Sunday, November 6, 2016

Just a catch up Post

Well?! Where to begin when it's been so long since you've blogged? I imagine that since it's mostly friends and family that follow this blog they'd want an update because I know so many of you don't do the Facebook thing.
Life these past 5 years since losing our house in 2011 has been something else. In previous posts I mentioned we moved out of our home and into a rental that was a very tiny duplex. It was a huge, hard decision to make. Not one we made lightly but one we decided was best for us at that time/point in our life. 
We settled into that little duplex and made do for 2 years. It was small and cramped but we survived.
 I also made some very tough decisions concerning my weight/health. I had gained a lot by 2013 and had serious medical problems along with collapsing both my knees. It was a daily struggle to do anything including my own personal hygiene. I was miserable, in a lot of pain and severely depressed. I was shutting everyone out of my life. I really just wanted my life to be over. So I had a very long, heart to heart with my primary doctor. We both agreed that with my condition/s Weight Loss Surgery at this point in my life was necessary. We agreed on the most drastic one, the duodenal switch. I'm not saying this was an easy decision nor is it the right decision for everyone. I did this for myself, to be myself again. It took almost a year before everything was cleared with insurance and all the hoops I had to jump through for them. But I did it. Thank goodness there was no actual jumping. I had WLS on July 15, 2013. It wasn't an easy recovery and there were quite a few days I really thought I'd done something horribly wrong and irreversible. Nope. Just needed to get through the long recovery process. I know some people don't take that long but I did. I didn't begin to feel better until December and then life really took off for me. 3 years later it's the best decision I could have made. I don't regret it. I get to be me again and do those things I thought I would never do again.
 The photo below is me the day of surgery. I looked and felt miserable. The photo above was taken a year before surgery on a trip to see our daughter in Wyoming.
 The photo below was taken this summer. So glad I made the WLS decision.
In September, 2013 we made the hard decision to put Neil's dad in a nursing home. He was becoming violent as the alzheimer's was progressing. He doesn't know us anymore and doesn't really talk. It's hard to see him this way. 
January, 2014 we moved to a small little cottage in a great part of town. We really enjoyed it.
But our time there ended and once again in April of this year we had to find another place to live. We were nervous for a while as things just weren't opening up. We weren't sure what we were going to do. So one Saturday morning I'm perusing Craigslist hoping to find another place that will allow pets and not cost an arm and a leg when a photo caught my eye. Hey I know that house! You see we'd been really good friends with the people who lived there when we lived in our little cottage on the same street. Yep, we moved back to the same street we had said goodbye to 5 years ago. Life really does come full circle. We're happy as clams in this little house.
Hopefully I'll be more faithful now that things are back on track for me and I'm actually getting things done. 

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Spring at the cottage

Spring has been here in the valley for quite awhile. I don't think we ever had winter this year. But our move in January and then painting all the rooms has put me behind on spring decorating. A great friend came to my rescue last week and helped me get it unpacked and put up. So things are looking good. At least in the front room.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Our New Cottage

I've really been enjoying making this new cottage home. I've almost completed all the painting. Then the fun part can begin -- decorating. Today I'll share a few photos of the outside. It's been a rental for several years so there's quite a bit to do to the yard. It's mostly just plain and boring. But I've been perusing Pinterest for ideas. So here's a few photos of the new place. The front has a cute little porch and an original lamppost. Originally every house had one with the address hanging below it. Most houses no longer have these. Ours currently doesn't function and it's pretty unstable hence the re-bar holding it up.
The backyard has a fenced off area that the previous tenants used as a dog run but I want to turn it into a raised bed garden area. That way the little hound doesn't dig up my garden. It's got a cute covered "deck" area. Someone bricked in all the flowerbeds but I think eventually I'll unbrick them. The doggies are happy here with the dog door and the yard. It's also got a swing. Great place for morning coffee. 
I hope you've enjoyed these first few pictures. Many more to come because I've repainted every room in the house.

Sunday, December 15, 2013


Well it's official! We're moving! To a cute little cottage in an older, nicer area of town. We are so excited. It's located in a little area of town called Westchester. I even love the name. I've already started taking pictures, picked out paint and figuring out where to put everything. So yeah I'm a little excited. A place to make ours again. Stay tuned.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Just a little update. The surgery went really well and though it was a longer recovery than I expected I'm doing great now. I've lost 81 pounds so far. I can already feel the relief in my knees. They're thanking me a lot. Another year or two I can have knee replacement surgery. I'm thankful for all the supportive friends and family through this process.
Now for some other great news. We will be moving again. We've been in our little duplex for two years now. It's been good to us but I've missed having a yard and a house. So we've found another little cottage to love in a lovely older neighborhood. Though we don't move until January I've already started packing and planning. It's not much bigger than the duplex which is fine. It's just hubby and me. I don't want to be packing while the kids are visiting over the holidays. 
Hope everyone is doing good and looking forward to the holidays. 
Hugs, Amanda

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Just a quick catch up

Just a quick post for friends who check here to see how things are going.
Surgery went really well, recovery has been slow and hard. Lots of things to get used to. Healing wise I've done great. Almost all my incision is healed and very nicely I might add. Getting used to eating, eating, eating has not been easy. I can only eat a small amount at a time, so within an hour I'm hungry again. I've never been much of a snacker or grazer so learning this new kind of eating is hard. Also lots of water consumption. Which I didn't do a lot of before surgery either but neither did I drink a lot of anything. Usually just with meals. So much to re-learn.
Tina came home from the Navy on leave right before my surgery and stayed until just after surgery before returning to her new post in Jacksonville, FL. She's doing great and we're really proud of her. She's my go-getter that's for sure.
Seth came home also during that same week and was so good to have both of them home to love on and spoil. He's working and living in Sacramento, 5 hours north of here. He loves his job at Costco and has done really well there. We're proud of him also. Seems so funny how grown up they are now when for so long it seems like all you've done is take care of them. Circle of life I suppose. 
I'll hope to post pictures soon. 

Sunday, June 30, 2013


It's been a summer of waiting. Waiting to hear about whether or not I've been approved for surgery. Now waiting for the surgery. I just feel like you do knowing that the storm is coming, that build up of anticipation. I've got mixed feelings about the surgery, excited and scared.
I've been busy taking care of Neil's father, Pop. He has Alzheimer's Dementia. It has its good and bad days. I try to be patient and realize that he really can't help it. Really enjoyed a day long seminar lately, Caring for the Caregiver. Attended with my brother-in-law and his wife. I felt it was very informative and uplifting. I strongly urge that if you are caring for someone or know someone that is dealing with this. Go to the Alzheimer's website, here. They are so helpful. 
All the Kramer Fellows. L to R Neil, Brian, Seth, Erik, Eli and Dick (Pop), May, 2012
I've also been hanging out with the dogs. We've "adopted" the neighbor's dachshund, Pearl. Her and Trigger get along very well. I did plant a few flowers in containers and I've been attending to those. Haven't made it to the farmer's market this summer, unfortunately. Hope to before surgery so I can enjoy local, fresh fruit and veggies. I've also managed to do a little quilting, sewing and smoothie making. 
Quilt that Kelly and I did for Tina's Navy  Instructor
Pillowcases for our bed
Pearl and Trigger hanging out
Homemade smoothies
Well that about sums up our summer. Hope your's is going well also. Take care. Amanda