Day 254, Year 9: Staying Cool on a Hot Day

Day 254, Year 9: Staying Cool on a Hot Day
Date: Wednesday, July 2, 2014
Weather: Sunny and Windy, High in the Upper 80’s
Location: Quissett Harbor, Falmouth, Massachusetts

The weather report tells us it was 87 degrees F here today. But we spent a great deal of today in the water and in the shade, so I guess we just didn’t notice. Mark has a couple of annual doctor appointments today (ophthalmologist and cardiologist) which complicated things a bit, but with Jed’s help, we worked things out. Mark’s first appointment was at 9 am in Sandwich which is about 35 minutes north of here. Heather had to go to Boston today, so Jed kept the boys until Mark and I returned from Sandwich. We met Jed at the Woods Hole Library where the boys were attending a folk music/puppet show. After the show, Jed went to work and we headed to the beach in Quissett to enjoy lunch in the shade along with a little water play. Mark’s next appointment was at the Falmouth Hospital at 1 pm, so the boys and I drove him there and then went to a nearby playground to wait for him. The drive to the playground gave Ollie a chance to go to sleep, so he slept while the big boys played on the equipment. Then it was back to the hospital to pick up Granddad. We decided to go to the freshwater pond in town rather than to the beach to play for the rest of the afternoon. We did a little extra driving around to give Ollie a chance to sleep and then we all enjoyed the pond at Goodwill Park. We staked out a shady place at the water’s edge and Sam and Jonah started excavating a huge hole and building walls of sand around it. Once they had a little pond within their walls of sand, Ollie put one of the body boards in it and practiced jumping off it into the water. We had a great time digging in the sand and floating about the pond until late afternoon and never even noticed that it was hot. So it was the perfect way to spend a steamy afternoon.

We are now on weather watch. With Tropical Storm Arthur (soon to be Hurricane Arthur) headed our way, all sorts of 4th of July activities are being changed. Boston has moved its fireworks and Boston Pops concert to tomorrow night (July 3rd) instead of having them on the 4th. And Falmouth has postponed their fireworks until Sunday night. Whenever, we will enjoy them.

140702 Day 254 Cape Cod, USA–Woods Hole Puppet Show and Goodwill Park

Day 235, Year 9: Tiny Steps Backward Today

Day 235, Year 9: Tiny Steps Backward Today
Date: Friday, June 13, 2014
Weather: Rain All Day and Evening—Heavy in the AM
Location: At “Porat’s by the Bay” in Greenland, NH

You move forward and then take some tiny steps backward. That was the case today. Mark is still not able to eat much of anything and today he didn’t feel like he could drink much. And by early evening he had a temperature of 101.3. He immediately took a couple of Extra Strength Tylenol and called the resident on duty at Mass General. He asked all of the standard questions and he told us to just hold tight. He would check with the surgeon on call and get back to us if we needed to head to Boston. But for the time being, the orders were to keep drinking water, rest, and call back if the temp went up even higher. It did. So we called back. He asked many of the same questions and also asked if we took the temp while Mark was in bed under the covers. That is exactly what we had done, so he asked Mark to get out of bed and then take the temp again. It went from 101.8 in bed to 101.1 out of bed. So once again the orders were to drink as much as possible, keep taking the Tylenol every 6 hours, and to call if at any point the temperature rises even higher. I’m hoping this is Friday the 13th pulling a bad joke on us and that tomorrow morning it will be gone. In the meantime, I’ll get Mark up every hour and a half during the night to check his temp.

Day 228, Year 9: Superman

Day 228, Year 9: Superman
Date: Friday, June 6, 2014
Weather: Mostly Sunny and Warm
Location: At Home with Sue and John Reed, Cambridge, MA

Mark’s ability to recover from surgery is nothing short of amazing. Today I dubbed him Superman. By the time I got to the hospital this morning, he had been out walking with a nurse and was sitting up in a chair. He continued to walk throughout the day and is feeling good. They let him start drinking liquids today, but when his surgeons came in to see him this afternoon, they reversed that order as they felt he was starting to bloat a little. We hope he will be able to resume drinking liquids tomorrow, but we shall see. Both his original surgeon, Dr. Sylla, and his new surgeon, Dr. Ferrone, came in to visit and they both think he is doing great. Let’s just hope things continue this way.

I left in the afternoon and drove to Concord, New Hampshire, for Linda Stuart’s retirement party. It was the first time I have seen many of the teachers in attendance since I retired in 2005. I recognized most everyone, but there were a few people who had changed so much I just couldn’t associate a name with the face. It was great fun to see everyone, especially a beaming Linda. It was 8 pm by the time I got back to the hospital and my niece Candi and her husband Char were there visiting with Mark. They agree with me that he is doing great. I’d love to write more about Linda’s party, but I keep falling asleep. So the photos from the party will have to tell the story.

140606 Day 228 Cape Cod, USA–Linda Stuart's Retirement Party

Day 198, Year 9: Questions Four Year Olds Ask

Day 198, Year 9: Questions Four Year Olds Ask
Date: Wednesday, May 7, 2014
Weather: Beautiful Day, Temp in the 60’s F
Location: At Home with the Goldstones in East Falmouth, Massachusetts

Today was a typical work a day. Mark worked from 10 to 6 at West Marine and then had an hour and a half monthly meeting. Loooooong day for him. Heather doesn’t normally work on Wednesdays, but since she stayed home with Ollie so we could go to Boston yesterday, she worked half a day today. And while Mark and Heather worked, Jonah and Ollie and I had fun in the backyard. When Heather came home, Ollie was napping and she took Jonah food shopping with her. When they returned, Jonah presented me with a red rose and told me it was to go back to Windbird with me. I then told him how in Thailand, when you launch a boat, you decorate it with flowers, sort of like christening a new boat. So I said the rose would be Windbird’s christening flower. Jonah looked at me and asked, “Who’s Chris?” That was definitely the highlight of my day!

Our friends Geoff and Chris who are crewing aboard Lady M as she crosses the Atlantic wrote an update today. They made it to the Azores and filled the almost empty fuel tanks with 70,000 litres of fuel. That’s about 18,500 gallons. Sure am glad I didn’t have to pay that fuel bill. Here’s the update from Chris after I wrote to her yesterday telling her about Windbird’s 24-hour turn around.

“Windbird’s work period is quite the opposite to what we have experienced over the past 6 weeks and the problems continue to plague this gorgeous sports yacht. We arrived in the Azores about 7pm on Tuesday evening by the fumes in her fuel tanks. She had guzzled over 70,000 litres of fuel and we crawled in at a relatively slow speed for her of 13 knots. The fuel pipe was waiting on the dock and they pumped 75,000 litres in around an hour and a half and after taking on hundreds of bags of groceries, we were on our way in perfectly calm conditions doing 24 knots. Just after I started my watch at 2am a hydraulic hose in the starboard steering blew and sprayed oil all over the place including Geoff who was on watch at the time. Between him and the Chief Engineer they managed to fix the problem with another hose from the SCUBA compressor. It took a few hours but eventually we were underway again and at the moment we are flying along at 24 knots in the most gorgeous conditions for a motor yacht you could want and burning over a 1,000 litres of fuel per hour!!

We are heading non-stop to Malaga in Spain now instead of stopping in Gibraltar. It’s just been a continuous chasing of unrealistic arrival times to try and keep the boss happy. Stupid really as everyone is feeling so stressed and now working around the clock to have her ready for the owners to step onto the moment we arrive in port.”

Day 58, Year 9: Snowy Day

Day 58, Year 9: Snowy Day
Date: Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Weather: Snow, Temps in the 30’s F
Location: Brewer Fiddler’s Cove Marina, North Falmouth, Massachusetts

We didn’t get a lot of snow today, but it was enough to cover everything with a blanket of white. It was supposed to warm up and rain tonight, but that isn’t going to happen. We might get a bit more snow overnight and then it looks like we have a break until New Year’s Eve. That could change, will change, but that’s the current forecast.

We had a fun day with Ollie and when Sam came home from school, we launched into Christmas cookie mode. Today we made Coco Thumbprint Cookies. Sam and Jonah rolled dough into balls (Ollie with a little help from Oma). Then Sam rolled them in granulated sugar and Ollie and I rolled them in confectionery sugar. Once we put them on the trays for baking, Sam made a big thumbprint in each one and put goodies in the center of each one. He used M&M’s from his left-over Halloween candy and various kinds of decorative sprinkles. He was so good at coming up with ideas and doing it on his own. I didn’t get a photo of the end result, but they looked great and tasted even better. We will try to make a different cookie each day after school and keep them for Heather and Jed’s solstice party on Saturday night.

Day 305, Year 8: Back to Sunny Weather

Day 305, Year 8: Back to Sunny Weather
Date: Wednesday, September 4, 2013
Weather: Lovely Day with a Hint of Fall in the Air
Location: Eel Pond, Woods Hole, Massachusetts

After yesterday’s late afternoon deluge, things were back to normal this morning. The sun was shining and the skies were Cape Cod blue. It was beautiful, but there was definitely a hint of fall in the air. I went to Heather’s to help out with Ollie and Sam who are both still on the sick list. Actually Ollie is much better and I think he will be going to daycare tomorrow. I’m hoping Sam will get to go to school, but we’ll just have to wait and see how he feels in the morning. In addition to having croup, his asthma is flaring up and he needs an inhaler every four hours. Jonah is still hanging in there and hopefully he will stay that way.

Mark took Geoff and Chris to West Marine in the morning and then spent the afternoon on Windbird working. When I got home around 5 pm we got ready for having Geoff and Chris over for dinner. We had a lovely evening. Tomorrow morning they need to make contact with Raymarine in New Hampshire about their radar. They have sent it in a couple of times (at great expense) to be checked out and no problems were found. But every time they run it on the boat, it just kicks off after a certain length of time. So frustrating. This evening, Geoff and Chris came over for dinner and we had a wonderful time. Tomorrow they will decide when they will be leaving, but until then we will continue to enjoy their company.