Valley of Fire State Park

I finally have found time to edit the photos taken during our trip to Las Vegas. Not sure exactly what happened those two weeks I was sitting in the recliner at home........but I digress.

Unfortunately, I didn't seem to take very many photos in Las Vegas. I must have been too busy carrying my drink.....errrr....I mean enjoying the sites to take out my camera and snap some shots.

I did, however, get some fantastic photos of the Valley of Fire State Park. The Valley of Fire State Park is located in the Mojave Desert, a little under an hour north of fabulous Las Vegas. It's name was acquired from the red sandstone rock formations and mountains that grace this amazing land. Being from the "great plains" it was some of the most stunning beauty I have ever seen. It was also unbelievably hot....very, very 115 degrees hot! And, no, the "dry heat" doesn't make one bit of difference!

Gym Dad

Brother J

Sister K

Gym Dad was attempting to stand on a very unstable sign....not too sure what he was trying to prove, but I got some hilarious expressions!



Well, this is it! The end my confinement is closely at hand. I have been giving the a-okay to go back to work on Wednesday. I am about at the end of my rope with this room, this chair, and daytime TV.

The doctor confirmed that my knee and leg are healing well. He took a portion of my stitches out (the rest will dissolve) and showed me a lovely x-ray photo of his handiwork. I was astonished by the size of the screws. They resemble the ones used by Gym Dad to hang drywall. No dainty hardware for me! I can now bear 10% of my weight on my leg which isn't much of a change from what I was already doing, but can progressively add more as I can handle it. Only two more months and I should be rid of my brace and walking unassisted......Lord give me strength!


New & Improved Views from the Recliner.....

Sister K helped me improve my views by arranging my fall decorations around the house. Fall is my favorite time of the year for a few of reasons. It means that the curling season is around the corner, and fall brings about the start of college hockey. Not to neglect to also mention the colors of the trees, the first snow, and deer hunting. Thanks to Sister K I have new views from the and improved views!


pa⋅thet⋅ic [puh-thet-ik]


1.causing or evoking pity, sympathetic sadness, sorrow, etc.; pitiful; pitiable: a pathetic letter; a pathetic sight.
2.affecting or moving the feelings.
3.pertaining to or caused by the feelings.
4.miserably or contemptibly inadequate: In return for our investment we get a pathetic three percent interest.

As you can see it is very hard for me to
get any work done as of late. Crazy
Canadian Kramer seems to think that
he should have my undivided attention
at all times. He is pathetic!


Sunday Update.....

I'm not feeling sleepy tonight, even though I have every reason to be sound asleep right now. I watched the weekend fly by from my recliner. Gym Dad helped winterize the lake cabin while Sister K took care of me. She made, from scratch, a fabulous lasagna, and decked out the house with my collection of fall decorations. Thanks again K! These decorations make me smile and I could use a few new reasons to smile!

It was an exciting sports day. It was hard to keep up! The President's Cup, the Vikings, Nascar Racing, and the Twins. The U.S. took the cup, the Vikings are 5 and 0, Jimmy Johnson can go fly a kite, and the Twins STUNK! By the way, isn't base running a skill these guys should have learned in little league? Geeze! Rent a clue! It could have been an exciting series. Just for the record, I will be cheering from here on out for whomever is playing against the Yankees.

Even with the exciting boob tube action, I am going stir crazy sitting here day after day. Which is unfortunate because as I found out today trying to help Sister K with decorating, I am in no shape to be returning to my regular daily routine. Why can't I accept that my body needs time to heal? If you watched the video of my surgery, you can see that it was quite a traumatic ordeal for a body to endure. Again, I think this goes back to my inability to admit weakness. I shouldn't be walking by now, I shouldn't be out cruising the town, I shouldn't be grocery shopping.....I know these is common sense. However, for some reason I still long to return to the mundane activities of my life. I'm less that a week post surgery! I have got a long road ahead. If I get through this without asking to be shot (...ahem...Rob...) it will be a miracle! The sedentary lifestyle is NOT for me!


My new love....

Since being at home I have discovered that television sucks! I mean really sucks! We have somewhere in the ball park of 200 channels at our disposal....surely there must be something worth watching on at all times of the day, right? WRONG! Between infomercials, The Golden Girls, and international soccer I can't even find an episode of The Andy Griffith show to occupy my time. Heck, at this point I'd settle for a rerun of Matlock. I find myself aimlessly flipping through the channels trying to score 30 minutes of entertainment.

While doing just this, I stumbled upon Curb Your Enthusiasm. The show was created by and stars Larry David who was co-creator of Seinfeld. I LOVE this show! It is hilarious! I found myself laughing out-loud possibly with a few snorts! The Seinfeld references in every episode are undeniable. As I huge Seinfeld fan, the references remind me of the show I never missed. Kudos, Mr. David! You have done it again!


I finally was able to get a good night's sleep last night. I woke up only once to re-medicate myself, lest I get behind on my pain control again.

My first physical therapy appointment was this morning. I was convinced that my doctor was some kind of sadist scheduling therapy so soon after surgery. My therapist, L, assures me, however, that the pain endured during therapy has a purpose. Really?? If I wasn't able to trod though the session in a drug induced haze, I'm certain I would have a different opinion. Thankfully my legs are conditioned and in good shape so we did not have to begin therapy from square one and all went well. I will continue to see L biweekly for approximately two months. I have exercises which I am to perform at home. I will dutifully do so every day. Seriously, I know that therapy is imperative for recovery, and I am way to young to not make a full recovery.

Now I must rest. Crazy Canadian Kramer has just reminded me that it is time for our afternoon snooze. Ahhhh....the life of a cat!


Views from a recliner........

I am feeling slightly better this afternoon. Doctor T. prescribed a new pain med to try and I am optimistic that I may soon be able to rest comfortably. I am ultimately concerned about the pain because I start physical therapy tomorrow morning. Therapy with zero pain relief is not an adventure I want to experience. In fact it sounds rather insane!

I have been sitting in the same recliner for what seems like an eternity and have been looking at the same areas of the living room. Leave it to me to see it as a photo opportunity.

Crazy Canadian Kramer has become my constant companion...

And last but not least.....a very lovely and gorgeous smelling flower arrangement sent by the best co-workers; Kathryn, Julie, Phyllis, Rob and Cheri. Love you guys!!


Dear Crutches:

You are an evil spawn from hell....a medieval torture device invented by a sick individual. I mistakenly thought that our previous meeting three years ago would be our last. I again was mistaken when I thought that packing you away deep under the stairs, would make the memories of our relationship disappear. Alas, I was wrong....very wrong. The pain you once created has again become my reality. My arm pits and ribs are bruised, my hands are swollen. As if that wasn't enough you tipped over and smacked me in the head! The grand paradox is that you are the only one that can help me get from here to there, and there to here. You are my only source of support. What cruel irony!

All my best (errr.....drop dead),



Oh the pain!!

Ok, ok!! I know they told me that the first few days following surgery would be the most difficult. Why is it that I always think I am the exception to the rule?? It is well known by friends and family that it is extremely hard for me to admit any form of weakness......but this is PAINFUL.....and EXHAUSTING! Being an independent creature, it is difficult to accept I need help....well, with everything.

For those of you waiting for an update, I'm happy to oblige. My surgery went very well and was considered a success. However, there were some unexpected factors. (Why wouldn't there be, right??!) My knee was in worse shape than originally conceived.

The first part of the surgery involved an arthroscopic procedure to examine and clean up the cartilage under my patella. What they found were 50+ floaters (cartilage that has sheared off, hardened and is floating around independently within the joint) wreaking havoc under my knee cap. They act like bits of gravel sanding away at the healthy cartilage. This was a good explanation for the grinding, snapping and swelling I was experiencing.

The last portion of the surgery involved the Tibial Tubercle Osteotomy. It was originally thought that my tubercle (the upper portion of the tibia) was rotated out approximately 14 degrees. Zero degrees is considered normal and helps ensure that the femur, knee joint and tibia are in a straight line. However, my tubercle was found to be somewhere in the ballpark of 20 degrees, much more severe than anticipated. What does this all mean? It means that because of the severity, they were unable to place my tubercle back to the 0 degree position. However, I still should notice significant relief upon my recovery. And I am very thankful for this. Doctor T. assures me that we made the right decision performing this radical surgery opposed to another that would simply act as a band-aid. This procedure should help preserve my knee function and delay a knee replacement until I am at an appropriate age (or never!).

I am taking things hour by hour at this point, but know that with every day I should be feeling better. Thank you for all of the well wishes! They do a great deal for the morale!


Going Under the Knife!

Tomorrow I will be having knee surgery. I have been dragging my heels over having this procedure done since it was first mentioned to me three years ago. I resisted my doctor's recommendations, thinking that surely my knee would get better on it's own, surely I wouldn't need that procedure! Alas..I concede! I can no longer ignore my ever aching, cracking, snapping, swelling and stiffening joint.

I will be having what is called at Tibial Tubercle Osteotomy . In laymen's terms it is basically a knee realignment surgery. Over the years, curling, injuries, and being blessed with hypermobility have all attributed to my left knee becoming severely unaligned.

I am looking forward to two weeks off of work, 6 weeks on crutches, 3 months in an immobilizer brace, and extensive physical therapy.....or maybe NOT! However, I am grateful that there is a treatment to improve my condition.

I will try to update as I can. On the bright side, during my convalesce I may actually have time to edit and post my Vegas photos!


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