Sunday, March 24, 2019

A Weekend of Finding Memories While Redeeming Things.....and an Update on Lillian....

Friday we started work on the sewing room.
That flash flood from last September did damage that we are just now addressing.
There was mold that we tended to and after treating it, applying Kiltz and a lot of cleaning - we were ready to put the room back together.

I found some treasures that had fallen behind things......

like this autographed photo of Monty and Dually......

Amber loved horses when she was a little girl - and still does.
Monty Roberts was known as the Horse Whisperer.

The four shelves bookcase that held all our cookbooks was so damaged that Louis Dean had to cut it off and make it a three shelf bookcase.

I found this treasure on one of the shelves.
It wasn't lost because I knew it was there.

It was a gift from Deanie 47 years ago on my 23rd birthday.
I have used many of the recipes and will forever keep this cookbook in my collection.
While I may not live to be 123 - I am going to work on it!!

Amber's first cat was named Calico......I painted this in 1990 and it had fallen behind the bookcase.

The entire room was a total mess!
I took the curtains, shades and blinds down and washed everything.

Things were all piled up int the closet area and we even carried stuff out to the gazebo.

This is the way it looked Friday night when we went to bed.

Saturday morning we started in again.

Slowly but surely, I was able to reclaim order out of the chaos.

By the way, the kitchen is on the other side of the window looking area where the Pfaltzgraff pottery is on the shelves. To the left of that back lamp on the bookshelf is the dining room.
The French doors (where I was standing to take this pic) open out to the gazebo.

I am not a true stitcher like my friend, Arlene, but I have done some work that I just can't throw out.

I really need to take these apart and wash them but for now I cleaned them up the best I could - and hung them on the wall.

I remember the hours I spent on each of these.....

especially this one! It's not a good picture but I do love this scene.

I hung this right above the desk and I can see it now as I write.

I have so many memories in each and every room.

I love this sewing room and it is now more user friendly than it was.
My crafts, fabrics, sewing machine, so many books and cookbooks, all organized and where I can put my hands on what I need when I need it!

Saturday evening Louis Dean built us a campfire and we sat in the gazebo looking into the sewing room and admiring our work.

One project we can call done!
With the exception of the ceiling repair from the water leak last fall.
All in good time..... that's in the closet area and not noticeable .....much......

This morning we were up and ready to go to church!

It's March Madness at Fellowship!
I am not a basketball fan and do not know a thing about the game but I know lots of people love the Mavericks!

It was so much fun to see these two on the stage doing what they do!
Going to church is always an adventure with a scriptural sermon that applies to real life every single Sunday!

After church Louis Dean and I made a trip to Home Depot to buy house paint.

I paint the house like they paint the Golden Gate Bridge......
once you finish - it's time to start over again.
That's why I paint it the same color.
We do not hire it done - we are old school and do it ourselves.
That's why it takes so long.

We took a tea break in the gazebo and Louis Dean spied the first gecko of the year.

We have lots of geckos but the contest is to see the very first one in the gazebo!
Every time we get a new gazebo - it takes the geckos a long time to come on in.
After the spring storms pass, we will put up all new rain curtains, screens and cover.
Hopefully they will still feel welcome.
It's amazing how we can entertain ourselves simply watching a gecko stalk, catch and eat its prey!

One thing leads to another and we set about getting the wall (it's the side of the house where the kitchen is) ready to start painting in the morning.

That meant cutting down the greenery that had overgrown and was spreading its branches over the deck. That deck is another project for this year. Louis Dean is great at putting in decks. Good thing!

I can hear Louis Dean in there drawing his bath water so I will wrap this up.
The May flies do not realize it is still March and they are fluttering all around me as I sit here at the desk in the sewing room. I best shut the French doors! They are harmless but a bit annoying when there are so many.

As I was leaving church, I got a phone call from Nita. She visits Lillian on Sunday afternoons and Lillian wanted to talk to me to give me an update.
It seems that Lillian's daughter, Ann, was holding on to life until she could see her mother because an hour after Lillian left the hospital on Thursday, Ann passed away. The funeral will be on Tuesday.
I told Lillian we would be there on Thursday to visit and bring in lunch.
She has lost her son and now her oldest daughter.
Lillian is broken hearted because her two daughters and their families were - and still are - estranged.
What comfort they could be to each other is apparently not possible and it puts Lillian in an impossible situation.

Tonight I am praying for Lillian and her surviving daughter and the grandchildren of both daughters.
And I am also rejoicing and thanking God for my siblings.......
I love that we love and appreciate each other.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Thursday With Summer......

Summer and I spent the whole day together!
I packed up the car, filling the entire trunk with the various bags and baskets this morning, and Summer drove us over to Fort Worth and the Trail Lake Nursing Home.

She is so photogenic!
I don't think she ever takes a bad picture.

Lillian's room is just inside the door and as we came in I could hear her crying.
Mark - the social worker, and Tara - her granddaughter, were both kneeling down in front of Lillian trying to comfort her. Tara had just arrived from her home in Weatherford. She was there to tell Lillian that Ann - Lillian's oldest daughter, was dying and she would take her to see her one last time.
We knew Ann was seriously ill and was in a hospital in Weatherford but Lillian thought she was improving. Ann was on a liver transplant list but had taken a turn for the worse.

I felt so sorry for Lillian. She lost her only son a few years ago, then she lost her husband in January 2017. They had been in the home together so after his death, she was given a roommate with whom she bonded and they were good friends. This lady died just 6 months before Mother arrived at the nursing home. Lillian was good to Mother even when Mother was not good to Lillian. Still, Mother's death upset her and then she had a difficult new roommate and that resulted in being moved not only to another room but to another hall where she didn't know anyone. The beauty of that move, though, was getting to have Margaret for a roommate. So, you see that Lillian has had many  losses in recent years. 

Lillian and Tara left and we stayed the afternoon with Margaret.

Lunch for four was now lunch for three.
I set the table in the community living room just around the corner from their room.
We had such a good time as we ate and talked. Lunch lasted well over an hour.
I had baked the Lemon Crack Cake in cupcake pans and that worked out so well.
That's the red container there on the table that I had prepared for the nurse's station.
I asked Margaret if they had asked to have a plate of food heated up and she said that Lillian had asked one evening but the aid had refused saying she would have to check to see if it was okay and never came back. did not set well with me to be baking and gifting goodies to the staff when they were not taking care of the residents. I thought about how to handle this and decided to go talk to them about it. There was a LVN at the desk so I told her the situation. I said that Lillian couldn't keep the microwave we bought her because of her pacemaker and that we had gifted the microwave to that station since theirs had gone out. I also said that Mark - the social worker - had assured us that the aids would heat up stuff when Lillian and Margaret asked. The LVN agreed and said that was certainly right. Then I told her about the aid refusing and she agreed that was wrong and that she would make sure they all knew it was okay to heat things in the microwave for any of the residents. I thanked her and told her I had brought cake and trotted back to the table to get it!
She ate one right then and there and proclaimed it delicious! I watched the cupcakes disappear over the course of the afternoon one by one as the different staff workers would come to the station.
I was happy I had brought them to 'sweeten' the deal.

All in all - lunch was a huge success!
There were a few other residents in there while we were eating but none of them would have been able to join us even if I had brought more food. Lillian and Margaret are the most independent people I have seen in this section. It's called Hall 1. Seems more practical to put the healthiest people in one hall so they could be friends and interact together. But perhaps they need to spread the less needy ones out so the 'work' is evenly divided among the staff. I'm certain there's much more to running a home than what I can see from my limited perspective.

Summer wheeled Margaret back to the room and I cleaned up the table.
I had brought a few movies and asked Margaret to select our entertainment for the afternoon.
Nita and Mike had bought a brand new TV for them on Sunday and got the VCR set up and fresh batteries in the remote!

Summer is not a big fan of musicals but she is a really good sport!!

While the movie played, I would watch awhile and clean awhile.

Lillian stores her case of soft drinks, water and a couple of baskets of odds and ends under the bed so I thought a bed skirt would be nice to keep the staff from seeing what she had down there. By the way, they had not been asking her for drinks this week like they did before. Or I guess they could have and this time Lillian said no! Anyway! Getting a bed skirt on with that rail is no easy task! Finally Summer held the mattress up. It's feather light. Glad she was with me or I'd still be tugging that thing this way and that. Then I just slit the skirt where the bar things were so the skirt fits nicely now.

And she has a little more privacy for her things.

Nita bought some hooks for their hand towels last Sunday and hung them up.

I laid out her new pajamas on the bed when I was finished.

I love a comfy cozy bed and wanted Lillian to have one, too.

This is Margaret's!
 Her granddaughter bought the bedding for her and I think it looks so cheery!

A painting of mine now hangs on the wall covering up an inspection door.
I need something smaller for the one below it!

It felt good at the end of the afternoon to look around at the warm cozy room with the fragrant smell of 'clean' hanging in the air.
I hope coming home felt good to Lillian tonight.

I packed all my stuff up and it was time to head home.
But I couldn't leave without going back to Hall #5 to see Roberta.
She was in bed and looked like she was asleep but she wasn't.
I went in and we visited for a few minutes.
She has asked for hospice and had spent the afternoon 'doing businesss' as she calls it.
Hospice will increase her quality of care. 
I had prayer with her and told her I love her.
God has knit our hearts together and I am grateful to know such a beautiful lady.
God is taking care of her - even with the hospice care.
Come to find out, the hospice lady got to talking to her and Roberta and her husband had been good friends with this lady's parents. They were all in the same Sunday School class at Broadway Baptist Church. The others passes away a long time ago. At 100 years old, all of Roberta's friends and siblings have already gone on to heaven. Last week she asked me to pray for her to have peace.
I don't think she's afraid of dying. In talking to her tonight, I gather she wants peace from the staff and residents there at the home. The lady across the hall has made a pest of herself spending hours in Roberta's room. Once I had to ask her to leave so Roberta could take a nap and she was really ruffled by that and demanded to know why she couldn't stay while Roberta slept!
I admit to tearing up when I said goodbye tonight. 

Summer drove us home and navigated us around some nasty traffic due to wrecks!
I picked Louis Dean up and we went up to the Center to walk.
When we got home I took a hot shower.
Any time I visit a nursing home or the hospital, I come in and change clothes and take a shower.
I remember Amber doing this when she would have to go to the doctor back when her preemie quadruplets were home from the hospital. Deanie does the same thing.
It's probably a good idea with all the germs around everywhere......especially in a nursing home.

While I showered.....

Louis Dean fixed supper!
It was delicious!
AND he cleaned up the kitchen!!
Now that's a Win! WIN!!!

Goodnight, everybody!
Sleep well!

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Tuesday Treasures and Good News Wednesday!!

The last two days have been chock full of good things!
I was up early Tuesday and dropping things off at Goodwill before 10:00!
And then I went in and bought up as much as I dropped off - but it wasn't all for me!

I was wending my way to Dallas by 11:15 and Amber and I drove to Frisco to take in a movie at noon. Our movie of choice was only showing at one theater within our time frame - so we were off to Frisco! To the newest Cinemark around!

Cinemark has long been Amber and Mike's favorite theater and this Cut! Cinemark has only been open for two weeks! We smelled the 'new' as soon as we walked in!
It is a full service dine in theater or you can buy refreshments from the concession stand.
Amber had a popcorn bucket that they honor there and the server brought her a huge classy style  bowl of fresh popcorn with a side container of popcorn salt.
I ordered a Ghost Margarita......

Mine was served with two tiny green chili peppers.....
I ordered a Caesar Salad and put the peppers in that and ate them!
Amber had the blackened chicken sandwich and rosemary fries. Perfect!!!
We shared our food but the margarita was all mine!!!

We both really loved this movie!!!
That's three in a row for us lately!'
A Star is Born - LOVED that one!
The Upside - my kind of movie and really good!
Now Green Book! 

Any time a grown up 'child' wants to spend time with us is incredibly precious.
Such was our afternoon together.
Amber and I make this a doesn't just happen.
Now days things must be planned and on purpose. That's just the times we live in.
I am so grateful for the precious gift of purposing to spend time with me from my daughter.

We got out of the movie and went straight to school pickup!

I did art with the quads - that would be Trystan, Kailey, Harrison and Logan.
They pretty much finished their canvases except for a few highlight details for the next session.
As impressed as I am with their artistic talent.......

they do not compare with their mother's artistic ability at their age!
Amber did this mixed media painting when she was 7 years old.
She combined oils, acrylic, fabric and dimension paint and fabric.
She chose her beloved Snowball to paint and she dearly loved that cat for all of her 20 years!

I snapped a picture of the amazing sunset on my home last night.
I see sunsets at the ranch but not at this one was special.

Here are my Tuesday Treasures!
Lots of bedding for Lillian and what she doesn't use can be shared with Margaret.
I'm doing the linen laundry and changing the sheets every visit.
When I am out at the ranch - I want to leave extra bedding in their closets and then they can leave the laundry until I come back.

Lillian and Margaret only have the home's big plastic mug for ice and water and that's really good.
I bought two pretty plastic glasses for our lunches together - for Lillian's Creme Soda and Margaret's Diet Cokes. Plus cool unbreakable thermal cups for their coffee.
I scored big on the pair of red Donkeys mud boots!
$6! I will wear these a lot this spring in the country!

I do love my tiny candle lights!
These may go  to the ranch.....a light in the front windows.....

I even found a few treasures for me!
New candles, a cute top and a pretty necklace.

And one more cool top.
Summer heat is coming and this will be a good thing to wear then!

I came home Tuesday night in time to pick Louis Dean up and go to the Center to walk.
It's hard to walk at night.
Much easier in the afternoon but we DID it!!

I got up early this Wednesday morning and turned the coffee on, changed out the laundry from the washer to the dryer, folded and put up a load of clothes, made up the bed, put fresh sheets on the bed in the guest room, and had our devotional Bible reading. AND got showered and dressed and arrived at the cardiologist's office before 9:30 this morning!

No wonder we look like we are still in a stupor!
It was a good visit with Louis Dean getting a good report!!
Her main concern is from the stress test that he did very well on but showed he has a bit of an 'electrical' problem. No blockage concerns which is wonderful! She said he does not need a pacemaker at this time but she will continue to monitor him and the next appointment is in 6 months! Win! WIN!!!

So of course we kept to our exercise routine and was walking on the treadmill at the Heritage Senior Citizen Center this afternoon!

Thumbs up for keeping up with the program!! 

You gotta admit - Louis Dean is so cute!!

Another piece of good news this day .......

Summer was winging her way back to Texas from the very early hours of morning in Puerto Rico!
It was not a direct flight so her first take off was at 3:45 this morning....Puerto Rico time.
She had a connecting flight in Ft. Lauderdale and just barely made it - with no help from the airlines!
Still - she smiles!

Here she is at DFW airport waiting for me to pick her up!
It's so good to have her back!
She's in the guest room as I write tonight.
She came in and after we visited a bit she went in to take a nap.
She had been up for a very long time.
I took a nap, too!

Tonight I have been busy cooking and baking in preparation for a visit to Trail Lake Nursing Home tomorrow. Summer is planning on going with me and it should be a fun day.
I'm taking lunch - which I have cooked and prepped tonight - salmon croquettes, mashed potatoes, green peas, salad, watermelon, tea, coffee, and lemon crack cake!
That was also our supper tonight!

I'm really looking forward to tomorrow!

So that's what I am going to do!!