Not much going on today. Love the image above!
Can you believe it’s December 8?! I can’t!
But I’m here to talk flying Corgis. Good grief they’re cute! Look at that little bun!
That’s just so sweet!
I have to share what I found today. It made me laugh out loud and I hope you’ll get a giggle or two too. 🙂 I certainly NEEDED it.
I really needed a laugh and this did the trick. They have chipmunk/hamster cheeks…lol. 🙂 Oh, the things our companions endure for our joy…sigh.
Can you believe it’s mid-November? I was just whining about summer’s heat and poof! It’s less than two weeks from Thanksgiving.
My friend who was my stalwart companion through my divorce and now through the knee surgery kindly invited me to spend Thanksgiving dinner with them. I was so delighted since I have spent it alone for the last seven years!
I’ll still cook a turkey since Von’s has their Safeway brand of 8-16 pound birds for $7.00 with a $30 purchase. Note: may or may not get one since it’s over a week away. Why do stores do this?
Anyhow, I put the “happy stuff” at the beginning of this post. Now onto the more difficult matters.
On a sad note, I will most likely be putting Blue to sleep (or sending him over the rainbow bridge on Monday, November 18, 2013 around 2 p.m.). He has hit “critical mass” as it were. About a week ago, I walked around the foot of the bed where he was sleeping with his back to me. As he heard me, he tried to lift himself and turn to look at me. Sadly his left front leg went out and he fell on his left shoulder with both front legs stretched straight out and his lower half rolled even further so that his rear legs aimed to the sky, twisted in a pirouette fashion. He didn’t move.
In mere seconds I could see he really couldn’t move…paralyzed. I quickly “righted” him. Poor little guy, didn’t even seem to know it happened, just licked my hand. So the disease is advancing. Plus he can no longer make the six feet of patio to reach the grass where he used to roll with such joy. (see above photo)
He also is a constant “leaking machine”. For a while I could count on two to three major bladder blowouts per day. Now it can happen every 20 minutes. Certainly can’t stop giving him water. Clean up is rigorous and I have noted both of my knees crackling and crunching more and more as I bend over to clean up the messes (osteoarthritis and NO cartilage anywhere). But I will never complain. I don’t mind doing it since I love him to pieces.
My schedule and “his” for feeding/pooping/peeing have gone off the grid. He just poops and pees at any minute even if it was minutes ago. So there’s no “window” I can count on. Thus, I have to leave him outside for a large portion of the day and at night, lock him in an enclosed area (aka: laundry room or the bathroom). Fortunately as I’ve said before he must have been crate-trained because these smaller contained spaces seem to calm him immensely.
On Friday, we had a sudden, unpredicted downpour while he was outside. Since he is a house dog, he does not take well to being left outside, unlike my previous love, Alpine, the Siberian Husky. She would look up at it (rain) and just look at me like “yeah, so what?” She’d shake herself off, and look at me again like, “what’s the big deal? Rain, what rain?”. Where Blue sat in a little pile getting drenched. I ran out and managed to carry him back inside where we had a prompt rubdown and blow-dry. I think he kind of liked it. 🙂
The heart breaker for me is the lack of interaction I can have with him. None of the areas he can be in (tile or hardwood floors vs. oriental rugs) are adjacent to where I am, which is my office. As a result, I get to hear him crying and whimpering which just kills me. But after a while of responding, I just try to ignore them and as a result, much like a baby, he falls asleep.
I went out today and got puppy training pads (tried diapers but due to his dragging lower half, he just slides out of them, even with a snug over-pantie) to put between him and the tile floor. Hopefully these will help him not be so stressed out when he looses control. Did I mention that I think he has a bladder the size of a blue whale (which btw can hold 5.5 pounds of urine)? Don’t know how he does it. The amount he holds is amazing or was, since now it’s just sort of a constant outflow.
And how can you ever deny water, food and treats to your companion? You simply can not. So, we come to the final stage and a decision. Having “walked” six other loves on their way, via their choice or mine, I’ve come to know when they need assistance. We are now at that door. And I do not like that door, but I must open it.
If you’ve been reading for a bit, you’ll know that for about a year I lived on salads, Trader Joe’s Caesar salads to be exact. I’d buy three at a time plus a bag of three heads of romaine and a package of “Just Chicken” which is their pre-cooked chicken to add to the salads. This worked out very well since prior to following this regimen, it’d suddenly be nine at night and I’d realize I hadn’t eaten anything. All day. Plus I wasn’t drinking much water. Not good.
Looking back I now know that I was still in shock from the divorce being finalized. It took a greater toll than I realized. Well, after a year of salads, boredom set in. So I changed to frozen food like chicken pot pies, pork shu mai, and Celeste “pizza for one”. During the six or seven months this went on two things happened. First, the good, I discovered Trader Joe’s “A Taste of Alsace” pizza-like tart. OMG. It was heaven. Carmelized onions, cheeses, ham bits, all on a super thin, rustic-looking, crisp crust.
Second thing that occurred started after about five months of these types of meals, my ankles began swelling like balloons, twice their size. I’d never experienced this before. (I use very little salt, only Celtic sea salt in a grinder if I do.) This was not a good thing. After awhile it hit me, salt or better yet, the amount of it in these processed, prepared foods. So I have cut out prepared food and and now am cooking. The urge to cook has finally returned. Yay! Of course, while cooking’s like riding a bicycle and you never forget the first few times out, you’re quite wobbly and might fall, which I did.
So a week ago I made a minestrone-like vegetable soup cobbled together from about five other recipes. It was so much better than my earlier stab at Panera copy-cat Cream Cheese Potato Soup. I wound up with 4.5 quarts of soup so I was set for the week. Good thing was, my ankles returned to their normal size. The only salt used was that in the stock, can of cannelloni beans (rinsed) and can of tomatoes. Finished the last smidgen off yesterday for a late lunch.
So today I have a pot of Danish Kale/Caldo Verde Soup in the works.
As you know I don’t try to be a pro photographer, just want to give you an idea of what I’m making or looking at, so please don’t be overly critical of the photos. Anyway, that’s my dinner for tonight. It made a good three plus quarts of soup. Yum. Only salt added was Wyler’s chicken crystals and the kielbasa. So my ankles should be safe 🙂
I’d swear I posted the recipe in the past but can’t find the post so here it is again:
Danish Kale/Caldo Verde Soup
2 T. olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1/8 – 1/4 t. ground cinnamon
1 lb. or bunch kale, stems removed, leaves chopped
6 – 8 c. water
3 T. Wyler’s chicken crystals
1 large or 2 medium white rose-type potato, peeled or not, large chop (see photo below)
1/2 rope of smoked sausage, sliced into 1/2 inch rounds (i.e. Keilbasa, Linguica, etc.)
Salt & pepper, to taste
In a five quart Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the olive oil and onion: cook 5 – 8 minutes. You want them translucent, not brown. Add the garlic, cook 2 minutes longer. Stir cinnamon into onion mixture. Add the kale, tossing to coat it well. Add the water and Wyler’s crystals. Heat to boiling, reduce the heat. At this point add the potatoes to water in a small pot and cook. Add sausage to soup. Simmer, covered, 20 minutes.
Drain cooked potato cubes and add to the soup mixture. Heat until uniformly hot, then serve. Note: I never add salt since the chicken crystals and sausage provide enough for me.
On another note, today I said goodbye to P and A who lived in the other house on this lot. Since the landlord raised their rent $100 per month, they’re moving in with her parents for a few months in order to save some money and putting their stuff in storage. They really want to buy a house and start a family. They’re in their mid-thirties and the extra rent would scuttle plans to accomplish their dream, so I can’t blame them. I’ll miss them dearly, they were the best neighbors in the six years I’ve lived here.
There is something to be said for not moving far from your family like I did. They must have had 15 people helping today, all family. I do wish them well, hope they’ll stay in touch and hope the new tenant(s) will be as nice. Fingers crossed. If you crossed your fingers too, it wouldn’t hurt! 🙂
Holy smokes! Where does the time go? Twelve days have passed without a post! My excuses are many and serious including a gas leak. Yes.
About eleven days ago, my little desk heater died just as the weather was going from balmy to blizzardy (by California standards). Day temps in the high 50’s and nights almost to and possibly including, freezing. The little valley that this town sits in right at the base of the foothills, is a “pool” for both hot and cold air. As a result, if it’s 85F elsewhere in this valley, it’ll be 90+ and the same in reverse. So I really needed heat!
I’d asked the property manager/landlady (she lives with the landlord) over a month ago to please fix a few things including vacuuming out the pit in the floor where the little one foot by one foot gravity furnace sits about 16 inches below floor level. It hadn’t been cleaned in two years and since it’s grates are open and have no cover, all manner of dust and hair fall down into the box.
Back in January I mentioned this needed to be done but as usual nothing was. The short of it was that it took over six days of her ridiculous solutions to getting the furnace to work. Rather than hire a professional (her excuse was “oh, it’s so old, no one knows how to fix them) she had her two day laborers spent multiple hours every day futzing with solutions. All of the jerry-rigged.
I finally told her to hire a professional, that this was stupid. So she says she’ll call around and “oh, you can look up on the internet and see if you can find one. Normally I wouldn’t do this but I was so fed-up with her that after waiting to hear from her for five hours, I did. First listing on the web and I find a guy who knows what he’s doing. This is a benefit of buying old fixer-uppers, you’re exposed to all the old technology.
Called her up and asked what she’d found. She hadn’t even started looking! So I gave her this guy’s name, number, his solution and his cost which was less than $200. Turns out she calls him, gets his solution, then sends her guys to Home Depot to get a new digital thermostat.
One comes over to install it, three hours later he calls the other guy. The second guy flips through a couple of random pages in the manual and then ignores is. Note that on the package it states “installs in 15 minutes”. So five hours later it’s in. They leave.
Overnight the heat goes up to 82! They had screwed up all the default settings by pushing this button and that. I actually read the manual and a second one that was in the packaging which they didn’t even see. Turned the furnace off and went back to bed. In the morning I called Honeywell, explained the problem. They said by turning the thing off for eight hours, it would revert to default settings. So I turned it on and sure enough it worked.
The next morning I wake up and smell gas. Call the gas company. Someone will be out between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. I repeat “gas leak”! Doesn’t matter. Amazing. After about an hour I’m getting nauseous even though the doors are open (can’t open the windows because they’re painted shut).
Call the gas company back and ask if getting sick to one’s stomach was a symptom of gas poisoning. This person is operating on a full tank of gas and moves me to top of the list. Within ten minutes a tech was at the door! Yes, the pilot was out. He fixed it and put the long rods to operate the on/off gas switches into the box and labeled them, telling me what to do to turn off the gas if this occurred again.
Next, I went for my three month follow-up to laser eye surgery to re-attach a tear in my retina. Got all the drops…numbing, dilating and so on. Luckily I asked to only have the one eye dilated since I was driving. Good results, all’s well and don’t have to come back for six months.
Made the mistake of running too many errands on the way home with the dilated eye on a very sunny day. By the time I got home and got the groceries out of the car and around to the back porch I was toast. Went inside, washed my face and went to sleep, leaving the groceries on the porch (in the shade). Woke up three hours later. My right eye was super bloodshot and swollen. I put eye wash drops in it. Brought the bags in and went back to bed.
That was two days ago. The right eye is still bright red where white should be and swollen. I’m guessing the drops as well as the poking and prodding for pressure readings as well as the bright lights to photograph the interior did not agree with my eye. Sigh. Maybe I should have checked my horoscope for this month. What do you think?
So that’s part of what I’ve been doing. What are you up to?
Posted: April 6, 2012
Where has the time flown? It was just Monday!
The 10-12 year old camera I’m used to using doesn’t seem to have the ability to lay a “rule of thirds” grid over the LCD screen and so I have to use the other P&S, a Canon. I don’t care for it because of all the little pictures and combos thereof and menus, etc. that you have to search through in the 137 page manual and the 24 page basic manual. Makes me feel like Lloyd Bridges (aka Mike Nelson) in a kelp field on Sea Hunt. Scenes like this gave me the creeps as a little kid…and still do!
Oh, hey, I just found out how to change a date on a post in WordPress this very second! Hey, it is a big deal, I’ve been hunting for it all week! 🙂 However it still doesn’t change the date at the beginning of the post for some reason…hmmm?
Back to photography. I was so excited to take the photo class but have had “writers” block all week. Sigh. Quite annoying. Yesterday when I was out shopping for edibles, I found myself pricing flowers and plants to use in photos. I even bought brown eggs, a bag of small arrow shaped sweet peppers (reds and oranges), and tomatoes to play around with.
In the past the container garden in the back provided plenty of material but now that it’s a wasteland, not so much. Two assignments are due by Saturday night so time’s running out! Eek!
I’ll be updating you with whatever I can muster together for tomorrow’s deadline. Will be shooting outside so that I don’t have to look up balancing the different kind of lighting. Wish me luck! Funny, I actually thought of dragging out my old film SLR and using that. So much easier!!
Note: Since WordPress still posts things I write with the next day’s date on them at times, I will be posting the date I actually posted an article at the beginning of it. At least till I figure WP’s time stamping out.
Okay, there’s a certain learning curve on WordPress. Just had a whole post set to go and suddenly something made it vanish in a puff of smoke. All right, not a puff of smoke but it had the same effect…gone!
Think I’m just a little nervous because I’m rather tech-challenged and found out yesterday that I had to have a Flickr account for the photography class I’m taking. Eek! So spent today signing up and trying to learn my way around Flicker. Nothing like a little pressure. Figure out Flickr while finding my way around Word Press and taking the class. Piece of cake. Not. Well, it’ll keep me off the streets for a while 😉
One other thing I did was spend several hours going through about 300 of the 500 plus posts on my old blog. After following the links Bella Karma so kindly sent me (thank you!!) I only found 24 of the lost blog photos, so I culled the posts. It’s amazing how much has gone on since the beginning of 2009! Who knew I could write so much?
I did find a number of photos that could be retrieved so I loaded five of them onto Flickr per it’s instructions. Something about having to post five before the stream would be publicly visible. As I said, tech-challenged.
Anyhow, I’ll post a few now just to get a little practice inserting a pic into this blog.
Next is a shot of some gorgeous petunias from 2007.
Well, time to go forage for some dinner. Hope you all have a good weekend! And thanks for stopping by, I really appreciate your company