Friday, February 26, 2010

A Day Away

No, it wasn't a day at the Spa. However, it was just as relaxing and fun. My cousin Barb and I decided to take a day trip back in time (sort of) to the town where we grew up--Archbold, Ohio. Our parents lived there all their lives, and now that they are gone we don't really have any real reason to go back. We do have some cousins who still live there. But it's kind of sad for us, because we really liked going to see our family there, and now it's different.

We stopped on main street at a little gift/floral shop and bought a cheery flower in a vase to take to our Aunt Mable. She is still in a nursing home in Archbold, and is 101 years old! In one month she will be 102. She's a little hard of hearing, but her mind has always been pretty good. She has a sweet smile, and likes to see us,though it sometimes takes a little time for her to remember what family we belong to. This time however, she didn't look as good to us physically, and she had a really hard time communicating her thoughts. We just sort of felt like maybe her time here is nearing to an end. (This picture was not taken yesterday--it was on a previous visit last fall). We prayed with her before we left, and she thanked us for the flower and for coming to see her.

Our next stop was at our cousin Carol's house. We picked her up to go out to lunch with us. We went to "Mom's Diner", which has sort of a 50-60's atmosphere, complete with a juke box. I had a delicious cheeseburger and chicken rivel soup. We sat and visited for a little while.

You may remember seeing previous posts about"Walt's House. It is the house where I grew up (at least from the time I was in grade school). It is now being used as a home for men who have been in trouble and need a fresh start. There are currently 4 men there which is about the maximum they can have). I hadn't seen the house since it had been re-furbished and furnished, etc.. so we were given permission by Cecily, the lady in charge of it, to go by and see it. They have done a wonderful job of fixing it up. I was very impressed. We also met 2 of the men who are staying there.

You have probably heard of Sauder's furniture. Their manufacturing factory is in Archbold, and there is an outlet store there. Barb was looking for a particular piece of furniture to go with her daughter's bedroom set, so we went to the outlet store, and had fun just browsing. They have some unique pictures , lamps, etc.

There is a meat store in Pettisville (just a short distance from Archbold) that has certain meats and foods that are sort of to die for. So we went to the Pettisville meat place. I got a ham loaf (which is one of their specialties) and potato salad (also totally delicious). The ham loaf was frozen, but I'm letting it thaw so that we can enjoy it tonight.

All of us are supposed to be on diets. (Carol has lost a lot of weight and looks great!). But there is a candy place in Archbold that has been there for years and years called "Al-Meda's Chocolates". Barb decided she would like a couple gift boxes of "local" candy to have on hand for gifts. There was a sample dish there, and between the 3 of us we nearly finished it off while we were there. We had to make sure we still liked it! Barb got her gift boxes (I wonder if she'll open one?) and I got a little bag of broken pieces. Just what I needed, right?!

I had to back by supper time, so we took Carol home and headed back home. It was just a fun day of visiting with each other and re-visiting some of the familiar places.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Of Mice, Women and Cars

I had pretty much decided that, at my mature age, there was nothing I hadn't heard about before, in some form at least. However, I was sitting in my recliner, with my laptop, just enjoying a quiet Saturday afternoon, when my hubby came in with this very strange look on his face. He said, "Donna, I have to tell you something". (he seemed so serious and tentative). He proceeded to say "you've had a mouse in your car". OK! So NOW maybe I've heard everything. I thought at first he was trying to pull my leg, but I should have known better. As much as he likes fun, he wouldn't have thought this one up on his own.

He proceeded to explain that he (being the good hubby that he is) had taken my new license sticker tag out to put it on my car, and then was going to put the registration in the glove box. When he opened the glove box, there were bits of paper torn up, a pair of gloves eaten through with many holes, and mouse dirt! He found a little place in the carpet that the mouse had eaten through. (Although I still don't totally understand it, he explained where the little opening is that the mouse came through).

Now, mind you, I've had my share of experiences with mice. And I felt I was fairly objective about them. After all, I didn't get all emotional at the sight of one. In fact, when my hubby and I were cleaning my dad's house, we caught many mice--once even catching two mice in the same trap! But I digress. All of this to say, it was kind of freaking me out that I was driving around with a mouse in my car!

Lynn had of course cleaned up my car and glove box. (Did I mention--I'm really thankful for a wonderful hubby who looks out for me!) He said he would set a mouse trap in my car overnight.

Sunday morning, I am once again relaxing in my recliner with a cup of coffee. Hubby comes in, with sort of a half smile on his face and said, "Well we caught your mouse!". I couldn't believe it! My next thought was, "I wonder how many friends and family he has?!" I encouraged Lynn to set some traps in the garage, as that is where my car is always parked; so surely this mouse had to be in the garage, before he found my car.

I slept in a little bit this morning, but when I got up there was a sticky note on the table where I usually sit to eat breakfast. It said "There was no mouse in the trap in your car this morning. Maybe there was only one. Your lover".

I got up in time to see him off to work this morning. He was kind of laughing, and said, well at least the mouse story will give you material for your blog. What was he thinking? It's hardly worth mentioning!

Friday, February 12, 2010

The Eyes Have It

Just over one week ago, I told you about a laser treatment I had on my eye. It is actually called Photo-dynamic Therapy. (PDT). Ever since that procedure, I have had very limited vision in that eye. It was as if there was a black circle covering my central vision. I was trying to maintain a positive attitude, as I had read that your vision might be blurry for several days following treatment.

Finally, on Thursday, I went back to see my Doctor. I told myself it was to quiet the concerns of my hubby and other friends and family members. But of course, deep down, I was also rather concerned. After doing the routine tests, my Dr. explained to me that the laser treatment was doing exactly what they want it to do--sealing off the blood vessel at the retina. However, as best I understand his explanation, the light from the laser has temporarily caused my retina to "go to sleep", thus causing this impaired vision. He said this could last as long as one month. He also said, that sometimes the vision will come back better; but he was quick to add a disclaimer, not wanting to make any promises he couldn't keep.

I was very glad I decided to go back to have this checked, as it has put my mind at ease, and actually gave me more information about the actual procedure. So for now, we are praying that indeed, my vision will be restored, at least to what it was before the treatment.

The Bible has much to say about our eyes, as well as the eyes of the Lord.

Hebrews 12:2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him, endured the cross, scorning the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Psalm 121:1 I lift up my eyes to the hills--where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.

Proverbs 3:7 Do not be wise in your own eyes;

Proverbs 15:3 The eyes of the Lord are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good.

Thank you Lord, for providing doctors and treatments that have allowed me to keep my eyesight these past few years. Help me to always keep my eyes and my focus on You, and then I will see all things in proper perspective.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

A Window of Opportunity and Beauty

I woke on Monday morning to a dusting of snow
It gave our humble country dwelling a fluffy white glow.

The sun was coming up, so I seized the day,
Before this winter scene would melt away.

The fence looked like an intricate needle-work crochet
I had never seen it look quite this way.

I could have blown this fluff a way with a puff of air
It looked so fragile as I gazed on it there.

It was quiet and peaceful, with hardly a breeze,
But alas, I must get inside before I freeze.

Though my pictures don't compare to Moments of Mine,
I so much enjoyed this glimpse of God's design.

According to predictions, we're in for much more snow,
I wish I had a fireplace, to enjoy it's warm glow.
But not to worry, with a good book and a cup of tea,
Comfy and cozy in my recliner, I surely will be.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Just a Note

I admit this is a bit humorous, but nevertheless, I wanted to post a tribute to letter writing. I'm dedicating this post to Cindy at Letters from Midlife, as I know she truly believes we should not lose the art of sending letters and notes by snail mail. I always enjoy getting a personal note or card in the mail.

This is a poem that was passed on to me by a fellow "senior". I'm sure it will be mostly appreciated by those of us who have a "senior moment" now and then.

Just a note to say I'm living, that I'm not among the dead
Though I'm getting more forgetful and mixed up in the head
I got used to my arthritis, to my dentures I'm resigned.
I can manage my bifocals, but gosh I miss my mind!

For sometimes I can't remember, when I stand at the foot of the stairs,
If I must go up for something, or have I just come down from there?
And before the fridge so often, my poor mind is filled with doubt,
Have I just put food away, or have I come to take some out?

So if it's my turn to write you there's no need for getting sore,
I may think that I have written and don't want to be a bore.
Just remember that I love you and wish that you were near.
Now it's nearly mail time so I must say goodbye my dear.

Here I stand beside the mailbox with a face so very red!
Instead of mailing you my letter, I have opened it instead!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Maintaining Eyesight

About 2 1/2 years ago I was diagnosed with wet AMD--Age-related Macular Degeneration. At the time that I was diagnosed, I was legally blind in my right eye. (My left eye is normal). Fortunately, there is a medication that they can inject in the eye to slow the progress of this disease, and sometimes it improves vision. In my case, it improved my vision initially, from 20/200 to 20/50. However, for about the last year I've had to get an injection every 4-5 weeks to maintain that level of vision.

Today, I had another procedure done, called Photodynamic Therapy. This used to be the only option available, before they found that Avastin and/or Lucentis would help this condition. My Doctor felt that by having this procedure today, it would seal off the blood vessel at the retina and then I won't have to have injections every month; I might possibly need an injection once or twice a year.

The procedure itself isn't painful. I had some tests to check my vision, and then they inject a dye which targets the abnormal vessel. They then shine a laser on that part of the eye and this process seals the blood vessel, keeping it from leaking into the eye.

The dye, however makes your skin extremely photo-sensitive. They told me I would need a hat, sunglasses and gloves (and long sleeves) when leaving the office, to prevent sunburn. My good friend, Rebecca, had taken me for this procedure, and also loaned me the beautiful hat! Thus, leaving the office I was decked out in my movie star outfit!

It was a cloudy day, so possibly this was overkill. But the nurse had told me a couple horror stories of people who got sunburns, and said that even on a cloudy day I should cover up. It will take 4-5 days for this dye, and consequently the photo-sensitivity to get out of my system.

As you might have guessed, I plan to lay low, read, scrapbook, maybe even put together the puzzle on my dining room table (although I'm finding I'm not a very good puzzle person, so I might have to give that up).

I am very thankful that these procedures are available. I am still able to read and do all of the things I enjoy doing, so this has been a real blessing.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Friendship is a Treasure

My sister-in-law, Annette, shared this with me, and I thought it was really appropriate for my blog. I know that I haven't met many of the women who read and comment on my blog, but I consider them friends. We share things that good friends share. So I wanted to pass on this poem about friends.

Friendship is sincerity, wrapped up in a smile,
A corner of tenderness shared for a while.
It's a niche in the heart, that is suddenly filled;
A deep-seated longing, discovered and stilled.
It's a hand on the shoulder when problems increase,
A sharing of laughter, a heart filled with peace.

A milestone that brightens each step of the way,
Like a beautiful thought at the start of the day.
It's deep understanding, a thoughtful reply,
A glance shared in secret, a wink of the eye.

Friendship is that rarest of treasures to hold,
It cannot be purchased with mountains of gold.
It's being protective when hope tumbles down,
A fault that's forgiven, a smile for a frown.
Encouragement offered when the goin is rough;
It's a hand set to help when the job is too tough.

Friendship is the essence of faith, deep and strong.
It's a poem unwritten, a beautiful song.
Alice Leedy Mason

Those of us who have friends like this are truly blessed. Thank you Lord, for the friendships you've given me.