Cave Dwellings

Thomson Causeway, Mississipi River

Thomson Causeway, Mississipi River
October, 2006

Cave Dwellings

Sunday, August 17, 2014

CANNOT WAIT UNTIL SEPT 1…officially the beginning of Fall in my opinion!

Surprise! I managed to get my act together and create another meaningless blog within the 1 week time frame. This is no easy feat for one as busy as “moi”…Remember that great looking pan of spaghetti sauce I slaved over? …blanching, peeling and seeding a gazillion tomatoes, adding fresh chopped basil, parsley, a few bay leaves and other assorted items,(“Fillet of a fenny snake, in the caldron boil and bake; eye of newt, and toe of frog”…you get my drift.)

20140810_131526  Well, I put said “caldron” of home made spaghetti sauce in the refrigerator overnight to cool. The next morning I got it out and set it on our kitchen counter. My intension was to dip it into quart zip bags and freeze it… I then commenced to open the overhead cabinet to retrieve a plate…and proceeded to drop the plate and break it into a thousand  pieces INTO said caldron of sauce!!! CRAAAAAAAAP!!!!! Down that hungry garbage disposal went all my hard work!!! Soo, guess what I’m going to do tomorrow??? Yep, I’m gonna give it ONE more try..20 gazillion tomatoes will again meet their demise at my little paring knife. Thank GOD, I have a great harvest this year!! SHEESH!!

We have the Hiker mostly ready to hit the road, but we wont be doing it for another 15 weeks…MacGyver’s quote: “You can never spend too much time in the planning stages”…Not to mention that he will be back in the combine again this Fall…

I tell Dennis he pulled a “bait and switch” on me when we met..He never said he was a “farmer wanna be”, and would be booked half of  September, all of October and some of November!!!

But…..I married a MacGyver…and MacGyver is a wizard of many things…Yep, he certainly has many hats!

Yes, I DO love Fall!!!! It’s far and away my very favorite season!!

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…and I ADORE Halloween…There is something very wrong with me, I think, that I so enjoy all of the creepiness, scariness and bedlam it brings with it…

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Now if this doesn’t either scare you or make you nauseous, you have a cast iron stomach and constitution of an Ox. (note…this was also pre-turkey neck surgery…I could have had the doc save that waddle and had a purse made from it..with enough left over for a little change wallet!)

In closing and also in my eager anticipation of Fall, I will yet again re-publish my contribution to poetic literature…


Farewell Summer, Oh, I’ve had fun,

But FALL is what I love!

Bright new colors catch the sun,

Crisp, clear evenings have begun

And ..Oh, those Harvest Moons above.

OK, Jack, bring on your frost.

We’ll have a campfire every night.

And fallen leaves the trees have lost

By chilling winds they’re gently tossed

As flocks of geese begin their flight.

Oh, Fall, I relish all you bring,

As yet another Summer ends.

And different birds begin to sing

Oh, I’ll be loving everything!

I welcome you, my Autumn friend!

D.Cave 08/30/2011

I thank you for reading this far…You must be bored to death today!!!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Decisions, decisions, decisions….

My, my…seems I have been stretching the time between my blogging to the max lately…I have been pretty busy here…

20140810_131526 …our tomatoes are beginning to ripen, sooooo…I have been making spaghetti sauce!

Dennis and I have been busy too…

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…taking 7 huge garbage bags of crushed cans to get some CASH!..109lbs @ .60 a lb came to $65 +change!! (FYI, not ALL of them were beer cans!)

I have been busy taking photos of a few clouds…


…and…I  had a visit one of my Sandwich High School classmates that I hadn’t seen for years/ He surprised Den and me a few days ago….

20140810_153255 Meet Mr. Patrick Waite.  Pat is a huge hunter and outdoorsman, and he lives just 70 miles North of us.  I should also mention that Pat is a distant cousin of Dennis’s…small world, right?

Oh, yes…I have also been busily planning our Winter trip, hoping to spend some time in Florida.  Our family has been going to Florida since our son was 2 years old…that would be 42  years.  We had so many trips to  Disneyworld that I made a collage and it hangs on our wall….


If you look close, you will see the “Cave Family” at many stages of their lives through the years…Mickey was a close personal friend….

However, most of my time has been spent busily looking into a good surgeon for my NEXT parathyroid excavation…I did a LOT of  research. I was told by many peeps that I should go to a University Hospital for my next “opening”.. I found a highly recommended Doc at Chicago University Medical Center.  I emailed him and (surprise surprise!)he emailed me back that he would be glad to see me…But I also had some good  help hunting for a doc. Our daughter Chris (who works at Indiana University Medical  Center in Indy) asked her boss whom he would recommend there for this type of surgery. Her boss is a Vascular Surgeon, and has been at IU Health for 30 years. He gave Chris a name of a surgeon down there that he thought I should look into.  Very gratefully, I contacted that Doctor by email… Surprisingly, he also got right back to me…within an hour after I sent the email!   Sooo I now had 2 options good on my plate.  Long story short, I decided to go to Indianapolis…Having some family there and a daughter working there was the determining factor. Decision MADE!!

I made the appointment today. I will be seeing Dr. Michael Moore (NO, not the movie maker) on Oct. 21st.  Dr Moore said he needs my records, reports and labs from here and he will do some tests of his own.  He does many surgical “revisions”, and is a head, and neck surgeon specializing in Cancer.  My surgery won’t happen until next Spring. I really don’t want anyone cutting on my neck just now, and Dr. Moore said it would be best to let everything heal. (I’m still having some swallowing issues..GRRRRR!) I am, however, feeling really good about my decision. Also, Den and I will be going to babysit Chris’s kids in middle of November, so if I need further appointments I can make some for then…I think I made the BEST decision..Being pro-active in your own healthcare is a MUST! these days.

OK, this was a dumb blog.  I will try to “bring it”the next time I decide to create some drivel on the computer. Now that my brain isn’t so full of decision making, I can get back to my sick humored,  politically incorrect, often disturbing (but VERY stylish) SELF!! tee heee..  Now HERE is a big decision….

Just couldn’t help myself…Yup…I’m sick humored…

Friday, August 1, 2014

Tryin’ to see the humor….

  Not much going on here in Sandwich, IL. We seem to get a shower about every other day, which keeps MacGyver on his John Deere about every 5-6 days.  It seems like this summer has already flown by, and Fall isn’t very far from right now. Most of our birdhouses are fledging their 3rd go round of young ones…Those Sparrows are about as bad as rabbits!

20140720_133006 This is one big fat baby Sparrow I caught  hanging out on the bricks outside our screen porch..

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…Then I noticed his Mom..or Dad, bringing him some food…REALLY??? This baby Sparrow is bigger than his parent..the Baby Huey of birds!! Dude, just use those wings and go to our feeder..It’s like an” all you can eat”smorgasbord!

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I’m being “toyed with” by the Wrens again this year. They have been building nests in my two Wren houses, only to lay their eggs in a big tree out back. I thought by now those Wrens would be done with their breeding, but I have yet another Wren who just started building his nest in my Wren house…I would have thought all of their “ gettin’ busy” would be done by now…I think this one is just playing with my mind…pretending to be interested in becoming a renter in my Wren house when he actually has NO intentions of setting up  housekeeping!

As for my magical medical mystery tour, I had my 7 staples removed last Tuesday…Maybe this doc took one look at my tough old tanned skin and thought sutures wouldn’t hold…but staples??? Yes, the bad  news was the staples…the good news is that I now have a ready made Halloween costume for this year…Bride of Frankenstein…And now, get ready for a good look at THIS incision…



I can’t decide what’s worse , me sans make up, or the droopy skin scar on my neck…Hopefully it will get better with time…Speaking of time, I am on the hunt for a good Parathyroid Surgeon. My quest has taken my to the internet and I am researching University of Chicago Medical Center and Indianapolis University Medical Center.  My youngest daughter, who works as an Ultra Sound Tech in one of the medical center’s hospitals, is going to ask her boss, a Vascular Surgeon to recommend one..(Her boss has been a surgeon for 30  years, so I think he should be “in the know”!)…Right now I really don’t want to imagine one more scalpel being applied to my tender neck, but in the future I will certainly be more diligent in looking for an “accomplished” one!!


Gotta keep that sense of humor!!!!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Yep! Plans ARE made in jello!

Well, what can I say about my lousy day on Wednesday? Thumbnail sketch ..What was suppose to be a 25-30 minute surgery turned into 2 hours. Hubby was beginning to worry. I woke up at noon in recover with a huge ass bandage on my throat and way more pain than anticipated. They moved me back to my room and Den said the Doc came out and told him they didn't find it...WHAT??? After digging around in my neck for 2 hours he couldn't find the parathyroid with the growth. Disappointment doesn't describe it. The nurse brought me a glass of water and told me I could go home. I could barely function...felt nauseous, faint. Den helped me dress and I lay on the foot of the bed. Finally I sat up and the nurse said,"OK, I'll get the wheelchair"..She handed me a “barf bag” and I was whisked out the door like I had the plague...The Doc never even came in and spoke to me. I’m pretty sure they were waaay behind in the OR because of me..I got out of recovery and on the road 30 miles to home in about 1 1/2 hours..record time, in my humble estimation….  My big plans of having Burger King Whoppers for dinner were swiftly turning into broth, Tylenol and a bowl by the couch.  Thank God for Nurse Dennis!!!! He did a double shift and got NO overtime!

Needless to say, the rest of my day was NOT as I had planned....All the fun things, nausea, pain, weakness and crud in my throat. My Doc did call at 7PM, (REALLY?) and told me to take the Tylenol 3 he prescribed. (I can't take it because of the Codeine, so I took Extra Strength Tylenol which barely helped). He also said that the reason he couldn't find the errant gland with the growth might have been the angle of the CT scan. Sooo ..what was suppose to be a 30 minute procedure turned into a 2 hour one, with absolutely nothing to show for it but a huge bandage, a drain in my neck and a bad attitude. Here's the kicker....They cannot do another Radiation CT for 6-8 months. In the Doc's exact words on the phone, "By then it will have grown and will be easier to see". THIS was NOT what I wanted to hear from him..sheesh!! You cannot make this stuff up!!

Today I went to the Dr. and had my drain taken out and bandage changed. We were told not to bother the huge bandage on my neck until he could take it off..So, what I didn’t know is that I also have a 2inch incision and 7 staples in my neck…Those get taken out next Tuesday. I am on a mission  now to search for a new ENT Doc to see if he wants to “find the buried treasure” parathyroid gland. I have been reading up on this and know for a fact that this is NOT am impossible task. I actually do feel better today FINALLY, but am not looking forward to going “under the knife” in the future. Unfortunately, it looks like I will have to..

OK, enough of the pity party…I will now concentrate on the UP side of things.  We have been making plans to head off to Florida this Winter…hoping to spend about 6 weeks in South Florida, and visiting Cypress National Park and Everglades National Park…Dennis has a high school classmate from Sandwich who takes his fishing boat down to Everglade City. Two years ago Den and I visited him and his wife, Sammie, and went out on their fishing boat into the ocean..Here are a few pictures from that trip..

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We are planning on going to Flamingo  Florida for a week, which is about 38 miles South of Homestead. I hear it is a great park to see the wildlife and the wildlife there includes mosquitoes!! Because it is a National Park we get 1/2 price camping. They have electricity 30 amp and a dump station…we will have water onboard and they have water to fill you fresh tank. After this last few days, I am NOT afraid of mosquitoes, alligators, snakes or anything!!!!!

I also have another little trip to look forward to at the end of August. Our crazy son-in-law, John….(well, actually BOTH of our son-in-laws are nuts!) is running in an Iron Man Triathlon in Louisville Kentucky on August 25th. Dennis and I are going down and rooming with our son, Kelly and his wife, at the same hotel John and Chris will be staying at..I gotta give Cindy, our daughter-in-law credit..Who in their right mind would spend 3 nights in the same hotel room with their in-laws???? Hey, we’re all family…AND… we’re all CHEAP!! We go down Friday, August 23rd and come back Monday, August 26th…Unfortunately for John, this will be an alcohol free trip until he does his event…Don't’ worry, John, it may be hard, but the rest of the family will do our best to drink your share and ours too!

OK, that’s enough for today. I’m sure everyone is weary of hearing my “medical mystery tour”.  My attitude had improved since Wednesday evening, somewhat, and I just gotta remember that I am one of the lucky people who really don’t have a darn thing to crab about…I have great family, friends and I WILL have FUN!!! And now…it’s time for my very first cocktail in 5 days…AND I DESERVE IT!!!!!!

“To thrive in life you

need three bones.

A wishbone.

A backbone.

And a funny bone.”

                                                                  ~Reba McEntire

Saturday, July 19, 2014

One more trip to the “surgical suite”….

  Not much happening around here these days.  After our trip to Hayward, Den and I have been chilling in the peace and quiet. Our weather here has finally straightened out…well, at least it has stopped raining for a few days. Seems like the minute Den finishes mowing he gets right back on and starts again..I use to be really glad we had a big yard, but lately I feel the day coming when we really don’t need all that grass!

Today Dennis went over to our son’s house to help him cut down a “couple” bushes…Pretty soon I saw this pulling into our driveway…

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Hmmmmmm…Looks like we are about to have a “burning pile” in out back…Now here is one BIG advantage of our large back yard..We have our own little big burning pile that is ongoing.

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If you look closely at the photo on the right you will a dark line on top a little hill. You see my nemesis…the dreaded railroad tracks..

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What we have here are two firefighters at play…They love nothing better than to work with fire…Like two  little kids, right?? I was a little concerned at all of that brush going up in flames at once. A few years ago our neighbor (who has a burning pile too) lit a fire in his backyard and almost burned down that telephone pole you see behind Kel in the  photo on the right..Kelly looked me in the eye and said, “Don’t worry, I’m a “trained professional”…

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…Yep, he surely is, as you can see above. That’s him on the top of that ladder…These photos were taken at “Fire School” quite a few years ago. Kelly is now a Lieutenant on Oswego Fire Dept…Dennis was the Hose Captain on Sandwich Fire Dept…Den’s Dad was a volunteer firefighter for the old Sandwich Fire Dept…It’s in the blood.

OK, next Wednesday I am going “under the knife” to remove one of my parathyroid glands which has something called an “adenoma”attached to it. Adenoma is a fancy word for growth. I am keeping my fingers crossed that this out patient surgery will be the answer to my “moans, groans and stones”…Maybe I am hoping for too much, but this surgery cannot come soon enough..

Senior surgeon (angrily) : 'For goodness sake, nurse, get me my auriscope.' [a medical device which is used to look into the ears].

Distracted young nurse : 'But doctor, I don't even know your star sign.'”

Thursday, July 10, 2014

I LOVE the Northwoods !! Our Cave-a-palooza in Hayward, WI, 2014

This mundane summer was broken up by a great trip to Hayward, Wisconsin . Most of our family has been going there for  years and years…My Grampa Fry owned a cabin up there when I was a little girl and we always spent 3 weeks every summer in that cabin on Grindstone Lake.  When I married Dennis, I found out that his family was going there too!..and the tradition continues.  The resorts have varied over the years, but the one they have been going to lately is Treeland Resorts, on the Chippewa Flowage.

As  usual I took a gazillion photos..I will post a few close ups dear to  my heart and put some in a couple collages…

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Left is our niece, Leanne, and her Lab puppy Molly..on a boat ride….right you will see Den and I and 2 of our 3 kids, our beautiful daughters.

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Left, Terrie, Chris, Leanne Chris’s friend, Jessica…middle is the oldest of the Wolff Cubs, Aiden…Right, it’s the younger Woff Cub, Maddox.

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Left, Ter and her oldest son, Peyton….middle is Tim and their youngest, Campbell in the lake, and right is Taylor, their oldest and our only granddaughter.





As you can see, we had a real great time and I don’t think any of those bars/ restaurants we went to will ever forget us. When we pulled up and unloaded about 27 adults and kids on their docks, they HAD to be a little scared!..Actually, most of the places we went know this crazy family well. Great friends of our family from Sandwich also have been going up with us for the last many years. A big shout out to Gene and Julie Frieders and their wonderful kids Chelsea, MacKenzie and Mike..Gene brings his boat up and so does our nephews Mark  and Tom…so we who DON’T   have a boat mooch rides off these three boat owners…Yep , just one big Cave-A-Palooza!


Brenda managed to talk the owner of Tiger Musky (our last stop together on the Chippewa Flowage) to take our picture…He also managed to put his finger over the sign for Tiger Musky at the top of the photo..there went to free advertisement!!..hee hee..