Author Archives: Jo

Medical Update #2

Well as many of you know, Gannon my sweet little grandson had surgery today.  He had a testicle that didn’t descend.  That’s a fairly routine surgery but in Kramer style it all turned into a little more.

They found two hernias and repaired them while they were there..and ended up doing something else too (Kalissa will explain it all in a blog post on her blog The Pink Shoelaces soon)


Well Gannon woke from anesthesia with a bit of a problem.  His breathing wasn’t the best.  He was crying a lot and the doctor ended up deciding to admit him.

This is related to pain management more than anything so once that gets a little better under control we’ll see him back home soon.

BUT…on a side note, Craig is in Iowa City with Kalissa and Gannon.  He has to get home tonight.  He has a chemical applicators test that he has been studying for that he has to get taken.  It’s only offered a couple times a year and tomorrow is the day.  So some scrambling will be done between the family to get Craig home.  Iowa City is about 2 1/2 hours from here.  Buck lives closer and he’s off of work because of his hand so he might run to Iowa City and get Craig then Karl or I will run and get Craig from Buck.  It’s a whole thing.  If Gannon’s issue was serious, Craig wouldn’t come home but it’s manageable so we’ll do what we can to get him home.

There’s news on my cancer hunt too…Here it is. Continue reading

My Whirlwind Weekend

I had a really busy weekend Saturday was post office, tax day, errand day, company day and party day all rolled into one.

I was up early and got packages ready for the mail.  Our little post office is open Saturday mornings from 8 to 8:45am.  That’s when I try to get there if possible.  That way I can go on my own and don’t have to depend on the kids to help me get packages there.  The kids are helpful but as always, I hate asking.

It turns out just as I had the packages ready Karl said he was leaving.  He had plans to visit friends in Minneapolis and to see a play.  He said, “Do you need anything before I go?”  I mentioned he could do my post office run and he did.  YAHOO!!

From there is was up to Cresco for my tax appointment.  That was about as fun as I expected.  To be honest, I wasn’t really impressed with them….We’ll see how everything pans out once I get the returns back.  I think I saw just an assistant and she told me several times, “I really do have to do a lot of input for your account.”  She really didn’t seem excited or happy to have my business but who knows…it might all end up fine.

From there off to get groceries.  Kalissa had a list for me to pick up too.  We were having Georgia’s and Gannon’s parties together on Sunday and Kalissa needed food for the guests.  I hadn’t been to the grocery store for a long time so $366 later, I was finally out of there.

On my way out of town I drove past the cell phone store.  I had cracked my screen some time ago…back in October I think.  I knew I needed a new phone.  As I was driving by the parking lot was empty so I turned in and got myself a new phone.

I was getting towards 3:30 by the time I pulled into town.  I dropped groceries off at Kalissa’s and then home to find Buck and kids had made their way to my house.  YAHOO!

I was so worried how Lucy would deal with Rosie.  I’ll be honest, Rosie is still what we all politely say is, “a bit too much”.  She is.  She isn’t the best with kids yet.  Lucy though…LOVED Rosie.  I was so happy.  Rosie was a even a little rough from time to time but Lucy didn’t mind or care.  Here was an action shot I got…Rosie jumped up on the chair and Lucy tumbled back in the recliner.  It didn’t phase Lucy a bit.  She was pretty rough and tumble with Rosie…and Rosie loved it.


Here’s a picture I snapped of Georgia, Lucy and Rosie looking out the door.  So sweet.  Lucy turned two in December and is a big girl.  Georgia turns one in about a week and is petite.


Buck helped me carry in groceries and then I started scrambling.  The firemen were having their Christmas Party…a winter get together really, at the chief’s house.  It was potluck and I needed to make food.

You all know the firemen were so good to Kramer and I when he was sick.  Those same guys have continued to be good to me.  I still got an invitation to the party, even though Kramer passed away in June.  It was so nice.  Buck used to be on the fire department so I took him and the kids with.  Seriously…I had a great time…we all did.  I don’t know what it is but the firemen and their wives create a real safe place for me.  I think it’s because many of them were with us all along the way of Kramer’s illness being as helpful as they could. I truly love this group.

Sunday was a joint birthday party for Gannon and Georgia.

You all don’t see pictures of Kelli’s husband Jason much.  I thought I’d add this series of pictures…. Continue reading

Medical Update for the Kramers

Our family has continued to support the medical community.  Gannon got tubes in his ears last week…he has two appointments in Iowa City this week.  Georgia is getting tubes in her ears on Thursday.

….and me, well my case continues to be “challenging”.

You might remember that I have thyroid cancer that is doing it’s darndest to stay hidden.  We know it’s back according to my bloodwork numbers…but where, who knows for sure.

On February 10th I was back to Lacrosse to have a neck CT scan done.  A lymph node near my trachea had grown and the suspicion is that the cancer is there.  I’ve had several intervention radiologist look at and none have been able to get a biopsy on it.  In the meantime, I’ve had numerous other lymph nodes in my neck biopsied but none have come back cancerous.  This particular lymph node is more or less in the middle of my neck.  There are all sorts of things going on there….There’s a risk to my voice, to my trachea and now I found out my main artery too.

Well I’ve been waiting since the 10th to find out a plan.  I’ve not heard anything.  On the 14th I messaged my doctor and she said that my surgeon was supposed to be talking with the latest intervention radiologist and see if he might be willing to try this biopsy.  Apparently he was on vacation and no one told me so last week on the 20th, I messaged the surgeon.  I heard from his nurse a simple courtesy reply..and heard a courtesy rely on the 21st again.

Over the weekend I was frustrated.  All of my kids were home so I talked with them about it.  I told them I thought I was going to request to be sent on to Mayo Clinic.  So Sunday night I messaged my doctor.  She got back to me this morning.

She apologized and apologized for the delay.  She told me she was out all last week with Influenza A.  She had a cold when I saw her on the 10th so she’s had a rough time of things.  She sounded terrible on the phone.

We came up with a plan.  Here it is… Continue reading

What I’m Working On…

I’ve had another busy week here.  I had Georgia overnight one night.  I had a full house of childcare kids all week.  We had a no school day and a two hour late due to snow.  That means shoveling sidewalks and that all means less time to create.  I was also busy doing the last few things for my tax prep for my tax meeting.

I did get a few things done.  I stole time the best I could.  Sewing didn’t happen much.  But I did get the borders on this.  YAHOO!!


Sorry for the bad photos.  It’s winter in Iowa and pretty gloomy.

Here you can see how the borders turned out.  I like them.  Next up, find a backing.


It’s not fancy but I love it and was on the easy side as far as quilts go.  I think it will be a great quilt for a fundraiser.

Right now being that I am sewing on the kitchen table (because Rosie, my beagle pup, can’t handle my sewing room or the upstairs for that matter yet) sewing gets harder.  I have to carry my sewing machine to the kitchen table and set it up every time.  I’m only sewing on my Singer 301 so it’s not a big deal but every time I think of setting it up and then being extra diligent that I know where Rosie is and what she’s doing so she doesn’t chew my cords, I’m more nervous than having fun.  Having these UFO from Roxana have been a blessing as I don’t have to keep track of two boxes and a million quilt pieces out every time I want to sew.  I only have to keep track of the blocks.  There is no way I would want to make a Bonnie Hunter quilt with this set up…too many pieces.

This is all just temporary though..so that’s okay.  It has given me a whole new appreciation for those of you who do sew in a small space or on your kitchen table.  At the farmhouse I had a very small sewing room.  There is no way I could fit in there nowadays but I wasn’t coordinating all the charity sewing that I am now.

Anyway…because of that, if I only have an hour to sew, I often grab cross stitch instead.  Since I completed the piece last week, I’m so excited to finish more.  I have a stack of items that need to be fully finished.  This week I grabbed one. This one…. Continue reading