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!