Wednesday, 13 December 2017

WOYWW 445–Life Gets Complicated

Another week with nothing on my desk, and I have only done a few rows of knitting on the second rainbow sock.

I am posting this on WOYWW so you know what’s going on, but I doubt if I shall have time to visit many desks this week as I’m up to my eyes.

It’s been quite a week, it really has.

Last week my hubby went in to see my mum and she was in bed and hadn’t eaten for two days, and was obviously poorly, and quite confused. They’d had the doctor for her and he thought she might have a UTI. They phoned at the weekend to say she was worse, and the doctor had been again and said she had pneumonia. Her breathing was poor and she was unable to take anything. I was out to lunch on Saturday for our church’s Christmas dinner (my hubby was unable to go because of his broken leg) and a lovely couple from church drove me home afterwards via Mum’s care home, and while I visited her they sat upstairs in the lounge and had coffee.

I sat with her for about an hour and she was unable to speak to me and obviously in distress and uncomfortable. I was so glad of this time with her despite how she was, because I had a feeling it might be the last time. The last visit I had with her a couple of weeks previously had been lovely – she was pleased to see me, and I took in my iPad with photos and videos of the kittens for her to see, which she enjoyed.

We thought she might linger a little while longer, but at about 10 p.m. the care home phoned us to let us know that she had just died.

Mum Outside Front of Yarrow

We are now in the throes of the usual paperwork and huge amount of organisation needed in the aftermath of a death. With my brainfog and lack of mobility, my hubby usually sorts this sort of stuff out, as he did marvellously well with my dad’s affairs four years ago. Of course, he is now laid up and quite immobile, and unable to drive, so life is very complicated! Everybody is being so kind – family, friends, neighbours, friends from church – with lifts, collecting documents, odd bits of shopping etc. My hubby is able to wade through papers and write letters which I have been printing out for him, and sending emails etc., and deciding what has to be done and when.

After a while I find too much information overload makes my brain want to explode, so I can only take it in relatively small doses. He keeps reassuring me that we will get through this – it’s just a bit more complicated than it would have been if he hadn’t broken his leg.

We cannot plan the funeral for any time soon – it will have to be delayed until after Christmas or even into the New Year now. We’ve already started making tentative plans, and we thought it might be nice to include “I know that my Redeemer liveth” from Handel’s Messiah, and it occurred to me that instead of having a recording, it would be much nicer if I was to sing this myself, if I am up to it! I found a Youtube video with just a piano accompaniment with no vocal part for practising, and practice is exactly what I do need to do if I’m going to make those top G-sharps!! I haven’t done very much singing recently. I have just found a useful website where I can buy digital sheet music of the piece, transposed to whatever key I want, so this may be a better option – a single tone down would probably suit me.

To add to all of this was the fact that my hubby had to go into hospital on Sunday morning very early (which made an unwelcome early start for me as he needed help sorting his stuff) for his leg to be pinned – he had an X-ray at the fracture clinic on Friday and it appears that the bones were springing apart and not mending as hoped. However, by mid-morning he was home again because his operation had been postponed in favour of more urgent cases. Usual scenario!

We had a repeat performance on Monday, and this time he was prepped and ready for surgery. However, once they got the plaster off, they found that his skin was still blistered where the plaster had chafed, right where the surgeon was going to make the incision, so all he could do was manipulate the bone back into place and strap him up again, which has certainly made him more comfortable. He was in overnight and came home mid-afternoon yesterday, with strict instructions to keep it up and rested as much as possible. He is now accepting that he has got to cancel stuff and not take on any activities. He had a nice rest in hospital, which was good, and I enjoyed a quiet day, resting and watching TV, and catching up with some emails etc.

He’s going back in again next Monday or thereabouts, and if the blistering has healed, they will proceed with the operation and pin the bone. The anticipated 4-6 weeks’ healing period in plaster will recommence from then, and several people have said that he will probably not be fully weight-bearing for some time after that, so we have no idea when he will be driving again. This is turning out to be quite the long haul, from what he originally thought was a bad sprain!

All this could not have come at a worse time, and in the middle of it, Christmas is looming, when everything slows down to a virtual standstill, with the post being delayed, etc., and also bad weather warnings too!

I am still determined to cook my famous Christmas dinner though, because even more so now, it will be a lovely treat for the two of us, and hopefully an oasis in the middle of the storm! Before my hubby returned yesterday, I spent the middle of the day in the kitchen making some stuffings, the first being mealy stuffing, a traditional family favourite from Scotland, made with medium oatmeal and onion, and for me, a turkey dinner is incomplete without it, and the second being made from dates and walnuts with a few dried cranberries chucked in.

I also discovered this week that not only can you freeze par-boiled potatoes in order to save time on the day, but if you roast them from frozen, they come out even crispier and more delicious than normal! I prepared a whole 2.5 kg bag of Maris Piper potatoes (a nice floury variety that roast well) and froze them separately, so I can take out as many as and when I want.

I had bought a cheap white loaf for crumbs for the date stuffing, and with the rest, I treated myself by making Delia Smith’s marmalade bread and butter pudding from her winter recipes book. This is one of the most delicious variations of this pudding that I have ever tasted! By the time I’d finished all this cooking, my hubby was returning, and it was mid-afternoon before I was able to sit down to enjoy it.

With so much to do, it might seem silly to take on all this extra cooking, but I found it so therapeutic and I got really stuck in and enjoyed doing it so much. I enjoy cooking in my lovely kitchen, particularly with my gorgeous new pantry making things so much easier.


  1. I hope life improves for you and your hubby in the new year Shoshi. Everything always seems to happen at once doesn't it... ! About 10 days ago I fell down some steps at my sister's home and cracked some ribs - which has been very painful. A few days after my fall I developed a cold, with sore throat and hacking cough - not great when you've got rib pain! Never mind, I am improving. I'm thinking of you at this difficult time Shoshi and with help from family and friends I'm sure you will get through this ok....

  2. Sincere condolences on the death of your mum Shoshi, at least you got to see her before she passed away. I'm sorry to hear about your poor hubby too, hopefully he'll improve after this new appt. I quite understand you wanting to prepare for Christmas, cooking or crafting or any working with your hands helps deal with all the emotions.
    Hugs LLJ 5 xxxx

  3. I'm so sorry to hear about your mum's passing, Shoshi. I know you had a difficult relationship with her but that doesn't make it any less painful. It's certainly true that when it rains it pours. Make sure hubby rests that broken leg - you don't need any more complications with that. Your idea to sing at your mum's funeral sounds very ambitious and scary - but if anyone can pull it off, you can! I don't think I would even be able to mutter any words in public, let alone sing! Very admirable and if there's a recording of it I would love to hear it! Hope all goes well in the end - just take it in your stride - one day at a time - that's all you can do. Cooking sounds like a good distraction and I will remember your tip about the roast potatoes! And when things get too much, sit back, put your kitties on your lap and listen to them purr. That always calms me down and lifts my spirits! Thinking of you at this difficult time xx

  4. Oh Shoshi, I am so sorry to hear about your Mum and the ongoing difficulties with hubby's leg. Hopefully 2018 will be a better year for you all round. If cooking and baking makes you happy and helps take your mind off things then it is certainly not silly to do extra. I hope those kittens are behaving themselves too! Hugs, love and best wishes to you and your hubby. Sarah #12

  5. Oh dear sweet Shoshi, I’m so sorry to read of your darling mums passing, praying for you all in this, you certainly need a ton of prayers, there. Sending hugs too.. God be with you and guide you in all things and for all to go well with hubby’s leg being set successfully I pray also.
    Every blessing and mercy and grace of the LORD along the way, dear friend.
    Thanks so much for your share.
    Happy WOYWW! Shaz in Oz.x #2

    {Calligraphy Cards - Shaz in Oz}

  6. Oh dear it all happens at once. I am so sorry for your loss and the hard times you are facing. I hope your your hubby feels more comfortable and you can have some nice time on the run up to Christmas xxx
    Ellie #25

  7. Oh Shoshi, I am so sorry to read this sad post. Please accept my condolences - these things are never easy at any time of year, let alone Christmas. I hope also your hubby's leg can be sorted properly soon - just what you also didn't need!! Sending much love; take care. Helen #1 xx

  8. Such a sad post Shoshi but thank you for telling us. Sometimes we act so happy and inside we are not ... we are crying.....and I am crying for you. Your husband is correct you know, you will get through this. My prayers will be with you both....for healing and comfort and strength.
    Take care
    Christine #15

  9. Hi Shoshi, I am so sorry for your loss. I hope you and your husband have a restful and peaceful Christmas, and that his leg heals well. I too find cooking therapeutic. I have not tried that Delia Smith recipe but it sounds tasty! Sending you a big hug, Heather #6

  10. December 2nd 3 years ago, my father passed away he was just 69 years old. It is such a lot to bear especially at this time of year. My thoughts and wishes are with you and your family.
    Personally, I think you are an amazing lady- so much to have been through in the past year, and yet still thinking of how to make the best of each day, and thinking of others.
    Have a therapuetic, healing week with baking and kittens,

  11. Oh Shoshi, sorry to hear about your mum. I'm sending you big hugs, take care, Angela x12x

  12. So sorry to hear your sad news dear Shoshi, what a difficult time you are both having. I do hope your hubby's leg gets sorted out soon - I can empathize with you as my hubby developed sciatica a few weeks ago and he's hardly able to walk at all. He says it much much worse than the hip pain he had before his replacement op - it's so frustrating.
    Good luck with the paperwork regarding your mum, it can be very overwhelming can't it.
    I'm not joining in this week but just thought I'd mooch through some desks while I enjoy a hot cuppa in this chilly weather.
    Thinking of you,
    Diana x

  13. Oh Shoshi, I am so sorry for your loss, but I feel she is in a better place now, with no pain and suffering. I admire you so much for your upbeat attitude, making dinner, freezing potatoes (great tip- thanks!). Your hubby is certainly going through an ordeal as well, and there you are, the backbone of the family, keeping everything together. BIG hugs, and I hope the funeral goes well in the new year, and that your hubby finally gets what he needs, and that you (yes, YOU!) finally get some peace when it is all over and done with. My best regards, my sympathies for your loss, and my wish for a much better new year for you both. I wish I lived closer so I could come and give you a hug, and a cup of tea, in person. Lindart #27

  14. Hi Shoshi, I know you don't have time to even read your comments, but I'm just popping in to let you know that you're in my thoughts. Missed you on WOYWW - it's just not the same without you! Wishing you a peaceful, restful Christmas and I hope things will return to some kind of normality for you in the new year. xx

  15. Hi Shoshi, not joining in again - life - you know. Anyway wanted to send condolences re your mum and to say I hope you DH soon gets his leg sorted and makes a fairly swift recovery. Best wishes for 2018 Anne

    1. Thank you, Anne, very much appreciated.



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