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Nice, fun, sleepy weekend...

Monday, April 27, 2009
We had a pretty quiet weekend. Rod had a very earned vacation day on Friday (all of the stars and moons aligned and he could actually take a day off!). He spent the day outside, enjoying the great weather, digging in the dirt, you know, guy stuff.
I spent most of my time "being one with the couch." I read, watched TV and worked some more on transferring our old VHS movies to DVD's.

On Saturday, I went on a PEO outing. A bunch of us went to this little town in Nebraska named Plattsmouth and visited an old Victorian house and had a fantastic lunch! The place is called "The Heights" and was built in the 1890's. The owner and her husband are restoring this beautiful home and offer Victorian teas, luncheons, wedding and baby showers. The owner also dresses in complete Victorian era clothing. As part of our program, she explained the numerous layers of clothing the women had to wear. Several of us decided we would have much rather been the hired help than the high-brow rich women!
This is a picture of the "Lady of the House."

As you can see, the place was decorated beautifully!

Part of the fun was picking out a special hat to wear during our luncheon. Here are a few of my beautiful "Victorian Sisters!"

On Sunday we went to church, had brunch with a bunch of friends and then, I came home and slept most of the afternoon. We finished off the weekend by having dinner with some good friend's and their family.

"The knee issue" is still around. I'm still taking extra steroids, but not enough to keep the fluid off the knee. The rash is gone from my leg, but it's still on my face. I did just receive the "latex-free" cannulas that I found online. So, I'm hoping that the rash on my face will be getting better in a couple of days. Since there is minor improvement in my knee and the fact that I'm still taking extra steroids, we're going to keep "watching it" for a few more days. In the meantime, my cranky level is such that even the dogs are staying away. I don't blame them. I wish I could stay away too.

Well, I'm off to book club with my phriend, Cindy C. We have sunshine for the first time in three days! Yahoo!

Thanks for reading.


Off to the doctor...

Thursday, April 23, 2009
There is still fluid on my knee and I've now become one giant rash. So, I'm heading off to the doctor this afternoon. I'm almost to the point where I'm ok with the doctor draining this stupid knee. I don't know what he's going to do about the rash, though.


I just got back from the doctor. Guess what? It looks like I've developed a Latex allergy!! That would explain the rash on my face and now the rash on my leg and the increased in severity of the rash on my face! CRAP!!!

The doctors do not want to drain my knee because of the rash. They agree that the knee probably needs to be drained because of how much fluid is in there along with the fact that the kneecap is displaced because of the fluid. But, they don't want to risk having any kind of rash getting into the blood stream. CRAP!! Did I mention...CRAPPPPPPPP!

So, I've got to take some serious steroids for a few days and see if we can get the rash to go away. The steroids might also help get rid of some of the fluid. But, if the fluid doesn't go away, then as soon as the rash is gone, I'll go back and get the knee drained.

So, have I mentioned....CRAP!!

Thanks for reading.

Beautiful day in the neighborhood...

Wednesday, April 22, 2009
My knee is getting better...but...(I know, there's always a but...or a butt....) I've developed a rash all over my leg from the little support "sleeve" that I've been using.
OK, I've got to say something that I KNOW someone is going to slap me for, but that possibility has no impact on me whatsoever!! When I was diagnosed with PH nearly 5 years ago, I didn't think I was going to live long enough to deal with this "OLD LADY CRAP!!" OK, I've gotten that out of my system. :)

I'm tired of whining about my stupid knee (and oh, I also have a stinking rash all over my face because I've developed an allergy to the nasal cannula's....so, I'm just one giant whining rash!) so I think I'll jump into an old favorite...

Movie Review!
Rod and I went to "State of Play" with Ben Affleck and Russell Crowe on Saturday night.

It is a fabulous movie! It's in the thrill-who-done-it genre with Russell Crowe being an investigative reporter trying to figure out who killed an up-and-coming senator's (Ben Affleck) assistant. The only downside in the entire movie is this one scene where Russell Crowe is wearing a tank-top kind of shirt...he has gotten a little pudgy (I know, pot....black...) and isn't aging really well. If you can close your eyes during that part, I would highly recommend you seeing this movie!

Another old favorite....
Book Review!
I'm a huge Patricia Cornwell fan. But, when I saw her latest book, "Scarpetta,"

I wasn't sure I was up for the challenge...the book was 500 pages!! But, it was a quick read and, in my opinion, significantly better than her last couple of books.

And, since I've been sitting on my butt a lot lately due to MY STUPID KNEE (sorry, I won't go back down that whiny road), I have another
Book Review!

I'm in two book clubs. One is with my PEO group and the other one is a group of women who all have one thing in common...they are either sick or have been sick with a tough illness. My friend Cindy C. has PH, a couple of the ladies are cancer survivors, etc. It's an interesting and somewhat comforting group to be a part of, if that makes any sense. Anyway, our book for this month is called, "Sarah's Key" by Tatiana de Rosnay.

This is such a beautiful book. It is about a young Jewish girl, living in Paris during WW II and a woman living in present-day Paris. The woman living in present-day Paris is an author who is working on a story about the "roundups and deportations" of Jewish families living in Paris in 1942. I had a couple of late nights because I just couldn't put down this fabulous story.

OK, I guess it's time to go do a little Flolan mixing.

Thanks for checking in and thanks for reading.


I think I've avoided "The Needle!"

Saturday, April 18, 2009
My knee seems to be getting better and I'm not walking quite like a 90 year old woman. So, I think this latest "speed bump" is about over. Oh, did I tell you about the special gift Rod bought me the other night?

Laugh if you like, but it certainly helped and he at least bought one in my favorite color! (No, not CHROME...BLUE!)

I did receive another gift this week. As much as I love the gift that Rod gave to me (because, how ofter does your husband buy you a WALKER!), the other gift is truly a very special and unique gift. When Rod and I visited his Aunt Emma in California, I was mesmerized by a frame that held some beautiful pieces of a quilt along with an old photo of an elderly woman. Emma explained that they were pieces of a quilt that had been hand-made by her Grandmother, which would have also been Rod's Dad's Grandmother and Rod's Great-Grandmother. The photo was a picture of "Grandma Walters" who had made the beautiful quilt.
So, this week, on the same day that I hurt my stupid knee, I received a wonderful, wonderful gift in the mail:

Isn't it absolutely beautiful?

I believe a very special cousin Lee and her husband Paul put the pieces together in the gorgeous frame and then mailed the finish piece to us. On the box was a tender note from Aunt Emma telling me that she thought I would enjoy my own "piece of family history."

I am so blessed to have been given the gift of such a loving family.

Thanks for reading.



Thursday, April 16, 2009
Yesterday afternoon I was folding and putting away laundry when I suddenly get, what feels like a cramp, in my right thigh. I tried to "walk it off" and it actually got worse. Then, my right knee starts to swell. By the time Rod gets home I have a swollen knee that looks more like a baseball! And, it hurts like crazy! I had an x-ray taken this morning that shows there is no damage and no blood, just a bunch of fluid. So, I'm keeping it elevated and iced and wrapped. If it doesn't get better in a few days then I might have to have it drained. I'm planning on it getting better, whether it does or not, I will be saying it is better...if you get my drift...

Thanks for letting me complain, whine, moan, groan, grumble, gripe....


It's been a while....and I've been a bum...

Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Sorry about being so lazy and not posting for a while. I've been trying to figure out some clever excuse, but, the bottom line is that I've just been feeling lazy, lazy, lazy! I don't know if this laziness is something I should worry about, or just "chalk it up" to being a 52 year old overweight, out-of-shape woman with Pulmonary Hypertension and Addison's Disease. As a PH person, tiredness is pretty much the norm. But when you throw in the Addison's sometimes the tiredness can mean that my body is under some kind of stress and I need to take more steroids since my body doesn't naturally make any steroids. But, if I take extra steroids and I don't really need them, then I can put on weight and/or have some of the PH symptoms and/or Flolan side effects masked, which isn't a good thing. As a person who has loved living with a black and white personality, living in the "gray zone" is not very comfortable.

So, now that I've gotten that whine out of the way, I can say "hello!" I hope you all had a nice Easter weekend! Chris came home and brought his dog, Deeoje with him. Asa LOVED having Deeoje around! They played and played and played and there was no blood flying! Haver did a bit better with Deeoje than he did last time, but, he still had several "time-outs" in the laundry room.

Chris playing with the dogs. Asa is in the blue collar and Haver is in the background.

Easter was always Rod's Mom's holiday. When Nick and Chris were about 2 and 4, we decided to combine families and do one larger celebration and take turns at different homes. Rod and I always did Christmas (so the boys could be home for Santa), Rod's brother and his wife always did Thanksgiving and Rod's Mom and Dad always did Easter! Bud and Hetty Jane would hide lots of great Easter eggs and Hetty Jane would always make a delicious dinner. The first Easter after Hetty Jane passed away, Bud still had Easter at his house. He worked so hard and put on such a "brave face" for all of us. The second year he was sick with cancer and eating was low on the priority list, so we just did a smaller celebration at our home. Then, the next Easter Rod, Nick, Chris Jim L. and I went to Jamaica! We had no idea when we scheduled the trip that is was Easter weekend. We had a marvelous holiday and enjoyed an Easter celebration at a Jamaican Catholic Church!

This year, Rod decided he needed to "take over" Easter in honor of his Mom. So, we had everyone here for ham, green beans and all of the traditional goodies. My sister and her daughters Katie and Maggie drove up from Lincoln (about a 45 minute drive).

(Kathleen is going to hate me for posting this picture. But, she doesn't usually have time to read my blog, so I think I'm safe.)

Maggie (Isn't she adorable?)

Chris and Katie (Also adorable!)

Rod's brother, his wife and their three kids came (they just live a few blocks away).

Doug's wife and his two daughters.

Doug and his son.

Nick and Rod.

Nick's fiance', Kara was also able to stop by after her family celebrated.

Nick and Kara.
Throw three rather large dogs into the mix and you have quite a nice group!


Well, I think that's about it for today. I appreciate you checking in.
And, as always, thanks for reading.

I'm here...I'm fine...

Thursday, April 9, 2009
I'm just really, really lazy. I thought I should at least stop by and tell you hello and don't worry. I'm just lazy. I'll post something of substance or at least a little bit more interesting tomorrow.

Thanks for checking in.

Movie Review, Book Review and Whine Alert!

Thursday, April 2, 2009
#1. Movie Review:
"Last Chance Harvey"

This was such an uplifting, funny and happy ending movie! At first blush, I think someone might think it's a "Chick Flick" which is actually why I went to it! But my friend Cindy C. convinced her husband to go to it and he enjoyed it. The big draw for me was Dustin Hoffman:

and Emma Thompson:

I would seriously recommend this movie. Any time a movie can having me shed a small tear and laugh out loud it is a real winner!

#2. Book Review #1.
"The Middle Place" by Kelly Corrigan

This is a true story of a young woman, married with children who discovers she has cancer AND that her father also has cancer. The author demonstrates her true grit as she manages the cards she's been dealt. It sounds like a depressing storyline, but Kelly Corrigan

is able to tell her story in an entertaining and hopeful way.

#. Book Review #2.
"Plum Spooky" by Janet Evanovich

I'm a big fan of Janet Evanovich's "numbers stories." I have already read her #14 book named, "Fearless Fourteen."

While her fans are waiting for #15, which will be called, "Finger Lickin' Fifteen"

she writes these smaller, stand-alone books that she calls "Between the Numbers" books. "Plum Spooky" is typical Evanovich. Diesel (a big, blond, hunky bail-bondsman)is looking for his cousin "Wulf" who is a bit dangerous. Stephanie Plum (also a bail-bondswoman)is looking for a science geek who is doing work with Wulf. The story is funny, entertaining and is an easy read.

#4. Whine Alert.
It has been 9 days since I had the new central line put in and the old one taken out. Yesterday was the first day I went out to do errands and such since the surgery. (See movie review #1)I'm very frustrated with how slow I've been in bouncing back from this surgery. I expected it to be fairly easy since I was having my line switched due to a break in the tip of the line and not an infection. I was really, really wrong. Part of the slow "bounce back" I just realized is the Addison's Disease. I underestimated the need for steroids with the pain and just the general healing process.

yes, CRAP!! This happens to be a ball of horse crap that the dogs brought home for a gift. Is there any question as to why Haver looks like this?

Thanks for reading.