Thursday, November 20, 2014

Day 9 - Lake Elmo Inn and . . . An Unpleasant Surprise

My parents generously took Greg & me to the very fancy, very wonderful and beautiful and cozy and delightful Lake Elmo Inn as a 40th birthday celebration (yes, I turned 40 in October!)

Mom, Dad, Greg

The walls are covered with built-in cabinets that hold salt and pepper shakers that the founders of the restaurant/inn collected over many years of travel.  Adorable and unique.

The day we went (Tuesday), we could have either something from the menu (which I did) . . . 


the beautiful and tasty buffet!

Layers of fruit and desserts . . . 

There were even some gluten-free options.

The main dishes weren't safe for me that particular day (they either had lots of onions, which isn't great for Crohn's, or weren't gluten-free), so I chose a gorgeous and delicious strawberry chicken salad.  It was fabulous!

The presentation was fantastic, too.

Dad and Mom were happy

and we were happy, too.

Mom found a cream-filled eclair in the dessert section.

Our server was kind enough to bring us champagne, 
due to the fact that we were celebrating a special birthday.

Our surroundings were cozy and homey.

And this HUGE wooden duck presided over the dessert part of the buffet.
I think I need to start collecting wooden ducks!

In the background, you can see how big that duck is!
Dad, Mom, Greg, & half of me

all of me in the restroom mirror
blouse: Macy's
sweater: WalMart
pants: SoHo
Socks: Target
Shoes: Aerosoles

The loo was decorated with autumn paraphanalia:

And Mom and I were excited to go for a little shopping expedition after lunch.

I had forgotton that Minnesota restaurants need a coat room!

The Lake Elmo Inn is well-rated!

and it has a little solarium!

After this point, Mom and I went shopping and Greg & my Dad went shopping at men stores (Menard's, Radio Shack, etc.)

Mom's wings shirt - so cool!

The sunset was beautiful over the marshes and through the clouds.

AND THEN . . . 

I got a text that Greg was in serious pain.

We suspected a kidney stone (again) . . . he's had them a few times in the past.
My Mom and I met Greg & my Dad at the Urgent Care facility.

They got Greg in very quickly once they saw how much pain he was in, and the doctor came in right away to tell us that she couldn't help us - we needed to go to the Emergency room.  That Urgent Care couldn't prescribe pain medication and didn't have a CT machine, so they couldn't check for kidney stones.  They told us there would be no charge because they couldn't help us.  What a blessing!

So we got in the car and went to the ER.

The ER room had a TV with ambient nature music and video.
I was impressed, because there is research that shows that nature and music can ease pain

more information on the C.A.R.E. Channel

Eventually they gave Greg some pain medication and then did a scan to find out that 
he did (does!) have a kidney stone.  It is 5 mm in size and he has not yet passed it (three weeks later).  It isn't causing pain any more, but it's threatening to know that it's still there.

We were in the ER less time than I expected, and all the staff were thoughtful and helpful.

The doctor recommended a trip to a kidney specialist, but said we could travel home the next day.  He gave Greg some heavy-duty pain medication in case the pain returned.  

When we went to pick up the prescription, I was interested to see all these "prepare your vehicle for winter driving" things . . . it makes me glad that we don't have scary winter weather here in Arizona!

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