Thursday, January 13, 2022

10 On The 10th: January 2022

This week has not gone at all like I thought it would. We were supposed to be leaving today for a short getaway to celebrate Dave's 40th birthday, which is on Monday. Unfortunately, my body decided it had other plans.

Since it's Covid and our province has gone back to Step 2 (whatever that means -- partial lockdown and more restrictions), we'd planned something for Dave's birthday, and then we've revised it and revised it again. By the time we made our getaway plans, we were on Plan Q or something like that. However, Plan Q involved possibly going downhill skiing which the kids have never done.

So on Sunday, we were at our local ski hill, waiting in a long line to rent equipment and sign the kids up for an intro lesson when I started feeling fairly awful. The left side of my chest was aching and I couldn't get comfortable. It felt like a sore muscle but also like something... not good... was happening.

Finally, much to the kids' disappointment, I said we needed to leave. As we were walking to our car I felt a big squeeze on my left side (lung/heart area) and lost my breath. We headed to the ER, wondering if I was having a heart attack. I received very good, and very quick, service and after about an hour (and heart monitoring and x-rays and blood work and a EKG and...) the doctor announced it was a spontaneous pneumothorax.

Back in 1999 and 2000, I had two spontaneous pneumothoraces (sudden, random partial lung detachment) on my right lung and had surgery in February 2000 to fix the issue. I have had no problems since then. Until this week.

Now I have one on my left side. The current plan is "take it easy and monitor." I can't shovel snow, go to work, or lift anything heavy -- the doctor specifically mentioned "like piles of books" which makes me think the fact that Dave and I brought a bag with three books (two for me, one for him) to the appointment was a dead giveaway!!!

In my two previous experiences with this, my lung fixed itself -- the hole stopped leaking and my lung completely reinflated on its own. As of yesterday (my third monitoring x-ray), my lung showed "slight improvement and no leaking." Unless anything changes suddenly, I don't need to go back for another x-ray until Monday.

So this is my "10 on the 10th" of Natasha's Hospital Visit And Being Assigned To Bed Rest.

When we got to the hospital, even though it was no longer an emergency, I still had to register with the emergency room. Here are Dave and I waiting to be triaged and to register. I'm so thankful Dave could stay with me through the whole process.

Hospital gowns are so flattering. Because I was so cold the previous day at the hospital (likely because I'd been standing outside for over an hour when it happened), and hospital gowns are all short sleeved, I brought my sherpa jacket to keep me warm.

Dave has been allowed in as my "care partner" and he gets a special sticker, designating him as such.

This pole at the parking lot, covered with Care Partner stickers, made Dave and I laugh.

For some reason I am always cold when I get home from the hospital so I was in bed, under two blankets, with a snack and a book.

I am amassing quite the collection of hospital bracelets. Excellent accessories, I tell you :)

Okay, at least they make good bookmarks. And yes, I've basically been reading a book a day since this whole ordeal started.

I was really craving a salad so Dave bought a superfoods salad at the grocery store while the rest of my family ate Kentucky Fried Chicken.

Rachel enjoys using this handy flowered tray to bring me things in bed -- a pear for a snack, a cookie, my phone.

Since there are only so many pictures I can take from bed, this picture is actually from the next day. I asked Dave to bring a bouquet of tulips upstairs so I'd be able to enjoy them.
And that was my more exciting, but simultaneously more boring than I'd anticipated, January 10th. Hopefully by February 10th, this is all a memory and we've gotten on with our lives...

Sunday, January 09, 2022

I Spy 2022: Week 1

So one of my goals for 2022 is to try and be more timely about my "I Spy" posts. Clearly, I'm starting off on the right foot :) Hahahaha!!! I'm so happy that Lysha at A Camera and A Cookbook is continuing this challenge for 2022 and check out the fun new graphic below.

Let's Play iSpy 2022 


I'm participating in a decluttering challenge and it makes me happy to have so many items decluttered and "checked" off. Slowly, but surely, I am getting there.


Sadly, I haven't yet found tulips in stores (boooooo) so these Gerbera daisies are "different" than my usual January flowers. However, their pretty colours still bring me joy.


Another thing which brings me joy... the "new" Kleenex box patterns for Costco kleenex. It's all about the joy in the small things these days :)


Balderson cheddar on Melba toast brings me "happiness." It's my go-to snack.

{your choice}


I captured this picture of Dave and Rachel skating at our neighbourhood rink yesterday. Connecting with neighbours, a sunny day, and having fun is always "my choice."

Thursday, January 06, 2022

I Spy: Week 52

It's the last I Spy post for 2021!!! I've so enjoyed linking up with Lysha at A Camera and A Cookbook for this series and I am thrilled that she is continuing it in 2022. Come back on Saturday for the first I Spy of 2022. And it's not too late to join in on the fun! You should link up too.

Even though this post is late, I took all these pictures in the last week of 2021. However, I hadn't seen the prompts so none of these pictures are intentionally taken for this post -- I just looked at what I had taken and made them fit the prompts. Enjoy!

Let's Play iSpy 2021


I was trying to capture the sparkly ornament but I love how you can see the "needles" on the one branch in the background. This is the one prompt I was surprised I actually had a picture for.

{Color: black}

It was really cold the week after Christmas (-30C/-22F without the wind chill) but Dave and I tried to get out for walks a few times anyways. You can clearly see the frost on his "black" scarf. And his eyebrows! If you haven't been in really cold weather, that is what happens when you go walking outside and breathe :)


It was "great" to spend so much time with my parents. The kids often cuddle up in Oma and Opa's chairs with them to read or play on screen or talk so I was happy to capture this moment.

{Starts with 'R'}

My dad has become quite the maker of "rollkuchen" -- a deep fried dough. I love to eat mine with corn syrup. It's not very sweet and we ate this for lunch one day. Yep, very healthy!!! I thought this would be a unique picture for "starts with 'r.'"

{Your Choice}

While only being home from the airport for ten minutes before going off to get boosted wasn't the original plan, doing everything I possibly can to keep myself and our world safe, will always be "my choice." (The pharmacy opened their vial of vaccine too early so asked me to come in an hour and a half early for my appointment.) 

Wednesday, January 05, 2022

Currently: January 2022

It's time for the first "Currently" link up of 2022 with Anne at in residence. I love the prompts that Anne picked for us to write about this time because they're very "new year" focused. That was likely intentional :)


I have to admit, I'm not anticipating much of anything right now :( Our province, Ontario, headed into a "modified Step 2" for Covid restrictions at midnight so, once again, we can't do anything. We can't eat in restaurants, we can't attend church or school or any of the kids' activities in person, our "social gatherings" are limited to 5 people indoors and 10 outdoors. Yeah -- it's super-fun right now. I guess I'm anticipating when this current set of restrictions will end. We've been told it's "time limited" but I'm not holding out much hope...


I made a goal to get our house in order. There's too much stuff. So I've signed up for an internet decluttering challenge, which also has an organizational component. So basically I'm organizing (or will be organizing) EVERYTHING. Nothing is safe. I told the kids what I was doing, because I'll need their help, and they are completely on board with it.


I've decided, after some friendly pressure from my Blog Friend's Book Club people (Love you!!!), to try and track my reading on Goodreads this year. Thus far I've read two books and rated two books. I don't want to commit to writing mini reviews here on the blog and on Goodreads so I might just copy and paste the reviews from here to there but I haven't figured that part out yet...

My current read is this one:

Uncomfortable Conversations With a Black Man


My phone will no longer back up to iCloud so I'm resolving to go through all my photos and get rid of the extraneous ones. Do I really need 17 pictures of Rachel swinging or 32 pictures of a bouquet of flowers or 15 pictures of Sam reading or 12 pictures of my afternoon snack? I don't think so... My goal for January is to delete, delete, delete. I think I'll have to write another post like this one!


Well, given that we can't really do anything, I'm not scheduling much of anything. And probably won't be for awhile. However, I was so grateful that I was able to schedule boosters for Dave and I, and a second dose for Rachel, for this past weekend. Vaccines are what is going to help get us out of this pandemic and we're thrilled to be able to do our part.

I'm sorry to be such a downer today but honestly, I'm frustrated. Families in our province waited all Winter Break to hear what was happening with schooling for our kids. Last Thursday (December 30th), our Chief Medical Officer of Health told us they were extending the break by two days (from starting back this past Monday to starting back today) but that kids were returning in person. He commented, "Our children have sacrificed enough throughout this pandemic in terms of their mental health and they need to be at school in person." (AMEN!)

Then, this past Monday (January 3rd) our premier announced that kids would be starting back online "until January 17th." Well, as many people have said, "I've seen this movie, I know the ending, and I don't like it." Last year we were told that our kids would be doing online learning for a week after Winter Break and it ended up being five weeks. Then after our delayed Spring Break, we were told our kids were doing online learning for "a few weeks" and our kids didn't return to in person learning for the rest of the year (two and a half months).

All this is to say, I feel a sense of dread as to how long this current "limited time, currently two week period" of remote learning is going to be. As a parent, and as a school secretary, this is really hard. I really hope that by February's "currently" link up, our kids will have been back in school for awhile and some of our current restrictions will be lifted but, once again, we shall see...

Tuesday, January 04, 2022

One Sentence A Day: December 2021

Whoa?!?! HOW is it 2022 already? Why did the first half of 2021 drraaaagggg on forever and the last half flew?!? (Answer: Lockdowns in the first half of the year -- months of lockdown.) What even happened to December?!? Once I read this post, I sort of figured it out. December was FULL.

1 - Wednesday -- We celebrated the fourth night of Channukah with a new family game that had us laughing so hard we could barely breathe!

2 - Thursday -- After a full day of getting things done (present making, grocery shopping, cookie baking), we celebrated the fifth night of Channukah with Dave's parents.

3 - Friday -- The kids and I enjoyed our neighbourhood holiday party and then watched the new, Channukah themed, Hallmark movie. (Second sentence: Also, there was a Covid case at my school -- never fun phone calls to make.)

4 - Saturday -- We went to the library and the bookstore, Rachel had Nutcracker rehearsals, I had Nutcracker volunteering, and Sam had cookie baking with his youth mentor.

5 - Sunday -- It was a full morning at church followed up with watching The Nutcracker show in the evening.

6 - Monday -- After a busy weekend, I was dragging today.

7 - Tuesday -- I had to have a cavity filled after work which is never fun :(

8 - Wednesday -- I didn't sleep for a few hours the previous night so I called in sick to work and had a very long nap.

By the evening I was feeling well enough that we could go and buy the kids a delayed Channukah present.

9 - Thursday -- Sam stayed home this day because he was exhausted (HOW MANY MORE DAYS UNTIL WINTER BREAK?!?!?!?), I didn't have a job, and we set up our book tree, part 2.

Also, Dave fell down our basement stairs carrying a basket of laundry and needed ice in a few places.

10 - Friday -- My coworker brought me a White Hot Chocolate Chai Tea from Tim's (which was delicious), we ordered Thai food for lunch (which was also delicious), and I attended the really fun Sr Youth gift exchange at church in the evening.

11 - Saturday -- Dave and I had the windiest walk delivering items to the thrift store!

12 - Sunday -- Dave and I got a lot of errands done this afternoon.

And we started a new puzzle.

13 - Monday -- I was supposed to get a massage this evening but I decided to cancel in favour of extra sleep and it was the right decision.

14 - Tuesday -- I had to make a bunch of calls to tell a cohort they needed to quarantine due to a positive case and the parents were very gracious.

15 - Wednesday -- I got a couple of gifts from my co-workers and felt very spoiled.

16 - Thursday -- We celebrated Christmas with Tim and Janice and family and, although our plans had to change slightly, we enjoyed our evening with them.

17 - Friday -- I came home from work with a pile of gifts (I didn't realize that a lot of teachers gave gifts to office staff) and ready for a two week break from work.

18 - Saturday -- I folded a bunch of laundry while watch a Hallmark movie, we went on a long errand walk in the afternoon, and we got ready to leave for our trip the next day.

19 - Sunday -- Our flight was cancelled, we weren't scheduled on another one until the next day, so we got a complementary hotel room and meal vouchers and tried to make the best of it.

20 - Monday -- We made it to Saskatchewan after another long day at the airport and a long flight.

21 - Tuesday -- We tried to enjoy the start of our vacation although we were without one of our suitcases and had to make do with random clothes.

22 - Wednesday -- We got our suitcase although we had to go to the airport to pick it up.

23 - Thursday -- We celebrated Tibb's Eve (a Newfoundland (province in Canada) celebration with a walk through the fields with my mom, watching Home Alone, and drinking prosecco.

24 - Friday -- We enjoyed Christmas Eve appetizers and opened new books and spent the rest of the evening reading.

25 - Saturday -- It was a lovely Christmas Day starting with presents and ending with turkey dinner and Christmas pudding.

26 - Sunday -- We had a quiet day with delicious turkey soup and the kids had fun snapping the wishbone.

27 - Monday -- Mom and I ran a few errands in town and Dave enjoyed frying latkes inside for once!

He'll get spoiled what with drinking wine and staying warm!!!

28 - Tuesday -- We went for a walk, even though the high was only -27C (and the windchill was hovering around -40), and looked for Northern Lights.

29 - Wednesday -- I got Covid vaccine appointments for me, Dave, and Rachel and we watched National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation in the evening.

30 - Thursday -- It was our last day in Saskatchewan (boo) but we got the news that the kids are going back to school next week!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

31- Friday -- It was an extremely long day (and I barely slept on Thursday night) as we had an early morning flight home and vaccine booster appointments for Dave and I. (More sentences: I was asleep by 7:30pm because I was wiped out. Happy New Year!!!)

As always, I'm linking up with Rebecca Jo and the other One Sentence A Day bloggers. This post now marks two years of me writing one sentence for every day. I look forward to continuing this practice in 2022.