Tuesday, April 11, 2017

More Doctors

Well, April has started out with more doctor's appointments.  However, let's start at the beginning.

On Saturday, April 1st, I took over paying Mom's bills.  This is no April Fool's joke and it was a long time in coming.  She has been complaining about having difficulty writing her checks for some time now.  So, when I went over on Saturday I suggested that she go to the bank and let the girl there that mom likes pay her bills for her.  Well, the more we talked the more she didn't like having to go down to the bank every time a bill came in the mail.  So, finally I told her that I could pay her bills on line.  She seemed surprised, but agreed and she gave me all her "stuff".  I keep her informed of what bill has come in and how much it was and what her balance is.  I do a little sheet for her so she has everything in writing.  Now, it's only been a couple of weeks, but so far, it's working out well.  I have a key to her mailbox and I check it everyday when we get out mail.  If there is a bill I take it - but leave all her other mail.  We shall see how things progress.  Oh,  if she goes to town on the bus or buys anything she just puts it on her credit card - then I'll pay it when the bill comes in.  As I said, so far, it's been easy peasy!  Let's hope it stays that way.

Monday the third Dan and I worked in the front yard.  We had bought plants and mulch over the weekend and I wanted to get everything in the ground on Monday since we were suppose to have rain Monday night.  We worked all day, but being the bad blogger I am, I didn't take any before pictures.  But I do have some after pictures.

Everything was looking so much better.  There was still a few things that I wanted to do, but the front looked so much more inviting.

I even moved the plants that had been in the front out under the large Camilla tree that is in the front yard.  With our small garden flag and a couple of rocks and some pine straw as ground cover - things were looking up.

A couple of new plants for the front "porch".

Monday night Dan had a sleep study over in Lake City.  Of course, I stayed home with the puppy.  Well, let me tell you, the bottom dropped out Monday night.  We had a terrific thunderstorm - first one of the season - and had five and three-quarters of an inches of rain.

My nice pretty flower beds looked like this Tuesday morning.

So, while the plants loved the rain, the mulch went to the street!

So, after Dan got home and recovered from not a very good nights rest we headed into Live Oak to Lowe's  where we preceded to pick up some landscaping timbers and more mulch.  Oh, I might have picked up a few more plants that were on the clearance rack (I just can't seem to resist plants priced at $.50).

Anyway, we came home and got everything unloaded - but not much work was done on Tuesday.

Wednesday morning I volunteered at the shop.  We were actually a little busy and it did make the morning go quicker.  While I was dusting (which I do every Wednesday morning when I first get there) I saw that an artist kit in the kids section was opened.  When I looked at it there were several colored pencils and crayons missing.  I had to pull the kit and put in the office with a note to the manager.  I just don't understand why someone would steal from a non-profit organization that is only trying to help the residents.  Now, it was probably a kid, but the parent should have been watching.  Anyway, when I got home Dan had arranged all the landscaping timber - but he needed some dirt to get them level before he staked them down.  So, we went searching for dirt in the golf cart with the gorilla cart tied on the back.  We were able to find what he needed and he came home and finished up while I put out more mulch.  We even bought some solar powered lights for the bed.  I don't have any night pictures but this is what the bed looks like today.

All nice and straight

With the solar lights.

One of the hanging baskets
(gotta love those fifty cent plants)

One of the spider plants that I thought we lost in the last freeze.
Also have one of our hummingbird feeders out front.

This fern is another plant that I really thought we had lost.  We had this plant when we lived in Lake Placid on Loquat.  We brought a few ferns up with us, but really had not been taking care of them.  They were lying next to the house all last year while the renovation was going on.  I found this one and hung it up under the big Camilla bush in the back yard this winter, but really have not paid any attention to it.  Well, it is a survivor.  It is really coming out now that we are watering it and giving it some plant food.

The petunia in the background is another fifty cents plant - I bought two plants, brought them home and put them in an extra hanging basket I had in the garage.  They are doing great!

The Easter garden flag.

The front of the house from the driveway.

My April "wreath".

Wednesday night we went to our friends for dinner.  There were four couples - Neil and Carol, Dan and Kathryn, us, and the hosts Bud and Joyce.  It was a fun evening and a delicious meal!

Thursday was the Executive Committee Meeting.

Friday was Dan's cardiologist appointment.  I really think he was dreading going to this appointment since the last time we were there the doctor put it to him straight - he didn't sugar coat things.  Anyway, Dan has lost almost 15 pounds and has had all the tests the doctor wanted him to have.  While everything wasn't perfect with his visit things were better.  The doctor liked the amount of weight he had lost (he still has about 30 more to go) and the results of his tests were not bad.  His heart efficiency is about the same as it was the last time he had the stress test (about five years ago), but it isn't where the doctor would like to see it.  His stent is working fine.  The doctor did change up his medicine to see if we can have some better results - he said he wanted to get his blood pressure to around 110/60 instead of his normal 150/90.

Also, Dan does have sleep apena but he will NOT consent to the C-PAC machine.  The doctor is pretty sure that with the weight loss and exercise the sleep apena will go away.  Right now, we are trying elevating his upper body since he does not have the problem when "napping" in his recliner.  I have ordered a wedge for him to use and we will see how that works.

Well, the doctor ordered his medicine and after a little mix up at the pharmacy he started taking it Friday night.  Sunday I took his blood pressure and it was 113/60 and has been between 110/60 to the high of 115/63.  Dan says he can feel the difference and he says he feels better.  

Before we left Lake City we went by the new Hobby Lobby store that has just been open for about a week.  It was a really nice store and I picked up a couple of things for the house and for the girls Easter baskets that I would be mailing.

We had planned on going down to Lakeland from the doctor's office to see the girls play in their first soccer game, but we had to have some duct work done in the attic and it was suppose to be cool on Saturday morning.  So, instead of seeing my girls play, we had the A/C man here replacing about 20 feet of duct work, taping and mudding seams, and hanging the "new" duct work that was put in over the new family room.  The other A/C guy had left the duct work lying on the ceiling instead of strapping it to the rafters.  The new guy did all that on Saturday.  So, we should not have any more issues!  We can really tell the difference in the output of air - so that should help with the electric bill this summer.

Sunday I finally got the house and porch clean!  It was something that just kept being pushed to the back of the burner when other things came up.

I have never shown you pictures of the back patio area after we got all the dirt spread and some of the mulch down.  We still have a lot of work to do in the back but it looks so much better than it did and we sure enjoy using this area now.

Some of the plants

(The plant on the left is another 50 cent plant - give it a couple of weeks and see if it will come back)

This was a hollow log Dan found back in the woods that he brought home and we cut it different sizes and planted some plants in them.

Our other hummingbird feeder.

I also wanted to share some pictures of the back porch.
I have shared some on Facebook and I think on the blog, but only from one prespective.  I thought I'd do a better job and show you the whole porch.

sitting area


I love our little $5.00 pillow from WalMart.
I saw similar ones at Lowes for $30

I'm still looking for coffee mugs for this area.  We want to host some "Coffee On the Back Porch" soon for the neighbors.

My little bit of Easter decorations.

Which brings us to this week.
Yesterday I took mom to Gainesville for her doctors appointment.  It did not go well again.  She just seems to be angry with the world and nothing pleases her.  She is having some real problems being civil to anyone.  I'm not sure what to do about it.  I do have an appointment for her with another doctor in June - I guess I'll have to wait and see what that one says.

After I got home from Gainesville, Dan and I walked to the end of the cul-de-sac and back.  Then I power walked around the block.  (We are just getting Dan into this exercise thing -so it's baby steps). 

Today, I went to yoga and Dan went to the pool.  We was able to swim and exercise some without putting pressure on his knees.  We plan on walking three days a week and then going to yoga/pool two days a week and both of us going to the pool on Saturday (when we are home).  If we can continue to watch our diet and then add in the exercise, we should be able to lose the weight the doctor wants.  (BTW, I've lost another .8 pounds)

Well, that catches you up with all that has been going on so far this month.  The next couple of weeks don't look as busy right now, but who knows what they will fill up with.

Hope you enjoyed all the pictures.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

March Recap - the Month of Doctors and other things

So many things have gone on in the month of March that it's going to be another long, long post.  I hope that you will stay with me as I recap everything.  (At least everything I can remember - LOL!)

Since the first of the month was on a Wednesday I was at the shop for my weekly shift.  Things have actually been very slow at the shop, but whether we are busy or not someone has to be there.  That's okay as it gives me a chance to either catch up on some paperwork from home that I'm too busy to do or do the menu planning or play games on my Kindle.  I seems to find things to do to make the time go by - I guess it's a good thing that I'm a volunteer as it sure wouldn't pay to keep the shop open for the amount of money I make.  Most of the time I am my own best customer - but I am really trying NOT to buy things.

Also, Dan's niece and her husband stopped by for the night on their way back home in Michigan.  I fixed some Chicken Enchilada Soup for dinner and we did a little tour of the Village on the golf cart.  Cindy and Rod left on Thursday morning.

Thursday the 2nd was a super busy day.  Dan and I went down to mom's to finally hang the pictures she wanted hung in her living room/dining room.  This is something that we should have done a long time ago, but things just seemed to get in the way.  I finally just put it on the calendar and we were able to get it done.  I had a doctor's appointment at 10:30 - so, we worked at mom's from 9 to about 10:15 - I went to the doctor and Dan just stayed at mom's house waiting for me to get back.  I was back by 11 and we were able to get it finished before my next appointment at 2:00 which was the Executive Board Meeting.  I was back from that meeting by 3:45.  Then we had to drive into Live Oak to pick up my medicine the doctor ordered.  (I've had a terrible ear infection that we have been trying to get a handle on - it's all better now, thank goodness!)

Friday, the 3rd we had a monthly street breakfast at the Café.  We had to be there since our friends who are usually in charge were out of town and they asked us to "run" the meeting part.  Nothing major there - just verifying some things that will be done the next couple of months.

We also discovered that our A/C was not working.  The fan was running all the time but we were not getting any cool air.  Since things are starting to heat up around here we decided that we needed to get it fixed.  So we called the A/C repairman, and he stopped by the house.  He put a new part on, but it till wasn't working like it should.  He thought that he could "piece" it together and we would be able to get another year out of it, but he couldn't guarantee it. 

Dan and I talked it over and we decided that we would just bite the bullet and get a new unit.  We knew that we had been lucky that the unit had worked as long as it had (this was the unit original to the house), but we also knew that we were really pushing the upper limits of the unit with the added square footage to the house.  In fact, last year you could tell a difference in the air temperature between the main part of the house and the new family room.  Anyway, we decided to just do it and we got a larger unit that should handle the extra square footage with no problems.  The new A/C was installed on Saturday.

Out with the old!

In with the new!!

Sunday was church and then a quiet afternoon at home.

Monday the 6th we traveled to Lake City for a doctor's appointment with Dan's cardiologist.  Let's just say that he lit a fire under Dan and my rear ends and we came home committed to losing some weight.  We decided to try a modified Weight Watcher's program and we are still trying to work on that.

On the way home from Lake City, Dan decided that it was time to get the dirt in the back yard for around the patio area.  So, we called The Dirt Man and arranged to have two dump truck loads of dirt delivered on Tuesday.  Dan and I started working on spreading all that dirt by hand - what a task!

After some of the dirt was spread!

You might notice that there is a lot of furniture on the patio.  Well, there was a really good reason - while Dan and I (and our friend Neil) were spreading dirt we had another little project going on.

Screening in the back porch!!!!

Yipee!!!!  We had been planning on doing this ever since we did the remodel.  We just had to make sure we had the money to pay cash for it.  Well, let me tell you something - it is AWESOME!!!!!!!

So while the guys were working on the screen porch - I had a meeting about the River Woods Homeowners "Christmas" dinner - it was decided several years ago to have our get together in March instead of trying to make it work in December since so many people have so much to do during the holidays.  We didn't want to add anything else - so, having it in March gives everyone a much needed break.  Anyway, the planning meeting was at 2:00 and it was decided that we would have a St. Patrick's Day theme again this year since we already had all the decorations and the dinner would be held on the 16th.    No biggie.

After that meeting I headed back to the doctor to have her check my ear again.  I could tell that it was better but still needed to be checked.  She washed it out and got quite a bit of built up wax out and told me to continue on the medication. 

The rest of the week and weekend Dan and I worked on getting the porch "decorated".  We already had all the furniture, but we added some decorative touches and made it "homey" for us.

Some new pillows, plants, a couple of pieces of decorative furniture (bench and plant stand) and we had a finished porch we could enjoy!

Things sorta calmed down for a little while until the 16th.  I woke up Thursday morning aching all over - I figure my fibro was going to act up and just kept powering on.  At 1:30 I had the Membership Council meeting and right after that I had to help with decorating for the River Woods dinner that evening.  The longer the day went on the worse I felt.  I finally called Dan and asked him to come pick me up.  I went home and laid down on the couch - every single bone in my body hurt and I started having chills.  I was covered up with two blankets and went to sleep.  About 5 o'clock, Dan woke me up and told me to go get in bed.  He turned the electric mattress pad on and covered me up with a couple of blankets.  He then got ready to go to the dinner (he brought home a plate for me, which I didn't eat).  He didn't stay long - when they started the program he left and came home.  I slept off and on - but hurt so bad that I finally got up and went in and got in my chair.  I couldn't stand the weight of laying on my side - it just hurt too bad.  Anyway, I went back to sleep and slept for about 2 hours before Dan got up and came in the family room. 

We had some coffee before he had to get ready to go to Lake City for his stress test.  I ALWAYS go with him because he is super claustrophobic and can not stand to be in the tube.  I go in and read to him to take his mind off the test.  Anyway, he would not let me go - saying that I was still sick and there was no way he was letting me go with him.  He was determined that he could do it
on his own.  Well, four hours later he was home with a prescription of Valium and a new appointment for the 28th.  He was just unable to do it on his own.

We spent the weekend trying to get me well - really in 48 hours I didn't have chills anymore and the ache was pretty much gone, but I was completely wiped out for a couple of days.  By Monday the 20th I was back to "normal", whatever that is.

Wednesday, the 22nd, after work Dan's daughter, son-in-law, and two of their girls were here.  We all ate lunch down at the Village Café before coming back to the house.   We had invited Neil and Carol down for dinner and Dan fixed country ribs on the grill, while I fixed potato salad and baked beans.  (I had bought bread to fix and then completely forgot about it - so no bread).  Carol brought a fruit salad for dessert.  It was nice just spending some time sitting and talking.

Thursday morning Dana, Mark and the girls were on the road by 9.  I got the house straight before packing a suitcase and heading to Lakeland for the weekend.  I had some babies to see.

I made it down to the kids house just as Justin was pulling in the driveway - so we all loaded into the car and went to get the girls - there is something so very special about walking into their classrooms and hearing them yell "NANA"  and come running.  That will NEVER get old.  After picking the girls up we headed to the grocery store and picked up a few things.

We went home and Melissa and the girls fixed pizza for all of us.  After dinner the girls got ready for bed and I headed for my room.  It had been a long day.

Friday morning the girls went to school, Melissa worked from home and I headed out.  I wanted to see the movie - "Beauty and the Beast" and I'm so glad I did - It was FABULOUS!!!!  I had thought about taking the girls to the movie on Saturday to see it, but there are some scary parts (especially the scenes with the wolves) and Ada is already having some issues with sleeping and the "big bad wolf" in her room.  So we decided that it might not be the right movie to go to right now.  So, instead we all went shopping Saturday afternoon.  Just a couple of stores - Kirklands, Bed Bath and Beyond, and Target.  We did stop for lunch at a place called Glory Days.  I had an awesome rice bowl and the girls ate well - or at least Lorelai did.  Ada has become somewhat of a picky eater for some reason.  Anyway, after heading back home, the girls and I did a special project that Lorelai had been wanting me to do since Valentines Day.  Make a heart cake!

When we were at the grocery store on Thursday we bought the cake mix.  Of course, Lorelai wanted white frosting and Ada wanted blue - so, Nana just divided the cake in half and there we go.

Lorelai "pretending" to eat the cake.

And of course, Ada had to pretend too!

Sunday we spent a quiet day at home getting the girls ready for school and me ready to go home on Monday.  Justine did fix spaghetti for dinner Sunday night and we had cake for dessert.

My three beautiful girls after getting ready for bed!

Even though the girls had their first soccer practice on Monday night - I had to head for home Monday morning.  So, after getting up and saying good bye to the girls I headed for home.

My lovely, loveable, spunky Lorelai in her new glasses!
We just found out she is far-sighted and she has only
had her glasses for a couple of weeks.
Isn't she beautiful!!!

And my awesome, adorable Adalyn!
She had just finished 'twirling' and was surprised I took her picture.

My daughter and Lorelai

Well, when the girls headed for school and work, Nana headed home.  I made it home with no issues and met Dan down at the dining room for lunch.

Tuesday was Dan's make up stress test.  We were up and on the road by 7 am and at the doctor's a few minutes early.  They started his IV and we sat for about 45 minutes while the dye made it's way through his body and the Valium started working (he didn't take any until he got there - took two when they did the IV and the third later in the testing cycle.)  Anyway, to make a long story somewhat short, he was able to complete the test with the help of the Valium and me reading to him.  YEAH!!!

Wednesday, was volunteering again and Thursday and Friday was spent working in the yard.  I'll show some pictures of the patio area later - plus I have a big job to do in the front yard with new plants for around the porch.

Well, there's the month.  I keep hoping to be able to do posts more than once a month - and maybe I'll try to do once a week this month.  Wish me luck!

Rainy, Dreary Days

Well, I don't know what the weather has been like where you live but here it has been warm, overcast, and rainy.  We are having temperat...