Tuesday, March 3, 2015
1. I want to get out of the house. I want to walk beyond the back patio. I want to smell fresh Spring air and drive through the county taking inventory of what has and hasn't changed over these long cold months. I want to see the things around this area that make me glad I live here and maybe even stop for lunch somewhere. I'm battling almost daily dizziness and pretty severe muscle spasms but I just want to get in the car and DRIIIIIVE!
2. I want to see my mom out on the lake in her paddle boat. She loves it and loves fishing and I think she's ready for the kind of therapy that only happens when it involves worms, hooks, fishing poles and a big sunhat. Since there wasn't a memorial service for her brother who passed away last week, she needs to get out and commune with nature and work those feelings that need closure in peace and quiet.
3. I'm ready to shave my legs. I may have to start with those clippers that cut mens' hair but I want soft and silky legs so I can wear my pretty Spring dresses. I've given away a few dresses this year trying to stretch Tasha's maternity wardrobe. She hasn't been able to build the wardrobe she wants and heck... there's not much out there in the plus size maternity department except in the high dollar stores. I buy most of my clothes in thrift stores so I have a lot of clothes. At least, I have enough clothes to share. I've got a lot of stuff that doesn't have clearly defined waists that can accommodate a whole lot of Cosette. I've got a pile of my "too smalls" set aside for Marquee, at least baggy tshirts to sleep in and such. (How did we get here from me shaving my legs? Oh well.) Dressing daughter-in-laws to the best of my ability and soon to be dressing itty bitties.
5. I'm ready for a big grocery run. January and February for me were both pretty miserable months because you know, pain and stuff. I try not to subject the villagers to my rage or risk being known as the village idiot because when I'm in pain I'm not nice, I'm stupid and scattered and say things I don't mean. Stuff comes out wrong. I'm awkward and I'm not used to being so weird. But mostly it's just been the pain that's kept me indoors. If mama and daddy are going to the store anyways, I just give them a list but... I really need to get out and go food shopping.
6. I've got to get my part of the menu for Tasha's shower sorted out. Tasha is 31 weeks pregnant today! Cosette will be here SOOOOO soon! Austin and Tasha seem to be bonding well and enjoying each other, he's getting along fine with her family and has mostly been with them for the past several weeks. He lost out on a job lead that was almost a sure bet because he failed the drug test. I'm frustrated... beyond frustrated. He must work. Somewhere. Somehow. He's got to do something. End of story.
7. I've got to dig through the old box of baby clothes that I have saved to see if there's anything remotely usable. I have two of my baby dresses saved to do photos with Cosette. I want to see if I have anything of my kids' dad's stuff that might work for Oliver.
8. I'm almost finished with the flower pillow I've been working on for about two months. It's a slow process lately. Everything is taking longer. Aging sucks. After that are two projects for Cosette, then a wedding project for Bryan and Helen, then a grandma book to fill out for Oliver, then a baby project for Oliver. I've got to get the cross-stitching amped back up to longer days to get it all in. AND... I'm working on a book of family history, trying to do it in the format of somewhere between a yearbook and a childrens' book. I want it to be easy to read, contain fun facts and family lore. In many ways I feel unworthy but... I want to leave something for my grandchildren so that they can know who they are. It's important.
10. We've got to figure out our Wedding Agenda so we can start working on an itinerary. You have no idea how much it helps on the really bad pain days to have these babies and this wedding to look forward to. Just like having projects to work on gives me a tangible reminder of how I've spent my days because lately they're all looking the same. I've been online shopping for dresses for me and mom and although I haven't found anything yet, I'm enjoying the "window shopping".
There's more I could share but I'm getting sleepy... thanks for checking out my To-DO list. It's not the finest blog out there but I always like knowing what people are doing. This is what I'm doing or about to do.
Love and hugs y'all!
Posted by Heather at 10:42 PM
Thursday, February 26, 2015
I can now tell you the exciting news that Baby Peanut Espericueta Sauls is a BOY!!
I am over the moon at the thought of another little Cody in the world because he was the cutest, sweetest, most adorable little kid. I'm imagining a little one with Cody's Precious Moments eyes and Marquee's dark hair... I just know he's going to be a doll!
The name is maybe going to be different from what we had originally thought. They're leaning toward Oliver which would make Cody's gay dad (Purple Michael) very proud. Two grandbabies with names that reflect musicals - Cosette and Oliver - makes me think we did something right!
I think - based on the alien looking eye sockets - that he's going to have Cody's big eyes. So he *might* be called Oliver Joel Espericueta Sauls. I think Baby Peanut might also stick. He currently weighs nine ounces, about two pounds less than his cousin Cosette.
We had heavy snowfall for several hours last night and woke to a beautiful blanket of snow! It's breathtaking beautiful outside and now I am ready for Spring.
Photos taken by other folks in our area....
And that's it for now. I think, if you want to enlarge the photos, you can just click on them.Hope you're all safe and warm. Love and hugs, y'all!
Posted by Heather at 8:16 AM
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
Anyways... baby Cosette is now at 30 weeks gestation! I can't believe how close we are to cuddling that sweet girl! Yesterday Marquee and Cody went to an ultrasound to find the gender of Baby Peanut Espericueta Sauls... It's a........................................
Secret. I am not allowed to share yet because there are family members that Marquee hasn't been able to contact yet and they don't want anyone to find out via internet. I understand. I respect it but keeping secrets has never been one of my best traits. I just about had to stay off Facebook yesterday and may or may not have driven my daughter-in-law crazy texting to see if I could tell YET. Cody called last night and said, "nope. not yet." I'm respecting their wishes because I believe first and foremost that parents have the right to do things the way they feel is best for their child and this is my first opportunity to honor that. I promise that as soon as I can tell, I'll tell.
So that's it for now. I'll have more snow photos and hopefully news about Baby Peanut Espericueta Sauls to share later this week. Stay safe and warm! Love and hugs!
Posted by Heather at 9:02 AM
Monday, February 23, 2015
Modern media has connected me with family members that I might not have known well or seen often in my younger years and it's been a lot of fun building new bonds within the family. There are still those relatives with whom you just don't have much of a relationship due to geography or... whatever. It's not that you don't want to know these people, at least in my case, it's just that sometimes it doesn't work out that way. My dad is one of three children and my mom is one of seven. The number of aunts, uncles and cousins in my family tree is mind blowing. Maybe the abundance of family makes it feel a bit impossible to know everyone as well as I might like. And in a way, I think that makes me cherish the close bonds even more.
Two of my mom's brothers came up to visit in the past year... and my dad's brother did too. My mom's sister and her family came up for Thanksgiving. Those times are important because we're all getting older (even me!) and I'm not physically able to just jump in the car and take a road trip over the river and through the woods as much as I might like. So these mini-reunions mean the world to me.
Yesterday my mom's brother passed away. The family has asked for privacy so I won't name him here. He was number 3 of the seven children in my mom's family. My mom is number 6. Grandma had four boys in a row and then three girls in a row between the years of 1935 and 1950. This brother has five children, four boys and a girl - just like my family. Other than some family gatherings early in my childhood, I don't have many memories of this particular uncle. At our last family reunion in 2011 he came and his oldest son, came. Neither of them are on social media much. His wife has been rather reclusive for some time and I don't think I've seen her in probably twenty years. It doesn't mean that his life and death don't matter - they do. He's joined my favorite group of relatives, after all... the dead ones! (Please don't take that as anything other than a genealogy joke.) My parents reminded me that it was this uncle's dog that bit me when I was a little girl - the first step in my transition to Cat Lady. I'm sure that's not why we lost touch but I have seen that families grow distant for many random and different reasons.
My uncle's death does make me think about the relatives that seem to remain out of touch. Obviously, the biggest in our life is my brother, who has the same name as this uncle, and how he has completely removed himself from our family over the past few years. I always pray that there will come a day when one of his children get curious and start digging around the roots of their family tree and find me and my blog or my tree on ancestry.com. We can never fill in the blanks of the things that we have missed but I want them to know that they are loved and cherished and missed. Our hearts are never so full that we forget the parts left empty by those broken branches of our family tree.
I'm also so very grateful for the family members that I might not have known as well growing up but who are a precious addition to my life now. I feel honored to have walked, even a short part of life's journey with them. I went to work for my dad's brother and have a much better appreciation for who he is... and I know his wife better than I would have just from weddings and funerals and reunions. I have a few cousins with whom I have much in common - parallel medical problems, parallel life challenges. And some who are fascinating in how they are different from me. I am always thrilled to see pictures of the babies and grandbabies of my cousins. I'm happy to see what my uncles and aunts are doing. I respect all of them and appreciate whatever role they play in my life, whether large or small. I love my family.
There won't be a memorial service or funeral but I think over the next few days we'll all reflect about family. I'll pray for God's comfort for my cousins. I'll thank God for the family members who are actively in my life. I'll also thank Him for the ones who have gone a different way and pray that He lights their path.
Sorry for rambling. Grief is an odd thing and it takes many different forms. Please keep our family in your prayers. Love and hugs, y'all!
Posted by Heather at 9:07 PM
Thursday, February 19, 2015
So you know how I have been talking about this crazy gut pain for a year and a half? Trust me, as a person who lives with pain every day from my whacked out spine, for the gut pain to be worthy of mentioning just about every time I blog, you know that has to be some intense pain. Since I'm in this purgatory of not being able to work and not being approved yet for disability I've been without health insurance for almost three years now. That means that not only the crazy gut pain has gone undiagnosed (is that a word?) but also we have not been able to do the necessary follow ups on my back pain. My pain doctor would have preferred to do more diagnostic testing on my back and hip pain but I couldn't afford anything more than just basic maintenance appointments. It is so very unsettling to have pain, significant, continuous pain and not be able to find out what's causing the pain. It's stressful. It keeps you from feeling connected with the rest of the world because of being so distracted from pain. It has been a time of so much insecurity for me.
And then... finally the doctor at the clinic said that there was a way for me to get an ultrasound through a charity program at the local hospital. Alright. So I thought I'd get the ultrasound and at least be able to rule out some possibilities, even if I couldn't get an outright diagnosis. Then I found out that the charity program would cover the full amount of the ultrasound AND any care I receive through that hospital from now until the end of August and then, if I'm still in limbo about health insurance, I can reapply to continue on the charity program. There's a lot I don't know about the program but I am so very thankful to have the opportunity to have health care without worrying about owing for the rest of my life.
AND THEN.... yesterday I went to the pain doctor and let him know that I had been approved for the charity care and that the clinic had scheduled me for an ultrasound to hopefully diagnose the crazy gut pain. My pain doctor said, "um... why drag this out longer than it's already been?" So he sent over orders for me to have an MRI and x-rays to get not only a better idea of what's causing the crazy gut pain but also see what changes there are, if any, in my spine since the last time - four years ago - I had been able to have scans done. I haven't confirmed this but my pain doctor thinks that the charity coverage extends to the doctors that are affiliated with the hospital which means that I could actually see doctors who specialize in whatever my problem is, not just depend on the free clinic. My pain doctor isn't affiliated with the hospital- they are sort of a different animal as most pain clinics are - but they do know a lot about what goes on at the hospital.
Side note: I wish someone had told me about this program sooner but I have to believe that the timing is exactly perfect.
So anyways... the sweet girls at the pain clinic got on the phone yesterday and made arrangements for me to have all this diagnostic testing done at the same time to prevent me from having to make the trip to Gainesville (about 45 minutes away) more than once, especially since I am having so much trouble with dizziness and try not to drive long distances alone. All of that was scheduled for today. When it's the coldest day we've seen here in decades. Cold. Cold day. And as anyone knows on cold days you dress in layers. Did you also know that the Imaging Center keeps things nice and toasty warm in their exam rooms since people are normally wearing less clothing than normal during medical testing? Except for when there are tests that you don't have to have clothes off to do and in that case I was wearing a thick sweatshirt and warm fuzzy pants. In all three tests at least some part of me was warmer than comfortable. Then we left the Imaging Center and I was so sweaty that I didn't put my jacket on and whoooosh... out in the frigid weather ... freezing! Then the car was warm and the sun was bright so I was again feeling uncomfortable.
I've been absolutely exhausted and drained ever since I got home from the tests but I have to state once more how grateful I am to have access to the kind of care I have needed for a long time. I didn't get any information today and that's super frustrating. The ultrasound results go to the clinic which is only open two days a week so I'm not confident I'll hear anything soon. The xray and MRI results go to the pain clinic but since they're not affiliated with the hospital they tell me that they don't get results in a "timely manner" so who knows when I'll hear anything. I requested to have results sent directly to me and apparently that's just not done. Ever. Since I am so grateful to have charity care I didn't want to be a demanding medical consumer but yeah, would like to know what they saw.
When they were doing my x-rays I told them that I have an extra vertebrae in my lumbar spine. The techs told me I saved them a lot of time in positioning and repositioning and having to retake multiple xrays when things were off center. Come to think of it, seems like every time I've had x-rays it's involved a lot of re-doing the same shot. I guess that's the way to speed things along - make sure the techs know about the skeletons in your closet, at least that the skeleton in your closet is abnormal. If any of you have any weird anatomy you might want to let the friendly medical folks know.
Anyways. That's it for today. It was cold and I have been nuked until I glow. We are expecting more wintry precipitation tomorrow and then it will be climbing back up to more moderate temperatures. It will probably be 80 degrees here within the next month and we'll be laughing about the very unscary benign reason for my gut pain just have to wait it all out.
Hope you're warm and cozy! Love and hugs, y'all!
Posted by Heather at 4:36 PM
Tuesday, February 17, 2015
I have felt horrible today... dizzy, nauseous, sleepy and just generally icky. I took a long nap this afternoon and could still go back to sleep right now even though it's only 6pm. I have to drive into civilization tomorrow to see the pain doctor and I hope I have a break from the dizziness. Schools are going to be closed here again tomorrow because there is still a good bit of ice out there. Most of our backyard is cleared because we get direct sunlight but a lot of places still have a thick layer of ice/snow. Thursday I have to drive back down to civilization again for my ultrasound and it's supposed to be the coldest day of the year. Just. my. luck.
Anyways. I mainly just wanted to show you the pictures I took of the ice. I had a lot of pain this morning and then the dizziness, etc kicked in so I would notice the light changing and think, "I really want to capture a photo of this" and would take about three pictures before I had to lay back down. It truly was beautiful. Hope you enjoy them!
Hope wherever you are it's safe and warm! Love and hugs, y'all!
|mostly crunchy ice, very little snow|
|Not climbing those stairs!|
Posted by Heather at 6:35 PM
Sunday, February 15, 2015
|Eddie, Lily, Oscar and Lady|
Lily the old dog has gone out to pasture. My dad and Austin took her to the vet on Friday and had her put down. She had been sick for so long that she had lost over half her body weight and was just skin and bones. It was time but still so sad not to see her sweet, trusting face. Or have to have the gate up to keep her from wandering downstairs looking for water... or to step in wet spots she left behind.
Eddie the cat misses Lily the most. She was his best friend. Last night he climbed up in my lap like he needed comfort. I gave it to him for a few minutes but then my leg went numb. That is one FAT cat!
|Lily and Eddie last week|
On Thursday I went with Tasha to her appointment with the regular OB. The ultrasound showed that Cosette is only a couple of days behind - down from a few weeks last month. In a month she caught back up and gained up to 2 and a half pounds. On Friday we went to the special OB just to make sure that scan was accurate and they confirmed - Cosette is no longer considered small for gestational age. She went from being breech to being head down and Tasha has done a great job of keeping her blood pressure down and her weight where it should be. Tasha is still considered high risk due to some of her health factors and will be having twice weekly ultrasounds from 30 weeks on. Fortunately the ultrasounds can be done at the regular OB instead of having to drive an hour to the specialist. My dad was a good sport and drove us on Friday because my pain was pretty intense and I was afraid to assume the responsibility of getting us all there and back safely.
|Eddie and Lily|
|Eddie, Stubby and Little Kitty|
What else can I tell you about life around here lately? It seems like time flies by so quickly! I spent today watching a mini-marathon of Mad Men and Book TV while cross-stitching and then dress shopping online. We have to find dresses for me and mom for the wedding and wedding activities. I probably have suitable clothes but we're shopping anyways, blessed with a little gift from a family member who didn't want us to look like kuntry done come to town up there with the classy folks. It's fun window shopping. Tonight I'm watching The Bachelor not because it's worth watching but out of that whole "train wreck" curiosity.
Yesterday I managed to avoid all "Singles Awareness Day" references. I just so very much don't even care about romance and all of that. I figure I've had more adventures than most people have in three lifetimes so I can't complain. Being single means watching The Bachelor without apology, going an extra day without washing my hair, not shaving my legs and going to sleep at 7:30 at night if I want. I mean, I'm sure Happily Ever After is wonderful for those it happens for but it hasn't happened to me and I don't see any reason it would at this point since I'm not even trying.
And thus ends my random rambling for now. Stay safe, warm and content as much as you can. Love and hugs.
Posted by Heather at 6:05 PM