Semper Gumby Yet Again

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Our plan for today was to get Fred ready to move to Tuscaloosa to work on some estate business there next week. We had almost finished and were about to move the coach out to the end of the driveway before the rains arrived.

Remember the medical alarm we installed for Aunt Helen yesterday? Well, about 1:00 pm we got a call from the alarm company that the alarm had been activated and EMS notified. We jumped in the car and headed that way thinking it was another accidental activation. (We had several of those with her old medical alarm.) We arrived at the same time the first member of the Pine Mountain Volunteer Fire and EMS pulled up on the scene. When we entered the house Anne immediately saw that it was real. Aunt Helen was in the kitchen floor holding her right shoulder.

She has a broken clavicle.

Jump forward seven hours and we are in her room in the hospital where she will be for a couple of days for evalution. After that, we will see.

Please pray for Aunt Helen. And us.

More Springing

Friday, February 23, 2018

Today was another beautiful spring day. High temperature was 80. Don’t know if this was another record but it was nice. Everything is starting to bloom now. The tulip poplar that had only 2 blooms 2 days ago is approaching full bloom today. Beautiful. Now we are starting to think about fresh local strawberries. It won’t be long.

Today we installed a new medical alarm at Helen’s. We are trying to do everything we can to make her environment as safe as possible so she now has a fall detection pendant/medical alert button. She is suppose to wear it all the time, especially at night. We told her to never, ever take it off. We don’t want her to fall and be in the floor all night.

grilling smoked sausageWe took advantage of the beautiful day to get the grill out.  We like to keep some grilled smoked sausage in the freezer to add to omelets and have with biscuits and the freezer was empty.  Now it is restocked with three pounds.  Since we had the grill out anyway, we also decided to have some steaks, potatoes and salad.  Good meal.  Max really knows how to grill a steak.  Of course we have no pictures of the steak.  It was eaten as soon as it was done.

We also began reloading FRED today. We never really unloaded everything but today we started sorting and taking the sweatshirts back inside and bring out more short sleeved shirts for Baton Rouge. We plan to take Fred to Tuscaloosa Sunday and leave him there until we head to Baron Rouge in about 10 days so we have to get everything loaded tomorrow. It will be a busy day. We were able to get our 4 miles in again this afternoon. We are getting back in better shape. Hope you all have a great weekend.

Springing Spring

Thursday, February 22,2018

Sorry, we have been offline for a while. Think we just needed some down time. We have done better the past two days. Actually been able to accomplish some things and feel like we could think again. There were a few days where we just really felt like we were in a fog. Maybe the lack of sleep finally caught up with us. We have slept better the past two nights but probably the biggest influence has been wonderful, gorgeous, record breaking warm spring like days. We had highs in the 80s the past two days which is about 10 degrees above our normal February days. It’s been wonderful. We have gone for nice walks for photography as well as our usual 4 mile cardio walks every day this week. Also think getting back into our normal exercise pattern of weighing in each morning with the Wii and walking or riding several miles in the afternoon also helps our mindset. The trees are budding out and our tulip magnolias are beautiful. Yes, we know – time for a frost. At least that is what happens a lot of years. At least for the next 10 days the forecast looks safe. The star magnolias are prettier than normal this year. Anne’s dad’s favorite spring bloomer was the forsythia and it is starting to bloom too.

Repotting succulents
We re-potted some succulents for travel.

Other than trying to be a little kind to ourselves the past few days, we have also been working on all the stuff that has to be done to handle the business end of our mothers’ affairs. There are thank you notes to write, bank accounts to balance, bills to pay etc. Canceling upcoming doctor appointments was one of those unexpected landmine things. It hurt. We still have lots to do and more decisions to make but we are feeling more capable these days. And we are giving ourselves permission to just stop when we start feeling overwhelmed. So, for today, we did good. We will take this one day at a time. Thanks again for the cards, calls and concern. Hoping we get back to some more interesting blogging soon but at least we have some nice pics for you today.

Church x 2

Sunday, February 18, 2018

A little sun was peaking through the trees before we went to church this morning. However, it didn’t last long. Most of the day was cloudy and this afternoon we had rain again. If rain makes for pretty spring flowers we should have a beautiful spring in our future. We do have some trees that are trying to put on some buds but it is really still to early for that.

Lester Memorial UMC morning serviceWe finally had a night we both slept pretty well. Thankful for that. We were so glad to be able to go back to Lester Memorial for worship today. It’s always nice to worship with our home church. We stayed for most of Sunday School and was so nice to be in class again too. Then we headed back to the mountain to worship at Lee’s Chapel. Lee's Chapel UMC morning serviceWe wanted to be with Aunt Helen today. She seems to be doing some better but still just looks so sad. After worship we took Helen home and fixed her lunch and visited a while. Rain started shortly after we returned home so it was time for a Sunday afternoon nap. We were able to get a little work done this afternoon on some of Juno’s business and still get our walk in. It was a good day.

Catching Up a Little

Saturday, February, 17, 2018

Today was a much nicer day than predicted. It was cloudy most of the day but early afternoon we actually had a little sunshine. Nice. The rain didn’t really start until around 4:00 this afternoon. We had some showers and drizzle earlier but no significant rain until late afternoon. The long term forecast still doesn’t look very cheerful – rain every day for the next 10 – but makes us just look forward to heading south again. That won’t happen for a few weeks, but we will be busy and time will go by quickly.

Today we worked around the house and FRED. We sanitized the coach’s fresh water system. We had planned to do this chore when we un-winterized in Florida but since we had to leave so soon after getting set up it never happened. We try to sanitize twice a year, roughly January before we head to our winter projects and June before our Constructors project. We know some people never sanitize but we feel it’s the safe thing to do. Max also changed out one of our living room ceiling lights today. One of the LED lights started flashing like a strobe light. Very annoying. A week or so ago it only did it after the light had been on a considerable time, but recently it had started strobing whenever it was turned on. We quit using the overheads and just used the accent lighting for the past week. The light was not problem to change out, but now we have to get Tiffin to send us a replacement. We were fortunate we had purchased an additional light we planned to install in a dark area under the kitchen cabinets so we had that one on hand. We also worked on catching up some paperwork and have lots more of that to do.

JonquilsWe again got to walk the track with Barry and Donna this afternoon. We did a total of about 4 miles today. Trying to get back into a routine of some sort since in some ways we feel sort of lost right now. We always love catching up with Barry and Donna. Blessed to have such wonderful friends. The jonquils are really starting to bloom now. We first noticed them when we returned from Juno’s funeral Wednesday afternoon. It was like they sprung up during the service and were there just for us. We had not noticed them Wednesday morning. It was another one of the little blessings that comforted us that day.

That’s about it for today. Right now we are enjoying listening to the rain and watching a movie. Hope you are having a great weekend. Don’t forget to be in prayer for services tomorrow.

Log Truck Karma

Friday, February 16, 2018

Today was another gray rainy day but with nice temperatures, lows in the low 40s to upper 50s and highs in the upper 60s to mid 70s. And it’s the same forecast for the next 10 days. Rain predicted every day. It helps replenish the water table from last summer’s drought but sure would like to see the sun. I understand it was 80 and sunny for our family in South Carolina. Lucky ducks.

Today was another catch up day. It seems we are behind on most everything. The laundry is finally all done and put away. Yea! We have clean clothes and our work clothes for NOMADS projects are ready to go again. We went to visit with Aunt Jean and purchased her supplies and paid her bills today. Both she and Aunt Helen are really grieving Juno’s death so we are trying to stay in a little closer contact with them both. Each of them are the only remaining member of their families. We can only imagine how that might feel.

With every thing that was going on when we returned to Alabama, we never told you about our trip home. On that Wednesday morning, we worked to complete the concrete pad forming work we were doing at the Chapel at Crystal River. We stayed in close contact with the hospital and it became obvious that we needed to head home ASAP. Our wonderful team members laid hands on us and prayed for Juno and for us and lovingly sent us on our journey. After sleeping a few hours at Lowe’s in Troy Wednesday night, we were back on the road by about 4:30 am. Both times we have come back to Alabama recently, we stayed at the Troy Lowe’s and both times when we went to customer service to ask permission, we were greeted by women who were obviously Christian and both said they would be praying for us.

So by now you have read this far and are wondering about the title.  It was an uneventful morning drive through Montgomery and then we took US 82 to Tuscaloosa. We were committing the unforgivable sin of driving the speed limit. Shortly, an unloaded log truck approached us from behind at a fairly high rate of speed and made the decision to pass us on a double yellow line, going up a hill, in the dark and right after passing a sign indicating passing lane ahead. He successfully passed us without hurting anyone. Sure aggravated Max who was driving at the time. Then karma kicked in. Less than ten minutes later, we saw our friend again. This time the log trailer was jackknifed off an embankment and the rig was blocking one lane of the road. The driver was rocking the truck back and forth trying to get back on the road but try as he might, he wasn’t budging. Fortunately for us and the rest of the cars, one lane was open and we could safely continue our journey to Tuscaloosa to leave Fred at Mama Ruby’s house. You know, we don’t want to wish bad things for anyone but we certainly weren’t surprised to see the truck in that predicament. Just really glad no one got hurt with the crazy driving. Be careful out there everybody! Drive safely and try to stay out of the way of the crazies.

Headed Into Uncharted Waters

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Today begins our journey toward a new normalcy. We have never walked this road before and its a little scary. Multiple times a day Anne wants to call one of our Moms. Our lives were so intertwined. We celebrate their entrance into heaven because they both had suffered pain the last months of their lives and now we know they are pain free. We are very happy for them, but we sure do miss them.

Today the last of our family returned to their homes. We thank God for safe travels for everyone. It was sad to see everyone leave. Can’t help but wonder when we will see some of them again. We all came together with Mother. Everything will be different now. We have to figure out how to do this with both families. And we have just begun to think of all we have to do to settle everything. That will have to wait a few more days.

After everyone left we started on laundry, lots of laundry. We hadn’t done any since before we left to return to Florida. We have also been doing some research on new medical alarms. We think we need to make a few changes at Helen’s to try to assure her safety, including a fall detection alarm. We are praying for guidance and wisdom as we move forward.

We did get to do something this evening from our “old normal”. We walked a few rounds on the track with Barry and Donna. It was really great to spend a little while with them getting caught up. And as we were walking toward the track we saw five deer in our pasture.  Love seeing any kind of wild life.  That’s about it for the day. Maybe things will be more interesting in a few days.

Again thank you for all your support and love.