Hi, everyone!

After a week hiatus, let's start this week off with a MASSIVE UPDATE!

First, for updates on baby and house "stuff", head over to How to Have a Baby and check out my 29w2d Update post.

Second, check out that I've actually update my 101 in 1001 post with some of our recent accomplishments. Yahoo!

Third, I have several new projects to announce very, very soon. I've been hired by a major blog network for a really nifty blog topic, and am also nearly ready to launch (or, in a couple cases re-launch) a few blogs on topics near and dear to my heart. One is another personal blog with a narrow topic and the others are on informative topics that I know a lot about...but will be writing on objectively instead of personally. Towards the end of several 101 in 1001 goals, I'm still working to expand my freelancing and its related income...and this is a part of that. Through ongoing clients, I've met many of my financial goals already in 2008, but am always looking for ways to expand.

And finally, and on a very somber note, I'd like to ask you to pray for my father. (I know - some of you are probably still praying since I initially asked you for your prayers last November and again this past March.) Dad took another huge downturn late last week and is now no longer able to get out of bed at all and is being fed 100% mechanically. At the advice of the nursing staff at his care center as well as the hospice that is overseeing his case, he was given Last Rites last evening around 5 PM. We decided not to go up to PA over the weekend because (a) I had a big doctor's appointment and testing this morning and (b) we're already scheduled to fly up Wednesday evening because of a pre-planned trip. If something happens sooner, then we'll travel sooner.

Mom puts her phone up to his ear whenever she calls so I can talk to him. Beyond that, unfortunately, there's nothing anyone can do beyond what is already being done. The nursing staff assures us he's resting comfortably, and of course the priest is full of assurances of better things to come. (Which, somewhere in my heart, I know. But I've really struggled with being incredibly angry at God for keeping my Dad in this awful state for so long over the past few months and as a result, haven't even regularly attended the church that I normally adore in about six months.) We've lined up all funeral arrangements, from pre-writing the obituary to having pallbearers to actual details with the funeral home, church and cemetery. When the time comes, we'll just need to finalize the memorial cards and service handouts, the readings and music (which I've already mostly picked...just need to convey the info, really...this, unfortunately, ain't my first funeral by far), his suit, and a coffin. We will not be doing any kind of lengthy viewing or any eulogies...first, it'll be a closed casket because we don't want anyone to remember Dad as he now is, so withered away and unlike his former self, and second because neither Mother nor I care to be on display. I wish I could play my violin for him at the funeral, but I just don't think I can handle's something I've done for other friends and family at their funerals and I don't know how I ever kept it together then. In this case, I think it'd be almost impossible.

So right now, we're again in a holding pattern...needless to say, I'm not exactly sleeping well and my heart stops every time the phone rings. Not exactly a great state to be in while pregnant, but who can control the pace of life? Again, the prayer is that Dad goes quickly and painlessly...he's been living on borrowed time for almost six months. Thank you!

Hope you all have good weeks! I'll be back with a Tuesday Travels post tomorrow!



  1. Tiff, I had no idea your dad was that bad. Which facility is he in? Are his siblings there?

  2. Hey, Nicki! For the life of me, I can't find your email address to write back just to you, but I'll post the short response here...and maybe catch you up on more details later.

    Anyhow, "short" version.

    Dad's been getting worse and worse with his Alzheimer's over the past 5+ years. Last November, Mom and I agreed that he'd come spend the winter with me, to give her a break. While at PennDot getting a new photo ID (since it's been years since his DL was taken away), he slipped and broke his hip. After surgery, he was moved to a nursing facility to go through rehab. After rehab, they recommended he stay, because of the more rapid deterioration of his mental state.

    In late February/early March, he developed an incredibly high and completely unexplainable temperature. It basically fried his brain - more than a week at 104+. He went through every medical test known to mankind. I do mean every. At that point, he became mostly unresponsive - couldn't walk or feed himself, would only say a word or two highly infrequently and usually unintelligibly. He was given a terminal diagnosis and we flew to PA in a hurry. Somehow, he's still hanging on. Last week, he stopped being able to ingest food...and he's only been on pureed food since March anyways. So he's on the IV now for nutrition. He's down to about 110 pounds. He's too weak to get out of bed...when he was getting out of bed in the past few months, it was only with 100% assistance and being carried directly from bed to reclining wheelchair. He opens his eyes occasionally but does not focus on anything. It's awful.

    As for his siblings...other than my mom's sister and her son, he's basically had no other visitors (plus, of course, my husband and I on our several trips to PA over the past few months) since he got to the Jewish home. Uncle B. visited once, for 15 minutes. Almost hilarious, considering it's a 45 minute drive each way. Uncle B. and Aunt M. have each called a few times, but don't understand why Dad can't talk to them on the phone, even though Mom's given permission to the nurses to release info to any of them and the nurses have explained time and time again that he is just not able to respond. Uncle J. isn't doing well and I don't think he fully understands Dad's situation. Aunt A. is totally out of it herself, bedridden at home but in about the same state as Dad. And I'm not sure if Uncle N. has called or not, but I know he calls Mom a lot. I don't think Uncle T. has called Dad or Mom at all, but he called me about a month ago to check on Dad.

    He's in Scranton at the Jewish Home. Uncle B. is outraged over that, considering they're all Catholic, but it really is the best care facility available, and having volunteered there in high school myself, I can vouch that there's no other home in the area I'd agree to put Dad in. Anyhow, it's not like you have to be Jewish to stay's just that it's run by the local Jewish organization. They have Mass there almost daily, and I'd wager there's more Catholics there than Jews. Anyways...

    So that's the update. I'll put more up on the blog when I know more...and of course, you'll probably know more even sooner, Nic, since we'll get everything out to the family as soon as we can.

  3. I'll be thinking of y'all and praying. I got home yesterday from Nationals - had an excellent time (check my blog), but leave again first thing in the morning for Gary and Ardyn's. Please call me if something happens. Seems to be the week for bad things. Don's brother Greg's 9 year old son died on Sunday - he'd had a blood clot from a sports injury go from his shoulder and explode in his lungs. They finally took him off the breathing machine yesterday and he died. Don will be going up to the funeral. Sad, sad.

    I love you both. I hope your Dad will find some peace soon.

  4. Sweetie I will continue to pray for your father, and you, as I can tell how much this is hurting you.
    Just remember everything happens for a reason. If you need to talk, let me know - email me, and we can exchange numbers.

  5. I'm so sorry to hear about your dad - I had no idea things were so bad. My very best wishes to you and your family at such a difficult time.