Monday, December 19, 2022

...Soon it will be Christmas Day!*

 Well, Campers, I hope your Holiday Season has been Joyous, Restful yet Fun, and Grateful so far  and continues that way through the remainder of the season.  It's been fairly busy, not with any protecting the country level priorities (important as they are) rather with a lot of protecting the Family level ones.

Way back at the start of the year, one of our visitors asked, as she was leaving, if she could rent both cabins this year during the Holidays.  She and her Husband are Grandparents and she wanted both so she could celebrate with her 3 generational family.  10 people and a Dog or Two.  As new Grandparents ourselves, it sounded like a wonderful use of the property, and it was far enough out that neither cabin was reserved, so Mrs. J approved the reservation.

A few months later, the "issues" with LJD cropped up and long term housing was going to be needed while she was in hospital.  Mrs. J blocked reservations for one of the cabins so Little J and LJW could have a place to stay while the adventure was going on.  Unfortunately, one reservation slipped through her view.  Way back in October, she had received a call from the Grandparents asking for an Early Check-in.  As she perused the reservation book, and saw the December two cabin reservation, she got a bit concerned.  We had "double booked" the cabin.  We had a quick PowWow with LJD and LJW about moving into our house for a couple of nights.  They agreed and that juggling session was successful.

Now, normally, an early check-in is 2 PM (4PM is the norm).  But, she approved it.

Since checkout is NLT 11 AM, that gives us 3 hours to turn the cabin.  A bit tight if things are very messed up, but since we've got multiple sets of sheets and towels, quite doable.


Unfortunately, the version of English used to describe  "Early Check-in NET 2:00 PM" is different apparently in various parts of the country. 

The plan of attack in turning the cabin is for the House Cleaner to  "Clean" and make beds, gather towels and washcloths etc.  Essentially supplies are provided by us.  So, Myself and/or Mrs. J, visit the cabin, pick up the dirty stuff and bring it back to Casa Juvat to wash and fold.  This weekend, as we're bringing the clean laundry we notice a blanket is missing.  

Now, weather in TX has still been pretty warm, but a cold front was scheduled for this weekend (and boy did it!), so a blanket was probably called for.  When, and by whom, the blanket disappeared, is somewhat impossible to ascertain, so it's off to Wally World we go.  Pick up a new blanket and return home.  It's now about 11:30.  Previous guests had left about 9:45, so House Cleaner was done with the reset.  All we needed to do was put the blanket on the bed.

Come on to the property and who do we see?  You got it, the next guests.  "Well, you said we could check in early!"  Mrs. J did a very diplomatic explanation on why they couldn't check in right now, but could in about a half hour.  "But, you said...."

"OK, you can leave your stuff in the cabins.  Why don't you go downtown to the "Burg" and do some shopping, while we finish resetting?  It'll take us about 30 minutes."

"Harrumph, Harrumph....well ok"

Later, I carefully, diplomatically, politely and quietly stated that "...maybe we should change the verbiage on the site to read "...Early Check-in is available with verbal approval by the owners.  Under no circumstances is it allowed earlier than 2PM"

We'll see if that makes a difference.

"Juvat, sounds like your blood pressure was a tad high."

Why, yes, Sarge, it may have been.

So...On to happier topics.


This picture does a great job applying "Happy" to my outlook
As does this one.

14 Months, Walking, Talking (some of which is understandable) and funny as all get up.

And, I'm happy to say, that LJD is doing quite well also.

The "Saints of the NICU"** are doing a fine job of trying to reduce everyone involved level's of stress. 


Not only does LJD seem to be enjoying her first "Christmas card photo", no doubt the two nurses involved in setting it up enjoyed it, and the sounds of laughter when the picture arrived on various phones in our house were pleasing also.  So...Good Job, Guys!

Other good news on that front, She now weighs over 9 lbs.  Also, the discussion with the Charge Nurse about Nurse rotation was agreeably resolved.  LJD has a crew of 5 or 6 nurses that will tend to her.  Something I didn't understand about the feeding issue discussed before didn't involve nutrition per se.  Rather it involved breathing.  

I probably knew this, but it's so basic that I didn't employ that data in trying to understand the problem.  There's no problem with breathing when she's being fed through the nasogastric (NG) tube.  The food goes through the NG tube directly into her stomach and air from the nasal canula can still come in through her nostrils.  However, when she's trying to bottle or breast feed, she's got to learn (suck, swallow, breathe as the speech therapist calls it) how to suck a little, swallow a little, breathe a little and since lungs are the last organ to develop in a preemie, they are hard pressed to deliver enough air to her as is.  Stopping breathing to suck on a nipple...

So, she, and the person feeding her, have to establish a rhythm.  Suck for a few seconds, swallow, and breathe for a few seconds.  Rinse, repeat.

The 70ML requirement I mentioned last week is the nutritional goal and a way to measure how well she's balancing that rhythm.  Sensors will keep track of O2 levels, and Milk consumed will measure for the other.  I believe the 70ML number comes from the amount of milk she takes thru the NG tube now and is based on her current weight.  

Which, now, makes sense to me.

She is improving, Mrs. J and she, last Wednesday, were able to tag team their way through 30MLs.  A definite improvement.

On a tertiary level, yet still critical, progress on Mrs. J's Christmas present passed a Major Milestone this past week.  I've still got the usual, and tedious, sanding (lots and lots and lots of SANDING (gratuitous comment made by Little J after he proofed the Baby Data) and touch up process.  But, I might just make it.  

Pictures will be posted next Monday, I promise!

Merry Christmas to All y'All and Thank You, Lord for your Son!

*  YouTube Video Location

**While the Catholic Church has not yet completed the process for Canonization on the nurses, but if I get any say, the Staff of the Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit are shoo-ins.

As, my next post will be up Christmas Morning, let me wish all y'all a Merry Christmas.  I'll take care of the "Happy New Year" next Monday.

Peace out, Y'all!


  1. Early check in.. misconception on "early" or "give'em and inch & they'll take a mile"? I guess it doesn't much matter when the result is the same.
    It's good to see the baby all dressed up for Christmas!

    1. Rob,
      A bit of both, I think. Later yesterday, I was out and about and saw their Daughter out for a walk. Stopped and chatted with her for a bit and apologized for the rough start. She also apologized and said they were having a great time and would quite likely reserve the cabins again next year. So, Maybe we dodged a bullet. Speaking thereof, they should be checking out about now, got to go and reset. Making the "mighty" have fallen! ;-)

  2. LJD is coming along nicely, what a blessing!

    1. Sarge,
      Yeah, she is! For both sections of your comment. Merry Christmas to you and yours.

  3. Great news on LJD Juvat (and yes, the Catholic Church is usually slow on the uptake of such important matters).

    Early Check-in: Yikes. My sense - and this is purely based on my encounters with modern people - is that even with that revised language, peolple will still show up early - because really, it is all about them and their vacation.

    I do love the pictures.

    1. THBB,
      As I mentioned above, we got it worked out. They just called and said they were leaving. Communication...what a concept!

      Yeah, Pictures. So do I.

  4. Great news on the family front. And the Christmas projects sound like they are on track.

    I hate hard limits on check in times. I used to jump seat out west. That involved a trip starting about 2200, ending about 2330. A wait in a huge room with a ton of recliners and other morons waiting for their flights. Gotta stay awake until about 0300 for the call to GTF. Meet the crew, ride out in the bus, and up into the jump seat. I never could sleep during flight, as there is too much to see and learn. Land in GTF around some time I can't remember because I'm so tired from being up all night. Rent a car, drive to Helena and try and check in early for a much needed nap. "Earliest we can do is noon." Find a used book store and stumble around like a zombie. Nap in the motel parking lot until noon, then into the room. Fall on the bed cover and pass out. Barely wake up when the cleaner opens the door and screams about the dead man on the bed. Roll over and go back to sleep. I hate hard limits on check in times.

    Fun fact: did you know those bed covers are seldom washed? Did you know you can get crabs and scabies from unwashed bed covers? Did you know how grungy tv remotes are? Did you know....... The life of the traveling troubleshooter is an unending education.

    And no, when I said "Forsaking all others..." I promised that to God. I meant it when I said it.

    1. STxAR,
      We're normally very flexible on check in times. But, there is a "Rock and a Hard Place" issue here. On the good news side our weekend (and to some extent Week Days) occupancy rate is in the high 70's. Which means we frequently have to quick turn the cabin (Mrs J and I are heading down to collect dirty linen and trash as soon as I hit send on this). That takes a bit of time and while we are fairly efficient in the process, it still takes time. And nobody likes to sleep on dirty linen or use dirty towels. So...
      As an aside, our bed covers get washed regularly.
      For those other readers. GTF is the airport code for Great Falls International Airport. Not the middle of nowhere, but fairly close.

  5. Didn't you know that their request for early check in means they expect you to boot the previous guests out early? The customer is always right, even when they're irritating, overly demanding, and a PITA? Not in my book, but I'm not a host. And who steals blankets?

    C'mon LJD- we're all rooting (and praying) for you!

    1. Tuna,
      That sure seems to be what they're thinking. Most understand that it takes a bit of time to turn the cabin. But I don't think people understand occupancy rates and just assume there's nobody ahead of them. But...As I mentioned above we talked it over and everybody's ok now.
      And I got it off my chest.
      Thanks, She's making good progress and this past week I noted that she seems much more aware of her surrounding than she had been, so there's that also.

  6. Continuing good news on LJD, that photo of her....."Is Santa REALLY coming to visit me?" Those folks in the NICU and hospice are angels here on Earth. Good luck on Mrs. J's Christmas present and a very Merry Christmas to you juvat and all your clan.

    1. Thanks, Nylon, Same to you and yours! Yeah, did get a good chuckle out of that when I saw it yesterday. Knew it was going into the post!

  7. why not mess with (almost) everybodys' heads and establish the time in UTC?
    easy to see from LJD's expression that she's gonna be a real something as a teenager - G-d bless!

    1. Boron,
      Hmmm. Interesting thought. We're 5 hours behind, so if we wanted to have them show NET 1600 our time, we'd have to advertise NET 2100 GMT. If they screwed that up, at least we'd have plenty of time to get the cabin turned. Could work.
      Fortunately, teenage girl relatives is not a defined responsibility of Grandfathers except for the spoiling them rotten part. Little J on the other hand will undoubtedly have his hands full.

  8. I can see it now. juvat hires a gang of thugs to track down the thief and give him/her/it a blanket party...


    Glad things are going swimmingly at your end. Especially with LJD.

    1. I mean the replacement blanket was 20 bucks or so at Wally World. If someone needs a blanket that much...
      Thanks, Beans.

  9. Great news on the littles, and they will bring your BP down! Yes, you HAVE to specify things like that in your ads... sigh... Merry Christmas to you and all yours Juvat, and to everyone else that publishes and comments here!

  10. My fingers are crossed that Santa will drop LJD off under the Christmas tree!! 9 pounds!! Heck, that is a small to middling sized turkey... ;)
    And yes, eating is work, and work of any type does involve breathing...just ask anyone of a "mature" age who is recovering from pneumonia "All I do is eat breakfast and I'm exhausted" is a common complaint.

    My grandson is now 3.5 years old, and the verbalization's that are understandable improve on a daily basis. It never fails to amaze me how much they understand and can get expressed back. Truly little pitchers with big ears...

    And yes, early check-in times need be to approved on an individual basis, especially if folks are arriving via airplane. We have rented a beach house for the past few years, and no one can arrive before used to be 12 noon before the covid stuff started...but the owners need the time to clean and sanitize the place. Something about the local rental rules by the town. Which is one reason why we make sure the place is sparkling before we leave--and we have to bring all our own linens/towels/sheets, etc.

    I am sending good sanding vibes your way--I remember how you are not a fan of doing the sanding. But it looks so wonderful when completed.
    Merry Christmas to you, your family and all who wander by here.

    1. Thanks, Suz. She's getting there and it is what it is. LJ has to return to HK mid-January. Best estimates say, LJD's current condition won't be good enough for a health visa by then. So, LJW and she will be staying behind most likely until summer. (The next time the health visa board convenes.) That's just one more little stress inducer in an already stress filled saga.
      Surprisingly, Covid had little impact on our occupancy. Living out in the country on 30 acres makes social distancing quite a bit easier. The cleaning ladies had a different protocol for sanitization and Mrs. J and I also went through and sprayed Lysol liberally. AFAIK, no one got sick in the guest list and neither did we, so something must have been done right.
      Can't wait until Christmas when I can show Mrs. J the final product and release the pictures. Spent about 2 hours sanding this afternoon. Came into the house all covered in dust. Mrs. J remanded me to the showers. Ahh well.
      Merry Christmas to you and yours also, Suz.

  11. Christmas scheduling around the house is really messing with my reading pattern. But, better late than never.
    Appears the best blood pressure reducer, just might be sitting on the couch with a grandchild on your lap while reading a book together. Only thing better would be to have two grandchildren.......if they're sleepy and not figeting.
    Happy to see Miss LJD wearing her Christmas apparel and looking alert. Hope it won't be long before she can play the part of a blood pressure reducer while helping grandpa read a story.
    Did have to chuckle about the "blanket party". Only witnessed one, but that process definitely leaves an impression, especially on the "offender" if they're on the 2nd floor of the barracks. Also, it gives the old saying of "Cleanliness is next to G-Dliness" new meaning.
    Merry Christmas to all!
    Cletus Valvecore

    1. Cletus,
      Yeah, it does mess with the schedule, but I wouldn't trade it for anything. MBD, MG and The Rev will be coming over Thursday and staying through the Holiday. Although The Rev may have to return for Christmas Service at his church, we'll see.
      Never witnessed a "Blanket Party" in action, although we did have a young airmen who learned a hard lesson in proper personal interactive skills in close quarters at Kunsan. Funny, the maintenance squadron didn't have any further issues with him thereafter.
      When we visit LJD, I bring my iPad with me. We've got several books on it. Currently working our way through the "Mia Mayhem" series. Keeps all concerned in the area awake and entertained. (Even the Nurses seem to hang around a bit more. Having extra time while working in the NICU is a good thing, compared to the alternative.) While all the apparatus in the air makes reading to her in my lap almost impossible, we both seem to enjoy it. As does Mrs. J.


Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)
Can't be nice, go somewhere else...

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