Rolling On

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

This sunny, but much cooler Tuesday, I am rolling on down the highway of life. The idea of coming to the final river seems like a far-off dream at this point and time.

I am filled with life.

Trying to keep up on the action, the drama, the intrigue, the ins and outs of the political alterverse is not easy. Not sure how long Americans will stay interested in the first Reality Television Presidency.

Check out my take:  

The Prez – A Review

Such is life.

Not much to talk about this second day of the week and second month since I was given my prognosis.

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your second day of the last week of June, 2017, going?

Ah, those were the days in my other life so long ago now. The best job I ever had was as a reporter.

Alive & Kickin’

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

After taking a two-day vacation from the internet over the weekend, I figured I need to let everyone know I am alive and kickin’ as this last week of June begins.

I came close to posting, but decided I would give it a break. I did check out Facebook and added my likes and shared some memories, but did not post to my blogs.

My Desert friend, Bonnie, was concerned and sent me an email. Naturally I acknowledged all was well, I was just taking a hiatus.

My Desert friend, Bonnie, ready to watch the regatta on the Colorado River summer, 2015.

Sunday and today I have been rather lethargic. Keep wanting to fall asleep. So here it is at the 4 o’clock hour and I am just now posting.

With rain off in the distance, I am staying inside with the air flowing and my oxygen connected. This rainy weather is not my friend.

The neighbor walking her goats as she mows the field in front of Mark’s Den.

Can you believe that a week from tomorrow it is Independence Day?

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Monday going?

This Rainy Day

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark


The rain falling across the Cornfield today is playing havoc with my system. Not that is anything new over the last nearly six years. Does not look it will go away any time soon enough for me.

If it wasn’t for the rain effect I would be having a pretty good day. You would never know what the doctor told me by observing me in non-rainy weather.

The best I can do today is tread water (pun intended).

Going to do my best today to write up the op-ed I alluded to a few days ago. I have been rolling it over in my brain of what I want to say and how I want to say it.

I may even start back with Kernels From the Cornfield on Monday.

Staying in and staying dry, that’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Friday going?

Full of Life

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

This day after the first day of summer, I am feeling full of life in Mark’s Den. As I look out at the Cornfield, I have a sense that rather than nearing my time to cross the river, I still have miles to go before I sleep.

If the doctor is right, by November I will be saying farewell to family and friends. If I go by the sensation coursing through my body and mind, God has not yet finished preparing my mansion.

Yes, I realize there will be good days and bad days. There will be great weeks and not so great weeks. I also know that none of us know God’s timetable.

How many times have we read or heard stories of people the doctors had given a time limit to be dismissed until months, years later?

I can say with Paul, “For me to live is Christ, but to die is gain.”

The other side of my reality is that as long as I remain seated, I feel fantastic. Yet, if I get up to move around – even with my oxygen – my energy, my zip is shot almost immediately. But I am not ready to be a vegetable.

I am going to continue to spread my roots, streaming out and exploring new territory.

That’s the way it is this Thursday.

And how is your day going?

#ThrowBackThursday photo:

The Powell Family: (L-R) Nancy, Grandma (Mary Olive) with Mom (Sharon) behind her, Allen and Grandpa (Luther)


Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

I feel myself starting to slump this Hump Day as I battle with my body to keep from sliding into another round of pneumonia. Still waiting for the Cipro to do its thing.

At least I know I will be staying at home and being treated rather than going to the hospital this time around if things progress and are not arrested.

Such is life. Good news – Iohn landed a job at the new Love’s truckstop’s Hardee’s yesterday. He starts on Friday with a 40-hour-per-week schedule.

This will help in many ways. For one thing it should help Iohn not only financially, but also mentally and emotionally.

Chooey is nows two years old. Yep my little Chewbaca is growing up on me.

Gots to do my best to keep my spirit up today and not give in to the attacking bacteria.

I believe God still has a plan for me.

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Wednesday going?

A Message from Kev

I’m Kevin Ivy, son of Mark Ivy, and I’m writing to request help from anyone who has the means.

On September 2, 2014, my Dad was diagnosed with disseminated histoplasmosis, a fungal infection. The infection is fatal if left untreated. For 2 1/2 years he lived under a death sentence being misdiagnosed with a non-specific bacterial infection which left his right lung a “dried up sponge” and non-functioning. He was aggressively treated for the infection with antifungals. The treatment ended October of 2015 and fortunately did not take two years.

On May 9, 2017, Dad’s lung specialist informed him that he has possibly six months to live if the chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), the damage caused by the histoplasmosis, ran its normal course. Dad is now on hospice at home. Although he is content and ready to cross over the river to the other side, we want to make the transition as painless and comfortable as possible – both physically and financially. This means we need help covering the extra expenses Dad and Iohn are now facing.

If you’ve ever known Mark you would know how much he loves and appreciates his family. Our family has a long history of caring for others, having a big heart, reaching out when no one else will even to those we do not know or are friends and acquaintenances. The number of fundraisers, benefits, biker rides and other charitable activity to help others has been appreciated through the years. Now we need to come together and help Dad.

Dad needs someone there to help daily – which is Iohn. It is necessary to have someone to help with certain medicines, cooking, cleaning, etc. Due to being full-time help for Dad, Iohn cannot work and will use the money raised here for daily living expenses. The rest of the family are unable to assist due to distance, age, financial or medical conditions and I am eternally grateful to Iohn for stepping up to take care of my Dad while I am 1,000 miles away in Texas.

I am not normally one to resort to asking for financial help, but at this stage there is no other option. Can we do for Dad in his hour of need as we have done for so many others?

Even if you can contribute only a little, every dollar counts in aiding in Dad’s care and recovery. Thank you for your time and your help. And if you can’t give, we always appreciate your thoughts and prayers as well. God bless.

If you can help:

Tuesday Thoughts

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

Tomorrow is the first day of summer, but you would not know it has still been spring as the temperatures have been more like the dog days of summer so far this month.

The color of the mucus plugs began changing on Monday. This means I am back on an antibiotic. This time around it is Cipro. The doc tends to alternate between it and Levaquin.

I can definitely feel my body warring against the infection which usually becomes pneumonia. Normally it turns into a stay at the hospital.

This time around, as Nurse Tabitha says, “We bring the hospital to you.”

I am going to keep fighting. I am determined to battle right up to the end. Come November, I am praying and hoping to still be going strong rather than facing my demise.

If I can get my mind together enough, I plan on penning a new op-ed today or tomorrow. I plan to review the most popular reality television show captivating the nation.

In the meantime, here is more from Sunday’s gathering of Ivy Sprouts:

(L-R) Phil, Mom, Bill, Me, Dad
(L-R) Brenda, Phil, Mom, Me, Dad
(L-R) Bill, Mom, Hailey, Me, Kev
(L-R) Bill, Mom, Phil, Brenda and Me, Susie, Dad
(L-R) Mom, Bill, Chance, Me, Hailey, Kev

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Tuesday going?

Fast-Tracking June

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

The month of June is clickety-clacking at fast pace toward the depot. More than half the month is already left behind in the dust.

The third full week of the month has begun. I continue to be close to normal for me. I still have to keep the oxygen on most of the day and all night, but I have definitely improved over the condition I was in back in May.

More seasonable temperature is in store today here in the Cornfield. The July hotter days may be over at least for a few days.

My sweet daughter-in-law Hailey and youngest son Kevin have set up a Go Fund Me page to help out with the extra expenses with my condition being what it is these days.

Check it out:

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Monday going?

Happy Father’s Day, Dad!

Phil Sr., Dad (Lynn), Mark

The third Sunday in June is celebrated as Father’s Day in the US of A. For me being a son, a father and a grandfather, each Father’s Day is a day of joy with a tinge of sadness.

The five happiest days of my life are:

February 21, 1979 – the day my oldest son, David, was born

November 29, 1989 – the day my youngest son, Kevin, was born

February 6, 2007 – the day my granddaughter, Dylan, was born

September 20, 2012 – the day my second granddaughter, Alaina, was born.

December 9, 2014 – the day my third granddaughter, Amelia, was born.

As a child, I was always trying to please my Father. I would try to emulate him. I would make sure no matter how often we moved and how many schools I attended in one year, my grades would remain at the top of the class.

Always striving to obtain approval.

Yet, it seems that approval never came.

On Father’s Day I would try and find the right card, get the right gift. I would get an obligatory, “Thanks for the card and gift, Mark.” Not much more as he would set the card, the gift aside.

During the past couple of years the relationship with my Dad has been better than ever. We have become much closer.

Now that I have been given, by the doctor, about six months to live, what once was divisive has become a stone upon which to build a bridge.

The last month or so, Dad has been there of which I am greatly appreciative.

At 81 he is still going strong. He is still working. He is still striving and winning his own race along the road to eternity.

To my Father, I wish the best this Sunday on Father’s Day, 2017.

I love you, always have, always will.

Dad Through the Years

Kev is a thousand miles away in Austin. Dave and my granddaughters are one hundred miles away in the Cornfield.

Father’s Day will be another Sunday.

From Mark’s Den, to every father out there, remember the best joys in life are not the cards or the things, but it is having the love of your children.

Fathers – How Long Has It Been?

Since the beginning, fathers have been responsible to God for the spiritual well-being of the family. In recent times, too many fathers have resigned from that responsibility and brushed it off on mothers.

But it is the father who should be the rock of ages and anchor to the Creator.

Today’s Sunday Gospel simply asks, “How Long Has It Been?