007's Blog

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life and times

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FIRST BLOG OF 2008

WE'LL, IT'S GOOD TO BE BACK AMONG FELLOW STROKE FRIENDS. I'LL CONDENSE 2+ MONTHS AS BEST I CAN.   WE SPENT JANUARY IN PALM COAST, FLORIDA AGAIN. THE WEATHER WAS BEAUTIFUL, SO I COULD GO IN THE POOL ALMOST EVERY DAY TO EXERCISE. THE REAL ESTATE MARKET IS THE PITS. LAST YEAR WE HAD A TWO BEDROOM CONDO OVERLOOKING A POND. YHIS YEAR WE HAD A THREE BEDROOM CONDO OVERLOOKING THE INTER-COASTAL, AND IT WAS $500 DOLLARS LESS. GOOD THING, BECAUSE WE HAD LOTS OF COMPANY.   fEBRUARY WAS THE BEST. WE

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so long for a while

RIGHT AFTER CHRISTMAS, WE ARE HEADING TO FLORIDA. A MONTH IN PALM COAST, THEN WE'RE OFF TO ORLANDO FOR FEBRUARY. THANKS TO THE FRINGE BENEFIT OF HAVING MY SON WORK FOR DISNEY, WE ARE STAYING AT DISNEYWORLD FOR THE MONTH. THIS WILL BE A REAL TEST; MY WIFE AND I IN ONE ROOM FOR 28 DAYS. THANK GOODNESS IT'S A SHORT MONTH. I GET THE BATHROOM ON THE EVEN DAYS. THEN WE WILL WONDER BACK SLOWLY, VERY SLOWLY IF IT'S STILL NASTY UP HERE   SO, BEST WISHES FOR THE COMING YEAR. SEE YOU IN THE SPRING.  

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I GOTTA JOB

SUNDAY NIGHT, WE ATTENDED A NEIGHBORHOOD CHRISTMAS PARTY. WE WALK A LOT, AND EVEN THOUGH WE LIVE IN AN APARTMENT, WE MET A LOT OF PEOPLE WHO LIVE IN THE NEIGHBORING HOUSES.   ANYHOW, I WAS TALKING TO A LOVELY YOUNG LADY WHO IS THE MARKETING VP FOR THE HOSPITAL LOCATED IN THE TOWN WHERE I HAVE MY AQUATIC CLASSES. THE HOSPITAL IS EMPHASIZING STROKE CARE AND IS GOING ALL OUT IN THIS AREA. I TOLD HER HOW I TRIED TO DO VOLUNTEER WORK WHERE I WAS TREATED, BUT NEVER GOT CALLED. SO I WAS TOLD TO REPO

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MY AQUATIC CLASS

WELL, IT'S BEEN THREE AND A HALF YEARS SINCE I BEGAN SINCE MY ROAD TO RECOVERY IN WATER. AND IT'S BEEN A GOD-SEND. THERE WERE 15 WOMEN AND 2 MALES IN THE ORIGINAL CLASS AND THEY ARE ALL STILL THERE. ABOUT 2 MONTHS AGO WE ADDED ANOTHER 12 WOMEN BECAUSE A NEIGHBORING YMCA CLOSED DOWN. I WAS AFRAID I WOULD HAVE TO DROP OUT OF THE CLASS BECAUSE THE ESTROGEN LEVEL IN THE POOL BEGAN TO RISE. BUT, ALL IS WELL. WE HAD OUR ANNUAL CHRISTMAS PARTY LAST TUESDAY AND WE HAD A GREAT TIME. WE ARE ALL VERY CLOSE

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WHAT A DRIVE!

FOR THE FIRST SIX MONTHS AFTER THE STROKE, I COULDN'T DRIVE BECAUSE MY LEFT ARM WOULD NOT REACH FAR ENOUGH TO THE TURN SIGNAL LEVEL. AND TRYING TO THROW COINS IN A TOLL BOOTH BASKET WAS A CHALLANGE IN ITSELF. NOW I'VE DRIVEN ALL OVER THE PAST THREE AND A HALF YEARS, AND NEVER HAS MY WIFE SAID ANYTHING ABOUT MY DRIVING.   YESTERDAY WAS OUR GRANDSON'S 9TH BIRTHDAY, AND AS PLANNED, WE DROVE THE ONE AND A HALF HOURS TO A RESTAURANT TO HAVE LUNCH WITH HIM AND THE REST OF THE FAMILY. WE ALSO WANTED

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THE TURKEY DESERVED BETTER

FIRST OF ALL, I'M SITTING AT THE COMPUTER BECAUSE I'M HOME AND DID NOT GO NEAR A STORE OF ANY KIND TODAY.   NOW ON TO THANKSGIVING. I LEFT INSTUCTIONS WITH MY DAUGHTER, SON-IN-LAW, WIFE AND PRESIDENT BUSH THAT IF I DOZED OFF WHILE WATCHING THE FOOTBALL GAME, PLEEEEAZE WAKE ME UP WHEN IT'S TIME TO CARVE THE TURKEY. WELL I DID DOZE OFF, AND NOBODY WANTED TO WAKE ME UP. SO MY SON-IN-LAW AND HIS FATHER DECIDED THEY WOULD CARVE THE BIRD. WHEN I LAST SAW THE TURKEY, HE WAS GOLDEN BROWN AND A BEAUT

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A THANKSGIVING TO LOOK FORWARD TO

BESIDES STILL BEING AROUND THE UNIVERSE, I CAN LOOK FORWARD TO ANOTHER HOLIDAY. THIS YEAR OUR DAUGHTER AND FAMILY ARE HOSTING THE FESTIVITIES THURSDAY. MY SON-IN-LAW'S PARENTS WILL BE THERE AND HIS SISTER AND FAMILY ARE COMING FOR DESSERT ONLY. THIS IS GOOD NEWS BECAUSE TIME WITH HER UNRULY KIDS WILL BE LIMITED. LAST TIME WE HAD DINNER IN THEIR PRESENCE, THE EIGHT YEAR OLD DRANK ENOUGH WINE TO NEED A DESIGNATED DRIVER. BUT THAT'S NOT MY PROBLEM.   I'M THE DESIGNATED TURKEY CARVER WHEREVER I G

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WHAT A DAY!!!!!

FIRST OF ALL, I READ ALL THE COMMENTS ON MY BLOGS AND I THANK ALL OF YOU WHO RESOND.   YESTERDAY, I WENT TO THE LOCAL CONVENIENCE STORE FOR THE MORNING PAPER. AS I PARKED, MY CELL PHONE RANG AND I GOT WRAPPED UP IN THE CONVERSATION. NOW I FINISHED MY CALL AND WENT INTO THE STORE, WHICH WAS QUITE BUSY. STANDING IN LINE, I LOOK RATHER NORMAL. A WOMAN CAME IN SHORTLY AFTER I DID, AND INFORMED ME I WAS PARKED IN A HANDICAP SPACE WITHOUT A PLACARD. BEFORE I COULD TELL HER I FORGOT TO HANG IT ON T

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A SPECIAL HALLOWEEN

WELL, TODAY WE VENTURED TO ILLINOIS TO SEE THE GRANDKIDS AT THEIR SCHOOL HALLOWEEN PARADE AND PARTY. AVERY AND I DECIDED TO DRESS UP FOR THE FESTIVITIES. I WENT AS A PERSON WITH A HANDICAP, AND MY WIFE DRESSED UP AS A CAREGIVER. HOW ORIGINAL CAN YOU GET? THE FOUR YEAR OLD ATTENDS PRE-SCHOOL, AND THERE ARE A LOT OF SPECIAL NEED KIDS THERE. QUITE A PLACE.   ANYHOW, THEY ALLOWED US TO SIT BY THE DOOR INSIDE THE SCHOOL BECAUSE IT WAS A LITTLE CHILLY AND WINDY OUTSIDE. THIS WAS GREATLY APPRECIATED

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THE TRIP HOME, UGH!!!!!!

WELL, WE HAD A WONDERFUL TRIP TO NEW MEXICO AND COLORADO. BALOON FESTIVAL , TOURS OF THE AIR FORCE ACADAMY, OLYMPIC VILLAGE, AN INDIAN PUEBLO AND A HOST OF OTHER THINGS WE DID I WON'T BORE YOU WITH. BUT I WILL TELL YOU I'VE TRIED TO MEET PEOPLE WITHIN A 25 MILE RADIUS OF HOME TO NO AVAIL. I SHOWER, SHAVE, I'M PLEASANT. SOMTIMES HUMOROUS, BUT I HAVE TO TRAVEL 1300 MILES TO BOULDER, COLORADO TO GET TOGETHER WITH A FELLOW STROKE NETWORK MEMBER. MY WIFE AND I ENJOYED OUR TIME WITH SARA, GARY, KRISTI

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LIFE IS JUST A BOWL OF FRUIT SALAD.

I HAVEN'T BLOGGED IN 6 MONTHS, SO I DECIDED TO BORE MYSELF AND REMIND MYSELF WHAT I'M DOING THE NEXT FEW MONTHS. WE BACKED OUT OF BUILDING THE TOWNHOUSE BECAUSE THE BUILDER'S CONTRACT WAS SO LOPSIDED AND WE NEEDED TO MAKE 30 CHANGES. IN ADDITION, AFTER 1 YEAR, THEY ONLY PRE-SOLD 2 OUT OF 180. NOT A GOOD SIGN. SO WE CONTINUE TO BE "HOMELESS". AFTER KEEPING OUR SICK CAT ALIVE FOR SIX EXTRA MONTHS, HE LOST THE BATTLE TO KIDNEY DISEASE, AND WE PUT HIM TO SLEEP AT THE AGE OF 5. THREE WEEKS AGO. AFTE

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NATIONAL STROKE MONTH

I'VE DECIDED TO MAKE A LIST OF ALL PEOPLE I WOULD LIKE TO SHARE MY STROKE WITH, SO THEY CAN EXPERIENCE AND CELEBRATE WHAT I HAVE AND AM STILL GOING THROUGH. EVEN THOUGH MY LIFE IS NOT THAT BAD, I FEEL SOME DESERVE TO PARTICIPATE IN THIS MONTH AS SURVIVORS. ALL EXCEPT MY EX-NEIGHBOR. FOR HIM, I CAN ONLY WISH, WELL #%<<%#   MARTY :big_grin:

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CAT OR WIFE?

WHILE IN FLORIDA, WE NOTICED JAKE, OUR CAT, WAS GETTING THIN AND NOT EATING. WE TOOK HIM TO A CAT HOSPITAL (NOT CAT HOUSE, CAT HOSPITAL) WHERE HE HAD BLOOD TESTS AND X-RAYS. HIS KIDNEYS WERE SCREWED UP AND THERE WAS FOREIGN MATTER IN HIS STOMACH. SURGERY WAS RECOMMENDED, AND ARTIFICIAL GRASS, SOME WITH WIRE WAS REMOVED. MEDICATION HELPED GET HIS KIDNEYS IN BETTER ORDER AND HE BECAME HIS OLD SELF.   WHILE SHOPPING FOR CAT FOOD, WE MET A WOMAN WHO HAD SEVEN CATS ANS CALLED HERSELF "KAY THE CRAZ

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CHRISTMAS THERAPY

LOOK, I'VE BEEN BLESSED THIS YEAR IN SPITE OF THE STROKE. MY KIDS AND GRANDKIDS ARE ALL WELL AND HAVE EVERYTHING THEY NEED. SO YESTERDAY I WAS READING THE LOCAL NEWSPAPER AND THERE WAS AN ARTICLE ABOUT HOW THE ANGEL TREES PUT UP BY THE SALVATION ARMY WERE LAGGING IN PEOPLE WILLING TO HELP. SO MY WIFE AND I WENT TO A LOCAL BANK AND PICKED THE REMAINING TAGS OFF THE TREE. THEN WE WENT TO TARGET AND SPENT THREE HOURS SHOPPING FOR TOYS AND CLOTHES FOR TWO THREE YEAR OLDS, A FOUR AND THIRTEEN YEAR OL

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JUST RAMBLIN'

AND SO ANOTHER NOVEMBER HAS COME AND GONE. THE POOL AT THE Y IS CLOSED FOR REPAIRS FOR 2 MONTHS. I MISS THE SWIMMING AND PEOPLE, BUT TOMORROW IS THE CHRISTMAS PARTY FOR THE 2 GROUPS. FIRST ONE I'LL BE ABLE TO ATTEND SINCE I'VE BEEN IN FLORIDA THE LAST COUPLE OF YEARS.   THANKSGIVING WAS GREAT AT OUR DAUGHTER'S HOME. GOOD FOOD, GOOD COMPANY, AND LOT'S OF FUN. WE STAYED OVER THURSDAY NIGHT AND I SLEPT WITH 2 CATS, 2 KIDS, AND A COCKER SPANIEL. WE DEPARTED FRIDAY AFTER LUNCH BECAUSE THE LEFTOVER

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GOTCHA

AND SO SHE WAS ABOUT 30, LONG BROWN HAIR, CUTE FACE AND A WONDERFUL PERSONALITY. SHE USHERED ME INTO A RECLINING CHAIR, MADE SURE I WAS COMORTABLE AND I WAITED IN WILD ANTICIPATION AS HER BREAST GLIDED ACROSS MY FOREHEAD. I OBLIGED AS SHE ASKED ME TO OPEN MY MOUTH WIDE AND FELT HER TENDER FINGERS WORK THEIR WAY AROUND MY MOUTH.   AFTER FORTY MINUTES, SHE SAID WE WERE DONE. IT MUST HAVE BEEN AS GOOD FOR HER AS IT WAS FOR ME BECAUSE SHE INVITED ME BACK IN SIX MONTHS. JUST ANOTHER DAY OF GETTING

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AH, THE JOYS OF BEING ALIVE

AND SO IT WAS A PERFECT WEEKEND. MY OLDER GRANDSON AND HIS FATHER HAD A CUB SCOUT OUTING SO OUR DAUGHTER AND 4 YEAR OLD CAME TO OUR PLACE. IT WAS A BEAUTIFUL FALL DAY SO WE HIT THE ROAD. FIRST WE WENT TO MICHIGAN AND HAMBURGERS AT ONE OF OUR FAVORITE PLACES. THEN IT WAS OFF TO AN ORCHARD FOR SOME APPLE PICKING. RATHER THAN A RIDE OUT TO THE TREES ON A TROLLY, WE WERE GIVEN OUR OWN "GOLF CART" AND ZIPPED UP AND DOWN THE ROWS OF APPLE LADEN TREES. WE PICKED TWO LARGE BAGS OF HONEY CRISP, GALA, A

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JUST ME AND THE CAT

WELL, MY WIFE LEFT FOR FLORIDA THIS MORNING. I WENT TO MY AQUADICS CLASS, TOOK A WALK AND A QUICK NAP. I PICKED UP A ROASTED CHICKEN AT THE SUPERMARKET BECAUSE I COULD GET FOUR MEALS OUT OF IT. SURE. AS I CARVED THIS BEAUTIFUL GOLDEN SKINNED BIRD, I NOTICED THE DEEPER I WENT THE LESS COOKED IT BECAME. SO I PACKED IT UP AND RETURNED IT. EVEN THE CAT SNUBBED HIS NOSE AT THE CHICKEN. THE CLERK TOLD ME I COULD EXCHANGE IT, BUT I TOLD HER I LOST MY TASTE FOR CHICKEN. SO I GOT MY MONEY BACK AND WENT O

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DINING? OUT

AND SO YESTERDAY, MY WIFE AND I DROVE UP TO ILL. TO SPEND THE DAY WITH MY DAUGHTER, SON-IN-LAW, AND THE GRANDKIDS. WE HAD A WONDERFUL DAY AND I SUGGESTED WE GO OUT TO DINNER. I FIND IT BEST TO LET MY DAUGHTER PICK A RESTAURANT WHERE EVERYONE WOULD BE COMFORTABLE AND A 3 AND 7 YEAR OLD WOULD HAVE A GOOD TIME. A NEIGHBOR(apparently with no taste) TOLD OF A NEW PLACE, SO OFF WE WENT.   THE MENU DESCRIBED EVERY ITEM WITH FLAIR. I ORDERED A SHRIMP STCKED SALAD THAT SOUNDED DELICIOUS. IT WAS STACKE

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THE SINS OF COMMISSION

SO AFTER CAREFUL CONSIDERATION. WE DECIDED AGAINST BUILDING A HOUSE BECAUSE WE WOULD BE GONE DURING THE MAJOR PART OF THE CONSTRUCTION. OFF WE WENT TO A DEL WEBB COMMUNITY BEING BUILT OUTSIDE OF CHICAGO.   THE SALES GIRL, I WILL CALL Q, WE WERE "LUCKY" TO DRAW WAS PUSHY, SCATTERBRAINED, PUSHY, LYING AND OF COURSE PUSHY. WE LOOKED A HOUSE WITH A FLOOR PLAN WE LIKED, ALREADY UP. IF WE CLOSED BY THE END OF THE YEAR, WE WOULD GET A $30,000 INCENTIVE. THERE WERE CHANGES WE WOULD MAKE, AT OUR EXPENS

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OLD, JUST PLAIN OLD

AND SO I WENT TO THE NEURO-SURGEON AT NORTHWESTEN UNIVERSITY, MONDAY. HE WAS SO GOOD, I HAD TO CHANGE MY OPINION OF DOCTORS. COMPASSIONATE, CLEAR IN EXPLANATIONS, UBDERSTANDING AND JUST A NICE PERSON. ANYHOW MY LEG PROBLEM IS CAUSED BY A NARROWING OF THE CANAL IN THE SPINE IN A CERTAIN AREA. SINCE THE STEPS I UNDERTOOK ON MY OWN HAVE CORRECTED THE PROBLEM, HE SAID HE WOULD SEE ME A YEAR UNLESS THE PROBLEM GOT BAD AGAIN. IT CAN BE CORRECTED WITH SIMPLE SURGERY.   WELL, I GUESS I CAN'T BLAME EVE

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OH MY ACHING LEGS!!!!!!!

ABOUT 2 MONTHS AGO, MY LEGS STARTED TO HURT LIKE HE**. HAD TROUBLE WALKING ANY DISTANCE, DOING EXERCISES, AND JUST BEING MYSELF. SO THE DOCTORS DID TESTING, MORE TESTING, AND ENOUGH TESTING TO PAY FOR THEIR NEW EQUIPMENT AND MAKE A BOAT PAYMENT. THE RESULT IS I HAVE STENOSIS OF THE SPINE. IN LAYMAN'S TERM. IT'S A NARROWING IF THE FLUID TUNNEL INSIDE THE SPINE. NOW THERE ARE SOME THINGS THAT CAN BE DONE. IT IS NOT STROKE RELATED, JUST A CONDITION ASSOCIATED WITH AGING.   SO ON AUGUST 21, I HAV

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building a house?

WE SOLD OUR HOUSE LAST SEPTEMBER BECAUSE IT WAS TOO BIG AND I WAS AFRAID OUR IDIOT NEIGHBOR WOULD OUTLIVE ME. OUR DAUGHTER AND GRANDKIDS LIVE IN WHEATON, ILL, AND HAVE BEEN TRYING TO GET US TO MOVE FROM INDIANA TO AN AREA NEAR THEM. WE LOOKED AT HOMES AROUND THE NEIGHBORHOOD WHERE WE CURRENTLY RESIDE (IN AN APARTMENT), AND FOUND NOTHING. IN ILINOIS WE LOOKED AT CONDOS AND TOWNHOUSES, BUT NOTHING CLICKED. NOTHING UNTIL SAT. WHEN WE FOUND A MODEL TOWNHOUSE THAT CLICKED. NOW THEY DON'T BUILD THAT P

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ON THE ROAD AGAIN

IN MARCH OF THIS YEAR, I DECIDED I WANTED TO DO SOMETHING SPECIAL FOR MY WIF'E BIRTHDAY IN JUNE, SO I TOLD HER TO PICK ANYPLACE IN THE U.S. FOR A 2 WEEK EXCURSION. SOUTH CAROLINA BECAME THE DESTINATION, SO WE WENT ON THE WEBSITE "VRBO" (VACATION RENTALS BY OWNER). SHE SELECTED A COTTAGE ON THE BEAUFORT RIVER NEAR THE OCEAN.   SO WE PACKED UP THE VAN JUNE 16, INCLUDING THE CAT AND HEADED SOUTH. I MENTION THE CAT BECAUSE HE CONTRIBUTED TO ONE THIRD THE EXPENSES. WITHOUT HIM, THE TRIP WOULD HA

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A FRIEND'S WAKE

THIS MORNING I HAD TWO DOCTOR APPOINTMENTS TO GET TEST RESULTS. NOTHING NEW EXCEPT THOSE AILMENTS ASSOCIATED WITH OLD AGE (I MEAN AGING). IT KEPT MY MIND OFF FACING THE FUNERAL HOME IN THE AFTERNOON.   WELL, I FOUND THE COURAGE TO GO AND PRAYED THE CASKET WOULD BE CLOSED. NOBODY HEARD MY PRAYERS AND THE CASKET WAS OPEN. I VOWED TO BE STRONG AND MADE IT THROUGH FINE ACKNOWLEDGING HIS WIFE, CHILDREN, AND OTHER RELATIVES. THAT IS UNTIL HIS MOTHER CAME UP AND GAVE ME A BIG HUG. I JUST LOST IT. MY

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