thing much easier on me.  She even tries to do things I have been or think I should be doing for her.  We went to church Sunday.  However, all this extra activity, Saturday visiting my Dad and church has caused her knee she is walking on to hurt and swell.  So I am limiting her activity.  No more excursions for a while.

As I anticipated my Mom is off the charts with her anxiety.  My presence seems to add to it.  No matter how hard I try I seem to say the wrong thing at the wrong time (her perception). Long story. 
But that has caused me a great deal of concern.  She has to now make a decision for a rehab place for my Dad.  You would think she would choose some place close to her.  It appears she has chosen a place downtown that has no free parking or ease of parking for that matter.  Any place down there is not a safe place for an elderly woman to be walking alone.  She used to work there 40-50 years ago.  She loved it then, but does not realize how much things have changed there and downtown in that time frame.  It is also very difficult to get there now.  There is no direct route and it isn't close at all.  The traffic patterns have changed so much and increased exponentially from what she is familiar with.  As much as I would like to persuade her to try somewhere else, my doing so would cause her more worry and I just can't do that at this point.  This may sound harsh, but I will limit my contact.  She calls K all the time.  I keep up with things that way.  That way she can focus on thing other than my poor communication skills.  

I apologize for all the depressing news.  I write this mostly so I can remember things/events.  My old brain has its own issues with keeping track of events and where they go in the time frame.  I am sure things will become more positive as things progress.  By nature I am optimistic mostly so I don't ever get down in the dumps regardless of how this blog sounds at times.  Remember, it's just documentation of my goofy life.

I am going to try and start a small leather project to help pass the time and still be close at hand for K.  I can only watch so much TV.  

Happy Trails

Saturday, June 22, 2019

The Hits Keep Coming

As I write this Friday evening about 6 PM my Dad is undergoing surgery on his hip.  He fell and broke it last night.  Mom called early this morning to let us know.  With K immobile and my open wound, it is near impossible for me to be there with her.  My Brother and his Wife are there along with Son #2.  I worry about my Mom and how anxious she gets in stressful situations.  This is a very serious issue for my Dad.  According to the doctor, the next 90 days are critical to his survival.  How rehab goes will make the difference.  He didn't do well in rehab 6 years ago with his knee replacement.  It's all up to him.  The future is clouded.

On a brighter note, K had her first doctor appointment since surgery.  Things are progressing nicely and her pain is minimal.  That in itself is a big deal as far as I'm concerned.  She will get the stitches out next Friday and then the following week get a walking boot.  Encouraging.  

We have also cut our home health nurse back to two visits a week.  K is willing to handle my wound care now that I am relatively pain free.  They will come in to check progress the other times and make sure I am not infected.  The nurse today gave her a quick lesson on how to do it and what to look for.  This is great as far as I'm concerned.  It frees us up more and will allow us to not have to  wait around all day for the nurse.  So if K has a mind to we may even go out for a change of scenery or at the least to church.

More good news, my closest cousin who I grew up with has been battling similar issue to me with same surgeries etc.  They recently found mass on his pancreas.  It turns out it is NOT cancer but will have to be removed or it could turn to cancer.  Thankfully he didn't ignore the warning signs.  this was great news to hear after all the other news lately.  I stay positive regardless.  My faith sustains me.

I've been keeping up with the news and the craziness with Iran.  However, it seems pretty strange that there isn't more continuous coverage.  Or maybe I just missed most of it with all the things going on.  I am not real sure what to make of this all.  I know Iran likes to talk big and tries to provoke us, but to what gain?  Yes, I know they hate us like no other but is that all it is?  What's their long game? Do they really think things will go well for them if we decide to go to war?  Puzzles me to say the least.

Happy Trails