Marty Riley’s Glenn House Exhibit

Marty Riley art exhibit 04-01-2016Marty Perry Riley, Wife Lila’s sister, was the featured artist at the landmark Glenn House on April 1. I have long admired her work, but I didn’t realize she had done so many pieces. She is a member of the Arts Council of Southeast Missouri and the Visual Arts Cooperative, and a frequent winner of contests.

Marty, a retired RN, was the person we’d call when Mother needed help with something over the years, and Wife Lila had her number on the speed dial whenever one of the kids broke or bent something. Her’s was the voice of comfort that would say, “Don’t worry. Just stick Adam’s arm back on with super glue and a couple bandages and he’ll be fine.”

She likes street painting, too

Marty Perry Riley LW Street Painting Festival 02-27-2011Her work isn’t confined to canvas, either. She’s been down to Lake Worth, Florida, a couple of times to participate in the annual Street Painting Festival, one of the biggest in the country.

Picture This

2015 CHS Reunion 08-01-2015I was going to write something profound about the 2015 reunion, but I need to let my thoughts simmer for awhile.

Maybe it’s my family’s brush with mortality lately; maybe it’s looking at that looping series of photos of our classmates who have graduated to the next level; maybe it’s just that the doggone stairs in the Arena building seem steeper than they used to. So, rather than post the rather melancholy thoughts that are floating around in my head right now, let’s just go straight to some happy pictures of the celebration we had.

2015 Reunion photo gallery

Click on any picture to make it larger, then use your arrow keys to move through the gallery. There are a lot of images of the photographer herding cats to set up the group shots. I’ll add that job to the list of career opportunities to avoid.

Taking a Break

Ken - Mary - David and Mark Steinhoff in Lutheran Home 04-20-2015After more than a year of posting seven days a week, you may have noticed that I’ve been slacking off.

This has been a rough winter for Mother: she had her heart shocked back into rhythm in February, her pacemaker was replaced and she’s been sucking down supplemental oxygen to help her breathe (her oxygen saturation is higher than mine, so it must be working). In addition to the miserable weather that kept her trapped in the house, her circle of friends is getting smaller and smaller, which has made her a bit gloomy.

Regaining her strength

Different combinations of Mark, David and I have been keeping her company, but we determined that we didn’t have the expertise to get her back up to speed. She’s moved into the Lutheran Home temporarily so she can get physical therapy and gain some weight back. She’s got plenty of muscles from mowing the lawn, blowing leaves and going up and down the basement steps, but she’s working on learning how to use those muscles more effectively when you’re 93, going on 94.

I like the Lutheran Home

I’ve done quite a few stories over the years about healthcare facilities, including some that are no longer in business in Cape County. Most of the stories, sad to say, were about neglect and abuses.

The first thing I noticed about the Lutheran Home was that it didn’t smell. It’s clean and shiny.

The staff is friendly and caring. I’m usually there from late afternoon, through the evening meal and wind down watching a movie with Mother until she falls asleep, so I’ve had plenty of time over the last couple of months to get to know the folks who work there. They are stretched a little thin, but that’s a management issue, not anything the individual nurses, aides and therapists can control. I’m impressed.

Cards and letters

2015-05-20 MLS cards_20150520_164100385Road Warriorette Jan put the word out to her wide network of friends that she knew someone who would love to get some cards in the mail. Before long, Mother was getting batches of unique and interesting cards from all over the country. It has certainly given her something to look forward to.

If you’d like to send her a note, here’s her address until she gets back home.

Mary Steinhoff

Lutheran Home Room 217

2825 Bloomfield Road

Cape Girardeau, MO 63703

Back to work

I’m way behind on some projects, but I’ll try to post to this blog a little more regularly. Thanks to you folks who sent me email saying you missed seeing the morning posts.

I also need to thank Marty Riley and Rachael Criddle who have been a tremendous help over the past few months. It’s nice to have folks around who can explain medicines and procedures to you in non-doctorspeak.

72 Minutes in Cape Girardeau

Street Scenes 03-28-2015It’s amazing how many random things you can encounter in 72 minutes in Cape Girardeau.

And, I didn’t even have to get out of the car to shoot them. (Which explains why they aren’t all that sharp.)

About a block from Wife Lila’s sister Marty’s house on Themis, I spotted three pairs of shoes swinging from utility wires. Now, you can see shoes tacked to a utility POLE in Perkins or onto a tree at Murray State, but running into a three-fer of pairs hanging in the air is pretty unusual.

63 minutes later

Street Scenes 03-28-2015I’m not sure where we went after the shoe shot – maybe Annie Laurie’s Antique Shop – but, just as I was pulling into a parking spot to walk down to the river, I spied this photo shoot going on. It looked like Mom and three girls being photographed for Easter.

I thought it might be a commercial shoot, and I don’t like to interfere with those, so I popped off two frames and walked down to the river. I love the woman trying to coax a reaction from the girls. Click on it to make it larger.

What is this guy’s message?

Street Scenes 03-28-2015Nine minutes after leaving Water Street, I found myself tucked in behind this guy. When we were stopped by the red light at Broadway and Sprigg, I got close enough to read the signs (even though one says, “Private Signs Do Not Read).

I wasn’t sure if he meant that or not, so I waited until the light turned green before raising the camera to take this picture. Even though I can read the words, I’m not sure I can deduce the meanings.