Monday, December 21, 2009

That's Not the Garbage

Whew! It's been a long couple days. (I should note I'm writing this Sunday evening and I'm a little loopy). After a roller-coaster of a week (ahem), my grandmother was released from the hospital on Sunday and is now back in her apartment. She's already refered to me as her cook and bottle washer several times, but she enjoyed the first meal I cooked for her so I don't think she'll ride me too hard. ;)

I saw my first snow in almost three years over the weekend and despite my baby-deer-like legs and uncooperative front-wheel-drive vehicle, I made it to all my destinations in one piece. And did I mention I now have a pre-paid cell phone? BIG WEEK.

One hurdle my grandmother and I have yet to comepletely overcome is figuring out how she'll get my attention in the middle of the night if she needs something. For the past ten weeks she's had a button within arm's reach that brings nurses and aides running (in theory anyway) and no matter how nicely she smiled, they wouldn't let her take one home (the button, not the aide, although that could be helpful).

Our solution? A little brass bell.

We're not sure if it'll be loud enough though. While I'm not a deep sleeper, I have learned to sleep through a lot of odd noises and a gentle tinkling in the next room (the bell... the bell...) may not be enough to rouse me. Plus, as you may recall (I can't track down the post, I'm sorry), there are a lot of bells in our neighborhood in the morning -- specifically, the trash collectors -- and I've trained myself to block them out. Hopefully the fancy bell will break through my defenses.


Penguin said...

On a simple solution get a baby monitor.
There are also some very low cost intercoms that work on the house's internal phone wiring.

Sucks about the crappy snow doesn't it. All it is doing is making the roads nasty. Nothing good to board on.

Janna Qualman said...

I'd be having some pretty messed-up dreams. :)

Glad she's home! You guys'll get a good system down, I bet.

Lauren said...

Glad that she is home and that you are there taking care of her! I hope the bell works!

Anonymous said...

some friends of mine have an older relative who lives in the basement apt and they put a wireless doorbell on her cane!

Natasha Fondren said...

Speed dial from her bedside phone to your cell phone?

Baby monitor is a good idea!

Good luck. I hope she feels as well as possible for the holidays! And that your holidays are filled with family.

Happy Holidays, Melanie!

Natasha Fondren said...

Oh, duh. Of course you don't have a cell phone!

Adam said...

I have this freaky image in my head of you with deer legs.

It's not the best look. ;-)


JLC said...

My Grandmother in-law used a bell when she was being cared for by family. Of course, she abused the bell's power and used it all. the. time.

Hope you are enjoying your time with her!! :D

Robin said...

(He Robin) Another solution that may be cheaper than a baby monitor (Not sure about the price of baby monitors) is a wireless doorbell from a home improvement store. I think they're around $25. Put the button in her room and the doorbell in yours and then you're just a button push away, just like the nurses.

Jenny Greenleaf said...

We used walkie-talkies and, each time my grandmother needed something, she just pushed the "call" button because she didn't like the idea of actually using it to talk. It was loud, scared us every time . . . but it worked. Then, we gave them to my kids!

Melanie Avila said...

Penguin, we actually talked about that and my original idea for this post was to have a picture of a baby monitor, but it got lost in the shuffle. The bell did wake me up, and we just had an even LOUDER bell delivered.

I love the snow, even this stuff. :)

Janna, I'm curious what I'll dream about tonight, that's for sure!

Thanks Lauren!

Sarah, that's pure genious!

Natasha, they actually bought me a prepaid cell phone so we could do that, I think. I don't know how to do anything with this phone -- aside from the alarm clock.

Adam, once again, you made me almost spew my beverage. Well done.

JLC, she keeps joking that she has me under her control, but she hasn't rang it at all today.

Robin, that's a fabulous idea! I'll have to remember that if we ever end up in a longer-term situation.

Anonymous said...

I'd love the snow if I only had to see it once every three years, too.

Robin said...

You're a great grand kid, Melanie! I was thinking baby monitor, but Robin's idea was so good! It's funny, but if you're waiting for something to happen, I find that just a little noise will wake me up.

Nadine said...

Hope the bell works! So glad she is finally back at home!

colbymarshall said...

Glad your grandmother is doing better! And I'm with Janna- you'll figure it out soon, I'm sure!

Erica said...

Yep I was thinking baby monitor too. Glad the bell is working though.

Can you take this snow back with you? We've had enough ;) Sounds like you are having a good time :o) Enjoy the holidays!

Melanie Avila said...

Jenny, the walkie talking is a good idea. She can't hear very well so she'd probably just push the button too.

Ferret, I loved the snow when I lived here too. :)

Robin, that's true. We got her a bigger bell that sounds like the alarm in a firehouse. Now I BOLT out of bed!

Thanks Nadine & Colby!

Erica, I'll try, but we're not supposed to bring liquids on the plane. (Yes, I'm hysterical, I know.)