Thursday, January 30, 2014

No more hunting!!

Hunting season is over.  The boys are sad.  I'm sad - I like those quiet Saturday mornings!  It was a good year.  Les spent alot of time this past summer building a new duck blind.  He launched it this fall - and it floats!!
Thanks to the hunting buddies - Rolf, Luuk, Steve, Gunnar.  AND to the Tinklenberg boys for the great breakfasts!!  Hank loves that cold water - he did good.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Progress report

Les had an appointment at UW Medical Center yesterday. It has been 3 months since his diagnosis. We have been a bit anxious about this appointment.....lots of wondering.

First up was Dr. Weiss. He was encouraging since Les hasn't lost any weight and no new symptoms in his limbs.  We chatted a bit about speech and eating and he sent us on!  Next was a lung capacity test. This also was encouraging; Les' lung capacity has decreased only a small bit.  Then he had a heart test but we don't know the results of that (he has to have his heart checked because of one of his meds).  Next was a blood draw - to check his liver, again because of meds.  Last was the speech therapist, Deanna.  We know that Les' speech is worse, and he has more difficulty swallowing.  Her test results showed that Les' tongue is weaker.  We discussed a feeding tube but they aren't concerned with that yet.  Les would have to be losing weight and choking more often before they feel a feeding tube would be necessary.  We found out that Les should always be able to eat (even if just smoothies)--that cheered Les up a bit!!  We also talked with her about speech aides.  Most of them aren't appropriate cuz they are for wheel chairs.  Les will probably start with an app on his iPhone and maybe the iPad, but he needs to be able to hold it in his hand.  So that is his assignment-- find an app that works for him.  Talking alot makes Les pretty tired, so he does need to start using an alternative way to communicate.   Down the road we will look at a bigger machine/computer, but not quite yet.  Next appointment April 16!!  Lesson learned:  "Do not worry about anything; but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus"  Phillippians 4:5-7

My cousin Lori's husband just had heart surgery at the UW medical center so we got to visit them on the 5th floor.  The patient is doing great and we had a fun visit!  See you in May for sure!!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Brother time

Les' big brother Howard has been here for a week.  He called up awhile ago and said he wanted to visit and just hang out with his brother.  I think he also wanted to escape the frozen tundra in the midwest :)  Worked for me since January is one of my busiest months!!

Our friend Carl called about this time "would you and Les be interested in going to the Seahawks playoff game on the 11th?"  I informed him that brother-in-law Howard would be here so didn't know.  Carl then called Les and Les said "of course! I'll take my brother!!"  Um, hello, what about ME???

Thank you Carl. Priceless.

They spent time just putzing.  Niece Emily who lives out here is Howard's daughter so Howard spent time cleaning Emily's car, building shelves in her garage,  being a dad.  The brothers put together our kids' old crib (Kaden needs a place to sleep!), washed cars, drove around the county.  When these two are together it's a bit scary - they are two peas in a pod.  We tease Emily about having two dads to watch over her!  So many similarities.  There is 8 years between these two brothers but we have stayed close with this family since they have visited out here so many times.  Here is a picture of Les' family.  We are hearing rumors of more of these peeps visiting soon!

The brothers had a good time.  Thanks for the visit Howard.  We are next looking forward to Les' checkup at the UW next Wednesday, the 22nd.  We are anxious for that, curious to hear what Dr. Weiss has to say.  Please pray for peace for both of us.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Words from Les

Dear friends and family,
Karen has asked me for some time now if I'd like to write something on her blog. When she first asked I thought there was no way I could ever put into words what I have been feeling the past few months. But with the new year knocking on the door, I think it's time. So here I sit at the computer trying to pull a few thoughts out of my brain.  It's difficult for me to do this. The past few months have been quite surreal. It is something that I try not to think about, but find that it is part of  my every thought. It is just 'here' with me all the time, and I know it isn't going away. Don't get me wrong, I'm not sad or down trodden or moping around the house all day.  How could I be with all the love and support that I (we) have received. And how do I thank everyone properly?  How does a guy let people know that their card, email or text touched me to the core of my heart.  That their prayers, hug, handshake or gift did more for me at that moment than any drug or supplement ever could! I'm at a loss for words, and that's not like me. Your thoughtfulness and kindness has overwhelmed me. I'm just a regular guy for crying out loud!  A guy who has tried to follow God's leading for my life both at work and home. And now as we say goodbye to 2013 and start a new year I wonder.... I wonder what this year will bring?  What will my doctor tell me at my 3 month checkup?  What will he see?  Will my symptoms advance and spread? Will it happen slow, fast or even perhaps plateau?  Only the good Lord knows. And that's ok with me.  A friend of mine likes to say, "It is what it is." And that's right! But, God knows "what it's going to be!" I don't know 'what' my future holds, but I sure know 'who' holds my future! So as we pull the plug on 2013, let me just say; "THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!" I am a very blessed man to have friends and family such as you!

"God has said, 'Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.'
So we say with confidence, 'The Lord is my helper;
I will not be afraid'"  Heb. 13:5-6