Tuesday, December 29, 2020

August 2020 Recap

 It is the end of December now and still trying to catch up. 

Hello August. This piece was inspired by @Wensdimade on Instagram. I did mine on my I pad Pro with Procreate. 

The wild sunflowers in our backyard were even bigger then last year. I love sunflowers but this was way too much. I could not even see the path to the back of the yard and they crowded out my Zinnias. I still enjoyed looking at them though.  

The month started out trying to sell my moms car. There was more damage then I thought on the passengers side so I kept getting lowballed. After 3 attempts I finally found a buyer. It was sad to see it go but I knew it was time. The guy that bought it seemed like a great guy too. It made me happy to know it would finally get some use. 

The 2nd and 3rd buyers for my dad’s rental houses walked. The 3rd buyer brought in a structural engineer and they came up with over $30,000 worth of damage??? I knew they were not in good condition but I never thought they were that bad. Our real estate agent wanted us to bring in her own structural engineer to see what he thought but wanted us to pay for part of it. She said she would go in half so I was okay with it. What he found was not good, we thought we were going to have to sell it for land value but then another buyer came in and said he would take them as is but for even less money. We were not happy about that but felt it was better to just be done with them at that point. We still had major problems ahead though. More about that in the next few updates.

In the meantime, I was continuing to look for places for my mom to go to once she got done at Skilled Nursing. I even looked into bringing her home with 24/7 care but most agencies wanted around $32.00 an hour. I don't know how anyone can afford that. The cheapest agency I could find was $6000.00 a month but that did not include the expenses to keep up the house. I also did not feel comfortable with the guy that ran the agency. He told me he could get people to be with her but wouldn't let me meet anyone first or give me more information about them. He was also not very professional. I had to ask him to send me something in writing about what services he was offering and they were all done in a word doc. Very odd. My friend whose mom has Alzheimer has used him for over 8 years but even she said that did not sound right to her either. I could not find another way to afford to bring her home with care long term which made me sad.

The assisted living house I was thinking about sending her ended up having red flags too. I was talking to the the lady that runs it and she told me that they drugged one of their residents when she got out of control. I did not like hearing that especially after what happened with my dad. I ended up calling a few more places on my own because the people I was working with would not give me any other options. I found out that is because they only send you to people they have contracts with which sucks. I was still not able to find a place to take her because of her arm.

Mom was finally starting to like the SNF though and was not even asking to go home which made me feel better about her being there and I was thinking about looking into possibly keeping her there in their long term care but she got into a fight with her roommate and they had to call the police. I have conflicting stories on what happened. The case worker told me that the roommate pushed her or took away the wheelchair and they found my mom on the floor of the bathroom. She had a skin tear on her left leg but they said other than that she was not hurt. When I talked to her and asked her what happened she said the roommate woke her up hitting and kicking her?? I asked her how she ended up on the floor in the bathroom then and she said she did not know so I didn't know what to believe. I talked to my APS lady after that and she said she would let me know when she got the report but I don't think they ever filed one. They did end up separating them and put her back in her own room again which made her not want to be there again. The weird thing was they told me she and the roommate were friends and were planning their escape together. It was like dealing with children, but you cannot just pick them up and put them in their room. The roles have reversed, and I hate it. I was finally able to get a photo of the wound on her arm. They thought it was looking much better, I thought it still looked awful and was really worried that is was never going to heal. They ended up changing the way they were taking care of it and it finally started to look better. Shortly after that mom got a discharge date from the SNF for August 20th because they said she had "plateaued" and Medicare wouldn't pay to keep her there any longer. I decided to go ahead and try the assisted living house but found out it was not available anymore because the person that was leaving decided to stay. They said there was a room in another house and was going to take that one but when she sent me the paperwork to sign the first thing I saw was a page saying that they could drug her with antipsychotic and anxiety meds. No way I was signing that especially after what happened with my dad and she knew that. I started frantically searching the internet to try an find her another place to go. We only had 3 days left at that point though.

I finally found a place on my own with Google's help called Juniper Village in Aurora. It looked like a great place. After I told them what happened they did everything they could to get her out of the SNF in time. They even furnished the room for her. I had gone over the day before to take her some of her things from the house to make the room more familiar for her when she got there and had a good feeling while I was there. I should have known it was to good to be true though. They kept telling me when they were selling me on the place that they "over communicate" which I was very happy to hear. Trying to get information about my mom in the places she has been before this had been very difficult so I was really happy to hear that. Unfortunately that was not true. I never heard from anyone after her arrival, I was told I was going to be getting photos and videos of her day and never got those either. I was at least expecting to hear from the doctor there so we could discuss the ongoing wound care she was going to need and her meds and never heard from him. I found out later they fired the wellness director that day. What are the chances of that happening? It was not no excuse for the lack of communication. I was originally going to use Hospice with her but they told me to wait until he evaluated her to decided on that. I was able to talk to her after she got there and she was not happy which was upsetting. She was telling me that there was nothing wrong with her and she did not need to be there and was going home. I was hoping she would at least have something good to say. I was starting to second guess myself again but I knew she could not go home either. We just didn't have the money for 24/7 care and keep the house going. She ended up saying she was getting a lawyer so I told her I was hanging up. I called back to talk to someone about how things were really going and they told me she was doing good. Said she had gone to a Luau earlier in the day. When I asked her what she had done she said nothing. I also found out her TV was not working. I brought it over so she could watch her movies. She loves TMC and they said they had cable. The guy I talked to said they were having someone out to fix it. I also found out they put her in 14 day quarantine again. That did not help anything. I thought she was not going to have to do that because they tested her. We finally got to see her on the patio the end of the month. It have been over 2 months since we last saw her in person. While we were there the doctor came over to talk to me, He did not think she needed wound care. He had a crazy idea to keep it closed with butterfly bandages even though it was still draining and wanted her to go back to the hospital as an outpatient to get it closed up with stitches?? I told him we didn't want to go back to anymore hospitals but he said he was calling the orthopedic surgeon she saw in the last hospital to talk to him about it. He also felt we didn't need to do anything about her other medical problems. On top of that he didn't want her using hospice and they refused to let them in to even evaluate her. He basically ruined the visit for me. I left there trying to figure out another option. On the way there the check engine light came on in the car. Luckily we were not far from the dealer. Turned out it was just a lose hose 129.00 later. :(

I was also continuing to deal with selling my dads properties. The 2 rental houses were set to close the first week of September. We got an offer on the commercial property as well but it was a lot less than the asking price and the hot water heater had gone out so more things to fix. The real estate agent thought we should accept the offer because it was an all cash and they said they would take care of the current tenants. My sister and I talked about it and agreed to see what happened, I was afraid that if we didn't take it the current tenant could walk and then we would lose it because we couldn't pay the mortgage. I also was still trying to decide what to with my moms house. I decided to get a few more opinions on what it was really worth before we made the decision on how to sell it. It turned out it was worth a lot less then we thought so decided to put that on hold until we finished with the other properties. Also once the house is sold there is no going back and that is going to be hard. I just wish they had done better with their money and they still owned all the properties free and clear. If they had done that she could be home with care. I just want my mom to be happy, in a place where I don't have to worry about her care but I can still be involved and see her. I am not sure if that is ever going to happen though.

On top of all this Indie did something to her eye and ended up back at the vet. She had a corneal ulcer not sure how that happened. Thankfully the meds they prescribed helped. She looked like Popeye though.

Things in my Etsy shop were slow but steady. I got this great photo from a return buyer of her new dog wearing my girl dog birthday hat. Isn't she adorable? She looks like my Lily and her name is Sophie too.

Finally I had some time to do this piece for the Florals and Praise for his glory challenge on Instagram. This verse came at the perfect time. I did mine on my I pad pro with Procreate.
Still hoping to be caught up by the end of the month.

Saturday, November 28, 2020

July Recap

Even though it is the end of November I am still trying to catch up. 

July should have started out with us celebrating Zoey's gotcha day but that didn't happen because instead I ended up sending my mom to a skilled nursing facility that was suppose to specialize in dementia/Alzheimer called Garden Terrace. The guy from the hospice told me about it and when I looked at the reviews it looked like a good place for her. I talked to them about her situation and they assured me they could handle her so I decided to send her there.  She did not go willingly but they finally got her there though. I finally got a call telling me she arrived but because she went in on a Friday and it was a holiday weekend we would have to wait until Monday to talk to a case worker. She would be also be in quarantine for 2 weeks which I was not happy about but nothing we could do about it.  She was not there long and I got a call she fell. Found out SNF don't use any kind of alarms which makes no sense. They consider them restraints? I think that is crazy. They would rather have people fall then try to prevent that from happening? Thankfully she was not hurt. I was told she would not have a phone in her room which I found kind of odd but she was still able to ask for one when she wanted to call us and she did that a lot, mainly to tell us to come and take her home. I had to tell them to stop giving it to her sometimes. I didn't like doing that but she was driving us crazy. Because she went in on a Friday and it was  holiday weekend we had to wait until the following Monday to talk to a case worker. That did not help anything. She was even more confused then usual and kept thinking she was at the health club or an abandoned office. I was finally able to talk to the case worker and they said I would be getting weekly updates. I told them that I wanted to talk to a doctor there as soon as possible but that took forever to happen. They had taken mom off of a lot of her meds at the hospital including the Aracept which she takes for the dementia because they thought that could have been causing the urine retention.  They also took her off the Gabapentin which helps her spinal stenosis and her ability to walk so I was trying to get her back on those things but it took awhile. I also wanted to go over her med list to see what else they took her off of.  I was never able to talk to a doctor there. The closest I got was the PA. I didn't get much out of her but she told me that she still would had to have 24/7 care from now on. I told her we could not afford that at home so was put in touch with the social worker who put me in touch with a placement service called Oasis to see what the other options were. They thought a group home would be a good fit for her. I had never heard of anything like that but I did a virtual tour of a few and was leaning towards one. It was a lot further than I wanted  though and when I told mom about it she said no. I also found out that her supplement would pay for up to 100 days after the first 20 from Medicare which is something that we did not get with my dad so that gave me time to see if we had any other options. I was also still looking into 24/7 care at home but the cheapest I found was around $6,000 a month and the caregivers slept at night. I also did not have a good feeling about the guy that ran the place plus we would have to continue to pay the house expenses too and that would be even more money we did not have.  I also got a text from the SNF one night out of the blue saying they had an active COVID case in the building. My heart dropped. I called to find out more information but nobody had any. I couldn't believe they would send out a text like that and not have more information. I had to leave a message with the GM because he went home for the night. Who sends a text like that and goes home? He called me back the next morning and thankfully it turned out not to be a big problem and was not in the building she was in. The guy from Compassus Hospice that saw her in the hospital was still calling to see how things were and was being somewhat helpful but that didn't last long. I had another hospice come and evaluate her Suntree Hospice this was the one I was going to switch my dad to but never got the chance and they said they would accept her too but not until she was out of skilled. You can't do both together. She was also starting to refuse physical therapy saying that her legs hurt to much to walk. I was hoping that once I got her back on the meds that would change. It did help some but she was not making a lot of progress and her mind just continued to get worse. They did have a wound care doctor and nurse coming to see her. I was not getting a lot of information about her wound either at first but was finally able to get some photos and it was starting to look better. They also had an appointment with the infectious disease doctor virtually but did not include me even though I asked many times to be part of that call. I was very upset about that along with all the other lack of communication. The APS lady who had been to the house to see us last month had called to see how things were and I told her what was going on. I had tried to get a hold of her at the last hospital but she was out of town so was really glad she called me. She was super nice and helpful and able to get the Ombudsman involved so we all had a care conference with the people at the facility and that helped some. I continued to try and figure out what to do next because I thought we still had time. That was not true though. 

In the meantime I was continuing to look for places for mom. We decided it was time to sell her car so we would have some money if we found a place. I went to the safe deposit box to get the title but they would not let me in even though I had taken my mom to the bank months before to get all that taken care of.  I had to get my sister to sign off on it and then mail back in the from which I did. They claimed they never got it. I ended up talking to the branch manager the next day and thankfully she was able to get them to let me in so I went back and I finally got it. Unfortunately the care was dead as a doornail from sitting in the garage so long but thankfully Rich was able to get it started with a new battery so I put it up for sale.  We also finally had someone interested in buying my dads rental houses. Unfortunately the deal fell through though because when they tried to go and see it the tenants would not let them in and they thought they smelled drugs? We were able to find another buyer after that but that one fell through too. 

If all this wasn't enough Indie got sick the end of the month. It started with a gurgle stomach like Lily use to have but nothing I tried was helping and things just continued to get worse. By the end of the week she was throwing up and had diarrhea.  I got my home vet to prescribe her some meds but they didn't work either so we had no choice but to take her to a vet office.  Because of the virus we could not go in with her though which I hated not being able to do but I had to get her help. Over $400.00 later they could not find anything really wrong. They put her on a different antibiotic, Pepcid, Probiotics and a shot of Cernia. I had to feed her tiny amounts of bland canned dog food for days. It took a while but thankfully she finally started to get better. 

Things in my Etsy shop were pretty good. I got this great photo of a return buyers dog wearing my small boy dog party hat. His name is KJ. Isn't he adorable? 

The end of the month I finally had some time to complete one piece for the Florals and Praise for His Glory Challenge on Instagram.

With everything that happened this verse gave me hope that things could get better. Unfortunately that did not happen though. More about that in my next post. 

Friday, October 30, 2020

June Recap

Things with my mom have continued to be challenging and have delayed my catching up on the blog, Even though it is now the end of October, below is a summary of what happened in June.

The month started out okay. We were still taking care of mom at home but it didn't last long. She ended up back in another hospital again on the 5th. I had taken her to the Portor wound clinic that week for them to access it. They decided we should pack it with silver. I tried to get them to send a nurse to do it but once again Medicare would not pay so I had to do it myself. A few days later I was having trouble getting the packing in and then she started saying she was cold, shaking and could barely walk. I knew something was wrong so we had to take her back to the hospital. I could not believe this was happening again. When we got there I went in to get a wheelchair and when I came out it looked like a tornado. The wheelchair went rolling down the parking lot and I could barely see. It finally stopped and I got the wheel chair back and mom inside. She did not have a fever when we got there which surprised me but by the time they took her back she did. We sat in the ER for hours again until they decided to admit her for observation. That turned into another week in the hospital. During that time they were trying to decide if the infection was in the bone and not the bursa but never did an MRI to know for sure. They had someone go and evaluate her and then called me to ask the situation at home. I made the mistake of being honest with them telling them we needed more care for her there so they tried to force me to put her in skilled nursing by taking her rights away from her and calling APS. Once again I fought them. I still did not think she would be safe there. We ended up with another new doctor and he was a real asshole. The home health company we had before also dropped her. My uncle's caregiver told me about a hospice that might be able to help. I was very hesitant to use hospice again after what happened to my dad but decided to give them a call. They told me that they could help us and would try to get her qualified. In the meantime I found out they were giving my mom trazadone at night to help her sleep. I told them numerous times to not give her any meds like that especially without my knowledge so that was a big cause of her confusion and made me even more angry. The hospice finally got her qualified because of her low albium levels and they said that they would provide wound care everyday. They even told the doctor this. Another home health company had called me in the meantime saying they would provide care for her too. I decided to go with the hospice though because I thought I would be getting more care for her there. The doctor finally agreed to let her got without me signing the AMA. I finally got her out of there and was told a nurse from hospice would meet us there. When we got home I got a phone call from the lady that was helping me crying. She said they changed their minds and could not take her on after all. I could not believe what I was hearing she said she was going to figure something out and call me back. A little while later she said they changed their minds and were going to send out the nurse and evaluate her like planned. It took a long time but she finally showed up and took a history, checked her vitals, asked her some basic questions then said she needed to go to her car and make some calls. She drove away and never came back!!! She called my moms phone and said they could not provide us with hospice or palliative care. I could not believe what I was hearing. I had no home care for her at all now, the antibiotics were due tomorrow between 12-2 and I didn't have the right dose. They were suppose to provide them. There was nothing else I could do at that point except get through the night and try and figure it out the next day. Thankfully she made it. I started making calls as soon as I got up, Fortunatley she already had a virtual appointment with Bloom which was good. I told them what happened and they said they would try to help figure it out. After a lot of back and forth we finally decided to stop the IV antibiotics and replace it with an oral antibiotic. The home health agency that I turned down thankfully decided to still take her on and were suppose to start on Monday. They ended up coming everyday to take care of the wound and we had a CNA twice a week to give her a shower. APS ended up paying us a surprise visit. Thankfully I was there when she came she showed up right before a virtual appointment with her rheumatologist. I was freaking out at first but it ended up being a blessing. After she heard the story she was on our side and was super helpful. I was still trying to get mom an MRI of her arm to see if the infection was in the bone or not. We also had an appointment to see the orthopedic guy to get his opinion but that was a waste of time. He freaked when he saw it and said she needed to go to the PSL Wound clinic to have any chance of saving it. I finally got her an appointment for the end of the month but things were starting to go bad again. One night I checked on her through the camera and didn't see her anywhere. I knew something was wrong. I called my BIL and told him to go upstairs and look for her. He found her on the kitchen floor. We continued to watch her on the camera after that at night and and she was still having problems getting through through them. By the end of the week she ended up in another hospital because the infection got out of control again and this time she also had C-diff. We found her on the floor covered in poop. It took both my niece and I to get her up and I had to call an ambulance because she could not walk. I spent another night in an ER with her and she was finally admitted. She spent another week in the hospital. They also had to put in a catheter which is the last thing we wanted to happen. Thankfully they were able to get it out before she left. Things there started out pretty good I liked the hospitalist she had originally but they ended taking her off a lot of her meds and I got a doctor from hell after that. She finally got the MRI done after I insisted and thankfully the infection was not in the bone. She was evaluated by another hospice again and this one said she could qualify this time but she still could not come home though. Her mind was a mess and she could not walk or go to the bathroom on her own and was still contagious from the C-diff. She would need 24/7 help and we could not afford that so this time I had no choice but to send her to Skill Nursing. More about that in the next update. 

The anniversary of Lily's passing was on the 22nd, It was hard to believe that a year had already gone by. Emilia post this photo and the caption read I can't believe it has been one year without you. Missing you extra hard today but feel you in Zoey everyday. If you have seen a dogs life you know what I mean. Cancer sucks. 

I made this piece to welcome in summer. Tutorial from I pad lettering on Youtube. 
I got a custom order in my Etsy shop for a 3 piece boy elephant photo prop set like the quarantine one I made a few months ago. I have been wanting to make an Elephant ribbon and fabric banner like this one for awhile now so I was really excited about this order. This set also has a personalized Bodysuit instead of a bib and a party hat too.  These sets are a great way to celebrate your little ones special day since large parties are still not safe to have. They also make great photo props too. 

Finally I made this piece for the June Florals and Praise for his glory Challenge on Instagram hosted by @Artuplifted and @Tinysparrowdesign. Done on my Ipad pro using procreate. 

That's it for now. I hope to be back with the July update soon. My goal is to get the blog up to date by the end of the year. I hope that by sharing my life it will help others reading this that are going through something similar to know they are not alone. 

Saturday, August 15, 2020

May Recap

I originally started this post in June but never got a chance to finish it until now because things with my mom took a terrible turn for the worse. I am just now finishing it and hope to catch up on June and July soon. 

Hope that the sun is shining where you are and you are enjoying the start of summer. We have already been blessed with even more Sunflowers than we had last year. It is a sight to be seen. I will share photos next month when there are more in bloom. This piece was made using a tutorial from Teela Cunningham on Youtube. 
May started out with my mom getting her stimulus check and also getting one for my dad. I have no idea why that happened since he had passed. We finally figured out that we had to send his back. The properties were still not up for sale.  I was worried about what else lie ahead after that, Never did I image it would get as bad as it did.
 I was suppose to take mom to the rheumetologist to get the fluid drained from her elbow the middle of the month. We had been holding off because of the Covid and not feeling it was safe to take her anywhere. We finally thought it was safe to go but a week before that she had bumped it again and a hematoma formed under the skin. It ended up breaking open. I thought we had it under control because it formed a scab.  The morning of the appointment the scab had come off and she was bleeding so much it looked like a crime scene when I got there. I ended up calling 911. Thankfully they were able to get it stopped and she didn't have to go to a hospital. That was the last place I wanted to take her but her provider was not coming to see patients, the best they could do was set up home health but that would take time so I ended up calling Dispatch Health. Thankfully they came pretty quickly. They were able to put a stitch in it to try and get her through the rest of the day and night until home health came. She made it through the night but it was bleeding through again the next day. The home health said there was nothing they could do and she had to go to the ER. That was the last place I wanted to take her but we really had no choice. We decided to go to Rose that was a big mistake because they would not let me in with her even though I told them I was her POA and she had Dementia. I had no choice but to leave her, I made sure to tell them they had to call me when she saw the doctor though especially if they wanted the right information. I got a call a little while later saying she wanted me to come get her and she was still in the waiting room. I told them they had to get her back to a room before she left. I had to call and demand that someone do it and they finally got her back. 2 1/2 hours later they called and said she was ready to go home. No call before that. I was livid. I finally got the doctor on the phone that treated her and they said all they did was drain it and gave her a prescription for antibiotic. I told them she was already one and they would have known that if they had bothered to call. The said it was not bleeding anymore and she would be waiting when I got there. It was still bleeding when I got her home. I rewrapped it then left to go get some dinner while I was out she unwrapped it again. I was not happy about it and told her so. When I checked on her through the camera she was trying to re wrap it herself. I got my BIL to go up and help her. Thankfully she made it through the night. The next morning she was not doing well. It looked terrible. I had to call Dispatch Health back, They said I had to take her to another hospital. We decided to go to Porters this time because they would let me in with her and that is where she went to save her leg 7 years ago when Rose messed up the last time. After hours in the ER they finally admitted her. She was septic by that time. It felt like Sepsis 2.0 all over again. She did okay that night but the next night she want crazy. They had to put her in something called a Posy Bed to contain her. I was going to go over there and see if I could help calm her down but they said I was part of her hallucinations and she was mad at me. They finally got her to calm down and gave her some Melatonin. Thankfully she was better the next day. I really liked the hospitalist but hated the case worker. She was pushing to send her to rehab and tried to make me feel guilty for not being with her 24/7. They moved her to a different floor and she got another doctor after that who didn't even call me and keep me updated then they started to try and take her rights away from her and were pushing for inpatient rehab again. We told them no. The doctor I liked finally came back and agreed to send her home with home health and me doing the IV antibiotics and wound care. I had no idea what I was getting myself into though. When I saw the box of supplies I totally freaked out. I didn't think I could do it. I just wanted to crawl up into a ball and make it all stop. I started rethinking my decision not to send her to rehab but decided I needed to at least try it, The home health nurse tuned out to be a real bitch while trying to teach me how to do it and it took everything I had not to let her have it. I got through it though. They would not give us a CNA to help her take a shower so I had to find someone to help with that and pay out of pocket. I found someone on Nextdoor and she was a big help.  
More problems after that.  Moms home phone stopped working. It took over a week to get it fixed. We had to go and buy her a prepaid cell phone in the meantime so she would have a way to call us. It took a while for her to get use it and not turn it off. She also got scammed  into signing papers for a new roof. She was starting to become very confused again and decided to go and sit out front for some reason when I told her multiple times not to leave the house. A  roofing guy saw her sitting out there and got her to sign for a new roof. I only found out about it because I saw the contract on the kitchen table while I was there. He had come back to talk to her and I was still there. I let him have it. I asked him who he thought he was taking advantage of the elderly like that. I think I scared the crap out of him I didn't care though needless to say he never go the work.  Her sewer line also backed up after that. If it was not one thing is was another. I continued to do the antibiotics everyday. It was not that difficult to do once I got use to it but it was still very time consuming and breaking up a big part of my day. I was hoping once we got through the antibiotics things would be better but unfortunately that did not happen. More about that next month.  

I was still trying to keep up with my Etsy shop through all of this. It was hard to get work done and take care of all her needs too but I managed somehow. I didn't really make anything new but got this great photo of a buyers dog named Ritzy wearing our small personalized dog hat and matching tutu. Isn't she adorable?
I did not have a lot of time for my art either but I did get to make this piece for the May Floral's and Praise for his Glory Challenge on Instagram
Since I didn't have time to make anything else new I decided this was the perfect time to finish this piece I started from the February Floral's and Praise for his Glory Challenge. 

That's it for now. Hope to be back with the June recap soon. 

Sunday, May 31, 2020

April Recap

Happy Sunday.  I had hoped to get this blog post up sooner but things fell apart with my mom again, more on that next month. As I write this the sun is shining and it feels like summer. We are still continuing to find a new normal because of the virus but at least we can enjoy the weather though.
Hello April
The month started off with mom having another infection in her Lympth nodes where the dental work was done. Because of the virus we could not go back to the oral surgeon but thankfully he was willing to prescribing more antibiotics. He said we would just have to try and keep the infections under control until we could see him again. We had a virtual appointment with her Rheumetologist and  I told him what was going on. She had not seen him since she had the dental surgery. He suggested that we do an MRI on her Jaw to see if there is infection in the bone. When she was in the hospital in Feb they never did one?? They only looked at her brain. Uggg!!! I think getting another MRI of her Jaw is a good idea but can't take her for one of those right now either. He also suggested that we stop her Xeljanz while on the antibiotic this time and see if that helps it work any better but it didn't. He said he could drain the fluid from her elbow but we wanted her to wait a little longer before taking her in because they would not let anyone in with her and we still were not sure how safe it was.  
In the meantime I was still trying to get my dads properties listed for sale but kept running into more problems. 

Emilia's 22nd birthday was on the 2nd. Unfortunately it snowed that day and we were not able to have the family over for dinner like we usually do because of the virus but we were still able to make the day special for her. I ordered her cake from a small bakery here in town so was able to support small business in the process. After we picked up the cake we went to get her birthday drink at Starbucks drive thru then over to see mom and give her a cupcake. After that we dropped by my sister's and niece so they could give her their present in the driveway. The rest of the afternoon was pretty quiet, We ordered Olive garden for dinner and it was really good. We ended by face timing my sister and niece so we could all sing her happy birthday. Overall I think it turned out to be a really good day for her even with the Quarantine and one we will never forget.

We celebrated Indie's Gotcha Birthday on the 7th. I made the crown and she got a pupachino. Emilia bought her a new harness, collar and squeeky ball. As you can see she looked very happy.
Emilia and I took a virtual cooking class on how to make French Macaroons from The Seasoned Chef Cooking School here in Denver.  Not only did we help support small business it also gave us something to do during the quarantine. It was a lot of work but was really happy with how they turned out. We have been wanting to learn how to make them for awhile and can now say we know how. They are yummy too

I was still trying to figure out how a way to get my Etsy sales back when I had a buyer request a high chair banner with a quarantine theme and came up with this set. It tuned out to be a best seller!

Another good thing about the quarantine was all the online options for group meetings. I was able to attend a few grief support meetings. One of them was a better fit than the other. I also attended an Alzheimer support group meeting but it more for spouses than adult children with parents that had it. My creative Adventure also started something new called Living Colors which includes 4 monthly scripture based coloring pages and prayer journals. April's theme was hope. Shelley and her husband CJ also did weekly Zoom calls for guided coloring and prayer. I really enjoyed that and it helped bring me a sense of peace and calm during this difficult time. This page was my favorite because “Most days I feel like I keep throwing water out of my boat and am trying not to sink just to stay a float” which perfectly described how I was feeling too. This verse also helps to anchor me.
Finally I was able to create this piece for the Florals and Praise for his glory challenge on Instagram. This verse could not have come at a better time. I got over 1000 likes on this piece. I an not sure how that happened. I have never had that many but it was nice to know people like it so much.
That's all for now. I hope your last day of May is a good one, I hope to be back sooner next month with more to share then.

Saturday, April 25, 2020

March Recap

Happy Saturday. The sun is shining and we have lots of signs of spring here. Hope the weather is good where you are.

March started out with me looking for more help for my mom. I had a big list of places to call but most of them turned out to be a dead end. She also continued to have problems with her mouth and lymph nodes. The infection was gone at the beginning of the month but came back again shortly after that so we had to do another round of antibiotics. She just can't seem to go more than 10-14 days off of it. The oral surgeon was worried about the infection being in her bone and said that she may have to go on IV antibiotics to get rid of it if these don't work but can't do that unless he biopsy's it which didn't make any sense. She had IV antibiotics years ago when she had a bone infection in her foot and they never had to biopsy it before they did that then. He said he was also worried about more bone coming out of the tooth with the ostonecrosis. We were suppose to go back in April for a recheck but that didn't happen. She continued to do physical therapy through the end of the month with home health care and that was going well. I also talked to a social worker there that I really liked.  We also had a major problem with one of my dads properties a line broke under the toilet in one of the houses and caused a huge mess and expense. My sister and I agreed it was time to sell them after that. The first thing I had to do was get a financial POA for my mom. I had a really hard time finding one that would have both my sister and I on it as co powers of attorney but finally figured out a way to do it on my own and was lucky to find a notary in the neighborhood that would do it for free. Things in my life were already hard enough but  it was about to change in an even bigger way. Around March 8th the whole world started to fall apart because of COVID-19 by the middle of the month we had orders to stay at home and social distance ourselves from others. I was already pretty use to be home most of the time but the thing I was most worried about was my mom. I could not let this stop me from helping her. I still continued to go over to her house everyday  We could not just leave her alone. Emilia's Esthetician business was shut down by the state and Rich started working from home. At least he still had a job to do. My business took a major loss because nobody could have birthday parties. Paper products and cleaning supplies were very hard to find. My Instacart orders were taking days not hours to be delivered. Emilia tried to work for them but gave up after a few orders. It was not worth the risk. I also tried to find a therapist again. I found out my Insurance company would pay for 3 free sessions after numerous calls to get the right information. The first person I met with was definitely not the right fit. Her approach was to not talk about the past? I know we can't change the past but I still think we need to find ways to work through it if it is upsetting us. I did not agree with her approach so continued to look for someone else that would be a better fit.
Spring arrived with snow and a blizzard warning. Not what I wanted to be dealing with on top of everything else the only thing keeping me sane was the daily walks Emilia and I were taking. I created this piece digitally on my Ipad pro using procreate. I followed a tutorial from Ellen Cremini on Youtube
My birthday was on the 25th. We had to find creative ways to celebrate since most everything was closed. Thankfully Emilia came up with some great ideas and it turned out to be a pretty good one. The day started with Rich giving me a surprise gift. A silver bear bracelet and matching necklace, Emilia gave him the idea but he picked it out himself and I really liked them. Emilia also gave me a beautiful necklace with Sophie and Lily's photo on it. She said this way I can always have them close to my heart. It was such a thoughtful gift and I will treasure it always.
After that she surprised me with an online art lesson from a local art teacher. I am having the lesson today. We went on a ride in the car after that with the dogs to pick up some tulips and my favorite vegan coconut tarts. We were able to support small business in the process which made me feel good. I was also able to join in on a Zoom meeting at the church I have been talking about for awhile while we were driving and it made me feel good to hear from other people locally and what they are going through. I was not sure if the pastor would remember me but she said she did. I still don't understand why she didn't reach out again after my dad passed but I guess I just have to let that go. The meeting talked about how prayer and faith play a role in this and it brought me some comfort. Thankfully my mom was okay and no major problems that was a gift in itself even it was just for 1 day. My sister had to remind her it was my birthday that morning but when I went to see her she remembered when I walked in. My sister and niece also gave me flowers and a gift card to Lands End. Overall it was a good day which is all I really wanted and one I will always remember. 
Even though Sales in My Etsy shop were terrible. I did get this great photo from a buyer showing how well the ducky party hat I made for her son looked with the rest of her party decor which made me happy.
I also made this piece for the March Floral's and Praise for His Glory Challenge. This verse came at the perfect time. Especially with everything that was going on.
On a happier note one day while we were visiting my mom Emilia took this picture of Zoey. She was sitting on the chair but because she is so small all you see are her eyes. They are always so expressive. I think she was eyeing the crackers. Silly puppy. She brings us a lot of joy which is much needed during this difficult time.
That's all for now. I hope you are staying safe and well where you are and are finding ways to get through this new way of life right now. I will be back next month with more to share then.

Saturday, March 28, 2020

February Recap

Happy Saturday. It snowed last night but at least it is melting quickly and the sun is shining here today. I hope you are doing okay where you are. I never thought something like this would happen in the world then again with all the other bad things that have happened to me in the last year I guess I should not be surprised. I was really hoping that 2020 would be a better year so far that has not happened though.
Hello February.
Mom had the dental work done I mentioned in my last update on Feb 12th. The nurse came back to get me when she was done and said everything went fine. They didn’t have to use general which was great. I asked if she needed an antibiotic and she said no. They said she could take Advil and Tylenol for pain and to use Perodex and Salt water rinses. She had some stitches but said they would dissolve on their own and we made a follow up appointment for a week later. They said he would call later that night to check on her which he did and things were okay.  She continued to do okay for 3 days after that. On Sunday Feb 16th I called to check in on her as usual. She didn’t answer so I had my sister call and she answered she was still sleeping though which was odd because it was after 11. She called me back and said she had a headache I asked if she took something for it and she said was going to. I asked her if she needed me to come over she said no. I went over a little while later to check on her anyways and I could see she was not doing well. I asked if her mouth was okay and she said it was so I assumed it was still a migraine but it was on the same side as where the dental work was done so I was concerned. She said it was okay for me to go so I left I had a bad feeling though. I Called to check on her again around 4 she said she had taken a shower ate and took her pills but still had a headache. I asked if she needed me to come back over again and she said no and would call me if she did. I didn’t hear from her so I assumed she was okay. My sister called me at 9 saying she didn’t answer the phone I knew something was wrong. My brother in law raced over and found her on the bedroom floor covered in poop and it was everywhere. She must have been lying there passed out for a long time. He had gotten her to the toilet but she could not stand on her own. I tried to clean her up, but it was really hard because it was dried on. The carpet was a mess it looked like a crime scene. I don't know where that came from, she was not having any stomach issues that I knew of before that. She refused to go the hospital, so we got her to the living room with the walker, but she was still very unstable. I called her new health care provider because they are 24/7 and they told me to call an ambulance to come and check her out. She still could not walk on her own she started to fall over when they stood her up. They convinced her to go the hospital, so they took her there and we followed. I sat there for over 4 hours with her. She still said she had a headache while we there and she was even more confused than usual and not remembering much about what happened. They did a CT, Blood and EKG all were normal except for a little inflammation in her Jaw on the side where the headache was and where she had the dental work done. I was still worried it had something to do with the dental work and mentioned it many times but they kept saying she didn't have an infection. They finally decided to admit her around 4 am. I was thankful for that, but they did it on observation status again at that point I didn’t care though so I left to go get some sleep. The next day they did a MRI and Echo on her. I finally heard from a doctor in the afternoon she said they couldn’t really find anything. Once again I talked to her about the dental work but she still said she didn’t have an infection. I got up there later that night and she was still in horrible pain. You could also see how swollen and red she was on the side of her face where the dental work was done. She was begging for pain meds again and could still hardly walk on her own so she was a fall risk. She was also still very confused even more than usual. I stayed with her until she calmed down and fell asleep. She made it through the night okay. The next morning they did and EEG then called me to say she could go home. They wanted her to go to inpatient rehab but she refused. I finally decided to call the oral surgeon myself because nobody else did. I told them what was going on and they said they would call them. I waited to hear something. I got a call from her nurse saying to come get her. I asked if she had talked to the oral surgeon and she said no. I told her to call them. She got back to me shortly after that and said they told her to just watch for swelling. She was already swollen! At that point I just went and got her and brought her home. She was still in terrible pain. Thankfully she made it through the night but was still not doing well. She saw her regular doctor the next day and they still said she didn’t have an infection she even looked in her mouth and said it looked fine. She was still in terrible pain though. I took her for a follow up with the oral surgeon the next day. He looked in her mouth and immediately said she had a massive infection! He then turned to me and said I told them the hospital to put her on an antibiotic??? I was livid. I didn’t know who to believe at that point. My main concern was to get her on the antibiotic asap. Turns out the antibiotic he gave her was not strong enough though so we had to increase the dose. It took almost 2 weeks to get the infection under control. We did get a nurse, PT and OT from Home Health but it still was not enough so I started looking for more help for her. Once again I kept hitting more walls and was no closer to finding it than I was for him before. I felt like I was going down the same rabbit hole again. More about that journey next month.

I made this piece in honor of Valentines Day before everything went so wrong with my mom. Who doesn't like a cute llama?  Inspiration came from Pinterest. I did mine on my Ipad Pro.
Rich also surprised Emilia and I with flowers. Sunflowers for me and a Purple bouquet flowers for her. They were so big I had a hard time getting a photo of them.

Sales in our Etsy shop were starting to slow down again. I did get this great photo from a buyer of her dog wearing one of my boy dog party hats though. Isn't he handsome?

Finally I was able to create this piece for the February Florals and Praise for his Glory Challenge on Instagram. Inspiration came from Amy Latta. The flower was a challenge but I still like how it came out and that verse was definitely comforting for what I have been going through.

That's it for now I am going to try to be back sooner next month with more to share then. In the meantime I hope you stay safe where you are and we all can get our lives back to normal soon.