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(Like so many pieces of laundry, morning thoughts aren’t usually organized.)

May 22 – 31, 2019 Part III

Living with Parkinson’s

Phyllis and Sam Turner ©2019

APDA: American Parkinson Disease Association
CH: Cynthia Holmes, Ph.D. Neurology
CPAP: Continuous Positive Airway Pressure mask (for Sleep Apnea).
DBS: Deep Brain Stimulation (much improved since Michael J. Fox!)
HEH: Happily Ever After!
HS: Harvey Stanbrough Pro-writer and mentor(
IBS: Irritable Bowel Syndrome (often associated with PD)
MJFF: Michael J. Fox Foundation
PSG: Parkinson’s Support Group(s)
PD: Parkinson’s Disease
PMD: PARKINSON & Movement Disorder Alliance
PJ: Phyllis – my wife: SWOMBO (She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed) A contributor and #1 editor.
PT: Personal trainer Tresha,  including daily in-home exercise assignments for PD
TC: Tai Chi Chuan for balance and body health once a week
TCF: The Compassionate Friends (For parents who have experienced the death of a child or sibling.)
WIP: Work in Progress (32º North)  I write every chance I get.  Writing is my vacation!
YISKA: Navajo for Darkness has passed.  (also the name of Sara’s Navajo Sheepdog who barks in Navajo!)

05.22.19: Parkinson’s:  Some days are good; others not so much. At our group support meeting yesterday, several of the participants mentioned that they seemed better in the morning after a good night’s sleep, but by noon, their tremors were back. Many have digestive problems. “Don’t drink with a straw. There will be difficulty swallowing.” Several members seem to have lost their vocal power and speak softly. Speech Therapy can help this condition.  In fact, Speech Therapy is gaining attention among  Movement Specialists as a necessary part of  PD therapy.

On another subject: PJ and I watched a Judy Dench (PBS) Special on Judy’s passion for trees. I get a sense of calm when I am in a ponderosa pine forest. Maybe it is because I grew up amongst them on the South Rim of Grand Canyon.

1400-1500: Shot 36 arrows at the club @ 20 yards with only two bullseyes. Must keep my right elbow up and back. POSTURE! Where have I heard that before, Tresha?

PD: Started the MJFF INSIGHT Survey. Two and a half hours. Think of going to a new Primary Care Doctor and filling out all the forms and more.

05/23/19: 0600: I took 45 minutes to get dressed. The back pocket buttons are a challenge, especially the left pocket.  I will not wake up SWAMBO for help. I know better!

1000: Tai Chi, where we worked on movements of arms, knees and toes, breathing, and posture. (Tresha: take note.)

Remembering Pines

Here comes
Another one
He’s safe
How do you know?
From the others
Near the Great Canyon
or the Catalinas
or the Redwoods
He understands
a little
He doesn’t visit often
He hears us
How can he hear?
We give him
He’s sitting beneath us.
He’s listening.
I can hear him


1400: Practiced archery in the back yard. Shot sixty arrows. Grouping tighter, but still off the yellow.  Getting closer to center. Must hold my right arm back in line with the arrow.

05.24.19: 0700: Met a new PT at Body Central for an assessment. PJ has an appointment for next Wednesday at 1000 for her back. 0900: Randy from Geeks spent an hour with us working on our computers.   My sound is back. (It never left!) My printer works. My files are clear.  Everything seems to be working; all in about twenty minutes.  He moved to PJ’s office and helped her.

The house smells of garbanzo beans! Swombo gave me directions for fixing them. They “rested” in the pot overnight.

Breaking News!


Yes, it’s been on the market in soft cover for a few months. It’s on all electronic readers. All of our books are now digital for those who prefer a tablet to paper pages.

1300: Tired.  Slept for three hours.  Man! I don’t want this to be a habit.

05.25.19 0700: Finished the MJFF Insight Survey.  Now for the DNA testing.

Helena cuts checkerboard patterns.

She likes to show off her creative style. This being their last week in Tucson, I told them they could each do half of my head. (For five bucks, per barber, I can’t complain.)

Gailian takes a concentrated approach.

They can work their way through college as creative barbers! It has been a delight having them as neighbors. Swambo and I wish them and their parents good fortune as they continue their Life Adventure.

1445:  Windy! No shooting this afternoon.  However, I made it through the “nap window” without napping. Got the laundry finished and packed emergency clothes in Matrix.

05.29.19: These hollyhocks are descendants of a set of plantings Larry Mann gave me years ago. Like his family, they have spread to surrounding settlements.  They are a welcome greeting to my dear wife Phyllis Jane, who celebrates her Birthday this day. HAPPY BIRTHDAY,     SWOMBO!

We’ll go out to dinner.  Someplace special.  Jonathan’s, or Longhorn Steakhouse, maybe? You may remember: she can now cut her own steak.

Remember this?  Creative Barber, Helena fit the last pieces together while Gailian was cutting her half of my hair. (There are more broken pieces under the black plastic.  Maybe they can be fitted into the empty space.) The lid can then be glued to the top.

0655: Time for PJ to awaken so we can go to church. She’ll drive her Buick.

PD?:  I just noticed…I can’t snap my fingers!  Either hand.  When did I lose that skill?  Do any of you have a similar problem?  Is this a result of PD?

1230: Tired again.  I’ll take a short nap.  Then, we’ll go out to dinner.1530: Not very short.

1600: Longhorn Steakhouse for early dinner. In honor of Joe, I ordered a Hawaiin ribeye.  He’s right: it is excellent. Next time, we’ll bring him with us.

2000: Watched the 30th annual Memorial Day Program on PBS.  Brought us both to tears –over and over.

05.27.19:0700:  PJ and I sat in the patio and listened to the quail calling. We counted 12 babies feeding under our feeder.

1100: Joe and Ethan came over to take us to lunch and celebrate PJ’s Birthday.  We ate at BJ’s. What fun it was to have the four of us. Ethan told us about the plants that he brought home for the school greenhouse: peppers, grapevines, artichokes, etc. We discussed his school goals for this summer (He’ll be a sophomore next Fall.) He will be taking private lessons on the cornet and tuba.  He’ll also be on a 13-day Boy Scout camp in New Mexico. While he was at the house, he strung some chicken wire across to lines for the grape vines to attach. Next time he visits, I’ll give him some St. John’s Bread seeds to plant.

05.28.19: Dentist at 0700. Quail Run Writers at 0900. Pauletta dipped her toe into the fiction genre for her first time, sharing a story about winning the lottery and the not-so-pleasant results. Bev continued to leave us hanging (wanting more) with her look-alike ladies.  Flo wrote of early days when she worked at her college and the parties she had with the students and distraught neighbors who had wild imaginations. Phyllis presented a short letter written to the Jupiter, Florida, Historical Society to see if they would be interested in a childhood experience working for the U. S. Coast Guard.  Sam continued with four pages of his WIP: Thirty-Two Degrees North.

05,29.19: PT @0745 with Tresha.  10:00 PT for PJ @Body Central.  Sometime after that, I’ll shoot at the club. 1400: Practiced.  Shot 60 arrows. Getting closer to the yellow.  Home by 1530.  I’ll shoot tomorrow when they open at 1000. PJ is fixin’ chicken.  This evening, we found the Netflix production of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society! We stayed up late (for us) to watch the whole thing. Many of the actors we recognized from Downton Abby.  PJ remembered reading the book years ago.

05.30.19: 0700: Light schedule: only two appointments.  0900: I got monthly supplies at Wild Birds Unlimited.  1000: Drove from there to Robinson’s archery and shot 72 arrows. The last 12 were done after a site adjustment. I’m hitting two out of three in the bulls-eye. My left hand is stiff this afternoon.  1130: took PJ to lunch and met with Carl, Guy, and Larry for the first time at a new restaurant called Smokin’ Butts. Brisket seemed to be the most popular, although PJ and I had pulled pork. Next time, we will try the brisket. Carl and Guy could be out of the old West with their curly beards and long hair. No picture. Sorry. 1300: Took a two-hour nap. I made pulled pork wraps from leftovers for dinner. We watched the news and went to bed by 2100.

05.31.19: Slept late.  Up at 0630. By 0900, we were walking in the mall.

We note that Brett’s pod is almost full. Saturday, he gets a little 4 ft.² trailer to load up his camping gear. They plan to leave Sunday or maybe Monday morning. They are moving to Oregon, where her parents live.  They have been our neighbors for 11 or 12 years. We fixed a care package for them for their trip. A bird magazine, a 2015 Arizona Highways magazine, and a book by Julie Andrews The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles. These are in a paper bag with specific instructions to not open until they’re on the road and north, past Picacho Peak. I have to get it over to Corinna soon.  The longer it stays here, the more we add new items.

Thanks to all of you for reading (and responding).  They won’t always be this long.  Remember: Tomorrow is RABBITT DAY!

Blessings to all.

Sam and Phyllis.

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