Friday, October 31, 2008


Happy Halloween!

I'm looking forward to seeing all the cute little ghosts and goblins out trick-or-treating tonight.

Have a fun day!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Sal's Dad: Wednesday late PM update

Hello everyone.....

Pasquale had the tracheostomy today, and the surgery went OK. He is recovering from it and is fairly responsive tonight. Hopefully, this will allow the pneumonia to subside more quickly.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Sal's Dad: Tuesday afternoon update

Hello everyone.....

Sorry that I didn't update you sooner about Pasquale, but the family has been in and out of lots of meetings and conference calls with his doctors, etc.

He has stabilized somewhat, especially his kidneys. The nephrologist saying that, at this point, dialysis is not necessary, which is very good news!

Pasquale's breathing has unfortunately not improved though. He still needs the assistance of a ventilator, and now the pulmonologist suggests that a tracheostomy be done. That's a minor surgical procedure whereby a breathing tube is inserted into the neck. Then, the ventilator will be re-inserted though it instead of the mouth. This will hopefully minimize infection and allow faster healing of the pneumonia. The surgery is tentatively scheduled for later this week, probably Friday.

Sal and I are heading home to Delray Beach tonight. I'll post again soon.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Sal's Dad: Sunday afternoon update

Hello everyone.....

The news is not good today.

This morning, Pasquale's doctors said that his kidneys are failing, and the family is being asked to consider dialysis. He is still on a ventilator, he has a high fever, and unfortunately he's not responding to the strong antibiotics that are being administered for the pneumonia.

Sal and I are on our way to Gulfport this afternoon. I'll post updates from there.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

movie review(s)

Hi there, hope you're enjoying the weekend. It's a gray & rainy weekend here in south Florida, but nonetheless Sal and I managed to sneak in a few hours at the beach this morning before the dark clouds rolled into Delray Beach.

I forgot to mention earlier that I finally went to see The Secret Life of Bees this week. It was a pretty good movie, not excellent though. It's unfortunate that it's not generating more buzz (pun intended), because the story is moving. Emotionally heavy subjects are front-and-center in the plot, particularly the racism of the 1960s. For me, it's so difficult to watch the unfairness, the blatant ignorance and hatred. Makes me sick...and angry! But I was pleased that the screenplay was true to the book. Not like Under The Tuscan Sun, which was a fabulous book but a cinematic disaster. What were they thinking? They deviated so far from the book, it was almost another story entirely. The only thing I liked about that movie was the scenery in Italy. And, by the way!, do you remember that scene where Diane Lane (who played Frances) and her new "friend" (aka Italian hunk) had a *ahem* fun evening? Sal and I have stayed in that same hotel (Albergo California) in Positano where that was filmed, on the gorgeous Amalfi Coast!

But I digress, geez....getting back to the Bees movie. Overall, it was well-acted and had its sweet-as-honey moments. Worth the price of a matinee ticket.

Gotta run. The Office just came on.

Friday, October 24, 2008


Yep, today's the day.....I'm turning 40! The big Four-0. Gosh, how did that happen? Wasn't I just in college?.....getting married?.....starting out as an engineer? I really look forward to this new decade though! A fresh start......40 Is The New 30.

To kick off my 40s, and to celebrate my passion for travel, I plan to make a scrapbook page with the theme "40 places I still want to visit". Thought I'd share a preview of the locales my list will include, in no particular order (unless otherwise noted, these are places that I've never been, but some places warrant a 2nd, 3rd and 4th visit for sure!):

(1) Iceland
(2) Spain
(3) Hawaii (again!)
(4) Morocco
(5) Niagara Falls
(6) an African safari
(7) Kodiak Island, Alaska
(8) Tahiti
(9) Yellowstone Nat'l Park
(10) northern Italy (again!)
(11) Provence, France
(12) Japan
(13) The Seychelles
(14) autumn "leaf peeping" in New England
(15) Bermuda
(16) Mount Rushmore
(17) Yosemite Nat'l Park
(18) Poland
(19) Galapagos Islands
(20) Easter Island
(21) Peru
(22) New York City (again!)
(23) a polar bear safari in Canada
(24) St. Lucia
(25) England
(26) Indonesia
(27) St. Augustine, Florida
(28) Utah (we're going in 2009, woo hoo!)
(29) Antarctica
(30) China
(31) Australia & New Zealand
(32) Greece
(33) India
(34) Panama Canal
(35) Egypt
(36) Russia
(37) Hoover Dam
(38) South Korea
(39) Anguilla
(40) Costa Rica

So I'm hoping for a "bon voyage" in my 40s! Thanks for sharing the journey with me here on my blog!

P.S. ~ Today is also my niece's birthday...Rebecca is turning 2 today, and she lives in Gulfport, Florida. Happy Birthday, sweetie!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Ratchet update

Wonderful news!

Remember my blog post about Ratchet on Oct 14? He's the puppy who was rescued from a burning pile of trash by an American soldier in Iraq. But the military confiscated the dog from her. And the soldier is coming home soon and wanted to bring the pup with her, but the military prohibited it. Well, the military relented and turned the dog over to an animal rescue group, Operation Baghdad Pups, who flew into Baghdad and loaded the pup onto a charter flight! Ratchet arrived in the soldier's home state of Minnesota earlier this week, hurrah! You can read the full story here.

THANK YOU to everyone who signed the online petition for Ratchet, I'm sure the public pressure made a difference!

Woman's Best Friend:

Enjoy your new life, Ratchet!

And in other military animal news.....on Tuesday, a new hospital opened in Texas for dogs injured in the line of duty. It has been dubbed "the Walter Reed of the veterinary world". It offers advanced medical treatment for combat-wounded dogs, including rehabilitation facilities. Click here for the full article and a photo gallery.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

mystery getaway destination revealed!

Thanks for your patience while waiting for the reveal of my mystery getaway, I had planned to blog about it earlier.....Sal and I are back home now from visiting his family; Pasquale is still in a critical period of recovery.

OK, so Where In The World? did Sal take me for a special birthday getaway weekend?

On Saturday, we drove to my parents' house in the Tampa Bay area, where my family and some of my longtime friends had gathered for a surprise party! WOO HOO

I walked in to see decorations (including personalized balloons in a gorgeous teal color), a big spread of food (all yummy veggie-friendly Mediterranean stuff!), a birthday cake, gifts, and my wonderful friends JoAnn (pictured with me, below) and Milton! It had been a long time since I had seen them, and I was so stunned to see their faces that it took a few seconds to register in my mind! I've known JoAnn for 23 years, she and I worked together at my first job at a department store back when I started college.

And Milton and I have known each other for over 20 years, and he was the Best Man at our wedding 18+ years ago. How fabulous to have them with me to celebrate my milestone 40th birthday! We all had fun chatting, laughing, reminiscing, and....eating!

Milton, my Dad & me:

Me, my Mom, and my sister's husband, Heince:

from left: me, JoAnn, my sister Theresa, and Milton:

And as I opened gifts, someone caught my reaction on I'm just realizing what Sal had in store for the weekend:

The fun and surprises continued after the party when we drove to Orlando! Sal took me to Discovery Cove on Sunday. What a fabulous park! It's operated by SeaWorld (and is right across the street from it), and is a tropical paradise full of fun. They allow only 900 people into the park each day, so it never felt crowded. We swam with a dolphin named Cindy and had a lot of one-on-one time with her.

They allow only tiny groups at a time to interact with a dolphin and a trainer, so you really get up-close-and-personal with these magnificent creatures (the dolphins, that is, not the trainers, ha ha!). It was so special to touch her smooth (and warm!) skin, look into her soft eyes, and to hug and kiss her too! (I appreciated that they provided a wetsuit because the water was about 70 or 75 degrees F, brrr).

She was 9 feet long, and weighed 550 pounds. That perpetual dolphin "smile" on their faces is deceiving, they're so powerful.

But apparently Sal wasn't finished surprising me! He had arranged with the Discovery Cove staff for Cindy to give me yet another birthday surprise! The trainer told our group that Cindy was going to the other end of the lagoon to get her favorite toy, and he "volunteered me" to step to the front of the group so that she could bring it back to me. I was thrilled, but thought that I was chosen completely at random and suspected nothing! So then Cindy pops up out of the water right in front of me with a toy in her mouth that had been personalized to read "Happy Birthday Susan! Love, Sal". OH. MY. GOSH. !!! I was SO stunned! You can see the surprise all over my face in the photos:

I'll never forget it! Sal, you sure got me! Even Cindy seemed to be happy about it!

Discovery Cove is absolutely beautiful, with lush tropical foliage everywhere, so very Florida.....loved it! And the weather was spectacular that day, so fortunate. Not a cloud in the sunny blue sky. Perfect.

The fun was to continue on Monday, with a day at SeaWorld. But, as I mentioned in an earlier post, Sal's Mom called to say that his Dad was unfortunately doing worse, so we felt that it was only appropriate to get to the hospital to be with Sal's family on Sunday. So, we canceled the final part of our trip. SeaWorld has kindly extended the dates of our tickets, so we plan to go back to Orlando sometime in 2009 and continue the celebration. Can't wait to go to their manatee rehabilitation center!

So thanks for sharing the excitement of my fun surprise getaway! I hope you enjoyed all of the surprises as much as I did!

And a BIG special thanks to Sal, my sweetheart, for all of your planning and thoughtfulness! I felt like a princess and really enjoyed all of the surprises! My 40th has been extra special! Love you! XOXOXO

Sal's Dad: Wednesday afternoon update

Hello everyone.....

Pasquale had a bronchoscopy this morning. It's a procedure that clears the lungs, and will hopefully help him recover from the pneumonia more quickly.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Sal's Dad: Monday AM update

Hello everyone.....

Sadly, Pasquale is not doing well.

He is back on a ventilator, is running a fever, and has a severe case of pneumonia. We are hopeful that the antibiotics will help him recover from the pneumonia so that he may regain his strength. This all seems a bit sudden as we expected him to be leaving the ICU after the weekend.

P.S. ~ As many of you know, I was on my birthday getaway with Sal, and I appreciate your excitement and enthusiasm about it, but given the circumstances, I'll give details about it in a future post. We opted to cancel the remainder of the trip and return to St. Petersburg to be with Sal's family at the hospital on Sunday. We will also be here today, and later into the week, so I will post updates as often as possible.

Friday, October 17, 2008

manatee news

I'm SO excited!

Sal and I are featured in the Save The Manatee Club's October e-newsletter! Go here to see us!

We had such a fun time kayaking among the manatees on one of the SMC's "do-not-disturb" tours last December. If you'll be visiting Florida during the winter months, when the manatees gather at the springs (Dec thru Feb), I highly recommend this adventure. It's "natural Florida" at it's best!

Enjoy the weekend.....

Thursday, October 16, 2008

another scrapbooking temptation

Anyone who knows my scrapbooking style knows that I love to create pages and projects with all things bling.....rhinestones, Stickles, Glimmer Mist, Dew Drops, Bazzill Bling cardstock, glitter. And now.....Shimmerz paints (love that name!). Uh-oh, another scrapbooking must-have!

I recently discovered them at a sb store and they're amazing! They are a paint with tons of shimmer and glimmer built right-in. You can completely transform anything using just these paints and a 10-cent paint brush. Get out your plain old white flowers, ribbon, chipboard, etc. and turn them into gorgeous and original creations! The palette of 35 colors is so yummy, check 'em out on the Shimmerz blog.

Bling it on!

Sal's Dad: Thursday AM update

Hello everyone.....

Better news today!

Pasquale is more responsive, was removed from the ventilator, and is now back only on an oxygen mask. His doctor is optimistic, saying that he will likely be out of the ICU after the weekend. He'll then begin some physical therapy sessions.

This is all good news!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


"We can never know about the days to come
But we think about them anyway..."
--- Carly Simon's "Anticipation"

My excitement is building!

We leave on Saturday morning. Sal is whisking me off for a mystery getaway weekend (see my Sept 17 post). I still have absolutely no idea where he's taking me.....Where In The World? I'm filled with anticipation. What fun! Sal hasn't told anyone where we're going, and has divulged only a few select details to me:

** I need to pack a sweater and my bathing suit (are those conflicting articles of clothing his attempt to throw me off?.....a climate conundrum, perhaps?), and something dressy to wear
** we won't need our passports (so I've at least narrowed it down to a domestic destination)
** Buddy & Aruba will be safe and well cared-for (I was concerned about where they'll be staying?); and
** we're on a strict schedule on Saturday! Apparently we've gotta be ??somewhere?? at a certain time to do ??something??

HMMM.....??? Sal has certainly got me guessing! Hopefully, wherever it is, I'll have a WiFi connection and can get on my blog to let you know where we are.....stay tuned! :-)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Sal's Dad: Tuesday PM update

Hello everyone.....

Unfortunately, Sal's Dad's recovery took a step backwards today. During a physical therapy session, his heartbeat became erratic and his breathing problematic. So, he's now back on a ventilator.

Otherwise, he is alert and stable.

Hope to have better news in the near future.

help a soldier and her Iraqi dog

Like so many animals around the world, the dogs in Iraq are given little chance at a good life. But many soldiers are trying to make a difference for them, despite the trouble that often ensues.....for instance, next month, a soldier wants to bring a rescued puppy home with her when she returns from Iraq, but the military will not allow it and they have confiscated the dog from her.

Please join the thousands of others who have signed a petition supporting Sargeant Beberg and her pup Ratchet. According to the SPCA International, which runs the Operation Baghdad Pups Program, this dog faces certain death if left behind. Their mottos are "No Buddy Gets Left Behind" and "From a War Zone To a Real Home".
Why can't we allow a dedicated soldier this joy, while saving an innocent life at the same time? I can't imagine how she's feeling.

Thanks for helping!

Monday, October 13, 2008

"The Secret Life of Bees" on the big screen

On Friday 10/17, The Secret Life of Bees movie will be released.

It's based on the novel by Sue Monk Kidd, which I read when I had a book group a few years ago. It was one of our favorites! Should make a great movie, I plan to see it.

Have a great week!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Sal's Dad: Sunday afternoon update

Hello everyone.....

Sal's Dad is stable today, and is awake and alert, after having some difficulty breathing this week. But he is breathing on his own now.....they removed the oxygen mask today! And a kidney specialist said that an ultrasound showed that his kidneys are functioning fine.

Unfortunately, a feeding tube will need to be inserted through his abdomen since it will be a little while yet before they can evaluate his swallowing ability. Hopefully, with some rehabilitation, the tube can be removed and Pasquale can resume normal eating.

We're wishing him all the best as he continues his recovery!

a lovely evening of Indian culture

Hi everyone, hope you're enjoying the weekend.....

On Saturday night, we went to a performance in West Palm Beach by Ravi Shankar and his daughter & protégé, Anoushka; both are classical Indian musicians. It was fabulous! Ravi has been dubbed "the Mozart of Indian music", and is a sitar guru. He is famous for writing the score of Gandhi.

Sal and I made an evening of it, starting with a delicious dinner at Punjab Indian Restaurant, in Boca Raton. We LOVE Indian food, it's so flavorful and is super vegetarian-friendly. What better way to kick off an evening of Indian music?

We had great seats in the Mezzanine, in one of those "little boxes" off to the side of the stage, with only us and another couple sitting in it. We've never sat in that section of an auditorium before, usually we sit on the Orchestra (floor) level, but we gave it a try and liked it! It was a unique vantage point, looking down onto the performers.

Listening to the sitars (pictured left) was so pleasant, mesmerizing. I felt as if I was transported to India! The sitar has a unique sound, hard to describe.....perhaps a cross between a classical guitar and a steel guitar? Ravi & Anoushka were accompanied by a musician playing the tabla (a pair of small Indian drums, shown below), and the percussion sound added an unexpected richness to the performance.

And a shout-out to my family in Philadelphia --- I saw that Ravi & Anoushka will be performing in Philly soon, on October 19, if you're interested. Check out their Tour Dates webpage for tickets & more info. If you go, please let me know what you think of it!

Friday, October 10, 2008

scrapbooking eye candy

I've been meaning to post pics of this scrapbooking project for weeks. I plan to post more scrapbooking projects as I finish them. (Celita - I love your idea of a girls' crafting day.....the next time Sal and I are in Italy, we'll plan on it, OK?!)

Anyway, this summer I was enrolled in a workshop with Tim Holtz, a celebrity among us scrappers! He was here in SoFla, teaching for a weekend at a scrapbook store. The class was called "Paradise Found", and instead of traditional scrapbook pages, we made a canvas.....we scrapbooked "off the page", if you will. It's so pretty, and as the name implies, it has a tropical, beachy theme. (The big empty space is where the photo goes, I just haven't added one yet.):

We made "sand" to create a border along the bottom. It's a mixture of glue, some colorant, and ultra-thick embossing medium. It came out so realistic, it has the color and texture of real sand! Here's a close-up of the "sand" detail:

And calling all scrappers! Do you know about Dew Drops? I discovered them at my local sb store the other day. They are tiny (1/4" diameter) acrylic pieces that come in a rainbow of
colors, and have one flat side for easy gluing. Most of the colors are transparent, but a few are opaque. (the "flame" variety is shown at right) They can be used as flower centers, water droplets (the blue ones really do look "wet"!), or anywhere that you'd use, say, rhinestones but don't want that much sparkle. So. Much. Fun.

And I've never been one to do any Halloween scrapping; after all, I don't have kids, so I would have no reason to make pages about costumes, trick-or-treating, etc. But when I saw this ghost-shaped mini-album, I just about flipped because cute ghosts are a favorite of mine! It's so stinkin' cute, I had to find a way to use it! So it got me thinking. Why not make an album about my own childhood Halloweens? costumes, my trick-or-treating memories. Fun!

And check out this new collection by Creative Imaginations called Tidepools. Oh my gosh, the colors and artistry of this collection blew me away! A luscious combination of teals, blues and greens...unlike any color combo I have seen in tropical papers and embellishments before. As it is, I love anything tropical, but this collection has a color twist that I can't resist. And the coordinating album.....yummy! Here's a sample of the papers and goodies from the Tidepools collection (won't some Dew Drops be perfect with these?):

And just look at this 12" x 12" album!

brewing up some votes

So how do you take your coffee? Black? or Red? or Blue? That depends how you'll be voting. 7-Eleven has a fun way to "vote" for your candidate of choice in their "7-Election" promotion. When you stop in for coffee, choose either an Obama or a McCain cup, and your "vote" will be cast. They're tallying the national results here, state-by-state, updated weekly. So far, it seems that 7-Eleven coffee drinkers prefer Obama by a W ---- I ---- D ---- E margin! Who says these partisan coffee cups aren't a good, albeit unscientific, prediction? Check this out:
* In the 2000 7-Election, Bush's coffee cup outsold Gore's cup by only one percentage point.
* In 2004, the 7-Election results tracked identically with published national election results: 51% for W, and 49% for Kerry.

Hmmm. Perhaps we should hold the next presidential debate at a 7-11 store? {sarcasm}

And speaking of voting, be sure to check out the poll on my blog's sidebar. If you haven't already, please stop by and place your vote (and yes, it's confidential....I've been asked if I can see who cast which vote, and nope I can't! It's just a widget that I programmed in through my blogging software.) From the 30 votes cast thus far, the results interestingly mirror those of the national polls.....a dead heat! It's gonna be a fun election night!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Sal's Dad: Wednesday PM update

Hello everyone.....

Sal's Dad is doing OK today. When I spoke to Angela tonight, he had just come back from another MRI. The doctors are also carefully monitoring his lung function and are trying to keep the fluid build-up to a minimum.

Sal and I are in touch with Angela and the family several times a day. Please check back for periodic updates.

i've been tagged!

My cousin-in-law in Italy, Celita, has kindly included me in a fun get-to-know-you-better tag. So, here are 5 random things about me:

(1) When I was young, I wanted to be an airline pilot (apparently my love of travel started early on!).....Where In The World?.....but I decided that being away from my home/family/routine that much (especially for work) just wasn't my thing.

(2) One of my pet peeves is standing in a shower that doesn't drain well. Ick! Can I get some Drano in here please?

(3) The tallest building that I ever designed foundations for was 55 stories. I'm a licensed Professional Engineer (P.E.) in 2 states, Florida and Indiana. My specialty is Geotechnical Engineering, and I design and oversee the construction of foundations for various structures, mostly bridges and high-rise buildings.

(4) I daydream about buying a beach house. Oh, and decorating it too! Either an elegant Hawaiian Asian decor or a seaside/beachy theme, depending where it's located. Oh, to have the beach for a backyard. Ahhh....

(5) I've had a huge rock & mineral collection for most of my life (I love geology!). When I was a kid, I started a "rock club" with neighborhood friends (I was "President"). And I even started my own rock and mineral "magazine", and tried to sell "lifetime subscriptions" to my family. What a scam artist I was! {tee hee}

So now I'll tag my Creative Escape pal, Shannon, in Arizona. Have fun!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Sal's Dad: Tuesday PM update

Hello everyone.....

I wish I had better news to report here tonight. Sal's Dad had fluid building up in his lungs; they were able to remove fluids from his passageways, but hopefully medications will take care of the lung fluids. His heartbeat is a bit irregular, so he remains in the ICU so that his breathing and heart can be monitored. But Pasquale is alert and responsive.

I hope to have good news to post tomorrow.....

animal news

It's October.....Adopt-A-Shelter Dog Month! If you're considering a dog as a new companion, please won't you adopt from a shelter rather than purchasing from a breeder or a pet store? Shelter dogs are more in need than ever, with many now being abandoned there because of foreclosures and economic reasons. Please, rescue a dog from death row.

In other animal news.....a true "march of the penguins"!.....hundreds of stranded penguins were recently rescued in Brazil, and were rehabilitated and then returned home via an Air Force jet! Here's the amazing story of what the rescue team from the International Fund for Animal Welfare did for those lucky penguins.

Monday, October 6, 2008

celebrating 2 milestone birthdays today!

We're celebrating 2 milestone birthdays today! :-)

Our niece, Sarah, is turning 5 years old! She lives in Gulfport, Florida. Have a fun day, sweetie!

And Sal's Dad is turning 75 today! (So, yes Sarah, his granddaughter, was born on his 70th birthday.) Unfortunately, Pasquale is still in the hospital on his special day, but we're thinking of him and wish him a happy birthday and a speedy recovery!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Sal's Dad: Sunday AM update

Hello everyone.....

I have good news to share today.....Sal's Dad was taken off the ventilator on Saturday and is breathing on his own, with just the assistance of an oxygen mask. And this morning, he is awake, alert, responding to conversation, and is in good spirits.

Sal and I are heading back home today, but I'll keep everyone posted here with updates on Pasquale's condition as we get news. Monday is his 75th birthday, too.

Have a great week.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Sal's Dad: Friday evening update

Hello everyone.....

Pasquale is in stable condition today; he's still in the ICU, but seems to be resting comfortably. The neurologist said that it's possible that he may be taken off the ventilator on Saturday, terrific!

He's surrounded by lots of family now. His brother Sam and sisters Lidia and Michelle flew in from Philadelphia today. They spent some time with him, singing Italian songs. Pasquale responded by squeezing Michelle's hand. Such a positive sign!

Tonight we're all gathered for a family spaghetti dinner at Sal's parents' house. Despite the sad circumstances, Sal's really enjoying the time with all his family, celebrating life.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Sal's Dad: Thursday afternoon update

Hi everyone.....sorry for the delay in posting today, I had technical difficulties with my blog site.

When Sal and I left the hospital late on Wednesday night, Pasquale seemed to be improving, recovering.....he was singing Italian songs with Sal's Mom, and seemed to be interested in the baseball game that was playing on the TV. The speech pathologist had determined that he could begin swallowing pureed foods.

The hospital called early this morning to tell us that he was worsening, it was a scare. He is now sedated, and on a ventilator in the ICU. The results of another CT brain scan indicate no additional damage from the stroke, which is great news! Apparently his lung function was compromised due to low blood sugar, which they're stabilizing now. They expect him to continue recovering.

All of his 5 children are with him, and are here to support their Mom.....Patricia, Sal, Paul (who arrived from Philadelphia this morning), Mark and Deborah.

I will post updates frequently, as we get news. Nicely, I have my laptop and the hospital has WiFi, so I can blog right from the hospital instead of waiting until we leave late in the evening. Please keep checking back.....I hope to have good news soon.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Sal's Dad: Wednesday afternoon update

Hi everyone.....

Sal's Dad was transferred to the Intensive Care Unit so that they can get his blood pressure under control. Other than that, the recovery from the stroke continues, and the doctor said it will be slow. Unfortunately, it appears that only limited rehabilitation will be possible because, since Pasquale also suffers from Alzheimer's, his cognitive function is compromised. But he seems in better spirits today, smiling at times, and a bit more alert.

Please check back here later on for any updates, I'll post as often as possible. Thanks to everyone for your well-wishes.

P.S. ~ Paul, we all look forward to seeing you here tomorrow!