Nature, gifts, and parties

Monday, Dec 4

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 3: SpO2 low 84 9 events <88% with overall avg., 92.1%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.8%. Pulse avg. 54.5, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 3 min.

I’m going to start this week with a sunset from last night and a number of views that people in Ellensburg shared on a local Facebook site: Community Connect, Kittitas County.By Mikka Jameson, Carrie Hall, & Keri Armstrong, Ellensburg, WABy Padi Pierce, Carrie Patrick McKamey, Alisa Lundy Peterson

Called Marci at Culligan in Spokane to replace our filters under the sink. Set for this Friday, call coming Thursday for a window of time. It happened.

This morning, I spent time reviewing my comments and research on my latest medical finding and need for an endocrinologist to consider my case of an atrial fib medication that has been fine for 7 years keeping me from any fibrillations but has been making my thyroid dysfunctional. I called the head of Medical Records in Cle Elum and asked him if he could search the records by test and not by just the date of a blood draw. He said he could and he would print copies to leave for me at the check-in desk when we go to see our new doctor tomorrow morning.

Afternoon, I went to town for SAIL exercise class and to run some errands. I got some on sale items at Safeway, when I went in to spend lots of money on a prescription for my Brittany. I’m not sure she even needs it, and I halved her dosage six months ago. At least I’m getting it for ½ price there through GoodRX.

During the afternoon, I worked on checking out things I wanted to talk to my doctor about and heated up the back guest bathroom in the house (the coldest part of our house), to take my shower because we have to leave about 9:00 a.m.

Also, I washed a big load of dishes.
John spent the day on another project to build a covered entrance for the 3 outside feral cats to come over the front fence, near where the old cable table was moved from, to get over the fence to get to their heated water, dry food, and the front door to eat their vittles of canned food each morning and night.

Tuesday, Dec 5

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 4: SpO2 low 85, 4 events <88% with overall avg., 93.9%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.8%. Pulse avg. 57.4, low 50. Slept 7 hrs 15 min.

We got up, fed the animals, and got ready to leave. It was great we had good weather, cold, but no freezing fog, as had been forecast.

Great visit with our new doctor. He started with reviewing the printed copies of previous tests waiting for me there before my appointment. I had talked with the head of Medical Records at Cle Elum (Ed), and asked him Monday afternoon about checking my records. He found I had four previous labs tests during the last 8 years, before my recent ones in 2017. He printed them and left copies for me to pick up when I arrived for our joint follow-up appointment.

I explained to Dr. Wood what I had done, and he was anxious to see them. He reviewed them with us, and pointed out the meaning of the values (which I had already seen, and suspected). The 2009 was fine. The atrial fib medication was started in 2010 and the 2010 test showed a change, with the change continuing for the next 4 years, in 2012 and 2014. No one ever told us about the potential conflict. Now we know from our recent research, that this can show up as soon as 3 weeks after going on the drug. Other than the hair loss, I have had no other indications of a problem. My energy level has not been affected. [John says: Hair loss could be from some other issue.]

I’m being referred to another doctor (endocrinologist) to assess my information regarding the conflict of the atrial fibrillation med with my thyroid. I’m quite excited I will be seeing Dr. Lisa Stone, in Wenatchee, for her evaluation. She comes with excellent recommendations and reports from a number of people I know. My blood tests and my loss of hair on the top of my head alerted my new PCP to research further, and he found the potential conflict.

We didn’t get home from Cle Elum until noon and had not eaten, so John cooked up a nice brunch, and I left for town for my vigorous exercise class. Only two of us were there today, and we had a good workout, with 25 minutes of vigorous exercise (according to my FitBit wrist monitor).

I brought home a plate of various Christmas cookies in a gift-wrapped bag, with a hand painted card by the kids. I’ll show you the card, and inside were printed Merry Christmas greetings. I also got a plate for my 92 yr old friend, Gloria, who has been a member of our exercise class since 2010 at the center. She is not coming anymore because the assisted living place she moved to has two SAIL classes she can attend.

The gifts were assembled by the Bits and Buckles, kids group, of cowboys and cowgirls, and they made the cookies, candy, and packages, to deliver to the senior center. What a nice gesture.
Bobbi Broderius, their leader will send me a description tomorrow and a picture of the back of her car with all the plates for delivery. She’s the mom of one of our new AmeriCorps staff helping with exercises and events at the senior center (AAC). Her name is Jessi. I have known Bobbi through CWU for many years in our scholarship luncheon group.

Here are the photos she sent of the back of the car and also some of the kids. More were involved, as you will see in the story below the pix.
Bits and Buckles Club with a nice Community Christmas offering.

Here’s the story (at my request) from the leader:

Bits & Buckles is a 4-H club that has boys and girls ages 8-18. Up until this year we only had horse 4-H members in our club. This year we added rabbit 4-H so that is a new adventure for us. Most of the kids in the club have at least one horse.

The members have to give a demonstration in each of the projects they are involved in, attend horse judging contests (where they judge the horses), keep a record book, complete a showmanship class, and participate in club meetings. They also show their horse in different events throughout the year. There are pre-shows for both rabbit and horse and then horse has their big fair in August (2 weeks before Labor Day Fair) and the rabbit kids will show their rabbits at Fair. The horse program only takes a few horses back to Labor Day Fair as there is just not room for us.

We have a club business meeting once a month and offer club rides at Bloom pavilion to help the kids with their horses. We host a couple of horse shows a year and do various community service activities.

Jessi started when she was 9 and I just stayed after she aged out. I have been involved for 15 years. I have a bunch of great kids! I love working with the kids and horses. I could talk about horses forever!

Wednesday, Dec 6

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 5: SpO2 low 85, 3 events <88% with overall avg., 92.6%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.9%. Pulse avg. 55.4, low 50. Slept 7 hrs 45 min.

Today’s wonderful wake up picture was from my friend since 1974, when he hired John and me to teach at the Univ. of Idaho. He lives in two places now and was traveling when he saw this view and returned to photograph it.By Sam Scripter: “Willamette Falls, @ Oregon City, with Mt. Hood gracing the horizon,” 12-5-17. [Copy and paste Willamette Falls into Google Earth to see the location.]

I worked again on email address changes, and left earlier than usual for music at the food bank. I was able to help set up chairs, music stands, and visit with people. I also delivered a bunch of containers to the kitchen for their use (plastic containers such as sour cream & cottage cheese come in). They use them and appreciate receiving them. Two grocery bags of them were donated by two of my neighbors and left on our gate post at the road. A week ago, the same neighbor brought two much larger bags of egg cartons, and those I took to the food distribution center. John and I are still amazed they can reuse those cartons. We toss any that look messy.

I attended SAIL exercise class, and we had another vigorous workout, led by Jessi Broderius.

From there I went by the pharmacy to pay for and pick up two medications.

I came home and heard about John’s chore filled day and saw his newly created bird feeder. Its got thin plywood on the top and bottom and a 2″x 4″ wire enclosure. The little birds come and go as though it isn’t here. A few Quail go through, but the Collared Doves are too large. As ordered. The fence cross-over for the cats is covered and has a platform. The fence now has a 2 x 4 rail across the top that may keep the deer from coming over. We’ll see. Cats have a ladder like approach to the platform just above the higher fence.
Our local skunks are the striped type (Mephitis mephitis) and not good climbers. They are able to squeeze through an opening near ground level and they are good at digging. There is also a spotted skunk, sometimes called a ‘polecat’, not seen around here but a better climber. Just some of the issues when living in a rural setting.

Thursday, Dec 7

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 6: SpO2 low 84, 3 events <88% with overall avg., 93.6%. Avg. low SpO2, 91.5%. Pulse avg. 54.4, low 49. Slept 8 hrs 9 min.

Today our Fiddlers and Friends group is not playing. The nursing home is “locked down” because of a flu-like viral gastroenteritis (in England called the winter vomiting bug) with over ½ the residents ill. One would think they would give the residents a flu vaccine (I don’t know, just a comment – but apparently nothing yet works well). Residents are confined to their rooms and served their meals there. This being one of the “51 specific evidence-based recommendations” to lessen the impact.

It gives me time to stay home and work on my changes of email addresses required by the end of the month.

I didn’t get as much done as I needed, but made more progress. Still have many hours to go on this project.

Friday, Dec 8

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 7: SpO2 low 85, 9 events <88% with overall avg., 91.4%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.4%. Pulse avg. 55.6, low 48. Slept 5 hrs 16 min. & got more off the oximeter.

This morning we await the Culligan man to visit to check our Aqua-Cleer® Advanced Drinking Water Filter System, make tests, and replace the 4 filters. We pay something every month to cover the cost near the end of the year. This works very well. The water could not be any better or safer – we think.
When we go to the Yakima Costco we see area folks buying bottled water by the cart load. We have no idea what that costs per year. You pay either way, but under the sink filters seems simpler.

Today for lunch, I am going to the senior center for the annual Christmas party, and wearing my old (now too large) “ugly” Christmas sweater to be in the contest, with a gift for the winner. Mine is probably not ugly enough to win, but it will be fun to wear it. I got lots of compliments as I was going around taking pictures of the crowd. John wore it last Sunday to the Grange Christmas dinner. We didn’t take any pictures there. Some of you have seen it in past Decembers in the blog, normally on him.

I carried John’s Nikon, but the memory filled up partway through the event. Here are a few photos I took early on, or had help from someone with my camera. I had taken another camera with me, and switched to it later.

The AAC activities started with the sweater contest. Left is the contest at the start of the party. The two winners are 2nd and 3rd from the left. Right is my friend Mildred with me.

After the contest, they served us lunch. Here’s a food collage:Sides of apples, eggnog bread, banana/choc chip, pumpkin bread, and a plate: ham, green beans, & potatoes w/ gravy. I had water, and most all had cranberry punch (I cannot w/meds).

Santa joined the crowd while we were eating.
LINK: Santa

A gift exchange (a fun game in itself) for those that wanted to play, came after we finished eating. Last year’s gift I had to throw away after it blew up in my microwave cooking eggs and made a terrible mess.

Here I am with part of my gift that came in a big sack with some smaller items. This is supposedly a fantastic game for up to 8 people, called Mexican Trains Dominoes:Nancy with the heavy metal box with game parts. I’ll have to take it to Hearthstone or Briarwood to set up to play with some of the residents (next year in my spare time; what’s that?)
Nancy on Santa’s knee, Mrs. Claus, Connie, & just the 3 of us.

I took a lot of photos of the day, which I will share with the staff so they can post what they want on the Ellensburg Adult Activity Center’s Facebook page, to go along with all the photos they took. I try to take photos while they are busy fixing our lunch, or serving, when they cannot take pix.

We were done by 1:10 p.m. and I went by the hospital in my outfit to wish Merry Christmas to 3 people on the hospital staff.

I did not stay around town for a 3:00 party at the Food Bank for all volunteers & family, because I had things to do at home, and I was already full of food and carrying home gifts.

I did go by my pharmacy to pick up two prescriptions, and completed another chore of putting in my pills to a week long’s supply of morning and night pills.

We stayed up late working on computer chores.

Saturday, Dec 9

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 8: SpO2 low 84, 6 events <88% with overall avg., 92.1%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.9%. Pulse avg. 56.3, low 51. Slept 8 hrs 16 min.

I screwed up on picking up my Coumadin from Super 1 pharmacy. I should have been alerted when I heard the price that I owed (with Insurance paying part). It was more than double what I get it for at Safeway, through GoodRX for cash, not using insurance), at the price for 90 tablets (2.5mg) of $15.58. I won’t make that mistake again. By federal regulations, it cannot be returned to the pharmacy after it is dispensed.

All day I’m home to take care of things. Progress is going slowly. We have been shooing off the collared doves from the feeders, so the smaller birds can have their share. They do not mind sharing with the quail, but the doves are not liked by anyone, apparently including the hawk in a tree near the road. John chased them up that way but the hawk didn’t move.

I have had bunches of emails I needed to respond to. Much time has been spent since last night, moving and sorting pictures from the event at the senior center yesterday that I captured on two different cameras. John’s takes the nicer photos, but when his memory filled up part way through, I switched to the other older camera. I tried deleting a few that I knew were deletable, but after filling it again, I waited for John to review them when I got home. There were photos back to 2010 on the SD card. John has started deleting old photos. He often takes 5 or 6 of the “shot” and so will be clearing about half or more of the space. It has taken him 7 years to fill up the memory card.

I’ll end the week with a picture joke – someone should have seen this not so merry sight coming.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan