Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Cozying Up

Yesterday was a long day and a long night. My DH worked a double shift and I could not manage to go to sleep alone in the house last night. (I think I was afraid I was "nod out" and not hear my alarm and forget to go pick him up. He insisted that I keep the car in case anything happened... like a 20 pound black and white dog running off into the night.

I did have a little bit of craziness last night. I reconnected with a girl friend from high school. We met on our freshman year and were very close for awhile. There was another girl that rode our bus and decided she wasn't going to let me have Mz. T as my friend. She drove a huge wedge between us and as I moved at the end of my sophomore year, we lost touch. I had thought of her over the years as her family had the adjoining acreage next to my Aunt Carolyn and Uncle Chet's 5 acre farmette. They moved at the end of the school year as well... to Montana.

We had reconnected back in the 90's somehow.... I don 't really remember. Anyway... along came social media and she friended me. We have briefly messaged each other and read and comment on posts. Last night I sat down, picked up the phone and dialed her up. We talked non-stop for 4 hours! It was wonderful, insightful, introspective and a great source of healing and reconnection. It was like when we were young girls, sitting and talking about life and our dreams.

Ms. T has struggled with health issues and suffers with some of the same maladies that I have, and she has other issues with back surgeries and fighting for mobility. Nobody said getting old was for sissies, that is for certain! She is also dealing with her mother having dementia and I was able to give her some insight and comfort in dealing with that issue.

Because of the phone call, I was not able to relax and sleep like I had hoped. I watched a couple of things on Net*flix.... and stayed awake. I went to get DH early, stopping to get him juice and breakfast. We cozied up to relax and snooze. I napped a couple of hours and DH is still sleeping. I will need to wake him soon so he will sleep tonight. The wind in howling and we are getting snow. I took Punky outside at noon and the cold was too much for her. She started to crash after she came back in, trying to warm up. I gave her honey and some snacks and food to bring her back to recognizing me, poor little dear.

As we ring the old year out and the new year in... we don't make resolutions in this household. We do discuss what we want to change and try to make a plan to carry that out. I am glad this year is over... glad to see some of my health issues improve and continue to work on others that need to improve. We are grateful to be able to have spent Grandma Jeanne's 95th birthday with her, and reconnect with DH's daughters. I am grateful for the wonderful husband and my Punky and Cooper dogs and how they are my essential spirit.

Happy New Year... and thanks for reading!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

What I Have Been Dealing With...

Life in the last several months has drastically changed for me. Over a year ago, at the request of my husband, I resigned from my position with a leading Fire Protection company, handling 1.5 million dollars on a monthly basis for a Florida market. It was stressful and my former peer and now supervisor was making my life miserable. The toll on my body was great and I was in a very unhealthy situation.

I worked with several doctors to get myself into a healthier place. During the last 6 months, I have had increased pain and mobility issues and a "so called cyst" that would not heal. Since then, I have had another surgery on the cyst, and the surgeon discovered that it was a fistula stemming from my very first cancer surgery in 1988. The doctors had placed several drains in my lower abdomen and stitched them in place, and one stitch was pulled through my mid-line fascia, causing years of drainage and issues that went undiagnosed. My surgeon was quite surprised when I told him of the date of the surgery and said I would always be remembered as one of the more surprising surgeries of his career.

As that surgery was healing, I was having issues with my joints and pain and stiffness in my hands. I went to see my husbands rheumatologist and was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis. I have it in my fingers on my left hand and recently began symptoms in a couple of fingers in my right hand. I also have it in my right foot with most of my toes... and of course fibromyalgia also presents across the ball of your foot inside and out. Let's just say it's hard to keep slippers on my feet when I am going up and down stairs. I have to rely on my husband to help me do shopping as of late, as I can't drive very well.

My husband has not been home very much this year. He clocked a total of 4000 (approximately) hours of work this year. The standard 40 hour work week totals 2080 per year. So, yeah, he's never here! We did see each other on Christmas eve and on Christmas Day. He should be off on New Years eve and New Years Day... so we will likely go see a movie and have dinner somewhere... depending on the weather.

I had a rough day the day after Christmas. I hadn't heard from my family on Christmas... from anyone. My husband went to work and by the evening, I was dealing with the crazy emotions of cancer and all that it has robbed of me through the years. The one thing that I have always wanted was to be a mother and a grandmother. Knowing that the rest of my family were busy with their own families and grand children  was very keening on my heart. (I know that I should be grateful for just having my life, but cancer has twice robbed me of things that I love.) It makes me angry to feel those losses at this time of year. Before I was married, I managed to stay busy... but it's very different now as we have moved so far from dear friends. I have a couple of dear friends here, but I have issues with intruding upon family time.

I am also dealing with the loss of a couple of friends... one from years ago and one who was my best friend at work. Since I have left, that friend has never picked up the phone and called me. I have called her, met her for dinner a few times, but it's always been me to make the contact. I don't know what I did... all I know is that it's hard for me to keep being the one who calls.

It's a strange phase of life for me... I am also facing a new doctor's appointment this year with a hematologist to discuss my new diagnosis of having a genetic mutation that is causing my to have very elevated hemocysteine levels. A very serious issue, along with having aortic stenosis and an aortic root aneurysm. I just had an aortic mri, which shows I am maintaining my moderate status.
It's always something.

That's a little bit of what I am dealing with... I'm trying not to be overwhelmed!
Thank you for reading!
Happy New Year!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Holiday Time!

I have been busy preparing for Christmas for weeks now. But somewhere in all the busy-ness, I seemed to lose track of the days... I so need an extra one! Both DH and I thought we had an extra day. Yikes, there is still a bunch to do!

I did lose some time having an arthritic flare and DH's schedule going to 12 hours a day, 7 days a week. I have times where I need his assistance with things. He can also become quite a mess maker when he works so much and I find that I constantly have to clean behind him. And then there are the things I cannot do on my own, either because of health issues now or issues from past health issues... making it really all about my health. Which, it has improved from last year to this year.

That being said, I do have to deal with Fibromyalgia and the ever present back pain that radiates to my arms and down my legs. I also have Rheumatoid Arthritis in my hands and in my right foot. It makes it difficult to do certain things like load and unload the dishwasher and washing pots and pans. I drop a lot of stuff! I can no longer be barefoot in the kitchen to protect my feet. It took a while for me to adjust to as I love being barefooted. I have trouble with holding on to most anything, I have trouble with my right toes... my second and third toes are affected and sometimes I cannot curl my toes... and it makes it difficult to keep my slippers on my feet!

I'd love to be able to share my Christmas tree this year but my abilities to upload pictures is giving me trouble. My laptop has had issues ever since we bought it and my husband did have to replace the motherboard on it once. My power cord has become cracked and it's been taped up. My DH took my entire computer apart and fixed a couple of things... it was out of commission for about 2 weeks. I had to use his laptop for a few things, but mostly used my I-pad.

So, dealing with Fibro and R/A... has given me lots of fatigue and a ton of brain fog! I don't always remember things I should... forgetting to pay a bill or forgetting just how much money I've spent. DH loves me inspite of my screw ups! Time to go get busy in the kitchen again... making peppermint bark, cookies and dessert for our little gathering at my friend Janey's house! So excited to give her her Christmas gifts... both of which I made for her.

Thank you for reading... Marry Christmas!


Sunday, September 29, 2013

Simple Woman's Daybook...

FOR TODAY (September 29, 2013)...

Outside my window... it's been a partly sunny day with temps at about 65  degrees. Fall is here and the colors are coming in brightly on the trees.

I am thinking... that I need to get some of the housework under control, or that it's time to hire a housekeeper to help me keep up.

I am thankful for... a hard working husband that works seemingly endless hours to provide for us.

From the kitchen... there is a meatloaf in fridge and I am making at least one casserole to get through the week.
I am wearing... a grey long sleeve t shirt and black yoga pants and silver jewelry with hot pink running shoes.

I am creating... a cleaning list to keep me on track, and hoping to cut pieces for a new quilt.

I am going... to see my friends in Shickshinny today. They have a cute little second hand shop that I always find wonderful things to cheer me up and decorate my home.

I am reading... several books on my kindle.

I am hoping... to plan a little day trip for DH and I in the coming month, provided he gets a day off.

I am hearing... the television on HGTV, a fan blowing, and my DH somewhere in the house.

Around the house... the dishwasher needs to be ran and the house needs to be dusted and vaccumed.

One of my favorite things... snuggling on the sofa with my sweet Pomeranian, Punky!
A few plans for the rest of the week: Get as much cleaning and order put back to the house today and tomorrow. I have a day surgery on Tuesday and will be in bed for a couple of days at the least. Having a few meals done ahead and having things in order will go a long way in helping me heal. I need to make something with pumpkin in it for my DH... he loves the flavors of fall!

Thanks for reading... be blessed!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Busy as I can be!

I love the end of summer and beginning of fall. Especially around these parts as there are so many wonderful farm stands in our little area. I have my choice of 4 produce stands that are direct from the farm within 5 miles of home. And there are 2 wonderful orchards within 6 miles.

I have been busy with my canner. I've done my wax beans - at total of 18 pint and a half jars. And I have done strawberry freezer jam. I have done roasted tomato marinara sauce and I have frozen it in zip locks bags, done quart jars in my pressure canner and frozen even more in freezer jars by the quart. I am also dehydrating tomatoes and have one last batch in the oven roasting as I sit and type. 

I have 2 more projects to do... making raspberry peach jam and also canning homemade pork and beans. I hear that they are much better home canned than what we can buy in the store. I am willing to give it a try as my DH loves beans. I hope that when the time comes, he will enjoy the efforts I am making! He's not home much these days as the plant he works at is very busy finishing up their Christmas candies to be shipped across the country. Long 12 hour days and with a few shifts that only have 8 hours in between are the norm for this time of year.

DH also tells me that they are short handed and a few people were suspended indefinitely last week due to an issue with getting date codes changed properly. Someone was suppose to change it... thought someone else was doing it, a supervisor didn't check soon enough, product had to be pulled from shipping to be reworked. It sounds like a big mess, and they are trying to get it all figured out and place the blame on the proper person. It's all stuff that makes me feel glad I don't work there. I know those things are important, but it also affects so many people when someone doesn't do their job correctly... from other employees and their families, all the way to the consumer if things aren't caught soon enough.

I am feeling very blessed to be able to be home and do my canning projects. I am also working on doing laundry today and trying to get some weekend housework done. It seems that I am always working on cleaning the house in the midst of what ever I am trying to do. I do know that I need to get my closet sorted out and get rid of some clothing. I have way too much, and I need to let go of some of my older pieces that I no longer wear. (I always think I will wear again soon, and then I don't.) I have a huge pile of things that either need to be thrown away or have a yard sale and then donate the rest to Goodwill or Sals. What a quandary to find myself in. It takes it's toll on me both mentally and physically... more physically than anything, my hands hurt and so does my back and my knees. Time to soldier on!

Thanks for reading... have a blessed day!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Things I am looking forward to....

Fall is upon us... in just a couple of days!
I am looking forward to a few of the following things:

I am looking forward to the tv show Parenthood returning next week!

I am REALLY looking forward to Million Second Quiz ending. I am sick of that thing!

I am looking forward to my DH's next day off... thinking it will likely be Oct. 5th.

I am looking forward to have a few more things crossed off the "Master Honey-Do list" that is attached to the side of our fridge. This is a long list with lots of projects, both big and small. I would so love to see a bunch of the small stuff crossed!

I am looking forward to finally getting enough money saved up to get my DH's truck back on the road.

I am looking forward to doing one or two more canning projects and then putting all the canning gear away for awhile.

I am looking forward to doing some fall baking... pumpkin bars for one... and some pumpkin scones.

I am looking forward to sitting down at my sewing machine and starting a new quilt project.

I am looking forward to starting a few more chapters to the book that is in process.

Oh... and I am really looking forward to the schedule changing for DH... we are not liking the 11-11 schedule at all!

That's a pretty good list. All realistic and attainable, don't you think?
Thanks for reading! Please have a blessed day.


Tuesday, September 17, 2013


I don't really have much to say of late... other than I am having struggles on so many fronts. My health seems to waiver back and forth... good days and bad days seem to fight for balance. I went through a tough arthritic flare a few weeks ago that had me in bed and knocked out for days.

I also struggle with keeping up with house work and chores and keeping my husband ready for his grueling work schedule. He has been working 12 hours days... 21 days in a row. When he finally was able to use some vacation time, it was all spent on getting things ready for winter as he is not certain when his next time off will be. When I have a good day, I grocery shop. The rest of the time, I pack lunches and do laundry.

I have done some canning in the last few weeks. I just couldn't help myself from taking advantage of all the good produce that is grown locally. I just had to put some things up for the winter. That too, has taken it's toll on me. I get exhausted after a day of working... and need to sleep and nap for the next 2 days after that.

I also struggle with things from my past, things that are triggered by news reports. I have done a book outline, preface and have started to write in order to cope with all that troubles me. Someday, I will finish and be able to share it. But for now, it will be a memoir for my family.

I wish this post was more positive... but I do know that I can say that I have a wonderful husband who loves me deeply and takes such good care of me. I have my sweet Pumpkin-dog who adores me, and my silly Cooper-dog who entertains me as much as he drives me crazy. That is quite a lot in scheme of things these days. Yes, I am very blessed.

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Pumpkin... the dog, not the vegetable.

My Pumpkin-dog has been sick for a few days. Needless to say, that has contributed to my aches and pains. (Meaning I've had to clean up a lot of messes at the bottom of the steps, clean carpets and get her out when she is able to communicate her needs during the day. Most messes were done while I was either sleeping or in the shower or just too plain stupid to figure it out.) Anyway... it has caused more than a few angry moments that included some shouting that I am not proud of... poor little confused dog.

I think we are on the upward swing of the episode of illness for her. I sure hope so because my back and right knee are killing me. The fact that we own a small spot-cleaning machine has made it easier for DH to help me. (I am still not suppose to lift or carry more than 10 pounds.) It's been a tough few days. Here's to baby aspirin and pepto bismal to help her out.

I've been trying to do a little more lately. DH does not like when I buy bananas for a whole week, so it seems like all I ever do is go to the grocery store. Yesterday I went to buy bananas and found they had his favorite energy drink on sale for 10 for $10. That's what I bought. And I took my own bags to the store... and the clerk put all 10 bottles in one bag. Along with the yogurt and a few other items. ALL in ONE Bag. I wasn't paying attention as I was distracted by looking at the flowers in the floral department next to the register I was at. I checked out and took my groceries out to the car. I tried to catch the courtesy clerk at the curb but he was on a mission to collect shopping carts. I lifted that bag full of quart sized bottles into my trunk. That move pretty much put me out of action for the rest of the day. (No, I didn't carry it into the house as DH was home.) But, I don't remember much of my drive home because I was hurting so much.

I have an ultrasound on my neck and collarbone tomorrow... right where my pain is. Holy cow, even using the computer and keyboarding is not comfortable. Time to end my little story, hydrate Punky-dog and grab the ice pack for my shoulder and neck.

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

It's been awhile

I haven't been posting as of late because I haven't been feeling all that well. Most days, I feel like I've been ran over by a freight train. I ache all over, my right knee is barely holding on as it feels like my lateral ligament is about to let go at any moment. Fatigue grips most of my afternoons. It's all I can do to take a shower and get myself out the door to grocery shopping. If DH is still sleeping (as is the norm when he works 3pm to 3am) I struggle to bring in my purchases and put away the perishables. My day is pretty well shot after that... and I struggle with getting DH's lunch made.

I am starting to wonder if I don't suffer from fibromyalgia what with all the pain my joints are in or if in fact it's arthritis spreading. Most of my summer plans for the yard have been placed on hold due to how I feel and that DH is not home much. He works almost all the time... weekends included. And most of the time, it's a 12 hour day.

We did manage a fast trip to Connecticut for the 4th of July and DH's Grams 95th birthday party. It was a fun time and so many family were there to visit... it was a great party inspite of the heat and humidity. Punky dog didn't take to that heat/humidity combo... she had 3 nice cool dunks in the bathtub to help keep heat exhaustion at bay for her. (That meant I got to spend most of my day in a soaking wet t-shirt in front of the a/c to keep her cool. She's such a cute little dear-heart of a dog that I didn't mind. She is our baby after all!

I think the highlight of my week was seeing a couple of girlfriends from work for lunch this past Friday and having DH home for Sunday. We went out for dinner, it was a lovely evening but I've been exhausted ever since. I bought canning supplies to do some freezer jams, but have yet to go to the Amish market to buy anything. (There's always next year.)

That's all I have... sorry it sounds like a laundry list of aches and pains.
Thanks for reading...


Thursday, May 9, 2013

Thursday This and That

  1. I have become totally engaged on the Jodi Arias trial. I didn't know she was from Siskiyou County... the same county I went to grade school in and later lived with my first husband.
  2. DH had vacation 2 weeks ago... we ended up not going anywhere. Instead we tore apart our guestroom and painted it. We moved our bedroom into that room. We are still working on putting stuff back into both rooms. (My house looks like a bomb went off.)
  3. I decided to keep the car yesterday and took DH to work. He ended up having to work until 3 am... just my luck!
  4. Things escalated with the neighbor kid and his Dad, who rang our doorbell yesterday to talk to us... the kid can no longer come to visit me because he was lying to all of us about his situation at home and his grades among other things. Makes me sad.
  5. My bestest friend in life is graduating from college tomorrow in North Carolina. She's been working on her teaching degree for the last 5 years. She is graduating with honors. So proud of her!
  6. One of my dearest work friends became a grandma yesterday. She is over the moon!
  7. I have been buying flowers... and need to get my pots from the basement and get stuff planted.
  8. Punky dog went to the groomers for a grooming session and they did exactly what I asked them not to do... they shaved her down instead of cutting half of her coat off... I know it will grow, but she looks like such a different dog when she's cut so short with the classic Pomeranian cut... and it changes her coloring.
  9. I need to get 3 doctors appointments in this month... and have a huge ct scan coming up next month. I hate having to go to the doctor so much.
  10. DH thinks he may have the weekend off... I won't get my hopes up until its here!

That's all I have for now... Thanks for reading!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Still Here!

This is my third attempt to do a post today. We are still here... working on living life! (The posting issue is due to "user" error... ahem!)

DH has officially started 10 days of vacation! We are having a staycation... because I have a huge "honey-do" list. DH is working away at it and more than likely will be able to finish most of my list!
So far he's installed a new bathroom fan and light, cleaned up the yard and hauled 14 full wheel barrow loads of yard debris to the back side of the barn. He's finished my bookcase shelves in my craft room, installed a new hose reel outside and moved one of my wrought iron hooks for a hanging basket. That's just what he's done from Saturday to Sunday!

We've also semi-adopted our neighbor boy. He doesn't have the most ideal living situation as his fathers girlfriend treats him badly and does some real crazy stuff to this kid. His Dad seems to treat him more like he's a bother in their lives. I've taken him in... trying to give him guidance and good food. He's a good kid, goes to school every day, gets good grades, but doesn't play sports, which causes the girlfriend to think there's something wrong with him because he isn't play basketball or running around like all the other kids in this area do.

I have been trying to get potato salad made for this week. We are going to grill steaks tonight... I am very excited about that. Red meat is a treat for me anymore these days. (I eat so much chicken that I could squawk like one!) We are going to try and head to Lancaster tomorrow... very excited about that.

We also went out last night and enjoyed the meteor show... it was fun to snuggle up with my DH and watch for those gorgeous shooting meteors. It was quite cold... didn't real just how cold until I came inside at 4:45 and it was 31 degrees outside! Brrrrrrrrr!!! It took me forever to get warm enough to fall asleep. There is a very cold breeze blowing today as I sit here at my patio table... my hands are frozen. (That would be the aboved reference of "user" error. lol)

We do plan on going out tonight to view the ISS as well... it will be passing over us tonight at 9:00 pm... coming from the Northwest to East at 50 degrees. It should be wonderful viewing night as it is very clear and the air is dry despite the coldness of the Canadian air we are dealing with. (Can you tell I am ready for the cold to stop... it's Spring, I want Spring temperatures!

Thanks for reading about life here today!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Simple Woman's Daybook

Simple Woman's Daybook...

FOR TODAY (April 7, 2013)...

Outside my window... it's been a lovely day at 62 degrees with high thin clouds. Spring had finally arrived here.

I am thinking... about Spring flowers and planting. Also about being able to get our patio furniture out to so I can sit outside.

I am thankful for... a hard working husband that works seemingly endless hours to provide for us.

From the kitchen... Grilled chicken alfredo from our trip to Sam's club yesterday.
I am wearing... an aqua and balck floral sprig dress and silver jewelry.

I am creating... a painted border clay pot for my porch.

I am going... go nowhere today... I ran myself ragged the past 2 days with errands and shopping.

I am reading... Rod Stewart's autobiography... almost done with it.

I am hoping... to plan a day trip when DH goes on vacation later this month down to Lancaster.

I am hearing... the tv, the air purifier in the other room and a sleeping Punky-dog in her crate.

Around the house... there are some things to put away from shopping and the dishwasher needs to be emptied!

One of my favorite things... watching "Call the Midwife" and "Mr. Selfridge" - both on PBS!
A few plans for the rest of the week: I have to pick up medical records to visit my cardio-thoracic surgeon later this month and I see my pulmonolgist this week.  I am hoping to be well enough to schedule lunch with the girls from work this week.

Thanks for reading... be blessed!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

We've been Busy!

Yesterday was a much needed day of fun! DH and I had a date day where we went off together to do a few things that I cannot manage to do without help. We made it a fun day together. (I think we have turned the corner on being sick and are starting to feel better!)

Anyway... we headed north to do some shopping. I needed to go to Hobby Lobby... and I can't maneuver through the store on my own. They don't offer electric shopping carts, only wheelchairs. So... DH has to push me through the store. Someday, I will have the ability to walk through that place. (I can't wait for that!)

We shopped at Harbor Freight as well. DH got some longed for bench tools... and he's promised me to get the garage cleaned out and a new work bench installed for said tools. (I can't wait for that! I love doing projects on bench tools!) We also went to Petsmart for some goodies for Punky and lastly stopped at the fabric store for me. I bought some beautiful dress goods and can't wait to get sewing on a cute dress pattern that should give me some great dresses for this summer. (I love wearing dresses in the summer.)

We stopped for a yummy steak dinner at a place we can only go to up north. It was really good food and a great atmosphere. We had a lovely time together. We love to people watch and visit... it has been a bliss-filled 4 days off together. Even being sick and trying to get some things done at home were nice because we were together. It sweet and DH did do several things that I need help with, carrying laundry and changing bedding. (He's a real sweetie and does all he can to help me so I don't over stress my heart or back.)

I have done some cooking in the last 4 days as well... we have lots of good eats stocked in the fridge right now. There is a great meatloaf, easter ham, a pot roast with potatoes and carrots, a yummy mashed potato casserole with bacon and cheese, red bliss potato salad, and left over steak and salty baked potato from last night. It's nice to have so much to chose from for dinner while DH is at work... and then for him to heat up when he comes home tonite.

The weather has been fairly mild... yesterday was fabulous! It was in the 50's and sunny... only needed a light jacket. I wore a t-shirt with an insulated vest and jeans... it felt great in the sunshine and no cumbersome coat!

It's hard to believe I have been home from work for 4 months now. After driving north yesterday, it felt great to go past my old exit and not have to worry or think about all that stress of my old job. I do not miss that drive at all... and really wondered how I managed it for over 2 years. I am so grateful for DH to work so hard that I can be home. He's a wonder!

Thanks for reading... please have a blessed day.

Thursday, March 28, 2013


I am still not feeling well. I am not sleeping more than a few hours due to congestion and coughing. (TMI???)  I am still taking my antibiotics and using inhalers along with a decongestant. It's keeping some of the crap at bay... but I still am hacking up crud.

We are suppose to go to my friend Miss Jane's for Easter dinner. She has been following my progress on feeling better on Facebook. She left me a voicemail tonite to call her... and to not feel obligated to come on Sunday. She's also afraid that I could pass this on to her mother-in-law or her father, both of whom are quite elderly. I totally understand that issue and wouldn't want to pass this on to anyone.

DH and I discussed it briefly before he went to work today. We didn't come to any conclusion but now I have confirmation that I should cancel this visit. I need to plan on what we will have for our own Easter dinner... likely a ham and a potato casserole that won't be taxing on me. It's also a matter of still having enough air in my lungs. I went out with Punky tonite and made it to the top of the drive way. I came in and climbed the stairs and got winded... but I only had to rest a little bit and my coughing was as head splitting as it has been. So, there is a little improvement.

Tomorrow begins a 4 day weekend for DH... and some much needed time off for him. We are planning on doing some catch-up chores and laundry. (There's always laundry!)

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Still Here!

I am still here... wrapped up in my favorite blanket on the sofa. I did go to the doctor... well, actually I saw the PA. He gave me stronger anti-biotics instead of a trip to the hospital. I am still doing all my other breathing treatments and get some relief. But if I over-exert myself at all... I end up sounding like a sea lion as I cough and hack. Once that is under control, I still have the peacock sounds of wheezing and feel the pressure of trying to breathe.

Yesterday we had a heating oil delivery. The driver needed help with the doors so I was required to get down stairs to get him inside the garage. It was cold, snowing and windy. Between the activity of the stairs and getting the door open and the weather... I thought I was a goner! I made it inside to the staircase and sat on the 2nd step to try and catch my breath. I sat there until the delivery driver was done and he brought our receipt. He looked at me and asked if I needed medical assistance... he was concerned. I told him I would be ok in a minute or two. He asked again if he needed to get me some help... poor guy. I told him I would be ok and to have a nice day. I made it upstairs and took a hit on my rescue inhaler and rested. I felt that exertion in my chest the rest of the day.

I can't seem to stay in bed all night... I end up going back to the sofa to sit up for sleep. Getting good rest is important to getting better. I hope I can get some good rest soon.

Oh. Happy News too! DH has a lovely 4 day weekend coming up! He has Good Friday and Easter as paid holidays this year. We are grateful for needed time off. He needs rest and I also need some help with the basics of housework right now.

Thanks for reading! Have a blessed day!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

It Abounds Here!

Sickness.... upper respiratory infections... Z-packs.... they all hang out here! I am wheezing so badly that in a quiet room you would swear we had peacocks outside! Even after doing Symbicourt, Albuterol rescue inhaler and albuterol breathing treatments... it's not letting up.

I am going to the doctor in the morning. I am afraid I won't get to come home. I have no real appetite, a slamming headache and fever and chills. This is really sucky! I am suppose to go to a birthday party on Saturday afternoon... but I quietly cancelled today.  DH was home from work on Monday and Tuesday. He's doing a little bit better than I am. He's stronger and gets more fresh air.

Oh... and that's another thing... No fresh air! It's been so cold and I've had such chills, it's rather like being in a germ incubator in this house. I am so sick of the wind, cold air and snow... we are thinking that someone needs to take out a hit on a stupid groundhog named Phil!

Thanks for reading... I have no more energy than this.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Happy St. Patty's Day!

Top o' the Irish to you!

I'm not Irish... for years I thought we were. Until my brother and I actually met our half sisters and learned of our actual heritage. It's been 8 years since we each got an email and made the trip to Texas to meet the girls. It's been something that has been wonderful in my life... to have such wonderful big sisters who are so loving and care so much. They might not have been raised with us... but we are all so much alike that it's just uncanny sometimes!

Not much is new here around this little cottage. DH has been working some crazy long hours. I have been to see a pulmonologist. I will be going for lung function studies and blood gas work in the near future. He changed my inhaler and also gave me a rescue inhaler for the Spring. I will also be going for another CT scan with contrast in June to check the size of calcification's on both of my lungs. It seems that my body grows these things... I have one at 4 cm on my right lung and one at 5 cm on my left lung.

Along with the above mentioned calcification's... I also have one on my heart and one on my spleen. Anyone see any kind of correlation, since I have had cancer twice and the Pulmonologist also was concerned about a mass I have on the left side of my neck where my thyroid used to be. He was very emphatic that I mention it my Endo Dr. when I see her to double check my last ultrasound results.

Thursday was an errand day for me... did some grocery shopping. It was so beautiful out... 54 degrees! Mild and sunny... when I walked Punky before going into the house, I saw 4 robins having a feast on the lawn. I was so excited by that little notion of Spring! And then it snowed yesterday... all day! We got over 2 inches. DH just left for work and said that it had started snowing again! When will all this snow end and bring Spring in bloom??? I am so ready!

In fact, I am going to start doing some tole-painting on some clay pots to go out by our front door. I have done this style of painting in the past... and I am looking forward to doing a little collection of them for our side yard area. It will keep me busy during the snowy and rainy season ahead.

That's all I really have to share for now... I need to get some laundry done and a little house work as I have a technician coming in the morning to set up a lovely CPAP machine for my bedside. (Oh... how glamorous is that???)

Thanks for reading. Have a blest day!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Changing the View

We have had some delightful Springtime weather the last few days. It's been warm and sunny and quite therapeutic for me. I love feeling the sun on my shoulders... and it's been very needed!

DH has been very busy with work. He's been doing a ton of overtime... and working a double shift here and there. He's missed some of the sunshine trying to catch up on his sleep. We finally went and did a get-away day yesterday. We took a slow, meandering drive... and landed down near Reading.

DH took me shopping at a fabric store... and let me kind of go crazy inside. I did splurge on a few wonderful things, but really kept myself in check. There were so many wonderful kinds of fabrics and patterns and I wanted it all. I did get a cute pattern for a dress... but was so overwhelmed with one project I have wanted to do, that I didn't buy any dress yardage! (Silly me!)

It was a fun trip to the city... and included dinner at one of our favorite places to eat... Chipotle! I adore mexican food and love the simplicity of the menu and how healthy it is. I did indulge in guacamole... and loved every bite. We had such a nice time together... laughing and talking and sharing in the day. It was exactly what I needed after spending so much time at home in the last 3 months. I really have been housebound through the winter. I can't wait for better and warmer weather... to be able to work in the flowers of the yard and sit outside with a nice cold drink and play with Punky-dog.

Speaking of Punky... she had a much needed grooming session on Friday. The groomer did such a fabulous job on removing her undercoat... she looks and feels like such a different dog! She knows hows how nice she looks and enjoys all the praise and attention we give her as we tell her how pretty she is! She smells so wonderful... and her mani/pedi turned out lovely. She is such a pretty Pom!

I also spent time with one of my best friends from work... having dinner and a nice long talk while I waited for Punky to be groomed. It was a delight to be able to visit with her. It made me feels so good to share and laugh and feel normal for a change!

That's what is new... what's been happening here for the last few days.
Thanks for reading...


Saturday, March 9, 2013

I am stuck...

I haven't posted in awhile about anything... except for the simplest of things. I am rather stuck by events of my childhood. Things that are never talked about... especially not on the Internet. But certain things have come looming to the surface of my memory. Things that have been worked on in therapy, but still linger on after all these years.

I faithfully check an old hometown newspaper each week. I want to see if the perpetrator of crimes within my youth has passed away. I want to know... yet, I don't know if, what I would do with that information. I have had notions of bringing forth the long withheld information upon the surviving members of that family. I am torn... because of knowing that it would very much be denied even though the abuse that happen was multi-generational. And I worry that my allegiance to my very best friend after being put back into that scenario many times over the years, to either succumb to it once again or to finally take a stand and say-- "No, enough is enough" would make me credible.  And yet not being able to report to any agency for fear of repercussions upon my now former childhood friend as she could lose her livelihood weighs all to heavily... despite the statutes of limitations.

Things that happened were not my fault... I know that in my head. Things that were done, were done by numerous people from the time of being a very small child. It has been something that has affected my entire life up to a certain point. Again... it would (and did) take therapy to help me begin to move past the pain and devastation this crime has imprinted on my life.

I have also just passed the 3rd anniversary of my mothers passing. Something that is very difficult for me to even speak about. Things that surrounded that event are indeed quite hurtful and painful... and I again am having issues with processing those feelings. I miss my Mom... and in her last few years of life, she became inaccessible to me within the confines of dementia and distance. I loved her deeply and miss the last few years we had together as I fought for her dignity within the confines of my family and "what they felt was right" when I didn't agree. It was always a battle to be heard and to have a favorable outcome as I know that if my Mom could truly be aware of what was happening (instead of the stress of the matter) she would have let the opposing party have it (once again) and we would have moved toward the positive direction. ( Once my Mom went to dementia care... I would often send clothing as gifts to her... it was important. This is being said as a point of reference only and not as a point of attack on anyone.) I loved my Mom very deeply and I know that she loved me... and she so wanted to have me near her after I had moved back to the east coast.

What brought all this on were 2 events. One being a facebook post made by a friend, praising her children... and I was wondering if my Mom had ever really been proud of me. I don't remember her saying so... never during my school years as they were very turbulent times. And Second, I watched Lisa Ling's "Our America" on Trouble in the Clubhouse... about abuse by coaching staff. That one hour set things off for me ... again....

So, the question is this...Does that part of your inner psyche ever really heal? It can be overcome... with time and distance and separation, but does that inner part of the one what has suffered ever really get to a place where it doesn't rise up and cause pain once again?

I am sorry this post is not about sunshine and rainbows. I do have many things to be grateful and thankful for. I am not depressed... I just have things within my heart that can sometimes weigh down the sweet spirit that usually resides there.

Thank you for reading... and being patient.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Randomness... Again... (sigh.)

I am once again a second shift widow. This time I am now home instead of working full-time, so it's going a little bit better. At least I get to see my husband everyday for more than 5 minutes.

Although, my husband has been working very hard... 12 hour days all last week. Plus he's worked the weekends since the beginning of the year. He's so strong and loves the extra work. I worry... but he's insistent on signing up... plus his company does require some voluntary overtime. It's complicated, but if you don't sign up for it, it will count against you in a review.

I've been dealing with health issues again. I have been having issues with my back and my knee. And for the last two weeks, I've been having pain in my side. I went for an ultrasound which revealed that I do have an issue with my liver... Oh, goodie! Time to change up my diet and really work at getting things back to a more normal kind of life. (Whatever that is!)

Life has become a little more quiet now that we are back to one dog. And our little Pumpkin is revelling in all the attention. She is snuggled, carried, given treats, sang to and pampered beyond belief. She's had such a tough life in her first 6 years that she deserves all the love we can give her now. She loves it and is very contented.

The weather has also played a huge factor in my lack of blogging as I haven't really been anywhere except for buying groceries. Really... I don't leave the house except to take the dog out. I have done some work in my craft room... but nothing that is shareable. It's more practice work rather than a project to rebuild my skills.

We had a pretty intense ice storm last night... and it had a lot of wind with it. I had a hard time sleeping with the sound of ice hitting the windows. I did make a nice pot of chicken soup for dinner last night... the perfect thing for DH to come home to after a tough day at work.

DH just called me and he has to work until 3:00 am... he said he was covered in chocolate... even had it in his hair. Poor guy. He was just getting his lunch break at 10:00 when he called me. He didn't say what he was working on... but it sounds like a long night at the plant for everyone.

Thanks for reading... please stay blessed!

Thursday, February 14, 2013


This has been a rather tough week for me...

We ended up rehoming Sophie Jean and it has broken my heart. I miss her big, goofy face and her sweet, tender kisses and her big, clunky paws that left bruises on my body. I cried all the way home.

Punky-dog has had a few issues this week... she decided she was upset with us for taking Sophie Jean away. She left more than one "warm little gift" in several places on Sunday and Monday. Thank the good Lord above that I have one of those handy pet steam carpet cleaners! She's settled down and is enjoying being the only dog in the house again. (She's NOT spoiled... at all.   ahem.)

I've been having issues with being cold, not being able to move when the cold air hits me... causing some crazy stiffness and pain in both of my knees. Add the stupid neuropathy in my feet trying to settle into my bunion... and it makes being "mobile" much harder. It makes it hard to walk the dog, and to really get anything done.

I haven't had much reason to go out... we did most of our grocery shopping on the weekend, altho I did have to go and get DH's prescriptions for him Monday night. I am just wondering what has changed that I am feeling all this pain?

I have also been contemplating the desire to get into my craft area and paint. I have several ideas that would like to do... I just hope I don't go blank when I get in there. (I often find that I do go blank once I sit down to start! It's frustrating! More than a little aggravating, no?)

I have been also contemplating working on my cookbook again. It's a project that I started almost 3 years ago and I would like to finish it. I know that I need to work more on discipline and also that ability to cook and photograph the recipes to make an eye pleasing book. It takes time and creativity... and I need to just work on a section at a time.

I've also been contemplating why it is that when I try and go to sleep at night, I find that I am thinking of crazy things such as recounting all the places I lived when I was married to my first husband. Isn't that nuts??? Or laying awake thinking of some of the crazy things I did in my 20's while I was married to that man and how difficult he made life for us. Crazy, crazy, crazy!!!

Thanks for reading... have a blessed day!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Weekend in Review

This weekend has been a bit crazy around here... we caught the edge of the winter storm and had about 8 inches of snow down here. DH's family lives in Northeast Connecticut and they received about 40 inches of snow.

During the storm... DH had to be out in it. He had signed up for an overnight shift and ended up working over on his regular shift as well. He came home at 5 and ate dinner and got ready for his next shift. Because it was snowing so badly, I suggested that he leave early and rest at work instead of trying to get there during the height of it. He was going to take the car but ended up having to come back and get the SUV out of the garage and use it to get up the hill. He made it there quite fine and made it home in the morning at 7:30 to shovel and help the plow guy.

We decided to go up to Sam's Club yesterday and do some shopping. We had a ball and really enjoyed our time together. DH is quite fun to go shopping with as he loves to look at everything. He's very patient with me as I decide on what I need for the house. I did happen to find a 6 1/2 qt. enameled dutch oven at a very reasonable price. It did make it's way to our home.

When we got home, there was a call on the answering machine from Sophie's former Foster family. I had contacted them as I felt Sophie was not adjusting to life here as well as I had hoped. We decided to rehome her with their help. They had found 2 families that wanted her and we ended up taking her to her new home last night. It was very traumatic... and Sophie was not going to go into the house with us to meet her new family until I picked up my purse and started inside. Her new home has a large dog as well and a nice large fenced yard for her... and 5 kids to love her. it was hard on her to be cooped up with me with the cold weather and snow.

Today, I tried to sleep in but Pumpkin had other plans. One thing she learned from Sophie is how to wake me in the morning. Today has been a trial with Pumpkin as she is missing Sophie. She has decided to soil the floor on several occasions today instead of communicating her needs...  so I will have to start working with her tomorrow on her manners.

DH has worked today as well... he takes such good care of us. I appreciate how hard he works. I was able to also chat with several former co-workers this weekend, and I am so glad to be able to stay home these days as I heard several stories, all the same, about how hard and hostile the work environment has become. Very glad that I don't have to be subjected to the things I have heard.

Thanks for reading. Please be blessed!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Pure Random Bits

It's Thursday... I was going to blog yesterday, but couldn't seem to get anything to come to mind. (Insert "Big Sigh" here.)

We are still in the adjustment phase with Sophie. She is adjustly rather slowly. We feel that she may not be adjusting well as she was very bonded to her Foster family. She's had a few issues with commands and listening. She actually got away from me one morning during the weekend. She would not come and instead, went running across the neighborhood. Not fun in jammies, slippers and a winter coat. She started to run around the entire house... so I stood at the front door and called up to DH to help me. She finally came to the door and ran inside. Crazy girl. We did have a good day yesterday with her being fairly comfortable with noises and the house sounds and wasn't too "barky." We bought her a rawhide bone... and finally got the first real smile out her. She recognized what it was instantly and got very excited about it.

We are all waiting to hear just how much snow we are going to get with the storm headed this way. They can't decided which weather model is correct... but we are going to getting "plowable" snow with this storm... anywhere from 3 to 6 inches or... 6 to 12 inches, but it depends on how it tracks. It's all very confusing to me... all it means to me is that I will not be going anywhere for a few more days. We went and did our shopping last night so we are ready for whatever comes our way.

DH has discovered that he may have some engine problems with his truck. It's been parked in the garage for a week... and he is going to work on it tonight. We will basically be using it for short trips while he tests things out... and so I am adjusting to being a one car family. I told him that it would fine once the weather gets a little better and I wouldn't mind having to take him to work on occasion. (That would be for going to doctors appointments or having lunch with the girls on Fridays!)

Once we get Sophie dog adjusted, I am going to be spending some time in my craft area. It's a little crowded in there right now to have a huge dog at my feet. We need to move Pumpkins crate to the living room in order to move my sewing cabinet... this place is so small... and it shows when I have to plan on where I am moving the dog crate.

Since this post is about random things... is anyone watching "The Bachelor" this season? DH and I have been watching and we both think Sean is being duped and is clearing not making good choices with keeping the drama queen known as Tierra. (Hello... her name is a "crown" associated with being a princess and... DRAMA!) I know... it's reality tv... and it's for entertainment. So... we are being entertained!

I think I've done enough randomness to qualify for a blog post! I am still staying at home... I am fighting a cough and chest pain. I also started a new medicine this month and today I "upped" the dosage per the doctor's instruction... and I don't like it. It hurts my side... very uncomfortable. So... I am on the sofa, wrapped up in a warm throw and have Pumpkin on top of me to warm me up. Life right now is slow and lazy... I am hibernating for the winter! Send a prayer up for DH as he just called me to tell me he's working late... and he's working on Saturday. He's going to be a tired man. Love him so much for how hard he works for his family.

Thanks for reading... have a blessed day!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Adding to the Family!

We have been searching for another dog to add to our family for some time now. We tried to adopt a dog last January that did not work out. He was not happy here and consequently made the rest of us very miserable. We took him back to his owner after a week.

We talked about doing a puppy. We talked about just waiting. We looked for awhile and then stopped for awhile. I decided to go back on Craigslist and look... and had found several dogs that we liked. A few ads actually belonged to scammers wanting to take our money. That being said... I came across an ad for a Great Pyrenees/Anatolian Shepherd... a 5 year old female that is a housedog. We sent an email off and waited.

They responded the next day and arranged to bring her to meet us. She ended up staying and we are on day 3 of getting adjusted. She's a BIG dog... very tall and long, with a very large head. She's extremely intelligent... and is very protective already. She's attached to me all day until John gets home and then she ignores me in favor of the Big Dog. She is quite a picky eater and it's going to take time to get her tummy adjusted as she has a sensitive stomach.

Her coat is short but she does shed. Thank God that we just purchased a new Dyson animal quick vac! I think we will be getting a new Dyson animal vac soon to keep up with the fur. Punky is taking a rather wide berth for now... but does spend most of her day being attached to my right side. Having 2 dogs in the house again is very different... and Sophie-dog is keeping me very busy as I work on helping her learn the noises of the house and noises of wind and pine cones hitting the roof and snow plows and car doors. It will take some time for her to learn to take cues on what to be alarmed at. She does have pretty good house manners and some training. We are already working on improving her training skills.

We went to Petsmart and purchased her a new dog bed... but she's so long, it doesn't fit her. She did not enjoy going to Petsmart and had to go back out to the truck. She's not really been socialized all that much... so my plan to have a "therapy dog" will likely have to wait. It will depend on if I can get her trained to not be so timid and scared of new environments. So... with out further ado, meet our Sophie!

These photos were taken at her previous home... She was being fostered as her owner had a stroke and they were afraid Sophie would knock her over trying to be affectionate. It's my observation that Sophie is able to gage how to best interact... she is very gentle with me on the stairs and does not pull me when on lead. I can't wait for the weather to clear enough to be able to take her outside and work with her.

Thanks for reading... have a blessed day!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

A Long Overdue Daybook Post

FOR TODAY (January 17, 2013)...

Outside my window... it's 32 degrees, with 4 inches of snow on the ground.

I am thinking... it's time to start looking for another dog for our house... one that I could train for therapy work.
I am thankful for... a hard working husband that works seemingly endless hours to provide for us.
From the kitchen... I made chili last night and plan on making a Frito Pie with left-overs.
I am wearing... a black and pink dressing gown... still haven't hit the shower yet today.
I am creating... a new crafting area in the guest room... excited about that!
I am going... likely "nowhere" since it's cold and icy out. I like to stay in!
I am reading... the autobiography "Rod"... about Rod Stewart.
I am hoping... to plan a little day trip for DH and I in the coming month.
I am hearing... the laundry going in the other room and cars going by on main road.
Around the house... I am working on slowly cleaning things, dusting and putting things away.
One of my favorite things... is that Punky dog has become so bonded to me since I am no longer working. She loves to be next to me or even better... being in my lap for a belly rub.
A few plans for the rest of the week: To continue to get things back under control after being sick with the flu for 7 days. To be able to sit at my craft table and work on a project.

Thanks for reading... be blessed!

Friday, January 11, 2013

One of Those Lucky People...

I am one of those "Lucky People" who have been suffering from the flu. I am finally on the backside of it... but the flu took all of my energy and interest with it when it left.

I still have a lingering cough and some body aches. I have a really bad case of "sofa-itis" and a side of "I don't really care" thrown into the mix. I am still very fatigued and I can't seem to go to sleep at a normal time causing me to have to sleep in every day. (I don't like to sleep that late... it screws up the day!) But for some reason... my body is requiring that I sleep 9 to 10 hours... with a nap in the afternoon for good measure.

You may recall that I had to go off my synthroid in December and go in to a hypo-thyroid state which caused me to sleep 18 hours a day. I don't know if this fatigue is part of that... part of a lingering flu symptom... or something else. I do know that I have no energy or desire to do anything. All I want is to sleep. It's all I can do to clean up the kitchen and make dinner for DH. I made myself a doctors appointment for Tuesday... and I do have a sleep study scheduled for tonite.

I am trying to bring some sense of normalcy back to this house from before I stopped working. It's not working and yet it's driving me a little crazy that I can't seem to get everything back to a neat and orderly stage for some reason. I think I am going to start with trying to get my dining room table uncluttered (DH's favorite dumping ground) and work on all the paper that never gets tossed or shredded. (I think I will even break out the shredder from under the desk and out it into overdrive.)

Well... it seems that writing about my issues has helped and I am ready to go tackle the 2 afore mentioned projects and get that shredder going! If you see smoke from over my way... that will be the shredder!

Thanks for reading!