Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Wow...now THAT was a stomach turning typo

Note to self: NEVER try to eat lunch and type at the same time.  Ever.  Again.

You know how you take things for granted, then suddenly realize you're not completely sure you have the whole story?  That was me today, wondering about exactly what ingredients comprised the food Hummus.  So using one hand I typed the word into Search and this popped up. 

...dark, organic material that forms in soil when plant and animal matter decays. When plants drop leaves, twigs, and other material to the ground, it piles up. This material is called leaf litter. 
When animals die, their remains add to the litter.

Um.  What?!  

Suddenly my chicken salad didn't taste so good.

So I looked again.  Yep, I'd typed in "Humus".... not "Hummus".  

So the lesson, boys and girls, is to pay attention, real attention, to what you're doing so you don't lose your appetite unexpectedly.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

For Savannah

Even after biblical rainfall, the old gal is still blooming.
This Gardenia is for you.
Y'all have a great weekend!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

S.C. Flood waters close to home...real close

 I'll preface this with: all photos taken with Hubby's cell phone camera.

The water in our neighbor's pond went over the dam, around the dam and across the field...

Where it rushed across the road like a raging river...sounded like rapids!

Creating this mess.
This is the road behind our house which I normally take to work. 
(Fortunately we're on a hill and stayed high and dry...
as did Hubby's Archery Shop).

The next morning....

Yesterday afternoon not only was water still rushing across what was left of the road, it was churning through the woods in about 3 raging rivers.

Even washed these little guys right out of the pond.

So after about 10 days of grey skies and torrential rain of biblical proportions, today looks like this.  
Feeling thankful.

Don't remember the last time the grass was this green...
we've been in severe drought conditions all summer.

Currently our small county is, as our Sheriff noted, "Like an island.  We're cut off due to major roads washed out or bridges out.  We're not going anywhere fast."
So while we're okay, unfortunately rural country roads aren't high on the repair list.  Little by little they'll get to all of them...
and maybe I'll get back to work soon.
Weird vacation.
Hope your week is sunny.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Thank You Thursday

Thank You Thursday salutes: Mrs. Elizabeth Kitchen, my 7th grade English teacher.  Granted, that was a while ago and Mrs. Kitchen has been gone for years.  But what she shared with me never left: the love of words.

Mrs. Kitchen looked like a Rockwell portrait of an all American grandmother: white haired and apple cheeked, with a twinkle in her eye, even when she was serious. Once a month Mrs. Kitchen handed out Reader's Digest.  Our assignment was to complete the "It Pays To Enrich Your Word Power".  She believed in learning by doing...that self motivation was better than a teacher droning on in a monotone at the front of a classroom.  The bonus, for a kid like me who loved to read, was that if we completed the task before the allotted time was up, we could read the rest of the magazine. 

Not only did I increase my vocabulary, I increased my reading/comprehension skills.  To this day, if I pick up a Reader's Digest, I go to that page first. Because of her belief that we could learn anything, I still get a high score...and probably learn a new word.

Mrs. Kitchen inspired with her can-do attitude.  She only had 2 rules: (1) that we always do our best and (2) we were forbidden to chew gum in class.  The gum thing was actually a school rule, but it was her pet peeve.  Offenders were made to memorize a poem and recite it in front of the class at the end of the week.  My friend Pete got caught.  But he possessed a wily sense of female sentimentality, even at the age of 13.  So when his recitation came, he turned, not to the class, but toward Mrs. Kitchen and began to recite...a love poem.  Her face remained stoic while every little girl in the class swooned. (Except me...I knew his sense of humor was at play).   She complimented his recitation, gently noting that she hoped he'd learned his lesson.

Funny, I don't remember the poem.  But I remember her reaction as Pete wandered back to his seat with a Cheshire cat grin. Mrs. Kitchen's cheeks grew rosy and she fanned herself once.  Yet another lesson in the power of words.  

Although this Thank You may seem to come way too long after the fact, I actually made it to her, in writing, years ago.  After I sold my first article, I wrote to her and my 8th grade English teacher, to thank them for encouraging my love of the English language.   They wrote back, pleasantly surprised, to know that a woman in her 20s still thought of them fondly.

But that's what good teachers do....they stay with you.  Forever. 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Thank You Thursday

Thank You Thursday salutes...the seniors at my Senior Citizens Center. Many having grown up in a world of little money and WWII rationing, means they understand that gifts from the heart are the best. Whether using donated yarn to hand craft items for those who are ill/in a nursing home, to sharing jigsaw puzzles with other groups so everyone saves a little money, they are inspiring. They set the bar pretty high...and I'm grateful.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Well, at least I'm not getting on my own nerves

The good news: turns out I didn't pinch a nerve in my back,  therefore the "promise" of a cortisone shot to the back didn't happen.  (Insert squeal of relief here!).  Nope, it turns out that the sad truth is:

I am NOT Superwoman.
 No, more like Super Stupid and paying for it.   

Short version: a little over 3 weeks ago I was carrying to the trash a box of books too-heavy-for-a-vertically-challenged-woman.  (Don't start yelling: these books were ancient in the smelly/unreadable way).  I went to put them on top of the garbage can outside....and failed miserably.

The only thing funny about this story was my finally breaking down Friday and going to the doctor.  What had been a "circle" of pain in my back was slowly shrinking but there was a nagging spot that was driving me nuts!  Haven't slept well, or in a bed, for 3 weeks....and I fear becoming addicted to ice packs and the heating pad.  

Doc is an old fashion kind of doctor: he knows what's good for you because HE went to medical school and doesn't care what you read because you probably misinterpreted it.  He's one of Hubby's archery customers and took me on, I think, as a favor to Hubby for good archery discounts.  Hey, he was forewarned that while I'm an excellent caregiver, I am a lousy patient...because I have no patience with being under the weather.   I bet we spend half of my rare appointments with Doc raving about how great and fascinating Hubby is, as I nod in hopes of escaping without a test I don't want or need.

Poor Doc, he doesn't know what to do with me because I listen carefully, ask questions and try not to smile when he looks at me the way a parent does when viewing their wayward child.  My defense is this: it's MY body, I've lived with it for 57 years and I understand all of it's quirks.  Like the one where a little bit of medicine goes a L-O-N-G way.  After 2 years, I think he's getting use to my "educated stubbornness".  Which is why this last visit was funny.

I began with, "I did something stupid.  I know better, but when you work alone, you do what you have to do.  I lifted a box that was too heavy and now I'm paying for it."  

He illustrated me lifting a box, supporting it from the bottom.  I shook my head and replied it had handles, like a box fruit is shipped in.  He looked befuddled.  Doc is about 6'3" and I'm guessing he doesn't remember what the world looks like from down here at 5'1".  So I stood up, showing him how I carried the box, noting the fact that most women have no good core strength once they get to a certain level...and how I pushed past that level in spite of it all.  Lifting the box almost to head level so I could leave it on top of an outside garbage can (the large kind on wheels) was further complicated by the amount of thrust I used.  Which might've worked if I hadn't hit the lip of the can and the box bounced back.

I am still wondering, "Why didn't I just let the damn box fall to the ground?  It's trash."

But no, Not Superwoman tried to snatch it back up and over again, only to be rewarded by the bulk of the weight shifting to my left arm as the box began to slip down my forearm...leaving cute little purples bruises where it bit down along the way.  Still, Super Stupid refused to let go, lunging once more and accomplishing her mission.  Which is what brought me to the Doc's office, pretty much against my will.  I think it was the sleep deprivation.

Doc listened, nodded and told me I probably didn't pinch a nerve.  (I knew that...had already told him I didn't have any of the symptoms, which I rattled off as he looked surprised).  After hopping up on the exam table, I helped him locate the spot which felt like someone's knuckle was trying to work it's way up and out of my body.  To my credit, I didn't yell the first word which came to mind when he found the spot.  He then proceeded to push on that spot and rotate my left arm in positions I'd never even thought about.  Diagnosis?  Tendonitis in the muscle under my shoulder blade.  Cure?  Exactly what I'd been doing (ice, heat, Advil for pain).  

"So you're telling me to keep doing what I've already been doing, then add the healing power of Ma Nature and Father Time?"

He nodded and grinned.  Then he pulled out his iPhone to show me an illustration, which he couldn't find, leaving him to use the old fashion flip chart behind me on the shelf.  I admit it.  I think he told me the name of the muscle but my brain was too busy screaming, "No shot in the back!  No shot in the back!"  That made me super polite when he started telling me about a conversation he'd had with Hubby earlier in the week.  And I did get him to call in my prescription refills, so I don't have to go back for a while.

My goal is to get to the point of sleeping in bed again as soon as possible: the recliner and couch have offered a better angle for slumber, but Hubby and Bou the Dog are looking at me as if I'm anti-social.  Hubby told Bou to go look for me yesterday and the dog automatically went to the recliner, where the heating pad lives.

It's tough to admit that your Kryptonite is having good intentions, which are stronger than your back.  But this will make me think twice before doing something when the little voice in my brain is whispering, "I don't think so.  Maybe you ought to re-think this."

That little voice is called Common Sense.  Listen to it.  It might keep you from losing sleep...or having to pantomime an injury to someone taller than you.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Thank You Thursday

Thank You Thursday salutes comedian Jeff Dunham.  Honestly, there’s just too much anger and unhappiness in the world some days.  Jeff provides welcome relief, if only for a moment.  Besides, who knew ventriloquism could be so cool?   See for yourself…he has a new special on tonight on NBC at 8 p.m. eastern time  

 I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to see Walter duet with Brad Paisley.  Wonder who’s going to take on guest, UFC Champion Chuck Liddell?