Friday, March 30, 2012


I talked with Donna this morning. She came home from the hospital and she's doing good. She sounded great but says she's very sore..(like she got hit by a truck sore!) Thanks for all the well wishes and prayers. Donna, if you get to read this, know that you are very loved and cared for and I'll see you on Sunday night! Love ya!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

You've Got A Friend...Lots Of Them!

I was given permission today to post about this subject. A few weeks ago Donna (Starkey Hollow)my BFF, good walking buddy, best blog buddy, and sort of relative...our hubbies are cousins but we claim each other!, said the words that made my heart stop..."I have a breast lump". She immediately went to the Doctor, had an ultrasound and found out the news was not good. She has breast cancer. Since that time she's had an MRI that showed a large lump that is almost to her chest wall. She will have a complete mastectomy tomorrow. The days and weeks ahead will be a journey that she saw her Mother go through....her Mother saw Donna's Grandmother go through this too. Donna is a nurse, a very good nurse. She knows what will be required of her. We just want her to know that she is not alone. All her coworkers have tried in their own ways to show support, love and "what can I do to help" attitude. Her family and church family and other very close friends are there for her too. I know her blogging friends will be praying for her. Tomorrow I will stand next to her at the operating room table as a member of her surgery team. I will do as I have done for more than 35yrs..set up the room, prepare the instruments, help the surgeon, and do the best job possible for the best outcome. The other teams in the other operating rooms will be doing the same for their cases, but all us will have Donna in our prayers, thoughts and hopes that this will be the first step in her recovery and cure of this stupid disease. To make sure she knows how much we are thinking of her we surprised her today with a little party. I know you must think that is strange to have a party for such a serious thing...but we know Donna. She has a very upbeat attitude, is trying to get through this with courage and also a sense of humor. So the following are pics of her day.
We did what we do best in any situation...happy, sad, congratulation, name it we will have a carry-in of food to honor it!
When she came in the break room and saw the tables of food, and saw that it was for her, she was overwhelmed... then the sign said it all.
Then she looked up and saw this! The one thing bigger than Donna's heart is her sense of humor...she loved it!
Besides flowers and food she received this lovely blanket made by one of the nurses we've worked with for more than 25yrs...We have been with each other through family crises, divorces, parent deaths, happy times of kiddo graduations, weddings and Grandkiddos...and we'll be here for this too.
Truer words were never written.
Not the best pic of us, but hey, it was the end of the day and Donna was just finishing up her last eye case and I was getting ready to head for home. We're used to seeing each other dressed so lovely!
This is Suzie with Donna. Suzie made this beautiful blanket for Donna to wrap up in and feel all the warmth and strength of caring that's being sent her way. Beautiful job Susie!
You do have all the love and support of your coworkers, friends, church friends, family and bloggers. Good luck tomorrow and know that you're never alone, God loves you, and now let's kick this in the butt!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Spring Surprises

With the warm and wet weather we've been having I thought I would head up into the Creepy Woods with Eddy to see if we could spot any mushrooms so I could let my friends know they can come and pick to their hearts content. Well, I was looking for shrooms...Eddy was just enjoying the walk. He loves to explore every nook and cranny. I really didn't spy any shrooms but I found a few surprises.
I found these cute little wildflowers growing everwhere. They are very tiny. Don't ask me the name of it...I just call it "cute".
Further down the trail I see what looks like daffodils growing in the middle of nowhere. Transplants that somehow got dropped here.
Not too far from these little dudes more daffodils are growing right in the creek. I guess the bulbs must have washed down stream. A nice surprise!
Yep, that's a daffodil alright. You just never know what you might come up on in the Creepy Woods!
No, this isn't some crazed wild dog whose toenails need clipping. It's just Eddy giving my the "hairy eyeball" to put down the stinkin' camera and get a move on! I had to get back ASAP because I broke my own rule this month and had to get back to do it...What you may ask? Mow the lawn. I cannot believe I actually mowed the lawn in March. I had too though because it was getting so high that I would need a much bigger mower than I own to tame it! My other rule was no AC until atleast May. I sure hope I can keep that rule!
A sure sign that warm weather and Spring have arrived is this tree outside one of the few windows in the surgical suite. It's this lovely blossom beauty that will show us another beauty show in the fall. The only thing I don't like about it is the smell..and they have a ton of them in our parking lot. I'm good at holding my breath because it's worth putting up with the smell to feast on the loveliness of it.
Speaking of work...It's not just pretty trees that we get blessed with. It's nice patients that take the time to say "thanks" to our staff. One of our patients made these adorable cupcakes for us. This is just a sample of the ones that we received. The breakroom looked like "Cupcake Wars"! It's nice to feel appreciated!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Good-bye Mr. W!

Good-bye Winter...Hello Spring. Today is the final day of Winter. I can't believe it, probably because we had such a warm and mild one it didn't feel like a pain in the bum like last year! I think we will be a bit sorry though. Without a long freezing time the bugs will emerge in droves. Ying and yang in all things. Even though it's not officially Spring, my yard has been acting like April for a few weeks. The flowers, like this daffodil, are trying to give a nice show. We've had a ton of rain also that makes my yard a soggy mess. But I'll just have to enjoy this weather and hope we don't sizzle come July!
The Creepy Woods is starting to take a new green shade. Soon it will be mushroom hunting. With the warm weather and rain we've been having, it should be a good year!
The daylilies are up..present and accounted for!
One of my favorite flowers is getting it's green leaves and blooms..the lilac bush. I have about 5 of them and hopefully they will do well blooming this early.
My magnolia tree thinks it's time to bloom. I bet by the middle of this week it will be in full pink glory.
Another sign that Spring is arriving...Critters! We see deer all year but these two were just hanging out in the Creepy Woods together..perhaps they have Spring fever? Can you see them? They saw me and soon took off.
Speaking of critters...Here's one that we don't see all the time. In fact there were two of them but I only had time to click a pic of one before they took off. Relax there big fella...I said we're celebrating Spring tomorrow..not Thanksgiving!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Are You Feeling Lucky?

Happy St.Patrick's Day to all the Irish and non-Irish who wish they were Irish! Are you feeling lucky today? I'm not sure about luck. I'm not sure how it works, who gets it, why some of us just don't seem to possess it. My Father-in-law used to say that the harder he worked, the luckier he got. Some days I feel like a work my tail off but the results always don't equal out. Then there are the times when I think, hey, I just can't believe my luck. This just wasn't one of those weeks. And it doesn't even have to do with the HGTV dream home I obviously didn't win! Do you believe in luck? Or fate? Or the line up of the stars? Or is everyday a crap shoot and we get what we get? What about God in all of this? I'm a strong believer in God and his love for us..even in the bad times. So why do I care about "luck"? So many questions for a beautiful day like the one we had today. That brings me to my next subject.. Us Northerners are weird. I should know because I've been one all my life. We have had the warmest March that I can remember. It's been a total opposite of last year and most every year before that. Yet, can we just sit back and enjoy it? NO! I'm looking over my shoulder and thinking "When does the snow come back?" "What does this weird weather mean?" So today I sat outside to get a little vitamin D. If you live within 50 miles of me the phenomenon you witnessed was just my white arms and legs giving off a glare. It's been since last year in...maybe September...when they last saw the light of day! I watched my neighbors clean up their yard. I watched them work. I watched the grass grow, the flowers bloom, the sun shine. I was feeling lucky I guess. Lucky that I wasn't working at the hospital..I'm on call this weekend. Lucky that I had nothing inspiring me to want to work in the yard yet. (Hey, it could snow next week..right?) Lucky that for one minute I could take a deep breath and think..for right now, I'm doing OK.
I do feel lucky to have sweet Grandkiddos like this little squirt! Cameron told his Daddy, (my son Jack), that he needed to go with him to YaYa's because he was sure YaYa was missing him. Well, besides being such a cutie, he's a mind reader..yep Cameron, YaYa did miss you and I'll always miss you until I see you again..hopefully very, very soon.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Awards Night..And The Winner Is:

Last night Jack and I attended the Chamber of Commerce awards night. Usually around this time of year they have the small business of the year award breakfast. They decided this year they would expand this to include awards in 8 different categories such as retail, health and social services, small business, large business, security, education..just to name a few. Taking it from a breakfast to a dinner was a big difference and a big challenge. The night turned out great. The food was wonderful and the speeches were short. The response from the community was great, they had about 340 people there..100 more than they had at first anticipated. Jack usually is in charge of the small business awards and this year was no exception. He had to say a little speech and hand out the the academy awards only with no wardrobe malfunctions...dang it! The keynote speaker was a wonderful, inspiring woman named Dr. Lucille Ford. She is almost 90! But you would never guess it from listening to her speak. I have had the privilege a few times and always enjoy her wisdom, her sense of humor and her intelligence..I want to grow up to be her some day...I would have to live to be 200 in order to accomplish all that she has. I wish my pic of her had turned out but it was too dark to get a good shot when she was speaking. I should have taken one during dinner since we sat together but I was a bit shy to whip out my camera...surprising I know since I have no qualms about shooting pics of my hubby in surgery! When we entered into the Convo Center this landscape decor was set to symbolize the main thought for the night. If you can see it, the center has a willow tree. A willow sends out big, strong roots and that can help keep soil from eroding and it was likened to a community of businesses and organizations that reach out to keep a community strong. Our Ashland community has been blessed with many small and larger business throughout the years and small business especially has become almost a backbone of small towns like ours. It is easy to see how the large employers of our town help us, but we forget sometimes about the little guys that may only employ 25-100 people. There are many more of those than people really know about. So events like this that give focus to that is such a nice thing to have happen.
Hi Jack! All around the room the finalists for the Chamber of Commerce awards had tables set up with hand outs and information about their organization. This was display was from the police force. Now Jack, you must admit that this picture is much nicer than the hospital ones that I took a few weeks ago.
Ashland University has a wonderful event area in the Convocation Center. It's used for many things throughout the year...weddings, any AU events and many things from our community. I thought they did a great job in decorating for tonight's award celebration.
The tables all looked very Spring like. I thought the centerpieces were very nice.
Here's a nice blurry shot of Jack up at the podium waiting to give out awards to businesses and other organizations. My little point and shoot just didn't have the "umph" to take a nice clear shot at a distance. how did that get to my house? I guess it pays to know a big wig at an awards event. I love a freebie!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Saturday Doings

This past week has flown by and I have been a bad's been over a week since I posted anything. Jack is doing great..still sore..but he's healing well. We've just been busy doing the regular, like all of you I bet! I first want to say a big thanks to Cathy from acorn hollow blog for the super magazine I won. It came yesterday and I have been enjoying looking slowly through each lovely page. The weather has been so beautiful these past 2 days and that's the perfect time to sit outside and read a good mag..Thanks again Cathy!
It's been wonderful to have unusually warm weather for this time of year. It's nice to have sun streaming through the (sadly dirty!) windows. Squeak found her spot for the day..right in the path of the sun. Smart sunscreen needed for her!Our woman's organization..the Relief Society...was finally able to have our breakfast meeting that was canceled back in January. We had it at my house and turned out to be a fun time of fellowship, food and a good motivational speaker. The gathering began in the kitchen as all the ladies stopped to visit and greet one another. We had a good turnout for a Saturday morning. I was grateful that they all took the time out of a busy day to stop and enjoy each other's company and share breakfast.
It's easy to have alot to chat about sitting around the kitchen table...they are all involved in a deep conversation here while enjoying some chow.
They gathered in the diningroom and I'm not sure what's being said about the flowers!
The food was put out on the island and we had a good variety. Breakfast casseroles, pancakes, bread pudding, fresh fruit, blinis and some OJ to wash it all down...I love breakfast!
After eating and visiting we moved to the livingroom to hear our guest speaker. Everyone grabbed a chair and settled in.
Here is our speaker for the meeting. My friend Shay from work. She told us about setting goals, not giving up, and having no excuses when it comes to completing a goal. She's lost over 60lbs and is still on her journey. She has a large family...six kiddos...a hubby who works for the railroad and is gone alot, and she works full-time (plus call time which can add many extra hours to a 40hr. week!). She was nervous at first but I assured her that the women assembled today were all low key, fun, and eager for inspiration. Thanks Shay, we loved it! After some quick business everyone headed out. Great way to start the day!
The weather was just perfect this weekend. I walked around the yard checking out the spring flowers that are just peeking out of the dirt. The crocus is always the first to greet me...this year was no exception. Spring must be on it's way!
A final thing I found blooming in the garden. How about this gas cap from the mower that I lost 2 years ago. I looked everywhere for that sucker when I first lost it..everywhere. Unfortunately it was well hidden in the dirt and I had to purchase a new one. It just needed to be found in it's own time I guess!

Friday, March 2, 2012

A Day In The Life

Yesterday Jack had to have surgery to repair another hernia. It's OK, I'm not breaking any HIPA laws in divulging this info. I have his permission..maybe not his blessing, but his permission! The surgery went fine. All the players involved did a great job. He had a rough night, but is feeling better now. I thought I would show you a start to finish day in the life of a surgery patient and also some of the wonderful people I work with who do the very best for everyone who walks through the door. I was able to pic my team members to take care of Jack. Donna (Starkey Hollow) was kind enough to say she'd scrub for him. I took care of her hubby Larry a few times and so we try to take care of each other! Thanks Donna! She's a sweetie. If you follow her blog, you already know that!
Shay is the circulating nurse in the OR. She is in command here. Shay took care of Jack last time so I asked for a repeat performance. She gets the patients and helps the Docs and gets supplies for us scrub nurses and her favorite part of the job is running the computer. That's just a joke...all the nurses hate that thing! She's blurry here because she's always in a hurry to get the surgeries started on time. And she has 6 kids so running is her life! Thanks for taking such good care of Jack, Shay!
Hello Dr. Mary McDonald! She's a really good general surgeon..I also consider her a friend who loves to garden and tell me all her garden secrets! She's the only one I would let touch my family. I don't know why she's squinting here...probably because I caught her on a dead run to get to the OR for Jack! Besides being an awesome surgeon she's the mother of 5 kiddos and her hubby's a Dentist. So her life is only a tiny bit busy.
This is probably your best friend in the OR. He's the anesthesiologist..gas passer...the pilot in charge of the take offs and landings. The most important part of the surgery. Keeps you pain free while "under" and makes sure you wake up nicely at the end. This is Dr. Frazee. Isn't he cute? I should have asked him to take his mask down so you could enjoy his cuteness. If he reads this he may choke me...nah, he's our buddy and he and Jack have a good friendship. Sometimes Jack will come to the hospital and give Dr. F an adjustment...really! Jack makes hospital calls to only his best friends! Many last week on Dr. F's birthday, I will make him his fav request...a Texas sheet cake. He may have just earned another one!
Here's nurse Sonie (or as I call her...Sonic Boom!)She's the first to take care of you and the last to see you out the door. She works in our pre-op area. She made me laugh when I found out she actually ran downstairs to find a hanger for Jack's clothes so he wouldn't have to stuff them in a plastic bag. Now that's a caring, over the top nurse.
Yep, here he is already to take on this adventure. Jack's a good sport about my camera...really he is!
I went with him down the long cold hallway on the way to OR #2. Nice socks!
This is the final pic of Jack...he made it through the surgery fine and went home late afternoon. Unfortunately he wasn't feeling as good as the last time he had surgery so I decided no more pics, he'd had enough. He's just happy it's over!