Good Bye to 2014 – appreciate the “small” stuff

December 31, 2014

We thank all for the loving Christmas wishes.
Christmas Day here was very quiet. We were invited to go and spend the day with Vi’s sister Deb and family. Come the day and I was just not feeling well and pushed Vi out the door to go and have an enjoyable day. The day passed very quickly for me as I slept through most of it. Did say my little prayer wishing Jesus a happy birthday.
Must have been really tired had 3 days in a row where I slept 16-18 hours a day.
Happy to say Vi is recovering very nicely. External cuts from the surgery have healed nicely. Jan. 7th, the staples will be removed. She is one strong lady, she went through so much and handled it like a trooper.
For me heart is still going in and out of A Fib. Episodes only usually last 10 or 15 minutes but are becoming more uncomfortable at times. It is hard to describe because it can vary so much. One day it will be very noticeable 5 or 6 times throughout the day. The next day only once or twice. Been a couple of times when the old heart has been pounding so hard Vi could actually see my chest and upper abdomen area going up and down with each beat. Other times though I will check heart rate and find it is in the 160-170’s and I don’t feel a thing.
A new issue has risen that has the potential to be scary but trying not to dwell on it. In a 3 month period my hemoglobin levels dropped from the high side of the normal range to 1/2 of that normal range. I am told this would normally indicate substantial blood loss. Tests show no blood loss from usual areas. Was hospitalized to receive a blood transfusion. I have to say receiving 3 units of blood was almost magical in the way it mad me feel so much better. Have to wait and see, now as more tests are planned for the New Year.
In ways 2014 was a tough year. Both my brother Robin and dear Aunt Isabel passed. Both Vi and I experienced major medical issues. I am trying to look back at the year and see beyond just the bumps in the road as big as some of them were. Look at the big picture. We do have so much to be grateful for. A big one is I am still here.
Going to make a couple of phone calls today to acknowledge and praise two of the unsung and under appreciated heroes in my life. At a quick glance their contribution to my life may even seem small or even as just what is expected of them and we take it/them for granted. One thing I have learned is to take nothing and no one for granted.
I am thinking about our Canadian winters. The past few days factoring in the wind the temperature has been in the -40 range. I feel for anyone working outside in those conditions.
One of my favorite times of the day is early morning. Sipping my morning coffee while reading the newspaper. Right there one of those “small/little” things I take for granted. Around 6:00am irregardless of weather conditions magically appears at the door, which allows me to enjoy my favorite part of my day.
I am an early riser and a couple of times have gotten but a glimpse of this “mystery” person out there battling the temperatures and the snow in the dark of night. The “mystery” person is a very slight, middle age+ lady out there all by herself. Now I am certainly not trying to say a Lady can’t do this kind of work. I suppose it just surprised me.
OK, just phoned newspaper to commend our delivery person on the reliability of service. Learned her name is Helena. My message to her supervisor will be relayed on to here.
Thank you Helena for contributing to the enjoyment of my day, everyday irregardless of weather or anything else.

Merry Christmas

December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas to all my dear blogging friends and anyone that may read this. May you have a wonderous day. Even if just for a moment please take time to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – in memory of dear Aunt Isabel

December 18, 2014

Today is a sad day in the Howdle family. Today a large portion of the family has gathered in Swan River to say good bye, to honour and celebrate the life of Isabel Howdle. Sadly, I can’t be there in person to celebrate a life well spent during her 87 years on this earth but know I am there in spirit.
Any that have followed the blog may remember, I have written about my Dear Aunt Isabel on many occasions. Visits were wonderful and so often spent facing each other down over a crib board. Between we even created our own little special tournament, “The Championship of the World”. In this Auntie proved to be a very worthy opponent, so worthy, I believe she took that title with her every time we played. Now to be sure while playing we were both playing to win but the final score or who actually won wasn’t at all important. What was important was the time we shared. That is time for which I will always be grateful. Special memories will be carried in my mind and heart forever.
Aunt Isabel had a very kind and unassuming nature but was a very strong lady. Through what can only be called very difficult financial times she raised 11 children. Each of whome I am proud to claim as a cousin. Carol, John, Joe, Jim, Shirley, Gloria, Ken, Doug, Garry, Sherry and Clifford. All of whom loved and respected her deeply. My thoughts and prayers are with each and everyone of you.
Aunt Isabel often leading by example raised a family that I admire each as individuals but also as a family unit. That family “unit”, the bond they all have together is one that I envy and admire very much. Good job auntie. This may sound a little corny even, but their family unity I would describe a being something like that of the Walton’s as seen on TV.
There is a saying you can’t choose your relatives, only your friends. Well if somehow, I could choose my relatives. I know who would be my very first pick to have a an Aunt.
Aunt Isabel, you have filled my heart and mind with memories, I will treasure forever. I am sure you have a crib game organized up there in Heaven. Please hold a chair open for me in the tournament and we will play again

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Birthday Gifts Please

December 13, 2014

Another milestone reached. Today is my birthday. So many things have happened over the past years, I have been told so many different things by doctors that to have actually reached this point, in my mind seems almost miraculous. I give thanks.
This year there has been so much going on, I sort of lost track of the calendar. Big thank you to Jennie for the reminder and do I want gifts. Absolutely, I want gifts, the more the better.

I am asking for random acts of kindness.
Now the size of the act doesn’t matter, for whom the act is done doesn’t matter. All that matters is that purely from the goodness, the love contained with in our hearts we reach out to another. Now there are a few rules here. It can’t something that is already expected of us, it can’t be something we do out of a sense of obligation nor can it be an act for which we are expecting some sort of reward or recognition. It has to be an act of love and kindness straight from the heart. Ideally the acts will be done anonymously if by chance the act is noticed we accept no thanks, instead ask the kindness be passed on.
Now please scroll to the top of this page. Spread across the top you will see a row of names. Each being the title of a separate page I have created to go along as part of the blog. Please check them out and let me know what you think. Today, I specifically ask you click on to open the page titled: “spirit within me”. Please read it and I invite all to join with me in my “everyone is welcome club”. Please leave me a message telling me you have signed on board.
Please leave me a separate message right hear telling me of your kind act. That is your gift to me, hearing of these acts of kindness.
I believe when we come into this world, we do so with an expiry date stamped on our butts. Statistically, I am likely years past that date. Doctors have told me I am at or very close to that date, but I have been hearing things like that for years. Only Our Heavenly Father knows when that date will be. I am more than content to carry on until that Heavenly appointed dated arrives.

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Still plugging away

December 4, 2014

Start with a big thank you to both Vi’s daughter Lynelle and son Rob. Both traveled long distances to come and provide help and support. It is very much appreciated a big thank you to both. Vi’s progress definitely much slower than she would like. She is having some better days and some not very good at all days. It was very major surgery with numerous serious complications. It is understandable healing will take time. It is just when you are in pain or just really uncomfortable continuously for over 2 weeks it can wear on you. Even knowing it is/will get better seems of little matter in the moment.

I thank all the have donated blood. Vi required blood during her hospitalization as I, myself just a couple of days ago. I ended up in the ER getting a 3 bag blood transfusion. Seems my hemoglobin levels were low. Tests coming up to possibly learn if there is a particular cause. Feeling a lot better after receiving it
Both Vi and I appreciate all the kind loving comments being left by all.