Playing Again – & Spring

Lise McGowan’s elk photographs at Oak Creek feeding station, 3/17/19, on St. Patrick’s Day. Thank you, Lise, for providing the photos and permission to publish.This is a few miles west of Yakima and usually noted as being near Naches WA – 5 miles west, actually. If you use Google Earth and go to this location:
46.7399, -120.9147 –
Then back out until you can see both highways #410 & #12. The green areas to the left are the valleys and mountains of the Cascades. In winter, elk come from there, down that valley to where it meets the highway (#12) to White Pass. Years ago there was an offer to adopt an elk – buy hay for the season – for $90. We don’t know what it is now.

Hay is thrown from trucks

While we are on St. Patrick’s Day, shift back to Friday, March 15, and add this link to get to the photos taken by me and the AAC camera crew at the event. Mine are numbered and theirs start with AAC.

St. Patrick’s Day Party at AAC-3/15/19

Monday, March 18

Last night we managed to publish the blog at midnight.
This morning, I slept in until after 9:00 a.m. after staying up until 1:00 a.m.

John has left for White Heron to prune wine grapevines, and I’m leaving soon for the hospital for a blood draw to check my INR after all the antibiotics last week and the change in dosage of Coumadin trying to compensate. I have a few other chores in town, and then will return to tackle more. Need to get things done that have been ignored for over a month.

Not leaving until almost 1:00 p.m. for my blood draw to recheck my INR, so I can be there when my favorite phlebotomist returns from lunch.

Got a call from Lacey, the Triage nurse, at 4:00 with the results from today. INR = 2.1, Potassium = 4.6.

I’ll have it rechecked Monday, 3/25. History on the K= (3/7 4.4; 3/12 4.8; 3/18 4.6) Coumadin dosage will be full pills every day but Wed & Sat nights with ½ pill. It will be nice to get back to the old grind without the influence of antibiotics on the value of the INR and all associated concerns with medications.

I went to several places in town. First, I hit the food bank bread room and got a windfall (I love English Muffin bread for toast and they almost never have it), maybe once in 4 months. It costs $3.00/loaf so I have stopped buying it. I met a guy there in the parking lot. I was all dressed in my St. Patrick’s Day green outfit (you’ll see in the blog) and he wanted to talk. I invited him to come back this Wednesday, bring his wife, and sit in front of us and sing along and then stay and have lunch with us, but he did not show.

On my way there, I stopped to pick up a free bottle of Apricot Preserves (commercially made) from a family I know in town who doesn’t eat much jam. She’d advertised it on The Free Box. I prefer the homemade apricot preserves from my neighbor, Ken. This almost tastes acidic. Weird, just not the same at all.

Now that the season is advancing, pruning will start at 9 am; but today they start at 1 pm. John won’t be home until 5:30 p.m. and I need to wash more dishes, but right now I need to rest.

I stopped by the Dollar Tree to see if they had any St. Patrick’s Day stuff left over and marked down, because our music for two months has an Irish tilt/lilt. I found some Shamrock necklaces with blinking green lights, marked down to 50 cents, so bought 6. Two didn’t work, when I got home to undo the wrapping, so I carried them back later, and traded for a box of toothpaste (it had to be a non-food item that I exchanged for). I thought not everyone would wear them, but it turned out I had more than four gals happy and willing to wear them. You’ll see the picture later of 4 of us on Thursday at Pacifica.

Then I went by the Pharmacy for John’s and my refills for meds and home by way of one more store which had ordered nothing for St. Patrick’s Day – interesting how marketing works. I talked to the buyer at Super 1 this morning by phone, and found out she only bought napkins and paper plates. RiteAid had nothing. Christmas they were loaded with several aisles of stuff. However, all stores, including the $ store are setting up big time for Easter.

There are not a lot of “Irish” in the State. They came, but shed their identification as Irish as they achieved prosperity. They “looked upon past traditions, wounds, and memories of the ‘Old Sod’ as irrelevant and, at best as “remote.” Their mobility and transformation from Irish immigrants to Washingtonians has been through.

Irish in Washington — The Early Years (1840s to 1890)

Still, quite a few – if you ask – will have an Irish ancestor, as does John.

Washed another load of dishes, and started going through the Friday AAC photos I took.

John fixed a neat supper of chicken breast meat, wild rice, and peaches.

Tuesday, March 19

John’s out doing morning feeding chores and such.

I’m trying to finish cropping the photos from last Friday at the AAC to take by the Senior Center on a Jump drive to share.

Finished and now need to fix and eat my brunch. Then off to town to check numbers at Bi-Mart, and visit other places.

I had a late brunch, and am sticking around until later when I will start at the food bank with a free fruit and veggie giveaway, and then on to the AAC after 2:30 to exchange photos, and home by way of Bi-Mart.

Missions accomplished. From the fruit and veggie give, I brought home apples, onions, a few oranges, and some baking potatoes.

Wednesday, March 20

This morning was a sad day of mourning for the tragic shooting in our community of Kittitas, WA, last night, 3/19/19. Sheriff’s Deputy, Ryan Thompson died, and Benito Chavez, Kittitas Police Officer, is recovering in Harborview (regional trauma hospital in Seattle) from a shot in the leg shattering his femur. The Deputy Ryan, was trying to make a stop of a “road rage” call, and that ended several miles later on a blocked street in Kittitas. Because the driver of the car was killed, no one seems to know why this happened. We suspect a report will have more in a week or two.

Below is Lise McGowan’s tribute to the occasion linking to the setting super moon. Mt. Rainier is on the left.
John left at 7:40 a.m. for White Heron; back at 1:30.

I’m taking my Fiddle to the Food Bank to see in a gentler place whether I can manage playing it. It took me forever to tune it, and that may be my problem playing today, keeping in tune after all these days. Otherwise, it seems like I can hold and play it all right. I managed to play for 40 minutes, but my fingers need some calluses (having not played since Jan 24)! Here’s a photo to prove I was there today.Nancy at FISH Food Bank Soup Kitchen Lunch. It was a trial run for tomorrow. I decided I would make it tomorrow, but probably not for the whole hour.

I went by the senior center to meet Roxanne, we’re exchanging photos – from my USB jump drive and to get ones from their AAC camera. I still need to collect them and send to the members of the AAC for which I have emails. I have not done that in over 2 months. You have seen the way I sent them above in this blog after the Elk Story on 3/17/19.

Sent out the call to KV F&F for tomorrow’s chair count and added the invitation to the 2019 Volunteer Recognition dinner, on April 9th (a dinner celebration for community volunteers as we are with our music group). Need to RSVP by 4/2. It’s from 5-7:00 PM at the Ellensburg Presbyterian Church on E 3rd, across from the EBRG HS. We can invite our family.

Tonight, John fixed baked chicken for supper with cornbread with creamed corn. I had mine with maple syrup. Nice after only a liquid lunch at the food bank (because it was easier to carry).

Tonight our friend Evie Schuetz was out photographing the super moon, and look what she captured for the exposure! Photo by Evie Schuetz, March 20, 2019 in Kittitas, WA ~10:30pm

Thursday, Mar 21 First full day Spring

Spring came to the Naneum just before 3 PM yesterday, so today is the first full day.

Around 7:00 a.m., our friend from Kittitas, Evie, photographer extraordinaire, was walking along the John Wayne Trail {now re-named, but no one can remember to what} where she took the following photographs. The location is the part of the road where the Trail crosses the Kittitas Hwy. The willow tree is ~200’ from the Kittitas Hwy on the trail, in a fellow’s backyard.
These are some of my favorites of her morning photo trek, and she has given me permission to post any of her photographs.From John Wayne Trail, near Kittitas, WA by Evie Schuetz, 3/21
I love the sky’s purple hues over Manastash Ridge, and the rich vibrant colors in the valley floor of the early morning sun.

My favorites of hers of the willow tree are here: Willow tree: Prior to sunrise, and “sunrise” by Evie.
I love these and find the sunrise one almost eerie, but lovely.

On this first full day of spring, Evie captured a local sign that spring has sprung with the arrival of the Red-winged Blackbirds:I love the “heart” on the side of the talkative one. Photo by Evie.

John left for White Heron at 7:40 a.m. We both viewed a nice full moon setting and a pretty sunrise this morning, through the trees, from our northerly end of the valley.

I counted my pieces of clothing for delivering today before 1:00 p.m. to the Foursquare Church clothing drive, which is planned for March 30th, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

It took me almost an hour this morning, but I finally filled in the requested digital survey from the University of WA (Seattle consultation with Matthew A. Napierala MD – and Frederick Matsen MD) on 3/11/19. Part of my time spent was capturing my answers on the whole thing with the Windows 10 snipping tool, so John could see what I answered, and I had a record as well.

I also made arrangements with our car insurance (Safeco) to pay the majority of the bill at Johnson’s Glass to replace the broken windshield on John’s Crosstrek this coming Thursday, when they need it all day. Our deductible is $100 and the cost will be over $500 total. My next chore is to change our payment schedule from monthly credit card to a one-year charge for the rest of this year as a payment from our banking account (that won’t cost but a $2 service fee (maybe), and we will have a discount as well (next year) for paying the bill all at once.

Afternoon fun with music by the Kittitas Valley Fiddlers & Friends at Pacifica. We had a good turnout: Charlie, Evie, Nancy, Amy, Tim, Roberta, Minerva, Charlotte, Sharon, Marilyn, Maury, Anne. We had a good audience who joined in and enjoyed it.


Here I am at Pacifica, in my birthday present from Joanie Taylor last year (the Irish shirt), with my shamrock put on incorrectly and not turned on in either photo. I showed the others how to turn them on and then didn’t do my own.

Next the gals willing to wear the shamrocks, but later I gave mine to Evie who was standing playing the flute and it could be seen much better; plus, she loves shamrocks and anything Irish. Sorry I do not have her photo here. We took these early on before she arrived on the scene.Here we have Charlotte, Sharon, Amy, and Nancy

I took Lemon Cookies for the residents, after checking with Terri the activities director to see if it was okay for them to have sugar.
I had help carrying in my stuff and in taking it out as well, for which I was very appreciative.

At the end, Evie and I met at the back of Amy’s car and sorted through clothes Amy was clearing out. I received a nice dark White Stag jacket (L), and some other tops. I told them about the Clothing Share at the Foursquare Church next door. People take in 12 items for each person in their family, and then receive a number on an entry, to allow them entrance to come back March 30th evening from 6:00 to 8:00 and pick out that number (or fewer) of things others have donated. I need to get rid of things, not bring in more, but I have a deposit place for anything I need to move out, and have been using it (The Methodist Church Community Clothing Bank).

Friday, Mar 22

Check out Evie Schuetz’s morning sunrise – with awesomely spectacular colors, she described as “absolutely unbelievable.”John took off for White Heron this morning after feeding the livestock and birds, taking his companion dog and cat along, and doing stuff around the house.

I slept in for some much needed rest. I’ll be arranging for some plans tomorrow to visit our neighbors for a birthday party, and thinking about the celebration in PA of John’s cousin Ethel Reynolds, special birthday! Her 101st! Family members are visiting her both days this weekend in her apartment in Brookville, PA (John’s birth place, but a short stay).

Brunch. Chicken Soup with rice, wild rice and veggies (lima beans, and carrots). Wild rice: We don’t know what it is, but it is not rice and we don’t know where it comes from. Looks a lot like mouse poop.

This afternoon has been full of doing things that have been put aside in the past couple of weeks.

Next is to arrange for some GoodRx (less expensive medications through the local Safeway Pharmacy). Normally we prefer to use Super 1 Pharmacy, but occasionally the price difference is worth the bother. That is the case for Atorvastatin and Coumadin.

Saturday, March 23

I slept in a little longer than I should have, but had a rough night with weird dreams awaking me, and totally unexplained.

I was able to call two pharmacies with questions about refills on medications I will have to arrange for changes to, this coming Monday, when my doctor’s office is open.
I checked with my normal pharmacy and refilled two of John’s medications he will be running out of the end of next week.

Then I called another pharmacy (Safeway) where I can buy (without insurance) some meds at a lower cost. I can even make it lower by buying a higher dose (of a pill) which we can ½ and get twice as much for the same amount of money. This is through GoodRx.com . If you are on a lot of medications, it is definitely worth checking out. You’ll be quite surprised.

These were my concerns:
I’m taking only 40 mg or Atorvastatin, once a day. I asked if they had any 80 mg available in stock, and they did. I spoke with Dan, the pharmacist.

I will need to check with my PCP to have a refill rewritten for the 80 (because we intend to ½ it to get the 40 mg required / day). It’s cheaper to buy the 80 mg for 90 days. Here’s the price difference: For 40 mg, 90#, it costs $19.24. For 80 mg, 90#, it costs $20.74, but I get 180# after halving the pills. We have a pill splitter. Or, some are scored and can just be done by hand (e.g., the next one, Coumadin).
I will need also to check with my PCP to request a refill on my Coumadin for getting 5 mg that I can snap in half for the daily dose of 2.5. I suppose I can keep some of the 2.5 when I have to lower them to 1.25 mg, down the road, in case spitting further would not be possible. Some of my other pills are quartered into very small pieces. Luckily, my normal pharmacy will do that for us. Safeway will not.

We went first to the Methodist Church Community Clothing Center arriving about 10:00 a.m. I wore my green shirts to show them what I took away to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and use at Assisted living homes through March & April, when we are playing Irish and Celtic music. They were happy to see how their clothes got used. The residents at all the places we visit, including the FISH Food Bank lunch bunch, love it when we dress up. I really got a lot of Christmas stuff from the clothing bank back in December. We also donate a lot of clothes to the center. Today, we carried in a nice spring jacket to share which I liked, but had shoulder pads that were sewn inside the lining and I couldn’t just cut them out easily as in a blouse. It made me look like a full back football player.

Today I returned an REI winter coat to the bank that John found there a couple of weeks ago, which I had not tried on at the time, because I thought it was my size (marked WL). I interpreted that as Women’s Large; but it did not fit, and we looked it up on line to find that WL stands for Waist Length (strange marking). They were happy to have it returned, and allowed me to look for an exchange. I didn’t really need another jacket, so I traded for a blue/green small plaid shirt that I wore to the birthday party.

We went to Super 1 grocery for ice cream on sale, a dozen eggs (88₵), and navel oranges 68₵/pound, some Italian sausage, and some large cans of mushroom soup. We are frustrated with the lowering of the size of a can of soup to 10.5 oz. It seems a lot smaller than years ago, but can’t find a source of such things. Many other package things are smaller. How far will they go? Remember the “Where’s the beef?” commercial.

Lunch at Swedberg’s home was scheduled at 1:00 p.m. We took a couple of bags of Delicious apples for the family to share when they left for home, and ice cream for the cake. We took Butter Pecan, and kept a container for ourselves.

The lunch was a birthday party for the grandfather’s 96th. Grand and great grandkids and families from around the state brought food, kids, and dogs.
We were late eating, after 2:15, but enjoyed all the food: meatloaf with tomato sauce, mashed potatoes, beef noodle & corn casserole, big strawberries, cantaloupe, ice box rolls, salad, and chocolate fudge cake for dessert with two kinds of ice cream.

Today is John’s cousin Ethel’s 101st birthday. We had a nice afternoon (early evening for her) telephone call. She is amazing and planning for her 105th with family visitors who came to her apartment today with food. The church sent an orange cake with orange frosting to her. It was left over from an event at the church yesterday where 100 were expected and only 50 showed, so it was appreciated as a 101st birthday cake for Ethel. I never heard what was on the rest of their menu for lunch.

Ethel has advanced macular degeneration and doesn’t see much, but she still gets around without a walker, rides the elevator down, but walks back up 17 steps to her apartment. She believes her long life is helped by keeping moving**. Her daughter, Pat, washes her clothes, but Ethel still takes her own shower. What a trouper! She also is still able to write messages on birthday cards she sends to us, with the help of daughter Pat.

**Clint Eastwood says “Don’t let the old man in.” And a country musician friend created a song for Clint’s new {‘The Mule’} movie:
Toby Keith
**
We both were tired at the end of the day, came home, and took naps. Mine was longer than John’s, lasting 2 hours! I guess I needed it.

He had a bite of last night’s casserole, but I skipped it. I ate a lot this afternoon. We will have a piece of turtle pie and hit the hay.

Before I do, I’m going to copy a link to a video on The Time Out Saloon’s Facebook page, of the folks in Kittitas welcoming Benito Chavez [Kittitas Police Officer shot in the leg by the Shooter (illegal alien) who killed our Sheriff’s Deputy, Ryan Thompson this week in Kittitas, WA].

I realize those of you without Facebook will not be able to view this moving tribute of support.Night view of The Time Out Saloon, 101 Main St., Kittitas, WA, by Evie Schuetz backed by the super moon, 2019.

Benito Chavez Arrives Home in Law Enforcement Caravan

Sunday, March 24

Just when I thought the views of our valley were on hold, comes one posted this morning, but actually taken on Friday, 3/22, just after sunrise. On Friday, I published her spectacular sunrise photo. Some of the same purple hues are noticeable in this photo below as were noted in the Friday post.

This morning and all night before, the rains fell, so no sunshine today in the valley, or tomorrow, when we have to drive to Yakima, via Ellensburg.

From Evie Schuetz, another beautiful capture and composure:The Clerf farm with Kittitas, WA water tower, backed by Manastash Ridge and gorgeous morning clouds, but the lower right under the shed, tells the significant part our valley plays in the World Global Economy through our Valley Hay Farmers. The colorful red and yellow farm implement is a Harobed, used to pick up and stack bales of hay from the hay fields around our valley. The machine was developed and named after the inventor’s daughter. Spelling it backwards gives her name: Deborah!

Here’s a video of the history of the Harobed, invented by Gordon Grey in the late 1990s, in Lancaster, CA. This video shows the stacking occurring in the field, but most of us have seen the process happen in barns around Kittitas County. I have taken hundreds of photos and videos over my time in the valley, after being enthralled with it and teaching about it in my Economic Geography class at CWU since the 1990s.

Harobed Clearing a Field of Hay Bales

I’ve been working much of the day on the blog (my portion), and took some time this morning to run a load of dirty dishes. More still await attention.

John opened our 2-year-ago purchase of Panasonic telephones, which we have put off installing until the others finally crashed on us yesterday trying to talk with cousin Ethel. We had to use the speaker phone on mine and stand close together to have our conversations heard. John now has all five phones charging for 7 hrs. Maybe tomorrow, after we return from Yakima, we can set them up.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Seattle Doctor Pike Place

Sunday, March 10

Left, below, is March 10, with cold fog in the Valley. We left for Seattle in the middle of the night and the temperature down there was about 2°F.
We were in the sunshine much of the day, and the Kittitas Valley lower elevations were covered in fog, and all the trees we saw the next morning on our way to Seattle, were covered in frozen fog and iced all over. Even the cattails in the side ditches were sparkling. Now a week later on St. Patrick’s Day we are in bright sunshine with beautiful blue skies, and outside our temperature is ~ 40°. At the airport 5 miles south, it is 37°. By 3:00 p.m. today, at the airport it reached 50°. Spring has arrived with a foot of snow still on our place.

Monday, March 11

For today, we are at the long-awaited trip to Seattle to consult with the shoulder surgeon, Dr. Rick Matsen III, about the potential of solving my severely arthritic shoulder with a complete shoulder replacement. Recall that I fell a few weeks ago, and could barely function. We are approaching this with a lot of concern about the ramifications on me with all my related heart issues that might throw a monkey wrench into the process.

Years ago, my original cardiologist – Dr. Kim, warned that it was a life threatening operation, that I should not consider, because of the general anesthesia required. We were hopeful that medical technology had moved ahead and perhaps it would now be possible, under the guiding medical eyes of the best surgeon team, with MDs, cardiologists, and anesthesiologists from the best hospital in the west (UW). I was referred there by my now-retired Primary Care Physician, who had Dr. Matsen replace his shoulder 2 years ago, successfully.

The two doctors consulting with us allowed me to videotape all the information and comparison of my shoulder x-rays from 2016 to the present in January after the fall, and the 3 x-rays taken Monday morning at UW. (They are advanced in their radiology capture!). John and I got to see views of my shoulder, on an x-ray taken with me lying down, viewed from under the ball and socket to see an unusual (but telling and educational) view of the actual proximity and relationship of the ball in socket.Left normal view of my left shoulder, showing bone-on-bone with ball in socket, bone spurs, and bone cysts, & my ICD that looks like a mean man starring out from inside my body. The image on the right was taken from underneath the shoulder, providing a totally different perspective to view the misalignment.

The surgeon, Dr. Rick, was incredibly concerned and honest, telling us about his personal life. He said he was 75, the same age as I, and has been married for 52 years (we have been married for 50 years, this year). His wife has an unusable right (dominant hand) shoulder problem she will live the rest of her life with, but without a complete shoulder replacement. His recommendation for me was with my heart issues, the same life-threatening issues still exist for me as I had been warned about in 2016 by another surgeon from Yakima. He was pleased how much I had stretched and exercised to recover almost the range of motion I was experiencing prior to the Jan 24 fall, and asked if I was coping well? Was there great pain? (No.) Could I live with it? Of course, my response was a definite yes.

Since 2016, I have learned to make adjustments and I am able to participate in fiddling, sometimes 3-4 times weekly, in assisted living homes, FISH food bank lunch, and retirement homes, providing music; I also participate in exercise classes at the Senior Center (SAIL, Silver Sneakers, Jazzercise, and Dancing there), just by altering certain of the over-the-shoulder moves. Our music group (Kittitas Valley Fiddlers & Friends) also visits the Senior Center for special days, with patriotic music (July 4 celebration and Veteran’s Day).

Our consultation meeting lasted from 7:00 a.m. until after 10:00 and involved two medical doctors and a technician (including the radiology technician at the start of my day). They are thorough and it was a great experience. Young Dr. Matt did initial things, much like physical therapy, noting what I could do, or not do. Elder Dr. Rick continued with questions, explanations, and advice. They agreed the shoulder was in bad shape. That they could replace it. And, that they advised against doing so.

After obtaining a CD with the x-ray imagery taken today of my left shoulder, and watching the fish swim in the waiting room aquarium, we proceeded to the kiosk to pay our $12.00 parking fee for the underground parking on Roosevelt Way, and continued our day by heading toward Seattle’s waterfront.

The office had several tanks of fish. Several were of a half-round type. See this one. Back in the early 1980s, John suggested to the owners of the mall in Moscow, Idaho that they get something such as these. They are a great attraction. These at the medical facility get cleaned every week. Very nice. We wonder now whether or not other buildings at UW have similar things?

Video: The Aquarium in the Radiology Waiting Room

From the parking garage, we drove south on old streets of Seattle, through Capitol Hill (disputed source of name thereof), en-route to Pike Place Market.

First, a few photos of the Capitol Hill neighborhood in Seattle.Street scene Capitol Hill Seattle – Boxwood sculptured
We stopped because it was a beautiful structure and the Seattle Tower can be seen from the back parking lot of the church. We didn’t know until later that Cameron’s mom’s ashes are enterred in this church. She was a minister.

We had a fun trip down the hilly streets to the piers and market. We saw familiar places as REI Co-Op where we have shopped.

Trip down Stewart to the bay, hilly terrain and fun views First views of the Pike Place Market:

We took a right here and were lucky to find a free parking space.
Passed other lots where the cost was $5.00 for a half hour!

We walked in by a bunch of vendors and I snapped photos.Woodworker’s crafts appealed to me.
Lots of fancy flowers. Who buys them? Why?
Maybe helps to cover the smell of the fresh seafood?

Lots of fish selling going on.. have to put in two:


I’d rather go gather my own Morels. No price listed, and no one to ask. The dates looked good, but expensive as everything else.

We spent a couple of hours in and out of the 5th floor Northwest Tastings shop, overlooking Elliot Bay, with a view of cruise ships, ferries, tugboats, the snow-capped Olympics, and even the demolition of the Alaskan Way Viaduct. Did not see a big ocean-going container ship.

We were there with the owner, Cameron Fries (Vigneron & Vintner) of White Heron Cellars & Mariposa Vineyard (west of Quincy, WA), where John volunteers wine grapevine pruning and occasional bottling. We enjoy their winery events throughout the year as well.Made it to:
Northwest Tastings in Pike Place Market

A 2 minute video. Watch for the huge timber behind Cam’s head.

After we had an interesting (not the best in my book) Pike Place BBQ lunch, Cameron gave us a tour of the market, which we had already seen some of the crafts and farm tables going through to get to his shop. We learned the history of the market (started in 1907) utilizing very large timbers to build the structure. Big trees were plentiful and cheap, back then.

We met other vendors he has gotten to know there, and got an excellent behind the scenes view. We walked all over, and my Fitbit recorded almost 2 miles for the day. A young lady in need of mental help came by. We even saw the original Starbuck’s on the street in front of the market. We left and drove home, not arriving until about 3:00 p.m.

Ending this day with a prize winning photo from our friend, EvieMae Schuetz, winner of the Old Farmer’s Almanac Weekly Cover Competition for her sunset tonight, of the Stuarts.Sunset in the Kittitas Valley over the Stuarts, by Evie Schuetz.

Tuesday, March 12

I dropped my effort – it got increasingly complicated – about helping with getting Meals on Wheels for taking food to a person who had back surgery and cannot drive for 6 weeks. I arranged for volunteers to pick up the meals and deliver them to his rural house, and also had people willing to travel to another facility to pick up frozen dinners for the weekend and other meals through the day, other than the hot meals made at the FISH food bank for Senior Nutrition, Mondays – Thursdays. In order to set it up, the person in need had to be interviewed in his home and examined at his house to determine his eligibility, making the request himself. Originally, it was meant as a good wish and nice gesture by his friends to help out, but we knew he would not want to participate in the qualification process, because he felt he had enough food on hand and did not want to bother anyone.

We also stopped by my Pharmacy with a prescription for my Amoxicillin, to pick it up later in the day, so I would have it for my Wednesday dental visit for teeth cleaning and full mouth x-rays
.
I had to go to the hospital lab today to have a recheck on my INR and potassium midday. That was accomplished.

John and I stopped by the Bi-Mart store to check our numbers for prizes, and look for the place to pick up WA license tabs for our plates, on the south side of town (rather than the courthouse). By going there for pickup, the $5.00 fee goes to our county funds, whereas, if we go to the courthouse, the $5.00 goes to pay for Ferry Funding on the west side. We’d rather the money stay in our Kittitas County.

Before we left town, we went to Fred Meyer and took advantage of their special sale for Gatorade G Zero (means zero calories) and if buying 10, we get the price of 77₵/32 oz. bottle.
While there we ran into several people we knew, so it was a useful stop to catch up on news.

Wednesday, March 13

I started at dentist at 11:00 for my teeth cleaning and full mouth x-rays. Here is the evidence I succeeded in making the appointment: The one on the lower left shows the socket for the recently extracted tooth (#30) in potential of infecting my bloodstream with bacteria to eat on my Mitral valve (porcine) replacement.

Then after scheduling 3 dental appointments for the future, I drove to the FISH food bank and participated (late) in singing with the group—Irish songs and others.

Stayed and had lunch with the bunch until 1:30. I probably didn’t get home until a little after 2:00, and did some computer work, and then was sitting in my recliner going to sleep, so I turned off my computer and lay down. I got a phone call at 3:30 talked for a few minutes and went back to sleep until 6:25! Guess I needed it.

Thursday, Mar 14

John left at 11:30 to drive to White Heron to prune wine grapevines from 1:00 – 4:00.

Today, I went to help with music at Meadows Place. We had a great turnout and a good audience, with lots of thank yous and compliments at the end.

Friday, Mar 15

John left at 11:30 to drive to White Heron to prune wine grapevines from 1:00 – 4:00.

I left earlier today to get gasoline before going to the AAC for St. Paddy’s Day party.

Then I was off for the Senior Center, and a great day of entertainment and reconnecting with friends, as I have been away from there for a long time with all my recent health issues.
I have missed exercise, Silver Sneakers, and dancing classes in my time away, and have not been to any weekly events since the end of January. For lunch they served corn beef, cabbage, and carrots, and a banana pudding for dessert.

What great news on the Ides of March!

Buttons Cle Elum Elk-New Home at Woodland Park Zoo

Needed to figure how to print (after numbered) the last 7 songs for March/April audience music copies. I need to print a few copies back to back to add to old copies from 2016 & 2017. John helped me finish this project.

I took a bunch of pictures of the folks there, and have some photos of myself as well. Maybe I’ll just include it here and send you the link to the others next week.

Nancy in her wearing of the green.

My musician friends, Barb Riley, Roberta Clark, and Tim Henebry (with Celtic music group, Prairie Spring), played music for us for an hour.

Barb (Violin), Roberta (on Bodhrán and also Autoharp), and Tim (on Guitar & Cittern). Cittern is the instrument in the photo standing at the end.

Saturday, Mar 16

I went to Briarwood for our 3rd Saturday fun of the month.

We retrieved my old mandolin case from the back room covered with > 15 years of dust, and I’m slowing vacuuming it to take to a player to see if he wants to buy it for his friend. Mine is a Fender. I cannot play it, except for picking individual notes (it’s strings are tuned the same as a violin), but my left hand cannot get the range of motion to do chords on it, and I took a week long course at the WA Old Time Fiddlers Summer Workshop years ago, only to realize I was unable to play it. It’s a nice mandolin. Because paper-proof of our Car Insurance was ended today, March 16th, I spent time putting all the updated paperwork in envelopes. Now we need to get those to the glove compartments of all our vehicles. It felt good to have that behind me. I took my own with me today to drive to town, and John put his in his Crosstrek, but the pickup trucks will have to wait until later. We have those near the door, ready to go out.

I also had a canvas shopping bag with a 4” seam missing, so I asked Rita (our singer), if she would be able to sew it up on her machine. She told me to bring it today, and she would be happy to. Not only did she take it and sew up the hole, she brought me another lovely handmade (by Rita) shopping bag that is lined. It’s lovely and would have been just the ticket for carrying my medical paperwork over to Seattle, this past Monday.

John’s onion starts arrived today in the mail, from south Texas near the Mexico border, Carrizo Springs, TX, a little ahead of time to plant, but that’s the breaks. Happened last year as well.

Thanks to the ladies at Briarwood, headed by Lee, Jo Ellen, with helpers Connie, Kathy, and Deirdre for putting on a fine dinner after music. No picture here of Lee’s homemade Chicken Soup with Wild Rice and Veggies (carrots, celery, mushrooms), and large chunks of white meat of chicken. It was scrumptiously good, as was everything. Betty’s great corn flake cookies and Lee’s Shamrock sugar cookies added a special touch, but the birthday cake not shown cut in these pictures was a highlight. Chocolate cake two-layered, with the yummiest cream-cheese frosting you have ever had. Everyone enjoyed it.
Dessert table on left, and sandwich and salads on right.

Sun, March 17 Happy St. Patrick’s Day

I slept in until 8:30 a.m. and John has now been out to feed the horses, and I have been working on the blog. He’s headed out to move snow, to make a place to plant the onions starts. We have had a foot or so of snow on the ground. All of February and to Wednesday of this week, none of it went away. Over the last 3 days the snow has gotten softer and sagged some. Still there. Still freezing at night. With snow off the onion beds, and the brown surface, maybe he can plant by next weekend.
I’m continuing with my chores. Off to the kitchen to load a couple of sinks full of soaking dishes, into the washer. Now enjoying a cup of coffee after taking some more morning pills and my BP.
More things happened all afternoon, but I quit taking notes.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Not so nasty news March 15th

Item #1: Images

Item #2: St. Catty’s Day

You may not need this prayer:

St. Gertrude of Nivelles, ask you I pray
.
a last thing I beseech from thee,
Protect my sofa from claws and my carpets from pee.

From: Prayer to patron saint of cats

My favorite cartoon – Breaking Cat News – introduced this previously unknown (to me) saint. Intro and first of several. Follow the week’s entries by clicking on the forward button ( > )under the right side of the panels. Friday’s panel is cute.

I wasn’t going to use this, but Monday, while waiting in the doctor’s office in Seattle, I noticed much cat hair on both Nancy’s and my lower legs. I had on my cleanest dirty pair of dark blue jeans.** What we need, instead of a prayer, is a hand-held mini-vacuum.
[** Hear Kris Kristofferson perform “Sunday Morning Coming Down” lines at 22 to 32 seconds. Video link

Item #3: Regarding Pepperoni

The major controversy in the Nation seems to be whether or not the pepperoni on a cooked pizza should remain flat or curl or cup-up when cooked. In the image at the top, the choice is to have it look like little cups. Most big chains opt for flat.
Marco’s, America’s eighth-largest pizza chain, has offered both lay-flat and cupping pepperoni, which it calls “Old World Pepperoni,” for about seven years. “We see people requesting the Old World more and more,” said Steve Seyferth, the company’s chief marketing officer. The cupping style was featured in the company’s latest TV commercial.

Y’all can discuss at your next pizza meal.
The image of the store here is the Marco’s in Parma Heights OH, closest to sister Peggy. So, Peggy – take your friends to Marco’s. Order pepperoni of both flat and cupped styles. Let me know what the elder Parmesans think of this?

Item #4: Carly

From the Clydesdales’ barn

Budweiser Clydesdale Puppy Love Super Bowl 2014 Commercial [ Link ]

Item #5: Approaching blossom time


This site may be of interest.
Washington D. C. cherry blossoms

One of our grape vine pruners says to skip the mall and go to the Botanical Gardens

More to see; fewer people

And that, for this week, is the not so nasty news.
John

On to the First Full Week of March

We realize we are still behind, but this will at least bring us up to the current time frame, and I shall slowly update the previous weeks you have missed in our life.

I’m actually going to start this week with a photographic tour by EvieMae Scheutz (an integral part of our Fiddle Club weekly in Ellensburg). As well as being an accomplished musician on many instruments, she is a photographer extraordinaire. You have seen her work published previously in our blog, with permission, as with this link. These are her own entries into the game (that last from 4 days to 3 weeks), including participants photographing our beautiful world. The voting is done by the competing photographers. (On each photo, the left number is the number of votes; the right one is the number of views.) I find this really interesting.

Evie (Queen Bear) Photography

Before I decided to put this link to all Evie’s competition photos, I was going to put in these, so will go ahead and add here.Evie’s Icicle Drop, left; Macro from the web of Ant pushing drop

Comparison of Evie’s Icicle Art with our backyard ones showing snow roof roll beyond.Evie’s beauty beside our beast. Our longest is just left of center red line.

Monday, March 4

Pretty danged cold this morning. Airport said it was zero. We were 6.2° on front porch sensor which is a little warmer because of the adjacency of our house.

John took off by way of Ellensburg to buy some black oil sunflower seeds for the birds, and onto White Heron to prune from 1:00 to 4:00. After it warms, they will be doing 9-12, as in prior years.

I did some paperwork through the bank to pick up tomorrow and take to the courthouse to arrange for payment automatic withdrawal from our bank account for our property taxes every ½ year. It used to be done for us through escrow from our mortgage payments, and then we happily transferred the chore for paying taxes and insurance to our own checking account auto pay withdrawal. Apparently, it was too late last year to have time to make it work. This paperwork had to be in by March 15, but now we are set for the future.

Got a message from SunRidge Oral Dentistry that they sent the paperwork to Hospice Friends for the Ensure. That will save me $35. We have been members and contributors for many years since I came out of my 2009 experience and donated my large 4-wheel walker to the organization, along with a gate belt, and some other stuff.

Last week, John bought gasoline in Quincy for $2.49/gal. Not bad. But, today they raised it while he was pruning. Guess the whole region is up 5-6 cents/gal. He got home about 5:20, and went to feed horses. We talked twice on the phone while he was coming home.
His Motorola Phone works nicely from the Crosstrek.

I fed sunflower seeds to the front and back birds and they were happy. All the little birds and the quail are depending on us during this cold snow-covered winter. Michelle Kristine’s Sunset Teanaway Forest, March 4, 2019
{30 miles northwest of us}

Tuesday, March 5

I took my shower in the morning, while John was still in the house.

I needed to arrive for my blood draw before 12:15 p.m..

The redraw today was because of the elevated reading of the Potassium test last Friday, way above my normal. It came in at 5.6. I knew right away that was way high because monthly I have that blood test with my normal INR readings. I knew it usually is 4.2 or 4.5 max.

On Friday afternoon, my PCP Chelsea explained the elevated item measured could have occurred by the method used for the blood draw. It was done in Cle Elum. Normally, the one we usually do monthly is by a standing order, for Potassium and for the INR, and I do that at the local hospital.
Chelsea scheduled me for a retake today and to talk with my favorite phlebotomist at the hospital lab in Ellensburg, to be aware of this and to be careful of the drawing procedure.

I know exactly what was used at Cle Elum to draw my blood, and it was totally different from anything ever done in Ellensburg. Instead of a small butterfly needle with a syringe, she used a large one with a container, then left it in the vein, and pushed the two vials in separately to fill. She finally took the needle out, and put the gauze on my arm. I held onto it. I told her I needed Coban and she obliged and then ‘taped’ it.

Chelsea said: the method of handling blood can damage red blood cells and then they leak, and therefore the values for blood chemistry (such as Potassium) are wrong. The terminology is called hemolyzed. Much is written on the web about the phenomena and many phlebotomists and nurses are aware of the potential problem occurring. Obviously, my PCP was on top of it. I ended up being educated in the process, and I now have decided against having blood drawn in Cle Elum again. They do not have the facilities to do the analysis on the sample and have to use a courier to pick it up (handle it and not disturb or shake it too much), and deliver to the lab in Ellensburg. The prime time to centrifuge the sample after the draw is 1 hr, 50 min. or less. Otherwise, that too can affect the results. From now on, I will drive by the hospital lab on my way home to have the blood drawn, and give Cle Elum a call to check in an hour for the results on the computer. I can check the portal myself too from home .

Included Friday morning were two chest x-rays. We stayed around Friday for Chelsea to view them and compare to the ones done on me in Nov, 2018 at my annual physical. There was no change.

Also needed to meet Jeannie in Vanessa’s office to sign and pick up my CD order for the two chest x-rays from Imaging at the hospital. I need it to take to the consultation next Monday with the shoulder surgeon in Seattle.

Went by Bi-Mart to check numbers (no wins) and buy some Friskies Cat Gravy food, Tussin CM (for my congestion), Fisherman Friend’s for cough, and 2 bags of songbird seed (I paid for and they no longer had any outside in their container).

Went by Midstate Coop for 2 more bags of buggy Black Oil Sunflower Seeds for $9.99 each.

Went by Umpqua Bank and got 4 copies of our joint checking account checks (free). I voided one and attached to the form to go to the Courthouse (County Treasurer’s office to turn it in for setting up automatic withdrawal from our bank checking account to pay our property taxes each ½ year).

Wednesday, March 6

Today is National Stay Home with you Dog and Drink Wine Day!!!
I should have had John do that to celebrate and stop his cough, which is driving me insane. He says it is more of a tickle at the top back – a web image points to “oropharynx’, middle throat behind mouth. Whatever. It goes away in 3 days.

Called people who haven’t responded about not going tomorrow to Rehab (canceled because of flu outbreak). Everyone emailed or called to confirm their knowledge.

Sorry, you’ll need a Facebook account to view the following video.

I long to be able to do this, again:

Silver Sneakers: 5 Exercises for Healthy Shoulders

Meanwhile, I want my shoulder to improve so I can rejoin my Silver Sneakers class and SAIL exercise class at the AAC (Senior Center).

Snowing hard started 12:30 p.m. and is still going on. John just went out to feed (and shovel more), and said whoever prayed for snow got their wish, and he wished they hadn’t. In five hours we received 5” of the fluff. I don’t know how much total we have had by 5:30 p.m.

Peggy from Parma called and we talked 40 minutes while soup simmered. Nice conversation. Now we can eat. Late for her in the Eastern Time Zone, and she is way south of us, too.
In the West, Mount Shasta is near her Latitude.

Thursday, Mar 7

John stayed home today from pruning at White Heron because of the lousy weather forecast. He was able to drive me around town, for which I was most appreciative. If/when my shoulder is repaired, he will be doing even more such things and full time for awhile.

Today our Kittitas Fiddlers & Friends music at Rehab was canceled because of a flu outbreak in house. I will use the time to go back for a recheck on my INR. The high value [5.9] Tuesday is over the top.

Results: the INR reduced to [4.3] which is still too high. So, my Coumadin dosage was decreased for the next 4 nights to
no tablet, no tablet, ½ tablet, and ½ tablet. I’m scheduled to go back next Tuesday for another retake.

We went by Bi-Mart: for cough drops for John. There are 3 or 4 “brands”, several package counts, half-dozen flavors, and at least 2 Menthol dosages. The store brand “GoodSense Honey Lemon” was the best deal, better than the on sale famous Swiss Ricola. The Audubon songbird seed is not yet in.

Went this afternoon to Celia’s for a haircut (much needed). John need a haircut but claims he can wait until my shoulder is fixed and well.

Friday, Mar 8

I stayed home working on a number of projects, starting in the morning with a talk that went unfinished last night with the medical professionals in Cle Elum, who needed to report and evaluate my blood test results mid-day.

I wanted to get to my medical records for Monday’s trip to Seattle, but never made it to them.

John went to prune from 1 to 4 at White Heron, and had beautiful sunny & warm weather. A few places had 8″ of snow, so they will miss some of the ground hugging suckers. The fastest pruner, Tom, will go visit young granddaughters for two weeks near the end of this month, and the work will get further behind. It has been way to cold for 6 weeks to get work done outside. Massive acres of fruit trees in the region remain untrimmed.

Terri Towner sent me scans of all the material she got when she was over for her consultation with Dr. Matsen. It’s very useful while I’m filling in my paperwork, and considering my questions for the surgery team. I understand from Terri they will have a lot of questions

Saturday, Mar 9

Spent time working on various computer and medical records (getting ready for the trip to Seattle Monday a.m.). I still have a ton of things to do today, on the actual 11 page questionnaire.
I will fill in my one copy for John to proof and if it is okay, then I’ll copy that for my files.

Only just today we got an automated call saying my appointment was 7:00 a.m. not 7:15 a.m., as we originally thought.

We went by the Methodist Church Community Clothing bank just before 11:00 a.m., and found it closed, in honor of a woman who died and had been involved in this community service for years. Her celebration of life was held at the church at 11:00 a.m. We were going in to look for winter skull caps and scarves for us and hopefully find some Irish colors/emblem (in shirts or jackets) for celebrating our Irish music this month at the assisted living homes. I received quite a bit of neat stuff at Christmas, so I’m hopeful there will be some Irish paraphernalia there.

We went around the corner and up main for gasoline for my rig. The place was full, with one pump broken, so we drove on up past the other 7/11 in town. The price there was $2.649/gal, so we went on over to the bread room, supposedly open between 10:00 and 1:00 today, and it was locked shut. No clue what happened there.

We left there and went back by the most eastern gasoline station, where earlier, we had seen the price posted as $2.619/gal. Thankfully, it had not change in the time it took us to move around town.

Over in Seattle, if all goes well, we plan to visit Cameron at Pike Place Market [ Wikipedia Link ], where he has a sales room, called Northwest Tasting, with his wine and some other local central WA products such as Smoked meat from Cle Elum.
About all that one sees nationally of this is young men throwing 20 pound Salmon from the viewing front to the wrapping tables behind. However, it is a large area with several levels and many vendors. The link above has a long-long explanation and many photos. Be sure to look at them, if this is a new thing to you. You need to be an avid historian to read the text.

Saturday, Mar 9

Wintertime Teanaway River by Scott Seymour, March 9, 2019
This photo was taken right near our friends, Sharon & Jack’s home in Cle Elum, WA. Currently, they are in Seattle.

Sun, March 10

Great way to end this week with a video (made almost exactly a year ago) about the kind of stuff I loved teaching in Geography, through GIS and other classes, presented here by a good friend Joseph Kerski, who says: “A good map helps you to ask a better question.”

It’s worth 10 minutes of your time watching at full screen view:

Whys of Where | Joseph Kerski |TEDxVail

John used the old 4WD Chev PU and moved 7 bales of hay to 2 places under cover near where he feeds the horses. He also used the rig to drive a couple of figure eights around the pasture, to give him and Annie some paths to follow on their morning and afternoon walks. The snow is still cold and fluffy, but the ground is hard. That will start to change mid-week, as spring arrives.

I stayed inside working on a few house projects, but mostly dividing time between the blog creation, and on my paperwork collection for the consultation tomorrow morning.

We plan to go to bed by 9:00 p.m. tonight to be ready to leave early morning. John has already planned all the routes and made a Google Earth map street view for us to use to find the places we need to go. Cameron made sure he had an alternative route planned, just in case I-5 got shut.

I’m hesitant to take a nap, because once I hit the hay I want to sleep until I wake up ready to dress and leave. I have been setting out my planned wardrobe. Along with maps, John is putting his “travel” box in order, with drinks and food.

Now mostly all that is left is a night shower and finishing up all the paperwork required, and being sure I have packed all my medical insurance cards, my photo ID, my credit card, my filled in questionnaire, and my CDs of prior x-rays (Chest and Shoulder).

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Catching up with the last week of February

I realize I am still behind, but this will at least jump over some of the past things, bring me up to the current time, and I can add previous information – as I get to it.

Sunday, February 24 Here’s a nice start that was photographed today, in our front yard, to begin an otherwise bad report day. Last Thursday night at the Audubon meeting we just heard about this bird, a Varied Thrush. We have had a couple hanging around our feeders ever since. I thought when I first saw one last week that it was a Rufous-sided Towhee, but apparently that name has changed, and it is a different bird: (this below from Audubon)

The study of birds, like any science, remains a work in progress. New findings about birds’ DNA or other attributes bring changes in classification of species, which often result in new names. Take the Rufous-sided Towhee, found across North America. Differences between its western and eastern forms – plumage, songs, genetics – brought an official split into two distinct species: the Spotted Towhee in the West, the Eastern Towhee in the East.

So for years we’d “been seeing” a Roufous-sided Towhee that wasn’t a Towhee at all, or if we did, it should have been called a Spotted Towhee. Our bad!

Temperature on our front porch at 8:00 a.m. is 28.8°, at the airport (Bower’s Field) 5 miles south the reading is 36° (wrong). And it gets worse during the afternoon.
The airport weather station was off all week with sensor problems reading the temperatures much higher than they should be. John wrote a notification to the Pendleton NOAA site, and it only finally got fixed at the end of the week.

At 5:45 a.m., I awoke in the wrong position with a painful neck. Turned off alarm to go off at 6:00 a.m. to remind me to take my Amoxicillin; went to the back guest bathroom, where I found a brown blood spot on my shirt from my mouth overnight. I assumed it came from the socket, but I checked in the mirror and had no blood in my mouth.

Czar-cat was visiting for attention, and I left the guest bathroom with him, and came back down hall as Rascal came into hallway (hissing, at Czar). I put Czar out the front & Sue was at the door. John began taking care of cats in and out, while I heated my flax seed bag to put on my sore neck. I took my 6:00 a.m. med. John went outside to shovel a path to a small hay shed and for the cats. He determined we had 3-4” overnight, and it is still snowing this morning. John continued to take dry food out for Sue, Woody, and Czar, and I figured out how to set up a pillow next to my neck, to protect it directly from the hot flax bag. I then needed John’s assistance to place the bag behind the thin pillow. That done, I rested on heat. Also was thinking about what might have happened and what I should do. I decided about 6:35 a.m. to have John get me a tea bag from the kitchen cabinet, and a bag of gauze from the green carry bag given for post-op procedures after the extraction. I took out 2 pieces of the unfolded gauze. I had John wet the tea bag with cold water, and bring it to me. My idea was to stop any bleeding that might occur.
I left that on for 45 minutes, and noted the pressure was hurting the socket. So I got John to fix me an Instant Ice Pack (came with the post–op materials, for swelling, but it also helps with pain for me. That helped a little. I decided after 45 minutes, it was probably under control.

BP 135/73 pulse 80 at 8:37 a.m. on new monitor; FitBit p 65. The new monitor is consistently higher on the pulse than is my FitBit.

Monday, February 25

About 6:00 p.m., I experienced a little pain from the socket. Took 2 Acetaminophen at 7:00 and it seems to be improving. No front tooth pain after early morning.

Lacey at KVH FM-CE requested the standing order for my potassium and INR to be in Chelsea’s name (my new PCP). Dr. Norm Wood officially moved from the area and/or retired 2/21. Too far from family and friends – apparently.

I went to town to the hospital lab for another INR check, and it came back as 2.1. I’m now finished taking the antibiotic (which raises it), and resumed my dosage of Coumadin to the normal one full pill once a day in the evening (2.5 mg).

Tuesday, Feb 26

Took 2 Acetaminophen at 5:00 a.m. now needed every 6 hours.
Did the first load of dishes. Took me 1 hour and I kept running out of energy and having to stand still and breathe deeply. I still have shallow breathing plaguing me. Whether a function of medications or illness, I’ve not a clue.
Pet and fed Sue, put Czar out to rub faces. They like each other.
I’m drinking strawberry PowerAde Zero and resting.

Left home at 1:45 p.m.
Went by Bi-Mart to check number.
By KVCH to request at front desk the medical records from Jan 24, for the lab only. I forgot to ask for an ROI form for future use to leave at Cle Elum Family Medicine.

Wednesday, Feb 27

Emergency need for me to go to food bank soup kitchen with music because of Evelyn’s broken down car from Thursday, last week, still not fixed yesterday, and won’t be by this morning either. I took the KV F&F music for Jan/Feb (our last time to play it is tomorrow at Hearthstone). We had a good turn-out of players at the FISH Food Bank lunch: Rob & Kevin on guitar, Richard on drum (a plastic bucket) using regular drumsticks, Dean (Harmonica), guest Amy on Flute and Violin to give us the first starting note, I was singing, leading the choice of songs after checking with those there to be sure we only did songs they knew, and announcing to the group out in the large room. Another Richard sat to my right, singing, next were Reta, and Bob, both singers. We did a good job and provided music for over a half hour to an appreciative audience. Then we sat and visited over lunch. I had taken one of my liquid nutritious drinks. Met a few people there I had not seen in weeks.

From there, I came right home. I was still very weak, and still experiencing shallow breathing, tiredness, unable to carry much weight (music bags), and generally not feeling well.

Later in the day, Evie Schuetz’s daughter Franka took this photo of the sunset tonight on their way home from Franka’s cello lesson. She took it out the window of their car on her mom’s cell phone. A wonderful sunset landscape over a snowed-on hay field in our Kittitas Valley. Artistic touch and beautiful composition in Franka’s photo.

We cannot get such nice beautiful views of sunsets from our house because of the trees. But, often if I’m out driving home, I’ll view them. Sadly, I never knew about this one, having come home at 1:30 p.m. and lying down to recuperate. I guess I’m still recovering from my surgery. But this awesome view today surely helped at the end of the day, when I saw it posted by Evie on Facebook.

Thursday, Feb 28

Today was Kittitas Fiddlers & Friends music at Hearthstone, with many of our normal followers and a good crowd of new folks in the audience. We used all the audience copies, with several sharing, so was a large crowd. Players included Anne, Marilyn, Manord, Amy, Dean, I was there to call music and hold both Charlies’ and my amplifiers for the microphones attached to our heads. I’m still unable to play my violin. Charlie and I sang the lyrics to lead the audience. I announced the song title and number in their books. Evie was standing behind us, playing her fiddle, for the first half hour, until she had to leave for a doctor’s appointment. Also there were Maury, Kevin, and Charlotte.

I was still walking slowly, and concerned with side effects from something, combo of meds, surgery, or who knows what.

In the afternoon, after talking to the oral surgeon’s assistant and hearing their recommendation, Dr. Tew was not concerned about my high blood pressure but thought I should visit my PCP and have my heart and lungs checked out. So I called for an appointment and got one tomorrow at 9:00 a.m.

Friday, Mar 1 Willow tree draped in frozen fog, photo by Allen Aronica, 3/1/19 He’s our neighbor a mile north on Naneum Road.

We had to be at my new “doctor”, Chelsea
Newman’s office today at 9:00 a.m. in Cle Elum.
She is a Physician Assistant-Certified (PA-C), from the State of Oregon, and Pacific University, Hillsboro.

Frozen fog was wicked in our valley, and I-90 was dangerously icy – with cars off the road [some upside down]. We made it safely (and slowly), and I had a fine (long) visit (with John present), w/Chelsea. For this change, we had 4 folks to choose from. A few years ago when our doctor was out of town, he suggested John see her. We really liked her then (it was when he had his hernia issue). She did not do much then, but seemed competent and nice.

So, I explained my problems with recovering from the tooth extraction surgery 2/18, and how I had no energy, slow walking, inability to carry weight any distance, shallow breathing, and overall weakness from normal activities. She examined (listened to) my heart, my lungs, could not hear the lower left lobe, so she requested two chest x-rays, and heard my complaints of congestion and concern of a possible return of Pneumonia, as I had in February last year.

She reviewed my whole medical history (which is not documented in their medical records, because the provider quit (in March or so last year – here and at the KVH hospital, of which the Cle Elum clinic is part). A switch to another medical records provider’s database, has seriously affected historical records. The new one would not move the records forward because of worry they were endangering their own medical records to a hacking, or something. All data have to be reentered by the individual doctor’s office for each patient! They don’t have the “manpower” to rebuild it (even though they still have access to the old records). It’s a tedious process, but will try to enter old stuff as needed.

So, she listened to mine and John’s memories of what I had been through since 2009. She was very attentive and concerned, and spent an amazing amount of time with us. She ordered the two chest x-rays for me to have there. I was having them done after 11:00 a.m. She returned to the lab to review them, when I returned to the examination room. She had also requested two blood draws, which were done before the X-rays were taken, with the results being analyzed and reported to me by late Friday afternoon. The X-rays will be reviewed by a contract specialist in Yakima, but that will make a difference only if he notes something Chelsea didn’t. [He saw what she said, so that’s good.] She had mine from November, 2018, at the annual physical there, and it had not changed from then.

Normally, I receive such lab test reports from the Triage Nurse there, after she’s read it on their computer report. Instead, at 5:00 p.m., I had a phone call from Chelsea. I have never had that happen in my past. She went through all the values, we discussed them, and she requested my going Tuesday morning for a re-draw to check out the high value on my Potassium – it was 5.6, and when she said that, I knew that was very high. I have that drawn every month along with my INR (for blood thinner [Coumadin dosage planning]), so I know I’m always in the low 4.0 range, not higher than 4.2. I asked what could cause such and she gave me some answers I expected, but also one that I had never ever heard before. She told me to tell my fav phlebotomist at KVH lab to be aware of the high value and be careful with the draw because of something about the way the procedure used to draw it can affect how the red blood cells are handled and will (or can) cause a higher reading {Things that make you go – Hmm?}

I do know what the person in Cle Elum used, and it was not a syringe as I’m normally used to having, from which they reload the blood sample into different vials. She also used a different needle (larger than a butterfly one, usually used on me). With the one she used, the vials are pressed into the container while it is still in the vein, to fill. I know that is unusual for me. John says he has had that done, but can’t say where.

It will be interesting to see if there is a noticeable difference in that blood draw from a different lab, and from someone whom has never drawn my blood before (even there in Cle Elum). With all the INRs I have received in the past several weeks, it didn’t seem necessary to draw the standing order potassium along with, so we weren’t. Now I’m sorry we made that decision. My potassium value has been consistent for a long time.

Saturday, Mar 2

My day had an earlier interesting start by seeing a video with a short narration from a former student and friend since we first arrived in Idaho in 1974.
Chas Scripter at his house on Lake Coeur d’Alene

Otherwise, this was one very screwed up day on the Naneum Fan.
I slept in until 8:00 a.m. after being up for an hour between 4:00 and 5:00. Then I was busy responding to an email from Evie about a new song she wanted to add to our practice folder: It’s Hard to be Humble (by Mac Davis). I asked her about another one that I want to add to our repertoire, called Lovesick Blues, then found the sheet music on line from 1922, and started checking other things about that song. At some point I switched to work on the blog and start on dishes, because most everything in our house was dirty and piled on every flat space in the kitchen. I didn’t succeed in completing that dishwasher load until 6:30 p.m., tonight.

I really zoned out completely around 1:00 and still don’t know what happened. I finally moved enough dirty dishes so I could fix my eggs and toast for brunch. I didn’t eat until ~12:30 and I had Annie sitting in front of me wanting my leftovers, but there was a lot of the crust left from my toast on my plate. I guess I was tired, and never got up from my recliner to throw away the excess bread, so I could give her the rest of my leftovers. Apparently, John was working on his computer, turned it off deciding to go outside and work some, but saw me sitting there sleeping, with the plate on my knees. He took it from me and left me there. He went outside for over an hour, came back in and found me still in a very bad position for my neck, and still asleep.
He was moving around opening the back door, feeding the birds, and I awoke not knowing where I was, or with any memory of what had happened. He said what he knew, and commented he bet my neck was sore from the position I had been in for the last couple hours. It certainly was, plus I was disoriented, not knowing what happened. So, I started again, and it was ~3:00. I took my blood pressure right after I awoke, and it was low (for a change).

I decided to fix an Ensure/Yogurt drink to get back on line, and returned to constructing the blog (only for this week, Feb 24-Mar 2). I also continued to load stuff in the dishwasher all afternoon.

Finally, after he’d fed the outside animals, gotten the mail, and paper, I added more things to my to-do list, based on what arrived in the mail (such as the yearly property taxes).

I made my normal evening call to Gerald, and we ate our baked chicken thighs and butternut squash dinner John had prepared.

John went to bed just after 9:15 p.m. I stayed up and now need to take my meds and hit the hay too. It’s 11:15 (yikes)! I didn’t get into bed until midnight, and then I awoke at 1:30 a.m. and stayed up awhile, because I felt I needed to eat something.

Sun, March 3

I managed to sleep until 5:00 a.m., got up and took 2 Acetaminophen, walked to the back bathroom with companion cat Czar, and back to the front door to find Sue outside wanting food. So, I handed her some, and went back to bed.

John has now fed the outside animals and we are near to having a brunch. We did have a part of an omelet, hash browns, sliced pears, and I had a piece of toast with Kenny’s apricot preserves.

John’s been out moving snow, starting and running the blue Crosstrek car old truck, that aren’t used much right now, and doing other things.

I’m going to try to end this, and get it to John for editing. Then I will take my afternoon nap.
Oops, no, first, I must complete the PDFs for players to have to get their music in order for the March / April music for the Kittitas Valley Fiddlers & Friends, starting at the Rehab this coming Thursday, March 7th.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan

Tuesday Night Update, the 19th

Tooth extraction Monday.

We walked in the door at about 7:05.
I went back after the procedure so the assistant, Lacey, could have two heads to explain follow-on care.
[At one point Lacey left the room and I weighed myself on their high quality scale. Winter has been good. I’ll have to stop eating.]

We came back through EBRG to buy yogurt and pick up a case of Ensure Nutrition Drink. I also had a Key Lime pie thawing.
Still, Monday was not a lot of fun for Nancy.
With doctors and nurses advising, Nancy’s blood thinner was tweaked so bleeding would be slowed. Lots of gauze and a few other tricks helped. Pain and related feelings eased some by late Monday.

Tuesday has been much better. She feels well and got some things done.
At home the sun came out and the temp popped to 40°F.
Small birds by the dozen came to the feeder and entertained her. It is now past 9 PM and the temp is down below freezing, on its way to 20. Our weather will remain cold to cool with some snow into March.
The mountains to our west will get a bunch more snow.

We had been scheduled to go to Seattle on Wednesday. Thank the Lord and Pass the Ammunition, that was rescheduled until March 11th.
Wednesday, the I-90 corridor into Seattle, and the city, are going to be a total mess with snow and cold rain. We are happy to miss that.

One manner or another, we will update again on Friday – my Not so nasty news, and then on Sunday.

Stay warm and dry.
John

Not so nasty news February 15

Nancy’s been very busy with setting up medical appointments, trying to coordinate with CWU regarding passwords and getting revised MS Word and other software reestablished. The last was just fixed at 5 PM today, Friday. I guess we will figure out how to finish last week’s blog, and the one expected out this Sunday. All in due course. John

Item #1: Images

Link to story is here: Cold and dark, until … (Darlene Tanner/Team Tanner Photography) 10 Feb 2019

Lacombe, Alberta, Canada About 100 miles north of Calgary
Light pillars, large beams of light which appear to be reaching up from the Earth, materialize when either natural or artificial light bounces off ice crystals suspended low in the atmosphere.
The ice crystals act like little mirrors.

Item #2: Le Grande River Music

If I knew how to play a piano I’d plan a trip. This is the sort of place I’d visit – if I traveled.
About Chisasibi

Story here: Two pianos coming

Young Cree musicians in Chisasibi
near the east shore of James Bay will be getting two new pianos to play after videos of them practicing sparked a fund raising campaign.
One of the pianos is funded locally, the 2nd one is being donated; to be shipped from the south shore of Montreal. They don’t say whether this is a road shipment or by air. I suppose such things are of interest only to me.

Item #3: Stuck

This story is a few weeks old, and while from the US, I found it on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation network. So it is on ABC, but not the ABC seen as American TV. Maybe those who watch network news have seen it.
Anyway, an adult male Bald Eagle got his tail feathers wet while he and friends were on semi-frozen Suttons Bay, west side of the lower part of Michigan.

An ice beast

A Michigan based group called Wings of Wonder (Link: WofW) arrived to help with the rescue, and later release of the bird.

Item #4: While at the ABC

Each week there are fantastic photos posted from all over Australia. If you go to this link:
OZ Photos

. . . they have 15 there as I write. This set opens with a parrot.
To the right are small images and links to spectacular photos from prior years. The set takes a few seconds to load.
You’ve got nothing better to do, so have a look.
Just above, is a baby Eastern Barred Bandicoot – a small, nocturnal marsupial.

Item #5: Good News & Bad News

So the good news is our esteemed leaders have figured out a way to keep the government open.
The bad news is our esteemed leaders have figured out a way to keep the government open.

And that, for this week, is the not so nasty news.
John

Shoulder #Two

At this time my computer is balking and I’m only half done with this. If I don’t finish tonight, check back Monday afternoon. Thanks, Nancy

UPDATE #2 — MINOR we are still here –UPDATE TUESDAY PM
John says: Nancy has been busy setting up a tooth extraction and related meds because of the blood thinner.
Also she has been following friends with snow issues, and our local Snoqualmie Pass that got 53 inches, causing lots of problems up there, and stranded hundreds (locals and travelers). I’ve been moving snow and feeding horses, cats, and little birds. We have only a foot of snow and at 3:12 PM Tuesday the temp is 28°F.
All is well.
In spare moments she is still working on the blog.

Sunday, Feb 3

We published the blog just before midnight.

Monday, Feb 4

Today is the date of the death of my father when I was 14 years old and in High School in Atlanta, GA.

Komonews report – View idiots driving cars not cleaned off the windows or lights.

Go here for views of idiots driving

25 miles east of Seattle, Snoqualmie City has 9″ this morning.

From friend Sharon’s home in Seattle:Snow on the Olympics, white caps on the water (Puget Sound), and bad traveling on hilly streets in North Seattle neighborhood.

Snowing hard here – received 6” John measured and it has quit.

This afternoon at 1:30 p.m., I received a call from “Roy” – a female scheduler at UW Medical Center for our consultation with Dr. Frederick A. Matsen III, M.D. in Seattle. We are scheduled at 9:15 a.m., Wednesday, February 20th. Pray for no snow on the pass for our trip over.

Tuesday, Feb 5

John planned not to go pruning at White Heron because of cold temperatures expected to last all week there. This morning the vineyard has 19°. Yesterday, snow canceled the whole pruning team’s visit.
We went for my INR blood draw this afternoon to check if Prednisone had raised it. It was up to 5.0 (very high). My normal value is ~ 2.3.

It was after hours there (after 5:00 p.m.) when I received the reported value from lab analysis, and the orders to load up on foods (high in Vitamin K) to lower it, but I was not told I could go to Ellensburg for an injection of 5mg Vitamin K to counteract it. I’m still disturbed about that omission, when I now know they give them at the Cle Elum clinic. I was told to leave off Coumadin tonight and tomorrow night. I knew too late I couldn’t do it with food alone, and I could have gone to the hospital for an injection of 5mg of Vitamin K. I wish my doctor in Cle Elum had informed me of that possible way, instead of saying do it with food. We haven’t had much of that sort of food in the house for 9 years. Besides, the amount in food is measured in micro-grams, not milli-grams.

I spent a lot of time online creating a list of all foods that lower INR and the amounts to eat for what return. It cannot be done with food alone. Important information about Coumadin (which is Warfarin):
Warfarin is a blood-thinning drug that functions by inhibiting vitamin K–dependent clotting factors.  Vitamin K can decrease the blood-thinning effects of warfarin and will therefore lower the PT or INR value. This may increase the risk of clotting.

The triage nurse told me not to cut myself with a knife, fall and hit my head, or do anything to cause bleeding. I was in danger.

It wasn’t absolutely necessary but Allen Aronica plowed our driveway, in time for us to leave for Ellensburg for a blood draw before 2:30 p.m. Getting it plowed reduces packing and ice.

Starting from back of my parked Subaru; on out 300’ driveway

I have spent a bunch of time over the past several days to correct an error from the WSJ’s mistake at charging a higher price for my subscription. Today, I succeeded in getting through to a person on the second team to make it right (3rd person was a charm today). It is now resolved, and I have a direct line in for the future in case it should happen in a future year. I’m approved to receive the WSJ print and digital forms as a professor for $49/year. That’s hundreds of dollars below the regular rates. My current delivery was cancelled 2/5.

Wednesday, Feb 6

Temperatures various places of interest this morning include 6.7° on our front porch, 4° at 6:53, 6° – at 8:35 – 5 miles south of us at airport, and it is 12° over at White Heron, where pruning happens.

Thinking pill, not injection, I called Super 1 Pharmacy to see if they have a 5mg Vitamin K pill to take on hand if I get a prescription sent to the Pharmacy, for cases when my INR goes sky high (5.0 as on 2/5) from increase caused by the Prednisone I’m still taking for the second week. They do not have a pill 5mg of Vitamin K at Super 1 Pharmacy or at the KVCH Pharmacy or Bi-mart. Reason they don’t carry it is that it is not in demand and an expensive bottle would have to be bought for one pill by a pharmacy.

Leaving off my Coumadin Tues & Wed completely with INR being taken again on Thursday.

Went to KVH Imaging to sign and date form for pick up CD of X-rays in Cle Elum of shoulder to take to Dr. Matsen for consultation. Between 1:00 & 3:00 went to NW Orthopedics office in Ellensburg and picked up CD of 2016 X-rays of shoulder by surgeon Richard Roux. Felicia from their medical records in Yakima brought it up for me today.

Got GoodSense Moisture Tears at Bi-Mart

John got 5 items at Amazon including a wireless mouse for me to replace mine that has a crack in the case from dropping.

We got some fresh Spinach & Collard Greens for a salad, to go with turkey, apple, Jarlberg cheese, Baguette croutons seasoned. Meant to lower my INR for tomorrow’s reading. John had roast pork, beans, tomato, chili.

Temp at bedtime on front porch, 7.7°F. At airport 3°, at 10:53; 6° at 11:53.

Neighbor Louaine wants a sort of cracker we have not had, so she gave us two to try. They are loaded with Sunflower and Flax seeds, We will have to look at WalMart and/or Winco; Costco no longer has them. We liked them but the small seeds get caught in my teeth, so we probably won’t get them for home.

Thursday, Feb 7

Called Hospital Kim & asked time for her lunch and coming in for blood draw. I have to arrive at 12:15 for my blood draw check in at the front desk.
We left for town earlier than usual on Thursday to make it to the Hospital lab for my blood draw to recheck my high INR from Monday. Then from there we went to the Rehab. I sat in the audience and announced the songs to the audience, and sang along. We had a guest accordionist from Bend, OR who plays with us when she is in town visiting her parents. Katie Eberhart is her name. Her dad was at CWU when I arrived in 1988, but I’ve only met her recently. With their ageing parents, the several children come and go so someone is with Dee and Barb.

From there John drove us home and I communicated with my doctor’s office in Cle Elum, about my medications. That’s another sad story. My primary care doctor will not refill the two I have been on since JAN 28. They were slightly removing the pain. Now I have to wait until Monday to hear if he will refill the other pain pill he has been allowing me to take when I needed it. I have been very conservative, and today, he said he would not… just when I need something to tied me over until my 2/20 consultation with the shoulder surgeon in Seattle.

We came home and had to fix an early supper so we could eat and be to CWU by 6:30 to assure a place on the front row for me to videotape the proceedings. The speaker tonight was a geography major and was my student in 1992, John Stimberis.

That’s all for now.

Thanks — Nancy

Not so nasty news February 8

Taken through a multi-layer patio door; with glare.

Item #1: Roadrunner

Elise, a friend in New Jersey, sent a funny thing on Monday that has a connection to the cartoon of the Roadrunner and the Coyote.
Below is the image Elise sent:
You may find this of interest: the Looney Tune’s “ACME” Corp

{I had to skip ads in this next one.}

And here is a 20 minute compilation: Looney Tunes

Item #2: How icy is it?

On Friday morning, freezing rain covered much of Nova Scotia in ice. Watch the video in this link to see how that worked out.
Slip sliding away

Item #3: Houston, I have a problem.
This story is from the Scottish Highlands, near the highest mountain in the British Isles, Ben Nevis at 4,411 feet. This is a collapsed dome of an ancient volcano, and sculpted by glaciers.
The region is lacking infrastructure such as roads and power lines, but has a natural beauty that attracts many visitors, and a few hardy folks that live off the grid. Therein is the genesis of this tale.
So, there is something called GEOS Response – Home of the IERCC in Houston Texas. Since 2007, this center has been monitoring travel safety, security services, and any other state of the art signals, including ground to satellite.
The Washington Trails teams now carry “Garmin InReach” units (as do many individuals) for when cell phone or Forest Service towers are not within reach (pun alert). Once set-up, an SOS can be sent with the press of a button. If in error, you have (I think) 20 seconds to cancel. Otherwise, things start to happen thousands of miles away, as in the case of this story.

Highland rescue

This story has a link to a community “off-grid”. Scoraig
Lots of photos, taken in Summer time.

Item #4: Snowpocalypse

Do you have enough food in your house such that you could exist for 4 days without going to a grocery store? If you don’t, and you live in the Seattle area – you are too late. This is a link to photos of grocery store shelves after the announcement that a second storm is approaching Puget Sound.
Seattle prepares

Note the photos are mostly about fresh food, or the lack thereof.
Snow is expected to arrive about Noon Friday and total about 4 to 6 inches. Schools are closing early, or not opening. News reports and officials are urging precautions and strategy for coping. All of this is good for places that hardly ever get snow and cold temperature.
Everyone ought to have a 3 day emergency stash for members of the family, however many that is. This includes water for drinking, cooking, also washing and flushing.
See here: Food

Above the word Food , click on Home to see some other things your government thinks you should be aware of. The other link is “Build a Kit/Food Preparedness” and it too is worth a look.

On Sunday, Nancy will include snow photos from South Lake Tahoe.
For us on the Naneum Fan, the forecast claims to expect between 7 to 17 inches. 7 is not a problem. 17 is a bit of a burden.
Northeastern Washington (closer to Spokane) will get less snow, maybe, and strong winds, thus drifting. Think blizzard-like conditions. Single digit cold at least for a week. That won’t be fun.

And that, for this week, is the not so nasty news.
John

Shoulder One

Sunday, Jan 27

We published the blog at 10:38 p.m. after a series of computer problems.Star-studded sky shine tonight, by Evie Schuetz, taken over their playhouse in Kittitas Sunday night.

Her description is as priceless as her photo:

I thought it was extra special seeing Orion directly over the playhouse, and finding out that my brother Mike had been flying overhead on his way to Spokane around the time this photo was taken. His nickname has always been “The Shining Star,” so it seemed a bit magical.

Monday, Jan 28

My first call this morning was to the orthopedic surgeon, from Yakima, who diagnosed my left shoulder arthritis, in September of 2016. His assistant suggested I go instead to my doctor for an X-ray and a referral to a shoulder surgeon.

I got off the phone and called Patrice at the front desk in Cle Elum, WA. I knew my doctor was in the office today.

She set me up in Cle Elum for a 10:45 appointment with Dr. Norman Wood. John drove my car. We have a 45-minute drive to get there, and have to check in at 10:30 a.m.

Our drive up via I-90 was spectacular with Mt. Stuart (7,416’) reaching up above the nearby peaks of the Stuart Range backed by beautiful dark blue skies. The view cheered me through the pain I was suffering from my “fall.”

We were rushing to make my appointment, and while I had my camera along, we didn’t take time to pull off onto to the road’s shoulder to take a still shot. When I got home I wrote a request for such a photo from that location, and Lise McGowan offered me one. It is exactly the view, with added valley fog, taken last year, that she was happy to give me permission to display in our blog:Thanks, Lise McGowan, my photographer friend, for this lovely landscape view, using your talents of exposure and composure.

My appointment started on time in a part of the building we had not been in. There was a water break in the part where we normally go, and when they started work on that they found asbestos. That section is now encased in a plastic sheet.

The new exam room was nearly twice the size of what we would normally see.

I was weighed in at the least I have been in some time, 144.7#, and was ushered in for my vitals. I reported one change less in my medication list (by my cardiologist; now no Allopurinal required). Then the nurse took my blood pressure (it has been higher than usual). My pulse was up a little too, but temperature was fine. After an explanation of my problem, with my doctor, I was sent to the lab for two X-rays, and blood draw (for my normal monthly INR & K reading). That took a half hour and I returned to the examination room.

In not too long, Dr. Wood returned with the results and his suggestions. I showed him the bruise on my upper left arm. It was diagnosed from the X-ray as a strained or pulled muscle, although he thought he saw a small hairline crack at the ‘head’ of my Humerus bone, which is already a culprit for the severe arthritis I have, with bone-on-bone, bone spurs, and bone cysts. I first thought I might have broken off a bone spur with the impact. We didn’t see the X-ray, which was reviewed by my doctor and his P.A., but I will be able to get it on a CD later to review from medical records at our local hospital. (I picked it up the next day at the hospital in Ellensburg).

We drove back by Super 1 Pharmacy in Ellensburg, and I walked in for my prescriptions. They were amazingly inexpensive; both totaled $3.50. I went inside to get some water to take the first dose of each, right then.

Here is the evaluation of the X-rayed image, [provided with the CD of the image] by the Radiological Technician (Eric J. Lundstrom) at KVH: (1/29/19 10:23 am)

Reason for Exam:
(XR Humerus Min 2 Views Lt) fall

Radiology Report
Comparison: None

FINDINGS: There is no evidence of fracture, subluxation. Glenohumeral osteoarthritis with medial hypertrophic bony change in the humeral head. No radiodense foreign body or erosions. Osteoporosis.

IMPRESSION: No evidence of acute osseous abnormality.

Meanwhile, he wrote a prescription for pain using Prednisone for 6 days (Dose: 3/day for 2 days; 2/day for 2 days; and 1/day for 2 days) and Ultram for pain (an opioid) (Dose: 1-2 every 4 hours; no more than 6/day.

I’m adding two diagrams from the web to show the various parts of my shoulder involved and mentioned by my doctor, by the radiological technician in the radiology report, as well as in the informational links below.His last comment was that he is writing a referral to Dr. Frederick Matsen at University Hospital in Seattle. Dr. Matsen is the head person, but may (or may not) do my surgery. John and I will make that appointment to discuss my situation. Perhaps medical technology has improved the procedure since 2016, when it was recommended (by my then Cardiologist) that I not consider it for the life-threatening possibility of complete sedation with my heart issues. Or, maybe they can provide a superior local to get me through the surgery without endangering my life. My Primary Care Doctor had his own complete shoulder replacement done by this same surgeon in 2017.

Below is an exciting (to me, anyway) biographical description of him. I like it that he is interested in outdoor recreation and music, and in performing less invasive surgery.

Dr. Matsen Biography

Below is a video of ~ 28 minutes
It’s a close-up Look – Not for the faint of heart or someone who doesn’t want to see blood. This is a very informative presentation, so a person knows exactly what will be done during their surgery. It was done a few years ago, so there maybe some changes.

Close-up of an Actual Shoulder Surgery

Dr. Richard Matsen has a blog on line (see link below). It has over 1 million followers!

Dr. Matsen’s Blog

This is a short, one minute, 12 second, statement by Dr. Matsen explaining their team’s different procedures of regular and reverse shoulder replacement. Just a discussion; no diagrams.

Short Arthritic Shoulder Replacement Description

Here’s an informative write-up (discussion with photos) of Shoulder Joint Replacement from the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons:

AAOS- Shoulder Joint Replacement

A one minute, nice video of the procedure, by arthritis health (click on the triangle to the left of the title on the video):

Animation of Shoulder Replacement

I have more than enough reading material to digest before going to our consultation with Dr. Frederick A. Matsen III, M.D.

Tuesday, Jan 29

John left early for pruning at White Heron.

I have now, this morning, restarted uploading this video from Nick on the Rocks, the last of the programs Thursday night 1/24/19, published in last week’s blog. On the original upload, the blue screen of death appeared right at the finish of the couple hour upload, saying my PC had problems and was being restarted. When it returned, I had a message from YouTube that the link was still uploading and I would be able to refresh and continue. That never happened – would not allow it. I was so busy dealing with my shoulder issues yesterday that I never had time to get out and delete the bad file to reload under a different title.

When it is working, I will correctly update the new link in last week’s blog, but meanwhile I had to notify those few folks I’d already sent the bad link to. I have now re-sent the corrected link on the blog, with the revised update, as follows:

New Upload – Great Ripples of the Scablands

I dressed to go to KVH to sign for and pick up (no cost) my shoulder X-rays on a CD that were taken yesterday. Then we went to the AAC center to pick up winter boots left for me there by my friend, Anne, from her time at the community clothing exchange. It is open on Saturday, but we did not want to drive in just for these. Used winter boots given to me.

Also we went for purchases at Bi-Mart and to Super 1 for needed groceries. Lastly, we drove by a friend’s house who was returning my loaned rice bag, because her family bought her one. I was happy to receive it back to be able to be able to alternate heat and iced ones on my shoulder joint. The one heats up in 2 minutes in the microwave but cooling the other takes a lot longer in the freezer.

Wednesday, Jan 30

John left early for pruning at White Heron.

Called Cle Elum regarding values of my INR & K drawn there Monday, 1-28-19, the same time and lab in Cle Elum, when the X-rays were taken.

Page did the draw and filled the blood vials for each, to send to KVH lab for analysis (I doubted it was in time to connect with the courier until Tuesday morning, so I predict it won’t get delivered until Tuesday afternoon, for access, analysis, and the radiological evaluation report not accessible until Wednesday. We had to return to Ellensburg for my two meds, and in hindsight, I should have sped up the process by carrying it by the lab. All the staff knows me well there.

I planned to stay home all day Wednesday, so I was available for the reporting. The nurse only has access to the blood tests results, however, and not to the X-ray evaluation.
Page (the Cle Elum phlebotomist) also put a drop on the pin prick machine and got a reading of 3.2. I’m never comfortable with that method because of the calibration often not agreeing with the blood draw results; however, it was confirmed to be the same.

Then Samantha updated Dr. Wood’s standing order in the system with Diane’s help. I guess it had expired, but now is fixed.

I was hurting worse yesterday, but maybe because I was feeling better this morning I did too many things too soon with the left arm. I drove to town today Tuesday, to see if I could drive. I have not been driving since before the fall/and jamming my shoulder and apparently straining, pulling, or stretching? my shoulder muscles. I have a bruise too, on the top front probably from hitting the metal on the bottom of a flipped-up theater seat, which I must have hit on my way down to the riser where it was connected, and the spot I ended up sitting, facing forward. A young student was next to me and pulled me up by my right arm. John was in front of me, because I was behind him with one camera on the tripod and one hand-held from the seat above on the riser. I could not drive home, so we switched seats for the return trip.

Thursday, Jan 31

Missed knowing about this in time to view early a.m. to the east. Link to story is below:

Moon joins Venus and Jupiter

We had noticed the proximity of two planets over the past few nights.

John went to prune grapes. It was cold.

I called for Lacey, the triage nurse in Cle Elum. Needed to have her consult with my doctor about refilling orders to get me through the weekend to be at Super 1 Pharmacy this afternoon, just the Tramadol and 3 Tablets of 50mg of Prednisone.
John drove to town alone. He will pick up the rest on Monday, late in the day.

I called Dr. Richard Roux’s local number 925-4114 about my request for the 2016 September X-rays to be sent to the shoulder surgeon referral in Seattle. Shelly transferred me to Medical Records in their Yakima office.
Felicia there suggested getting them out for me to carry with me to Dr. Matsen, when I go for my consultation. She will be coming to the Ellensburg office next Wednesday, and I can pick up there between 1:00 and 3:00 at the NW Orthopedics clinic, saving me a trip to Yakima. That made me very happy.

If you are interested in shoulder health updates, let me know. I’ll email them too, if preferred, or if you want off the update list, let me know that too. I won’t be offended.

Friday, Feb 1

Went to Ellensburg for 3 more tablets of Prednisone for Monday’s a.m. dose. Go back in afternoon to receive and pay for the entire purchase, and pick up the remaining 6 tablets.

From there, we went to Fred Meyer for special prices on Red Baron pizza, getting the allowed 5 ($1.99/each), and then 10 bottles of Gatorade for a price of 69₵ each. Places such as this are expecting folks to have smart phones and ‘texting’ so as to encourage “engagement” with them. We do neither except when an ad in the newspaper shows a sale on something we want. Then the clerk has to go through extra steps because we do not have a digital coupon.

On home by 3:00. We had a nice warmed piece of Kirkland fruit cake from the freezer that John had cut up from a December purchase at Costco.

Saturday, Feb 2

Morning fog filling the Kittitas Valley and engulfing Ellensburg.
The photo is from the highway camera near the ridge top, about 2,300 feet.

We live on the far side of the fog. We had minimal fog at our location, so the sun was streaming through. We enjoy our home’s elevation (2,240’) because we frequently get sun when the fog starts a mile or so south of us.

We read the morning paper too late to get into a show at the Planetarium at Science II building at CWU. This article announces it (we are friends with Bruce Palmquist, the columnist from our days in Lind Hall with the Physics and Geology departments). His column is in the Saturday paper. Because of monetary concerns, this year they stopped publishing the Daily Record on Fridays, and combine the two days to come out on Saturday.
In the Thursday part of the above, Bruce mentions the planets shown in the image I’ve included above.

Sunday, Feb 3

There is a 7 lb. rolled pork roast in a slow oven. Dinner and beyond. This one has been in the freezer since an end-of-year gathering of the music group was cancelled in 2017. John figured it was time.

Brunch for me was sausage, eggs, toast, and peaches. John had toast much earlier, so now had just sausage and peaches. Afternoon snack, warmed Fruitcake.
Dinner: Roast pork with mushroom/onion gravy, carrots, tomatoes, Yukon gold potatoes, and slices of a Honeycrisp apple. Now the left-overs have to be cared for.

Our weather is getting colder, such that after Monday we won’t get above freezing for several days. The cold is moving into the Seattle are too, and they may get snow at sea level. Meanwhile, friends down at South Lake Tahoe are goings to get snow 2 or 3 feet deep. Above 7,000 feet in the nearby mountains there may be 8 feet of snow. Yikes!

Hope your week was fine.
Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan