Monday, August 31, 2009

Dad Update

This morning I got up early, because I was going to bring dad french toast for breakfast. Don't get excited. I was going to pick up Sonic french toast sticks. I wasn't actually going to get up early and cook anything, so don't get any crazy ideas about me cooking you some delicious french toast.

However, mom called and said dad's gastroenterologist wanted to run some tests this morning, so dad couldn't eat anything. She also said that they gave dad some more blood "to be sure he has enough" and that Dr. Birdwell will restart dad's chemo tomorrow. They are going to do the chemo right in dad's room, since he's still so weak.

He saw the physical therapists today and did a short walk across the room and sat up in a chair in the room for a couple of hours. Amazing.

The scan report on his lymphoma tumor shows that the tumor has grown, but there are no new spots. Dad's oncologist says the fact that the tumor has grown is not surprising due to the fact that the chemo was stopped prematurely due to dad's original bout with jaundice a couple months ago.

Keep those happy thoughts and prayers coming dad's way. They're working.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Dad Update and Laurie Appears to Find Jesus

Dad Update
Dad was much better today, though still very weak. His temperature is low, but his blood pressure is great. He had visits from his brother and sister-in-law from Houston and the grand-fabulous Ava.

He still doesn't have a drain tube from his liver, but he isn't jaundiced either. We saw an infectious disease doctor who says his infection is better, but still there. We also saw dad's gastroenterologist who is keeping an eye on him. Basically, we're still waiting for dad to get strong enough to restart his chemo. We didn't see an oncologist today. I'm sure we'll know more about that area of dad's treatment tomorrow.

Laurie Appears to Find Jesus
When the priest came into dad's room today to give him communion, I pushed dad's tray out of the way and the leg of the tray got caught on dad's urine catheter bag. I hit the floor, grabbed the bag and while trying to dislodge the bag, pulled out some sort of plug. Bonnie said later, "I bet the priest thought you got the Holy Ghost or something."

The priest, being in the middle of his priestly duties, never skipped a beat while I kneeled at his feet fiddling with the catheter bag and whispering loudly to Bonnie, "Get the nurse! Get the nurse!"

Dad was never in any danger, but I didn't think it would be a good thing to get urine all over the good priests shiny black shoes. I finally shoved the plug back where I hoped it was supposed to be and stood up thinking I had created an unholy disruption to the communion proceedings only to find that mom and dad and Aunt Laura and Uncle Leonard were oblivious to my maneuverings.

As the priest walked out, the nurses walked in to bathe dad and change his bed and to check out my handiwork on the catheter bag. The nurses suggested we go to lunch and come back, so we grabbed our purses and were headed out the door when the nurse looked at mom's feet and said, "Mrs. Ransonette, you better put your shoes on." Mom was about to go to the cafeteria in her socks.

It's been a long week.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Dad Update - The Roller Coaster Continues

We got to the hospital early this morning and knocked on the doors to ICU to find out if dad had been taken back for his procedure, yet, to have his drain/flush tube reinserted. We were greeted by our nurse who told us that the procedure would not take place.

We went back and spoke to the doctor who told us that dad's biliary ducts are not dilated enough at this time to reinsert the tube. Ironically, his bile levels have to increase in order to be able to insert the tube. However, we don't want the bile levels to rise because that means there is a blockage which will result in jaundice and jaundice is bad.

There are a couple of possible scenarios. The bile ducts could dilate and begin functioning normally (unlikely, but we have lots of prayer armies out there) or the bile ducts could become blocked again which would cause jaundice and also dilate the ducts enough to insert the drain tube so that the bile could drain outside his body.

Another problem is the fact that there is only one radiologist in Beaumont who can perform the tube reinsertion, so timing of any jaundice and tube reinsertion procedure is heavily dependent on the availability of the radiologist. If the radiologist is not available in Beaumont when the procedure needs to be done, mom and dad will have to go back to Houston. I hate even typing those words.

So, right now he is in a regular room, no more ICU, which is a one thousand percent improvement. Love and prayers to all of the wonderful people who are still in that ICU waiting room keeping vigil over their loved ones.

There will be a physical therapy consult and efforts to strengthen dad enough to begin chemo. The hope is that the chemo will stabilize the liver and bile ducts and everything will open up and drain like it's supposed to.

His potassium levels are slightly low, but his appetite is much better than it was yesterday and he is in a very talkative mood. We're all still a bit weepy off and on, because dad is sad and we're all worn out physically, mentally and emotionally. However, this too shall pass and for right now, things are good and there's also lots of laughter with dad telling jokes and explaining magic tricks to the doctors and nurses. He's a pretty entertaining fellow.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Dad Update

Today was one of those roller coaster days. Mom and I left the house early to get to the hospital for the first visiting hour with breakfast burritos in hand for dad, because he's lost his appetite. When we went into his room, we were encouraged by pretty good blood pressure readings and told he had been off of the dopamine for about an hour.

Next visiting hour would tell the tale as to whether or not he'd be let out of ICU and get a regular room. His oncologist also had him scheduled for a CT scan to check on the status of the lymphoma spot on his liver.

Mom and I left the hospital and went to Cory's house for a visit with the grand-fabulous Ava and decided to go to lunch before returning to the hospital. We had a fabulous lunch at Chili's and headed back to the hospital.

At the first afternoon visit, we were excited about great blood pressure readings, but had to leave the room for dad to use the restroom...uh...bedpan. On our way back into the room, the nurse said, "His drain tube came out."

Crash. Bam. Boom.

Mom and I stopped dead in our tracks. The nurses finished arranging dad in the bed before they would let us back into the room and when she came out she told us that dad was very upset when she told him that she spoke to one of his doctors and he "might have to go back to Houston."

Back to Houston? For the fourth time in eight weeks. No f*cking way.

We went back into the room with dad and started trying to sort this newest mess out with the nurse. I said, "I can't believe there isn't a radiologist in Beaumont that could reinsert that tube." The nurse said that dad's oncologist said he would watch his bilirubin counts over the weekend and wait until Monday to make the decision on whether or not he needed to go back to Houston. This was not encouraging to us at all.

Mom and I left dad discouraged, distraught and pissed off. Dad was once again in tears and mad at himself for "being a big baby." However, he didn't say "big baby." I won't say what he said. Use your imagination and think cats.

Mom and I spent the next three hours in the waiting room trying to distract ourselves with ghost hunting books, NCIS reruns and the endless stories of all the other poor people in the ICU waiting room. ICU waiting rooms are places of unbelievable sadness and equally incredible joy. Everyone becomes emotionally involved in each other's sorrows and triumphs. We all applauded when one lady's husband finally was moved from ICU to a room. Sweet.

Then the roller coaster started its slow grind uphill. At the late afternoon visit, we were told that the only radiologist in Beaumont qualified and willing to attempt to reinsert the flush/drain tube happened to be on-call and in the building on a Friday afternoon. Since dad was already scheduled for a CT scan, the radiologist, dad's gastroenterologist (who also just happened to be in the hospital and on-call) and his oncologist would all review the results and possibly reinsert the tube tonight.

Hallelujah. Happy. Happy. Joy. Joy.

So, we followed dad's bed down to CT, waited for them to finish the scan, followed them back up to the room and left dad again, this time much more optimistic. Back to the waiting room we went, this time with Bonnie in tow who had just gotten off of work for the day to be greeted with all this fine news.

Three and a half long waiting room hours later, we went back into dad's ICU room to find the nurse drawing blood in preparation for dad's procedure. The radiologist agreed to do the procedure Saturday (tomorrow) morning. So, the roller coaster has pulled into the station for the evening and we're hoping for a nice "Pirates of the Caribbean" type Disney World river ride tomorrow. No more roller coasters.

I hate roller coasters.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Dad Update

Dad is still in ICU. It seems that he is more sensitive to the Dopamine drip they're using to raise his blood pressure than most patients and they're having to wean him off of it more gradually than usual. Now, we're hoping for a regular room Friday.

We had a good day though. Dad was in better spirits. He doesn't want visitors, but we let his cousin Sandy and her husband Carl come in with us for the early afternoon visit. There were a few tears at first and when they had to leave, but it was a really good and fun visit. At one point when he was teasing Sandy about something, he spoke louder than we've heard him speak in weeks.

Since that went so well, he also insisted we let one of his and mom's friends come in for the late afternoon visit and he enjoyed hearing all the latest gossip and catching up on his friends.

For the last visit of the night, we even had him laughing (when we told him Ava locked her dad out of the house) and dad is staying on our asses about charging the dead battery in his van. That's a VERY good sign, because dad is one of those dads who has to fix everything as soon as you tell him something is broken no matter what time of the day or night it is. We're glad that the dead battery is bugging him.

The ICU nurses also let us extend our 15 minute visits to an hour or so which is wonderful, except for the fact that there are no chairs. That's no big deal, but by the end of the day going back and forth to the hospital and doing all that walking from the parking lot and standing...and worrying...we're exhausted.

I'm not complaining though. Dad laughed today.

Dad Update

They will be moving dad from cardiac ICU regular ICU shortly. Dr. Birdwell does say he has an infection, but he thinks the antibiotics will kill it and he might put him on antibiotics continuously to prevent a recurrence since the infection keeps coming back. Right now, he thinks the infection keeps recurring in the biliary duct.

He hopes to have him in a regular room by this afternoon. After he gets into a regular room, they will do more scans to check on his lymphoma, but he doesn't know if treating the lymphoma will help his weakness or not. He is going to still start the lymphoma treatments soon though. He said the weakness might be from so many hospitalizations.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Dad Update

Dad is still in ICU. His blood pressure seems to be stabilizing, but that is only with medication. He is still alert and eating well. Since he's in ICU, it's hard to be there when the doctor is there so we missed him today. If we don't catch him tomorrow, we're going to call his office.

We want dad in a room where we can be with him. We can only see him for 15 minutes at a time four times a day, but one of the nice nurses let us stay for over an hour at supper time so we could help dad eat.

Dad cries when we leave.

It breaks my heart.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Dad Update

Dad is back in the hospital here in Beaumont. Mom called me this afternoon to help her bring him to the doctor because she was concerned about his incision site. When I got there, he was so weak that I called 911 immediately.

When the paramedics got to the house about two minutes later, they told us he had very low blood pressure and rushed him to the emergency room. He is spending the night in ICU tonight.

When we left him tonight, his blood pressure had stabilized. He never lost consciousness and, in fact, ate a sandwich and drank some juice earlier in the emergency room.

Also, his jaundice is back.

Monday, August 24, 2009

"I'm going watch my fights."

In the olden days, women would stop whatever they were doing in the middle of the day to watch their "stories." "Stories" was another word for soap opera. In our family, mom watched "As the World Turns."

Just as religiously as mom stopping every day at noon to watch "her stories," every Friday night, my dad would announce, "I'm going watch my fights." He would then go off to the "den," pop the handle on his recliner and watch boxing for hours. The "den" in those days was an eight foot by eight foot room in the middle of the house with a chair, a couch and a twenty year old black and white television set. The "den" also had a door on each wall leading to various rooms in the house. So, people were constantly walking in front of him while he watched his fights.

These days, dad has his own room in a big house that he shares only with my mother. So, nobody's walking in front of the TV anymore. He's also got cable, so he doesn't have to wait until Friday night to watch the fights. However, although his television is color, I still think it's twenty years old. Dad always gets the oldest television in the house. That's just the rule.

Since dad's been sick, he doesn't watch television in his room. He sits in his recliner in the living room and watches the big fancy schmancy television. Of course, being outnumbered by women in this family (4 to 2), the fights were rarely, if ever, watched in the living room.

This past Saturday night, my mom and I decided to bite the bullet and watch the fights with dad on the big TV. Dad was a good sport about it, but I don't think he was prepared for the female play-by-play that occurs when women decide to watch "the fights."

"I hate that guys pants."

"Oh,my God! He's bleeding!"

"Why doesn't somebody stop this thing?"

"Is that his mother? Even his mother can't watch. Oh, that poor woman."

"Oh, isn't that nice. He wants to be a lawyer and help poor people."

"That guy from New York talks too much."

"I hate that guy from New York."

"Why are they booing? How rude."

"Now, I feel sorry for that little guy from New York."

"Why doesn't somebody stop this thing?!"

"Oh, my God! Look at his eye!!"

I think we've given dad a little extra motivation to get his strength back. I'm pretty sure he can't wait to watch "his fights" on that twenty year old television in his quiet little room without the commentary from the ya-ya sisterhood.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Dad Update and Geo Burrito

Nothing much new to report on the dad front. Although he's about 5 percent of the old Jingles the Clown he used to be strength-wise, he's about 80 percent stronger than he was when he got home two days ago.

Everybody is also pretty much over any sense of modesty we may have formerly thought we had. It's weird how a body just becomes a body when somebody you love is sick. I've seen and done things I would have never dreamed (or nightmared) of doing a couple of years ago and I'm not even traumatized.

N-Fuego is now Geo Burrito
I recently did a blog post about a Subway style burrito (and much, much more) cafe here in Beaumont called N-Fuego. They are now changing the name from N-Fuego to Geo Burrito. They are also opening two more locations, one by Parkdale Mall here in Beaumont and one by Central Mall in Port Arthur.

Below, you will find a fax form which will allow you to fax in your order and pick it up at the drive-thru window. The guy I spoke to also said they can arrange for delivery in certain circumstances (office parties, etc.).

Geo Burrito now offers homemade sauces you can add to your concoction and may I just say the Jamaica Jerk sauce is yum.

Salsa Roja - semi mild tomato salsa
Salsa Tomato Verde - spicy and delicious
Mango Habanero - fruit based heat
De Arbol - toasted arbol peppers, ripe tomatoes (hot)
Jamaica Jerk
Jalapeno Sauce
GeoBurrito BBQ
Chipotle Ranch
Jalapeno Ranch

Geo Burrito
4230 Calder
Beaumont, Texas
(409) 898-8688

Friday, August 21, 2009

Dad Update

Mom and dad got home this afternoon. I'll be staying here with them for as long as they need, so dad better get over his body issues, 'cuz I ain't leavin' just so he can poop in private.

He's not coughing nearly as much as he was, but is very weak. We are going to work him out and fatten him up and get him back into chemo.

Since he's been off the Paxil/cough syrup cocktail that had him talking to Mark Twain and petting imaginary bunnies, his mind is back also. That's the most important thing. Dad's back.

Dad Update

Sorry for no dad update last night (Sandy!). I went to dinner with my daughter-in-law and my grand-fabulous-daughter, came home and fell asleep on the couch.

Mom and dad should be coming home from Houston today. They were told by the team of doctors yesterday that his fever is definitely not from an infection and the stent/tube/liver are all working fine. They want him to take Tylenol/Advil/"something like that" for the fever, because they think the fever is definitely related to the lymphoma.

So, they're going to come home, get dad strong and restart his chemo as soon as he's healthy enough.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Dad Update, Ghost Hunters and Rock Band

Dad Update
Dad ran fever again last night and today. Mom's meeting with the doctors and the patient liaison tomorrow. She's hoping they'll either put an oncologist on his care or send him home so he can restart his chemo. It the fever is caused by the lymphoma, we're hoping he can come home soon and begin treatment again.

Ghost Hunters
New Ghost Hunters tonight. Can't wait.

Rock Band
My Rock Band 2 came in tonight. I can use my Guitar Hero III guitar with it, by the way. The Rock Band guitar looks very cool, but wasn't in the mood to put everything together tonight. So, I tried with my Guitar Hero guitar and it worked fine. So far, I like the Guitar Hero graphics better, but the actual "playing" seems more intuitive to me on Rock Band than on Guitar Hero. Can't wait to play with a whole "band."

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Dad Update and a Brain Fart

Dad Update
Dad is still doing good with the new flush tube and/or stent. Mom's still not sure if he got a new stent or just a new tube. No fever today. One doctor told dad he heard they were going home tomorrow and dad says he's not going home until he's sure he won't run fever again as soon as he gets home. Hopefully, he'll feel better about going home and will be home tomorrow or the next day.

Brain Fart
I quoted "Airplane!" today ("Don't call me Shirley") and couldn't think of Leslie Nielsen's name to save my life. The problem was that my brain got stuck in a loop of "Liam Neeson"..."Liam Neeson"..."Liam Neeson"...

With Liam Neeson running through my brain, Leslie Nielsen couldn't get through. I guess I'm not smarter than a fifth grader.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Dad Update

They took dad into radiology today and dad says they put in a larger “tube.” Mom thought they were putting in a larger “stent.” Not sure which one is right about that, but they should be in the hospital another couple of days to be sure this works.

UPDATE: Bonnie just spoke to mom and now mom says they put in a new tube AND a new stent. We shall see.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Dad Update and The Countdown Begins

Dad Update
Nothing new to report on dad. They see the radiologists who originally inserted the stent tomorrow. Send prayers, happy thoughts and brain power toward Houston.

The Countdown Begins...

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Dad Update and Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad

Today is mom and dad's 55th wedding anniversary. Unfortunately, they're spending their anniversary in Methodist Hospital, because the doctors are still trying to figure out the cause of dad's problems. Is it infection? Is it the stent? It it his lymphoma? Why is he still coughing? WTF?

In case you haven't been keeping track, dad's been in and out of Methodist Hospital and St. Elizabeth Hospital for the last 6 weeks, give or take a week. It started out with a bout of jaundice which required replacement of a stent which was originally implanted three years ago due to a surgery he had to remove a tumor caused by his lymphoma. Since then, there have been problems with the stent and intermittent fevers which nobody has been able to accurately diagnose. And the cough. Did I mention the cough? Again...WTF?

Yesterday dad's stent started draining in ways it wasn't supposed to drain. However, when that happened, his fever went down and he started feeling better. So, now the plan is to turn him back over to the radiology team which is the team of doctors that originally inserted the stent. Confused? We are, too.

Dad has now been under the care of the medical team, surgical team, infectious disease team and now back to the radiology team. Fingers crossed that there will be a solution, soon.

In the meantime, Happy Anniversary, mom and dad and...

WTF, docs?

Friday, August 14, 2009

Go see my friends! That's an order!

My good friends Southern Embers and Longneck Road will be playing at the Outlaw Drinkin' Club Saturday night for the Southern Embers CD release party. Don't let the name fool you. It's a nice little bar. Don't be skeered.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Dad Update and Information Blog Post

Dad Update
Dad is feeling stronger and he hasn’t had a fever since yesterday. They are going to call in an infectious disease doctor, because they’re still trying to determine the source of his fever before he goes home. They will also do another CT scan of his chest and a lung x-ray since he’s still coughing. The doctor thinks the cough is coming from an irritation in his throat, but they are going to check his lungs again to be sure all is still okay there.

Beatles Rock Band Song List (courtesy of Wikipedia)
"A Hard Day's Night" Ed Sullivan Theater
"And Your Bird Can Sing" Budokan
"Back in the U.S.S.R." Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"Birthday" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"Can't Buy Me Love" Ed Sullivan Theater
"Day Tripper" Budokan
"Dear Prudence" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"Dig a Pony" Rooftop Concert
"Do You Want to Know a Secret" Cavern Club
"Eight Days a Week" Shea Stadium
"Get Back" Rooftop Concert
"Here Comes the Sun" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"Hey Bulldog" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"I Am the Walrus" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"I Feel Fine" Shea Stadium
"I Saw Her Standing There" Cavern Club
"I Want to Hold Your Hand" Ed Sullivan Theater
"I Wanna Be Your Man" Ed Sullivan Theater
"I'm Looking Through You" Shea Stadium
"I've Got a Feeling" Rooftop Concert
"Octopus's Garden" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"Paperback Writer" Budokan
"Revolution" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" / "With a Little Help from My Friends" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"Something" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"Taxman" Budokan
"Ticket to Ride" Shea Stadium
"Twist and Shout" Cavern Club
"While My Guitar Gently Weeps" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"Within You Without You / Tomorrow Never Knows" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape
"Yellow Submarine" Abbey Road Studios / Dreamscape

Information about Pete Malinverni
Click here and here for information about the artist and album I also bought yesterday.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Dad Update and a Weird Beatles-ish blog post

Dad Update
Dad is still in the hospital in Houston. He ran a temperature of 101 this afternoon which I say is a good thing, because his temperature was normal all morning and we don't want him coming home until they figure out what is causing the fever. Dad agrees. The doctors agree. We all agree. Mom said the room he is in this time has a more comfortable "bed" for her and an HD television. I guess after you spend so much time there, you get a room upgrade. (That's not true...the upgrade the way. That's just "in Laurie's brain.")

The Weird Beatles-ish Blog Post
A few months back, I did a blog post about the fact that I cashed in all the coins I had been saving and ended up with $184.31. By putting all that money on an gift card at the CoinStar machine, I avoided any fees which are usually about 8 percent.

So, tonight I finally went Amazon shopping and Happy Birthday to Me shopping. I put some things in my cart and wasn't really paying attention to the cost and was going to delete whatever was over the $184-ish amount.

I put this in the cart because I heard it on NPR the other night and thought it was cool...

I put this in my cart because I know I'll never spend $100 on something so frivolous unless it's for my birthday or from "free money" like coins that had been sitting in my closet for five years...and it was on sale...
I put this in my cart because I...MUST...OWN...IT...

The Weird Part
I've done previous posts about my weird connection with Beatles things. (Click here and here.) Several years ago, Cory and Jamie bought me a book about The Beatles that I've never gotten around to reading. Two days ago, I picked up the book to start reading it. One day ago, VH1 Classics had a Beatles Day in conjunction with the 40th anniversary of taking of the picture for the Abbey Road album cover.

Tonight I set out to spend $184.31.

Want to know what my completely random total was for the three items in my cart?


Pretty darn close.


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Ava and Oakley on The Weather Channel website

My mom sent the picture I took of Ava and Oakley looking out their window to The Weather Channel website and they published it. Here's the story as it is on their website...

Ava's pet Oakley is very afraid of thunderstorms. As they look at the approaching storm, Ava decides to comfort poor Oakley. Ava is 2 years old and they have been very close since her birth.
Taken in Beaumont, TX by Ruby1935 on Jul 23, 2009
More like this: Beaumont, Ava comforting Oakley, TX, Weather, Texas, Stormy
uploaded Aug 10, 2009

Free Monkey Butt Coffee at Rao's

A local bakery is giving away free samples of "the world's most expensive coffee" on August 13, 2009. This is the description from Rao's website:

"As seen on on the 'Oprah Winfrey Show' and the movie 'The Bucket List'. Rao’s will be giving FREE samples of this rare luxury.

Kopi Luwak coffee comes from the Indonesian island of Sumatra, an area well known for its excellent coffee. Also native to the area is a small cat-like animal called a luwaks. These little mammals live in the trees and one of their favorite foods is the red, ripe coffee cherry. They eat the cherries, bean and all. While the bean is in stomach, it undergoes chemical treatments and fermentations. The bean finishes its journey through the digestive system, and exits. The still-intact beans are collected from the forest floor, and are cleaned, then roasted and ground just like any other coffee. If your interested in purchasing, please ask the Manager."

I love the way the description dances around the fact that the coffee came out of a luwak's butt. The coffee bean "finishes its journey through the digestive system, and exits." What was the initial thinking here?

"Hey! That luwak over there just pooped some beans. Let's make coffee."

I think I'll pass.

Dad Update

Dad spent the night in ICU last night because his blood pressure went really low. Mom slept in a chair in the waiting room. She says he’s doing better today and they’re going to put a surgical team on his case that specializes in infections following surgery to try to determine the source of his fevers.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Dad Update

Dad's temperature went back up to 102.something this afternoon, so mom drove him back to Methodist Hospital in Houston. Updates tomorrow. Mom says he's fine. Keep the prayers coming that they'll figure this thing out for good this time.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Dad Update and a Regular Old Blog Post

Dad Update
Dad's home (since Thursday) and getting a little stronger every day. The home health nurse showed up yesterday and turned out to be a very good TJ Alumni friend. We were all in our Sunday "best" (glasses, hair pulled back, little or no makeup), so we didn't recognize each other until I read her name tag and told her who we (me, Terry, Bonnie) were. She did a wonderful job. Thanks, Robyn. It was great seeing a friendly, familiar face. (That's not to say that every doctor and nurse at the hospitals and working for the home health services haven't been wonderful, because they have.)

Regular Old Blog Post
When I was a little girl, the first thing I would do when I went to grandma's house (after the hugs and kisses, of course) was look for her newest Lillian Vernon or Harriet Carter or Miles Kimball catalog.

I would look at those books for hours. I'm still not sure why. It wasn't because I wanted any of that stuff. I guess I was just amazed by the amount and variety of stuff there was out there in the world. To this day, I still look at those catalogues. I don't think I've ever actually bought anything, but I love looking at them.

Of course, now a person can order from these places online. Maybe I'll do a little shopping. I really want one of those windshield cleaning thingys.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

John Hughes - Rest in Peace

If you think your life hasn't been influenced by John Hughes, think about how many times you've watched the following movies or quoted lines from these movies either written, produced or directed (sometimes all three) by him...
  • 1983 -Vacation
  • 1983 - Mr. Mom
  • 1984 - Sixteen Candles
  • 1985 - The Breakfast Club
  • 1985 - Weird Science
  • 1986 - Ferris Bueller's Day Off
  • 1986 - Pretty in Pink
  • 1987 - Planes, Trains and Automobiles
  • 1987 - Some Kind of Wonderful
  • 1988 - The Great Outdoors
  • 1989 - Uncle Buck
  • 1989 - Christmas Vacation
  • 1990 - Home Alone

Tuesday, August 04, 2009


For the family (and blogging friends)...

Dad was making some slow progress last week, but was still very fatigued and developed a cough. Sunday night, he started running a fever again (102), so mom drove him to Methodist Hospital in Houston.

They took him right in and they say his stent and drain/flush tube are working great (very good news). They ran a lot of neurological tests to make sure his sleep talking, sleep walking (1 episode) and hallucinations (possibly just sleeping with his eyes open) were not signs of something serious. All of his neurological tests came back great (thank you God) so they're cutting back and weaning him off his Paxil. He already seems to be doing better in that department.

Soooooooooo, the very good news is, we just need to find the source of the fever. They've run cultures on the stent, drain/flush tube and port-a-cath and are leaning toward removing the drain/flush tube.

We decided to wait to update everybody until we had news this time. Sorry for the delay, cousin Sandy. :)

UPDATE 8/5/09:
Just talked to mom and dad snored all night long and didn’t “talk” to anybody. So, evidently the “crazies” were caused by the Paxil. They’ve taken him off the Paxil and they’re transitioning him to something else for his depression/anxiety. He’s still got a slight fever at night and a little cough and once they figure that out, he should be all good. The doctors are meeting this morning.

UPDATE 8/6/09:
Bonnie just talked to mom and there's a good chance mom and dad will be coming home today. One of the doctors ran a different test to determine where the fever was coming from. The culture showed a mixture of e-coli and yeast. The doctor thought it might be from the bile being routed directly into the colon. She gave dad some different antibiotics and he didn't have fever this morning.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Wienerschnitzel Angus All Beef Hot Dogs

One of my favorite things about New Orleans is buying a Lucky Dog from a street vendor. I've finally found something close. The new Wienerschnitzel Angus All Beef Hot Dog is the next best thing. For a Lucky Dog-ish flavor get it with chili, catsup, mustard and onions. Like the commercial says, "They're DER-licious!"

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Sleep Talking

Since my dad's been sick, my mom's been concerned with his talking in his sleep. Being the internet family we are, we all Googled "sleep talking."

My sister Terry wins the prize for the best site I've come across in years. Click the link and be amazed at people's actual nocturnal wanderings...or wonderings, I supposed.

Click here.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

My new favorite beer

Introduced to me by the man who bought the very first beer
that I ever finished three whole years ago.
I've been drinking beer for three years? Time sure flies when you're drinking beer.