Tuesday, January 31, 2012

On our way to Catalina Spa and RV Resort in Desert Hot Springs

Virginia is in Respite Care for 5 days and we have a spot at Catalina Spa in Desert Hot Springs. We arrived at this lovely resort at 4:30 pm. Pictures tomorrow. The drive up was very easy and uneventful. The weather is gorgeous. The valley is warm, but there is snow on the high mountain peaks around us. We are looking forward to exploring this part of the Coachella Valley.

Before we left, V was safely delivered to the rehab hospital for her 5 days of respite care. She seemed happy to be able to give us a bit of time away. Thank you, Virginia!

The road to Desert Hot Springs

Wind Turbines

Turbines on the hill

Like soldiers, marching down the valley.

They look as if they are on the bridge

Lined up

Solar Farm

Solar and wind

Monday, January 30, 2012

Off to Respite Care

I recommend the book "The Help". It did very well at the SAG awards and is well worth the read. The movie is also wonderful. If you buy from my site, remember that proceeds go to Breast Cancer Society in the name of Virginia.

After a discussion with V's hospice nurse this morning, V has requested to go to Respite Care for 5 days. She will go to one of the facilities that is accredited by Silverado Hospice. Hopefully, it will be in the local area. We may take the opportunity to go away for a few days. Carolyn will step in to see to V's needs while she is there. The cortisone into her hip did nothing to ease the pain, so she has spent the day in bed resting. We are now just waiting for a bed. Hopefully she will get placement in the next 2 to 3 days. In the meantime, I am still staying over on the sofa bed.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Big Brunch, Bread and a drive up to Julian

I am still staying at Virginia's as the cortisone into her hip has not worked at all. She is unable to put any weight onto her right leg and even turning it slightly is very painful for her. 

Welcome to new readers tlong and kcgaz.

It was such a stunning day today. We went to the Brunch at the Chateau. What a spread! This is like no other Retirement Home I have ever been to. Here are some photos of the choices and some of the wonderful staff.
Dessert table. They also had Brandied Apples on Vanilla Ice Cream. Yum!

Michael at the Salad Bar. There was some very good seafood salad.

Prime Rib or Ham

Veal stuffed cannelloni, Lamb cutlets, Popcorn Shrimp, Fried clams, veggies and all the trimmings

Breakfast Bar. Eggs, bacon, pancakes, waffles, french bread,  Hash Browns sausage

The omelette bar. Great fillings.

Looking into the dining room

Looking through the dining room toward the fountains and V's condo beyond that

Families enjoying brunch with their aged parents

After brunch we loaded V and her wheelchair into the car and drove east to Julian, stopping off at Dudley's Bakery on the way.

San Diego Zoo, Safari Park in Escondido

Dudley's Bakery in Santa Ysabel

Wheeling V in the wheelchair

Building in Julian

Nick's Knacks

Just 2 Cowgirls

Julian Hotel

Bikers everywhere

Line up outside the Julian Bakery for apple pies

Corner Store

Restaurant and gft shop

Orange groves on the way home

Young orchard

Oranges everywhere

Avocadoes on the hillside

iPad Apps, Tips and Tricks

Now has some App information on it. Click here to read. many of these apps are also available for Android phones and tablets.

Friday, January 27, 2012

My sister's blog

My (very much younger) sister has a blog, Headuponastone.blogspot.com. She is a Quaker and has started a blog about her spiritual search and her experiences with Quakerism. She was also born in Rhodesia and then went to University in South Africa (Rhodes University) and became a journalist. On a cruise with our parents around South Africa back in the 70's they met Virginia....yes, the same Virginia. Virginia assisted her in coming to the US to do her Master's degree in Washington DC. After she finished University she stayed in the US, managing to get a job in the South African Embassy, and then with a South African newspaper. Eventually she met her husband, Simon, a Brit, who is also a journalist and involved in the news media in South Africa. They live in Maryland with close links to Washington DC. The link to her blog is above. Hope you enjoy it as much I do. P.S. It is her birthday today (the 27th) so this plug is for her.

Welcome to new reader, Mike Mills.

Spring has Sprung....well, in SoCal anyway

It is so warm here in North San Diego County that the trees are all blooming. High of 26C tomorrow. Fantastic.

Tree in bloom near the dining room at the Chateau
Virginia had the injection of cortisone into her hip joint today this was done in the radiology department of the Tri-Cities Hospitals in Vista/Oceanside. She is still being transported in the wheelchair, but we are hopeful that she will be able to put weight on that hip soon. 

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Not such good news

Virginia is not doing too well with the pain in her hip We had her to the doctor today who gave her another intramuscular cortisone shot and he has arranged for V to have a cortisone shot directly into her hip. That is arranged for tomorrow at the hospital. Hospice has given us a wheelchair to transport her around. Mentally she is alert, it is the pain which is making her life difficult at the moment. So again, no blog post from her today.

One good thing we did today was to get the forms filled in by the doctor, so that we can put her name onto the waiting list for Assisted Living at the Chateau.

Welcome, to Rick and Kathy and Jackie new readers of our blog.

What a beautiful day it is!

Hot and sunny. We are taking V to the doc today as she is experiencing more pain in her hip. The back seems to be a bit better. So we are getting the necessary forms filled for her to move into Assisted Living right here in the chateau complex.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Busy Day

Early this morning we got a call from Carolyn, another of Virginia's "adopted" daughters, to say that she could not get an answer from V's phone. Yesterday we had moved the office around to put the new sofa bed along the long wall, moved all her computer equipment onto the big desk and sorted various things out. In the move of the sofa we had hit the phone duplex connector. She has a Life Alert system connected to the phone so we had to get over to her condo as soon as possible to find out what had happened. When we got there we found her sitting at the dining table looking as fresh as a daisy, talking to her spiritual counsellor. He had tried earlier to contact her and after not getting an answer he had just opened the door, expecting to find her in a heap on the floor. Instead he had found her sitting at the table having her morning coffee, reading the paper.

I got onto the computer for a chat session with TimeWarner to come in and fix the phone connection and to move the Cable modem as she has phone through her cable.

I gave her breakfast and then we used the cell phone to make an appointment for manicure for both of us and a pedicure for me.

Off we went for the mani/pedicures. I love being pampered.

Virginia getting her acrylic nails fixed and filled.
My foot being tended to by Kim
On the way home from the salon we stopped off at Fry's Electronics and picked up a new phone duplex connector and an ethernet cable which we used to replace the stuff on the phone and internet connection, and we got the phones in the condo working again so could cancel the $40 service call from Time Warner.

Then V's realtor called to say that the tenant in her house in Oceanside had locked herself out, so Michael and I jumped in the car and raced over there to open the door for her. By the time we got back to V's condo, I was just in time to get her dressed for dinner....so no blog from her today.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Virginia will be making a post.....

....as soon as I can get her in front of the computer. She is so much better that I have left her alone for the night for the first time in almost 2 weeks.

We spent the day moving the office in V's condo around to accommodate the new sofa bed. This entailed taking all the computer stuff off the computer desk and putting it onto the other desk, and then reconnecting everything. Quite a job! We will sell the old computer desk.

I am back in the Seneca, trying to get the WiFi Ranger set up. Using my Droid cell phone tethered to my Mac at the moment.

We are thinking of taking a few days off to go to either Desert Hot Springs or up to Pismo Beach. Need to check the weather reports as I do not want to go anywhere that may have rain.

Come back tomorrow, I may have a note from V!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

The sun is shining again

Yesterday was a very blah day. It rained Friday night and was pouring in the morning when I went over to V's to relieve the caregiver. V is so much better now that she has been taken off the morphine. Man, she was a zombie! Now we just have to deal with the pain via methods other than morphine. There are decisions to be made about her care, long term.

A couple of days ago, we heard that Virginia's old neighbour in Ocean Hills was selling a sofa bed, so yesterday we managed to find someone to transport it to San Marcos, where she lives now. I slept on it last night and I must say that for sofa beds it was pretty comfortable. I slept like a log. It is a full queen size and miraculously fitted into the space in her office.

The Canadian couple who were reported missing are still missing. Here is a news article which gives more details. There is also a photo of the two. They were heading to Yuma, so please everyone, be on the lookout for them. I feel that they may have gone to Quartszite, or into Mexico.

"Police in Weslaco said the couple is travelling in a 2006 grey GMC 3500 four-door pickup with Ontario licence plate number 9906TH. And they're towing a trailer with plate number A8272F. There may be a red canoe on the roof of the pickup, and their small dog should be with them."

Bruce and Linda Stewart. Missing.

Please pass this on.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Hanging out in San Marcos

Not much to report today. Just taking care of Dear Virginia. We have had to take her off the slow release morphine as it was just too powerful for her. She is just a little scrap of a thing. 100lbs soaking wet. Visits by RN and Hospice Dr.

Nice sunny day, but cool. I overheard someone say, "It's freezing!". They don't know what freezing is! At least there was no ice this morning. That's all for today. Maybe I should have spent some time adding information to some of my pages, like the one about iPad Apps and tips. It is much more fun to sit and chat.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Freezing, Fish and Followers

I was up early this morning so that I could be at Virginia's home before the caregiver left. I noticed when I got out to the car that there was ice on the roof and the windshield. Of course we were snug inside, especially with our Sunbeam Heated Mattress Pad. We have found that it uses very little electricity and works better than an electric blanket.

Ice at the bottom of the windshield after I used the wipers

Ice at the top of the windshield and on the roof
The day with V was quiet as she slept most of the day. In the late afternoon we decided that she was well enough to go out for dinner, so off to The Fish House Vera Cruz in San Marcos. Michael had the Scottish Salmon, I had Rock Fish and V had a small lobster tail. Absolutely delicious.

I would like to welcome our newest followers, Barry and Denise, Hembree, Allen and Lolita, Nan, Jessica and Harry, John and Bridget, Bob and Jo, and if I have missed anyone, please forgive me.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

ABC = Amazon for Breast Cancer

Just a quick note that I have decided to donate all Amazon income for January to June, to the Breast Cancer Society, This for Virginia.

Are you kidding me??

My weather widget says it is going down to 1C tonight. For you Americans that is 33.8F. Just look over to the top right >>>>>>>

Quick update on V. The caregiver last night was great. I arrived there this morning and V was sitting up at the dining room table, reading the paper. All that was left for me was to get her breakfast for her, give her her morning meds and then she went back to sleep for a few more hours. We are going back later to get her dressed for dinner and take her to the dining room. Escort Service will bring her back to the condo. Jonie comes back in at 9:00 pm.

I am in the RV and updating my blog (as if you didn't know). I have added a page of links to Shopping Flyers and Coupons. I am starting off with the USA, but will add Canada soon as well.

I am still working on review of the WiFi Ranger as I am actually not sure if I have set it up properly. Didn't have much time over the past few days. Now what was it that I was doing?

7:00 pm
We got back to the Chateau to get V ready for dinner and she met us at the mailboxes. She was walking with her walker, a little spaced out from her new pain meds (maybe we need to reduce it just a little as she is such a tiny lady) but she does say that she feels she has "turned the corner". Good news! We may not need the night caregiver beyond tonight. We are so happy!

Monday, January 16, 2012


After yesterday in the ER we are making progress as far as V's health needs are concerned. Twice a week with Hospice (V does not qualify for 24/7 hospice). A caregiver for overnight needs and days will be taken of with family and friends. Pain medication has been changed. Plans for the future have been discussed between V and I. So I am sleeping at home tonight, with the assurance that someone will be with her.

Later I will post a review of the Wifi Ranger which I installed last week.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Sleepless in San Marcos

There has to be something broken.

We are in ER of Tri-Cities in Vista. XRays done, we are waiting for the verdict.

No fracture but very inflamed joint. Lots of awful arthritis exacerbated by the fall. Home care 24/7 has been arranged for the next few weeks. Pain meds will be increased. She has slight CHF so diuretics given. Hope this does the trick.

Thanks to my blogging community for all the hugs and prayers.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

I am not going to discuss last night

Suffice to say that V no longer has any plumbing issues. So onward and upward, and once more into the fray, dear friends, and other such catchy phrases. I am going back to bed until I hear her wake up.


We are up, showered and breakfasted. Today is a new day. It is cloudy and cool today, so I guess we will just veg out and watch videos and catch up on some sleep. Michael came over for a visit and has left to go and do some shopping. I think he is lonely. I am going over to the Lake San Marcos Resort Inn to find out if we would be able to park the RV there as it is only a stone's throw from V's residence. I saw a small B class parked there for about a week, so there's no harm in asking. Would be very convenient. They are in foreclosure, so maybe they will need the money. I will go on Tuesday to speak to the manager, Monday being Martin Luther King Day.

Watching Lawrence Welk on TV. It can't get much more exciting than that! I am staying over at V's again tonight.

Now we are watching "Waiting for God" on PBS. I am getting depressed.

Friday, January 13, 2012

I don't know what to title this post

Our poor Virginia is just not well. The cortisone does not seem to be reducing the pain. She is unable to get out of bed or get dressed without help. I have made the committment to her to be over early in the morning until she is able to take care of herself again. She is taking so many pain killers that it is causing problems in the plumbing department, so we have bought some stuff to resolve that. I have pretty much spent the whole day over here while Michael has been home alone.

So nothing to report in the RVing adventure. Except that the weather is wonderful. Shorts and T shirt weather until the sun goes down then it cools right down and very quickly, too! I see Toronto had snow today. I am glad I am not there for that reason, but missing the kids and grands a LOT!

6:29 pm
I am staying over tonight at V's as she will possibly need help to get up during the night and definitely will need the help in the morning.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

WiFi Ranger

We are awaiting the arrival of our Wifi Ranger Pro today in the quest for better internet. We'll see if this works. If not it goes back.

After lunch we go over to pick V up for a dentist appointment and a bit of shopping. She has not called us this morning, so I am presuming that all is well and she has managed to get herself out of bed and dressed.

8:00 pm
When we got to V she was up, but still in pain in her back, so she called her doctor who upped her oral dose of cortisone. A sleep, more analgesics and she was feeling better this afternoon.

We did a bit of shopping for her and bought a router for her computer. This was so that we and my sister can go onto the computer when we are at her house.

Our Wifi Ranger arrived and I have set it up. So far so good, We are picking up the campground wifi very easily. We did not buy the exterior antenna, but this may be a future purchase.

So a quiet day doing chores and caring. Nothing too exciting to report!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

What a difference a day makes!

Miss V is so much better today. That cortisone shot she got yesterday has started to work and she is so much more mobile. She even put on makeup after her shower. This evening we will load her gently into the car and we are going to have a light dinner with friends. I am heading back to the RV now for a nap.

10:00 pm We have just got home from a lovely evening out. V is improving by the minute. She got herself all togged up in a beautiful outfit that she bought in Palm Springs in December. Pure determination got her out the door and into the car. She is one spunky lady! We had supper over at a friend's house in Vista. Lovely home made split pea and ham soup with herb focacchia bread. Wine and a bit of Bailey Coffee flavoured liqueur. We were in fits of laughter over recounting our disastrous Christmas Day Adventure. It was not so funny when it happened, but now in re-telling the tale we were all crying with laughter. Isn't that odd?  Must be some kind of coping mechanism. Of course that started up the other tales of lost cars in parking lots and other related happenings. I think everyone was trying to outdo our story, they did not even come close.

We are so happy that V is feeling so much better. Thanks to everyone for your prayers and good wishes. God is good!

What adventure awaits us tomorrow hmmmm?

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

An Exhausting day.

Welcome to those who have joined our blog recently. Please forgive me if I don't name you personally, but I do appreciate you all.

Today has been an very tiring day. V was unable to get out of bed this morning due to the intense pain in her lower back. I gave her some morphine, a cup of tea and a bowl of apple sauce. She has a hospital bed, so I got her sitting up. We called Hospice and they sent a nurse around immediately. What an amazing organization. The nurse did an assessment and between us we got her up and shunted her around on her walker. In the meantime, Dee from Chase Bank had arrived and was busy in the office with moving all the pre-authorized bill payments. We managed to get V dressed and between us all we got her into the car. By now the morphine had kicked in and she was feeling a bit more comfortable.

The doctor was so good with her and checked her over, dressed her skin tears and said that he believed that her arthritis had overwhelmed her. He gave her a shot of cortisone and we went home. We stayed at the Chateau for dinner, which was ordered in from the dining room, watched some TV together and I got her ready for bed. When we left she was actually starting to walk on her own with the help of the walker. I am back there early tomorrow morning. Her PCW will be in as well to give her her shower.

I just dread to think what is going to happen when we have to leave at the end of March.

Thanks to all for your prayers. She is thrilled when I read all the comments. I may not reply to them all, but rest assured that I read them and appreciate them more than I could ever say. Praying that tomorrow will be better for our dearest V!!

Monday, January 09, 2012

Nursing Miss Virginia

Virginia was not good today. I left Michael again and went over to her place at about 11:00 am. She was in a lot of pain and was in bed, having brought up her early morning medication and coffee. She had called Hospice and the nurse arrived about midday. After an intensive assessment she called the Doc who ordered morphine for the pain, which she was given. Back to bed, while I did some banking for her, took a time out at Starbucks, and ordered her new Disabled Person Parking Placard, which had been lost or stolen from her car.

I made her some soup for an early supper and left with the assurance that "I will be back" in the morning.

I have to tell you this, because I am totally impressed with Chase Bank. She is the process of switching from Bank Of America to Chase Bank because it is much closer to where she lives. The person she has been dealing with at Chase Bank is called Dee, she is the wife of our agent in Escondido, Justin. We were not able to finish the transfer of bill payments as I do not know V's password, so Dee is coming to V's home tomorrow to finish the transfer on V's computer. That to me is absolutely amazing!!

After that we are going to see V's Dr in Vista. He is a fantastic physician and Virginia loves him to bits. I don't know if it is professional to say his name, but it is Dr Kaveh Farhoomand. He makes each patient feel as if they are his only patient. A bit quirky, but has a wonderful sense of humor. I think his motto is "Laughter is the best Medicine".

So we live each day as it comes, and be joyful for whatever that day may bring. Sorry no photos today.

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Did you feel the earthquakes this weekend??

Click on the heading above for news of the earthquake.

We didn't feel it. It was in the Coachella Valley and was felt from Indio all the way down to Oceanside.

Today we were woken early by a call from Virginia who was feeling down. So we went over to her place and found her in pain again. We all decided to take her out for a drive to get her mind off her ailments, do a bit of shopping and go for a drive to the beach, so after some more analgesics we bundled her and her walker into the car. Target was our first stop for a nice clock for above her mantle, a new scale and some other odds and ends. Then we carried on down to Encinitas and stopped off at Moonlight Beach. A short walk to a bench for her to get some fresh air and a good view. She seemed to enjoy sitting in the fresh air and filling her lungs with the salt air. The cool breeze came up and chased us home.

Virginia and Michael 
Moonlight Beach
Playground and Beach side houses

Saturday, January 07, 2012

We have been approved!!

I have become an Amazon Affiliate (as if you didn't know it from our  ads on the page). So if you want to buy anything from Amazon and you are not using your son's, daughter's, other dear friend or relatives affiliate account, please go to my Amazon links on my page and use that to go to Amazon. We would appreciate it!

My Amazon Store

Thank you!

Sun glasses, pelicans and surfers.

Up late this morning and it was foggy! Or was it a Marine Layer?

Michael had dropped his Cocoon sunglasses in Ruby's yesterday. I called the restaurant last night and they had found them! Fancy that!! someone actually handed them in and did not just pocket them. A quick drive down to the pier and as we pulled into the $5.00 a day parking lot,  a family was leaving and they very kindly handed their ticket over to us. It is valid until midnight. Probably illegal, but hey, $5.00 is $5.00!!

The fog was lifting and the sun was coming out. Another beautiful day. The waves are still high and there was another batch of photographers out. I took some more pictures on the pier and found these young pelicans on the railing hanging around the bait shop.

....and yes, I did pass our parking ticket on to someone coming in.

Brrrr, low of 3C (37F) tonight. Turn on that electric mattress pad!

Morning crowds on the pier watching the surfers

Young male and young female pelicans

Lots of pink and 1 yellow starfish on the bottom of the pier pylons

Hoping for handouts

Close up

Happy to have his sunglasses back