Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The saga continues

My patient seems to have a recurring fever in the evenings...absolutely normal temperature during the day. Stuffed him into the back seat of the car again this morning and took him to the clinic where the Doctor diagnosed a bladder infection. Picked up antibiotics and hustled him home for a rest.

It is very difficult for him to get out of the car, easy getting him in...I just push him... but he won't let me pull him out!! I have now devised an ingenious setup in the back seat using a three part folding mattress, shiny side up that raises the elevation for him and gives him a slippery surface to slide his bum across! Genius!!

His Doctor called later to say that the surgeon wants to see him in Vernon tomorrow morning to further assess the incision. We'll test out my back seat revision at 8:30am!!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Nurse Ratchet

Apparently my new name, referred to affectionately, is Nurse Ratchet. I do not fit into the sympathetic role of nurses that was depicted in WWII movies, hovering over my patient, fluffing his pillow and whispering kind words of encouragement! Unfortunately for John, he is more likely to hear "get up!" or "why is it taking you so long?"

On the bright side, he is gradually spending more time in a vertical position. This morning, while being "encouraged" to drink his tea at the breakfast table, he managed to remove the dressing from his "wound".
Nurse Ratchet was not happy. The plan was to remove it after he did a walking tour of the house, oozed into the dressing and returned to a horizontal position for a session of "icing". Complicating the working schedule of Nurse Ratchet does not result in a happy nurse!! When will he learn?

Today Nurse Ratchet is taking a break from her duties to share lunch with a friend. She should return in a happier and calmer frame of mind!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

A fever!

I must be a dreadful nurse! John ended up in Emergency at the local hospital last night with a fever, not a good post-surgery sign! Anyway, they did a battery of tests, couldn't determine the cause and this morning he woke up feeling cool and well enough to come home. Once again, I stuffed him into the back seat of the car. This time he tackled the back stairs, a bit easier than entering through the front.

We both caught up on some sleep during the afternoon before alternating between knee exercises and icing sessions while competing at backgammon. Even in his weakened state, he won the challenge!

The small TV has been moved to the bedroom now. It is too challenging for John to thrust himself out of a chair in the TV room. His shoulders and legs refuse to cooperate.  After dinner we stretched out on the bed and watched Jack Layton's funeral, sharing emotions with millions of viewers across Canada.

Friday, August 26, 2011

My patient

Just one day short of a 59 week wait, John finally had knee replacement surgery on August 22nd. Three days later I stuffed him into the back seat of our car and brought him home. He's happy to be in his own bed surrounded by the quiet music of birds.

Apparently I was wise many years ago to avoid a nursing career. Although efficient, I seem to lack patience with my patient! Urgings to "get up!" and "get moving!" fall on deaf ears. 

A community nurse visited today and approved of my urgings but this patient is more inclined to catch up on lost hours of sleep. I have retreated, waiting for him to feel energized.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

R&B 2011

Another great Roots & Blues Festival!
Paintings are on display and for sale by silent auction this week.
Proceeds are split 50/50 between the Art Gallery and the artists.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Paint the Town - followup

It wasn't easy!! I am obviously not destined to be an "on-site" artist!

When I drew the location from a jar the night before, my first thought was that this wouldn't be too difficult. Hah!! To begin with, a series of pickup trucks parked directly in front of me for the entire time. One would leave and another would pull in. Being in a high traffic area, it was a steady stream of people stopping to chat and ask questions. I love to socialize but the clock was ticking faster than my paintbrush was painting. The wind blew through the passageway offering a cooling respite to the day's heat and also drying my paint as soon as I squeezed it onto the palette. Clumps of colour were appearing on the canvas! Then the palette(a white plate) shifted and crashed to the ground, splintering into a thousand shards! That meant cleanup with a borrowed broom & dustpan from Fitzy's and a trip to the store for a new plastic palette.

By the time that John came to pick me up at 1:45pm, after 5 3/4 hours onsite,  I was thoroughly discouraged and uncertain how to proceed with the painting. At home, I withdrew to the cool of the basement and considered my options: 1. throw it in the garbage, 2. cut it up and throw it in the garbage, 3. set it on fire before throwing it in the garbage.

The final solution, in a rare moment of clarity, was to eliminate the buildings on both sides. This gave the building an ethereal look with the clouds and wind about to move it from its foundations. Then the idea of collaging came to mind.  Images of people from other cultures were applied to reflect the Film Festival's use of the building. On the far left is an image of musical instruments to represent staged concerts.

At 4pm, as requested, I dropped the finished painting at the Art Gallery, drove home and went to bed.
It is very clear to me that my paintings have to be well thought out in advance. No more "flying by the seat of my pants"!!

Monday, August 8, 2011

A white horse

A white horse 
came into my dream

she lay beside me
warm and shivering

three others watched
then turned away

she came to comfort
or so I thought

until a tear fell 
from one eye

I wrapped my  arms
around her neck

sharing her sadness
before awakening

Friday, August 5, 2011


The honeymoon is over
nature is heating up
leaving green behind
for the heaviness of summer.

Leaves prepare to change colour
birds sing into the night 
thinking of empty nests
and southern skies.

Yarrow and cheeky chickory
line nature's pathways
luring bees and dragonflies
for a last gulp of summer honey.

Farmer's markets overflow
with produce and peaches
bringing hungry locals
to fill their eager bags.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Paint the Town

This Saturday I will participate in the 7th and final "Paint the Town". In past years I have been able to select a location and preplan my paintings. This has worked very well. In the Parisienne style, this year the artists will gather to share a meal at the Art Gallery on the Friday evening before our "plein aire" paintathon. Following the meal, we will pull our locations from a hat. The expectation is that, with the surprise location in hand, we will create masterful paintings of our town the next day! What a scarey idea!!

Looking for support, I have been scouring my shelves of inspirational art books. This quotation seemed appropriate:

"Every painting should be a surprise journey with an unexpected ending."   Robert E. Wood

I was also heartened by this one:

"There are no mistakes. Where my brush goes, that is where I am today. And, I'm dancing in my own landscape."   interpreted from Fujo Kato, Sumi painter

So, I have decided to release myself to the unknown and embrace the unexpected. If you're out there on Saturday, looking over our shoulders, don't be surprised to see magic!