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.

 

Happy Bday Marty Perry Riley

Wife Lila’s sister, Marty Perry Riley, Central High School Class of 1968, has a birthday today. This was taken at Christmas around 1972.

Pictures on the wall include John Perry, our wedding picture, John in the navy and a piece of art by Marty. Note that the TV’s rabbit ears have been “improved” by the addition of aluminum foil.

Other Marty stories