Cave Dwellings

Lake George, NY

Lake George, NY
about 1988...before RVing...

Cave Dwellings

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..

Friday, June 27, 2014

Papa’s Pub…Now open for small gatherings

   Thanks to one of my Ya Ya’s, who wanted to get rid of a pub style table..I decided to create a small “pub” atmosphere on one end of our front porch!!

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Yep, it works just great…We sat out there watching it rain a couple nights ago…and speaking of rain, we have had our fill!



I was keeping a close watch on these clouds….They went South of us and hit the South side of Chicago with wind and downpours, but no tornadoes…Chris and John had a close call though!..


This tornado just missed Speedway in Indianapolis, and caused some damage in Plainfield, about 10 miles from where Chris works and the boys are in daycare…YIKES!!

One good thing about all this rain is how it has really popped our flowers! Our grass is really greeeeeen, too! There have been some Junes that is it all drying up, but not this June!!

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Not too much going on here.  Den and I have been helping out Uncle Jr. and Aunt Jeanette about every 10 days …getting groceries, doing some banking…They are back living at home, with no help wanted.  If they do decide to have someone come and help them on occasion we will let THEM decide who and when this time…Lessons have been learned!

Our niece, Leanne, got some good news this week. Her Cancer Doc looked at her last CT Scan and gave her the “go ahead” to leave for a 2 week vacation in Hayward, WI next week from today. More Chemo down the road, but for now Leanne is thrilled for this respite… Most of the family is going, as it has become a “mecca” of sorts for one of our famous “Cave-A-Paloozas”…Here are a few photos from last year..

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And here are MOST of the adults in our group, enjoying some beverages at Treeland’s Lodge…I may have to go through “de-tox” after this vacation!


We had a little celebration for Leanne’s good news at our neighbor’s “garage pub”..Leannes’ hubby and I made a toast to vacation…(Notice my very stylish Loony Toon evening wear).   LOOK OUT, HAYWARD, HERE WE COME AGAIN !! (It does help to take your own personal police officer with you …just in case ;-)


Thursday, June 19, 2014

Dreamin’ of Florida for this Winter’s trip

  Well, Dennis and I have decided to try doing Florida again this Winter. We tried a couple years ago, but got called back after 5 weeks when Uncle Jr. fell..I got just a taste of it and knew we had to go back…Not that we haven’t been there before…When our kids were little we use to go almost every summer, beginning in 1972, which was the 2nd year it was open. All they had was the Magic Kingdom…

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The first year we went, Kelly was 2 1/2 and I was pregnant with Terrie…We stayed at Daytona Beach and drove over to Orlando for the day..As the kids got older, a couple of our friends started going with us…Eventually we had a small caravan of families, and the property got bigger and bigger…Walt Disney World is still one very magical place to me….




Left was taken on Den and my very first trip to Florida in summer of 1970.  I was pregnant with our son and oldest, due on August 22nd. We decided to go to Florida in July, when Caterpillar Tractor shut down for 2 weeks vacation. Hey, I wasn’t due for 6 weeks! So I asked my Doctor and he said “Sure, go ahead. They have doctors in Florida”. He then gave me a slip of paper with my blood type on it and something about I was healthy, told me to pack a bag for the baby and gave us his blessing. Heck, Dennis said he could deliver our baby, he had read the book!..My Mom and Den’s Mom , on the other hand, were none too happy.

Long story short, our good friends (he worked at Cat too) followed us down. That photo you see on the left was at Cocoa Beach Holiday Inn. My friend, Sharon is behind me, and that would be her hubby, Ron, with his toes on the diving board and his body underwater…No, I didn’t dive…we took this for our parents….and..NO, they did NOT think it was funny!!






Our love affair with Florida continued when Chris and John got married on the beach at the Hilton Inn on Longboat Key, near Sarasota….I think I have changed my favorite coast from the Atlantic to the Gulf…


In August, 2005, we took the Cougar down for Chris and John’s wedding…We met the Heisers at Disneyworld and camped at Ft. Wilderness, then drove to Long Boat Key for the wedding…I guess you could say that we have been in Florida more than any other state. Texas probably runs a close second. I have already booked us in for Ft. Pickens campground, Ocala National Recreation Area, and Ortona South Army Corps camgrounds at LaBelle, FL…DO YA THINK I’M ANXIOUS?????

Before I get up from my computer chair and have a nice white wine, I want to thank you all for the encouraging words concerning my parathyroid issues. I am booked for out-patient surgery at Rush-Copley Medical Center on July 23rd…Oh, and one more thing…Our oldest daughter, Terrie, was just diagnosed with Hyperparathyroidism..just like me..She has an appointment with an Endocrinologist August 1st…Yep, good ol’ genetics dealt her a real bad hand…

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“One of these things is NOT like the others”…That would be Christie, on the right….no thyroid issues there!