Sunday, March 28, 2010

Well... M ended up being discharged from the hospital twice in 24 hours, but it looks like he is really home this time.

M was discharged Saturday about noon from our local hospital's inpatient children's unit (it's a satellite of our main Children's Hospital). He had been doing well that morning, and it seemed like he was getting back to normal so they sent us home. Unfortunately we weren't home 5 minutes before he started having trouble again... by bedtime he was as sick as he'd been in the hospital and I could hear no bowel sounds (yes, I've had to learn a little more amateur nursing!). I talked to the doctor who'd just discharged him and she thought (as did M's pdoc) that he might have been discharged too soon and I needed to bring him back to the ER at the main Children's Hospital first thing in the morning, so a GI specialist would be available to see him.

By this morning I could hear bowel sounds again, and M seemed better, but I took him to the ER anyway... There was no way I wanted to take a chance with staying home when two docs felt he needed to be seen again.

He was checked over again at the main hospital ER, and things seem to (finally) be working again. They put him on a very restricted diet for the next two days (nothing but carbs... no fats, meats, fresh fruit or veggies, and very little dairy), and if he does well we can slowly, over the next couple of weeks, start reintroducing foods that are more difficult to digest. He was discharged from the main hospital ER almost exactly 24 hours after he was discharged the first time.

It's soooooo good to be home again... It was a nightmare of a week, and I'm very happy to put it behind us. (In addition to the crisis with M, the engine in my beloved Previa self-destructed... This really isn't a good time for me to be running around looking at cars... so for now I'm borrowing B's (dd#2) car.)

Anyway... that's the latest... I do think the crisis is finally over and am hoping life will quickly and easily slip back into what passes for normal around here.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

A quick update...

M was readmitted into the hospital Wednesday, and we are still there now.

He's been having stomach problems since his surgery, and got much sicker Tuesday night into Wednesday morning, so I took him into the ER.

At first they didn't seem too concerned, but then took an x-ray and found an impacted bowel. They were still going to send us home (with a LOT of miralax!) but both our pediatrician, and I, felt like they should admit him.

It's good they did because the impaction turned out to be secondary to his digestive system basically shutting down. Nothing from his esophagus down through his colon was working... and probably hadn't been for awhile.

This is a potentially life threatening situation caused (most likely) by the clozaril he takes for his sz, combined with the anethesia during his surgery, the percocet he took after his surgery, and his low activity level since the surgery. Both his attending doctor here at the hospital and his pdoc told me this morning that without aggressive treatment he could die. (There have been some fatalities from this same clozaril related problem...)

So we've (temporarily) cut his clozaril dose in half, and M's been on clear liquids since Wednesday...to give his belly a break, and to be ready if he needs emergency surgery.

From what the doctor is saying this evening, it's looking like M is finally starting to turn the corner and is (hopefully) out of danger.

R has been home with Joe through this and is doing well.

I'm not sure when M will be discharged, probably sometime this weekend.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Luckily...

.... I read the weather forecast for today.

I've (temporarily) given up reading the news online, and I never watch the news on TV, but I'd heard there might be a storm coming in and thought I'd better pay attention just in case it was a big one.

Elbert/Central And East Douglas Counties Above 6000 Feet



Winter Storm Warning:



Issued at: 6:12 PM MDT 3/23/10, expires at: 12:15 AM MDT 3/24/10

Winter storm warning remains in effect until 6 pm mdt wednesday,
A winter storm warning remains in effect until 6 pm mdt wednesday.
Snow will continue along the front range through Wednesday afternoon. The snow will be especially tonight, then decrease in intensity Wednesday morning. Snow amounts will range from 8 to 16 inches by Wednesday afternoon with up to 20 inches possible over the foothills from boulder county southward and in douglas and western elbert counties. Northeast winds of 15 to 25 mph will produce areas of blowing and drifting snow mainly along and east of interstate 25.
Precautionary/preparedness actions,
Unnecessary travel is discouraged tonight. If you must travel, keep extra food, water, a flashlight, and dry clothing in your vehicle in case of an emergency.
We're in eastern Douglas County... and yeah, it looks like it's going to be a big one.

The day started warm, sunny and dry...

This is what it looked like by late afternoon.



The kids and I went to the store earlier, to pick up the last few things to finish up the month's shopping...

It's good we went because I'm guessing we'll be snowed in for a few days.



After we got home I went out and filled all the water troughs (before the hose froze again!), put Tilly's coat back on her, raked and  cleaned the run, and did a few other jobs that need to be done before a big snow.



Then R and I stole another egg from Lili's little nesting box (I'm amazed at regularly she lays!) and shut her up in her cozy little coop for the night.



It was so strange, there was thunder and lightning with the snow for awhile.... and the lightning turned the sky (or more accurately, the snow that was filling the sky) pink.

I've never seen that before.

I should ask my friend whose husband is a meteorologist why snow + lightning = pink...

Here's the view out my dining room window. The wind has plastered it with snow and ice.



M's supposed to have a follow-up appointment with the surgeon tomorrow... and the pediatrician wants an abdominal x-ray done at the same time (as long as we were going to be at the hospital anyway...), because he's still throwing up all the time.

It looks like neither one of those things are going to get done tomorrow... hopefully we'll be out by Friday.

Monday, March 22, 2010

*~*daybook*~*

simple-woman-daybook-small
FOR TODAY

March 22, 2010

Outside my window... the sun is bright and warm, the remains of last week's snow is almost completely melted away, and tiny shoots of green grass are starting to grow.

I am thinking... how irritated I am at my bank for charging me for a service I specifically told them I didn't want.

I am thankful for... the warmth, spring sunshine feels so good.

From the learning rooms... over the weekend I read to the kids from a new book I bought, The American Story: 100 True Tales from American History.  First I read about Paul Revere (because this ties into what they are learning about in history) then let each of them pick a story for me to read. R choose the chapter about John Henry, and M wanted to hear about the 1938 War of the Worlds radio broadcast that caused so much panic. After reading about it, we went online and listened to part of the actual broadcast... it was so much fun!

From the kitchen... with M's stomach still so messed up, all of us are "dieting"... it's hard to eat in front of him when there is so little he can eat. I've got turkey soup in the crockpot... I hope he can keep it down.

I am creating... no big projects going right now.

I am going... to the stable later today so R can have a lesson. M probably isn't well enough to go, but I hate to disappoint R, so he'll just have to go anyway.

I am reading...Undaunted Courage, and The Journals of Lewis and Clark

I am hoping... M's stomach problems just go away. None of the treatment options are good... even if they help in some ways they all seem to bring the possibility of causing more problems in other areas.

I am hearing... the TV (M is watching some kid's show on PBS), M talking about food (poor thing... he's hungry, he just can't eat!)

Around the house... I should be working on the laundry, and getting things cleaned up... maybe later.

One of my favorite things..watching Lili peck around in her pen... and the funny way she runs to me when I call her.

A few plans for the rest of the week... the stable today, regular stuff (like today's blood draw, tomorrow's med pick-up), and probably a visit with the pediatrician later in the week.

Some pictures I am sharing...

Lili coming when I call her...




"So... what do you want?"




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Saturday, March 20, 2010

Leigh, from 5 Acres and a Dream recently introduced herself here and I've LOVED finding her blog and reading through it. She talks about about her new homesteading life, remodeling their old (but new to them) house, gardening, fiber arts, chicken raising etc. Her house even came with pink carpeting! (Just like mine...) But, unlike me, she was wise enough to NOT wait five years to tear it out!

One thing that makes her blog such a joy to read is the lovely way she has it organized... I've never categorized my posts, but after reading her blog, I've decided I probably should.

So... there is a new "categories" listing on my side bar, but it's a work in progress. It will take me awhile to go back and categorize all my posts... So for now most are still uncategorized, but little by little I'll get my posts sorted out and the "categories" tool will actually be very handy to have!

Edited to add:  In the process of adding categories to all my old posts, I accidentally made public a draft I'd written more than a year ago. (I think it was from Oct. of 2008!) I didn't notice it for hours of course. It's gone back to draft status... sorry about the confusion!

Friday, March 19, 2010

7 Quick Takes

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7 Quick Takes

~1~

A spring snow is bringing some much needed moisture today. We are supposed to get 6-12" of snow, but I don't think it's going to make it. That much snow would be nice though... the pastures are very dry.



~2~

M is sick again (still...) so I am staying home and having a quiet day, waiting for the doctor to call (again!)... and trying think of things he might be able to eat for dinner without further aggravating his already messed up digestion.





~3~

Fortunately we didn't have anything planned for today that I would have had to cancel, and the snow makes it a nice day to stay home and enjoy the weather...



~4~

I've had a fire going all day... it's 78 degrees in the living room (where the fire is), about 70 in the family room, 65 in the kitchen and 60 in the bedrooms! The kids are hanging out in the warm, but not too hot family room...



~5~

Lili is snug in her little coop. This is her first snowstorm "outside' so I checked on her a little while ago. She is happily sitting in her little nesting box. She's laying every 2-3 days, and R is still excited about every egg she finds.



~6~

I worked outside a lot this week... For once I got the yard raked and seeded before the nice wet spring snows (that will help get things growing!). Usually I don't think of it until after it starts snowing...



~7~

Time to finish this up and go feed the fire...

stay warm!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

No sense rushing into anything....

Happy St Patrick's Day!

I thought this might be a good day to blog about a little project I just finished (or almost finished!), since it involves some beautiful handwoven wool tweed from Ireland.

Many of my ancestors are from Ireland, and learning about and respecting our Irish heritage was a big part of my childhood. I even used to dance a (really terrible!) Irish jig for my grandfather. My mother always told me "it brought tears to his eyes", and let me believe it was because of he missed Ireland so much... but I'm guessing now that it might have had more to do with calling the strange hopping around I was doing a jig! (They were tears of laughter perhaps?!)

Anyway... I went to Ireland with my family back in 1973, when I was a teenager, but although my mother and younger siblings made other trips back (my brother Steve lives there permanently now), I always had little ones at home during those years so have never gone back.

During one of those early trips (maybe early to mid 1980's) my mother brought me back some hand woven wool tweed. There were two different fabrics... one is blue, with multicolored speckles, the other deep green, red and black with a little cream. I pretty quickly used the blue wool as the collar and trim for a winter coat I made (there was only about 3/4 of a yard of each fabric), but I could never decide what to do with the deep colored tweed. I'd think of something I wanted to make, but not have enough fabric, or not want to waste the fabric on something that would go out of style or be outgrown. (The coat I made is wearing like iron... it's hopelessly out of style now, but the wool still looks like new and it's WARM!) So this beautiul hand woven tweed just stayed in my fabric box... and every time I saw it I thought I should do something with it.

I finally decided to just use it... that saving it for just the right project was wasting some beautiful fabric. (And if I hadn't come across just the right project in 25 years, I'm probably not going to!) The colors in the fabric match my living room perfectly, and it's a bit too scratchy, and small, to make a garment out of, so I decided to cover a couple of throw pillows with it.



When I unfolded it, I saw that it still had the original price tag on it...  It's like it's been in a time capsule for all this time!



The first cut was hard...



But it was a dream to sew, not at all bulky... just a nice even weight.



Here's the (almost) finished product. I want to add some buttons on the front of each pillow, but other than that they are done... and sitting out where I can see and enjoy the that beautiful tweed.



I thought about finishing the pillows using buttons from one of the Aran sweaters my folks bought for my brothers back in 1973. My brothers were about 8 and 9 then, and quickly outgrew the sweaters. I ended up with them at some point and have had them ever since. I dug out the sweaters, got the scissors, and was ready to cut the buttons off the most worn out of the two... but I just couldn't bring myself to do it.

I think I'll ask my brother to send me some new buttons from Ireland to finish off the pillows.

I have enough tweed left for a table runner or something else small... hopefully it won't take me another 25 years to get brave enough to use it!

Here's me, wearing the Aran sweater I got in Ireland during that 1973 trip. I've "grown into" it a bit over the years, but it's amazing the way it's held up. Looks pretty good for a 37 year old sweater doesn't it?

Monday, March 15, 2010

*~*daybook*~*

simple-woman-daybook-small
FOR TODAY

March 15, 2010

Outside my window... it looks cold and gray. There is an inch or two of snow on the ground, and it's still snowing lightly.

I am thinking... a lot about forgiveness lately... and, for me, how it seems to be as much a journey as a destination sometimes.

I am thankful for... the beauty that surrounds me this morning, and  the (mostly) healthy children upstairs just waking up for the day.

From the learning rooms... I cleaned and reorganized the classroom yesterday... such a good feeling. A bonus was finding several things I'd forgotten I had! ;)

From the kitchen... the cookie jar has been empty for too long, I've got to make some cookies this morning.

I am creating... not much of anything, but I am finishing lots of little half done projects around the house.

I am going... to have to take M back to the doctor if he isn't better soon. His stomach is still a mess, I almost took him to the ER this weekend, but I decided to give what we're already doing a little longer.

I am reading... Undaunted Courage, and The Journals of Lewis and Clark. "We" (the Corps of Discovery and myself) are done wintering by the Mandan villages, and have followed the Missouri almost up to the Falls. An unexpected river (The Marias) has stopped the expedition temporarily while the two captains try to figure out which river is the Missouri and which is a fork. Lewis and Clark ultimately decide the south "fork" is the Missouri, but everyone else in the company things it's the north fork. Turns out L & C were right (of course).

 I am hoping... things work out with the new pdoc. It would be really wonderful to feel good about the kid's psychiatric care again.

I am hearing... a mostly quiet house... the only noise is the dishwasher is humming and gurgling.

Around the house... I'm still possessed by the purging bug and cleaning and throwing things out. It's almost time for another trip to the Goodwill to drop stuff off.

One of my favorite things... a nice cup of hot chocolate when it's cold outside.

A few plans for the rest of the week... blood draw and PT today, pick up meds tomorrow, probably take M to the doctor on Weds. (her first day in the office) about his stomach. Oh.. and we should celebrate St Patrick's Day on Wednesday too! I hope M feels well enough to enjoy some corned beef.

A picture I am sharing...

the dogs at my feet, a picture of canine companionship



Visit Peggy's blog for more about The Simple Woman's Daybook

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Lili is so proud....

Today was Lili the chicken's big lay... I mean day!



Yep, she finally laid her first egg... The first of many, I'm hoping.

It's just a little egg, because Lili is a banty hen... but R's already put dibs on it for breakfast tomorrow!



Now to get a few more chickens so we don't have to fight over the fresh eggs...

Friday, March 12, 2010

Hmm... Friday already... it looks like another week has gotten away from me.

Today was a good day for, and with, M. He didn't throw up once and was able to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner! The exclamation mark at the end of that sentence gives some idea as to how rare that is lately. Actually, as I think about it, today was the only day this week he was able to eat all three meals. :( After hopelessly confusing and conflicting advice from the pediatrician, M's former psychiatrist (who I called for an unrelated matter), and the pharmacist, I've reluctantly started M on some over-the-counter stomach medication. I really hate giving him another med, and there are many he can't take because of the other meds he's on, but he can't just continue throwing up all the time!  Hopefully this will settle things back down again...

Outside of M being sick so much of the time, it's been a decent week. He's still up a lot at night, but during the day he's doing pretty well. We got a full week of school done, and both kids said it felt really good to have our school routine back again. It's been so sunny and springlike this week that there is no place in the house nicer to be in than our little sunroom/classroom. The geraniums and impatiens (that winter there) are blooming, the maple tree outside the window is showing the first tiny beginnings of it's spring buds, and the sun streaming through the windows is warm... but not too hot, the way it is in the summer. It was the perfect week to get back into our school routine...

R has been riding Murphy every day, and has been gaining confidence and doing some new things.  The other afternoon I was biting my fingernails and saying my prayers when she rode him on the road... alone... for the first time.



She didn't go far... she just next door to return some movies the neighbors lent us... but it was hard to watch her riding up the road and having to trust Murphy to bring her safely home again.



She's been riding Murphy up to the mailbox each day to get the mail too... Today's mail run turned into another nail biter when the big brown UPS truck came down the road while she and Murphy were at the box. She doesn't dismount when she gets the mail, she just inches him over very close to the mailbox, then leans down, opens the box, and grabs out the mail. She'd just finished reaching in for the mail when the UPS guy came over the hill. She didn't have time to get Murphy back across the road to the driveway, and there is a steep hill on the other side of the mailbox... so they were pretty well trapped where they were. She said later that she was scared but knew she couldn't show it, because then Murphy might get scared too... So she just kept a tight rein, tried to stay loose, and even waved to the UPS guy (who almost put the truck into the ditch trying to keep as far away from her as possible!). She was proud of herself when she got back to the house, and Murphy got an apple for being such a good, calm, boy!

I took this picture of Tilly and Tucker today...



I don't think there is anything cuter than Tucker, enjoying the sunshine, cuddled up by his mama.

I've been spring cleaning this week too, tossing things out heartlessly... in one of the "purges" that seem to possess me every few months. I filled the entire minivan with bags and boxes of things for Goodwill today, and M felt well enough for the drive up to drop them off. I could barely fit his wheelchair into the car with all the donations, but I'm glad I did. We went into the store for a few minutes after dropping everything off and I found this...



...made by Henry Watson Pottery.  I have a little butter box that I love, made by the same company, so I was excited to find the loaf pan.



I might just have to bake some bread this weekend!

I guess that pretty much sums up our week...

It's not late here, but the house is quiet... the only noise is the hum of the dishwasher.

The kids are asleep.

The dogs are asleep.

I think it's my turn...

(maybe M will sleep tonight! :))

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

update and new floors

M's surgery was three weeks ago today, and it's starting to feel as though things are slowly getting back to normal.

 We were able to get a full day of school done yesterday (for the first time since the surgery) and he's getting to be slightly more independent. He can get himself to the bathroom, if he doesn't have to go up or down stairs to get there, and is able to join us for dinner in the dining room. (Up until now he hasn't been able to sit in regular chairs, just the wheelchair, and even then he wore out fairly quickly...)

It feels wonderful to see some light at the end of the tunnel. My only serious concern is that M's stomach is still very messed up... If that problem doesn't resolve itself soon, I'll have to take him in to the pediatrician.

Since I'm fairly sure many people are waiting with baited breath to see our new living room floor (and since nothing else even remotely interesting is going on) I thought this would be a good time to post some pictures...

First the "before" pictures.

From the front door...



... and looking up into the family room.  There was a LOT of pink carpet!!



The pink carpet took one afternoon to tear out (our SIL did all the work, both tear out and installation... he's a very nice guy!), and it wasn't long before there was nothing left but the plywood sub-floor.



SIL painted the whole subfloor with Kilz paint, because there was a doggie smell in the plywood. (Our dogs rarely have "accidents", but the people who lived here before us had three big golden retreivers who, judging from the damage we've found, had been left inside the house for extended periods of time.)



Then he started laying the wood.



I'd never seen hardwood put down before... I was surprised at how much work it was, I guess I thought it would be more like laying laminate flooring (which we had in our old house).



The finished job, isn't it beautiful?

I chose dark wood because I wanted a definite contrast with the log walls. I wasn't sure how it would look, and was a little apprehensive... but reassured myself that, if it looked really bad, we could always sand it down and stain it a different color!



But I do love the dark wood... I think it fits the house well.

(Hey Steve, do you recognize your trunk under my window? I'm taking very good care of it... :)



The next job, and hopefully the last BIG job, will be replacing the rest of the pink carpet with a more neutral color. That should happen later this spring...

Next month we will have been in this house for 5 years, and during that time we've had the log exterior repaired, stucco and stone work done, both chimneys torn down and replaced, the roof repaired (three times!), the barn refurbished and painted, landscaping done in both the front and back yards, a sprinkler system installed, a new deck railing built and installed, formica countertops replaced with granite (twice!), the well pump and water storage tank replaced, and we gutted and remodeled the main bathroom.

Hmm... It wasn't until I started typing it out that I realized how much we've done to this place... especially considering it was supposed to be in good shape, not needing much of anything, when we bought it!

I think I might shoot for getting the new carpet installed in April, to celebrate our five years here, and the end of the MAJOR work on Woodstone Prairie. Once that's done the only things left on the"to do" list are a new floor in the guest room bathroom, and a bit more landscaping work out back...

Monday, March 8, 2010

*~*daybook*~*

simple-woman-daybook-small
FOR TODAY

March 8, 2010

Outside my window...it's overcast and dreary looking, but a spring warmth is in the air, and the songbirds are back.

I am thinking... not much of anything. Too little sleep for too many days in a row has emptied my head of most meaningful thought.

I am thankful for... M still being asleep, and not still throwing up (as he was a couple hours ago).

From the learning rooms... good intentions, but not much else.

From the kitchen... still eating leftover turkey from the party on Saturday. It will probably be gone by tomorrow so I'll have to start really cooking again.

I am wearing... blue jeans, white henley, red button down shirt

I am creating... right now? A blog post...

I am going... to have to find a way to wake myself up. I'm finding myself, once again, wishing I liked the taste of coffee.

I am reading... still working on Undaunted Courage, and The Journals of Lewis and Clark. I've had very little time to read lately, so "we're" still in the Mandan village, on our way to the Pacific... but spring has arrived there, and Sacagewea has had little Jean Baptiste so we'll probably by on our way shortly. (Thanks mamagames for leaving the comment about your aunt's journey following the Lewis and Clark trail... I checked out her website and it's fascinating!)

I am hoping... that M has a good day.

I am hearing...Emma snoring, while Quin wanders restlessly around the kitchen waiting for his breakfast.

Around the house... the living room floor is done, and it's beautiful! If I ever have more than a few minutes at the computer I'll post pictures.

One of my favorite things... right now a decent night's sleep probably tops the list.

A few plans for the rest of the week... draw blood today, have Joe pick up M's meds, physical therapy for M and a telephone appointment with his pdoc later in the week.

A picture I'm sharing...

a leaf I saw on the way to the barn... it's nothing special, it just caught my eye



I liked the way it looked covered with frost, still intact despite a winter's worth of wind and snow.



Visit Peggy's blog for more about The Simple Woman's Daybook

Friday, March 5, 2010

7 Quick Takes

[7_quick_takes_sm.jpg]
7 Quick Takes

~1~

I wasn't sure I'd have time to get to this today... it feels like things have been impossibly busy here this week.


~2~

Which makes me think of a funny saying... it pretty much fits how I've been feeling this week. "I'm so busy I don't know if I've found my rope or lost my horse!" That pretty much sums up my week...


~3~

I fired the home health aide company a few days ago. I wasn't happy with the people they were sending out, and decided it was easier to just do the work myself.

~4~

We still have physical therapy, at the house, three times a week, but I might decrease the frequency so we don't run out of visits too quickly. Luckily M's PT is also a friend... it's always nice to see her and visit when she's here.


~5~

M had a bad day yesterday... both physically and psychiatrically. Today seems to be better. He even slept fairly well last night... only waking up once! After being up multiple times each times each night for the past couple of weeks, I felt so rested this morning after only having to get up once!


~6~

The living room floor is almost done... it should be finished today. It's beautiful! I'm so happy with the wood we picked, and with the job my son-in-law is doing laying it. It changes the whole room... I can't wait to move the furniture back in. :)


~7~

I'm anxious to get the living room put back together again not only because I'm an impatient person (which I am...) but because I'm having a family dinner here tomorrow, and the house will be full of people (so I'm going to need a usable living room). This probably isn't the best time for a family get-together, but it couldn't wait. It's a good-bye (for a little while) dinner for B (dd#2) who is moving to Philadelphia for a few months for work. She leaves Sunday, so the dinner can't wait.... It will be hard to have her so far away, but she's excited so I'm excited for her.


Monday, March 1, 2010

Spread the word to END the word...



Today, March 3, has been designated a day of awareness of the hurt and disrespect shown when the word "retard" is used in everyday conversation, especially because it's almost always used as a slur, a put-down, an insult.

For those of us who live with, and love, people with cognitive delays and disabilities... and for those people who struggle each day with intellectual disabilities... the word is incredibly hurtful. People who would never dream of using a racial slur, think nothing of using the "r-word"... probably (hopefully) not realizing how hurtful and insulting that word is.

Please be aware of the words you use, and how your words can hurt others...and please join me in pledging to NOT use the "r-word".

You can pledge here, and read more here and here.

*~*daybook*~*

simple-woman-daybook-small
FOR TODAY

March 1, 2010

Outside my window... it is dark, with a brilliant full moon shining through the kitchen window and skylight

I am thinking... how peaceful the house is now after all of today's comings and goings.

I am thankful for... M having a good day today after his bad night last night. He was tired by this evening, and struggling then, but the day went better than I thought it would.

From the learning rooms... we're still pulling ourselves together again after the surgery. I did pick up Sequential Spelling and am looking forward to starting it. R is a pretty good speller, but it's one of M's most difficult subjects... He seems to learn best with a variety of curricula and approaches, I'm hoping he likes the uniqueness of sequential spelling and learns from it.

From the kitchen... I made two big dinners yesterday, a pot of soup and some homemade bread for a neighbor who had a mastectomy, and calzones for us. Unfortunately, today kind of got away from me and our dinner ended up being hamburgers Joe picked up on the way home from work.   

I am creating... same thing I was working on last week... a good recovery period for M.

I am going... to bed as soon as possible. I've been up since 3:00 and I'm tired!

I am reading... Undaunted Courage, and the (abridged) Journals of Lewis and Clark, I'm reading Little Britches as a read aloud, but M is the only one who is really into it... it's not R's kind of book, and since I'm mostly just reading to help M stay calm I don't mind if she skips out on this one.

I am hoping... the M sleeps tonight.

I am hearing... the deep heavy breathing of the sleeping dogs at my feet, and M's radio (he listens to it as he goes to sleep).

Around the house... BIG excitement! Our son-in-law started working on the floor in the big living room. The pink carpet is GONE (in that room, we still have plenty in the rest of the house :(), and I think he might start laying the new wood floor tomorrow! When we bought this house I said the first thing we had to do was get rid of this nasty pink carpet... but then we found the house had many really major things the matter with it, and redoing the floor became a very low priority. Now... finally... after 5 years... the pink carpet is on it's way OUT! :)

One of my favorite things... the black lightweight fleece top my brother got me. It's become one of my most favorite things to wear....it always just feels so good.

A few plans for the rest of the week... we're home for the week except for M's two week follow up appointment with the orthopedist. M was doing well enough today that I'm thinking we might even be able to keep that appointment.

A picture I am sharing...

I can't seem to stop trying to capture the beauty of the moon with a camera...  (maybe someday I'll figure out how to do it!)

tonight's moon



Visit Peggy's blogfor more about The Simple Woman's Daybook
A heavy fog rolled in yesterday...



....and sometime during the night a light snow started falling.

It's beautiful outside... peaceful and serene. It's funny how even a light snow seems to muffle the outside noises, leaving a quiet, cocooned-in kind of feeling.



I wish my mood matched the peacefulness of today's snow.

For the first time since M's orthopedist brought up M needing surgery, I'm feeling like this might all have been too much.

It's not like not having the surgery done was an option... M's hip joint was being damaged further with every step he took, and without surgery he was looking at years of pain, leading to a joint that was in need of replacement when he was still a young man. I'm guessing it's easier to fix the hip of a 17 year old with schizophrenia... who still has his parent's insurance, and is living at home, than replace the hip of a 30 year old man with schizophrenia who has only Medicaid, and may be living somewhere else...

No... it had to be fixed... but the recovery period has been difficult and isn't getting any easier.

He was sick last night, throwing up... I don't know whether he caught a bug somehow, or it's connected to the reflux that has shown back up now that he's laying down so much.

I hope he didn't throw up his psych meds, that could complicate things more than I want to think about.

We seem to be stuck in a not-so-good place... His developmental disability (which includes problems with motor planning and balance) has a negative impact on his ability to maintain the "precautions" he needs, so his hip will heal well, and with as little pain as possible. The pain that comes from his problems maintaining the precautions cause his psychiatric symptoms to worsen... leaving him even less able to remember and comply with the precautions (which leads to more hip pain, of course). The pain meds help with the hip pain, but make him sick to his stomach, and sedate him enough that his balance is even worse and he just wants to sleep. Sleeping all the time doesn't help his hip get better, and makes his reflux worse. And the stress of feeling sick (with the reflux) also leads to an increase in his psych symptoms.. and everything that goes along with that.

Nothing is working together very well right now...

M's two week follow-up appointment with the surgeon is Wednesday, and I have no idea how I'm going to get him safely down the stairs and into the car, through the long (tiring) appointment without a flare up of the psychiatric symptoms and finally... get him back home and up the stairs again (especially since I'll probably have to give him extra pain medication to get through the appointment, and possibly extra psych meds as well... both of which are sedating).

I might have to cancel the appointment, but I'm not sure they'll let me.. and I really want them to do an x-ray to make sure M hasn't knocked anything out of place with all the stumbling around he's been doing. (It's not like I'm just letting him wander around on his own, I'm with him every time he's out of bed... keeping my hand on him to steady him, but he moves so suddenly and quickly, and he's so big, that I can't always stop him before he's stumbled, or put too much weight on his bad leg, or whatever...)

I guess I'll call the orthopedist's office later and see what they say...