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The Team Save Janet Report is Out! #TSJ #timeflies

Mostly because of the dog, our day got off to a rather early start which was kind of nice. We were finished breakfast before we often have started it and that left lots of time for other things. After making her own breakfast, coffee first of course, Janet had some emails to respond to and once completed asked if we could work on the old photos. She did a great job with the scanner again and we got a nice pile of paper transferred onto the computer.

I convinced Janet to try something other than grilled cheese for lunch and she enjoyed making a turkey breast sandwich for herself. Her kitchen skills are improving steadily and she needs very little coaching as long as she’s awake enough.

We tried to finish watching the Ladies Figure Skating today and got through the first half before Janet needed a nap. Knowing that the Olympics end tomorrow has Janet a little sad but The Voice starts Monday and that should fill the void nicely.

Yesterday’s pants shopping needed correcting today and as we drove to the mall before church we both wondered where the day had gone. We had that early start and it felt like we had so much time but it just flew by. We exchanged Janet’s pants and picked up a few other things Janet slowly lost her energy. The mall is bad for you. I wasn’t expecting much from Janet heading into church but she pulled off her best transfer into her seat yet. Very strong and deliberate and following my verbal cues exactly. While standing during one of the worship songs Janet let go of the pew in front of her for a few seconds and scratched her nose. I don’t even think she realized she was free standing but I sure did. Nice!

Janet helped put dinner together and chose to watch the rest of the figure skating after that which was a bad call as she fell asleep with six skaters to go. Guess we’ll try tomorrow. Praying for a solid night of sleep and a productive Sunday.

The Team Save Janet Report is Out! #TSJ #bath

Sleep in Sunday! And did we ever sleep in. By the time Janet was eating her toast and drinking her coffee it was time to Skype Mary/Gaga which routinely happens around 11am. Janet handled that conversation fairly well and was polite enough to not eat and talk at the same time. Heather was up right after that and I think Janet had trouble thinking of things to say to Heather because she had just said a lot to her mom.

Janet volunteered to keep going on digitizing her photo collection and we made good progress again before getting sidetracked by the Olympics. We agreed before the games started that there were only a few events we really wanted to watch and none of them were scheduled today but Janet asked to see if there was figuring skating on and sure enough there was and that pretty much put an end to any productivity. I did manage to give Janet a bath as she didn’t want to have one at Connect tomorrow and we are getting better at that for sure. She stayed pretty warm the whole time and was energized for the rest of the day which didn’t require much energy but it was fun relaxing and hanging out with her. Every chance I got I had Janet stand and take a few steps and once she even got up from the couch without me looking as I went for her wheelchair. She couldn’t maintain a standing position without me but I was impressed she made it up so fast.

It was another sombre trip back to Connect tonight and I really have to keep reminding myself she’s doing good things there that she can’t do living at home. Janet really wanted me to read to her in bed and I could see how tired she was so I made a bet with her. She said she could last through an hours worth of reading, I said no way and won easily. Her first snores were heard twenty minutes in then she woke up and denied she was sleeping. Three minutes after I started reading again she was snoring louder than ever and I called it a night up another Blizzard.

Praying for a night of deep and healing sleep, lots of energy and a positive attitude and a willingness to work hard at getting stronger.

The Team Save Janet Report is Out! #TSJ #sidestep

A bright sunny morning helped Janet and I get up and at em today albeit with no set agenda. After breakfast while watching Canada win gold and silver in Women’s Moguls we cleaned up from our wine club gathering last night with Janet able to empty the dishwasher full of wine glasses and also help me shrink the dining table back to every day size. We scanned a whole bunch more old photos into the computer with Janet manning the scanner again and doing what I believe has been a good job of identifying people and approximate dates of photos. We had some laughs and got a lot done before nap time that was spent more in reading than napping.

Janet executed a very nice transfer from her wheelchair to her seat in church tonight especially the side stepping part. She was very confident and well balanced, in fact all of her transfers were like that today with her only challenge remaining control of her right leg. I sense a little more muscle activity there but that doesn’t seem to be equating to an increase in control yet.

It has been a while since we brought home sushi for dinner and watched a movie and Janet was happy to do so tonight. We watched Captain Phillips and although it is not a Janet movie she enjoyed it and didn’t find it to be too scary or violent. A little wound up afterwards it was good the Olympics were on and we stayed up too late watching the Men’s Downhill partly so Janet could “forget” the movie.

Praying for a night of deep and healing sleep and for a productive day tomorrow.

The Team Save Janet Report is Out! #TSJ #Superbowl

Today ended up being Janet’s sleep in day and good thing. She never would have made it through the Superbowl without a nap otherwise. She managed to make her coffee and toast by herself before having a good Skype chat with Leslie. I noticed Janet correcting herself a little more now, saying no in answer to a question by default then switching to the correct answer seconds later. Good to see.

We continued our scrapbooking type work and finished off the one with all the greeting cards in it. The big project now is photographs and to start we are going to digitize them all and Janet was quite happy to sit by the scanner and place photos on it while I operated things on the computer end. The photos we did today were of school age Janet and it was fun trying to figure out how old she was in each picture as most are not dated. I think she guessed fairly accurately. One photo puzzled us more than others. Can you find her in this one? We have different opinions.Janet Pre School Class

Our strata had an information meeting in regards to a large landscaping project facing us and I wanted to go but Janet didn’t so I risked leaving her alone for forty five minutes and she was quite happy to do so. When I got back she was watching the Superbowl Pre-game show and had really enjoyed the interview with Denver head coach John Fox. She said he seems like a nice guy. I’m glad she was that tuned in while I was gone not just staring blankly. Apparently she even went to the bathroom on her own. I know she is capable of that so I believe she did. High five!

After a quick chat with the Calgary gang (plus Ottawa and Costa Mesa) it was time for some football. Janet had never been upset we weren’t going to a party or having anyone over to watch the game so she was ready but neither of us was ready for what we witnessed. Janet stayed interested throughout and made lots of intelligent comments along the way. It was nice to watch quietly with her.
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The return to Connect keeps getting more and more difficult, for both of us I think. Janet was a little crabby and just wanted to get ready for bed and read even though it was only 8:30. I didn’t expect going to the gym or anything but thought she could at least help set her calendar for the week. Nope, bed it was, and ten minutes into the read she was sleeping. It’s like she willed her way through the football game then crashed. It was a good day all around and I think she’ll have a solid week. Praying for full and complete healing and thanking Jesus for every minute I get to spend with my beautiful wife.
Janet School Gr12

Kicking In. A relaxing day as the Botox takes effect. #TSJ

A sleep in Saturday for sure as Janet opened her eyes at 7:30 then happily went back to sleep until 9:30. That set the pace for a relaxing day hanging out at home. She chose her traditional breakfast which we enjoyed together with no idea what we would do next. Fortunately Janet asked to watch TV while I went to shower and while searching for something to watch I noticed an NBA playoff game about to start. I thought they started Sunday so we scrambled to the computer to fill out our brackets in Raju’s annual Pool. We got our picks in just in time and Janet enjoyed the process making some good choices in winners but I think she has too many series going the full seven games. Anyways it’s something she enjoys doing and we had basketball on in the background all day.

The only scheduled event of the day was a Skype chat with Leslie that went well despite some technical challenges. Heather checked in with us later on and it was good for Janet to catch up with both of them. I’ve had to resurrect my role as physio therapist while Janet is at home so we can maximize the potential of the Botox and when I stretched her legs this afternoon I noticed an improvement right away. It was even more noticeable tonight as I was able to get her left leg down to almost where we used to be able to get it in the 4B days. Janet is not too happy that we are doing this stretching stuff at home but she was OK with lounging with her legs up in her wheelchair. Her standing for transfers was quite good today as well and I sense a little confidence coming back there. That increase in confidence saved her from a total meltdown after seeing some pictures of herself from her KGH days. I had just shown her photos from Raju and Laurel’s wedding and at the end of those there were a few unflattering pictures of Janet and she got a little upset but kind of accepted that she’s come a long way. She asked me to turn them off which I did and she was on the verge of really crying about it but held it off. A nice improvement.

Since the day started late, nap time was late too but Janet did have a brief one that allowed her to do a good job making a salad to go with dinner tonight and she really enjoyed watching The Voice together especially since I made popcorn for us. All in all it was a very relaxing day at home just making things up as we went along. One highlight for me came as we were doing the nightly rundown of the day and as I mentioned the first couple of things we did Janet chimed in with “and we picked our teams”. Love my sports junkie and nice to see a little short term memory action.

Praying for a restful night that brings lots of energy and awareness for tomorrow.

Anniversary. We celebrate ten years together. #TSJ

April 19, 2003. Lynn Valley United Church

April 19, 2003. Lynn Valley United Church


Today I am happy to say is the tenth anniversary of Janet and I being married. At our age, ten is not a huge number for married years but boy has a lot happened over that time. All seven of “our” kids are “grown up” and are out on their own, we moved to Kelowna and have been through career changes and life changes and have developed a network of friends and supporters unlike anything either of us has ever had. I am blessed to be married to Janet and we are blessed with family and friends that we love dearly.

The day together got off to a bit of a rough start as I delayed my arrival so that Janet could do her routine things, including a nap and be rested and ready for our dinner date tonight leading into the weekend at home. Janet was in bed when I got to Connect but wasn’t sleeping and after the surprise of seeing me wore off she started crying as she had been waiting for me all afternoon. I told her last night I’d see her towards the end of her nap and we would get ready to go out to dinner. She remembered the going out for dinner part well as she refused lunch but forgot about the arriving after nap time part. It’s nice to be wanted but that wasn’t the way I wanted to start the weekend. After lots of talking while laying down with her she fell asleep for an hour and awoke refreshed and determined to go out. I had brought some fancier clothes to try on her for dining out but the pants that barely fit her a month ago no longer do so back to the usual pants we went with a slightly dressier shirt than normal.

Dinner was at Bouchons, a French bistro in downtown Kelowna. I had showed Janet the menus from there and one other restaurant that we both really like and she chose Bouchons and a great choice it was. Very good service, beautifully presented and prepared food, a good wine list and a really cute room that is bright and lively without being loud. Janet really enjoyed her dinner, even commenting on it later on her own, something that never happens. I’m sure it was the food but it could have been the wine too. Janet actually had two glasses tonight as the baked pear tartlet she started with commanded a lovely Sauternes to accompany it. A great start and it was pretty funny watching her drink the Sauternes and a glass of Viognier during the main course. Just before the mains arrived I presented Janet with an anniversary ring. Something I would not have gotten away with prior to the aneurysm. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that she knew how to put it on and on the correct finger too. There is a video of the presentation on Keek.

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Janet chose ice cream at home for dessert in typical Janet style and we enjoyed that while I showed her our wedding pictures from ten years ago. There were lots of laughs, a few surprises and some memories kicking in as we scrolled through them all. We both have to laugh at the fact there isn’t one photo of just the two of us on that day. Silly us.

Janet went to bed, full and happy and looking forward to a relaxing day tomorrow.

The intent of this blog has never been to shine a light on myself at all and I don’t want you to read this next story in that way. I include it so that we all may remember the power of words and the importance of taking action.

As Janet and I were leaving Bouchons we spent a few minutes having the hostess take our picture and after that we went outside so I had room to put Janet’s coat on. While doing that a gentleman who had been at the table next to us came out of the restaurant saying he wanted to thank me. My first response to him was “for what?” but I knew by the look on his face what he was going to say next. He went on to praise me for my care and love of Janet and how inspired he was to see us together. I’m never sure how to respond to compliments like that so I reiterated by commitment to Janet and thanked him. I truly thank him for leaving his table, coming outside to shake my hand and “thank me”. Kind words delivered that way have enormous power. Janet almost cried after he left saying “that was really nice” and I am touched thinking about it now. Something prompted him to take the risk and come out and talk to us and by obeying that prompt he made two people very happy. It has been my prayer since very early on in this journey that Janet’s situation be used to inspire others. That prayer has been answered many times and I pray it is many more. If you get a chance to say a kind word to someone, anyone, do it.

Thanking God for everything.