Friday, September 29, 2006

Is it fall or summer?

Here in Michigan the weather is not very predictable.

It is the end of September and today in southwest Michigan where I live we were under a tornado warning. These are pictures of two different waterspouts within a 7 mile range of each other. The lower one on the left is the one that came on shore and headed inland triggering the tornado warning. The upper one on the right came on shore and quickly dissipated! Waterspouts that occur on the Big Lake this time of year are called cold air funnels. They are only upgraded to a tornado when they come on shore and intensify. Fortunately there was no reported damage from these storms.

Earlier this morning we had a frost and freeze advisory posted. And a couple of days ago the temp was 71. Heck, our high for today was only 57 degrees. So much for thinking that tornados only happen when the weather is hot and humid.

There is a saying about Michigan and the weather. "You don't like the weather, wait 5 minutes and it will change, but you still might not like it!"

At least it didn't snow!!

Thursday, September 28, 2006


First, I want to thank all of you for worrying about me after my fall down the stairs. It has been almost a week, and I have recovered very nicely and can actually walk without any pain once again. I am fine, so you can all stop worrying now. LOL

One of my dearest friends is moving away. We used to get together every day for coffee and just to chat. We were each other's link to sanity. I moved away from the neighborhood that we both lived in just over a year ago, but still kept in weekly contact and still had our coffee and chats.

That will all end on Saturday morning.....early. That is the day she and her husband are moving out of state.

On Friday they will come over for a last get together. We will have something on the grill. Probably hamburgers since that is her husbands favorite food cooked on the grill. Our granddaughter Amber, will be here also. When she was younger, she use to go with me for the coffee klatches with my friend. She started calling them Grandma Maryann and Grandpa Del. Grandpa Del always played the tough, gruff guy, but Amber saw through all that and realized that he was just a big ole' softie at heart. Grandma Maryann just fell in love with Amber as she has no grandchildren of her own. They are giving Amber a 7 speed bike they picked up at an estate sale dirt cheap. It is a really nice bike. Amber will be thrilled with it. She will cry when they give it to her and she will cry when it is time to say good-bye to them. She is a very sensitive little girl. Grandma Maryann will cry too.....she always was a sucker for Amber's tears! And I wouldn't doubt it one bit if Grandpa Del claims to have gotten something in his eye at that moment too! ; )

I will hate to see them go too, but we will keep in touch and after all, it gives us someplace else to visit on vacation! See, there is a bright side to everything!!

Monday, September 25, 2006

Like toy soldiers, sometimes we all fall down!

Before y'all get to far into this and think your're not! Well, maybe you are but not about this. Yes, I changed the name of my blog from "MadHatter" to "In The Middle". Also the appearance is looking a little different, but it is still ME!

Now on with the story at hand.

As you noticed from the picture these toy soldiers have fallen down. I too have fallen. My fall was down the stairs Friday afternoon just before hubby got home from work.

I was talking on the phone, cradling the phone between my shoulder and ear while trying to fix some floral arrangement with both hands and walking down the steps. It is now obvious that I can't do more than one thing at a time, let alone attempting three things at once!

I first thought that I had broken my right ankle. It swelled and was quite tender but that subsided. Then I thought I had somehow injured my left knee. I landed on it after I twisted my ankle and fell. That also swelled and remains a little puffy yet today. And Saturday morning when I awoke I hurt almost everywhere. I didn't know I had so many places that could hurt! I was amazed that a simple fall could leave so many muscles aching so badly! A few years back, a fall like this would not have left me feeling so rotten for such a long period of time. I guess that's what happens when people get "old". Today is much better than Saturday but the major problem now seems to be my right hip. I don't even remember that hurting when I fell. I can't seem to find a comfortable spot for my hip when I try and lie down in bed to sleep. Consequently I remained awake most of last night. Hubby thinks he should take me to the ER but I refuse to go and tell everyone that I fell down the stairs. Besides, I'm sure nothing is broke so I really don't know what they could do except to tell me to be more careful and take it easy while the muscles repair themselves. I can tell myself that and save a bunch of money in the long run.

Y'all be careful, ya hear!!

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Up a Creek......

So, here it is...almost autumn and then follows winter! Brrrrr.....the cold mornings and frosty air. This is all regarding the title of this post. The temperature dropped to a low of 42 degrees in the wee hours of the morning.
We have hot water heat in our home. We moved into our present home a little over a year ago. The boiler/furnace/heating source is not working properly. Hubby thinks we need a new one! We're only talking about $1500. and I'm not sure that even covers the installation or just the cost of a new system! I've been leaving reminders (ads from the newspaper) around as subtle (or not so subtle) hints that he needs to do something soon.

We have three different heating zones in our home, the lower level, the middle level and the upper level. Of course, the bedrooms are on the upper level and that is the zone that isn't working. Well, that isn't entirely true. I'm not quite sure how the zones are split, but it is our bedroom that doesn't seem to be getting any heat at all. With the temperature dropping into the 40's at night, our bedroom tends to get a little chilly come morning...... and that isn't very conducive for getting out of bed. It is much easier and more comfortable for me to linger under the covers a little longer than I should.

He called from work today and asked me to call a heating place in a nearby town. He said that hopefully they won't be that busy yet. HA HA HAHAHAHAHAH!

I called and they are....imagine that! The first opening they have is for 11:00 AM on October 11th. They took the information and we are now scheduled for that day. See what happens when one procrastinates!!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

A Bad Situation Made Worse ~ Updated Fri. 9/23

I received an email from Amy today and she said they have started her on anticoagulant therapy. They believe that the "thing" is a tumor inside a blood clot. We will just have to wait and see what happens next. Thank you all for your prayers and support!! ;)

Meet my niece Amy. She is the one with the blue/gray top on. Her husband is next to her on her right and on her left is their daughter, Emily. On Emily's left is my sister that I went to visit in Denver. This picture was taken at my nephew's wedding reception.

Amy was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis last year at the age of 36. She is now 37 1/2 and has been on constant antibiotics to combat the ever present lung infections, a complication of the CF. She even had a 'port' implanted in her chest earlier this year to deliver the antibiotics intravenously for better results. The port had to be removed last week. She was having chest pains and the ultra-sound showed that it had somehow shifted and was now resting on her heart. They pulled the port in the out-patient surgery department of the local hospital where her Pulmonary Doctor practices. A blood clot had formed but was dissolving on its own. But there was still something there.......they thought perhaps a tumor.

She had an MRI done early in the day on Wednesday and it showed that the "thing" (for lack of a better name to call it at this point) had grown 1 cm in a weeks time! They have decided to treat it with drugs at this point and recheck in less than a week and see if there is a noticeable improvement. If it is no smaller or if it is larger they will see if they can go in to remove it. This alone is a very dangerous thing to do to a woman whose health is already compromised. They aren't sure that her lungs will hold up for any lengthy procedures or operations. It this "thing" turns out to be malignant, there is nothing they can do for her.

Please pray for her and her family!

Friday, September 15, 2006

Three Musketeers + One won't be long now! Just a couple more weeks before Clew, Nelly and Chesneygirl show up in Southwest Michigan at Naive's home for the first 'Cackling Locust' get together! It should be interesting!

And I should probably keep them in line somewhat....but how? I really don't think my 'spanking stick' that I use to keep hanging in my kitchen will do the trick. I'm sure threats won't work either. Ame suggested I get a video camera and hide it in Naive's house....sounds like a good idea to me. Maybe if they just think that there is one hidden there capturing every funny and out-of-line thing they do it will be enough of a deterrent to keep them on the straight and narrow......NAW....I don't think even that would do it!!

I can only attest, first hand, to Naive's shenanigans of the past. Although, I have read plenty of Chesneygirl's antics on her blog....something about not remembering some happenings in the pits of the MIS. And I have spoken with Clew many times and learned some of the things she did while growing up. Nelly is a different story. I've not heard about any stunts she has pulled.....maybe I should have a chat with her sister! Don't worry, I plan on taking plenty of pictures myself. Since Naive lives so very close (less than a mile from me) I can just pop over there, camera in hand, at any given hour and start snapping away and be gone before they even realize I was there....heeheehee! This could prove to be a very profitable adventure for me. I wonder just how much each will be willing to pay to have me not post them on my blog? What? What's that you say? You say that's blackmail!?! I like to call it 'security for my old age'!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006


Well, it's been quite a day and I can honestly say I'm glad it is over and doubly glad that tomorrow is a new day.

My day started out early at 7:00AM, after being awake most of the night due to thunderstorms and some lightening. You may remember that my wonderful companion from the rescue center does NOT like storms!! I would much preferred to have slept through them or at least been able to stay in bed. I don't know about any of you, but if I have to get up in the night I am always hungry which undermines my trying to lose weight. Although, I didn't eat last night or drink even a drop of water. I was doing a 12 hour fasting for some blood work at my doctor appointment this morning. It was time for my blood pressure check, annual physical including blood work, urine specimen, and pelvic/pap smear. Sorry any of you guys reading this...I know that kind of talk makes you all a little uncomfortable!

I left my doctors office and headed for one of my sons to pick him up and take him to the surgeon that repaired his ankle/leg in May. While waiting in the waiting room for him to be finished, my cell phone rang and it was my daughter in Kentucky informing me that she and her 8 month old son, and one of her younger sisters and the sister's 3 week old baby had been in an accident and were at the hospital in Richmond being checked out and she would let me know how they all were later!

Finally a little after 7:00 PM, I was able to speak with her again and found out that they were all okay. Sore.....but okay! Thank God!!! I was already tired from lack of sleep but this news and worrying and waiting to find out causes stress and stress causes fatigue!

As Scarlett O'Hara said in "Gone With The Wind", 'tomorrow is another day!!

All's well that end's well! ;)

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Happy Birthday, Elijah!!!

Yesterday was my grandson's 3rd birthday! Elijah is getting so big so fast. I wish they could stay small longer but it doesn't work that way.

I went to his party at a place where they serve pizza and the kids can play on slides, climbing ropes, a bounce tent, and in a cage containing plastic balls. I took Amber and her younger brother Hunter with me. Bumpa wasn't able to attend with us due to a previous engagement.

No sooner had we arrived and the kids started playing when Hunter came to me crying that he wet his pants. Hunter is 4! Of course we had no extra clothes along with us for him. He doesn't usually wet himself. I think with all the excitement of playing on all the equipment and being with his cousins, he just forgot to come and tell me he had to go to the bathroom. There was nothing I could do but leave and find a store and buy him a whole new set of clothes to wear. The place we were at was over 20 miles from our house and 30 miles from his house. Luckily, there was a Target store nearby. Hunter and I left and went shopping and found him a pair of shorts on sale, a shirt to go with it, and some new underwear and socks! Yupper! When he wet, he got everything wet!! So after dropping $21. on new clothes for Hunter and washing him up with baby wipes I had in the car and dressing him in his new clothes, we headed back to the play place.

The party was fun and the kids had a great time running and playing and screaming. Amber got a couple of rugburn marks on her elbows from going down a slide holding hands with another little girl, but other than that, no injuries. HOORAY!! Hunter and Amber were both going to spend the night here, but after the party and upon exiting the play place, Hunter started crying that he wanted to go home instead. So I had to call his parents and let them know that I would be bringing him home. They live 16 miles from my house so after driving the extra 16 miles there and back, I never got home until 10:30. By the time I got Amber settled in, it was well after midnight before I got to bed. But, as long as Elijah had a great birthday that's all that matters!

Monday, September 04, 2006

Last camp-out of 2006!

This picture is of my oldest son (facing the camera) and his youngest son and hubby (back to camera) setting up the tent for the last camp-out of the year. Never mind that it was their only camp-out this year due to out of town employment requirements for our son! The kids were excited! They were going to sleep in a tent! It would be our grandson's {Brian's youngest boy, Elijah (3)} first time sleeping in a tent. I'm not sure he actually was aware when they were setting the tent up that this would be his lodging for the night. Brian's older son, David and our granddaughter, Amber, were looking forward to staying in the tent all night. Both have camped before, so it wasn't a brand new experience for them, but still something to look forward to!

Amber and David disappeared into the house to play video games while hubby and Brian set up the tent. Elijah and Drew (who was here for the weekend) were getting acquainted playing outside and getting a feel for each other.

Elijah(dark hair) will be 3 on Sept. 8th and Drew will turn 2 on October 26th. This is probably the first time that they have really played together for any length of time. They weren't at the right ages for playing with one another during previous family gatherings.

The boys really seemed to enjoy the others company and really didn't fight at all. Of course there was a few times when they both were a little upset if I was holding the other ya think they might have not wanted to share the Mema?

I, nor Brian, received a lot of sleep this night. The kids didn't want to settle down in the tent and it seems like everyone had a bladder that was way too small. David and Amber made several trips into the house to use the bathroom closest to the door, but being that I am a really light sleeper, and after deciding that I should sleep on the couch in the family room in case they needed me during the night the frequent trips kept me awake. When all three kids finally fell asleep and I was dozing off, I heard the door once again. It was Brian this time, needing to use the bathroom and he wasn't feeling well. It might have something to do with drinking a few beers and eating s'mores at the same time....I'm not sure, just wondering!! He was eventually able to go back to the tent and I thought I was surely in for some much needed sleep. Not quite! Elijah woke up and was freezing and wanted to come in the house. Bri brought him in and made a bed for him on the loveseat. He went back out to see if the other two wanted to come in the house with him and Elijah, but they opted to remain in the tent for the duration. That was about 4 AM, and I finally fell asleep ~ only to be awakened 2 hours later when David came in because he was freezing too. Brian sent him back to the tent to wake Amber and make her come in too. He didn't want to leave anyone alone in the tent. Retrieve her he did and then they were wide awake and making too much noise for me to be able to get any more sleep!

After a big breakfast of eggs, sausage, toast and pancakes, juice and coffee, we put a movie (Nemo) in the DVD player to entertain the little ones while I cleaned up the breakfast mess. I glanced in to see Brian sound asleep on the floor!

Brian and his boys left about 12:30 PM and Bumpa, Amber, Drew and I decided to just play outside until it was lunch time and then nap time for Drew. Boy, was I ever ready for bed Sunday night.

So, it is now Labor Day evening and I am trying to catch up on laundry after taking Amber back to her mom today and after Michelle and Glenn picked up Drew. Quiet at last.

Almost too quiet for my liking!