Thursday, December 15, 2011

The BIg Curd

Hi All!

Lately I have been trying to lower the amount of carbs I eat so I have been eating cottage cheese for breakfast.  I prefer the large curd variety because it is fun to squish the curd while eating.  Yes, I know that is a bit strange but consider the source!

Anyway - I was making my way through this week's container of cottage cheese when I found this.

One giant curd!

Talk about committment to living up to the label on the package!


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Visions of Sugarplums

Hi All!

Generally speaking, I enjoy baking and cooking but don't have the time to do it as much as I would like.  Sure, I cook dinner pretty much every night but what I really like is that holiday baking.

Sugar cookies with frosting.  Spritz cookies with colored sugar sprinkles.  Pies.

Then there is the holiday candy.  My specialty is the iconic Ohio Buckeye candy.  This is basically a ball of sweet peanut butter coated in chocolate with just a bit of the peanut butter showing to look like the Buckey nut.

Everyone LOVES my buckeyes.

They are delicious but take a lot of time to make and the end result is not only the candy but also a backache for me from all of the hand rolling of the candy.

After finishing the buckeyes there is always left-over melted chocolate to have fun with.  I coat pretzel bites, almonds, raisins, and anything else that might be handy.  I give the buckeyes away but the miscellaneous stuff I dip is all mine!

This year I have had a particularly strong urge to bake and make candy.  In fact, as I type this, I am contemplating making carmel because my Great-grandmother used to make it and it was always a wonderful treat.

True.  She made it for Easter but . . . that is just splitting hairs!

In addition to my yen to make caramels, I want to make cake balls to send to my sister-in-law and spritz cookies for my Hubby (they are his favorite!).

There is a strong possibility that a trip to the store is in my near future.


Monday, December 12, 2011


Hi All!

It seems like, over the years, our lives have become cluttered with gadgets.  Things to make our lives "easier."  Cell phones.  E-readers.  IPods and MP3 players.  Laptops.  Tablets. 

Well, I hate to admit this but, I am a gadget addict.

I LOVE gadgets.

Anything electronic can keep me occupied for a while.

First it was the computer.  Yes, I am of the generation where computers weren't part of my formative years and so they were fascinating (and still are).

Then it was the iPod.  This got me into podcasts which are another addiction of mine.

The whole cell phone/smart phone thing has gone by me, however.  Hubby and I don't call each other a whole lot and so have never really seen the need for a cell phone.  After all, if we go on trips, it is normally together so why would we need a cell phone to call each other?

Yes, I am aware of the safety perspective of having a cell phone - especially since they have systematically taken out the pay phones across the country.  I DO have a cell phone - prepaid and VERY basic - that I take with me for safety.  Hubby has the same set up himself but . . . he never takes his phone with him so I suppose it isn't worth too much.

Lately, Hubby and I have been talking smart phones.  With my future career pretty much requiring smart phone accessibility, a smart phone is certainly in my future.  We just aren't sure WHEN in my future.


We are so far out of the "loop" in terms of cell phones, we have absolutely no idea where to start.

Luckily, Consumer Reports' most recent edition is about smart phones and service providers.

I guess it is time to read up!


Friday, December 9, 2011


Hi All!

Surprisingly, yesterday I felt festive.  I actually got out my Christmas decorations.

Okay - I didn't get them ALL out. The would involve the Christmas tree and garlands and lots of ornaments.

I got out the Christmas decorations I put out when I don't get the tree out.

The wreath got put up on the front door.  Red ribbons were hung on the porch lights.  Fake candles were placed in the front windows.  I even crafted a pseudo ball of ornaments with a nice bow to hang on my banner hanger.

Then, I went a bit wild - for me!

I actually added stuff to the wreath!  New red berries (the old ones were showing their age by splitting and showing the lovely white foam they are made of) and read and green ornaments were wired into the wreath to give it "new life."

That is wild for me!

To top all this "hoopla" off, our Christmas cards are actually in the mail.

I know - amazing!

You see.  I don't get too excited about decorating for the holidays.  Somehow, it always just makes me sad.

So much time is spent "decking the halls" and preparing for the season and then it is gone in an instant.  On December 26th, the decorations already look a bit tired.

Then you have to take everything down.

That is such a bummer.

Nothing ever goes back in the box quite right and then fitting everything back into the closets . . . what a chore.

I love the look of decorations and lights.

I just get sad when I think about having to take them down.


Thursday, December 8, 2011


Hi All!

This is the season of remembering.

Do you remember your childhood?

The other day I got a message via Facebook from a boy I knew in elementary school.  Of course, he is a man now but, he will always be a boy in my memory.  It was a strange experience for me.  This boy was someone I had a crush on and he remembers having a crush on me.  In fact, he remembers so well that he even mentioned it to a person he met before heading out to the Navy.  Another man who said he was from the same hometown.  Another man who just turned out to be my brother!

Imagine!  A boy who had a crush on me in elementary school remembering my name (and the street I lived on) long enough to mention it to someone he met after finishing high school.

Imagine that.

Someone remembering ME!

The messages on Facebook got me thinking about a lot of stuff.

Would my life have turned out so differently if I hadn't moved the summer after discovering my crush for this boy?  Would we have "gone out" if I had stayed?  Would that have led to more relationships?

Before moving I think - I THINK - I had friends.  After moving, making friends was difficult.

After moving - which is the period of time I remember the most from my childhood - I was unsure of myself.  I remember thinking that I would never have friends again - let alone boyfriends.  I didn't have boyfriends in middle schol (they all called me Grimace from McDonald's!!).  I didn't really have boyfriends in high school (partly because of the whole Grimace thing and partly because my Dad was my high school principal for the last two years!).  I had lots of boyfriends in college and didn't really know how to handle them.

Of course, my life has ended up pretty darn well in that area - I have a wonderful husband who I love more than anything.  If I hadn't moved - I probably would have never met him.

But - I still have to wonder what it would be like if I hadn't moved.

Maybe I would have been the popular girl.


Just maybe.


Thursday, October 13, 2011


Hi All!

My how time flies! It is Thursday already!

This morning I had all kinds of wonderful things to show you and tell you and then . . . my mind decided that I shouldn't show or tell you!

Darn my mind!

Oh well!

Maybe I will remember what I wanted to say tomorrow!

Have a fabulous day.


Tuesday, October 11, 2011

So Pretty!

Hi All!

Things in life are a bit "confused" these days for me so it is wonderful that I can go out to my garden and see this beauty.
Such lovely Columbine (which isn't supposed to be able to live in my climate!) and a Cone Flower - which I thought was dead!

 On my way home one evening from class I saw some lovely cloud formations!

 I couldn't quite get the right shot to show the nice pinkish red coloration that was in the sky!

It was a perfect day for finding shapes in the clouds.  What do you see?


Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Hi All!

Just a short "check in" to let you know that I haven't forgotten all of my bloggie friends!  I have just been dealing with "stuff" like medicine and glasses and rehearsals for the play (which opens on Friday with my team interpreting!).

With everything going on - I haven't had a lot of time to think of things to blog about.

However, I will tell you about the new CD I got in the mail (for free!!) yesterday.  It is from the people who publish Our Daily Bread - a devotional booklet. Of course, the CD is religious music - this one is "Favorite Hymns of the Summer."  It is a bit late for summer but - it is FREE - and I am not going to complain!

The music is good and is perfect for times when I need to be in a more meditative and prayerful place.

The funny thing about the CDs - I have gotten several free CDs from this entity over the past couple years- is that my mother gets the devotional booklet as well and NEVER gets information about free CDs.  I get the information all the time (well - probably two to three times a year). Since we both like music, it is a mystery how I got on the mailing list of people who "like music and would love free inspirational CDs" while Mom has not.

At least I send the CDs to Mom after I have uploaded them onto iTunes so she can enjoy them as well.

If you would like some devotional material and haven't found a good source yet, I highly recommend checking the RBS out.   They have lots of stuff online and you can get the devotionals via email as well!


Voice Update:  Doing well.  The other day a woman called me about the SD support group.  I was mystified as to how she got my phone number since I have had it removed from all SD stuff for about a year now (has it been that long??).  Apparently, she had an old flier from when I was support group leader.  Anyway - I talked with her for about half an hour giving her information and places to find more information (NSDA is the best place).  I wasn't comfortable doing this when I first called her back but it turned out okay. It doesn't make me want to return to my former role with the NSDA though!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Surprise Package!

Hi All!

Yesterday was an interesting day.  I finally took a tiny, little, baby step in technology and got a webcam so I could Skype with classmates.  Yeah!  AND I actually had a two hour session with the classmate who is my team for interpreting the play. 

Skype is so neat.  Now I just want to Skype everyone!  Of course, that means needing to look halfway decent when I am on the computer . . .so . . . that might not work too well.

In addition to Skype, I made cake balls yesterday.  Red velvet with cream cheese frosting!  Yum!  The cake balls are for a speech I have to present in class today.  While it is an ASL class, we all give speeches (spoken English speeches) so that classmates can practice their interpreting.  I made the cake but I still haven't really organized my speech.  I am sure I will think of something by class time today!

Then, Hubby got the mail and I had a pleasant surprise!

A package from Australia!

Inside was a note and two CDs.

Hubby and I met a very nice couple while we were on the cruise and the husband is a musician who has made a couple cds.  Being ever on the lookout for new music, I asked him about his work and he promised to send me a cd. 

Of course, I promptly forgot about that when I got home so when the package showed up in the mail yesterday, I was surprised!

I have the music loaded onto iTunes and am listening as I type this post.  One cd includes vocals and one is all instrumental. Nice!

Isn't it nice when you get surprises?


Voice Update:  Doing well. Honestly, I haven't really thought about my voice too much lately as I have been dealing with classes and medication side effects.  I need to get more focused on my voice to keep it in top shape.

On a related topic - I have been getting information via email and the mail about the NSDA (a very wonderful organization for people with SD and those interested in learning more about SD).  This has brought up some old feelings.  I am not really sure how I feel about all of that yet. 

Monday, September 26, 2011

Wally World and a Treasure

Hi All!

Blogger's new interface is still confusing me but, hopefully, I have it worked out enough to get this post (with pictures) done today!  Keep your fingers crossed!

This weekend I was THRILLED to discover that I can SLEEP!  If you recall, my new medication was leaving me sleepless.  Now, it seems like my body has adjusted a bit to the meds and I have been able to sleep.  This "new" phenomenon started Friday night.  On Saturday, I woke up and felt . . . weird.  It took me a while to understand that what I felt was rested!

Of course, my meds didn't want me to feel too good so it kicked into intestinal upset mode for the day (Saturday).  Lucky, lucky me!

That didn't keep me from going with Hubby to watch Ohio State (his alma mater) play football.  Hubby really wanted to go since the freshman quarterback was starting for the first time.  They won but my stomach "issues" didn't let me appreciate the game too much.

Yesterday I had another chance to go to rehearsal for the play that my classmate and I are interpreting.  I think we are getting it!  Slowly but surely!

Today I have to work on my "how-to" speech for class (due tomorrow) and finish up a paper for  group project (also due tomorrow).  Doesn't that sound like fun?  I was supposed to meet my classmate to work on the script (for the play) but, I went to Wally World this morning and bought myself a webcam so we can Skype.

Welcome to the new technology!

Wally World is actually sort of peaceful at 7:15 in the morning.  Not too many people roaming around.  Of course, there aren't too many check-out lanes open either but you have to decide which is more important.

On the way out of Wally World, I walked by this machine.
 Hubby checked this machine out the other day (we go to Wally World a lot since it is the most convenient store for us!).  Hubby thought it was great that there was a "can of Spam" in the machine.  Can you see it?

 I thought it was a bit strange that there was a can of Spam in a machine so I took a closer look.

Spam The Dice Game!?!?

I had no clue there was such a thing.  It almost makes me want to play the game to try to get the game.  Just to see what it is all about.

Have you ever seen the dice game?


Voice Update:  Doing really well. 

Saturday, September 24, 2011


Hi All!

Honestly I am having problems getting Blogger to work with me this morning so . . . I think I will just let you see my lovely Moonflowers.

Monday I will try to tackle Blogger again!

Have a super weekend!


Voice Update:  Doing extremely well at the moment.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Ya Ain't Got A Thing If Ya Ain't Got That Swing!

Hi All!

Well, I am sad to say that I am still not feeling quite up to "par." I have always wondered about that saying because, generally, par is pretty low.  It I don't feel up to par does that mean I am below a 3 or 4?  It seems like even if I WAS up to par, that still wouldn't be very high.  Maybe it should be "I am not feeling up to cruising altitude." instead.  What do you think?

My new meds are treating me to a "lovely" variety of side effects which include stomach "issues," sleeplessness and headaches.  Of course, to be fair, the headaches are probably caused by the lack of sleep and not by the meds themselves.  I wouldn't want to be said to be unfair to medications!

This whole sleepy, headachy, grumpy thing is starting to get me down!  It feels like I can't do everything I want to do since I am in a "fog" of sorts.

Of course, I am not sure if the "fog" or "funk," which may be a better description of the phenomenon, is actually medically caused or if it is just the way I am.  I have been in this "thing" since summer.  Then again, I have been dealing with medicine "issues" since this summer.

So - which came first - the funk or the issues?


Have I told you that as part of my ASL experiences this semester I am volunteering to interpret a play? Another student and I will be working as a team and will be interpreting the entire play in case a Deaf person shows up (we aren't sure that any will and are actually hoping that they don't so we don't feel as pressured!).  The play is called "A Samurai Nosferatu" and is about . . . . Samurai warriors and vampires.

To be perfectly honest, I had never heard of Nosferatu before this play and was woefully behind in my vampire and monster "lore."  Apparently, my education in lacking in that very important genre of movies - the B monster flick.

At rehearsal last night, everyone was talking about the various monster flicks they grew up watching and me . . . I had nothing to share (can I blame my parents for this???).  I am a quick learner though and I do have internet access so I am trying to catch up.  I won't be watching the movies though - monster films (good or not) freak me out!

Actually, the play must be freaking me out as well.  Last night I dreamt about vampires!

I think I need a break.  Or something!


Voice Update:  Still doing really well.  My neck hurts from Susan's "work" on Monday but it is still loose and working well.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Glasses and Tree Shopping

Hi All!

Okay - I am using Blogger's new "interface" and it is just a bit . . . weird!  I am not certain how the pictures I am posting will turn out (size and position wise!) but . . . I guess there is a first time for everything, right?

So - here we go!

I recently got glasses.  And they are bifocals!  I feel so old!  I think they look okay though.  I had the woman at the eye doctor help me pick them out since I am pretty much clueless about that kind of thing.

About the picture - Hubby took it and he isn't too good at working the angles to make sure that my double chins don't take center stage.  Oh well!

In other news, Hubby and I took a trip up north in Texas to a tree farm to pick out a new tree for out front.  That will get the home owners' association off our backs!  The tree farm was huge (I didn't actually get pictures of the farm) and we had fun walking around looking at the trees.  Next to the farm's outdoor office was this wonderful pond.  There was a nice flock of ducks and this visitor.

A beautiful heron!  This is as good as my purse camera would zoom.  A bit later - when we were ready to leave - there were two more herons but I didn't get their picture.  So fun!

After buying a tree (an October Glory Maple to be delivered in October), Hubby and I decided to do a bit of exploring since we were out of our normal neighborhood.  We ended up eating at Lucy's Diner in Celina, Texas.  It was a nice little restaurant in a historic building.  After a lunch of BLT (for Hubby) and Beef Dip (for me), we heading to Pilot Point for a Dairy Queen Blizzard.  It was a nice little road trip for us!

Yesterday, I had speech.  Susan was happy with my voice and not too happy that my neck - especially up under my chin where I simply can NOT get to on my own- was a bit tight.  She also told me that she plans to retire in January!  What in the world am I going to do then?????


Voice Update:  Doing well and have a sore neck from Susan working on it for me!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Short and Sleepy

Hi All!

Just a quick post to let you all in on another side effect of my new meds.  Trouble sleeping.


I think I woke up forty times last night and I certainly feel it this morning!  Too bad I have things to do (and people to see) today and don't have time for a nice, morning nap. 

By the way - the temps here yesterday (and today if rumors prove true) - have been lovely!  I actually have windows open this morning and drove to classes with the windows down in my car (and the moon roof open)!  Yee-haw!

More tomorrow when I have hopefully had more sleep!


Thursday, September 15, 2011

M.I.A. Kitty

Hi All!

First of all - I am trying the "new" blogger interface so . . . I am not really sure how this will go today so be patient!

Next, a report on the new meds.  So far, it seems like my body is starting to get used to the new meds.  My stomach still gets a bit upset but nothing like the first day I took the meds. Saturday marks the one week point as well as the point where I "get" to up the dosage.  Hopefully, it won't up the stomach "issues" as well!

Speaking of meds, I got two prescriptions filled yesterday and one had tiny little pills in a tiny little pharmacy bottle.  Then I pulled the other out of the bag - it is HUGE!  The pills are HUGE and the pharmacy bottle is HUGE.  It was a bit of a shock to see that HUGE bottle.  It makes me feel like an old woman with that big bottle in my cabinet.

In other news, I am behind in class.  This is something that is totally and unequivocally my own fault.  Well, I will blame the meds a bit but . . . I am sure that I could have done what I needed to do if I had just tried a bit harder.  Being behind isn't that big of a deal since I am really only about one day behind.  However, it means that I will be working like the dickens today to get everything done before class!

Last night, Miss Cleo gave me a bit of worry.  Hubby was home all day with a hurting back and as I was puttering around the house putting off my school work, I noticed that Miss Cleo was missing in action.  I called her name.  I put food in the bowl.  No Miss Cleo.  Finally, Hubby found her in the guest room curled up on the chair. She looked up when he came into the room but didn't move.

Now we knew where she was but . . . why was she in there all day?

We went about our normal business and she stayed in the guest room.  On the chair.

We went to bed and I had a hard time sleeping.  I was worried about class (being behind will do that to you!) and Miss Cleo (just why hadn't she come out?) and all kinds of other things I can't remember now. 

In the morning hours (EARLY morning hours!), Skor came in to let me know that he was lonely (Miss Cleo was STILL in the guest room on the chair when I peeked in) and needed someone to watch him eat breakfast.  Silly cat.

Now I am thinking that I might have to take Miss Cleo to the vet.

Then - right as Hubby was leaving for work (his back is much better - thank the Lord!)- Miss Cleo sauntered out and casually checked out the food dishes.

What is up with that????

Doesn't she know that we worry?

Kids.  Uh - I mean - Kitties!


Voice Update:  Doing well.  Doing well.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Reaching for the Record

Hi All!

In case you don't know (and why WOULDN'T you?), North Texas is reaching for the record for the most days at or above 100 degrees in a year. The old record (which we tied yesterday) is from 1980 - one of the worst summers on record for this part of the world.

Well folks, it looks like today will be the day. Today will be the day that we break that old record.

Interestingly, people are a little excited about breaking this record.

I would think that people wouldn't want the record broken because breaking it means that it is HOT here and we have to live through it. However, people are saying that if we are going to live in Texas and deal with these ridiculous 100 degree plus days we should have a record to point to.

True, those people I have been talking to about the record are people who did NOT live here during 1980. These people want to be part of a record.


I just want to be part of the air conditioning!

No matter what we want, I do believe that we will be breaking the old record. If not today - certainly this week since it is fore casted to be above 100 all week.

I wonder where we are with the record for no rain.

Or the record for state-wide wild fires.

Welcome to summer (yes, here summer continues well into October!) in Texas!


Voice Update: I have a tinge of a sore throat this morning. Maybe because I didn't drink enough water???? I am drinking about a gallon to see if that helps me out because I don't want something else to continue my bad summer.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Hair - Before and After

Hi All!

It has been a while since I last posted. Partly due to my laziness and partly because of my new meds and their "lovely" side effects.

Long ago, I discovered that there are certain side effects that will ALWAYS happen to me if there is even the slightest chance that a medicine might cause them. Due to this, I have become very good at reading the medical information that comes with new medications and have also become good at questioning the doctors about side effects when discussing thing in their offices.

However, this medicine was given to me by the new doctor. A doctor who hasn't learned that I really, honestly, do know what I am talking about in terms of side effects. Also, this particular medicine is something that the doctor hasn't worked with before so she may not be well versed on the side effects.

So . . . .

Hello, side effects! I am hoping that my body will be able to adjust to this rather quickly. Of course, this isn't the only medicine with this particular side effect. My endocrinologist has given me one with the same side effects and I have been tolerating that pretty well. Maybe the combo of two medications with the SAME side effect is just too much for my body!

Don't you wish you could "play along?"


Can't say I blame you. Not one bit!

On to other interesting things.

Have I mentioned how much I love my hair lately? It is just so well behaved and fun to work with.


I actually was laughing at myself on Saturday morning (before the side effects took hold) when I was getting ready to go out with my friend, Donna, for breakfast. As my hair has gotten longer, it take more and more time and effort to "do" it each morning. In fact, I am developing new habits to take care of it (and help me be as lazy as possible!). One such habit is keeping my hair in a towel for a while after getting out of the shower so that it can dry a bit before I get out the hair drier.

Saturday, I took my hair out of the towel and combed it. Then I took a photo so you could love the way it curls up on the ends as much as I do.

Now, this picture doesn't quite do the curling justice. In real life, the ends of my hair are flipped up all around my head. Not really the style I was going for!
Also, don't mind the make-upless face or the funky half smile. The make-up doesn't happen until after the heat of the hair drier and the half smile is for Mom - who always says "You could have at least smiled!" when I take pictures to show her my hair.

This picture is after some drying. My hair isn't totally dry (that would take a LONG time and I wasn't willing to invest that much time Saturday morning) but it is more in control. Note the gentle turn UNDER of the ends.


Again - don't look at the missing make-up or the funky smile. Or in that case - don't look at the double chin either!


The hair is much
"poofier." This is something that would happen on its own as it dries. Apparently, the body in my hair just can't be held down. Not that my hairdresser doesn't try her hardest. But that is a whole different story.




Voice Update: Still doing really well. 'Nuf said!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

A New Doctor - the "Try-out!"

Hi All!

After my rather recent "go-round" with my old general practitioner, I decided to find another, more sympathetic, doctor. Then I proceeded to procrastinate a bit (just a month or so!). However, I FINALLY tried out a new doctor yesterday.

This doctor was recommended to me by my endocrinologist (whom I adore) and so I felt good about trying her out. True, I can't quite pronounce her name (Indian maybe?) but, the first appointment seemed to go well.

The doctor took the time to sit down and talk with me. She even took notes about different things in my medical history (like the whole SD thing - she had never heard of SD so I did a bit of educating!). She asked questions and then actually listened to my responses. We ended up changing my meds a bit (the same meds that the other doctor was playing with). Hopefully, the change will go well.

Hubby is already anxious about the med change. We discussed it last night (and he read the package insert from the new meds) and he wanted to know what we would do if the new med turned me into a zombie. I guess he didn't enjoy that period of time! Gee - I wonder why?

Keep your fingers crossed that this doctor and this medicine work out for me. I REALLY don't want to have to keep trying to find another doctor!

In other news, today is the third day in a row that I went out walking. It was very nice out - a cool 68 degrees - and listening to my podcasts and walking just felt so right. Except for my shins which were feeling a bit "shin-splinty," of course.

Next week the "normal" Texas weather is supposed to return. That means temperatures in the 100s again. Lovely.

I guess I should enjoy the cool weather while I can!


Voice Update: Still hanging in there. Another couple of weeks until my next speech appointment so I hope things continue as well as they have been lately.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Cool and Fuzzy!

Hi All!

Yesterday was a blessing of cool temperatures and cool breezes. Something completely unusual for Texas at this time of the year. Normally, we are in the upper 90s and low 100 straight through until October or so (yes, really!). However, yesterday was in the upper 70s to low 80s. Heaven!

Then, I woke up this morning to see this on the weather station . . . .
That is 59 degrees with 56 % humidity.
Another cool day?
Amazing, isn't it?
In other news, since it was so nice out, I decided today would be a perfect day to start walking again. It has been a while since I walked due to the heat and I also haven't been swimming due to the eye infection(s). So - today was the day.
I actually enjoyed it. I listened to my podcasts (this morning it was The Cisco Kid) and took in the neighborhood. It was my intention to take some pictures during my walk to show you but . . . .there wasn't anything too exciting. Everything is still pretty brown and dull from the summer heat.
Tonight in class I "get" to give a speech. Wonderful! Yesterday, instead of resting and relaxing, I worked on my speech and PowerPoint while Hubby waxed his car and then did whatever else he found to do in the garage.


Voice Update: Still hanging in there.

Monday, September 5, 2011

A Minor Miracle . . .

Hi All!

Something weird is happening here this morning.

I think it may just be a minor miracle. Check it out.
Two kitties sniffing at air from a recently opened window.

A mischievous kitty taking advantage of an OPEN WINDOW.

Notice the OPEN WINDOW!

It is September in Texas and I have two windows OPEN!


Am I nuts????


Actually, the temperature has miraculously lowered into the refreshing range. Quite a change from the "Oh my!" range we have been living with for the past months.



In other news - Texas is home of longhorn cattle but these "longhorns" are a totally different breed. Check them out (you may need to enlarge the picture to get a good look! I was taking the picture from my car across the street and my purse camera doesn't have a strong zoom!)!

This is a date palm I started from seed. It spends the summers outside and, from the number of leaves it now has, it seems to enjoy it!

Before this summer, this plant only had three leaves. Now - just look at it!

Okay - quick story before I go.


Skor, my lovely, innocent kitty, has been getting up on our kitchen bar lately. Both Hubby and I have had to reprimand the little bugger several times. Neither of us could quite figure out just why the bar was suddenly so attractive to Skor.


So - we attempted to take everything we thought Skor was interested in off the bar. Apparently, that didn't do the job because the other morning (at about 7:00) I got up and noticed some papers (formerly on the bar) on the floor. When I looked closer, I also saw a candle - the kind in a glass container - on the bar stool. Shattered!


Not just broken or cracked a bit - SHATTERED!


There were glass shards everywhere across the living room! Pieces on the carpet. Pieces on the rocking chair. Pieces on the sofa table. Pieces on the couch!


Glass everywhere!


I got Hubby up to help me clean up and . . .more than forty-five minutes later we thought we were done. Of course, we are still finding little bits of glass in weird places.


Bad Kitty! Bad, bad Kitty!


The good news, however, is that he hasn't been back on the bar since!




Voice Update: Doing really well!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

So . . .

Hi All!

This week has been a bit crazy with classes, going out on observations, and, of course, the eye infection.

Hopefully, things will settle down a bit soon.

Well, I know it will be at least another week of eye drops since I went to the eye doctor again yesterday and learned that the infection, which had been in my left eye, is now in my right eye!


Now I get to put drops in that eye plus the left eye (to try to keep the infection from going BACK there!).

Yee-haw, what fun!

As you may remember, classes last semester got a bit complicated due to conflicts between students, students and teachers, etc. Well, friends, I was hoping that this semester would be much different but . . . we have already had a misunderstanding about something the teacher said in class. This resulted in the teacher being called a racists and a bigot (not in class but apparently via email or phone and to the higher-ups at the college)!


I mean . . . really?????

How frustrating.

We then had to have a fifteen minute conversation about the intent of the teacher's comments and how they weren't meant to offend, merely to illustrate - which most of us understood the first time around.

I think I am getting too old for this.


Voice Update: Doing well but for the past couple of days my neck has been hurting - the muscles, not the larynx. I don't know if it is how I am sleeping or the stress of the infection, classes, observations, etc. It seems like it is always something!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A Squirrel Visit

Hi All!

Happily, my eye infection is on the decline. The blood is all gone - a wonderful sign! However, my eye still hurts -back behind my eyeball. This happens mostly when I am tired - have been using my eyes a lot. For example - when I am communicating in sign language which is all visual, my eye starts to hurt after a while (a couple hours).

Maybe I should call the doctor and ask if this is "normal" for an eye infection. What do you think?

In other news, we have been having daily visits from a friendly male squirrel. I am positive that the visits have NOTHING to do with the food that is out (including some less than edible berries. Edible to humans that is!) and more with the fact that he LIKES US! Yeah, right!
Here is our friend trying very hard to get into our bird feeder. So far, he hasn't managed to figure out how to get the seed but, maybe he will someday!
Then we will need to buy another, more squirrel-proof feeder to continue the "game."

You might ask how we are sure that Mr. Squirrel is a Mr. and not a Mrs. or a Ms. Well, let's just say that there are times when he really "lets it all hang out." If you look very carefully at this picture, you will see what I mean. I apologize for the darkness of the picture but it is taken through tinted windows and from the shadows.

After munching on our fruit offerings (which are more for the birds than for Mr. Squirrel but they are willing to share!), Mr. Squirrel sometimes likes to take a nap on the fence. I have been trying to capture this particular pose for quite a while but, normally, he scurries away while I get my camera ready and I miss the shot.


Doesn't he look comfortable?


Skor has really been enjoying Mr. Squirrel's visits. Sitting on the kitchen windowsill (the feeder is right outside the kitchen window), Skor "chats" to the squirrel the entire length of his visit and then looks quite forlorn when Mr. Squirrel flits off to visit another family or feeder. Sometimes, Skor remains at the window waiting in vain for his little friend to return.


Hubby and I are just happy that our plan for a "kitty entertainment center" has worked out so well. Between the feeder, the plants, the bird bath, and the fruit offerings, Skor has a lot to watch during the day. This keeps him busy and keeps his mind off of other, possibly more destructive, ventures.


Now, if we could just keep Miss Cleo from opening all of the closets when she is bored . . .




Voice Update: Still doing really well. My throat is a bit "crunchier" than usual but I am starting to really work on that. I need to get out the "thumper" to help me in the process.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

And the Verdict is in!

Hi All!

Went to the eye doctor yesterday because I had some blood in my eye. Luckily, it is neatly contained under my eyelid.

Anyway - went to the eye doctor and was told that I have an eye infection - basically I have pink eye!

Not having been around any kiddos with the problem nor any adults from whom to catch the infection, I asked just how I could have gotten it. The nice doctor told me that sometimes it is the result of a cold or upper respiratory infection.

Interestingly, I have just had one of those!

Can we all say "Thanks, Hubby!" together?

So for the next week it is drops in the eye four times a day and trying not to rub my eye. Of course, as soon as someone says "Don't rub your eye!" I feel like doing nothing BUT rubbing my eye. I guess I will just keep a bottle of Purell next to me at all times to disinfect my hands!

What fun!


Voice Update: Doing well. Still not quite up to pre-restaurant quality but not back to horrible voice days. Mom talked to me on the phone yesterday (when I relayed the infection diagnosis) and was surprised that my voice wasn't really bad. These days, my voice has been so good that even a little slip backwards is BAD to me!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Here's Mud - I Mean Blood - In Your Eye

Hi All!

Yesterday's class was fabulous. I think (feel, hope, believe) that this semester will be wonderful. Compared to last semester it would be hard NOT to be but .. . . anyway.

After class last night I went to the Bavarian Grill with two friends from class. We had a good time chatting and listening to the accordion player. Since we were seated at a table right next to the stage, we even got to ask the player to play some songs for us (The Lonely Goatherd from the Sound of Music and In Heaven There is no Beer). It was a fun, fun night. AND the food was delicious!

One the way home my eyes were sort of bothering me but I just thought it was from the length of the day. So- I headed home. No problems. Got home. No problems. Got ready for bed (after playing with the cats and feeding them, etc.). No problems. Tossed and turned in bed (for some reason). No problems.

Woke up this morning. Slight problem.

My left eye/ eye lid hurt. I happened to rub my eye and instantly regretted it! Ouch!

I didn't think much of it and got up and got ready for swimming. Then, I decided to take a look at things in the mirror. My eyelid looked fine - no swelling and no redness. Then I peeled back my eye lid and saw this.



Blood. Plus a spot that seems to be the "epicenter" of everything. Not good.


This is the first time I have ever had blood in my eye (which is why I am not too talented at taking pictures of it - as you can see!)


Blood in the eye plus some aching pain. Not good.


I called my eye doctor (it is time for my eye check up anyway!) and made an appointment for this morning so, hopefully, she will tell me it isn't anything to worry about!


Keep your fingers crossed.




Voice Update: Sitting that close to a stage with an accordion player wasn't a good idea. It was sort of noisy so I had to raise my voice too much. That left me with a nice, hoarse, tired voice which I will no doubt pay for today. When will I learn??

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Musings on Friendship

Hi All!

This morning I was snooping. I admit it! I went on Facebook and snooped in photos on other people's walls.

This is something I do now and again.

Normally, I do this to people who I have not communicated with for a long time. Yes, they are facebook friends but they never comment on my wall nor I on theirs. These people may be friends from long ago who "reconnected" with me on facebook or they may be casual acquaintances I have met more recently.

Today it was friends from the past. One from Junior high/ High school and one from college.

As I scrolled through pictures of children ready for the first day of school and family photos as well as photos from the past, I started musing on friendship.

Now, I have always had lots of friends. It seems like people like me and like to associate with me. However, most of these "friends" are what I would call "surface friends." By that I mean that they are friends who I chat with when the occasion arises and I may even do something with them (like dinner or a movie) but, they are not the kind of friends who come to my house and hang out. Not the kind of friends I spill my guts to. Not the kind of friends who really cares enough to give me a call when I seemingly fall off the face of the earth.

These "surface friends" might hang around for a while - years in fact - but they never really fill that friend space in my life. Some of these friends may even drift away almost before we become friends.

Some "surface friends," especially ones who have been in my life for years, cause me to look back and think "What if?"

What if we had made a deeper connection? What if they had responded to that Christmas card I sent? What if I had asked him/her to my house for dinner once or twice or had gone out with him/her more often?

Would those "surface friends" have become "real friends?"

In fact, some of the friends seemed like "real friends" at the time of our friendship and then drifted away like "surface friends." These friends give me pangs of regret when I snoop on their pages.

If we had stayed friends I might know the children in the photos and the friends shown grouped together at the restaurant.

Oh well!

I guess that is the way things work out, right?

It still makes me lonely for their friendships at times, though.



Voice Update: For some reason, my voice is a bit hoarse this morning. I do have more drainage and have been coughing up "gunk" left over from my "lovely" cold. I am sure that is what is going on. Just not fun to hear. Whenever my voice is less than perfect - even if I am the only one who can tell that it isn't perfect - I start to worry about ABSD coming back full strength again. I wonder if that fear will ever dissipate.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

What's That On the Wall?

Hi All!

Well, I FINALLY got registration for my class figured out. It only took a 30 minute wait in line and then a 45 minute "discussion" with the people in Academic Advising. It wasn't that my English requirement wasn't satisfied now, it was that the computer had no record of my ASL classes (also prerequisites) even though my transcript on the SAME computer had all of the ASL classes listed.


So - after all of that - I went to class. I think it will be a good one this semester. There is a different mix of people and it should be interesting.

This morning, I am sad to say that I did NOT swim. I know - Boo me!

However, I do have an excuse. Not a good one but and excuse nevertheless!

Last night was the first night that Hubby was away at his conference and I can never sleep the first night he is gone! I tossed and turned and tossed and turned well into the wee hours of the morning. When I finally did fall asleep, it seemed like only seconds later my alarm clock was blaring.

What did I do?

I got up and took my medicine I have to take on an empty stomach and then . . . . went back to bed.

After all the mess with the college AND starting classes again I figure I sort of deserve to sleep in a bit.


Something new has been added to my music room.

Sorry the picture is so dim - I took it the other morning in a hurry so . . . didn't take the time to make it "pretty."


This is a frog that Hubby and I bought while in Mexico ages ago. He (the frog, not Hubby) has been wrapped up on my dresser ever since. While cleaning up, I finally ripped open the paper and pulled Senior Frog out.


Now he is literally climbing the walls!


I like him!




Voice Update: Doing well.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Today is the Day

Hi All!

Well, today is the day that classes start again for this semester. However, things are turning out significantly different from what I thought they would be.

First, the only class that I really needed to take was Interpreting III. Of course, that class was cancelled yesterday (through the grapevine because calling would be too logical!). So - ANOTHER semester of classes. I don't think I will ever finish this stinking program!

Next, I have been trying to sign up for Transliteration class (a type of interpreting) and the school has been adamant that I don't have enough English skills to take it. So - after MANY phone calls, I got a call from the school telling me that everything is worked out and I can register. I go online to register and . . . . guess what! I can't register!

And of course, I can't call to get things worked out because yesterday was the first day of classes and the Academic Advisers are all busy.

Should I tell you what I am thinking of the Academic Advisers at this moment?

At least the teacher of Transliteration told me to come to class tonight even if I can't get registered. That is good.

Finally, since Interpreting III is cancelled, I will be finished with classes much earlier than I anticipated. That is a good thing!


Now that I have all of that off my chest.

I swam for the second day in a row (cheers, please!) today. Hubby was up early to head to the airport for his conference and so I got up early too and hit the pool before 7:00 A.M. Nice! The water was a tad bit warmer than it was yesterday but still refreshing!

After a few weeks of not wanting to read (this is a BIG deal since I read ALL the time normally), I forced myself to pick up a book last night and now I am hooked. It is a "fluffy" book - just right for my mood at the moment - and it is good. In fact, I think I will be reading for most of the day (after a quick nap to make up for getting up so early!).

It sounds like a good day!


Voice Update: Doing well despite a cough hanging around now and again. My throat has been a bit sore but I think that is due to drainage (hopefully, the END of the cold not the beginning of another!).

Monday, August 22, 2011

Getting Back Into the Swim!

Hi All!

Splish! Splash!

I went swimming today for the first time in forever (okay - not really forever but for a long time - since before the cruise!)!

My cold/cough/upper respiratory infection is finally gone enough that I can do physical activity without dissolving into a coughing fit so I decided that today was the day! True, I did "cheat" and drive to the pool but - I thought I would start slowly. Well, that and it was 84 when I started out and I didn't feel like getting that sweaty by walking!

The water was nice and wet even if it was a bit warmer than ideal. There is no possible way that it could be nice and cool when we haven't had a day under 100 degrees for about a week now. I guess I can't really complain.

The pool was my own private relaxation station this morning and I enjoyed it to the fullest. The sky was lovely with clouds (! We haven't had many clouds around lately either!) spotting the sky and birds flitting here and there busy with their morning routines.

Then it was back to the house for a shower and my morning "chat" with Mom.

What a wonderful way to start the day.

To be perfectly honest, I am trying to stave off my anxiety about Hubby leaving town tomorrow morning AND classes starting tomorrow afternoon. Two big things that I don't really want to happen.

Hubby is going on a work business trip. I hope he relaxes and has time to socialize with friends while he is away.

Classes. I used to be very enthusiastic about classes. Now. Not so much.

This turn-about in attitude may be because of last semester's conflicts. Then again - it may be because this summer has been such a bummer for me. First the months on the "zombie pills" and then topping off a lovely, wonderful, amazing cruise with a horrible upper repsiratory infection that laid me low for two weeks plus.

Could it be that I didn't really get much of a "break" this summer?

Hubby and I have discussed this and have agreed that if things don't improve attitude-wise, we will have to decide if taking classes this semester is really the right thing for me to do or not. I know he is hoping that I will love classes once I get started.

I hope so.


Voice Update: Still doing remarkably well. Honestly, I thought the coughing would set me back major time but . . . so far that hasn't been the case!