Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Starting To Get Excited

Okay, I'm getting excited! We leave for our cruise in just three days!

Yesterday, I went clothes shopping for my guy. I brought the store home to him, everything was on sale! He was able to try everything on and decide what he wanted to keep and what was going back, all in the comfort of our home. I had a blast shopping for him.

Today was my first day back at work after a long weekend. I worked all day then ran off to a pamper-myself appointment right after work. Now, how often does your hairdresser bring you a glass of wine while you're under the dryer? LOL Mine does! We have a great time.

Afterwards, I went clothes shopping just for me! Like yesterday, I bought quite a bit with the intentions of trying them on at home and returning those items I didn't really want. Fun, fun, fun! Gosh, tonight I spent alot at one store, got home, tried everything on, and decided the whole lot will go back tomorrow! I'm laughing, I feel rich again... All that money spent tonight will be mine again tomorrow! Compulsive or what? LOL

The fog has been hanging around, as thick as pea soup! My son was supposed to fly home from his dad's tonight. But, when he checked in he was told that he would be stuck at his layover in Oakland, CA, due to the fog here in Boise. Well, I couldn't have my little guy staying in Oakland over night, all by himself! I would worry sick about him! So, I called the airlines. They felt the same as me about him staying in Oakland alone and booked him another flight out of Las Vegas, NV, tomorrow in hopes the fog will lift. All at no additional charge!

Not only do we have fog, we have ice! And my guy was sent, long haul driving, to Portland, OR, today. He's supposed to be back tomorrow night. Gosh! Talk about cutting it short! There isn't any time for weather problems. He had better make it back in time for our trip. I worry about him getting over the mountain passes between here and Oregon.

I can't believe I haven't booked our hotel yet! We have changed our minds a couple of different times about what we plan to do with our two days in Los Angeles after our cruise. With all the indecision, I haven't yet booked the room. I found a hotel on the marina in San Pedro, it looks really nice. And there's a Best Western that looks pretty good in Redondo Beach. I have reserved a rental car for after the cruise, so at least we'll be able to throw our luggage in the back and drive around to wherever we end up. I'm really not caring where we go, I just plan to have fun.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Christmas With The Kranks

When my youngest brother and his family were here for Thanksgiving, I told them of my Christmas plans. I would not be home this year. As soon as my 11 year old niece found out I would be going on a cruise for Christmas, she told me I had to see the movie, "Christmas With The Kranks!"

I hadn't seen this movie with Jamie Lee Curtis and Tim Allen before, so I added it to our Netflix account. The movie was here by the following weekend.

We were all there. My guy was home from a week's trucking. My son was home still recovering from his injury and surgery. So we all gathered around the t.v. and watched "Christmas With The Kranks."

As the movie went along, I sank further and further into the couch. See, I had no idea what this movie was about. Tim Allen had been in a couple of cute "Santa Claus" movies before, so I was guessing this would be something similar.

No! It was about a couple (our age) running off on a cruise, skipping Christmas! This is where my guilt really started working on me. I couldn't believe I was sitting there, watching this movie with my son, knowing I was going to be taking off on a cruise at Christmas... without him!

It's been a couple of weeks now since I saw the movie, and I think I'm okay. Last weekend, I started looking at things to do in the Los Angeles area for after the cruise. We have a couple of days there before coming home, and my excitement is building! I found hotels with marina views, an aquarium, the boardwalk, beach paths and ocean sunsets. I can't wait!

But when I look at the calendar and see that next Friday I will be on a plane, heading out of town, to warmer territory for Christmas, I start feeling weird. LOL! (It was just 9 degrees out this morning on my way to work, and just 26 degrees on my way home!) I will be fine, my son will be fine, we'll all be fine! I do plan on having a great time, taking lots of photos to share.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Anxious, Nervous, Excited

Anxious: Just 17 days 'til Christmas!

Nervous: I've never been away from my family at Christmas before.

Excited: A brand new experience, a three night cruise, just me and my guy. We fly out December 23rd, spend two nights in Los Angeles after the cruise, and return home December 28th.

I should add Guilt to my list. The guilt of motherhood. I worry about my son being home alone at Christmas. Though, I did ask him if he'd like to go on this vacation with us, and he wanted to stay home.

There will be lots of family close by, so he won't be totally alone. My 24 year old daughter will be home. She arrives Dec 23rd after we've already left. My parents live just up the road. My brother, his wife and three kids, all from California, will be there at my parents' home. My other brother's 18 year old son will also be at my parents', on holiday leave from Florida where he's stationed in the Navy. And of course, there will be six Yorkies to give him love and kisses.

Speaking of my son... November 18th, he cut his left index finger pretty bad. November 22nd, he had surgery to repair nerve damage. Just this Monday, he had all the stitches removed and started physical therapy. He's doing really good.

Ya know, I've done so well with his injury. I haven't passed out at the sight on my baby boy's blood or the sound of his pain. The night he was brought to the ER, the doc had to put a turnicate on my little guy's finger to stop the bleeding that wouldn't stop on it's own. Blood was EVERYWHERE. Then she irrigated the wound to see, if she could, what the damage was. I stood right there the whole time, watching the entire event without ever getting light headed. I was pretty proud of myself.

But, that first finger curl they made him do Monday, right after they removed his stitches, made me see stars immediately! I was light headed and weak in the knees within a minute. Sounds funny, I'm sure. But I had to sit down before I fell down. lol

Right now, he has four weeks of physical therapy ahead of him. The doctor states it will be a year before he heals, and he may never heal 100%. Last week he had 0% range of motion in his injured finger, today he's at 10%. He's moving in the right direction, getting better and better every day.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

'Tis the Season...

Wishing All My Readers
a Very Merry Holiday Season!

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Starting To Feel Like Home...

Alerts! Sounds! All my old friends! What more could a online journaler ask for?

This place is great! I love the fun I'm having, getting back into the HTML mode. I like having more control, the say as to what is put on my blog. Yes! This feels good. I have to admit, I wasn't really sure I would like my new place in cyberspace, but I'm loving it here!

I've been transferring my AOL entries to my new home here. Someday, I plan to close my AOL account, and when I do, I want to be sure I have all my old entries safely placed here. Moving is always alot of work, but I'm worth the move.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Wishing Everyone A Very
Happy Thanksgiving!

Spoke Too Soon

All was going so well. The surgeon was excited about the damaged found and the repairs made. Recovery from surgery would be pretty much painless immediately after surgery as they administered a nerve block in his arm pit to block feeling to his whole arm. This should last anywhere from 12 to 24 hours, we were told.

My son hadn't eaten in 24 hours and was starving after surgery. He requested the Olive Garden, again! I went in and ordered takeout, soup and salad and bread sticks. We shared a lasagne serving. Dinner was yummy, my son was definitely coming out of the anesthesia.

About 11pm, my son informed me his finger was "starting to really hurt!" As advised by the surgeon and anesthesiologist, it was about time to start the pain meds sent home with us. By 11:45pm, the pain had increased to at least a 20 on a chart of 0 to 10!

I phoned the surgeon's service in hopes of getting a hold of him, or someone. I was assured someone would phone me back in a few minutes. The minutes went by, and by some more. Time was moving so slow.

By midnight, my son was totally dressed and dancing around the front door. He was in so much pain! I took him to the ER.

About a half hour after arriving at the ER, the surgeon's service called back to check if anyone had called me. I explained that I couldn't wait any longer and took my son to the ER, and no, no one had called me back. He apologized for the no response. I told him it was okay and it wasn't his fault no one called me back. ARGH!

At the ER, the physician on staff was concerned about giving another nerve block to my little guy's finger. He wasn't sure if giving him another block in the nerve would damage any of the repairs made to that nerve during the surgery earlier. They gave him more narcotics. The pain would go away, but came back within 30 minutes.

My son asked so many times if he could just spend the night and keep getting the meds in the IV, he felt so much better. But, the meds just didn't last long. He was afraid to go home.

At about 2:30am, the surgeon on call for our surgeon phoned the ER and let the doc there know it was okay to give another block to my little guy's finger. Whew! Within a minute of getting the block, my son was doing fine. Without the block, the pain just kept creeping back.

We were back home by 3am and he was fast asleep by 3:15am. I set the alarm for 5am, when I was to give him more pain meds. I was so exhausted I didn't even hear the alarm. I woke up to the neighbor's dog barking at about 7am. The good thing was, my little guy was sound to sleep. I had to wake him to give him his meds.

Today has gone so much better. I have been keeping him doped up. It's so hard to see your baby in such pain, even if he is 16 years old.

When my guy phoned this morning, I broke down. So much has happed this time while he's been out. He's heading home... He's been gone since October 25th. My mom was finishing up her radiation therapy. My gramma went through hell and back. And now, my little guy.

I've been told things happen in threes. I think I've met my quota! I'm knocking on wood and praying everything is now moving in an upward and better trend.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

It Went Well

I'm exhausted! I was up early today so I could get to the office and out again by about 1pm. Surgery was at 4:30pm. I needed to run home to pickup my son and then head back to Boise and get to the surgery center by 3pm.

It was nearly 2pm when I arrived home. My son was showered and ready to go. Poor guy, he was so nervous. To think they would have to rip him back open again to repair the damage to his finger, just scared him to death. It hurt bad enough the first time, to last the rest of his life.

My parents met me and my son at the surgery center. I was glad they were there for him, and for me. Seems we've all been through quite a bit this year. I can't wait for this year to be over and the new year to begin!

Anyway, back to my little guy...

He's doing really well. The surgeon was excited to let us know that the damage was to just the nerves, and the tendon was intact and untouched by the knife blazing through my son's finger. My little guy will not be able to return to his job for almost two weeks, he's not too happy about that. He loves his job and co-workers, and not to mention the money.

Thank you, everyone, for all your prayers and thoughts.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Surgery's Scheduled

Friday night, the ER referred us to a hand specialist. Of course, it was after midnight Friday, when we got home, and then the weekend. So, first thing this morning, I phoned the orthopedic surgeon to schedule an appointment for my son. The ER doc had briefed this hand specialist Friday night. They were waiting for our call, we got in at 2pm today.

I had been a bit worried and a little upset since I learned my son will most likely need surgery to repair the possible severed nerves in his finger. I was having a total momma moment... "Why don't they fix him up right then (Friday night) when he was already numbed up and wide open?" That's what they do on "ER" Thursday nights! I didn't want him to have to go through the pain of re-opening the wound to repair it.

I learned today, nerves and tendons, when cut like this, swell and fray immediately after an injury. When in this condition it's very possible to over do, or under do, the repair, while stitching them back together. Though, three to five days later, these severed parts of our bodies, shrink and tighten up to a more normal state and are easier to stitch up correctly. So, it was best we wait.

After testing range of movement and feeling, the doc today explained, my son most definitely has severed at least one nerve, maybe two, and possibly the tendon in his finger. Surgery is scheduled for tomorrow at 3pm. The doc said he'll know more when he gets in there. The doc also explained, right now my son has 0% range of movement. With the surgery, in case we thought we had a choice, he'll have 30 to 75% range of movement. He'll probably never have 100% again, in this left index finger.

My son is sleeping now. At the doc visit today, it was the first time he'd seen his wound since Friday when the accident happened. It was almost too much for him to look at it. He did manage to take a photo of his finger with his cell phone after the nurse unwrapped it and before the doc came in. My son's pretty nervous about the procedure tomorrow. I keep telling him to think past tomorrow, when he's all put back together and on the road to recovery. I'm praying for all to go well tomorrow!

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Oh What A Night...

A cruise sounds wonderful about now!

Last night, I got home a little late, I had to speak with an employee and wanted to do this after most everyone else left. All was well; issues heard, misunderstandings understood, resolutional plans put in place. It's been a long week and I'm glad it's over.

I hadn't been home long when the phone rang... "Mrs M? This is your son's boss, he's had an accident here at work, and the paramedics want to speak with you..."

My heart stopped!

The paramedic, a very young gal with a very calming voice, continued to explain the accident, my son's condition, and where they planned on taking him. We agreed on which hospital ER they would take him to, and they were on their way.

She did a good job in getting my heart jump-started and running again as I was able to get the dogs to bed and drive to the hospital without freaking out. When I got in the car, I called my guy. He was enroute to Los Angeles via I-5 in central California, a long way from home.

As I made the major intersection, a mile and a half from the hospital still, I met up with and merged in behind the ambulance carrying my son. It was just after 7p and dark outside. The back of the ambulance was well lit. I could see an IV strung and swinging with every road bump. I started to worry. Only another mile to go.

At the hospital, the ambulance pulled into their specific parking area while I continued on to the ER parking. I hurried in and asked for his room. As I entered the patient care area, my son was just being rolled in.

He's my baby boy, he's hurting and he's scared.

I had to step back out of his room, for just a moment, to take a deep breath. I ask one of the paramedics what was going on, he didn't look like he had "just cut his finger!" She explained, my son was in shock. His body had totally locked down in a full body spasm, he couldn't move, he couldn't talk, his eyes were full of fear. I took another deep breath and went in to be with him.

After more than four hours and several stitches, we learned he will need to have surgery to reconstruct the nerve damage (severed nerves) in his left index figure. He has a cut, almost 2" long, from just above his first knuckle on the underside of his finger, to up and over his second knuckle. A clean slice, clear to the bone. We see the hand surgeon Monday.

He slept through the night last night. I thought I might have killed him, giving him two pain killers when we got home, about 12:30a. (The very same pain meds my Gramma was taking a few weeks ago, throwing her into her nightmare for a few weeks.) The meds sure knocked him out, he didn't wake up once. He needed the sleep.

At 8:30a, I checked to see if he was still breathing, and to give him another pain pill if he needed it. I had to wake him up, and yes, he was definitely ready for another pain pill. Back to sleep he went.

This evening, he's up and moving again. We had dinner, I thought food would be good for him, and he's been up watching tv and playing on his laptop with one hand. The good news is, he's gonna live, he injured his left hand and he's right handed, and doc's are so good anymore. I am sure they will be able to mend my little guy, it will just take time.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Normally, Just A Stick In The Mud...

Oh, I too, hate change. I mean, I will change if I have to, but even with things like dining out, I order pretty much the very same thing at most every restaurant I go to.

The truth of the matter is, I've been thinking about dumping AOL for a long, long time. They were very comfy, but enough is enough...

Recently, AOL developed this AIM program to do everything we were paying for, for free! This was pretty much a slap in the face. I've been paying good, hard earned, money for what they're now giving away for free! And now, this ad banner on our paid journals! It's the straw breaking this camel's back.

I've been with AOL forever... since 1994, back when I had to pay by the minute, plus long distant phone fees! I had tried them all, way back then, and AOL was the most user friendly program, in my opinion. I've made lots of friends, met lots of online people in person, and heck, I met MY GUY on AOL in January 1997! I will miss AOL...

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Hoppin' the Fence...

Well, I'm here. I'm hoping I can save my previous AOL blog. I think this blog will be easier to work with, and it's FREE! No ads floating around my Journal. I hope to see many of my online friends visit here.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

All The Leaves Are Gone

All the leaves have blown away and it's starting to look alot like winter around here. I do have a few roses trying to beat out winter temperatures, but I'm sure they will not last long. It's just 41 degrees out now, at about 1pm MST. I've been freezing for a week now. The sun is trying to make it's presence here today, so maybe we'll warm up some. Gramma was discharged from my facility Thursday, and doing excellent. I visited her before leaving work to go home Wednesday, and it was everything I could do to fight back tears... I found her in our Activities room, full of smiles, in the middle of singing songs along with the guitar player who comes to play once a week. She loves to sing. The day before, I found her playing bingo, reaching across the large bingo cards to mark the numbers called. A week ago, she couldn't even get out of bed, let alone recognize me. She's doing so well. Thursday, Gramma was transferred to yet another Rehab Center now, in hopes of getting well enough to go back to Assisted Living. That's a BIG hope, one we know may not happen, but it is a goal. This bout of too much pain meds about killed her, really taking a toll on her. What a month's it's been for her.

My daughter came to town! I was so happy to see her! I worked until I heard she was here, then arranged to pick her up downtown so we could meet up with my parents for dinner. My daughter's favorite restaurant in Boise is The Olive Garden. My parents picked up my son, and we all met at the restaurant for a wonderful dinner and visit together. After dinner, my son and I joined my daughter and her band for a night of heavy metal sounds downtown. The band consists of five guys and my daughter. She plays the guitar. After the show, most of the band stayed here at the house.

The next morning we visited and took some photos before they took off for their next show in Denver, Colorado. They would be stopping that night in Salt Lake City,Utah, at another band member's family home. Now, everyone grab a dog and smile pretty! These kids are so sweet, I don't know why they have to look so tough! We got up early that morning so my daughter could visit with Gramma for a few minutes before she left. When we left the house, the guys were still sleeping. Gramma was tickled to see her. It was so good to see my daughter. Inbetween all our quick visits with family, my daughter and I had a chance for a deep talk about relationships and family. I believe we came to an understanding of eachother's feelings, something that has been totally untouchable for a year now. I also shared with her, our plans (me and my guy's plans) for Christmas. She was the last of my family I needed to tell.

My son... I love him with all my heart and want the best I can give him. I believe all parents feel the same. (I find it amazing how much love us moms have, always enough for all our kids!) I mentioned before he was in a bad place, a bit of emotional turmoil. He is working through his feelings and doing much better. When a 16 year old knows everything, a mom can only do so much. In the past year or more, I have tried to talk with my son about dropping out of all his sports, letting all his male friends go, no longer playing drums with his band, and being so involved with one girl. This girl has been his whole life for almost two years. She is a very smart, very nice girl. But, they are too young for such a devoted relationship. And when they broke up last week, he took it so very hard. He doesn't have the support group of friends and activities to help him through such emotions of the heart. The good thing is he felt safe in talking with me and talked with me about everything. I shared with him the one thing I've learned in and about relationships; you can never lose yourself, you need to keep involved in what you love to do and the relationship should be the icing on your cake. This week he's gotten back together with his band. I'm hoping in the spring he'll try to get back into baseball... he's so good at baseball.

My guy is still out on this special assignment with his company. We're hoping he will be home next weekend. He will have been out for about four weeks by then. This job was supposed to be just regional routes, home most every weekend. That was a year and a half ago, and now, for understandable reasons (hurricanes, special contracts, etc.), the company has taken him out longer. I'll be glad when he's back on the regional track and home more often.Peanut, Molly & Rodney... aren't they cute! This weekend was doggie wash weekend at our house. All but Ozzy, he's out on the truck with my guy. I take all the dogs into a shop for professional grooming about every eight weeks. This time, the shop being in the Holiday mode already, the dogs came home smelling like Grandma's Sugar Cookies! They smell so good. But, sugar cookies? Believe it or not, the scent isn't bad. LOL In this photo, only Molly had already made it to her appointment, the boys didn't go until today.

So, life is good... My guy's coming home soon. My son is doing better. Gramma's doing great. My mom has finished all her chemo and radiation treatments. My dad, well, he's been good all year. And, I had a wonderful visit with my daughter!

Now, about those Christmas plans... I've finally told all my family I will not be home for Christmas this year. This year, my guy and I are taking a Christmas cruise to Mexico! Just us. We're so excited! We did ask my son if he'd like to go, but he'd rather stay home. At almost 17 years old, I do not believe he should have to go if he doesn't want to. My daughter will be home with him, and together, they will watch the dogs. My brother and his family will also be here for Christmas, staying with my parents. My kids will spend the holiday with my parents. So, it's just me and my guy, cruising to Mexico! Did I tell you how excited we are?

Monday, November 07, 2005

Quick Update

This photo from my archives was taken last December. With all the storms we've had the past few days, you wouldn't be able to tell the difference between today and last year, (unless you peeked at the signature stamp on the photo.) This is Bogus Basin high above Boise.

I hadn't seen Gramma since she was admitted to my facility on Friday. My biggest fear with her admitting to my facility in the condition she was in, was that she may die here. This is where I work, she couldn't die here. I don't think I could handle that. I didn't visit her this weekend as she was so out of it, she slept most the weekend and wouldn't even know we were there. I thought it best to let her rest the weekend. I knew I would be popping in to see her throughout the day, each day during the week because I worked there.

I saw Gramma, first thing this morning. Oh my gosh! Gramma was a different person! She was up and eating breakfast with the other patients, she recognized me right off. She looked so much better than when she was admitted on Friday. I made a few visits during the day, and spent quite awhile with her this evening before I went home. Gramma was asking me about things she did and saw the last couple of weeks. I told her none of the scary events she saw or heard had happened. All she said was, "Boy!" She couldn't believe it, everything seemed so real to her. I assured her none of it happened.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Hanging In There


Boise State Broncos have done it again! Last week, BSU played against University of Nevada Reno, winning by a long shot, 49 to 14. Yesterday, they hosted New Mexico State and left them in the dust early on. New Mexico never did catch up, and the game ended with a 56 to 6 BSU win. Next week BSU will play Fresno State at Fresno, California.

The photo above was a mirror image of the skies above Boise yesterday. The clouds hung around and by evening the wind picked up as a new storm rolled in. It's been raining since. Earlier this week, we received our first dusting of snow in the mountains here. Since then, some of the ski resorts have received a good foot of snow, as we've had a couple of storms come through. With this new storm last night and today, the resorts are expecting another 6 to 8 inches of new snow. We will receive rain here in the valley.

My guy has been on special assignment and not home for two weeks, and will not be home for another two weeks. He sent me a little ditty via email last night that made me smile. I could feel his hugs.

My daughter will be in town this week. Her new band has been touring the country and they will be playing in Boise, Wednesday night! I haven't seen her in several months and can't wait to see her. I've asked for the day off work to spend some time with her before she is off to her next stop. I need to let her know my Christmas plans.

My son, he's going through a rough time. It breaks my heart to see him hurting so much. He's just 16 years old, too young to be hurting like he is. He and I talked, and I think he's going to be okay. It takes time to heal, and time seems to stand still when you're in the midst of turmoil. We'll work through this.

Update on Gramma... Wednesday this past week, we had to transport Gramma to the emergency room. She seemed to be declining, she was not doing well. We followed the ambulance to the hospital. Her condition was bad enough to admit her to the hospital. This is her second inpatient stay in a month's time. Friday, after stabilizing her, she was sent by ambulance to a specialty hospital for further care. She seems to be drifting away. I know she still has drugs in her system that are causing some of her symptoms. Some of these drugs may have triggered underlying problems to surface that we were not aware of before. We are hoping she will improve enough to go home.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

My Thoughts Are With Gramma

Wow! Hard to believe October is just about gone! These miniature roses came from my yard, and for whatever reason, are blooming like crazy right now. Our high was just 54 degrees today, our low is to be 39 tonight, so I thought I'd better get out there and get these shots before they're gone for the season.

So much has been going on lately, I don't know where to start. My grandmother is at the top of my list. She hurt her back and was taken to the hospital three weeks ago. Her stay with the hospital went well, but she was in need of rehabilitation before she could return to her home in an assisted living facility.

Gramma was transferred to a skilled facility from the hospital, and that's where things have gone down hill. This skilled facility came highly recommended by a social worker and my administrator I work with. I work in a hospital and felt confident in their recommendation. So, I have to be honest here, I'm feeling terribly guilty that this stay became a total nightmare. I was unaware of the facility's maintenance problems and unprofessionalism of some of their employees.

My Gramma cannot get around very well on her own. Her knees have been a problem for years. Her back was injured a few weeks ago at her assisted living facility when they were conducting a fire drill. In the haste of getting everyone safely outside, she was transferred into a wheelchair in an inappropriate manner, fracturing a vertebrae in her back. Afterwards, she was kept doped up on pain meds and in her room for all meals in hopes her pain would subside. After a week or so of this, she was sent to the hospital.

Again, the hospital seemed to be good for Gramma, she was doing much better, but she needed rehab before she would be able to go back to her home at the assisted living. The recommended facility turned out to be a disaster, and unfortunately, my Gramma is paying the price.

The call lights did not work in Gramma's room. My parents complained for days, six days to be exact, before Gramma was moved to another room with a working call light. During the time she was in the room without a call light, they gave her a dinner bell on her bedside table, one of those heavy brass bells. Her fingers are so crippled with arthritis, she could barely pick it up, let alone ring the bell without dropping it out of her hands. Not to mention, the facility is so big, no one could hear the bell even if she was able to ring it!

Add to all this, they gave her two different types of narcotics to manage her pain, at the same time. Yes, they were doctor ordered. The problem came when Gramma had adverse reactions to the meds. She started seeing things and people that were not there. She also became mean, striking out at others, something she's never done before. She called 911 from her room because a man was cutting through her door with a chainsaw. Terrifying!

The next day, my mother, recovering from her own chemo and radiation treatments, insisted on stopping the meds. Gramma was balancing her own checkbook just the week before. Now, she's totally out of it, having drug induced psychotic behaviors . Evidently, the nurse went ahead and discontinued the drugs causing the behaviors, but never followed up with the doctor to have the orders changed. The nurse incharge of my Gramma's care... well, I won't even go there! She was incompetent, rude and insensitive, to say the least.

What this facility did not know is, my mother is a Registered Nurse and knew exactly what was going on, or not going on. Gramma was starting to come down off the meds, back to her normal self. It took four days. My parents had my Gramma transferred as soon as they could. She had been there a week.

Gramma was transferred to a brand new Rehab center. All was going well. When a patient is admitted to any skilled facility, the admitting facility always does a full body check to note any abnormalities such as bruises, skin tears, etc. In doing this at the new facility, they found two, I say, TWO, of the narcotic patches on her body! The new facility also administered the oral narcotic meds as directed on the "transfer orders" from the first facility! Again, the nurse at the first facility did not follow up with a doctor to have the med order changed or removed! This was last Monday.

Gramma has been in HELL since! By Tuesday, Gramma was seeing things again. As the initial doses of these meds were not totally out of her system, these new doses through her into a deeper psychotic mode. Doctors were called immediately, meds were stopped again. Orders were documented this time!

My parents and I have been with Gramma around the clock, hiring a sitter for the late nights. Last night, she recognized me for the first time since last Monday when she was admitted to this latest facility. She was in and out. The drug used to counter act the narcotics started working and Gramma finally fell into a restless sleep last night. She hadn't slept in 48 hours. Today, she was doing a little better.

The nurse last night told me the drugs will take time to leave her system. Once she's back to normal she can start her rehab so she can go home. The way she's been the past couple of weeks, I didn't think she would ever go home again. Still not out of the woods, I pray she continues to come around. I'll stay with her again tomorrow, after work.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Another Gorgeous Weekend

Along the Boise River, once again... one of my favorite photo opts places.My guy was home for the weekend, and then some.

The weather was gorgeous! It was probably the last weekend we'll see in the 70's until next spring. I loved every moment of it. We caught up on us, movies, and family; his and mine. I was tickled pink when my son joined us on an outing with my guy's family. My son hasn't joined us on much of anything for almost a year now, so I was really happy to have him along. My guy and I also stopped by and visited my grandmother a couple of different times, she's had a rough go of it the past couple of weeks. And, the best part of this past week, my guy and I finalized our plans for Christmas. We're so excited!

October 22, 2005 -
Boise State Broncos vs. Utah State Aggies - Boise wins 45 - 21

Monday, October 17, 2005

Perfect Weekend

This past weekend was absolutely gorgeous here in the Boise area. I had to get out and get some of this fresh air and, of course, photos.
Just a few miles up the road from my home is the Boise River, where I always find I can air the cobwebs of my mind and refresh my inner soul.
While walking along the path that follows the river, I found a summer swing hanging from high above the river. I wished I had been there a month or so ago, on a hot summer day when the kids were jumping from this swing into the river. It must have been great fun.The Boise River has been a great challenge for me in the fishing department. All the years I've fished this river, I have never had one catch. I think I'll stick to enjoying the beauty of the scenery and leave the fishing to Rebecca.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Feline Friday (a day late)...

Wigs... from my photo archives... Given to a wonderful cat loving family, she's been gone for about a year now, The gal who took Wigs home, works with me, so I get frequent updates. Wigs still loves to be perched high above whatever is going on, swatting whatever, or whoever, comes within swatting reach. Wigs still loves to eat with her paws, yogurt cups are her favorite.

Check out Steve's
Feline Friday, over at (sometimes)photoblog, and see other Feline entries. I do love cats, but have been invaded by Yorkies!

* BSU Broncos win again tonight, 38 - 21, over San Jose State Spartans. They're 2-0 in the WAC, this being their 28th win in a roll.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

BSU Broncos

We're off to see Boise State Broncos play Portland State Vikings this evening. The temp is 61 at the moment, and not a cloud in the sky! We were told there was a good chance of rain today. Whew!

Bronco Stadium sits along the Boise River at the east end of the campus. Breath taking views of Bogus Basin and the mountains are beyond the score board at the river's end of the stadium. Boise State University is a beautiful campus.

Photos Courtesy of BSU website.
Sunday, October 9, 2005 Update: Broncos won, 21-7! This is their 27 win in a row in the WAC division.


...more roses from my yard.

Thursday, October 06, 2005


My Journal will have "pink" in it all month, in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Fall... Change is in the air. The colors are bright and vivid. Here's another photo from my yard. When I planted my trees, I tried to find a variety of trees that would be real showy during the fall and spring.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

New Journaler

Please stop by and see Stephanie's new Journal... She's excited to be starting her own Journal after reading lots of ours! Please join me in welcoming her to J-land.

Here's the view, peeking over my back fence, this past weekend! I love Autumn and all the colors. There's a bright red, I mean, fire red plant, just on the other side of our fence. I thought the colors of the trees, further behind the fence, being green and yellow, were beautiful with the red leaves making a great accent. Enjoy!

Sunday, October 02, 2005

October Begins

October ~ Breast Cancer
Awareness Month

My mom is in her third week of radiation treatments for breast cancer, and seems to be tolerating the treatments okay. She has another three weeks of these treatments to go.

Last weekend was my mom's 65th birthday. My dad wanted my son and I to join them at dinner out to celebrate. We met them at the restaurant of her choice, bringing her a beautiful, pink with roses, gift bag full of special items, just for her. She seemed mildly surprised to be receiving gifts, and was almost too embarrassed to open them in front of the strangers of the restaurant.

From all of the chemo and radiation treatments she's received so far, her skin has dried out terribly and her nails have discolored and curled in. Of course, she's lost all her hair and now wears a wig which looks as natural as her own hair.

So, self pampering items from shower gels, body lotions, to pedicure sets with mint fizzies to soak her feet in, nail polish, and a light pale pink lipstick and liner to match, were all in her gift bag. She may not be able to use the lotions until after she finishes with the radiation treatments, as her skin is very tender and vulnerable right now. But, she'll be ready for them when the treatments end. She couldn't wait to use her pedicure set and have my dad help with her toenail polish.

Dinner was wonderful. The manager and assistant manager have become personal friends of my parents and stopped by our table frequently to make sure we were treated like royalty and our food was perfect. In the end, our tummies were full and we all had a really good time together.

Taken today, the photo above is a rose from my garden.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

It's Been A Year

Tomorrow is the Anniversary of my Journal's First Entry... I cannot believe it's been a year already! Life. Oh, what a year can bring...

I started Journaling shortly after my guy decided to go back on the road. He's a long haul truck driver, and being so, he is gone a lot more than I like. I miss him so much it hurts. Being able to write my thoughts and feelings to him in my private Journal allowed me to feel closer to him while he was away. I eventually ventured out and started reading other Journals, and wanted a place to share my stories and own amateur photos.

Some of my favorite entries of the past year:

Black with Gold Trim ~ A story of Harley, my first Yorkie. Just a month after this posting, we lost Harley. He's now waiting for us at the Rainbow Bridge.

My Baby Girl ~ A photo collage of my daughter.

Peanut, Our Little Miracle Yorkie ~ Peanut almost didn't make it.

My Idaho & Puppies ~ Beauty in my backyard and Puppies all summer long.

For all my regular visitors, your comments mean so much to me. Thank You all. Sonya, thank you for the graphic!

Here's a current photo of Sadie, one of Lucy's puppies we kept. Sadie will be six months old this week.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Summer's End

What a summer it's been... My son worked his summer away at his first real job, my Mom has had a rough go of it with her chemo treatments, my Dad has been by her side the whole time, my guy has been gone all summer long, puppies came and went, and more.

My Son... School is going well for my son, if you can tell much by the third week of school. A Junior in high school this year, and he's already earning college credits with some of his classes. We're pretty excited about that! He tells me he can manage working and going to school, and promises his grades will not suffer. I have asked him to cut back his hours at work, he's only 16 years old. In Idaho, once you're 16, there are no limits on the number of hours worked or the time worked in a day. My wish is that he's home by 10 p.m., he's not made it here before midnight already twice this week. ARGH! He needs the job to support that old truck he bought (his Dad bought for him) last spring.

My Mom... Bless her heart. She had only two more chemo treatments left and was told she could not continue the treatments. She's developed a condition in her feet that has left her barely able to walk. If she continued with chemo, it's very possible she may have permanent damage to her feet. Radiation treatments started this week and is planned to continue for six weeks. She'll have to have another biopsy done later this week for new found lump. Will this ever end? I keep trying to tell her, and myself, she'll make it through this. These treatments are tough, but she'll make it through. God, I pray I'm right.

My Guy... Tonight, he's in hot and humid, Thomasville, Georgia. Today, he drove through what looked like a war zone; New Orleans, Gulfport and Biloxi via Interstate 10. The interstate was clear of all debris, but the devastation he described over the phone, of what he was witnessing from the cab of his truck, was unbelievable. He's happy to be doing his part in helping Katrina victims by delivering badly needed supplies. After almost two weeks of delivering in the south, he'll be heading west, for home. It'll be good to have him home.

Puppies... Our first litter of puppies came early this spring. Almost eight weeks later, we had our second litter of puppies. The puppies stay with us at least eight weeks before letting them go to their new homes, so I had puppies all spring and summer long. I loved it! They kept me busy and out of trouble. Sadie is one of Lucy's puppies we decided to keep, and she's doing great! I need to get a new photo of Sadie to share with you all. I'll work on that this weekend.

I've learned a new trick... I've been playing with hyperlinks, inserting them throughout my entry. I feel I need to multi-task here, and make sure I enter photos too. All words and no photos, hmm, not sure I like that. LOL The above photo is a rose from my yard... I wasn't thrilled with the original shot so played with my photo editor, and wa-la! I like it!

Sunday, September 11, 2005

September 11th, 2001

September 11th, 2001... It's been four years since the tragedy at NYC, the Pentagon, and in Pennsylvania where the fallen airliner found it's final resting place, tragedy for all of America. I will never forget the unbelievable 'live' seens I saw from my t.v. that beautiful, September morning. On this anniversary of that horrific event, I think of those who lost loved ones, four years ago today.

Monday, September 05, 2005


I have been overwhelmed with emotions and frustration this past week, while watching the devastation of the Gulf States unfold on t.v. I am embarrassed that our great American country, what's considered the strongest country in the world, has taken so long to help our fellow Americans in such desperate need, in all the areas hit hard by Katrina.

Seems our troops have been dwindled down to so few over the years, and the few troops we have have been sent over seas to help other nations, leaving us vulnerable to emergencies like Katrina.

I have done what I can from Idaho, far, far away from the devastation, and will do more as I can. My guy is driving loads of food to the areas in need. His company has been asked to drive for larger companies donating to F.E.M.A. He may be gone for a long while, transporting food and supplies from all points to hurricane hit destinations.

I am thankful my 22 year old niece and her little family, 2 year old Gabrielle and her Daddy, made it out safely after staying in one of the hospitals in Marrero, LA, until Tuesday evening. She made it to West Virginia, the night before last, to stay with her Mom for awhile. My niece's home is in Marrero, LA. Rumor has it her home is dry, built 6 feet above sea level, but has wind damage. I pray for all those displaced and left without anything, that they will find a way to create a new life.

Gabrielle, while here on her first visit to Idaho, last November.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Good Day...

Today we celebrated my Father's 71st birthday... His birthday is tomorrow, August 22nd. ...Yes, the day after my daughter's birthday... I called to let my parents know, my son and I would be stopping by for a visit. My Mom sounded weak. ...She has four more chemo treatments... She called me back saying she wanted to go out to eat. I told her, we could just visit, we didn't need to go anywhere, she didn't need to fix a meal, just enjoy our visit together. She insisted she had to eat, either way, so, if we wanted to join them at dinner out, they would like that. My Dad picked the restaurant, his favorite bar-b-que rib house.

As we pulled up into the drive of this restaurant... I noticed several black vehicles, loaded with antennas. They looked like something out of a spy movie. I joked, "...the President must be here!" We parked right next to one of four SUV's with Washington D.C. plates. The vehicle in the center of all these SUV's was a Cadillac limo type, with the same Washington D.C. plates.

It was the Secret Service... President Bush is due to arrive in Boise, tomorrow. There were five men sitting a few tables away from us, enjoying ribs, Idaho style! Things appeared very normal, the guys looked like normal guys off the street. They weren't dressed in uniforms. They left 8 x 10 photos of the President's limo, posed in front of the White House, for all the wait staff at this restaurant.

Here's an excerpt from our local newspaper:

"Before the president even sets foot in Idaho, an advance team of Secret Service will have walked every possible step Bush might take while he's here.

"They scout everything out so there are no surprises," said Ken Walsh, chief White House correspondent for U.S. News and World Report.

And then there are the image people who will determine where the president should stand and where TV and newspaper photographers will film so that Bush appears in the most photogenic light possible.

The Secret Service will bring its "war wagon," a van or SUV loaded with weapons and communications equipment. Close to Bush at all times will be the "football" -- the package of top-secret nuclear launch codes.

On Monday, the president and some reporters will fly into Boise from Salt Lake City, where Bush is scheduled to speak at the Veterans of Foreign Wars conference. Other reporters will charter a plane. A U.S. Air Force cargo plane will bring at least two limousines (one real, one decoy), and other planes will be used if needed to carry Secret Service vehicles, staff and other equipment, possibly including Marine One, the presidential helicopter that will likely take Bush to Donnelly because no airport near there can hanndle a cargo plane or Air Force One."

Just west of Donnelly, Idaho... The mountains of Idaho are absolutely gorgeous. The president will be staying at one of Idaho's newest resorts, Tamarack, on the Cascade Reservior.

The news is reporting that the president will be enjoying a couple of private days in the mountains to ride his mountain bike along the many trails at Tamarack.

Maybe this will be the next generation of Secret Service employees? Aren't they cute? Tamarack has miles of mountain bike trails.

I do hope the president has a good visit, here in Idaho. We have some of the most spectacular sunsets, I hope he gets to see one. By the way, I didn't vote for him, either time.

On another note... I called my daughter to wish her a Happy Birthday, and she answered the phone on the first ring! I about fell over in my seat!

She has rejected most every call I've made to her since Christmas. I didn't expect her to pick up the phone.

We didn't talk long, but she told me she was in Victorica, British Columbia, Canada, with her boyfriend. They took a ferry from Seattle for her birthday. I could hear the breeze in her phone, she said she was sitting on a park bench, listening to church bells ringing. She couldn't see a church, but the bells were beautiful. I asked her to take lots of photos and send some home, she said she would. I let her go, I didn't want to overstay my welcome.

Today... was a good day! I had dinner out with my parents and my son. I was able to talk with my daughter for a few minutes. I feel so warm and fuzzy inside. Baby steps in the right direction. Life is good.
Secret Service and Tamarack photos were copied from their perspective websites.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Happy Birthday, Baby! I miss you!

My daughter... She's all grown up now. Her birthday is tomorrow, August 21st. She'll be twenty-four years old. I can still remember, as if only yesterday, bringing her home from the hospital. Her daddy and I had baby-sat for many friends before the birth of our first born. Our home was a good 45 minutes from the hospital and on the way home, I remember talking about how this baby was ours, we wouldn't be sending her home after a few hours. We were so proud of our brand new baby girl.

Through the years... We did all the parental things, making sure our little girl was well rounded in life's experiences. Swimming, gymnastics, piano, Brownies and Girl Scouts cookies, private religious schools, public schools, holiday celebrations, sleep-overs, dances, cats and dogs, vacations to Disneyland, camping, fishing, hiking, biking, friends and family gatherings... The same most every other parent does for their kids.

Then they turn into Teens... By now, I had become a single parent of two children after divorce. A girl, 14 years old, and a boy, just 6 years old. We had been divorced two years and I had two "only" children, going in two separate directions. I did the best I could to keep some stability in the lives of these kids. When we lost our home, I stayed in the same neighborhood so the kids would go to the same schools. My parents lived 800 miles away, with all the rest of my extended family. So, it was us three against the world for a few years.

Life was hard... Idaho is not easy on single women. The wages here are barely above poverty when trying to support a family. I found it difficult to keep a job, for the first time in my life. There were times I didn't know where our next meal would come from. I remember attending my son's teacher conferences, late that fall, when he was in 1st grade. The teacher had asked me something and I just broke down and cried. She must have been an angel because next thing I knew, the City Police were at my door with food and gift donations that Christmas. Those days seem so far away, but they were just in the last ten years.

Somewhere along the way... My daughter lost respect for me as her mother. It was more than the normal teen thinking their parent knows nothing. When she turned 18 years old, she left without letting me know where she was. Then within a year, she moved from Boise to Seattle. I remember feeling so lost, so helpless... How could I be a part of her life, living so far away? What if she met someone special and wanted to get married, have kids, how could I be a part of this? I never, ever dreamed I would live life without my daughter, my only daughter. I always imagined our lives would be entangled with each other; family dinners, movies out, shopping, crafts, baking, and just hanging out together. I know, as a young adult and mother, I spent a lot of time with my parents, stopping by whenever I could, calling and talking with them several times a day. We went shopping and camping and just everything together. I don't believe it's possible to have this with my own daughter, and I never saw it coming.

Divorce happened to all of us... My daughter was affected by this divorced as much as I was. She was just 12 years old when I left the kids' father. I do not know if I could have done anything different than I did. I do know, I did the best I could for both my kids. They were always my first consideration in my decisions. I can only hope that someday, both my kids will understand I did the best I could for us.

My adult daughter... She has every right to her own life, her own opinions, her own way of doing what she does. I do not understand her distance, her withdrawal from me. It hurts so much. She has been living so far away from home for so long now, I don't notice the pain so much. When I stop to think of all the time we've missed being together, all the moments we'll never have, the memories we are missing, it just kills me.

I love my daughter with all my heart... I know she loves me too. Someday, I hope whatever is keeping her from me will go away and she will find happiness in our relationship. Happy Birthday, Baby. I miss you.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

From Las Vegas to Warhawk...

My guy arrived in town on his way from Portland, Oregon, to Las Vegas, Nevada, about 1pm, Saturday. We are about halfway between the two cities on this route. This would have been the perfect trip for me to have hopped onboard and traveled on with him to Las Vegas. He was to turn right around after he delivered there and reload for Portland again, coming right back through our home town. Perfect!

We planned
to drive down Saturday and have all day Sunday and Sunday night to play, and drive back through Boise for a night's sleep, Monday night. I really wanted to go! I haven't been anywhere all summer long!

After trying to get Monday off work without success, I decided to suggest he stop at home and we go to some local attractions. There was the Night Fire, jet fueled cars, out at Firebird Raceway drag strip, or there were a couple of interesting planes at the Warhawk Air Museum. We could have gone to the local 1/4 mile roundy-round track to see stock and mini races. There's the Idaho Shakepheare Festival. We also had three Netflix movies to watch that had arrived throughout the week. Dinner out, and we would be good.

We decided to see some airplanes out at the Warhawk Air Museum in Nampa, Idaho...

We got there just in time to see this B-25 load up with civilian passengers, fire up and take off for a half hour ride. People could sponsor a ride for $300 each.

I think it would have been fun to ride inone of these! What an experience!

Also there, at the museum, was a P-40 that was in the movie "Pearl Harbor" starring Ben Affleck.

Once in the air, both planes did a fly by for the audience below.

Here's another P-40...