Friday, October 25, 2013

2 "Mysterious" Friday REVEALS!

WHEW! What a crazy couple weeks with my long finger imprisoned in it's metal birdcage and gauze wrap! I traded out my original flesh toned dressing (translate: finger/wrist prison/torture device) last week for a smaller fashion-forward hot pink wrap.

Sadly, the original wrap was filthy, stained with a medley of foods and who knows what? The chocolate pudding and spaghetti sauce stains were alarming to some, who thought they were blood! When I told the nurse I was having mini panic/anxiety attacks from the tightness of the bandage, she reluctantly agreed to rewrap. What a joy it has been to wash my hand, or most of it, again!

Today...the REVEAL! Went to visit Dr. Chan early this AM and my new cyst-less finger finally emerged. Everyone kept asking me exactly what was under that big bandage...stitches, glue, whatever...I didn't have a clue until now. 

Under my new REMOVABLE splint, they removed 2 rows of teeny stitches that formed a "c" around the joint. ICK!!! Now I'm off to pick up my octogenarian mom and do the mani-pedi thing. This splint is coming off to prettify my nails!

The second REVEAL....I'm much more newsworthy! We're busy assembling Part 3 of the Holly & Hearts Mystery Sampler. We'll be shipping to needlework shops on Monday, November 4. 

Here's a sneak peek of the pretty covers nestled in their boxes, fresh from the printer. Our part-time helper, Carmen, is busy sacking piles of them, including their antique gold heart charms, right now!

I should take this opportunity to say that Carmen is the BEST helper! Three mornings a week she comes to Lizzie*Kate after she drops her middle-school son at school. Every morning she is greeted by a desk piled with various L*K products to assemble, as well as older Flip-its, kits, embellishment packs, etc. that need to be restocked. Somehow she gets through the whole pile, and then we're scavenging for MORE things to keep her busy. Today is Carmen appreciation day...and she's OFF!

One more bit of Friday fun to share. Last week during my finger disability, I was in charge of desserts for a monthly church event. Last month I shared some of my "fun with food" with you for the same event, including the lovely Twinkie school buses. 

This month I had planned a spooky theme, just didn't anticipate how hard it would be to work with a finger splint. I baked a bunch of gingerbread cutouts before, cats and pumpkins. Then I conned my clever friends, Julie and Saundra, to come over the decorate them...skeleton style...great job!

While they labored with the pastry bags, I put together some easy witch's hats and brooms, a la Pinterest!

If you need an EASY (but tasty) project to do with kids or grandkids, these were super quick, and everyone thought they were cute! And I found it necessary to eat any Reese's, Kisses or Fudge Stripe cookies that were "imperfect". Sometimes that happens...

This will be the LAST post lamenting my finger disability (sigh). Just know...I typed this SLOWLY with my ring and pinkie fingers hitting the keys the long finger usually does...think about it

Monday, October 14, 2013

What's a LONG finger?

According to my hand surgeon, Dr. Chan, it's the finger between the ring finger and the index finger. You know, the one commonly referred to as the "middle finger" or "third finger". There's a handy fact you can add to your medical knowledge!

For me, it's the finger that chose to grow an unsightly cyst on the knuckle near the fingernail. Then afore-mentioned cyst decided to grow to "witch-like" proportions, just in time for Halloween. Alan swears it would have made any costume I chose more authentic this year, but I chose to have Dr. Chan remove the extremely sore/ugly/growing larger by the day/constantly getting bumped even though hidden under multiple bandaids little thing last week.

Insert ugly picture here - I'm sparing you the BEFORE image.

Do you ever have that experience where you wish you had asked more medical questions in advance? Where the doc says "small procedure, minimal recovery, blah, blah, blah"...and afterwards you would describe it quite differently???

Fast forward to Alan and I leaving the minor surgery center last Wednesday and me looking like this! I'm propping up the right hand because my arm is still dead (anesthetized) from the shoulder to my un-tingly fingertips.

I was too traumatized to ask what might possibly be lurking under the unbelievably large splint...stitches, glue, a replacement finger...I'll have to wait 2 more weeks to find out.

Meanwhile, back at work after a fuzzy few painkiller-adled days (and a couple bouts of finger claustrophobia - not kidding), I'm rapidly discovering what I can/cannot do. Doc's official instructions forbid "grasping, lifting anything over 2 pounds". Really? Twould be a miracle to really grasp something with this extra appendage in the way!

I can type...slowly/...badly...weirdly trying to get ither finger s to do the work that long finger usually does. Case in poijnt,  this uncorrected text! Note to silly self...I must learn to appreciate hte LONG finger more in the future.

THINGS I CANNOT DO and must enlist help from kind husband
* wash my own hair - thankfully can still manage flat iron myself
* cook if it involves using knife - darn - more takeout
* laundry - you know how heavy those clothes are!
* open my car door easily - left hand is SO uncoordinated
* cut fabric with the rotary cutter (thanks for your help, Carmen)

The list goes on, but I won't bore you and my hand is crampy weird and requesting more Tylenol.

With apologies to all of you with SERIOUS medical issues...
If you have a funny "minor" surgery story to share, (or a spare tasty casserole to drop off), you are welcome to do it HERE!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

40 years and counting

Counting what? 40 years since I graduated from the hallowed halls of Wichita North High School!

I just attended my 40 year high school reunion last weekend, and emerged smiling and unscathed. It seems every year we care a little less about who/what we were in high school, and care a little more about just seeing each other. Hey, it's a miracle just to recognize some of my classmates!

I started the weekend with lunch with 3 of my best buds from high school (actually, two friends I've known since grade school). We met at NuWay, the quintessential Wichita diner that has been there longer than us. Conveniently, it's just around the corner from my house. I'm the happy one, 2nd from left, slurping on my cherry limeade, eagerly anticipating my NuWay burger (no onion, extra pickle).

Later that night we met at a local bar and did the usual reunion thing...wore nametags with our photos from our senior yearbooks! Actually, this was really useful, even if a little painful. Note to other reunion attenders...don't bring spouses to these events. We have enough trouble recognizing each other, and spouses are just confusing. 

Alas, have no idea why I wasn't smiling for my picture. Maybe that Farrah Fawcett hairstyle was stressing me out?!And I have to note that my hair has mysteriously grown blonder over the years....hmmmmmm.

Maybe I wasn't smiling because I was bemoaning my departure from this beautiful old school! Even when I was young, I appreciated the lovely architecture of North High. Sure, there were some drawbacks to attending a high school that's old enough to be on the Historic Register (really, it IS on the Historic Register!). No air-conditioning meant sliding around on your wooden desks on hot days, not to mention a swimming pool that was condemned. But a new school would never have the beautiful Proverbs scripture engraved on the wall under the tower (see it above to right of tower).

North is famous for it's terra cotta artwork adorning the exterior building, including the nearby "matching" bridge. North sits on the site of the original native American settlement in Wichita on the Arkansas river, hence all the Indian motifs.

I have fond memories of canoeing on the river in gym class. It was sure easy to tip over a canoe with 4 laughing high school girls inside who may/may not have been following instructions from the gym teacher shouting on the shore.

We were greeted on the school tour by the famous buffalo "Butch". He's been there forever, though he doesn't hang in the same spot as when I attended. North has had several multi-million dollar renovations since I left, and he had to find new grazing grounds. Before he was well affixed to the wall, he was often stolen by opposing high schools. Strange, he hadn't aged a bit!

A good natured batch of cheerleaders led groups of reunioners through the halls. My graduating class had 600+ seniors, but the school isn't as crowded now. The hallways above was news to us, as a wing has been added along the river recently - we never saw the river unless we were skipping school and going to the nearby island (not that I participated in this).

My husband came along to photo document our tour. Thanks, Alan, for snapping alot of pics along the way and allowing me to be in the pictures!

One highlight for Alan and I was visiting a painting that hangs in the "permanent collection". Our daughter, Sarah, did this reproduction of the famous American Gothic when she was a senior. Now she's busy teaching high school art in Chicago at Lane Tech

We also visited the pretty outdoor courtyard (also a recent addition) and managed to find the bricks we donated in our daughter's names.

There are about a zillion photos in the halls of past classes, and we had to have a look! Would you believe the photos from the 70s are in black and white? YIKES!

We finished the tour with an optional climb to the top-secret TOWER. Even the location of the entrance is a secret to students, although it's pretty easy to discern where it must be. Alas, Alan stayed on the ground as I trudged up floor after floor of tight winding steps to the Non-Alumni allowed! I'd show you some pics of the inside, but....wait...that's a North High secret!

The stairs were worth it, though, as I looked out through stained glass windows at
beautiful city views. It's a North tradition that Seniors visit the tower and leave names/messages on the walls. Almost a 100 years of senior scrawls is quite a mess, but what fun!

Forty years and counting! I'll close with the school motto....Once a Redskin, Always a Redskin!