Monday, November 30, 2015

Goodbye to November

November is drawing to a close and we have begun to anticipate the celebration of Christ's birth. And, so far about the only decorations that we have out are the children's Fisher Price nativity that we got out on Saturday and then yesterday I got out our Precious Moments nativity. The rest of the decorations are just in boxes and/or scattered in one room or another awaiting a spot to be found for them. Today has been busy, but not busy with decorating. This morning Woody called the surgeon's office to make an appointment to have his staples removed of his accomplishments of the day! He also took a short walk in the drizzle. It has been a drizzly, dreary day. Joseph and Isaac had their school time. After lunch Erin and I ran a couple of errands. And in between all that and before and after I have done various mundane everyday chores around the house. There just hasn't been time to delve into the decorations very much and at the moment I am too tired to even think about them...I know that when I settle into my chair that my eyes will close and they can't close for at least another hour as that is when I have to give Woody another blood thinner those shots about does me I have said many times before...I am NOT a nurse...but Woody seems to find ways to attempt to make me one...but it still isn't one of my callings! Woody seems to be getting stronger and "perhaps" hurting is still a struggle for him when he gets up out of a chair, etc. We will see tomorrow how the doctor feels Woody is doing. Erin has just gone next door to watch the Charlie Brown Christmas special with her cousins. December will be knocking on our door in just a few hours...where has this year gone?!?

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Kept Some! Broke Some!

Today...for our family Thanksgiving gathering...we kept some traditions and broke some. We broke with the tradition that I cook everything for this dinner. Because there was just no way that I could do it "all" this year, Nathan and Kathy and Wade and Melany took up the slack and divided up the sides and made them. My only cooking duty was to cook the turkey (we had already bought one) and make the gravy. During lunch I told them that this might become a "new tradition!" We had a very nice family meal. We ate over at Nathan and Kathy's. It was such a pretty day that some of the children ate out on their screened-in-porch. Some of us ate in their kitchen and then three (Woody, Alex, and Isaac) ate over at our house in the family room on TV trays. We had lots of yummy food. After lunch, the kids headed off to play for a while, Kathy cleaned up her kitchen, Melany carved the rest of the turkey, I cleaned up our kitchen and got the turkey broth going for our traditional after Thanksgiving turkey soup. At a point we gathered all the grandchildren together and we got out the Fisher Price Nativity set...that's the top photo...note that the big fellows sort of sat back and just watched...guess they are outgrowing that tradition. But the littler ones still enjoyed setting it up and doing silly things with the putting the camels on top of the tents or putting a sheep on top of the manger where the angel belongs. Joseph enjoyed looking at the animals. Then a little later several went out to put up Nathan and Kathy's large outdoor nativity scene (bottom photo). All in all we had a great day. I will admit to being VERY tired. Woody seems to have done fairly well with all the activity going on around him. It has been a week now since his surgery...what a blur that week has been! Erin is staying with us to help me with our Christmas the moment I don't see how I can get up enough energy to do it even with her help...but perhaps I will feel differently after a good night's sleep?!? I will end with a "Gobble Gobble" that is fast turning into the sounds of "'Tis the season!"

Friday, November 27, 2015

Beautiful Start to our Friday

Such a pretty sky this morning. The top picture is what we saw this morning from the front windows of the house and the second is what we saw out the back windows. Woody awakened me this morning when he came upstairs looking for one of his medications. Since I was awake I decided that I might as well get underway with my day! I spotted the moon out of the back window when I went out to put some clothes in the drier...or take some out...not sure at this point of the day! Later in the morning I did our weekly grocery shopping...on Black Friday no less! But I guess that Gray Thursday must have helped as none of the lines were too bad. I wasn't too sure about shopping at WalMart on this day, but sailed right through. They actually had just about all their check-out lanes opened...something that almost never happens in our WalMart. After WalMart I went to Kroger. Then headed home and put away the groceries with Abigail's help. At that point it was time for lunch. Mid afternoon I called the pharmacy to see if they had Woody's syringes. They did so I headed their way to get those. So I have had a busy day of running errands...about did me in! Woody did take a walk around the block today. I asked him how it was and he said, "Slow, I didn't know that I could walk so slowly around the block!" He said that the walk made him feel better and didn't hurt so much after his walk. He is still having quite a bit of pain. Late afternoon Isaac came over...he is so happy...he can now open the door and get in our house! (Katie, bar the door!!!) He came over to check to see if I was finished resting and I was so we did a little getting ready for Erin to come stay. He helped vacuum the guest room and I dusted and put away some of the sewing things that the girls and I had out. I did manage to "finally" give Woody his injection last was not easy. It will be time shortly for his second injection...oh, boy. Hope I can do it again! I have to go get out the big roasting pan so I can get the turkey in the oven in the morning (my only cooking part of this Thanksgiving dinner). Hope I can hoist it into the oven on my own in the morning...that is usually Woody's job...but not this year with a "no lifting anything" edict riding over his head. Off to get the pan out. Tomorrow night I will be waddling in here to post news of our gobbling good day!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Thanksgiving Activities

We had lots of Thanksgiving activities going on today. I cut up, peeled and cooked two of the small pie pumpkins that I had bought for fall decorations when Cheryl was visiting. I used my new hand processor to puree the cooked pumpkin. That will give us some pumpkin to make a pumpkin pie or some pumpkin pudding some time in the near future. I don't have to use it for our family Thanksgiving on Saturday as Kathy is making the pumpkin pie/s this year. We both slept fairly well on our first night home from the hospital. Woody spent a good part of the morning working crossword puzzles. On into the afternoon he walked outside and sat and watched the club house building activity. We joined Nathan and Kathy and family for supper tonight. After supper Elijah juggled four balls for us...he's working towards five balls...pretty good for a six-year-old! Well, Woody just came upstairs to get his medicine...why didn't he let me take it down to him? I think that he is hurting some so guess I had better go see to my patient. He just told me that he guesses that I am going to have to give him this blood thinner shot in his stomach. Gulp!!!!!! I am not a nurse!!!!! I just wish that they had shown us how in the hospital. Happy Thanksgiving to all! We have so much to be thankful for this year!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Home Again, Home Again!

Well, Woody did get to come home from the hospital this evening. Hip Hip Hooray! He is ensconsed in his recliner and says that it feels pretty good sitting there. Melany came up late morning and I headed home for a while and rested, showered, and just had some down time. We weren't absolutely sure that he would go home this evening. Woody once again did a lot of resting...hopefully good for what ails him. Melany decided that she would stay till the doctor came in and then stayed till Woody was dismissed. She helped to get him ready to go home while I made a "flying" trip to our pharmacy to get there before they closed. I made it. Got the prescriptions filled and then went by and got Nathan so he could drive us home. He helped take things down to the car and brought the car over to the patient pick up spot. We got him in the car and off we went. Melany headed towards Murfreesboro and the rest of us headed to our house. Woody had a welcoming committee when he got here. They helped open doors and turn on lights. When Woody got seated in his recliner, he saw the "Welcome Home" sign that the neighbor grandchildren had made. It's good to be home. I'm hoping that we both manage to get a good night's rest tonight. There's no place like home! Woody is very glad to be longer tethered to an IV pole! Maybe I'll get back to posting pictures tomorrow night! Hope that each of you has a blessed Thanksgiving Day with family and friends.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


Woody seems to be heading in the direction of being able to go home. He has been a "fairly" good patient. I felt uncomfortable when I posted last night about his relationship with the night nurse. Well, I was right as I got a call a little after midnight to come and take care of him! So off I went in the middle of the night...a bit of a comedy about of errors as you can't go in normal door,but through the ER...then you're have to sign in and then go down totally different halls. I did get there eventually. But according to Woody not quickly enough. So a long night was spent in the hospital room. I was "entertained" with all sorts of tales about this one nurse. Woody says that he hasn't but it seems that he has either dozed or slept deeply for a good part of the least he was resting. He finally "allowed" me to go home for about an hour so I could eat a bite this afternoon and gather things so I can spend the night tonight. So here I sit. A few minutes ago he told me that next time he wanted Melany tI bait with him as she would break the rules! I just wouldn't let him eat something till the doctor said that he could. When the doctor came in this evening he said that he would let him go to a regular diet. So I offered Woody a banana from my stash from home...but it still sits on the side table. I really don't think that he knows exactly what he wants. Today is the third day after surgery...surely "things" will get better!?! He did take a walk a few minutes ago. Now he is settled back in the bed with covers tucked up to his chin and I think I detect snoring...but I am sure that he isn't sleeping! The doctor's report was good this morning. He said that his white count was down and that his creatinine level was back in normal range. So definitely progress is happening. The doctor said that we are aiming for him to go home by Thanksgiving Day. Now if we can both have patience with each other while he convalesces! At times like these he isn't always the most patient...nor am I! I don't like writing the blog from the iPad...can't go back and fix errors that I spot without jumping through a lot of hoops. Google (blog) doesn't like Apple it makes it I will publish while I'm ahead...sorry for a missed letter or two or...will update you on more progress toward going home in tomorrow night's blog. I have to add a P.S. Guess who is his nurse again tonight! Oh, no! At least I am already here or I would probably be called again. I will stay here and keep on things and help him through the night rather than have him deal with his favorite nurse!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Back and Forth Kind of Days

I'm going to skip a picture tonight. As the blog title indicates I have made a couple of trips to and from the hospital today. And, just got home from the last trip to the I think that Woody started experiencing the "third day after surgery on the second...but maybe it will be worse tomorrow?!? Hope not! Not that it was a terrible day...but compared to yesterday, it wasn't the best of days for him. Yesterday visitors couldn't believe that he was all that sick...if they had come today they might have realized that he is sick! He was sort of restless and couldn't get comfortable He isn't in a lot of pain unless he moves...and he is finding out how often he moves! It is quite hard for him to get up into a seated position as he has one arm that is rather weak and not all that mobile and his other arm has the IV in it takes a lot of scooting and me "trying" to assist him to get up (I'm heading for the heating pad as soon as I blog!). The doctor says that he will be in the hospital for a couple more days as they have to pump IV antibiotics through him to overcome the infection from the ruptured appendix. By the time he is dismissed, I may know how to raise the head, feet, and middle on this hospital bed to Woody's liking (I never seem to get it positioned just right!). I'm being reminded of my Candy Striper days...boy that was a long time ago! He did take a good walk around the unit this afternoon...he went at a pretty brisk pace. When he got back, he was ready for a rest so I went home while he attempted to nap. The nurse reported to me that he had slept pretty good for part of the time that I was that is good. If the nurses don't bother him any more than they have this afternoon, they shouldn't intrude much on his sleep during the night. But I know that nights can be long in a hospital and he hates to call the nurses during the night. I told him that they need to hear that buzzer to keep awake...that he would be helping them...don't know that I convinced him to push the call button if he needs help or not!

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Well...NOT a Kidney Stone!

Woody finally decided this morning that he should probably go to the Emergency Room. So around 9am he got signed in to the ER. There weren't many emergencies at the time so it didn't take long till he got called back. He was still sure that he had a kidney stone. Because his white count was elevated, they did a CT scan...and planned to do one with contrast, but his creatinin level was up so they couldn't do the contrast. He was pretty dehydrated...reason that his creatinin level was up. Anyway, not long after they did the CT scan they came in and informed him that his appendex had ruptured! He was very surprised. He said that he guessed that he was just trying to catch up with his grandsons. Both Graham and Alex had theirs rupture when they were quite young. So I guess he decided that he needed to keep up with the younger generation! Everything got underway pretty quickly (for an ER visit)...a surgeon was called and things went from there...various and sundry of the medical team checking in with him and filling in information. He had his surgery (wheeled in at 2:45) and was back in a hospital room before 5pm. The doctor and nurses said that he did great. We have been told that the next couple of days may be in running a high temperature, etc. When I left him a while ago, he seemed to be resting quietly, but was alert when nurses came in and asked him questions. He was hoping to be able to get some sleep. I'm planning on a good night's rest too...I'm pretty tired at the moment. We never know from one day to the next what to expect! And, we learned today that Woody having had so many kidney stone attacks masked a pain of a different sort.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Progress for Some

As tonight's photos show, there has been quite a bit of progress by Nathan, Kathy and family on their club/play house. They have really worked hard today. This is going to be a great place for the children to play! I periodically checked out their progress and snapped pictures and gave encouragement! I wish that I could say that Woody has also made progress, but he still hasn't passed his kidney stone. He doesn't seem to be in as much pain as the previous days, but he still isn't feeling good at all. This morning I got up and made chicken soup (hopefully good for what ails him). While it was simmering, I headed off to the grocery store for some "sick food" (trying to find something that would appeal to Woody). I came home and finished up with the soup. He didn't eat any for lunch, but did give it a try for supper. I have been pushing fluids (of all kinds) to him...but he is in that mode that even mentioning that he needs to drink something makes him almost nauseous! All I can say is, "this too shall pass!" And, hopefully he passes this stone soon! I'm pretty sure that being sick like this for most of this week will make him "not pass" his labs on Tuesday and thus he won't be getting Keytruda that day. But, I guess time will tell! Maybe they will just give him extra hydration along with the Keytruda. I made "breakfast cookies" to take to church in the morning. They are having a workday for our Night in Bethlehem and our Sunday School class has been asked to provide refreshments. I had two little boys (Elijah and Isaac)come in while I had one pan in the oven and another ready to go into the oven. They thought that "something" smelled awfully good! And, "luckily" for them when I was taking them off the pan, one broke in two (conveniently! Grammy couldn't let them come in to cookies baking and not let them at least have a taste!) so they got to be my taste testers! They pronounced them worthy of eating! I will have to be up and out of the house a little after 8am in the morning...and it is supposed to be cold! I was going to take them to the church this afternoon and then I realized that they close the church early on Friday (at least I remembered before heading that direction) guess it is a trip out in the cold in the morning. I have the facing all basted on my blouse...but haven't had enough time or inclination to take it to the sewing machine to sew it on...maybe tomorrow? Well, guess I will go check on my patient and try to get him to drink something. Do you think that he is going to be happy to hear me coming?!?

Thursday, November 19, 2015

About the Same

Woody may be in a little less pain...but still in pain. He says that the pain has that means that the stone has moved. Once again he hasn't done a whole lot today...mainly try to stay halfway comfortable. I had school with Joseph and Isaac and then Joy had her sewing time. She is coming right along with her Christmas sewing projects. After lunch I headed next door so Nathan and Kathy could go on their Thursday date (usually Goosey does this for them each Thursday). While I was over there, Esther worked on her cross stitch project. We read stories and I attempted to help a couple with homework. Graham is beyond me in math (doesn't take a whole lot to bamfoozle me with math). He couldn't remember if he was supposed to divide or multiply to get "x" so he worked it the way he thought he should and then I checked in the teacher's book (the teacher's book was a trial in math for me...just to find the right page!). He had it right so on he went with the rest of the problems. He had his school all done by the time his parents got home. Joseph took a nap. Isaac and I with several other listeners read quite a few stories. Early evening, Abigail came over to see if we could get the Red Cross Babysitting course to open up on our laptop...theirs wasn't letting them get into it. We did manage and Abigail very happily started in working on the different lessons. She is very excited about becoming a babysitter. My sewing saga continues: I did manage to get all my piping made today and it is now all basted on to the facing pieces. I guess that the next step is to get the facings attached to the front edges and the sleeve edges. I think that is a job for tomorrow. I'm pretty tired this evening. Hopefully tomorrow's blog will have good news about Woody's kidney stone. Now for a cute story about Isaac. Last night Isaac, Joseph and Abigail came over to play for a little while. When Abigail was ready to go back home, she suggested that maybe they could watch Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer if they went back to their house. Isaac wasn't quite ready when she suggested heading home, but in a little while, he said, "Okay, I'm ready to go watch "Olaf the Red-Nosed Reindeer!" Hmmmmm only the "Frozen" generation would substitute "Olaf" for "Rudolf!" But they definitely have the same sounds in them. Abigail and I got tickled when he said it. He is at that cute age when "kids say the darndest things!" That last quote is from me, part of the "Art Linkletter" generation! I will close with one last "Isaacism." Over the weekend he and his family were at a church where the choir members wore robes. When he saw the choir heading upstairs, Isaac's comment was: "So the angels go upstairs?" See...I provided you with at least two smiles tonight...needed something to lighten the mood after all this talk of kidney stones!

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Dreary Wednesday

There are several reasons that it has been a dreary day...the weather and the fact that Woody continues to be "under the weather" due to a kidney stone. This has been pretty much a "do-as-little-as-possible" day for Woody. He feels pretty miserable and hopes that this attack will be over as quickly as possible. He did say earlier today with a slight smile that "this too will pass." And, I'm sure that he hopes that I can title tomorrow night's blog that in the past tense! I continued with my sewing marathon today. It is actually in the shape of a blouse/top tonight. The next step is cutting a lot of bias strips and making piping. I got surprised when Kathy came to pick up their mail this morning. I hadn't expected them to be home till sometime today and they came in last night. Abigail came over and had her sewing time. She is making good progress on her Christmas sewing projects. After lunch Joy and Elijah came over and played for a while in the living room. Then this evening Abigail, Isaac, and Joseph came over and played for a little while. We stayed in the living room to let Goosey (Woody) rest. A little while ago we got our friendly automated call from Vanderbilt reminding us of next week's appointments...surely it isn't time for another Vandy trip already! I haven't reminded Woody...yet...I figure he has enough on his mind at the moment without having to think about those appointments. We got our share of rain earlier in the day and it never brightened up...definitely the day reflected how Woody has felt. Guess I will publish this and go check on him!

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

It's Been a While...

It has been a while since I have had to report that Woody has another kidney stone...he hasn't felt the greatest today (an understatement). He did go for a four-mile walk. He was hoping that the exercise would be good for what ailed him. He has read, played a game or two of Scrabble with the computer, watched TV, and just tried to not hurt. I have continued on with my latest sewing project. I still haven't actually started sewing it together, but did get all of it cut out and all the interfacing pieces applied today. I am about ready to take it to the sewing machines. I say that it is all cut out, but I still have to cut a lot of bias strips for piping. It is a very blustery evening. I guess storms are blowing out way...the wind and my aches and pains are telling me that they are coming. I looked at radar a little while ago and there is quite a long line of storms off to our west so looks like we are in for quite a bit of rain and then temperatures are supposed to fall again. I think that I heard the weather man say that it may get into the 20's after all this passes through. Brrrrrrr!

Monday, November 16, 2015

Blue Bird Monday

Our little blue birds continue to frequent our garden bird houses and perch in the trees outside our bedroom every so often I manage to get a photo of them. This little blue bird is perched on the branches of our young tulip poplar (TN's state tree). I spotted the bird when I was taking a picture of the tip-top of this tree and the last six leaves left on it.
Woody worked out in the yard some today. Mid morning he went on a four-mile walk. Late morning he went to Life Care Center and had Bible study with Jeff. I spent most of my day preparing the pattern for my next sewing project and a little before supper I did start cutting it out. This is a project that will take a bit of time as it has several details that will take extra time and care. The pain about cutting it out is that it is a solid color...BUT it has a geometric raised pattern in it...and that needs to be matched. So it is cut out each piece individually and mess around with lining each piece up with the last piece...luckily there aren't many pieces. When I get this blouse done, then I am going to stop sewing for myself and get back to working on Christmas ornaments that I plan to give as gifts. I have quite a few made, but need to make a few more. Over the weekend Woody and I both worked on getting some Christmas we are underway with that "tis the season" job. I am usually decorating by this time in November, but this year I have decided to wait till after Thanksgiving...that way perhaps no trees will get toppled during our family Thanksgiving festivities! Erin is planning to stay for a few days after Thanksgiving and help me decorate. I'm not having the Sunday School Christmas party here this year so I'm not under the gun to have the decorating done by a certain date (except in time for our family Christmas). I am thinking about doing less decorating...but I know that when I get the boxes out and see all my favorites, it will be hard to not to put them out. We will see what transpires! I actually took some time from my sewing today and did do a little cooking. This morning I cooked rice that needed to be cold for a salad. Then just before supper I added the other ingredients and we had one of our favorite salads made with imitation crab, rice, carrots, celery, and a dressing made from mayo, lemon juice and French dressing. It tasted quite good. Woody ate his with tomato and I ate mine with avocado. I guess I will go and cut out one more piece of my blouse before I call it quits for tonight. Then I guess I will read for a while. I did finish two books over the weekend.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Saturday Doings

Woody headed out, like usual, to do Saturday errands...WalMart and the library. Later in the day he went on a four-mile walk. I sewed for a good part of the morning and some this afternoon and also talked to Cheryl and Melany on the phone. While I was talking to Cheryl, Woody brought me up a yummy sandwich that he had made for lunch...a turkey, bacon, tomato, avocado sandwich with roasted red pepper sauce on a chibatta roll. That was a nice treat. (Note that I don't cook as much when I am sewing mode! I'm glad that Woody doesn't mind cooking.) I did get my top done all except for hammering on the snaps on the front opening. I have been sitting in "my" chair trying to talk myself into getting up and putting the snaps on...but so far have just made it in here to blog. I need to put the finishing touches on my Sunday School lesson but so far haven't talked myself into doing that either...guess I am feeling rather lazy. I did doze off for a little while and woke up just a little before it was time to blog...maybe that will turn into a power nap and once I totally wake up I will be able to talk myself into doing one of those two things...or something else. Woody is downstairs reading. I have read a little today too. When I look back on my day it looks like a pretty lazy Saturday! It's nice to have a lazy day every now and then! Tonight's photo is one of the few leaves still hanging on to our little tulip poplar that resides between our house and Nathan's. The sun was glinting on it just right the other day when I was closing the curtains against the afternoon sun so I got my camera and snapped this picture before I closed them.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Feast or Famine

Today was my six month check-in with my doctor mainly for bloodwork. And, it was for fasting bloodwork...and, the appointment wasn't until 10:30 this morning and I didn't leave the doctor's office till almost twelve. Woody drove me to my appointment...about a 45 min. had that amount of time to get back to Tullahoma too. When we got back we stopped at the Credit Union and then went to WalMart to make a Christmas purchase for one of the grandchildren. Then we made a stop at Red Lobster for the first feast of the day. We both enjoyed our late lunch. We stopped at the public library on the way home so Woody could drop off some books and DVD's that he was finished with and also to pick up a book that he had requested. After we got home Woody went on a four-mile walk. And, a little after we got home I started on tonight's that takes a while to prepare. So after a late lunch we had a late supper. We just got finished eating Eggplant Parmesan...another feast. At this point of the day I am pretty tired. Woody did yardwork before we left for my appointment this morning...raked some more leaves down to the road before the leaf machine got underway this morning...leaves are once again swept up and have been whisked away...of course as I type I'm sure that more are coming down. It has been a tiring day for me. I'm looking forward to my recliner as soon as I hit publish on tonight's blog! There's a freeze warning out for tonight. Woody went out and picked all the varieties of peppers and also covered a few of our plants.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Typical Thursday

Pretty humdrum around here most of our days...and that is really a good thing when one lives in a house with a stage-4 melanoma patient. We like run-of-the-mill kind of days in comparison to some of the days that we have been through in the past seven years. We are almost to the seven-year anniversary of the phone call from Woody's surgeon saying that his melanoma had returned...which put him at stage-4 because it had spread beyond the original tumor. And, at that time most of the doctors, if they would say, said that he had less than a year to live. So he has definitely proved them wrong on that point! But in proving them wrong he has been through so many things...tried just about everything that he was offered. I do believe that God had his hand in all this and decided that it was time for a miracle! We like miracles! I had preschool with Joseph and Isaac this morning. Then Elijah, Joy, Abigail came over and read to me and then Esther came for her sewing time. She is doing counted cross stitching at this time...a very slow process, but she is enjoying watching the progress of her work as the picture grows. Today when her fingers grew tired, she looked through some of the many, many, many cross stitch books that I have. She found a picture that she wants to is pretty big, but she was really set on giving it a try. While I was having school, Woody, Kathy, and some of the children were frantically trying to blow more leaves to our curbs as the leaf machine was back in our neighborhood...and when the leaf machine is here one wants to get it to pick up as many leaves as possible. Last night we had some pretty strong winds and lots more blew down. I looked out once when I heard the wind pick up and the leaves were just raining down. "If only" that wind could have blown them all down...but these oaks are stubborn about releasing all their leaves...they will hold on to some till the new ones come on in spring. But at least more were blown and raked to the curb. The leaf truck didn't make it all the way to our houses, but hopefully tomorrow they will be back. When Esther headed home at lunch time, Goosey (Woody) headed to her house also. This is Thursday and Thursday is "date day or night" for Nathan and Kathy. Today was a "date day" and Woody stayed next door for a couple of hours. After lunch I got back to my sewing. I sat down in my comfy recliner to baste something and the next thing I knew I was waking up from a pretty deep sleep...hadn't planned on that! When I did wake up I got busy again with my sewing. We had leftover soup for supper...when sewing I like seems to be an interruption! I have made a couple of trips downstairs to do a couple loads of wash. In that wash I am washing spring/summer clothing of mine so I can put it away for the winter. The predicted temperatures say that I'm not going to be needing them for a while. Of course, if I need them I know where they are! There is a freeze watch out for our county for tonight...I think that I will stay inside and not watch...if it comes it comes! I am going to go downstairs and mention this watch to Woody and see if he wants to cover anything tonight. Well, back to sewing...or maybe I'll take a break before I start making mistakes and read for a while. I am about finished with a book that I borrowed from a friend and would like to take it back to her on Sunday. Plus I "could" study my Sunday School lesson some more (I have been doing a little on it the last couple of days) as I am to teach on Sunday. Lots of options to occupy my evening!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Veteran's Day 2015

Pretty much a normal Wednesday for our household. We got back into the school routine this morning. After Isaac finished his school time with me, he and Joseph went to help Goosey (Woody) with his Wednesday Krogering. I continued on with listening to children read and then Abigail had her sewing time with me. After a quick lunch I headed to the church to work in the library for a couple of hours. When I got home, Woody was still out on his six-mile walk of the day. For supper we made a joint effort...Woody sliced green, yellow, orange and red peppers and onions and I sauteed them for our Steakum sandwiches. After supper I cut out another top for myself. Woody has been reading and watching TV. I think that I am about finished with sewing for today...but at least I am at a good place for the next time I can grab a bit of sewing time. I humbly end tonight's blog thanking all those who fought in the past and those who continue to protect our country's freedoms.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Slow Motion

The computer is going verrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrry slowly this evening. I think that I had better make this short and sweet in case it decides to not let me post! I sewed most of the morning...putting on the last few touches of my top. Then after lunch I went to get my hair cut. Since then I have been preparing the next thing that I plan to make...another top. Woody has done this and that around the house and the yard. I know that when I was leaving to get my hair cut he was blowing the leaves and acorns off the walkway and part of the driveway. This evening he walked to and from the church prayer room. He is watching a movie. And, I am trying to decide if I am too tired to start cutting out my top...need to be able to concentrate as this one has some stripe matching. Graham and Elijah popped in for a few minutes. They had just returned from a ministry trip to St. Louis. They extended there stay a bit so they could take in the zoo and they also went up in the Gateway Arch. Abigail sent me pictures from her phone of some of her sibblings looking out the windows in the top of the Arch and then a picture of the complete shadow of the arch down below them.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Possible Winter Digs?

This morning when I opened up our bedroom curtains, I looked down on the garden and was surprised to see blue birds flitting about and they seemed to be interested in all of our birdhouses...though the one pictured seem to get the interest of both the mama and the daddy. One would go and look in the hole and then the other would go look inside. I'm not sure how many there were down there at the same time. I just know that when I looked at one or another of the bird houses there was one sitting on it too...hard to keep track of just how many when trying to capture one or two with the camera. Now we will have to wait and see if we have bluebirds live in our garden throughout the winter. Woody walked four miles this morning. Later in the morning he went to the funeral home for a visitation. Then a bit later he went to the Life Care Center and had Bible study with Jeff. I stayed home and sewed. After I blogged Saturday night, I hemmed my skirt and then yesterday got under way with a knit top. I am just about finished with the top...just a few details remain. Late this afternoon while I sewed, Woody made one of our favorite soups--J. Hatheway's Italian Sausage. We both enjoyed it for supper. I think that I am through with sewing for today. It gets to the point that I figure that it is just as well to stop before a big mistake happens! And, at this point with it almost finished, I don't want to make a mistake and ruin it! I think that my recliner and a book sound good for the evening for me. Woody is downstairs in his recliner and a book and I hear the looks like we are settling in for another typically quiet evening for our household.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

A "Sew Super Saturday!"

I had a really good time sewing and eating and visiting and then more sewing and more eating and more get the picture! I managed to get a skirt finished except for hemming it (hem is turned up and basted so all it will take is sitting in my chair watching a show on my iPad to get that sewing job finished). And, then I got underway with a knit polo shirt. So it was a productive day along with lots of fun just being with others who have a love of sewing! I even got to see my good friend/partner in many sewing "crimes," who moved from Tullahoma. Connie was back in the area and stopped by to visit with her former quilt guild. I had sew perfect of a day that I didn't even take my camera out of my purse till on my way home. Woody took me by the beautiful ginkgo tree and stopped so I could get out and capture it in all its current golden splendor. The next path on the way home led us to another ginkgo tree that was a bit ahead of the top picture...and its leaves have now just about totally fallen off...the fate of the top pictured ginkgo tree..probably in a matter of days its beautiful branches will be totally bare, as these trees tend to drop all their leaves in a very short time (what we wish our majestic oaks would do!). Woody was pretty much on his own all day except for being my chauffeur to and from my sewing day. My machine is too heavy for me to lift so he takes me and comes and gets me and my machine. Today when he picked me up he had a bit easier time of getting the machine to the car as I was gifted by Connie with a rolling case for my machine...her current machine doesn't fit in it so I was the lucky recipient! Besides being my chauffer Woody walked four miles and went to the grocery store and has made brownies, which I am tempted to go sample...except I have really had what "should" be my quota of desserts for the day, but that "might" not stop me!

Friday, November 6, 2015


Woody came upstairs this morning to check the radar on the computer to see how close the rain was. And, it was he took an umbrella. Not long after he closed the door the bottom fell out, but it didn't rain hard for too least not here...not sure how much rain he had on his six-mile walk...not enough to cut his walk short. Later in the morning he went to get the oil changed in the Fusion and also made a stop at the library. I spent the morning gathering everything together for the projects that I plan to work on tomorrow at "Sew Super Saturday." I just unplugged my machine and put the carrying case over it. So the machine is ready to go and all the other things that I will need (at least I hope that I have gathered up what I will need) are packed in the laundry basket. I have a skirt cut out and a top...those should keep me busy...but if there is more time or if I get tired of one project or another I can also make some piping that I am going to need for another project or I can work on making one of my needlework pieces into a pillow. So there should be plenty to keep me occupied for quite a few hours. I did take a break from the sewing area long enough to do a little cooking today...made one of our chicken thigh recipes.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Pinky Raised?

Woody headed off on a twelve-mile walk before I started having school this morning. Joseph always looks for Goosey (Woody)...especially when we look at the picture of the goose in our animal book. He then looks for "Honk Honk" (Woody) when he tells me what a goose and Goosey say. We had another modified school day. Joseph and Isaac had their regular time with me and then Esther came over a bit early for her Grammy/sewing time. I needed to be through a bit early as our Sunday School class had an outing planned to Southern Charm's Tea Room this afternoon in Bell Buckle, TN...a piece down the of the towns that Woody and I head through when we go the back road to Vanderbilt. We had a nice group of fourteen enjoy tea, sandwiches, soups, and some had afternoon tea goodies. I know that my grilled cheese with pesto sandwich was delicious as was my velvet chicken soup. I think that a good time was had by all. I came home and got busy and cut out a skirt. I have been cutting out several things that I want to make for myself. I plan to sew on them when I go to "Sew Super Saturday" this Saturday. A whole day blocked out for sewing...what could be better (at least for me!). This special sewing day is put on by one of the local quilt guilds. I am not a quilter, but do sometimes have quilting projects of sorts that I work on when I go to this...but this year it is straight up garment sewing for me. I have been included in this quilting event for years by a friend who was a member of the guild. She has moved away, but another friend in the group continues to issue me an annual invitation. So I am gathering sewing notions, etc. that I might's a bit hard to anticipate everything that I might need when I sew outside of my own sewing room. Well, back to preparing the pieces for the skirt that I am going to make on Saturday. I have a top all cut out perhaps it will be a productive day? Time will tell. Woody is downstairs reading. It's a pretty quiet evening in this Dorrell household. I don't even hear the TV downstairs.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015


When I called for Joseph to come over this morning for school, he was out at the playhouse/clubhouse construction site. I headed out to get him and checked on the progress of their building efforts. Tonight's pictures show the progress they made from yesterday afternoon when we got home from Vanderbilt (first three pictures)and today when I went out the last time before Abigail had her sewing time with me. They had a nice sturdy floor when last I checked. Woody did his Krogering this morning along with checking on the progress of our Taurus, and stopping at the local Farmer's Market. When he checked on the car it's window was fixed, so sometime while I was working at the church library this afternoon, he walked to the car repair place and got the car. (I did offer to take him when I went to the library, but he wanted that to be his walk for the day.) So we once again have two cars that have working windows. After I worked at the library I ran a couple of errands. First I stopped to get some sewing supplies that I needed and then I went to the public library to return a book that I had finished. I decided to look around and found several other books that I decided that I want to read. So once again I have quite a stack of books next to my chair to read or at least peruse. One of them is the history of Thanksgiving...not sure that I will read every word, but thought that it would be interesting to at least look through it and read the parts that intrigue me. We had an easy supper tonight. I gathered some more things together for my latest sewing endeavors. Then I sat down to read for a little while and next I knew I was asleep. Then when I came in to blog the computer was very slow to wake up. Woody is downstairs watching a library DVD.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Foggy Start to A Keytruda Anniversary!

Our morning started out foggy but other than fog and a slight slow-down a couple of times on the interstate...the rest of the day was smooth sailing. We got to Vanderbilt about an hour before Woody's first appointment...and all the appointments continued to go ahead of schedule. Once again shortly after we sat down in Dr. Sosman's outer waiting room, someone asked if anyone in the waiting room had an appointment with Deborah Wallace (Dr. Sosman's nurse practitioner). Woody's appointment was with her so he was taken right back. She told us that his PET scan showed that everything was pretty much the same...nothing new = good news. Dr. Sosman hadn't discussed with her the possibility of Woody stopping Keytruda either at the end of this 12 week time or after the next 12 weeks. She said that she would check and let us know if a decision had been made when we come to the next appointment in three weeks. We were out of that appointment so quickly that Woody decided to go check if a church friend was still in the hospital at Vandy. She had been discharged so we headed back to the infusion clinic and he signed in there. He got taken in thirty minutes early for that appointment and the Keytruda infusion started about five minutes before his actual scheduled appointment. Shortly before the infusion was finished, a nurse from Dr. Sosman's office came in and had him sign some papers as it is time to get reapproved for Keytruda. Guess what that means...he has been taking Keytruda for an entire year. I checked in my running notes from all his Vanderbilt appointments since his return to Vanderbilt after his time at National Institutes of Health...and...sure enough his first Keytruda infusion was November 6, 2014. Time marches on...swiftly! We were waiting on our car to be brought to us just a few minutes after noon. So a very smooth day of Vandy appointments. We did stop for lunch at Steak and Shake. We hadn't done that in a while. We enjoyed our hamburgers and fries and Woody also enjoyed a strawberry shake. Then we headed on down the road for home. Woody stopped for me to take some pictures of the most beautiful ginkgo trees in town. Wish that the sky had been blue behind it...we stayed cloudy all day. Here are a couple of pictures to see still hasn't taken on its really bright yellow hue...still a bit of green in the leaves...but a really breathtaking tree...the trunk is also so unusual...I was told one day that the reason that it had so many trunks was that it was run over by a lawnmower in its early days and it came back multi-trunked.
We got home and Nathan, Kathy and children were out working on the "clubhouse" out back...getting the foundation and floor underway. They decided that they had better take advantage of the mild and dry weather that we are supposed to have for the next couple of days. After supper Woody walked to and from the church prayer room. I sat down in my comfy chair and fell promptly to sleep...reason that the blog is a bit late tonight. Our Vandy trips always wear me out no matter how smoothly they go. But the Vandy patient sails right through hardly affected by the day and he is the one being treated!

Monday, November 2, 2015

Dark Thirty

Tonight's picture shows what the time change has done to us...dark before 5:30pm...really pretty dark at 5pm. The light that is on the porch is from the street light. Our bodies are still trying to adjust to the time change. I keep thinking that it is later than it is...and really it is an hour later to my body's clock. Woody headed out on a seven-mile walk before school started for me this morning. Joseph, Isaac, Joy, Esther, Abigail, and Elijah all had some time with me today. It was Elijah's "long" time with we read a book about Morse Code and then deciphered a riddle that had been written in Morse Code and he wrote his name in dots and dashes. Late morning Woody went to Life Care to have Bible Study with Jeff. I continued on with some sewing preparations this afternoon. I'm trying to have several things cut out so I can sew on them on Saturday when I go to a special all-day sewing day that one of the local quilt guilds puts on yearly. I am not doing any quilting at the moment, but do have several things that I want to get I plan to garment sew...hope that they don't throw me out!!!!! I made chicken salad for our supper tonight...guess it is time for me to get back to cooking...I have taken a bit of a break since Erin was here and we have been eating leftovers or other easy meals. I just hung the towels back in the upstairs guest the bed changed the other day in the guest guess we are ready for the next guest/s that might come our way. Tomorrow we will head to Vanderbilt for Woody's next labs, seeing docs, and Keytruda I am gathering what I will be taking...a book, camera and batteries, iPad, pack into my tote bag...I want plenty of choices as to what I will do to wile away the waiting hours.