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Old 04-27-2017, 03:53 PM   #4131
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It is cold here today.

57 currently with a "feels like" of 44, which we are going to have off and on for the next week or so.

No freezing temps predicted, tho, so my plantings should be safe, but I may need a fire.

Nothing too exciting going on here...spring choring, needlework group this afternoon, Grandparents Day at sweet gdd's grade school tomorrow afternoon.

The gentleman I have spoken about, with rapidly progressing dementia, went into a nursing home on Monday.

When he has a moment of lucidity, or semi-lucidity, he calls, wants his car keys, and demands to be taken home.

He is not improving, but steadily getting worse.

The last few weeks have been chaos and a prolonged state of crisis for his kids, navigating this process and the nursing home outcome for which he was unprepared physically or financially.

They have good advisors and plenty of support, but most things only his kin, and not advisors, can do....they of course with families, jobs and other obligations.

I listen and offer perspective, but there is little I can do.

Sigh. Makes me want to have as much of my life in order as possible...not that it is in disarray, as I do not do disarray ...but one doesn't get up in the morning and think "what if I am suddenly very ill and then never able to live independently again?..what if it happens today?...am I ready, if not what can I do to prepare?"

Bad things often happen quickly, life changing in an instant.

We always think we have time, but usually we don't.

When Doug was stricken, had he survived with meaningful brain activity he would at minimum have needed extended rehabilitation services.

The first day or so, I was concerned about that, and how the ---- we would pay for it. Somehow, we would have.

By the end of the first 48 hours, it was clear he would not survive this, and plans turned a different direction....getting his kids on board with taking him off life support, making arrangements to get his body home, getting myself home, planning a funeral....

We did not have long term care insurance, and I still don't...I did look into it after Doug died at the request of my children, but simply can't afford it and still have any quality of life. I do have some resources, but they may not be enough.

This man doesn't have it, either, and Medicaid will take everything he does have to provide his care....likely now for the remainder of his life.

It's been a frigging mess, but he is safe from himself...not at home, and not on the road.

He drove the day before the last hospitalization a couple of weeks ago, but those days are over.

The point to this story....as my medical social worker daughter said, "most people don't die as Doug did..they are stricken with something debilitating, and linger often for years."

So do what you can to prepare, for those who love and will survive you.

Maggie
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Old 04-28-2017, 11:39 AM   #4132
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In and amongst Friday choring here, I had a man I found on Angie's List come to look at some damaged siding on the north side of my house.

There is fence there, and I haven't a clue as to how it happened, damage about 15" in circumference just appeared on the siding in the last couple of weeks.

There is no one who should have been in that area but the guys who mow my yard, and I don't think they did it.

It looks to me as if a shoulder slammed into it, and hard.

Someone playing football nearby on Easter Sunday, football went over the fence, they continued the game in the small area between the house and the fence?

It's about the right size, blunt rather than sharp impact, and sizable enough damage that its unsightly self needed repaired. The drain pipe on that corner of the house has also been knocked loose.

At any rate, I found this guy on Angie's List, he came this morning to look at it, and repaired/replaced the damaged areas on the spot from leftover siding I had in the garage. Cut the damaged parts off and returned it all to my garage.

He does painting and general handyman work, and I am hoping he will become a resource for me for things I can't do myself....like getting on the roof and looking around...

I need someone handy, reliable, and trustworthy....also someone who will not try to take advantage of a widow by herself.

We'll see...I am cautiously optimistic, as darling daughter said after her 3rd date with the man who is now her husband.

Grandparents Day this afternoon, Emma and I will run a few errands and then pick up her brothers for supper out with Grandma...some alone time for me with them, and will give their parents a chance to breathe after a very busy week.

It will be fun.


Maggie
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Old 04-29-2017, 12:11 PM   #4133
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I took the kids to Avantis for supper last night, their choice, where they consumed an impressive amount of food...then most of the leftovers while watching a movie on Grandma's new tv, while Mom & Dad had a little time off.

Sweet babies, but I am always glad I am not responsible for feeding that crew three meals a day, plus snacks.

2nd day of lots of rain, and cool, but I have decided I will not start a fire no matter how tempted I may be.

Tho I love my woodstove, it is not the cleanest way to heat, and I have been plodding thru annual deep-cleaning of the little house...so why go backwards. It will be over soon.

A few days ago, watching the local morning news, they made a healthier version of always popular Hot Spinach & Artichoke Dip...which I then made, because it sounded good, and it was excellent.

But, how much dip can you eat.

I froze some , and kept out a cup or so which I decided today to heat and then mix with hot, cooked pasta.

Absolutely delicious, and a balanced meal in a bowl. Kind of like a good pesto on steroids.

Better-For-You Hot Spinach & Artichoke Dip

1 bag frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained, and squeezed to remove excess moisture
2 cans artichoke hearts, drained and coarsely chopped
1 bunch green onions, sliced
1 cup finely chopped green & red bell pepper
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup grated Parmesan
2 cartons plain yogurt, about 1 1/4 cup
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 tsp each salt, pepper, garlic powder

Mix together in large bowl, baked at 350 degrees in greased casserole dish about 25 minutes, til hot and bubbly.

Eat with raw veggies, crackers, good bread, etc....refrigerate leftovers.
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Old 04-30-2017, 10:47 AM   #4134
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Lilacs thru the window in my daughter's old room...Doug and I planted these the last fall he was alive.
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Old 04-30-2017, 11:28 AM   #4135
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Hi Maggie!!! Looks like spring is there... I just saw on the news 46 inches of rain here since October!! 4.5 so far this April... geez.... however, spring things are happening... I'm sure ready for the rain to take a break!! Love the spinach artichoke dip recipe... one of my fav dips... never made it but I may now!!! Have a fun day there... hugs and love from out here....
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Old 04-30-2017, 12:14 PM   #4136
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Hi Miss Gail!

Yes, spring is well underway here....tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, etc., have bloomed and gone, lilacs are now doing their thing.

I love lilacs.

We have had a couple of days of rain here, pretty much over at this point and sunny days with wind are coming.

Maggie
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Old 05-01-2017, 11:19 AM   #4137
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I thought the rain had mostly passed at mid-day yesterday, but I was wrong.

We had torrential downpours early evening, with thunder and lightning so loud and close that it shook the house....sounded like a fighter jet was making a pass directly overhead. Yikes. Lily was not happy.

Depending on which rainfall map you look at, we got 1-3" of rain in 24 hours, and I would bet on the higher range.

There is widespread flooding along Illinois creeks and rivers, washed out roads and bridges, and folks stranded in their homes, but the little house is on a slight rise and so there is no flooding going on here.

I think part of the same storm system that has been tormenting the south, spawning tornadoes and causing so much death, destruction and devastation.

Carpet steamers are coming early tomorrow, to do the living room, hall and master bedroom, so I have this morning been moving furniture, vacuuming, wiping baseboards, etc., in preparation....wearing the Sloppy Joe's Key West tshirt I pulled out of the back closet the other day.

Bought on our last trip to Key West, one of those v-neck, unisex, Henley styles, and a shirt that Doug and I shared.

I haven't had it on since he died, but it is one of those I couldn't bring myself to give away...so there it hung, in the closet of the back bedroom, his man-cave, still with all his prints, pictures, etc. from the time he died...and the 2014 Labrador calendar he had purchased for himself, still open to January, when we headed out on our last trip.

Doug loved Lily....he a man who often said "I have never had a dog", to which I would respond "no, but a dog has had you".

I miss having your help to do this stuff, honey, I told him.

Maggie
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Old 05-01-2017, 11:41 AM   #4138
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Good morning, Maggie. We've had some rain this spring...badly needed. During our recent snowstorm, we had "thunder snow". Always surprising when that happens, and the pups don't like it at all. Any time we get thunder they all come to me for protection. Have a good day.
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Old 05-01-2017, 11:53 AM   #4139
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Hi Evelyn.

No, drought is not good, either...we all need water, and I hope our spring rains made up for the lack of snow this past winter.

Farm country, you know....it's all about the crops.


Maggie
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Old 05-01-2017, 12:59 PM   #4140
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good morning Maggie... I've been watching the weather station.. I was wondering where you were in relation to all the flooding... what a mess... what a winter it's been!!! We may have some sunny days this week!!! Weee!! Life is good... enjoy the day.. be happy!! Keep having fun!!!
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Old 05-01-2017, 01:22 PM   #4141
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Hi Miss Gail!

It has been a wild winter, and is becoming a wild spring.

Been unusually warm, now we are back to highs in the 50's and 60's, with some lows in the upper 30's.

Little woodstove is done for the season, tho, so will make do with the furnace.

I am tired...drinking tea, crocheting a lovely shade of pink prayer shawl, and resting up before getting Miss Lily onto the trail for a walk.


Maggie
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Old 05-01-2017, 09:41 PM   #4142
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Maggie, long term disability insurance IS unaffordable - and for an excellant reason. The medical BUSINESS model is such that it is very profitable to keep people "alive" for weeks, months, and even years in a coma or persistent vegetative state.

And the love, fear and even guilt of family members makes it too easy to put the sick person on a ventilator indefinitely - especially if there is disagreement among the relatives and no DNR or durable power of attorney exists.

Dying is NOT an optional activity. If you happen to have a contentious or high drama family
Make absolutely sure that you jave have all the paperwork done and updated ---- and that the biggest drama queen(s) know they'll get nothing if they contest the decision of the person you designated.

I'd never say losing Doug was anything but awful for you or your family, but given a choice
... I just want to fall OUT of the door of my Airstream when I go. My sister wouldn't enjoy using it if...

Paula
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Old 05-02-2017, 04:59 AM   #4143
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foiled Again View Post
Maggie, long term disability insurance IS unaffordable - and for an excellant reason. The medical BUSINESS model is such that it is very profitable to keep people "alive" for weeks, months, and even years in a coma or persistent vegetative state.

And the love, fear and even guilt of family members makes it too easy to put the sick person on a ventilator indefinitely - especially if there is disagreement among the relatives and no DNR or durable power of attorney exists.

Dying is NOT an optional activity. If you happen to have a contentious or high drama family
Make absolutely sure that you jave have all the paperwork done and updated ---- and that the biggest drama queen(s) know they'll get nothing if they contest the decision of the person you designated.

I'd never say losing Doug was anything but awful for you or your family, but given a choice
... I just want to fall OUT of the door of my Airstream when I go. My sister wouldn't enjoy using it if...

Paula

My wife Alice and I have everything we and our attorney could think of in writing and shared all with our children. Including what happens to our dogs in the event we die and they survive after us. This includes who will take them, plus some funds to help the person taking them. Working in a rescue I've seen way too many wonderful pets dropped off after the owner dies because no one would or could take care of them. Even if the owner thought family would, they could not control the dog as they did not have the patience to help the dog through the grief they too suffer.

Bud
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Old 05-02-2017, 05:27 AM   #4144
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Originally Posted by Foiled Again View Post
Maggie, long term disability insurance IS unaffordable - and for an excellant reason. The medical BUSINESS model is such that it is very profitable to keep people "alive" for weeks, months, and even years in a coma or persistent vegetative state.

And the love, fear and even guilt of family members makes it too easy to put the sick person on a ventilator indefinitely - especially if there is disagreement among the relatives and no DNR or durable power of attorney exists.

Dying is NOT an optional activity. If you happen to have a contentious or high drama family
Make absolutely sure that you jave have all the paperwork done and updated ---- and that the biggest drama queen(s) know they'll get nothing if they contest the decision of the person you designated.

I'd never say losing Doug was anything but awful for you or your family, but given a choice
... I just want to fall OUT of the door of my Airstream when I go. My sister wouldn't enjoy using it if...

Paula
Hi Paula, and good to hear from you!

As his wife, I was Doug's next of kin, so tho I wanted his children in agreement, the decision to take him off life support rested with me...and I could have made it without their consent, if I'd had to.

In his case, with no meaningful brain activity and by day 2 his organs demonstrating failure from the assault of prolonged lack of oxygen...his body was clearly trying to die, while the ventilator kept him alive, so the decision was agonizing but clear.

He wasn't going to survive that event, it was just a matter of how much we put his body through to get there. It was pretty devastating to watch, tho they assured me he was not suffering and was experiencing no pain.

I did the POA's last year with both of my kids when my daughter was home, so I am as ready as I can be in that regard.

The high drama in my family does not reside in my children. They will make good decisions, and in accordance with my wishes.

I agree with the sudden death analysis...certainly easiest on the dying, but have your affairs in order.

My only fear now is that something will happen to me, I'll be dead for days before found, and Lily will be without care during that time.

She's my dependent child, you know...I had the same fears when my children were small, and as soon as they were able I taught them how to dial 911.

All you can do is all you can do.

Thanks for dropping in, Paula. You are one of the wittiest people I have ever had the pleasure to meet.

Maggie
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