Sunday, September 25, 2016

Dougs surgery is over, it's time to get strong again

It's been a busy month.  Doug had his heart surgery on the 12th.   He had the Wolf Mini Maze procedure.  Here is a link to a video of the actual procedure.  It really is a cool procedure.  Doug came out looking like he had been in a knife fight and lost.  LOL
This is left side.  I don't know what the two small holes on the top were but the longest cut was where he did some of the work.  The smaller one was more laparoscopic tools I guess.  The bottom round one was a drain tube.  He had a wire under the skin to his heart for an external pacemaker that was removed around day 4.

This is the right side.  This is where most of the work was done.  Doug's heart and lung was adhered together.  The doctor had to separate them before he could start his surgery.  He still has sutures on the drain tube holes.  All other incisions were glued back together.
He was in ICU four days.  They let me stay with him.  He had so many tubes coming out of him it took 30 min. for them to gather everything, just for him to get into a chair next to the bed.  Don't you love the yellow socks and the compression wraps on his legs?  LOL  At one time he had 9 Iv bags running at the same time.  He had a port, two iv's in his arms and a arterial iv that also took his blood pressure.
He is doing well but still weak. His heart rate is running in the 90's now.  This is still high but much lower than what it was before surgery.  The doctor said it could take up to 3 months for his heart to settle in to its new rhythm.
I forgot to show you the hospital room he was in before surgery and after he got out of ICU.

The nurses told us that Dr. Wolf puts all of his patients in these rooms because they come from all over the country.  They come with family and he wants them to have room to stay in the room also.  This was a very nice room.  We could live here!
Doug has an internal piece of hardware that I don't know what it's called but it monitors his heart and when and if it goes into afib it records it and when he goes to bed at night it sends that information to Dr. Wolf.  Cool huh.  He sees Dr. Wolf tomorrow for his two week check up.  I guess we will find out then what it sent.  Is that cool or what!  I wonder if I can use his built in wifi?  LOL
We have been staying at son, Michaels house since getting out of the hospital.  Most of the time they have been gone on business trips.  We have been house and dog sitting.  They will be back tomorrow so we will head back to the motorhome.  Everyone thought it would be easier if he didn't have to climb the steps into the motorhome.  It was a good idea.  It took more out of him than he and I both thought.
 I got him to walk on the treadmill in the clubhouse today.  He didn't last very long.  Maybe 5 min. but that was 5 min.  He will do better tomorrow.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Mowing the property and a Labor Day Celebration

It's been a busy few days around here.  Thursday we went out to the property to mow.  It was a beautiful day.  There was a breeze blowing and in the shade, it was very comfortable.
 I love the shape of this old dead tree.  I am enjoying in now because I believe it is destined to be removed.
 You can see Doug mowing in this one.  It didn't take long for the grass to get out of control.
                                            I like the shape of this one too, but it's a goner.
                                                               It's looking better out here.
 It was so quiet out here until Doug ran over a paint can that was left in the tall grass.  It made the loudest boom!  It scared me half to death.  I can't imagine what it did to Doug since he was on top of it.  It looks like someone was murdered out there.  LOL

                                                                     Yep, there it is again.
 I don't know what kind of wild flowers these are, but there are a lot of them growing at the bases of the trees.
 After about 3 hours of mowing, we left to head home.  We are still learning our way around and we decided to go home a different route.  Coming down we had taken Hwy 6.  It is a very easy way but it takes you through a lot of small towns that have a kazillion red lights.  Doug and Mike had taken
different route using one of the tollways.  We thought we could figure it out without using the GPS.
So we got on Hwy 288 and headed back towards Houston.  We were suppose to get on Beltway 8.  Instead we wound up on I610.
 yes, the dreaded 610 and it's now 4:00.  Did I say it was also a Friday.  Blow this picture up and look
at all the cars.  Doug said we took the scenic route because we were going so slow, even he could look around.
The traffic was so bad that I cut it all off in this picture so that you can just enjoy the beautiful sky.
We didn't get home that night until 6:00.  Big mistake we made.. yep BIG mistake.  No more 610!

Today, Saturday, the RV park we are staying at had a cookout for everyone to celebrate Labor Day.
Can you tell this is a Mother/Daugher?  On the right is Kristi.  She and her husband, Dave were our hosts.

                                       Dave, her husband is on the left.  We call him the Sheriff.
 The two ladies on the right are also employees of the Resort.  It looks like they are plotting something.

 It seems that some of frogs had gotten into the pool and the girls had to go get them out.
                                              That was their story and they are sticking to it!  
                                             Someone can sure throw that horse shoe!
                                   Looks like he gave up and went back to eat some more.

I think everyone had a good time.  There was talk about a chili cook-off in October.  I think I can win that.  

                                                             Happy Labor Day folks!

Monday, August 29, 2016

Back home, in Texas

We had a busy week in Arkansas.  We saw almost everyone that we were hoping to see.  Spent some great time with my sisters and our friends.
Ramona, we've been friends since 1972, showed me her new house.  They haven't moved in yet.  They are remodeling and painting.  It looks so good, I can't wait to see the finished product.
We did have one disagreement about a chandelier.  She hates it and I think it would be wonderful in a game room or in Scott's office.  That is where it's hanging now.  He wants to keep it there, she wants it gone.  Who will win?  I betting on Ramona.
 Well, it's not so bad is it?  I texted Michael and asked him if he would want it for his game room.  He loved it.  Kaitlyn sent back, "I know our family is a circus at times, but I don't want my home to look like one!"  It's not looking good for the monkeys.
I know this is a bad picture, but you can see its size better in this one.  I think it's perfect for an office or game room.  I think that I am the only one though.
The week went by way to fast.  We left this morning around 8:30.  Thank goodness we hadn't gotten very far before I realized that I had left my phone.  We left again around 9:30.
We traveled thru more rain going back to Texas.  I don't know what it is with us and rain.  We seem to take it with us wherever we go.
 Between all the rain, we had some beautiful skies.  I love looking at the clouds.
 It feels good to be home.

Monday, August 22, 2016

A transplant for the transplant

Today we went to see Doug's cornea specialist.  Doug as had a lot of problems lately with this cornea.  In fact, he has had a lot of problems with his eye, period.  He has had several ulcers that left caverns, as the doctor likes to refer to them, in his cornea.  Today he informed us that this cornea has reached the end of it's usefulness.  It's time for another transplant.  Transplants last on average, 10 years.  This one is 11 years old.  Dr. Berry recommends that Doug use a doctor in the Houston area, since we have moved there.  He said he would do some research and recommend one for us. (yea)  Since Doug is scheduled for some heart surgery on the 12th of Sept., he told us to wait until after that to see the new specialist.  In fact, his words were, "just wait, and if you are still alive on the 13th, then let's schedule the appointment with a new doctor".  He does have a dry sense of humor.  We like him and hate to start over with a new doctor but as he said, you can't be that far away from your doctor with something like this.  He also told us it wouldn't be fair for him to do the surgery and then send us to a new doctor for him to take care of his handy work.   He said a few things about how wonderful he was and all but it was time to find a new "wonderful doctor".   Like I said, we like Dr. Berry.
We got back in town in time to have dinner with Jim and Libbie.  Today is Libbie's 62nd birthday!
It was good to share their company this evening.  I don't have any pictures.  Unfortunately, I left my camera back home.  I brought my camera bag, it just didn't have my camera in it. bummer!
Happy Birthday LIBBIE!!!!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Driving in the rain

We left at 9:00 this morning after a very heavy rain shower.  We were hoping that was all the rain but we weren't so lucky.  It rained on us through most of Texas.  At times it was so heavy you couldn't see the road.  There were several cars in median that had hydroplaned.  We had one right in front of us.  She was getting out of the car when we went past.  There was already someone stopped to help.  It was a mess.  We slipped a couple of times but thank goodness, we stayed in control and on the road.
We arrived around 6:00.  Happily there was no rain here.  Two of my sisters, Phyllis and Debbie, greeted us and fed us fried chicken!
After visiting for a while, it didn't take long for us to crash.

Yep, we are tired.  I think we will make a short night of it tonight.

On the road again, but not in the motorhome this time

I have been a little lazy about writing in my blog.  We haven't been traveling or having any new adventures.  Just living life right now.
In the morning we will head back to Arkansas so that Doug can see his eye doctor.  Hopefully he can recommend one in the Houston area.  I know there are a bazillion great doctors in this area but I would like to have a referral, a recommendation or something.  I hate to just close my eyes and wherever my finger lands, that's the one.  LOL Without a recommendation, that would be what we would be doing.  We want one that does cornea transplants so that he can take care of that but we also need one that knows how to fit and care for his new Jupiter lenses he has.  He has been having trouble with his cornea and his new Jupiter lens.  We need another Dr. Berry here in Katy!
While back home (it will always be home even if we aren't living there anymore) we hope to see all of our family and friends.
It's hard to move so far away from the place you have spent your entire life.  Don't get me wrong, this is a good thing.  I am glad that we have moved.  I just miss my family and friends.  It will be good to see them.  We will be in Arkansas about a week.  We have a lot of people to see in that time.  Doug's eye appointment is first on Monday.  We aren't taking the motorhome but will stay with my sisters.  Looking forward to seeing them all on Tuesday.  When the four Johnson girls are all together under one roof, it can get loud with lots of laughter and everyone talking at once.  I can't wait!

Friday, August 5, 2016

Just a few pictures of our day

Not much going on around here so I thought I would just post a few pictures.
                     Can you find two frogs in this picture?  I think this bird is called  a killdeer.

                                           This pond has the biggest bullfrogs I have ever seen!
                                                  This place is just teaming with wildlife.

                                             I took a few pictures of the sky this evening.

                                           Here is a shot of the moon.  It's just a little sliver.
Can you see the star?
Almost forgot to show you this one.  See the snake?  It looks so small in this picture.

If you can blow this picture up somewhat you can see the curve of the snake under the water.  This snake is much bigger than I thought.
To get your mind off the snake, here are a few pictures.    Lucas wanted to ride Buster.  Lucky for Buster, he couldn't stay on.  No 8 seconds here.
This was taken as we were leaving the doctors office in downtown Houston.  We are getting on I 610.  Oops, didn't mean to get scary again.


Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Moving is a long, painful process

We have been very busy around here trying to become Texans.  We have gotten both vehicles and the trailer we use to haul the Kubota tractor, registered and licensed with Tx. tags now.  That alone took us several hours of standing in line.  We should have licensed them in Amarillo.  Not only was it quick and easy but cheaper.  Having a vehicle inspected cost a mere $7.50 in Amarillo.  Here it is $25.50.  An emissions test is required here is one of the reasons for higher cost.  We had to pay $90 sales tax on each vehicle and the trailer to transfer titles and registration.  The total cost to get license on the car, truck and trailer was $599.00.  In Arkansas it was $25.00 each and the trailer was a permanent tag.  They keep telling me that it will be cheaper next year because we don't have to pay the sales tax or the transfer of title fees.  I guess this is helps revenue since they don't have state income tax.  I feel like I just paid my income tax!  LOL  The tags for the motor home were $252 so we spent close to a thousand dollars just putting Texas tags on vehicles.  We still have to get our  Texas drivers license.  We should be about finished with changing everything over after that.
We meet with the builder to finalize our house plans on Saturday.  I think after all this we need to take a vacation!  It's time to go somewhere fun and preferably cooler.

To update on my poor old tooth, or lack thereof.  I do have dry socket and it's not much fun.  The dentist told me to get some clove oil and pack the tooth.  That oil tastes terrible but it is amazing how it deadens the pain.  Keep that in mind if you get a toothache or even a mouth ulcer.  I found the clove oil at a GNC.  And you can add it to a candle warmer and make your house smell good.  How about that!

Sunday, July 31, 2016

The tooth, the whole tooth, and nothing but the tooth!

Wednesday I woke up with a swollen face and a toothache.  This large molar has been bothering me off and on for a while.  It would ache a little and by the time I would decide to see a dentist it would stop.  Well this time it didn't ache at all, it just puffed up my whole mouth and face.  Of course, I don't have a dentist in Amarillo.  Or I didn't have a dentist in Amarillo.  I called the dentist recommended by my daughter-in-law.  They got me right in.  Sure enough, it was an abscess.  Lucky for me it was just beginning.  It was decided that the best course of action was to remove it.  I haven't had a tooth pulled in 40+ years!  It had a great big silver cap on it (that shows you how long that had been there, they don't do silver caps anymore).  Since the tooth had the silver cap on it, they put it in a kids tooth keeper thingy and gave it to me.

I thought Ashlynn would find it interesting.  After I saw the thing, I couldn't believe that big ole thing came out of my mouth.  It looked like a horse tooth!  It's huge!
I know I shouldn't have shown it, but really, look at the size of that root! No wonder I am still in pain.
It's Saturday now and this has been my worse day so far.  It is more painful now than before it was removed.  I still have some swelling but my biggest worry is that I might have developed dry socket.  I guess now I will have to find a dentist in Katy.  Because.....
We left Amarillo on Friday and are now residing at Katy Lake RV Resort.

We will be here until.... I guess we decide to be somewhere else.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Well that made for a busy day!

Did I mention that as we were hooking up the car, I noticed that the tags on the motor home had just expired?  That's a wonderful thing to see when you are leaving for a 500+ mile trip.  Of course, our first item on the agenda was to get new tags.  New Texas tags!  I got online to see what I needed.  First you need an inspection.  As luck would have it, I found a place that would inspect the motorhome as soon as we got into Amarillo.  Yep, after traveling all day, we had to unhook the car and get it inspected then hook the car back up to go to the RV Park.  Keep in mind I was driving the truck.  We also needed the title.  It happened to be in Katy, TX.  Mike overnighted it to us.  Ok I think we have everything.  We head to the DMV.  We arrive to a long line.

Again, we are assured that it won't take long.  An easy in and out.  I admit the line moved fast but when it was our turn things went downhill.  First we need to have the motorhome weighed.  Weighed! Yep.  Also we also have to have a picture of the motorhome.  We gather our stuff and head out the door.
First we find a place to get the MH weighed.  Flying J did the job for us at a cost of $10.50.  She weighs 23,900 lbs.  Then I took a quick pic of her
Back to the DMV we go.  This time we walked right in and everything went smoothly.  We now have Tx. tags on the MH.  One step closer to becoming a Texan!

Monday, July 11, 2016

Washing the motorhome and then mani-pedi's!

We have been so busy since we got to Amarillo that we have neglected to wash the dirt and road grime off the bus when we got here.  Well today became that day.  First we bathed Buddy.  He wasn't too happy about it until I started scrubbing his back.  After getting him all dried off and brushed,  Doug started to wash the bus.  There was so much dirt on the sides that it took all afternoon to finish it up.

The wind was blowing so much that it dried almost immediately.  That wind also camouflaged  just how hot is was out there today.  That wind felt pretty good.  But it caused Doug to overheat a little bit.  He laid down for a little while and was ready to move on.   We have done nothing but work for the past couple of months.  Today was the day we finally got to do something fun and relaxing. We went for Mani-Pedi's.  We then finished off the day by eating a fabulous steak that Brian cooked.
Oh, the high for today was 102.  It's unreal to me that it was that hot outside.  That breeze can sure cool you enough that you don't know your burning up.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

We are homeless vagabonds.

The house is empty and we are now living in the RV.  The last couple of months have been very busy ones.  You just don't realize how much "stuff" you have until you have to pack it.  At first I was all about keeping everything.  That attitude didn't last long.  Too many boxes.  Way to many boxes.  So I rethought my criteria for what to keep and what has to go.  I took 3 or 4 large car loads of  "stuff", to the resale shop.  I gave my dining table to our niece.  I sold the master bedroom suit and gave away  the couch and the chair in the living room.  There was 31 years of stuff and memories.  I raised my two boys in this house and surprisingly, it's been hard to leave it.  We loaded the motorhome and set our sights on Amarillo.  The drive was a very hard one once we got into Oklahoma.  We had some terrible wind to contend with all day.  I was driving the truck and following behind Doug in the motorhome (which was pulling the car.)  I don't know how many times I squealed as I watch the motorhome and car be blown sideways.  Then the wind caught the slide topper and it unrolled.  We stopped and Doug climbed the ladder and used some zip ties to hold it in place so that it couldn't unfurl.  Of course right outside Amarillo it started to rain and hail.  We lucked out in that we were on the very edge of the storm.  It lasted about 3 minutes.
Did I mention that as we were hooking up the car I noticed that the tags on the motorhome had expired? Yep, they expired on the last day of June.  Since we are moving to Texas, I called around and found us a place to get the RV inspected so that we can get new tags.  Now we don't have to set up on site, only to take down tomorrow and reset.  I head to the DMV tomorrow to get us some Texas tags and to UPS to take our U-verse modem.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Back to Arkansas in the morning

Our son has recuperated nicely from his recent surgery and it's now time to head back to Arkansas and start packing everything up.  Right now it looks like the sale of the house is going to go through, but as I well know, anything can happen.  We have a lot of packing to do before the closing date of June 6.  We also have to make a trip to Amarillo and two trips to Houston to get everything moved.  We have a large storage unit to put everything until the house is built.  Sunday we will meet #2 son in Ruston and give him the 1976? truck that was Kaitlyn's grandfathers'.  It has been at our house for a few months getting some repairs done.  Since they are in Ruston for graduation, it is a good time to move the truck. That's one thing moved!  We will take the large gun safe to Amarillo for son #1 to use.  That's two things moved!  We are on a roll.
It's going to be a very short 2 1/2 weeks.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

The house is up for sale, it's sold, it's not's sold

We have been very busy getting the house decluttered so that we can put it on the market.  That day finally arrived.  It was on the market 2 days and a full price offer was made.  We accepted it and were excited to being moving so quickly.  Don't get too far ahead, the buyers were suppose to be pre-approved, but something was amiss and their loan fell through.  It was sad because they were excited and I thought it was a good fit for them.
Friday, May 6, they showed the house twice.  We got another offer.
Saturday, May 7
We countered and then they countered.  We accepted their second counter.  This reads like ping pong.  Anyway, here we go again.  Hope this one goes thru with no problems.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

A family gathering and a new truck!

If you mention food, and lots of it, you will not have any problem getting the McDaniel clan to gather.  Taylor,  Ricky, and Tina, invited us all to a fish fry on Sunday afternoon.

Ricky invited Fabian and then made him do all the cooking.  I wonder if he would have been so eager to come had he known that bit of info.  Knowing Fabian, yes he would.  And besides, he is a good cook.  We had fried fish, homemade onion rings, french fries, hush puppies, boudain balls, homemade chocolate and lemon pies.
The younger bunch, sat around a table and caught up on all the gossip and all the "stuff" going on in each of their lives.  They also solved all the world problems.  Global warming is now a thing of the past.

                                                    Hostess, Taylor and her boyfriend here.
                               Scott and Michelle planning some strategy for corn hole.
Don't you just love Doug's hat!   Tim and his new girlfriend are admiring it.  Tina is just wondering who that dude is and who invited him!
                                  He was caught sampling the fish or maybe it was the onion rings.
                                                     A good selfie of Debbie and Bruce!
                                                                   And Scott and Karla!
           After eating they played a few rounds of Corn Hole.  The object of the game is to throw those little bags in the the hole.  If it lands on the board, you get a point, if it goes into the hole, you get 3!
Of course, if your opposing team gets a bag on the board, their bag cancels out yours.  With all the adding and subtracting, I never could keep up with the score.
We all had a very good time.  The weather was beautiful and it felt good to be outside.  We must do this again.
Today Doug bought himself a new truck.  We discussed whether or not to replace the HHR.  I hated to buy a new SUV and then pull it behind the motor home.  So we decided to keep the HHR.  It has been a great tow vehicle and even though she is showing some wear and tear, she still has a lot of life left in her.  But as a vehicle to do much traveling in, she is not very comfortable.  The HHR is strictly and drive around town kind of car.  We needed something that was useful and comfortable to travel in when we weren't traveling in the motorhome.
                                                              He looked at a Ford.
                                                          And he looked at a Chevy.
 But the GMC won out.  Notice that they all were white.  He does love a white vehicle.
                                                The interior is a chocolate brown and tan.