Wednesday, May 26, 2010

She's...ALIVE. (Stay away from the villages!)

Well. Now it's day seven of being sick. I took the last dose of antibiotic today, and this is the first day I've felt "I'm getting better." (or, as I sometimes put it, "I'm going to live.")

I still have significant swelling in my glands, but they will shrink down, day by day. I would say that I'm now about 60% of normal strength. This was a bad bug, or I was really stressed out. Yeah, we know which one it was...

Memorial Day weekend coming up! Charming will be with us "on the day" for the first time in five years. Love the not-restaurant job. He got a surprise that had been lurking on his schedule. He just got off of a three-day weekend, during which he nursed me and not much else. He knew he got a holiday next week (meaning, one manager has to work, the others get Memorial Day off, and that manager gets a three-day the next weekend.) As he checked to see if he worked, he noticed that, not only does he have Monday off, but Sunday. and Tuesday.

What? Three days off two weeks in a row?

Blessed, folks. We are blessed. And we can have a cookout either Sunday or Monday, whatever is more convenient. Because the weather's gonna cooperate, too!

I bought a new badminton set, because our old net was crummy. You know how tangled they get. This one says "no tangle." I picked up four rackets at the thrift store, so with our old ones and the new ones, we'll have plenty for the grandkids to give it a try, as well.

I'll make my famous/fabulous potato salad. Charming will do bbq chicken, and hot dogs for the littles who don't seem to appreciate chicken yet. (that's okay, more for me.)

Well, I need to get off here. I'm doing the opening lesson next Wednesday for our Ladies Summer Bible study called Conversations. My topic: The Lost Art of Conversation. I'm supposed to find a YouTube to go with. I think I've found it:

I'm using the end part, about 3:50 into the video.

So, I'd better get to my studying! and the laundry...

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Today's Fun.

I found this over at Little Jenny Wren:

It is a photo by Robert Doisneau. He wrote:

"The marvels of daily life are exciting; no movie director can arrange the
unexpected that you find in the street."

[yep. I've already put a book of his photographs on reserve at the library.]

Monday, May 24, 2010

Climbing out of a very deep hole.

This was day 5 of being sick. My estimate was that I'm back to about 40% normal strength.

Thursday I had a stomach-bug. You will remember that I had diarrhea meds in the house already. (I'm a good Girl Scout!) Didn't have any action at my northern end, but I was pretty miserable.

Friday, I noticed that the glands in my neck were swelling, tho' not my tonsils, which are usually first on the list when I get sick. Now, tonsils and glands collect dead germ-guys *and* the white cells that give their little lives to kill them. They are then routed out through the lymphatic system and out of the body. When they are overworked, you get tonsillitis or swollen glands.

Saturday morning I was feeling better, and thought I was really "on the mend." I took a nap like a good little sick-girl, and woke up feeling really, really awful. My tonsils had blown up like balloons, and were covered stem-to-stern with yellow, waxy (well, let's be gross) pus pockets. I had no energy to even get up to the bathroom.

Great. Saturday late afternoon. My preferred treatment would be chiropractic (explained later), but my chiro wasn't open either Saturday or Sunday. Was not going to wait until Monday, folks.

Now, let me explain about me and tonsillitis.

From the time I was a little girl, I spent two weeks a year (one fall and one spring) with tonsillitis/swollen glands. The actually-fairly-new drug penicillin worked wonders, and was used often. Later, amoxicillin and ampicillin and other antibiotics were also used.

Once I grew up and entered my childbearing years, these bouts would come three times a year (young mom/tired thing, I think) and often turn to bronchitis or pneumonia. Still loaded up on antibiotics. Only sometimes the meds wouldn't work, and I'd have to try another kind. Twice, I did three rounds of different meds, and still was sick. Not. Fun.

When I worked for the chiropractor, he adjusted my neck (which had been in *horrible* shape (his word). If I felt sick, he'd just adjust it at work, and I'd be back at my desk. He did call me "a stubborn case," though, because sometimes he'd adjust me four times a day, and each time it was like he hadn't done it before.

I worked for him for two years. Having my neck adjusted worked so well, that for the next six years, if I felt sick, I just went to bed as well as I could with kids, and get better with no meds. The effect eventually wore off, and I began to get sick again.

At times, our insurance didn't cover chiro well, but did the urgent care center at 100%, so, sorry, it won out. A new drug, Zithromax, was a wonder for me. You know how they say it takes 36-48 hours for the effect of an antibiotic to be felt? 12 hours after Zithromax, I was improving. Verra, verra cool.

I started getting sick only about once a year, I figure because I have had so many infections, I've prolly got antibodies for most of them, right? I've had these symptoms *maybe* 75 times or more. Is that as scary to you as it sounds to me? I'm thinkin' I might be antibiotic-resistant.

Fast forward to Saturday night.

I hate going to the urgent care center, because I get a doctor I've never seen before, and they always think that the world is ending when they stick that tongue depressor in my mouth. "OH MY GOSH!!" (it really does look horrible...) This doctor wanted to do a test for mono. (really, Doctor, it's not going to be mono, it's going to be tonsillitis.) *just to be sure.* I waited, and he came back in the room, really disappointed. "It's not mono. It's acute tonsillitis. Hasn't anyone ever suggested to you to get your tonsils removed?" Actually, the only doctors that have ever suggested that have been the urgent care doctors. My own doctors have told me that if all that cuh-rap doesn't have tonsils to go to, it will just be shoved into the neck glands, which, honey, are like little rocks, they're so hard and full. My tonsils are part of my not-very-well-functioning lymph system, and I'll keep them, thank you.

I told the doctor that I have had good luck with Zithromax, and so he wrote a prescription, as well as giving me a shot of something. Now, shots are something I've tried before, as well. Supposed to work faster than pills. Haven't had too much success with them, tho'. But, okay, let's go. Honey, that was the biggest shot I have ever seen (volume wise.) Nurse said that it was a whole gram. So I went home and waited to be amazed.

At twenty-four hours (early Sunday evening)...nothing. Felt just as bad, looked just as bad. So much for Miracle Zithromax and Fast-Acting Shot. This morning (Monday) I noticed a Change. I could actually do something for about ten minutes before crashing on the couch. Before school I folded two baskets of laundry. I was exhausted. Took the kids to school. Had to rest when I got back. So I paced myself all day, made sure I did no more than ten minutes' effort, with at least 20 minutes' rest before doing something else. It wasn't much better this evening. I went to the atm to deposit a check, then to the gas station for $15 worth. Gone between ten and fifteen minutes. Didn't even get out of the car at the bank. Could hardly walk up to the house and throw myself on the couch when I was done.

So after five days of being sick, I'm still at about 40% of my normal strength. This one's a bad'n. But tomorrow is another day, and Rest is a good thing. (and I can make an appt. at the chiro!)

Nettie (Myra) came home tonight! You can read about her "adventure" here.

I. am. off. to. bed.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Rules for Life no. 16:

...Two things you should have in your house before you ever need them:

a toilet plunger


Diarrhea meds.

I did have the second on hand. Goin' to bed (again).

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Update, and Other Stuff.

Things are looking up for Baby Nettie (Myra). She responded quickly after they finally got an IV in (naturally)--Lily noticed that her eyes were no longer sunken, and her little jowls puffed back up (only in a baby are jowls considered "cute!"). They will check electrolytes this morning, and hopefully, she will be coming home sometime today. Thank you all so much for your prayers.

Still working on Joe Hardy's birthday quilt (now almost 30 days past birthday). The good news is that I *think* I'll be finished by Memorial Day! I am anxious to take the "finished" photo on that one, to share with you. He will be able to use it all summer, because he sleeps in the basement next to the a/c. Since we live in an old house with leaky ductwork...let's just say it's the Coolest room in the house!

But before I can continue on Joe's quilt, I need to make birthday gifts for Sweet Pea, who is turning four this week. She wants a ballet outfit for her doll. I got the incredible reuse/recycle idea to use an old pink t-shirt for the fabric for the leotard. The tutu will be easy-schmeasy: remember the fifteen yards of purple tulle from Blackeyed Susan's prom dress? Yeah. Lots of leftovers. And Sweet Pea requested a "pink and purple" outfit.


I finished my "monster trilogy" that I began last summer. (I was going to link to the blog entry, but it is over on Homeschoolblogger, and they are re-doing their entire site, and I can't access the archives.) In my ongoing effort to read some of the classics I missed the first time around (you know, high school...) I read Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and Frankenstein. In my blog entry of last year, I noted that I was surprised that in both of the books, the "hero" did what he did in order to honor the Lord. Dr. Jekyll was looking for a formula that separated the good and bad parts of our personalities so that people would be able to live in their "good" part all of the time. Unfortunately, it so happened that the "bad" part prevailed. Dr. Frankenstein was trying to find a way to generate life from the dead in order to restore children to life who had died from disease. He sorta forgot, however, Who is the Author of life.

So, on to Dracula. The book is long (417 pages) and it took me several weeks to read. It is set up as a series of journal entries by several of the characters. The story was predictable, tho', as in the case of the other two books, much, much better than any of the movie versions. For most of the book, the only references to God were the use of the crucifix and the communion wafer as deterrents to the "undead" characters. Finally, about page 365, Van Helsing makes a speech about why they are doing what they are doing, referencing God's saving work through the death of His Son.

So, I can cross another "classic" off of my list.

Next I picked one off of another list: Newbery Award winners. This time it is Carry On, Mr. Bowditch. It reads much faster (of course, it *is* a children's book!) and is a good picture of life in the last part of the eighteenth century. Charming had a long period of fascination with "ship" books as a youngster, but I never indulged. My next classic will probably be Two Years Before the Mast, since I'll be in the "life at sea" mode...

I just picked up from the library This Momentary Marriage by John Piper. I hope to read a chapter a day along with my devotions.

Finally...horrors! Susan called me from upstairs this morning--she saw a mouse! I have several questions:

a) Mice come in houses in the fall, not the spring. There is plenty to eat outside.

b) Mice that have dared to enter our home come in through a hole near the back door, and either go to the kitchen or down the basement stairs. How did one little guy get all the way upstairs?

c) Where was my cat? The fact is (and why we never fixed the hole by the back door...) when we don't have a cat, we get mice. When we have a cat, we don't have mice. Joe Hardy grabbed Sherman and took him upstairs, but he didn't seem interested. I think we give him too many kitty-treats....

d) I need to buy a trap, b/c I obviously cannot trust my attack-cat any longer.

We have not had to deal with this for eleven years. I feel betrayed.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Please pray for baby Myra...

Update: They were finally able to get an IV in, so the dehydration will very soon be taken care of. Myra is taking a paci for the first time since Saturday, and wants to nurse (appetite?). Lily's last facebook post said they were delaying her nursing. (WHY?) So thanks for your prayers, things are looking up!

My grandbaby Myra (Nettie) has been in the hospital since Saturday night. She started choking at home. The ambulance came, but she had stopped by that time. They left, and just a few minutes later, she began again. After three days, they still do not know why she is gagging and choking off and on, but it keeps her from being able to eat. She still has a feeding tube in her tummy from her first month of life, so she can get nourishment. However, a big problem is that they have not been able to get an IV established.

She also developed a double ear infection, as well as "explosive" diarrhea. (they've given up diapers in lieu of a baby blanket wrapped around her to "catch" everything.) All day yesterday, Lily asked the nurses whether she should be concerned about dehydration--baby's mouth seemed so dry, and skin a funny texture. They did blood tests, and the results this morning show...dehydration. Nettie was transferred to pediatric ICU, and they again failed to get an IV going. They injected some fluid under the skin, hoping to get an IV in, after it is absorbed.

Nettie has lost a pound since she has been in the hospital. Since she was only "almost" eleven pounds when she went in, that is almost 10% of her weight. (she is almost eight months old.)

Please pray for her recovery, and also for wisdom for the doctors, so that they can find out what is wrong with the baby. I thank you in advance!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010 which we feature my gorgeous daughter...

Prom night!

Blackeyed Susan and one-of-her bff's Mads did not have dates for the prom, so they decided to go with two other girlfriends.

[Susan, Mads, and Sam]

[Susan and Mads]

Dinner was at our house: bbq chicken breasts, baked potato, nice salad, and strawberry shortcake. Afterwards, they crowded into our teeny-tiny powder room to freshen up:

[of course, it's a known fact that girls visit the powder room in herds.]
[little photo, but I wanted to show the four girls: Susan, Megan, Sam, and Mads]
Changing subjects now.
One of Susan's friends asked her to participate in her photography project for school. Here are two that I grabbed off of facebook:

this one looks super-creepy to me, especially as I am reading
and the description of the "undead" is eerily similar to this photo.

this one is not so creepy, more "artistic"-looking to me.
The art show at the high school is tonight. Susan may go, but I have a date with Alvin Fernald for his baseball game. The spring has been so cold/rainy/hail-y/windy that he has had more rained-out games than he has played. So I will be sitting in my hoodie/blanket, with umbrella at my side.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

National Apron Day

National Apron Day is Monday!

National Apron Day is the day after Mother's Day, and a day to wear your apron proudly! I would even encourage you to wear it "out" on your daily tasks, as my friend Kaybeautiful and I did last year.

And what could be more fun than a giveaway on this national holiday? Calamity Kim has a darling apron that she is giving away--go on over here to learn more about it.

Kim has some gorgeous, gorgeous things for sale in her etsy shop as well. If you haven't visited before, get yourself a cuppa and plan to stay for awhile. I'm completely envious...

Be sure to spread the word, and don't forget to wear your apron!

Monday, May 03, 2010

Awww, yeah.

Veni, vidi, vici.

I came. I saw. I conquered. (for those of you who were not fortunate enough to take Latin...)

The Deep Purple Prom Nightmare is over!

(now, promise not to look at Blackeyed Susan's face. I told her I would take the photo from the neck down. See how well I succeeded...)

[the dress is much more *Purple* in real life.
Here it looks royal blue-ish.]
back view.
[but I'll bet you guessed that already.]

Taffeta. Gathering miles of tulle. BONING.


Actually, I'm not quite finished. I have to sew ribbons inside that will slip over a hanger to hang the dress up. But that's all. And, somewhere in all this process, I got "encouraged" to hem one friend's dress, and re-place a hook and eye on another. But today should see all that done. Then tonight I'll watch four of my boys play their first church-softball game of the season.

Then tomorrow maybe I'll do dishes. Yesterday we had to use the "good china." This morning we ate cereal out of Cool-whip containers. [just to show you I'm not Wonder-Woman...]