A New Life: Great Expectations! 2023 – 24

An impromptu dessert birthday party

Mike’s 86th birthday started with a lot of surprises. When I opened the front door, there was a box with six fresh donuts. Ten minutes later, somebody brought two bouquets of flowers, a delicious cheesecake dessert for two, an apple pie, a chocolate bar and a small balloon. Dennis and Stephanie brought us a delicious lunch from Chick-fil-A, and the next-door neighbor brought a container of frozen custard.

My thoughts: Let’s share, let’s have a party! I made three phone calls, and five guests appeared at 7 o’clock on our doorstep. The apple pie was delicious with the frozen custard on top, and we also had chocolate oatmeal cookies, and chocolate Oreo cookie balls, leftover in the freezer from the time our grandson made them during his visit.

An hour and 45 minutes later the guests had left, there was very little to clean up in the kitchen, and we sat and reflected for a while on a wonderful evening.

Physical Therapy

It’s going well! I have a great therapist, five minutes from the house, who does special strengthening exercises with me for left knee and hip. On Monday, I will see the surgeon again and hopefully, when he sees my improvement, he will prescribe more physical therapy and forget about surgery. Ultimately, my goal is to walk again without pain, and not just around the house, but three miles a day with the dog.

Because Mike would also benefit from physical therapy, but it is difficult for him to go places, I looked for outpatient therapy services. Online, I found a company by the name of LUNA, that does just that. I called them yesterday, and already today a very sweet therapist came for an evaluation. She will come back twice a week. The company also gets in touch with Mike’s Primary Care Provider and they will bill Medicare. If I had known it was this easy, I would have started looking  earlier.


The day before Mike’s birthday, Lani turned five. It is amazing to watch her mature and change her likes and dislikes. When we still lived in Cary, she slept in the sunroom, separated from the living room by a half wall, and closed off for the night by a 24″ high little gate. She never attempted to jump the gate, although she could jump on the loveseat and in our laps. One night, she did not want to sleep there anymore. when I tried to force her, she almost bit me. I bought her a little basket that fit under my vanity in the bedroom. She loved it. For almost two years. Then, just around the day she turned five, she jumped on our bed. Try as we might, she would jump off and right back on when the lights were off. And that’s how it stayed for two weeks now. She sleeps at the foot end of our bed on top of the bedspread between our (moving) legs, until the birds start singing in the living room: that is our alarm, singing birds: time to get up, 6 a.m. Our dog walker Monica will stay on until my meniscus has healed enough that I can walk any distance with Lani. It’s been two months since the injury, and going well.

Labor Day

Everyone is excited with the long weekend, the end of summer and start of fall. Some of the plants in the patio border are blooming again, and I desperately need someone to do some weeding for me as long as I can’t squat down yet. Perhaps the neighbor’s grandson will be interested in earning a little money. Where has the time gone that my sister Paula and I were happy picking up snails for 1 cent a piece? We got buckets full of them, at least once a week. That was after the war, in our yard in Surabaya. A few years before that, during the last war year in the Halmahera camp, we ate them, if we could find any before our neighbors did.

Anyway, I’m wishing you a wonderful Labor Day weekend. Stay safe if you are traveling!

Until next time,




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