It’s nearing the end of July, and I just got my second wasp sting of the summer. This morning I was trying to rotate a big planter/bench that’s on our back deck off the bedroom. Dad planted coral bells in the planter, and the ones at the end gets more sun so it’s shiny, but the one closest to the house, always dull. I’ve dragged the planter around in years past to balance out the two sides before but didn’t feel confident enough to do it til today, as my knee continues to improve.

As I almost got it into place I reached under the edge of the pot and I thought I got a spiky thing in my finger but when I pulled it away I realized, nope, it was another wasp sting.

I hurried into the house calling Kevin, who found some anti-sting stuff. It didn’t do a lot of good so I’ve been icing it periodically ever since. It’s on my left ring finger and as I type this I’m very aware of how many times the left index finger is used for typing. SWX are the letters but somehow it feels like it must be more than that.

And last week I sprained my ankle.

Maybe it’s time to spend much more time inside the house.

Meanwhile… Glenn’s sailboats were in our driveway for a while now and Kevin realized that there was a nest of little birds living in the hole at the bottom of the mast. In June they were super cute and kept popping out with wide-open mouths, clamoring for food.

The parents kept flying in to feed them.

So much summertime wildlife.

They had to wait to step the mast til the birds had flown the coop. Actually, Glenn’s sailboat was still in the driveway til last week, as is his other sailboat and Kevin’s sailboat. I keep saying TIME’S A WASTIN’, BOYS. They ‘ve had some issues, like there put old gas in the motors I think, and so they had to take them in to be serviced. Last week Glenn’s big sailboat was ready to go so we took it over to the sailboat launch, they spent a lot of time putting up the very tall mast, then Kevin had a heck of a time trying to navigate his truck with boat attached past the tall trees.

He only took off a couple of branches and finally the boat was in the water, yay! But as Glenn and I motored toward the Vachel Lindsay Bridge we suddenly realized that the power lines looked might close to the top of the sail.

Oh dear. Kevin called at that point and he’d rushed down to the rocks and said that the boat could clear the lines. It was a little scary because when sitting in the boat looking up at the lines they looked like we’d certainly crash into them. Kevin assured us that we’d be fine so Glenn motored closer to the bridge. Kevin, still on the phone, said, “You[re not going to make it under the bridge.”

Oh boy. So back under the lines we went and safely moored the boat overnight at our dock. it was then that I tripped over a brick down at the fire pit and twisted my ankle. I went to Prompt Care and it was only a minor sprain but they gave me a nifty ankle brace which will be good to have around.

The next day they lowered the mast and we successfully motored to the boat launch on the other side of the bridge and they had a heck of a time getting that mast back up.

After a lot of pushing and pulling and swearing and only dropping one fairly insignificant piece of something in the lake, they were eventually successful and Glenn and I motored the sailboat over to the yacht club and i got to drink a refreshing cocktail at the outdoor bar while Glenn and Kevin did some more final boat stuff. Finally, the sailboat is now snugly secure in its berth

Now for Kevin’s sailboat…he keeps working on it even though the temps feel like it’s 100 outside, but I do think he’s getting super close.

Kevin had been using Glenn’s other motor but it’s still in the shop and Kevin’s motor doesn’tt go backwards. It seems to me that going backwards is critical. Kevin took the motor apart, ordered a critical piece, and I’m pretty sure he’s very close to launching it.

Hopefully he’ll set sail before August, although that is coming right up…

ok then,

Gracefully Grace


Just one picture

by grace on July 19, 2021

I realize that this photo is up above in the banner, but really, it’s one of my favorites. One of the first nighttime photos with my new phone. I might even print it out and frame it.

Many things have been going on around here, mostly cat-related. More on that later.

ok then,

Mrs. July Hughes.


June, in July

by grace on July 8, 2021

June 11th, to be exact. I was up pretty early (for me), enjoying the morning and the darling kitties who were also enjoying the morning.

It’s usually Lester who is posing for the camera while Riley sprints away, but here Riley stopped for a minute.

Lilies are so beautiful. I wish they lasted longer. Some are still blooming, which is great. All of these from June 11th have died off, of course. Something to look forward to next year…

The two big boys suddenly got very, very tired.

I had my two-week post-op checkup and the doctor who looked at my knee seemed mostly just concerned with the redness around one of the stitches. I told him I thought it was because of having a band-aid on it so long and that satisfied him. He said I have no restrictions now at all, except I should wait a month before trying to run again. But I can go for a walk! It’s a little disturbing that I’m so excited about something that I took for granted.

I kept asking him about different things – can I do squats, can I do lunges, can I do wall sits and the other things I usually do, and he kept saying I can do anything.

I forgot to ask him if it’s ok to jump in the lake, or to even be in the lake. But I think it’d be a good idea to wait a month to do that and then I should use a waterproof bandage. Or maybe I’ll wait til next year…

I also forgot to ask about bike-riding but I figure it’s probably about the same as running.

Meanwhile, there’s still plenty to enjoy during the rest of this summer which is whooshing past in the usual summertimely alarming manner.

ok then,

mrs. july already hughes.



by grace on July 4, 2021

I lived through my surgery, yay for that!

Gee, it’s been way over a week since it happened. Much has happened, but not so much.

First – two days before my surgery, June 22nd, Les Paul and Riley were on top of their cat house and suddenly there was something out in the yard and I managed to get this action shot of Riley leaping down into the hostas. Of course he didn’t get out of the fence but it was very exciting for both kitties.

Lester the kitty model.

The next night, June 23rd, a lovely moon shot. Have I mentioned that I love the camera on my new phone?’

Surgery morning, after I wrote on here and then took yet another Dial soap shower, we walked out and Spot was lying there waiting for us.

And then the surgery – well, the whole thing went pretty darn quick. We got there by eight in the morning and were on our way home by 11:30.

When they led us into a room a nurse asked me many questions and then eventually the anesthesiologist came in and I told him that I was worried about anesthesia and he had a puzzled look on his face and asked, “why?”

I guess most people don’t worry about it. And no, they didn’t intubate me with a tube down my throat, they gave me some kind of sedative and then put something just inside my mouth so i didn’t swallow my tongue. I think?

I just remember that they wheeled me into the operating room and I tried to look all around since I’d never been in one, and then they put the sedative in my IV and that was it.

When I woke up I was in the second recovery room. They took me to the first recovery room so a nurse could help me get dressed and I’d be more lucid, and in the second recovery room, Kevin said I told him that I was chattering away to the nurse, but I have no memory of that. I lounged there in a recliner for a while and the nurse gave me one of the two opiods; this one was Norco. I’d take them intermittently every three hours, the Norco and the Tramadol. Super duper strong drugs. I had a big gauze bandage from just above my knee all the way down to my ankle, with lots of protective cotton over my knee.

I didn’t spend the day napping. Instead, the narcotics which were supposed to make me sleepy instead had me wired. For some reason I insisted that Kevin needed to go fill my car with gas (was I planning on driving around somewhere?), because my 15 cent-off coupon was going to expire that day. While he did that, Amy came over to babysit me and seemed surprised at how very animated I was.

Sometimes my knee would hurt a little but Kevin assured me that I wanted to keep ahead of it, so I kept up the drugs every three hours.

I was sort of tired late in the afternoon and three of the kitties were very happy to lie in the bedroom with me.

But I didn’t nap. Amy brought us over some delicious taco salads and I continued to be wide awake. Here’s me at 10:20, still wide awake. My right leg had an interesting orange tan from the iodine prep stuff. Kevin had to add some strips of tape around the top because it had started to sag.

We went to sleep; it had been an exhausting day for both of us. But I lay in bed wide awake. I finally got up to pee at about 1:30 and as I was walking back to bed I felt something on my leg – the bottom of the bandage was dragging on the floor. Panic! I hobbled into the kitchen and wound and wound more tape around it to secure it.

And then I started seriously worrying. What if I hadn’t wrapped it right? Should I wake Kevin and have him look at it? And why was I wide awake?

Here’s the bandage at two in the morning, looking very securely secured.

I had read the accompanying dire warnings for the two drugs I was taking and one of the many things they said was that if I took them with a whole list of other things, including Xanax, that this could cause difficult breathing resulting in DEATH.

I take one .5 Xanax every night before bed and it helps me sleep. Since that surgery night I’ve been reading about Xanax and I worry that maybe I’m addicted, but since I always take one to help me sleep, I wasn’t sleeping.

What to do? There was an emergency number I could call, and I finally did that and realized at that point that I wasn’t able to put together a coherent sentence. “I……bandage unwrapped…” I sputtered to the woman at the other end of the phone and she finally said “do you want to talk to a nurse?” and relieved, I said, Yes! She said somebody would call me back in a half hour which seemed way too long to me, and I said, what if I fall asleep? And she said they’d leave a message.

So while I waited I called Bev and sent her the above photo of my knee. Bev doesn’t sleep much and lucky for me she was dozing on the couch so I was able to prattle on to her til the nurse called me back 15 minutes later.

The nurse said she thought I should wake up my husband to show him the bandage and she kept saying, “are your toes blue? Can you move your foot?” And I thought I’d have had to be some kind of moron to have wrapped it so tightly that my foot turned blue.

I told her about the drug warnings and she said she didn’t think I should take any Xanax and I’m pretty sure I then had a conversation with her about the risks of opiods and I know I was talking really fast and I’m not sure how she finally got me off the phone.

I called Bev back and we agreed that I shouldn’t wake up Kevin. After about an hour I finally said “I’d better go to sleep,” and Bev asked, “Are you sure you can sleep? Because you seem a little wired.”

Maybe she didn’t say the wired part, but clearly I was. Well after three I finally hung up and lay in bed but I think I only slept an hour and a half.

The next morning I had a huge list of questions for the nurse at the Orthopedic Surgery Center and the most important answer the nurse gave me was that I could take my Xanax, that goodness. Right there on one of the many post-op instructions it said that I could take everything I normally take (besides Xanax, it’s mostly just vitamins of different types). She said that since I take Xanax every night, I wouldn’t die from taking it with the other drugs.


But the thing is, I took one of the opiods on Friday morning and then started taking Tylenol instead, and then didn’t even take anything after Saturday morning. The horrible pain never materialized and things are going swimmingly.

I was able to take the bandage off on Sunday and shower my leg back to its pre-op whiteness. All i needed was two little band-aids to cover the two little slits. My knee wasn’t swollen for long, and I go back on Thursday and hopefully they’ll say that things are going great.’

But one other thing is that I think the anesthesia affected me for a few days. I did sleep on Friday night because I could take the Xanax, but for the next few days I felt like my brain wasn’t quite right. But then it got better and I wanted to start doing everything again.

I still can’t go up and down stairs normally and I haven’t taken a walk and I get sore after standing around too long, but I think things are good. I’ve been able to pull more weeds and put down more mulch, still mostly scooting around on the ground, which works well. We had a weenie roast on Friday night and yesterday a boat ride.

And here it is the 4th of July and I hope you’re having a relaxing one.

I have many photos of June and I’ll try to select just a few to put up here very soon.

ok then,

mrs. recovering nicely hughes.


No high heels!

June 24, 2021

Jeez, where has the month gone? Well, oing yard work. Lots of yard work. It’s 6:18 a.m. right now and we have to leave at 7:30 for my torn meniscus surgery. It’s so lovely and quiet at this time of day, but I doubt that will make me get up this early on a regular […]

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DON’T BE DUMB. plus beautiful orchid blooms

June 11, 2021

Don’t be dumb, that’s me talking to me. You can do whatever you want, but I, personally, I’m trying like crazy to not be dumb. So far it’s not working out super great. It’s all about my dumb knee and how I keep doing things that make it feel really, really bad. Last week I […]

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the rest of May

June 8, 2021

A good moon photo! I’m excited to take more moon photos with this new phone. Sunday May 30th we had a little get-together for my birthday and then we sat down by the water where it was chilly! This is funny because that was only nine days ago and it’s sweltering outside again. We had […]

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More May Stuff

June 4, 2021

It suddenly got super hot around here but it cools off at night which is great. I have photos from the end of May, but these are mostly from May 22nd, after Kevin and I took that lovely kayak trip. We need to do that again soon. Anyway, that afternoon I babysat the dogs who […]

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May, quickly slipping away…

May 27, 2021

How did that happen? It felt like mid-summer with temps soaring high into the 80s but it’s suddenly cooling off a bit, now that June is almost upon us. On May 20th we were down at the dock and a goose sauntered by… Lester, always so happy… We’ve seen this huge gaggle of geese a […]

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Early birthday morning

May 24, 2021

I woke up at 5:50 this morning, and without my glasses on I could just make out the rising sun and decided to get up and go outside and look at it. Because it’s my birthday, I thought it would be a good idea. The air was crisp and fresh and the kitties joined me […]

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