Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Stupid Shoulder

It was weird looking at the inside of my shoulder. Some pictures make me think of steaks and pork chops and others remind me of a big slice of roast:
I made an appointment and while it's at my hand doctor's office it is with another doctor. Apparently my hand doctor is a hand doctor after all. The appointment is at 10:40 am tomorrow (Thursday). Yuck. I will have to get up very early. Anyway, I had to go pick up my MRI from the imaging place to take with me.
Not only did I get to look at all the images, but there was a detailed written report. It's looong. Apparently there is a lot more going on than the one tear. My Sweetie looked up most of the words and apparently of the four rotator cuff muscles, I have tears in three of them, as well as some other irritated and swollen things. And there were some early signs of osteoarthritis also. Yay me.
Not all of the report was horrible. There was no atrophy of something and something is intact. But those were two short sentences in a very long paragraph. Anyway, so I've been having a little pity party for myself for the last couple of hours. Having thoughts like, I won't even be able to tie my shoes! Now I'm going to make a list of things to ask and tell the doctor because nothing is more irritating than remembering something you forgot to ask. Well, maybe not being able to tie your shoes.

Monday, December 26, 2011

The MRI and Christmas

I pretty much went through the list in the previous post without a hitch, except the neighbor visiting was moved from Thursday to Saturday and the Friday kitchen part took about 10 hours. I was starting to feel like some sort of kitchen prisoner in hell.
Of course that was the point: to have everything done the day before. On Christmas eve, it all went pretty easily: basically displaying things on platters and trays. We had ten guests, which may not seem like that many to some of you, but to me it felt like a million people were here.
There was a lot of fruit left over, and that surprised me because that's what I eat at parties. I had blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, grapes and blueberry craisins. In fact I am finishing off the strawberries right now.
Christmas day was supposed to be a rest day but I seemed to be busy until about 7:00 pm, so I will use today as my rest day.
Thursday's MRI was very interesting. My main concern was that I would fall asleep. To try to keep myself awake, I made up things that the noises sounded like. Some of them were amusing. But I caught myself almost dozing off FIVE times! And in case I didn't mention it before, I didn't want to fall asleep because people move and jerk when they fall asleep and you are supposed to stay perfectly still in the MRI chamber. It went by pretty quickly actually, and she showed me the video. It just looked like some 1974 hippy acid video except it was in black and white.
My doctor's nurse called on Friday and said that I did in fact have a tear in my rotator cuff. (I knew that.) She gave me two referrals for orthopedic surgeons and one of them was my hand doctor, so I picked him. I called his office pretty late on Friday and left a message. I have no idea when I will hear back. It was odd that it was my hand doctor, because for some reason I thought my hand doctor was just that: A hand doctor. I don't know why I thought that. Anyway, he struck me as a competent fellow when I used him before, so I'm good.

Now I am looking forward to January 5th. My Sweetie and I are going to New Orleans. Also I booked the beach cottage for May. We've upgraded to a five bedroom so everyone can be there at the same time. Yay! Wow it's almost 2012. It seems like I waited forever fo my 50th birthday and now that was 8 months ago. Time flies.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Wednesday ~ House cleaning, neatening up

Thursday ~ Visit neighbor, go for MRI and drinks with daughter, grocery store

Friday ~ cooking, prepping food

Saturday ~ celebrate Christmas Eve with family, go out to play

Sunday ~ Rest

I think I have this down.

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Best Laid Plans....

I kind of wanted to talk about this sweet little thing I bought:
And how I plan to use it for my finely grated provolone and horseradish spread that I plan to make for the roast beef sliders that will be part of my Christmas eve finger food and how I have a strange fascination for spreaders:

(The steak knife on the right was for size reference). But I guess I should (ha! "should" almost spells "shoulder!") get to the nitty gritty about what's going on.


I have two little pills left of the Prednisone and there has been no change in my shoulder. Whenever I've taken this before, I got instant relief. Everything I've read online about torn rotator cuffs describes my symptons exactly. The good news is the Prednisone has been great for my poor thumb. My right hand is doing a lot more work because my left side is so pathetic, but I have had no thumb pain at all. And because I had to eat low fat, low protein in order to avoid a gall bladder attack, I actually lost a few pounds. Which was weird because I always thought this was all beer fat, and believe me, I have been drinking a lot of beer.


So when I wake up today, I will call my doctor and I guess he will either hook me up with a specialist or send me somewhere for an MRI. I really don't want to get surgery before my January 5th New Orleans vacation, but I'm also not sure if I can take this for 21 or so more days. I'm sure I'll have a better idea of everything in the next few days.


So that's where my shoulder stands. I do have a great menu for our Christmas eve and I'm also happy we are having it in the afternoon, so our night and our Christmas will be free. Oh, and I am SO SO VERY happy that my gall bladder held up, but I sure am craving some cheese.

~~~UPDATE: MRI is scheduled for Thursday at 3:30 CST.~~~

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Not Shouldering Through The Pain

I haven't mentioned it before but my left shoulder is all out of wank and quite painful. It's been like this for about three weeks. When it comes to physical irritations, because I have a pretty high tolerance for pain, I try to ignore them, thinking they will go away. They usually do. But not only is my shoulder not getting better, it began to interrupt my sleep. That doesn't fly with me.
I am a great sleeper. Granted, I get to wait until I am sleepy to go to bed and then sleep until I am ready to get up. Yes, I do appreciate that. I remember those horrible "Insomnia Sundays" from back in my working days. They sucked big time. So at this stage of my life I have really good sleeps and I enjoy them.
Well this wanky shoulder and sleeping do not have a good working relationship. It wakes me up. A Lot. So today I did what any normal person would have done two weeks ago. I actually went to the doctor. Okay, I have to confess here that besides not being a doctor goer type person, I was afraid he would say: It's osteoarthritis and you will just have to live with it for the rest of your life. Because that is what the hand doctor told me about my thumb. And I'm no longer a big fan of my thumb, but we tolerate each other. A shoulder however is a bigger deal.
And by a bigger deal, I don't just mean size. You may not realize it, but unless you are a knitter, or maybe a hitchhiker, or someone who is paid to "autograph" things for a famous person, you use your shoulder way more than you use your thumb. And when it comes to sleeping, you hardly use your thumb at all. And if you do, please tell me how.
We looked at the x-ray together and I was happy to see my bones were all smooth and rounded and nicely spaced. He thinks I have a small tear in my rotator cuff. So he gave me that steroid dosepak thing. Yeah, the thing that gives me gall bladder attacks. I refused them the last time I was supposed to take them for something, so that should tell you how bad my shoulder hurts. I did however ask him how to avoid the gall bladder attack. He said to avoid proteins and fats. If I had known all of this, I would have had a ribeye yesterday.
But my shoulder hurts, and gall bladder attacks are hideous, so I went to the grocery store and bought very healthy things to have for the next few days. And the doctor said if I am not good after the medicine is finished (which will be Monday) then I will have to have an MRI and possibly rotator cuff surgery.
The timing seems kind of poor considering it is Christmas and we are going to New Orleans on January 5th. But I think I'll always remember this Christmas season as the one with the bad timing. I forgot to tell you that we had to buy a new hot water heater ($$$$!) on Tuesday. Gotta have hot water. A good working shoulder would be nice too. I hope the medicine works.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Shower Chemistry

As I was taking a shower today I was trying to decide which conditioners to mix. Then I wondered if anyone else does this. That's my shower and my husband has his own shower. I counted and I have eight shampoos and six conditioners. I don't know why.
The odd thing is, I'm a real stickler about certain things. For instance, I've used the same soap for at least 20 years (Pears) and I've used the same toothpaste for longer than that (Colgate). But when it comes to shampoo and conditioner, I love variety. I'm always looking for something different. And then I like to mix them together. Not mix shampoos with conditoners of course, but shampoos with shampoos and conditioners with conditioners. (And I think "shampoo" is a really funny word if you think about it. It's like a combination of "Shamu" and "tattoo" which are two things that really do not belong together. You shouldn't get a tattoo of Shamu and you shouldn't tattoo Shamu.)
Anyway, does anyone else do hair chemistry in the shower? And to be quite honest I really just want everyone to listen to this song:

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Good Art

I first posted that picture over four years ago. It is Caravaggios' The Cardsharps. It's my second favorite painting and it makes its home right here in Fort Worth at the Kimbell Art Museum. On Saturday we went to The Kimbell to see the exhibit "Caravaggio and His Followers in Rome." I was excited to see more Caravaggio work. It was also fascinating to see the paintings of his students, followers and admirers.
There are many reasons I love this type of art. Most people who have an interest in art have all sorts of different tastes. Impressionism is very popular as well as modern art. I really love the very old, very realistic paintings. I was thinking about this today and I think I figured it out. Most of the paintings in the exhibit were painted between 1590 and 1620. There are no photographs from that time so these realistic paintings give us a snapshot, if you will, into the past. Because such objects as an apple or a stein look almost photographic, I think it is safe to assume that the other objects (not the angels, of course) are also very realistic. And a lot of these old paintings feature books.
Books were not commonly owned objects in that time and so I imagine that it was because they were special that they were included in so many paintings. They did not look like modern books. They were always curvy, wavy and somewhat crinkled. I paid particular notice to the books in the paintings. There were also some things in the paintings that were unidentifiable by me. I wish I could have asked someone what they were.
I also got a big kick out of seeing from where the paintings had been loaned. There were paintings from all over Rome, some from Spain, at least one from The Louvre and even one from the museum in my home state of North Carolina. I've always thought it was fascinating how these great old paintings travel around the world. On the one hand, I am thrilled about it and on the other, it makes me nervous to think these fine old irreplaceable, delicate masterpieces could be damaged or lost forever.
I guess I should just appreciate being able to see great artwork. I'm sure there are millions of people on the planet who have never seen great art. I'm lucky because I have seen my two favorite paintings. And of all of Caravaggio's work that I saw today, I still say The Cardsharps is his best.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Watching Time Flip By

My best friend gave me a silver photo album as a wedding gift. It's very pretty and is a single picture page book with a photo slot in the silver cover and stands upright like a picture frame. As we did did not have a huge amount of pictures - it was a small family event at my in-laws' house - there were many pages left empty.
I remember getting all the pictures back. Yeah, back in the day when we had to get pictures developed. I had fun arranging them in the book and then I was out of pictures. As I looked with dismay at all the blank slots, I decided that every year, we would have our picture taken on our anniversary and put them in the book. This is this year's pic:

It's very strange to flip through the book and watch yourself change. It's like Boom! Turn the pages and watch yourself age from 40 to 50. Or from 34 to 44 if you are the groom. It might be funny to do a 10 year slideshow.
And speaking of time passing, my dashboard says this is my 1000th post, but I know that's only partly true. They count half finished posts that you deleted or any post that you deleted. My guess is that my blog probably contains about 985 posts. But I'm not going to count them. It was bad enough counting from 40 to 50. Turn the page.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Organizational Madness

I checked back over my blog to see when I first mentioned the Tupperware and it was two weeks ago. Since then I have continued with this finding of places for things. That old expression: A place for everything and everything in its place, or something to that effect, has apparently taken over my mind. I can't seem to stop. I found a good place for all of My Sweetie's school books (schoolbooks? I don't feel like looking that up). They were in a stack in the bedroom and that's fine when you're twenty, but at our age it seemed silly. I found a shelf for them in here. I also found another shelf for all of his big hardback video game guide books. And those actually seem like something you would own when you are twenty.
Saturday, I decided to rearrange some stuff in the library. To move bookcases in the library requires removing all the books. It was daunting but I HAD to do it. And I did. One bookcase only had to be slid four inches to the right, but take out all the books, I did. And it is all better. And I enjoyed seeing all the books. I found all kinds of things I had never noticed. I have decided to read Jane Austen's Mansfield Park. Especially since I have never read a Jane Austen novel and her fans all hate it. I digress.
On Friday, one of my MOW ladies asked if I could come over some day and help her organize her clothes. I was all WHAT ARE YOU KIDDING YES!! I did that this afternoon (yesterday - Monday- chronologically. I haven't gone to bed yet.) She could not have picked a better time to ask me. I was The Wizard of Clothes. I was more than just the mover of things from place to place: I gently chastised her for having clothes with tags on them. I also told her how I keep my clothes to a workable minimum. She liked the idea. But considering that she had eight or nine nearly indentical red shirts, I doubt she will heed my advice. I made a point to hang all of the red shirts together so she will see that she has an unnecessary redundancy in her closet.
This afternoon I am going to tackle a built-in storage area in the house that I don't think I've opened in six months. I can't wait. But I'll have to. I have to go to sleep now.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Pictures in Pictures

One of my FB friends wanted to see my polymer cover on my porch light and so I took a picture.
After I took the picture I saw so many things in the reflection as well as the picture. It's almost like a picture puzzle.
For instance, you can see my beer in a red huggy and that's inside the house although it looks like it's sitting on bricks. The bricks are on the front porch.. You can see through my house to the backyard. You can see my neighbor's house across the street from the front of my house.
You can see the back of my mailbox out on the street.
You can see me taking the picture.
And Snoopy.

And Charlie Brown.
I was tickled that I was just taking a picture of the porch light and all these other things happened. Have fun. Let me know if you see anything else.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Silly Adult Phone Conversation

Me: Hello?
My Sweetie: Where are you?
Me: Nevada
My Sweetie: So you hopped a plane?
Me: Yeah
My Sweetie: Are you having fun?
Me: Yeah, except I just lost $140.
My Sweetie: But you got groceries for that.
Me: Yeah
My Sweetie: See you in a few minutes.
And just for funsies (and to possibly make you roll your eyes), I covered a cardboard box for Barney to sleep in and I really think he likes it:

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Organizing the Tupperware

This is the before picture of the three main shelves of my pantry:
I had kept my plasticware in that blue dish drainer for quite a while. It seemed like a good idea at the time. And don't let the picture fool you. First of all I was holding the camera up. That middle shelf is my eye level shelf. I had to use this to sort through the plasticware:

And you had to do it that way, because if you tried to just slide that drainer thing out, all the small lids would slide right through it. And the bottom shelf? Well because it was below eye level, I pretty much used only the front 8 inches. I didn't even know what was behind the stuff in front. So I cleared out that bottom shelf.:

I am ashamed to say, there were cans of stuff in there that dated all the way back to 2005. There was a can of peaches that looked like it was moments away from exploding. It was not good. Out of Sight, Out of Mind truly applied.


Anyway I got this pull out drawer plastic bin thing and transferred all the plasticware from the blue drainer basket to the drawer:

Then I put the good stuff from the first 8 inches of the bottom shelf onto the top shelf and I slid the drawer bin onto the bottom shelf with my plasticware tucked neatly inside:

And now it all makes more sense:

Whenever I do stuff like this I always wonder why I hadn't thought of it before. I've had the pull out drawer bin since 2008. It was one of the things I brought home when I cleared out Mom's house that year. I had been using it to store my rock polishing stuff - which I haven't used in a long time. And why hadn't I noticed that I hadn't looked into the back of that bottom shelf in years? There are actually two shelves below that one and I go through those quite often. Anyway, I got it done and it has worked out great so far. So yay! And thank God that can of peaches never blew up.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Christmas Fever (in my feet?)

I spent most of Friday, Saturday and Sunday decorating for Christmas. I do it for me because I love love love Christmas stuff. See that stuff at the bottom of the pic? That's a clear polymer with little gift boxes printed on it. I cut out little panels of that to put on the panes of my front porch light. I love it! I didn't take a picture because although the project itself is very cute, the metal around the panes is old and crappy.
We went our for a little while to shop for some fun stuff on Saturday and then stopped at a bar for beers and then went out to eat. That was fun. We went to three different places to shop and I got piles of stuff but we only spent about $40 at each store. I love good deals. And now my feet are killing me!
Seriously, the last time my feet hurt this bad was when I wore my "ruby" slippers to walk all over Bourbon Street. What happened was, I spent quite a lot of time over these last three days, balancing on my toes on the top step of a step ladder. Standing on your toes on a step ladder uses about a thousand more foot muscles than just standing on your toes on the floor. I guess there's that whole balancing thing. I mean if you're on the floor on your toes and reaching up and you get off balance, you just take a step back. On top of a step ladder? Taking a step back is not a good idea. It requires falling. I do not care for falling. So I used all thousand muscles of my feet over and over and now I am paying the price.

I think Monday will be used to rest my feet and enjoy my Christmas decorations. Sounds like a very good use of a Monday to me.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Friday Goofy

I took this picture Thursday night in Downtown Fort Worth
of My Sweetie in front of a painting
of what we can only figure to be Pirate Claus.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Not A Topical Climate

This is going to be one of those posts where I ramble and do not adhere to any particular topic because I feel like chatting about some things.
Saturday night, we went out on a date night because we found out about a bar/arcade that features the old 80's arcade games as well as pinball. We played Galaga, Asteroids, Ms. PacMan, Donkey Komg and Frogger as well as a few other games as well as pinball and skeeball. The weather was perfect and they had the place sort of open air with two large garage type doors open to the patio. After we played some games we headed downtown to eat and play.
I love the crazy Texas topiary they have downtown. We went to the old City Streets which is called something else now and had some beers and played pool and wandered about. It was a fun date night.
I have been unhappy with my current tupperware situation. And I don't mean Tupperware©. I use "tupperware" like I use "kleenex." Kleenex means "soft paper you blow your nose on" to me. But back to the tupperware. My plastic food storage containers, (see! tupperware is easier to say and type!) are ridiculously unorganized. Where they are currently stored requires me to stand on a step stool and have a hunting expedition. EVERY. TIME. So I have been mulling over this for a while and as usual, I got an idea. I will take before and after pictures when I do this - about 13 hours from now.

Although I hate Thanksgiving, I somehow ended up volunteering to provide food for my in-laws. I have kept it super simple and it's only going to be four people so it's not so bad. The hardest part will be taking everything over to their house. And if you have just wondered, the answer is "No. It would not be easier to have them over here." Well, easier for me, but not for them.
45 minutes ago I put an ad on Craigslist for something free. I want to get rid of a computer speaker set. And I am not kidding but I have already had EIGHT responses. One of them said "I can pick them up right now." Really? At 1:00 A freaking M? I've done this before and I met the guy in the afternoon in a CVS parking lot on the corner of a busy street. And I watched him drive away before I left. And then I didn't go straight home. I'm no dummy. That was for a box of pool and spa chemicals that we had after we had that spa taken out. And for these speakers I'm doing the same thing but also My Sweetie will be with me because I'm going for Saturday afternoon. While I have been typing this, I have already arranged for the Saturday thing and had two more e-mails. I guess some people really want some free stuff.
Also I finally am getting near the end of this chair covering stuff. The third chair I covered was awful. As in "How not to recover a chair" awful. So that is now the chair in my smoking room. So after the third chair, I guess I was gun shy. I kept saying, "I need to be in the zone." Well apparently today (Tuesday) I was in the zone because I did my best chair yet. I wanted to go ahead and do the 5th chair after that because it was ready, but I had an accidental nap. And the 6th and last chair has not been stripped down yet. I will get there eventually. And I've taken lots of pictures.
And now I am all topiced out. Topicked? Topicced? Topict? hmmmm

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Time. How It Boggles.*

Today is Mom's birthday. My Sweetie and I went out for a date night, Saturday night, and as we were cruising down the highway, I was thinking: So 73 years ago, my grandmother was a 26 year old woman with two little kids and at full burst pregnancy with mom. (I really can't picture grandma as a 26 year old person.)

By the way, I finally figured out why I never liked my grandmother. I can usually come up with things, but they never really explain how I feel. I realized after all this time that in my entire lifetime, I never heard my grandmother laugh. And she never smiled. Oh yeah there are a few photographs, but that's just for the photographer. Who doesn't laugh or smile? Ick. But enough of that.

Today is Mom's birthday. Mom was no June Cleaver. If Mom had to be described in comparison to TV people, she would have been a combination of Laura Petrie, Mary Richards, Edith Bunker and Della Street. Yeah, an unusual combination, but that's how real people are.

I really love Mom and I'm so happy she's still here. I can't believe Mom is 73. Time is a weird thing.

Mom laughs and smiles. I love that in a person. And I love my Mom.

(*I stole the word "boggles" from Jazz.)

Thursday, November 17, 2011

My Weird Dreams

I always have the strangest, most vivid dreams. This morning when I woke up, I was straight out of a long dream where I was a student at some sort of audio/visual school. There were all these banks of VCRs and monitors and we were all comparing our work and, of course, it all seemed perfectly normal. When I woke up I was all, "What the heck was that? An audio/visual school from 1993?" I thought it was weird that my dream self did not realize that all the equipment was so outdated.


I wonder why I have no sense of the date in my dreams. Sometimes my daughter (who is 27) will be 5 years old in a dream and my dream self doesn't even notice. Or Dad, who died in 1998, is in the dream and my dream self doesn't freak out - it all seems perfectly normal. Dreams are so odd. At least I don't get the tidal waves anymore.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I Am Not Kidding

My Sweetie opened that bottle for me and pulled out that cotton. We did not fluff it up or anything. That's just how it came out of the bottle. It was crazy. Like a clown car. If the car was a vitamin C bottle and the clowns were cotton. And there are actual vitamin C tablets in that bottle. Lots of them. It was very strange.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Good Blood

So I got the letter from my doctor regarding my latest blood work and I was very very happy to read that my liver is fine. I do so love my beer but I like my liver also. Also my kidneys are fine, which are things I rarely think about but my doctor had said that he was concerned because of one of my medicines. So that was good. The only negative thing in the letter was my bad cholesterol, the LDL was a little high. It was followed by these lines: Avoid the fried foods and foods with lots of butter or cream. Watch out for high fat dairy products as well.
Really? I could go months without fried foods but I love butter, cream sauces, cheese sauces. Havarti cheese? yum yum yum. I suppose this would be good reason number 18 to start walking on my treadmill regularly. My excuse that it was too hot all summer was sound, but has now expired. Trying to reduce my LDL seems like a more interesting challenge than trying to lose 20 pounds, so I think I just may have the incentive I've always needed.
The most interesting thing about the letter was that my doctor had actually hand written my address on the envelope. I bet it had to be hand canceled. I can't imagine the electronic reader at the post office could read it. Heck, they probably had to take it to a pharmacist.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Shoes and Synchronicities

I decided I wanted some black leather tennis shoes for winter and as usual after trying on five or so pairs of shoes, I felt dejected and so ambled over to the men's section where I found these great Pumas:
Yep. More man shoes for me. They are so comfy. I can see why man shoes are so much more expensive than lady shoes: They are way more comfortable and way better made. On the other hand I have funky Fred Flintstone feet. My daughter's feet are so narrow, she could probably put both of her feet in this shoe if her feet weren't so long. We have opposite feet. That actually works out great if one of us buys the wrong shoes. But enough of that.

I've talked about synchronicity a lot. I am especially attuned to it. It all started last week when I watched Drumline while I was eating lunch. I had seen it once before, just after it came out eight or nine years ago. I was thinking: Who is this kid? I love this guy! So I looked him up and found out it was Nick Cannon. Well I knew Mariah Carey married Nick Cannon and I knew he hosted a TV talent show but I didn't really know who he was. And then all of a sudden, just a few days later Nick Cannon pops up on two of the talk shows I watch. Synchronicity.
I also watched the movie 2012 and the German Chancellor was played by a blonde woman and I thought: That's cool they made the German Chancellor a woman. Yeah I know, the German Chancellor is a blonde woman, but I did not know that until a few days later when she popped up all over the news regarding the Greece bailout. Synchronicity. By the way, the actress playing her in 2012 was born in Vancouver - Merrilyn Gann. She also founded the Northern Light Theater in Edmonton.
There were a couple more that I can't think of right now, and then Sunday night we were watching the TV show "Grimm" and a big bad wolf had eaten a college student in the woods. When the lead characters showed up they were told it was a girl and when they asked how they knew that, the cop on the scene said, "Lady's pink Nike." So this was just a few hours after I bought my latest man shoes and I turned to My Sweetie and asked, "So if all they find is my shoe, they'll think it was a guy?"

Friday, November 04, 2011

File Under: WHAT?!?

This picture is in the November 2011 issue of National Geographic:
The article is about buried warrior's gold from medieval times. The caption on the above picture states:
A figure pocked with nail holes may represent a horse - or a bear, or a boar, or even a wolf.
Really? Really? I consider National Geographic to be a smart sciencey magazine and that's what they think that gold figurine is? Really? It's a freaking seahorse! It even has a little swim fin at the bottom. Or it could be a wolf. Or a boar. Yeah, no. I'm going with seahorse.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Halloween Was Fun! And Exhausting!

My Sweetie has school on Mondays and Wednesdays so he wasn't here Monday night, but my daughter came over for Halloween. We had a good time. I got a late start decorating. I think I started at 4:00 and everything seemed to take 1000 times longer than I remembered from three years ago. More than likely, I didn't start at 4:00 three years ago.
It was also very warm and although I was wearing shorts, a Tee and had my hair up, I got so hot and sweaty I completely soaked a bandana that I was using to wipe my head.

I was running so behind I didn't bother to move the step ladder for the picture and I didn't get to put as much spider webbing on the porch that I wanted to. The funniest thing that happened was Carole called me (she lives two doors down) and said that a little boy had just come by and asked for extra candy for his sister. He said she got so scared at the house two doors down (mine!) that she wouldn't get out of the car. I think the reason my ghoul is so scary is because it is 6 feet tall. It's funny to think that an old shower caddy and some chicken wire could cause a little girl to not want to get out of her car. I'm sure she'll be fine.
The fun part of the night was the crazy conversations my daughter and I were having between doorbell rings. The strange part of the whole thing was the next day. I had a good solid eight hours of sleep but I felt exhausted and even kind of hungover the next day. It was very odd because two years ago I spent Halloween partying on Bourbon Street and I was fine the next day and last year we dressed up and went to a World Series game. And I was fine the next day. If decorating my yard and handing out candy is so exhausting, I think next year I will just go back to New Orleans.

Monday, October 31, 2011

It's Halloween!

Today I'll be decorating my front porch and yard for the first time since 2008. I went all out that year and then the next year I went to New Orleans and then last year we were at the baseball game. I carved my pumpkin today. I think it looks better in person:
I spent most of Sunday afternoon finding things and organizing things to have them ready. I mean it's been three years. I'm doing a few new things this year and some of the old and I will have lots of pictures in a few days.
So while I was running around doing all this stuff, Barney came in the house and was acting all nuts like he was on a bad acid trip. He went under the daybed in the library and was howling like a loon and My Sweetie went in there to "talk him down." He was finally able to pull him out from under the bed to do a full body check (a "cat scan" if you will) which he always does when Barney acts oddly. You know, because he's an indoor/outdoor cat so he checks for injuries. Well he was perfectly fine and even started purring but then went right back under the daybed.
My Sweetie has a theory. He said, "I think it's the front door. It even scares me." It's this:

Friday, October 28, 2011

Thought Fissures

This may sound odd, but I hardly ever look at myself in the mirror. Often I will leave a public restroom and moments later think, "Damn! I forgot to check my face." Yeah I wear make up on the few days I go out and of course I apply that in front of a mirror but that's close-up work and when I'm done I'm done. And when I do my hair on those days, I'm just looking at my hair. So tonight I caught a glimpse of myself walking by a mirror and it weirded me out. It was a strange blast from the past.
Apparently my last haircut was not new at all, but some old replay. I'm not happy about that. Besides, I think my hair is too long for my age. Or I can just go kinda Katharine Hepburn and wear my hair up all the time. I guess I should figure this out when I'm not so tired.
Oh and today I ordered a "slib of rabs." And then later while we were watching the game, I said something else backwards and My Sweetie asked, "When they took that blood from you today, did they pull out some of your brains?" And by "they" he was not talking about vampires. I had a doctor appointment. It was a kind of head to toe "look see" I guess. He even touched the top of my foot and said my foot circulation was good. Well I could have told him that. Why else would my feet be so freaking hot?
I guess because I turned 50 this year, the doctor has to watch for all sorts of things. And ask me to do strange things, which I don't want to go into. Test things I mean, not strange things with the doctor. And not strange per se, just things I'm not ready to do yet. But he was happy with my general health, blood pressure, lung sounds and whatnot. So maybe I should just keep not looking in the mirror and it will keep me healthy.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Ponies and Rangers

I went to the last home game of The World Series and we won and it was fabulous and I saw some big ponies. Life is good.

Monday, October 24, 2011

One Tired Puppy

Thursday we went to the Texas State Fair where I think I walked about 18 miles. It was great fun: One of those perfect days where everything falls into place and flows ever so smoothly.

Ha Ha! Look! Fried beer. No I did not try that. For some reason I did not try any of the weird fried concoctions, but My Sweetie loved the fried pumpkin pie, as did my neighbor Carole. (She was the one that told us about it.)


So that was on Thursday. Friday was the usual Meals on Wheels delivery and grocery store trip. Then Saturday was day one of The World Series:

We lost that game and it was horrible but on Sunday we won. We were there for SIX hours on Sunday. And today we go back for game five. It's a very long walk from where we park to the stadium. I feel like I'm some sort of professional marathon walker now. I hope it's another great game. On Tuesday I think I will rest.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Halfway Point

Today is the halfway point of my 50th year and I am celebrating by going to the Texas State Fair. My 50th year has been quite good so far. I'm looking forward to the second half.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Thought Points

  • At the baseball game Saturday night (which the Rangers won, winning the ALCS Championship thus advancing them to The World Series), I sat next to a 15 year old boy who was 6'5" and wearing a baseball glove. It's the safest I've ever felt sitting near third base.

  • Two things about me really irritate my mother: 1) I wash a shirt (or any item of clothing) after wearing it only a few hours and 2) I don't eat breakfast food very often.

  • "dim-witted simpleton" is not a redundancy if you are talking about my cat.

  • Most foods labeled as "haute cuisine" are things I would never eat and seem ridiculous to me. Fried egg with carmelized squash and tomatillo salsa? Give me a break.

  • One of the new shows that I enjoyed has already been canceled. What's the point of watching new shows? Why should we even bother? (It was "Free Agents.")

  • It's supposed to be cool today - in the 60's. I'm still cynical about that.

  • If I had to give my hair a nickname, it would be "Puff Daddy."

  • I told my daughter today that I think that feet, like ears and noses continue to grow as we age. She did not like this idea.

  • I hope I was wrong about the feet thing.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

And I'm Back

On Monday I had lunch with a crowd of family members:
On Tuesday Loretta drove down:

This is from Monday again. My stepDad looks thrilled. And the ladies on the right are two aunts and my cousin:

After lunch on Monday, my cousin Jennifer drove me and my nephews over to the beach:

And this was my last Day. Loretta and I went back to the beach:

I had a great trip. I need to go through more of my pictures. I am happy to be home with My Sweetie but I sure do miss everyone back in North Carolina!

Friday, October 07, 2011

Friday Goofy

History according to the creationists?:

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Sleeping Around

There was a thing going around on Facebook a while back where you click the U.S. states that you've visited and I think it said something like: don't count states that you've only driven through. I remember thinking, Why not just ask which states you've slept in? For me, Missouri is the only state I ever spent time in without sleeping there. We spent most of a day at the Gateway Arch park. I actually took what I think is probably my best photograph there, but because it featured my second husband, I left that picture with him. Anyway, I think I should get this all down before my brain stops working.
So, I'm going to list the states (alphabetically) I've slept in with a few notes about each one:

  1. Alabama ~ This was just a few years ago when my daughter and I took that cross country road trip. On the first leg of our return trip, we were taking some back roads thinking it was a nice scenic route, but it was SO slooow. Plus we had spent way too much time touring the Blue Ridge Parkway before we even really got started. We were so happy to finally make it onto a freeway. Then we trucked and trucked and finally gave out. Kate said "All I want to do is sit and drink beer and smoke." So we stopped in Tuscaloosa at what we called the "Ratmada Inn." It was very rundown and the carpet was so gummy or something I kept my socks on and they became gross. But we didn't complain because it was the only smoking hotel we could find quickly and we wanted Out Of The Car. We actually had a good time.

  2. Arkansas ~ I've actually slept there a few times spanning many years and all three husbands. My first husband and I spent the night in Hot Springs on the way back from N.C. And my second and I stayed in some "resort" roadside place several times on our way to Illinois. Maybe it was in Blytheville but I'm not sure. And my current husband and I have been to Hot Springs.

  3. California ~ Well this would be too long for much detail, but I have slept in San Diego, San Francisco, Huntington Beach, some business park suburb near San Francisco and in Lancaster which is a small air force town in the Mojave desert. That was for my brother's first wedding and my memory of that plays like a weird movie in my head, but I don't want to go there.

  4. Colorado ~ I have been there on three different occasions, but, and I am not trying to do a husband theme here, Colorado is memorable because I went on my first trip there with both my first and second husband. At the same time. Except my second husband was not my second husband at the time because that would be illegal. And just weird as hell. Oh and the cities in which I slept were Colorado Springs (twice) and Boulder.

  5. District of Columbia ~ While this isn't an actual state, it is a place where I have slept on two occasions: First grade on our way to New York to visit relatives. We didn't just sleep over though, we did a day of sightseeing, and for my daughter's senior year in high school. We got lucky and caught the cherry blossoms on that last trip. Mostly I went to see the Hope Diamond at the Smithsonian. Not sure why I was so into that at the time.

  6. Florida ~ My first Florida trip is a tale worth telling. We had been in Durham about a year or two when a family from Connecticut moved into the apartment two doors down from us. We were all fascinated with them. At least I was. The girl was two years older than me and the boy was 5 or 6 years older. I was 13 or 14. One day I happened to walk out the back door and saw them packing a big camper on a large truck. I said, "Where are ya'll going?" They said Florida and somehow I talked them into including me. My parents said okay and gave me $50 or so and I packed some clothes and my toothbrush and off we went. I was a very strange child. It was a great trip. We went to Lion Country Safari and had lots of laughs. I guess I felt like I had to entertain them to justify my being there. And I did. My second trip was with a boyfriend, his dad and stepmom when I was 16 - to Disneyworld. My third trip was with My Sweetie in 2009.

  7. Georgia ~ I went to a big concert event called "Champagne Jam" in Atlanta when I was 18 or 19 and think I slept there overnight but am not sure. I do remember cutting my foot on a beer tab - the old pull off kind. There was once a poster or album art or something which I can't find online that showed the crowd and I recognized my sleeping bag out on the field. My second trip there was with my first husband and toddler daughter. We stayed with my junior high/high school friend in Dunwoody - an Atlanta suburb. She had the perfect guest room. I'll never forget that.

  8. Hawaii ~ My Sweetie and I went to Maui in 2004. That's where he spent his childhood, so it wasn't just a touristy thing. He showed me all his old haunts. That was a fun trip.

  9. Illinois ~ My second husband was from an idyllic small town in southern Illinois, so I went there many times. That's where my daughter and I had our very first white Christmas. It actually began to snow about 6 p.m. on Christmas eve. I also once fell asleep in a beautiful old cemetery there. Years later I spent a few nights in a suburb of Chicago on a business trip.

  10. Iowa ~ When the Motorola plant down here had a big reorganization back in the erly 90's, some of our friends went to Florida and some went to Iowa. My second husband's best friend went to Iowa. One year after an Illinois Christmas visit, we drove up to visit this guy and spent New Year's eve there at a party with other former Motorola friends. I always loved that guy. I should do a post about him.

  11. Louisiana ~ Obviously the first thing that comes to mind is New Orleans. Not only have I been there many many times, I've actually been there with 6 different people. I still want to take my daughter. We had planned to do that for her 21st birthday, but that was when Katrina happened. I've also stayed in Shreveport twice. Once back in 1989 to go to the horse races on a Motorola group trip and also that was the last stop on the road trip with my daughter.

  12. Michigan ~ Besides the 1982 SuperBowl in Pontiac when I stayed at the Ren Cen in Detroit, I have been there two other times, both were for the funerals of My Sweetie's grandparents.

  13. Mississippi ~ Back when my daughter was a toddler, her Dad and I took a road trip to N.C. we stopped to spend the night in Vicksburg so that we could wake up on the Mississippi river.

  14. Nevada ~ Las Vegas (too many to count) and Lake Tahoe (once). Why else would you go there?

  15. New Mexico ~ My first husband and I were poorer than church mice. When my daughter was 2 or 3 his aunt and uncle invited us for a visit in Ruidoso. They were wealthy and retired and had a magnificent place, a "spread" really. We stayed in a guest house. They had chickens with fresh eggs, an apple orchard with homemade apple cider, a creek and some animals. It was all breathtakingly beautiful and something I will never forget.

  16. New York ~ My first visit was as a child visiting Granny and some other relatives on Long Island. Then the two visits as a teenager to the city to see Duke games in Madison Square and New Years eve on Times Square. About twenty years later my visit with My Sweetie in Soho and then this year for my 50th birthday. All good times.

  17. North Carolina ~ Well of course, I slept there. That's where I'm from. And I have slept all over that state.

  18. Ohio ~ I had a rich Ohio boyfriend once. He was a Duke student, so that's how we met. He invited me to Ohio and we drove up to Michigan for that Superbowl. But I stayed several nights in Bowling Green.

  19. Oklahoma ~ My first husband is from Oklahoma so I spent many nights there at his grandmother's house. She was one special lady.

  20. South Carolina ~ Myrtle Beach was the place to go when I was a teen. I have spent many nights there, although to be fair, maybe sleeping isn't the right word: I was more likely passed out.

  21. Tennessee ~ My daughter and I spent two nights in Memphis on our road trip partying on Beale Street. And I saw B.B. King!

  22. Texas ~ That's where I live, so of course I've slept here. I've slept in Fort Worth, Dallas, Arlington, Carrollton, Richland Hills, North Richland Hills, Irving, Hurst, Euless, Keller, Grapevine, Azle, Austin, Houston, San Antonio, Galveston, Port Aransas and whatever towns I was in when I went camping on many lakes.

  23. Virginia ~ In 2002 or 2003, Loretta and I went to Virginia Beach. It was great fun. A really neat little resort town with a free trolley bus that goes up and down the main road. We laughed a LOT! We still make jokes about that trip.


I didn't realize this would be so long, but I enjoyed remembering all of it. And now I have it all written down so when I become even more senile, I'll have it. Except I probably won't be able to find it.

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Getting Ready

I've been sort of an absent blogger lately because we have all this baseball going on and I am going on a trip on Saturday.
The baseball is good so far, but I'm really excited about spending some time with Mom. I'll also get to see my brother, nephew, a cousin, two aunts and my best friend. I'm really looking forward to it.

Saturday, October 01, 2011

On The Beatles (My Response to Ian's Post)

My old blogger friend Ian posted this post about The Beatles and as I was thinking about my response, I realized it was too big for a comment box and required its own post. (And ha ha Ian: by "old blogger friend" I am not calling you old, just referring to the age of our blog history. I bet you were wondering about that.)
The Beatles, well, the idea of The Beatles in my brain is a kinda funny study of how my thought processes have evolved (devolved?) over the course of my lifetime. Here are the stages of my brain and the Beatles:

  1. I'm a happy kid hearing The Beatles on the radio and singing along.

  2. I'm a teenager and I'm all, "The Beatles? Who? Yesterday? Yeah, that describes them."

  3. I'm a young adult. A Beatle has been murdered. The matryrization of The Beatles grows to a fever pitch. I rail against it. As usual, I stand firm and unbending against a wave. A wave that seems to have no cease.

  4. I'm at the age of the "midlife crisis" which is really just a stage of questioning every belief and assumption you've ever had. I ask myself, "Are The Beatles that bad? Was I just disliking them to be unique?" I begin to listen to their songs instead of automatically flipping the channel.

  5. I have passed the midlife crisis phase, have discarded former incorrect assumptions, accepted the value of other lifelong assumptions, and have even added new ones. The Beatles? Yeah, they still suck. It was nice to realize I didn't hate them all these years just to be a rebel with a pointless cause. They are just not all that. Now, The Stones? Yes, Ian. They rock.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

It's Always The Little Things

There is a dime trapped inside of one of the dryer fins. I saw a little piece of it as I was pulling out laundry and reached for it and WHA LA! It went right down inside there. So now every load we dry, even if we were to dry a load of feathers, sounds like we have a jacket in there with a large zipper. A dime, A dime, My Kingdom for that dime!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Crazy Day

We had a crazy day which I can't really talk about on here, but I can tell you that we both got the crazy laugh fits at a restaurant tonight (Saturday night). The kind where your eyes are pouring water and your ribs hurt and you can't even look at each other. I imagine people in the restaurant thought we were on acid or something. (Do they still call it acid? I'm not up to date on the latest drug lingo.) But man we could NOT stop laughing. And it was the stupidest thing. It involved a gnat. And Loretta, And Heloise. Ouch! I started laughing all over again.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Another Annual Ritual

On Monday I did the horrid annual ritual of pulling out all my jeans to see if they still fit. I do this every year. I haven't worn jeans since my New York trip in April. I always think I won't be able to get into them. I was lucky this year. I haven't been lucky every year. Same thing happens every spring with my shorts: Will they still fit? I believe I've gained about 6 pounds over the summer because it's always too hot to move. Which sucks because I certainly have no use for 6 extra pounds. But the jeans fit fine, so I guess the 6 pounds is probably all over my head.
It's funny how they always ask on these weight loss TV shows, "Why do you want to lose weight?" And the answer is always something intelligent sounding like: Diabetes runs in my family. Or: My blood pressure has gone up and I'm out of breath. But if anyone asked me why I would like to lose weight, my answer would sound so NOT intelligent and actually rather shallow: My head looks fat in photographs. The truth is, I am quite limber and don't get out of breath, I just have a fat head.
My Sweetie has school on Monday and Wednesday nights so I'm thinking about taking a Zumba class on those nights. My daughter wanted us to take belly dancing together but I don't think there is a class that fits her schedule. Maybe she can Zumba with me on Mondays. I just need to do something about my big fat head. At least my jeans still fit. Good thing I don't wear hats.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Officials say beaver teeth are 7 million years old

Okay, so maybe this could be construed as false advertising, but since I'm not selling anything, I don't think it counts. Although I do like the idea of beavers being 7 million years old, this blog is not about really old beavers, it's about me. (Ha Ha! Insert horrid dirty joke here) Wait, I did not mean to go there. Seriously I did not. This is what happens when I have too many "Out Days."
I had FIVE out days in a row. This is very unusual for me and also very tiresome. I do not like to go out five days in a row. I understand all you normal people reading this are rolling your eyes and asking yourself, "Huh?" But I like my IN days. I like them a LOT.
Granted, I enjoyed most of them: Rangers baseball game, horse races, my Friday Meals on Wheels day out and Sunday visit with the in-laws for my MIL's birthday were nice, but I am all done in and want to be IN. I'd ideally like to stay in for maybe 10 days, but that's not going to happen. At least all day today I will have an in day and I will relish it.
And now because I am yawning like a mad man, I will go to sleep and dream of in days with really old beaver teeth. Really? Beavers have been around for 7 million years? I'm surprised there are still any trees.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Friday Goofy

This is an actual real painting that I saw in person in real life and took a picture of. Here are my ideas for the title:

  1. They are foolish to believe this bird can pull me.

  2. They are foolish to believe I can pull this horse.

  3. Look! The string hangs off the canvas!

  4. I was stoned when I painted this.

  5. Worst remake of The Defiant Ones ever.

  6. I do not think this will get that tooth out.

  7. Nothing in this picture makes sense.

What might you title this hideous painting? And if you say you actually like it, I will not believe you.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Funny Old Things (My 1950 Cookbook)

For years and years I thought I had drawn that dog. It looked like something I might have drawn and it felt like something I might have drawn. It was in Mom's 1950 Betty Crocker's Picture Cook Book:

I always loved that the picture was upside down. Mom told me that I drew that picture and she told my brother that he drew that picture. At some point I thought she was just being diplomatic. I then realized that she probably had no idea who drew the picture, but she certainly knew it was either me or my brother. So she was always half right. Once I realized that the book was published in 1950, it seemed pretty obvious that it was my brother who drew the dog. He was born in 1957 and I was born in 1961.

In probably the early 1980's, I decided to "fix" the binding on this book. I used some high quality grey cloth duct tape that I had "ended up with" from the tv production company I had worked for. And by "high quality" I really mean just that because that duct tape binding job is still holding strong and steady after almost 30 years. That's good tape.


I love the recipes. There are a few classics like white sauce or roux, but most of it is obsolete such as the cheese sandwich loaf, the Prune Cream Pie, and the strange dessert recipes using popular cookies of the time (I guess like how now people use Oreos in stuff). There's quite a list of lamb recipes and lamb is no longer a regular meat staple here. I think you can only get it at Christmas. Almost any food item in the book has a "...with dried beef" which says a LOT about the times. And the seasonings? Salt and pepper.


Speaking of the times, 1950 was right at the beginning of the cold war and so there are no Russian foods in this cookbook. No beef stroganoff, no chicken kiev. They kept Italy also to a minimum: spaghetti and tetrazzini. No lasagne, no manicotti. They of course could not leave out the French because as is the case with ballet and war, most basic food terminology is French. And they keep it basic. There is no quiche. And hot? The things they call "hot" have a dash of chili powder. No cayenne or chipotle.


Another funny thing is that foods that were the rage at one time have come and gone since this book was published. There is no mention of chateaubriand and the only mention of fondue is a bread and cheese casserole.

Another thing I like is the back of the book is so much darker. I guess the front got sun faded over time. That makes me think the book spent some time out in the open. But not in use, or the front cover would not be so faded.

It's 61 years old. That's eleven years older than me. Many of the recipes sound kinda icky with a big use of ketchup and cracker crumbs along with the ubiquitous dried beef which as I mentioned earlier was a sign of the economic times and lots of the recipes are just weird, but I really really love that old cookbook. It makes me smile. Pretty much like that dog that I didn't draw.