Trip Start Nov 01, 2008
1Trip End Nov 30, 2008
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Dana for breakfast. Charlie and the guys went to a local airport to see another friend so he didn't get back till around noon and then took a nap. Mid afternoon we headed out for gas and groceries - hoped the credit card had been fixed, and it worked so must be though they never did return the call. He only had a limit of $2,030 and we spent that on diesel on a trip! Checked it online when we got back home and it is now $10,000! We took a load of stuff to the motorhome and while I put it away Charlie winterized the water lines. Dana and Chuck were in the office and came over and we talked for a couple of hours-till it got cool out. We gave then 6 12 packs of Coke that we had gotten in Myrtle Beach, (we kept the cases of beer) and went on home. I had planned to make bean soup today but now it is after 7pm so had some pork, baked taters and a salad
November 2-We slept in, Charlie longer than me, finally had breakfast and decided around noon to head out for a long ride. It is a beautiful day, blue skies and warm - got up to 76 in the afternoon. We went SE planning to go to the town of Georgetown where Charlies grandfather had lived. Charlie had stayed with him a bit when till he was about 12 and grandpa had died. We wanted to take a scenic route rather than the freeway so headed out using our Garmin Nuvi to guide us. Put in Georgetown and started following it and realized it was taking us in a wrong direction! Checking it found that it listed FOUR Georgetowns in Ohio and none of them right! It rarely lets us down but this was bigtime letdown! We drove around a lot of small towns and enjoyed talking about childhood and seeing the beautiful fall colors. Eventually got close enough to the real Georgetown to get Nuvi to recognize and point us to it!. We found an aunts house and his granddads house on Main street-still there and the old red barn out back still standing. We were able to take Apple street and drive right to the barn. Next a tour of the town, not too big but full of neat old 'Victorian type' houses. It was a mix of well kept and derelict looking houses. We found one beautiful stone house that has been let go-It has such possibilities that we cannot believe it was not restored. It is 2 houses S of granddads place so we stopped and walked around it and then around the neighborhood for a bit. Next stop was where President Ulysses S Grant lived from very early childhood till he left to go to West Point
Nov 3 - Monday. Charlie off to Chemo early. Happy birthday to Amanda and to grandson Joey on his 12th birthday
Nov 4- Tuesday - Charlie didn't sleep well last night resulting in me not getting much sleep. I was up early and he followed a couple of hours later. We sat around here, did some house cleaning, and finally he decided to go fly the cub. I asked to go and he told me he didn't think I should, and that scared me. I worried about him till he finally arrived home near dark. After a spaghetti dinner we spent the evening watching election returns. Hope against hope that we will be happy with the winner!
Nov 5 - Another day of chemo for Charlie. Dar and Jimmy stopped by for a visit and later I went out to the postoffice, the AT&T store to get my phone numbers transferred to new phone, and Wal-Mart for a few things
Nov 6-Thursday - No Chemo today so slept in a bit. Charlie had a noon lunch at El Mason with Bob Lord and was home mid afternoon in time to take a long nap. I am messing with the 'photo album' I am doing for his and the kids Christmas gift-a lot to do yet! I did get a lot done around the house today and also chatted for a long time with Lola, across the street. A supper of left-overs from last night, some computing and off to bed - tomorrow another early Chemo day.
Nov 7th-Charlie off early for his Chemo - I had a do nothing kind of day
Nov 8- Sat Charlie up early for his Springfield breakfast and I slept in a bit getting up in time to meet Dana at Bob Evans for my biscuits and gravy! Back home to find Charlie sleeping in his recliner. He woke, sort of, when I came in and told me he didn't feel good and was unable to eat or drink because his jaw didn't work! That his jaw hurt and he could only open his mouth a short ways! He is hot, but not too bad, cold and wrapped in heavy shirt and blanket. I gave him a piece of bread and he could not begin to chew it. Found a straw and he was able to get a sip of water down. He had taken B/P and it was high so took another BP pill. He is now sleeping, with labored breathing and a lot of talking in his sleep - something he has been doing the last few nights - (wish I could understand it!). I did some online research but could find nothing similar (he is on Rituxan chemo) so we decided to let him sleep a while and assess his condition again and call Dr Yanes is it seems any worse. I went to the store for groceries and a thermometer-I know we have 2 in the motorhome but none here- and I think he is running a fever
Nov 9 - Up early to 37 degrees weather. No more blue skies and warm days for this year. Hope we can leave for AZ before snow storms everywhere. Charlie up about 9:30 and seems chipper this morning though his BP was high- 130/104. Was sitting here watching TV and computing and suddenly got bad chills - got him into recliner and covered with lots of covers and checked temp and it was 101.8. Not a good start to the day. He has spent the entire day with occasionally chills and high temp, and has slept most of the day. Linda's Son Gregg was out of town but his wife Ruta and children dropped by for a welcome visit. Jesse is 15 and a very pretty gal, and Ryan is almost 14. They haven't seen 'grandpa' for at least 1 ½ years so was good for them to visit. After they left I fixed Charlie some tea with honey that he did not drink - he went back to sleep. Taking his temp at 5 and 6 it was over 102. Two more Tylenols and finally by 8 was down to 101.6 - not good but better. He is up for a while and ate a grilled cheese and a glass of milk, then back to bed.
Nov 10 Monday-5 AM Charlie woke and his fever had broken
Nov 11- Veterans Day - Charlie slept in till 10, but no fever, but still very tired and worn out. I left at 1 for my ear appt and now have one new hearing aid, and so far it works just fine. When I answer the phone I can push a button and talk without taking it out of my ear! Maybe I will not lose another one! Back home at 2:30 and Charlie was ready to head to the office. Very tired but he wanted to go. He didn't get home till after 6 and is absolutely worn out. He felt warm to me so took his temp and it is 102.4!! Got him to take 2 tylenol and got it down to 101 an hour later. No appetite at all - though he did have some cheese and crackers, and later I fixed him a favorite, tapioca pudding. Not much supper but better than none at all.
Nov 12- Up at 6:30 and Charlies temp is 99.8 - better but usually lower in the AM. He is off to Chemo again, and looking really worn down. I tried to go with him but no go! I heard today that classmate and friend Myra's mother died last night. She was our grade school cook! Had a phone call from Charlies Insurance Company about our Las Vegas 'incident' last spring. The man we hit, and killed, suddenly has a brother in Peru who is suing us 'to the limits of our insurance!!' We were cleared in the accident but this guy wants money! Our big problem now is the witness that we had won't return calls and the police did not do a reconstruction of the accident. It was so straight forward that they didn't think it necessary, but now in retrospect looks like they should have. Dar and I have talked several times today and she decided to call her dad's doctor/nurse. . He was home at 2, ask for some buckwheat pancakes, all he has eaten today, and was asleep in his chair by 3:30. I am just back from the pharmacy for 2 prescriptions for next 7 days--$241!! They couldn't get his insurance to accept it so now have to go back tomorrow and try to straighten that out! I am to take him to emergency if temp goes over 101.5 and no more Tylenol for him. They don't want to artificially mess with his temp. They 'think' it may be an infection, and he is to stay away from people this week. His counts are all bad-White blood cells 2.5 (norm 4.5-10.5), Red cells 7.7 (norm 11-18) and Platelets 5 (norm 150-450) that last one is up from 4 last week. Most all of the counts are too low or too high, but these 3 most important. At least he has 7 days of pills-I guess they expect him to be around that long! Dar just called and is stopping by. She spent at least an hour and we had a good chat, both before dad woke up and after. The two pills have already made him feel better and he is up and looking more chipper. May have solved the insurance thing too. Found a stack of unpaid monthly premiums and looks like some communication breakdown as the company was to have paid this. Dar will check on it tomorrow. By 8 PM Charlie is back to somewhat normal, the best he has looked and felt in a couple of weeks- Must be powerful antibiotics (should be for the price!), no fever and looks chipper-well, almost!
Nov 13-Thur. If it's too good to be true ---- well, it was. Last night was bad-all night. Charlie was cold, but sweating profusely, all night long. Tried to take temp but new thermometer will not register below 97! The bed is soaked from his cold sweating! Good thing it is a King and big enough that we could just move over to the other side! I was up early, talked to Dar a couple of times and she decided to call the doctor. I told Charlie when he got up and he had felt so bad during the night he didn't seem to mind. Then as he got more awake and on the phone with Dar he decided he was just fine and he was not going to the doctor till tomorrow! His temp is still only 96.9 - way too low, but he had decided! Later he went to the factory, and called me mid afternoon to ask if I wanted to accompany him, Dar and Mary to the funeral of a guy from work. Billy Viviano aged 54 had died of lung cancer. At 54 he had many kids, grand kids and even several great-grandkids. We went to Wilmington for the viewing but didn't stay for the service. It was interesting-lots of tattoos and facial hair, and to quote Charlie 'only a couple of DNA's present'. The 4 of us went to the local Bob Evans for dinner and talk, enjoying the time together. Mary was driving so took us back to Dar's and we headed home, stopping for fuel on the way. We had met at Dar's new house and got our first look at it with furniture. Beginning to look like a lived in home. Charlies temp is 97.6 but better than it has been, and maybe some of this sickness was due to infection and he may be getting better. Well, I can hope.
Nov 14- Friday-I was up early, Charlie near 10. He has doctor appt at 1:30 and probably chemo after it today. His temp was still low, only 96.8 this morning but no cold sweats last night. After a long hot bath he was off to the doctor, calling later to tell me they would do his chemo in the afternoon. I finally got myself moving (no one gets much sleep here anymore!) and off to Wal-Mart to see if the drug insurance was straightened out, and it was so they refunded me a bunch of money! Did some basic grocery shopping and home, where the condo assoc man has our outdoor light all torn apart to repair. Finally at almost 6 Charlie dragged in-headed directly for the recliner and sleeping in a couple of minutes! Weather report is for heavy rain tonight and possible snow by morning or tomorrow. Charlie is not good tonight-- he usually pulls out of it the next day, but news was not good today and he is very depressed--his platelets are down to 3, the lowest they have ever been in spite of all the chemo--he only has 2 sessions left next week--still on the antibiotics and infection seems cleared up but tonight he can hardly move around- he is in bed already-at 7pm . They are worried about spontaneous internal and/or external bleeding - If that happens I am to get him to emergency immediately.
Nov 15th - Neither of us slept too much last night. Up early for breakfast in Springfield - usually just the guys, but I had called Barb and we decided to join them this morning, but not at the same table. We were around the corner from them. We need to do that more- enjoyed her, and meeting the guys I don't know but hear about. Back home and Charlie was tired but had some business stuff to do on computer and before he finished Dar came by to get the leaf for her dining room table out of the basement. She also brought me a stack of books to read-Yeah! I was having book withdrawal! She stayed at least an hour and after that Charlie took his nap. Then some tomato soup, and more computer stuff, a call from his sister Jane and one from my Aunt Jean. As he does, Charlie has bounced back fairly well. This is so up and down - so hard emotionally, this not knowing what his health will be from day to day. On days like this it's hard to realize he is seriously ill! California is burning up-over 800 homes, and today over 500 mobile homes destroyed! We had rain a good part of the day mixed with big fat wet snowflakes and most of the fall leaves are now on the ground.
Nov 16 -Sunday - 33 degrees this morning but no moisture (snow) as predicted. Charlie had another good night. Losing weight has improved the sleep apnea 90%. An easy 'cure' for an annoying sleep problem. 9 AM and tiny little sleet coming down! We hung around home all day, though Dar had invited us to dinner and Charlie didn't feel up to going out, but it was a good day for Charlie - so good that one could think he had no health challenges at all. Love days like this and hope for more! About dark Lindas Son Greg, Ruta, Ryan, Jessica and her boyfriend Taylor came by for a visit. Ryan brought his guitar and amp to give us a chance to see his talents, and he is good! They have done an excellent job of raising those kids and Linda would be very proud of what they have become. Jessica is very interested in her grandmother now - I gave her Lindas Jewelry case - it still has a few pieces of costume jewelry in it and Jessie was very pleased! It was a good visit and so much better than last week when Charlie appeared to be on his last breath! We had a few leftovers for a dinner and to bed fairly early as Charlie had 8:30 doctor in the morning and then chemo and possibly to hospital for blood and/or platelets. Still only 37 degrees but no moisture.
November 17th - Up early to find the patio with white stuff on it! Not much but some - and big fat sloppy flakes coming sown. Then they quit. I expect more before the day is over. Charlie up and off to his doctors and chemo and whatever else they want to try on him today. Yesterday was such a good day for him, and last night too-almost like before going out of remission. 8:30 34 degrees and snowing again and this time I think it will stick! But by 10 it was all gone. Later in the afternoon it began snowing again and had a thin covering by dark. Charlie home about 2 and very tired but with good news-His platelet count was UP to 7! One more chemo to go. He napped till Dar and Jimmy arrived-Jimmy in his ROTC-Air Force uniform looking very handsome! Dar brought us dinner that we would have had at her place yesterday. Charlie napped again after they left and up at 6. We were getting ready for bed when Chuck called and he and Dana came over till 9:30 - enjoyed them as always. Finally off to bed.
Nov 18 -Some of the excitement of the platelet count of 7 has worn off as he got up this morning just dragging! He is off to the factory but can hardly walk from room to room. When he was in remission his count was around 11-12 and he seemed very normal in activities. Getting it back as far as 7 really seemed like it would be good, and it may be but right now you cannot tell! It was 23 degrees when we got up this morning, and now at 4 pm it is only 33! The thin covering of snow is almost all gone and we have had blue skies with white fluffy clouds. Arizona is sounding good to me. Charlie home and as predicted exhausted. I had planned going to the store for milk and such while he napped, and had my list ready. Sat down to await his arrival and coughed, just a small one, BUT, something went wrong and I hurt my lower back! I can still move but it hurts so Charlie headed off to the store for us. I really appreciated that as tired as he was. Fixed us chicken sandwiches-he still has no appetite- and both off to bed early. I could hardly get into bed! I am hurting much more now, and my first bathroom trip took me at least 10 minutes, and so much pain I thought I might pass out. Wow, how can a cough do all this! We don't need me down too! Second time up Charlie was awake and helped me in and out of bed. I am eating ALEVE like candy, but no help - well maybe, can't imagine what it would feel like if I didn't take them!
Nov 19th- When Charlie left for chemo he got me water, pills, phone and hope all I need till his return! It was 20 degrees when we went to bed, down to 16 at 2 am and then slowly climbed back to 20 by the time Charlie left so we must have gotten a cloud cover during the night. I finally and literally dragged myself out of bed at almost 10, still painful but at least I was finally able to get to the kitchen and sit. And the temp is up to a high of 27 now at 10AM. But no moisture - that is good! Oops- radio just announced snow for tomorrow! I finally just had to take a shower- couldn't stand myself-painful to walk and change clothes and shower but I did it-that hot water felt soooo good on my back. Shortly after 3 Charlie arrived home and was in pretty good shape. Platelets still at 7! At 5 he headed to the recliner for his nap. It is only 35 degrees out at 5:30. Dinner of juicy burgers and later Chuck, Dana and the kids came to visit bringing their American bulldog- that is big enough that it should come with a saddle and bridle!!! They stayed till about 9. I am still miserable in spite of taking it easy and eating ALEVE all day, but less of the pain that just knocks me over!
Nov 20 Thursday - I slept a bit better but still cannot turn over or move in bed. I had an ear doctor appt at 10 and Charlie was to take me, but at 9:40 he was just up and sitting here in his jammie bottoms so I slowly and painfully got into the car, out at the doctors and into the office. All well and we just fine tuned my new hearing aid and then back to repeat the in and out car thing! I had planned a stop at Trader Joes, but it would not show in the Nuvi and I had no idea how to find from where I was so just went home. Charlie headed out about 2:30 and I did a few things that I could do around here. Around 2:30 it began snowing- tiny little frozen flakes but then it is only 35 degrees out. Charlie came home early and we headed out to Trader Joes to do a bit of shopping, then around the corner to a health food store where we finally found some buckwheat flour! Kinda fun to be out walking, as good as I can walk right now, with the snow swirling around us. By now the snow has turned to real snow- big wet flakes and we headed home to refrigerate our shopping and over to Skyline Chile where we had a '4 way' for supper. By the time we headed home near 7 the snow was about 1/2 inch deep and will continue most of the night with temperatures hitting around 20 by morning.
Nov 21 - Before we went to bed there was a good ½ inch of snow - and when we woke there was a temp of 25 and still the same amount plus clear blue skies. At 9:30 it is down to 23 degrees. I am ready for Arizona! Now at 2:30 it has finally hit 31! I hurt as bad as yesterday-had hoped for a good day today, but as I favor that side I have strained some other muscles and things and now more that the original hurts. A long soak in a hot tub felt good bit don't think it really made any changes physically! We had a light dinner and then snacked! It is 9 and already 25 degrees.
November 22 - another cold night with 13 degrees again this morning, up to 25 by 11 AM! Some of the snow has melted off, but any that was in the shade is still there, making it even look cold out! The lake has a fine sheet of ice on it frustrating all the local geese! Funny to watch them land and find that the ice is not thick enough to hold them! We had a very late breakfast cause we had to shop for groceries first. Been hard to buy food lately as nothing sounds good to Charlie - he just has no appetite! Dar had come over soon after we arrived home and I was cooking a 'Dutch Baby' for Charlie and since he couldn't eat it all she helped him. She stayed a couple of hours and we had good visit. Later in the evening we had the broasted chicken and some mashed potatoes for early supper, and finished off the evening with ice cream. Off to bed by 9 PM and 35 degrees.
Nov 24th Monday- I was up early for a routine doctor appt I need in order to get another prescription for my heart meds. Charlie was gone when I returned but soon showed up with a much needed haircut, then left for his doctor appt. I feel much better today- at least 90% now and can actually bend over but not quit pick up anything from the floor yet! Rain off and on all day and the warmest it has been in a while -37 degrees!, with rain/snow predicted for tonight and temp of 30. Charlie finally home - after doctor he had gone to the office. The doctor report was good- the platelets actually up to 10! That is great news, but still having low oxygen in blood causing him to be very tired and out of breath often. But, his doctor had been to a meeting last week where they discussed a 'new and very rare' disease that could be his problem so took blood again to test for this. Charlie does not know the name of it, but IF it should be this there is a remedy for it! He also gave us a folder of all Charlies treatments/notes for a doctor where ever we should need one.
Nov 25-Tue- I woke and do not hurt! Wow- that is so good! We both had dentist appts this morning -for cleaning. He has insurance - I do not - $100 for cleaning, having the doc look into my mouth and NO X-rays! I have 2 small cavities but will have them filled in April when we are back here. It is 32 degrees and very windy - blows right through you. We left the dentist and over to Barleycorn for lunch- A Reuben and a pulled pork sandwich. Very good. Home for me and off to factory for Charlie. I spent part of the day packing up stuff that I want to take out to my storage shed in Mesa. Charlie tired again; we just snacked for dinner since we had such a big lunch. I found the Christmas cards and will get started on then soon. One month till Christmas. Again they are promising snow overnight. I did get the Cathedral Window candies made for the 'Carry-In' at the CB factory tomorrow. Charlie tired and 'down' tonight; hope to hear from the doctor soon.
Nov 26th - Off at 11 to the CTG factory for a pot luck (called a carry-in here) lunch. Really a good time and after lunch while Charlie was talking business I walked around and talked to nearly all of the employees- all love their jobs and like working here- that is good to hear. I then expected to come home but- we talked to everyone there to say good-by, then over to each of the other units on campus to say 'bye to everyone. Then down to get something out of the motorhome, which is parked at the Ace building and had to go in to say farewell to everyone there. Finally home at almost 6PM! Dar called and she and Jim came over to get some dishes for tomorrows dinner and we talked till 9:30. Charlie and Dar talked business and Jim and I looked at my Italian pictures. His heritage is Italian and he really seemed to enjoy them.
Nov 27 - Thanksgiving-We didn't do much this morning. I had my dessert made and the salmon dip ready to go-just had to do the dressing and I did it in a crock pot and worked out fine. About 4 we headed out to Dars new house. Good dinner, good company, Jimmy and Joey on their guitars and Nikki sang us a song. Joe and Joey, Dar Jim and Jimmy, Chuck, Nikki and Charlie 3 and Amanda and Stephanie were there. We finally headed for home about 8:45, and as we arrived my phone rang. It was son John in Salt Lake City -he had been trying all day to reach me. He was on his bike last night and was hit by a car, who did not stop. He got the bike, busted up, home and went to bed but this morning a neighbor took him to the hospital- broken arm, broken orbital bone-around eye and broken nose and he hurts-needless to say he can't work - so work, no transportation, no money, no food and his phone is out of minutes!
Nov 28th- I didn't sleep more than a couple of hours last night-finally just got up early! Dar showed up shortly after Charlie got up - she was returning some dishes she borrowed for our dinner last evening. We all chatted for a while, we did laundry and made the bed and finally about 1 headed over to ACE to get the motorhome. Brought it back here and loaded all but the refrig and a few boxes that will go in the outside storage. Then delivered it back to ACE parking lot and headed for the Wright Bros airport for a 'cub' flight before the sun went down. It has no heater! We flew over Dar's house and could see Jimmy and 2 friends, we think one was Joey, skateboarding in the driveway and waving to us. We were comfy till about the last 15 minutes so as we flew over the CB factories we turned back towards the airport - it was only 40 degrees out. Put the plane back in the hanger, and as we walked away discussed that this would probably be the last flight in it for either of us. Charlie put an ad in the Trade-A-Plane magazine this morning to sell it.
November 29th Up early and Charlie off to Springfield for his last breakfast with the guys for a while. I took a load of boxes of stuff out to the motorhome - these are things I want to take to my storage unit and had to fit them in the outside storages - what a challenge. I didn't think I hurt my back again, but I found later in the day that I really had. Not bad but moving carefully! Charlie back home and retrieved the motorhome from ACE. As he drove in there was a moving van on the curve in our road and I do not know how he got around it. Later the garbage truck came through and he was also challenged. Good that we can go one around the circle to get out of the complex. Our goal was leave by noon and we drove off at 11:50. Headed south through Cincinnati, into Kentucky and on into Tennessee where we stayed on the west side of Nashville. Charlie grocery shopped and I hung up my clothes- we had just laid them on the bed earlier. A dinner of the rest of the turkey day feast and off to OpryLand Resort. We have been here before, also at Christmas, and it is fantastic! The decorations are unbelievable, huge and beautiful. We also enjoyed the Rock-A-Billy singers and a fantastic and never ending water show. Last time we were here it must have been mid week because it was not at all crowded. This time you could hardly walk for the crowds. It is a fantastic place, but magical during the Christmas season. http://nashville.about.com/od/tourism/tp/opryxmas.htm And finally home to our comfortable bed and listen to rain on the roof - It's 55 degrees, warmest we have been in some time!
Nov 30-Sunday-we were up about 9 and on the road shortly after, heading towards Memphis, Little Rock and ending the day at Texarkana AR. It has been a dreary, dark and raining most of the day kind of day but supposed to be sunny by the time we get to Dallas. We may stay here a bit tomorrow if Charlie can get some business appointments. Not an exciting end to a month, but a satisfying one as we are on our way west and more importantly, Charlie is feeling better - perhaps the chemo is doing its job! The news from Ohio is they are expecting 3 inches of snow tonight!