We’re bustin’ mom outta dat joint

I decided this morning that mom was coming home.  She wasn’t cooperating with rehab at the hospital, wouldn’t eat, they were short-staffed to the point of one nurse on an entire ward, and our aide was taking complete care of all of mom’s needs anyway… that we can do at home.

Mom’s hip is fine – she needs to work it to get back to where she was.  The surgeon says it is all good as far as the surgery and repair goes.

She has been refusing to eat the hospital food (which is tasteless BTW).

The Physio said her strength in both legs is over 90%, so no reason that she can’t stand.  He also told me there is no medical reason that she needs to stay in the hospital and that he would put in an order for the Home Care P/T to come to our house for sessions.

So I asked our aide (who is fully trained and certified in various things as a rehab aide) if she was on board if I TOLD the hospital we were bringing mom home.  She was.

I called our case manager at home care to make sure that it would be acceptable and they would be able to assist with the possible need for additional equipment.  She was and is arranging for an O/T to come and assess our equipment needs if there are any over and above what we currently have. I called our family doctor to update him on mom – as he doesn’t have hospital privileges he isn’t in the loop.  Once she leaves the hospital she is back under his care.  He said as long as it was not against medical advice he was fine with it.

Then I booked the handi-bus to pick mom up tomorrow morning.

Then I drafted a memo to the hospital/surgeon/doctor advising them I was taking mom home tomorrow morning and outlining my care plan for her, and that I’ve lined up all our support systems.  I handed it in at the desk on the ward when I got there this afternoon.

One of mom’s nurses came in around 7 p.m. when her shift was ending to tell me the surgeon would be up in the morning to sign the release form so the discharge would be official and not against medical advice.

So tomorrow we  will get mom home.  She really perked up when told she was coming home.  It might be a little rough for a couple of days, but it will be less stressful for everyone having her here.

Family members:  If you want to phone and talk to mom please wait until AFTER 1 p.m. tomorrow, Thursday, May 28.  We need to get her home and settled first.


Update on Mom

I spent today with mom at the hospital.  She was more “normal” today – dozing off a lot but speaking.

One of the nurses managed to get her to stand up off the edge of the bed holding onto a walker.  She didn’t stand up totally straight but did balance her weight on her good leg. Also sat more upright most of the day too.

Getting her to eat is still a struggle but she did eat something at each meal.  I took her some watermelon that she did eat.  The meals they are giving her are HUGE and she is not a big eater at the best of times.  Breakfast this morning, for example:  Hard boiled egg, pancakes, big bowl of oatmeal, fruit cup, yoghurt, coffee, cranberry juice… mom’s usual breakfast is yoghurt and banana, with a cup of coffee.  And while the food isn’t disgusting like the crap they tried to feed her the last time she was in after her stroke, it is pretty much completely tasteless.  She’ll eat a few mouthfuls then doesn’t want any more.

The surgeon stopped by to say everything was great with the hip.  Just need to get her back on her feet now.

I’ll be back at work tomorrow and will stop in to see mom on my way home each day.  Gerry is there with her in the daytime for her shift.


My Mom (June)

My mom had a fall last Friday – we were getting her out of the car in the garage after her water therapy session.  She slid down the car and hit the cement floor of the garage, landing on her bad side.

We spent 13 hours in ER… she was admitted for a broken hip AND clavicle.  Both on her left side which is the side the stroke affected so she wasn’t “using them.”  Although due to therapy she has much more strength in her left leg now.

They did surgery on her hip on Sunday afternoon – had to wait for her INR to be right as she is on blood thinners.  It was a clean break (only visible on the CT Scan) so they put in a rod and pins.  The surgeon said the surgery went as well as that sort of operation can.  The incisions are immaculate!  Three tiny slits, with a total of thirteen staples, no redness or gaps… just neat and tidy!

Now we are dealing with her pain and trying to convince her to bloody well use her good leg and stand up!  Typically they want hip surgery patients on their feet within two days, but mom, as she doesn’t walk anymore without assistance, needs different rehab.

Our new (started in April) full-time aide, Gerry, is fully trained and experienced in rehab which I am SO grateful for right now.  She was away for a week visiting her new grand-baby and was back at work Thursday – so she spent it at the hospital taking over mom’s care and maintenance from the nurses and working with the hospital physio to get mom moving.

Mom doesn’t want to eat – says it all tastes horrible.  So we’ve resorted to spoon-feeding.  I’ve tried taking in other things and she will eat some, but not all.

I’ve been at the hospital all-day everyday until Thursday.  You have to be there when you have someone who isn’t fully aware (they had her on opiates which make her loopy – finally got that changed) so you can hear what the doctors and therapists have to say directly.

For the first few days I had to tell everyone who came to check her that she COULD NOT move her left side due to a stroke.   I think that is all noted now.  And Gerry is there to deal with it from now on during the day.

Mom is aware, in pain which is understandable, and being well looked after.  I had hoped we could get her home within a week but that doesn’t look likely.  She needs to stand to transfer and she hasn’t stood up on her own power yet.  They are using a mechanical lift to pick her up as she will NOT cooperate and put weight on her GOOD leg, let alone the broken one which is functional and stable and can bear weight.

As I was at the hospital everyday I missed work this week, and all the yard work and other things I had planned for the long weekend didn’t get done.  I’ve got bookings for make-up/face painting, have to get back to work at the day job, and visiting mom – and housework, yard work and getting paperwork done.  Days are long and I just want to chill, make myself something to eat and sleep when I finally get home.

This part is for family: I know a lot of you read my blog.  If you are trying to call me I will not answer the phone after 9 p.m. (ever) and I tend not to check for phone messages when I get in as the flashing light is on the phone in the office which is out of sight – right now it may be the next day before I listen to them.  I do not have a long distance plan.  I am not in the house a lot and when I finally get a chance to chill and watch mindless television I have no interest in talking on the phone – I need to relax!  Shari and Shona have the latest updates and information (including mom’s room number, etc. which I won’t publish here.)  If you want to send an email or FB message (ShannonFennell.MakeUp)  I will respond to those (again, Shari and Shona can provide my email if you don’t have it.)

PLEASE DO NOT SEND FLOWERS  – mom has severe allergies and the nurses have instructions to not let them anywhere near her.

Now that Gerry will be working with mom I really REALLY hope that we can get her home within another week – but she may not be up to coming with me on the big jobs for quite some time.



Time rolls merrily along

Another month has whipped by in a blink.  I can’t believe how fast time goes by… every year it speeds up. If this keeps up I’ll soon be missing entire years by sleeping in on weekends.

Last weekend we were face painting out at the Annual Swan Festival at Saskatoon Island Provincial Park.  Marilyn Grubb of Chipabirdee Images took some sweet shots as usual

MG SF 2015

MG2 SF 2015

We’re booked for lots of face painting this season.  These events are open to the public for the most part (there are admission fees for some): The MS Walk at the end of the month at Muskoseepi Park,  Municipal Government Day on June 10th at Muskoseepi Park, Canada Day at Muskoseepi Park, County Fair at Evergreen Park in July, Grizfest in Tumbler Ridge on the August long weekend, the Debolt Fair, the Hythe Fair, the Wembley Demolition Derby and more.


Opening tomorrow: Agatha Christie’s Cards on the Table… in shades of grey

Does that title sound like a bit of a mash-up?

It isn’t really… literally (in the literal sense of the word) the entire show is shades of grey – and black and white.

Cards Scene

The sets, the costumes, the make-up, the hair… shades of grey.

The photos are from dress rehearsal as the show opens tomorrow night.  I still need to tweak a few things – it is a process to get the make-up right and a challenge to have total and complete coverage.

Particularly when one of the actors reacted to the make-up and we had to figure out an alternative which isn’t perfect.

And colouring the hair with make-up on those who we don’t have wigs on and trying to cover the scalp so the natural skin doesn’t show through in the stage lights and make the hair look pink.

I’ve got a great crew to work with and we’ll get it right!

Here are some shots I took backstage:

Cards Saitana Cards Major Cards Maid Cards girls Cards backstage

It is a little strange looking at the photos; they look photo-shopped.

Once we work out the kinks I’ll get more photos of the whole cast.

It’s a good show too!  Come and see it – tickets are available at GPLT 780-538-1616 or on the website.


Just some random thoughts

Spring is here… yeah, right.  First day of Spring usually means more snow around here.  And this year was no different.  Snowed pretty much all day yesterday and today we are under a “Heavy Snowfall Warning”… after such a nice warm spell too.  Forecast is to be back up to +11c by next Thursday so I am not even going to bother shoveling the driveway.

This was yesterday afternoon.  Spring started at about the time I took this photo.

Mar 20 (1)

This is this morning, first full day of Spring.

Mar 21 (2)


I’ve just been checking in on blogs I have bookmarked (I don’t “follow” or sign up, I just bookmark them to check in when I have time) and there are a lot that haven’t posted for months, and in some cases a year or more.  A couple haven’t posted for over two years.  I think I may remove them from my bookmarks.

Makes me wonder about why they’ve stopped posting… are they dead? They forgot they have a blog? Don’t care anymore?  Some are connected to businesses that are still in operation – why have they not been posting on their blog?  Did the person responsible leave and no one took over?

I know in some cases the bloggers are overwhelmed by feedback from their followers and take breaks from the whole thing.  While I don’t have that issue I can understand the need to back away.  People can be demanding and/or cruel and/or needy, etc.  Just look at how demanding some people can be on Facebook groups – magnify that and focus on one person who has a hugely popular blog with hundreds of thousands of followers.  Yeah.  That.

There are a few I really miss.  I keep checking to see if they’ve come back…

I try to make sure that I post at least once a month on my blog.  Sometimes it is hard to find the time to write something interesting.  That’s when you get to read posts like this!  LOL

In my last post I mentioned making scones… I did and here they are.  My new container of baking powder is a dud – nothing is rising, so these should be about three times higher but they are still very good!


I also made chocolate cupcakes with chocolate icing – a request from mom (she asked for cake but cupcakes were easier).  No photos as they weren’t that interesting.  Mom had them for lunch the last few days.

Next Saturday is a make-up test run for the next show at Grande Prairie Live Theatre, “Cards on the Table” which is an Agatha Christie murder mystery.  We are doing something very unique and interesting with the hair and make-up – and sets and costumes!  I will post photos after the show opens as I don’t want to spoil the surprise.  I did a test make-up on one of the cast – it is pretty neat.

And, as Easter is coming here is my bunny painting – which will be the featured design at the Easter Eggstravaganza at Muskoseepi Park on April 4th.  We will be there face painting from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.!

White Rabbit




Productive downtime

I have been enjoying my “break.” Aside from a make-up test last Saturday for a show in April and a couple of clients for an appointment early this morning, I’ve been relaxing after a very busy fall and winter.

I’ve managed to get my laundry/utility room back in order after getting everything dried out after my flood on Feb 18th.  And the hall carpeting is completely dry now too.  Now I have to start getting all my kit, wigs, beards, etc. cleaned and put away – we just piled up everything from Les Mis in the corner of my studio.  I had to do a rush tidy-up last night for this morning’s appointment but they are regulars here so were understanding of the reason for the mess.

This is what they had done (they were adjudicating an innovation challenge for students):


The collar on the Egyptian Queen is a big glitter tattoo that goes all around her neck.

I have been doing marketing and paperwork – got in touch with my repeat clients and confirmed dates, and got contracts and deposits back through to the end of the year.  Also getting my taxes ready to take to  my accountant as soon as I get all my receipts.

After not getting any Christmas candy making done due to being too busy, tired and then getting sick, I seem to have been hit with a baking bug!

A friend was looking for a Chocolate Fudge Torte with Chocolate Ganache icing.  He couldn’t find one anywhere so I baked one for him on Tuesday night – it was a four-hour process (make, bake, cool, chill, coat, chill again.)  I found a recipe online and it smelled divine while baking.  I heard it tasted awesome…


Then this morning I was seeing pie references everywhere (today is Pie Day 3-14-15) so I made an apple pie which mom and I had for lunch with vanilla bean ice cream.


Tomorrow morning I’m going to make scones and we will have a Cream Tea for brunch!  For those who don’t know what that is – fresh-baked scones, fresh whipped cream, jam and tea!  In England they have “double cream” and it is different from whipped cream but I’ll just whip the cream till thick, not fluffy.

I think the baking mood is because I am not so tired and have some energy.  Although, I haven’t seem to have found the energy to get cracking on the wig washing and kit cleaning yet.

Once we get to the end of March I will be busy again with theatre and bookings.  I really needed this break to get a chance to take care of household and business stuff, although I still need to vacuum.  Maybe next weekend.  It’s been so long since I used it I may not recognize it…



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Shannon Fennell

Shannon Fennell

International Award Winnning Make-Up Artist, Face & Body Painter

I am a professional make-up artist with credits in film, television, theatre and editorial.  My face painting book YOUR FACE OR MINE was published in 2007 by Snazaroo USA Inc. is widely available worldwide and I offer a multitude of make-up related services and retail instructional products for face painters.

Some of my awards include 2005 International Face Painter of the Year, 2006 Winner of Fantasy Worldwide Face Painting Contest in Putte, Belgium, Second Place at the 2007 US Body Painting Festival, as well as over 50 other awards and prizes. 

I love creative projects and can do everything from wedding make-up to custom SFX appliances, large scale international sporting events to individual appointments at Halloween, birthday parties to trade shows.  No job too big or too small.


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