Time with Mom

A Look At Our Week

Wow! I missed a week of blogging! Mom has kept me pretty busy these last 2 weeks and it doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon! I’m home for the weekend but will return to Mom on Monday.

Mom had surgery, yet again, last Wednesday on her ankle. This time we are trying a bone fusion in hopes of allowing her to walk somewhat pain free. Parts of her ankle bones were removed and the bones screwed together. She will no longer be able to move her foot in an up/down motion but should recover and be able to move pain free with no limp. Over the next 6 to 8 weeks her bones will fuse together as they heal. In order for that to be successful, she has to stay off the foot and that is incredible difficult!

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She is using a knee scooter to get around right now, which is causing her knee to swell from the extended use/weight being put on it. Create one problem to correct another! We have tried crutches but she just doesn’t have the strength to move herself very far. Her apartment is just too small/narrow for a wheelchair or scooter. Walkers will not work because she would have to hop on one foot with them and we have learned hopping is not her thing! It’s been an adventurous week and a half as she has created ways that maneuver herself.

I always say mom is not a good patient and I am not a good nurse. We are somehow surviving though. My sister (the good nurse) stops by everyday and will do the things I either didn’t think about doing or mom didn’t mention to me. I feed her and her daughter as a thank you! My brother is staying with her this weekend so I could take a break and come home. I go back Monday and will stay the week again. We are just not confident in leaving her by herself for extended periods of time just yet. She goes back to the doctor Monday for her first re-check.

Caring for your aging parents is hard. Seeing the roles reverse is sad and difficult. She is becoming the child and we are becoming the parents. Her stubbornness in doing exactly what she wants to do despite the consequences and damage she knows it can and will do is so very frustrating. We may not always handle these daily occurrences as we would like to, but we are trying. Trying to do what is best for her and give her whatever she may need just as she has always done for us.

Here in the mountains we do not have cable and do not get any channels with an antenna. That is completely fine with us. I watch  two or three TV shows regularly and will watch them online a week later or binge watch to catch up if needed. Any news we he comes from Facebook or other websites. Well, I have caught up on my TV watching while at moms! Everything from Kathie Lee & Hoda to Ellen to Dr. Phil to Wheel of Fortune! Oh and The Voice too! It is so easy to get sucked into that TV and I have realized I really don’t miss it! The background noise it provides is such a distraction to the other things I’d rather be focused on! It was nice to be able to watch the season premiere of Grey’s with my sister, niece and bro-in- law.

Also, I was able to go to my nephews high school football game. He is a beast and having a great season! Way to go Trey #44!

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Hiking Adventures

Well, there has been no hiking for me the past week and a half! No walking either! Lots of ice cream sundaes and milkshakes though! I have promised myself I will do better next week and at least take my daily morning walk!

My guy usually fills the time when I’m away with hiking and last week he did one of the long, hard hikes he has been talking about for awhile. I was nervous!  Being so far away and scared he would slip and fall on one of the rickety ladders he was climbing up,  but he made it, well he completed most of the trail and had the good sense to stop when the trail became wet, slippery and dangerous. He is planning more hikes for this upcoming week.

What’s for Dinner? 

There’s been plenty of cooking going on at moms! Her appetite has definitely not gone away! We have had cubed steak with gravy, pork chops, pork tenderloin, stuffed green peppers, & broccoli cheddar soup. And cookies, she requested Bob’s special chocolate chip/peanut butter M&M’s cookies! But apparently I didn’t take time to take any pictures of any of these! I believe I will take my tomato that is ripe on the vine with me Monday and we will have a tomato sandwich maybe!

Sappy Selfies

Selfie with my mom and bro will have to do for this week! Off to spend the day with my awesome guy! Have a great week! XOXO

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Time for a Getaway

A Look At Our Week

Our week was quite normal for a change! I focused on working and trying to reach my weekly goal as well as make up for the weeks I haven’t met my goal. I had some great files to transcribe this week and some not so great ones mixed in as well! I enjoy the many topics that I get to cover and the freedom of working where and when I want to!

I did my walks each day this week and added a trail with hills for two of those days. Staying home helped keep the diet in check although we did have one night out in Boone. I managed to be sensible and had a salad and passed on the amazing looking salted caramel (my fave!) cake they brought around! Of course my guy ended up at Krispy Kreme with the hot light shining! I stayed strong though, with only 1 glazed doughnut and a nibble off of his pumpkin spice and blueberry cake doughnuts. He went back for seconds!

Hiking Adventures

Last Sunday we went to one of our favorite trails that is nearby, Elk Knob. I’ve done it before and completed the trail. I won’t say with “no problem”, but I completed it. Not so much this time! I did manage to complete the hardest parts of it and make it to the halfway point before waving my guy on and promising to be careful on my way back down. I added a trail at the end that is flat with no hills to make up for it! It’s amaizng what a difference 10 pounds can make, but it is huge! Working hard to stay focused to get it off! I do not like feeling this way!

Traveling Times

Friday afternoon just as I was almost to my halfway point of my daily goal of work, my guy came into the room and suggested I take the rest of the day off and we go somewhere! I of course agreed, he even offered to pay me for half a days work, which I assured him wasn’t necessary. While I finished up my current job, he planned our get away. Before he could begin to think about the process of getting ready, I had changed and was packed and standing at the door ready to go!

We went to Asheville, N.C. for the night. There was a big state fair going in that we checked out. I even rode the chair lift from one end of the fair to the other. Opened my eyes for a little bit of the ride too! My guy was impressed with his front rower seat in the chair lift to see the human cannonball. Unfortunately, my eyes were closed during that.

After the fair we went to one of our favorite bars in town, Jack of the Wood. They were having a hurricane party with a mediocre live band.  The next morning we went to the outlets and huge farmers market before heading back home. It was a great quick getaway and just what I needed!

The sky was amazing that evening at the fair. The clouds were beautiful and swirling as we were on the outer bands of Florence.

What’s for Dinner?

Homemade vegetable soup is what’s for dinner! My guy always says my pots of soup are never big enough so this time I loaded up the veggies and cleaned out the fridge. We have had soup all week and still have some left. Love fall weather and homemade soup!

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Sappy Selfies

Fair Selfies! Have a great week! Xoxo

Off to See the Wizard

A Look at Our Week 

The first part of our week was actually quite calm, quiet and normal! After Monday’s holiday, I focused on getting back to my daily routine. Walking each morning and then home to work, scrapbook and clean. My goal is to finish up my son’s scrapbook through his graduation. I am in 2013 right now! Once I am done documenting his life I will begin making scrapbooks from all of my travels and adventures with my guy. I am really enjoying my transcription work and all the different topics I get to listen to (and in my pj’s!). My speed and accuracy have greatly improved since I started and usually average working about 4 or 4 1/2 hours a day.

My guy is settling into his own daily routine. He usually waits until later in the day to go do his hikes and then is home in time for dinner. We seem to have rain in the forecast everyday and this has caused him to postpone many of his planned big hikes. He is hoping to get in a few 20 milers. On those days I will drop him off at the trailhead and pick him up 20 miles down trail much later in the day. Depending on the location of these hikes I will either return home while he hikes or hang out in whatever town he is in. We are both looking forward to these adventures!

House Hunting News 

Yes, we’re still out here looking for land or a house. We talked with someone yesterday who is in the process of building their home near here. They told us it took them around a year before they found their land. This gave me hope. Maybe we are not the most pickiest home/land buyers in the world! Maybe someday we will be able to find something we like!

One of the houses we have wanted to see went pending immediately but is now back on the market. They are having an open house tomorrow. It is in Unicoi, TN. We are planning on going to the open house and doing drive bys at a couple of houses we have seen listed in Erwin, TN. There is also one house, well actually it’s 2 houses on the same lot, that is for sale here in town. We will drive by this one as well and check things out.

Traveling Times

Our weekend started early this week! No wonder I’m so tired with an extra day of adventuring! Friday I took the day off and me and my guy headed to West Jefferson, N.C. He had been on a hike there earlier in the week and knew I would love the downtown area. He was correct! I love little quaint, charming downtown strips with all the different types of shops to browse through! We visited a local Cidery and I know have a new favorite cider! I was also able to sample my first flight of something! I am not a beer drinker, no matter how many my guy tries to get me to try, it’s just not for me. But cider I can do! This cidery uses all locally grown fruits and products in their ciders and it was very good! Try Molly Chomper’s if you ever get the opportunity!

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Saturday was our day in OZ! Back in June I went to The Land of OZ with my sister and nieces. It is an old Wizard of OZ theme park that is in Banner Elk, N.C. About an hours drive from here. They only open up now during 2 weekends of the year. The tickets will sell out usually on the same day they are offered for sale. I snagged me and my guy some tickets for their Autumn at OZ show this weekend. What a great day it was! My guy was a real trooper, being sure to take my picture with each character and posing along with me for some. He’s the best! While standing in line I thanked him for coming with me and I mentioned the possibility of a return visit. His reply was, “If you want me to come back, I would.”  I told him most men would not say such things and he said, “Of course they would.” The woman standing in front of us turned around and said, “No, they wouldn’t!” Ahh, that’s why I love him, he spoils me and I spoil him! After our time in OZ we explored the town of Banner Elk, but were not too impressed and found ourselves back in Boone, N.C. for an enormous dinner!

Hiking Adventures

Okay, let’s all keep in mind that it has been several weeks since I stepped foot on a trail. I have been doing my daily walks on a concrete trail in our local park. My normal route has gotten easier for me and I have even added to my distance a little. I was feeling really good about this! And as far as diet, when we are home I am on track 100%, as soon as we leave our driveway, game over! Anyway, Friday while in West Jefferson, N.C. we walked on a trail my guy had done earlier in the week at Mt. Jefferson Park. He was excited to share the trail with me and I was excited to be out in the trees again. Then we started. And wow, my body is out of shape for trails I quickly discovered! It was so hard!

I blame part of my difficulty on the fact that I had not slept very much the night before. I’m been having sleeping issues lately and was not able to sleep but for just a few hours before it was time for us to leave home. So I was tired from the get-go. Also, my shoes were broken! The sole is pulling away from the bottom of the shoe. Then add to those factors the fact that on my normal walk it’s a straight path with only slight hills. No real elevation gain at all. The trail my guy had planned was rather short compared to our normal distances, so he parked at an overlook that was further away from the trailhead, adding on just a little bit of distance to our hike. Well, the hike up the huge hill to get to the next overlook where our trailhead was just about did me in! My guy was ready to go get the car and pick me up before we even started.

Once on the actual trail, I did do much better! Still very tiring and hard, and my body was just tired. I needed a nap desperately! During the hike while assessing my difficulty, I decided I am going to mix up my normal walking routine. Instead of doing the flat surface walk everyday, I am going to mix in a couple of real trails that are nearby that I am very familiar with. Maybe this will help me kick it up a notch.

What’s for Dinner?

On Labor Day we were in the mood for a good burger! Holidays are meant for cooking out! Well, we don’t have a grill! We gave ours away when we moved and have not bought a new one just yet. So our cook out was a cook in! Our burgers with all the fixins’ were delicious! I tried a new recipe on Wednesday night and it has now been moved over to the “Food for Guests” folder in my Pinterest app. So, if you come visit Garlic Tuscan Chicken may be on the menu! This was to die for!

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I still have my vegetable soup ingredients ready to go. I was thinking fall was here and it was time for soup! We have our pumpkin spice candle lit, we’ve had pumpkin spice doughnuts and yogurt, but it’s still really warm outside! Come on fall, I’m ready!

Sappy Selfies

Hiking & OZ Selfies! Have a great week and come visit! XOxo

 

Long Journey Home

A Look at Our Week

It’s Long Journey Home week in Mountain City, TN! This small mountain town has been bustling with activity since Thursday! We have participated in each special planned activity and have enjoyed all of the socialization and history learning!

Long Journey Home weekend celebrates the musical history of Johnson County, TN. And what a musical history they have here! Several well-known musicians came from here or surrounding areas. We are renting our house from a local celebrities daughter. Clint Howard was a bluegrass musician who played with Fred Price, who lived in the next holler over. Both of these gentlemen played with Doc Watson and have even played at Carnegie Hall. This town is very proud of its heritage and honors them each year with this special weekend celebration.

It started Thursday evening with a kick off dinner and dance. There was square dancing and a shape note singing demonstration and even an old-fashioned cake walk. We didn’t win a cake but they sure did look amazing! We were able to meet up with our landlord during this event (she lives about an hour away from here and we had not seen her since we moved in.) We were all relieved to learn that this arrangement is working well for everyone involved! She hopes we take our sweet time finding a house or land and we love this place so much we feel no push to get out. It is a relief for her to have someone here taking care of the house until she makes a decision on what to do with it.

Friday evening there was an old-fashioned buskin’ downtown on Main Street. Reminded me of the Friday Night Jam Sessions in Floyd, VA. Musicians lined the street playing a wide variety of instruments and singing. There was also an art show and a quilt show in town as well. We were able to vote on our favorite quilt entries. What beautiful works of art those quilts are.

Today was the musical  heritage tour through town. We started at a local farm that has been a working farm since 1746. We heard a story of how the area got its name (Maymead) and about the railroads that used to go through town. Murder ballads were next on the tour, unfortunately we only got to hear one due to being a little late. Their was a mural unveiling on Main Street of a new train mural that includes the local musicians riding on the train. This year’s theme was trains, now how perfect is that?? Then we went to Clarence Tom Ashley’s homeplace and listened to some of his bluegrass music. The final stop was at the Fred Price homeplace, just down the street from our house. If you ever come to visit us we will more than likely take you to eat at Lois’s Country Cafe. Lois is the daughter of Fred Price and with her brother Kenny, is teaching the music and sharing the stories with the youth in the area.

I think watching the young kids was one of my favorite parts of the weekend. They have a group named, Junior Appalachian Musicians and is kids of all ages singing and playing various instruments. Quite impressive to inspire our youth in these ways and that they have the desire to carry the torch on. Another big enjoyment for me of the weekend was to see the pride on these family member’s faces as they played their relatives music or talked about the talents of their relatives. This is truly a special place.

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Tomorrow is the last event of the Long Journey Home with Sunday Singin’. I can’t wait! My guy is tossing around the idea of learning how to play the bass. Seems about right that if he was to choose a stringed instrument that it would be the largest one!

House Hunting News

We spent last Saturday looking at several houses we have found in the area. We came away with two prospects. One we have already taken off the table. The house was great, checked a lot of our boxes even though it was a tad bit smaller than we would like. My main issue was with the lot. It had plenty of land, just not very much usable land. Mainly sloping lot, backed up to a hill with the front yard sloping downward. Not ideal for my gardening dreams. I initially said, “It’s okay. I’ll make it work.” But the more we looked at the land and thought about what our ideal picture is, the two just didn’t match. One day we may be at a point where we will be willing to “make it work” but we’re still hopeful that somewhere, somehow we will find, or build exactly what we want.

The other prospect was mainly for land. The issue with this one is that it is an older house that is actually for sale with 12 acres of land. We would live in the old house while our new house was being built way at the top of the hill where the awesome view we want is. Then we would sell the older house and a couple of acres of land. However, the house is very old, and not really worth very much. So, we would end up paying premium price for our land, then have the expense of building our house and then only get a very small portion of the original investment back.

The $500,000 is still on our watch list. One can hope they become eager enough to sell that they drop the price a few $100,000! But even this house has its issues! For starters it’s a log home exterior which we are not crazy about and worry about maintenance. It is also only two bedrooms. That issue we would be willing to “make work!” especially since there could be options in the basement for another bedroom/workspace. We shall watch and see.

What’s for Dinner? 

We made it three nights this week without going out! Big achievement for us! We’ve had Chicken Bruschetta, BBQ ribs and Cajun shrimp and sausage with vegetables. My guy seemed happy finishing off some of the leftovers tonight! We’ve had our share of hot dogs this weekend with all the festivities and a huge ice cream treat as well. Festivals are fun!

Sappy Selfies

Have a great week! XOXOXO

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