Monday, February 28, 2011

Life is good,,,,,,,

Greetings!!!

Tomorrow I will be posting some pictures of my latest ceramics project I have been working on.  I don't usually work on Sundays as I believe that day should be set aside for the Lord, but yesterday I got into the craft room and went to town.  I did it more just for the shear joy of it rather than for work.  I am making a set of six Sundae Bowls.  I might just keep these for myself, LOL.  I keep very little for myself but I am liking how these look so far, so we will see.

I had a lot on my mind yesterday and just wanted to get off by myself and pray about it and not deal with a lot else so off to my work room I went.  So it actually still was a day for the Lord too but I was working, sort of, LOL.  Anyhow, I think these bowls will be cute and can't wait to show you.  Once I get these done I am going to work on a bunch of salt and pepper shaker sets.  I have a craft show coming up in April and need to get a bunch of stuff done for that.  I am so far behind schedule its not funny.

Tomorrow, Frank and I will be smoke free for 3 weeks now and doing really good with it.  I am so very proud of him.  Before we started I told him I knew he was a strong willed and determined man and I believe he could do anything he set his mind to.  Well, he proved me right!!  We have gotten this far, we will make it for sure.  You know, when you quit, you will always have some cravings, that never goes away completely, but over time it does get easier to get past those cravings without running for a cigarette.  Neither of us have gained any weight either, so I am very happy about that!!

But tomorrow I am still starting back on my diet.  I need to get the rest of the weight off that I gained while being on Lyrica a few years ago.  I am determined this is the year I reclaim my life, from smoking, from too much weight, from health concerns, and I am moving on!!

Life is good,,,, we are so lucky.  God gives us a life full of second chances.  We can make mistakes and we get a second chance to get it right.  We can keep moving on!!  God is good,,  all the time!!  I have a second chance to quit smoking, I have a second chance to get the weight back off, I have a second chance to get my business going,,,,,,,  Life is good!!!

Until next time,,,,,,, Blessings!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

High protein, low carb diet,,,,,,

Greetings!

I have known for some time now that a high protein, low carb diet is better for you and will help you to lose weight.  I have been on it before and lost a tremendous amount of weight.  Then I kind of fell out of the routine and put a few pounds back on before landing at a plateau for the last year or so.

I bring this up because I just finished reading an article about this very thing in the February issue of Reader's Digest.  If you need to lose weight I strongly suggest you get this issue and read it.

It would appear that all the folks that called Dr. Atkins a quack for his low carb diet are now eating crow or should be, LOL.  The fact of the matter is simple in my opinion.  God did not give all this high sugar, high processed foods to Adam and Eve.  He never intended for us to over farm our lands so that we would have to dump a ton of chemicals on the land so anything would grow.  He expected us to be good stewards and take care of the land so it would take care of us.

Another good diet to look at is a book called "The Maker's Diet".  I try to look at food in this way.  If it was not around during biblical times, if they could not produce it during biblical times, it should not go in my mouth.

I do not believe we should totally eliminate sugar intake.  But I do believe if we get that sugar from a natural source such as fruit and vegetables then it should be OK.  For example, beets are very high in sugar content, but they are also filled with antioxidants, something our bodies need.  Do I give up beets entirely?  No, but I will give up pickled beets because they have processed sugar added.  Sweet potatoes are extremely good for regulating blood sugar, but they have sugar in them.  Instead of having them with brown sugar, marshmallows and whatever, I will bake them and just add some butter to them and eat them like I would a regular baked potato.

Ah, and here is another argument you hear about, margarine vs butter, which is better for you?  I say butter is better in moderation.  They could make butter during biblical times but not margarine.  Have you ever tried putting a tablespoon of margarine and one of butter in a hot skillet to see which one melts faster and completely?  The butter does.  Margarine has God only knows what in it but it sure does not melt good.  I can't imagine that moving through my arteries.  But butter melts smooth and flows easily if you move the pan around.  That would actually move through my system where margarine most certainly is going to get stuck some place.

Back to the article a minute.  There was one line that really got my attention.  To paraphrase, "we have always been told to lose weight you must eat less and exercise more."  But did you know that when you eat less and exercise more you get hungrier and therefore pig out or binge more?  Dietitians, nutritionists are telling us to do the very thing that will make us gain weight and keep us fat!!

The article starts off with one important question.  "If obesity researchers are so smart, why are we so large?"  Then he goes on to tell us that in the past 40 years the obesity rates have gone from 13% to 33% in the last national survey.  That is a pretty huge jump in my opinion.  Especially if, they are correct in saying eat less fat, less protein, etc.  That percentage should have gone down, not up.  Everyone is or has tried some sort of a diet.  You see new ones coming out all the time.  Now some berry is suppose to make you thin.  Come on, give me a break!

I am probably one of those people who have tired just about every diet out there and I can honestly say, the high protein, low carb diet is the best.  I might take in a bit more sugar from veges and fruits than Adkins would like but I eliminate it from the areas that I think are the worse, processed sugars and flours.

Well, after reading this article and so many others that are saying essentially the same thing, I think it is time for me to knuckle down and get back on the high protein low carb diet and get the rest of this weight off. 

For those of you who do not know, I have fibromyalgia and a few years ago we tried the Lyrica for the pain.  I was one of the unfortunate ones that had weight gain as a side effect.  I more than doubled my weight in 6 months.  No more Lyrica for me!!  It did help the pain but the weight gain was horrible.  Oh, how it went on so easy, but it sure is not easy getting it off!!  I have about 1/3 of it off and I really want to get the rest off.  It certainly will help how I feel to get that off.

I am going to start this soon and I will keep you posted with my progress.

Until next time,,,,,,,, Blessings!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Snow,,,,,,,,,,

Greetings!

When I went to bed last night we were under a "winter storm warning".  They were calling for 6-8 inches of snow with lots of blowing and drifting.  Perhaps another blizzard.  It had just barely started to snow but I went on off to dreamland.  What will be, will be was my attitude of the evening.  I did say a prayer we did not get as much as they said we were going to.  :-)

I woke up this morning to the bright light that only comes from the reflection of snow on the ground.  Did my usual morning routine, feeding the cats and dog, checking emails and having my coffee.  Then I finally ventured out with Rusty to finally find we had only received 2 inches of snow and not the larger amounts called for.  Hallelujah!!  Thank you Jesus!!

Even though I still have to shovel a bit and at least clean off the sidewalk it was not the hard, heavy, wet snow we had the last time and much easier to shovel.

Rusty romped in the yard a bit while I took some pictures and shoveled.  I did not dig out the two vehicles because this stuff will melt off fast and is not that deep.

Here are some pictures.  :-)

The snow was just wet enough to cling to everything.



Snow is always pretty hanging on to branches.


I just love how the snow sits on this little pine tree, so pretty.


Looks like a cat took a stroll up the street this morning, LOL.


Won't be long and it will all be melted away.


I thought this was interesting how the snow formed a perfect ring around the edge of Rusty's water bowl.


That's my boy!!!  Rusty loves the snow, but he doesn't want to stay out in it long.  Getting smart in his old age, LOL.


Hope you enjoyed the pictures!
Until next time,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, Blessings!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Not starting seeds today after all,,,,,

Greetings!

I am a bit bummed.  I was all set to start my seeds today.  I had bought a new shop light to be the light over the seed trays, but low and behold after I got it hung I realized I had the wrong size bulbs.  :-(  I will not get back out to the store until some time next week to pick up the correct size bulbs.

We are under a winter storm advisory for tonight into tomorrow.  Expecting 5 - 7 inches of snow.  I will do well just to shovel us out and you know I will be paying for it with fibro pain.  Oh well, such is life.

So, I will keep this short.  Sorry for the delay but I was all set to write about starting seeds with pictures so you could see the process step by step. 

Until next time,,,,,,,,, Blessings!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Slow day today,,,,,

Greetings!

I was going to write about starting seeds and take some pictures as I actually start my seeds,,,, but I am not going to start them today after all.  So, hopefully tomorrow I will get to it.  Plan on me posting later in the day so I can take some pictures as I set up my seed trays and get the seeds planted.

I know I slept fairly decent last night but I am still very tired and almost feel drugged out.  I am sure it is the meds doing this.  :-(

I saw the doctor yesterday and I guess I am going to feel like this if I want to get a handle on the pain.  Seems I am damned if I do and damned if I don't.  Take meds, feel drugged out but less pain,, don't take meds, live in horrible pain.  Some choice huh?  I also have to see a neurologist due to the severe and very frequent migraines and the confusion and memory loss I have been having.  Unfortunately the earliest the neurologist could get me in was the end of April.  Hurry up and wait!!! 

Well, I need a nap again.  You all have a good day and I will be posting later in the day tomorrow so I can put up some pictures too.

Until next time,,,,,,,,,,Blessings!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The chemicals on our food,,,,,

Greetings,

I got this story off a news report and copied and pasted it.  I often talk about the garbage that is finding its way into our bodies by way of commercially produced food.  This is just a small sampling in this article.  I am sure you will find it interesting!

10 dirty fruits and veggies. partner

by , on Tue Feb 8, 2011 10:27am PST1233 CommentsPost a CommentRead More from This Author »Report Abuse..Share
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By Ashley Macha

Are the fruits and vegetables you buy clean enough to eat?

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) studied 100,000 produce pesticide reports from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to create a list of 49 of the dirtiest and cleanest produce.

So before you hit the grocery store, see how some of your favorite fruits and veggies measured up.

Did one of your favorites make the list? Don't worry, the EWG recommends purchasing organic or locally grown varieties, which can lower pesticide intake by 80% versus conventionally grown produce.

Celery
This stalky vegetable tops the dirty list. Research showed that a single celery stalk had 13 pesticides, while, on the whole, celery contained as many as 67 pesticides.

Chemicals fester on this vegetable as it has no protective skin and its stems cup inward, making it difficult to wash the entire surface of the stalk. It’s not easy to find locally grown celery, so if you like this crunchy veggie, go organic.

Peaches
Peaches are laced with 67 different chemicals, placing it second on the list of most contaminated fruits and vegetables. They have soft fuzzy skin, a delicate structure, and high susceptibility to most pests, causing them to sprayed more frequently.

: 10 heart-healthy dessert recipes

Strawberries
This red, juicy fruit has a soft, seedy skin, allowing easier absorption of pesticides. Research showed that strawberries contained 53 pesticides. Try to buy strawberries at a local farmer’s market for a sweet dessert.

Apples
Apples are high-maintenance fruit, needing many pesticides to stave off mold, pests, and diseases. The EWG found 47 different kinds of pesticides on apples, and while produce washes can help remove some of the residue, they’re not 100% effective.

Blueberries (domestic)
These antioxidant-rich berries have a thin layer of skin that allows chemicals to more easily contaminate the fruit. Domestic blueberries were loaded with 13 pesticides on a single sample, according to the EWG. Imported blueberries also made the list at No. 14 for the dirtiest produce.

: 10 refreshing blueberry recipes

Sweet bell pepper
This crunchy, yet thin-skinned, vegetable is highly susceptible to pesticides. According to the EWG, sweet bell peppers showed traces of 63 types of pesticides. While some pesticides can be washed away, many still remain.

Spinach, kale, collard greens
These leafy green vegetables are on the list, with spinach loaded with 45 different kinds of pesticides and kale 57.

In 2006, Dole recalled bagged baby spinach after multiple E. coli illnesses associated with the vegetable made their way across the country.

: 10 foods that can make you sick

Grapes (imported)
These tiny fruit have extremely thin skins, allowing for easy absorption of pesticides. And think twice before buying imported wine. The grapes that go into the wine could be coming from vineyards that use too many pesticides.

Potatoes
Have you ever indulged in a potato skin at your favorite restaurant? You might want to think twice before eating the skin. This spud was highly laced with pesticides—36, according to the EWG—that are needed to prevent pests and diseases.

: 5 new ways to savor your spuds

Cherries
Cherries, like blueberries, strawberries, and peaches, have a thin coating of skin—often not enough to protect the fruit from harmful pesticides.

Research showed cherries grown in the U.S. had three times the amount of pesticides as imported cherries. Because cherries contain ellagic acid, an antioxidant that neutralizes carcinogens, it’s worthwhile to buy organic or seek imported ones. .

You can find the complete article without all the crazy stuff it seems to have copied in here at yahoo.com  Folks, be careful what you eat, you are pickling yourself and keeping yourself sick eating commercially raised foods.

Until next time,,,,,,,,,,,, Blessings!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Spring is here,,,,

Greetings!!

You might think that the threat of snow would not be a sign of spring, but indeed it is.  Spring always comes with fluctuating temperatures and weather.  We will see rain, snow, and lots of sunshine the coming weeks.  We will also see temperatures in the 20s and 30s and temperatures in the 60s and 70s.  A typical spring!!

Today it is raining here in Central Illinois but they are calling for some snow later tonight and possibly tomorrow.  The snow will not accumulate.  The temperatures are to drop off for a couple of days then rise right back up again.

Unfortunately, this type of weather we have every spring is not good for my fibromyalgia.  The pain level is flared up pretty bad.  I do what I can.  I feel bad for my dog because he does not like to go out in the rain.  I will take him on a short walk after I finish this post.  I took him down the street and back about 2 hours ago.  He had his ears folded down and tail tucked between his legs looking as if he had just been scolded.  He does not like rain because he associates it with thunder and thunder scares the bajeebees out of him.  I can tolerate the pain but it breaks my heart to see him so scared.  He has been sighing since we came back.  He knows this weather means we will not be spending time in the yard today.

Do dogs get depressed?  Can they get cabin fever?  He sure acts like he does.  I can tell he is ready for warmer weather when I will be out working in the yard and he will spend more time outside with me.  I am looking forward to it too!!

Today I have some errands to run then will meet with the "girls" for lunch.  We try to do this every Monday, but do miss occasionally.  Tomorrow I have a doctor's appointment and need to try to figure out what I can do to ease this pain at least a little.  Without all the horrifying side effects of the meds!!!

Wednesday will be 2 full weeks smoke free.  I think we have this beat!!  Hallelujah!!  Praise the Lord!!

Hope you all have an awesome day!!
Until next time,,,,,,, Blessings!!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Greetings!!

We had a beautiful day yesterday to go to Arthur, IL.  The sun was shining and it was plenty warm to have either a light jacket or a sweater on.  The only bad news of the trip is the shop I had planned on selling my ceramics in has gone out of business and sold out.  The new owners have a lamp shop and antique shop and do not want hand made items.  :-(  So now I have to regroup and look for a new venue some place else to sell my ceramics.

But I did take some pictures while in Arthur that I will share with you.  A lot of the pictures were actually taken from a moving car as we were heading back home.  There were not very many buggies out yesterday which I found a bit odd on such a beautiful day.  But I got a lot of shots of farms, and a few of downtown Arthur.

If you are not from Illinois then you might be surprised at the openness of this area.  Farms are usually pretty big and spread out.


Vine St. is the main business drag in Arthur.  This little store has a lot of home made cheeses, jams and jellies.


They don't seem to be in a hurry to get the Christmas decorations down.  I love the awning over the walk on this side of the street.


Yoder's Lamps is now where the shop was that I had hoped to sell in again.


This is on 133 heading east on our way to Beachy's.  There sign is so small you almost can't see it.  Can you find it in this picture?


Some farms on the way to Beachy's.  It looked like there was either an auction or a wedding going on there when we went by.


Yup, that's Beachy's, my favorite store!!  I picked up just a few things this time,,, pickled beets, pickled mushrooms, a few spices and some snacks.  But I still love to go and shop, LOL.


Beachy's is becoming so popular they have had to add on a couple of times since I first started going there and we noticed yesterday they have recently enlarged their parking lot.


This is at the 4 way stop at Rt. 133 and Vine St., we are heading west.


All the pictures I post now will be along Rt. 133 as we are heading back home.


An Amish home and cabinet shop.  There are several custom kitchen cabinet builders in the Arthur area.



This family builds custom fences.


I just like this old house, so pretty, the picture does not do it justice.


Some of the farmers have both dairy farms and grain farms.


I hope you enjoyed the pictures!  I have a few others I might post another day.

Until next time,,,,,,,,  Blessings!!

Friday, February 18, 2011

I love going to Amish Country,,,,

Greetings!!

Today Frank and I are going down to Arthur, IL about an hour and a half south of here.  This is Illinois Amish Country.  Although Arthur is not the only Amish settlement in Illinois it is certainly the biggest and the most popular I believe.

I have a few things on the agenda for today.  I need to stop at the tourist center and pick up some brochures to send to a lady I have been emailing with and met on Amish America.  I had promised her a couple of months ago I would pick some up my next trip down there and then the weather turned bad and we went no where, LOL. 

Then I need to go to Buggy Wheel Crafts and Antiques and see about getting in a booth again there.  The owner rents out booth spaces to those who sell crafts and antiques.  I sold there before and did well, but its been a long time, so I want to talk to the owner.

Then we are going to one of my favorite stores called Beachy's.  Beachy's is a bulk foods store.  If you buy whole grains, cereals, baking items, spices, oils and candy items this is the place for you.  All items are packaged down into smaller packages but you still get the bulk prices.  You can not go wrong at Beachy's, especially if you bake.

We'll go out to eat while we are there and if we feel up to it and have the time I want to try to find this new craft supply store I heard about recently.  If not, I will save that for another trip.  I am taking the camera with me and hope to get a few photos while I am down there.

The weather is to be in the mid 50s today with lots of sunshine so that will make for a nice trip.

I hope to post some pictures for you tomorrow.  Have a great day!

Until next time,,,,,,,,,,, Blessings

Thursday, February 17, 2011

A beautiful day,,,,,

Greetings!

It is another beautiful day here in Central Illinois!!  The high today should be in the low to mid 60s.  Makes me want to get into the garden.  But it is way to wet and soggy with all the snow melting.  So I will need to try to be patient.  Hard thing to do when the weather is so nice.

Rusty, (my dog) has been enjoying being out for the last couple of hours.  Like mommy he is also ready for spring and spending more time outside.  Winter was rough this year with lots of snow and also bitter cold temperatures.  We are ready for a much needed break.

Tomorrow, Frank and I are taking a trip down to Amish Country.  My favorite place to go!!  It is still suppose to be warm out with plenty of sunshine.  I need to make a few stops.  I am picking up tourist info to send to a lady that I talk to on Amish America.  I have to go to Buggy Wheel Crafts and Antiques to see about renting a booth again this year.  I want to go to the craft store I heard about recently.  And to Beachy's to pick up a few spices, pickled beets and some nuts.  I want to show Frank the butcher shop and of course we will go out to eat before we head back.  It will be a full day but a fun one too.  :-)

I would love to move down into that area.  I feel such peace down there.  It is a simpler, easy going lifestyle that I would so enjoy.  I like going to the butcher shop and the discount grocery.  I like shopping in the quaint little stores downtown Arthur.  I love being in the country.  I guess I am just an old fashioned girl, wanting to live an old fashioned kind of life.  :-)

I hope you all have a wonderful day!!

Until next time,,,,,,,, Blessings

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

7 days smoke free,,,,,

Greetings!!

Frank and I have gotten through our first week smoke free.  Best news, we did not even bite each other's head off, LOL.  We started day 8 today.  I think we are going to make it!!

We are taking Chantix to help us quit that stinky habit.  It is helping a lot.  We still want a cigarette from time to time and we will always have that twinge once in a while.  But we are able to get through the cravings and not run for the cigarettes.

I am so proud of Frank.  We both knew this was going to be hard on him because he didn't really want to quit.  He has to for his heart and to be put on the heart transplant list.  When you want to quit mentally it is much easier on you.  But when you don't want to, what a battle that can be mentally.  But Frank resolved to quit and he has been successful thus far. 

I knew he was a strong and stubborn man and could do anything he set his mind to and he is proving that now.  I am so proud to see him do this!!  He is also taking other steps to help his health, changing his diet a little at a time.  Trying to walk more, etc.  Way to go Frank!!!  You are my champ!!!

If you have been thinking about quitting smoking, don't just think about it, take control of your life and do it!!  Use whatever method you feel will help you most and take your health back.  Be strong, be determined,  be stubborn and just do it!!!

Until next time,,,,,, Blessings!!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Idiots among us,,,, LOL

Greetings!!

I got these cute little jokes in an email the other day and thought I would share them. 
I'm pretty tired today so going to rest and just muddle around the house.  I plan on getting some glazing done too, just not going to over do things and work too hard.

IDIOTS AMONG US,,,,

 IDIOT  SIGHTING

                               When my husband and I arrived at an automobile dealership to pick up our car, we were told the keys had been locked in it.  We went to the service department and found a mechanic working
 feverishly to unlock the driver side door.  As I watched from the passenger side, I instinctively tried the door handle and discovered that it was unlocked.  'Hey,' I announced to the technician, 'it's open!'  His
 reply: 'I know.  I already got that side.'
                                 This was at the Ford dealership in  Canton, MS

                                 IDIOT SIGHTING:
                                 We had to have the garage door repaired. The Sears repairman told us that one of our problems was that we did not have a 'large' enough motor on the opener. I thought for a minute, and
 said that we had the largest one Sears made at that time, a 1/2 horsepower.  He shook his head and said, 'Lady, you need a  1/4 horsepower.' I responded that 1/2 was larger than 1/4. He said, 'NO, it's
 not.' Four is larger than two.'   We haven't used Sears repair since.

                                 IDIOT  SIGHTING:
                                 My daughter and I went through the McDonald's take-out window and I gave the clerk a $5 bill.  Our total was $4.25, so I also handed her a quarter.  She said, 'You gave me too much
 money.' I said, 'Yes I know, but this way you can just give me a dollar bill back.  She sighed and went to get the manager, who asked me to repeat my request. I did so, and he handed me back the quarter, and said
 'We're sorry but we could not do that kind of thing.'  The clerk then proceeded to give me back $1 and 75 cents in change.
                                 Do not confuse the clerks at McD's.

                                IDIOT  SIGHTING

                                 I live in a semi rural area. We recently had a new neighbor call the local township administrative office to request the removal of the DEER CROSSING sign on our road. The reason:
 'Too many deer are being hit by cars out here! I don't think this is a good place for them to be crossing anymore.'


                                 IDIOT  SIGHTING

                                 My daughter went to a local Taco Bell and ordered a taco. She asked the person behind the counter for 'minimal lettuce.' He said he was sorry, but they only had iceberg lettuce.


                                 IDIOT  SIGHTING

I was at the airport, checking in at the gate when an airport employee asked, 'Has anyone put anything in your baggage without your knowledge?' To which I replied, 'If it was without
 my knowledge, how would I know?' He smiled knowingly and nodded, 'That's why we ask.'
                               Happened in Birmingham ,  Ala.

                                 IDIOT  SIGHTING
                                 The stoplight on the corner buzzes when it's safe to cross the street.  I was crossing with an intellectually challenged coworker of mine. She asked if I knew what the buzzer was for.  I explained that it signals blind people when the light is red. Appalled, she responded, 'What on earth are blind people doing driving?!'
                       She's a probation officer in Wichita , KS

                                 IDIOT SIGHTING
                                 At a good-bye luncheon for an old and dear coworker who was leaving the company due to 'downsizing,' our manager commented cheerfully, 'This is fun. We should do this more often.' Not another word was spoken. We all just looked at each other with that deer-in-the-headlights stare. 
              This was a lunch at  Texas Instruments.

                                IDIOT SIGHTING
                                I work with an individual who plugged her power strip back into itself and for the sake of her life, couldn't understand why her system would not turn on.
                             A deputy with the Dallas County Sheriff 's office, no less.

                        AND FINALLY..
                How would you pronounce this child's name?

                                         "Le-a"
                                Leah??                NO
                                Lee - A??            NOPE
                                 Lay - a??             NO
                                 Lei??                   Guess Again.

                                 This child attends a school in  Kansas
 City, Mo. Her mother is irate because everyone is getting her name wrong.

                                 It's pronounced "Ledasha", When the
 Mother was asked about the pronunciation of the name, she said, "the dash
 don't be silent."

                                SO, if you see something come across your
 desk like this please remember to pronounce the dash.

               If dey axe you why, tell dem de dash don't be silent.


                                 STAY ALERT!
        They walk among  us ..... they VOTE and  they REPRODUCE!!!!! 


                                  Hahahahaaaaa!!

Until next time,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, Blessings,,,, and keep laughing, it makes people think you are crazy, LOL


Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!!!

Greetings and Happy Valentine's Day!!

Love is or should be in the air today.  It is suppose to be a day for sweethearts to show their love in an extra special way.  I don 't really know how or why Valentine's Day got started and have often thought it was just a money making holiday.  But somehow I think a woman must have started it so her man would be reminded to show her he loves her.

Seems woman are more of the romantic type than men are generally speaking.  We expect more affection and attention than men do.  In fact sometimes I think we crave it.  And we never seem to get enough.  There is a big difference between love and affection  and sex.  A lot of men, not all, but a lot, don't seem to understand that either.

Valentine's Day doesn't have to be about gifts like the florist, candy maker, or jeweler would like you to believe.  Its more about making the woman in your life feel like she is the most important thing in the world to you.  You don't have to go out and spend 6 bucks on a card when a hand written note expressing your deep love would probably impress her more.  Jewelry and gifts are nice but eventually the newness wears off.  The jewelry goes in a box and is worn once in a while, the candy gets eaten or thrown out, and the flowers die,,, but hugs, kisses and I love you's make sweet memories that will last forever.

Here's wishing that this is the best Valentine's Day ever!!

Until next time,,,,, Blessings!!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

I am so blessed!!!

Greetings!!

I am so blessed!!  We got through day 3 with no smoking!!  Working on day 4 today.  No fighting or moodiness either, so I am very happy.  Do we still want a cigarette?  Yes, but it is becoming easier and it is not constant.  The cravings come and go.  I do find myself snacking more but I am trying to grab things like oranges or nuts.  Frank really wants to stick to it and that makes me very happy!!  :-)

I'm so blessed!!  My seeds are here for the garden and next week I can start working on them.  Gardening makes me very happy.  I enjoy playing in the dirt, being in the sun and being able to eat the fruits of my labor.  To me it is very exciting to take a tiny seed, plant it, care for it and watch it grow into something that you can eat and sustain life with.  God gave us an enormous gift to be able to create life in that fruit or vegetable.  Its awesome!!!

I am so blessed!!  I have my ceramic studio and can be creative making ceramics.  There is nothing like the feel of a paint brush in your hand with a blank canvas of any medium in front of you and to be able to just let your creative juices flow.  God gave us such a gift in creativity.  Each and everyone of us can be creative in one form or another.  It can be art, music, ceramics, writing, speaking, singing, etc.  We just have to figure out which we are attracted to the most and then take that gift of creativity and develop it into a talent.  The great creator gave us the ability to create!!  Isn't that so awesome??!!

I am so blessed!!

I'm off to work on one of my blessings.  I hear the paint brush calling my name, LOL. 

Until next time,,,,, Blessings!!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Whooooo hooooo, my seed order is here!!!

Greetings!!

I am so very excited my seed order is here for my garden.  It came in the mail this morning when I was out taking care of errands.  I have not even opened it and gone through it yet.  But now the fun and planning start in earnest.  Next week I will get my flats lined out and start the seeds.  I just can't wait!!

If I start more than I actually use I will sell the excess plants at the farmers market in May.  That way, I don't lose a thing and perhaps will actually make back my costs for the seeds.

This is really a good time as we are starting a warming trend, by next Wednesday we should see temperatures in the high 40s to low 50s.  Oh what encouraging weather to think about gardening this year!!  I sure can't wait.  Seems this winter has been exceptionally rough and I can't wait until its over.

Well, I am keeping this short so I can go through my seed order and make sure everything came in.  I know the potato starts will be shipped later, closer to planting time, but I hope all the seeds are there so I can get them started.  :-D

Have an awesome day!!

Until next time,,,,,,,,,,, Blessings!!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Today is the first day of the rest of our lives,,,,,,

Greetings!!

Last Wednesday Frank and I started taking Chantix to help us quit smoking.  I had quit before but after Frank moved here and was smoking all the time I gave in and started smoking again.  Bad me!!  I have no will power if its here in the house.  Even with food.  If its in front of me I want it, if not, I don't think about it.  So, just like eating candy I should not, I was smoking again and I should not.

Well I kind of got off track there, LOL.  As I was saying, last week we started the Chantix.  With Chantix you continue to smoke for the first week and then you stop smoking.  Today is our first day not smoking!!  This is the first day of the rest of our lives!!

Everyone should quit for their health.  But Frank really has to.  He will not get put on a heart transplant list until he is smoke free, verifiable for 6 months.  And eventually, he does need a heart transplant.

Last summer they had put in a defibrillator/pacemaker to help prolong his life and time before they actually have to deal with a heart transplant.  He still needs to get on the list though as you can wait often for years before they find a donor.

But even that aside, quitting smoking is a good thing.  The damange smoking does to your body, after quitting, will begin to repair itself immediately.  Not as many sinus infections after you quit smoking.  Breathing becomes easier.  Not to mention getting rid of that awful smell.

Frank took a major step in improving his health this past week and I am so very proud of him.  With Valentine's Day just next week you might say we gave each other an awesome gift for the heart.  :-D

If you are still a smoker I truly encourage you to quit, you really will feel much healthier.  Plus you will save a ton of money, LOL.

Until next time,,,,,,, Blessings!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Brrrrr, the bitter cold has returned,,,

Greetings!

We have been showing signs of an early spring for a while now, in spite of the storms.  Robins are returning to the area, small buds on the trees, geese flying back north, bulb plants poking their tiny starts up through the ground, etc.  But the bitter cold temperatures have returned.

It is currently zero with a wind chill of minus 20.  I can't seem to think about much this morning in this cold.  My poor dog Rusty didn't stay outside more than 5 minutes this morning then barked frantically for me to get him back inside.  When he bolted through the door the first thing he did was head for his blanket which is on the floor near the electric heater I have going.  He is one smart dog!!

On the bright side, its not snowing right now, LOL.  And by the weekend it is suppose to warm back up again.  I guess I will wait until the weekend to try to get my car shoveled out as I have not done it yet.  Right now it is too frozen solid to even try.

My shoulder is finally starting to recover.  I hate to have to push to get that car dug out and have the bursitis in my shoulder flare up again.  It took a good week to get it to settle down.  Such is life, we deal with it and move on, LOL.

Today Frank goes to the VA in Decatur for blood work.  That is a monthly routine.  On the way back we are going to stop at the beauty supply store.  I want to try to get some blades for my hair cutting razor.  I plan on giving Frank a hair cut soon and I would like to use the razor to put in some layers.  He has long hair and styling it with a razor will be easier than with scissors as far as layering goes.  I'm going to try to talk him into letting me shave his beard into a goatee also.  Time for a change and his beard is really looking scraggly, LOL.

I graduated cosmetology back in 1975.  I let my license go years ago but still style friends hair from time to time.  I often think about going back to school but with the fibro I am not sure I could do all that standing any more as my legs go numb very easily and my back hurts like the dickens.  Then of course there are those pesky muscle spasms to contend with too.  But I do miss doing hair.  I really enjoyed it.  Something to ponder.

Well, I should get busy and get a few things done before Frank gets up and we have to get ready to go to the VA.  Hope you all have a great day!

Until next time,,,,,,, Blessings!

Monday, February 7, 2011

The week ahead,,,,

Greetings!

We have a busy week ahead of us.  Today I have a couple of bills to pay, then meet with "the girls' for lunch.  We do this every Monday.  It is good as these ladies and I met through a domestic violence program.  We were all at one time victims of DV.  We have bonded and formed a lasting friendship.  We have been meeting once a week for almost a year now.  You never know what we will talk about.  Sometimes its about DV but sometimes its just about the town gossip, LOL.  Its fun and a good outlet for each of us.

Tuesday Frank goes to the VA for blood work.  Wednesday might be a free day but not sure yet, LOL.  Thursday we go to the VA again, this time Frank has to see a specialist so we will be going to another VA facility.  This is the appointment we had to reschedule from last week as it was to be during the middle of the blizzard.  Friday I have counseling and then errands again.

I still have not dug out my car so I reckon I will try to get to that sometime this week.  A lot of the snow has been melting so that will make it easier.

Also this week my big order of garden seeds should be coming.  I can't wait to get them started!!  I am so excited about my garden this year!!  I do hope and pray it is a good year for gardening.  Last year was miserable.  There was so much heat and humidity things were rotting where they were growing.  You could not get out in work in the garden much either, the air was so thick you could not breathe.  Thank God for air conditioning!!  But it did make for a rough time when you had to go out in it.  The weeds took over my garden last year.  Between my not being about to get out in the heat and humidity and the fact that it was the first year there was ever a garden in that area, it was pretty bad.  Seems when you till up an area for the first time and do not have the luxury of prepping the ground the year before you are going to have a lot of weeds and grass trying to grow back up.  And that was the case here.

I never use chemicals on my garden. So I did not use herbicides to kill off weeds and grass.  I believe we get way too many chemicals on the food we buy in the grocery stores, I do not want it on the food I grow.

Well, I need to get a few things done here before I head out the door to run my errands.  Hope you all have an awesome day!!

Until next time,,,,,,,  Blessings!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Still trying to recover,,,,

Greetings!

Since the big storm and all the shoveling I am still trying to recover.  My fibromyalgia is flared up pretty bad.  That along with a torn rotator cuff, torn a/c joint and bursitis in my right should I am hurting pretty bad.

I have a ton of stuff to get done today but not sure how much I will do.  I definitely need to do some laundry.  If I don't I will soon be walking around naked, LOL.  I also have to go out later and pick up my blood pressure medicine.

I ran errands yesterday and picked up pet food and a few groceries while I was out.

This week will be a busy week with appointments every day but Wednesday.  So it doesn't look like I will get much glazing done this week.  Just as well as I don't think I could hold my right arm up to paint.  Guess this is a rest week as far as that goes and hopefully I can get back into the swing of things the following week.  Life sure has a way of throwing curve balls at us doesn't it?

Yesterday I got word that my 10+ year old work comp case is going to have to go to the Appellate Court.  Which means another year before it gets resolved.  Life goes on and we just have to deal with it.  I believe God has a purpose for this so I must be patient and let Him do as He sees fit, after all He is much wiser than me.  :-)

We are suppose to have snow on Sunday and Monday and then be clear the rest of the week.  I sure hope that is right and we don't snow during the week as some of those appointments are out of town.  I can deal with being in town with the snow but don't like traveling in it any more.

Hope you all have a great day!

Until next time,,,,,, Blessings!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Pictures after the clean up is started,,,,

Greetings!

Here are some pictures after the clean up is started.  Enjoy!

Nope, my car is not going anywhere for a while, LOL  No strength left to shovel today!


This is the side I have not shoveled yet, LOL.


At least Frank's truck is shoveled out if we need to go any where.


The snow was so wet and packed so hard it took forever to get this little bit shoveled.


Yes, that is a fire hydrant poking out of the snow!


Rusty and I had to walk in the road because most sidewalks are not shoveled.


They're home, just not going any where so not shoveling.  A common site.


The icicles hanging off this porch roof caught my eye.  They are actually curving backwards the direction the wind was blowing.


Just a small snowbank created by a plow.


I'd hate to have to try to get out that door before someone shoveled it out, LOL


Yes, there are steps and a porch under that snow!

Until next time,,,,,, Blessings!

The Blizzard of 2011,,,,,

Greetings!

The storms are finally over and now the clean up begins in earnest.  It is really hard to tell just how much snow we got because of all the blowing and drifting.  But I estimate it at somewhere between 14 and 18 inches.  We had drifts in some areas that were 3 and 4 feet deep.

In the heart of the worse part of the storm I had to get my dog Rusty out for a short walk so he could take care of his business.  Yes, I love my dog that much that I ventured out in it.  The snow was coming down hard,  roughly 3 to 4 inches an hour.  The winds were extremely furious, probably close to 60 mph.  It actually blew us over twice.  I thought I could handle going around one block.  I almost didn't make it back!!  It was hard to see where we were going because the snow was blowing so hard.  We round the first corner and wound up in a drift that was waist high for me.  Rusty is a fairly good sized dog but he had to stretch to keep his head above the snow.  We were stuck!!

We stood there a couple of minutes as the wind battered us around.  I felt like a punching bag for the wind.  The winds howled so loud it sounded like a freight train.  Living in tornado alley the only thought that came to mind was a tornado.  Tree branches and twigs were flying everyone.  All I could do was pray.  Lord, please watch over us and protect us, get us back home safely!!

I took a deep breath and said OK Rusty lets go!!  I pulled us both out of the snow drift and onward we pushed.  What would have been about a 10 minute slow walk in good weather took us nearly 40 minutes.  But we made it and Rusty managed to take care of his business along the way, LOL.

Shortly after we got home we lost cable and Internet.  Then the power started flickering on and off.  We completely lost power about 2:30am.  We have a gas furnace in this rental house and thought we would still have heat, but we did not.  Apparently, the furnace has an electric start that must fire up every time the furnace kicks on.  But we have a gas stove, so I fired up the oven knowing that would keep the kitchen, bathroom and bedroom warm enough to be comfortable.  I know they say you should not do that, but desperate times calls for desperate measures.  Besides, I do a lot of baking and that oven is on a lot anyway.  Haven't died of carbon monoxide yet, LOL.  It got a little cool in the house but really not that bad.

The next morning Win came over with a kerosene heater.  We set that up and used it until the power came back on.  That kept us toasty warm.  As it would have it, the power came back on later in the afternoon.

The snow was extremely wet and heavy.  I would go out and shovel a few feet then have to take a break.  Between my fibromyalgia, back problems and torn rotator cuff in my right shoulder I just could not do much at one time.  Then my friend Caleb came over to help.  Between us we managed to get half the sidewalk done and the driveway.  The other half of the sidewalk and my car will have to be shoveled out today.  We managed to get Frank's truck shoveled out so at least there is one vehicle that can get out if need be.

Today the wind chill is 5 below zero but the sun is shining.  If I get to moving a bit better I might tackle the other half of the sidewalk and my car this afternoon.  If not, it can just sit a few days.  Right now it takes a lot of effort to just put one foot in front of the other.  But yes, I will still get Rusty out for his walks when needed.  One of the walks I will try to remember to take my digital camera with me and take some pictures to post here later today or tomorrow.  But for now, everyone is asleep and I intend to take a nap.

Until next time,,,,,, Blessings!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Still waiting,,,,,,,,

Greetings!

Still waiting on the storm.  We got a little bit of ice over night.  Not nearly what they expected, but it is early yet.  When I kicked on my computer this morning the weather bug was flashing so I took a look.

They have put us under a "Blizzard Warning" now for this county, for today into tomorrow.  Expect 18 inches to 2 feet of very heavy wet snow.  White out conditions, high winds, and drifting.

Bring it on!!  I'm ready!!  Shoot, I've been ready, LOL.  I am planning on getting out each time it reaches between 3 and 4 inches and shoveling.  Yup, a lot of work but 18 inches just might be too heavy for me to lift, especially if it is very wet snow like they are predicting.  Not sure if I will be able to keep up with it or not,,, but I will give it a try and do the best I can.  I am going to go out shortly and spread some ice melt on the walk to try to knock the ice down before the snow hits.  Might make things a bit easier to keep clean.

The mail was here early this morning.  I suppose they are trying to get as much done as possible before things get worse.  Can't say I blame them.  A lot of people here don't keep their sidewalks shoveled and it makes for a hard time walking.  I guess people just don't care any more or are too lazy.  I remember as a kid everyone shoveled.  They took pride in keeping things neat and tidy, even the snow on sidewalks.

I walk my dog every day and in this weather sometimes I feel like I am taking my own life in my hands on some of the sidewalks.  I'd really like to start some sort of a campaign to get people to take care of their property's again.  Probably wouldn't do any good in this "me, me first" society we live in now.  Seems good sense and values have gone out the window.

Well, I am off to put some ice melt on the sidewalks.  Have a great day, stay warm and don't travel if you don't have to.

Until next time,,,,,,,  blessings!