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Betty’s Week

By Betty Shearer

  We were having a light week last week, so Wednesday at noon I left for Panola County where I helped answer questions about things needed to be decided in the new bath going in at Moms.
  On Friday builder Steve Ford gave me a list of supplies needed for this project and late in the afternoon Jimmie and I went shopping. It’s not easy to find exactly what you want, so it took many hours to find the products, write down the numbers, prices, etc. Told Jimmy that if we were building a whole house we’d have to start early to stay ahead of the carpenters. Making all these decisions is hard work. Left notes on the dining table that I hope Steve can make heads or tails of. If not he knows just to use his best judgement.
  Most of my weekend was spent in Golding Living Nursing Home with Mom. Thanks to all of you who has asked about her and lifted her up in your prayers.
  She is doing very well physically. She can now get out of bed, onto her walker and into her wheelchair. She does rehab from one to two hours a day and then sits up for several hours. Her incision has healed nicely and I’m sure the staples will be taken out soon. Her appetite is pretty good—she eats most anything we poke into her mouth and the menu is pretty good for institutional foods. I had a piece of meat loaf (they brought two big pieces) in a whole wheat roll one night and it was excellent. Also sampled her green bean casserole, which was also very good. They serve large portions—no way Mom can eat it all. She does eat all the fruit and cobblers, and drinks all the tea and milk, though.
  Mom is having a little trouble learning to wear gowns. All her life she’s worn PJs and she  definitely prefers them. However, I’m sure it won’t be long before her gown days will be over—they are at present easier to handle with the maneuvers she has to do.
  When you sit in a hospital or nursing you get in  lots of TV time, lots of reading, and lots of just reminiscing time. This past weekend was an excellent time for the latter.
  Ten years ago Ed and I had our last great weekend outing. We left the Valley at noon on Wednesday, as I did last week,  but we enjoyed a ride through the Arkansas countryside to Hot Springs, where we decided to stop for the night.
    We just picked a motel and when we were eating breakfast, found we were across from the race track. Of course it was closed for the season, but we still took a stroll around the area before continuing our vacation. Went up Scenic 7 to Petti Jean Mountain and the Auto Museum.
    Saw many exciting vintage cars, including the Blackmur T-model and one of President Clinton’s autos. The folks were so friendly and told us all about all the cars and also introduced us to the big show, which was to be held the following June. We took all the brochures and made plans to come back—unfortunately that didn’t happen.
  Then we went back to the main road, stopping for a walk up to the falls. This was beautiful scenery. It was a cool, damp day, so we had the area all to ourselves—made for a very romantic afternoon and one I’ll treasure always.
  Back to Scenic 7, we found a great little country restaurant, with some of the best food I’ve ever eaten. The proprietor was cook, waiter and bottle washer and he was good at all these jobs– plus he was a great PR person for the area.
  We then went on up to the northern part of the state where we spent the night at Hamilton–I think. Found a late night snack and dessert that was excellent and then awoke to a wonderful breakfast. Food was so good on this entire trip that if we’d had more than five days, I’d have had to bought a larger wardrobe.
  It was then on to our destination, Eureka Springs, where we had planned to ride the scenic railroad. Unfortunately we’d rambled so much that the train had completed its season the day before. No matter, we would ride it next year—another event that was not to materialize.
  We never did waste a day—there is always something to do. We choose to spend the day in the Eureka Springs Botanical Gardens—an excellent selection. The five mile drive up is beautiful, if a bit scary for me—I don’t like cliffs and narrow roads. The hike around the gardens is about five or six miles and it’s definitely worth the effort. The flowers were beautiful, the coy pond was huge and the fish were so  playful and pretty. About halfway out we encountered a good rain storm and had to run for cover in a refreshment shed. Spent an hour or so there, again alone—another romantic interlude.     
    Think God was rewarding us for something or maybe preparing me for the long separation that was to come. A pickup vehicle came by and offered us a ride back to the main pavilion, we declined, choosing to walk hand in hand back to the potting shed and green houses. Here we got lots of information and saw so many beautiful plants and flowers. Again the staff was friendly and informative. They answered all our questions and didn’t seem to mind at all that some of them were probably a bit unorthodox. Ed did want to know everything and was smart enough to ask.
  Closing time came and they stayed with us even a little past it before we finally let them go home.
  Back down the mountain, we ate supper in a small little restaurant, with some more delicious food. Then it was off to see the Passion Play for a second time. It was even better than our first visit. We had better seats and the cool weather and clear sky was wonderful. Again, I cried through most of it and Ed supplied a hankie and arms to hold me.
  Next morning we went to our favorite breakfast place—the War Eagle Mill. After eating we spent a little time there and then it was on to Mountain View for dinner and a show. It was the last night of the season and the Cowboys telltale event, along with music. This trip was not planned, we just happened to arrive on the right weekend.
  Made lots of friends at the show, one family even invited us to spend the night with them. We found a motel room, though, and after a great night’s sleep and breakfast at our favorite spot, it was back to the Valley where a routine life continued until Ed’s death on December 29. Life has never been the same since that day.
  We had Sunday School High Attendance Day at Woodland Hills Sunday and the count was almost double our usual number. Everyone seemed to have a great time, with a delicious soup and stew lunch, then games, a cakewalk, and many other fun activities in the afternoon.
  The Blue Devils were again victorious Friday night, soundly defeating the Independence team. Congratulations, boys.
  I’ve been rooting for Independence and our former Defensive Coordinator Richard Russo when their opposition was not the Devils. Be pulling for you again next week, Richard.

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