Sunday, March 24, 2024

Sunday, March 24, 2024, MN

 Dang, it’s been eleven days since I’ve written anything and a lot has been happening.  Most important is that my daughter-in-law Tracey had a stroke last Saturday and has been hospitalized since then.  It affected the left side of her body with some paralysis and loss of peripheral vision. A bit of progress has been made in the last few days and I got to talk wit her yesterday. She sounded positive and ready to work toward recovery. It looks like she will be transported to a rehab facility tomorrow and will probably be there for 2-3 weeks. 

I considered making a quick trip to Stoughton but Pat would rather have me come down when she gets back home and will need some assistance.  He is working on getting a network together to help out while he is at work. Right now, my plan is to head down there on the 10th or 11th of April. 

Winter is back this week and we saw a few inches of snow on Friday morning but it was mostly gone by the evening. Today and tomorrow are predicted to get some possible heavy snow, up to 10” or so.  

Ben and I met up yesterday and walked around Staring Lake with the dogs.  I so enjoy these walks because it’s about the only time we get any one on one time to talk and that is a convenient half-way between our homes.  I wanted to see him as he is heading to Las Vegas today for a work trip. After the walk, I stopped by their house to see the kids and Jill. She gave me a box full of hair products from one of her salons and I will donate to some of my friends here at Penelope.

I spotted this cute little snow capped bird nest on our walk.

I had a real scare on Friday when I switched my phone service from T-Mobile to Xfinity as they were offering a pretty incredible price for both - $40/month.  Everything was done and my new service was activated. I hung up with the technician and went to make a phone call and it didn’t work.  I looked at my iPad and saw an email that said my phone number had been canceled and would be put back in service for other customers.  PANIC! I got in the car and headed for the nearest xfinity store and was helped right away.  The first thing the guy said was “don’t worry, your phone number isn’t canceled”. So he got my problem resolved although it took a while and he had to get someone involved who had more experience. All is good now and I still have the phone number that I got back in 2005 in San Francisco (I think I’m attached to it).

Wednesday, March 13, 2024

Wednesday, March 13, 2024, MN

 It’s been another active week around here.  Back on Sunday afternoon, I took a box of 50 Easter cards for Hospice to the grandkids for them to help assemble.  It is a project that they like to do and they have fun putting their own little artistic embellishments on them and I think the volunteer effort is a good thing for them to do.   I didn’t stick around for long, as they had chores and projects to work on but we did have a nice visit.

I went to the Sportz Page for dinner on Monday with Elaine and Joann and it was nice to connect with them again. We probably haven’t hung out since January - not sure why but I guess we were all going in different directions.

There was a Service Coordinator meeting in my building yesterday and I don’t think I will go again. The same five grumpy complainers attended and they didn’t have a positive thing to say about anything. I’ve been avoiding them and I’ve said that I would distance myself but I like to stay informed. I guess I will speak with Maureen directly for information. 

Deb and I went to Harrison Park and met up with our former Service Coordinator, Mary, who retired last November. We walked the trail and then found a picnic table and sat for a nice visit. It was good to see Mary again and to learn that she is enjoying her retirement - imagine that!

I had to get up early this morning and scramble to my follow-up cardiology appointment.  The echocardiogram that I had last week showed a 5% improvement in the pumping action (ejection function) of my heart - a result of the new medications that I am taking.  It is now pretty close to the normal range and I don’t have to have it checked again for six months.  The condition is called cardiomyopathy and if left untreated can result in heart failure.  I’m feeling pretty good that a few little pills can keep it working and keep me living the lifestyle I want.

As I pulled into my parking spot at the clinic, I spotted a large flock of Tundra Swans flying northward. Woo Hoo! I also spotted a Red Wing Blackbird and heard a Robin off in the distance recently. Spring is just around the corner.

Friday, March 8, 2024

Friday, March 8, 2024, MN

 Another busy week for me and I am ready for a slow down. I couldn’t even watch President Biden’s State of the Union address last night because I was too tired. How did our congressmen and women get to be so rude with the opposing party?  The sneers, grimaces, and heckles really disturb me and it disgusts me that they can’t behave at a professional level and show respect for the president, regardless of their party.  Anyway, I knew that I could get the information the next morning, so I went to bed.

Norah and Camille had a sleepover with me last Sunday, as they didn’t have school on Monday.  We made creamy pasta for dinner Sunday evening and then watched old episodes of Young Sheldon.  It was Camille’s turn to sleep on the couch and we all read for a bit before drifting off to sleep.

I had planned to take them to the Science or Children’s Museum on Monday, but all of the museums are closed on Mondays. Dang!  So we headed to Mall of America (not my favorite place) and to the Aquarium.  When we left there, we walked around the amusement park as they were trying to decide which ride they might want to go on and they spotted the climbing wall.  That was an option that Ben had suggested and they were all up for it.  It was a bit pricey but I knew that we would get our moneys worth by doing it and they stayed engaged and loved it for the full hour.  Of course, everything is a competition with those two and it was either a race to the top or who could get to the bottom first.  Funny girls.

Joey had a 6-month checkup on Tuesday morning and all looks good with him except that he is about 2 pounds overweight and I need to cut back on the people food and treats.  

I had art class with Genevieve that afternoon and we did an Easter needle felting project.  Here is my outcome from that session.

Last week when I stopped at one of my favorite thrift shops, Assistance League in Richfield, I purchased the little ceramic basket.  When I was checking out, the gals admired it and I told them what I was doing with it.  One of the gals, Kristy, told me that she had gotten into felting, purchased a lot of supplies and then didn’t like the craft because she poked her fingers too much. She asked if I would like her supplies - of course I would and I gave her my contact information.  So I got a text from her this week and will head to the store to pick it up later this morning.  I’m excited to see what she is passing on to me.

Wednesday was food shelf day and I did my volunteer duties in the morning and did some grocery shopping and food prep for Thursday lunch.  I also took Joey to the hockey rink to play - my little fence gate worked well and we spent about a half hour running around, chasing the ball (not returning it) and playing.

I had to get up early yesterday morning to make it to a 8:00 Echocardiogram appointment (a follow up procedure after starting a new heart medication a couple of weeks ago.  I will see the cardiologist again on the 13th.

Randy Sabien invited me to a show that he was doing at the Sidekick Theater and offered tickets. It was the same performers who did the Christmas show that I went to with the addition of a base player who looked a lot like Hank Williams Jr. So Deb and I went and sat in the balcony and enjoyed the show of great performers playing country music hits from before the 1980s. There was some real talent up on the stage and the show was fun to see.  After the show, Randy followed us to my apartment and we had Spicy Baked Shrimp, beet salad, breadsticks and apple cranberry crumble for dessert while we chatted about lots of different topics.  Feeding him lunch was the least I could do after he generously gave me tickets to the show.

 It was a very nice afternoon and I was tired and lazy the rest of the day.  I didn't even stay up to watch the State of the Union address.

Sunday, March 3, 2024

Sunday, March 3, 2024, MN

 This last week has been full of birthdays - every day except Thursday and Friday. My dear friend Mary (76), cousin Jonnie (74), friend Tom (75), niece Olivia (14) and niece Stella (50).  Happy Birthday to them all.  I sang Happy Birthday to Jonnie and she told me not to quit my day job. Tom and I had a long 2-hour conversation and text greetings were sent to others.

I cleaned at Ben and Jill’s house and anxiously awaited the news that Patty made it safely to the ground after her first ever tandem skydive in Arizona on Leap Day. What a brave and adventurous woman she is.  All is good and she will be around for a while yet.  Yay!

We had a little cold spell this week and it went from a record breaking 65° on Monday to 20° on Tuesday, then it shot back up to the mid 40s again on Wednesday.  It has been so strange this winter with all but two days in February that were well above average temperatures.  The silver maple trees are budding out quickly and the grass gets greener every day. It is 44° already this morning and they say we could see 70 today.

Charlotte had a swim meet this weekend and I went to watch her take first place in the 50 yard backstroke.  She competes in the 50 yard freestyle today but I am going to watch the streaming video from home. It is a 30-minute drive there, parking lot is jammed full, and the spectator area is packed and it always seems like she swims in the farthest lane from where we watch - so the streaming video makes sense to me.

I have been pondering a way to block off the entrance to the hockey rink in the park near me so I can let Joey run free.  I stopped at the hardware store and bought a length of 4-foot plastic fence and some wood garden stakes. I think it will work but I need to come up with a way to keep it upright on the existing fence that the city will not notice.  So that challenge kept me from sleeping last night.