Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Updates, Octoberfest and a new look at childbirth.....

Medical report Alert :      It seems that I do not have a complete ACL....this isn't my MRI because this knee has one.    The Dr asked me when I tore my ACL and I gave him an intelligent glance and said "Ummmm.......I don't know.... "  He asked if I'd had a previous injury etc and I checked back in my remembered history and couldn't find any time when I had pain or an injury to it.    He said it wasn't repairable at this point and doubted it was causing me  any problem.    The MRI did show a lot of bone edema and signs of inflammation but nothing requiring incisions and anesthesia .... yeaaaaa !!   So, I am on steroids, anti-inflammatories and Physical Therapy.    NO GOLF, NO WALKING for exercise but I can ride a bike and swim.   I guess it's the best I could have hoped for except to not have an injury at all.    
So, with that reasonable news under my belt, we went to the Town Square to celebrate Octoberfest.    It was really really chilly.....I think we missed fall somewhere.... We bundled up to watch the wonderful Polka dancers and the German band.   Then we warmed up with a big Italian dinner.     Over on the waterfront, was the New Orleans Preservation Band from Orlando.     They were renamed the Heidelberg Hot Shots for the evening and wore shorts.    The trombone player and spokesman is well into his 80's and they got the crowd warmed up and swinging.
And because it's Halloween, I had to 'borrow' this pic from my sister on Facebook.     Maureen is a CNM at Kaiser ...... she also has a license plate on her car that says " Midwives help people out.  "    

The Connecticut kids are getting good at cooking on the grill and reading by flashlight.   We're hoping that the 3rd big storm in the past year won't leave them powerless too much longer altho almost 100% of Newtown is black.    

And,  I don't want to make you jealous or anything, but I can still fit into the earrings I wore in high school !!        (borrowed from this blog )

Sunday, October 28, 2012


It's a pretty morning down here, away from hurricanes and  floods and tsunamis and earth quakes......even the bugs are behaving.      We worry about the kids in Connecticut and have encouraged them to make haste and head south to the comfort of electricity.    But they are brave, or not very smart, and will stay put for now......

Yes Norma, those are the same birds from the store in Kent.    Glad you have such good taste and that I can copy you.  

This dark picture shows Lizzie and Becca in front of the Apple store, hooked into  WiFi so that they can set up their new Surface tablets from the Microsoft store.   Mike insisted that this was part of the deal for them to get one.     Wonder if anyone noticed.......

The MRI was OK.    It sure didn't look 'open' to me but they kept my head and shoulders out.  And with closed eyes, and lousy music thru the earphones, I was very very still and out of there in 20 minutes.     

Broncoman is back in his rightful place .....  but it is very windy and often he is crumpled on his back like a dying fish.     But we are confident  they can keep their lead in the AFC.    Meanwhile, the Jets look really really bad....maybe they'll bring in Tebow to try and save the day...half back ??  Quarterback??      
Thinking good thoughts for  all of you in the path of Sandy.....enough I say !!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Enough already....

Today, I get to subject myself to claustrophobia..........
The knee finally won and I'm having an MRI.    I still don't think it's anything that would require surgical intervention but it just ain't right.   And it's getting worse instead of better.    And it even hurts when I'm asleep.   AND, I can't play GOLF !!!      I called to make the appt. and after asking me a zillion questions about body implants (none) and metal body parts (none) and my history of scary ailments (none) and my age (old) and my weight (going down) and if I was CLAUSTROPHOBIC !!  (YES), I was rethinking the necessity of this.  
My first known episode of the C word was when we were at DisneyWorld and in the 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea submarine ride and they closed the hatch and I couldn't breathe and I panicked.....fortunately, because of my reaction, they have since removed that scary attraction.    I guess my fear of flying had something to do with that narrow tube and my stress level always elevates when the door closes and I have to turn off all electronics.....well, maybe it's not the door thing, maybe it's my disconnect from my phone, my Kindle, my iPad......
Anyway, she offered me the Open MRI machine......I had one before(the closed type) , on my head (yes, brain cells were present) and I had to close my eyes BEFORE I entered the room so I wouldn't see the thing and so I could ignore the fact that I was surrounded by impenetrable metal inches from my nose.....I have a vivid imagination and I just knew that bad things happen and that it could CRUSH me.   The drugs they gave me before did help.......I'll be brave today and skip the drugs but will close my eyes......and since it's my knee, maybe I won't be so surrounded...maybe.

In other news, we're trying to shovel out accumulations ....  Becca's Disney leftovers,  all the RV stuff , mail, dust, too many geckos on the lanai and dead plants............Company's  coming on Tuesday .    I read somewhere that a clean house is a sign that a female relative is coming for a visit.....or college roommates !!    Gotta get busy, I'm way behind and the maid threw up her hands and quit !          

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

To say Goodbye.....

We gathered at the house this weekend to remember our years together as a wonderful family.   Others joined us.......children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, aunts, cousins, friends, neighbors and all of those who remembered with us.    Our parents moved to this house from North Dakota in 1961.   It is a solid craftsman style with architecturally- rich details and fine finishes.    Mother loved this house and it's gardens which became her trademark and her therapy and her rewards.    Dad kept it all in pristine shape as the ultimate Mr Fix-it.    It became the haven  to return to  with it's large comfortable rooms, it's kitchen designed for a crowd (despite the small single oven)  and the deck Dad designed to enjoy the California evenings, shaded by magnificent trees.    On Saturday, it was filled with almost 100 who came to share their stories and offer their condolences.    We laughed and ate and looked at the photos of all those years gone by so quickly.     

It will be so strange not to return to the house in the middle of the vineyards.   It has already been sold to the owner of that acreage and altho our brother Tom will continue to live there for awhile, we won't go home again.      The 4 of us will gather but it will be somewhere else.......    but we won't forget the red house in the vineyard, nor  our Mother and Dad who made it our home.   
Sandy, Tom, Maureen and Me.........and in the background, the largest of the many carousel horses that Dad carved.  

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

A Perfect finale to our journey.........

 We made it home !!    Over 9000 miles in 4 1/2 months......from the oceans to the flatlands to the mountains, we saw it all.        The blog followed us everywhere and took you's a few of the last pictures.........
Mesa Verde is a hidden gem, literally.......   you'd never know there was anything in this high and arid country until you look really close........

 And, after a downhill jaunt , you can get up close and personal.    The structures at this site are very well preserved, including original logs in the ceilings.    Very little has been restored.     And then you get to walk back UP, at 7000 ft and with warnings about the dangers of the heat and altitude and the strenuous climb if you have any health problems.    I decided that my knee wasn't a health problem and with some huffing and puffing, we did just fine.  

And then, we headed south to Albuquerque.     National Geographic lists this event as a "must see".   We agree.     

 These are random shots, in no particular order, taken at sunset and at dawn and in daylight.   They are not edited at all........

 I liked the alarm clock......

 Alex holding the stabilizing rope while they inflate "Flyer"......

 Becca and Lizzie on a morning flight............the "Flyer" represents the Denver logo.

 A tribute to the 911 firemen.............

 Evening "Glow"........not to be missed.

 The butterfly is huge........

And a real crowd pleaser........Airabella the Cow.     She is huge and disrupted traffic one day while landing on the highway.    Her feet land before the basket.  
I have many many many more pictures ..... over 800 just of the Fiesta.     In the next weeks , I may share more...... but if you ever get the chance, plan a trip to this amazing event.  Plus, the fireworks are the best we've seen..........and Alex worked the set-up for them.

We're off early Friday morning to California for a gathering of family and friends to honor my mother on Saturday.  

Monday, October 15, 2012

Almost Home

It's hard to believe that our wandering is almost over. We crossed into Florida late today and we can almost see where we started 5 months ago. We still don't have decent WiFi AGAIN !! I had hopes so I plowed thru the nearly 800 pictures I've taken in the past couple of weeks and picked out 17 to share with you.....but it would take me 3 days to download with the balky system at this CG. Anyhow, here's one I had on my phone....

Special shapes are always a favorite.........Trust me, my other pics are much better......(click to enlarge)
We left Albuquerque Saturday after the morning Mass Balloon Ascension and have been almost coasting downhill ever since....the strong tailwind the first two days really helped the gas mileage. It looks like we will actually sleep in the stick house tomorrow night if all goes we did well over 500 miles and then managed to do some serious housecleaning in preparation for putting the moving house back into storage. We do plan to do more traveling this fall but probably by air.
I'm trying to remain optimistic while watching Monday Night Football.....but....the Broncos really look bad and I'm losing interest fast.....oops, just realized that I didn't put my Broncos T-shirt on.....I'll wear it to bed and maybe a miracle will occur while I sleep............

Location:Milton, Florida, birthplace of Jeffrey Paul Miller 5/19/66

Monday, October 8, 2012

Balloons, balloons, balloons

I expected to see balloons but never in my wildest imagination could I have visualized

this amazing event.

I have probably 500 pictures on the computer but no way to share them with you until i get wifi These few are from my phone.
And, besides the visual impact, they allow you to walk anywhere among the balloons. Last night was the Glow.....the balloons don't launch but they light them is surreal to walk between them, to feel the heat of the burners, to experience sensory overload, to meet the very friendly balloonists who answer questions.

We don't even have to leave the comforts of home. This was my view this morning thru the windshield.
I'll keep looking for strong wifi so I can take you along this week.
Click on pics to enlarge.
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Location:Balloon Fiesta, Albuquerque

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Wandering the Southwest

We are barely connected so I revert to my backup blog system. I have a ton of pictures for you, of cliff dwellings, of golden aspen infused views, of waterfalls...... But, they are on the Mac and I can't even get them over to the iPad to post...........

We spent one long day exploring Mesa Verde. The cliff dwellings from 1000 years ago are amazingly intact....even the original wooden beams. We walked down a winding path to get up close and personal and then climbed back up in the humidity/oxygen deprived air.....worth every gasp !

The next day we headed in the opposite direction to the funky town of Creede. A ramshackle assortment of buildings mark the site of a town that was born from the large silver strike in the late 1800's. The mountains still show the remnants of mines and settlements. There is a road that winds around thru the high elevations that is accessible by regular car........most of the roads often are 4 wheel only and we have loved exploring the back country in jeeps over the years. So, we picked up a $1 guide to the sights and headed up. Somehow we ended up on the rutted narrow jeep road....but we didn't know it. The jeep trail was more scenic and climbed 1500 ft by tight switchbacks ...... We did switch to 4 wheel drive part way up and wondered how smart this was to recommend it for ordinary cars. And then we came to the REAL road and considered ourselves a bit lucky that we hadn't gotten ourselves in trouble out in the middle of nowhere.... The aspen were fading higher up but still vibrant in the valleys.

And now, we are in Santa Fe. We were here 6 years ago and look forward to seeing the highlights once again. We are in Santa Fe Skies RV park, perched on a hill with great views. And we are surrounded by a very large gathering of Prevost coaches. They are the million dollar coaches that the celebs well as those in the 1% ....But we still like ours the best.

Tomorrow we will head to the Balloon Fiesta. I doubt we will have wifi but will try and get a few pics posted. A blog without pictures is..............really boring !!!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad