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Friday, August 31, 2012

The Eyes Have It.

I personally feel that given the week I have had - falling off (and then back on) to a table, being on call - and being called (A LOT), x rays and a few other stresses at work I should have a free pass for the rest of the summer. Nope. I had my big eye exam today - I had taken 3 hours of personal time for my 3 pm appointment. Then it was emailed the office would be closing at 3! So I gave it back and took two hours. Then it was emailed that they were taking it back and we would be closing at 5 - well. Thanks  a lot, so much for employee appreciation. SO I changed my personal time back. THEN last night the eye place called to tell me I would need a ride home because my vision would be blurry. Sigh. 4 hours personal time since now I would have to drive from WV to PA, get David, drive from PA back to WV. Oh well. The doctor and his office were very nice - very efficient. I sort of figured it would be like my entire medical history - I have something that might be scary so they test the snot out of me, or remove whatever alien deposit is taking form, they say dreadful things but I'm alright in the end. They tested me from one end to the other, I took a little test which involved a flashing light and a button to push when I saw it. It reminded me of the hearing test the nurse would give in elementary school - you would put on headphones and raise your hand every time you heard a little peep. I can't remember if they did the same day as the dreaded Physical - do they still do that? When everyone would have to line up in their underwear for the local doctor to do the physical? They'd paper the window to keep out the peekers but it remained the most embarrassing event of the year. But I digress. The doctor put a numbing drop in my eye and then he pressed various objects against my numb eyeballs. All I kept  thinking was what a great party trick that would be! He dilated my pupils so I looked like something out of a Twilight episode and they took pictures of the inside of my eyeballs. The upshot is I either have glaucoma or a hereditary condition that  looks like it. So I have to go back on Wednesday in the morning and if I have High Pressure Eyeballs I am not a genetic freak but I will have glaucoma so there will be no real winners. After I was done we went to the Greek place where I totally ordered too much food and brought some home in a napkin. I already at the cake and will probably eat the rest of the sandwich tonight. Whee.   We don't have much planned for the weekend, I might find something fun to do tomorrow but after such a busy summer we're looking towards spending some time home. It will be leaf peeping time very soon and I have some big decisions to make soon so I'm planning on spending some time mulling that over. But for right now I'm full of chocolate cake, the cat is on my lap and life is good.  

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Fall From Grace.

I am on call this week. Eww. Due to HIPPA I cannot talk about it but I am allowed to say they have been calling like crazy!  However, I digress. I had said since I was on call I would be rearranging the kitchen as between moves and renovations everything was where it should not be. So Sunday morning David went shooting and I got cleaning. It took a good part of the morning but I managed to get rid of the bakers rack, move the table and take a lot off  the counters. Then I did General Housecleaning which included cleaning the mirrors. Upstairs. As I passed by the windows I suddenly thought I should clean the middle one from the top. David had put a half table in front so my Master Plan was to stand on the table, open the window, quickie wash it and La La! So I got up on the table and stood - it actually crossed my mind this might not be a good idea -that was right before I realized the table was not nailed, but freestanding. It's a heavy wood table and it suddenly flipped forward, I was airborne and WHACK! I hit my right shin full force, left ankle and my knee. David did his usual, we've been married over 30 years and this is not first time for one of my time savers to end in disaster. His usual mode is to A) figure out if I'm alive B) how badly I'm hurt and then he acts accordingly.  He righted the table and cleaned up while I limped down to the kitchen for ice. Of course since I was stuck sitting with ice I decided to paint my toe nails and flipped over the nail polish. David cleaned that up, quietly announced he could not look at me anymore for right now and went to take a bath. When I got up yesterday my ankle was not too bad, the right leg was swollen(have you ever had the FRONT of your leg swell - its really bizarre). I ended up in the Urgent Care after work  for an X Ray just to make sure and then they gave me a tetanus shot because after hearing how I hurt myself the doctor thought it might cover me for Future Endeavors (I think I also might have mentioned to her that I put a nail through the back of my heel a couple of weeks ago. And the skunk. the poison ivy........). Oh well, I never lack for conversation. My new car is running just fine, I'm really enjoying it and this weekend I need to shift my crap around so it fits. Being in home care means always having a full trunk. So, I've gotten no knitting done this week between work, call and injuries. The tetanus shot sight is really hurting and I'm aching all over - I think it's early to bed and hopefully tomorrow will be a better day.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Hot Wheels!

 We were actually going out to buy groceries yesterday. I had slept in so we got a late start. The night before Pearl had us up - the vet increased her prednisone so she had to potty about 1 am. And 2:30. And 5. Then Friday night I was on call - and they did. I couldn't get back to sleep, then I did, then they called again. So Saturday we were just doodling and pottering about - before we left David asked me to look at a car he found on the computer at a local dealer. We've been having increasing issues with this last CRV and in the past year it's been going to the garage more and more. This last repair still didn't solve the problem so we hit that point - do you dump more money in the car you have and hope for the best - or do you take the plunge? So, we've been sort of looking for the past couple of months, David searching on the internet and pulling into car lots on Sunday. We had to hurry, they were closing early but made it in plenty of time. The car was exactly what I was looking for - it's a Subaru Emprenza - big enough for all my home care stuff, 36 miles to the gallon and all wheel drive.  They gave us a pretty good trade in on my car, shimmy and all and within an hour and a half we were new car owners. The only thing that was a little nerve wracking is it's NEW. Brand spanking new! Twenty six miles on it as we pulled off the lot. I have never owned a new car before, we usually buy used at least a couple of years. But the gas mileage sold us on this and well, I'm fifty one now and think I am old enough finally to be responsible for a new car. The only problem is going to be Reuben. He will eventually be my hiking buddy and I plan to start him soon with some easy trails. But he gets hideously carsick. The last time we went to the vet (15 miles from the house) he barfed three times. I think we can break him of it eventually, part of it I know is anxiety. When you even get him near the car he starts freaking - who can blame him? I think we can use Dramamine and then start cutting it back - but that little experiment will involve him actually riding in a car. A NEW car. Hmm.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Let It Go Sunshine.

 I saw Donna's blog and how badly she is feeling - I was going to write something funny and zucchini related, but stopped. Because I've learned over the years if you're feeling bad or depressed the best thing to do - is go full steam ahead, full throttle. As anyone who has read my blog  knows I've gone over the subjects of painful family rifts, the death of loved ones, homesickness gets it's own department every time I try to move away from West Virginia. I am a fan of full out sobbing, giving into grief over my steering wheel, the sides of roads, the sadness so enveloping I can hear my own breath drawing. The painful silence of depression, being immobilized and drowning in sorrow. Would I do it long term? Nope - but you know what - you let it go - and it does. When you're done grieving and being so overwhelmed, you can't keep it up, can you? You have to dry your eyes, wash your face, eat something - and look around. It may still be that bad and you may not even be able to fix it. But you can see the sun a little bit and it's not so bad. Everything  ends and most things are fixable, aren't they? My butt is hugging the border of West Virginia, isn't it? But telling people it's not so bad, that crying doesn't fix anything, chin up and all that crap - you won't hear that from me. It shouldn't go on for a long time of course, but if you feel that bad pretending you don't doesn't help. So I go ahead when I have to and I not only feel bad, I embrace it. It is all encompassing, overwhelming, pulses with my heart. And then it dissipates. And I can start to see that the final things are final, Mikio  and Setsu will never be back. But I'll always have those  memories. I cannot stop Pearl from dying , but I have had my all out grief sessions and will most likely have a couple more coming down the road. But crying like a loon allows me to accept what is inevitable and enjoy what we have left. So if you are really that sad, be that sad - and when you're done put it behind you and go on.  You have to experience the bad to truly appreciate the good.                                     

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Rocking The Backroad

 I had a visit to do way out - I hadn't been out that way since we'd moved so I really meandered my way home. When I worked as a visit nurse this was one of my territories and one of the things I still miss about that is being on the road. You cannot find a more beautiful state then West Virginia and SW PA - some places are almost beyond belief they're so beautiful. Sometimes you'll head down a back road only to have it open up to a mountain range, I started down a dirt and gravel road and found a huge, sparkling lake. I stopped at a graveyard I had passed on my way out and walked amongst the headstones, some dating from the early 1800's, others no more then a hand hewn flat rock with the lettering worn off. You wonder - how long did they live? Why did the mother die two years after the baby? Why would a family spend so much on a huge ornate gravestone for a child that only lived 3 days - were they incredibly wealthy - or incredibly heartbroken? In the midst of this was an enormous statue, why so big, why here, who are you and why are you so important? or loved? Maybe that's what fascinates me so much about graveyards, not what I can see but what I can't. I've had a lot to think about lately and walking in the quiet calms me and clears my mind, a strange form of meditation perhaps. I got home later then I had planned but I had a good time and felt better. David has been working on the house a bit lately, as I had mentioned we're concentrating on the kitchen. He put the door in today with a screen. It's top to bottom windows so it brightens it up a bit - he also found a returned special order skylight which will very much help. We've had this problem with a couple of the older homes we've bought in the past - the original house has things added on - porches, garage, etc and the windows are either removed or under an extended roof and it makes the room dark all the time. Even at noon you have to turn on the lights if you really need to see well. But the way the kitchen is structured there's really no where to add more windows back so we have to work around that. It will be nice to be in there during the day and be able to see stuff. Speaking of which still loving my glasses, it took a few days for me to get used to them, especially the bifocal effect. Now I just have my appointment at the end of the month - I would say that doesn't worry me but it does a little.  I'll get through it and be done. I have not been working on my shawl as much as I'd like to - having to do the chart FIVE times is a bit wearing to say the least. I have ten rows left of the the 4rth repeat, then the 5th, then I'm finally onto chart 2. I'm pretty sure I have the right amount of yarn but if I don't it will be an issue. I love hand dyed locally made yarn but the downside of it is of course if you need a little more yarn it's not a trip to the local craft store - it's an undertaking of epic  magnitude.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

A Change Of Seasons.

 I woke up last night freezing and stumbled over to the air conditioning to turn it off. The cat was jammed up tight, annoyed I hadn't woken up earlier - it's all about the cat if you hadn't guessed. I'm not sure if fall is right around the corner or we're all hoping it is- this summer has not been pleasant, has it? Usually we only get a month or so of hot dry weather, this summer it seems up until the past couple of weeks it's been breathtakingly hot. But when I stuck my head out this morning I was thinking I would wear long pants to walk today, it might even be cool enough for that. Pearl is doing well enough, but we've had to add prednisone as even with the new medication the tumors were getting big. And it's not the ones we can see that we worry about, it's the ones we can't. But she was good this week and she loves her walks in the park. I'm also bringing zucchini with me, it just keeps coming in unstoppable heaps. Charlene will take some and one of my patients said you can freeze it. To slice and freeze it on cookie sheets, then freezer bag it. I think I'll try it with a couple today and see how it comes out. I just cannot look at another zucchini dish! David counted a dozen watermelons in various forms of production, we'll see if we still love watermelon by September!  I still am too chicken to pull the beets, I wish there was a way for me to peek at them without pulling them first. I've got a compost pile going near the garden, it works out for everyone. Whatever the local wildlife wants to eat, they can, the rest is composting away. The sunflowers appear to be going to seed which is super interesting, at least to me. My shawl is coming along, I've got one more time with Chart One and then on to Chart Two. My new glasses are great, I can really see the stitches now and no longer have to turn on every light we own to knit. My appointment for the extensive eye exam is at the end of the month, not wanting to do that but I suppose I should.  David and  I went out to breakfast yesterday for the first time in ages, I had pecan pancakes at Cracker Barrel - we had to drop my car off for the rest of the repairs. I'm going to keep my car til at least January which is the best month to get a car deal and then see if I want to trade it in or not. With the cooler weather we're starting to make plans to finish the house, that will cover the weekends!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

For Where Art Thou Reuben

 Reuben, up until now has had his moments but for the most part has been a pretty good puppy. That all changed yesterday when I came home to a re-enactment of The Day After Tomorrow. I was so stunned I didn't even take a picture. What was left of my footstool sat next to a giant pee spot - on the carpet. The edge of the end table had been gnawed but the piece de resistance was the wing back chair. Or what was formerly a wing back chair. It looked like it had spontaneously combusted in the room, fabric hanging in shreds, the floor a sea of batting and splinters. I quickly removed the gate so Pearl could fly up the stairs, she wanted no part of this mess, no sirree bob. If you need her she'll be under the bed thank you very much. Reuben hid by the sink but it did him no good (he is terrible at hiding you might have noticed). I more screamed then anything else, when you're that mad you need to keep your hands to yourself but be assured it will not be happening again. No, he is still alive to tell the tale but we are back to crating him - he's just too young to be left to his own devices and no one enjoyed yesterday at all. We'll start leaving him out for short periods of time since I'd like to eventually for  him to have the run of the house but for now for eveyone's sake (and safety! He ate a WHOLE chair and I didn't kill him! It was like a Dr. Phil moment) he will be a prisoner for time during the day. Pearl just looks at him in it like she cannot believe anyone can be  that stupid. Oh well, I guess we all have our moments. Didn't know what I was going to do this weekend but I guess we'll be out furniture shopping. For a new chair REUBEN. The temps have dropped a little - by a little I mean it hits about the mid eighties but after this summer we can deal. My garden is still producing zucchini by the foot, by Sunday whenI see Charlene I should be able to fill her trunk. And then some. The sunflowers are growing heavy, their  blooms facing down, they look a bit ashamed I think. Or maybe so the birds will leave them alone, I've noticed we've been attracting finches lately.  I'm not sure how the seeds get formed but I suppose I'll find out soon. I have about 6 good sized watermelons, about 3 pounds about now and hopefully will be getting bigger soon. I have four beets now but not sure when they're ready to pull, I know that once you pull them you can't put them back so that's a big nerve wracking. I have  ONE  ear of corn.  But it's a really nice ear of corn, it's probably the Best Ear Of Corn In The Universe. As you can tell summer is starting to wind down and after this year - I can't wait for fall!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

See You At The Fair!

 The Mannington Fair was this weekend - we met over at Big Lots in town and Susan drove. We stopped at her parents house down the road for the bathroom and to store our purses, then off to the fair. Susan remembered it much busier, it was once the second largest fair in the state - but I think that's endemic all over. The rides and games are very expensive now, up to five dollars a game or ride. If you have two or three kids, they each want to ride 3 rides.......and that's before you eat. And eat I did! There were rows and rows of fair food, all deep fried and liberally coated with sugar.  Jessica did not believe me that the deep fried oreos were a point a piece. I did have vegetables, however I'm sure the nutritional value was negated by the think batter they swam in prior to being lowered into the deep fryer for a spell. The ranch dressing didn't look too low calorie either but you once the pony's out there is not point in shutting the gate, is there? I did peek in the trailer of where they were cooking it - big mistake but then realized nothing viral or bacterial could survive the hot oil bath so what ever. I was not TOTALLY bad - I got the small vegetable plate instead of the large and split the oreos with Jess and Susan. We went up to the community building to see my shawls on display - I won ribbons for ALL of them, two first place for the large ones, second place for the smaller one. We met up with Susan's family and had her nieces with us for an hour, they're hilarious of course, Claire is 8 and Lily is her 13 year old put upon sister.  I did find it very funny that Susan refers to Claire as her brother's payback - she's a pretty rambunctious child and rather hilariously speaks her mind. Loudly.  It's always funnier when it's someone else's relative, isn't it? We watched the tractor races - the one from Morgantown was so slow. He had more safety equipment on than a NASCAR driver, we think that's what slowed him down. We did the craft sale, the horse pull (the Belgium horses were beautiful). I didn't get home til after 12:30 but what a fun night. Today we went walking with Charlene, Pearl spotted her friends right off and went racing, tail wagging and dancing. We did the very easy trail, Sophie has slowed down a great deal too and Pearl does well, but gets short of breath if it's too much. I have been bringing water and food with us on a regular basis, my little backpack serves me well. We're doing it again next weekend, even though it might be a strain on Pearl she enjoys it so much it's worth the effort. I have work on Monday, coming too soon. This weekend has been really really nice.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

A Sight For Sore Eyes

 I got my glasses yesterday - they called when I was part way home so I turned around and went back. The woman handed them to me to try on and turned a mirror. I shrieked and yipped "ACK! I'm old!". It took her a second but then we sat there, laughing our butts off much to the amusement of the other customers -  one should always enjoy old age. I got bifocals without a line and it is taking some getting used to but I can see what I'm knitting now and that was the whole point of this expedition. Seeing where I'm going is secondary. David and I have been discussing the kitchen a lot lately, trying to figure out how we'd like to finish it. We are repainting it white because of the darker  wood that's been added, he's putting in skylights,we need to change out the lighting fixtures (low ceilings and fans just don't work for me!) -  the counters are a huge and expensive decision. The bathroom will have to wait - that we look at, can't figure anything out and leave it be. With an older home it's a little tougher, up until the 70's football stadium sized kitchens and bathrooms were not in. The bathroom here is the same size we had when I was growing up, just enough room for the toilet, tub and sink and not much else. There were no decorative niches, floor to ceiling shelving or heated towel racks. The same with the kitchen - so you have to scale it all down. The living room has been settled, we have our big furniture, just not a lot of it.  The backyard remains the same, we are waiting til next month to replace the lawn furniture when everything goes on super clearance. By then it will be cool enough to actually sit out there and we can use it right into October. I guesss I'd better get moving - a lot to do today!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Show Me The Weigh

 I got weighed last week after putting it off. Actually, it was just hard getting there  with all that's been going on lately - and keeping my weight from creeping back up has become a balancing act. I'm still around my goal weight, but closer to it than I am comfortable with. I like to keep a few pounds between me and exile back into Rolypoly land - if you go past your goal weight by more than two pounds Weight Watchers will start charging you again - as long as you behave you get to be a Free-Bee.  It's a good system I suppose, except for us that are happily sliding to hell in a hand basket, a cookie in each hand and a case of Yoo Hoo in the back. In the past 3 months I've gone down to once a month meetings and it is starting to show. I find it so easy to slide back into old habits - giving my self the weekend "off" and acting as if it doesn't count. But just because I don't count it, doesn't mean it doesn't show up on the scale. Falling off my diet when I was on vacation I expected to do, having such a hard time getting back on it I didn't. But I am doing it - a bit at a time. I've stopped rewarding myself with food, stopped telling myself I'll start my diet again tomorrow - I promise! - that TODAY is the day I'll get up and exercise, not Monday, not Sunday - Today. No more last suppers, last donuts - if I eat it I write it. And for now I''m trying to plan things for the weekend instead of hanging about the house which I love to do. I've often said we don't spend enough time at home, we work so hard to have nice fun things- and then we spend all of our time frantically running around trying to make money so we can have more things. But it's time to get out of the house. With fall (hopefully) around the corner I'm trying to get Pearl out more. She's doing OK by the way - she had a vet appointment that went well  and the pill we started her on did make the tumors smaller. She seems more herself and if she continues to feel good we can start walking some more. Also too we are considering how to finish up the house. I see David pulled up the last of the stained carpeting upstairs revealing the hideous 50's style linoleum (you realize if this HG TV he would have pulled up the rug to reveal perfect oak flooring from the civil war. But this is our house. You get tan speckled linoleum, live with it). I want to finish off the kitchen, the rest of the carpet will have to wait, we are going to do something with the basement as we spend a lot of time down there with our home gym. We have expensive equipment in a welfare housing room. There's always something to do around here. I have to rearrange the kitchen, between moving in and David redoing a lot of it, everything got shifted and shifted again. The coffee, some spices and dog's medication are next to the oven. The pots are next to the fridge and the dishes are next to the stove. The canned goods are spread all over, etc and I found some swanky plastic ware that has the sole function of sucking up space. We have things piled on the counter and empty cabinets beneath.  I'm on call in a couple of weeks and have to be home so I figure that will be a good day to do those things. As we get closer to fall I'm getting back to cooking - dinner has been low calorie affairs most night due to all the fresh vegetables I have to try and eat. My zucchini plants have become manic little things, sneaky making more zucchini when they think no one is looking. We have nine in the house and there are more forming as I write. Kind of like that movie with the people pods.Maybe zucchini will take over the world. Or Garards Fort.  

Sunday, August 5, 2012

My Eyes!

 I had a list of Things To Do yesterday, get my oil changed, haircut, eye exam, grocery store of course. We didn't get to the oil change but I can do that during the week. I did get a BOFFO haircut, I took a picture with me this time of what I wanted. You can buy haircut magazines and page through at home you know - then just take the page with you. It's easier than trying to describe it, trust me.  I've found if I don't take a picture I tend to come home with a bowl cut.  I had an appointment with the eye doctor who's office is in the mall - hooray for that I might add - and it went well. He asked why I thought I needed glasses and I told him quite sadly that I am Old And Stuff now so I seem to having a lot of trouble reading lately. So we did determine two things. I do need glasses and I have a prescription - and that there was something else possibly wrong with my eyes and I am being scheduled for more in depth eye testing. There is a possibility I might be in the early stages of glaucoma which I do not find amusing at all. No sir, not at all. However, it was a big maybe and he said if you catch this stuff early it is VERY  treatable. Since I have a tendency to skirt the edges of medical mayhem I'm not going to lose any sleep over it. My entire life I've been poked and prodded, cat scanned, sonogrammed and bone scanned for a variety of things I look like I have, but don't. I have had a total of 3 operations to remove a variety of tumors and calcification, all benign. My breasts have been more closely examined than Marilyn Monroe's at times due to my family  and personal history and the fact I am a lumpy bumpy thing at times.  I have a lovely three inch scar running down the side of my chest from the removal of calcification, one across my abdomen from the removal of my uterus plus a softball sized tumor, etc - it doesn't bother me because I know how lucky I am all I walked away with was a scar and nothing else. My retirment career plans of being an exotic lap dancer will probably not happen now, but what ever. I can either take up sheep herding or knitting for money.

Friday, August 3, 2012

What Goes Up Does Not Have To Come Down

 David and I have a giant Sears freezer in the basement, it's what I tend to refer to as the "hide a body size". We've never even entertained the idea of getting rid of it, I have no idea how they got it down there and less of an idea of how to get it out. It's still working of course, and working well. I cleaned out well last weekend, scrubbed and dried and left open to air. It has that fun late 60's- early 70's star burst design on the inside of the top, the hanging baskets are all accounted for - all and all a fine example of Sears Best. We are plugging it in this weekend for test run to see how much electric it will use - and the reason for all of this is the never ending climbing price of food. I almost sucked all the air out of the supermarket last week when I bought a spaghetti squash and it cost almost seven dollars! We buy very little meat, nothing too fancy and yet cannot seem to get away for less than $150 - $200 a week. A lot of the reason is we buy tons of fruits and vegetables and with the drought that hit us this year it can only get worse. My garden actually is producing but it's useful only if you're prepared to live on zucchini and sunflower seeds. We see things on sale, but have limited space to store it so we think we may be plugging the freezer in and starting to stockpile the things we see on sale. Speaking of food I did get to Weight Watchers this week - I was getting emails that if I didn't get my butt to a meeting and get weighed I would be Weight Watching from the outside. I admit I have been putting it off because this summer, before, during and after I had my vacation I did not fall off the wagon - I went catapulting into the stratosphere, sailing away on cupcakes and pizza slices. I thought it would be easy to get back into the diet mode - but it's not. It's the one more and then that's it. Well, after Sunday that's it. Welllll.....after  NEXT MONTH  I am Totally Serious, That's It. I did stay under my goal weight but only a little. I am working on getting back on track and have lost a pound and have gotten back into my morning routine. I'm hoping to take Pearl walking this weekend if it is not too too hot. We'll have to see.