A Story Teller
Be of Good Cheer
Believing is Seeing
Benefits of Play
Different, Yet Similar
Division More Fun Than Hiking
Forty and Pregnant
Happy Mother's Day
Happy Valentine's Day
It's a Miracle
"Just" a Housewife
Little Gem in the Woods
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
RMKK Year in Review
She's Having a Baby
The Game of Life
The Otters Return to Glacier
The Wonder of it All
These Boots Are Made for Walking
Time is on My Side
You Get What You Expect
100 Years of Grandeur
One of the joys of motherhood is
having one’s children gather in the bedroom and lounge around on the
bed. My tots and teens have often engaged me in conversation this
way and I’ve always felt it created a special bond between us. While
the girls and I were tucked under the covers last night as my
husband washed up, I began to tell the following bedtime story.
Once upon a time there was a pioneer family with two girls that
had traveled by wagon train out west to settle in a land near
Canada. They lived near the beautiful Rocky Mountain Front with
sweeping plains and mountains on part of the
Lewis and Clark trail.
A stone fireplace kept their log cabin warm on cold winter nights.
The girls and their mother lie cozily picturing Father, who was out
this frigid night. A trapper, he had gone out for beaver, ermine,
and mink to sell to people back east. Mother had killed a bear with
her shotgun last fall as it foraged in their apple barrel. She had
skinned the bear and made a warm winter coat for Father. This
comforted them as they pictured Father sitting in the moonlight near
a crackling fire at his camp. Suddenly they heard the spooky howl of
wolves. Mother didn’t want to mention it as not to worry the
children. The ominous sounds grew closer as Mother contemplated what
she would do if the wolves got vicious. Sometimes in winter when
food is scarce, they resort to humans to sustain them. Mother told
the girls to get up and sit near the fireplace, while she looked
outside. They were to stay there for two days until Father’s return
in the event anything happened to her. She picked up her rifle and
stepped out into the crisp night. She watched from the porch as the
pack of wolves encircled the house. Inside, the girls huddled near
the fire and prayed. Suddenly, they heard a shot and then the cries
of their mother. A fight was going on but they were not to move.
Silence and then their mother’s moans.
“We should look out of the window, before opening the door”, said
the younger girl.
“Yes”, said the older one. “You look out while I throw a piece of
meat to the wolves”.
The younger one peered out into the darkness as the older one slowly
opened the door. She saw her mother lying bloody and unconscious on
the porch. She stepped out and tossed the meat to the wolves, still
lurking in the yard.
“Watch out”, the younger girl screamed, as the older girl grabbed
her mother by her underarms. Right before she pulled her to safety
inside the house, the girl saw a wolf. The wolf could smell the
meat. Fortunately, he went to the meat, and the older girl pulled
Mother to safety.
Next to the fire, the sisters examined Mother’s injuries. The older
girl knew Mother was in shock. She covered her with blankets and
elevated her legs. A big gash was bleeding on Mother’s arm. It
At this point in the story, E asked how stitches were made,
etc. I told her a special curved needle is used and that the next
morning we would look it up. Now back to the story.
The older girl said that she could do it. She had watched Father sew
up his own hand in the past. They cleaned the wound and stitched
Mother’s arm. A restless night was spent worrying about Mother, but
they now understood the wakeful hours she had spent nursing them in
times of illness. A day and a half passed with Mother in a coma.
Finally, they heard Father whistling, as he was strolling up with
animal pelts tied to his hips. They were so happy to see him. He
praised the girls for their bravery as they explained the terrible
events of a couple of nights ago.
Mother was nursed back to health and they lived happily ever after.
End of bedtime story.
The next morning after breakfast, we looked up surgical needles for
sutures. There are straight needles for sutures (stitches) as well
as curved types in various sizes.
- half curved or ski
- 1/4 circle
- 3/8 circle
- 1/2 circle
- 5/8 circle
- compound curve
Traumatic needles are surgical
needles with eyes that need to be threaded. The thread comes out of
the needle on both sides and tears the tissue, hence the name
traumatic. Atraumatic needles come already threaded from the
manufacturer in which the thread was attached to the needle by a
forging process called swaging. Atraumatic needles have a smaller
eye opening, therefore creating fewer traumas to the skin. Some
atraumatic needles are “pop-off” types which come off with a tug and
are used in interrupted stitches.
There are absorbable stitches made out of collagen taken from bovine
intestines, and other synthetic materials that are absorbed by the
body. In cases where non-absorbable sutures are required, where the
stitches will be removed, silk is the common fiber for suturing.
We watched a demonstration of suturing and also of stitching an
eyeball. Someone asked a question about cataracts, so we picked a
cataract surgery video to watch.
A picture is worth a thousand words, so here’s a link to the
RMKK blog, where you
can watch this wonder for yourself.