Me and My New Knee


Continuous Passive Motion

Continuous Passive Motion (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Five weeks ago today, I had my knee replaced. I had intended to keep you updated about the recovery, but all that didn’t happen the way I planned.

On the third day after my knee replacement, I went to the Health South Valley View Rehab Hospital in Las Vegas, NV. They treated me like a queen. I think it is the best hospital treatment I have ever received. If you need to go to rehab, I highly recommend this facility.

I am totally amazed to say that I was up and doing assisted walking within 24 hours of having my knee replaced. Within a week, I noticed I didn’t have any pain in my knee. I only had surgical pain.

There was a lady in rehab with me who had one knee replaced on a Monday and the second knee replaced on a Tuesday. I didn’t even know that could be done. Her approach to therapy was amazing. She always had a smile on her face.

Rehab is different than a regular hospital. We go to a large open room called the Gym. The Physical Therapist starts a patient doing exercises and then instructs the next patient. Patients encourage each other with smiles and encouraging words. There was a great feeling of support.

Physical therapy in the gym lasted one and a half hours a day. I also had occupational therapy for an hour and a half. I preferred the physical therapy because I wanted to regain my strength and get back in the swing of things. Back in the room, I used a machine called a Continuous Passive Motion (CPM) machine. It bent my knee back and forth. The goal was to continually increase the bend of the knee until I reach 120 degrees.

As of this writing, the machine is home with me. I am at 118 degrees. The machine is heavy, but portable. It provides steady, constant movement as it bends the knee. It is a clever piece of equipment and I am happy to have the use of it. It is much less painful to use than manual manipulation.

After nine days in the rehab hospital, I was discharged to go home. Steve did an outstanding job of having safety grab bars installed in the bathroom. He bought me a walker and other things I needed at home. Everything was perfect. I just felt guilty having him wait on me all the time. Thankfully, that only lasted a week and then I was more independent.

Sixteen days after surgery, I started “out-patient rehab” at the Health South Rehab center in Henderson, NV. I go three times a week for a 45 minute one-on-one session with a personal Physical Therapist. He has everything timed down to the minute. We cover many different exercises in the time we spend together. Every time I go, he adds something new to my list of exercises to do at home. In addition to the four plus hours I spend on the CPM machine, I am using a goodly portion of my day doing therapy. But that is OK, I am making progress.

Before surgery, I was told that recovery would take six to twelve months. That is probably true for complete recovery. At five weeks, being about to walk unassisted, makes me feel very blessed. The word is that the more physical therapy that one does right after surgery, the more successful one is at regaining full use of the knee. That sounds good to me.

I learned that healing takes a lot of energy. My body required, and still requires a lot of rest. I don’t get emails answered immediately. I missed a lot of Facebook information. I missed Tweets and Instagram pictures, but I am gaining more energy every day. Life is good.

It is good to be back.

Mom Pop Pow – Where You Can Do It If You Try!

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Bellagio – The Jewel of Las Vegas


The Bellagio Conservatory and Botanical Gardens is the first place I suggest people see when they come to Las Vegas. The scenes change five times a year, but they are always magnificent.

The current offering celebrates the Year of the Horse for Chinese New Year through March 1, 2014.  The horse sculpture is beautiful. When I stop and think about how much thought and labor went into making such a breath taking display, I am mind boggled.

IMG_6796 copy

The Ding Pots sitting at the entrance of the garden have special meaning. A nearby sign has the meaning:

Ding Pots

These vessels commonly made of bronze, widely used for cooking, could only be possessed by an official or a king. Our replica is an example of a pot that would  be used for worshipping by a Chinese temple.


Chinese Money Tree – sign

A symbol to bring good fortune to the Chinese while still living and in the after-life. Also used to guide spirits to heaven and provide wealth while there. The meaning has been handed down from ancient Chinese legend that a person shall grow wealthy through hard work and relying on one’s own sweat and blood.


Many people have their picture taken, especially in front of the money tree. Steve and I with our Godchild, Kathleen Cassidy, had our picture taken.

I totally enjoy going to the Bellagio Gardens. Most everyone is happy. People take pictures of each other. Smiles abound. People are cooperative. It is a wonderful place to be. It seems as if the magic of the place and the flowers mix with the people and their personalities. Everything is right with the world.

The magic of the garden is carried over to the registration desk where flowers are replicated. We always tell people to check out the entrance because you never know you may find.


Photo by Steve Brogan

Photo by Steve Brogan

Currently in the lobby is this jeweled horse. Beautiful to behold. Awe inspiring. The place was alive with snapping cameras and smiling faces.


Photo by Kathleen Cassidy

Photo by Kathleen Cassidy

More exciting was when we noticed the view of the horse against the Dale Chihuly ceiling. We took dozens of pictures trying to record the feeling we were experiencing.  We had a wonderful time.

I highly recommend you visit the Bellagio and enjoy the fabulous gardens where magic happens.

Mom Pop Pow – Where You Can Do It If You Try

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#NMX – New Media Expo 2014


Last week at this time, Steve and I were at NMX in Las Vegas having a wonderful time.

This was a challenging year for founder, Rick Calvert. Many of the presenters did not show up due to the cancelled flights caused by horrendous weather.


Our son, Chris Brogan, who was attending NMX this year, filled in for two missing speakers. Other people also filled in vacancies. It was all good.

Ric Dragon, head of Dragon Research and his group of some fifteen people got stranded in New York. Only one dragonette, Etela Ivkovic, made it to the conference.

Etela manned the Dragon Research booth as if that was her sole profession. When I praised her for her excellent showing, she said it was due to all the help and kindness she received from others. She is such a lady.

Dino Dogan, Diane Brogan, Steve Brogan

Dino Dogan, Diane Brogan, Steve Brogan

We totally enjoyed the pictures provided by Dragon Search. It was fun and Dragon Research made a big statement even though the whole crew was not there. This is a picture of Steve and I with Dino Dogan.

Misty and Marty McPadden at work at #NMX

Misty and Marty McPadden at work at #NMX

We saw many of our friends at NMX and that is half the reason for going. I was talking with Misty and Marty McPadden, remarking how happy I was to see them. Marty made a profound statement. He said: “Meeting people in person, creates a solid foundation for social media.” I think that is a true statement.

Mitali and Shashi Bellamkonda, Diane and Steve Brogan, Chis Brogan seated

Mitali and Shashi Bellamkonda, Diane and Steve Brogan, Chis Brogan seated

Our friend Shashi Bellamkonda and his daughter, Mitali, attended. We are always happy to spend time with Shashi.

Sam Fiorella, Diane and Steve Brogan

Sam Fiorella, Diane and Steve Brogan

Sam Fiorella was very much in attendance and he gave us a “signed” copy of his new book, Influence Marketing: How to Create, Manage, and Measure Brand Influencers in Social Media Marketing.

Brandie McCallum

Brandie McCallum

We were so happy to see Bandie McCallum. She helped out by introducing speakers and filled in wherever there was a need. I didn’t get to make Brandie any corn bread this time, but the next time Brandie comes to Vegas, we will schedule more quality time together.


Calvin Lee, was at NMX. He has so much Klout, the writers of Klout Matters, singled him out in the audience and gave him a signed copy of their book.

Street Fighter

Calvin is a kind, wonderful, helpful, fun person. He is also an excellent photographer. The picture above was taken by Calvin and got wide circulation on the internet along with many comments.


Jane Boyd and Lego man were at NMX. She also brought her daughter Brittany. It was fun to catch up with Jane. We even made an audioboo for our friend Paul O’Mahony in Ireland.


The one and only Marla Shulman showed me her new Google Glass. I treasure Marla and her enthusiasm for life. It is always wonderful to see the DvinMsM.


Although it was at the beginning of the conference I heard Lynette Young speak, it wasn’t until the end that I got to meet her. Lynette is as lovely as she can be. We had a wonderful chat. Our conversation would have continued longer, but it was time to get Chris Brogan on a plane and homeward bound.

With reluctant goodbyes to #NMX 2014, we bid farewell and anxiously await next year.

Mom Pop Pow – Where You Can Do It If You Try

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To Be American

American flag

American flag (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


We are so fortunate to live in America. You can debate me on every issue I am about to mention. Even your right to disagree with me is a right that many in this world do not have. We are blessed with so many rights that we don’t even think about any more. And then something happens that reminds us how great it is to be an American.

As an American woman I am happy and thankful for:

-Clean water

-Safe housing



-Our government

-The right to vote

-The right to go to school

-The right to practice my religion of choice

-The right to wear the clothes I choose

-The right to drive a car

-The right to live where I want

-The right to be friends with people of all cultures

-The right to read what I want

-The right to have a child

-Clean air

What can you add to this list?

Mom Pop Pow – Where You Can Do It If You Try


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Rock of Ages


Rock of Ages at the Venetian in Las Vegas in more than just a concert featuring music of the 80’s. It is a musical! It has a story line, multiple love stories and great music all the way through.


Before the show started, we had the opportunity to look at some pictures of the artists of the 80’s.


I am so pleased we had the opportunity to see the show. It was very well done and most enjoyable. I was afraid the music would be too loud, but that was not the case. The music was loud, but it did not blow my head off.


Back in the 80’s when our sons were teens, I was particularly fond of David Lee Roth, lead singer of Van Halen. I even had a poster of him in my bedroom. I don’t remember where the poster came from, but I remember the poster.

We were living in Augusta, Maine at the time. It was a most momentous occasion when Van Halen came to town to give a concert. That was a major thrill. The concert was held at the Augusta Civic Center.

I was so excited. I would actually get to see David Lee Roth in person. Because of previous commitments, Steve and I could not attend the concert until after it started. We entered the back of the concert hall and waited a moment for our eyes to adjust to the dim lighting. Our eyes adjusted, but our ears never adjusted to the loud head splitting music. I can’t even say for certain that we stayed for a whole song. After that I continued to like David Lee Roth and Van Halen, but only when I could control the volume.


Our outing to see Rock of Ages was even more fun because we went with our friends, Debbie Drummond and Michael Petit. I think you will enjoy this fun, high energy show as much as we did.

Have you seen the show?

Mom Pop Pow – Where You Can Do It If You Try




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Quality at Sale Prices


Chris Brogan’s pretty new sneakers

I like wearing top quality clothing and shoes, but I always look for sale prices. You could say it is almost like playing a game. The only problem is, I don’t really like going shopping frequently to get the best deals.

As a matter of fact, I don’t do too much of anything regularly. Watching our son, Chris, go to the gym every day, even when he is on vacation, in a great incentive. While he was at our gym last week he met a lady. Chris told us this story:

There was an 84 year old lady here today killing it on the treadmill. She rolled up in a wheelchair and did the work. Her son died two years ago. Her granddaughter died last year. Her last cousin died last month. But she said she’s got to stay and do God’s work. She’s a retired school teacher and former principal. When I offered to help her off the treadmill she said I had best move on lest my family would have to file a MIA report on account of her taking me home with her. She said she’s a selfish woman. 84 and pure inspiration.

Then Chris looked me in the eye and suggested I may want to spend more time at the gym and perhaps meet up with that nice lady and make her acquaintance.

I thought about that and agreed that yes, I would like to meet her and yes, I should spend more time at the gym. BUT, I need some proper footwear. Steve suggested we go shopping. Steve has the patience of Job and is such a saint – a helpful one.

It could be age or just making a shoe choice too quickly, but several times, I have bought shoes that felt great at the shoe store, but hurt my feet when I got home. Steve suggested I buy more than one pair. He said that changing his shoes daily made his feet feel better.

We went to DSW – where you get Designer Shoes at Warehouse Prices. I didn’t really want sneakers with ties. The ties always come undone. I got these nifty pull-ons. They make me feel like I am walking on a cloud. They are called Go Walk by Skechers and they are great for walking.

Go Walk

Then I got these smart walk around shoes, just because I needed them. We often do a lot of walking around Las Vegas.

Total savings $25.10

Encouraged that I found an awesome pair of shoes for the gym, we went to the Skechers store to see if I could find one more pair of gym shoes. They had a ton of memory foam shoes, but they didn’t appeal to me. Maybe I should have tried a pair???


I wondered down to the sale merchandise and found these comfy runners. Got them for 70% off. How’s that for a bargain. I was so excited, I looked around some more.

As my feet frequently hurt when I go for a long walk around Las Vegas when I have to look cute, I decided these little cuties would be nice to have. They look cute on the top, but have a sneaker bottom. AND they too were 70% off.

These shoes are on the same theme. Cute on the top, with sneaker bottoms. Can you believe I got these at 70% off too. Woot! Today was my lucky day. Total price of the last three pair together $53.40.  Total savings $124.60.

Do you shop for quality and bargains?

Mom Pop Pow – Where You Can Do It If You Try


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Help Me Understand


U.S. flag

U.S. flag (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There are so many things in life I don’t understand, but I ask questions. Answers to my questions have broadened my understanding. With more knowledge, I ask more questions.

Most of my years in the corporate world, I worked in the telephone industry where acronyms are frequently used. During meetings, when a word or acronym was used, that I didn’t understand, I asked for the meaning. So many times, after the meeting, someone would thank me for asking. Like me, they had no idea what was being talked about.

Currently I am totally perplexed about the war in Syria. In my opinion, America should not take part in that war.

Truthfully, I don’t understand the whole foreign war policy. We were involved in two wars in Iraq and one in Pakistan.

We lost thousands of Americans lives. Many more thousands are back home living with bionic limbs.

Thousands are wondering the streets homeless. There is no government assistance for these people, but, America is still sending millions of dollars to Iraq and Pakistan and other foreign countries.

If I have the facts right, all these foreign wars are the result of disagreements over religion. I don’t understand.

My God is a God of mercy and love. My God loves all people and is non discriminatory. My God is a God of peace and not war.

Someone once said that all wars should be waged over a chess board. When two waring factions come together, they would meet at a chess table. The stakes would be set before the game. Whoever won the game, won the stakes.

Of course that never happened because egos could not be reigned in to accept that great method of winning the battle. So wars rage on.

Computer hacking. Our site got hacked. Why? What does anyone have to gain from hacking our site or any site? It makes no sense.

How do we turn hate into love?

I don’t worry too much about global warming.

I worry about the homeless.

I worry about the returning war heroes who are not receiving the assistance they deserve.

I worry about the elderly who can’t make ends meet.

I worry about the people in foreign lands who never know what tomorrow may bring.

I worry about those who refuse to work together to find a solution to the problem.

I pray for those who think they are better than me.

I pray for understanding.

I pray for peace.

Mom Pop Pow – Where You Can Do It If You Try


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I Don’t Know If It Is True, BUT


The story is, that you can do just about any thing you want in Las Vegas and get away with it. I’m not exactly sure what the “IT” is. I think they are talking mostly about clothes.

The weather is warm year round and it does get hot in the summer, but it is a dry heat. That allows people to dress in any fashion they find desirable.

So my friend, Carolyn Stephens, was wearing a beautiful tie dyed top and I just had to have one. Of course there are no tie dye stores just waiting to quench my desires, but Carolyn helped me out. She directed me to the Harvest Festival where she got hers. It just happened to be in town this weekend.

You guessed it. I now have some tie dye of my own. I wear it and feel totally bodacious.

Now that is a silly story, isn’t it!!! BUT it is true.

If something as simple as wearing a colorful piece of clothing, or a special piece of clothing cheers you up, why not go for it.

Life is short. Live it with zest.

Mom Pop Pow – Where You Can Do It If You Try


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Oh So Lucky


Open Face Chinese Poker

Steve taught me how to play Open Face Chinese Poker. I won’t even begin to try to tell you how the game is played. I will tell you that Steve and I have been playing the game against each other and having lots of fun.

There are 20 rounds to a set. We don’t always finish a set at one time. Yesterday we finished a set we were playing. I just happened to win with 34 points. I assumed I won $34.00 from Steve, then he said we were playing for a penny a point so I only won 34 cents. The professionals play for lots of money, but Steve and I just play for fun.

Happy Birthday Dinner

I may have mentioned before that I love birthdays and birthday parties. Yesterday I got to make the birthday cake for Teresa Barber’s birthday dinner. We enjoyed a lovely dinner at the home of her parents, Mike and Corky Eden.

Friends and family. Life doesn’t get any better than that.

Checking in with Mark Horvath



Elaina -Click to hear her story.


Our friend, Mark Horvarth, also known as @hardlynormal on Twitter, is on a road trip highlighting the homeless youth in America.

Most people have no idea there is a huge population of homeless youth in America. Reading Mark’s tweets brings tears to my eyes. He is currently in Salt Lake City Utah.

Mark Horvath @hardlynormal
Photo: At 16, homelessness was a better option than living with his mom

Mark Horvath @hardlynormal
Just walked thru “skid row” area. Now talking to 21yo single mom w baby and another young homeless girls that’s pregnant #WRECKED #invppl

Mark Horvath @hardlynormal
We met a lot of homeless youth with kids today. Babies having babies! One single mother was like 14! Police were involved. #WRECKED!

You can help by checking out the latest news from Sevenly at the link below.

Mark Horvath @hardlynormal
Sevenly + Virgin Mobile USA are Partnering to End Youth Homelessness:

Mom Pop Pow – Where You Can Do It If You Try



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