Wednesday, October 31, 2012

#271

Elaine had her best day of therapy! Her arm/shoulder moved incredibly well! Elaine is FINALLY noticing a difference in herself, which makes us all so excited! She was doing an arm exercise today that six weeks ago she couldn't do at all. Elaine noticed the difference (which never happens) and started to cry! They were tears of happiness fortunately. Diane then started to tear up too. Fred was there and immediately started with his strip tease music, which made them burst into laughter. Her walk was better and she was able to make her left leg completely straight during pilates today. It was a great day and Elaine left feeling great about her progress.


Elaine went home to rest and then did her stretcher and cane exercises. Staci and the kids picked her up from the gym so the kids could trick or treat at their house. Elaine was looking as beautiful as ever and the kids were so excited to see her! 



Tuesday, October 30, 2012

#270

Elaine woke up feeling much better today. She slept really well and her pain was much more manageable today. She relaxed at home today. Staci was fortunate to watch Elaine do her afternoon home cane exercises, and could understand Fred's excitement! Her elbow was straight and she is able to reach her arms all the way behind her head. It really was one of those moments that you experienced goosebumps watching her. She has worked tirelessly, and to see results like those was incredible! Here is a photo taken on August 23, compare it to the one take today. Its hard not to notice a difference! Please keep in mind that mid-July, she was not able to even lift her left arm to shoulder height. Unfortunately, the photo doesn't quite do it justice, but her arms today were all the way back touching the bed. Even Elaine, her own harshest critic, has to see improvement.

August 23rd

October 30th.


This is another photo showing off her increased mobility and ability to straighten her left elbow! 

Elaine we are so proud of you!



Monday, October 29, 2012

#269

Elaine started today with therapy. The Smith'\s both slept well and headed to see Diane this morning. Elaine still had a lot of pain in her arm and shoulder. The good news: Diane said Elaine's flexibility continues to increase and she thought this was as loose as Elaine has been. The bad news: she can't get better if she stays in the intense pain she is in because it will continue to cause more swelling. After therapy, they went to the doctor. They are trying some different medications, and hopefully this will get her out of pain. She looks incredibly beautiful and she is so tough. Just by looking at her, you would never know how much pain she is in!

Elaine received a bracelet and special letter in the mail today from Jessica. Below is a copy of the letter that Jessica wrote to a non profit that is selling these bracelets that say "I can Not be replaced." We know much Elaine is loved by so many. She was so touched by this letter Jessica wrote. Thank you Jessica. We are thinking of you and your family as you are riding out this storm. Our thoughts and prayers are with you, Elaine's brother Deno and his wife Peggy, and all of our east coast friends, and everyone out there braving the storm.



Sunday, October 28, 2012

#267

It was a lazy Sunday for Elaine today. Fred left early to play golf, while Ben, Brian, and Christi dropped off some coffee for Elaine. She was a little emotional and had some pain in her arm  which wasn't helped by the stretching machine. Thankfully, Christi was there to comfort her!

We are also thankful that both Fred and Elaine had much better nights of sleep. Let's hope it continues so this week can be as productive as possible. Elaine is mentally much sharper the last few days as well. They are going to the doctor tomorrow after therapy to alter the dose of the medicine, because its not strong enough, but Elaine is much clearer. Elaine had her best day ever doing her cane exercises. Her range of motion was the best is has been since her shoulder became frozen. After her second round of doing them so well, Fred got tears in his eyes to see her progress. Elaine's voice is stronger and louder as well. She celebrated all her progress with a massage this afternoon. It was earned and deserved. We are so proud of Elaine and Fred, and how well they have handled the ups and downs of this journey.

Elaine had the TV on all day today, watching the storm prep on the East Coast as Hurricane Sandy approached land. Our thoughts and prayers are will all of those affected! 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

#266


It was another busy Saturday for Elaine. As usual she mixed in soccer games for Taylor and Christi which in and of itself is amazing. Definitely more amazing when you consider that she probably walked a mile between the two games. Even more amazingly, she did this without really sleeping the night before. To top it off, her biggest supporter (Fred), also has not slept for a three straight nights. Well, they were great sports to go to the games to see Taylor score on a dramatic coast-to-coast play and see Christi save the game with three huge saves at goalie. Then, they even had the stamina to go to lunch with Ben's parents, Vicki and Larry, who were in town to watch some soccer.





Later in the day, Fred and Elaine's old friends Sam and Nan came by for a visit! It was a great time to catch up!



Update

Hi. We wanted to apologize for the surprising (and offensive) word in the blog this morning. Ben wrote last night's blog on his iPhone which added the word through an autocorrect function (which may mean that he has used that word on his phone before :) ). Normally, one of us edits the blog, but Staci was not  feeling well and went to bed early.  Again, we are sorry that it happened and certainly didn't want to offend anyone!


Friday, October 26, 2012

#265

TGIF. It was a great day for Elaine. Who doesn't love Fridays? At therapy, her arm was sore, but looser  than it was on Wednesday! Elaine is such a star fighting through the pain to continue to make positive steps despite the obstacles!

In other news, Fred and Elaine hired a new housekeeper today. She should be a big help keeping things in order and run some errands. Let's hope she sticks around!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

#264

Elaine went to bed late last night, and she was tired this morning. The nurse came to talk to them about the stretcher. She adjusted the setting. It was not in the right position and that is why is was causing Elaine so much pain. Her arm was straining to stretch, in a way it shouldn't, and it caused the tissue to swell. She should be headed in the right direction now after the correction

Elaine ran some errands this afternoon and finished off the final interviews this evening for their new housekeeper. A good night of sleep is hopefully in store tonight and back to therapy tomorrow. Hopefully her swelling with continue to go down and her pain will decrease. We hate seeing her in pain!!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

#263

Elaine was very tight today. Her arm and elbow were tighter than they have been in a long time, and her arm, from her elbow to her shoulder, was swollen. She spent a lot of time on her feet yesterday, which also caused a lot of swelling in left leg and foot. Staci picked her up for therapy this morning and she still had a good session. Elaine did some pilates on her lower body and just did some stretching on her arm. The therapist told her to continue to work on her arm exercises, but not to push it or overdue it. It is important to do the exercises, something is better than nothing, but to do so in moderation and not to have pain.

Elaine had a massage this afternoon which also helped with her pain and her swelling. She switched pain medications on Monday, so it will be a week or so of trial and error trying to find the right combination and dose to keep her comfortable. Unfortunately, we haven't found that dose yet and she is in pain and was exhausted tonight.

The day ended by watching Christi's soccer game and dinner at Taco Rosa. The soccer game was a little chilly and a lot of walking. It has been a long day for Elaine and she was understandably worn out tonight!


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

#262

Despite a very sore arm, Elaine went to work today. Her first task was to interview housekeepers. Tedious, but important work. Her last stop of the day was dinner at the club. In between those two jobs was what mattered the most!

Elaine went to work on setting up and hosting a Halloween treasure hunt for Christi, Taylor, and Brian. This has been a pretty serious endeavor for Elaine. She has been collecting "treasure" for the last SIX weeks. She had clues for the kids to figure out. She had Halloween toys and trinkets all over the house. And, of course, she had candy absolutely everywhere. She also dressed up in her Halloween bat headband (see below) as an active participant in the day. The kids had so much fun running around the house, laughing at every clue and every turn. They had the time of their lives finding treasure everywhere. Fred and Elaine may have had more fun watching them tear through the house at million miles an hour! It is probably why they need a new housekeeper!




Monday, October 22, 2012

#261

Today was a good day! Elaine went to see the therapist this morning and she had made significant progress with the range of motion of her arm. Optimal range for her shoulder is 180 degrees. Today, Elaine measured at 165 degrees. Pretty darn good for someone who could barely move her arm. The therapist wishes Elaine could see how far she has come! She is still not completely trusting her leg when she walks. She has been ordered to focus on balance while she is at home. Also, she is going to lay off the arm stretcher until the nurse can come by and do an assessment. After therapy, the neurologist altered Elaine's medication. She is switching to a pain medicine program that will have the same palliative effect with less side effects.

Then, it was onto Monday night dinner at the Francois house!





Sunday, October 21, 2012

#260

Elaine and Fred enjoyed a nice day today. It was a nice day to be inside, and they spent the day getting organized and doing some "fall" cleaning. Elaine's elbow was very sore and swollen this afternoon, so sore that she wasn't able to even raise her arms over her hear to do her cane exercises. She took the rest of the day off of the stretcher and is going to see the doctor in the morning. On Friday, she was told to reduce the time she was spending on the stretcher, going from 3 times a day for 20 minutes, to 2 a day for 15 minutes. Typically people aren't as diligent with the machine, and Elaine rarely misses a session so she is going to reduce the time she spends on it. After a nice, and productive, afternoon, Fred and Elaine headed over to their favorite Sunday night spot, True Food. Elaine was in bed early and resting up!


Saturday, October 20, 2012

#258

The weather certainly changed today in Newport. There was some drizzle. The air was slightly cooler. It felt a little more like Autumn today. Well, the wet weather could not deter Elaine from watching her granddaughters play soccer.

Elaine's first stop was Taylor's game requiring a long walk to the field. Following the success of the Butterflies, Fred and Elaine headed over to check out the Green Machine. Elaine was a trooper sitting in the rain watching Chirsti's game! No one said hat being a grandparent was go to be easy.

The rest of the day was spent as you would expect given the gray skies! A little bit of relaxation and rest!

Friday, October 19, 2012

#258

Quick medical update on Elaine. She continues to make great progress in her therapy sessions. In fact, her therapist Diane has now told her that she no longer has to wear her boot! Huge move for Elaine.

More importantly, Elaine had a great day with friends. Shirley and Colette came to pick her up and take her out to lunch. They enjoyed their time together at Sabatino's down by the water. It was a wonderful day with wonderful company, and it was exactly what Elaine needed. After all the fund and laughs, Elaine was tired and is home relaxing - and hopefully getting bed to early and getting a full night of sleep.






Thursday, October 18, 2012

#257

The Smith house slept great last night and everyone woke up feeling great. Elaine even dreamed about a shock running through her body, and she woke up feeling completely normal. When she actually woke up, she was so eager to get out of bed. When she realized she wasn't quite, "back to normal" yet, she said, "well sh*t!" In time Elaine, you are getting better every single day! We can't possibly understand your frustration, but we are so grateful that you are alive, and continuing to improve daily!

Staci and Brian met Elaine and Fred for lunch today. Elaine looked so cute! She was wearing clothes and didn't have to wear her leg brace, which really made her happy. She finds out tomorrow at therapy if she break with the brace in indeed permanent. She will be dreaming about that tonight, and sleeping with her fingers and toes crossed:) Her elbow is quite swollen too. We aren't sure if its from the stretcher.  Another question that will hopefully be answered tomorrow.


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

#256

Elaine had a good day today. It was VERY hot and she was a little tired but, not surprisingly, she plugged through it. Staci and Brian picked her up for lunch this afternoon and then went to pick up Taylor from school. Elaine didn't have a official therapy appointment today,because the therapist was out of the office. Elaine still worked very hard. She did her shoulder, all her extra exercises and worked on her balance exercises. She also walked down to the gym(in the heat) and rode the bike! She looks as beautiful and normal as ever! We are hoping the Smith's get some rest. They are still playing catch up!


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

#255

The tables have turned for Elaine. Usually, this blog is about Elaine and her battle to get back to a normal life. There is nothing more normal for Elaine than thinking about her grandchildren. That is exactly what she did today. Elaine has been worried about Brian and his little broken foot all day. All she wants to do is help the little guy out! As for Brian, he is doing pretty well. Of course, it has only been a matter of hours and he is ready to get his cast off. Unfortunately, he has to wait to 2-3 weeks! 



Monday, October 15, 2012

#253

Elaine and Fred didn't sleep well again, and they are both exhausted today after a few sleepless nights. They got up and went to see her internist. He was thrilled with Elaine's progress, especially her shoulder. He could feel and see her actual shoulder for the first time today. He said she must be working really hard to have these results. He also said that the noticeable progress will start to slow, but that she is still progressing. She is doing amazingly well. Elaine was quite emotional today as well. Fred has come up with a new way to make her laugh instead of cry. When she starts to cry, he threatens a strip tease. This quickly dries her tears:)

Next stop, a trip to therapy. The therapist reminded her of how well she is doing. She told her when she first came in, her arm was so severely frozen that she really wasn't sure how long it would be before they saw progress. She could have never imagined Elaine would make so much headway in such a short time. She admires and respects her dedication so much and loves working with Elaine, who doesn't!

This evening, Elaine was off patient duty and back on caretaker duty. After a quick trip to urgent care, we learned that Brian broke his big toe bone after a fall. We will know more tomorrow. We tried to get him to have the same appreciation for ice as Elaine has, but he didn't like it. We will know more tomorrow after he goes to the doctor. Fred and Elaine came over to give Brian a hug and have some dinner. Elaine cleaned up the kitchen while Staci bathed Brian. She was so helpful!


We really wish them a solid night of rest. They are absolutely exhausted!!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

#252

Last night was relatively sleepless for Elaine. Today, she tried to make up for it by really getting some rest. She was able to get some extra sleep and spend the day relaxing. Elaine did mix in some arm therapy, but she opted to skip the gym. She is looking forward to another productive week starting tomorrow!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

#252

This picture tells the story of how well Elaine is progressing with her shoulder! Its amazing. Her shoulder was sore today, but seeing how well it is moving, its understandable. We are so proud of her, and being over there for the morning round, it is evident how dedicated Fred is as well. He is in there encouraging her, cheering her progress, and making sure she does everything right! He found a new neck wrap for her while she's icing, and she likes it too. She skipped the gym, she was sore from yesterday and her arm was sore.



Fred and Elaine came to cheer on the butterflies(Taylor's team) this morning as well. The walk from the car to the field isn't a cake walk. They even dressed in the teams colors! Christi and Ben are away this weekend camping, so we missed the Green Machines game. Taylor was so excited to have everyone at her game though. Thank you Chirsty for the yellow hair clip and thanks Plote's for the shirt:)



Fred and Elaine enjoyed a relaxing afternoon of football and being home. Elaine even started her Christmas shopping this afternoon! Yes, she is still Elaine:) Don't we all wish we could be so organized!

Friday, October 12, 2012

#251

It was a restful night of sleep at the Smith house! Elaine had another great day of therapy as well. She used her arm for the first time today during pilates. This is an event even Elaine was excited about, and acknowledged that she couldn't have done a few weeks ago. It's wonderful when Elaine is able to see progress too! She rested this afternoon, did her stretcher and her home exercises.  Elaine went to the gym this evening before dinner. She is being very responsible about getting some rest too, even if she doesn't sleep, she is at least laying down. Admittedly, it is because she gets to take the brace off her leg when she rests, but whatever it takes to keep her down:)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

#250

Elaine had a fun day today. She went to lunch with Shirley and Maureen. They took her to lunch at the Dock on the water. Elaine had never been there and loved it and was so happy to be out with her friends. After they finished lunch, they headed to Rogers Garden to look at the holiday decorations. Elaine was very tired and asked them to bring her home after that. They did forget to take a picture too!


She had a wonderful time and is so grateful for such great friends. The pain in her shoulder was a little better then its been the last few days today and she did her torture stretcher all three times today. She has grown to love icing her shoulder as well. It was definitely an acquired habit, that now she depends on. She skipped the bike after 40 minutes yesterday though! They were in bed early, watching the debates and heading to sleep!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

#249

Elaine had another very productive day! She woke up this morning feeling a little down, and discouraged after someone telling her that it would take three years for her to recover from her stroke and her frozen shoulder. All of us that know her, and have watched her closely over the last 10 months, were quick to remind her of how far she has come. We have thrown stats and statistics out the door since the day this happened. She has defied all odds from the beginning and she continues to. There is no one that works harder or more diligently than she does!

Staci picked her up for therapy this morning and witnessed a great session. Her arm/shoulder are doing amazing and she continues to be able to move it more and more. Watching Little Darlin' move is truly a incredible. They worked a lot on her walking today. She is trying to keep her left arm straight as she walks, since it wants to curl up. It seems another revelation was discovered today. She is not confident baring significant weight on her left leg. She is going to work a lot over the next few weeks on balance, balancing on one leg, balancing on one leg while bending her knee, and balancing on one leg while kicking the other on in and out. The first few times she tried it, she was very unsteady, and she was gripping on to the counter with all her might, even with her left hand! As they practiced, and become more comfortable and confident, she eased up and also became much more balanced. As Staci watched, she was reminded again of how lucky Elaine was to have been in such good shape before this happened. Her muscle memory comes back as it gets triggered more and more. She works so hard, and never says no to an exercise.


After her workout, Staci and Elaine went to lunch. Elaine truly doesn't remember that literally her "dummy arm" was just that, and it didn't do anything! Elaine picked up a straw today and opened it with BOTH hands. Staci stopped her, to notice this accomplishment. Elaine didn't think much of it, but it was awesome. Its the little things we notice, and she really does get better and better. Elaine helped pick up Taylor from school today and even had a tour of the classroom. Taylor's teacher shared with her that she once had a frozen shoulder too and related to the pain!

Elaine went home to relax, do the stretcher. She then went to the gym and rode the bike for 40 minutes! Yes, you read that correctly. Fred is definitely wearing off her. It seems that the word, "moderation" doesn't apply to them!


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

#248

Unfortunately neither Fred nor Elaine slept very well last night. It didn't slow them down today though. They still made it to the gym, and also to the doctor. Elaine went to see a psychologist today as well. The doctor works in the same office as her neurologist. It was Elaine's idea to meet with her. Elaine has been offered to see one since her stroke, and decided not to. Last week, she decided to give it a try. 

Elaine really enjoyed her session, so much so that she is going back next week. The doctor lost her first husband to a stroke, and also had a frozen shoulder, twice. She can relate to the pain and frustration Elaine is feeling. She sympathizes and empathizes with her. She also encouraged her to cry, telling her that a recent study showed it is a way to release toxins from your body. Elaine feels so much better, getting to release some of her feelings and speak freely. She told Elaine to hang in there, that it is not an easy road, and that it is definitely a long one but there is light at the end of the tunnel. It won't happen as fast as we want it to, but with her dedication and work ethic, it will. 

Monday, October 8, 2012

#247

Elaine woke up feeling rested and ready to take on the world. She had a great night of sleep and was in a great place mentally, and physically today. Fred and Elaine went to see the therapist today and she had a great session. She continues to be very excited by Elaine's progress. Pilates went great, and she also had her best day of walking as well. Fred and Elaine walked out excited and encouraged.

They went to lunch, and a movie today, Taken 2, which they highly recommend:) They came over to the Francois house for tacos and football. Elaine was singing nursery rhymes on the couch with Brian. You can see that the kids notice Elaine is improving and they continue to engage her and get her more involved her their antics:)


Sunday, October 7, 2012

#246

Elaine had a good day today and she is feeling good. She is still recovering from her lack of sleep Friday night, but she slept well last night. I am sure having Fred back home definitely helped:) She headed back to the gym this morning to ride the bike and was feeling good. Vangie left this morning after an eventful few days. We are so thankful to her for coming down to spend some time with Elaine. She has been such a great sister and friend, especially the eight months! Thank you Vangie!

This afternoon, Elaine had some special visitors. Pat, Kris, Brendan, Sean, and Jerry came over to see Elaine and Fred. They are spending a few days at Disneyland, and stopped by to see them first. She was really looking forward to seeing them, and so appreciative of the effort they made to visit. The Smith house was buzzing with people, the Francois family also come over to see them as well. Fred and Elaine had their quiet house back this evening and were going to get in bed early tonight and get ready for another busy week.


Saturday, October 6, 2012

#245

Elaine had an interesting day. She woke up at 2, to her alarm going on, thinking it was time to get up. She showered and ate breakfast. She started yelling for her sister Vangie, to wake up too. Vangie heard her about 4 and panicked running down the stairs to see what was wrong. Elaine said, "come on sleepy head, we have to get to the gym and then to the soccer game!" Vangie said told Elaine it was 4am. Elaine promptly went back to sleep!

When Elaine woke up at 7, she was exhausted. She managed to torture her arm, and they still came to Christi's game. They went straight home for some rest, and relaxed and took a nap for the rest of the afternoon. Fred arrived back home this evening, and Elaine was excited to see him. Hopefully, the house sleeps soundly tonight and gets back on schedule!!


Friday, October 5, 2012

#243

Elaine's shoulder has been hurting again. It is a combination of reducing her pain medication as well as the therapist pushing her a bit to hard. Elaine had therapy today and told her about the increased pain. She took responsibility and said that she has in fact been pushing her and that she will ease off. It is an injury that takes time, and will not get better if you push it, only time! Elaine also went to hard on the bike yesterday, doing it for 20 minutes instead of 10, as instructed.

After therapy, Elaine and Vangie met Staci and Taylor for lunch at CPK, followed by some shopping. Elaine is absolutely exhausted tonight and going to bed early. She didn't sleep well last night because of her arm. Vangie is also tried, trying to keep up with Elaine. Vangie was impressed with Elaine's improvement, especially mentally. She last saw her the end of July. They are having a nice time together. There is nothing like a sister:)


Thursday, October 4, 2012

#242

Two steps forward, one step back. It is a frustrating way to make forward progress, but at least it is progress. Elaine went to the gym today to ride the stationary bike for 10 minutes. But, as you know, she is Elaine so she rode for 20 minutes instead! She works so hard to continually improve.

So, you wonder, what is the step back? Well, unfortunately, her left arm is hurting again. We thought we were past that, but her soreness returned. It is just another obstacle that Elaine will undoubtedly fight through.

Vangie is in town staying with Elaine for a few days. They have been at home mostly allowing Elaine to catch up on rest, and today they headed over to the mall to see a movie. They have been able to spend some nice quality time together this week!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

#242

Elaine had a great day at therapy today. Diane said that her shoulder was much better today. Her flexibility continues to improve. They worked on her walking as well. It is incredible and humbling to watch Elaine literally learn to walk again. There are a number of factors that have caused her hitch, including habit, tightness in her hip, the lack of mobility in her left foot, and just general stiffness in her left leg. It makes her walk almost like a robot. It is continuing to improve though and she is confident with all the hard work Elaine is doing, she will walk "normally" again. As Elaine continues to ride the bike, it will also help loosen up her leg and get her knee in the habit of bending again. Elaine also did some pilates. She moved on to some more advanced exercises (one of Elaine's favorite words). She also showed much better leg control today. She was doing some one-legged exercises on the reformer as well. Staci was very impressed!


After Elaine's therapy session, Cindi came to pick her up for some lunch, shopping, and hair appointments. They had a wonderful time and lots of laughs. Elaine arrived at home to be greeted by her sister Vangie. She is in town through Sunday to visit with Elaine. Fred is going out of town for a few days, and we hope he relaxes and enjoys!



Elaine was tired after her busy day. They had dinner at home and watched the debate! She is gearing up for another day!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

#241


Fred and Elaine started the morning off like the good old days, by going to the gym! They went to the gym at Big Canyon and Elaine rode the stationary bike. She was very happy to be exercising on her own finally. She said it felt really good too! They followed up with a fun afternoon of lunch and a movie. Elaine slept really well and her head was feeling good today as well. Her arm is still in pain, but getting more and more bearable (easy for us to say) as her range of motion increases. She has been able to cut back on her pain medication, which she is thrilled about too!


Monday, October 1, 2012

#240

Elaine's day was back to being filled with doctor appointments. They started the morning off with the orthopedic doctor, who was very please with Elaine's improvement in her shoulder. They then headed to the physical therapist, who was also impressed with her range of motion after a week off, not that Elaine took a week off, but she didn't go to therapy. Their last appointment was with the neurologist. Elaine has been very emotional the last few weeks, especially over the weekend. She will be in the middle of a sentence and just start to cry, and not really even know why she is crying but she can't stop. They talked to the doctor about this. He said, this is a side effect to victims of people who have a stroke on their right side. There is no explanation for it, and unfortunately nothing you can do about it. The stroke sometimes causes people to have unexplained mood swings, and cry. It is still fortunate that she had it on her right, instead of her left side though. Aside from that, he is impressed with her continued progress. Elaine explained that she just wants it to all be over. Unfortunately, it doesn't happen that fast, but she is going in the right direction and should be very pleased with her progress. He also told her how important it is for her to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep a night. He would prefer for her to take a nap daily, which she said she tries and just can't. She did have another headache tonight, which was the first in a few weeks. There doesn't seem to be an explanation for the headaches either, given their inconsistent pattern, but he isn't worried about it.

After a busy afternoon, Fred and Elaine came over to the Francois house for dinner. Oddly enough, despite the chaos of the Francois house, Elaine's head felt better this evening. Little Darlin' is becoming more and more involved in Elaine's life daily. We have come a long way since referring to it as her, dummy hand:)