Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Mom's diagnosis

You may also find this post on Frances May's blog at

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Friends from Albuquerque

Jerry and Kathy Millspaugh and I have been friends since about 1980 when I joined the Undersea Adventurers Scuba Club, in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. The club had about 200 people in it and we used to observe that it was half diving and half social. The friends I made there will always have a special place in my heart.

Kathy had bad arthritis and noticed when they vacationed in dry climates, she felt much better. IBM worked out something so Jerry could complete his work from Albuquerque until he retired. They bought a fifth wheel RV, which they call their Roadhouse, and have traveled all over!! They usually spend the spring in Florida to be with their two children and their grandchildren.

This year, they're on a long planned trip to Canada and stopped here in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia for a visit to the Angelil homestead called Blueberry Hill. I took them to see cows being milked in a dairy barn, a house of 30,000 young chicks, and an egg operation. I think Kathy was especially pleased with the flat of eggs given to her.

Janet sorts eggs coming down the conveyor belt. Notice the chicken looking through the window.

Jerry and Ed's tedious work!

Flat-out Like a Lizard Drinking Caring for Mom

(You may also find this post on Frances May's blog at )

.......that's what they say in Australia when someone's super busy!
In this case, I'm referring me being busy and to Mother (age 82) being flat-out.

(I'm prejudiced because she's MY mom but, isn't she pretty?)

Mother had gotten along pretty well after her sprained hip ordeal in late March. Her doctor sent home health therapists who really helped her. She had even driven herself to the Wellness Center for her water aerobics class.

But, last Saturday this pain started in her lower back. Her doctor sent her for bloodwork and an MRI. He says it's not sciatica. He mentioned a pinched nerve but I am wondering if it could be a hernitated disc......this is her 9th day in pain. If she stays still, flat in bed, she feels OK but the slighted movement brings on such pain and those type spasms that "grab" you and are so strong they take your breath away.

We'll call the doctor first thing tomorrow and hopefully the MRI will show something! She can't keep on this way.

Anyway, one of the purposes of this post is to explain why I've gotten behind on my email responses. Ed's making some progress on the RV siding on the large wall and a small section of roof installed yesterday. I'm busy with Mother's care and sneaking out to garden as much as possible!
More later.....

Monday, May 19, 2008

Think before you shoot....

Put yourself in your photos!

I would like to make a suggestion that I think is very important. I lived in Australia for a year in 1974 and made a scrapbook when I got back. Now, all these years later, the only photos that really matter are the ones with me in them.

I used to think it seemed conceited to ask people to snap my picture but have gotten over it. One example is the grandmother or grandfather who takes pictures at all family gatherings but never puts herself/himself in them....PLEASE do yourself and your heirs a favor and get yourself into those pictures!

My dear aunt died 3 years ago and she was a world traveler. She had thousands of pictures in a gazillion albums, plus, thousands of photos in boxes everywhere. Out of a thousand, we might find one photo with her in it. We could care less about seeing a picture of a tree or a rock or a mountain.....we want to see Aunt Mary in those places! She could have just bought postcards and left her camera at home.

Please consider taking pictures that will mean something to you and your children in the future. People are always happy to snap a picture of you (they won't think you're vain and if they do, who cares?)....and there's always the self-timer feature on cameras these days. I rest my case.

p.s. Oops, "gotta" unrest my case to mention......

1. TRY your best to label the photos the moment you get them. Many people, like me, plan to do it later, then years later you find this sleeve of pictures and you have no idea where or when they were taken. The same goes for digital pictures......put a caption on them when you download them into your computer.

2. I've also learned that putting a caption below a photo in an album is great. But, most albums fall apart after 10-20 years and labels fall out. Do label your albums for enjoyable viewing, but also (They have acid free pencils made just for this.) label every photo on the back of the photo itself. (They have acid free pencils made just for this purpose.)

OK, now I really rest my case.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Lunch with Leslee (from Alaska)

May 1, 2008 - This is Part #2 from Email Mistake Yields New Friend
TA DA! Email pals meet in person in Harrisonburg, VA.
Mary May Angelil, Leslee Orebaugh from Alaska, Lois Brown Horne

I was not disappointed at all.........quite the contrary, Leslee was absolutely delightful! She's lively, self-confident, open and has had a fascinating life. We all have so much in common and talked over lunch for more than three hours! Lois went to the Iditarod Dog Sled races in February so they had lots to discuss.

I look forward to spending more time with Leslee, keeping touch through email, and maybe visiting her some day but I have NO thoughts of moving to Alaska (BRRrrr... )