Friday, September 30, 2011


Kind of hibernating today...the high for the day was 55' F and we reached that this morning about 6 am. The wind is blowing, the leaves are rustling and it's been damp and misty all morning.

I hear the ticking of a wall clock, the wind blowing in the trees (blowing hard to hear it with all the windows closed), the muffled sound of a radio on Squirrel's room, the hum of an overhead fan in our bedroom and the clicking of the computer keys as I type. It is kind of neat to sit here in the quiet and listen to the sounds.

I was supposed to go to a friend's this morning after bus route - we usually try to get together every couple of weeks. However this time she had illness in her family and had to cancel. So I was able to come home from bus route and take a short nap. Now I just need to get motivated to accomplish something constructive. There is laundry to fold and put away, creative stuff to organize, cleaning to do...I need to also find more magnets so that I can make more name-tags for my bus. I have some students that are going to have to have an assigned seat in the mornings and it will require name tags.

Have much more to write about...on a day I can get my thoughts in some semblance of order. One of the big things on my mind is thinking about my mom and dad sending us off to boarding school. Considering that in those days there were no cell phones, computers were just coming available and all we had for communication was snail mail and the extremely rare operator placed phone call - usually made only when there was an emergency...Wow! Now I have almost daily text contact with Stretch...

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

It is another grey gloomy day out - damp and drippy. It seems like we've had a lot of those this week...we had a fire in the furnace last night to warm the house up. I am so very thankful for wood heat! Sometimes the labor to get the wood is frustrating but it is so nice to be able to heat the house as early as it needs it without having to worry about the added utility bills.

The trees are well in the process of turning already. Some seem to have lost most of their leaves already. However the majority still have leaves - just the reds, oranges and yellows of autumn are what you see. Crops are coming off the fields - corn is mostly done and soybeans will start being harvested very soon.

B's shop addition is finished and in use. As I type this I hear a truck he's been working on running...and I can look out the office window and see two more tractors in various stages. He's finished up two jobs this week - that's a relief.

Dipstick is doing so much better in school this year. His grades are all A & B's - such a relief after the stress of last year. He's really enjoying his new school - and the freedom of not having daily homework. The other night at supper it was fun to listen to him talk about artificial hips and what is involved in putting one in. He is researching the longevity of such in preparation for a project to figure out how to make them last longer. (I think...if I understood it correctly). I can't remember exactly how the subject came up - except it had to do with Stretch's broken leg.

Speaking of Stretch...he is doing much better. He was released from the hospital last Tuesday and had his first follow-up surgical appointment on Wednesday - complete with x-ray. The surgeon was happy with his progress and said that there is clear evidence of healing in the bone(s). He is still not allowed to weight-bear and has another follow-up on the 3rd. He should be finished with his antibiotics the end of this week. Thankfully this entire time he's done well at keeping up with his classes and is enjoying being at college. I miss him though.

Squirrel is enjoying his freshman year as well. He's run excellently in cross country - making a PR every meet so far. He regularly practices his spanish on me and loves Gospel Choir. His first concert, complete with outfit is this coming Sunday at a church close to home. Additionally he is busy with volunteering at church running sound and with youth group, as well as looking forward to play practice and helping out there.

I feel like I'm chasing my tail...trying to catch up from being gone with Stretch, cross country meets and what not. My bus route, even though it's basically the same as last year, has been extremely challenging so far this year. Part of that is that I've had a lot more riders. That is starting to stabilize out some but still it has made a difference. Part of it is definitely discipline issues.

I'd better scoot - want to get some groceries before afternoon route so that I can just come home afterwards.

Monday, September 19, 2011


Stretch has mrsa. He has been back in the hospital on iv antbiotics since Saturday. It is a day to day thing at this point. Thankfully it seems to have been caught relatively early so it had not spread as much as it could have. However it is still not a good thing.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

From High to a Snap

Stretch and I left to take him to college last Friday morning, Sept 2. We drove two cars and did some last minute shopping on the way down. Getting him moved into the dorm was fabulously easy...there was a whole crew that just came and unloaded the cars in about 5 minutes and carried everything up to his room. From that point we unpacked and got him settled into his room. Then there were events for both the freshman and the parents for the rest of the day. I spent that night at the World Gospel Mission guesthouse about 15 min from the school...slept well. Drove back to attend a seminar and then have breakfast with Stretch. After that it was off to the cross country course to watch Squirrel's meet. Squirrel ran very well and Stretch got to come watch him run.

However on the way back across to campus Stretch had a bicycle accident and broke both his tibia and fibula in his right leg. He called me as I was walking back to the team's camp and said basically "Mom I wrecked my bike and I broke my leg". I hollered at Squirrel - sent him to find another team parent friend and took off running to find Stretch. An ambulance came (eventually - it seemed like a very long time to wait) and loaded him up with his leg in a brace. I could tell before they got there that he had indeed broken his leg...and watching the EMT's splint it just confirmed it. Legs are not supposed to bend between the knee and the ankle. However even at that point I did not realize that he had broken both bones. (Maybe I was in denial - not sure. It never even crossed my mind). ER service was good - took him for x-rays and I got to be in the room with him. The x-ray tech showed me the pictures while they were getting him settled back on the cart to move back to the room. Then it was just a matter of waiting until he was admitted - to a Peds room no less. Even though it was a little odd to have an "adult" on peds I was very thankful he was there. The rooms were large and cheerful and the nurses were fantastic. Stretch was on pretty heavy duty pain meds by this point - all it could do was keep him comfortable. The orthopedic surgeon came in after we were settled into the room upstairs and explained our surgical options. All 3 involved surgery and various recovery periods. He recommended putting a rod in and surgery was scheduled for Sunday afternoon. (Part of the reason for the delay was that this hospital had to order the rod from Ft Wayne) Surgery went well...took a little longer than the doctor expected due to the strength of his bones! One hears that and can only imagine the force it took to snap those bones in such a way that Stretch heard as well as felt them snap. Monday he was up out of bed learning to use crutches and Tuesday he was released to return to campus. He ended up missing only 1 1/2 days of class. I stayed in town until Wednesday afternoon before I came home. That gave me the chance to see him settled back into his new dorm room and make sure all our t's were crossed and i's were dotted as far as class schedules were concerned.

Getting back to bus route has been interesting. I had only planned to be gone for one day this past week instead of having an entire week off work. Some of my students were definitely glad to see me back and some were not. However I now have my seating assignments done on the bus (at least mostly for the afternoon route). Am still considering whether I will do them for the morning or not. Yesterday I drove the bus for Squirrel's cross country meet. It was an annual invitational meet where both the middle school and high school go. As has happened for the past several years our high school boys' team took first place. Squirrel placed 11th in the JV race with a time of 19:45. He was very pleased to break 20 min.

Next week plans to be another busy week but should be fun. I'm slowly catching up on what got behind while I was away. Will try to write again sooner. Thankfully I have been keeping up with a personal journal better.