Sticks and Stones may Break My Bones – but Needles…….

The van is due for an oil change.  It’ll wait.  I should dehaze the headlight lenses, but that can wait.  I really need to organize the video’s I’ve been transferring from VHS, but there’s no time for that now.  There are leaves to rake, gutters to clean, and power steering to find and install in the Toyota (and that rattling rear window is really wearing on me); but those things and more will have to wait.  I am making Christmas presents for my grandchildren, and for my sons.  They must be finished and mailed in time and, HURRAY!  I made it.

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I made coloring books


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Coloring books with pictures of them

I suppose now that I’ve dusted and organized the surface of my desk, I can no longer complain about not having enough time.  I did reach the point early on Christmas Eve when I’d checked-off enough lines on my to-do list that the ascending graph line of “this desk is an utter mess!” crossed the descending graph line of “time sensitive Christmas things that must be done.”  It will be nice to end and start the year with a clean desk, like that feeling of slipping into a bed of fresh sheets.

I sit here now in the afterglow of Christmas day.  Christmas was most always at Grandma and Grandpa’s house.  We’ve only had one official family Christmas at our house, and that was the year Diane gave me a 57 Chevy; so when she announced we were having the family Christmas this year, I thought great!  Maybe I’m getting another car!  She shortly relieved that suspense explaining there would be no surprise car under the tree or in the driveway this year. But, among my gifts from her was a very nice office chair in which I am comfortably sitting now as I type, no longer needing a pillow to sit on to counter the seat cushion flattened by years of use (I’m passing on the opportunity to comment here on the weight or rigidity of any posterior frequenting the now previous chair).

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She even decorated the bird bath

Diane really enjoys decorating every room and every part of our house for Christmas.  And, she did a wonderful job this year of almost singlehandedly orchestrating Christmas day arrivals, snacks, seating, background music, cats banished, gifting order and balance, Christmas dinner (Breakfast), leftovers to go with goodbyes, and directing cleanup triage.

This Christmas was very nice, but last Christmas may have been the best ever.  Diane and I met Robin and family at Brandon & Emily’s home in Michigan for Christmas week.   It was a grand experiment, and everyone survived – hopefully leaving the door open to a future Christmas with all of us together again.  On the way to that family Christmas, our flight from Chicago to Marquette was cancelled due to snow.  We decided to rent a car and drive the 370 miles.  Brandon called ahead and reserved a car for us, I hopped on the rental car shuttle bus, and Diane began the 90 minute wait for our luggage.  There she met an old couple (older than us!) who also would have been on our cancelled flight to Marquette.  In a moment, Diane phoned me and said, “Get a bigger car – I’ll explain later.  What a joy it was to meet, travel, and visit with these wonderful people.  Isn’t it funny how God works?  They said we were a blessing, but really, they were the blessing for us.

I had surgery in October to repair my incisional hernia, also referred to as an umbilical hernia (also referred to as a sticking-out-belly button).  It is so very nice to no longer have that little door knob on my stomach.  I’m glad I didn’t get the eyeball tattoo that was so tempting.  I also had the regularly scheduled quarterly cancer tests for my oncologist in December, along with a PSA test for my urologist, and a cholesterol test for my general doctor, and another test for my heart doctor.  I thought it would certainly be efficient to get enough blood for all this with one needle, but when the “draw” was finished that day, I had four little “badges of courage” on my arms and hands.

For more than six years, my PSA numbers have been rated as undetectable.  The urologist’s office called me the day after Christmas.  My latest test showed an increase in the PSA.  He wants to see me.  I suspect more needles.

I remain thankful to God for a life overflowing with blessings.