Before I start, I want to say "Thank You" to Betsy for the beautiful Christmas card and the sweet sentiment. You are a one of a kind, sweet, caring person, Betsy, and I treasure your friendship highly.
On October 6, the Hubs and I reached 46 years of marriage. I've now officially lived with him for over 2/3 of my life. It seems like a long time but actually, time (most of it, anyway) has sped by. As he often likes to say, we were young and stupid when we got married but we've it work and we're still together and looking forward to as many years as we can have.
Our son, Doug, who lives in Georgia, was bothered by swallowing issues this summer and early fall. As a mother, I was upset and worried with all the possibilities that this might be related to. He had several tests including one where he had to swallow a camera so there could be pictures made of his esophagus to hopefully diagnose the issue. The doctor finally determined that his esophagus muscle at the entrance to his stomach was constricted and wasn't letting food go into his stomach. He was having a really hard time so the decision was made to do an outpatient procedure to either use a balloon to open the muscle or to clip it so it would loosen.
The Hubs and I went down to stay with the kiddos and get them off to school the next day (the day of the procedure). Doug and Trisha had to be at Emory Hospital, in Atlanta, at 6:00 AM. Atlanta traffic is bad at the best of times and horrible, horrible during rush hour. In my opinion, rush hour in Atlanta is from 5 AM to 11 PM. I've never been through the town when the traffic wasn't whizzing left and right or at a complete standstill. Anyway, they didn't have any problems and got there on time. I got the kids up at 6:30 AM and harried them into getting ready for school. The two youngest are pretty easy to wake and get dressed and downstairs, but the oldest (she turned 10 on Monday, Dec 5) doesn't like to get up and is easily distracted. I had to go back upstairs after Eli and Lilly got downstairs and started their breakfast and she wasn't dressed. I finally bugged her enough that she came downstairs dressed but only had a few minutes to get something to eat before a neighbor came to pick them up for school. And Papaw didn't help matters by sitting with her and talking to her about this and that. *Smile*
Doug came home around noon and was fine. However, the procedure didn't go exactly as planned. The balloon size they had to use was smaller than the one they wanted and didn't open things up as well as they thought it should. He got some botox in the muscle and that helped. By Tuesday, he was feeling better and was actually starting to feel food in his stomach. He had been a liquid diet for a few days but when they got to the bottom of his esophagus, he still had food packed there. Bless his heart, he has had his share of medical issues.
We went down on Sunday with plans to stay until Thursday but by Tuesday, I was having problems getting up and down the stairs. Unlike their last house where the guest room was on the main floor, the guest room in this house is on the second floor with an attached bath. And that means up the stairs to go to bed and then back down to spend the day. I was having excruciating pain in my right lower hip and was in tears Tuesday night by bedtime. Doug and the Hubs had to help me up the stairs. We came home on Wednesday and I went to bed for 2 days. I got an appointment with my orthopedist for the next week. He did ex-rays but said my hip joint was fine. So he did an exam and hit the sore spot immediately. He said I had inflammation in my SI joint which is the joint between your pelvis and your tailbone. I got an injection and by the following Monday, I was doing great.
I have really had a hard time with the dreary cold weather. I've not wanted to leave the house or even get out of bed some days. I've tried to make sure I get up each day but some days don't see me get a shower or even change out of my nightclothes. I am trying very hard to go outside each day even if it's only walking to the mailbox.
I got in touch with a cleaning service through HomeAdvisor and started having my house cleaned once a month. I LOVE IT! I am not able to do a thorough cleaning each week and it was really starting to annoy me that there were little pockets of lint and dust bunnies and that the bathrooms weren't getting cleaned at least once a week. The girl who comes to do the cleaning is a sweetheart and she does a wonderful job. When she leaves, I just walk around and smile because everything is dusted and swept and cleaned! I am very pleased with the cleaning service and I will definitely check out HomeAdvisor for needed jobs again.
We celebrated Thanksgiving on the Saturday after. Everyone was able to come except my son, who was in London for business, and his family. So only two grandsons were here but they were so much fun. I keep a toy box of toys and try to buy some new things through the year and they dug into it as soon as they got here. Dinner was delicious: turkey, dressing, hash brown casserole, green bean casserole, corn, cranberry salad, and homemade Parkerhouse rolls. We bought a roaster oven to do the turkey and, except for burning the vegetables in the bottom of the pan, that went very well. The turkey was moist and well done. Then we sat around and talked and watched the boys play. My daughter and SIL were staying overnight and had gotten a motel room but the boys stayed with us. That's the first time any of the grandkids have stayed overnight with us without their parents around. James did great and Sam (2-1/2) was a little baffled but once he knew his brother was here also and we played some lullabies on my phone, he went right off to sleep and slept all night. He slept with me and James slept with Papaw. I told Abby he was like a agitated octopus, moving all over the place and twisting and turning. I even found him upside down under the covers once. But he was a good sleeper and all was fine. I loved it. I was one tired Mimi on Monday but a very happy one.
The November guardian was this adorable green elephant. I have loved each part of this SAL and with December's guardian (see below), it will be over.
A new project bag, my first with a vinyl front. I love the dancing fox.
The final installment of Guardians of Notre Dame and with that, the SAL is over. I'm really sad to see this one end. I can honestly say I have enjoyed every stitch and I look forward to getting it framed so I can enjoy seeing it on my wall.
The finished product. LOVE! I jumped ahead into December because I am so proud of this and wanted to show all of you my finished piece. My goodness, this was fun.
Through the end of November, I have read a total of 81 books getting 20 read in October and November. I have well passed my original goal of 65 books and just might hit 90....or not. Things get busy in December and I don't have as much time to read but maybe 85?? Should I aim for 100 next year or is that stretching too far? I guess it will depend on how my health is and how much traveling I might get to do. Since this post is long already, I won't list all the books I read but did want to tell you about one of them. "The Professor and the Madman" by Simon Winchester is about the compiling of the New Oxford Dictionary and the most prolific contributor to that dictionary. When the decision was made to do a dictionary to include all the know words, and their definitions, of the English language, invitations were published to anyone to contribute. The Professor in the story was the man who worked tirelessly to get as much done as possible in the time frame given. The Madman was an American Army officer who suffered what today is known as PTSD and who killed a man he thought was following him to do him harm. He ended up in a hospital for the criminally insane. His contributions were concise, clear and prolific. It was a really good book and I enjoyed learning about the process to create this monster of a dictionary and the friendship that developed between the two men. I highly recommend it. Betsy, I think your Mr. would enjoy it.
So there we are caught up through November. I send each of you my most heartfelt greetings for the season and my thankfulness for you. Words are hard pressed to tell you how much you all mean to me.