to my readers

This blog is now all about my personal life, including updates concerning Jerry's health. For quilt and pattern related posts please visit HillbillyQuiltShop.blogspot.com

Sunday, December 30, 2012

It's Almost time for...

my

 Big 

Huge

 Stupendous

 Tremendous 

Ahhhhnouncement!


Check back New Years Day for my exciting return to the land of blog!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

January is just around the corner...

Five or six months ago I said that I was backing off blogland awhile until I could start school and 're-group' after that incredibly busy May for ME season! 

Ha, re-group? How I wish the last 4 months would only have been a re-group. No, I do not wish that. I have been through probably some of the hardest times of my life in the last few months but I have grown personally so much during that time. 

 I said (way back when) that I would be back in the New Year, and it looks like that might just be true. I am not the same Hillbilly Tonya that 'left' you though. With life's seasons, and life changes come people changes. While I used to yearn to pick up a needle and thread...I now yearn to take a nap. (lol--seriously!). While I used to have a TON of projects saved that I wanted to do, from BOM's to cute little stitcheries, to EPP projects I've realized that while quilting is still very much a part of my life that I want to return to, it cannot be in the forefront. 

Going into January, Seth and I have ALOT of catching up on school to do, so while I will be returning to blog land, I will be taking it slowly. All of my spare hours are spent down at the fabric shop, (when did that become a fabric shop and stop being my Creation Station anyway??!!)

I have been keeping a HUGE announcement under my hat. It has to do with my Ahhh's. Everytime I came close to getting my act together to reveal, hubby would go back into the hospital. It looks like he is going to be spending much less time at the hospital, so I think my coming back for the New Year is the perfect time to make that announcement, don't you? So be watching! (Jerry--you better not go back into the hospital now after I said that. I feel like I 'jinxed' it.)

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How is Jerry? He's been doing fairly well (for him anyway.) He was supposed to go to the doc today because his labs were not the best at his last appointment. But we had a big winter storm move through and he couldn't make it.
 He is working. Last week he made it an entire week. This week has been harder and he's missed some time. We know that there will be times that he is probably going to be back in the hospital, etc. He wears out very easily and tries not to over do it. He is on blood thinners now, (FINALLY) so I can breathe easier about his strokes--and the lack there of!
 There were so many times that we just did not think he was going to make it; and were ready if God decided it was time for him to go home. We may never know the reason we had to go through all of that mess, but we know that it all fit into God's perfect plan in some way or other; so we accept is as that is just how it was to be; so be it; learn from it; use it to grow, you know?

How are the boys? Seth is ready to start back on school. He really is. Stephen is getting used to having a daddy again. It has been an adjustment, but he's getting there. 

How am I? Tired. I know I've said that so much, but that really is the truth. I work all my hours late night. The fabric shop continues to grow and grow. The shop is now closed until New Years Eve, so I am going to wrap things up there tonight, then spend my time off cleaning house, working on school, writing lots of thank you notes to many wonderful people, and hopefully sewing a few items; including some Ahhhs. But I am not holding my breath. A week will be over far too quickly, won't it?

If we don't speak again, I want to wish you all a Merry Christmas. Take this time to hold your family close. Life is fragile; we've none to thank for each breath that we take than the One who is the reason for the season, so please remember that above all. 

We'll chat soon. About quiltsy stuff even :)


Monday, December 3, 2012

A milestone!

Today Jerry turned 51. ( I guess yesterday because this has taken hours for me to get around to typing it all.)

Normally I am not the type to post something like that; as we all have birthdays, you know? Not too exciting to read about all our family members birthdays all around blogland. But when one family has been through what we have been through, I think it is a milestone worth celebrating--even in quilt world!

Since I have last posted, Jerry has been in and back out of the hospital again. Our new normal has become monotonous for blog posts, so I just let that one go. But I do have a funny photo to show you. This is actually missing 2 mugs...but hows this for perspective?? Yes, he's had 9 hospital stays now.

Actually Jerry is doing better. I am not going to say that he is great but he is now on blood thinners and is being monitored closely. That is a sigh of relief...hopefully that will stop the strokes! And internal bleeding has stopped. Once again, I am not going to say that it is over, but for now all is ok.

We are doing good as a family. Here is another funny photo for you. This is a screen shot of my bank account. I edited so that you could only see one little portion...Jerry's paycheck on the first.

Yep, only 95 cents. 
I laughed. But you know what? I could laugh. Why? because of you all. Someone started a walmart gift card shower, and we saved all of those for meds only. Jerry is going through tons of insulin due to his other meds, and the gifts of others have paid for that insulin.  Then our church has just sent random money several times. We never asked. They just did. And I have other friends that have. Someone called tonight and is bringing us over a deep freeze tomorrow. Why? I don't have room for the donated food anymore! We are truly blessed.(although one person has given us about 100 hotdogs or more. Good thing everyone but me likes hot dogs. LOL. But they do take up a lot of tiny freezer space!) Anyway, in spite of a 95 cent paycheck, rent is paid, utilities are paid, and all stomachs are full.

Oh and one more thing. My mother in law gave us some Christmas money. We decided that instead of a bunch of gifts, we wanted a tree. Someday I'll catch up Stephen's blog posts and he'll tell that adventure; but let me tell you my husband did himself in trying to get this family a Christmas tree. Isn't it wonderful that he was able to go with us though?


(No I've not lost a pound, that would be Amy providing a shoulder to my very worn out husband.)

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Our New Normal

There is a new television show called "The New Normal" or something along those lines. I don't watch a lot of tv, but I've heard it advertised somewhere along the way during Jerry's football shows or something. I don't think I'd like the show, but I was thinking just now of our new normal. Certain things have become everyday life to us that would cause most to have phone in hand and dialing 911.

Particularly strokes. We have no idea how many small mini strokes Jerry has had. But we do know when he's had medium size ones. Are there such a thing as medium size strokes? I don't know...but to us..they are our new normal. Like the last couple of days, Jerry has acted a bit strange, and then, just like always when he has a stroke, he fell asleep and was WAY out of it. Hard to wake up out of it. This is not his new normal because steroids keep him from sleeping. So I knew he'd had another. Tonight I casually asked him if he'd lost more use of his arm--just part of our new normal conversation. Before bed a bit ago, Jerry stated, "You know, I feel weird. I think I had another stroke". To which I replied, "Yes, you did. Yesterday. That's why I asked you about your arm". Just a conversation in our living room before bed--our new normal.

Jerry tried to go to work for 1/2 a day last week and won't be going back until he visits the doc on Tuesday. He's using so much insulin(due to steroids) that he ran out and when we went to get more tonight the pharmacy refused. We are going to have to call the doc about that tomorrow because his blood sugar was so high it was off the meter tonight. Ya, I'm worried. He's been very diligent with it; even though it is very frustrating to keep it down with the steroids hiking it up. On a good note, it looks like the internal bleeding has stopped. He might possibly get to go on blood thinners this week!!!!

How is Jerry? He tries to do some normal things, but wears out so easily. He insisted on fixing Thanksgiving dinner, bless his heart. He's always done that and this year was not going to be different. Oh, and last weekend his mother and aunt and uncle came to town. It was a wonderful visit. I really enjoyed them, and Stephen got to see his grandmother. One more Jerry note--he has trouble typing now with his left hand and can no longer play guitar..at least for now. In time, all in time.

How am I? Oh a world of emotions. Elated to have the bleeding stop so that we can maybe get the strokes under control. Worried because I see these strokes happening. Weary because I work so many late night hours. Guilt ridden because I have so many friends I've dropped the ball on and so many people I really need to thank, and blogs that I really need to write (ahhhhs) and read. Saddened when people stop communicating, because our new normal..has just become.... normal. You know what I mean by that? Yet I am so thankful for those of you that haven't given up on me, you check in on me, some of you have gifted us Walmart cards (which we save for meds) and you understand that every spare computer moment I have is usually spent in that crazy fun Ozark Fabric shop. I have something fun going on behind the scenes with ahhhs but I am frustrated that I cannot get the time to get the ball rolling on my end. And sometimes, I just wanna be a girl and cry. Through it all, I am ever thankful for my faith in Christ. How one ever lives without Him, I'll never know.

How is Seth? Fifteen years old now! Mercy.

How is Stephen? He taken to not allowing anyone near him but me. Not even his Sissy who he usually adores. She tried to have him spend the night with her last night and spend the day with her today, but he just cried and cried for me. So, I had to go back and get him and never got a lick of work done. He seems mommy needy right now, so he gets lots of attention. I actually am attempting to get a teenage girl to watch him for a few hours a week. I really really need a break. Not sure how that is going to work, and I don't like spending the money on it; but I just am too tired to continue as I am doing, something has got to change. I just hope the stress of a sitter won't be too hard on Stephen.

So, there you have it. Our new normal. When "oh you had another stroke" is our evening conversation.
But I have my husband still with us, so I am counting my blessings!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

The most daring ride ever...

Of course my hillbilly self cannot help but think about the new ride at  Silver Dollar City, when I think about what is going on in my life right now. It boasts of being "the Most Daring wooden roller coaster" ever made. There is one loopy loop that it does that I feel like I can so relate to. I'll post the video at the bottom so you can see what I am talking about..

So what am I gibbering about anyway? Roller coasters. That's what. Jerry is back in the hospital...

 He had to be taken there by ambulance yesterday(Friday) as he was having mild stroke symptoms.(His left arm is numb) Upon arrival of course they do lots of blood work and tests. His hemoglobin count was at 6.2 (normal is around 14). So first priority was blood transfusion--two bags full--which they drip slow. That process took over 6 hours. They really wanted to fit an MRI of his brain in between bags of blood but communication wires got crossed, so the MRI didn't happen until today. Due to Jerry's current situation three different doctors were basically pacing waiting on the results. But of course, MRI was super busy today and the results never came until later this afternoon(I guess..no ones heard a thing yet) when everybody finally got tired of waiting and left.

Why is that result so important? Jerry is in really between a rock and a hard place. He has so many internal sores which is causing him to be anemic and causing him to need the blood; and also makes it so that he cannot even be on blood thinners. (even aspirin now)

What happens when Jerry is not on blood thinners? He is at a very very high risk for strokes.

So, where does that leave us? Well, hows this..the neurologist looked me right in the eye today and said, "The next two weeks are critical. Until the bleeding gets under control there is nothing I can do. You are at very high risk for more strokes; including a massive one, and there is nothing any of us can do to prevent it."
{{prayer--that's the best anyone can do anyway!}}

So, want to climb on the roller coaster with me? I think I'd rather just step off the one that I'm now, and try a new one..like this one:

Monday, November 5, 2012

It's high time, I know!

I have had emails and messages asking for Jerry updates. It is all so hard. With income at ZERO right now I have been working working working at selling fabric. There have been major changes made there so maybe things won't be so hard and time consuming in that area from now on. Anyway, about Jerry...

Last time I posted the hospital he was in finally gave him a colonoscopy. Well, they found lots of infection, swelling, etc., but thankfully no colon cancer! After trying to give him meds, he continued to worsen. Internal bleeding was added to his list of diabetes problems, heart A fib problems which they think are causing his strokes...he was truly a mess.

FINALLY the doctors admitted they couldn't find the answer. So he left this hospital:


And they transferred him to this hospital:

I think Jerry thought he got taken to a 5 star hotel. Room service food delivered whenever you want. Good food. LOL, when they tried to put him on an all liquid diet he threw a fit! He arrived here on a week ago Friday, and they just let him rest for the weekend. His internal bleeding did worsen as time went though.

On Monday (a week ago today) they ran tests on him. And by afternoon; they had an answer. 
Did you hear me...IN ONE DAY! (after 9 weeks at the other hospital and thousands and thousands of dollars of tests.)

He has....

This is what threw his body into DKA. What made him sick and lose weight (40+ pounds). What zapped his energy (well 3 strokes did that too). 

They kept him in this latest hospital for a week to monitor him, and all his meds. He is home now. 
He feels and acts so much better but he has a long healing process ahead of him. And his meds are really messing with his blood sugar. This is so scary because even with LOTS of insulin and eating right, the meds are keeping his sugar from 250-350. This can cause more strokes. 

It's a vicious cycle. He's going to attempt to go to work tomorrow. Financially it is quite necessary, but oh man, you KNOW I am going to worry.

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Some stats for you: 10 weeks plus however many days on this one off work. Personal time ran out several weeks ago.
Hospital stays: 5 (I don't remember how many days each) Two different hospitals
ER visits: 5 (two different hospitals)
Total hospitals involved: 3
Ambulance trips: 2 from two different towns.
MRI's: I can count at least 6..but there were probably more
Surgery: 1
CT scans: umm more than 10
Ultrasounds: around 5
Xrays: 5-7
Blood tests: ha, impossible to count.
Medical bills total: I am not looking yet. I haven't even opened them. 

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How am I doing? Happy to have Jerry home but am ready for it all to end. Running a home based business as a single mom is WAY harder than working as a single mom. I know. I've done both now. Today I am just fussy because I am so dog gone busy!!!!

How is Stephen? He has taken to stuttering..and it is progressively getting worse. I am not going to rush to some doctor so he can get rushed to some speech therapist so that we'll have to go into the parents as teachers program. Not my thing. He's not even three yet. If it worsens, and AFTER life calms down, I'll consider talking to his doctor. But NOT right now. No way.

Seth? ahh, he's almost 15. Not much more to say about that :)

Thank you all for your prayers and concern. Things are looking up. Way up. And blessings abound. Many many blessings. 

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

I promised

several of you a new post updating about Jerry and I but I just cannot get to it. It is 5 am and I need to sleep an hour or two. I was up all night the night before last too.

I will update as soon as I can, but just real quick Jerry is in a new hospital..was transferred there last Friday.

This almost single mom running a very busy business has me so so exhausted....I will update when I can and tell all. Just let me get last weeks invoices out first. Thanks!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Monday Randomness...Jerry style

How long has it been since I published a Monday random post? You all used to love them. While life is tough, it is not as tough as it was a couple of days ago. So perhaps today I can bring back some Monday fun, in spite of the subject matter...

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Jerry finally had a colonoscopy today. After asking for one for like 6 weeks. The results were good, in that they found a ton of bacteria and infection. They showed me photos, it looked awful. Infection everywhere. How is that good? Well...infection does most likely not equal cancer. Biopsies are being done because they already attempted to treat him for an infection of his colon a couple of other times. They keep thinking he has C-diff but it always comes up negative. So...he's got something. He's being treated for C-diff again. (Even though it was negative just yesterday). And they are running biopsies to figure out what in the world it is.

More medical developments in a minute...but first a happy thought...

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Everyone needs one of these:

No, not the quilt. Thats MY HELEN holding the quilt that I gave her when she came up last time Jerry was in the hospital. She dropped everything and came up this time too. MY HELEN is a breast cancer survivor and at least I got this quilt (convergence 2) finished for her just in time for Breast cancer awareness month. Yes, everyone needs a Helen, but this one is MINE.  She leaves tomorrow. sigh.

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Want to hear my silly moment?


Exhaustion defined:

 I was so tired this morning. I worked all night on the fabric business last night and never went to bed. That in itself is not uncommon. I do that at least once a week. But we all know that right now I have ever so much more on my shoulders. Anyway, I was driving to the hospital early this morning and I know I kept weaving and was trying so hard to keep my eyes open. At one point I thought about stopping at a rest area, but it was still very early and dark and I felt uncomfortable with it. So I continued on...and safely arrived at the hospital at 6 am. I laid my head back on the head rest, sighed with relief and said a prayer of thanks for arriving safely because I knew I was not in good shape. Next thing I knew I awoke to loud music blaring from a cab and it was after 8. LOL, I fell asleep right there in the parking garage for over 2 hours this morning!!! But hey, I didn't miss Jerry's medical tests!

(STOP RIGHT THERE...I DO NOT need a bunch of mother henning. I know you mean well but I am doing the best I can and I am doing what I have to do the exact same as all of you would do if you were in my shoes. But thanks for thinking of me. I AM taking the best care of myself that I possibly can given the circumstances and I will not drive when I am that tired again.) I love you all though. And your concerns. :)

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I just got home tonight and was playing with Stephen (cuz he needed momma time), when Jerry called and said we need to talk a minute. The cardiologist was just there. Hmmm, didn't know there was a cardiologist on the case! So...here is the surprising development that just showed up tonight....

Jerry has had at least 3 small strokes in the last week or so. So the neurologist called in the cardiologist. They are thinking the small strokes are being caused from Atrial Fibrillation. (A fib). I guess sometimes Jerry's heartbeat is a bit off and it shoots these A fibs which the doctor described as almost Micro Bursts. But when it happens, it shoots those little clots of blood and those cause Jerry to stroke. Right now they are all small strokes, but at some point it could cause a massive stroke. So after Jerry gets the stomach stuff cleared up and after he gains some strength, they are going to implant a heart monitor and monitor him for the next three years. 

I really don't know much more as I was already home when this doctor came today with this latest development. I will get up early in the morning and find out more.

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The boys are well. Seth is quite occupied with something fun that I really want to blog about sometime. You'll love that story. And as for Stephen, it seems he is passed around to everyone right now. So I always try to find fun things to do with him when we are together. We've been doing lots of leaf paintings, and also some great tub painting projects. Like this one:


Those were taken in the dark for his glow in the dark black light tub painting. He'll blog about it someday.

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I don't know when Jerry will go back to work.While at three months he can get short term disability he is not there yet so we currently have no income( well we continue to get financial gifts in the mail weekly!) except for my fabric group. I was going to say, "My little fabric group". Little it is not. I logged on tonight when I got home and I approved my 600th member. How exciting is that? I promised them a nice giveaway, so I need to go find something fun.

I have 35 emails yet to even read. Most are loving comments from you all. I look forward to a quiet moment when I can sit and enjoy your outpouring of love and prayers.

Thank you.

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What is Monday Randomness without my rapid fire comment section? You all love this..but if you are new, here is the deal. You can only answer in ONE WORD ANSWERS, and you have to say the first thing that comes to your brain:

1) How many hours of sleep a night do you sleep on average?
2) What is one thing you could not live without. "Everyone needs a ____________________"
3) If you need mother henned about something, what would it be?
4) When you are stressed what 'bad' thing do you turn to? (meaning many will say that we need to turn to God, and I agree but the human side of us gets in the way all too often. Sweets are my stress comfort. Ugh.)
5) Ok, this does not have to be a one word answer: What exciting thing have I missed out on in blogland in the last 3 months? Give me some fun answers!!






Saturday, October 20, 2012

New developments

I was just thinking the other day how I yearn to blog again. Make some new designs, get kits together, visit my blogland friends. But today, I just don't feel it. Today I just yearn for life to come full circle...we've been going round and round, you know? I just want to get back to how things used to be. And as long as things progress...I just don't care to type anything other than about my husband. So no more apologies for this not being much of a quilt blog anymore. Because all that matters is that right now my husband is lying in a hospital bed and I can't be there with him.

Perhaps I should fill in some details for you...

Last Wednesday Jerry attempted to go back to work. He made it a half day; and that did him in. He had another small stroke. Several in fact. His platelet count is high so today the newest concern is that there is a blood clot in his heart. Because of that they cannot give him blood thinners to stop the small strokes.

He also continues to have problems internally with his bowels, etc. No known cause as of yet.

While I have been concerned all along, today, my friends I am scared. Jerry is in isolation and my daughter is out of town so she cannot babysit Stephen. I am stuck at home, pacing, pacing, pacing. I cry sometimes too. My pastor has offered to watch Stephen for a bit today, but I doubt I will make Stephen take the long car trip for a short visit. I do have a friend coming tomorrow to watch Stephen then I can go be with my husband.

I think Jerry knew he was getting worse. Several days ago I was downstairs working on my fabric business and Jerry was lying in his bed. (Where he's been for 8 weeks now.) He sent me this text:

"No matter what happens in this life, I care about you more than anything. You will always be the love of my life. Forever."

Ditto husband. Ditto.



Monday, October 15, 2012

$50 giveaway...for you for me

Ok, so yesterday I was pretty down in the dumps. But then things just happen, as they tend to do. I have been gone all day, but came home to find this in my inbox.

Please visit. I am just amazed at the outpouring of blessings...just amazed.

Go visit and you could win $50:

http://missionmontanalawson.blogspot.com/2012/10/50-paypal-giveaway.html

Is this 7 or 8?

An exciting Ahhhh update is written at the bottom of this post. You can skip down if you don't want to read personal 'stuff'. 

It is the middle of the night and I belong in bed. Last night I never went to bed, and here it is after 2 tonight (or I guess I should say this morning.)

I was laying in bed (the couch for me) thinking...how long has this gone on? 7 weeks? 8 weeks? One of those.

Is Jerry improving? Maybe. I guess. I mean he went from never eating, to eating once a day in bed, to now where he tries to eat at least twice a day at the table. He's eating more. But I don't see any weight on his bones. He tried to go to work one day last week. It is a long walk into the prison. Too far for someone who does not have the strength to even stand and shower or ever leave his room except to force himself so that he can eat. He had to come back home.

Today the boys and I wanted to go to church. Jerry thought that sounded nice too. Until he woke up and spent a half an hour gagging. By that time I just didn't have the heart to go either.

I rarely leave the house; although I took time with my children to go to a corn maze Friday night. We all needed that. Stephen isn't very nice to his daddy anymore. Jerry tries to talk to him...but Stephen being a 2 yr old has adapted to life without his daddy. He does run into Jerry's room and try to interact, and Jerry tries too..but the moments are few and far between. It is all so sad.

We've all adapted. My husband does not have the strength to show me affection anymore. I savor a nice hug maybe in the morning after I cook his breakfast. That hug is not easy though, since I can feel each and every bone, with no muscle/meat attached it seems.

I am a single mom who runs a business, who homeschools, who cares full time for an invalid. Or at least that is how it plays out. For sure adaptions have had to be made.

With the exception of the weekends (when I have to do fabric invoices) I try to get lots of sleep. I need the rest so even though I often stay up all night Saturday nights, the rest of the week I sleep naps and night as much as I can. I have too much to do to run through life weary. Even the fabric has to wait.

Tomorrow we are going to try to get help for Jerry again. He doesn't have a doc appt for a week and a half. That is too long away. He has worked hard to stay home from the hospital for an entire week. And he's weary. Depressed. So so depressed. Yes, it is time to try to get help again.

Well, I really cannot say more, so lets move on, Ok?

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I just got the COOLEST fabric in for Ahhhh kits...and I am in discussion with another company for something else for those kits. I am excited about that! Cross your fingers that I can get that worked out. If it does, then perhaps we'll start with some of the easiest designs and make some placemats or runners or something. I don't know, what do you think? What would be the best use of 3 or 4 ahhhhs? Ideas, please share ideas. Give me a distraction...something to think about, something to create!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Ahhhh--spiration

I am so upbeat today. I just feel like life is getting back on track. Husband is eating; he's keeping his doc appts, and the boys and I are anxious to get back to the day to day grind. I have a full appreciation now of that day to day grind, you know?

Anyway, I am anxious to draw up and ACTUALLY sew an ahhhh for next week. I spent some time looking through other's ahhhh's in the Flikr neighborhood. It was so inspiring. I want to invite you all to please share your ahhhh's to Flikr. I just love looking through them.

Here is the link:

Hillbilly Flikr Group

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Ahhhh 36--Octagon

How GOOD it is to work on an Ahhhh. I knew I had one drawn up for you but forgot in all the craziness. So here it is. Not a hard one at all. There will be 'geometric' hexagons more often now. I've put them off for awhile knowing that I have some serious star lovers out there.

The Octogon Hexagon was first published in the Farm Journal and Farmers Wife around 1941.




My colored version: 


Note each of these sections is a tumble block;
the entire block is colored like this:


Below not my work but will give you an idea of how this could look;
credit to Jinny Beyer


Monday, October 8, 2012

Happy Flannel

Manufactured by : Springs Creative Group
Name of Fabric: Splash

Cost $3.75/yd

7 yards available. Just make sure that you are not a 'no reply' blogger and comment. We'll handle details via email.

First come first serve.


I don't wanna....

I've been needing to write an update post...but it's been hard to do. Why? Because I grow weary of writing posts that are full of medical; and not full of fun. So maybe I'll just do a random post today. But it has to be fast as I have so much to do...always so much to do.

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Jerry was in the hospital last week. I don't even remember which day we went in this time around. I had just stayed up an entire night(and only 3 hours sleep the next night) to work on apples and fabric; and was just too exhausted to come home. So I stayed in a motel a few days. My friend Helen knew I was just about done in, so she came up to help me for a few days and left yesterday.

Jerry has a liver enzyme that wont quit rising. All his other blood work is great. Just that one liver enzyme that gives a clue something is wrong...but no one is sure what. They ran an upper GI and found a bunch of ulcers all down throat, esophagus and stomach. They are doing biopsies but we've not heard back yet. He's home and eating...and more importantly keeping it down. But he's not getting out of bed much at all. Just to eat. Not much more to say. We take one day at a time.

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My fabric friends have been awesome in helping me out and gifting me cash for gas, groceries, meds. The prison took up a collection and the church has helped as well. One day at a time here too. The bills are currently paid, there is plenty of food in the house, and all prescriptions (not total over $500 for the last month) have been paid for. All is good!

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Speaking of fabric, I ordered a bunch of flannel but I sure have a lot left. Some other goodies too. I removed the fabric pages here on the blog as they didnt do very well. I think I'll run some things as a post every so often. That would be so much easier for me. I'll start with the next post after this. I hope you all dont' mind me posting fabric, but someone may want some and I need to move it out of here.

If you belonged to my destash page on facebook, thank you. But I need to tell you that I broke away from that as it is an auction format for anyone. With no income, I need to step up my game so I started my own page. The button on the side bar goes to the page. Please help me share it. This fabric pays the bills right now. Thank you.

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Ahhhhs---these I feel so bad about. I don't even know what I've given you and what I havent. I will look into that and get a post up as soon as I can.

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Blogland--I sure miss it and you my bloggy friends. I am ready for life to return to normal, that is for sure! There are some BOM's that I missed the postings on and I pretty much give up on them...I guess there will be more, huh?
Oh, and I finally gave up and deleted all the comment emails just today. I was going to try to reply to all...but it's been so long now. Lets start fresh, what do you think?

Friday, September 28, 2012

Riding the Coaster...

I want to begin this blog post with an apology. A quilting blog it sure has not been. But hopefully, as my roller coaster of life continues I'll be back to my quilty blogland sooner than expected. If things go well, maybe even before January! (but I will not rush it.) That being said, I need to post about my husband again because, when life boils down to reality...husbands are more important than quilts (Oh the shock!)

LOL, you must know by me typing that I am in a upbeat, positive mood. But the last two days have been a complete roller coaster, UP down UP down...I'll continue our story:

When I left you all last, we were taking my husband back to the hospital. It was so sad to see him, he did not even have the strength to walk back to his ER room. The doctor this time was WONDERFUL. Oh I wish he were not an ER doc because I would insist that husband use him from now on! Of course, one could not help but notice Jerry was very weak. They pumped iv fluids into him rather quickly, and started running tests, tests, tests. His liver enzymes were elevated. He was severely dehydrated. He slept the entire time. He doesn't even remember the CT Scan that they took of his stomach. Or the x rays of his chest. They drew blood--multiple times--and he slept through it. Do you know how hard that was for me to watch? To know they were doing all this and he just kept sleeping. Not like in a coma, but they'd wake him up and say, "We are going to draw blood now." and he'd say "Ok" and go back to sleep.

The CT Scan of his stomach showed some abnormalities of his colon. With all his other symptoms it looked like he had C diff, so they started him on the antibiotics to treat that. They also ordered an MRI of his colon to see if they could find anything wrong.

Yesterday Jerry continued to improve. Having what they thought was C diff they put him in isolation. But he looked better, so I came home in a pretty upbeat mood last night. My computer had crashed due to a Windows automatic update (go figure) so this morning, computer was fixed; I was getting ready to write a post about C diff...when the phone rang. It was Jerry. He did not have C diff. WHAT??

Off to the hospital I go. Knowing it was not C diff, late last evening they went ahead with the MRI of his colon. Nothing found on that either. (that would be a good thing of course.) In the meantime, Jerry improved more and more all day today. He looks good. His eyes are normal. He talks normal. His headaches have been gone for 2 days. He was teasing me. I cried when he teased me. Silly me. It was just so nice to see that side of him again!!!

As I type, Jerry is FINALLY getting to eat food again. They are releasing him tomorrow. He will be weak, but he is so much better now.

What was wrong? No one knows. Why was his colon abnormal? Not sure. It could be from all the stomach distress; but he will need a colonoscopy soon just to be sure. His liver enzyemes still elevated? yes, but doc said it possibly could be from all the new meds. They will continue to monitor it.

How am I doing? Well...


How is Seth doing? He's a teenage boy...he goes with the flow. Plus he's not having to do any school work. I am very anxious to tell him about the alternative treatment to C diff. Sometimes antibiotics do not work. They have found a controversial treatment that does. You really should look it up. Especially if you have a teenage boy that would find that sort of thing very gross..yet very cool too.


How is Stephen doing?

I took this photo just a bit ago, in the car while driving home from the hospital (again).
He is so worn out. This morning when I was getting him ready to leave, he begged "Please we stay home mommy. Please."
So I took him in my lap, hugged him and explained that Daddy is still very sick and that I need to go be with him. Stephen started crying and said, "I fixed Daddys tummy. He come home. I fix him. I can fix him. Go bring him home."

Well, Stephen, how about tomorrow morning, we wake up and do exactly that!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Again...

Off to the hospital again this morning...

Jerry refuses to go to hospital #2. Wants to return to hospital # 1. (it is a LOT closer and right by Amy. And not in the middle of downtown KC. I will have to admit it is much more handy in a lot of ways.)

I've watched Jerry deteriorate before my eyes. He barely eats enough to stay alive--at least in my book. He eats less than Stephen does.Often what he does eat, comes back up. When he does try to get out of bed, it lasts for 10 min or less. And only twice a day to try to eat. He is losing so much weight. Don't know pounds...just see it.

His blood sugars are fine now; he is taking his insulin.
His headaches continue.
His nausea continues.

And there is the patter of little feet...I have to go get everyone ready for a long hard day...

ps..I have an ahhhh drawn up for tomorrow so if you don't see it right away, keep watching and I'll get it posted the minute I have time to edit the photos.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Jerry Update...

I am so sorry that I've not been able to reply to your comments. I told Jerry last night, as I was holding his hand in the ER, that he has people from all over the world lifting him in prayer. It has been such a whirlwind, let me see if I can update you...

Last I posted was Saturday..before his surgery...

Jerry did have his gall bladder surgery as scheduled on Monday. But that was so minor and so much the least of our worries. He's not even ever complained about pain in his stomach. He was consumed by other problems!

The longer Jerry stayed in the hospital, the worse his headaches became. They finally did a CT scan on Sunday (or so) and said that he had an acute sinus infection. Jerry is allergic to penicillin so they cannot use a strong antibiotic to knock it out as quickly as one would like, but they still put him on a drip antibiotic. His headaches worsened and worsened.

He looked so forward to his gall bladder surgery...so that he could have headache relief. Nothing was touching the pain. Morphine, vicodin, percoset, all the good stuff...he still remained in horrible pain. For some reason we could not get this hospital to get through their heads that the gall bladder really was the least of the worries. But, he got his surgery and a few hours relief. In fact he even ate afterwards; his first food in over 2 weeks.

Late Monday night he went into his worst episode yet. Nurses trying to get help, but he was told by his doc that he would just have to 'ride it out' and she sent him home Tuesday--even though his pain was intense.

Tuesday night he was up all night in extreme pain. Wednesday the headaches continued. No meds were helping. I finally called the ambulance and insisted that they take him to another hospital. Had myself a nice little argument with Mr. Arrogant Paramedic before they left. I could not get through his big head that we could care less about the surgery that Jerry just had on his stomach...that we are concerned about his HEAD.

Anyway, new hospital--St. Lukes. So much better. The doctor and I had a nice little chat out in the hallway (do you know I never get doctors to do that at Liberty hospital?!) The doctor tried one type of med for cluster headaches. It didn't touch it. Jerry was still in horrible pain. So the ER doc called another doc down from the floor to take over Jerry's case...and he found something that worked! He did! My husband slept. It was so nice.

We came back home late last night and spent all night in extreme pain again as I dont have a 24 hour pharmacy here. Every two hours I was pumping Jerry with either percoset or ibuprofin. Today at noon he took his first dose of the new stuff (since leaving the ER)..and he's slept over 4 hours straight.

Cause of headache? Unknown. But not sinus as the other hospital suggested. He has no fevers. When in extreme pain he trembles violently and gets into the fetal position. They could be triggered by his Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA)...and most likely are. He's still not eating (although must feel a bit better because he wants eggs for dinner. I had to go run and buy some as we don't normally eat them, but hey, I'll feed him whatever he wants!--except sugar.) He is still not over his DKA. He is still very dehydrated.

I am just taking one day at a time. And this day is the first in a week that we've not had to go to hospital or ER. I really probably shouldn't speak too soon, but I am feeling pretty positive that all is good until his meds run out anyway.

He has neurological physician he has to go see eventually. But I think that needs to wait until next week. There is only one working day remaining in this week.. and for that we all just need R.E.S.T.!!!! (and make a few doctor appointments probably...)

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Oh, I said this on fb but nearly forgot to put it here! You all know about my fabric group, well those wonderful ladies got together and donated all the money needed to pay for Jerry's prescriptions. You are not going to believe, WITH insurance they have totaled almost $500 --and the ladies collected just over $500 to help us. WOW! Do you know how nice it was to just pay those meds worry free? The ladies are going to do some other things too to help me pay other bills (like monthly meds, hospital stay, er visits (x2), ambulance ride, oy..I think I dont want to think about THAT anymore!). What a blessing the internet and all my internet friends have been to me.

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How am I? better emotionally than I was last week. Tired and have so much work to do. I think I have a wish...even if Jerry needs time to mend, I just want to stay home all weekend, and NOT GO ANYWHERE. Yes, that is the wish for the next three days. But, really,  I am doing much better than I was. Poor Jerry is not himself, and it is hard to watch him just lie in bed hour after hour after hour, shaking in pain. He never gets up. I really just want it all to end. That's my hope. Hopes are much bigger than wishes, you know.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Ketoacidosis among other things...

Oh, my friends, this time my husband just about did himself in. For real. The last few days have been quite scary indeed...

 By Friday morning Jerry realized something was seriously wrong and agreed to go to the Emergency room. He was to the point that he was barely able to walk, and when he got to the ER they didn't even make him wait. He was taken right into a room. By the time I got the boys delivered to their sister (thankfully only about 5 minutes from hospital!) and back to the ER; they had Jerry hooked up to IV's, and were starting tests. The nurse looked at me and said, "All we know is he is not going home anytime soon." I told her that I knew that.

Jerry's diabetes had spiraled so far out of control that he contracted a very dangerous condition called Diabetic Ketoacidosis. Since Jerry's body could not use sugar for fuel, it started eating away all the fat (even the good fat) and also released dangerous toxins into his body. By the time Friday had come around, he was very bad and just another day or two he would have gone into a coma or had a heart attack from low blood pressure (a symptom of Ketoacidosis). You can read more about Ketoacidosis RIGHT HERE.

Friday night Jerry was still not doing very well. He has only been on a clear liquid diet but they could not get his blood sugar down. This morning (Saturday) thankfully it was better. It sits around 160 at 3 hours after eating, which is still too high, but at least it is not at a dangerous level. Tonight (Saturday) he is still in intense pain. He sleeps around the clock...but it more alert this evening in the few moments that he is awake.

They have been running a multitude of tests on Jerry and his thyroid is not working, so he will be on medication for that. His gall bladder is infected and will be removed Monday morning.

As for me? I have been an emotional mess. From fear, to worry, to anger. I think you all know why without me getting into that. Two years ago this exact same weekend Jerry had a stroke...and this time around he was even closer to death's door. Well, at least this time it got Jerry's attention. When he's been awake, he's been emotional himself; scared, regretful and ready to improve.

While he hates putting things like insulin and medications into his body, he realizes that unless he does, his little boy and I will be putting him into a grave.

I continue to have fears and worry(and even anger)..."Will it work this time?".."Will he continue to rebel about doctor check ups and taking his meds?" It will take time for me to not worry about these things. I've never known any different. But, I love my husband. I remember who he used to be before two years ago and all the fun that we had. I want the Jerry who used to play guitar and write music. I want the Jerry that liked hiking with me in the woods. And mostly, I want our son to know this man.

By only the grace of God we have been given another chance.

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A word about the boys, as I am sure some are wondering: with my daughter living only 5 minutes from the hospital, she kept both boys until this morning. Seth then went with his father. I brought Stephen home with me tonight. Amy will be trying to catch up on missed sleep tonight/tomorrow (as she works nights and I nabbed her up Friday morning when she was sleeping.) She has to work tomorrow night, but will stay awake Monday morning to watch Stephen during surgery. As soon as Jerry is out of recovery, I'll have to take over Stephen so I will probably just come back home.

Stephen has enjoyed being royally spoiled by his Sissy, and he will write a blog post about it in the near future, I am sure...

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Hey, I never stop working. My fabric rep called me Friday, and I just happened to be on the way to grab a bite to eat when he called so I was able to talk and order in enough fabric to last us a couple of weeks anyway. As you all can see, now you know why I was dead set against getting a job and leaving Stephen home with Jerry. (he's gonna kill me when he reads that...and he will read this post. It might be a few weeks down the road before does, but he'll read it!) This fabric has helped a bit, but I only charge a few cents more than I pay a yard. I really don't want to change that. That is the entire point of what I do. So, that being said, we need a bit of a financial miracle right now, but God is bigger, huh?

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Thank you all for your kind words, and I am saying this to all of you: in blogland, facebook land, fabric land, and my Christian womens fellowship land. I have missed you. I am so thankful for each and every one of you.

Love, Tonya

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Ahhhh 35--Dutch Tile

A little note about the home front before bringing you this weeks ahhhh....
Jerry has been off work; home ill for two weeks. He has finally just agreed today to go to the doctor; as he has taken a turn for the worse today. It is something stomach related--most likely gall bladder. (as we already know he has gall bladder disease.) He is having very strange symptoms...and NO he won't go to ER...well he said he just might in the morning. If not; he has an appointment with the gastro doc on Monday morning. (Hey, that is good for this man!)

I just realized today that it was two years ago today that he had his stroke. It took more than 3 days to get him to the ER for that! My inner me worries though, because his symptoms match the symptoms he had when they discovered his colon cancer. Well, anyway, you know me...just fly by the seat of my pants while carrying the world on my shoulders.

My little fabric business continues to grow and while I am not making as much as I would working outside of the home...I don't think I've eaten a bowl of beans since I started it up. LOL!!!! I am serious! I am very weary as I often have to stay up until 3 to work; but still so happy to be at home and not complaining at all about that! The ladies are so kind (as all quilters are!) and they encourage me, and help me as we all learn how to do this together.

I have two different people looking into helping me learn to draw the ahhhhs in a computer program. Isn't that wonderful?? Oh I just cannot wait...ecstatic!

Speaking of ahhhs...I love this week's as much as the last one. Of course with all going on; I didn't get it sewn, but I did get it colored...and the best part of that? As I ran upstairs to help my husband as he was gripped with vomiting (again)(no--that is not the best part); Stephen took over and helped me. (that is the best part) He is so gifted!

I needed to bring you this ahhhh. I know I didn't have to. But I did. For me. Hope you enjoy it :)

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Ahhhhh 35 ---the Dutch Tile--- was published in the World Herald on Jan 4, 1934.

I started using new ahhhh drawing tools, and they work better than anything I've tried yet!
Yes, these Pilot friXion pens.
 Did you know that that was an eraser on the end? It works so good, and doesn't leave any residue and completely removes the lines.

When I started drawing, I actually used the sewline pencil.
While it worked good for me, I know now that it is hard for you to see.
I am going to go buy some more FriXion colors tomorrow.

If you look really closely you can see that the hexagon is slice divided.
Then it has three lines borders all the way around the top, one at 1/4"; 1/2" and 3/4". (of course this is because my triangles are 1/2" size.)










This proud mother was quite impressed with his red line on the right side.
I wasn't there, but we've been working on him drawing on lines when we do his school work.
I can tell he tried to stay inside the area--that makes for a proud teacher-momma!


Monday, September 10, 2012

Fabric! Fabric!

I have added fabric for sale right here on the blog. These are closeouts of my closeouts. How is that for a good deal? The other group has had a go of these for several weeks, so now it is your turn. I have to have constant turn around, so when they are not moving...I'll bring them here and offer them to you.

I've marked all fabric yardages at $4 yd and all fat quarters are just 99 cents.

Riley Blake, Westminster/Free Spirit, yummies!

Just look under the appropriate tab up top. Examples of current fabrics:








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Ya, I pretty much only get to finger fabric right now.
I did attempt a trade show Saturday.
I've now given up on those. 
I took 3 huge rubbermade crates of finished crafts.
At the end of the show I just dumped two thirds on the tables and gave them away for free.
I've lugged them around for too long and it is discouraging to say the least.
Giving them away and having them out of my hair--relief!
When I do get to sew again--it will be for gifts.

Hope you all are doing well.
Thanks to those of you that check in on me!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Ahhhh 34-- Diamond String

Today's Artistic, Hexotic, Hop-A-Long, Hex-a-long, Hillbilly, Hectic Hexie was designed by Nancy Page and appeared in The Nashville Banner on March 6, 1934.

I really love this design...only for some reason almost every thing I touch since Stephen was born--I completely mess up. (Wait til you see what I did to Convergence #3. Oy!!)

So...here is...once again NOT MY VERSION: (but very pretty in spite of the fuzz)...

And I bet you will be SO happy with me...because this is an easy one this week!






I'll not make you wait until I fix all my wrong colors.
You'll just have to deal with push pins instead.






Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Wait just ahhhhhhhhhh bit.....

I am trying so hard to FINALLY get an ahhh on here that I personally made. The block this week is one of my favorites. I just love it.

Do you know this is the first sewing I've picked up in weeks? Weeks I tell you!

So please, I know you in Australia are ready for it right now...and to you I apologize. But it will be worth your wait.

I thought I could finish it today. Ha! That shows me, doesn't it?

Anyway I only got 3.5 hours sleep last night and am so exhausted tonight, so I am going to sleep on it and finish up as fast as my fingers (and mostly my family) will let me in the morning.

I hope you think it's worth the wait too!

PS...I turned off comments for this post only. I am not trying to be mean...just want to cut down on my morning emails so that I can ahhhhh...sew!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Winner among other things...

I appreciate the opportunity to have this particular traveling stash. The originator has been so good to keep up on it; find out where it is, who won it; where it is going to next and stay on top of me for blogging about it. Ha! Little does she know that I LOVE to blog and my hiatus from blog land is not something I covet. At all.

But having the opportunity to announce the winner gives me an excuse to type up a Monday Random. That makes me smile; how about you? Of course I'll announce the random winner too.

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Life Random:

 My husband did NOT get his job promotion. We are all glad about it. Yes, a small pay raise might have been nice. A move--not so much. We are all weary of moving around; and unless some prison springs up between here and my beloved Branson Ozark Hills--then we'll just stay here.


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School Random:

The boys are doing great this year in school. Stephen gets my undivided attention from 8-10 every morning; then the rest of the day we work on Seth's as we can. We often save the harder subjects for the evening. Stephen has been enjoying studying bugs and our living room looks like an official preschool with the alphabet train on one wall and the huge grass and bug habitat on the other.

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Fabric Random:

My new fabric selling auction site is still growing with leaps and bounds. I have cut down in invoicing only once a week. I invoiced exactly 40 buyers this past weekend. But I do have some fabric left over that I need to move out of here. I am still considering placing them on a page on this blog. It is all closeout fabrics from Riley Blake. Is there any interest at all? Here is one example of some that I have available for $4.65/yd.



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Sewing Random:

I am working on an actual Ahhhh with real fabric for this week. Imagine that! I have a photo of some Ahhh's from Ann in Australia. She doesn't have a blog but she shared her Ahhhh's with me. Aren't they beautiful?

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Random Winner:

Hey, I made you read this far so I guess it's time, huh? Thanks for listening. It was so nice to blog. I still refuse to get back into it until I can devote time to reading blogs. Anyway...Mrs Facebook Random Friend says that...

Jill Martin

is the winner!