Thursday, March 30, 2023

Moving DONE plus Art Show...

It's DONE...all moved in.
My former area of work is no more...
Transformed into a new comfortable space.  The drafting table is where the file cabinets were.  It will stay for him to finish his final billing tomorrow and for me to use for drawing.

NOW...this is my whole entire area for painting, painting, painting...
It's not all done yet, but the organization has started with the most amazing help of B!  Thank GOODNESS I have her because I COULD NOT get it all done.  

Frankly the past couple of weeks have been overwhelmingly exhausting.  Moving carloads of art work/supplies several times a day, loading and unloading, in between being Granny Taxi to little Min and trying to navigate my new work desk to finish that job, I am more than overwhelmed.  In fact, I dropped Min off at school after making a couple of load and unload runs then running quick to pick her up from downtown from her catechesis class to then driving her to her day school at 61st & Yale, knowing it was lunchtime and heading back to the "new" studio, I was asked at her day school by one of the teachers how it was going.  Oops, wrong time to stop and talk to me.  I was vulnerable to falling apart at that moment.  There was the director, and two teachers in the hall and I fell apart.  I just hit a brick wall.  It has been so much that my mental capacity is at that breaking point and my body is breaking down too.  My tummy has been in turmoil to the point that sometimes while cooking dinner I almost want to throw-up with the thought of even eating it.  This nearly 67 year old body is to the point of collapse and I can't let it happen because there is still so much more to go.  Come June/July time frame we will again be having the three year old with us more, but she will be a bit older, that helps.  And the move is basically done, that helps.  Work will be sort of over, that helps.  I think there will be a breather in there somewhere.  

This weekend we are heading to the cabin and will have a mini celebration with our cabin friends on Saturday night, and a bit of drinking will be happening!  The Hubby is really in his head with this final day tomorrow and needs to get away.  We thought about staying to Monday but can't.  Have to be back Sunday night because I think we will have Min so they can discharge with Max on Monday and HEAD HOME!!!  Just in time for Easter.

Oh gosh, every second of our lives right now are changed by the minute.  I can hardly plan anything because of it all.  I, my art group, Tulsa Artist Guild, is having an art opening on Thursday evening.  THAT I have to do as I'm in charge of the caterer and food, and I have art in the show!  Looking forward to it.

If you are in the area and would like to come to our show, here is the info.  Please join us.  There will be very yummy refreshments and lots of beautiful art.  I have three paintings in this show and this the art sells very fast usually.  

Sunday, March 26, 2023


Change, is anyone okay with change.  Change is difficult for anyone, good or bad.  We've had a lot of change in our world lately, the grownups, and the kiddos in our life.
This one has been through it, with a new brother, not living with him yet, and her momma being gone now for 3 months, and spending a lot of her time with me and her Auntie Biff.
When Max does finally come home life will not at all be the same for her.  She will probably have to drop out of her day school because of the possibility of bringing home germs to Max.  
She's had some bright times at school, meeting new friends, like this little guy she met at the hospital.  His little sibling is in the hospital with the same thing as Max so there is a bond there.  Plus the family lives in Tulsa so they may get to see each other many more times.
This little guy who knows the hospital as his norm, will very soon (probably next week) have to adapt to a whole new surrounding at his actual home with a 3 year old sister and 3 cats.

Snicklefritz has also gone through a ton of changes in her very young life.  First we lost her Great-papa then her Mimi, then Max's entry into our world.
And with Min spending so much time with me, day and night, for weeks, her previous room was taken over by Min.  So we had to adjust for Snicklefritz and make her own space for spending the night, a more grown up space for her.  She has been so wonderful letting that happen, without grumbling, but with joy in helping with the process.

Now we are at the time where WE are retiring and the "shop" as she has known it since she was 2 years old is changing.  She's actually known our offices since birth but her first 2 years were at the other location where I watched her nearly every single day of her life (minus weekends!)  Since this is the last week of actual business as we've known it we have been gearing up for the auction of equipment, vehicles, tools, office supplies, etc.  So moving drafting tables out and file cabinets and having bags and bags of shredding stuff and boxing up files we have to keep for a bit of time.  All that kind of stuff has to go to storage.  My desk as I've known it for eight years will be in the auction and we had to make a new area for desk work because even though we won't technically be in business, work will still be done with reports and stuff until tax time next year, collecting the last of the accounts receivable and paying the last of the bills, changing the names of accounts, closing accounts, so much to do.  You do not realize all you have to do to shut down a 44 year old business.  

This brings to the changes, for me.  You see I'm yet again moving my art studio.  

It has always been the plan that I would move into our office with my studio.  
I've had a studio in my home for several years...

then Linda and I moved into a shared studio with artist Gil Adams, calling ourselves, Studio 3.
When the landlord rented our space out from under us we had to shift very quickly to another location where Gil left our happy threesome (maybe not so happy for him.)  It was his idea for us to be in the studio space with him, but he's a guy, a guy that had a hideout from his wife, where he could go and eat ice cream late at night and watch TV without his wife knowing.  We cramped his style, he was okay with the split and going his own way.  

So Linda and I moved into a larger space, calling it Lemon Tree Fine Art.  We've been studio partners now for over 6 years, happily.  In that 6 years I have amassed a ton more art supplies, created a lot of paintings that frankly were bad and either will have to be painted over or hopefully sold (the better ones.)
So I am moving yet again, packing up tons and tons of art stuff, making trip after trip to the new space.

The new space, our old office that we are cleaning out now.  The downstairs of the stone building as of next week will be the previous location of Alrac Electric and the new digs of Carla Hefley Fine Art! 

Back to Snicklefritz.  This is all so much change for a little girl and she's so feeling it, I'M feeling it.  It's like a tornado everyday to get it all done and frankly I'm quite exhausted, physically and emotionally over all of it.  I've had to change my business area and will be creating my new art, creative area all very quickly.  It is a lot.  Plus with Max and watching Min.  I honestly can't wait for summer to get here to take a breather, rest a bit.  I want to paint but frankly, I'm not sure where my paints are at this moment.  They're in piles and piles of art supplies.  To top off all of this, The Hubby will be in my art space a lot because it is our building and his "man cave" building is across the parking lot.  Hmmmm, not sure how this is all going to work out creatively with him in my business a lot and trying to dictate how I use this new space.  Saga to continue...

Monday, March 20, 2023

Loss and Hope

This week we say goodbye to yet another dear friend.  This guy, Tom, was a cabinite until he and his love decided it was time to move back to town.  They lived full time at their cabin, built new by them, for a few years.  We've known them at least 20 years, our weekend buddies.  They moved back to town just in time for him to do battle with cancer, which did not this time, unfortunately.  Oh my we missed him so much when they moved back to town but now, will miss him forever.  Tom was the guy who was quick to call The Hubby when we hit the cabin area to come over and smoke a cigar with The Hubby.  He would come over and we would talk books and life in general.  I will never fix potato salad again without him in mind.  He requested it time and time again.  

One of the greats he was, and ACCOMPLISHED.  His obituary in the paper yesterday was awe inspiring.  I had no idea he was a pilot at one time.  I did know he was a great lawyer, was once JAG for the military.  Quite a wonderful gentleman.  Tomorrow we go to say a final goodbye to a great friend.  Lots of prayers for his wife Peggy as she has been through the wringer of emotions and loss lately.  A month ago she lost a grandson and now her dear husband.  

On to some good news.  This big guy is close to coming home this time.  He's nearly 14 pounds now and next Tuesday will have another procedure on his GJ tube and the plan is he will be home later that week!!!
There is the distinct hope he will be here for Easter and we could not be happier.  Our dear Maximilian, our warrior.


Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Whitetail and a Lullaby

I finally, FINALLY finished this sweet one yesterday.  I've been working on it piece-meal, one stroke at a time lately because, as you know, my time has been limited.  Plus I've begun the process of moving out of my studio.  So I go in and paint an hour or so then I load my car and deliver to the shop.  Then I go back and load again and take that afternoon or the next morning.  It will be a long slow process until it gets to stuff I cannot lift or move myself.  Then the son-in-law and hubby will step in. 

This painting, the reference photo, I took last fall on a golf cart ride with The Hubby at the creek.  There were about seven deer getting a drink.  It was such a wonderful sight and I knew someday it would be a great painting, someday.  I posted it on Facebook and within a few hours it has racked tons of likes and one PURCHASE!  Yes, I sold it off of FB to an already familiar collector.  Carol has purchased at least eight of my paintings and this will add to her collection.  At first she said the price was too steep but about an hour later she said she wanted it.  Thrilling.

18x24 oil on linen

Also have to share a sweet, SWEET video of little Min singing a lullaby to Mighty Max.  This lullaby is one I sang to my girls and the grandgirls many many times.  I don't even know all the words exactly and definitely don't sing it right, but I love the tune.  It came from a Bing Crosby movie many years ago.  OMG, hearing Min sing it and ON TUNE is absolutely amazing.  Sweet little girl.  She can't wait for her little brother to come home.


Thursday, March 09, 2023

Max - Day 67


Max update,

day 67:
Y’all, prayers are powerful. Max had a great day. He only had a vagal/bradycardia episode once, right before I left only because I accidentally gagged him with his pacifier
(he has such a sensitive gag reflex), but there was no vomiting, thankfully. I was able to catch rounds this morning and we discussed a few different things we could do in the next few days to help him recover from all the emesis/vagal-ing/bradycardia episodes. We opened his gtube to gravity in a diaper (basically, letting the g-tube drain any bile or mucus to a diaper attached to the end of it) and immediately when we opened it he relaxed and his face softened, and after that he was the happiest little guy and had three long, peaceful naps, which was SO needed. And we’re keeping everything in his room really quiet, keeping him swaddled and “organized” as the occupational therapist puts it. Low stimulation for now….keeping him calm in an effort for him to recover.
I’ll be meeting with the pediatric surgery team and GI soon to discuss the nissen/fundo plication procedure and schedule it, just to make sure we have it in the books in case we do do it. We want to avoid it though because we just don’t want to have to put him through yet another major surgery. So we wait and we’ll see how he does in the following days.
But we’ll take today and put it in the bank. Those smiles and coo’s just fed my aching mama heart to the brim. To see him feeling so much better was just the best.
Thank you for your prayers! Keep them coming, please. #mightymax
#maximilianrobertmancini #stmaximiliankolbe #hlhs #hypoplasticleftheartsyndrome #halfahearttwicethefight

Tuesday, March 07, 2023

Kiddos Update

Lot's happening around here, some not good, some wonderful, some in a holding pattern.  This kiddo has finally snagged a job, a job she wants!  That is one worry off my mind for her.  With us closing our business that meant she lost her part time job with us, along with her hubby's job with us.  But it finally happened and she is on top of the world.  I/we will still need her to finish out the closing, she is invaluable!  

This weekend Snicklefritz and I FINALLY got some time together, just us two.  We even got to the studio to paint, which she has been wanting to do for a really long time.  It was a short spend the night but it was a spend the night and we had a great time.  Tonight she is going to see Hamilton.  We saw it a couple of years ago and for some reason is back in Tulsa.  We didn't want to see it again and I know it is her ABSOLUTE FAVORITE, so we gave them our tickets.  I'm so very excited for her.
I've also started packing up my studio and actually moved some today.  I have a lot more to go but it has started.  Kind of sad and I will so miss Linda and our visits.

On a good note, last week Min made it to her day school every day without incident!  Today she even made it to her catechesis class and then I picked her up and was onward to her regular school.  She didn't even wave goodbye, just made her way to the jungle gym.  So glad she has passed those dark times.
She also got to go see her Momma in OKC.  It has been so tough on EVERYONE to be split up like they are, we are.  But Max is a priority for her momma right now and she is being taken care of to the utmost.  

Max update, 🏩 day 66:
**Specific prayer request: please pray that Max’s severe reflux resolves. We ask that it resolves without the need for any more variations of feeding tubes or surgery. Thank you.**
Heart-wise, he’s doing well, considering. But this reflux is just awful.
They’ve tried all sorts of variations of meds, and today they put in a transpyloric tube (a TPT), which goes through his nose, through the stomach, and into the small intestine. Since he had that placed this morning, he’s still had emesis twice, vomiting bile, with two episodes of bradycardia (low HR).
I don’t understand it. We don’t know why he started having trouble after the g-tube was placed. It’s so upsetting to witness him have these episodes. I fight back tears every time.
If this continues, they may consider a surgical procedure for a Nissen wherein they tie the upper part of the stomach with the lower esophagus. Or we wait till he’s 7 kilos (he’s 5.3kg) to place a G-J tube. It could be another two months before he’s 7 kilos.
They said that feeding is the most frustrating part of this. Babies often have reflux, but having reflux with a critical heart defect is a much bigger issue. It’s not uncommon for heart babies either.
His second surgery, the Glenn, usually happens around 4-6 months. It’s completely within the realm of possibility that we may never get him home between now and then.
I have avoided going home for various reasons. Yes, I have been in OKC since January 2nd, and have not been home once. I’m a nervous driver even when not stressed. I’m terrified of having a panic attack on the road, or God forbid, I get to Tulsa and have to turn right back around for an emergency. I worry that the second I’ll leave, something will happen. And I worry about no one being here to advocate for him. I’m the only one who sees him every day and can literally sense when he’s going to brady/vomit before even the monitors pick it up.
I need to go home and be with Minerva. I need to do this drive and wrap my head around going back and forth.
Thank you for your prayers. We need them.


Friday, March 03, 2023

Retirement and Sunshine

Today we said goodbye to one of our oldest employees.  Mark has been with us for over 30 years and I can tell you we are all taking this hard.  We were fortunate to find him another job with another former employee who has been in business 13 years now.  So we feel good to keep Mark employed somewhere.  He's just not quite at retirement age yet.  So far we have three employees left and two are going out on their own and not sure about the third just yet.  The Hubby is really feeling this kind of loss and now questions what he's going to do in retirement and is wondering if he can stay busy.  Oh I reassured him staying busy is his middle name and he won't have a problem doing that.  He has a lot to occupy his time when we do close the doors with our rental properties, getting them ready to lease and we are losing one of our long time renters right at April 1, so that space will need to be leased too.  He has never been one to sit and do nothing, it's just not in his DNA.  Still this is a harder thing to do, to stop working, close the doors, tell customers we will no longer be able to help them.  He's finding that the hardest and today another hard, thing, say goodbye to an employee and friend.  

When NOT taking care of a three year old I've been trying to do some office stuff like prepare a goodbye letter for some of our customers.  I tell you I've printed that stupid letter threes times, having to shred his corrections or additions or deletions to the letter.  Tonight I finally got it done, folded and stuffed envelopes and stamped, ready for the mail.  While preparing dinner and after dinner, while he cleaned the kitchen, it is DONE!

I can't tell you how much better this week has been with Min.  Week before last we never left the house because she was naked baby most of the time.  She was deep in the potty training regression and I just wasn't going to make an issue of it and cause further damage to her thinking.  She's an extremely bright little girl and works things out before I can usually.  Then last week, things were a bit smoother and I was even able to take her with me to the office to do a bit of work.  Reminded me a lot of taking my girls to work and then watching Snicklefritz nearly every day at the office.  I'm just not as young as I used to be and it sure is evident.  This week was even better and we were able to get her to school for the entire three days of school.  Diapers are not allowed in her little class so because she was either naked or diapered we had to stay put that week.  I was able to get her out of their house each day and even though I had to go in and assist in the dressing a couple of times, we got out smoothly, without a screaming match or having "Mean Granny" make an appearance...LOL!  This week also brought a beautiful day, nice enough to allow us to go outside and let Min run and play in the sunshine.  She had such a great time.  It was her first time on a tricycle.  I remember when Snicklefritz learned to ride it and we would spend hours out there while she rode.

Thursday, March 02, 2023

Maximilian Update

Well, we don't have good news for little Maximilian today.  He has been doing so well but hit another speed bump in his journey for home:

"We’re not going home tomorrow. Not going home Monday. Not going home anytime soon. He’s not tolerating his feeds, his episodes of emesis cause bradycardia and that’s just not okay….and there’s lots of discussion happening on what the plan is and that’s all the information I have. He’s still doing well, considering.

Please pray though. Just when I think we’re in the clear, we hit another road block.
I’ll be honest and share that I’m struggling especially hard today. It feels like a nightmare that I can’t wake from. I miss my family, I miss my friends, I miss my job, and I miss my cats. And I worry about Minerva. And I just can’t bare the thought of my baby struggling any more than he already has. "

Saturday, February 25, 2023

Precious Grands

Painting time...

Well, this has been a week, I will not lie.  I've struggled to be granny with this cutie pie.  She does test my limits but I know it is all temporary and a must.  I must help as they wait for the doctors to release Max.  He was on the path to head home on Thursday, but it didn't happen.  His parents were on the 48 hour total care in the hospital so they could prepare and know exactly how to care for him at home but he started throwing up and his heart rate rose rapidly.  They had to call in the nurses and doctors, run all kinds of tests and put him back on oxygen and an  48 hour antibiotic drip in case of infection.  They're still not sure what caused it all but he is better now.  This caused his release to be delayed for Monday.  Here's where the "I won't lie" thing comes in, I confess, I cried.  I cried because of a lot of things, disappointment of him still there and because of exhaustion from a darling 3 year old in my chaotic world.  OMG, she can make me absolutely belly laugh and my face feels like it wants to break from smiling.  Then there are times when I've just had enough.  It is constant 3 year old chattering and being ON ALL THE TIME!  I can manage it and with a couple of breaks from B&B2 tag teaming watching her, allowing me to just get out, all is better.  B2 came to watch her on Thursday morning and I was able to spend some quality time at my easel, maybe finishing one of the paintings.  Friday B came and stayed while I went to the office to do payroll, run a few errands and have a nice lunch with The Hubby.  In fact when I got back home she was asleep on the couch, naked, of course.  You see she was up at 5:30 am yesterday!  I knew she would crash.  This regression potty training thing is a bitch I can tell you.  I remember when my girls potty trained and it was generally in the summer when you just let them run around naked.  If she has no diaper on she will run to the potty and she can do it all on her own, even on the big potty!  I was thinking yesterday, because she is bored at home now and wants to go, go, go, that if I make it seem in her mind, that we have to stay home because of no panties, but if she wants to go, go, go, then she has to wear panties!  I think that is actually swirling around in her mind.

This is ALL worth it...

I know sweet Snicklefritz is over the duo sleepovers but it just can't be helped.  She misses OUR time together tremendously.  Hopefully next weekend it will just be her and I.

Monday, February 20, 2023

Mardi Gras and Potty Training.

The past weekend we headed to the cabin with this little nugget in tow.  Getting her in the car/car seat was not as much a problem as it usually is (thank goodness) but she was concerned how far the drive was. She keeps her legs crossed until she drifts off to sleep or just eases up.  We have figured out she is regressing in potty training and I'm not fighting that.  Will just work with her on it.  We had company on Saturday night for dinner and I had her dinner done before and then all set up in her room with my IPad and Little Bear that I had downloaded.  Also my friend, Lesa, brought a huge goody bag full of new stuff to play with and that was perfect to keep her attention.  Forgot that this week starts the Mardi Gras celebrations everywhere and as luck would have it I fixed the perfect meal and we had beads galore with Lesa bringing more for the party.  The only hitch was I told her she had to stay in the room so she would yell out my name.  Goodness I was up and down like popcorn but I'm telling myself it's exercise!  She was good until she decided to strip the clothes, her bottom half.  I then definitely told her she could not come out if she was naked.  LOL!  Honestly she was great and packing and loading up yesterday she was a jewel all dressed with panties, but she wanted a diaper on when we got home.  I had only brought two with The Hubby going back to town for the flea market and picking up another.  My plan today is if she wants to be naked that is okay with me.  I'm not going anywhere and no one is coming over, except Snicklefritz and she may be a big help in all this.  Honestly I never experience potty training regression. This is a whole new thing for me but we will get through it.  She's also been eating really well and in fact last night, after a good dinner, she woke up hungry and wanted food.  (She actually woke up twice.)  It was kind of a rough night with sleep but again this is temporary and we will get through.  I am very tired.  

Forgot, my meal was so yummy this weekend.  Our store carries in the frozen food section a jalapeno cream cheese stuffed pork tenderloin that is so very yummy.  My grocery person who shops for me accidently picked out one that had shrimp and andouille sausage in it.  So I had one of each (Mardi Gras theme).  They are extremely easy to cook and pack a punch of flavor for company.  I also had roasted new potatoes and a huge tossed salad.  It was a tasty meal.  


Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Max & Min

This baby, Mighty Max is really close to coming HOME!  Today he had a G-tube put into his tummy.  He passed his 2nd swallow test with only one little aspiration but it's just a bit too risky to head home without the G-tube.  The injection has helped tremendously but it could wear off before his vocal cord could repair itself and he would aspirate and that would be life threatening.  So he goes home with the G-tube, just in case but they will continue mouth feeding carefully with the G-tube there as a backup for food.  He's bright-eyed and a happy baby that everyone in the hospital just adores.  

Last weekend Min and her daddy headed that way to see momma and Max.  This kiddo is absolutely in the throws of the TERRIBLE THREES!!!  She made her momma crazy, and this week, me too!  Oh man she is pushing the boundaries of how far she can assert herself with her daddy and me.  Yesterday her daddy just could not get her dressed.  She stalled and stalled saying she had to poop, then pee.  She was running around naked and I was left to try and get her to school while her daddy headed to work.  She is supposed to be at her preschool by 9 and I did not get her there till 10!  Getting her dressed is a horrendous task, she does NOT cooperate at all and strips whatever you manage to get on.  Her thing is she says she has to poop or pee, over and over again when she clearly does not need to go.  Yesterday I was able to cojole her into clothes and out the door, eventually.  Today, oh man today, Mean Granny made an appearance.  I had to pretty much manhandle her to get her dressed. As long as she is naked she is just fine but the MINUTE you put her foot in her panties she starts screaming she has to pee or poop, owey that her bottom has a rash, blah, blah, blah.  She does NOT have a rash, it is perfectly perfect.  It is a huge stall tactic to keep control in her hands.  This morning I was having absolutely none of it.  I got her dressed with her screaming no.  Getting her coat on, every time I got her arm in she screamed bloody murder, ouch, ouch, ouch and she would shuck out of it.  I finally got both arms in and carried her to the front door, grabbed her lunch and bag, my purse and out the door we went, her crying.  Down the front steps and to the driveway she suddenly bolted and I YELLED her name.  She stopped dead in her tracks and let me catch up.  I would have not been able to catch her if she had run which scared the shit out of me.  I got her to the car, opened the door and lifted the squirmy snake in the car with her yelling, screaming and crying, "HELP, HELP ME!"  Well, crap, just as a neighbor lady was walking by.  Good GRIEF!   Her daddy said she did that in the grocery the night before and he left his cart taking her to the car and a lady giving him the eye, watching him put her into the car and acting like she was calling someone and following him out of the parking lot.  THAT IS DAMN SCARY!  Where in the world did she learn to scream help me, HELP! in the first place.  That sweet little face is very deceiving and she is perplexing us all by her behavior.  I got her to school but it was definitely later than it should have been.  When we got there I turned around in the car to look at her and talk to her about her behavior not being acceptable and that it brought out the Mean Granny, that all I want to be is Nice Granny and love her and play with her.  I do not know if she understands but we have got to get through to her.  I'm mentally exhausted with this and feeling like I'm loosing control of my life really.  When I got the emergency help call on Tuesday I was at the office with all my taxes laid out I was trying to get ready for the accountant.  I ended up having to just grab it all up and put it back in the drawer and I have not been back to deal with it yet.  I tried to paint this morning but didn't get too much done because I was talking to Linda and dealing with an art show coming up.  Hopefully next week I will get more done.  Who knows what each day, each hour brings but I know it will level out and she will get it soon, I hope.  I love this little button and don't want to be Mean Granny at all.  

Sunday, February 12, 2023

Sketching and Max Update

I have had one busy week.  I was in my car every single day and Thursday I was in and out and in and out of my car.  I was the Granny-Taxi most of the week and boy was I bushed.  Trying to get some art in has been tricky lately.  Thursday, because I knew I was going to be on the go all day, I had spare time at 7:30 am, so to the studio I went to at least splash a bit of paint around.  I went Wednesday too but it was kind of busy there with a customer and friend in for Linda.  Chatting was the task of the morning.  I still have my drawing supplies, or a lot of them, at the house along with the watercolors.  Today I could of gone to the studio but I just did not want to venture out, or put a bra on so in I stayed.  I spent the morning sketching a bit.  

Hopefully the cows will get a tinge of watercolor on it.  My mind is kind in a whirl as the studio move is probably going to be sooner than later.  

The Hubby has been making room for me at the office, even though we are still technically a working business still.  Work is slowing down tons and basically we have a month and a half left.  B has begun the purge of our files, the accounting ones so we can move out some of the file cabinets we won't need anymore.  It's really a bit scary, something I've wanted for awhile, yet scary.  Kind of having a a hard time letting go of my actual desk.  I love that piece of furniture but really it won't be needed soon.  Just need a space for the computer and printer for minimal accounting stuff.  After 44 years of doing what I do yet wanting to be done with it, I am finding it hard to let it go.  Hmmm, imagine.  

Tomorrow will begin another week of the Granny-Taxi stuff starting with heading to their house to watch Min as she doesn't have school on Monday's.  I go there to give him a break of rushing her out of the house.  It's just easier for all.  This weekend they headed to OKC to see Af and Max and Nick finally got to hold his baby boy. Max is now a tad over a month old and is close to heading home!  All he has now is the NG feeding tube in his nose.  This past week they did a swallow test to see if he can be fed by mouth but he failed.  With all the tubes down his throat and having his chest cracked open one of his vocal cords was damaged.  Not permanent but it caused a paralysis.  His cry was kind of a squeaky cry, not full on because of the paralysis and this also affected the swallowing.  It would mend eventually but they can also do an injection of a botox-like medicine that can usually help quicker.  They did that injection on Friday and scoped his throat and saw absolutely no reason that he can't take food via his mouth.  It will just take some time either in the hospital and a longer stay or they will send him home with a G-tube directly in his stomach and his parents can work with getting him to taking food through his mouth and he would be home in a couple of weeks!  Not sure what they will be doing at this point but Af was really down because she wants badly to nurse him but she knows it is what it is.  He will come home and that is the most important thing, at least till about June when he will go back for surgery #2 and not another for 2-3 years.  They need to go home because Min NEEDS her momma.  She is in great need of having MOMMA!  

Sunday, February 05, 2023

There Is Something Different

 We have NEWS!!! News from our Mighty Max.

Notice anything different??

Max is completely off the ventilator! The nasal cannula are gone!!!! He is breathing totally on his own. Huge milestone!
Please pray that we can stay off them for good. Thanks be to God!
Also, Max is officially one month old now.

Wednesday, February 01, 2023

Kiddos Update

Feel like it's been a New York minute since I've posted here.  Last week was a few days of having the girls for overnights.  I love it but boy does it wipe me out.  She gets easier and easier to keep until she has her meltdowns.  It's funny that they don't happen much when it's just me.  She has a competition thing going with Snicklefritz, sibling-like.  Whatever Snicklefritz has or wants she wants too.  The sharing thing is a vague concept to her, trying to get across.  
Poor Snicklefritz gets frustrated too and ends up in the bedroom hiding out.  I get it.  Trying to reason with a 3 year old sometimes is frustrating and complicated.  Yet, when they are in sync they are the best of friends and Snicklefritz is so very good with her.  When they are around it's toys and toys and toys everywhere but the giggles outweigh all the inconvenience.  This week has been light in the Granny Taxi time because of our ice/sleet everywhere.  I do not, EVER venture out in this stuff.  I did have to head to the office on Monday but The Hubby carefully helped me into his truck and out at the door of the office so I could do invoicing.  The times to do that will be less and less, two more months worth actually!  March 31 will be the ending of invoicing.  The money will be still rolling in and the last of the payroll will be then if not before.  It's really a reality.  The office this week has been quiet as the employees are staying put, no one is going on jobsites.  The weather never stops The Hubby from going in to the office.  He goes in the same time every morning but what he is up to is beginning the cleaning out of the downstairs offices in readiness for my studio!!!!  He's really making a dent in files and furniture move out.  I thought it would take longer but with time on his hands he can't stand it.  I need, I want to go in and start boxing up files.  We will need to keep them in storage for I think 5 years and after that SHRED DAY!  
We've been trying to figure out what we are keeping in the office and what we are not keeping at this time and where exactly I'm going to set up.  Luckily we are keeping a nice drafting table I can use for drawing and watercolors.  I have my taboret table and various shelves, etc.  I have sooooooooooo many canvas's painted and unpainted.  A lot of them need to be repainted over.  I really don't need to buy a canvas again in my lifetime I think.  Yes, I'm moving out of my current studio in the next few months.  I hate that I won't be with Linda anymore but it is time.  What is nice is that she teaches out of her home too and has a standing offer for me to come to her class, free, to paint with everyone once a week.  When all this studio/office move gets straightened up and baby is home I will take her up on the offer.  I miss painting with other people.  I miss her company.

On the Max front, he is doing exceptionally well.  They've pretty much weaned him off of most things and his blood pressure is finally righting itself to normal levels.  Af finally gets to hold him now, with help as he does have a few things still attached.  He is even getting a lot of food through the tube in his nose!!!  Today the will be pulling most of the lines out.  
Honestly it's a possibility that he will get to come home in the next month until about June and the next surgery.
Oh that smile says it all.

While the girls are here at the house I've been setting up the watercolors.  I even brought in the little kids table but Min wants to sit by me at my big table.  I made the mistake of not taking the tablecloth off but it's watercolor.  I will take it off eventually as there is a plastic cover on the table that can get all kinds of stuff on it.  

I am doing a lot of these tiny watercolor things and plan on giving them for Christmas next year.  This one got snatched up by Af pretty quick.

I also, FINALLY, set up my Christmas present to me, my EdgePro Plein Air Easel.  I'm really hoping that this summer at the cabin to set up a lot outside to paint plein air.  This one a friend took the photo and said I could paint any of her photos.  She and her husband have been all over the world and she posts tons of great photos of places I will never go to,  i.e MOUNTAINS!  I think this one will be great when done.  I have a show to enter stuff into this spring and I need some things but I also have some already painted that I can enter.
The deer painting I'll finish at the studio.  I brought it home but just can't get back into it right now.  Honestly it's close to being done.  Thought I would put it in the show but it's a fall thing and the show is called "Spring Show" and they advised to maybe follow that.  Hmmmph...okay.  I know this is fall-y too but it's colorful.

Today, another day not leaving the house and not changing into real clothes.  I think tomorrow I will be out and about.  I'm sure that school will be back in session and will have to transport Min to school and will have to watch her on Friday morning, unless Bri watches her.  I have some stuff to wrap up at the office. We have a wedding to go to on Friday night and I HAD planned on doing a bit of clothes shopping this week to try to find something fluffy, not jeans wear, but this weather messed that up.  I'm sure I can rummage around in my closet for stuff.  Oh well, onward to the rest of the week.  

Toodles all!


Friday, January 27, 2023

Mighty Max...Update

3 Weeks Old and finally, FINALLY being held by his Momma.  Mighty Max is doing so well. They are weaning him off his meds slowly and there is a bit of withdrawal going on but that is expected.  He's smiling, hiccupping and making a few squeaky sounds.  He has not full out cried yet because one of his vocal cords is paralyzed but that, they think, will correct itself in time.  A nerve that is close to the surgery spot was affected.  This guy is a champion and we hope soon, very soon he may come home, at least for a time before surgery #2, then home for a few years.  Definitely a long but steady journey to stability.

Pure Love...