Good Night!

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Ha!  Paul slept all night last night, from 10:30 or so until about 5:30.  And in his big boy crib too!  I actually got up around 4 to see what was going on in the boys’ room (because my body was missing Paul : ))

I messed around with trying to put my own photo up as a header, but had no luck.  I need to know more about http I guess.  I like what I ended up with except it is smooth brome grass, which is the crabgrass of rangeland (least ways up here).  When I get it figgured out, I will put a native grass scene up.

I need to get to bed, I put Paul down in his crib again, so wish me luck.



With cold weather upon us, currently two below zero here, I thought I would post a couple of quilt photos. In a burst of domesticity I went shopping today. My book group is due at my house tomorrow, and this gave me the excuse to actually put something on the wall in my dining room. It has been bare since, let’s see…1998. Not that I am jealous, but they all live in new houses, and don’t seem to live in them, if you know what I mean.  A realator’s dream.  I couldn’t possibly compete, and don’t have any desire to, but I thought an update was not out of line.  As you can see, it is a huge wall, and the two items hanging on it were dwarfed by an expanse of white space. I hated to buy a quilt, but neither mom nor I have taken the time to make anything. Quilt presses (hanger thingies) run around $125 in town here, I need to get some oak and go into business. I did find this shelf thing though, and it was less than $50, but more than I had planned to spend. When I got home, I got out husband’s big drill, and screwed in a couple of screws while standing on the table. Don’t know what the ladies learned, but hopefully they learned women can use power tools. They probably learned to stand on the table.  The black thing in our dining room is the dangly from the ceiling fan, not something nasty on the wall.  Ansel Adams, I am not.

Quilt in dining room Paul's quilt, front Paul's quilt, back

The other quilt is the one I made for Paul. I bought the back several years ago, because I loved it. Mom found the design on the front, it was very easy. We did the team thing where she irons and pins and I sew. Makes things go pretty fast.

You will have to excuse my photos, I wasn’t able to stand very still.  Feel free to notice that the carpet has been freshly shampooed.  I did it for the first time ever.  From the looks of the water and the lack of stains on the carpet, I need to do this about once a year, rather than once every eight!  Jeez, look at the time, dialup took forever to load my photos, but I got the kitchen cleaned while I was waiting.

Four Things Quickly

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Four jobs I have had in my life:

Salad bar queen at Wendy’s, Grad student grunt, (aka new and used grass collector), Chef/waitress/bottlewasher at The Rustic, Mom 

Four places I have lived:

Laramie, WY, Pavillion, WY, Lyman NE, Mullen, NE 

Four places I have been on vacation:

Black Hills, Harlingen TX, Yellowstone, Tennessee


Four of my favorite Foods:

Something I didn’t cook, Fresh seafood, Anything Mexican, a good avocado

 Four places I would rather be right now:

Somewhere in the Sandhills, Scubadiving somewhere, Skiing somewhere, In front of a crackling fire with a good book

Rolling the Fuel Truck

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This story was told to Wildflowersp by Husband.

Several years ago, I drove a fuel truck as part of my job. I delivered bulk gas, diesel and propane to rural customers. At the time, I lived in the middle of Nebraska, a sparsely populated part of the state, with a lot of empty space between houses, like 25 miles in some cases. Cell towers were much farther apart than that, and cell reception was non-existent. It was a sun shiny Labor Day, and my boss had promised me the rest of the day off, after I made a round of deliveries. I was working about 90 hours a week for this guy, so extra time off was a rare commodity.

I had some trouble at the first place. I needed to fill an underground tank with gas. When I put the nozzle into the fill pipe gasoline sprayed back out at me. I couldn’t get more than a trickle into the tank, at about one gallon a minute. I could tell that something was blocking the fill pipe. Since I didn’t want to wait 1,000 minutes to fill the 1,000 gallon tank, I improvised. I crammed a piece of radiator hose down the fill pipe, past the blockage and began to fill the tank fairly quickly through this. The underground fuel tank had an air relief vent which ran underground 20 some feet, then up along the side of a building some 15 feet. When I had the fuel tank full, gas started shooting out of the air vent. I unhooked the hose from the fill pipe and gravity took over. The fuel that was up in the air relief had only one place to go, back out the fill pipe. I took an unleaded gasoline shower.

Gas on your skin burns, a lot, and I was coated with it from head to toe. I took off my shirt and crawled into the truck. Driving to the next stop, I became uncomfortable in the southern part of my briefs. You know, my tender areas. I was in the middle of nowhere, and my crotch was on fire. I did what anyone would do. I took my pants off. Actually I left them around my ankles. I had several miles to go, and the fresh air from the open windows was starting to get things under control. Aside from being a little distracted, I was driving fast so I could get home, for more than one reason now. The gravel road had a couple of curves, and at the second one I lost control of the fuel truck, and rolled it over onto its top. I crawled out as quickly as I could and looked around for witnesses. Then I pulled my pants back up. Fortunately, the truck didn’t explode.

Most of the gas on my pants had evaporated by the time I hiked back a mile to use the phone. Nobody was home at that place, but they had left the house unlocked. I called my boss, who surprisingly, was not mad. I got off work at 6:00, four hours earlier than usual, so I still got my vacation.

Later, I found out that the tank owner’s kids had been putting rocks in the fill pipe, and a large one had lodged itself in the bottom of the pipe, right above the tank. If you know where to look, the windshield is still in the south ditch.



  1. The Reader’s Digest published an issue on humor a while ago. I had to agree with a lot about the differences between men’s humor and women’s. It explained why my husband says, “you don’t have a sense of humor,” and why I reply, “you have the sense of humor of a 13 year-old-boy.” They pretty much used our words verbatim. I am not sure it is anything I can apply to life, but at least I know that I am not alone, and that I do have a sense of humor.

    I especially could relate to the part where they discussed what men and women call their friends. The article, which I no longer have (so this is paraphrased from memory), uses for example four guys meeting for lunch who call each other Fatboy, Red, Matter-o-Fact, and Schmidt Head. The four women called each other Helen, Meg, Annie and Jennifer. Husband calls both of his good friends nicknames, and not really nice ones. They have nicknames for him as well, and ones he deserves. I call all of my friends by their names, or a shortened form of that.

    Unfortunately the movie thing threw me a loop. I personally own two of the movies that were supposed to be men’s humor and none of those that were presumably for women. “Blazing Saddles” was my all time favorite movie to watch when I stayed home sick from work. I bought “Fletch” recently, and I still laugh all the way though it. I don’t believe it was on the list, which is a travesty, but surely it would have been on the men’s list.  We watched a Chevy Chase marathon while I was in labor with Mae, he just slays me.  I saw Annie Hall (listed in the women’s favorites) sometime in the last 24 months, and I don’t remember even thinking it was funny. Maybe it was because I don’t have much in common with the world of Jewish New Yorkers.

    My Step dad, Fred, is hilarious. We play a board game called Balderdash. You and your friends have to make up fake definitions for words you probably haven’t heard of, then you get to guess which one is the real definition. My definition for the word “squallop” was something about a brief but violent storm at sea. Someone else came up with a shell fish. Fred’s response was, “An Indian maid with loose morals.” Last night he came up with a definition for “snurp.” My first thought was something to do with Smurfs, but I made up something lame about shoe tread. Fred came up with, “when a person with a cleft palate drinks from a glass.” Please understand my step dad is not someone who would make anyone feel uncomfortable, and he is not prejudiced, or mean spirited in any way, and most of his ideas don’t have anything derogatory in them, it just happens that the two funniest I remember do. (I used to work for Uncle Sam, so I feel the need to put a disclaimer so as not to offend anyone.)

    Before she started pre-school last year, I taught Mae a couple of jokes. The teacher tracked me down and told me she had never heard a funny joke from a student before, or even one that made sense. So why did the chicken cross the playground? To get to the other slide.


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We are going home today!  Paul’s O2 levels are good enough to go “unwired.”  I laughed, a nurse cornered the Dr as he left our room and asked, “How come I have a mask and gloves on, and you aren’t wearing anything?”  I didn’t catch his answer.  Dr was really impressed that I could listen to the radio on my computer.  He isn’t really old, he might be as many as 10 years older than me, but I guess he isn’t really techno-savvy.  I’m gonna go pack now.

Still here, for now

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Friday Evening We are still here. Maybe tomorrow. Dr said that when we go home, we will probably have oxygen and breathing treatments too. I can only imagine what Leo will think of the O2 lines. Paul has started to flirt and visit with people, a good sign. Husband came up for a while, and he brought the baby vibrator chair. Unfortunately Paul is not interested in vibrating. I managed to pull the antibiotic line out of the port again, right at bedtime. He was really fussy all evening, and just wanted to be held, that is why I was transferring him from the bassinette to my bed. I feel sorry for our neighbors, although we are kind of at the end of a hallway. 


Not happy tonight.

  Saturday The cleaning guy is cute, probably 15 years younger than I am…but nice to look at and friendly too. Everyone here does things differently, one aid will put a full sized sheet on Paul’s bassinette, folding it under the mattress, the next will slip the mattress into a pillowcase (what I would have done). The respiratory therapist, a man, keeps Paul in his bassinette to do his treatments, he doesn’t even touch him. The nurses hold him and rock him when they do the treatments.  People come into our room in all states of dress, some in hazmat suits, some in just masks some just wander in.  I think there is a man in his 40s or 50s here, then the rest of the patients are all 80 years and up. I suspect my foray into pop culture is about to end. I think I have learned that 70 channels of TV doesn’t get me excited enough to want a dish. I didn’t even watch my usual shows this week. I used to watch Grey’s Anatomy religiously, but Paul was born on a Thursday, and I haven’t seen it since the first week in November. I don’t even miss it much. You can bet I won’t miss Lost on January 31. What I am missing right now is my Saturday morning NPR fix, I listen to Car Talk and Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me. Wait, I can stream radio! It looks like I am back into the early 20th century again, of course using (for me) 21st century technology. I am gonna miss this internet hookup big time.  More when I know more, still haven’t seen the Dr today.


Mama! My bouncy!

What are five random facts about you?

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1.I love to dance, but my husband isn’t very good so we never go, 2.I cried all through Game Plan, 3.I have been driving since I was 5, 4.I have a secret crush on the guy who plays Sayed on Lost, Ssshhh 5.I had a photo featured on the cover of a magazine  



Friday through noon

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  Friday Woke up around 6 after staying up until midnight. Paul has been getting a little better each day. I don’t think you get over this quickly. Dr said he would make a call on when we could go home based on this afternoon’s blood tests. After the morning breathing treatment, the nurses decided his port was clogged, and wanted to move it again. I decided that was my best opportunity to dash home for more clothes etc. When I got home, Mom was in the middle of making cabbage burgers, so I had to stay for lunch. Leo was so happy to see me, and had so much to babble about, then he fell asleep on Papa’s lap before lunch, while I was in the shower, so I didn’t spend much time with him. I did play barbies with the ladies for a while. Man that is boring. Mae called me on it, demanding to know why my dolls weren’t talking. I pointed out that they were in the beauty shop, and they couldn’t talk over the hair dryer. I was actually sitting and enjoying watching my kids play. I would much rather play cars or blocks or little people or store than barbies, although back in the day I played my fair share of barbies.

When I got back to the hospital, Paul was due for another breathing treatment, then my minister stopped by for a chat. So far nobody has drawn blood, but on Tues, the Dr said that we would have at least 72 hours of antibiotics for the infection. By my calculation, that is up, and the nurse said the Dr hadn’t stopped anything yet. I am gonna go check out youtube now.  I got the video loaded.  I don’t know what I did differently last night, but it worked like a charm today.  As you can see, he is a little hungry too.  I took that Wednesday.

We are in the hospital


Tuesday I slept in. Paul was not feeling well, I had 2 non-consecutive hours of sleep Sat night, and Sun was only a little better. I dropped the ladies at pre-school about five minutes late then took Leo and Paul to Paul’s well-baby appointment at 9:15. By 9:45 we were checking into the hospital with two X-rays and a nose swab under our belts.

Paul has RSV, pneumonia and also a secondary infection. I kept Leo with me until 3:30 in the hospital room. Can you imagine being in a hospital room for five-and-a-half hours with a sick 2 month-old and a healthy 18 month-old? We played drive-the-tractor, lose-the-puzzle-pieces and shred-the-toilet paper. The kitchen gave us two noon meals, including Jello for Leo. “Gave” is probably the wrong word to use here. I dashed home find that Husband had got upwards of 60 pounds of free baby carrots from work. At least I don’t have to wonder what to do with them.  I managed to line up our once-a-week nanny, pack, orchestrate my hospital entertainment and child care for everyone else over the course of half an hour. I got back to the hospital in time for the doctor to tell me we wouldn’t be leaving until noon on Friday, or later.

I brought Paul’s baby quilt, which I am about done with now, The Secret Garden to read, (I am out of unread books at home) and my cell phone manual. I spent the first night learning how to text message better.  I also brought the laptop, thinking I could write, or organize my files.  The Dr told me two months ago they didn’t have wireless.


This was as far as he opened his eyes Tuesday.

We got a single room, and a bassinette like when Paul was born. This is a small hospital, there are maybe 25 or so rooms. I recognize most of the nursing staff from my stay two months ago. They remember us too. We have a banner claiming “ISOLATION” outside the door. This means most hospital personnel who  come in have a mask and hazmat gown. Paul is on an IV and also oxygen. He has bandages on both “elbow pits” from blood draws and owies on the back of both hands where they tried to put a port in. They also tried twice on his head before they got it in. Poor little guy. Someone comes in every four hours to do breathing treatments on him with some kind of vapor, Chemistry 101 escapes me.

Wednesday, after the best night’s sleep I have had since I don’t even remember when, I was awakened at 5:00. A hospital is no place to sleep, we had people come in five times that night! Paul was put on glucose, since he wasn’t nursing well. As the day progressed, that changed, and he made up for several days’ worth of feedings by eating pretty much full time from lunch to bed time. Paul sounds like he is breathing backwards through a harmonica. Mom and my Stepdad came to watch the other kiddos, because Husband has a business meeting out of town Thursday. The whole tribe came to visit, for half an hour that evening. I had bought a bag of Cheetos, so my bedding has small hand shaped orange spots all over it. Kinda makes the place seem homey.

I learned this evening how to control the TV volume. We had it on extremely low. I accidentally noticed the dial on the bed thing, and realized I could adjust it. Cool! Since we have no cable, I miss out on some of the cultural things going on in society. Things I like to have a passing knowledge about, like “Sex in the City.” I got to see that for the first and probably last time. I also got to watch “Monk,” which I liked. I won’t watch anything with a crawler. I panic because I can’t not watch the words. I am a compulsive reader.  I have the same problem with subtitles, even if they are another language.  It took me until Thursday at 8:00 p.m. to figger out I had wireless.  Oh the time I could have wasted.  Seems like I need to be a little more observant of my surroundings.

Thursday, I slept in until 7:00. Oh my gosh it was wonderful. Right before I went to bed, around midnight Tues night, I moved Paul to my bed, because he was not happy in the bassinette, and managed to pull out the glucose line and cause him to bleed all over my bed. That was awful. The nurses keep saying that they want to use the same port site as long as possible. I guess I didn’t do any harm to that, but I sure felt bad for him, and he felt bad too. I slept great after that though. I must be running on fumes to be able to sleep through someone taking my kid out of my bed to give him breathing treatments. Personally, I hate to sleep where other people can see me. I stayed awake the whole time on the plane to and from Hawaii. I seem to be over that problem.

We have special garbage containers in our room, for all the stuff they put on. I made a comment to the cleaning guy about how much waste is leaving our room. He weighed it and we are using about five pounds of gowns/gloves/diapers/medical packaging a day. The respiratory therapist made a joke about the food here, and while it is not what one would expect from a high class restaurant, I didn’t have to cook it, so I won’t complain. It is definitely down home style cooking, and there is nothing wrong with it. I have had both beets and spinach for vegetables, nothing fresh though.

Dad and Nanny came to visit for an hour today. They are on their way through for some kind of meeting somewhere. They kindly brought me the Christmas gift I had given them, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, by Barbara Kingsolver. I was not done reading it when I had to wrap it. I should have plenty of time now, since the quilt is almost done, and The Secret Garden is pretty short. I sent the quilt home with Mom, so she can get the binding ready for me to attach. I have a hard time not doing anything, even watching TV for very long.

Later, Mom brought the ladies for a brief visit. We all used the stethoscope on Paul, and when the Cheetos ran out they left. Shortly after that, the port gave out and the nurses had to remove all the tape from Paul’s hair. I left when they put in the new port. After supper we had another guest. The Dr said he his thinking we might go home tomorrow afternoon, maybe.  I tried to upload video of Paul breathing, but I couldn’t get it to work.  I will try again before I leave this wireless haven and return to my prehistoric dialup.


                                       Notice the Cheetos, Mom can actually be bribed with them.                                      


 Looking a little better.

This begs the question, what happened?  How could my kid get so sick without me knowing it?  I knew he was sick when we went to the Dr.  The appointment was the reason I didn’t take him in Monday.  Sunday, a friend told us his daughter had RSV, but we didn’t touch him, or anything he touched, and she wasn’t around.  I understand that the child needs to be present for the disease to move from one to another.  God, I hope so, I visited my cousin’s baby in the hospital!  Paul stayed home.  I guess the only thing wierd, other than what I thought was a cold, was the fact that Paul had foamy drool.  Sorry about the technical jargon, but that is it.  When it dried, it looked a little like egg whites.  He was breathing a little rough, but all of my kids were snuffley at that age.  Hmm.

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