Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Home, and back to 'normal'

Buffalo Ridge Camp Resort
Custer, SD

George got to come home on Sunday!
His surgeon said that he did so well,
he doesn't see any more issues.
He'll have a follow-up appointment
in a couple of weeks.
George is doing pretty well,
and does not have too much residual pain.

We go back to work today,
but George will take it easy,
helping in the office for now.

We've gotten a new batch of babies next to us.
Some cute little ground squirrels (chipmunks)
have appeared out of their little holes.
They've burrowed right next to the
electric pedestal in the site next to us.

They're so cute!

Apparently this part of South Dakota is
'hail country'.
We're experiencing several afternoon thunderstorms.
Some of them bring on some pea to dime sized hail.
It gets a bit scary at times,
but the wind isn't too bad.

A lot of the storms gather over Custer State Park.

Behind us the clouds get some nice shapes..

We can't believe that it's the end of June already!
There are so many things we have on our list to do still.
As George starts to feeling better,
we'll be using our days off to check things off our list!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

George's second surgery

Buffalo Ridge Camp Resort
Custer, SD

We've worked 7 days straight since my last post.
The campground is getting full
with lots of tourists visiting Custer.

Our days were scheduled so that we
could be off to coincide with George's surgery.

Yesterday we got to Rapid City Regional Hospital
at 8 am for George's scheduled surgery at 9:30.
He had the pre-op blood drawn,
got checked in at admissions,
then sent to the pre-op area.

They gave him a lovely purple gown,
and got his IV's all set up.

Then a few nurses came in,
the anesthesiologist,
and finally the surgeon.
He explained how it all would go down.

One thing he told us was that he would be using
the DaVinci Robot to assist in the surgery.
(Picture from the internet)
For some reason they wouldn't let me in to watch! :-)

 The surgery highway was backed up,
so we waited in pre-op until 11 am,
when they finally took George to surgery.
They sent me to the waiting room,
where they have a cool computer monitor.
The volunteer checks you into the waiting room,
gives you a special code number that
is for the patient.
You can then follow the progress on the screen.
It shows where the patient is at any given time,
from pre-op,
to OR, 
to when the procedure actually starts,
to recovery.
I also got a call every hour from the assistant
telling me how George was doing.
Love this hospital!

Finally around 3 pm,
they called and told me George was in recovery,
and in about an hour they would let me know
what room he was going to be in.

The surgeon, Dr. Miller, came down
and told me that everything went fantastic!
He actually removed about 9" of his Sigmoid Colon.
The cut was clean, no issues or abscesses found.
He stitched him back together,
and said the healing should go well.
We were thankful to God that no colostomy bag was needed.
George has 5 small incisions is all!

He was very groggy,
so I stuck around for an hour or so,
then came back home to get some sleep!

I talked to him today,
and he's already eating some soft foods
and is feeling great.
They didn't need a catheter post surgery,
so he's  quite happy about that :-)

He's hoping to get released on Sunday or Monday,
but we'll see how that goes.
I'm going to take a ride over with Marlene
today to help her shop for the campground,
so we'll stop in and see how he's doing!

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Crazy Horse Memorial

Buffalo Ridge Camp Resort
Custer, SD

Yesterday on our day off we headed to Rapid City
where I got a much needed haircut,
and George picked up his pre-surgery prescriptions.

On the way back home,
we stopped at the Crazy Horse Memorial.
Using our VIP card we got in free!

Since we had been here in 2010,
we were interested in the progress 
that has been made to the memorial.

We walked through the museum and looked 
at some of the exhibits.

We also saw our friends Joan & Steve, and Phil & Rudee,
who were all working yesterday.

The real fun is outside, and the day was beautiful!

There are currently people working on 
the arm and hand of the memorial.

When finished, the arm will be 29.5' long,
and the hand will be 25' tall!

Here's a look at the mountain
in 2010 and 2016..

Not much difference!

We listened to a man playing some native flutes.. full view of the memorial..

Do you think the Memorial will ever
be finished in our lifetime?

Some more socializing!

Buffalo Ridge Camp Resort
Custer, SD

We work for such a great guy!
Last night, despite severe t-storms 
and torrential rain,
he had scheduled a BBQ potluck.
We all brought something to share,
and Jerad provided chicken and kabobs.

Besides us, Marlene and Danny, Gail and Bob,
also in attendance was Jerad's parents,
Mike and Bonnie,
his sister Sonia,
Bonnie's brother Jerry and wife Margaret.
Jerad's daughter Callie is always hanging around too :-)

Margaret, Bonnie, and me

George and Callie

Danny and Bob

Bonnie, Margaret, Jerry, Mike

There was a lot of good food that was shared!
We all had a good time!

Sunday afternoon after we got off work,
we took a ride and ended up at the top
of the Mt. Coolidge lookout.
The views from the top of the 6,023' peak
are incredible!

Today we're taking a ride over to Rapid City again
to pick up some of George's pre-surgery prescriptions.
On the way back we plan on going to Crazy Horse
to explore!

Friday, June 10, 2016

An update on George, and some familiar visitors

Buffalo Ridge Camp Resort
Custer, SD

George had a post-surgery appointment with his surgeon yesterday.
We took the drive into Rapid City,
and met with him at 10 am.
The lab did some blood work first,
and his numbers looked good.
George's next surgery will be on June 22.
At that time Dr. Miller will remove 6-12" of George's colon,
staple it back together,
and all this will be done laparoscopically.
He doesn't foresee any problems that will
cause a colostomy bag,
so we're thankful about that.

After his appointment,
we did some grocery shopping at Walmart,
then came home early afternoon.

When we got back to the campground,
we were pleased to find that
Debbie Lambert and her friend Diane
stopped to stay here on their way west!
We all worked together at Amazon last year.
the 6 of us got together for dinner
at the Buglin' Bull.
The food was fantastic,
and the company even better!

They're sticking around a couple more days to explore the area.

Today was back to work.
It's been hot..HOT here in Custer!
George and I got working on the pool,
skimming the pine needles off,
and making it nice for the guests.

Our teepees are coming right along..

They're pretty cool,
and for $75/night you can stay in one.
It will have its own covered picnic table too.
Just follow the arrowheads :-)

Monday, June 6, 2016

Back in time, a train ride to Keystone

Buffalo Ridge Camp Resort
Custer, SD

What a perfect day for a train ride!

We took a ride to Hill City,
and boarded the 1880 train.
This train is part of the Black Hills Central Railroad,
and is the oldest continuously operating tour railroad.
There are 3 steam engines and 2 diesel engines.
Today we were able to ride the train pulled by the steam engine.

It travels 10 miles to Keystone,
at a top speed of 10 miles per hour :-)
The views from the train were spectacular!

Our conductor, Joe, came around and got our tickets..

The ride was narrated, telling us about some of the history
of the area, and why the train was there.
A lot of the track was former mining train tracks.

The engine put out a lot of steam and smoke!

We passed by Harney Peak,
the tallest peak in the Black Hills.

We saw a lot of deer grazing in the meadows..

An hour later we made it into Keystone.
The engine fills with water in preparation
for the return trip.

George and I had booked the return train at 2:30,
so that gave us time to check out the Borglum Historical Center..
We were able to get in free with our VIP pass.
It was interesting, but glad it was free :-)

Gutzon Borglum was the main sculptor of Mt. Rushmore,
among many other things.

Keystone is a great little mining town,
with all kinds of shops and restaurants.

We picked this place,
Ruby's House,
which looked to me like an old brothel :-)

George had spaghetti, something safe, 
so good thing he likes it!

I had an Indian Taco, which I've been wanting to try.
It's refried beans, hamburger, cheese, etc.,
but on fried bread.
It was delicious!

Before too long the train was rounding the corner 
to take us back Hill City.

We sat on the opposite side of the train,
to see what we missed :-)
I really like the effect the smoke has in the trees..

We're so glad we took the train!

the campground is coming along.
The pool is now open,
the mini golf has new turf,
and things are looking great!

We'll be working the next two days,
then Thursday George has his appointment
with the surgeon to talk about the next step.

More to come!