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Showing posts from March, 2021

A Profusion Of Daffodils

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Daffodils, daffodils, daffodils! One can never have enough daffodils. The first spring we were here, I was aghast at spring when I realized that we didn't have one daffodil to greet us with its dazzling yellow sunshine harbinger of spring greeting. That first fall I made amends to never let that happen again, I planted a few hundred daffodils. The next spring those few hundred daffodils looks like a drop in the buck on our almost one acre of land here in our development (we have one of the largest lots in our development of 3/4 acre lots). Every year since then (2008) I have planted more and more daffodils. They are especially hard to plant in the fall because of all the other growth. A few years ago I started to plant in the spring. Yes, I broke that cardinal rule, "one does not plant spring bulbs in the spring." Well, I do folks because I want to know where the "holes" are. I buy already potted daffodils in the spring, then transplant them in those "holes

Wednesday's W

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  Hey folks, taking a break from my Nurse Ron life and posting a different kind of blog posting. This one I stole from Ur-Spo of Spo Reflections.  I've always like these kind of posts because the information gives you an insight into the blogger's personality and life, something which I always find interesting. Here goes: What's top my mind - concerned that I might not survive caring for Bill. My biggest fear is that I will die before Bill. Lately I've been so fatigued, I can hardly move. Of course a lot of this may just be my imagination. I hope it is anyway. Where I've Been - to the VA Outpatient Clinic in where I received my second dose of the COVID (Pfizer) vaccine. I have my proof of vaccination card and now I'm ready to travel. But I'm not going anywhere as long as I'm Bill's caregiver. What I'm watching - MSNBC usually, which is in the background when I am writing a blog such as this or cooking in our kitchen. However, since the Trump S

Fading

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Bill and Me Christmas 1976 (?) Finished up the last of digitizing our old slides and 8 MM and VHS videos to a flash drive and posted to You Tube. Some degradation of picture quality from so many transitions to new forms but the essence remains the same. This photo from Christmas 1976 (I think) of me and Bill at our home on Naudain Street In Philadelphia. Bill and I no longer look like this, we're almost unrecognizable now as we're fading out at the end of our lives now. But here's a photo memory of us for the ages long after we're gone. It's appropriate that this old photo is fuzzed out. That's the way Bill and I are now as we near the end of our lives. Bill has somewhat stabilized but he still needs help dressing, showering and with the bathroom (had another "accident" this morning). He also needs help with his medications, eating and direction. Some good news though, his edema open sores have healed and I don't have to dress his legs any more. Hi

Stimulating The Economy

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  Last week we received our stimulus payments of $2,800. After today's news, that payment is just about gone. Over the weekend I discovered our downstairs (basement) bathroom did not have a sewage pump but instead a sump pump to pump the sewer waste from the bathroom to our outside septic.  We've lived here since 2007 but have rarely used that basement bathroom. I have my own bathroom of my bedroom which is the master (of course) bedroom. Bill chose for his bedroom a small room off to the side of the utility room in our finished basement. He likes rooms without windows. I like rooms with a lot of windows. Just another total difference in preferences that Bill and I have. Bill didn't like to use the downstairs bathroom because the waste had to be pumped up through a sewer pipe to our outside septic tank. He almost always used the  upstairs bathroom in our bonus room on the second floor. Now that he's incapacitated he has difficulty climbing those stairs to the second flo

The March Winds Blow Cold

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Bill on the lookout waiting for the trash trucks this morning   Cold, cold, cold and windy this March morning here at Casa Tipton-Kelly.  Bill is at his usual spot on this trash pickup day. Every other week is recycle pickup. Wouldn't you know it, today is extra windy.  Our neighbor's trash was packed as it usually is (they have two young daughters) and this wind blew open the top of their trash can so now we have some their trash in our yard. I've already picked up some on this cold, cold, cold and windy day. Oh how I long for some warm days. I've had enough of the cold.  For the second year in a row we didn't receive any significant snow here in southern coastal Delaware which is just fine with me. I'll enjoy the snow I see on TV, I don't need to experience it especially since I fell on the snow and ice a few years back and tore my left leg quadricep muscle. That leg hasn't been right since but I walk again for which I will be forever grateful. Bill co

I Feel Good!

  Time for some smiles! Currently I'm reading a biography of my favorite female singer, Dinah Washington. I'm always amazed and impressed with people who have a natural talent whether it be in signing or another field like art.  I have no talent like that.  James Brown had talent. Mick Jagger has talent. Frank Sinatra had talent. So many singers who were born with that talent.  Another thing that always amazed me was that so many of these people who have that natural talent for singing had such chaotic lives. Dinah, one of my all time favorites, was a mess. Married seven or eight times, unpredictable and eventually dying of a drug overdose. How many of our natural talents die of a drug overdose? I knew Janis would die that way. Jimmi Hendrix, Jim Morrison. Keith Moon, Any Winehouse. So many, so much talent lost. But you know what? I think we all have some kind of talent, in our own way. Unfortunately my talent doesn't and never has earned me a lot of money. But I'm happ

Daylight Savings Time And Other Meandering Thoughts On This Sunday

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  This morning I had to endure the twice a year aggravation of changing all our clocks due to the beginning of Daylight Savings Time.  I love clocks and have way too many, but this is the time of year that I wish I only had one clock.  I think I have at least fifty timepieces to change. Some change themselves but most of my clocks I have to change by hand. And wouldn't you know it, no two are changed the same way. Because I only change the clocks every six months, at least half of them I forget how I changed them. Clocks are not like typewriter keyboards, standardized but someone went out of their way to make no two the same. As of this writing I've only changed about half of our clocks, I still have to change the one in my car. That's one I always forget. For some reason I have a mental block on that clock. Two of our clocks are high up on the wall. Bill usually pulls out the ladder and changes those times but he can't do that now because of his stoke and weakness and

Balancing

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  Pat's new penthouse condo in Hamilton, Ontario Bill's hospice nurse made her weekly visit yesterday. Using a hospice nurse is so much better for Bill and me than the previous home health care aides who were bombarding our house. They meant well but their visits were just too disruptive and not solving anything. When I had my leg surgery, my home health aide worker came in and changed my dressing, that was a big help.  Bill's just came in, filled out paper work, took his blood pressure and too often recommend that he go to the local emergency room immediately because his blood pressure was too low. That didn't work for our well being. I'm glad I changed his care to home hospice. The last few days we've had spring like weather here at our home in coastal Delaware. Bill's been out every day taking a walk. I also got in a couple long walks (over a mile) which does wonders for not only my health but mental well being. Something that needed renewed since Bill ca

Waiting For Bill's Hospice Nurse

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  Bill's leg wound dressing by Ron Right now we're waiting for Bill's hospice nurse to arrive this morning. She visits us once a week, usually on Fridays.  Since I decided on hospice home care for Bill, this is a much better option. Previously we had home health aides arriving here several times a week, sometimes two at a time, which was very disruptive. I'm sure they were just doing their job but with two consecutive visits which told us to go to the local emergency room right away because Bill's blood pressure was too low, I decided that home health care wasn't working for either one of us. There was no practical improvement in Bill's condition other than his day was disrupted (mine too) with no tangible result. With his home hospice care, she only comes by once a week, checks on Bill's condition and provides practical help. For instance, Bill's right leg was seeping clear liquid from his edema. She immediately ordered an antibiotic that was sent t

My New Normal

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  Bill waiting for trash pickup last Friday, his big event of the day. Bill now brings the trash cans back, a job he used to have before his accident, thus bringing his life somewhat back to normal. Here at Casa Tipton-Kelly we're pretty well settling into the new normal.  No more staying up all hours of the night. I used to go to bed around 12:30 to 1:00 AM. Two nights ago I went to bed at 8:30 PM and slept through the whole night. I do get up early, usually around 5:30 AM.  First job in the morning is to change Bill's dressing on his right leg. He has edema on both legs. That means his heart isn't pumping enough blood to his lower extremities. His right leg began weeping (seeping clear liquid) shortly after he returned home last month from rehab. His hospice nurse recommended dressing his leg wound. She also prescribed an antibiotic. Both measures seem to have stemmed any worsening of Bill's edema. The wound is still there but not as bad.  Every third day I have to he

Ron Is Now Vaccinated!

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Waiting for my first COVID vaccination shot at the VA Outpatient Clinic Hey folks! I got my first vaccination shot on Wednesday at the VA Outpatient Clinic in Georgetown, DE.  I got the Pfizer vaccine.  My second shot is scheduled for March 24th.  I am so relieved. I haven't mentioned it much but I was concerned that I would carry the COVID virus back to Bill. I tried to arrange a shot for Bill but they declined, saying in effect he was too old. In a few minutes Bill's hospice nurse is scheduled to arrive for her weekly visit. Now that Bill isn't on home health care, the we're not receiving those two and three times a week visits from the home health aides, sometimes two at a time. Very disruptive although they were just doing their job. Those visits weren't helping us though, especially the last two where both times the aide advised me to take Bill to the local emergency room right away, which solved nothing as far as Bill's condition. We're continuing to s

Finally,Geting My COVID Vaccination Shot

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Me waiting for my eye doctor this morning - yes, I've aged a lot in the past  two months   Finally, I'm scheduled for a COVID vaccination shot.  It's been so frustrating trying to get a COVID vaccination. I live in Delaware, president Biden's home state. One would think I would have no problem especially since I'm in the second group (old, cancer survivor). But, I've signed up to three websites (Walgreens, Beebe Hospital, and a national website), and nada. I get the same response, "No availability." Then today I get a notice from the VA that they now have COVID vaccinations for veterans.  They sent me a link.  I click on the link and get five pages of verbiage. Where do I make the appointment? Coincidentally, while I was looking I received a call from the VA following up on Bill's macular degeneration eye condition. I told them that Bill was now in hospice care and we don't need a support group to help Bill with his loss of vision. However, I d

New Year's Day Philly 1976

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Now that I'm basically housebound, full-time caregiver for Bill, I'm having time to review some old videos for digitization. This little blip of a video is of an old film that was converted to VHS and then I recorded with my iPhone. Needless to say, some of the video quality is lost but you can get a feel for the time and place. This video was taken on New Year's Day 1976 (give or take a year, it was the 70's), when Bill and I live in a quaint townhouse in center city Philadelphia. It was always my dream to live in center city Philly, where I could walk to work and the bars.  When we lived on Naudain Street (between Lombard and South Street, 2400 block), we had two male Pomeranian dogs, Hamburger (the orange sable) and Sparky (the cream colored Pom). I feel bad now thinking about how we left them alone all day when both of us went to work but they were always delighted to see us when we were home. We could take them out on the street and they wouldn't run away. They