Friday, February 29, 2008

Doug called me Wednesday to tell me that his car was broke on the side of the road. I asked what was wrong with it and he told me that with over 300,000 miles on it, it finally gave up the ghost and threw a rod through the side of the engine block. I'm not a mechanic, but have heard the guys talk enough about vehicles to know that what that means is that the engine is shot! Will never run again. It was the only running vehicle they had. Needless to say, he was very upset. And Virginia had an appointment in Grand Rapids to have Alissa's cello repaired. It seems the man who repairs the cello's is only there on Wednesdays. I told them that I could give them a ride, but I couldn't just drop what I was doing and go right then. I needed to finish making Tom's dinner and make sure his clothes were out of the drier and ready. I suggested they call and see how long the cello repairman was going to be there.........they did and found out he would be there until 5PM. GREAT. Gave me plenty of time, but then only 1 of them could go with me as the other one would need to be at home since some of the kids would be getting of the bus before I would make it back. They decided that Doug would go since Virginia had a headache and still wasn't feeling totally recovered from the pneumonia.

Fast forward to Thursday evening about 7:30 PM. My phone rings and it's Virginia all upset........I can hear it in her voice. She said that Harley had fallen in the house and hit her mouth and put her teeth through her lip and there was blood everywhere, and she needed to go to the ER. I told her I was on my way. While driving there I'm having flashbacks to the day when Doug was about 6 and fell off the neighbors porch and bit his tongue half off and they had to sew it back on and stitch the cut in his chin. I get there and Doug brings Boo to the car and she is holding this washcloth with ice inside to her mouth. As he is putting her in the car, the washcloth gets moved away from her mouth and I see this chunk of top lip skin hanging down and notice that her top teeth are pushed in and one is partially behind the other. I'm thinking......'oh, this isn't a good thing at all'!

While driving to Plainwell to reach the nearest ER from their house (it's called Borgess-Pipp Hospital, btw) Doug starts explaining to me how she fell. She was running and Hunter accidentally stepped on her sock that was coming off her foot causing her to fall forward, face first onto the top edge of the coffee table. Poor little girl. She was being so brave. She would move the cloth away from her mouth every so often and say "Daddy, my mouth hurts." But you have to hear it come out of a little 4 year old girl who can't say her ''r's" and is talking funny because her lip is more than twice the size it should be and her teeth have been pushed into her mouth. Very pathetic. We got her there and had a long wait. There was an elderly man with chest pains, an elderly lady who was in a diabetic coma, a baby with seizures, so we certainly understood why we had to wait. They had to deal with the more critical patients first. By the time Boo is finally seen by a doctor, he informs us that it is going to take at least 1 stitch to close the area, but there is a chance he might have to clip some of the lip skin away as it was already turning black. They brought in the suture kit and a needle and some med to numb her lip and gave her the shot. There were really 3 times that he had to poke her to make sure it was all the way numb. She cried big alligator tears, but that's okay. Once the shots began to take effect she was quiet again and holding Daddy's hand. The doctor was able to close it with two stitches and didn't need to clip any skin off............whew, we were glad of that. Then he decided he needed to take a good look at her teeth. Her gum above her two front teeth is terribly swollen and bruised already and he tried to move the one tooth from behind the other one. He was able to accomplish that, but feels that Harley should see a dentist as soon as possible. I finally got them to their house at 10:30PM and left and got back home just around 11:00 PM. It was a very long and frustrating evening. Ones that I thought I was all finished with. Some things never change, do they? Gosh, I hope they can purchase a vehicle soon!

FF, once again to Friday morning. Doug calls and has scheduled an appointment for Harley for 11:30 with the only dentist in the entire area that had an opening. Remember, it's wintertime in Michigan and I don't like to drive when the roads are slick and icy. And after receiving another 4 inches of wet heavy snow overnight, that's exactly how the roads were. So, for the second time this morning I wake Bumpa up. The first time was please don't laugh, I feel out of bed landing on my hip with a rather loud thud. I had been sound asleep and rolled over and out. Mind you, our bed is a pedestal bed with six drawers underneath it so it is quite a ways off the floor, much higher than most beds. It was a modified waterbed frame if that gives you any idea of it's height. And I am very sore and am having trouble getting around today. But I digress. So, good ole Bumpa gets out of bed, quickly drinks a cup of coffee and leaves to drive 16 miles southeast to pick up Doug and Harley and turns around to drive 10 miles back north to deliver them to the dentist office. He then drives 10 miles back south to return them home and drives 16miles to return to our home so he can get ready for his second shift job and drive 27 miles to work. He didn't even get his dinner today. But he said it doesn't matter as long as the grand daughter is going to be okay and no damage was done to her permanent teeth. Bumpa said she asked when she had to go see another doctor with a worried look on her face and her daddy told her not for a while. I think he will take her sutures out himself rather than try and arrange for another ride back to the ER which is another 10 miles south of where he lives.

So in spite of all the drama of the last couple days, things turned out okay and all will be back to normal before we know it..........maybe even by spring!

Monday, February 25, 2008

I found a treasure!

While searching through some of my personal files today looking for copies of birth certificates and old copies of tax returns, I came across this letter or report that Rachel wrote to her Dad several years ago. I'm sure she wrote it because she knew of his fascination with and love of eagles.

If you read this, Rachel, please don't be angry or upset. I am not making fun of you, sweetie. I think it is wonderful and I saved it all these years because to us it is a treasure and a gift of love to us from you.

I know I have many more of treasures like this from some of the other kids too in my files, and when I locate them I just may post some of them too!

Friday, February 22, 2008

We are expecting a new grand baby come this fall. That will bring our total to 19! I'm thinking that is enough. I wonder if I will live long enough to see great grandchildren and how many that number will be. Even if all 19 just have two each that would make 38. WOW! The expectant mom is sick with pneumonia right now though and is feeling awful. Fortunately, she hasn't been experiencing morning sickness, just tiredness and with the pneumonia, I'm sure she is feeling exhausted and probably a bit overwhelmed with her two and Doug's two already. Doug has another daughter, Amber, but she lives with her mom, but does visit on a regular basis.

Bumpa is sick today and I've talked him into going to the doctor. He usually won't give in and go, so I know he doesn't feel well. I think he has the flu even though we both had the flu vaccine last fall. From what I've been reading it is only 40% effective because of mutations of the viruses this year. Which means that I will probably catch it too. Last few times I had the flu, it went into pneumonia or bronchitis, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I won't catch it.

I am supposed to take care of Drew all day tomorrow, but if Bumpa does have the flu or is sick with something contagious, I'm sure they will want to find another sitter for him.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

What Marcia Means

You are confident, self assured, and capable. You are not easily intimidated.
You master any and all skills easily. You don't have to work hard for what you want.
You make your life out to be exactly how you want it. And you'll knock down anyone who gets in your way!

You are usually the best at everything ... you strive for perfection.
You are confident, authoritative, and aggressive.
You have the classic "Type A" personality.

You are wild, crazy, and a huge rebel. You're always up to something.
You have a ton of energy, and most people can't handle you. You're very intense.
You definitely are a handful, and you're likely to get in trouble. But your kind of trouble is a lot of fun.

You are very open. You communicate well, and you connect with other people easily.
You are a naturally creative person. Ideas just flow from your mind.
A true chameleon, you are many things at different points in your life. You are very adaptable.

You tend to be pretty tightly wound. It's easy to get you excited... which can be a good or bad thing.
You have a lot of enthusiasm, but it fades rather quickly. You don't stick with any one thing for very long.
You have the drive to accomplish a lot in a short amount of time. Your biggest problem is making sure you finish the projects you start.

What's your name mean?

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Winter is beautiful in Southwest Michigan

These are some of the landscapes as we took a drive through some areas not far from where we live today. The man driving, is of course, my hubby.......who is my wintertime chauffer and will drive me where I need or want to go (when he is not working) when the roads are too bad for me to feel comfortable driving on them.

Most of the photos are of frozen Lake Michigan. The large humps are frozen waves covered with several inches of snow after they froze. Some people are brave enough to walk out on these frozen chunks of waves, but many have gotten in some serious problems because of their foolishness and had to be rescued by the Coast Guards. We just admire the beauty of them from afar and stay safe. Today while we were there, we did notice two people that were quite a ways out on the ice. We left and they were still there, I hope they remained safe and dry............with Lake Michigan and the weather here, one can never tell what might happen next.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

How I long for the weather to look like my header picture!

But this is what it looks like instead. Notice in the bottom photo, the snow is half covering the slide on th swing set. And the trees in the first photo don't really hang on the ground. It's just the heavy, wet snow weighing them down today. We probably received a total snowfall of 5-8 inches last night when the forcast only called for 2-4. I guess lake effect snow is very hard to predict. Our temperature has climbed to a balmy 24º and the windchill is 18º. Much better than last weekend when we had below zero windchills and temps only around 0 to 5 above! The trailer way in the background is what we use for our wood shed. At the beginning of the season there was a huge covered wood pile in front of it too, between the swing set and the wood shed. But as you can see it is gone, or what's left of it is so buried in the snow, we will have to wait for the spring thaw to find any wood on the ground there. Thankfully, we have a large pile of it stored in the garage now (thanks to hubby's hard work) and although it is still cold to go to the garage and get it, it isn't as cold as if we had to walk outside for it! We burn a lot of wood up and we don't even heat the house with wood. It is just for our fireplace, that I abolutely love. I always wanted to live in a home with a fireplace and when we bought this old house 3 years ago, it had two of them. How lucky can I get! Although we have never used the one in the formal living room, we do have a fire in the fireplace in the family room almost every night. The only bad thing about having a lot of fires is the glass doors get really sooty, and we need to clean them every day in order to keep them clean and clear enough to be able to see the fire. We have struggled with this job for the last three years. Tried everything on the market made for cleaning glass doors to fireplaces. And you know what we found just a couple weeks ago that really works good and makes the job a LOT easier? Krud Kutter! You can buy it at Wal-Mart, Meijers, Menards, Home Depot and other stores of that nature. And bonus, it's cheaper than the stuff they make specially to clean them. So, I'm headed into the family room to build a fire and feel cozy!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Too much drama for me!

I've been very busy with grand children lately. Two of them came late one night and ended up staying for 3 days. They are a little girl Harley, 4, (aka, Boo) and her older brother, Hunter, 5. It was only supposed to be for one night, but we got another one of our famous Michigan snow storms and we were basically snowed in since I refuse to drive in that kind of weather. School was closed once again for a couple days. That was last week Tuesday when it all began. Doug and his fiancee went to the neighbor in the upstairs apartment to see the new baby they had brought home that day. Everything was fine. The dad asked Doug and Virginia to toast the birth of the baby with him and they did. Only problem was neither of them has had much to drink besides an occasional beer in a very long time. The baby's dad offered them whiskey. Doug can't handle whiskey........makes him mean. Virginia can't handle anything except a couple beers. Makes her a nag and very impatient! They went back downstair and put the little ones to bed. The older ones were talking with their dad on the phone.

Doug and Virginia began to argue and Doug decided it would just be better if I could come and get the little kids and keep them for the night so they wouldn't hear any disagreement if one were to pop up. He went to his truck and called to see if I would pick them up for the night. I told him yes, but it might take me a bit to get there depending on the road conditions. We were expecting a freezing rain/sleet storm followed by lots of snow. I hurried as fast as I dared. In the meantime, Virginia saw Doug loading the car seats into his truck, thinking he had had too much to drink and was going to take the kids with him driving somewhere. She locked the door and refused to open it to let him come back in and get his kids. He yelled that his mom was coming for them and to unlock the door so he could get them. She didn't believe him and yelled back that no she wouldn't because he was in no shape to be driving those kids anywhere. The more she told him 'no', the madder he got. Whiskey will do that to you, I guess! So he proceeds to kick the door down, breaking the lock and the woodwork around the lock. Remember her children are talking with their dad on the phone in the other room and hear the screaming and tell their dad what has happened and begin to cry saying they are well they should be by this time. Their dad tells them to hang up and he will call 911 and get the police out there. When I arrive, the police are cuffing Doug and placing him under arrest in the back of a police car.

Now I am totally confused because the last I knew, I was coming to pick up the kids just in case there was an arguement and they wouldn't have to listen to it. I was pretty shocked and asked the officer if he couldn't just release Doug to my custody for the night and I would take him home with me and keep him until he was calm the next day. Anyway, I was told "NO" and he would have to remain in jail for 24 hours on a domestic violence charge. Virginia spoke with the police officers and said it is not, nor was it at any time a domestic violence event. If anything, it was a big misunderstanding and she was just trying to keep the little ones safe by not letting them ride with someone who had too much to drink. To shorten the story they hauled him off to jail and kept him until around 1 PM the next day and released him in the middle of a blizzard without a coat or gloves or hat or proper foot wear. He called for a ride, but I couldn't go and get him..........the roads were too bad and I wasn't going to take his little ones out on the roads while they were in that condition. So he began to walk............22 miles. A truck driver picked him up and gave him a ride almost all the way to his house. His truck wouldn't start so he couldn't come and get the kids and like I said before I wasn't going to drive in it. The next day he called and asked hubby to come and give him a jump, thinking it was his battery. was his alternator. Hub lent him $100. bucks for a rebuilt one and told Doug to find his own way back because he had to get to work so he wouldn't be late. Doug managed to find a ride home and put the alternator in, but by that time it was freezing rain/sleeting again and too dangerous to come and get the kids. The next day he had to go to work early in the morning and arranged for a ride and Virginia came and picked them up by aroudn 9AM. Hunter made it to school, a little late, but at least he made it. Harley didn't have pre-school on Friday so she got to spend the rest of the day with Virginia, whom Harley says is one of her best friends.

The go to court on Feb. 15th, Virginia's birthday. I'm praying for a good resolution to this huge misunderstanding and hoping the judge is a compassionate man.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

My two-year old grandson in Kentucky, Cayden broke his arm. They are calling it a buckle fracture. It doesn't seem to be serious and I'm sure it bothers the parents a lot more than it appears to be bothering him from the looks of this photo! They had it splinted at first, but he kept trying to take that off and when they took him to see the orthopedic doctor today they opted to cast it. It should come off within 3 weeks. Little ones sure heal a lot faster than us old fooggies do! If that was one of us 'over 50's bunch', we would probably we wearing a cast for months. Sometime it seems youth is wasted on the young!

Sunday, February 3, 2008