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Friday, March 30, 2018

March 30, 2018

The last post was about our first outing with Cousin.  We stayed so busy that any down time was spent napping to get revived for the next adventure.  Over the next five days we did the following:

Thursday, March 22:  Shopped the entire Ikea store.

Cousin had never been to an Ikea.  We were wanting to go there for some under counter light fixtures.  Also, still checking out stuff for the DIL's laundry room project we are to get started on in April.  If you have walked and shopped an entire Ikea you know that can take quite a while.  A person works up a thirst.  So once we paid, we headed to Red Horn Coffee and Brew House.  We 'needed' to refill the gallon jug with beer.  Sampling was required.  And a cheese board for good measure.  After all it was 5 o'clock somewhere, right?  A stop by Sams for a few fresh supplies yielded a prepared meatloaf/mashed tray for a quick dinner.  The price was better than if I had purchased the items and prepared myself.  Busy day + good price = no brainer!

There were grandkid duties still to be performed.  Hubby headed to take Youngest Grandson to Soccer practice.  Son would attend the two lacrosse game for Oldest Grandson.  DIL watched Bonus Granddaughter at her track event.  Hubby would pick me up from the apt. and we would go watch the Middle Grandson run the mile at his track meet.  Cousin chose to stay home and watch basketball.  Good decision as we arrived at the stadium just as the race had finished.  Back home and finally eat the dinner + oven grilled Brussels sprouts.  It was time to stop for that day. (5100 steps for the day)

Friday, March 23:  Bicycle ride and hiking.

Cuz and Hubby loaded their bikes on the Jeep.  I loaded myself in the backseat along with picnic and hiking supplies.  Off to the Walnut Creek City Park and another day of activities.  Cuz and Hubby headed on their ride, I hiked a small area of the park and enjoyed the feeling of nature.

Trees leafing out and blooming redbud trees, the creek and some wildlife brought back the feeling of the countryside I roamed as a barefoot child.

Of course there were bluebonnets to be seen, too.  

I could not resist crossing the creek in a low area on the exposed rocks.

It was time to head back to the parking area.  My stomach was reminding me about the simple picnic items in the Jeep.  One more little side trail, one more picture and a text to Hubby and Cuz.  Only the phone is dead.  Oops, dead battery.  Hurry back to the parking lot and see Hubby and Cuz loading bikes on the Jeep with concerned looks.  I had not answered any of their texts.  Oops.  Oh, well.  Time for some food and sit down.

We each recounted the views and things we had seen.  They saw deer.  I saw squirrels and some birds.  I crossed a creek and so did they.  Cuz took a spill on her bike but was uninjured.  The over cast day and cooler (70's) temperatures made for a pleasant morning and afternoon.  We cleaned up the table and remains of the picnic and headed back to the apartment.  Showers for the bikers.  Then it neared time for the soccer game.  Off we went and returned to the pot roast meal that had been cooking all day.  And more basketball playoff games.  (step count 8278)

Saturday, March 24:  Shopping

Today was a slower start.  Cuz was good with just going back to an olive oil store we had shopped on a previous visit.  After a rather round about drive to get there we finally arrived.
Con' Olio Oils & Vinegars

We each made purchases then moved next door to the spice shop.  More purchases.  Then Hubby saw a person eating an appetizing looking taco.  And it had been quite some time since breakfast.  After finding out the source of the taco, we were off again.  Dinner out worked for me!  Then it was back to the apartment for more basketball.  Cuz is a major sports fan and her alma mater was one of the Elite Eight at this point.  I fell asleep in my easy chair for the rest of the late afternoon and evening.  Not a great hostess...  As I apologized to Cuz, she noted, "Well, you are an old person. . . and I am not far behind."

Sunday, March 25:  Two lacrosse games and more March Madness

Up and around with Hubby yet again preparing breakfast.  That is his specialty.  Breakfast and brewing coffee.  Before noon Hubby and Cuz are preparing to leave for a lacrosse game.  One last check of the calendar and see the time is 2 not 12 for the game.  A left overs lunch and chill time before the games.  

At the appointed time we all rise and begin gathering to go to the 2 o'clock lacrosse game.  Phone call.  Time was changed.  Now Middle Grandson's game is at the same time as Bonus Grandson's game, 5 PM.  And the same time as Cuz's team's playoff.  Change of plans.  Cuz and Hubby stay home and watch basketball.  I will go to support Bonus Grandson while Son goes to Middle's game.  Life is interesting with 5 grandkids participating in spring sports.  Oh, well.  Some time for Cuz to walk across the street to Kohl's for some shopping.  Hubby makes another fresh fruit and vegetable run to Sam's.  

I left for the 45 minute drive to the Bonus Grandson's game.  BG plays some.  Team loses and we cheer him on regardless.  It is now almost 7:30 when I am on my way back home.  Son calls and invited to dinner.  I say call his dad.  Hubby calls me back and says he and Cuz snacked while I was sitting on bleachers.  They are not hungry.  Had I heard that Cuz's team won.  Yes, in overtime.  Exciting.  I am going to eat with Son.  By the time I get home it is 9:30 PM.  Monday's plans are discussed.  Hubby and Cuz will go on another bike ride.  I will say home and catch up on laundry.  Cuz is leaving on Wednesday.  After bike ride we will go to the local Flix Brewhouse for dinner and a movie.  Tuesday will be potter painting that I have been saving for Cuz's visit.  Off to bed for everyone.

Monday, March 26  Biking, movie and dinner

Hubby and Cuz are off and biking by 10 AM.  I decide to clean the apartment as 3 people in 800 sq. ft. do tend to leave a bit of a trail.  Hubby had his tracking device on so I could see their progress.  When I checked their location I thought I had not expected them to ride that far or in that direction!  I go to the utility room to transfer a load to the dryer and start the last load in the washer.  My cell rings and it is Cuz calling.  That's strange.  I cannot get my phone to answer.  I call her.  Now her cell is busy.  I call Hubby.  Cannot hear him.  

More calls and finally get Cuz.  Hubby has fallen during the ride.  His leg is swelling badly.  Cuz who is a health professional does not think it is broken.  They are at urgent care but he cannot bend his leg to get back in the Jeep.  I need to transfer him to the hospital ER.  OK.  I am still in pj's and sweaty from cleaning.  Quick shower, dress, and pack for long hours in an ER.

Hubby had fallen around noon.  The long distance bike ride was actually his drive to the urgent care facility, by passing the hospital ER.  On the trip to ER I call Son.  Apprise him of details.  He will be on his way to hospital ASAP.  After the usual admit time to an ER an xray is quickly made of the leg.  Thank goodness, nothing is broken.  Son arrives.

Hubby has been on blood thinners since 2012 following a second pulmonary embolism.  The ER doctor determined the swelling is excessive blood loss due to the trauma to his leg when he fell.  While his sun glasses poked the edge of his head when his head hit as he turned off his leg, the helmet had done its job.  Still the upper leg was getting tighter by the minutes.  We asked for my orthopedist instead of the hospital orthopedist.  You know, a known port in a storm.  
about 20 hours post surgery
By 7:10 PM Hubby was being wheeled into an operating room.  The left thigh is lanced and a drain tube is put in place.  We have seen drain tubes for this purpose before in 2007 after his lung ruptured and hemorrhaged all day long.  This is a very unsettling feeling for Son and I.  But good Dr. V assures us all is well following the surgery.  Hubby would stay in the hospital a couple of days and be dismissed with some physical therapy followup.  Relief.

Cuz was dealing with a Jeep problem until just before the surgery when she arrived at the hospital.  I will share that story tomorrow.  At some point while she and I were talking during one of our many conversations that day while she dealt with the stupid Jeep, she said, "Guess the movie and dinner are off, right?"  We both laughed.  I mean laughter is the best medicine after all.

Ready to leave the hospital on Wed.  Thurs. afternoon.  What day is it?

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

March 21, 2018

This morning we woke up to the fact that the Austin bomber was dead.  Relief, but only cautious relief.  He was making the bombs less than 5 miles from where I live.  He killed himself within 2 miles of my home.  Less than a mile from my grandsons.  That is all I have to say.  If you need more you can read here.
B  L  U  E  B  O  N  N  E  T  S!
 Cousin made it in yesterday afternoon.  She was tired from the long drive from the Kansas City vicinity.  Drove straight through.  She is one tough cookie.  Homemade pizzas with the Son, DIL and grandkids followed her arrival a few hours later.  Back to the apartment and glorious bedtime.  Slow rising up with a late breakfast then off in search of bluebonnets.  Following the advise of the Texas Bluebonnet Sightings on Facebook we found them!

JJ Pickle Research Center

As well a Indian Blanket and coreopsis.

From the research center we drove to McKinney Falls State Park.  The bluebonnets need a couple more days to be in full bloom along the roadway.  But that is okay as Hubby and Cousin were scoping out the park for biking and/or hiking on a different day when we feel like an early start.
Image result for louie mueller barbecueWe were now ready for an early dinner.  What better way to celebrate our first bluebonnet sightings than with some old fashioned Texas barbecue.  Taking the not so scenic route for a few miles and finally in open country we headed to Taylor, TX.  Hubby had eaten at 'this place' back several years ago when he was down helping Son.  After at least three missed turns we finally made it to Louie Mueller Barbecue.  Yummers!  Pork ribs, brisket, tater salad and bread. 
Our final stop before the day trip ended was Andy's Frozen Custard.  Strawberry Oreo Concrete for me.  Cousin had an Ozark Turtle Concrete that had vanilla custard, fudge syrup and pecans in it.  Hubby played good and had only a vanilla single dip with sprinkles in a cup.  No cone!  Where is the fun in that.  Of course he sat in his easy chair when we arrived home.  I went out and walked another mile and a half.

Better say bye for the evening.  No telling where we will be heading out to tomorrow!


Saturday, March 17, 2018

March 17, 2018

This week sort of got away from me.  Let me see if I can even remember what we did.  Monday was a dreary, chilly day.  A good day to stay in and catch up on laundry.  That was not terribly exciting but necessary.  Time was filled in watching some Star Trek movies I had been wanting to watch.

We are expecting the cousin to arrive on March 20.  Hubby worked on getting some activities planned.  One day this past week we went to a park that has numerous bicycle trails.  Hubby and his Cuz will be exploring that park during her visit.  On the way to the park we saw bluebonnets  beginning to bloom.  Hopefully the flowers will put on a good show for Cuz.

We were invited for dinner at Son's.  That was a pleasant evening to just visit with Son and DIL.  The 3 grandsons we on trips with his ex wife.  Bonus grandson was with his dad.  The bonus granddaughter was on a trip with her boyfriend's family.  That means the house was really quite and no interruptions.  Real talk and listening.  And some work in the garage to gather stuff to take to Goodwill.

Wednesday my sister and her husband spent the afternoon and evening with us.  Dinner at Y'alls was tasty.  And we always enjoy our time with Sissy and her husband.  Plans were made for the next day.  Those plans were to help the nephew pack his apartment for a move.  That is what we did for about 6 hours.  Loaded the three hatchback vehicles to the top and headed for his new place.  Then we unpacked most all of the boxes.  Hubby had dinner waiting when I arrived home around 7 PM.  I crashed and burned on Friday.  Just slept on and off all day. 

That comes to today, St. Patty's Day.  Just some straightening around the apartment, more laundry an steps.  Oh, step count update.  Getting better each day.  The count is up to 4000 - 5000 steps.  Today is 6600.  And no discomfort.  So that is what I've done this past week. 

Saturday, March 10, 2018

March 10, 2018

Yesterday Hubby made us some $$$.  Well, he retrieved our money some would say.  He filed out federal taxes.  All the federal taxes we had paid were refunded.  The only direct taxes we pay are sales tax.  Texas does not have a personal property tax.  The auto tags are more expensive than in Missouri which makes up the difference. Real estate taxes are some of the highest in the nation.  The Austin area ranks in the top 50 cities with the highest real estate taxes.  While we do not own our apartment we still pay the tax indirectly in our rent each month. 

Taxes are hated by so many folks.  We have never gotten too excited about them.  After all we use the roads and other infrastructures.  We attended public schools as has our son and grandchildren.  We have had help from police and firemen at different points in our lives.  And I do love indoor plumbing and running water at the turn of a knob.  Taxes are the cost of these conveniences and services.  We paid our share of income taxes in the past.  Should I have income in the future that requires paying taxes, I will do it willfully.

Politics are just all over us this year.  The entire House of Representatives is up for election this year.  The primaries are over with the exception of a couple of run off elections where no one received 50% of the vote.  This fall will be mid-term elections.  Mid-term of the presidential 4 year term.  There seems to be more turnout anticipated due to well, Trump and the far right agenda.  No need for me to give my opinion at this time. 

Apparently the politics have waded into my sub-conscience.  I spent last night working to get a newspaper to correct my profile they had published for the campaign.  Mom saw us and said we needed to get over and cast out ballot for me.  I said I would as soon as I contacted the newspaper. Hubby and I looked for the phone number of the paper and finally found it.  I laid the paper down to get my cell.  This lady came up and sat on my paper.  I asked her to move so I could get my paper.  She finally stood up and I then explained to her who I was and hoped she would vote for me.  As I was preparing to tell her my political position, I awoke.

Whew!  What a nightmare.  Anyone that knows me probably would not vote for me cause most folks I know lean more conservative than I.  It would not be difficult to be more conservative than me.  Anytime I take tests about my political leanings it is always waaaayyy liberal.  Just not quite bat poop crazy by one mark.  Oh, well.  I do not plan to ever run for office of any kind ever again.  Not even dog catcher.


Friday, March 9, 2018

March 9, 2018

An old friend came to visit last night.  Sciatica is the name of the old friend.  It is an unwelcome old friend.  It had been lurking about for a day or two.  Last evening sitting in the stadium seat with a chilly wind to my back, it settled into the left lower regions of my body.  While online suggestions say ice packs, my body said no.  Spasms and tight muscles had already begin to seize my lower back.  PJ, muscle relaxers and just lying still for about 24 hours has sent sciatica packing.

In 1984 I herniated a disc in my lower back by picking up a small child at VBS.  I had been laid off from my job and was working part time at a friends jewelry store.  I ignored the pain in my back and leg.  Eventually the damaged cartilage in my right knee would send me to the orthopedic surgeon for surgery to repair the damage.  It would be two months before I would get the attention for the damaged disc.  It was during that time I learned the value of heat for muscles in spasm.

Tomorrow is a new day.  The last day before the jump forward to somehow make days longer.  They all look about the same to me.  Except for the one day we lose and hour by jumping forward.  Another day we fall back an hour.  But then, we can only live one moment at a time anyway.

Hope you have lots of wonderful moments over the upcoming few days.


Thursday, March 8, 2018

March 8, 2018

Watching a movie named 'Freedom' after reading yet another piece about MeToo and misogyny.  Makes me think.  I mean really think.  We can all be slaves in one way or another.  Slaves to our jobs. Slaves to our past.  Slaves within ourselves.  Lately I have come to realize just how I am really not a people person.  There are folks that are people persons.  They enjoy being with people.  They interact with others in a way that pleases the people.  The people they feel enriched by being with each other. 

Having grown up in the Methodist church I was and am a person of faith.  I believed God had a purpose for me in this life.  It seemed I had a gift for leadership.  I was probably just being a bully.  One day as I was cleaning the bathroom in our home on Hadley St.  I imagined the moment of my creation.  In whatever language The Creator spoke my name was said aloud.  The Creator smiled.   It seemed I could make folks laugh easily enough.  Maybe that should be my purpose. 

There is no way to move past the fact that my personality grated on those around me in the past.  I displayed a short temper. I do not need any one to tell me otherwise.  Sure I could be nice a little at a time.  But then people would be too close.  I just needed to be away from people.  Just in the quite.  Hard to make folks laugh when I want to be by myself. 

My Hubby wants me to get out more.  I will do it for him.  I will do it for my family.  Cause now that is the main purpose in my life, caring for my little family.  And that is plenty enough for me. I am going to spend the evening taking Youngest to soccer practice.  Then watch Next to Youngest run a mile.  I'll finish the evening watching Oldest Grandson play in the Dragon Varsity Lacrosse game. 

Hope the rest of your week is good. 

Cuba Gooding Jr. and Bernhard Forcher in Freedom (2014)

Monday, March 5, 2018

March 5, 2018

Life surely creeps up on a person.  March18, 1982, I began working for a company named Litton, Advanced Circuitry Division.  Thirty six years has really changed life.  That was slightly over half my life ago that I started on the midnight to 7 shift.  The company had just been awarded a contract for the keyboards for the TI 99.

In June of 2002 I left that company.  During those 20+ years while I worked for ACD friends were made.   Children were born and raised.  Children of coworkers married and presents were given.  Some folks divorced and some children divorced.  Having worked with a core group of folks most of the 20 years we knew the names of each others children and grandchildren.  We knew if each other's husbands snored.  We knew things the wives would let the guys eat or not eat.  Preproduction was a close knit group.

It has been 18 years since I left there.  The company closed its doors forever about 5 years later.  Facebook has help reconnect many of the former employees.  This last Saturday there was a reunion for the employees of ACD.  The photos were posted for all to enjoy.  Last night it was fun seeing if I could recognize faces that had morphed into senior citizens.  Grey hair, wrinkles and weight change made it a challenge at times.  There were some I did not recognize at all.  One person's nose was the give away as to who it was under the grey hair and age spots.

Then the little chat notification window popped up.  It was one of the former co workers.  She said she had bad news.  Another co worker's daughter we had watch grow up, go to college, marry and struggle to have a child was dead.  The daughter and her husband had been unable to have children so they had adopted first a baby boy and then a baby girl.  Those babies are now in their early twenties.  That baby boy that had brought so much joy had killed his mother.  My friend's 53 year old daughter was dead and the grandson was in jail.  It has been 24 hours and I cannot shake a dark feeling.  So much pain for the family on so many levels.    Life is just crap some days.

Sending prayers for that co workers family.


Saturday, March 3, 2018

March 3, 2018

Well.  The Granddaughter and her 3 team mates were the fastest in their early morning 4 x 400 relay.  Her mom watched that race.  We arrived in the afternoon to watch her individual 400 race.  About 15 minutes before the 400 M started the mist changed to a slow drizzle.  The sky had been just sort of overcast so we had not brought umbrellas.  Just as the JV girls finished the 400 M race, Granddaughter called.   Her hamstring was really bothering her.  She was wisely choosing not to run the 400 M. 

After some confusion about if she was going to meet us, we finally texted that we were going back to the car as the rain was picking up.  And the car was some distance from us.  We were wet and did not need to get wetter.  She said it was ok.  But I have felt badly every since for not hanging around to give her a hug.  It was not all that cold, 64 F / 16.6 C.  It did feel chilly with a breeze and wet clothing.  And we are not spring chicks, either. 

This event was the third for us to sit on bleachers watching one or other of the grands do their sports thing.  A soccer game tomorrow will round out the weekend for us.  Son and DIL have been splitting their time between the five grands this weekend.  Son in Houston for lacrosse tournament,  DIL bouncing between track and lacrosse for another grandson.  Four teens and one eleven year old.  And both Son and DIL are employed full time.  Very busy family.

So that is about all that is happening in our little world.  We are in our easy chairs now.  Dry, warm clothing with a nice soup for dinner.  Here is wishing anyone that stops by dry clothes and a warm meal.


Thursday, March 1, 2018

March 1, 2018

And the spring sports activities are ramping up these days.  Last evening was a lacrosse game for the 16 year old.  Tonight is track for the 13 year old.  Saturday is a track meet for the 17 year old and the first day of a two day lacrosse tournament for the 16 year old.  Sunday afternoon is a soccer game for the 11 year old.  Not sure when there is a lacrosse game for the 14 year old.  These events will not all be attended as some are 150 miles away from Round Rock.  We discussed the away trips and have come to the decision that only in area events will be attended.  That should keep up up and moving for the next two to three months.  Chairs and stadium seats now loaded into Icie.

Throw in some comedy shows by the nephew and out of town visitors over the next month and we will definitely stay busy.  And hopefully able to move.  I had upped the walking game to about 5 to 6 thousand steps.  Bad move.  This IT band thing is being a real challenge to gauge the right amount of activity.  Is it the distance, the shoes I wear, the length of time of continuous walking?  I just cannot get it figured out obviously, as the discomfort is there.  Not pain but discomfort.  At least I have learned to slow it down or stop at the discomfort level and not 'push through'.  Heat, ice and then stretching once the discomfort is reduced. 

Walking had become so important to me.  The simple pleasure of walking was such a great way to release energy and emotions.  The overall contentious climate in the US just wears me down to the nub.  All the talk about how there is really no such thing as an assault rifle makes me roll my eyes.  In searching to see the history of firearms it seems the first reason for development is for use as a weapon.  And there are all sorts of weapons through the ages.  Stones, knives, bombs, bigger bombs and the list goes on and on.  I just cannot figure out why people want to argue over whether something is a lethal weapon.

And now Putin is proudly displaying the newest round of what shall we call these things?  And Russia is not wanting to take over the world one blogger continues to espouse.  I just wish as much was spent on helping humans be better humans as is spent on inventing things that make it easier for folks that want to kill a lot of humans.