Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Someone Left the Door Open

I'm at work but it appears the guards are not watching! I will have to make this quick. I had started a post but my whole system locked up and I lost it all! This one will not be as long.

I woke this morning and was achy all over but I have this baseball sized spot in my lower back just to the right of my spine. It feels as if said baseball struck me there. I had problems all night with it and getting up and down reminds me it is there.

Other than that I feel fair to middlin'. I was late to work because getting going this morning was a bit difficult. However, I'm here, shoveling and while they aren't watching, taking a break.

I was so tired when I got home last night that I lay down and got a brief nap, about 30 minutes. When I got up I spent the evening finishing Sarah's little dress and then I did some crochet and watch television shows on the computer. The crochet is a baby blanket for my neice's baby. It is due in a few months and I have to really hustle to get it done. I should be done in a couple of weeks if all goes well and I can keep up the current pace. I'll post photos soon.

I have a writer's meeting this week and must find things that I can have as treats. I've decided to simply avoid white foods i.e. potatoes, rice, bread, things that contain processed sugar, and sweets in general. We'll see how I hold up. Certainly won't hurt me. I was worried about limiting my carbs too much but ran across a website with a post from a biochemist who disagreed with someone who said low carb diets were bad for you. When I began to read the posts I got depressed but that entry really gave me some information that was helpful and educational. She rebutted quite well. Here is here response. If this is, in fact, the case, the low carb diets are the only way for the population to stay healthy. It is also probably why Daddy never had heart problems, high blood pressure, or other common problems. He did not eat junk food... except

"As a biochemist, I am going to have to respectfully disagree with some advice you received here. The ketogenic diet is not unhealthy as long as you are not a type one diabetic. In the absence of carbohydrate, research has found that fat is eliminated from the body via fat breakdown byproducts called "ketones," hence the name ketogenic diet.

Fat storage, and arteriosclerosis: Fat cannot be stored, or build up in arteries, in the absence of carbs, therefore a high fat diet is only harmful when and ONLY when carbs are present. In the absence of carbs in the diet, the glycolytic pathway, (the pathway that metabolizes carbs), is greatly slowed to the point that the body cannot get enough fuel to survive from this pathway. Therefore, the body turns to a pathway called, "beta oxidation:" the fat burning pathway, to provide its fuel. The fat is broken down into ketones which the body uses as fuel. The brain can and does use ketones for fuel when glucose is absent. The heart prefers ketones, and actually uses them exclusively, as does peripheral tissue.

About muscle wasting: the ketogenic diet actually prevents muscle wasting, b/c the pathway that breaks down muscle for fuel is the very pathway, (the glycolytic pathway), that has been shut down. Muscle wasting can only occur when a person restricts calories during a low fat, high carb diet. Muscle wasting cannot occur in a low carb diet, because it is impossible to burn amino acids for fuel in beta oxydation. Therefore, the proper ketogenic diet WILL burn only fat, and preserve muscle, AND it is not harmful for a healthy individual. Nonetheless, before embarking on any diet, you should see your physician first.

Regarding ketoacidosis: ketoacidosis, the dangerous phenomenon where the body's pH becomes too acidic to survive, is not the same as ketosis, and it ONLY happens in type one diabetics. Ketoacidosis CANNOT occur in a person without type one diabetes, b/c of metabolic pathways that would be too long to discuss here. What I will say is that healthy individuals pee and breathe out all excess ketones, thereby the body maintains it's healthy pH. Type I Diabetics cannot do this, and the ketone production runs amuck. A healthy individual cannot go into ketoacidosis.

The other facts: Every night while we sleep, the body fasts and burns ketones for fuel. The heart must have ketones to survive, as ketones are its only fuel source, and so a good 8 hours sleep is paramount to a healthy heart. The worst thing a person can do is eat carbs before bed.

Done properly, as any diet, the ketogenic diet is safe and effective. Again, check with your physician to make sure you should be on a diet in the first place.

So, that said, I feel better about it.

Last night I finished Sarah's little dress and will get photos as soon as possible. I also started on a baby blanket this past week and am about halfway. It is going to be pretty I think. Again, I'll put photos up when I can. I spent last evening watching television, crocheting and working on the dress.

Tonight I will continue on the dress but I need to work on some of the writing stuff. It's been a crazy summer and I see it passing so quickly. I have so many things I'd like to do and just not enough time. Work takes most of it away from me. I have to rest sometimes so that takes more. Not much left for the things I really enjoy. Not sure if I mentioned going swimming with Sarah on Saturday. I'll have to tell you in the next post.

I'm getting ready to shut down for the day. It has been rather slow. My co-worker friend, Carolyn has her surgery tomorrow on her back. My writing friend, Loraine has surgery as well on Friday. These ladies are special to me so just keep them in prayer.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Waves of the Week

It seems as if everything in life is in waves, recurring waves. Like real waves you can't stop it or change it. Take Monday for example. It comes every seven days and is always the worst day of the week for me. I had a terrible time getting up and coming to work. I simply felt terrible. Very depressed and achy. I had eggs and bacon for breakfast. Very boring. I like both a lot but I'm going to burn out on this very quickly I think. There is no variety at all. And don't suggest the 1001 ways to fix eggs. I don't like to cook and don't have time for fancy stuff in the mornings. I've had my work mornings planned to the second for years now and this is causing some issues. I have to get up a bit earlier just to cook the stuff. Thank goodness for my microwave. I fix a cup of coffee, put the bacon in the microwave and get the eggs ready. In three minutes the bacon is done and I scramble the eggs at that point. That takes about another two minutes. Then I sit down to eat. Takes about the same time as it does to stop somewhere and order something to go.

I went to Dave and Becca's on Saturday afternoon and we spent the afternoon in the pool. Sarah has swim vest but she was really terrified of it. We got those little things that you blow up for their arms Saturday and put those on as well and it helped her immensely. At first she was scared to death and had a death grip on my fingers but after about 20 minutes of playing with her and showing her how to stay with her head out of the water and afloat she took off and was all over the place. We really had to watch her after that because she was in constant motion, her little feet bicycling like crazy. The manager told us that in that during the summer's she has the Y come out and give swimming lessons. I think she'll need them.

On Saturday night Sarah came to my house and was going to spend the night. She got sick around 11:30 and they had to come get her and take her to the ER. She was vomiting and with her being so small you can't let her do that long. She simply has no body fat to sustain her and she has very little fluid storage capacity because of that. They were there all night. I had them bring Sarah over Sunday for me to keep while they slept. Becca stayed with us but she did sleep. And so did Sarah. By bed time my back was acting up on the lower right side. Feels like a bruise back there this morning. I put ice on it when I went to bed. At the moment, it isn't hurting unless I touch it.

So, Monday begins. And I am depressed. Some of it could be sleep deprivation. Some could be because I feel as if once again I had no weekend. Although I didn't have a terrible one I needed some decompression time. I didn't get to go to church. I did sit and crochet for hours and that's the cause of the back problem. What I feel this morning is a need to find a place to be alone and sleep. I don't want to be here.

Files lie at my elbow and are waiting for processing. There are about 20 or so of them. By the 7th I'll have another 24-30 waiting for me to work on. Be nice to get ahead if I can.I have more work than that but those files make the biggest pile.

I may get back sometime today but it is doubtful. Too much to do.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

The Wonder of The Stars

My post this morning was influenced by Grammy Blick Texas. She is always inspiring.

I love nature and could sit for hours in the woods and listen to the sounds and smell the scents.  I have always been mindful of how awesome is this God who could create such a structure. For me, to look at the stars, at the amazing detail of the universe and the delicate balance that had to happen for it to even be possible staggers my mind and it is at that point that I can only stare in awe and say, "What an awesome God you are to have done this thing." And I am also astounded that he'd even care if we had this!

Some would say that last statement is the reason there can be no God. There is no one out there. Because humans can't create such magnitude, we believe it impossible for any other being to do so.  So, it must all have happened by accident. I would challenge them to read Hugh Ross' "Creator and the Cosmos" and "The Creator and Time" for the chemistry involved in the actual creation and the delicate balance of required to make every single thing in the universe exist. The mind boggles. One fraction plus or minus of any single element and it would not have happened. It wasn't an accident.

"O Lord, how manifold are your works! In wisdom have you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures. " Psalms 104:24

"Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created."Rev. 4:11

Despite science's attempts to find "life on other planets" or worlds similar to ours, they've never done it. "It is a matter of time" is constantly stated and yet, even scientist see that time may be running out for them and for this tiny little ball of dust. Here and there I've begun hearing that the planet will not last forever and that the human species might not be as long lasting as was once thought. There are even forces at work that can literally blow Earth apart. The impact on the solar system might be profound but the universe will hardly notice.

In addition, humans have set in motion events that may have tipped the scale and destroyed the only home we have, eventually making it uninhabitable. It is the one creation that we were given dominion over and we showed what we thought of it in a few short decades. Thus is progress, enlightenment, knowledge, and power of the human mind. It's pretty pathetic.

And yet, the universe still stands unchanged by our actions. The billions of stars that hang there will still be there when we succeed in the destruction of this planet. In fact, the Bible only speaks to the destruction of Earth, not the universe.

Science doesn't know exactly when or exactly how the universe came into being. It is constantly debated. They have lots of brilliant minds studying the events from the second of creation until now. Every decade has seen new theories advance on "how it happened". And they try to recreate it in a lab! Today they think they know. But they thought so 100 years ago. Today's scientist say they were wrong back then. In 100 years, if we are still here, another batch of scientist will say the same about the current crop of astrophysicist.

I know, I'm simplifying all that science to the ridiculous. I actually like reading these things. For with every theory they only prove to me that there is a power at work that is to be reckoned with and that with all our lofty opinion of ourselves, with all our brilliant minds the only truth is that what God has wrought can only be imagined.

I think it is fascinating to discover that Pluto is merely a dwarf planet and that there are two others out there. And yet, the only thing it furthers is my knowledge of how much we don't know!

We may climb to the stars, send probes to the universe but everything we learn simply expands our astonishment. "The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork." Psalm 19:1-3 

The information presented in the following articles appears to be "new" information. Science has "discovered" an amazing thing!

NASA Scientists Confirm Liquid Water On Early Earth

Early Earth Covered by Water

It isn't a  new discovery at all!  Peter published it first. "For they deliberately overlook this fact, that the heavens existed long ago, and the earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God,"  2 Peter 3:5  Was Peter the Einstein of his day?

Science will always make another discovery that will surprise them or that they can't explain to their satisfaction and it will constantly drive them to prove their personal theories and to force them on other people. It is, after all, a kind of religion!

"For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse" Rom. 1:20

Great is our God!

Friday, August 26, 2011

And On the Third Day. . .

I fell off the wagon last night. Yep. Had that wrap at lunch and ...well, I hate to waste those ice cream sandwiches. But I felt so good after eating one. Mentally anyway. My stomach didn't seem too happy with it though. I have to get banned foods out of the house. Just in case you all thought I'm strong and have super(will)power... you'd be wrong.

This morning I've climbed back on so we'll see how it goes. Maybe I can get farther along than a day and a half. However, I've decided I can't do this strict induction diet. I simply do not like the food and there is not enough vegetables that I do like. I don't like all this meat either! With each meal I feel a stronger aversion to meat! I never noticed that I at such small amounts of it! I don't mean all the time but most of it. Three meals of meat a day is too much!

I understand the principle and will try and eat some. I fixed two boneless chicken thighs last night. That is not a lot of meat. They seemed small without the bones but I could barely get one down. The other went in the fridge. I grilled them on my George Forman grill so they weren't greasy and it was dark meat so not dry. I hate white meat.

So, this morning, forget the eggs. 4 slices of bacon and a cup of coffee. I'm full. But I did so want my orange juice. I think I should wait on fruit juice until I get it sorted out.

I will also avoid "white" vegetables and starches as much as as I can. But Is simply can't eat all these onions, leeks, artichokes, asparagus etc. EEEEEwwwwwweeeeee! I only eat cooked onions in small portions... like that wrap. It is loaded with onions and peppers and grilled chicken and cheese. It has a breakfast plate sized toasted wrap. Oh yes, delicious! I did forgo the sour cream.

Ok. I have to get my face washed and my teeth brushed. I've had coffee but I'd truly love some juice or milk!

Oh, do you know.... it is Firday! Sue is coming to clean today. Although, there's hardly anything to do! She didn't want to dust to build up!! Gem of a woman, that Sue.

I have to say that after three days of limited carbs I am mentally a bit better. So, that is probably part of my problem there but it is too early to tell for sure.

I'd dearly love to start exercising again. I hate walking and walking alone would be just disastrous. I was crocheting last night and the house was so quiet. Suddenly, I'm in January 29, 2009 at 3 a.m. in the morning jumping out of bed and yelling for Jerry to answer me and telling him to wake up and .... it wasn't nice. It may sound crazy but I ended up dropping my work, covering my face and yelling STOP STOP STOP! Really it is like this movie reel that keeps playing over and over in my head.

The flashbacks never go away. And probably are the worst thing about it all. I can't escape it. I relieve the whole event several times a week. Thankfully, I'm usually alone. I've had it happen with someone talking to me and I usually have to redirect the conversation or leave the room on some excuse. I don't go all crazy in public. Only once in awhile someone ask me what's wrong. "Nothing."

Oddly, my stress hormones were right where they are supposed to be. I would never have believe it but I have more than enough of the "good" one... meaning that I handle stress well. At least, Dr. B said so.

I have to skedaddle now. I hope everyone's Friday is bright and sunny and stress free.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

What Day Is It?

I woke reluctantly, thinking it was Friday and that if I could just get through the day I'd be all right. I took out my pill minder to start gulping down about 10 pills. Imagine my dejection upon realizing that it was not Friday but Thursday. I had two eggs and 4 strips of fried bacon. I won't do that again. One egg and two strips of bacon are plenty. I finally had to have a piece of sugarless gum. Sorry, but it only had 1 carb and I needed something in my mouth that was not greasy.

I am looking for information on the modified Atkins to see how the diet differs. Nuts are not in Phase 1 of the Atkins diet and my doctor said I could eat all the nuts I want. So, this isn't strictly the Atkins diet. But close to it. I love nuts but they do give me indigestion.

Interesting thing I found was that the modified Atkins is being use to treat epilepsy with very good results. In early studies they said  "About 2/3 had a 50% reduction in seizures after 6 months. Many were able to reduce medications." There is also another report here regarding this treatment. I found another that talked about a clinical trials of the effects of Atkins on Tourette Syndrome.

What I find most interesting about both these is that if such major disease are connected to high carb consumption then so could other diseases. And if the connection is there, what does it take to get the problem addressed. It cost more to buy foods for these diets. That logic is skewed.

Ok, enough. I may do one slight cheat today because I need a really good meal. El Charro's quesedilla fajita con pollo is a large tortilla filled with grilled chicken, peppers, onions and cheese. It is delicious. I can't see how that one wrap will throw me for a loop. And if I stick with grilled chicken at supper with no carbs I might squeak by. I'm to have no more than 12-15 carbs a day and these are supposed to come from vegetables.... I have to see. Carolyn said I could just leave the wrap and eat the insides... {sigh} I could. Actually the tortilla will probably send me over the top carb wise but I don't know if I care at the moment. I have a headache.... a sign that my body is craving carbs so {sigh} maybe no tortilla.

I do hope my blogs are not going to be a constant rant about this diet. And I am going to have to sit down over the weekend and see if I can come up with some inventive ways to eat on it. The South Beach has a greater variety of foods but I actually think it is because it is similar to Phase 2 of the Atkins. I need to do the phase 1 for as long as possible. I can tell this morning that I'm not as tired as I have been this whole week. I was when I woke up and still feel as if I need more sleep. It was hard to get up. But the mid-morning crash has not happened. Lunch might be a way to see how that one wrap affects me.

Sue will come clean tomorrow and I hope I'm feeling better by Saturday. The sheer exhaustion I've felt is just impossible to tolerate. I am losing valuable time that I need to finish some projects. I'm not having trouble sleeping. I sleep like a log once I'm down, even having dreams... that I don't remember . . . unless they are like the one on Tuesday night where I woke up at 1 a.m. dreaming a huge spider was on my bed. I jumped up, out of bed, screaming. I flipped on the light and was tossing my bed covers to see if it was real when I finally realized it must be a dream. Really upset me. It is the second such dream I've had this month. NO idea what that means.

I'm supposed to drink 6-8 glasses of water a day and I thought it would be difficult. I do drink water throughout the day and keep a 32 oz bottle on my desk. I seldom drink all of it. I bought a plastic glass with a screw-on lid and straw a few days ago and I like it. It is probably about 16 oz. Yesterday I drank 4 of those at least. I just started my second today. I'm thirstier today than I was yesterday for some reason. I don't particularly like water, especially E'ville water. I have a filter at home and they provide a water dispenser here with bottled water. So it isn't too bad.

I'm off now. We're going to lunch at 11 today so Carolyn can go to her doctor's appt.

Pure Compassion

While I sat in the reception area of my doctor's office, a woman
rolled an elderly man in a wheelchair into the room.

As she went to the receptionist's desk, the man sat there, alone and
silent. Just as I was thinking I should make small talk with him, a
little boy slipped off his mother's lap and walked over to the

Placing his hand on the man's, he said, "I know how you feel. My mom
makes me ride in the stroller too."

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Atkins Diet

For those who've been wondering, here is a link to The Atkins Diet and the foods that can be consumed in the first two weeks. It is a lot of food but unfortunately, spicy foods or greasy foods give me problems. And a large number of these I simply can't stand the taste of.

However, if you read the information on the why of Phase 1 it makes sense. And since my body can't process carbs well, the diet makes perfect sense to me. It uses fat reserves for food. In diabetes, being overweight is deadly and actually makes the disease worse. A diet that would force the body to use up excess fat would be actually a healthy alternative for me. I still get carbs but they have to be restricted.

Let me tell you, I'm having a problem with it. Not for the reasons you would think. I'm feeling depressed because I don't want to do it. I'm stressed because I really do hate meat in most forms. I eat it in small quantities. I've never been a huge eater. Oh certain things I could eat a lot of when I was younger. But that was not all the time. I weighed 130 when I came to Evansville. I was in great shape and worked out every day. As Jerry used to say, "I was stack like a brick cafe." All my sand was where it was designed to be. The problems began when I started college, stopped cooking healthy meals and stopped exercising. I began to gain weight, a little at a time. In 20 years I've gone up three dress sizes.

I have consumed more carbs than is probably healthy for me given my disease. I like high carb foods. I love fruit. I love bread. I love root vegetables, peas, corn, and others. A big cluprit also seems to be processed foods as opposed to raw or cooked from fresh. But bread and root vegetables will always be tabu for me. And that's hard for me to deal with right now.

On top of that, I'm feeling sick. Since there are side effects to starting it, that may be my problem. But, I wasn't feeling well before this so, not sure.

The site above is full of information that explains it all. It is difficult but probably not unhealthy in its full range. I'm in what is called induction and lasts only a short time... which stretches to infinity when you are doing it. Based on what I've read, it is designed to force your body to burn fat by reducing carbs. They aren't totally eliminated, just restricted. And for the rest of my life, if I'm going to avoid the disasters of diabetes (keep my legs, eyes, kidneys, and heart) I have to limit carbs and reduce the over production of insulin. Fat is the only thing that does that.

I remember when I had my glucose tolerance test in 2002. I had to fast. When I came out Jerry ask me what I wanted to eat. We were both surprised when I said, "Meat." That's all I said. We went to get chicken dinners. In light of this diet, it makes perfect sense. My body told me what I needed to address the sugar overload... protein. And I felt better immediately after eating it. Although, fried chicken doesn't seem like a good choice if you know how much sugar they fed me anything was an improvement.

I have a choice here. It is what it is. I can't fix it. I can elect to continue on as I have been but if I can lick it and do this, I have a shot of several things improving. I will weigh less ( I have a slew of pretty clothes packed up). I will probably have a decrease in BP. I will have lower insulin which means I may have less pain. Insulin causes inflammation. RA is inflammation. No guarantees but fingers crossed. I certainly can't feel worse than I feel right now.

Too Much Space

The following link was submitted by Melina. If you're still using two spaces after a period, you're very old school. With the advent of computers, this practice became obsolete. Scalable type on the computer makes the "extra space" unnecessary. The fonts on typewriters is not evenly spaced. So the extra space made sense. Truly the practice was simply so it was easier to see where sentences ended and began. And so you would recognize quickly abbreviations. They never had two spaces after them at all. 

Anyway, have a look at Melina's find. 

Space Invaders

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Blood Work

Went to the doctor today for a review of my blood work. Yep, no other reason. This doctor does such a through job of blood work. I don't think there was a test she left out. A full profile. Four pages of stuff! I have copies.

It wasn't really good. My cholesterol didn't look terrible on the normal test but there is apparently a new test she had done. She said she had not heard of it until recently herself. My numbers are horrendous. Well, that's typical for my problems.

Triglycerides were at 397 - I've seen it much much worse so I wasn't shocked at all by that. I have been over 700 after I got a steroid and it took three years to get it below 500.

Thyroid THS 3 & 4 were just fine so that was a relief.

My D levels had dropped, despite taking the same dose the other doctor prescribed two years ago. He never checked it again. I have to take, brace yourself, 20,000 iu for two weeks, then 10,000 iu for two weeks, and then 5,000 every day thereafter. I also have to take 30 gm of flax oil three times a day and 100 mg of CoQ10 a day.

She thinks I'm not eating ENOUGH! I weight... well close enough to 200lbs to wink. And I'm not eating enough?

My blood sugar readings? Perfectly normal. Yes. Normal.

But, here's the kicker, normal blood sugar readings do not mean you do not have a blood sugar disorder. My insulin levels are way too high. Too much insulin causes PCOS. It causes inflammation in the body as well, things like arthritis, and other inflammatory disorders and fatigue. So, some of my problems of recent months that have become worse are made clearer.

You become truly diabetic when you run out of insulin... from a worn out pancreas.

So, I am to eat absolutely no sugar, no bread, no pasta, no peas, no corn, no root vegetables of any kind. None, nada. I am to eat only proteins at every meal and green stuff. I think I can have fruits but maybe not. Have to verify that.

Adkins diet if I ever heard it. She says I go back in a month to see how things are going. I do not care for meat in large quantities but she said I could eat nuts for the protein. I went to the store and bought chicken and pork chops. I love pork chops and can eat all I want within my calorie range. I don't like beef a lot. So, with no bread I'll not be eating that. I don't like steak either or pot roast. I do like a stew beef now and then but mostly the soup and vegetables so will fix that too.

I went to buy nuts, without salt if possible. I read the labels. Soy, wheat, gluten. Why? I want nuts. How hard is it to package a nut without all that junk? What is the point of it? Wheat in nuts? What tree do they grow on? The jar said cashews. Not mixed nuts. Cashews. That was the Wal-mart brand AND the Diamond Brand. I checked Planters. Just nuts. Nothing else. And I paid more for just nuts.

IF you are gluten sensitive or allergic to wheat and you thought you were getting just nuts......

I had scrambled eggs and fried sausage for supper and ice cold milk. {shrug} I'm don't feel as tired at the moment as I've felt for days.

Who knew I was a hunter gather type!

Men's Logic

The following is perfectly logical to all males.

A wife asks her husband, "Could you please go shopping for me and buy one gallon of milk, and if they have eggs, get 6."

A short time later the husband returns home with 6 cartons of milk.

The wife asked him, "Why did you buy 6 gallons of milk?"

He replied, "They had eggs."

Monday, August 22, 2011

The Impact of Soy on Your Thyroid

My advice here is as usual. Don't put things in your mouth that you have not investigated carefully. Long before it became food in the US, soy began as a machine lubricant. Now it is being fed to us more than you may be aware. If you are one of those who consume soy, continue if you wish but before you do, read carefully about the potential effects of putting it in your body. There are two sides to the argument, as usual.

Soy and the Thyroid
Do Soy Foods negatively Affect Your Thyroid?
Welcome to SoyOnline
Soy Foods and Thyroid
Readers Respond:The Pros & Cons Of Soy Foods and Supplements for Thyroid Patients

These are only a few of the articles. You can pick which side you want to take but if you have a history of thyroid problems or suspect thyroid problems, use caution. So, read up and make an informed decision. They are putting it in hundreds of food items and we are consuming more and more.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Inmates Congregate

Writers' Asylum Inmates gathered tonight in the sitting room to stare at the yellow walls. They're yellow to brighten the place up. No one appeared to be in charge but everyone showed up! All appeared properly sedated... or exhausted from the days activities. Pastry was served in the kitchen with all sharp objects safely tucked away. So much so that several Inmate has trouble locating a fork. . . for the pastry.

Loraine is painting. Not art...her house. So writing is, at the moment, not. She shared a beautiful photo she took of the mountains of Tennessee where she has spent her summer. She's had it blown up and ready to hang. It was lovely.

The younger set was in rare form. Cassie and Melina both were in great spirits and filled with lots of energy that the older inmates, me in particular, found charming. I am envious!

Good... no wonderful news? The Writer's Asylum is thrilled to announce that Kathy's book is on Amazon and Smash  Words for sale in the ebook for $2.99. Here's the link at Amazon: Tansy Taylor: Paranormal PI

We've all put our order in for hard copies... autographs, you know.

And now the Inmates have disbanded and all returned to their cells for the evening.

Lock the gates, Igor.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Middle of the Week

I am really not doing so well with the titles. Very bland and boring. But then, so is life at the moment. I so need some kind of break to recharge but it isn't coming anytime soon. The weather is just lovely at the moment and it would be nice to take time off.... if I had some. I had 30 hours last week available to use but I had to be out one day because of the air conditioner. So that cuts into it. I get 13 hrs a month so if I could go four months without have a problem, I'd be good.

I just got back from lunch and am dreading the afternoon. I am just so tired. I have been for a few days. I'm having problems with mild pain, dry, itchy eyes, and runny nose. Believe it or not, all but the runny nose is symptomatic of RA. My eyes were red as fire when I got up this morning and stung. I just use water to was them out with but I've had to problem before.

I've been putting all my appointments in my google calendar. I have an app with my printer that allows me to print out my schedule. I'm going to see how it works. Once I started putting them all in I was astonished. I have two calenders I use. One is the asylum calender of meetings and assignments and the other is my personal calender where I schedule everything else so I can have reminders sent to my phone and email. It is so helpful to have that feature and it cost nothing. I've not used it for work stuff before but now I'm putting that in there, too. If it means I get something off my desk, I'm all for it. I have a Day Timer planner and I like it but I suspect it is on its way out if this works. I use it but is is cumbersome to carry to all my appointments. Combined, the two calenders are packed.

I've been sold on Google calender for a while now. I don't forget appointments I put in it because I can set as many reminders as I want to be sent as many different ways as I want. SMS to my phone, email, and a pop up on my computer!

I now have several swiffer socks crocheted to give to the church to sell to raise money for the building fund. I'm going to look for some other easy crafts to do.

Oops, I need to get to work. Lunch is over!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Another Week Begins

I woke up this morning, late. My alarm was set for 6:30 a.m. but I started away at 7 wondering what day of the week it was. When I realized it was Monday I jumped out of bed to get dressed for work. I have no idea what happened to my alarm or if it went off. I was not feeling well at all and very confused. Once I got my bearings I dashed around and was at work by 8, with a quick stop at Micky D's for a breakfast. I had my OJ in my travel mug.

The day had been busy. I've managed to get all of October's files, save one, processed. I will spend tomorrow getting some interim changes done and then, I can, maybe, start November's. One can only hope.

The weather is absolutely wonderful. I've been cooped up all day yesterday and didn't realize how nice it is. I opened the windows last night and turned off the air to save some money. If all goes well, I can do that a lot for the next couple of months. We'll see. It will save me a pack of money if I can. My utility bill runs around 200 a month so not running the air will cut that by about $100 a month. Not a lot but hey, when you are looking at $5000, ever little bit helps.

I am a bit off track with things lately. I think because of all the comings and goings with my sister sick, the house full and running back and forth to the hospital and then Dave, Becca and Sarah staying for a couple of weeks. I had company for a month and once everyone was back in their own space, it hit me again how empty life is without Jerry. Sunday was just a terrible day and Saturday night was not good either. I was achy all over and felt bad but I just was so depressed, starting Saturday night, that I simply thought I'd tip over emotionally at any moment. I don't know that I'm ever going to get used to it. I never seem to. I'm very good at faking it for a short time but really it never changes.

I've said all along it doesn't get better. You simply build walls around you to protect you as much as possible. But occasionally, something breaches it and you have to rebuild it. My walls were knocked down by my sister getting sick. I was reliving things I wanted to forget. I said once I do not want to do death again. It isn't like the movies. The reality is more like Friday the 13th. Anyway, I digress. Today, I'm shoring up the walls again.

I'll be leaving shortly for home. I started this early this morning and am not taking a break to finish it. I don't know if I'll be online or not. It is so nice outside I may sit in the back yard. I haven't done it all summer!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Beddie Bye Time?

I just got back home. I left around 5 or 6 and went back over to Dave and Becca's. He was leaving to play with his band friends. He plays the drums. Becca and Sarah and I had decided to go for a swim in the pool at their apartment. The water was cold and the breeze got cooler. We only stayed about half and hour because Sarah was freezing and she can't swim so we cut it short. Next time we'll go earlier in the day. There was not another soul there so it was nice. Once dry, we went to supper and I just got in. I stopped before I came home at the drug store and saw a swim vest on sale. It is end of season for swimming. Now her mother can take her during the day, too.

Now, I'm headed for a hot shower and bed. I think I'm ready for that.

What did you do today?

A Day of Nothing

I've had a whole day of nothing. I paid bills first thing and then I took off and went to eat lunch at Burger King. Stopped at Office Depot to look for something and bought Mike's birthday present. It is September 22nd. I also bought me another one of those $4 flashlights. It has about 9 LED bulbs and is sooo bright. I now have one for my night table (hot pink) and the new one for my car (gold). They are about three inches long. Perfect to carry around in your hand bag. And believe me, you never know when you'll need one.

I also went and paid Sue for the splendificent cleaning job she did. It is why I've had very little to do today.

Next, I went to Big Lots and bought Becca a lovely lime green dish towel and two matching oven mitts. Their new apartment has lots of dark wood cabinets, brown carpet, oak table, and dark furniture so she needs lots of color to brighten it up. It really is a nice apartment and an amazing amount of storage. I delivered them.

I came home after that and wandered around in the house. I have no idea what to do with myself when I'm alone. I finished Doug's challenge.. to allow the church ladies to find a body. I'm not happy with it but it is what it is. I'll post it for my contact to read. I feel like I could have done better. I think the problem is there was only one church lady present.

I got very tired and lay down for about 30 minutes but woke up freezing. Yes, the air is working. It is only 79 outside but the humidity makes it feel 83. Still not terribly hot. I'm posting this now and will have to find something to do afterward.

And now I need to break out the crochet. I think my problem is that I've gotten off track with some things. A constant horde for weeks at a time have simple sent me off the rails and I can't seem to figure out what I'm supposed to do.

I'm going now.

Friday, August 12, 2011


At times I am overwhelmed with a sense of gratitude of such magnitude
that I am unable to express it even in writing. Tonight is one of
those nights. I do not know why, I only know it is so. I also know
that I must try.

As I dressed after my shower, the thought came to my mind that I have
always felt as if God had favored me in some way. I don't have any
idea how or why that would be so. Part of me said that it was arrogant
to think that way. I'm not special! But with that thought came
another. I understood that this is why, when things go so very wrong,
that I feel abandoned and rudderless. Where did God go? Why would he
suddenly turn away when I need him most? No answer came but what did
come was an awareness of how very blessed I have been, that, despite
my feeling of abandonment I was not alone.

I went outside to sit on the porch and watched the darkening sky. I
thought of all that I have been blessed with and found that for once,
I was unable to think of how to write what I was feeling.

From the moment of my birth there is a path of blessings so great that
it astounds me. I looked back over a life of so much turmoil that I'd
never want to live that life again. I was not a wanted child. I was an
"accident" conceived by a young woman who never thought such a thing
could happen to her and would not be inconvenienced by it. I came home
from the hospital to her parents home and never left. I lived with a
Godly grandmother and a backslidden grandfather who drank every
paycheck. They struggled to support two illegitimate children, giving
up any thought of retirement and a life of their own. There are
virtually no happy memories of Christmas or birthdays or any holiday.
Still we were loved. And there was a constant presence.

Never did I want for the necessities. I had food, shelter, and
clothing. I also had this huge family of aunts, uncles, and cousins
that loved me. I was not popular in school. I did not earn high honors
until my 30's. I was quiet among strangers and spoke only when spoken
to. But there always seemed to be people who loved me everywhere I
went. I was liked by most who met me and it was obvious. I never
understood it. It still baffles me. And those who disliked me gave
insane reasons... my hair, my clothes, my accent, my color, my

I practically stumbled across a husband weeks before Mama died. And he
was totally smitten with me until the moment of his death. For 35
years I had, for the most part, the life I'd prayed for. But there are
dark days throughout all those years. All the while blessings poured
in from unexpected directions, in surprising ways-odd events that
should not have happened but did, children who should not have been
born but were, places I traveled I never dreamed of, and people I met
that I can't imagine not knowing.

I had clothing, food, and shelter and knew a circle of people who
spanned the globe. And still blessings came. An income that would
help me live and even help people I loved when they needed it.

Even so, over the course of my life I have lost more than you would
guess, parents, a child, a spouse, the huge family has all but
disappeared. There have been times that I was in such a dark place
that I could not find my way and despaired of any help. But always, a
door opened and light poured in and a hand was extended. It should not
have been so but it was.

Tonight, sitting on my porch, with darkness around me I was faced with
the stunning realization that I could not even begin to count it all.
The scope of my life and the sheer volume of blessing overwhelmed me.
I could not speak words that would adequately express how very
thankful I am for all that I have been blessed with. It simply baffles

I am not sorry for all that I have lived through. I've always
accepted, at times angrily, that life was not predictable and that
some times it would be hard. I am only sorry I did not live with
greater vision. That I did not see, when I was young, the magnitude
and quantity of blessings falling at my feet. I am sorry that I was
not more grateful for what I had before I lost it. Perhaps the path I
walked through the dark places would not have been so miserable had I
looked in a different direction.

I have not done great things. There are things of which I am ashamed,
things I don't even want to remember but can't forget. I have not
changed nations. I have not lead a million souls to God, maybe not
even one. I do not believe I have influenced anyone. I do not possess
great wealth, intellect, or talents but still a voice tells me I am
favored by God. I do know why I feel this. It is not something I have
always been aware of. I only know there is no reasonable explanation
for all that I have seen, for all that I have been given, for all I
have survived.

There are no words to express my gratitude. Were the world to end
tomorrow I would be able to say God has been beyond good to me. I am
so very blessed. And perhaps the very nature of God is best described
when I say that I don't know why.

What's Your excuse?

Stole this from a friend on my blog. I just couldn't resist forwarding
it. Can only say "WOW...

"Jacob was a liar, Peter had a temper, David had an affair, Noah got
drunk, Jonah ran from God, Paul was a murderer, Gideon was insecure,
Miriam was a gossip, Mary was a worrier, Thomas was a doubter, Sara
was impatient, Elijah was moody, Moses stuttered, Zaccheus was short,
Abraham was old and Lazarus was dead. Now, what's YOUR excuse? Can God
use you?.. Sure He CAN : ) "

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Stuff in the Middle

Wednesday has arrived. The kids packed their stuff last night and move it all to their new apartment. They spent last night here and will go to day and start the unpacking and sorting. I don't know if they will stay here tonight but I advised it. There is no frustration like standing an a box filled, disorganized house and feeling like you'll never get it straight. Stepping away for a good night's sleep helps tremendously. I never had that option on any of our moves. I just waded in from the time I got up until I went to bed and started over. Jerry was usually at work so it was just me and then later the boys.

Middle of the week and move briefing today. I do hope the scheduled person will do it. Lately, people have asked me to do it for them but I don't usually unless they are sick or not there.

I feel like it has been such a long week. Last night I told Becca it felt like it should be Friday.

I did a very little bit of writing last night. I'm taking it when and where I can get it. I am hoping once they kids are sorted out I can get back to some kind or routine. I haven't even been able to sew much because of their items taking up space. Sue will come clean Friday and that will get things on a more even keep. Now if that guy would just come cut the yard!

Off to work, folks. I am praying the morning is very productive because the afternoon won't be with that briefing. We'll spend about two hours on that and be done around 4 p.m. so the day will be over.

Monday, August 8, 2011

A Grand Start to the Week

Actually,it is more like five grand. My central heating and air unit has to be replaced before winter. The heat exchange is rusted out. So the whole system has to be replaced. They were working on getting the air to work properly and found it. Becca called and said, "Mom! It has big holes in it!" The repair man said he didn't see why we had not been getting sick from carbon monoxide. My guess is that because the unit is outside the fumes are vented out there. I only get warmed air in the house. Of course, I believe that God looks out for me, too. I'm just thankful He was looking out for all the people I've had in my house over the last winter. "Blessed be the LORD God, the God of Israel, Who only does wondrous things!" Psalm 72:18

External units wear out quickly, unfortunately but they are far safer to my way of thinking because they are outside the house. The risk of fire is lessened and of carbon monoxide. But... they cost the earth. I paid $3500 for this unit 15 yrs ago. I can only presume they have not gotten cheaper.

Once again, my savings will be wiped out and I will have to actually borrow money to get the rest of it. I can scrape together maybe half by October. I doubt I can go as long as December without heat in the house. The way my luck is going, we'll get a hard freeze in September.

I can only say this is one more selling point to the house. I do not want to leave it. I love my home. After this expense the next major one is the kitchen. That one will kill me physically but I won't break the bank on the cost, if I survive. Anyone up for coming to Evansville for a kitchen demolition party, let me know. I can arrange it. I have to take out walls and floor and put new ones down. I know what to do... believe it or not, it is pretty much like making a dress. You measure, you cut, and you put it together. I've done it a couple of times before. The hard part is taking out the old stuff.

Needless to say, any and all travel plans are now off the table indefinitely. I'm a bit disgusted by all of it because I was thinking I could maybe take just a short little trip away for a few days even. Still, I don't see any sense in complaining. I have to have heat. And Lord knows right now I have to have air.

For some reason, at just this moment, I'm fine with it. When they told me I was actually a bit depressed. Now, I just don't care. It is one more thing in a long line of things. I feel like no matter what I do it won't make a difference so feeling bad is a waste of time. But it would be nice not to have to spend so much money all the time. I would dearly love to pay the car off and the house. I could do that but for all this bleeding money everywhere. I don't want to move to an apartment. I'd hate it.

I'm going back to work now. I have to pay for a central H/AC unit!


Saturday, August 6, 2011

Where Did the Week Go?

I have no idea when or what I posted last. I've had such a busy week and having people in the house always seems to make it go blindingly fast. We're still having problems with the air and not sure what is wrong with it. I have not paid for the work last week as yet. They reduced it when I complained about them sending two people to do a one man job. They deducted the labor for the second guy but late yesterday afternoon it wasn't cooling again. I called them and the first fella came back and got us some cool air and we hope to get through the weekend so they can come out on Monday and see what is wrong with it.

Dave and Becca will move into their new apartment probably Wednesday. It hasn't been a problem. We get along generally. Sarah keeps us on our toes. If it gets hectic, they get out and go somewhere and I have some quiet time or I get out and go. Right now, they are out. Becca's dad had to have surgery this past week. They recently found he had cancer and is not home. Not sure what the prognosis is but they think they got it all.

I've been working on a sundress for Sarah. I am still doing the no pattern sewing using up my "scraps". I don't think I could do it for myself but with Sarah being so thin and virtually the same from chest to hips it isn't really hard at all. I want to get all this small pieces of fabric used up so I can do some other things.

The writer's group met Thursday night, three of the six, at Panera. It was nice to get out of the house and it wasn't feasible to have it here, although Dave and Becca left for several hours so we could have come here. I don't know where the group is headed. We like to get together but it seems something is always interfering. It isn't a large group so two or three not making it is half the group. I do think we all find it a break from our usual routine and that it gives us a needed boost to talk about what is going on with us.

I had pain all night in my leg and did not sleep well at all. I woke to overcast skies and then rain. By noon, the rain cleared, the sun came out and hell opened it's mouth. It is hot. It went from 75 to 85 in a very short time and the humidity is unbelievable. At the moment, my back is aching and I'm tired. I'm going to shift or move and try to ease it. I hope your weekend is going well. Stay cool!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

More Oddballs and Idiots

I've become fascinated by the subject I think. Here is probably one of the odder locations to find a body.


I could come up with a catchy comment but it wouldn't not be nice so I'll stay silent.

Monday, August 1, 2011

When Does It Start?

Week Begins

Monday again and I'm set to leave for work in roughly 20 minutes, enough time for a blog.

We, meaning me, Mike and Phyllis, went to church yesterday and it was nice to be back. I woke feeling better than I had in weeks. We went to lunch afterward and came home around 1:30. I was exhausted for some reason and went to bed immediately. I watched a few shows but my head neck had begun to hurt a bit. I took a nap only to wake around 4 p.m. with a migraine. I finally too an imetrix and applied an ice pack. Around 7 p.m. the headache was gone. We did not go to church. I went back to bed, still tired and watched t.v. shows until around 11 when I felt so sleepy I couldn't stay awake.

This morning, my head feels as if it might like to hurt again. I hope not. The one yesterday was the first in a long time but fall is probably upon us and that is usually the very worst time of year for my headaches.

I wish it would rain. It is hot and dry and just all around unpleasant. I have not been able to sit outside all summer because of it. No point in having a nice porch or patio in this weather.

Now I'm about to dash off to work. I never look forward to it. Thirteen years at this job this year. Seven doesn't sound like a long time and I know it probably won't be but I'll be 62 if God allows me to live that long. I don't think about it. Jerry and I talked about the things we would like to do once he retired. He was seven years older so would get there first and he liked pointing it out. But it never happened. So, I try not to think that far ahead.

Time to leave. Do try and stay cool if your weather is like the mid-west weather. Currently, it is 73 outside but the house is not very cool.