Sunday, August 31, 2014

Well, We Did It

What did we do?  We made it to 40yrs of marriage today!  We celebrated with family back in June and I posted about it and shared pics.  My #2 son made a video that compressed those 40yrs into 12 minutes! It's really sweet, cute, funny, and reinforces  how fast time goes.  It brought tears to my eyes.  Made me ask the age old questions...."Where did those crazy kids go?"...."When did we get this age?"  Here's a few steps back in time:
The first date photo taken by my sweet Aunt was a blind date and I knew Jack all of 5 minutes.....aren't we color coordinated nicely?  It was fate I think!
Of course there's the wedding party.....Mom made my dress and all the bridesmaid's sister was Maid of Honor and she also helped in the making of the dresses.  Sewing was never a talent I had!
Walking down the isle had me smiling and for some reason Jack looked scared!
My cool Dad sang to Mom and sweet!  I sure wish he could be here today to see that we actually made it! Ha! He kept saying to me all the way down the isle.."You can back out any time. " And he meant it! 
We cut the cake...
And we "Hokey Pokeyied" with the best of them!
We stood on the balcony of our first apartment and waved to the future....
But marriages aren't just the dresses, the ceremony, the party, or the cake...not even the hokey pokey....they are the shared moments of a lifetime...ones steeped in happiness, children, sad times, busy times, career, finances, stress, companionship, good health and bad, gray hair and wrinkles and the tough decisions along with the easy ones.  Put all that in a mixer and it turns into a marriage that has survived these past 40yrs with the thought that I'd do it all over again....Happy Anniversary Jack!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Ice Bucket Challenge

Oh yes I did.  I took the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and thought I would share with all of you!  If you haven't heard of the ALS ice bucket challenge than I'm assuming you've been a prisoner of war or in a coma.   It's been all over Facebook.  You are challenged to dump a bucket of ice water over your head and then donate $10 to ALS research.  There's no cure for ALS and most die within 3yrs of diagnosis. One of our Doctors Dad passed away a few years ago because of ALS.  The operating room staff decided to get on board and take the "plunge" so to speak!  The money we collect will go to ALS research in honor of Dr. M's Dad.  We challenged 2 other departments in the hospital to do the same.  Here's some pics of the results.  I'm not going to post the video but I'm going to assume it will appear on line shortly.  I'll just say this: IT'S DANG COLD!!!!  I'm second from the right...
On your mark....
Get set....
Holy Smokies...we're nuts.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Birthday Wishes And Other "Things"

The last week of August...can you believe it?  That always brings on the Happy Birthday wish to my sweet hubby Jack....Happy Birthday Babe!  I had a low census day off today to celebrate.  Jack's response to that was: "Hey, it's my birthday and I have to work...what gives!?"  I told him:  "Yep, it's your birthday so don't you think it's great that atleast one of us gets the day off?"  I'm not sure he got my logic on that one. Me either, but I still had the day off! It gave me time to make his fav dishes..Shrimp Creole and for dessert, Texas sheet cake (with double frosting thank you very much!)
Eating, singing, cake cutting were all the fashion at the Pines tonight!
A few banners hung around and some funny cards on the mantle make it festive!  Now for the other "things" from the weekend.  We seem to be having some tree issues.  I know we're not the only ones with trees dying this Summer.  The past Winter was really hard on them.  This weekend the sound of chain saws from the neighbors and the smell of woodsmoke from the burning of branches filled the air.  Looks like we'll be doing the same thing.  A huge branch broke and fell from a tree in the backyard.
Crack! I had just been mowing under that sucker! Well, the day before this happened anyway!
I would have been under this branch if it had fallen while I was mowing! Another little tree also bit the dust.  We're getting a good start on wood for the woodstove this Winter.  Saturday night was a lovely evening to have a campfire so Jack got a fire going in the pit and we sat around and enjoyed a quiet night looking at stars and listening to the hoot owl in the Creepy Woods.  The neighbor kids did break out some firecrackers but they didn't  keep it up very long so no harm done! Another "thing"  I did was take the time to make some silly little cookies that look like hamburgers.
They were cute but too sweet for me...and that's saying a lot because I'm a sweet eater..unfortunately.   One of my other weird things I enjoy are signs...I have a few around the house. I found this one in the hospital gift shop and thought it was appropriate for me...
I do enjoy reading a good book..either with the Kindle or good old fashioned paper one.  I'm sure we'll be doing many more "things" this last week of August.  I'll try to do what Squeak does most days...sit back and enjoy the end of Summer and all the "things" that go with it.

P.S...the kiddo on the blog header this week is Katie....she's the sweetest little 12yr old around! I just love that kid!  She's the older sis to Taylor and Sophie and they are enjoying their Summer doing "things" in Oregon.  Sure miss those cuties! Thanks Katie..(her given name is Kathleen...after me!) for being the kiddo of the week!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

What Is JCAHO?

If you work in healthcare you know what those letters mean.  JCAHO....Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations.  It used to go by the letters..JCAH....Joint Commission on Accreditation of Hospitals.  I guess with all the urgent care places and surgical centers and other outpatient facilities they needed to change the name.  What it means doesn't describe what it does.  It strikes fear in the hearts of all who want/need those letters behind their names of their facilities!  You don't want to go to a hospital that hasn't been approved by this organization.  It's really not mandatory for this inspection process, but it should give you peace of mind to know that your facility is a quality one.  The standards are high and say they are very anal picky. I found out a few years ago that the headquarters for JCAH was located non other than my hometown. They are right down the street from Mom's house. I made a visit there and blogged about it a few years ago. I had to keep my hands in my pockets so I wouldn't show them how I feel they are "No. 1"..(if you get my drift)
 They visit, unannounced, every 3 years.  We prepare all year for this visit.  We do have a little suspicion of when to expect them.  When they arrive the hospital operator announces very calmly over the PA system...."Samaritan Hospital would like to welcome the Joint Commission."  After all the big bosses change their underwear, they commence with the inspections of whatever the "Joint" wishes to inspect.  Yesterday it was the OR (operating room) department.  Here's an example of how we handle this:
Mary, our boss, was under the impression they were at another of our facilities. I had to inform her that they were actually in the hallway....I never saw her jump out of her chair so fast! (Did I mention underwear changing?) Others saw fit to try and hide:
Becky and Shay were on the lookout from the decontam room...Duck girls!
Look at my BFF Donna (Starkey Hollow)...she's so cool and calm because she has all her eye "stuff" neatly organized...she's says: "Bring 'em on!"  After they roamed all over the place with notebooks and mean faces, a meeting was held to go over the problems they thought they saw.  We were happy to see the final note on our department:
OR did great....yep, we were happy.  The main problems seem to be the Doctors not doing everything that's required in the paperwork part of their jobs...they better watch out because this could be their fate:
Dr. Martin is trying out his job skills in case he can't keep his Anesthesiologist, excuse me Dr. M...I think you missed a spot..just sayin'.

Monday, August 18, 2014

This Little Piggy

Well, this little piggy did go to market on Saturday.  The farmer's market is booming right about now.  The corn is abundant, the veggies fresh, the bake goods yummy! Of course it's not all food.  There are vendors selling all kinds of wares from birdhouses to dish cloths.  Jewelry, knitted items, carved wood and rugs.  It's pretty fun just to walk around and look at everything.
It's also a good time to run into folks you haven't seen for a bit.  Saturday was lovely and sunny and not too hot.   It was busy!
In my photo attempt here I was trying to capture this guy's outfit. Sorry if it didn't come through! He was enjoying himself just talking to everyone. I'm not really sure what he was selling!
Mode of transportation is varied here. New trucks, or vintage....they get their items here!
You can even use this type....a wagon that uses no gas....
Just park your horse anywhere! Our market goes into October where produce gets slimmed down to pumpkins, squash, and other cool things that make Fall a fun time to visit.  It opens at 9am but if you're looking for something fairly popular you might want to arrive by 8.  Horse and buggy is optional! Oh, actually there were no pigs in sight!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

August? Really?

I promised myself I would not complain about any hot and humid or miserable weather we could have this summer.  After last winter's bitter cold and snow that I complained and blog about constantly, I forward to this summer.  I must say..and I'm going to whisper's been a very cool and wet summer. I like it.  Not so much the wet, but the cool is saving us lots on A/C bills and making working outdoor pretty pleasant.  Swimming has been done even when the pool temp is 72de.  72de is warmer than the outside temps were today.  We had a high of 68 and tonight it's going to be 45de.  This is September weather. I know it will get warm again soon.  But in the mean time it's perfect for burning the last of the branches from the tree trimming this weekend.
Addy helped pick up branches with the hope that PawPaw would put in a fire tonight.
Which he did! That brought out the marshmellows and blankets and crazy fun around the Pines.  It also brought out a new visitor to Whispering Pines.  I think I should name him "Trapper".  Why?
Because Hawkeye might be a bit obvious!  I've seen this little one flying around and Jack and Phil spotted him sitting on the red chairs in the front yard.  He came and landed on the tripod in the tomato garden. He seems to be eyeing the Creepy Woods.  Yes, it would be a superb place to live!
I tried getting a better shot.  Not having a super great zoom lens I snuck up as close as possible until he took off into the front yard.  Maybe he (or she) already has a condo in one of the pine trees out front.  Oh well, welcome anyway!  Since I don't have chickens I guess I'm not that worried.  Squeak might want to keep a low profile on the deck however!
Here's one last moon shot from Sunday.  I found it on the camera and thought it was a bit weird....blood moon anyone? Hey, with these temps it's more like an October moon!  I failed to mention my featured Grandkiddo last week.  It was Taylor in the goggles.  It was taken a few years ago.  He's 9yrs old now. This week it's his sister too was taken a few years ago. She's 5 now and just as cute as a button.  Thanks guys for letting me feature you on the blog!

Monday, August 11, 2014


Everyone seems to be on vacation or just returning.  That's the way summer is.  My summer is more "staycation"!  That's OK with me.  I've been enjoying our weather here in Ohio this summer.  It's been a bit cooler than normal but I still have managed to get some pool time in.  The cool nights keep the skeeters at bay and sitting on the deck is more pleasurable with a good book or a blog or two to catch up on!  The last couple of weeks have flown by.  Last weekend Jack and I did a little service by going to Wooster and helping the "People to People Ministry" get school supplies and clothing donations on a big truck for folks in need.
About 40 of us gathered to make the assembly line to pass the boxes down to the final guys who load it in the bus.
No yellow shirt for Jack!
The bus was sufficiently "stuffed" with the goods right before the heavens opened and  the rain came down!  This weekend was filled with more at home service projects.
The garden is producing and every couple of days I get a few quarts of green beans ready for the freezer.  Phil's girls enjoy helping with picking and Lexi loves to help prep them for the freezer bags.  Saturday she and Addy were a big help!
This poor tree in our front yard is having "issues".  It was hurt in a tornado a few years ago and has had some of it's big limbs die out.  Friday and Saturday Jack got out the chain saw and went to work to get the dead stuff out before it would fall on somebody! Cleaning up the twigs and branches meant a fire was in order.
We'll be doing more of that this week as we finish the clean up process.  I was on call this weekend and got called in Saturday afternoon.  I got home in time to help a bit with the wood but then we headed up to our son Jack's home to wish our little Cameron a happy 7th birthday.
He's a cutie! He loves soccer and will be starting on a league in the new town they moved to.  His age group is called "The midget league"...seriously, I don't think that's really very "PC" do you?
He's growing so fast! He has many allergy issues but he doesn't let that slow him down. Happy Birthday Cam-Man!
Tonight was the "Super Moon". Jack and I got in the car and drove around to see if I could get a shot of it.  This was the best I could do!  (It was a bit cloudy and hazy tonight) When I'm on call I'm never excited when it's a full moon.  Brings out the weirdos! I'm not kidding!  I'm not sure about the super moon.  It's been fairly quiet but hey, call's not over until 7am tomorrow.  With that being said, I do hope everyone has a  super week ahead!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

The Farm

 After Jack and I were married,  his family moved out of town to the country.  They had a 120 acre piece of farmland that was the prettiest landscape in this area.  I have never found any place that equals it.  It lives in wonderful memory for our family.  When Jack's parents passed away, Mom in 2000 and Dad in 2001, the land was sold.  But our good times we had can never be taken away or forgotten.  The real name of their place was "Valley Brook Farm", but everyone just called it "The Farm".   It's where our Christmases, Easters, Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, and family gatherings were held.  They redid the old farm house...gutted it and made it their own.
The red house stood up on the hill and overlooked the valley that had a spring fed pond.  There was also a spring fed pond right next to the house.  When my kiddos were little it made me a bit nervous until they could swim!  The water in the house was spring good!  The pond near the house had a little waterfall that came from the hill behind and down toward the lane.  Sleeping in the bedroom upstairs with the window open and the sound of the water and frogs could rock you to sleep better than a  lullaby!
This is one of my favorite pictures of Jack's folks. (Jack & Nelda)  They always had a fact they usually had a couple of them running around the place. This collie was named Rocky.  I could list a ton of other names through the years...McDuff, Max, Sarg, Queenie, Calvin, Hobbs, Ladd...and a few more I can't remember!  Cats also had free reign between the barn and the house.  Never saw a mouse around there!
This is Driana with one of their's either Calvin or his brother Hobbs.  They were sweeties!  Driana just turned 19 so you can tell these pics are old!
 I hear people complain about their "In-Laws".  I was lucky.  Mine were the best.  I learned so much from Jack's Mom.  She taught me about canning and gardening and cooking. We had fun picking berries all over the farm or at other places in the back hills. We got caught in all kinds of crazy weather! We'd hop in her Volkswagen bus and putter out the lane for some adventures!  Jack's Dad would always say that we were suckers for anything that was cute or smelled good!  Dad was always there to lend a hand when it came to fixing something or helping anyplace around our house.  He and Jack were in practice together and often times he'd stop by after work, throw on overalls over his shirt and tie and get to work with Jack on projects we had going.  They were the "executive" plumbers, carpenters, car repair, or whatever!
This was their fireplace in the livingroom.  They put every stone in place themselves.  This pic makes me smile because it's one of the few times there was actually a fire going! The farm had natural gas wells so they paid nothing for their heat.  Consequently, the place was always really warm in the Winter and a fire would really make it uncomfortable.  But it was pretty to look at and Mom enjoyed decorating it for Christmas!
This is the pond down by the lane.  Fishing and swimming or just sitting on the dock was a great way to spend time.
My kids spent many Summer days here! When they were real little they often swam in the buff...the first time they went to a public pool I had to remind them that it wasn't the farm..suits were required!
The hills up the back lane were a fun hike.  I usually headed up there after Thanksgiving or Christmas dinners and other times with Mom to pick berries.
This view was toward the orchard.  The new owners have put up a huge out building in that spot.  To each his own I guess!
Winter brought many outdoor activities as well.  Sledding down the many hills or ice skating on the pond.  Much more sledding happened than ice skating!
Christmas was a favorite holiday for Mom and Dad. They decorated to the hilt and their tree was always ginormous! The ceiling in the livingroom was atleast 15-20 feet high...maybe more....and the tree took up half the room! Always fun to see the kids reaction when we walked in and saw it each year.
The Church used the farm too.  Dad was generous in letting the scouts use the spot near the orchard for camping.  The farm had once been a camp ground and it even had 2 outhouses. (I helped clean them more than a few times!)  The scouts had use of the pond and plenty of places to hike.  Occasionally they would camp way up in the back of the farm where they could hike in with their gear.
Good place to learn how to split wood!
I could go on and on about the family gatherings...weddings that were held here, graduation parties, cookouts, and sleeping on the screened in porch.  I know the owners now have redone it to suit them and are enjoying it.  But somehow I hope that the sounds of laughter, the smell of a campfire, or the splash of a dive off the dock can still be heard.
This is the look that I will always associate with "The Farm"....A happy smile and a wave that says, "come on in...the water's fine!"