Friday, March 27, 2015

Dang It

This afternoon:
Front yard.
Backyard.  Snow...dang it.

Monday, March 23, 2015

A Journey's End

I head back to work tomorrow. I feel like I'm at the end of a journey and back to where I started...or maybe back to where I left off is a better term.  It's been a long, cold, snowy winter here in Ohio and many other places too.  I was never bored while being home.  I found things to do and ways to fill my days.  In the beginning it was mere survival and recovery! I had to learn to navigate differently.  I navigate without pain and that's a good thing.  I've taken time off work before.  When I've had kiddos or surgery in the past,  I've taken as much as 2yrs off.  It's a scary thing when technology is moving fast and you've been out of it for a bit...relearning and getting back into the swing of things.  I'm hoping for a smooth transition.  I'm hoping that the changes that I'll be facing with our new hospital merger will be OK.  I'm hoping I can stand at the OR table for hours and not get tired! Time will tell I guess.  Today the weather was very cold.  In Chicago it snowed like crazy and I thought how lucky we were to escape that mess and how thankful I was we came home from there yesterday instead of today.  Tonight I sat in front of the fireplace in the kitchen reading most of the evening. It was warm and cozy. I looked out the backdoor and saw this:
More snow on the deck and flakes coming down...not as lucky as I thought! I don't think we're in for big accumulation and by Wednesday it will be 60de and raining but it's a reminder that some things don't change...Mother Nature will get the last laugh! Oh well, I watched the last log burn down and I'm heading for bed...big day tomorrow! My journey's end in this chapter!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Happy 60th Midge!

Thursday Jack and I headed out for an adventure to Chicago.  My little sis turned 60! Yikes! We can't believe it but it's true!  It was my first long car ride since my surgery and it went super good.  The scenery between here and Chicago is still super boring but the weather was perfect...no snow! Mom was happy to see us and I think  happy to see that I'm walking and doing fine.  We hung pretty close to home and just enjoyed catching up and having some laughs.
Cooking some breakfast and doing what Mom does best...feed the masses!
Yes Mommo, I'm talking about you! Afterwards we took a nice walk around the neighborhood for some exercise. I couldn't resist the selfies....Midge and Mom's first!
I had to laugh that Midge and I turned up with white hoodies under a red jacket...you think we were twins!  We had nice enough weather that we spent lots of time out on the deck enjoying some sun.

Mom is catching some rays.  Then we were off to Oakbrook Shopping Center.  It's an outdoor mall and we always have to make the trek.
The fountains were up and running but no pretty flowers to enjoy...still too cold! Thursday night Mom, Midge, me, Jack and my brother and sister-in-law went out for dinner to celebrate but somebody forgot to take pics! That's OK because on Saturday we continued to celebrate with my nieces and nephew and their families.  Midge's daughter Katie set up a dinner at a cute place in Batavia called:
Pal Joey's...it's on the Fox river and we had a room upstairs all to ourselves.  The food was delish and we enjoyed seeing everyone.
Some of Midge's grandkiddos...3 were missing because of illness!
Midge and her son Bill.
Her daughter Katie.  After dinner it was time for cake! Yum!
Then it was time to bring on the gifts.
The littles liked helping her open them.  She received many nice things along with a girl's trip...her two daughters and granddaughters and Mom...to Galena sometime this Spring.  Galena is a darling town with antique shops galore, cute restaurants and bed and breakfasts...should be a really nice time! Her daughter Amy and her family were the ones ill...in fact, Ella, Amy's oldest spent an overnight in the hospital on Thursday because of the flu....everyone is doing good now but we missed having them with us. Too soon we had to bid farewell. We had a great time and hopefully we'll all be together again soon.  Some final pics for my journal...
Mom looking so cool and snazzy..soon it will be her birthday...89...can't believe it!
Mom, my sister-in-law Deidra, and my brother Greg.
Bill and his wife Laura.
Jack and me.
I was wondering why Midge had her eyes closed..then I remembered she was making a wish....I hope whatever it was it comes true and I wish you many more birthdays that we can all be together to celebrate. I love you more than anything...you're my "soul Sister" in all ways.  Happy 60th!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Bringing Home The Bacon

A few times a year Jack has a patient who drops off the "Box".  The other night Jack came home with the "Box". What's in that box?  This:
Ribs..and this:
Bacon..who doesn't enjoy a little bacon? Or maybe a lot of bacon!  We had to make a quick run to Wal-mart to get some sealing bags so we could get it all in the freezer.  Sometimes the "Box" would contain ham...it's always a surprise.  I love it when Jack brings home the bacon! (and the ribs!)  I can tell my stay at home time is coming to a close because all of a sudden the weekends are flying by.  Yesterday started out cool and foggy.  The warmer temps and rain have melted a ton of snow.  That always means a ton of wet yard and flooding.  The farmer's field down the road gets so flooded it looks like a lake.  The fog was sitting on this temporary lake on our way into town to do our Saturday errands.
The water is almost to the road and all this scene needs is a rowboat and a fisherman....right Jack?
This is the other side of the road.  The creeks are full and here's a pic of some run off at the end of my road.
Still sporting snow and ice but very pretty as the water runs into the creek.  Saturday and Sunday started out cloudy but ended up sunny and nice.  Under the snow are the signs that say Spring is coming.
  I'll be heading back to work and the atmosphere of the hospital will be different.  Our small hospital has merged with a bigger hospital group...University Hospitals of Cleveland.  The doctor that did my surgery left to go with a different group and I'll miss working with him.  That  has changed things in our department.  I don't know what to expect but I do know that the small rural hospitals in this country will not be able to stand alone.  I won't go into political blah, blah....but I'm hoping ours will go forward and continue to give the great care we always have.  We were just named, for the second time, as one of the best 100 hospitals in the country.  That's not too shabby! I'll enjoy this last week of quiet and home before I start bringing home some "bacon" too.  I'll be heading out to celebrate my sister's 60th birthday at the end of this week.  I'm looking forward to the first trip we've been able to take this long, cold, snowy Winter and we can usher in Spring at the end! Speaking of end....we headed into town at sunset and the temporary lake had a different look:
In a few days it will turn back into a farmer's field, but for now I'll just enjoy living by a lake.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

I'm Having A Meltdown

Yesterday we had picture perfect weather.  The sky was a clear, crisp blue and the sun shone brightly.  It looks as if we're going to get rid of the snow for awhile.  I'm not na├»ve enough to think it's over for the season, but it gives me hope when the grass is finally returning! 
It looks like the snow is creeping in away from the pines.
There's still plenty more to go though.
The driveway is a runny mess out to the street.
Speaking of street. With the snow and ice off the road I can finally do more walking. I went all the way up to the end of my road and back again.  It felt great! I'm hoping to increase the distance each time and get back to a regular walking schedule.  I really miss that!
The ice on the driveway is slowly melting too, leaving behind the mud.  I take care to walk on the strip of stone between the ice.  Lexi was with me on Sunday and she told me her words of wisdom: "YaYa, if I fall on the ice I just fall down...if you fall on the ice you're going to break something!"  Yep, you got that right Lex! So I'm being very careful and after the highs this week to almost 60de, it shouldn't be a problem for long! I hope a big meltdown is happening in your neck of the woods.  This has been a long, cold and snowy Winter for many of us.  So when days like yesterday come along, I just count my blessings and enjoy it.
The sunset last night was glorious!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Fact VS Fiction

This week some extraordinary things happened....things that will blur the line between fact and fiction.  First we'll talk about cheesecake.  Who doesn't like cheesecake?  Probably, a few folks, but not this gal.  I do enjoy a good, yummy cheesecake.  I have a "go to" recipe that I usually will make for special occasions.  It's a chocolate, raspberry, truffle cheesecake.  Love it!  But I found a recipe last week that is more "Spring like".  It was a coconut lime cheesecake.  Fact: I just had to give it a go.  Fiction: Easy peasy?  Fact: Not really. But not horrible either.  It required a few steps that might make you decide not to bother.  Fact: I did it! Fiction: No fiction...only truth here!
Yum! Fact: I would make the crust a bit different next time but the tangy lime flavor was very nice and the homemade whip cream and the toasted coconut on top was delish.   Now for some other "Fact" and "Fiction" that I want to share.  Fact: I have a cat. Fiction: She's a sweet, loveable thing. Fact: Squeak was a rescue and she was never the lovely dovey, jump in  your lap kind of cat.  But in her youth she was a good  mouser and chipmunk destroyer and was outdoors most of the time. As old age has set in she hates the cold and will venture in and out only in nice weather. Anyway, last year she had this nasty sore on her nose.  I thought she got into a fight but since she never leaves the house or the deck, I couldn't figure out how that would have happened. Nothing I did would clear it up or would she even allow me near it. A few weeks ago Jack came home with a tip from Ellen...she works in his office.  She said she has been giving her dog coconut oil in his food and it has cleared up many an ailment he had.  Coconut oil is the "it" thing right now.
 I even used it to swish with each morning. Fact: It wasn't pleasant to put a tablespoon of oil in my mouth first thing and swish it around for 20min.  However, it's suppose to flush toxins out. Fact or fiction? Well, it didn't do much for me...maybe I'm just too toxic! But when I put a teaspoon of it in Squeak's  food  her nose started clearing up the next day...that is not fiction! It looks almost healed and she loves the stuff on her food.  She hasn't been throwing up as much either.  Even Eddy has gotten in on this trick.  Jordan gives him about a tablespoon each day on his food.  We'll see what good it does him! Anyway, if you  have a cat or dog, you might want to try it out and see if it's a fact or just some fiction.  Finally, the area between fact and fiction was blurred this week.  Fact: Harrison Ford is just a man..an actor.  He had an airplane accident that makes you wonder if he's really a super hero after all. Fiction: Think Indiana Jones.  Fact:  He was flying an antique, WWII plane and it's engine failed.  He knew he was going to crash.  Now, what would Indiana Jones do? Well, he'd find a place to land that wouldn't hurt anyone.  However, he probably figured if he survived the crash he would need a doctor. Where do you land a plane that would also give you a doctor?? On a golf course, of course! Yep, he landed on a golf course right near where a doctor was playing...but not near enough to hurt anyone...he's a hero like that! Not just any Doc either...an orthopedic, spine Doc....because, let's face it...Fact: If you're crash landing you're going to break something and probably have whip lash.  Fact....he did have some injuries but not life threatening, and the Doctor was right there to help him get out and to safety.  Who else crash lands a plane and walks away?  Fiction: Hmmm, Hans Solo? Well, he was flying "solo" after all!  And that's a Fact!

 
 

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

A Light At The End Of The Tunnel

There seems to be a small little warming light at the end of our long, very cold, very snowy Winter.   Although a few folks in southern Ashland county might not agree.  They had freezing rain that cancelled schools today.  In our area we had warmer temps yesterday that brought down rain and a bit of melting.  Under all the snow melt was this:
ICE!! This is our driveway..bring your skates !  I spent a little time this morning chopping off ice from the back deck.
It's about 2 or 3 inches thick.  Chopping got some off along with paint on the deck floor...looks like I have some projects for the Spring and Summer! But we still have a lot of snow.
I tried shoveling some off the deck so when it gets warmer in a few days it might actually melt and we'll have the deck back! But the snow was very heavy...good for making snowmen,  not so good for my back! I looked out to the pool and had to laugh. If we get any more snow it might just be a huge snowball!
Snow is half way up and quickly filling in from the top! Not looking too good! Anyone game for a polar bear dip?  In the front yard I noticed that the bird bath is now visible.
Looking ahead I know we're in for more bitter cold tomorrow...then it's all up hill. I believe I saw "50" on the 7 day forecast...that's flip flop weather up here! Then I spied this little dude guarding some half chewed up worms on the front porch.
I was excited thinking it could be a Robin...little orange on it's breast...see, Spring can't be far behind!
Crazy human...wait, I think I do see a light at the end of the tunnel!