Monday, April 27, 2015

My Dad Part 2

I'm a nurse, right?  I know a little of how hospitals function and the changes that can happen, but it is much easier to be on the nurse side trying to explain to the family why things are changing than to be on the family side trying to accept the changes.

When I last posted, Dad was supposed to be in the middle of surgery right now.  Instead, he was discharged from the hospital on Saturday, spent the weekend in a hotel and now today had a tooth pulled.  Praise the Lord, the tooth was not infected, but it was rotten.  Surgery was postponed because of this tooth because it could have caused problems with the heart valve as I understand it. 

Because it was not infected, he should be on to have surgery tomorrow, but......  The surgeon who has been seeing him is a fill-in surgeon from Green Bay.  He has never really wanted to do the surgery because he will be leaving mid-care and didn't want that, but now he has flatly refused to do the surgery because the regular cardiac surgeons will be back on Wednesday.  So? What choice do we have?  But to wait AGAIN!!  As you can imagine, this is getting long and hard and stressful.  To go from hoping for a basic stent or at the most surgery this fall to all of a sudden a really, really major important surgery is a huge switch.  If Dad's cardiologist had had his way, Dad would have had his surgery already on Friday. And now to keep pushing it off can really play with one's emotions. 

As plans hold, Dad is to be at the hospital at 6:00 on Wednesday morning, meet with the doctor and go for surgery at 9:00 with the surgery lasting 6-8 hours. 

I think Dad is getting bored because we all watch over him like a hawk and don't want him doing anything.  In reality, he did have a procedure and is not to be doing any lifting and things like that, but we kind of forget about that in light of the serious blockage.  So taking it easy would be happening regardless, but it seems more important now somehow.  

In good news, all the siblings were able to be together yesterday and it was a really, really good time. This would have been the first time probably about ever that we have hung out together as siblings without the grandchildren.  There were a few there, but not many and I think it meant something to Mom and Dad to have us all together and just relaxing and visiting.  

So prayer requests for right now would be that Mom and Dad would be able to relax and rest and be at peace over the next day.  Pray that Dad's tooth would not give him too much pain--Vivian said he was pretty miserable from it.  And for us as a family: while nothing is really happening, it is hard for me to home with them in Eau Claire.  Kev's are leaving early Tuesday morning; Vivian will be with them on Tuesday, then Dorothy, Ruthie and I are planning to go down early on Wednesday to get there in time for the doctor's appointment.  Darryl and Dave will be stopping in periodically throughout the week.  Also pray that the first impression of the new surgeon would be favorable.  

Thanks to everyone for caring.

Friday, April 24, 2015

My Dad

It's a routine procedure, right?  Just go in through the femoral artery, look at the heart vessels, double check the valve and be done.  And while you're in there, please put in a stent or two so we know the cause for the shortness of breath and chest pains and then our lives will be better than ever and we will continue on our merry way. Thank you for your consideration in this matter.

If only--.

The cath was a routine procedure, it was done in an hour and the cardiologist came to talk to us, but alas, it is not as simple as a couple of stents.  Blockage at 85%, 80%, and 75%.  So now we are looking at quadruple bypass and a valve replacement.  It seems scary and it is, but we do know God is in control.  That can sound trite, but it's like the cardiologist said, "God has given you a lifeline."  And that is true.  This could have all been discovered through a heart attack, so we are grateful.

But if you think of my dad and mom and the doctors and nurses and the rest of our family in the next week, please pray.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Flash by Rachel Anne Ridge

Product Details
The Homeless donkey who Taught Me about Life, Faith, and Second Chances

Okay, so I have about 5 books to choose from and one of them is about a donkey.  Really? How interesting could a donkey book be and how in the world could a donkey teach life lessons? It somewhat intrigued me and seemed the best option available and so I picked Flash to read and review and boy am I glad I did.

Flash is a homeless donkey that just shows up at the Ridge's house one night when tensions were high and funds were low.  After searching for the owners with no success, Flash became a part of the family and taught Rachel some life lessons.  Flash was friendly, loyal and forgiving, except to the family dog, but even they made up before the dog died.  He did not like change and would destroy things that were changed in his barn.  He liked to supervise any going on in the barn as well and was always open for some TLC and treats.

What did he teach Rachel?  I could write a blog post on each lesson I think and I'm contemplating doing that or at least having a few more posts on these subjects.  Most of them were areas that I needed lessons in as well and so that is probably what made the book even more interesting.

1. Remember your name. Know whose you are.
2. Know where to find refuge. True sanctuary is found in God alone
3. Run with horses. The pursuit of excellence conquers fear.
4. Find your passion. Passion leads to purpose
5. Be a trailblazer. Persistence makes pathways for grace to follow.
6. Wear your donkey heart on your sleeve. A well-lived life is an authentic life
7. Stand where fruit is falling. The secret of abundance is in choosing gratitude
8. Be a service animal. You are made to serve in love.
9. Embrace change. Don't let fear of the unknown keep you from moving forward.
10. Make things right with others. Don't miss your chance to forgive, accept and love.
11. Your journey isn't about fixing donkey problems. It's about transformation.

Good stuff to be learned and reminded of in this book and I highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for lessons from a donkey.

This book was given me by Tyndale House for the purpose of reading and writing a review on it.  All opinions expressed were my own.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The Postage Stamp Vegetable Garden by Karen Newcomb

Grow tons of Organic Vegetables in Tiny Spaces and Containers

I am not having a garden this year, I told myself as I considered the prospect of a first-time garden here where we are renting and the fact that we don't want to rent long-term.  Then I got this book!!!  At first-glance, I was rather disappointed.  I was expecting glossy pages and full-color pictures, but instead it is more papery with few two-toned pictures, but the content is great.

I didn't read the book, every line, every verse, but I read the basic gist of it and it made me excited to once again try some container gardening, this time using good soil, some compost, and even some manure.

One thing I really liked about this book is she took the common vegetables, gave them a rating for how good they are for a small postage stamp garden, gave how to plant them, what kinds are the best and some growing tips along with how to store them.  That would be very helpful I think, especially for first-time gardeners or even those who like to try new things and aren't sure how to plant and take care of them.

Karen also gives instructions on how to make your postage stamp garden, what kind of soil to use, how to water it, and how to make your own compost.  All in all, I found the book very helpful and interesting.  It gave me itchy fingers to have some fresh produce right here at home this summer.

This book was given to me by Blogging for Books for the purpose of reading and writing a review on it. All opinions expressed are my own.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Praying Over God's Promises

 The Lost Art of Taking Him at His Word by Thomas R. Yeakley

I wasn't sure what this book would be like when I picked it up, but I have to agree with what Tom had to say in it.  You can't just randomly open the Bible, pick a verse and declare that your promise that God is going to fulfill.  But there are many promises in the Bible that can be applied to your life.

Tom talks about how there are conditional promises which may or not be applicable, but will have a specific action required on our part. "Delight thyself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart." I must first delight myself in the Lord.

"God wants dependent children, not independent ones!" This is a quote from the conclusion and such a true statement and yet so hard to live out.  I want to depend on God; I try to depend on God, but it is so easy to think I have life under control and I forget to ask God to lead in my life. That is also why some of God's promises can feel unanswered as well.

This is a good book that I would recommend. From what I could tell it seemed Biblically correct.

This book was given to me by Tyndale Publishers for the purpose of reading and writing a review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

A Fine Piece of Chocolate by Jacqueline R. Banks

So, when I do book reviews, I always try to look for the best things in a book and focus on that.  I try to be kind and positive and minimize the negative, if possible.  To keep that policy, this review would be about two sentences if that, but I am asked to give my opinion, positive and negative and so I will try to do that is as kind of way as possible.

The theme of the book was a young girl going away to college and getting caught up with the wrong boy and all that happens from there.  I think the idea of the book was supposed to be redemption, but I will be honest: the book was extremely disjointed.  The grammar wasn't that great and there were numerous misspellings.  I have noticed that this is more prevalent in ebooks, so that might be why there were more mistakes here.  Bible verses were included in the book which was good, but then I also thought there was a little more explicit content than what was appropriate or necessary in a book that was supposed to be Christian.

I'm really not sure what else to say about the book; I would classify it for adult readers, but wouldn't recommend the book to anyone.  The only reason I finished it was because it was given to me by Book Look Bloggers with the understanding that I would read the whole book and write a review on it.  So I did.  All opinions expressed were my own.

Friday, April 10, 2015

I can Post Something Other than Book Reviews

Good morning. It's 6:09 in the morning. I have more work to do than I am likely to get done if plans continue to hold as they are, but here I am blogging.  Why? I'm not sure, because I really don't have anything to say, but felt like I should post so you know I have a little bit of a life outside of reading books and writing reviews about them, though in all honesty that wouldn't be the worst kind of life to have.  Was that the right use of the word worst or should it have been worse?  Anyone?

On the subject of book reviews, the next one I post will be the worst (there is that word again) ever, I think.  I try to be nice on book reviews, but this one?  I will have to be creative.  I don't even want to finish it, but I think you are supposed to read the whole thing when you volunteer to blog about it. And my conscience will force me too and my curiosity to see if it gets better--which I'm pretty sure it won't.

I found these pictures online this morning and they amused me.

Then I also remembered that I had emailed these pics to my phone, so if you want to excuse my cell phone pics, here are some recent pics of the Amber girl.  She is still the joy of our lives even when she screams long and loudly when we are ready to go to bed. My conclusion of the problem, because she refused to tell us what was going on, was that she had a stomach ache and was also quite convinced that her mom was resolved to starve her and so she went crying off to dad who is always willing to give her food.  So after 2 rounds of bottle, she went off to sleep and slept for about 5 hours. Honest, I wasn't trying to starve her--I just felt that she shouldn't be that hungry considering the amount of time that had been spent over the previous five hours feeding her.

So, here is life from Amber's perspective:

I'm begging for boxing lessons, but my parents are old school, so I have to learn on my own. 

Really mom? You stuck me on the floor under this quilt and I'm just supposed to be okay with it, huh?

My cousin Emily has the nicest hand. It gives me happy dreams

This is my first smile that Mom captured on camera. Honest, I have more hair than this picture shows.  Mom even thinks I look like one of the little boys around here. (Gasp, but that's embarrassing)

And here is my cousin Emily's face. Everybody just dotes on me like I'm a princess or something. I'm trying to come up with a good strategy to keep that happening because I'm afraid eventually mom and dad will decide I have been spoiled enough and they might even start telling me no.  Mom tells me no sometimes when I'm fussing, but I just ignore her and she soon forgets about it. 

Well, I guess that's all the pics mom posted featuring me: so until next time, have a good life.