'I am simply a 'book drunkard.' Books have the same irresistible temptation for me that liquor has for its devotee. I cannot withstand them.' L.M. Montgomery

'There are no faster or firmer friendships than those formed between people who love the same books.' Irving Stone

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Where Have I Been?!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! I've been missing in action around here. I don't really have an excuse. I seemed to have lost my umph for awhile there. I'm sorry. I hope you all had a wonderful holiday and the new year has been off to a good start for you.

Christmas was quiet for us this year. I flew my handicapped brother in for Christmas. It was just the three of us. He came on the 20th and stayed until the 28th. It was his first visit since I moved away from him. Only his second time flying on a plane and he did it all by himself! Nerve wracking for me! Here's me and Donald before we left for the airport to take him home. That's his 'cheese' face!

We lack 4 days being a year apart in age! He loves it that for 4 days he's the same age as me! He was 3 months premature.

We had him fly into Charlotte NC, which is a 3 hour drive for us. He would have had an hour plus layover there to come on to Knoxville. I was afraid to leave him sitting in the busy airport all by himself for that long. Too many things could happen. It took us longer to drive to pick him up than it took him to fly down! It was a grand adventure for him and he loved it. The airlines were great and let us go through customs at both ends to see him to and from the gate. In this day of heightened security I didn't think that would be possible.

He was so tickled to get back to Tennessee. He lived in LaFollette years ago with my mom. He was excited to watch the news on the channels he use to watch and was disappointed that the newscasters are not the same. I use to get him and take him home with me for several weeks each year to give my mom a break. I was young, my kids were little and DK (Donald Kevin) was younger. It was no problem. Wow have things changed. I'm older, he's older and has several health issues. I had forgotten all the work it was to take care of him! Let's just say he is a full time job! Thank goodness he is so pleasant!

My house was not convenient for him showering. He had to go down the basement steps and the shower room is very large and roomy not good for a blind person! There are no side walls just shower curtains. I ended up just getting in with my clothes on and helping him. If I stood to the far end I didn't get wet. We have one bathroom, one toilet. He goes to the bathroom ALOT! He takes forever and he loves to crank the faucets on the sink so tight you can't get them on and he breaks them. Needless to say bossman worried himself to death about what he was doing in the bathroom all the time! Poor DK was probably glad to get home to pee in peace! He did mess up the hot water faucet :(

He wears a CPAP mask to sleep now and he can't put it on himself. Then he gets up once, sometimes twice a night, to go to the bathroom and I have to get up and put it back on him. Not to mention help him find his way back to bed as my house is new to him. He got turned around a lot going back and forth.

He is diabetic now and has issues with sores/cellulitis and when he gets them if you don't get right on it, he ends up in the hospital very sick. As soon as he got here he got a big blister on his toe, HOW??? and I went right into panic mode. I didn't know if his medical would cover him here. Then I discovered he had jock itch, again, that had to be taken care of. So We doctored, cut toe and finger nails, cut the hair out of his ears and nose and by the time he went home he was ship shape! And I was exhausted! There are definitely drawbacks to personal care homes.

I fixed all his favorites he never gets at the home. Pinto beans and cornbread, chili, beefaroni, tomato soup and grilled cheese for lunch and cream of wheat for breakfast. He doesn't have teeth anymore so we have to have soft stuff! He LOVES cream of wheat!

Donald lives in a good home, they are good to him, its like a big family there. He has lots of social opportunities there. I can't give him that here in TN. He would lose lots of benefits and his two social outings each week with Blind associations and his week of camp in the summer. He might not get as diligent attention as he would at home, but he is happy there and safe. He can't see the dust on his electronics or that his clothes are a mess in his drawers from him getting them out himself. I just have to let a few things go. He is loved and feels it and that is important. No one steals from him or abuses him. Everyone looks out for him. He has some independence there because they don't dote and fret over everything like I do. I think I would drive him nuts! I struggled with mixed emotions when he left, relief, sadness and guilt. But when I talked to him a day after he got home, he seemed so content and happy to be back in his routine and his own environment that I felt much better. We talk on the phone every Tuesday night. He seems content with that.

I just haven't felt up to being online and chit chatting since all that though. But I'm starting to feel more like myself and I'll be around more I think! I am playing around with the idea of moving to Wordpress. I was playing around with setting a blog up over there but didn't get too far as I haven't been online much. We'll see what happens.

Its been nice and mild weather here but tomorrow that is changing. A storm is coming in with very cold temps and some chance of a little snow! Here it is January and I've only worn my winter coat twice so I can't complain. Back up to 60 in a week though!

Lots to catch up on. See you later!

Peggy Ann


  1. Peggy, It sounds as though Donald had a wonderful visit with you, his loving sister, but that he's really happier at his 'home' home. It's hard to separate heart from head, but I truly believe you're both happier and healthier the way things are. Wishing you and Donald a very happy 2017!

  2. I love his 'cheese' face. It sounds like Donald was like most of us when we are on holiday - it's great, but at the end we're glad to get home!
    He's lucky to have you as a sister.

    1. Yes, and its actually kind of arrogant of me to 'assume' he would be happier here with me. Thanks, Katrina.

  3. You are an excellent sister and I am so glad he has you!

  4. I'm not at all surprised you lost your 'umph.' Not only was that a physically exhausting visit, but so emotionally tiring, which for me is worse. You had a million emotions flying around as you were having to deal with all his needs. Thank goodness such care homes exist. I am so glad you shared this on your blog.
    Why do you want to leave blogspot? I love it.

    1. It was Nan :(
      I'm not sure why I want to leave blogspot. I just want a change in something I guess! I have a terrible time trying to post from my iPad with the apps for blogger.

  5. How wonderful that you were able to spend time with your brother and dote on him. I'm sure he enjoyed it very much, in spite of the physical difficulties.

    You have everything to feel good about. You did the right thing and now he's back in the environment which is familiar to him. It sounds like the residence he's in is terrific.

  6. Great that you were able to have your brother for a holiday over Christmas but it must have been hard work for you.

    I was getting very frustrated blogging on my iPad too so I got BlogTouch Pro which is great - it costs about £4.00. Writing is so much easier and you can save drafts and then come back to them.

    1. Thanks, Margaret! Blogtouch Pro looks good. I'll check it out.

  7. I had wondered where you were when you were gone for a while, Peggy. I love all the food you cooked for Donald, except cream of wheat. You are a great sister and I am glad you had this time together. And bravo for Donald flying alone. I don't even like to do that.


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