01.29.19 Introducing our new blog theme “BECAUSE HE LIVES”

We started writing this blog years ago under a different name, Dora and the Explorers.  There will be no more posts about Roy and I traveling with Dora since Dora moved to California.  That move lead to a change in the site’s name and the look.

Please click the “FOLLOW” link on the right if you’d like to receive an email whenever a new blog is posted!

In this new blog we will focus on our life in Louisiana, about living a Christian life, updates as my dementia progresses, along with some Wild and Wacky posts from time to time.

Because this new blog is about our future life, I thought a good bit about how that should be expressed in the blog’s new name.

The new theme is BECAUSE HE LIVES….. I can face tomorrow!

Some of you will know what that means and some will not. If you do Praise God!  If you do not I hope you will read and learn!

As I was thinking about the new name, the thought that stood out in my mind is that I don’t know what my future holds.  Whatever it holds, I know my future is in God’s hands because I am a Christian.

After Christ died on the cross, He was buried and rose from the dead so, HE LIVES.  Because of this, I have the reassurance of Christ walking by me through every storm and joy that comes our way.  Therefore I can face anything that the future brings.

BECAUSE HE LIVES I can face tomorrow is the first two lines of the chorus in the amazing song written by Bill and Gloria Gather in 1993. I will share an audio version of the song and the lyrics below.

Back in the mid-1990s I was in a particularly dark place in my life.  One Sunday during that time in our Worship Service we sang a new song called Because He Lives.  My attention was immediately grabbed by the first verse.

God sent his son, they called him Jesus
He came to love, heal and forgive
He lived and died to buy my pardon
An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives

When we got to the chorus I felt something come over me that couldn’t be ignored.

Because He Lives
I can face tomorrow
Because He Lives
All fear is gone
Because I know He holds the future
And life is worth the living
Just Because He Lives

When we sang the second verse it hit me hard because it talked about the calm assurance that this child can face uncertain days Because He Lives.  During this dark time my main concern was  the well being of my children. I felt like God was talking straight to my heart giving me the assurance I needed.

How sweet to hold a newborn baby
And feel the pride and joy he gives
But greater still the calm assurance
This child can face uncertain day Because He Lives

I had to sit down I was so overcome with that amazing assurance from God.

And then one day I’ll cross the river
I’ll fight life’s final war with pain
And then, as death gives way to victory
I’ll see the lights of glory and I’ll know he reigns

Oh, how I needed to be reminded of this guarantee for true Christians who will get to live with God in Heaven for all of eternity!

This song reminded me that Christ came to earth for the purpose of giving Christians the assurance that we are able to face tomorrow, with all of the uncertainty that it brings. God holds the future right in His hands and makes life worth living for all who trust in Him.

I shared with my mother why that song grabbed my heart so much.  After that time whenever we sang Because He Lives in church we’d look at each other and hold hands while we sang.  It became our favorite song. Since she passed away, whenever we sing it I think of Mama and how Great our God is!

Here is a You Tube video of the song with the lyrics included.  I hope it will speak to you as it did and always will to me.

Songwriters: Gloria Gaither / William J. Gaither

Because He Lives lyrics © Capitol Christian Music Group

There is a much newer version of Because He Lives.  It’s a beautiful song but the original speaks to my heart with such comfort.

I look forward to sharing fun, meaningful and even silly moments with ya’ll.  When I am having a great brain day my favorite thing to do is to write.  When I’m not, well I just don’t write.  It takes me much longer to put together a post now but I push through it since I know it’s good for me.
Ya’ll have a Blessed week!

05.13.21 Retired Husband

This story begins with June Woolf receiving a letter from Walmart claiming that her husband was no longer welcome in the store. When she reads over the reasons why it’s no wonder they don’t want him coming in! Reading through the imaginative and mischievous things her husband gets up to in a store made me laugh out loud!

This piece of Internet humor has been circulating for many years and began as a list of funny things for husbands could do to pass the time while their wife shops. Over the years, it’s turned into a letter banning a husband from a store. The name of the store may change, as may the name of the wife and husband, but the joke remains the same!

Roy was pretty well behaved when he started going to the grocery with me though we did misbehave together in the store just to have fun. I’m pretty sure he would have loved to do several of the things in the list below!

I loved it, I hope you will too!

RETIRED HUSBAND

After I retired, my wife insisted that I accompany her on her trips to WalMart. Unfortunately, like most men; I found shopping boring and preferred to get in and get out. Equally unfortunate, my wife is like most women – she loves to browse. Yesterday my dear wife received the following letter, from the local WalMart:

Dear Mrs. Harris:

Over the past six months, your husband has caused quite a commotion, in our store. We cannot tolerate this behavior and have been forced to, ban both of you from the store. Our complaints against your husband, Mr. Harris, are listed below and are documented by our video surveillance cameras:

1. June 15: He took 24 boxes of condoms and randomly put them in other people’s carts when they weren’t looking.
2. July 2: Set all the alarm clocks in Housewares to go off at 5-minute intervals.
3. July 7: He made a trail of tomato juice on the floor leading to the women’s restroom.
4. July 19: Walked up to an employee and told her in an official voice, ‘Code 3 in Housewares. Get on it right away’. This caused the employee to leave her assigned station and receive a reprimand from her Supervisor that in turn resulted with a union grievance, causing management to lose time and costing the company money. We don’t have a Code 3.
5. August 4: Went to the Service Desk and tried to put a bag of M&Ms on layaway.
6. August 14: Moved a, ‘CAUTION – WET FLOOR’ sign to a carpeted area.
7. August 15: Set up a tent in the camping department and told the children shoppers he’d invite them in if they would bring pillows and blankets from the bedding department to which twenty children obliged.
8. August 23: When a clerk asked if they could help him he began crying and screamed, ‘Why can’t you people just leave me alone?’ EMTs were called.
9. September 4: Looked right into the security camera and used it as a mirror while he picked his nose.
10. September 10: While handling guns in the hunting department, he asked the clerk where the antidepressants were.
11. October 3: Darted around the store suspiciously while, loudly humming the, ‘Mission Impossible’ theme.
12. October 6: In the auto department, he practiced his, ‘Madonna Look’ using different sizes of funnels.
13. October 18: Hid in a clothing rack and when people browsed through, yelled ‘PICK ME! PICK ME!’
14. October 22: When an announcement came over the loud speaker, he assumed a fetal position and screamed;
‘OH NO! IT’S THOSE VOICES AGAIN!’
15. Took a box of condoms to the checkout clerk and asked where is the fitting room?
And last, but not least:

16. October 23: Went into a fitting room, shut the door, waited awhile; then yelled very loudly, ‘Hey! There’s no toilet paper in here.’ One of the clerks passed out.

Sincerely,
Mr. Wally Brown
Walmart Complaint Department

05.12.21 Dexcom G6, my new blood sugar monitoring system that I wear on my belly!

I have a Dexcom G6 which is a small, discreet wearable blood sugar tester that you apply yourself. It lasts up to 10 days monitoring your blood sugar every five minutes. Don’t let the every five minutes testing stop you from getting one. Mine doesn’t show me the reading unless I check it on my phone.

I wasn’t going to write about this but then I went to the gynecologist yesterday and he had never seen on any of his patients the little thing that is attached to my belly. His nurse hadn’t either. They were very interested in learning more about it. That got me thinking that if a doctor that sees that portion of a lady’s anatomy several times a day hadn’t ever seen one it might help one of my followers to know about it.

I am a horrible diabetic when it comes to sticking my finger and checking my blood sugar so I was a very good candidate for this system. I am an all-around horrible diabetic since I really can’t see why I should be miserable the rest of my dementia life by eating sugar-free things all the time. Dr. Majors my endocrinologist, a fancy name for diabetes doctor, gets that and is working with me to make it all easier for me to handle.

A couple of months ago he ordered a Dexcom G6 blood sugar monitoring system for me. Before Medicare will cover the cost of the Dexcom system they require you to check your blood sugar four times a day for 30 days and document it. For someone who checked her blood sugar once a week maybe that was a lot to go through but now I feel it was worth it.

The system came in the mail after I passed the 4 times a day for 30 day blood sugar checking and gave Dr. Majors the “evidence” that I did what was asked.

I had a rough time with the system at first because I put the sensor on wrong twice and there were only three sensors for the month, each lasting 10 days. The three sensors I get each month now are shown in the picture below.

After the very rocky start for me which I believe was because of me having dementia, I was so close to just giving up using it. I finally figured it out with help from a very kind Dexcom G6 customer service employee. Since I messed up the first two they very nicely sent me two more to replace those.

They have names for each of these pieces. The one on the right side of the picture below is the SENSOR The small thing on the left side of the first picture is actually two parts and together they are called the TRANSMITTER. There is also a “RECEIVER” which I do not use since I chose to put the Dexcom G6 app on my phone to receive the blood sugar numbers every five minutes.

Each Sensor (the big thing) is only used once. The bandaid-like patch with the hard plastic attached to it has a needle in it which is inserted in your belly when you remove the orange piece and click the orange button.

The first photo below shows putting it on your belly and clicking the orange button which inserts the needle and attaches the patch.

Clicking the orange button releases the bandaid like patch with the hard plastic attached to it. You then insert the transmitter into the bandaid like patch with the hard plastic transmitter holder attached to it. Then you answer the questions about the New Sensor on either the receiver or on your phone app and you’re all set for 10 days of testing every five minutes! One of the questions is what the new sensor’s ID number is which is found on the bottom of each sensor.

I had to laugh when the instructions said to put it on a place on your belly where there is some fat. Like there is a place on my belly that doesn’t have lots of fat!

Every ten days you are notified through the app that it’s time to change sensors. You will then remove the bandaid-like patch from your belly and take out the actual transmitter. That transmitter will be used in the next Sensor. You will get a new sensor out of the box and do the process all over again.

One of the purposes of the DexcomG6 is to help me learn how different foods and activities affect my blood sugar either in a good way or in a bad way. Or even how much of something I can eat without really affecting my blood sugar.

There is an alert that I set to notify me when my blood sugar goes below a certain level and above a certain level. I really like that.

While at Dr. Majors office Monday he installed an app on my phone called Clarity that sends him the same information I can see on my phone upload glucose data from a Dexcom CGM device and then view the data in easy-to-read graphs.

One thing he saw immediately was that my blood sugar is the highest all night. That lead to a discussion about snacking before bed. Since I read 2 to 5 hours in bed I tend to snack then. He added a mealtime insulin shot (in a lesser quantity as regular shots) before snack time. I can continue enjoying my snack and it will prevent my blood sugar from staying high at night. Last night my blood sugar was 100 points lower than other nights so that is helping me already.

Now that I have this all figured out, have made all the mistakes that could be made, and have gone through the process a couple of times I really like having this. It is making me more aware of how my blood sugar fluctuates during the day and night.

I hope this little information will be helpful to someone. Tomorrow I go to the Neuropsychologist in Baton Rouge to get the report on my neuropsych testing from two weeks ago. We plan to pick blackberries after the appointment so I have two things to look forward to tomorrow.

Ya’ll have a wonderful evening, It’s time for Prayer Meeting so I’m out of here! Rosalyn

05.10.21 RED SKELTON’S RECIPE FOR THE PERFECT MARRIAGE

For those of us who grew up being entertained by Red Skelton, I hope this will remind you of how wonderful he was. Whether you’re old or young I think you will enjoy this!

RED SKELTON’S RECIPE FOR THE PERFECT MARRIAGE
1. Two times a week we go to a nice restaurant, have a little beverage, good food and companionship. She goes on Tuesdays, I go on Fridays.
2. We also sleep in separate beds. Hers is in California and mine is in Texas.
3. I take my wife everywhere, but she keeps finding her way back.
4. I asked my wife where she wanted to go for our anniversary. “Somewhere I haven’t been in a long time!” she said. So I suggested the kitchen.
5. We always hold hands. If I let go, she shops.
6. She has an electric blender, electric toaster, and electric bread maker. She said “There are too many gadgets, and no place to sit down!” So I bought her an electric chair.
7. My wife told me the car wasn’t running well because there was water in the carburetor. I asked where the car was. She told me, “In the lake.”
8. She got a mudpack and looked great for two days. Then the mud fell off.
9. She ran after the garbage truck, yelling, “Am I too late for the garbage?” The driver said, “No, jump in!”.
10. Remember: Marriage is the number one cause of divorce.
11. I married Miss Right. I just didn’t know her first name was ‘Always’.
12. I haven’t spoken to my wife in 18 months. I don’t like to interrupt her.
13. The last fight was my fault though. My wife asked, “What’s on the TV?”
I said, “Dust!”.
Can’t you just hear him say all of these?
I love it. These were the good old days when humor didn’t have to start with a four letter word or political. It was just clean and simple fun. And he always ended his programs with the words, “And May God Bless” with a big smile on his face

05.09.21 An open letter to my Mama, sweet Josie Traylor, on Mother’s Day

I wrote this back in 2013, eight Mother’s Days ago. I started to write something this year and looked at older posts for pictures. I came across this and it is all so true and dear to me that I’m publishing it once again. I miss that little lady just as much today as I did when I first wrote this.

Happy Mother’s Day Mama…

It’s been five years (now thirteen years) since I was able to look into your beautiful shining eyes and hold your fragile little hands to say I love you.

It was probably two years before that time when you still knew it was your daughter Rosalyn saying those words to you.  The erosion of your mind and memories taken by that horrible disease known as Alzheimer’s was something we didn’t like to see happen but most importantly we didn’t want it happening to you.

You were one of the strongest women I’ve ever known loving your children and grandchildren unconditionally, caring for us with the last drop of strength and love you had.

So many memories flood my mind, examples of the Christian wife, mother, and friend that you were.

Your life touched so many yet you were no famous person, just little ole Josie Mae Cochran from small-town Mississippi.

Your brothers and sisters all share your same strength and love for family which is probably why I love each of them dearly.

How I miss the many visits to your home where you’d sit in your chair and I in mine where I knew I could share my innermost thoughts, desires, wishes, problems, and plans and you would always understand.

How I Granny Hen Rosieregret the times I pushed to the side your wise words of advice, determined to do things my way.

With age comes much wisdom and it can be used for good or not.  You chose to use yours for good, for the good of God’s work and His children.

I learned so much from you mama.  How to cook, how to clean the house, oh the many years I spent growing up cleaning the bottoms of the furniture so maybe one day I’d be big enough to clean the tops!

You taught me to love okra by allowing me to have one for each year I was old which made me feel it was a special treat!  You taught me about loving and caring for others with your many visits to the sick or just bringing a small gift to someone in need.

I never realized when growing up that we were not wealthy like others, my clothes were always clean and you managed to give me the things I needed.  My friends and I always knew that when we entered our house we were entering a house full of love and caring and that came from you, Mama.

I know beyond the shadow of a doubt that you are in Heaven watching over us.  Not because of the good person that you were or the good things you did for others.  None of that made you a Christian.  Your love for Jesus Christ and you obviously serving him as your Lord and Savior even unto your death are what makes me know securely that you will meet me in Heaven when my time here on Earth is done.

You taught us the importance of family and created family traditions we will always cherish.  Of all the things I am thankful for it’s that you were always there for my children, Chad and Chip, being there when I couldn’t because of work.

You convinced them that they needed to wear undershirts and even as grown men they still do.

You taught them about Jesus’ love and the importance of Him in our lives.  Chip still tells me things that you taught him and remembers so many ways you affected his life.

As you drew your dying breath our oldest son Chad and his wife was there in our family circle of prayer.

You made it possible for me to work and still know my children were taken care of by the best grandmother around.

Your life wasn’t an easy one especially when you were younger but you never gave up and taught us not to.

I owe you my strength, my sense of humor, my smile, my love for my children and grandchildren, my stubbornness, my intelligence, my determination, and my love for God.

I could write volumes about your simple specialness but I’ve shed many tears while writing this so far and know I need to stop.

Mama, I give you all the thanks in my heart for loving me, my husband and my children like only you could.  The values, morals, family traditions, love, support, and how you spent your time are what make you my precious mama and why I know there will never be another one like you.

Please continue to watch over us and give us a swift kick when you see we’re needing it and a supportive hug when that’s needed as well.

I know that your daughter Harriett, your sons-in-law Roy and George, and all your beautiful grandchildren and great-grandchildren join me in wishing you a Happy Mother’s Day. You are now joined in Heaven by my dear husband Roy who loved you so. I hope ya’ll are both aware of how much you are missed.

We love you mama.

05.06.21 My Buddy’s Story, by Grannie Rosie

Ya’ll know that we adopted Buddy who was a rescue poodle at the Tangipahoa Parish Animal Shelter. We adopted him back in December. We’ve been taking him to the veterinarian in Amite that the Shelter recommended. There he was treated for an infected eye when we first got him, was neutered, tested for heartworms (was negative), got his rabbis shot, and had his teeth cleaned and three teeth pulled.

The Animal Shelter said he was 6 years old which we accepted. We’ve never known how much he weighs.

Since we adopted Buddy he’s had a cough that he does a few times a day. It sounds like a cat coughing up a hairball but he never actually coughs up anything.

He also has a piece of black skin at the corner of his eye that sticks out. That eye also oozes a tiny bit.

I didn’t particularly like the original veterinarian as they never told me much and I couldn’t go inside because of Covid and couldn’t check out the place. Since Buddy needed to be seen because of the cough I found a different Veterinary Clinic in Amite and made an appointment.

The new one is Kent Veterinary Clinic on Factory Street in Amite.

I was able to go into the waiting room but not in the back with Buddy.  The Vet in Hammond that we use to bring our lab Nacho to always allowed us back to be with her for whatever they were doing.  Maybe now Covid has everybody changing things but I did appreciate being able today to sit in the air-conditioned waiting room.

From the minute we arrived, they were attentive, polite, and informative. Yay for finding a great Vet that let me go inside! Going inside is not as big a deal as was how they were with Buddy and what I learned.

Buddy is not 6 years old, he is between 8 and 10 years old. That immediately made me sad because our time with him won’t be as long. But we will just love him a little extra each day we have him.

A few recent photos of Buddy just cause he’s so cute!

He weighs 8.5 pounds which we never knew. Having dementia robs me from thinking of things I need to ask a doctor and I’ve never asked about his weight and wasn’t told his weight.

The doctor, Dr. Drew Doucet, sat with me and explained several things.  He said Buddy’s life before us was a hard one. The skin sticking out of his eye is from him being clawed by another animal and it not healing properly. He said his other eye was clawed but it healed okay. Buddy’s cough came from being around other dogs that have that cough.  He said they have treated six dogs that came from the Animal Shelter with that same cough. Buddy is now on steroids for the cough and had an antibiotic shot for his eyes. I have the steroids and will be giving him one each morning until they run out. I’ll bring him back to the Veterinary Clinic in two weeks for a recheck.

The disturbing part of the visit today came when the Veterinarian said Buddy’s teeth were in bad shape and needed cleaning. I told him the original veterinarian cleaned Buddy’s teeth and pulled three of them. He told me no they did not clean his teeth even though they told me they did and charged me for it.  Buddy needs one more tooth pulled.  Dr. Doucet doesn’t want to clean Buddy’s teeth until the cough is completely gone and the eyes are all cleared up.  He will clip the little skin piece off Buddy’s eye when they put him under to clean his teeth.

I can’t tell you how let down I felt to hear we were taken advantage of by the original Veterinarian. I am happy that we now know way more about Buddy than we did before.

Precious Buddy has helped me so very much while I’ve been grieving the loss of my honey Roy.  Roy didn’t want another dog but I’m pretty sure he would love Buddy just like we do. Buddy snuggles right up to my legs at night when we are going to sleep. He follows both Chip and I everywhere we go. We can tell how much he loves us and that he is so thankful for the good life he has now.

Well, that’s it for the Buddy health update. I am thankful for the folks at Kent Veterinary Clinic and believe we’ve found the right doctor and staff for our sweet one.

First thing tomorrow I’ll be contacting the original clinic to have Buddy’s records sent to the new clinic where he will be loved and well taken care of.

Now if we could just do something about how stinky his farts are, we’d be set!

It’s almost the weekend so ya’ll have a Blessed one! Rosalyn

 

04.30.21 My fun (not) day of Neuropsych testing and what it’s all about

In my opinion as someone who has taken different combinations of these tests three times, Neuropsych testing is the best way to see if someone has dementia and how it’s progressed from one testing to the next.

This took me four days (a couple of hours each day) to put together so that ya’ll understand what this neuropsych testing that I have is all about. Also, I am hoping it will help you see if it is something your loved one might benefit from having done.

This is Buddy and I on our way to the testing!

My Neuropsychological testing was Monday afternoon. On Monday evening and all day Tuesday, my brain was very incapable of thinking or doing anything. It wasn’t until today Wednesday, that I feel able to write. I put most of this together a while back so all I am doing now is adding my own experience in italics.

This link is to a post I wrote back in 2015 explaining a little about Neuropsych testing.

I can tell when I mention that I’m having updated Neuropsych testing that most people have never heard of it.

I call it paper testing which is very different than the medical brain and other testing.

I’ve had many medical tests to see what my brain is doing with dementia.

I’ve had the paper testing three times now. I looked it up and there first was in 2011, second in 2015 and this one in 2021. Between the first two there was not much progress which I was quite happy to know.

I’ll share the results of yesterday’s testing as soon as I can when I get the report on Thursday May 13th. I plan to have Chip with me when I see the doctor for that if it is permitted.

Here’s some information I found on the web from various sites about neuropsychological testing:
A neuropsychological evaluation is a group of tests to measure how well a person’s brain is working. The abilities tested include reading, language usage, attention, learning, processing speed, memory, executive functioning, reasoning, remembering, problem-solving, mood and personality and more

These tests are usually done with a pencil and paper in a doctor’s office. A neuropsychologist may also ask you a series of questions that you answer orally. Questions like what day of the week it is, who the current President is, what year it is and similar questions

A couple of simple ones were connecting numbers in the right order one connecting a number then the letter like 1 to A then 2 to B and so on.

Draw a face of a clock showing all 12 numbers in the right places and a time specified by the examiner. At first, I put 1 at the top and thankfully realized that was wrong. I’m not sure if I did the time on the clock correctly.

These tests covered by neuropsychological testing include:

  • Your ability to think, understand, learn, and remember (cognition)
  • Memory
  • Motor function (walking, coordination, etc.)
  • Perception (how well you take in what you see or read)
  • Problem-solving and decision-making
  • Verbal ability

All types of testing that an individual does in one of these sessions is based on that person’s individual issue. Some of the different types of test, including:

Memory test: Repeat a list of words, sentences, or numbers. I was given 10 words to repeat back to the tester. These same 10 words were given at two other times during the testing and I repeated what I remembered. At the end, she didn’t tell me the words but wanted to know which ones I remembered without her prompting. I was also read a few sentences about an event and was asked to repeat what I could remember. She did not repeat the sentence but asked me two more times during the session what I could repeat back to her that I remembered in the story. I don’t believe either one of these went well.

Cognition test: Explain how two items are alike. For instance, if you see a picture of a dog and a cat, you might answer that they’re both animals or that they are both pets. That is the simplest comparison question. They get much harder as they ask more. I don’t remember what the harder ones were but I couldn’t figure out how a lot of them were alike.

Verbal communication test: Name some items as the person giving the test points at them. I was also given the topic fruits and vegetables and told to name as many as I could. I think I did well on this part

Motor tests: These might include tasks such as putting blocks together in the same way a picture has them. This graphic I found shows the blocks and one of the many pictures I was to make the blocks look like.
The worse test was to pick out of a row of pictures the one that would fit into the series of pictures above that. This was something I was able to do easily earlier in my life. She wanted me to guess if I didn’t know and at least half of them were guessed. During this one, I wanted to scream and cry it was so difficult. I searched and searched just now for a graphic showing what this test looks like but could not find anything.
The other test that was so upsetting to me was the math portion. Only the last question was harder than a 6th grader could do. I could not remember any of the rules of fractions, division, add up big numbers. This was the only other time I showed my exasperation to the tester. I told her I had been a Vice President of a Savings and Loan dealing with numbers all the time and I made all As in math-related classes in college but I couldn’t remember how to do half the problems.

No matter what type of neurological test you take, you won’t need to study for it.

The testing takes between 2 to 5 hours. My testing was 2.5 hours.

The next two paragraphs are different ways of explaining the testing.

Neuropsychological tests are standardized, meaning that they are given in the same manner to all patients and scored in a similar manner time after time. An individual’s scores on tests are interpreted by comparing their score to that of healthy individuals of a similar demographic background (i.e., of similar age, education, gender, and/or ethnic background) and to expected levels of functioning. In this way, a neuropsychologist can determine whether one’s performance on any given task represents a strength or weakness. Although individual scores are important, the neuropsychologist looks at all of the data from the evaluation to determine a pattern of cognitive strengths and weaknesses and, in turn, to understand more about how the brain is functioning.

Neuropsychological tests evaluate functioning in a number of areas including intelligence, executive functions (such as planning, abstraction, conceptualization), attention, memory, language, perception, sensorimotor functions, motivation, mood state and emotion, quality of life, and personality styles. The areas addressed in an individual’s evaluation are determined by the referral question (what the referring doctor and patient want to know), patient’s complaints and symptoms, and observations made during the interview and test administration.

Like I said at the beginning of this post I put it together so that ya’ll understand what this neuropsych testing that I have is all about. Also so that you can see if it is something your loved one might benefit from having done I want you to know what they are about.

My brain wasn’t worth anything near the end of the testing. It was what I would describe as really tired.

Chip surprised me after the testing by driving to a place near the doctor’s office. When we got out of the car he told me to close my eyes and hold his hand while he guided me to someplace special. Wow, when I opened my eyes there were blackberries all over. It was the most I’ve ever seen and I loved getting to pick them until I could pick no more! Here’s a picture of them and the blackberry cobbler I made with them! You know, that kid of mine takes good care of his mama!

I’m not sure how much sense this all made or how it flowed but it’s what I could do. It took four days to get it done.

Ya’ll have a blessed weekend! Rosalyn

04.27.21 Almost eight months of grief

I originally posted a wrong version of this post so if you get two emails notifying you of this post that is why.

This post is about thoughts that I need to share about grief and how I miss my hubby, Roy. I’m not real sure it flows well or even says all I’m feeling. But here it is.

It’s almost been eight months since Roy died. Sometimes I feel the need to cling to the memories I have of Roy so I don’t forget them. Not trying to keep those memories fresh or not spending some time thinking about the memories feels wrong.  After almost 50 years together (including dating) we shared so many wonderful and some cruddy memories. Having dementia has taken a lot of those memories away. I cannot picture him alive very much anymore. That’s a big one. I have pictures around the house of him and I find myself talking to those pictures like it is Roy standing there.

We had so many enjoyable goofy times together and I deeply miss that. We even had fun when we’d go to the grocery together. Roy died shortly after he finished building our patio behind the house.  Now when I sit out there enjoying the beauty  I can’t help but wish he’d had some time enjoying what he put so much effort into building.

I miss having the person in my life who knew and understood me best and loved me the most. I’m learning to be more independent with Roy gone. I was very independent and strong earlier in my life.  I don’t guess I’ll be doing much travel around the country like Roy and I did. I do hope to take a trip somewhere with Chip sometime soon. I would love to show him some of the amazing places Roy and I traveled to in our time with Dora.

Everything I look at around here has a memory of Roy in it. I swing in the hammock nearest the house from time to time. I love to look up at the oak tree canopies filling in with leaves each spring.

Roy hung up that hammock in a way only Roy could. That hammock will stay screwed into the oak trees forever and ever. Roy believed in doing things one project at a time and doing them well. As I lay in the hammock I remember him screwing metal hook into the oak trees and attaching the heavy ropes to the hammock. I helped in a tiny way and we took pictures of it.

I have reached a place in this awful process known as grief that I don’t cry as often. My heart does not hurt as much every time I think of Roy.  I get sad mostly when I am looking at photos of our travels and he’s in the photo. I remember how happy we were at that particular place and want to feel that again.  The pictures I see of Roy and I in our travels showed us to both be so happy.  I don’t remember being that happy any time since Roy died.

I still deeply miss my husband, my best friend. I am lonely for his presence and wish we could still have the love and fun times that filled our lives throughout our marriage. I don’t think that other people can understand what this feels like if they have not lost their spouse.  I hope you all never have to feel this.

I am thankful that Chip lives with me or the loneliness would be so overwhelming. He is now very attuned to helping me do the best I can. He’s also a very good cook!

Chip took me to the Neuropsychologist for testing in Baton Rouge on Monday. I won’t have the report for a couple of weeks. It’s the very best way to see if there is a change in my dementia since the last time these tests were done in 2015.

After the neuropsych testing, we went to our oldest son’s home to celebrate our youngest grandchild’s birthday. It was wonderful seeing all the littles and celebrating with them.

More about the fun and testing in my next post. The scripture below is one I learned as a child and have loved my whole life since Jesus saved me.

Have a blessed week, Rosalyn

04.20.21 Spring flowers have Sprung at the Chauvin home

I have always looked forward to this time of year to see the flowers start to form and bloom. I walked around our property taking pictures of flowers and bushes.

Here’s the pictures!

One of my rock flowers and ladybugs

My metal chicken and a new tiny windmill in front of it

Now for the real flowers!

 

The blueberries are all over the bushes. They are still small and purple/green.  Soon they will plump up and turn blue and we’ll get to enjoy them!   Our first small tomato on the one tomato plant.   I’m not sure why the cucumbers are not taking off like they usually did. 

Our two fig trees look really nice. I am hopeful they will produce a lot this year!

The two azaleas that we brought from our home in Hammond. They are getting really big and I love it!

This is what one of these azaleas looked like when we planted it here four years ago. They were so tiny compared to how big they are now!

20170207_144513A couple of the lantana bushes that we brought from Hammond.  These bushes get huge so I divided them last year. I hope their flowers start blooming soon. 

The azaleas in the back part of our property bloomed really nicely this year.  They will bloom again later in the year and I’ll take pictures of them then.

After all of the rain we recently received it is very nice to have some days of nice temperatures and sunshine! All our windows are open and I love having the fresh breeze blow through the house!

Poor Buddy had a hard time today. His electric fence and collar were taken down a few weeks ago because he was doing so well not running after cars without it. He started doing it again so Chip rewired the front yard and put the collar back on.

Getting a little shock again scared Buddy so much he hid in an azalea bush by where I was pulling weeds. We thought he looked precious in the bush so I am sharing. He wasn’t happy with his Daddy Chip and hid under my bed for a while. He never does either of those two things. Chip has him outside now playing with him and they are friends again but Buddy is obviously skittish about going outside.

I hope you all enjoyed seeing some of our flowers and bushes., Rosalyn

 

 

04.19.21 Lately, Sunday School and Worship Service, Buddy, Easter Family gathering, Feet rocks, Hitting the Ball, Flying Ants, Snake, Mark Everett!

I wrote this first part last week when it was raining every day and I wanted to write but I was stuck and unable to write. My grief over losing Roy has changed and I wanted to write about that but somehow can’t do that right now. One day it will spill out. I loved that man more than anything and probably didn’t realize it truly until now. Cherish the ones you love while you still have them.

My heart has so much I want to share but getting started this time is kinda difficult.

I want to share about God’s love, what He’s done in my life and what He can do in your life.

I want to share how wonderful it is to live in my little slice of Heaven here in Amite.

I want to write about how I need and want to get out more often.

I need to write more about losing Roy and what it’s been like missing him.

I want to share more about Buddy and the joy he’s brought to my life.

So that’s what I’m thinking of writing about.

It is a beautiful sunshiny day in the mid-60s and now I can write. I’ll be spending the rest of the day outside doing gardening and enjoying this beautiful day that the Lord has given us. I hope you get to be outside today and enjoy it!  Isn’t God so good!

Yesterday, Sunday, Chip and went to both Sunday School (Bible Study) and our Worship Service at our church Trinity Baptist. We live pretty far from our church so getting there at 9:30 m means waking up at 6:30 am.

We both felt strongly that it was time to attend in person and not online. The people in my Sunday School class have become dear to me while I’ve been attending online.  Spot Traylor is my teacher and all of those in our class are wise and their Bible knowledge is deep. I enjoy learning from all of them. They are still having online Sunday School but now I’m in the room and can see those online on the monitor! I have to admit that I was a bit nervous going in person. Online I just listened and learned. I worried that my words wouldn’t come out coherently but they were all so welcoming that I felt comfortable being there.

Chip’s Sunday School class is big and meets in the gymnasium part of our new building. His teacher is Philip Bankston whom Chip has known most of his life. He really enjoyed the teaching and fellowship with those his age.

We were also blessed by being in our Worship Service in person. We got to see the young family (the Weeg family) that visited us last Sunday. That made me smile having another new family nas friends. We had a nice visit with Ms. Grace Turk one of my mama’s dear friends. She and Mr. Charlie Turk are precious people that we love. Our Pastor, Bro. Avery Dixon, as always preached a clear, Biblical message from the book of Luke. I appreciate his preaching so much, even those times that I think he is speaking directly to me about my sin.

In case anyone doesn’t know it, we are a church of sinners. Every church is full of sinners. The Bible says in Romans 3:23, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;”  We know we are sinners but we know that as Christians through the death of Jesus Christ our sins are forgiven.  That doesn’t mean we can sin because we know they are taken away.  We acknowledge our sins to God and ask forgiveness for them. So much has been written and can still be written about this but I will end here.

A friend, Ms. Janice Adams sent me a picture of feet made out of rocks. I love it. If you come across any rocks like these please keep me in mind and grab them for me!

The other day I watched Buddy chase after a ball that is hit across the field and then running back with it. Rick is teaching Buddy to sit while he is hitting the ball to prevent Buddy from getting stepped on or hit while he or Chip swings the bat.

We had a swarm of flying ants on the field next to the house. Chip put ant killer granules on them, ran the lawnmower over them a few times, fed them dry grits, put hot water on them and we’ve hosed them a few times but they don’t go away and the grass there is starting to die. I planted runners there every year since we bought the property so having them die from these bugs is distressing. Overnight they carried enough red dirt from around the pond to form hundreds of small red dirt mounds. It is a pretty good way from the pond to where the mounds are now so they are strong little guys. I’ve only seen them swarm, never walk around.

 

Don’t know if you can see the 4 foot or longer black dead snake that Chip is carrying on a stick but he and my renter Rick killed it in the yard this morning. They stuck with it as it made its way around the yard and stabbed it with a shovel! and beat it with a baseball bat. That’s Chip Chauvin and Rick Metlika for protecting Buddy and I!

Sweet Buddy getting his bath in the kitchen sink. He’s so puny with all his hair wet!

He’s all cleaned up and is guarding the house from his place on top of the sofa.

My precious grandchildren were here for Easter. One of the things they did was paddling around the pond in the paddle boat. From the shore I could hear them giggling and talking the whole time. I could tell they enjoyed it a lot.

They also love painting rocks for me to hide.  I painted a white coat and a colored coat on each of these rocks so they were ready for the kids to drawn and write on.

When they started painting our oldest wanted to paint on a natural rock and the younger girls followed her lead. Only two of the ones they painted weren’t natural rocks with no paint on them! I put a clear coat on each, added my label and they are in the basket to hide. One of these from each of the girls will stay at home with Grannie!

.One of my favorite young men at Trinity was featured in the following newspaper article. He recently signed with a Major League Baseball partnered team. His brother Jonah and his father Mark were ordained at our church a few weeks ago and I shared that with ya’ll.  Those two are in the photo with Mark Everett and his family. Click on the link below the photo that says Mark Everett Traylor to read the article. I am so proud of him!  The article did forget to mention that I was his 3rd and 4th grade Sunday School teacher which I am sure contributed to the amazing man he is now, lol!!!

Mark Everett Traylor

Our plants and bushes are blooming beautifully right now. I took several pictures yesterday and will share them in my next post!

Have a Blessed Week!, Rosalyn

I usually end each post with a scripture. Today will be different but it touched my heart as being such a beautiful message to all parents. Please read!