Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Nothing really new

Our weather is still bad.  I am so tired of being cold that I almost miss menopause!  Usually here in Swampland by this time of the new year, we have reached 80 at least once.  So far that hasn't happened.  Perhaps tomorrow when the forecast is high 70's.  I am doubting that however since we haven't seen the sun in days!

My arthritis is really kicking butt.  It is amazing that one session in the pool in July of last year sent my shoulders into such a state.  Many nights the pain accompanied by my insomnia means I don't get much sleep.  I know I have had problems with these shoulders since I was a teen, but they are both really bad.  The diagnosis is arthritis in the left and a torn rotator cuff in the right.  But the real pain began when I was doing some isometric style exercises in the pool.  I just don't understand.

But the shoulders, back, and knees (yes those titanium knees that still hurt) are going to have to wait.  I went to the retinal specialist yesterday. While my right eye is still ok (last time he was seeing some fluid build up), he said it is time for the cataract surgery.  I will see better - of course since I am legally blind in the left eye because I have a "filmy" cataract in that eye - that is a given. 

The state of Texas has done a real number on its teachers - both in service and retired.  Our insurance is costing us a lot more, and the coverage is poor.  I have been waiting to book this cataract stuff.  I really SHOULD have done it last year when the insurance was better.  I didn't think the same insurance company would become so terrible this year, but it has.  But I called to begin the process.  So we will see.

So here it has been another gripe session.  Moaning and groaning about health in general.  Sorry about that.  It seems that is life in these parts these days.  G has back problems that the ortho said is treated with surgery.  That didn't go over well at all.  So they are going conservative with injections and physical therapy.  Our days seem to be spent deciding who has what doctor's appointment.  So that's where the mindset is.

Stay warm!  Let's all look forward to spring!

Saturday, January 20, 2018

FINALLY melted!

I took pictures after three days in the deep freeze, but I am just too lazy to download them from the camera, but we still had snow (ice) on roofs, cars, and shady places in the streets.  This is Southeast Texas for goodness sakes!  We are semi-tropical.  This is ridiculous.

Schools were closed for two days, and well they should have been.  Our temperature didn't get out of freezing both of those days.  I knew that the buses would not run.  And they didn't. 

I am not looking forward to our gas bill.  We have two furnaces that ran A LOT!  Fortunately, we had gotten our firewood before all this, so we were good on that.  Our fireplace is really an important asset to our heat in the den.  Even with new ductwork that should have been able to send the air better, the master bedroom gets the lion share of the air (both a/c and heat).  It gets so hot in there, but the den, kitchen, and breakfast room get just a little so we have been freezing!

Today we are to have (finally!!!) temperatures in the 60's, but it is cloudy with occasional showers.  That makes it seem a lot colder.  Tomorrow temps in the 70's.  I wish the sun were to be out, the rain will be greater.

So that is what is going on in Southeast Texas.  With the flu rampant, and the terrible weather, we are sticking close to the house.

Hope all it better in your neck of the woods!

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

This and that

First - there won't be much done today.  We are once again under mixed precipitation and a winter storm warning.  What??  Tropical Houston!  Yes - right now here in Little Sub of Houston it is 27 and falling at 10:00 AM.  My car and roof are covered in sleet.  Our neighbors are without power - with the repair being done with repair being done between 11 am and 4 pm.  Thank God for our generator (that we got for hurricanes but use more in the cold!).

I. Am. Tired. Of. This.  We were at the SSB with my son and his family for New Years. It SNOWED, and the temps ran in the teens.  People - we are in the south!  This isn't supposed to happen.

Today this freeze covers the state and all over schools are closed, governmental offices are closed.  The joke is that Texas is closed.  And, sadly it is true.  But it is a good thing - we aren't prepared for this stuff!


In other news, my cataract isn't getting one bit better.  I really am legally blind in my left eye.  When I went to the Retinal Specialist last week I got the "wonderful" news that now there is a little fluid under the retina in the right eye.  That means the dry macular degeneration is affecting the right eye.   I am really upset.  That will mean injections in both eyes. 

My shoulders (right - torn rotator cuff, left - no cartilage to buffer bones) are terrible.  Now the sciatia isn't bad, but the degeneration is causing a lot of pain.  I cannot stand for much more than 15 minutes.

Getting old isn't for the weak.  I am lamenting as so many of us do - if I had known I was going to live this long...   Well if I had known I would fall apart like this, I think I would not have done things like moving heavy antique furniture upstairs by my self!

Peace to you all.

Saturday, December 16, 2017


I knew my vision was getting worse, but I didn't realize just how bad it really was until I began making some Christmas presents for my dear friends.

I had not used my embroidery machine since July when I hurt my shoulders.  They are upstairs, and those stairs are nicknamed "killer" because they are steep, and the very bottom one can be in a shadow - thus missed. 

The minute I sat down, I realized just how little I can see clearly in my left eye.  That cataract is really bad.  I know I am legally blind in that eye at this point. 

I was so thankful for a GOOD self-threader on the machine I was using.  It pretty much never fails, unlike the other one.  I have almost no depth perception.  Which is why I don't drive the main freeway that links my house with downtown and even church.  I take back roads because that freeway is under construction with extremely skinny lanes and lots of bumps. 

I guess sometime after the first of the year I will see my ophthalmologist for the surgery.  I don't know if it would be worth my while to wait for my next scheduled appointment which is in July.  The retinal doctor thought I would be doing the surgery soon. 

This whole situation with my eyes is so ironic anyway.  When I was teaching, our first week was spent on lab safety.  The kids were instructed to use safety goggles.  I would preach to them just how precious their vision was - "you only have one set of eyeballs."  Now look.  I am losing my vision. 

But the gifts got made, but the get together doesn't seem to be happening.  I put out the original emails and a follow-up, but I looked to them for setting a date and place.  That didn't happen.  If nothing else, I will just put the things away.  I can either participate in the craft show next year - or keep them as gifts either for these friends or someone. 

It was nice to get back to using my machines.  I have a "pig purse" to make for one of the granddaughters and I will do that probably next week.  But it pointed out just how old I am getting and how many faculties are disappearing.  I sat too long the last time pushing to finish, and that hurt my BACK. 

Geesh - getting old isn't for sissies!  I probably won't be back before Christmas - so Merry Christmas to all.

Friday, December 08, 2017

My new or continuing nemisis

Amazon.  While I have to be totally honest - about 99% of my transactions are great, there is still the nagging problem of getting my orders.

Back in early November, I ordered the book Wonder,  Now I know I can go watch the movie, but I don't want to do that for several reasons the primary being I am afraid I will fall in the theater.

That sounds drastic, doesn't it?  With my vision deteriorating as it is doing (now a special kind of cataract that has a "film" on it to further distort vision), I just don't see well with the macular degeneration coupled with glaucoma. Plus, after falling twice in about 2 weeks, well I have had enough.  So I don't want to go to a theater.

I also enjoy reading the book rather than watching parts of it in a movie.  So I ordered it.

Aaaaaannnnnnnnd - it was delivered.  Yes, it surely was.  The only problem, it shows it was delivered to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.  Yes, that is a little problem.  I happen to live in the Houston, TEXAS area.  Just next door, doncha know.

So I notified the seller.  Crickets commenced.  I notified the seller again.  Crickets louder.  I did the A-Z guarantee on Amazon.  You guessed it.  And today I requested a refund.  We. Will. See.

I do have to say all the Christmas presents I ordered arrived on time - one early. 

The early one was a problem too when I think about it.  I bought my kids cutting boards to go with the spices I had ordered from another company.  Amazon was out.  So I thought I would be sure to have my name ready when they came in.  We were going to be at the SSB, and if the boards were not in stock, they would be delivered when we got home.  NOPE!  They came on Wednesday when we were gone and not returning until the following Monday.  Fortunately, Krissi could come by to get them so the package gremlins that like to strike didn't get them.  She wanted to know what was in the package, but I put her off - since it was partially her Christmas present!!

So all MAY be good with Amazon.  Hopefully I get my refund, and hopefully, the bra I ordered months ago not knowing it had to come from China will be here on the 14th!

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Little trials

I am cheap!  I don't like to pay a lot for a wristwatch, so I go to my favorite place - Amazon.  I can usually find one I like for about $10.  Then by the time I get tired of it, I don't mind replacing it!

Last week I was to take my daughter to an outpatient procedure.  I was getting dressed in the dressing area with the tile floor.  I was already not happy with the current watch I had because it was difficult to put on.  The band (metal) was one that would completely open, so clasping it with one hand was difficult.

As fate would have it, it dropped.  It landed crystal down.  I immediately assumed that the crystal would be shattered, but when I picked it up all appeared to be well.  It was in tack and still running, so I assumed all was just fine.

Since my granddaughter also wanted to be there for moral support for her mom but needed to be in school that afternoon, G took daughter and I rode with my granddaughter.  That means we were a bit later getting there since we had to drop the younger daughter at school at the same time my daughter was to be at the hospital.

We got into the room where Krissi was waiting for her procedure.  I looked at my watch to see how much longer we had until her scheduled procedure.  It was 8:05.  Ok - great.  We all four chatted for a while.  Things were moving along well, and I looked at my watch again.  It was 8:05!!

This watch I had was a fake chronograph.  Around those dials were little rings.  Apparently, when this watch dropped and landed on the tile, it dislodged one of those rings.  It was lodged between the 8 and the 5!!  The watch hand just jumped around a bit!

But then the real trial began.  I went online to shop for the replacement.  I first went to the discontinued watches.  Some were priced as low as 49 cents - but the shipping was usually about $5.  So I went to the regular ones to get my Prime shipping.  And here the trial begins.

I shopped on Friday afternoon and got my order in.  I was to get my watch on Sunday by 8pm.  BUT I knew I was in trouble when it went to Amazon's shipping.  Sunday 9pm - no watch.  I went to the orders page and there it was delivery was from two to four days later.  Watching the page for tracking, that watch bounced around Houston for two days before going out for delivery.

The watch DID finally arrive on Wednesday, but I am so disgusted with the change in their delivery policy.  If one questions something not making the two-day delivery, they say they cannot promise.  Well, that is supposed to be their selling point for being a Prime member. 

I am still buying from them - I got my daughter-in-law's lists for her kids.  Those came as they should, but I have one order still wandering someplace.  Amazon replaced it, but the inconvenience was still there.

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Tale of Woe

Or how I am becoming a real Klutz!

First of all - holding to my determination to keep this blog politically free - I will only say I am so disturbed and disgusted by the events in South/Central Texas and the responses to it.

My sad tale begins two weeks ago.  We have a chest freezer that is not frost free, thus needing defrosting at times.  We had gotten about 2 years past defrosting, or so it seemed.

G kept making snarky remarks about it, so I told him that on this particular Monday we would do the task.  Plenty of fair warning - about four days.  So he unplugged this freezer on Sunday night so it would begin to loosen the frost that held the baskets like prisoners.

The morning was wearing on, and there was no movement on his part.  So I began taking things out of the freezer.  I was able to loosen a lot of the binding frost and start removing the baskets.  I put them around the breakfast room and into the attached den.  So where was the lord and master?

He had found an old briefcase and was sitting down going through it.  Then going to the shredder that was behind the breakfast table.  Of course, I was the one removing food from the freezer.

I wanted to make sure to try to organize the freezer as much as possible which is a task much like herding 50 cats.  I got the bright idea to use three laundry baskets to place the different proteins in.  One poultry, one pork and one for beef. 

I put them close to the utility room door so I would reach them easily.  But L&M was still shredding cr*p.  So they were too close to the door really, but I thought I had a reasonable path. 

When I was removing berries from one of the baskets still in the freezer, I had to go across where these baskets were into more of the den.  I thought I had cleared one of them well, but I didn't.  My three toes on my left foot got tangled, and I went down. HARD.  Remember - I have two titanium knees and am not supposed to even kneel.  I hit my on my right knee, and the pain was tremendous.

As fate would have it, there was a basket that had chicken breasts in it.  I immediately put one on that knee.  I became fast friends with that chicken breast, but finally decided that I really needed to get up. 

My biggest fear since having my knees replaces is falling.  The strength has never returned to my legs, and I really use more upper body strength to get up.  Well - remember the shoulder situation?  (And Marti - no I am not going to have either rotator cuff repair NOR replacement on them!!!)  Using the breakfast table and a chair, I was up.  Hurting, but up.  And then - I got to finish the freezer with minimal help.  Good thing I am not really a physically violent person - or, well let's just say G is still alive.

On Saturday of that week, we looked to be getting some fall/winter weather.  We have about 8 Hawaiin flower plants - Plumeria.  They can take a lot, but they do not like temps lower than 45.  So since they do well just unpotted or dug out if in the ground, that is what G was going to do.  But he needed help (hahahahaha - could have been MY chance).

I helped.  That is until I stepped down off the deck, and something felt like a tendon tore in my right thigh and hip.  But where do you go on a weekend that is covered by insurance and not cost $$$.   Not many, so I suffered,

It killed me to put a lot of weight on my right leg.  It sent me into spasms of pain.  AND we were scheduled to trek to the SSB on Wednesday.  Come Wednesday, Shadow decided to become a hidden cat.  Looking for him - like under beds, etc. aggravated my hip.  I was really in pain for 5 hours.

I wish this were the end of this story.  On Thursday we had to go into town to get Clyde his rattlesnake vaccine booster and used this trip to get groceries. 

In Texas, the opening of White Tail Deer Season is a BIG deal.  It brings LOTS of money in.  The hunters hit the little grocery store like a swarm of locusts, so on Thursday, they were preparing for this influx.

When I walked in, there were pallets of supplies EVERYWHERE.  It was difficult to get through the aisles, but the refrigerated sections along the sides and back were almost impassable.  I had to backtrack at one point in the back.  There was a man who was trying to get by, and I was going to try to move to an open spot to allow him to pass while I looked for my item.  I was backing into the end of an aisle that looked clear, but just as he was warning me, I was tripped by a single empty pallet at the end cap of that aisle.

You can imagine the rest.  Other than scraping the back of my left ankle pretty badly, I wasn't hurt.  In fact, my hip was better!! I don't know what happened, and other than some residual soreness I am better.  BUT I knew the problem was getting up. 

I was so terribly embarrassed.  I am not one to be able to accept help.  Since there is no rotational movement in these knees, it is hard to get set up.  To make a long story short, I finally got up.  The store is scared to death I will sue - which I won't.  Their insurance company has called home, but I haven't returned the call yet since we are still at the SSB, but it looks like things are OK.  For a while before this, I really was afraid I was going to need a hip replacement now, but I think I may escape that.

Yes - I have become a Klutz I guess!