After much exploration and help, my tender stomach is beginning to behave. I haven’t been proud of myself during this period. Lots of complaining and hiding out. No life goals have been addressed. As my stomach has improved, so has my mood. Finally, I’m gaining weight. Many thanks to those who continue to help me through my gut issues.
In the midst of all this, Tom had a stroke! He has been such a rock, keeping the homestead going, preparing for winter. Then he started talking weird… He was transported from our local hospital to UMASS where they have a stroke unit, had many tests, stayed overnight. The blood clot disappeared, broke up, it’s gone. He’ll be on a heart monitor for a while to keep track of stuff, but he is doing great! Wow, Tom!! We DO worry that the pressures of winter homestead prep will knock him back, so we are hiring him as much help as possible.
I begin a new cycle again today and have lots of energy after two weeks off. Tomorrow I will sleep a lot, then more energy each day till the following week! This bout of chemo seems so much less dramatic than the previous one. Gentler, fewer side effects. This part is not complaining, just statement of fact. My hair is thinning, fingertips are quite tender… Eventually I will shave my head, but not yet… Thanks, I don’t need any more hats or lotions; I have plenty left from last time. Gloves are very particular. Thank you again for your gifts.
Thank you all so much for your amazing generosity in GoFundMe—and through personal checks in cards. Many are from people I don’t know, though I recognize some of the last names--the same as friends. Hmm, thanks for passing my name along. I admire your ability to save money—enough to share it! Much of the money has gone for hiring help and purchasing supplies.
And the lovely cards I’ve received with notes of cheer and encouragement! Wow, Marge’s meditation, Jorie’s chaga tea, Lisa’s GoFundMe page and workshop cleaning, Dan and Judy’s beets and so many prayers! They really help. I am so lucky to have such great friends and customers who care about me, Tom, and our work…
Also, thanks to all who continue to buy items from our dwindling Etsy page. Thank you all so much! Working hard to make and enter new pieces. Hopefully be further along before the Open House late November/early December!
We are getting great pleasure from watching our bird feeders, and the chipmunks. Fortunately, our cat, Scooter, is 16 and not interested in them. He sits with us and watches.
And yet, though we’re not really working, the money keeps flowing out. The homestead is 22 years old and many systems require not just routine maintenance but overhauls. It seems like a bottomless pit. We were told that our backhoe tractor (necessary for road maintenance, hauling and major projects) would cost $3000, a year later it’s $8500. Thankfully, a friend has lent us the money and we’re paying back over the next few years.
People ask, “What do you need?” I need HELP, not simply money (that is really great, though not all), but physical help, here on the homestead. Lugging boxes around. Finding fabric for the house. Sewing. Cleaning the workshop. Cleaning the house. Readying the storage building for give-aways.
I’m four months behind in my custom orders and can’t predict when I will be able to fill them. E quit when I was diagnosed (no vax, no mask). I had spent months training her and she was doing so much (photos, working in the shop, tech stuff). I was way too dependent on one person. It was heartbreaking.
Corlis is back till the end of the year, doing photos again and helping out outdoors! Mary is back helping with tech issues! Hooray.
Pat’s dog-tending business has become much more full-time (good for her!!) so shipping and filing more often fall to me. I (really, really, really) miss her help, her moral support and long-term perspective on the business.
Two friends recommended Rachel and indeed she is a gem. The two days she has come in, she worked really well in the shop. A good fit. Great personality. Available only one day a week. Then she was sick, then Tom’s stroke, now she’s had Covid for two weeks…
So for the last month, I’ve been alone… writing apologies for late orders… doing all the homestead stuff I do (batteries, composting toilet, gardens, help Tom). Tom has had a bunch of help from his son and grandson. But now school has started… We are both quite overwhelmed.
I sincerely apologize about the Friend of Meb code -- 10% off anything, forever on Etsy. Looking at it now, I can see that I need to add that code to every item on Etsy. I’ll let you know when it is complete, no idea when... Not a quick fix…
Move stuff around upstairs in house
Someone to TALK to about business regularly
Specialized carpentry work