Friday, July 18, 2014

This and that

Saturday July 5th
After bringing Helen and William to the airport so very early in the morning I didn't really have any plans but then Sarah called asking whether I would go to the Southside Farmers market with her. I always like farmers markets so I went to her house and we went together. I really really liked it and will go again for sure. I brought back Padron peppers (or very similar) and look what tapas we had before dinner.

Monday July 7
Sarah had to work pm so she came for lunch. She likes to take "official" photos of Caleb once a month and a piece of fabric from my stash is usually the background.

She had to go in later then usual and it didn't seem worth it to drop Caleb off at the day care. So he took a nap at Omi's.

Tuesday July 8
CR quilters meeting. I gave the program on "crazy quilts - traditional and stack+whack".
I borrowed Sarah's quilt to show the traditional method. I had written a blog about it here.

This is the stack+whack quilt I had started in Singapore to incorporate a lot of my lace-bits.

We decided to do a workshop doing this in Fall. You can easily make 12 blogs in about 3 hours.

Show and tell! (I forgot to take a photo of the BOM "block of the month" though)

Show and tell also in the evening at the church mice meeting.

Ha-ha, and this I found on Facebook!   ...   Really?

Thursday July 10
Stitchers for a cause: my project ... I am making progress. I had decided on the patterns for some more rows and made them. Now the question in what sequence to arrange them. Makes a big difference.

Friday July 11
This was a very happy day! VERY HAPPY DAY! Early in the morning James had an appointment with a new orthopedic doctor ... across the river.
Here is what he wrote to his siblings:
Yesterday I met with a different orthopedic doctor. I didn't realize at first how specialized they are. The one I had been seeing is a general orthopedic doctor, the new one only works with ankles and feet so was much more knowledgable and confident in my case.

First he said that the treatment I got in Seville was excellent and the plate, screws etc that were used are exactly what he would have done here. He praised the work of the Spanish surgeon.

He then said that the bones had healed well and that it was already time to remove two of the screws. They had done their job and were already getting loose.

Next he told me I could walk on my leg without the boot/brace that I have had to wear ever since I got back from Spain.

He also said that I can expect an excellent recovery and that hiking etc will not be a problem­čśŐ

He has scheduled the surgery for screw removal for July 23. It will be same day surgery, but I will have to have a general anesthetic even though the actual operation should only take 15 mins. His only possible problem might be finding a screwdriver to fit if the Spanish screws have a different head than he is used to. But since the medical report I brought from Spain says they are Smith & Nephew screws which is a US brand he thinks it will be standard.

He says I will be fine to go on the holiday we booked months ago to Croatia and Germany leaving here August 18.

We both felt very good about him. Before the visit I had made a list of things I wanted to discuss with him but after he had looked at the X-rays he came in and answered all the questions on the list before I even asked them! Before he left the room I went down the list and didn't have any more questions - so could not have been a better result.

Now I am hobbling about trying to build up strength again in the ankle and leg. It is still a bit swollen but he said that was normal and would get better with time.

So wonderful result. I am truly blessed in having a skilled doctor in Spain, and quicker than expected healing. Now life can start to get back to normal. I can drive, shower by myself and get up and down stairs.

Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers. We know they make a difference.
We had left at 8:30 and were back at 3:30 because he was also sent for pre-op things after lunch. But it all was so worth it.

We had been invited for dinner at friends' house at 5 (which was wonderful) and then the four of us went to the Ashland Coffee & Tea to listen to a band from Nashville. We had a great time because we love spending time with Barbara and Rob, wonderful people. And it really felt like a celebration since we had such good news.

Note: how small is the world? Helen knows the lead singer, especially his wife and child. The two mommies met in prenatal water aerobics together!
Would you like to listen to a little country music?
Video 1
Video 2
I am pretty sure videoing was allowed.

It's so funny though because the railroad goes smack through the middle of the town and every so often there is an Amtrack or a freight train you can see behind Barbara and Rob. It is not too noisy though and doesn't disturb the music.

Saturday July 12
Sarah has to work the weekend and we help Wade out by keeping Caleb in the morning. Such a hardship ha-ha-ha. Love playing with the little guy.
Video 1
Video 2

Of course having one (of our grandsons) doesn't mean you don't miss the other. Saturday evening we had a lovely experience because we did FaceTime with William. He was ready for bed and I read him a bedtime story showing him the book pages with the iPad. How cool is that?
I have to think more often now of my parents and how nice it would have been if we had had "the gadgets" way back then too. They were wonderful parents, parents-in-law, and grandparents! I must say though that even with the distance of 4000+ miles we made the best of it.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Astronomical Challenge

A girl has to have fun. I love to create. Helen and William had left. True, I should have done some housework ... get things back into order ... put the toys away. But where is the fun in that? I remember that my mother told me she would leave the girls' fingerprints on the glass door for weeks before cleaning it after we had left.
Well, so I gave myself time for sewing. Sophie challenged us on Block Lotto to participate in THIS.
Can you imagine NASA Astronaut Karen Nyberg made a quilt block in outer space up in the space station? There is more info on the NASA website!
I love how the video shows the challenges of the fabric and tools floating around in the weightless atmosphere.

There are so many sooooo mannnyy star blocks out there in the quilt world ... which one to choose?
Destiny! Look what this month's calendar photo is? Helen gives me a quilt calendar every year for my birthday.

The calendar block is 14 inches. The challenge is supposed to be 9 inch (9 1/2 unfinished).
9 divided by 7 ... awkward! So I just had to put a little more background around. I must say that I like the vibrant colors.

I was not so proud about my corners (not meeting perfectly) but I decided to leave it up to the receiver whether they want to use it ... and actually mailed it off.
I was supposed to write my name with a marker onto the block though. This felt like graffiti to me and I didn't like to do it. But the good born-German I am, I stuck to the rules.

I wonder whether I will ever see it again.
Note: my father would be proud. He loved Space-travel and all about it, the stars, the moon, the constellations. When he came to the USA to visit us we took him to Cape Canaveral. He was "on the moon" or "in seventh heaven" (sorry, couldn't help it).
Another time when he was visiting the girls and I had a girl scout event where a female astronaut was present. I took a picture of him next to her and it was standing forever on a shelf above his bed (I wished I could find it. That was before digital time).
He will be smiling down on us because I think Helen his granddaughter is participating too.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Visitors - part 3


Auntie Sarah has to work in the morning today. So, after a good breakfast with scrambled egg and sausage Helen William and I head out to the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden. William is all excited about wanting to see butterflies and his mother thinks the Water Play (splash pad) would be fun.
We were half way when we remembered that we forgot hats. U-turn! This is not a day to wander around hat-less. And this time William does not object ... and he does look cute. Parked and on the way. Thanks to reciprocal rules (members at Cheekwood) we only have to pay for William $7 (just turned 4 year olds are expensive).

We went straight to the butterflies.

You have to watch because some butterflies land even on the path. There are puddles from the misting and some just seem to struggle in their last hours.

This one (which didn't look that good any more) I let climb on my finger and then put it on the flower. It seemed to drink (or eat?).

Outside the conservatory is a water garden. Some water lilies were blooming.

I love these water plants! When you look really carefully you can also see a frog. Quite large this one.

They are called "Water Mosaic" (ludwigia sedioides). So cool!

Helen's favorite flower is the sunflower as long as I can remember. She even bought herself china with a sunflower pattern in England years ago.

The splash pad was not a success. He didn't care for it. He rather wanted to go up to the tree-house.

You can see the treehouse in the background. We are on our way out. It is hot and muggy.

On the way home we pass the Sweet Frog. Passing it? Without stopping? William is delighted. He knows the word "brain freeze" though. But he doesn't squander a drop.

In the evening James and I babysit William and have a lot of fun. Mommy is having sister-time. They have gone to a "paint nite". Look at the photos they texted!

Friday - 4th of July - Independence Day

This is the last full day for our visitors with us. It started by William crawling into our bed.

Then Helen made blueberry pancakes for breakfast.

Helen had promised William to take him to the YMCA indoor pool (because this last few days were soooooooo hot and humid). She had called ahead to find out the opening times.

Unfortunately it was not open swimming after all. William was quite disappointed.

To make up for it we decided to go to Kroger for a few things. And that was a success.

We played ... and read.

... sat out on the front patio ... watered the hibiscus. Today was a lovely day with a wonderful breeze. A/C off, windows and doors open.

Suddenly Helen saw the painting of her dad and remembered that he was 4 years then. William is 4 now too and the hair seems similar ... so we decided to take a picture. I cleaned off the mantel and hoisted William up. He thought it was funny.

Closed mouth!

Helen, hurry up with the photos, ha-ha.

William was bored so the two of us went on a little walk in the neighborhood (while mommy was packing the suitcase). The geese are back. On the way back we jumped over the goose poop on the sidewalk. You can find fun everywhere.

At about 4pm we went to Sarah and Wade who had a cook-out for their friends. So funny how the scene had changed from previous years ... babies and small children and lots of toys around.

William is saying good-bye to Caleb.

We didn't play much more at home. William was ready to go to bed. So we played in the bathtub and then did some reading in his bed. He was asleep fast.

Saturday! Wake-up at 4:50am. William woke up smiling when Helen said it was time to fly to Pops. He was chatting and singing all the way to the airport in his seat in the back.

Safe travels!
I think we all had a great time!!! (Probably this statement would need more exclamation marks).
A shame that Ben couldn't come too but we are grateful that he did do without his wife and son for a week.