Iwo Gima

Iwo Gima
Marine Corps Marathon

Sunday, November 22, 2015

November 22, 2015

For those that haven't noticed, I have been a little irregular in my blog posts, and I would like to take this time to let everyone know, that the present pattern will be continuing. Jason has been able to heal up a little more and he is now off the wound-vac, and unless something drastic happens, he will remain off the wound-vac. Over the coarse of time I will be making fewer and fewer entries, until I get down to the point of maybe one a week, though honestly I don't see that happening for quite some time.

Linda has been working to get things ready for Thanksgiving, and even getting some things ready for the Christmas Holiday. Speaking of the Christmas Holiday, we were contacted by the "Fire Club," from the Palomar Community College and they asked if they could come and put up the Christmas decorations, on the house. They also want to present Jason with a nice REAL tree. Heck, we have the room in the house for a large tree, so we're going to be getting one. Like many of the other things that are a part of Jason's life, the decorating is going to be covered by some local news stations. If I can get the information out on the blog, about which station will be covering, I will.

We managed to get some things done this weekend, and eliminated a few more containers (boxes), so we're very happy about that. Jason is showing some patience in all this, as we both know that he would like to see the garage emptied of most of the storage things... To be honest, I would like to see them out of the garage, also, it is just going to take some time. Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Friday, November 20, 2015

November 20, 2015

I haven't posted much in the past couple of days, mostly because there wasn't much to post. I wasn't sure if that is a good thing or not, or just a natural development of Jason's overall progress. Then I got to thinking (I try to do this once in a while) and it occurred to me that I hadn't mentioned much about Jason getting away from the Wound-Vac. He hasn't had to use the wound-vac for a few days now, and both he and I are much happier about that. He is much more comfortable and I don't have to deal with the complexity of dressing changes. When he can just use the Hydraphera-Blue and basic pads I can get the dressing change done in a matter of just a few minutes. The wound-vac, when it has to be changed, is much more complicated. Anyway, it is also a reflection of the fact that they wound is doing much better.

Today, we had a special visitor, two actually - Joe Mantegna and Dan Ramm stopped by for a visit, on their way to the Wounded Warrior Marine Corps Ball. Joe was their MC, and it took place (actually still happening at the time of me writing this) in San Diego. For those that don't know, Joe is the main guy with Criminal Minds, and Dan is his personal assistant. Joe first met Jason and I back in 2011, when Jason was still at Bethesda. Come to think of it, that is where he met Linda, too, only that time was his second visit to Jason. Anyway, since he is an ambassador for the Gary Sinise Foundation, and we've gotten to know him a bit, it seemed appropriate to have him come by and see the new house and visit with Jason. One of the more interesting bits of information we learned with his visit, is that he and his wife also just celebrated their 40th anniversary, only their's was three weeks earlier than ours.

This weekend is a general clean up weekend, as we attempt to get ready for the Thanksgiving Holiday, next week. It really is going to be the only opportunity for us to get some of the heavier things moved, since I am working during the day. I feel like Linda and I are getting more settled in to a new routine, and that life is starting to come back to a more regular (normal?) pace... I just hope it continues that way. Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

November 17, 2015

I struggle to write a post that is interesting and tells you, the reader, something new. Jason has been in his bed, for the better part of 3 months, and is still in a very strong and positive mood. His hair and beard are getting pretty long, and he has no intention of cutting either of them - at least not at this time. I have been spending more and more time working, as the job is getting busier and busier, so that means Linda is doing more and more to take care of the girls and take care of Jason's needs, as they come along. The good part is that she has that "Mother" gear already from when she raised all our sons, so this is kind of an extension of those years... the house is just a lot bigger.

I did get a chance to walk my garden today, and most of it is doing well. The winter squash seems to be struggling a little right now, so I need to keep an eye on it. Everything else is alive and there is even a bell pepper on the vine - a little one. I would like to get some cages around the tomatoes, so that they have something to grow on, so I'll see about taking care of that this weekend, and the lettuce is doing great. The garden is to allow the girls to watch the plants grow, and see the cycle of nature at a level they can understand, and next year we'll take a look at growing other things, with the girls doing the planting.

Tomorrow, Jason will be going in to Wound Care, and Linda will be going with him. I suspect they will tell him that the wounds are doing better and continue to heal, slowly, and that the wound vac will still need to be on for another couple of weeks. I'll be sitting at my desk, working on the computer and staying home. Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Monday, November 16, 2015

November 16, 2015

We came home a little earlier than originally planned, due to a message we received from Jason. Apparently he was experiencing some difficulties with the catheter, again, and this time he was ahead of the discomfort. He wanted to go into Camp Pendleton Hospital and get it corrected. I think he would really rather have gone into Balboa, where they are much more familiar with him, and would have been able to address anything else that might have come up. As it was, nothing else did come up so he just had to deal with the ER staff again.

He was at Camp Pendleton when Linda and I pulled into the driveway, and back at the house about an hour, or so, later. He was wanting a shower and dressing change, so we got that knocked out, right away, and then he was much more comfortable, all the way around. As it was, Linda and I were very grateful for the help Jon and his wife Katie provided. The report back from Stacy and Jackie was good, and we were very happy and pleased about that. Loretta came in and took over for Jon and Katie, on Sunday, and took the girls to school this morning. She also helped with a couple other things around the house, and patio, so we felt that we were very fortunate for all the coverage we were able to secure.

Today, Linda and I picked up the girls, from the bus stop, once they were dropped off. They were very happy to see us, and both of them talked steadily for the next several minutes. The great part was that in the process of them doing the complete update, we got to find out about things going on at the school, as well as how the weekend went. We were very pleased to hear that they liked Jon and Katie, and their son Travis.

The rest of the day, today, went rather smoothly, and we were able to get caught up on some of the things going on, and some of the things we're getting more and more involved with. Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

November 12, 2015

These last few days have been particularly busy at the Ross household. First there was the visit from Team Depot, and they built a new play area and garden area, and it literally took 12 hours to accomplish. They all stayed and got it all done, including the leveling of the play area with rubber material, so that if the kids were to fall, it wouldn't feel too bad. They brought new patio furniture and even an nice gas grill, that I might start using before this year is out.

Yesterday was Veteran's Day, and it was an amazingly relaxed day for us. We all (Jason, too) went downtown Fallbrook, and watched their Veteran's Day Parade, and it reminded us of some of the parades we used to see in Livermore. Very simple and a lot of support from the city residence. Linda and I were able to just totally relax and enjoy each other's company, and Jason was able to enjoy his new video game. I also planted my winter garden, though "winter" may be a bit misleading. I understand that there are some days here, where it does get down in the 40's, and that is getting cool. It just doesn't seem to ever get really cold around here.

Today the guys were back at the house to finish the watering system on the garden, and it looked pretty good when they were done. There was also the two teams of vendors working on the communication/intercom system for the house. With the new gate, that Jason recently had installed, we can now see who wants access through the gate. There are a few other minor steps to be set, and they should have that completed tomorrow. Then there was the challenge of the network and security that had to be "fixed." I work from the house, and depend greatly on the network being as stable as it can be. Today it was bouncing all over the place, and I was dropped from calls a couple of times. I was just happy these were team calls, and not customer calls. It looks like they got to be about 98% finished with that, and will also be coming back to finish that.

Tomorrow, Linda and I will be taking off for Julian, to spend a few days together to celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary. The Gary Sinise Foundation has made it possible for us to take a few days off, and just plain relax. Linda has been working pretty hard around here, and can use the rest, just as I can too. I have to admit I haven't been working physically as hard as she has, but I need to rest time as well.

I helped Jason with his shower today, and then did a dressing change. Happy to report that his right side is looking much better, and that he continues to make progress. I know it is getting tougher on him, having to stay down and in bed, most of the day. The good part is that because he is doing so much better, he can stay up a little longer each day, and by the time we take our "family" vacation in December, he should be able to stay up in his chair for 2 or more hours, each day. I've included some pictures, as I haven't posted any in a while. Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Mike Schlitz, Stephanie Lanier, Jason and that other guy 

Team Depot taking a lunch break

Team Depot and Mike Amos with Jason Ross getting a group picture

Jackie was very happy and excited about everything

Jackie and Stacy couldn't wait to try out the swings 
Grandpa still has to help Jackie on the swings

Team Depot working to get it all done while there is still day light

Stacy trying out the "trapeze" 

Stacy seeing the world from a different perspective

Everything just about ready for testing

Some of the Team Depot are still kids at heart

Stacy testing out the slide

The girls really getting into the play area

Stacy on the other slide

Jackie sliding down for more fun

A couple of group shots of Team Depot, at it is finally done!

Another group shot of Team Depot

Monday, November 9, 2015

November 9, 2015

Jason's wounds are continuing to improve and because of Veteran's Day, on Wednesday, he will be going in to Wound Care, at Balboa, tomorrow. I suspect that they won't be making many changes, and that the wound-vac will continue, at least for another couple of weeks, and then possibly get back to the previous wound care, and not have to deal with the vac anymore.

On Thursday we will be having a conference call (Skype) with the team at Cal Poly, and be discussing some of their ideas, and seeing just what they think they can accomplish. My concern is the technology side of the call, as the network and signal strengths around here are sometimes pretty poor (thanks, AT&T). We really don't have any other options, at this point, so we're effectively stuck with them as a provider.

We've been busy with a number of things, and look forward to a little bit of a rest this coming weekend. We will be heading up to Julian for our 40th anniversary, and doing our best to get some good old fashion R&R. While we're gone, we'll have a couple staying with Jason, and helping him however the needs arise. Jon and Katie, are a couple we met, through our travels with the Navy health system, and they are anxious to help out. As a bonus, Jon is a corpsman, so he has total comfort in working with wound dressings, and Jason is comfortable working with Jon... and that makes us comfortable.

Jason has been staying down, as much as he can, though somethings that come up will get him up and moving. Like today he went to a parent-teacher discussion, and it was great seeing him wanting to be the lead on this. He was gone for a bit more than an hour, and so it wasn't too difficult for him. As soon as he got back home he was back down. Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.

Friday, November 6, 2015

November 6, 2015

Just a quick update on Jason and the family, so that you'll all  know that he is doing well and that we're all continuing to have faith that things are going in the right direction. Jason is doing well, and even getting out of bed every now and again. He usually isn't up for more than a few minutes; its just nice to see him moving around, and he doesn't have an appointment to go to.

I think that I might get out on the bike tomorrow morning, early, and see if I can get in a few miles of easier riding. The main highway, that is close to the house has been under construction for expansion, since we have been here, and about a year or more, before we arrived. They made a major "lane change" yesterday, and effectively closed off the old road. I saw this today and said, I need to get out on my bike and ride that road; especially since I shouldn't encounter any traffic, other than maybe another bicycle. The road work is to help straighten the highway, and to widen it. They are supposed to be completed with it in another year and a half. I'll be glad to see it complete.

We have some general clean up tomorrow, and I'll be doing some work around the house, and Linda will be doing some work inside the house, but before that happens we will be taking Linda's parents to the Lawrence Welk Resort for a tour in celebration of her mom's 80th birthday. Her parents were big fans of Mr. Welk, so this is something that is very exciting for them. Linda and I went there today and it looks very nice, though I hope Linda's parents aren't disappointed. I guess we'll just have to wait and see. Thank you, for all the continued support and prayers. Take care and stay positive.