Sunday, August 16, 2020

Stacia Turns 15!

 Stacia's magnificently loaded Birthday Sundae on birthday Sunday. 


 
We missed Cory (had to work), Larissa (at home in Juneau) and Izaak (had previous plans). Nolan arrived after work. All in all this is a pretty good crowd and the sundaes were a hit!  Both Bre and Arielle are starting to sport pretty cute baby bumps. 
Bre, Annie, Gideon, Stacia, Bella, Livie, Krista, Carrie
(Michael and Jamin in the back) Cy, Jared, Alex, Benny, & Arielle


Puppy Cuddles


Cousins! 

Stacia and Jamin bounce kids....

Interesting sermon notetaker....

Football of some sort






Annie is coming into her personality - and it's delightful!

Stacia received quite a few thoughtful gifts, cake decorating tools, a warm fuzzy blanket, a tablet, a phone, phone minutes, play toys for Millie and a training session for Millie with a trainer Jamin knew.

Best of all? Dad woke up! Yes, GG is awake and there is no more talk of implementing his medical directive.  

Puppy Play Date

 This is Millie at 3 1/2 months. She's the queen of the yard. Her official name is Millie Rose....but Michael and I call her Millie Mutt after his childhood dog. Her attitude is Mutt the second. 

She has been enjoying play dates with Kimber since she came home at 7 weeks. Kimber is CoRielle's puppy. She's about 9 months old and is a retriever/husky mix. .

Millie has been a rough and tumble wrestler from the start. The thought was that Kimber would put her in her place and she'd learn appropriate play. Kimber is a sweetie and is happy to let Millie play....from time to time she rolls on her back and let's Millie "win." 


This has not Millie appropriate play. She also "plays" with Reno, an English Mastiff. Reno, Luke's dog,  is the most laid back dog I've met. He lets Millie climb all over him and when he's done he just lifts his paw, places it on her and she's done. LOL 

On this day we were eating outside and misplaced a couple of dishcloths....Tug OF WAR. 



Millie  ATE the cloth. My word. We've had to pull more terrible things out of her throat....disgusting...she eats sponges, socks, ropes...and pukes them back up.  Here everyone tries to corner her....to steal her priceless dishcloth.



I can't remember who ended up pulling the cloth out of her mouth this day. This was BEFORE Stacia and Millie met with "the trainer" and she learned she had to control Millie's environment because Labradoodles are CRAZY.  These days Millie trails a leash so we can catch her quickly when she pulls these stunts. 



Saturday, August 15, 2020

Preparing for Sundaes on Sunday

Day 4 of the "week" Dad has been given to "wake up."

This is the day before Stacia's birthday! Many in our family request various ice cream cakes for their birthdays. There have been a few cheesecakes requested...but for the most part it's ice cream cakes.  This year Stacia requested homemade ice cream and sundae toppings. If one wants homemade ice cream on Sunday - one makes ice cream on Saturday. This is a rhythm we have had in San Angelo, TX and when we lived in the RV....she misses it. 

I shopped for an amazing amount of toppings, cream, and honey and made the ice cream mixture. Michael and Benny manned the ice cream makers. 

LOVE the summer yard

The girls chopped candies, nuts and cookies. 

The magical moment when Benny SEES the milk and honey really DOES make ice cream! I love how God promised the Israelites a land flowing with ice cream milk and honey. It confirms to me we are meant to enjoy our food. 

Everyone's favorite part - quality control - tasting y'all. 



Such a helpful pup

Jamin came out and the guys enjoyed relaxing together. We love having Jared here...and we're proud of the work he is doing in Juneau as well. 

Tomorrow we celebrate Stacia turning 15 years old, we will miss GG. 

Friday, August 14, 2020

Stacia Cut Her Hair

 Stacia has been growing her hair for years. She has been talking for over a year about cutting. Her sisters and I have been curious what will happen to her hair when she cuts it - we suspect waves and curls.  

She has decided, with her 15th birthday on the horizon, to cut her hair.  In this time of  COVID, I stayed where they asked me to stay and didn't grab photos. 

I had told Norma she had a LOT of hair....after about 30 seconds Norma came out and asked if they could donate her hair to Locks of Love. YES! 



Yep, she got the curls and waves, along with the height.  

Jared flew over or up from Juneau.  At this point in time (I'm writing in Oct), GG hadn't woken up from surgery. He flew up to be with us when he heard we had agreed to take GG off life support if he didn't wake up in a week.  GG had 4 more days to wake up.  These were tense days and it was nice to have Jared here. 


Sunday, August 02, 2020

Unexpected Happenings

This past week was QUITE a week.

We knew Dad had 3 scheduled appointments.....but the week went off the rails. We ended up with  more appointments - but I'm getting ahead of myself.

Josiah is quarantined due to a work exposure to COVID 19.

Jamin is also staying home due to the fact that he shares a home with Josiah.

BreZaak and crew began the week quarantined due to Izaak's exposure.

Dad's first appointment went well.  We came home and did a bit of work in the neglected garden. Dad has adopted the corn patch - which is SHORT, but tasseling.


Dad's second appointment was for an angiography and possible stent on the blockages detected in previous tests.  They allowed me to go into the hospital as I'm his caregiver.   I waited and waited  - masked - and thought up parody songs about, "I'll mask up for you..." The work needed was more extensive than they had expected.  All 3 arteries are 80% blocked. They referred us to a heart surgeon.


We began to discuss the issues with Dad....stay the course with meds, stents, or open heart by pass surgery.  We hoped for stents and waited to hear from the surgeon.

The surgeon called at 9:02 the next day.  They wanted to see us in Anchorage at noon. Up we went.  Due to the placement of the blockages in the left artery, to stent would require at LEAST 5 seconds of no blood to Dad's heart. The Dr. said he feared his heart wouldn't start up again. In his opinion this was the option with the shortest life expectancy.

Two options were to accept a major heart attack is on it's way....statistically 80% chance it would be within a year...could happen any time, or have the by pass surgery. Dad chose the surgery.  He chose the option with the chance of the longest life expectancy.

There just aren't a lot of photo options at doctors....this little sign in the elevator cracked us all up. There is NO WAY 4 folks will be 6 feet apart in here....maybe 2 could pull it off.  


We texted and called family and Dad's family-like-friends on the way home to the valley.

I spent significant time talking with various folks to get permission to at least attend pre-op with Dad. Anchorage has the policy NO ONE can attend patients...not even caregivers. I told them I understood, but if they had info pertaining to Dad's care I NEEDED TO HEAR IT....and  if they want him to go directly to surgery on the morning of surgery, I need to accompany him. I got a call back Friday afternoon saying I can attend pre-op and accompany him until the surgical nurse meets him. I will then leave and see him again when he is released at the door of the hospital. I can live with this.

The heart surgeon is predicting 4 days in ICU and a total of 7-9 days in the hospital.

We spent Saturday readying the RV. Michael, Stacia and I will go up with Dad on Tuesday. We'll stay in Anchorage for the first few days post op. I KNOW we can't visit or really do anything - but stay, we will.

Michael and I went shopping for a tablet so Dad could have video visitors in lieu of visitors. We worked on setting it up today only to  discover Dad has no interest in video visitors.  He is just fine talking on the flip phone and didn't want to take the tablet to the hospital.  It was MY need to have that contact. Stacia has a birthday in 2 weeks and is HAPPY to take the tablet off grandpa's hands.



We ended the night, and started the new week, playing Farkle...and eating treats. Stacia made a yummy carrot cake, Michael pulled out ice cream and Krista had Belgium chocolate left from her trip to AL.  One of her fellow chaplains had flown in from Germany.


Even Millie wanted to play tonight....look how quickly she is growing. She is 3 months old now. We suspect she will be more than the 50lbs we were anticipating based on her Mom and Dad's sizes. She was 21 lbs last time we weighed her.

Dad's surgery is Wednesday, August 5th at 0730. We appreciate and crave your prayers. There are many things about this I simply don't like.

This song has been playing in my mind......




[Verse 1]
I love You, Lord
For Your mercy never failed me
All my days, I've been held in Your hands
From the moment that I wake up
Until I lay my head
Oh, I will sing of the goodness of God

[Chorus]
And all my life You have been faithful
And all my life You have been so, so good
With every breath that I am able
Oh, I will sing of the goodness of God

[Verse 2]
I love Your voice
You have led me through the fire
And in darkest night You are close like no other
I've known You as a Father
I've known You as a Friend
And I have lived in the goodness of God, yeah!

[Chorus]
And all my life You have been faithful, ohh
And all my life You have been so, so good
With every breath that I am able
Oh, I will sing of the goodness of God, yeah!