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Monday, May 20, 2019

Time Marches On

It's become a bit of a "Groundhog Day" existence here at our South Carolina home.  My Dad is still living here which has really been an adjustment for us.  He is a 97 year old man with an 18 year old's mindset.  He still thinks he can do anything, until he takes a "digger" and I have to pick him up off the floor. 

One of us has to be physically present with him at all times to monitor his movements.  Thankfully we have been able to hire a respite company to have a companion with him two days a week for several hours so Marti and I can get out and do some of the things we need to do.  He doesn't like the companions, he calls them "baby sitters".  We call them angels!  :c)

Since Dad came to live with us last July, we've had three ambulance trips to the hospital, once for the broken hip, once for what appeared to be a stroke (it wasn't) and once for severe chest pains.  His ticker is getting a little worn out.  But he's happy, eating well and watching his favorite TV shows:  Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy.  I never really watched those shows before, now I'm not thrilled I watch them now, they make me feel really stupid.  Maybe I shouldn't have slept so much in school!

We are planning a Disney World trip first week of June with our grandsons Andrew and Owen.  My older brother Jon, who recently retired, is coming down from NJ to stay with Dad.  That's a great relief to know Dad will be well cared for and will enjoy somebody else to watch Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy with.  ;c)

I've been getting the Journey ready for the trip, I serviced the generator myself but had to make an appointment with a Freightliner dealer for the engine oil/filter and chassis service because I have no place to handle 20 quarts of used engine oil. On the appointment date I drove the Journey down only to find out they never got me on the schedule and were not able to do it.  Thankfully since I'm retired, I was able to reschedule another date for the next week.

Drove to the next  week appointment and ended up cooling my heels in the truckers lounge for FIVE hours.  I learned two things from this experience:  In the future, I'll stick to using Speedco shops for the Journey's service (which usually takes no more than and hour) and that truckers are very touchy-feely.  The truckers in the lounge with me were mesmerized by watching Dr. Phil on TV.  The whole five hours.  I was enlightened to  discover after five hours I am not touchy-feely.

The Journey lives in a nearby storage lot where I check on it regularly and about every 4-6 weeks run it around.  I am amazed at how dirty it gets just sitting still.  It gave me great satisfaction to be able to bring it to the paved lot next to our house (we live on a dead end street) to wash it and go over all the systems.  I tossed all the can goods we had left in the cabinets, they were all over two years old, and gave the carpets a good cleaning.  More scrubbing will be done over the next week.

I went to replace the water filter and fill the water tank to flush the antifreeze out and found the filter canister was cracked on the bottom.  A call to Lichtsinn Motors in Iowa got a new one mailed out to me, it arrived today.  It is a bit different so I may have to change some fittings to install it.  I took the Journey back to the storage lot for the next couple of days (don't want the HOA to complain) until I can work on it again and noticed one of my air pressure gauges has gone bad and when I closed the door, the step motor broke.  Another call to Lichtsinn and a new motor is on the way, I'll have to run by Freightliner to pick up a new gauge sometime next week.

I'm also replacing the front tires, they are Michelin XRV tires and although they have not aged out, they have severe cracks in the sidewalls.  A known issue with them.  It didn't matter that I've been very careful about keeping them covered and used 303 Protectant on them.  I'm done with Michelin and have two Goodyear G670 RV tires on the way, should be in next week.  The rear tires are just starting to show tiny sidewall cracks, they are even newer than the fronts, but I'll wait to next year to replace them.

I want to go to the Winnebago factory service center to have my left side slide looked at, it appears to need adjustment, it has dropped in the front side about an inch.  It still works just fine, but the slide arms ride on plastic bushings and I think they are worn.  Unfortunately that will have to remain on the back burner because of my Dad living with us.  Since we use the Journey so infrequently, it can wait.

So that's the latest, just doing what needs to be done.  Family first.  Dr. Phil, no way!

Thanks for visiting and feel free to leave a comment.


  1. It is difficult being Care-Givers especially to someone like our parents. If only there was a way to turn back the clock so that the Dementia could be treated at an earlier age.
    Keeping you both in our prayers and hoping the Disney trip with the grands goes well.
    Hoping the Goodyears work better on the Journey then they did on our Fifth Wheel. The only one left is the spare the rest blew.
    Be Safe and Enjoy your father's presence.

    It's about time.

  2. Dr. Phil just makes you appreciate your family so much more no matter how weird they are. I cant imagine taking care of your dad. My mom was in memory care for the last two years on this earth. I am so grateful for the wonderful care she had. Just taking care of Jim this year wore me out. Glad you guys are getting a break.

  3. Mike's dad only lived 3 months after he decided it was time to go--he wanted to go to the nursing home but we managed to keep him at home with the help of caregivers and his wonderful roommate Barb (a retired nurse). It is hard and I too am glad you guys are taking a break.

  4. We don't envy your situation, although if we had to do it, we would. It sounds like your dad still has his faculties if he's watching Pat Sajak and Alex Trebek. Although, he's probably keeping his eye on Vanna White as well!

  5. Good to hear from you again, I am sure the Journey is just waiting for that PDD to flare up and get out for a good run. Have fun at Disney and I am with you on Dr. Phil.

  6. I like the groundhog day movie, but I get it is not fun to live. Your dad sounds like he still has a lot of spirit going for him..that is great at 97! I am a little worried now, we watch jepordy and wheel of fortune every day when we our home:(

  7. You guys are saints for sure. Not an easy task and we're nowhere near there yet. We have decided, however, to turn our keys in and sell the RV. We have purchased (building!) a home with my Mom, so that all of us can live together. She is doing good still, but the future is in our radar. We haven't yet announced this news until we give our resignation here at Yanks :)

  8. Nice to get the Journey ready to go after sitting for a while, We have had Michelin and BFG (made by Michelin) tires on our coach change every 7 years, no cracking at all they actually gave us $75, for each used tire. I never treat them or cover them just wash with soap and water like the manufacturers recommend.

  9. We understand how "Parent Care" can push all the buttons...but we also know that you will be glad you did it.

    Just getting the Journey ready to roll must be fun when it has been sitting for so long. We hope you have a MAGICAL ADVENTURE at Disney with the Grands!!!

  10. I have been where you are with both of my parents!! It is not easy but a work of love for sure!! No regrets...none!!!
    I am so glad you all are getting away to Disney and with the Grands will add energy into your life!!!
    Good luck on sprucing up the Journey!!

  11. It's always good to see an update on your lives. Bless you for taking such good care of Dad, and good luck with getting the RV ready to roll. You deserve a break! Best wishes!

  12. We were happy to sell the Phaeton -- if for no other reason than to not have to maintain it while it sits unused in the storage lot. Have fun at Disney.

  13. Glad to see the update on your lives. I know how difficult it is caring for an older parent. I hope you have a wonderful trip to Disney and can recharge your batteries. Hopefully the problems on the Journey will be over before you leave.

  14. I haven't been reading blogs much but am glad I looked up some of them today and saw yours. Especially happy to hear you have blocked out some fun time away from Dad for yourselves. It's a hard job you are doing. Is your Journey stored "under cover" in this heat? I'm worried about how hot it gets in Winnona when it's 94 outside in Virginia in May which is seriously unheard of. Have a GREAT TIME at the Mouse House!

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