Wednesday, February 01, 2017

Finally got around to it!

Terry threatened that if I didn't blog something soon, he was going to highjack the blog and post something. I told him to go ahead, but here I am.

Luanne, my friend from high school and her husband Jim are arriving here Tuesday night, so I have been busy getting things ready for their visit. They will stay in the Texas room, so that is very comfortable. It's actually an efficiency apartment, so they will have everything they need there. I've been trying to think of things to do while they are here. They were here a few years ago and we did some sightseeing, but there are many more things we can do. We are anxious to see them.

It's a good thing they didn't come the last two weeks because we were sick. We got the "Texas Crud" which is a bad cold that lingers for going on two weeks. Terry got it first, then when he was going strong, I started in with it. But we are both better now and fortunately for us, the coughing has not lingered. With some people, they continue to cough for weeks, so I am glad we are not doing that.

Duchess is doing okay. I am reading all I can about canine diabetes and I'm finding that most vets just encourage you to inject twice a day with checks periodically at the vets. The forums I am on do not subscribe to that theory and encourage home testing of your dog. The reason being is that food, exercise and insulin all conspire to regulate blood sugar and too much or not enough of any one of those items can cause highs and lows in blood sugar. Lows in dogs are particularly dangerous because the dog cannot tell us they are getting dizzy or crashing. If they are asleep, they can easily slip into a coma, so home testing is important. In fact, most of the people on the forums seek out a vet for the initial diagnosis, and that is the last time the vet actually treats the disease. They do all their own testing and adjust doses depending on what is going on with the dog. They even do their own glucose curves which tell what is happening during the day starting with a fasting blood sugar.

I do think home testing is what I am aiming for, because many of these people have been able to slow or halt the advancement of blindness in their animals which tends to have a rapid onset after the initial diagnosis. We do know that Duchess is developing cataracts, so she will still have regular vet visits, but I am hoping to do a reasonable job of keeping her blood sugar under control. We are still working at getting her regulated. I do have the pet testing kit now and have tried it a couple times. She tolerates it well and it is a little easier than I thought it would be. She is a sweetie. I want to do what I can to help manager her disease and keep her healthy. I made her a Scottie bag to carry all her supplies. She has her test kit, small and large sharps containers, extra test strings and lancets, a cold pack insulin container, and her medical folder with all her information. Here is a picture of the bag. Hers is on the left, while my bigger bag is on the left.

A few weeks ago two of my nieces, Michelle and Staci, drove down here from Indiana to see Mom. They were here for about five days. It was a whirlwind while they were here. Their days were filled with shopping and playing cards and they even twisted my arm into playing cards with them a couple evenings. It was fun and I think they enjoyed their time here. It was cloudy some days, but they did have some sunny warm days as well. It certainly was warmer than Indiana at the time.

Our street dinners have started. The residents of each street sponsor and prepare a dinner as a fund raiser. This helps us to keep our assessments low. Ours was two weeks ago, just prior to our getting sick. We prepare a pork loin dinner which is very good. Today Mom and I went to the roast beef dinner. It was very tasty and we both brought part of it home. The hall was really hot tonight and I wondered if the air conditioning was even working. It normally keeps us cold and today it was very warm. The place was packed as well. They normally limit the tickets to the capacity of the hall, but with people going from 4 to 6, it can handle many more. They actually had to set up more tables tonight. I think their dinner was a great success. Terry doesn't go to the dinners because he cannot have salt. But he's gracious about not minding if I go with Mom, so he fixed something here at home.

Our park seems to be fuller this year than it has been for several years. There has been some turnover, with some older members passing away. It seems younger people are coming in looking for cheaper living in the winter and it is fairly inexpensive to live here. And it's a nice, safe community as well.

I have been taking Spanish lessons since the beginning of January. A lady in the community visits several of the parks and teaches us conversational Spanish. She is very dedicated. She surely has been trained as a teacher, because her techniques are very good. She is very encouraging. We laugh and have fun. She enjoys teaching and it shows and we all enjoy learning from her. Half of the class is made up of French Canadians. They already speak French and English and are learning Spanish. They learn very quickly too. They seem very dedicated. I really must practice for next week. It's a review week and I want to be sure I can put into practice some of what I've learned.

That brings you up-to-date with what we've been doing. We are beginning to plan our exit from the valley. I plan to have back surgery when we get to Indiana, so we may be leaving earlier than usual.

Till next time. . .

Dale








Friday, January 06, 2017

Message for Commenter

This note is for Gary, who asked the question about towing our Sport Trac. I replied to your comment, but you made it back in a post I had made in November. It was entitled "Family Time." So you will have to look for it there. I'm posting this note in the event you didn't remember where you posted it. I didn't want you to think I was ignoring you. Once you let me know you have found it, I will take this message down.

I have moderated comments, which is why you didn't see it posted right away. I'm assuming that's why you tried to post multiple times. That's okay. . . but that's why it didn't show up.

Dale

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Sweet, sweet Duchess!

 

Our wee Scottie lass, Duchess, has not been herself lately. This has been going on about ten days before I called the vet. She started drinking at least a gallon of water a day (or wanted to) and that is not good for such a small dog. There are several health issues that can cause that and none of them are good.

We took her to the vet this week. I had taken in a urine sample and turns out our little gal is diabetic. Her blood sugar was 346, supposed to be same as humans, 80-120. And she spilled over 1000 units in her pee. So there is no doubt that she is diabetic. That's the cause of her excessive thirst. So he put her on 3 units of insulin to begin with. We have to give her a shot morning and evening. We take her back on Monday for a fasting blood sugar and he will decided if we need more testing. It sometimes takes a bit to get them regulated, but once we get the right dose, it will pretty much stay the same.

So while it wasn't the best news, it was not a death sentence. This is something that can be managed. I just hope we can get it under control quickly so she can get to feeling better. She already is back to drinking normally, so that's a start!

Till next time. . .

Dale

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas!



We had Mom over after we had unwrapped our presents and we all had breakfast. I had made an egg casserole the night before, so I just had to pop it into the microwave. It was really good.

We exchanged gifts with Mom. I got her a lightweight step ladder she can use to access her cupboards. She is always dragging a chair over and I don't want her falling, so I got her a ladder like mine.

Our dinner at the hall was delayed till 1:30 because of it being Sunday. So after church, all the tables and chairs had to be set up and the people working on the food preparation had to have time to get ready for the big crowd.

We did enjoy our dinner and visited with some friends before coming back home. None of us did much else the rest of the day!

We hope your Christmas involved family and fellowship with your loved ones.

Till next time. . .

Dale


Tuesday, December 20, 2016

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas!

Mom and took the golf cart one warm evening and checked out the Christmas decorations in several parks. We went to Sleepy Valley, Dream Valley, Pleasant Valley and our park Restful Valley.










Till next time. . . 

Dale

Thursday, December 01, 2016

Life in the slow lane. . .

Winters in south Texas are just that. . . life in the slow lane. While there are many things to do to keep you busy, you can do them when you want and at your own speed. Kind of like my blog. . . . LOL Bet you didn't see that one coming!

We cleaned when we got here and spent time visiting with friends we hadn't seen in a year. We decided to sign up for Thanksgiving dinner at the hall. That way we could have a great meal, see everyone who is back and wouldn't have a big mess to clean up. The dinner was excellent and we enjoyed spending the day with friends.

We have had really nice weather up to Thanksgiving and the week after. Then we had a cold spell and it got wet as well. We actually had some thunder which is unusual down here. The weather just jumps back and forth between cool/cold and warm/hot.


 Shortly after Thanksgiving, mom and I got our Christmas trees up. I have a new white one because the white one I had before turned all
brown. Yuck. It must be from the heat. I could have kept it and put it outside. Lit up at night you wouldn't be able to see the brown on it. But I like my new one. It's prelit which makes it really easy. I just had to put it together. It has three parts that fit into one another and then I put the ornaments on it. Easy peasy. I did put most of my other decorations up. I like manger scenes, so I found a place for all of those.  Mom's little tree goes in the corner and still looks very nice and festive.

I managed to get some sewing done before Christmas. A couple years ago I made bags for everybody except myself. I really struggled to find the fabric I wanted, but when I saw the black/white Scottie fabric, I knew I had found it. I had all the pieces cut out, so I finally was able to put it together. It turned out well and now I have my own. I have fabric cut for 3 or 4 more, so I hope to get those done while we are here this winter.

I also made a new wreath. It really is a "fall" themed wreath. I added a bit of tinsel which made it more Christmasy, but I intended it to be more for Thanksgiving. But since I have no more storage space, it will probably remain on the wall year round. LOL

Mom and I hope to take the golf cart and look at Christmas decorations at some of the parks around. Pictures will follow!

Till next time. . .

Dale 

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Moving right along

Once we left the Intracoastal Park, we drove on to Houston and stopped at Advanced RV Park in Pearland. We arrived on Tuesday and went to visit my cousin Jim.

Jim continues to recover from a cardiac event from a few years ago. He has started Scuba diving again and is looking forward to a trip to Cozumel in March to dive in open water. Good luck Jim. Hope that all goes well for you.

On Wednesday, we had a doctor's appointment for Terry with a new cardiologist in Houston. In the past four years, all his doctors/specialists have either retired or resigned, going into other lines of work. A really sad thing to have happen as a result of changes in the health care system. So he has all new doctors. None have known him  before and we struggle to make sure they know what is going on with Terry. But he had a good report and we are good for another six months.

Wednesday evening we headed out to Hobby Airport to wait on Mom's plane. Her plane was almost a half hour early in arriving, so we wanted to make sure we allowed enough time. I was able to get an NPE (non-passenger escort) pass, go through security and meet Mom at the gate. My niece Kellie flew down with her and saw to it that she had good help. Mom was surprised to see me there, and we all got a ride on a cart by one of the airport stewards and we got to baggage where Terry was waiting. Kellie had left us earlier because she had another flight to Las Vegas to catch.

We got Mom's luggage and walked to the car which wasn't far away and off we went. I had made some homemade soup that was waiting for us when we got back and we had a late supper, then off to bed.

The next morning we got up early and drove 300 miles to Edinburg, Texas. It's only 40 more miles to the park, but that would have meant setting up in the dark and I did not want to do that. So we spent the night and Friday we drove on in.

We got to the park in Mission at about 10 a.m. on Friday and worked the rest of the day to get things opened up and all systems running. We got Mom's water and electric and gas all turned on and she was happy to piddle around in her trailer. We carried over her luggage and the few things we had brought with us and she spent time getting things in order.

Saturday morning we left around 8 a.m. and went to Walmart to shop for groceries. Mom wanted to get stocked up on things so she wouldn't have to go for a while. We got a few staples as well.

The biggest challenge for Terry was the golf cart. A battery post had literally been dissolved on one battery. He had never seen that happen nor had anyone else. For 8 years he has gotten it ready to store and nothing like that has ever happened. So he thought it might require all new batteries, because replacing just one will lead to the others failing. But the batteries seemed to be fairly good. Terry got on the internet and found a YouTube video which showed how to "fix" the missing battery post. I took him out yesterday to get what he needed. He came home, performed the fix, and she ran! Best part was that it cost $4 vs $500 for all new batteries! Whoo hoo! O Happy Day! So we put it on charge all day and night and it's fully charged this morning! Hope it all holds. Mom has her wheels back and I am grateful for that.

We continue to whittle down our list of stuff that needs to be done. The Texas Room is in good shape and we are busy getting stuff out for the Thanksgiving season.

All is well here! Mom is happy in her trailer and we are doing well. Duchess has had many walks already. She is always willing to go. She remembers familiar things around here and she is certainly happy that Mom's trailer is occupied again!

Till next time. . .

Dale