Mary

Posted April 20, 2019 by joebowker
Categories: Mary

Tags:

Time for an update. The process continues. A nurse came to meet Mary and do a report for the admin folks at Regency Palms.

We filled out more forms and went over the medical report that was done by Dr T. We gave her the power of attorney docs. More paperwork. I will likely be writing a big check.

So next step will be to sign the admission document. That will happen next Tuesday. Once that’s done we can schedule the move in. I expect that we will have her moved in by no later than the end of April. Maybe sooner. It looks like that we will be done well before our departure on our trip to Boston in May.

It amazes us all the things that she no longer remembers. For instance, she didn’t remember that she only had one daughter. She didn’t remember that we have been taking care of her for the past 6 1/2 years. She now seems to remember that she was married to Harold. A few weeks ago, she didn’t remember him at all. So sad. Sometimes, she remembers stuff. For instance, on the way home from church today, she pointed out the house that she once lived back in the day. Wow!

The Black Thorn

Posted April 18, 2019 by joebowker
Categories: Books, Reviews

Tags: , ,

41lCC6CPC2LJust finished reading “The Black Thorn”  by John Desmond. John Desmond is also a history teacher at Billerica Memorial High School. Our son, Mike, had him for an AP History course back in the late 90’s.

This is the story of Eamonn McDonagh, a Irish tenant farmer in the 1850’s who struggles against his English landlord in his town. He creates a secret society called the “Black Thorn” that proceeds to fight the oppression by the English.

He son, Joseph, witnesses the death of his father at the hands of the English. Joseph leaves Ireland in a “Coffin Ship” bound to America. Then the story tells of Joseph’s life in a coal mine and then in infantry of the Civil War.

Then Joseph comes back from the war to the coal mine. He then proceeds to form a union to fight the unfair labor practices of the mine owners.

Then there is violence in the murder of one of the mine owners. Joseph and his men get the blame and go to trial.

If I said anymore it would be a spoiler alert.

The story is historical fiction. The characters are not real but are based on real events in the Irish potato famine and the civil war.

Great read. I learned much about the civil war and other events of the time. I could hardly put it down. It took me only about five days to read cover to cover.

Dodger Stadium Tour

Posted April 13, 2019 by joebowker
Categories: Baseball, Los Angeles

Tags: ,

I was  a part of a group that did a tour of Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. What great fun. We started at the top of the upper deck behind home plate. The tour was organized by our local OES and Lodge group. Cost was $15 per person ($12 for seniors.). Need less to say, I left my Red Sox at home.

2019-04-13 10.19.18

One thing you can see in this picture is that the dimensions of the stadium are symmetric (ie. the distances to right and left field are the same). Not true for many major league  parks. What a beautiful ball park. The stadium uses a cantilevered design. Which means there are no poles that could block someone’s view.

Then we took the elevator down to the 1st tier where we visited the press boxes and one of the luxury suites. Luxury boxes go for between $5000-$15000 depending on the team that is being played. Seats about 20 people in very comfortable seats.

Next, we went down to the ground level and headed over to the dugouts. We were told, “Don’t walk on the grass”. I learned something new. The home dugout is on the third base side. The primary reason is because during an afternoon game, the sun would be coming over the third base side, thus having the sun shining in the eyes of the visitors.

There are many awards and other memorabilia lining the walls of the corridors. Here are a few examples:

And finally, here’s a picture of our entire group. A fun time was had by all.

Dodger Tour Group

 

 

A Place for Mary

Posted April 7, 2019 by joebowker
Categories: Aging, Board & Care, Mary

Tags:

Well the deal is done. We told Mary about our plans for her. We made an appointment to meet with the folks at Regency Palms in Long Beach. We met with one of the administrators for lunch. Here’s a picture of one of the administrators with Mary.

2019-04-06 12.28.33

Jonathan and Mary

We had meat loaf with mashed potatoes and carrots. Mary cleaned her plate and ate dessert too. As usual, she was real slow in eating, but we weren’t in a rush.

After lunch, we took her to her room and gave her a tour. Once that was done we headed down to the office to work on next steps. I gave them copies of her power of atty documents.

Next we got a document to take to her doctor to fill out. Once we get the medical clearance we can do the contract and schedule a nurse home visit.

Once we were sitting in the office conference room, I think Mary finally figured out what we were talking about. The first time that we brought up the subject on Thursday evening, I don’t think she understood what we were talking about.

We had told her that we wouldn’t be able to care for anymore and that we were physically and emotionally shot. Perhaps, she thought that we would be moving out. Who knows? At any rate, it seems that she finally understood it today. But she doesn’t remember any of it today.

Now we get to work signing forms.

Board & Care #3

Posted April 6, 2019 by joebowker
Categories: Aging, Board & Care

Tags:

This is the 3rd (and hopefully final) Board & Care that we have visited. It is up in the NE corner of Torrance. It is a solid 30 minute drive either on the freeway or on surface streets. As in most B&C’s, this is in a single family dwelling.

Here is an outside view of the home:

2019-04-04 15.56.47.jpg

This B&C is licensed for five residents. Currently there are only two residents living there. So there are three open rooms. All of the rooms are private bed rooms. Residents do share bathrooms.

Seeing as there are only two residents, it was pretty quiet. There was a large main room for dining and couches for watching TV.

Price is $3800, but might jump up in $500 increments if additional services required. I don’t have a good feel what they might be.

It seemed to be clean but the ramps could use a coat of paint. There was some patio furniture that looked pretty worn.

This one seem a bit better than the first two, but that maybe because there are only two people living there.

We are planning on discussing the topic with Mary this evening. We will probably take  Mary for a visit on Saturday to the Torrance B&C and the Long Beach Memory Care unit.

More later…

Board & Care #2

Posted April 3, 2019 by joebowker
Categories: Aging, Board & Care, San Pedro

Tags: ,

We visited another Board & Care today. Our goal is to make a decision by Saturday. This B&C is in San Pedro on 1st Street. It is only 5 minutes from our house. Once again this facility is in a private residence (as are most B&C’s) Here is an exterior picture:

2019-04-03 14.30.38.jpg

So this home seemed a bit bigger than the B&C we visited yesterday. It didn’t seem quite as cramped. There are three bathrooms. Each bedroom is equipped with two hospital style beds. So here are my pluses and minuses:

  • Price is $3800 flat rate per month. All inclusive.
  • Shaded patio outside.
  • 5 minute drive to get there. This means we can keep doing Mary’s usual routines like her hair appt. on Friday.
  • Newer TV. Not that it matters, Mary doesn’t watch any TV.
  • Ramps out back.

Here are some more pictures:

Bottom line is we don’t really know how Mary would take to doing the move. We will probably break the news to her in the next day or so. Then take her for a tour.

The proximity to our place issue is huge. Price is also a big plus. We can pay for it quite easily. We won’t go broke moving her. Cheaper and nicer. That’s a good combination.

Stay tuned.

Joe

Bored & Care

Posted April 2, 2019 by joebowker
Categories: Aging, Board & Care, Mary

Tags: , ,

Today, Paula and I visited a “Board and Care” facility in Torrance. Board and Care is the name given to non-medical care facility typically provided for  up to six or so seniors typically in a residential setting.

The facility that we visited is in a single family residence in Torrance. This particular B&C is licensed for up to 6 residents. Here’s an outside picture.

2019-04-02 11.45.32

As you can see from the picture, a ramp has been provide for handicap access. Though I wouldn’t want to have to do an emergency evacuation in case of fire.

Pluses

  • Only about 10-12 minutes from our home.
  • Price is $4000 for a bed in a semi-private room. That’s a lot less than some of the other elder care facilities. Price is all inclusive including all meals but not medicine.
  • Nurse Practitioner visits once a week.
  • Facility was clean. No rugs (trip hazard)

Minuses

  • It felt crowded. All of the residents (all five of them) were sitting in worn recliner chairs watching TV (Set was tuned to a “Bonanza” episode on TV-land. I figure that was the total extent of their mental stimulus. It wasn’t even a particularly good TV.
  • Lunch was served while we were there. We were not asked to join them. Menu was sloppy joes and a cup of jello or pudding. It didn’t look particularly appetizing.
  • Not sure how many bathrooms there are. We only saw one. I would assume there would be more, but we just didn’t see them. The bathroom that Mary would use is outside the room and a few feet down the hall. It has handicap access shower and toilet.

Here are a few more pictures. I didn’t want to take any pictures of the living room because there were residents sitting in the chairs.

Bottom Line

This ain’t it. We can afford better.  A lot better. I would be embarrassed to think we put Mary here.

We probably will try to see another couple of board & care’s by Thurday. Make decision by Thursday.

TTFN

Joe