- Memorial Service for 4 Fallen Officers: We were able to get into the Tacoma Dome for the service which really surprised us! We were happy to get within a few blocks and stand outside along the curb watching the processional! It was the most moving event I think I have ever been privileged to observe. I have never felt so safe, yet so vulnerable. I watched the service for Officer Tim Brenton in Seattle and it was pretty powerful, but actually being there was something far different. There were not as many civilians as we expected - I think the media scared everyone away - but to see the whole Dome filled with officers was absolutely overwhelming. The Canadian Royal Mounted Police in their red dress uniforms really stood out. There must have been a thousand of them! Police from every part of the state and country were there. The silence was unbelievable! The most touching part was when the children of one of the officers spoke and afterwards there was a spontaneous standing ovation! Then when they did the last radio call - gone but not forgotten, taps, Amazing Grace on the bagpipes, the 21 bell salute and you could hear the officers around you sniffling, we both lost it! Glad I packed a lot of tissues in my purse! And now we will have another service this coming Tuesday for another officer who gave his life in the line of duty. That makes 8 officers shot, with 6 dying and 2 wounded just here in Western Washington. We are all a little shell shocked and grieving the loss. I placed four electric candles with blue bulbs in the windows and expected to take them down today, but will leave them up until after next Tuesday's service. Thank you seems inadequate to express how we feel about our law enforcement officers and those in any rescue profession, including our military. Very humbled. May God guide, guard and protect each and every one!
- Christmas Eve and Christmas Day: fast forward a few weeks and we have a very special privilege - having my almost 95 year old mother-in-law here for Christmas! She was able to spend the night and spend Christmas Day with us as well. It was nice to be able to take her with us to our Christmas Eve Service and then over to relatives she hadn't seen for a long time! She had a ball! We had a very low key Christmas this year. Bill and I only exchanged stockings. I ordered a calendar online for Mom with pictures and birthdates and the kids got her a high powered flashlight. We decided to give the money we would have spent on the adults to a charity. I think we will purchase some goats through World Vision for families in need in Africa. We keyed down our giving to the grandkids as well, but I think everyone had a really good time!
- New Year's Eve: Can you believe it is now 2010!? We went to church for a few hours and played games and snacked on everyone's left over holiday goodies! Good way to get rid of the candy that everyone gifts you! It was fun and we didn't plan to stay up, but the neighborhood was so noisy there was no point in trying to sleep, so we saw the old year out and new one in! Last year was a sad one and we said good-bye to too many friends.
- Pre-holiday illnesses: We got a call the week before Christmas from Bill's brother saying that his mom had been in the ER that morning! She had the stomach flu and had gotten very dehydrated. Turns out about 50% of the people in her retirement home had it! I took her to the doctor the next day and she was pretty weak. Scary at that age! She recovered fully and we were thankful she was able to come for Christmas! Then the rest of the kids and grandkids got it! The three adults had it all in one night! So they were a little subdued on Christmas still! So far Bill and I escaped it! Although I thought I was coming down with it but it was really just....
- A Bad Trip: I have officially entered the Little Old Lady Who Mixes Up Her Pills category and I am not happy about it! Sunday night I thought I was coming down with the flu - lightheaded and queasy rather suddenly. Then my toes went numb. Then my fingers. Then I started to shake uncontrollably! OK, not the flu - call 911! I ended up with numbness and partial paralysis and unable to speak for a short while. Convulsive movements, confusion, all manner of very bad reactions. A CT scan, X-ray, UA, bloodwork were all performed and no one knew what was wrong. Not a stroke, not my heart although my blood pressure was sky high and pulse was racing. After 5 or 6 hours in the ER, I slowly began to improve - gaining speech and losing some of the numbness. Then the shaking began to ease and I felt much better, although extremely tired. It wasn't until I was getting dressed to go home that it hit me like a lightning bolt! I was pretty sure I had mixed up medications - an antidepressant for over the counter Advil. I probably took about 1,000 mg too much of the antidepressant. BINGO! I asked the doc when he came back in for the discharge and he talked to the pharmacist. They thought yeah, it could have been, but weren't convinced. When we got home, I checked and sure enough, that is what happened. I looked it up online and yes, the symptoms concurred. Boy, did I feel foolish! I was scared, Bill was scared and John and Brian came to the hospital and they were scared! Lesson learned and I now have Advil in its original container in my purse - brand name, no generic brand, as that is what got me confused. The generic Advil tablet llooked very much like my antidepressant and when not together....... I saw my doc for follow up the next day, and while pretty loopy, there was no permanent damage. It just had to work itself out of my system. Good grief!
So, that should get us up to date for now! I will post some pics next time. This should be enough for now! I'm just happy to be here! Happy New Year!!