This evening I am headed out to see my daughter Kyrston and meet my Grandson Oliver, but before I leave I wanted to do a quick post with some pictures of what I have been doing the last couple of weeks.  I know I have been terrible about posting this summer and I am sorry for that.  One of the main reasons is our desktop computer has died.  This computer is the one I used for all of my pictures etc  and without it I don’t have a great way of creating these blog posts.

That’s all about to change though because I am sure I will have lots to say about my trip to see my grandbaby and of course LOTS of pictures.   As a sneak peek here is a picture Kyrston sent to me. I absolutely adore this picture.

In preparation for my trip I finally finished a couple of things.  I recorded the audio book for the baby and I finished my cross stitched baby blanket!!


It’s been a long time since I read a childrens book out loud. Thankfully it came right back to me.

It hasn’t all been work though.  Jack and I have been doing some exploring.  First we went to visit Little Crater Lake.

He took a big drink of the crystal clear water

Another day we went to White River Falls State Park.  This park is a small Day Use area that overlooks the falls created by a defunct power plant.  Although the falls were pretty, you can’t get very close and it is in a super out of the way location.  Jack was bummed because he couldn’t get close to the water and although I am glad I saw it I certainly wouldn’t go far our of the way to visit.

Huge signs when we came in. Apparently people used to try to kayak down these falls and there have been several deaths. Big fences keep people out now and the day use area has a camp host. I am guessing mainly to stop idiots from killing themselves.


Beautiful vista. You could walk down and go fishing but because there were no paths up to the falls I gave it a pass.

I thought it was cool that the dam was built in the early 1900’s.

What else?  On another day off Jack and I went over to North Arm campground to visit Parson.  The camp host there is a nice enough guy, but who everyone really loves is Parson.  Seriously last year Parson got more positive comment cards than any person.  I wanted Jack to meet the ultimate campground dog so off we went.

They did pretty good together although Parson was having one of Jack’s nonsense.

And on another night I finally got to try out the Tollgate Inn in Sandy.  I have passed this restaurant more times than I can count and I finally got to give it a try.  It was delicious!!  Best of all they have an extraordinary bakery.  I’m not kidding everything was super delicious and this entire box of goodies was already $9.  Actually it’s probably a good thing I had no idea that bakery was there because I’ve already put on 20 pounds since I quit smoking and that bakery would have made it more.


From upper left: Mountain Berry muffin, Strawberry Shortcake, Cheesecake cupcake, upside down pineapple cake, strawberry and cream bear claw. They were all fantastic but the pineapple upside down cake was the absolute best.

Speaking of quitting smoking, we are both doing really good with that.  Lee finally got off the Chantix and despite his concerns he hasn’t relapsed at all.  He actually went down a pant size and had to buy all new jeans.  I am at an all time high 152 pounds, which is really bumming me out.  I am trying to get out an exercise more, but it’s tough when you work all day.  I am moving some though because Jack is super high energy and wants several walks a day.

One last update…we have been digging into the medical bills and have a status update on that.  So far we have paid $2K in deductible payments all of which came from an HSA account.  We still owe $6,600 to the hospital but have applied for charity assistance from them.  We received a letter stating they are partially forgiving the debt, but we don’t know how much.  We should have a better picture of that within the next 7-10 days.  The only bill they didn’t pay at all was a cardiologist bill, which I have appealed with BCBS.  They didn’t pay it because the doctors were out-of-network, but it is not like Lee had a choice who saw him in the ER.

The biggest problem is the Helicopter Flight.  The bill was $59,000 and the insurance only paid $10K.  The helicopter company actually provides billing appeal services and we have given them the right to appeal on our behalf. I have absolutely no confidence that we are not going to get completely whacked though, and I contacted a lawyer through the Hyatt Legal Plan I signed up for at work.  One lawyer said their was no point in negotiating a settlement until the appeals process was complete, which was ok by I didn’t get a good feel from her anyway.  I think the cost of an 83 mile flight was ridiculous and want some assistance in getting it adjusted to something reasonable but she kept talking as if the power all lay in the company’s hands.  Anyways I have some calls out to other lawyers on that as well so we will see.  Just wanted to give you guys an update and let you know where we were at.

Tonight I fly out and will be in Charleston in the morning.  I don’t know how long it will be before my next post, but hopefully it will be soon!

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