Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Bill’s Surgical Adventure

After all the waiting and all testing and all the restless nights the adventure of Bill’s gallbladder removal is finally over. As some of you know the surgery was originally scheduled for Halloween, but due to concerns of the anesthesiologist they opted to move the procedure from the surgery center to the hospital. While we were glad extra precautions were being taken, it did move the date out nearly a month.

This was only Bill’s second surgery in his entire life, the first being in 1958 when he (as so many other children back in those days did) had his tonsils removed. And to add insult to injury, not only was the surgery a month out, it wasn’t scheduled until 3:00 pm, pretty much an entire day without eating and nothing to drink since mid-morning. But he’s handling the whole thing like a trooper… after all with the 2 big losses he’s already suffered this year (his sister and his job) the loss of his gallbladder seems like a piece of cake.

He made it thru surgery just fine. He was very groggy and wanted to go home, they finally let us leave about 8:00pm. We got him home and tucked away in bed, that was when the fun really began, getting a prescription filled at that time of night!

I wish someone could please explain to us the complete job description of a pharmacist. To me it seems as if the most time consuming thing of the whole process would be to decipher the highly educated doctors handwriting, but I apparently am wrong on this assumption. I stopped by the Rite-Aid closest to our house on the way home, hoping that I could just run in, drop the scripts off, get Bill home and in bed, go back and pick up the drugs; I was wrong. Granted we had not had a prescription filled at this drug store before so when I dropped them off I had to give them our information; address, insurance card, allergies; I get all of this and the attendant said it would be close to an hour before they would be ready for pickup (did I mention that I was close to being the only person in the entire store?) to which I replied, no problem, I want to get my husband home and in bed, that I would be back.

Once I returned the store our scripts were NOT ready...now I have to deal with the pharmacist (apparently her assistant had left for the day), she asked me for the address, insurance card, allergies to which I explained that I had given all that information to her assistant, she then asked me, where did she put them??? I wanted to say, HELLO??? don't work here you'll do, but I didn't. She finally found the insurance card and I gave her all of the other information again. She then tells me it will take about 20 minutes!

The pills are already made all she had to do was count out 30 pills put them in bottles print a label and slap it on the bottle and let me go home, all of which I'm pretty sure could be accomplished in half that amount of time. Can anyone explain what I am missing in the whole process here? Finally got the pills, finally got home, drug the patient up for the night and fixed myself a stiff drink!

  • Whether it's Wal-Mart or Rite-Aid, there is no such thing as a quick fill for a new prescription
  • A new appreciation of our prescriptions by mail plan (too bad it's only for refills or 90 day supplies)
  • Gallbladders are now removed with a laparoscope

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Job Search Adventure

We received some really exciting news Friday, Bill has an interview on December 4 with a large construction company. This just so happens it is for the very job that he applied for the day he was laid-off. Coincidence? Fate?

Also, he is also now officially "in the system",,, the Unemployment system that is. Although we have not received that first check yet, but we understand it is "in the mail" which is a miracle knowing how he fought with their website (we all know Bill has the paitence of Jobe). We are not concerned yet but just in case our search for a second income continues:

Just in case, keeping all of our options open.

PLEASE pray for us...

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Adventure of Lewis River Falls

Yesterday afternoon as we were out running our weekend errands the sun was shining and the skies were clear as a bell. Mt Rainier was just beautiful and we had a crystal clear view of the Cascade Mountains when Bill said he would like to get of the house for a while and next weekend it would be nice to go for a day trip photo safari, Tonya agreed. We discussed going to Olympic National Park and up to Hurricane Ridge when we remembered that there was a waterfall in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest that we had planned to go to at some point this past summer and we never made it.

As we relaxed last night and were listening to the weather forecast for next weekend we decided to just get up in the morning and go today (instead of getting out in the yard as we had originally planned, as Bill said, “those leaves will still be there on Monday or better yet maybe they will find their way into the neighbor’s yard), so we begin to drag our stuff and get ready to head out first thing this morning. After perusing the newspaper (Bill) and Internet (Tonya) while having our morning coffee we put some bread, peanut butter and jelly (our homemade strawberry of course) in a tote bag and headed out.

It was a bit further down there than we had originally thought, but it was a nice day to spend together. The day was so clear that we could actually see Mt. St. Helen’s from Interstate 5, likely only the first or second time we have seen the volcano from the freeway.

We have always loved the Gifford Pinchot (or as we call it, “the GP”), it is one of the older national forests in the US. It was included as part of the Mt. Rainier Forest Reserve in 1897. The forest was named after Gifford Pinchot, one of the leading figures in the creation of the national forest system in the United States. It is located in a mountainous region between Mt. St. Helens in the west, Mt. Adams in the east, White Pass in the north, and the Columbia River in the south. The region is noted for its topography and volcanic geology. It is quite a wierd feeling being in the middle of three active volcanoes.

It was so pretty down in that area, not only were the falls big, so are the firs and cedars in the splendid old-growth forest. The Lower Falls drop 35 feet into the Lewis River with a powerful whoosh. There is lots of mist in the air and we even caught a rainbow in some of the photos. We checked out the campground at the falls and decided that we will definately put this one on the "must do" list for next summer. We would love to return to the area to explore more of the river and the waterfalls.

Since it was going to start getting dark soon, we decided to head back toward home. That is the bad part about this time of the year is the short daylight hours. It starts getting dark by 4:30 or so this time of the year. So next weekend we will try to do another "photo safari, if the weather permits.

Lessons Learned:
Spur of the moment trips are fun, but don't forget that the days are shorter in the winter.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Week of Up & Down Adventures

This week has been quiet the adventure for our family, similar to the stock market lately up and down. Friday 10/31 thru Friday 11/7 has been full of one thing after another. Bill was scheduled to have surgery on 10/31 which was postponed (the surgeon decided he should do the surgery in the hospital rather than the surgery center), Halloween was fun (see below) Whit was here for the weekend. Monday Bill turned 53 (post of 11/3), Wednesday we learned our daughter-in-law’s employment contract had not been renewed (lay-off #2 for her & J) and then Thursday Bill was laid off from his job (post of 11/7). It’s been a week but we are all healthy, happy and blessed in more ways than we can count.

Since we moved into the house back in 1998 we have always had more than our fair share of ghosts and goblins and this year was no different, 120+.

Bill was originally scheduled for surgery today (now postponed to the 11/25) so our plan was to forgo handing out treats this year but Whitney wouldn’t hear of it. She volunteered her services, we bought the candy, she made the treat bags (120 of them), she made the jack-o-lantern and she ran up and down the stairs time after time to each time the doorbell rang. It was also seemed like a good chance to have Family Game night, so we played Rummycube in-between Whit’s constant trips to answer the door. By 8:15 we had run out of candy bags as well as handing out part of “our chocolate stash”, so we turned off the lights and played like we were not at home.

All of our "surrogate" grandchildren stopped by for their special treat bags (since these kids have a special place in our hearts, they get a special treat bag full of all types of goodies) as they do each year and this year we had 2 new additions to our family, Kayla and Ben (no pix of Ben he was sound asleep in his Daddy's arms). This is our favorite part of this day, when each one of them (and their parents of course) stop by to show off how cute they look in their costumes!

Cinderella & Batman (J&K)
Skooby-Doo (Blayne)
Little Monkey Girl (Lexy)
The Little Mermaid (KMR)

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Recession vs Depression

We have all heard the old joke; a recession is when your neighbor loses his job, a depression is when you lose your job. As of this past Thursday, we are in a depression.

This past Thursday Bill was laid-off from his job of 12 years due to the economic down turn in the construction field. All sorts of feelings flood you when something like this happens, dumbfounded, disbelief, this must be a dream; when all you know really know for a fact is that your world has just completely changed with the snap of your fingers.

Right now this is all still soaking in and while we are not exactly sure what the future holds, we do know that for right now we are okay. Not that there is ever a good time for this to happen, if it had to happen there couldn’t be a better time for us to weather this storm.
Bill has dusted off his resume and he has already submitted an application on Friday. Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers that something comes Bill’s way in the near future.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Happy Birthday Bill!!!

Happy 53rd birthday to Bill today. Tonya just loves this day of the year! It is the day of the year that we are the same age. Finally those 7 months and 5 days have passed since Tonya turned 53 now it’s Bill’s turn, he caught up with her (at least for another 4 months & 24 days). But who’s counting!!

This year’s celebration was a quiet one at home, enjoying Tonya and Whitney's company with a dinner of Arroz Con Pollo and Carmel Apple Pie to celebrate.