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Saturday, August 31, 2013

Hibiscus Sale Heaven--POST FAIL

first hibiscus flower

I just managed to delete a whole post and do not know what I did!

I expected a pinky-er pink

If you get this by email, will you forward the email to me in hopes that I can restore it.  grrrr

At any rate, I paid $1 for hibiscus trees and bushes at Lowe's.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Salmonella in Your Spices?

A variety of spices. Photo: ThinkStock

This is shocking. Not once did I ever think my spices could have salmonella in them. Check out this article for yourself.

Is there anyone as surprised as I? Now, check the source of your spices in the cabinets in your kitchen.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Alley Garden Update

Saturday at the Alley Garden

June 1, 2013

another view
Saturday, after seeing the bride  and ground hog, I decided to check on the alley garden. The tomato plants are over six feet tall. It is amazing that this survived.
One day last month, I was taking a picture when one of the owners of the garden came rushing out. He said he thought someone was stealing his tomatoes. I assured him that I was not going to steal his tomatoes. They were only the size of whiffle balls.
I saw them white with Sevin dust one day and if I had been planning on eating his tomatoes, the powder would have dampened my appetite.
Your turn
Do you have a little garden in any unexpected space? Have you seen any gardens belonging to others that are located in an unusual place?

Monday, August 26, 2013

Disaster Preparedness Plan

Mispriced Ball Half-Gallon Jars

I love saving on purchases. I usually pay 11.47 for six one-half gallon Ball jars. So, I have few. In the store I found boxes of six one-half gallon jars for $6.97. Naturally, I grabbed a box. If I could have afforded more boxes, I would have gotten them. When I came to the register and the jars rang up at $11.47+ tax, I pointed out the sale price. As it turned out, the jars were on the wrong shelf, not on sale.  They gave me the jars at the price on the shelf--$6.97. YAY me!
It is the time of year that canning supplies are on sale. Maybe I can actually find a sale and buy more quarts and pints.
There are still several 4 pound bags of $0.25/lb. sugar  here that need to be stored in something airtight as I await more canning and baking. So, here is the answer.
There is no picture yet, but I decided to buy a pot for $2.99 that appeared to be just right for making jelly. As it turned out, there were half a dozen pots in the wrong spot. So, I scored a $25 stainless steel pot for $3. Granted, it is not an expensive pot, but well worth the price I paid.
And, I found thirteen cents, all in one place.
Your turn
Have you found any canning jars reduced yet this year? Do you often find items on the wrong shelf, decide to purchase because it looks like a great deal and then find it was just marked wrong? Does your store have a policy of selling you the item at the price on the shelf? Mine does?

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Bride in the Bushes; Wild Animal on Sidewalks

"don't smile"
That is what the lady with the camera said.  I saw a bride and two women headed across the street into a weedy lot. My curiosity got the better of me, I circled around with camera in hand and asked them why they were taking her picture in a weedy lot downtown.
"Oh, we have taken pictures in all sorts of horrible, trashy places today."  Color me stunned. "But, we have taken pictures of beautiful places, too." They surely saw the relief and my brow quickly unfurrow. I have to quit that contemplative or sad look, because the wrinkles are sticking right between my eyebrows. Besides, I don't look sexy and vulnerable like Jennifer Aniston does when she furrows her cute little brow. I am going to need botox there if I don't quit it.

gorgeous hair

strange poses
She married June 8, 2013 and came out today with her mother and photographer for these pictures. If this is a trend, I am way behind the times.

 Now for the wild animal acting civilized
He went to the door, stood and looked in, looked some more, looked around, and decided to keep going. It was almost as though he decided no one was home, so he would just keep going. I wonder if the city employees in these offices had fed him. He just trotted right down the middle of the alley like this was his old stomping grounds.
I spotted this animal on the west side of the block and watched as it traveled up the north side,  the entire length of the side walk. In the meantime, people were working, talking, running some sort of heavy machinery, getting ready for a festival today. As I parked and got out, it went up the east alley above.

 On the moving, leaving the door.
over to the right near ac
look hard
around the corner down the south side of the block 
on curb near truck door

he spots me and takes to the grass and bushes
see him in front of the ac?

above the two red flowers near the wall
I think it is a ground hog. It had travelled four side of the block. I could not follow at first, then had to go around the block to find the alley.
Can you think of a good caption for the wedding gown pictures? I will have to find a prize for the winner and post the prize tomorrow. How creative can you be? Give me a good caption and tell me whether it I for #1, #2, or #3. One prize.
Your turn
Isn't it sad how easily I am amused? lol  Is this a new trend in wedding photos? Is that a groundhog?

Saturday, August 24, 2013


A site I stumbled upon has some very interesting fact on Roundup, GMO, etc. Look here.

I have a weed experiment going on in the backyard.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Prevent Predators Digging Under Chicken Pen


There are some difficult ways and expensive ways, and cruel-to-chicken ways to prevent raccoons, dogs, or other digging predators from entering the chickens pen or chicken house. My way is cheap and humane.

It is expensive and cruel, in my opinion, to pour concrete for this purpose. Hens love to scratch in the dirt. Even if the concrete is a foot under the ground, they will get to it and might hurt their feet or toenails.

Putting hardware cloth down on the floor of the pen has the potential to cause injury also.

Digging down a foot to bury wire that extends up the outside of the coop or pen is a great idea. However, I cannot dig that far. I don't know anyone who is willing to dig that far, not for love nor money.

Maybe pouring a footer just outside the fenced area would work. However, I have a better way for me. It was free and Charlie put it down. Oh, yeah. He gave me the wire. He found it on the curb and thought maybe I could use it.

My Way
Can you see the 2' x 4' grid of wire?

Charlie raised the 10' x 10' pen while I dragged this in place. It is 4' wide. We cut four pieces that were 16' long so the outside corners would be protected. It overlaps. The corners are actually doubled. Three feet are extending along the ground outside the pen. One foot extends into the pen. Raccoons will dig at the bottom of the chain link pen. They will not reason that they should move back three feet and dig under. A raccoon would give up.
Behind the pen
You may be able to see it above. I can see it because I know where it is. I have taken a picture of the full width of the hog wire or dog wire, whichever you call it. It runs from the bottom of the picture and under the chain link pen and extends about a foot into the pen. I stack bricks behind the pen because there is a slight incline toward the back of the pen that soaks the ground in the pen. Eventually, water washes dirt and leaves against the bricks and the pen becomes less damp.

Inside the pen

Inside the pen you can see at the left of the chain link  the edge of the wire. I think sometimes that the hens are trying to dig their way out. At least, they won't relentlessly scratch the wire. They have a choice to move over.
When I was considering how to put this down, I was more concerned with how I could avoid tripping on it. How could a lawn mower go over it without getting tangled in the edges and the raggedy parts? You see, this was not a perfect piece of wire, It had raggedy places I could get snagged on.
Garden staples hold the wire down
These are easy to poke into dirt after a rain. I put them about 6" apart where the wire is bent. At other places, 18" apart is about right. I am using 80 staples for the edges that equal 56". The grass is growing over this in one part of the perimeter, so it does not show at all.

                                          Garden staples are almost five inches long.

I have bent a coat hanger to hold a hose down along the lawn, but that is another story. If you have the time and strength in your hands, bent, wire clothes hangers would work.

(Hurry and go HERE for Sluggy's Giveaway! Tonight, it ends.
Your turn
Did you dig a trench and bury mesh wire one foot down as recommended to protect your hens from digging predators? Who was your hero there? What safety measures have you taken to secure the bottom of your hens/turkey/animals  pens from raccoon, dogs or other digging animals? Do you use garden staples for anything around your house?

Hank Bought a Bus

Check Out This School-Bus-Turned-Stylish-Motor-Home (ABC News)

I found an article that led to this blog. Read the article first for a better understanding of the blog.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Sewing Kit for College Man: Update picture

1.5" x 6.5" x 4.5
My grandson is going away to college and needed a sewing kit. I volunteered to make one for him. Since my daughter does not sew AT ALL and was resistant all her life to learning how to sew, I volunteered. I knew I could do the job more cheaply than she could. She would have bought the $12 sewing kit and called it good.
The little pouch above came from a yard sale. Lots of medical and homebound items were for sale. I found this, a travel kit for diabetics for a quarter. YAY!

Here it is empty. I put something in each of the little clear pockets on the inside to make them more visible. The little flap to the right is actually a zippered pouch.

Prym purchased sewing kit, repackaged
The one item I could not find sold separately was the needle threader, bottom left. So, I purchased this kit, now taken apart and repackaged. I don't know if the thread is good quality. We will see. The little pack of three needles may not be the best. The whole kit was $1.47, not bad. If I had found the threader in stock, it would have been $1.
The alternative to the thread situation was going to be to purchase a package of plastic bobbins and fill them with thread. I know my thread is good quality. 

The needles in the red, shiny paper came with the kit. The embroidery needles to the right left (shoot, if I only knew my right from my left!) are mine. I took four and put them in a paper in the middle to share with him. Why did I give him embroidery needles? First, they are sharps, so they will sew through fabric. Secondly, and most importantly, they have large eyes to help him with threading. Of course, if he uses the needle threader, he will need to have larger eyes to make even that job easier. 

seam ripper and nippers
I could get along quite nicely without either of these or only one. But, he gets the benefit of the doubt and the seam ripper to pick all the extra threads from a button that pops off. The thread nippers can cut thread when he needs to thread the needle or to cut the thread after he is through sewing.
Either of these will do the job of the other. Plus, I keep cuticle nippers on me all the time. If I were making a sewing kit for me, both of the above tools would be extra baggage. Or, I could choose just one. This man boy has never sewn anything.

2' x 4" zip lock bags
Since I needed some of these bags anyway, I don't count the $2 as a cost for the sewing kit.
needle threader on my camera case for easy viewing
Okay, if you don't know how a needle threader works, this is for you. Hold the needle in left hand, poke the little wire into the needle eye. Put thread through the wire protruding from the other side of the eye. Pull the threader back through the needle and you have a threaded needle. VOILA! I learned to sew by hand when I was four and never owned or saw one of these until I was in Home Economics in the 10th grade and other girls had a threader. I only used one for needlepoint floss when I was much older.

buttons and safety pins
I own two pint jars full of buttons of all kinds. But, do you think I can find either of them? NO.
Resorting to cutting the extra button off a shirt I own is the best I can do. Probably, the button jars are packed away and sealed in a box. However, surely there is a button in every There will be more buttons and more safety pins. I have some 2" x 2" bags I may put these in later.

filled sewing kit
All the thread is on one side in a clear pocket. Nippers and seam ripper are on the other side, along with instructions saying how the seam ripper can remove threads left behind when a button falls off. The zippered pocket holds the bag with needles and the needle threader. Loose in the middle of the case are the bags holding the buttons and the bag with safety pins.
Hopefully, this is a good system. Stuff loose in a container would work for me. Who knows what he will drop.
I will add straight pens with large colored heads and more buttons and larger safety pins. But, basically, this kit is complete and usable as is. I might add a six inch ruler.
So, it is done and cost me less than $2.
Since he has never experienced losing a needle while sewing, I put a silver thread in each needle and knotted it. He will have to remember to leave a bit of thread in the needle when he is through sewing so he won't drop it and find a needle with the sole of his foot or stuck into his body. We learn this lesson quickly. Right? I used silver because it was in the cake tin I was looking for pins and white thread was not in there.
Your turn
Did I leave out anything a beginner might use? Have you had to put together a sewing kit? Sue, I know your

Monday, August 19, 2013

"IT" Is Back! WARNING!

tenacious and persistent wisteria!

two weeks ago

Do you see what I am up against? Look at the top of the chain link fence on both pictures. Only a very expensive or backbreaking endeavor will cure this scourge. I never thought I would say "scourge" when talking about beautiful wisteria. It has destroyed one board in the neighbor's fence already. The board fell when the guy used a chain saw on all the wisteria on this side of the fence.
I made a hard decision when he worked here. I will use Roundup in the small squirt, spray bottle to get the leaves. I don't wish to destroy everything in sight with overkill.
Top picture
Notice the stub in the ground? That was my previous clothesline pole, present when I moved here in 1977. It broke about 20 years ago. Left in the ground is a huge hunk of concrete. Above the ground is about 6 inches of rectangular, metal pipe or pole. It is enough to destroy a lawnmower or badly hurt anyone who meets the jagged edges.
I stacked bricks around it as a visible barrier. It is low enough that St. Augustine hides it from easy detection. One guy who was mowing took all the bricks and threw them over the retaining wall, breaking antique bricks worth over $10 apiece. Sooo, I try to just warn everyone.
Bottom picture
Can you see how much grass was killed by wisteria?

Wave petunia won't wave
pink wave petunias that are not thriving
Is it the weather? These flowers should have filled this basket and be hanging over the side. Maybe they think it is fall. Even in the fall, they don't behave this way.

Okay, I am now heading out with the Roundup to do my duty to my fence and destroy this scourge.

Your turn
Are you pulling up the wisteria yet? You still have time to save yourself. It is just society-approved kudzu! Have you ever seen a petunia act like this?

Don't forget to enter this giveaway at Don't Read This; It's Boring.


Sunday, August 18, 2013

Sunday Good Things

fresh from the garden

Jenny, the one who organized my yard cleanup, gave these to me. I gave her more school supplies, but not in repayment.
I do not eat banana peppers, but I will dehydrate these in little rings since I cut them crossways to dehydrate or use--cuter that way. I think that one green pepper is a jalapeno...not sure. Do you know? The cayenne peppers will be used in pepper jelly soon. Or, they will be strung and dried for grinding to make pepper. I do not eat peppers, but will use a bit for taste when baking chicken. These will help with variety.
The tomatoes need no I love free food.
These thread 5" nippers are made by Wiss and are superbly made. They have one function in life--to cut threads. I use these with my machines, especially the commercial machines. I think I got these from a sewing factory. This last two weeks, I have spent time making a sewing kit for my grandson who goes to college in ten days. I put a light blue pair of these in his sewing kit.
You put your thumb in the loop, and hold the spring-loaded nippers. All you do is press your fingers on the upper side. These are actually upside down, but I wanted to capture the "Wiss" brand embossed in the nippers. There is not the time-consuming act of putting fingers in both the scissor loops. Time is money in a sewing factory. Some women never take their thumb from the loop. It is possible to sew with a pair of nippers on your hand if you are only sewing seam after seam.

My favorite roller

One lonely roller
Do you remember these? I love these rollers. You can tell this one is old because the foam is an off color. After thirty years, I had five of these left. Then, I had four. In the last few weeks, something happened to all but two...sigh. I will wear these in the house and yard so that I can have a wild, curly hairdo. Have you ever used these? Do not tell me your mother used them. I am most likely old enough to be your mother or 
The little pink rollers have found me this summer, and I have used them often. When a friend saw me at a dinner with curly hair, his eyes lit up. He was so complimentary that I decided this would be my new look. However, I refused to use product in my fine, thick hair, so the curls just collapse, leaving me with waves and body. I will take that.
I know I can use a curling iron. Somehow, I just don't use the curling iron for curls all over, just when I want the front and bottom to be bent a little. I just wish these had surfaced when I lost power for five days after the tornado. These would work fine for long-term lack of electricity since the curling iron won't work!
Your turn
I am going to fix dinner now. Have you ever used nippers when you sew or even seen them before? Do you ever use the pink foam rollers? What do you use if you need body and curl as desperately as I do. 

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Saturday Tidbits

Free Pecans
I have located a source that has invited me to pick pecans. I want two gallons and I will get that many without a problem from this one source. YAY! Plus, I have four other free sources. I am so afraid not all will pan out. So, I keep a mental list of sources. I need to dust off my pecan picker upper.

I can't wait for more of these!

Free Figs
My friend with the fig tree called and told me figs were waiting for me. I will take him fig preserves from last year.

Losing a pink dogwood

front yard, looking to corner
See the tiny little tree past the big oak? Pathetic and hopeless in this location. 

closer shot
See the huge, vacant lot I have enjoyed for the last 35 years?
Enjoyed how? No one lives on it!
2 acres of perfection!

And, I could not be happier to lose a pink dogwood. The man who mowed last week and had the crew of boys will take it. I offered it to him if he would dig it up and refill the hole with dirt. Today, he cut limbs that were touching the house and roof, limbs that ants were using to access the kitchen. It worked. Ants are gone. Terro helped them

I planted this tree and another pink dogwood about twenty years ago. The other one planted in full sunlight in the backyard, now is higher than the edge of the roof and shades my kitchen window very well. The one that has to go has just not grown over a foot in this time. Granted, dogwoods are an understory tree, but the oak is not only shading it, but I believe that the giant oak is taking the nutrients the sweet little tree needs. It started spreading when I talked of cutting it down several years ago. I prefer it get a bit taller. He has a sunny space, so farewell little tree!

We had a new lowest high in Birmingham--70 F. I wore a coat from 6:30 am when I left the house until I arrived home at noon. Then, when I went out at 3 pm, I put the coat back on. It was not the chill that caused me to wear a coat, it was the slight mist and cool breeze.

On the ten day forecast, only days 8 and 9 are the only days free of some sort of precipitation. That will make six weeks of daily rain. Then, two days reprieve before it starts all over again. sigh sigh

I feel so much better.


It is recovering nicely.

This plant will have to come inside to its own private little nursery this winter.

just after re potting from nursery container
I can do this right. It is just a matter of taking time and energy to care for the plant.
Preparing the grandson!
Right now, I am putting together a first aid kit and a sewing kit for him.  He must be at his out-of-state college campus on September 1.
The county fair!
I am very excited about entering my canning this year. Plus, I just might enter baked goods. I won lots of ribbons when I entered several years ago.
2009--3 blue ribbons and 1 red ribbon
I think only one of my canned goods did not win a prize. I won second place for the birdhouse I made from 107 year old boards from my house. The winner birdhouse was so fantastic that I am not sad at all about my less than stellar second place win.
Back to School Giveaway
Sluggy at Don't Read This; It's Boring has a box full of back-to-school items you surely want for yourself, children, or grandchildren.
Your turn
What tidbits do you have to share?

Friday, August 16, 2013

Three-Year-Old Swallows Gasoline and Winner of Bear Grylls Survival Bracelet

She was just siphoning gasoline from the car. She sucked several times on the black, rubber tube, pinching if off each time she sucked on it. She knew what to do. She swallowed the gasoline. Unhappy that she did not transfer it to a container, she sucked on the tube again and swallowed an even bigger mouthful. Finally, after a few minutes she decided that gasoline drinking was something she might need to tell her mother because it might make her sick.

 The family had company over, and she had pimiento and cheese sandwiches for lunch. She and her two-year-old brother went outside to the car, something they had never done before. Inside was company, her parents and a baby sister. It is not clear why she siphoned gas until now. She was just doing something she had seen her father do earlier in the week. The children were playing "house" and this was just part of the game.

When I went to have the endoscopy, I remembered the wild ambulance ride, someone holding me down, hurting my side as the ambulance screamed toward the hospital. Once there, they held me down and pumped out my stomach. Lots of people held me down and forced a tube down into my stomach. My parents left me there, all alone in a crib.  This was the first time I had to be grown up. But, I did not want to be in a crib and begged for a bed.

(Daddy would not have stayed with me, nor would he have cared for two children, one that had to be changed and the other that he mistreated. So, don't judge my mother. She knew I would be safe. She had to keep the other two safe.)

One of the last things I told the nurses and doctor before the endoscopy on Tuesday was "make sure I know nothing. I do NOT want to know when you stick that down my throat." I told them about the stomach pumping...wonder if they cared?

Tuesday morning before the endoscopy, I awoke after no food since midnight. No problem. But, I had thirty minutes to drink Sierra Mist. They told me to do this since I was hypoglycemic. At 9 am, I quit drinking it. In thirty minutes my blood sugar had dropped and I was feeling the "stupids" and sort of stumbling about. I washed my hair. Exbf arrived and I whined lots about how awful I felt. Then, I apologized for not understanding what he was saying and for forgetting what he said thirty seconds before.

At 10:30 I called the doctor's office and told the nurses I was in trouble, that I could not make it until my expected arrival at the hospital at 12:30. They consulted the doctor. He said to go there immediately, and they would start an IV with sugar solution. It took me another thirty minutes to leave the house with wet hair.

I was so miserable, swiftly sinking further and further. Finally, they got me in my room, a miniscule room but adequate for what I was doing--lying there, waiting on the procedure, and hoping sugar would make me feel better.

The nurse told me to put the nightgown on. I forgot which way she wanted it to open. Exbf told me when I asked. So, I lay in bed, feeling like the room was turning, getting agitated even more, just like I do when my blood sugar falls so precipitously. I got up to use the bathroom and a nurse came into the room, giving me the code for anyone to reach me. As I pulled out my phone to call my daughter, give her the code and the phone number, two other nurses came into the room, all wanting me to do something. I was confused and my daughter could not hear me.

I raised my voice above the whisper exbf said I was using. She suddenly screamed at me, saying I was being dramatic, that I was "going to be OKAY." I started crying and she hung up. Way to go--make me feel like someone cares.

As I lay there, the nurse put the iv in the back of my hand without a shot to dull the extreme pain that site can have. I really hurt and tried to hold my hand still. I suppose I was still. I was still crying from my daughter. They started the iv, "full open so you will feel better." In five minutes, my blood sugar quit dropping. Even though I felt better, I was still confused.

Before I left home, I had packed my lunch box for exbf, a diabetic who will not spend money to go eat. Okay, he stayed so long that I suppose he would have, but I worry about him. I did not want him to get like he does when he does not eat when he should. One time, I saw him stumbling along, not able to keep his feet under him. Another time, he lay down in his recliner and lay there for 36 hours, missing work the next day, not answering the phone, and only roused when I sent the police for a welfare check. Soooo, I felt I had to take care of him.

At about 1 pm, he ate a peanut butter sandwich in front of me with the smell wafting to me, filling the room with something I could not have. Then, he drank a glass of milk. I was passing out, watching where the milk dribbled as he took off the Tupperware lid.  If I could have licked the Tupperware glass and still had the test, I would have. That fantasy danced in my feeble brain.  I managed not to say anything about his eating in front of me while I was starving.

About 2:40, I was wheeled to the operating room. I just talked a bit, asking questions. You know I would talk. My doctor came in and talked a bit. I told him about the stomach pumping and told him to please let me know nothing. The nurse had told me they would keep sedating me until I quit struggling. LOL

I was asked to turn on my left side. When I asked about what they were going to put into my mouth, wanting them to let anything hang out the right side instead of the left, she showed me. It was a little round, short, tube thing that I would hold between my teeth while they inserted the tube through it. They let me put it into my mouth when I asked. The nurse removed the iv and put something in the little thing still in my hand. It hurt like someone was stomping on my wrist. She remarked that it would sting a bit. NO, not stinging, quit standing on my hand. Then, the sting happened, a really big sting. I said something, but I don't know what.

And, I opened my eyes. The nurse said it was all over, that they were through. I thought maybe I would feel that something had been down my throat. I felt just like before the procedure was done.

Now, everything that happened is fuzzy. The doctor talked to me somewhere. Oh, yes, because he talked mostly to Tommy, it had to be back in my room. Then, they took out the iv thing. I got dressed but don't remember it. I asked Tommy questions over and over, asking him if I had asked him that before. "Yes, several times." Well, I could not remember.

Immediately, I asked for food before I got dressed, just as soon as they removed the thing from my hand. I was told I had gas in my stomach, and I had to wait until it was all out. Since I can belch on command, I did that for her. She said I still had to wait. Rats! I am starving. Finally, she brought me two little containers of oj and emptied them into a cup with a straw. How nice. Peanut butter crackers were delicious.  They were the best I ever had.  So, I asked for more. I shared one out of each pack with Tommy. He was reluctant, but I insisted. He opened the cold Pepsi that I put in the lunchbox, kept cold with a blue ice pack.

He had eaten the cherries and the one other thing I gave him while I was in for the endoscopy. He waited in the room for me instead of wandering off and was there when I came back. Okay, this is out of order. I think I put slices of cheese in the lunchbox. He did not eat the apple.

The doctor came in the room where we were, talked to Tommy and gave him a prescription for something like Postinix.  I do not have Barrett's esophagus as I feared. I just have several small lesions on my esophagus. I have lost the prescription, so I cannot say for sure what it is. At any rate, we took the prescription to the pharmacy and left to go eat at Ruby Tuesday.  My insurance would not pay for it, so we wasted a trip back to Walmart. We went someplace else, but I cannot remember where. My doctor can get the insurance company to approve the medication through some paperwork. ??? If I cannot find the prescription, I suppose the doctor can call it in.

I had made an appointment for 7 pm on Tuesday after the endoscopy with a rheumatologist, apparently, because Monday, the secretary reminded me. So, Tommy could not stay so late and bring me home because he had to go to work the next day. He had a doctor's appointment before he drove 65 miles to my house. I had him drop me off at the doctor's office, one block from my house. My neighbor agreed to come pick me up. I had not left the outside lights on, so I staggered in by flashlight about 9 pm, I think.

Tommy dropped me off, brought my car home, fed the hens and locked them in, and put my box of leftovers from the restaurant in the refrigerator, and left for home in his car.  Whew, what a day. I had the leftovers sometime very late that night.

When the rheumatologist/doctor came in I felt goofy, so I told him I had just been under anesthesia. We talked about my fibromyalgia. Then, he said, "So, tell me about your seizure." What? I have never had a seizure in my life.  "But, you just told me you had your first seizure.  Seizure? I said I had been under anesthesia! "Oh!"  So, I suppose I was not speaking plainly.

I left there with a thorough dressing down. It is a long story. But, I did get the paper for my handicapped tag.

The rest of Tuesday is a blur except for eating leftovers. On Wednesday, I was still stupid from the drop in blood sugar. No, I am not diabetic. I have reactive hypoglycemia.  Only on Wednesday night did I get in the car and drive.

Today, I had to go to the urologist for medication to stop the spasms and sharp pain when I urinate. I had already had 7 days of Cipro! Urine sample was clear. Today, the sharp pains were extending to my clitoris, not a good thing, not pleasant at all. So, my urine will turn orange. Oh, goody, goody!

Tonight, I baked the chicken I planned to cook after the endoscopy on Tuesday but had not thawed even if I had felt like cooking. And, tonight I cleaned at the disaster of the kitchen from two weeks of being ill with urinary tract infection, sinus infection and then the bladder spasms on urination and then just general pain  "down there." I will get in there and clean a bit more tonight after I post this.

I wish I had known exactly what was going to happen Tuesday instead of being surprised. I am a very good patient if I am told what will happen. Same with the dentist. Otherwise, I am a nervous wreck and not a good patient. Okay, the dentist said I am an excellent patient, but I don't feel like I am.

When I have the colonoscopy, the doctor will probably put me first on the schedule and put in an iv early. He wanted to do both tests this time, but I told him last week that I wanted to do one at a time. I do not regret that decision at all.

Oh, I had the ultrasound last week or sometime and there are no gallstones, nothing wrong with my liver or pancreas. So, why do I hurt so? Why do I feel like throwing up after one bite of food? Why does it seem like gall bladder, as the doctor remarked? I suppose he will tell me when I go back in a month.

I think the weather is to blame for my misery.

Oh, another detail of my siphoning gasoline. I had opened the trunk to remove the tube because I saw Daddy put it there. After an ambulance was called, my parents told them at which intersection we would wait for them. As Mama held me in the front seat while we drove, I showed her my little toe, how red it was from the gasoline running all the way down into my toe. "See, it has gasoline in it." I told her I was worried it was all over my body since it was making my little toe red. I knew gasoline burned and told her I hoped the gasoline did not burn up my toe. I remember that conversation. No one ever had to tell me what I said.

Winner of the Bear Grylls bracelet

I put all the names in a bowl, folded and mixed up.
I held it over my head, mixed again and picked one name.

And the winner is:

PaulaM S
Paula, email your physical address to me so I can contact the sponsor of the contest.

Your turn
Have you ever had the endoscopy? Ever drank gasoline? Ever had your stomach pumped out?

Thursday, August 15, 2013

This Is Just Not Right!

It is almost noon, the middle of August in Alabama, and it's only 62 F with 84% humidity. I need some dry temperatures of over 100 F. It has rained every day for five weeks! Stop!

The weather has not been this cool or wet since 1977. All three of my children stayed ill with a virus that summer. Every time we started to leave the house for grocery shopping or the pool, anything, one of them started throwing up. They each had this over and over for almost three months. I don't miss that summer at all.

Your turn
Is this weather driving you crazy?

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Make-do Clothesline

one lone line for me

This is my line, designed all by me. I had to have help on one little part. Basically, I took a green plastic line and tied it to two carabiners. It is not hooked on the neighbor's wooden fence as it appears.

7-foot pole for chain link fence
The pole has a cap just stuck on the top. I found it while browsing fence parts. Often I don't really know what I am doing, but I start with an idea. The pole was the original idea. I just did not know how it was going to work. As you can see, the carabiner is attached to the cap and the cap is just stuck on the pole. When anyone works around the fence, the whole cap is removed at my suggestion. That way, it won't fall off between the fences or in the neighbor's yard. I am afraid someone will remove the line by unhooking the carabiner and the cap will then be knocked off somehow.
As I browsed the chain link fence department, I was sort of lost. See the "brace" between the two poles. As I looked at them, and tried to figure out what they were, I found some bolts nearby. Oh boy, was I puzzled. Finally, I asked a young man who told me how they worked. Bingo! Clothesline! When I saw the thing in the picture above this one, I knew I could use it for holding the clothes line. There is another set closer to the ground. The one pole leans because wisteria grew between the two poles and from the weight of clothes.

from support to house
You cannot really see it, but the line wraps around the huge metal pole that supports the roof over the basement steps. I could have hung clothes there to show you exactly where it goes as I did for the longer part. The crape myrtle behind the support and slightly off-center to the right was planted by me with not enough thought about where and how high it would grow. So, I have to trim it in order to get near the short part of the clothesline. I took dry clothes off the line as I came in.
majestic crape myrtle planted in wrong place
too close to house and grows under porch roof
I only bought the 7-foot pole, the cap, 2 caribiners, four of the clamps to hold poles together, two bolts and two things to screw onto them. (that word escapes me)  Nuts, Linda, nuts!  Then, there was the line and clothespins. It is not much of a line, only about 60 feet, but it works for me. It presents a bit of a problem when I have two much in one load for the short line. That problem is solved by using pants hangers on even towels or washcloths. I have to watch and get clothes in as soon as they dry so I can hang another load.
This is how I solved the problem of not being able to afford guys and concrete to plant a proper line. Besides, I absolutely hate concrete used in the yard to anchor anything. It is really hard to force guys NOT to use concrete.
 just another view
I found this view that I don't think I have posted. See the area of dead St. Augustine grass?
Don't forget to enter the giveaway for Bear Grylls bracelet. You can leave your entry there with the rules. You must be a follower of my blog. You can join now.
Your turn
Do you have a make-do, unconventional clothesline?