Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Recovering and a Fall Retreat

The best and most beautiful things in the worldcannot be seen or even touched - they must be felt with the heart.Helen Keller

Ray is recovering. He is using a CPM (continuous passive motion) machine for 3 hours a day that moves his arm. His arm fits in the area shown by the white arrow. His hand sits on that black ball thing.

He also uses a Cyro Cuff (an ice machine) for 3 hours a day. The blue cuff where the white arrow is pointing, sits on his shoulder and wide straps wrap around his upper body for stability. Ice water is pumped through the tube into the cuff that is covering his shoulder.

He also has about 1 hour of exercises a day. So he is busy 2 hours and 20 minutes three times a day. Then we also have doctor appointments and physical therapy which are about 35 minutes away. Of course everything takes longer especially since he is right handed and this is his right shoulder.

There is lots that go on each day but the days all feel very much alike - Ray says he is living Groundhog Day - did you ever see the movie? The PT is painful at times but he's handling it well. Sadly, we have been warned that the PT will be harder when he quits wearing the sling.

We did have some fun when Ray wore the shirt I made for him to visit his surgeon, Dr. Sathoff. The doctor couldn't quit laughing - he said it made his day.
Body by Sathoff shirt
Dr. Sathoff has done three surgeries on Ray so I listed them on the back of the shirt.
Back of Body by Sathoff shirt
During surgery, Ray had a gown with a remote so he could regulate the temperature - it is supposed to aid in healing. He said it was really nice especially while he was waiting his turn in surgery.

Happily, things have changed tremendously since Ray had the same surgery on his left shoulder 18 years ago.


Our fall retreat (4 friends) was last weekend. It was only about 15 minutes away from me so I was able to  be there for three afternoons. Although not ideal, it was a fun break. My time was limited so I didn't take any photos of the great projects that the others were making. I did get a few pictures of my projects in the last couple of days at home.

I finished 40 more blocks for this quilt. I'm about half way! The scrappy log cabin squares will finish at 4" by 4".

I finished all of the blocks for this Courthouse Steps quilt. These blocks will finish at 12" by 12".

I made a few string blocks for this quilt.

I sewed for about a half hour each morning at home during the retreat. I worked on my Crosswalk quilt. 

I have now finished all of the colored strips - just need to trim the strips, sew on the white pieces and trim into squares.

Lately, I've been trying to manage some of my smaller scraps. With four quilts, I was hoping to see more scraps disappear!


We are hanging in there and doing pretty good. Yesterday at physical therapy, I sat with a lady in the waiting room. Her husband has prostate cancer that is now in the bones. He was doing PT to help relieve some headaches/dizziness. She was telling me he has less than 3 years to live and his personality is already changing from the pain. The pain will only get worse. I was happy that I had 45 minutes to sit and talk with (but mostly listen to) her. I decided that there was definitely a reason I stayed in the waiting room for the first time - I think she really needed a friendly ear. I'll keep her and her husband in my prayers. As we left the hospital, I was counting our blessings.


  1. So glad to hear you got to go to limited retreat and get away from the recovery ward! I am sure you needed the time. Glad Ray is recovering well and has all the extra medical aid devices to get him thru. The PT and daily work out can eat up every minute. That shirt is a good one! His badge of honor to wear.

  2. Oh my goodness! Ray’s daily routine sounds very challenging. Wish him all the best from us. Your quilts are like a breath of fresh air...so colourful and beautiful!

  3. Poor Ray. Hope he heals right on schedule, or even faster. Sorry for that poor man and his wife, too. Gotta be hard on both of them. Glad you got some time for yourself.

  4. Wow! You really made a LOT of progress during your limited sewing time. Nicely done!!



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