Wednesday, April 30, 2008

In Greenwood parlance, Sue is some better. She had the colonoscopy which showed nothing apparently out of whack. (That's a new medical term.) The physician who talked to us after the procedure said it would be several days before all the biopsy results were in but that all looked well. Since coming home, she has slept a lot and has some appetite. We did one more consult today with the neurologist who manages her IVIG treatments for the neuropathy. He didn't think moving up her next infusion (now scheduled for July) was necessary. That was our main question for him.

Margaret is coming home from the rehab facility on Thursday. Catrina has found a solution for getting in and out of the house--some kind of elevating device for a wheelchair. I knew it was only a question of time until that young lady solved that problem. Last week I had a $310 bill for my health check-up that my insurance company refused to pay. What to do? I called Catrina, who within one hour had the thing taken care of. The insurance is paying. For someone like me, that is a walk on water.

[For those who might not know what "Greenwood Talk" is, let me explain. Our home town newspaper, the weekly Marshfield Mail, printed various reports from around the county. One was titled "Greenwood Items." The reporter wrote things like, "So and So is some better," one week. The next week, the report might read, "So and So has taken a turn for the worse." If you missed the very first installment, you might never know what So and So's problem was. Another page was devoted to "Tandy What Nots." I think the What Nots reporter kept track of where the local preacher ate Sunday dinners. It was a very progressive paper.]

Monday, April 28, 2008

A quick update from Lake Woe Be Gone: Some of you may know Sue has been under the weather for the past couple of weeks, mainly diahrrea that has left her pretty weak. She has been to see her primary care physcian who has had her run through various (and variously unpleasant) tests and has had her try four different medications. She has consulted with her favorite neurologist, Dr. Hogan, about side effects of the medication he has her on. And she has tried various home remedies. Nothing has helped.

The next step is tomorrow morning when she is cheduled for a colonoscopy--also a most unpleasant affair. To top off this tale of woe, this morning around 1:40 am Sue fell and hurt her nose and wrist badly--not broken we think but swollen and painful. However, by this time the prep for the colonoscopy was well underway, and, as those of you know who have had one, the prep is the problem. Rather than go to the Emergency Room in the middle of the night (which would have been a disaster on top of a catastrophe), she toughed it out til this morning. After more consultations with various physicians' assistants and the anestheologist for the colonoscopy, the word is to go-ahead. So, tomorrow morning Sue will have her second colonoscopy in about two years.

Candace, Sue's former daughter-in-law and a perfectly wonderful human being, is coming from Columbia tomorrow to help us out. She will stay overnight. Chris will be checking in after work to provide some help. And Mark Goldman (whom Scott has dubbed "GoToMan," has phoned and e-mailed to tell us he is on call and five minutes away for anything we might need.

NO ONE PERSON SHOULD HAVE AS MUCH MISFORTUNE AS SUE HAS HAD!! Sue and I both hate to post bad news, but sometimes that's all we have. Leslie, Sue's friend from Springfield, called several times today. When we didn't answer, she knew something was up. This evening we called her to fill her in, and she said PUT SOMETHING ON THE BLOG. So, this post, Dear Readers.

In spite of the complications we've encountered, life goes on. Shirley was in Milwaukee and Chicago over the weekend. I (Rose) go to Chicago tomorrow for a teaching gig that has been set up for some time. I return on Wednesday. We were scheduled to go to Lawrence, KS, for Katie and Austin's wedding next Saturday. [Katie is Sue's granddaughter.] That trip is probably off. We were so looking forward to having Scott and Sons come here Friday evening, then all of journeying together Saturday morning for the wedding and reception. Alas, the plans of mice and women . . .

Shelly and Chris traveled to Nashville this past weekend to run in a half marathon. Makes me tired just thinking of it.

Shelly had a wedding shower for Katie a week ago last Saturday. Katie has grown into a beautiful, mature young woman. The shower was a lovely event. Shelly does know how to entertain royally.

Some good news: Sue and I went to see Margaret in her rehab quarters in O'Fallon on Friday. Margaret is doing well. Norman was there, as he is most of the time. A few days into Margaret's rehab, Norman knows everyone in the facility. While we were there, the duty nurse made her rounds. She checked HIS blood pressure. Margaret's family is having a wheelchair ramp built so she can get in and out of the house easily. She is thinking she will go home next Monday. Sue and I were relieved to see her doing so well. The plan Friday eveing was for various Abbott generations to gather for dinner with her in the rehab center.

Margaret and Norman's granddaughter, Erica (Randy and Lynn's daughter) is graduating from high school this spring. She has a great scholarship for Westminster College in Fulton, MO, where she will start in the Fall. We are very proud of her! Brains and beauty and personality--nice combination.

The Felin Brothers, Joe, Pete, and Donald, are on their annual fishing outing in Florida. Have a great time, Brothers. Don't forget--set those hooks!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

This medicine I'm taking makes me sleep a lot so after sleeping most of the day I'm going to add some more to the blog. Last Saturday Shelly hosted a bridal shower for Katie. Rose took lots of pictures and says she will post them when she gets time. Shelly's house was decorated beautifully and she had lots of food,snacks and drinks for everyone to indulge themselves in. Kate and Austin got lots of nice gifts.

Pete called this morning. It's still cold and windy in Idaho. We've seen a bit of spring here in Missouri. Pete and Joe are going to Birmingham next Monday. Then on Tuesday they're going with Donald to see Wanda Jean. Wednesday the three fellows are heading to Panama City for their annual fishing trip. Don't forget to set the hook!!

Rose and Shirley had planned a trip to Milwaukee this weekend and I was going to spend a few days in Louisville with Scott and the the boys but since I'm not feeling so hot Rose and I are going to stay home. It's baseball season for the boys and I just love seeing their games and/or practices and hate to miss going. Brayden's coach told Scott the other night that he would give Brayden the game ball every game if he could and he can't believe he's just 5 years old. Jalen's female coach told Scott that Jalen is the most polite boy on the bench. It sure makes Scott a proud dad.

Chris and Shelly are running in a half marathon this weekend in Nashville, TN. If Chris runs into Al Gore he going to thank him for inventing the internet. He's also going to look for Willie Nelson.

We badly need an update from our 2 LL side of the family. What has happened to you?
I've been under the weather and haven't felt like updating the blog and I'm not back to myself so this may be a short one. They've moved Margaret to a rehab place in Ofallon called Gardenview Rehab, we think. We call her on her cell phone there. Norm makes about three trips a day to see her. She says this is very hard on him. Her kids stop as often as they can. She'll have to stay until she can get around without putting any weight on her broken foot. Robbie is going to build a ramp off the back deck for her wheelchair so she can get in and out of the house. Her spirits seem good in spite of the situation. Margaret, we admire you for that.

I had a good 64th birthday yesterday. Rose and Shirley made me a special dinner. I got serenaded over the phone several times and got lots of cards and phone calls and email cards. Shirley's nephew Michael and his wife Leslie came over and brought me a bottle of wine.

I have more updates but have to rest for a while.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Rose and I just got back from seeing Margaret. That hospital is like a Miami hotel. Marge says most of the rooms are private rooms. They will bring Norm his meals too. Marge says the food is very good and they give you choices of different things that are equally good. The phone number in her room is 636-916-9240. She will be there for a couple more days and then will have to spend some time in a rehab place. They're not sure about any of the details on that yet.

Brayden had his first ballgame night before last and he was "star of the game". His prize for this achievement was a brand new baseball. I guess the coach made the presentation. I'm not sure what he did but he had some hits and some catches. Jalen's first game is tonight.

The second webcam meeting of Rose's class is tonight. We meet on the webcam every two weeks and she's hoping all the little glitches we ran into two weeks ago are ironed out.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

I talked to Margaret this morning. Her spirits seemed good. Norman and Stephanie were both there with her. Her block for the pain in her leg probably hadn't worn off yet cause she wasn't in awful pain. Sabrina said Margaret's pain yesterday was excruciating. They were told yesterday that she could probably leave the hospital today but now they're going to keep her for a while. Since she can't put any weight on the foot for such a long time they're not sure what to do next. Sabrina told me that they're going to talk to a post operative care consultant this afternoon. Margaret's cell phone number is 636-577-1809. I'll get the number in her room next time I talk to her.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Catrina just called. Margaret is out of surgery and is in recovery. She hasn't been brought to her room yet. The doctor told the family that the break was as bad a one as he's ever seen. He put in a plate and 6 screws on one side and 2 screws on the other side. This break happened on her right foot. She won't be able to put any weight on it for 8 weeks. Sabrina told me while ago that Margaret might be released tomorrow but I think that must have been before the surgeon came out to talk to them. Will post more as we learn it.
UPDATE ON MARGARET: Sabrina just called. Margaret has been in a lot of pain since this happened. The leg is all bruised from the fall. She is just now being put under general anesthesia and will have surgery when the anesthesia sets in. (I don't know how to spell anesthesia and I don't think spell check is on.) The break is more in the ankle and leg and the surgeon is going to put whatever repairing devices (pins or/and other things) are needeed to mend the break. She has a room number already - Room 2240 - Barnes Jewish Hospital - St. Peters, MO. I'll get phone number and other information as the girls give it to us.

Today is one of the first really pretty spring days we've had and it's too bad the Abbotts had to spend in in the hospital. We had snowflakes on Sunday and today is convertible weather.
BULLETIN: Margaret fell this morning about 4 A.M. and broke her foot. She is scheduled for surgery sometime later today and is being admitted to Barnes West. Stef and Dan were picking Sabrina up from work just now because she didn't have her car today. Catrina was already there as I'm sure Norman was. Margaret had just finished her radiation treatments last week and was hoping she wouldn't be feeling so tired and sleepy all the time. I'll update more as we get more information.

Goldman and I took Jalen and Brayden halfway to Louisville on Sunday to meet Scott and leave the boys with him. It is sure quiet around here.

We've had lots of compliments on the pictures of the improvements the boys did on the lakehouse. Joe thinks we should rename the place 'the furlined'. Sabrina loved it and wanted to kniw whose idea it was and I had to admit it was Doug's. My harem consists of a bunch of hardworkers.

I'll post more on Margaret when I hear more.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Rose met us on Wednesday night and we got back to St. Louis rather late that night. Jalen and Aunt Rose went to Art Mart next day for some of his artistic supplies. The boys brought their rock band with them and spent lots of time serenading us. They took turns on the guitar and the drums. They're both very good on both. When I was in Louisville Scott and Sherry serenaded me one evening. Sherry was pretty good and Scott surprised me with his musical talent. I didn't know he had that much musical talent.

We went to Goldman's classroom on Thursday. We've already posted the pictures that Rose took there. The class was recuperating from some tests they had been taking all week and the classroom was more like blab school. The students all like and respect Goldman and one of them who took us to the office told us that he doesn't have any 'teacher's pets'.

When we got back from visiting Mark's classroom, both boys made him some decorations to post on the bulletin board in his classroom. Both worked very hard at making something that his students would like. Needless to say, both decorations were very special and Mark posted them first thing when he got to school this morning.

Friday, April 11, was Shelly's birthday. Chris said he took her shopping for her birthday outing. He bought her some planter urns as a gift. Saturday night was prom night which Shelly had to attend and Chris told us he was being forced to attend. Lunch date is here. More later.
I've been behind in posting updates since I've been in Louisville and then the boys came back with me for a few days so I'll try to catch up. Rose and I have to go meet with our insurance man this morning and then I'm having lunch with two old GMAC friends. I've known Melba and Betty longer than I can remember. They both knew Brick and I know Betty knew him before I did and Melba may have. We will have a good time reminiscing.

Back to the week's happenings. Rose flew to Chicago on the 5th and I flew to Louisville. Goldman dropped us off at the airport. Scott and the boys were waiting at the airport when my plane landed. Scott had to work some that evening so Sherry brought us pizza for dinner. Jalen's best friend, Christian, spent the night and the rest of us went to bed long before those two boys did. Brayden had baseball practice practice Monday. He plays T-ball and it's fun to watch. Jalen had practice on Monday and it's quite competitive. His practice lasts two hours and is a real workout. Wednesday's night was rained out - at least we thought it was. It had rained and we thought it would be too muddy.

Scott drove the boys and me half way to St. Louis and Rose met us. We didn't get to do everything we had planned but we kept busy most of the time. We visited Goldman's classroom. More later. Gotta go.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

This computer has a mind of its own. The photos we are posting are all mixed together, probably because we don't know exactly what we are doing. Anyway, look at the ones that interest you and skip over the rest. We wanted our readers to get an overall view of Mark Goldman's classroom. He is a marvelous teacher. Sue told the student who escorted us through a maze of corridors that she had known Mr. Goldman since before Kindergarten. The student was astonished--as if Sue were talking about the Civil War or something of that era.

Friday, April 11, 2008

We went to see Mark Goldman in his classroom on Thursday. It was state test day, and his students were unwinding from a stressful morning. Note Mark's shirt: "May the Fours be with YOU." Four is the highest mark on the tests. We were greeted warmly

Friday, April 04, 2008

Rose and I went down to the lake house Wednesday and felt like we were in a different house when we got into the downstairs. It is absolutely stunning. Doug did most of the designing and he did a marvelous job. It's opened up now so whoever is cooking or working in the kitchen can see the deck or the lake and talk to anyone sitting at the table. There's more cabinet space than before and that ugly shelf at the end of the eating area is gone and is replaced by attractive cabinets and shelves. Thanks to Doug, Goldman, Scott, and Maddog. Ray helped out one of the weekends before. Maddog was still there on Wednesday touching up some of his painting. He did a meticulous job. I don't know what I did over the years to earn their love, help, and plain old work but I'm glad I did it. Using their vacations and spring breaks to do carpentry work wasn't something they would have dreamed of as teenagers. I knew most of them then, too. Thank you all again. Thanks, Suzanne, for the use of your husband.

Rose and I met Joe for lunch Wednesday at Denny's at the lake on Wednesday before we went to see the house. He never brags about his kids so I'm going to brag about my niece and grand niece. Lisa is now a teacher in the International Baccalaureate program. Joe and I both had to let spell check help us with the spelling. Joe thinks that after 16 years at Central High Lisa needs a challenge. Lydia, his grand daughter, is a student in the program. She is also going to get the highest Girl Scout award possible sometime in May. Pete, did he have your credit card? We went bto the ladies room when the check came.

We've got lots of pictures of the new kitchen at the lake house and will post them as soon as Rose has time. She has been busy. She is teaching a class on line again and is using the webcam so we can see the other students. One is in Mexico City. I may not be star student this time.

The forsythia are blooming and some of the daffodils are blooming. The trees out front are starting to bud so maybe Spring is coming after all. We loved the Kansas update. Keep us posted.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

We had Ellie's 2 year birthday party this last weekend. We had lots of family and friends drive from St. John, Belpre, Salina, Manhattan, Nortonville, and Mound City to spend the weekend with our little princess. Karen, Cristian and Ryan came up Friday night and we had take out from Buffalo Wild Wings. While we were waiting for our order, Ryan (who is 2 1/2) went up to Ellie and yelled "Let's Go!" and they both ran for the door to try to escape all the chaos from the NCAA Tournament.

Saturday, Tricia and Walter arrived just in time to help us get the clubhouse decorated for Ellie's party. We had the birthday party at our community clubhouse in hopes that the kids could play outside in the playground but the weather did not cooperate. When we returned back to the house, Debbie, Joe, Sabrina, Joshua, Jr, and Martesia were there along with Cathey and Gary. Danny showed up in the morning.

It was nice to have everyone around and got a chance to catch up with everyone. We headed to the clubhouse around 5pm and John's family all showed up. I made some salads and we had wonderful Kansas City BBQ! The kids didn't eat too much as they were too busy popping balloons!

When it came time for Ellie to blow out her candle, she did a good job but was really bashful when we all sang "Happy Birthday" to her. She kept trying to press her face against mine and turn her head to try to hide. Opening presents was a different story - she dug right in! For about the first dozen presents, she would open them and have a big surprised look on her face - then the the next several, she would say, "Look what I found!" She was especially drawn to those cards that had money in them. She opened one and I asked her what it is and she said "Money". I asked her what she is going to do with it and she said, "Put it in my pocket." (She gets that from her father, everything of his goes into his pockets!)

Some big ticket items included a pillow and body pillow along with a bench with cushion that Great Aunt Cathey made for her, her indoor playhouse/tent from Old Great Aunt Debbie and the Hearn's, a cabbage patch doll and her money for her pocket from Great Grandma Felin, a Radio Flyer bike from Papa Danny, a tea set from Aunt Tricia and her play clothes from Aunt Karen. She also enjoyed the My Little Pony from John's sister, Kristin. In fact, of all Ellie's presents, that was the only one that Ryan just had to play with!!! I think Ryan will need one for his birthday except it will be blue instead of pink.

Sunday, we all had BBQ lunch together at our house and Old Great Uncle Joe had to talk Debbie into NOT going to Nebraska Furniture Mart. We think that Debbie needs to come up some weekend and go by herself - it's such a great place. We were sad to see everyone go - we had such a good weekend.

Ellie was a bit tired when everyone left but would not take a nap. It was not until we got in the car around 3pm to go to John's niece's birthday party, that she fell asleep and managed to sleep all through Chuck E. Cheese's. We had to wake her up so she could play a few games before we left though.

This weekend, she is getting her 2 year pictures and managed to get a big red mark on her forehead at school yesterday. Lots of red scrapes from tripping on the concrete at recess. I've been medicating it at all times to help it heal - if all else fails - I'll get out my concealer.

That is all to report from KS. We are going to the Bon Jovi concert in Kansas City on April 17th of anyone wants to go with us - we have 2 extra tickets - otherwise, someone may need to bail us out of jail for scalping outside the Sprint Center.

Here are some pics

Ellie-sleeping at Chuck E. Cheese

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

We had Brayden from Wednesday to Sunday so didn't have much time to post an update on the blog. He and I spent Friday night and Saturday night with Suzanne, Lukas, and Josie and he was really glad to get away from all these 'old' people. Rose and Shirley had out of town guests coming in on Friday and he took me aside and asked me confidentially if these people were going to be old too. He and Josie and Lukas played hard and did not want to go to bed at night.

The harem got a lot done at the lake house. Rose and I plan to go down and back tomorrow cause we can't wait to see it. The steps between the houses are done. The kitchen project is complete. The weather was bad and time ran out so they didn't get the deck power washed and stained but the foreman (Doug) has a schedule for completing those things. Doug gets one thing done and his mind is already on the next one.

My boat was in the shop all winter and this hillbilly assured me it was fixed when he brought it back a couple weeks ago so I paid him. It had been overheating. The boys finally drove it Saturday afternoon and it heated up after about 5 minutes of running. Doug is going to meet him Saturday afternoon and take him for a ride. The hillbilly says it can't be overheating. I'm sure I won't get my money back and it's too late to stop payment on the check. It's already cleared the bank. At my age I should be smarter.

Shirley went yesterday for her final results on her breast scare and got a complete everything's okay. She doesn't have to go back for six months and what they found was nothing to worry about. She told me in some technical terms but the bottom line was she's fine.

Fr. Ed Schramm, who was pastor at Holy Angels parish when Chris taught there, died on Sunday. He was also a good friend of Rose's. When Chris taught at Holy Angels he and Fr. Ed were the only two males so, when the teachers needed something from Fr. Ed, they sent Chris to ask. He really had no choice. He couldn't say no to all those teachers. Fr. Ed was a wonderful man and taught Chris a lot.

We're hoping Joe can meet us at the lake house and we can all have an early dinner at my favorite restaurant, Ruthie D's. Pete, does, does he have your credit card?

I hope this entry makes sense. I'm in the process of changing meds for my seizures and accidentally took an overdose of one yesterday but I'm getting back to normal this morning. Breakfast is ready and Rose is calling me.