Thursday, April 03, 2014

AUNT MARGARET

Our cousin JoAnn called me a little while ago, this morning, and said Aunt Margaret, her mother, had died at 3:01 A.M. today. My first thought was I didn't get to go see her. She had asked for me. JoAnn said, no regrets. I am glad that the last time I saw her, she was her sweet, smiling, kind, gentle self, and knew me then. We had some good visits together when I would be in Panama City. She was a strong, beautiful lady. She was a huge influence in my life when I was a teenager, and took me under her wing. She was 90 years old, last November. JoAnn was her sole caretaker, nursing home notwithstanding, and they took great care of her there. JoAnn was devoted to her, as we should be to our mothers, and was with her almost every day of the week, usually eating lunch with her, providing little holiday favors and happies, helping with group parties, making her feel special. She was special. Another thought I had was, "Pollyanna" and "Summer Magic," for I know Aunt Margaret took me to see one or both of these movies. Always looking on the bright side. And she was ready and prepared to go. Her body was worn out and she had not been able to get out of bed for some time. The last of their family of siblings; the oldest of them.

Her 90th birthday.



 Her 88th birthday, which Sher and I were fortunate enough to help celebrate, 2011.



Around Halloween, 2010, I think. One of my first trips to Sher's.

With her best friend for decades, Irene. They worked together when Aunt Margaret lived in Memphis.

Margaret, Mama, Shirley, ca 1941.

Margaret, Mama, Shirley... They all look so happy! Especially Mama!

Funny - Same order... Margaret, Mama, Shirley.

Aunt M and her son, cousin Danny, probably late 1970's. She was a beautiful woman, black hair, olive complexion, the Indian ancestry evident.

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

TAKE HOLD OF YOUR OWN BULL

If it can be messed up it will. Had to straighten out a prescription through mail order pharmacy this morning, even went to the clinic to check on a fax they should have received. No fax. No two faxes. No, OptumRX didn't get clinic's fax. No. No. No! I won't be ordering that one from Optum again. So anyway, with e-whatever, or anything else - you better take the bull by the horns and don't assume anything! I learned a long time ago what assume means.

Paul's running an errand. Doesn't look as if AG will have her kythoplasty today - no word from the clinic yet. Home Health nurse has been there - protime checked - blood too thin. Another line of red tape to go through for them to get the results to the doctor, then to the patient/family. I'm relieving Glenda by noon today - Ilene is out of town. My night to spend the night. 

I did get Sher's bed made, the king feather comforter stuffed in it's zip bag, some clothes washed, all of the pants/shirts hung up. The house is at least straight, though not clean by any means. Not unclean, but not vacuumed, dusted... Well, it's only us here for now, running in and out, so?

Mike's grandson Tyler in Grandaddy's truck. I made prints for Mike yesterday, got eggs for Charlotte, practically threw them at her when we stopped by on the way back to AG's house to be there when Dr. Ben came to check her. 

Tyler is curly-haired - not had a big boy haircut - but trimmed the curls... So pretty. Sweet boy. Three in July.


Tuesday, April 01, 2014

LUCY IN THE LEAVES (OR THE CAT'S MEOW)

I wasn't able to go to GFWC-MFWC District Convention Saturday, so Jo took two photos for me for a contest. She called me Sunday afternoon (as I wasn't at church Sunday morning) and told me my photo of Lucy in the Leaves had won First Place in "Color-Living Things" category. So that picture will go to state competition. I won't get the actual photo back, but here it is:

A year ago March 27, we put Lucy in the garage and she ventured out little by little. She roams around the "neighborhood" (countryside) occasionally staying overnight at different places, or wherever cats stay.  Sometimes she sleeps on the truck hood (which we have a cover for). Often I pick her up, cradle her like a baby and carry her at least to the end of the driveway or in the pines while I walk Oscar. Paul said she came across our yard this evening limping. I haven't seen her so I don't know what the problem is. Hope it isn't too bad. 

And we finally got my new truck last Friday! Our sales person Melissa Henson called and said it was there; Paul and I left Iuka about 2ish; Sher had said her arrival time in Muscle Shoals would be only minutes from ours, so we met at the dealership. She stayed awhile then came home. It took us longer than I thought, but glad we went ahead and got it. It took the Delivery Specialist over an hour to tell us about all the bells and whistles (buttons and computerization), then there was the finance person to talk to and papers to sign.  I was scared to drive it! It was like learning to drive all over again. I didn't realize till I got home that the hood is shorter than my old one. It is just the cat's meow!




Good weekend with Sher. She didn't study! We went to Kiley's birthday party at Coleman State Park, directly east of our road, about I don't know - five to seven miles? We went to Country Squire and had filet steak (halved it, and she also had shrimp). We did Easter Baskets for each other. We watched a movie together - a one-character movie (Hugh Bonneville - Downton Abbey - only about 20 years younger) "telling" his diary he had written - "Diary of a Nobody." Based on a book. Obscure. I found it by looking at an interview with Patricia Routledge who plays Hyacinth Bucket (Bouquet!) on Keeping Up Appearances. She played the part of the wife Carrie and Richard (series husband) played Charles - last names: Pooter! But the movie Pooter was Lord Grantham from DA. Was really funny. Not many other people would probably enjoy it - we're pretty obscure sisters. 

I did let my little sister drive my new truck.

Aunt Ginny is not much improved pain-wise. The pain patches were making her out of her head and she had no appetite. We didn't put another one on last Friday so she was back to "herself" by Sunday anyway. But her back: today I took her to Iuka hosital for a CT scan. Dr. Kitchens came to her house (I know - can you believe that!? What other kind physician would do such a thing?) she has an L12 fracture but palpating it didn't increase pain or pinpoint it exactly. But there is a fracture and there's a possibility of relief if they will do it - if she is a "candidate" once she's at Tupelo hospital. Possibility of Paul and me taking her tomorrow. Paul talked to David tonight about possible long-term options. She is very independent, but especially Glenda and I are about worn out, plus Glenda practically has a full-time job keeping her grandchildren, and my back won't let me do much stabilizing... We shall see. It's been an ordeal for her. (Dr. Kitchens's grandfather Ed and AG's grandfather Will were brothers.)

I came in here to just look at a couple of blogs and post Lucy's picture. Gotta get off here, be ready-set-go for tomorrow. Good long shower coming up!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

BEING A NURSE

For the past few weeks the family has been attending Aunt Ginny, who broke her ankle, and until a couple of weeks ago was dealing with it nicely. Then back trouble set in just a few days before we were to return to the orthopedic surgeon who casted her leg (below the knee). The back pain may have been masking a UTI, which is all the local ER could determine was the cause of other problems she was having, nausea, more pain, stomach pain... As anyone knows who has been ill or who has cared for the elderly, there is a domino effect. Today she is so much better that we have rescheduled her appointment in Memphis to have the cast removed. Twenty-four hours ago that wasn't even a consideration. So Paul and I will take her to Dr. Crockerall on Poplar at Campbell Clinic... he is so nice and kind, patient. We don't usually have to wait, she is called right away. Just praying this will be a quick visit, she doesn't get nauseated and we see vast improvement after this ankle is free.

The the nieces and nephews have been taking turns spending the night with her and a lady in the area - Miss Ilene - has filled in during most days. Her chicken and dumplings have further improved Aunt Ginny's health. 


Amy was home Monday afternoon until Wednesday afternoon - a short visit, but so worth it, just to get a big hug and huge smackaroo kisses! Oscar is always glad to see her, too. She visited the local funeral home to see her live friends there. Little mortician humor. My stomach was in a knot yesterday - too much stress, Sprite, a Coke Saturday and delayed meals. She and I didn't do much; the temperature is cold again, but she said it was worth it to be home with us. My stomach is better.


I know there are two missing weeks, during which I did try to post, but if I download too many pictures and wait too long, it gets stuck and won't post. So here are a few of the most recent.


Beginning spring clean-up.

Buttercups uncovered. They had been hidden and shaded out under brush.

Who could ask for a better model?

Amy knows me well - a birthday present. (Fossil!)

Charlotte and I on a recent trip to Dollar Tree. 

Fredda and Zenobia at our last meeting at Fredda's home.

Sher with a family she knows from her "flight" at Culture Day, Maxwell AFB.

Cleaned out vines, probably honeysuckle. Maybe the spirea will have a better growth now.

Not to be outdone...

Amy home! First time she's been home or we've seen each other since Christmas!

Brother Mike's "distressed" truck.

Amy loved the baby chicks.

Mike's beautiful pair of peacocks. He said they are related to the turkey. 

Treat time!


Living sunshine!

More of the ones discovered this year.

I raked all the leaves from several years past from these iris shoots. Such good exercise and therapy. 

The big egg on the right had double yolks.


Monday, March 10, 2014

BIRTHDAY WITH TRAVELIN' BUDDIES AND VBF!

Last Thursday was my 66th birthday. I suppose I'm still considered "young elderly." I'm saying that, anyway. My TB friends in Arkansas sent me a surprise package that brought me to tears - for all the great times we've had together, times we've laughed, cried, considered life in general, had lunches and birthdays, trips and New Year's Eve dinners together. I've missed them, of course, but it has now been long enough that I really miss them. Jean, Carol and Charlene sent me this... They have a special meaning and the shirt - well, this is a family-friendly blog... Suffice to say we are precocious old ladies. Jean said this is scores for Scrabble and we had some doozy words!

Sunday afternoon my VBF Bren brought me this little book and I read it all after she left. I couldn't believe the parallels to my own life: Snowdown (though I never lived there, many of my Thorne relatives are buried in the cemetery of the church that's there); describing stops at Oldham store; the author and I had the same teacher (Mrs. Hovater) at Annapolis Avenue School in Sheffield. Her dad worked construction for TVA and moved a lot during her childhood; Willard did construction for TVA also and we moved a lot. Her family rented an apartment in Iuka from Miss Bama Akers, who is a cousin on Paul's grandmother's side of the family. His family rented an apartment from her when he was a child, too. Paul's mother was a classmate of Armisted Haines, a cousin of Naomi's father.  Just kind of spooky, all the similarities. Loved the book and the lessons she learned from the love of her family, home.  Bren said Fredda had reviewed the book at a DAR meeting recently. Thanks, Bren and Fredda!


Friday night Paul took me to Dinner Bell in Corinth for my birthday. Good filet steak! Delicious strawberry shortcake (to go, which I ate the next day). Amy's birthday card arrived - and there's a prize package on the way from her! Love prizes! Soooo many Facebook birthday wishes! Over 100! 

And Saturday was such a beautiful day - I ate my lunch on the deck. Oscar was there, on his leash since I can't trust him to stay when a sudden distraction pulls him away. He was in one of the metal chairs and suddenly jumped down, landing awkwardly. I petted him, took him in, and realized he had hurt his foot. A nail hung in the metal chair bottom and it was bleeding, loose and hurting. I cleaned it as much as he'd let me, put Neosporin on it and gave him a half dose of Metacam, his arthritis medicine. Sunday he just wasn't himself. I doctored it some more and he licked and licked it, which is what they do. This morning I called and got an appointment for the vet and Dr. Brad nipped the whole nail off; otherwise, he'd just hang it on everything. He cauterized it and wrapped it in a self-stick bandage. Oscar didn't know what do think. First of all he was shaking, had on a muzzle and golly-bill, he cut off my whole toenail! Brad and his vet tech Sam are so good, kind and gentle. It was over in seconds. O didn't know how to walk with the bandage on and I told him to leave it alone. So far he has. I know he's been scared and confused. I think this is the first time he's been injured in any way. (The arthritis was a gradual thing; as far as a trauma, this is the first.) Not a happy camper.

I was going to take him for grooming in the morning, but decided it'd be best to wait about a week. Brad said give him Metacam for pain every day instead of the alternate dates I do for arthritis. Just too much of the vet's office for him, plus a sore toe, he can not surely want to be bathed and have a haircut. My baby.

This morning I went to WMU, then to Brook's for bacon for Aunt Ginny (she finally had to have bacon at $5.41 a pound or maybe 12 ounces), to alternate with her sausage. Went by to see Marsha and wished her well on her mission trip - she leaves Friday and returns the next Friday. Eleven from her church are going to an orphanage in... oh, me... she's told me - South America, Mexico? Out of the country...Stopped at the pharmacy for probiotics. Stopped at AG's and left her mail and her bacon. Home and dozed in the recliner a bit (after O's doctor visit); two trips to town today. 

Tomorrow - no "plans" that I know of. Wednesday I go to Muscle Shoals to the dentist for cleaning; then to Hobby Lobby and possibly Lifeway Christian Bookstore if I have enough energy. I really dislike going anywhere alone; maybe I'll see if Charlotte wants to ride up with me. I think I may be getting aged old, the other side of 65... Oh, me, how did it happen? Well, by God's grace. I'm thankful for all I can do. So thankful for friends. Love them all and have been so blessed with such sweet, faithful friends.

And then Thursday, Paul goes to Tupelo to have a "procedure" in the office - the surgeon is going to cut out that cyst, deeper this time and with a larger drain. So Nurse Pat will need to have her supplies at the ready for the next two weeks at least. I'm sure he'll have a return visit at least by then. I hope and pray this time he gets it deep enough that it will drain completely and heal completely from the inside out and not heal over whatever infection it is that it heals over. This is going on two years of this. Last Friday I think it was, was a very bad day for Paul, with chills and fever. When the cyst drains, though, he gets immediate relief. But it's still there. Nancy told me her mother and daddy (Willard and Herbert) used to put salted fat meat on cysts she would have when she was a girl. Mama used to mix bacon grease and sulfur powder and put on ringworms we would have, out in the country. Maybe I need to just buy some fatback and slap it on his behind!

G'night all my friends... Ones who know my secrets and ones who just read what I write here! lol Love to you all!