Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Trip to Iowa

I spent the second half of April in Iowa so that I could spend some quality time with my folks and visit my brother, sister, godparents, grandmothers and a couple of other friends of the family.

My Dad was in the hospital when I arrived home with pneumonia and needing more blood transfusions. We found out that we were going to spend part of my first weekend home up in Rochester at the Mayo Clinic. We spent Saturday afternoon and night at the Wild Rose Casino in northern Iowa and then drove up to Rochester on Sunday for what ended up being appointments and tests for 3 days.

I got a lot of work done on my April bead journal piece while sitting around in the clinic and hospital. Our hotel was within walking distance of some stores so I went shopping in the afternoons two days so that Dad could take a nap in quiet. I found some perfectly dark purple sheets as well as some other goodies including a knitting loom that I started making a red and purple throw on.

Unfortunately they could not find where he was bleeding and it looks like it is somewhere in the small intestines that they can't get to. Good news is that now that he has been off of Plavix longer that the bleeding is slowing down so that he can make blood almost as fast as he looses it. When I left he had gone almost 3 weeks without a transfusion which is much better than he has done for months.
The picture above is of (left-right) me, Mom, my sister Betsy, and my brother Chris. We are standing on the golf course that my brother is in charge of landscaping for. In the background you can see some of the flooding that happened due to some very heavy thunderstorms the day before. We didn't get to see Chris very long but it was good to see him. He keeps pretty busy this time of year. Betsy and David came home with Mom and I for a couple of days.
This picture is (l-r) Betsy, my maternal Grandma, me and David. I got two chances to visit my Grandma while I was home. She is 105 and will be 106 in the beginning of August. She has definitely slowed down but is doing better than a couple of her kids at this point.
This is me with my new much shorter haircut. I haven't had it this short since I was in second grade. Wayne thinks it is funny that I had to fly all the way to Iowa to get my hair cut. It took me awhile to get used to how it looked since it was so different but it is really growing on me. I don't have to put it back to keep the hair out of my eyes when I work and it doesn't blow in my eyes when I walk and is cooler. The magnolias behind me are from the tree that her kids planted outside of Grandma's window at the nursing home.

I also got to see my godparents who aren't really my godparents, they are technically Betsy and Chris' godparents, mine were from the other side of the family. Luckily they treated me like there godchild too since I saw my Godparents at my baptism and confirmation and that was it. Larry had a heart transplant 15-16 years ago and is now on dialysis. He was there when we saw him and Mary. Although I see them more often than Betsy or Chris it has been a while and I was glad to get the chance to see them.

As expected the trip was full of emotions for me. Seeing people I love in failing health isn't easy but it was good to be able to spend time with them. Mom, Dad and I spent time most days playing at least one game of Farkle (a dice game). It was fun. Mom and I also spent plenty of time driving to visit people, some time walking together and time shopping. I sent one box of clothes to Iowa so that I wouldn't need to check a bag and shipped 2 boxes back. Too many treasures.

When I flew back to Baltimore Wayne picked me up and we headed straight up to Philly so that I could go to Wire Fest. I will tell more about that in my next post including pictures of the 3 wire wrapped pendants that I made in my classes.

No comments: