Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wow, nine weeks!

Nine weeks postop, and the summer is shot. I had a good PT session today, tho the new knee still doesn't bend as far or as easily as I'd like it to. I have PT on Friday, then next week it'll drop back to once or twice a week, after school. 

We have a new grand-dog! Ed and Heather got an 8 week old yellow lab puppy that they named Honey Rose. Ed came up with the Honey, and Julianna gave her a middle name. She looks adorable, and Ed's sister Michelle will be the designated dog sitter. 

I went and got a pedicure yesterday, so my toes are ready for fall. This Friday, Steph and Dan fly out to see Manda and Ben. I'm jealous, but I know my knee isn't up to a long flight and a lot of touristing. Maybe next summer. 

I'm still reading my way thru John Sandford, and enjoying them all. I bought more baby yarn, and I'm working on afghans. One of these days I'll get the urge to sew! I have been working on going thru magazines, and tidying up the sewing room. 

And the beat goes on!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

It's the end of August!

We're running out of summer! The days are getting shorter and shorter already. I won't miss the extreme heat that we've had this summer, which is reflected in my electric bill. 

PT continues. I'm having trouble lifting up my leg, so a new exercise was added. PT puts small cones in a row of 3 or 4 inside the parallel bars. I have to walk sideways and step over the cones. I can really feel it, so it must be a good exercise. That and the straight leg lifts are the hardest. I know I have to walk more, but I'm limited by the other leg. 

Mom Florence will be 90 in October! We're giving her a party at Scotland Run on Sept 15. We went with a brunch party, with an omelette station. It's mostly family, since sadly, most of her friends have passed. It was quite a production setting up a date around the grandchildren's schedules. First we got a list of Saturdays that Manda and Ben could fly in from Seattle. Then we had Heather subtract out the Saturdays she had to work (which has changed now with her change to pool- no assigned Saturdays!). Then Naureen subtracted out the Saturdays that Kevin is on duty. We were left with a choice of 2 Saturdays, so we had Juliette pick one. She picked the 15, as it is the furtherest one from the wedding. The party is not a surprise.

It'll be a short visit for Manda and Ben. They get in Friday night at dinnertime, and leave Sunday late afternoon. We haven't seen them since March! 

This week is Kevin and Naureen's anniversary! 

I was having trouble with my glasses, so new lenses were ordered in July. They finally came in. They made my eyes hurt so much that I called the next day. When they checked, two things were off on the lenses, so they're sending them back and getting the correct ones.

Manda is going to run a marathon! I'm so impressed! She started a program called "From couch potato to 5K" and she's doing great. There's an exercise room at her apartment complex, and she uses the treadmill, or she runs trails near her. And Ben's company has a program where if they walk 10,000 steps they get awards. From what he says, the company is so spread out that he almost makes the steps at work, and when he doesn't, they take a walk at night to finish up the numbers. 

And now I'm off to get some laundry started. Always fun.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Eight weeks postop!

Good grief, we're running out of summer! Only one more full week, then it's Labor Day weekend, then back to work. Staff goes back on the 4th, kids on the 6th. I have PT three times next week, then it'll get scaled back to twice a week when school starts. 

What a strange summer it's been. One long surgery/rehab/procedure/PT. No traveling, no vacation. But it's been very productive. I just got a regular straight cane from amazon, to use instead of the quad cane. The only disadvantage is that I can't just stand it up anywhere and leave it, it has to be leaned on something.

Mom Florence told Ralph that she needs a hobby, since her cat has passed. I suggested reading, and Ralph took her to the library this morning and got her some large print books. She's always liked to read. I don't see her learning a craft at this point in her life. 

It's been really nice out all week, and we've had the AC off and the windows open, which makes Cliffie very happy. She wanders on and off the porch, and on and off the window shelf in our room. Lots of things to watch and smell. 

The hummingbird feeder on the deck has been getting quite a workout. It's quite entertaining to sit at the kitchen table and watch them feed and chase others away. My neighbor was over to bring us tomatoes, and he was watching the little birds and decided he might need to get a feeder for his deck. 

Next week Steph and Dan leave for a week split between Seattle and Portland, which means that Toast and Whiskey come to visit us for the week. Whiskey's foot has been bothering him, and I'm hoping he feels better before they come to visit. I forget how high maintainence they are, until they come. 

I've been catching up on the Lucas Davenport series by John Sandford. I'd read the first 10 years ago, and somehow not kept up with them. I'd forgotten what a great writer he is. Mysteries, of course. 

And so it goes!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Seven weeks!

I'm 7 weeks and 2 days postop! The scar is looking great, but the leg and foot still swells up. I was at PT today, and the therapist complimented me on how flexible the leg is, and how much extension I have. I had 110 degrees of flexibility. 

And I'm driving! After PT on Tuesday, we went over to Lowe's parking lot and I practiced, and I was able to brake easily, so I drove home. It felt good, and Ralph was so happy! He hates to drive. Wednesday I drove the Heather and Ed's, and stayed with the kids from when Ed left for work til Heather got home. Eddie is so easy to babysit- I take the iPad, and he's good for hours. Julie flits between playing, the Kindle Fire games, TV, and bothering Eddie. 

Today I took myself to PT, then went to the library to pick up a book I had requested. There are 2 handicapped spaces there. The office that shares the library parking lot had both of them blocked. one had boards in it, and the other had a tarp and trash cans. Luckily, I was able to get a close parking space. When I came home, I called the non emergency police line, and told them. The police said they would go over and make the people clear out the handicapped spaces. The library is very busy, and there is almost always someone in at least one of the spaces, and I couldn't believe the office people were ignorant enough to block them. I hope they get a fine. 

It's Friday, so Ralph and Frank went off to the movies. They go at least once a month, which is great. 

Mom got cleared to not have her head down all the time, and her vision is coming back to that eye. 

And so it goes!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012


Yesterday was sad. Mom Florence's cat Sheba was having full blown seizures with increasing frequency, so Ralph called the vet, and the cat was euthanized last night. She most likely had a brain tumor, and they did the kindest thing for her. It's going to be very hard on Mom Florence- the cat has been her constant companion in the assisted living. It was hard on Ralph, being there to support his mom. 

I had PT yesterday and today. Yesterday we got there a little early, and it wasn't open yet from lunch. So we took a walk up the strip mall- Ralph paced it out to be 400 steps each way. Then the PT session began with 5 minutes on the treadmill, and went on to a lot of stretching and flexing activities. I was wiped out when we were done! 

Today it teemed outside while I was having PT. Afterwards, we went out to lunch, then stopped in the Lowe's parking lot so I could see if I have the range of motion to drive. I did! So I drove home, and it felt wonderful! Tomorrow while Ralph is at senior citizens with Mom Florence, I'll go to Heather and Ed's and watch the kids from when Ed leaves til Heather gets home. 

I haven't read a single physical book since my knee surgery- it's been all ebooks on the Nook or the Kindle. I had told the library I would be missing in action for a while because of the surgery, and it might continue just because I love reading on the ereader so much. 

I was watching an episode of House Hunters Vacation where they sent the family to St. Michael's, Md. It was so beautiful! It may have to go on my bucket list of places that I want to visit. 

I worked in my sewing room for another hour or so last night, tidying up. It's looking pretty good, and I keep finding things that I'd forgotten about. 

And so it goes!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Saturday night

It's been a fairly quiet day. Mom Florence called at 8 this morning, to say her cat was running around and wouldn't let anyone in the apartment. Ralph went up and they went to the vet. The vet did some bloodwork, but Sheba seemed fine at the office. Late this afternoon Florence called and said Sheba was having a seizure, so Ralph went up there. He's not sure what occurred was a seizure, and the cat was friendly when he was there. So it's wait and see. Sheba is probably 12 or so. 

I've been doing my exercises faithfully, but haven't walked outside for a couple of days. Either it's raining, or Ralph isn't home, or my other knee hurts too much. 

I've been reading the Body Farm series of mysteries by Jefferson Bass. A good set of mysteries- I just finished #3. 

I finished a oversized lap afghan in shades of blue and white, which if for the Farm Fair's raffle. Every year they raffle off a quilt and an afghan, and some other craft items. Definitely a good cause. 

I finally got a little bit of mojo, and I'm cleaning up my sewing room. Even the piles have piles! I worked in there for almost an hour tonight. 

I also watched the last show on the DVR. Now I have to remember - or ask Ralph- how to make the DVD player go on, and I can start on some DVD's. 

Tomorrow we're going to Sharon's house for Connor's birthday party. 

Mom is doing OK with her postop eye. She's annoyed with the entire thing, and sort of sorry she had it done. Barbara heard the same thing from her husband, so it's just waiting it out at this point. Sitting with your head down would get old real fast!

And the beat goes on!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Thursday night

Mom is doing OK after her eye surgery. She saw the doc yesterday, and can have the patch off during the day. She goes back next week, and has to continue to keep her head down. The only other person we know who has had that surgery is Barbara's husband John. Today I asked Barbara, for mom, how long it was til John was pleased with his vision. Two months! 

Yesterday we went and hung out with Eddie and Julianna while Heather went for CPR recertification and Ed was at work. It's always fun to spend time with the kids. 

Tuesday my new knee had it's 6 week checkup with ortho. I can flex it 105 degrees, and he said some people never get that much flexion, so he's very happy with it. The little knot that I can feel under the skin (the one that was giving me nightmares that the kneecap had moved) is scar tissue, and nothing to worry about. We discussed the fact that my left knee is getting more sore, and I know it won't last til next summer. I see him again in 6 weeks. 

The cardiologist who did the ablation will be the one who decides when I can go off the anticoagulant for a few days to have the old knee replaced. I see him in mid-September, so I should be able to make plans after that. 

This morning I had my first outpatient PT appointment. It was mostly an assessment session. I told him what exercises I've been doing, and he tweaked a few of them. He said that I'm where he would expect someone to be at 6 weeks post op, and maybe even a little ahead. He asked my goals- to build up endurance! I'll go there 3 times a week til school starts, then back it down to twice a week. This afternoon and evening, the old knee was bothering me so much that I skipped walking laps. 

I've been reading on the Nook. Nothing wonderful, just OK books. 

The administrator of the rehab called me, to discuss the survey that I'd returned. I signed my name- if I'm going to complain, I'll stand behind it. I had complained about the nursing staff not checking ID bands or even asking my name before handing me meds, including narcotics. I told him I had made the nurse manager aware, and he told me he takes the issue very seriously, and will follow up with her. I had also complained about the menu listing fresh fruit, and being served canned peaches almost every day. He said he had already discussed that with dietary, that you can't write fresh fruit and then serve canned. So I felt good about sending back the survey. 

And so it goes!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Another hot Monday

We had major thunderstorms last night. Lots of pouring rain, and intermittent thunder and lightening. I tried to go to bed early-ish, but tossed and turned and got back up.

Ralph took Mom to Vineland to have her eye surgery. He just called, and it's finished. Now she has to stay head down 24/7 for 5 days and see if it worked. 

My right foot swelling just won't go down. I asked the cardiologist for suggestions, and he said to try wrapping it in an ace wrap. I tried that last night, and this morning it looks normal! He's a genius! I've already done some of the knee exercises today. Today is the first day that I'm allowed to exercise after the ablation. It's already 86 out, so I won't take a walk outside til this evening. Last night's walk got rained out! 

This is Heather's last week as staff, before she goes Pool and can have a real person's schedule. 

No good news about the medical situation in Barbara's family. Life can change in the blink of an eye. 

And the beat goes on!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Postop Day 38

Our power went out last night right before 11 PM. It must have been something major, because Mom's side of the main road was also out. I was just thinking of getting in the shower when the lights went out. I couldn't get to sleep, so I read by my Nook book light. The power came back on a little before 2 AM, so we had to get up and turn off lights. I decided I was still taking a shower, so it was after 3 AM when I went to bed. 

This morning Ralph decided he wanted to go to Cracker Barrel for lunch. We haven't been there in a while. I grabbed the latest Joann's Fabrics ad, since we'd be in the area. We had a nice lunch, then went to Joann's. They had flannel on sale, and I got enough to make 5 oversized receiving blankets for Joseph's baby. There was a girl orienting who was doing the cutting, and she took forever! My knee was so stiff by the time the fabric was cut- and I was the only one in line!- that I wasn't sure I'd make it to the car. Ralph went and brought the car right to the entrance for me. I came home, iced the knee, and took a nap. 

I'm not supposed to do any exercising until Monday, as part of the post-ablation orders. But my knee has been so stiff that I felt like I had to do something! My chest has felt fine, and I finally stopped coughing, so I assume everything is healing well. 

I finished the latest of the Virgin River series, and the next one won't be out for a few months. I'm working on the latest Farm Fair afghan, which gets chanced off in December. It's in two shades of blue and white, and is looking good.

I've been watching the summer series Dallas, which I DVR'd. I have one more to watch, and the season finale will be this week. It's deliciously evil! 

Thursday night we went to Frank and Charlotte's. Ralph hooked up their new computer, and they fed us dinner- a good bargain all around! And we had a nice visit with them and Charlotte's mom. 

And the beat goes on!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

A new baby is coming!

My mom called and said she was going to be a grandmother again. Hmm, one sister in law will be 50 this year, and the other is older than that. Then she clarified that she's going to be a great-grandmother again. My nephew Joseph called her and told her that he and his girlfriend Ally are having a son the beginning of January. 

Mom has been really worried about the eye surgery that she is having next week, so news of a new baby came at a great time. She told Joseph that she'd call me to spread the word to my girls. First I called the new grandparents to be to congratulate them, but they were out so I left them a message. 

Then I called Heather, Manda and Steph to tell them they are going to be cousins. They are all very excited for Joseph and Ally. The baby is due January 3, so maybe he will arrive early and come on Heather's birthday! Heather, unlike Steph, doesn't mind sharing her birthday. 

Mike and Donna will make wonderful grandparents. Donna will be 50 when the baby is born, the same age I was when Eddie was born. And Mike has this gruff exterior that puppies and little kids see right thru. Donna's mom used to joke that Donna carried the kids for nine months, and Mike carried them for the next 6 years! 

And of course this means that I need blue yarn! 

And I wonder if this means there will be another little Joe Oehrl running around?

And the beat goes on!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Wow, it's August!

Today is postop day 35, and I'm at a standstill. I can't do any exercising until next Monday, as part of the ablation recovery. They make all these little cuts inside the heart, and they want them to get a headstart in healing. So PT had to be postponed. I'm mainly using the cane, and just doing the necessary walking and resting a lot. 

And it's August! Summer break is half over! We have birthdays- Tori will be 16, and Ben will also have a birthday. 

I've noticed in the last week that I'm sleeping much better, using less tylenol, and moving easier. So it's all starting to come together. 

In July I read 18 books, all on the Nook and Kindle. That brings the year's total to 91 books, 40 on the e-readers. I won't go back to the library til I can drive again, probably in another two weeks. I see ortho next Tuesday for a 6 week checkup. 

We're getting rain, a nice steady rain that we need. Of course it's also making my new knee achey. 

And the beat goes on!