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Welcome

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Make yourself at home. Put your feet up. Grab your favorite beverage and prepare to enjoy the reads.
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Thursday

My Celebrity Collage

I think this is hysterically funny! I don't even know who these celebrities are that I am supposed to resemble. Do you?





You can also get your own Celebrity collage, here.

Monday

New Treatment For Varicose Veins Uses Crochet Hooks

New Treatment For Varicose Veins Uses Crochet Hooks

ScienceDaily (2007-10-22) -- UCLA's chief of vascular surgery picks up size 7 crochet hooks from a fabric store -- not to make sweaters or scarves but to use in a new technique he has developed to treat varicose veins. Early results of the new outpatient procedure, called Light-Assisted Stab Phlebectomy, or LASP are encouraging. Over 250 patients at UCLA have undergone the procedure, designed to remove branch varicose veins in the thighs, calves, and ankles.

Sunday

Allergic to Pine Trees?

I'm so excited! I just got some new crochet jewelry from Laurie. I have been experimenting on photographing them. I want to show them off!

However, my photo talents seem to be limited. It's quite difficult to photograph jewelry, I am learning. I have these creative ideas, but am disappointed in the results. The whole picture doesn't stay in focus. So, I took the focused parts of the pictures and cropped them. And you are looking at the first results.



This necklace is like a Christmas present to me, so I hung it on my pine tree that is growing outside in my front yard. Suddenly, that tree stood up proud and embraced the idea of wearing this lovely decoration, and posed for me. But, maybe the necklace is allergic to pine trees. Or maybe it was just camera shy.

Saturday

Green Apple Necklace

Laurie has been producing crocheted items for more than 30 years. To look at her, you would never know she is a grandmother. She still has a few young ones of her own at home and yet, still finds time to put her inspired ideas into reality. Aren't her kids adorable. They look a little mischievous. How she can get any work done? It's a wonder to me. This woman is committed to her craft.


Something catches her eye and triggers her imagination, and suddenly she has another piece of art jewelry ready to rest upon someone's pretty neck.

Just take a look at this piece below. I think she calls it Green Apple. It does look luscious, doesn't it? The detail of the crochet design shows her craftsmanship, or would it be crafts-woman-ship? This piece is so feminine, without being frilly. And the natural theme to it, the leaves combined with green and gold, no wonder she likes to call it Green Apple. I'm sorry she already sold this one, as I sure would like to have it. Well, she takes special orders, so I guess I better let her know.

Young and old, alike seem to be attracted to her work. Men are impressed with the intricacy of her designs. In fact one gentleman ordered jewelry sets for his wife and daughter for a family holiday. The sets included necklace, bracelet and earrings. For the daughter, there was also an anklet.


Did I tell you these are all her own designs, which she has copyrighted? Oops, I forgot. Didn't I? Yes, I'm pushing it, aren't I?

Did I tell you that in the past she has crafted fun-to-wear skirts and shirts, exquisite christening gowns, and would you believe, even crochet swimwear (mostly bikinis). I kid you not! They were all hot items at the boutiques in her area of Southern California. She has been quite diverse in creating wearable art. Wouldn't you say?

I have seen her working on a gothic piece that was purchased by a lovely young orange-haired woman. It was designed in black Marcasite and went well with her style. Laurie is quite diverse in her creativity.

Tuesday

Grape Harvest Festival Crochet Jewelry

I just heard from Laurie today. How exciting this is going to be! She tells me that she will be presenting her handmade crochet jewelry for sale at the Rancho Cucamonga Grape Harvest Festival on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, September 28, 29 & 30!!! I wish I could be there.

Laurie is so talented. I'm so proud of her! The first time I ever saw her hand crocheted jewelry, I was so surprised. I had never seen anything like it before. Oh, I know what you're thinking, but this is NOT your granny's kind of crochet. Laurie's crochet jewelry is ART you can wear on your neck or wrist or... well you get the picture.

This lovely piece is such simplicity of design. You know what's really nice about this too? My sister could wear it without a problem. She is allergic to all jewelry, except pure gold. With no metal on this, it's perfect for those with nickel allergies. Laurie made this on for me. I get so many compliments on it when I wear it. It reminds me of midnight. The dark glass beads have a shimmer to them like black pearls, and the crystals remind me of moonstones. I love it!

It is interesting to know that Laurie started to crochet when she was just a little girl. She took to it naturally and has been doing it ever since. I remember when she was in her teens, and her talent in crochet brought her attention not only among her friends, but with their parents too. Soon her crochet talent soared. She taught herself how to make all kinds of decorative items, and as the years have gone by she developed her own personal style of creative art jewelry. Laurie's unique style expresses her motto perfectly... "Fierce, Feminine, Fun!"

Monday

Crochet Jewelry Art


You can go just about anywhere and pick up an ordinary piece of jewelry but you cannot find this type of jewelry art anywhere. My daughter, Laurie, takes exotic threads and beads (and just about anything) and creates her one of a kind masterpieces. Never are two the same. She has a vision and a passion for her crochet jewelry art. She can take anyone's old jewelry and magically weave it into a necklace or bracelet so that you can have your grandmother's vintage cameo pin in a new setting and wear it, bringing it back to life again.

Laurie uses linen, rayon, silk, polyester and other types of threads to work her beads into. She chooses those beads right from the source... glass, crystal, semi-precious stones, buttons.... you name it.

Sunday

Defining Meanderings


Meandering along the misty shore, my mind wanders, my body leading.






I think meanderings is a good description of how my mind works, and how my life has occurred.

I googled
Define: Meanderings

and these were the definitions of meandering on the Web:

* meandering(a): of a path e.g.; "meandering streams"; "rambling forest paths"; "the river followed its wandering course"; "a winding country road"
wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn

* An instance or period or roaming; winding or rambling
en.wiktionary.org/wiki/meandering

* meander - a bend or curve, as in a stream or river
* meander - weave: to move or cause to move in a sinuous, spiral, or circular course; "the river winds through the hills"; "the path meanders through the vineyards"; "sometimes, the gout wanders through the entire body"
* meander - ramble: an aimless amble on a winding course
wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn

* Meanders - A meander in general is a bend in a sinuous watercourse. A meander is formed when the moving water in a river erodes the outer banks and widens ...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meanders

* Meander - In mathematics, a meander or closed meander is a self-avoiding closed curve which intersects a line a number of times. Intuitively, a meander can be viewed as a road crossing a river through a number of bridges.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meander_(mathematics)

* Meander or Maiandros is a river-god in Greek mythology, patron deity of the Meander river (modern Büyük Menderes River) in Caria, southern Asia Minor (modern Turkey). He is one of the sons of Oceanus and Tethys, and is the father of Cyanee, Samia and Kalamos.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meander_(mythology)

* Meander is Carbon Leaf's first album. It was released in 1995 by the band's own label, Constant Ivy Records.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meander_(album)

* Meander - In art and architecture, a meander is a decorative border constructed from a continuous line, shaped into a repeated motif. ...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meander_(art)

* meander - A winding, crooked, or involved course; as, the meanders of an old river; A tortuous or intricate movement; Fretwork; To wind, turn, or twist; to ...
en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Meander

* Greek Maiandrosz, now Menderes, winding river on the west coast of Asia Minor Vigorous river bend, firstly as a result of the sidling erosion.
twisterrob.uw.hu/peq/eng/szoj.htm

* meander - "with the meanders of the stream" means the survey line follows the twists and turns of the stream.
www.directlinesoftware.com/survey.htm

* following a winding or intricate course
www.windowsintowonderland.org/wolves2/glossary.shtml

* meander - a turn or winding area of a stream
montereybay.noaa.gov/educate/teachercurriculum/glossary.html



Though these definitions describe many kinds of meandering. I thought it interesting that the way the ocean kisses the shore was not a part of the definitions.

Saturday

California Fires

"In response to a friend's email, concerning the California fires and asking if I was okay:

"My" fire happened last month, but because it was only a couple of mountains and all forest and only a few "hunter's cabins" and grew to be larger in size than the city of San Francisco , I guess there was not much news coverage on it. Fortunately, it was on the other side of my little mountain and would have had to jump the freeway to get to me. Staying locked in the house was my best option. Still it played havoc with my asthma, but that is under control now.


My son, being in San Francisco has little to worry about. My daughter is in the Los Angeles area and close to the Lake Arrowhead fire. Three years ago flames were in sight of her street and they were ready to leave when it turned around.

This year she is only being inundated by ash. (Think of a blizzard and you've got the picture.) They are all locked inside their house with the air conditioning OFF in 3 digits temps. Last time they used the air conditioner, the ash ruined the coils, and they had to replace the whole system, so this time they are using the house fans.

I told her to come up here, but now the freeways are closed. The routes they could take around still would make it possible, but I cannot imagine the traffic, and think they are safer at home. Her son, is a Paramedic and I am more worried about him, as he is working the Riverside area which is closer to the other bigger fires, and he is in the midst of rescue efforts. Not too long ago he was gung-ho to be in the military and on the front lines. Well, he got his wish in a way. He's a tough guy with a very big heart. I know he is getting an education the hard way, right now. I will get the real story from him later.


There are fires in the Canyon Country region, where my brother used to live, as well as my parents. I am so glad they are no longer there. My brother is frantic about his old friends and neighbors. Same with my sister, who used to live near the Malibu fires area. You have to realize these fires are NOT just in the uninhabited areas. It is inevitable that neighborhoods get destroyed.

Most people think of California as one big stretched out freeway city, but there is a great deal of wilderness surrounding each city and homes encroach right up the canyons and into the trees. There are those who say "I told you so" about building neighborhoods in areas that should be left to nature. But, I guess if one can afford $$$ million dollar homes up on the side of a mountain, one can afford the insurance and rebuild.

Sorry to sound so cynical. There's a lot of rich neighborhoods which have been destroyed. I cannot help but notice the comparison between Hurricane Katrina and now. Money has power and California money talks to politicians. Swarztenegger was there in the area of the very rich homes on the first day. He has friends in high places (like those homeowners near the fires). Though this is a terrible tragedy, the power that moneyed people have here is obvious. And of course, the ones in the shelters have less than the ones who have gone to stay at Hilton.

I keep wondering about the wildlife. We lost a lot with the fire up here last month. The small critters can't get away. The larger ones run into other regions. Where I live the wildlife relocated itself into farming areas and they keep rescuing cougars and bears. The wild boar are being shot. The coyotes live very well among communities. Wolves are on the fence as there are those who kill on sight, and those who rescue. I don't know what they are going to do in Southern. California.

Well, I suppose one could consider one good thing to have come from all this. The San Diego area is so devastated. There wont be any cover for the illegal immigrants. They wont need an army of immigration officers to watch the border. A single helicopter should be able to handle the job. That should take care of the problem for a long time! And, yes,  I am being a bit sarcastic here.

I dread this winter when the rains begin, as then there will be mudslides galore. It really is very very bad this year. I've lived in So Cal many years and seen the fires come and go.

Wednesday

Slow but Steady Wins the Race

Awoke again with no pain, on just five hours sleep. I just can't fall asleep easily right now. I don't any racing thoughts or things on my mind like some people suggest is what happens when one has insomnia. My body gets comfortable and I just lay there semi-dosing waiting to drop off. I would have slept in a little to make up for it, but had NPO blood work to be drawn, so headed over to my regular doctor. She is an Oncologist and Internal Medicine specialist. So, whether or not I have active disease she takes care of most of my needs. 

Her partner was there today and came out to say hello during the blood draw. (this really is small-town medical practice). So, I asked if he ever gets Sarcoma patients, to which he answered, yes. He presently has three. So I told him about Team Sarcoma and my plans of getting myself stronger so that I can participate. Then, told him that I wanted to find ways to get Sarcoma Awareness out there in the community. He immediately ticked off a number of suggestions on his fingertips, and was very happy to hear more. I couldn't write down his ideas. Darned blood draws anyways! But, he suggested I send an email outlining the whole program. I would like to find someone in my community who can let their fingers do the walking around here, and get me some opportunities to connect with people for Sarcoma Awareness!

There just doesn't seem to be enough time in the day to take care of myself, the chondrosarcoma group and trying to set up a community network. But, I keep in my mind some words of wisdom I once learned: "Slow but steady wins the race." (said the Tortoise to the Hare.)

After returning home, I had to lie down for a while. This happens sporadically for me. I just know... that's it... time to lie down. Once I did that, I realized my right foot was ice cold. This happens and I don't know why. The lack of pelvic floor muscles? Pressure upon veins? I don't know. If I ignore it the whole leg becomes cold, and that gets painful. I don't like to take pain drugs, if I can handle it without them. So I keep reclined, warm my foot with the heating pad, and when it feels better, get up.

After I felt better I headed off to the local outdoor shopping mall and walked the sidewalk, which goes from the end of Target to beyond the grocery store with a number of shops in between. I began in the middle so I could walk one direction and come back. If too tired, I would get in car and go home. But, I kept on going to the end and returned. In the meantime, I made one walk through the whole perimeter of Target. I took a cart to "lean on" as that has been what I do when I use my walker, substitute cart for walker. I was getting tired (actually achy) enough that it helped to have the cart to stabilize me. I didn't shop, though it was tempting. I was just there to do my walk, with only one poky stop in the socks department. I did notice that when I slowed down or stopped that pain hit my Sacroiliac joint. Now I realize why shopping is such a drag for me. Well, other reasons, too. I just hate it when kids who have lost their parents have a basketball and stand at each end of the aisle hurling it back and forth like a missile. Then there are little kids in a cart who are leaning out screaming to reach Mama, who has her back turned. 

I usually like to shop after hours!

The absolute most amazing thing happened today!!! I had been thinking about wearing a T-shirt while I am out walking that has something about Sarcoma on it, so maybe it would trigger someone to ask me, "What's sarcoma?"

I tossed around some slogans:

Tame Sarcoma with Team Sarcoma What's Sarcoma? Just ask me.

But, finally I settled on: "Got Sarcoma?"

You know, like that ad that says, "Got Milk?" My Japanese sweetheart has a bumper sticker that says, "Got sushi?"

I figured wearing a shirt that says "Got Sarcoma?" At least those who have had it or know someone who has will have a comment to make, and therefore, I will have a lead to help create Sarcoma Awareness. Who knows maybe Oprah will see me and donate big time. Because, after all her House Designer guy, Nate Berkus did a re-design for Ty Bassett who had been amputated due to synovial cell sarcoma.

Hey Oprah, don't you wish sarcoma patients had a cure? You can make it happen!

Okay, nevermind, let's get back to the awesome coincidence and the T-shirt story. I looked in the yellow pages in the hopes of finding a T-shirt place. Lo and behold, there was one right here in Watsonville. So, I called, and the owner answered. Conversation went like this:

Hi, this is Doug.
 
Hi. I am wondering if I can get a shirt with a logo on it.

Do you mean one shirt?

Yes.

We don't do one shirt orders. We make many at one time. Like for charities and organizations and so on.

Oh, darn. I was hopin'..

Well, it would be very expensive for just one.

I just want one. If it isn't too expensive. It is sort of for charity... for cancer.

Well, what would you want imprinted.

You know the slogan: "Got Milk?" I want a slogan that says, "Got Sarcoma?" because I....

Sarcoma? Why Sarcoma? His voice changed at this, and I suspected he knew the word that most don't.

Well, I had it and survived, and now I am getting ready to do a fund raising event and...
 
My dog's got sarcoma!!! She was just diagnosed 3 weeks ago!
Now I understood the unmistakable catch in his voice and the conversation was no longer about T-shirts.

We spoke a longer about the Sarcoma patient support groups online, and even the fact that there is one for dogs with cancers, and that dogs and cats are, or have been, members of my Chondrosarcoma group. By the time we got off the phone I would like to think that Doug has a bit of hope for a little while longer for his dog. I will stay in touch with him, even though he told me it would be easier to go to kinkos and get an iron on transfer made. Thanks Doug!!

You may think I am crazy for allowing pets to be members of my support group. Or to acknowledge them as Sarcoma Patients. I can't help myself. I was once told that the reason my surgeon was able to perform my internal hemipelvectomy on me (back in 1967) was because dogs had been used to perfect the surgery. So, in a roundabout way, I owe my life to a dog. So, why wouldn't I let them (or their people) join my group?

I don't think they experiment on dogs anymore for sarcoma. But, if they do, then they might have a cure sooner than humans will.
So, needless to say, today's walk is ALSO, dedicated to five year old Tina, the dog who has sarcoma in her throat, has had surgery, and presently is undergoing chemotherapy. May she have many more healthy years.


Because I still didn't find my pedometer, I just timed it. I was able to walk for 50 minutes

Saturday

Hypnogogic Electronic Walking

They're called Hypnogogic Hallucinations. I have had them on and off for many years. But not for the last two. So, I drowsed off to sleep with that sense of muscular tension like a sour violin string being plucked. I just wanted the sensations to disappear. While waiting for my seizure med to take effect, I fell deep asleep. I don't know how long I slept when, suddenly, I was aware
of someone in the room. I opened my eyes and there was what resembled that guy in the movie, "Powder". About a foot from my face staring at me, my automatic reaction was to shout, HEY!!! This has always worked in the past to get rid of the hallucinatory beings. (or wake me up as the case may be.) But, this apparition only stepped back, and I had to yell out another, HEY!!! Needless to say, I thought I would have awakened my brother, but he must have been out like a log. Four hours later, he woke me to ask if I was ready to go with him to the Electronics Flea Market. I told him, not possible, I would come later.

Kats picked me up and got me to De Anza by 6:30 AM. It was quite cold! I put on sweatshirt. two jackets and knitted hat. Soon, I was waiting on customers. I have worked with my brother like this since about 1979, when we both lived in the Los Angeles area. That's part of how I got to be such a Geek, being exposed to coaxial wires, adapters, antenna splitters and now a plethora of new stuff. I still enjoy hanging around with the big boys. Though not able to do the things I once did gets more frustrating, like unloading the truck, setting up the tarps, lifting crates of merchandise, putting up tables, and so on. Roger's space was about 30 ft by 20 ft and I found myself pacing when not waiting on customers. It is so painful for me to just stand in one place for any length of time, I just have to keep moving, lie down or sit down. So, I put my pedometer on, and decided to see what happened. Several times I left the site and went for walks throughout the swap meet trying to guess what all the unimaginable ham radio devices were for. I still have so much to learn.

This time I was wearing my Lucky Pinks, so walking was stable and able, up and down all the aisles at a brisk walk. It was fun to just look and keep walking without any difficulty except having no money to splurge on some old Syvania vacuum radio tube, like the ones my mother produced during the war. Eventually, I thought it would only be fair to return to Roger and get back to the business at hand.



We were aware of the possibility of light rain showers, but that is not what they used to call what happened next when I lived in the Mid-West. (tornado watch) We, of course, were ready for the rain, as Roger had put up his rain tarps before he set up the tables. A little rain occurred at that time and died off. Upon returning to Roger, the rain had returned with a passion. I kept going around with a long stick and pushing upward on the tarps to get rid of the run-off before the whole thing collapsed on us all. In the meantime, some customers were getting dowsed before I could get to them. Everyone crowded under our tarps anyways as not too many other sellers had protection from the weather.

All of a sudden the wind lifted up the frame of the tarps. I grabbed one of the poles and asked for help from the man nearest me. Then, a few others followed suit. The wind was so intense, many took their chances running back to their cars. A few regular customers (for years) stayed behind to help us. I felt so bad that I could not grab the goods, load them in the cases and haul them into the truck as I once did, and Roger had to rely on customers to help. All I could do was dry things off with a towel.

Going home driving through more rain was challenging now that my body had time to complain. Kats and I went to the spa and did the pool and jacuzzi, to release the tightness in the muscles.

During the four hours that I was with Roger, the pedometer registered 4114 steps.

Friday

Not Taking a Walk

Too many breakthrough seizures this morning. Probably more likely due to the lack of appropriate sleep, not the new walking program. If this continues throughout the day, I will need to call the Neurologist and ask if I need to up my dose of Lamictal.

Have been on the phone most of the day, one call was with the office of a researcher who had requested to communicate with me. But, it is Friday. His Assistant didn't say he was away, just he would call me back next week. I asked her to send me one of his research papers, which she did. I printed it out and have taken it with me to read later. I will stay overnight tonight in Sunnyvale where I have met up with my brother, Roger .

I had hoped to get there before him and take my walk while waiting for him to show up, as he drove up here from Phoenix, however it turned out that he was ahead of schedule and I was late. We had dinner out, then back to the hotel, where I am now. It will be a very early wake up as I will be hanging out with him.

I won't boo-hoo about not walking today. Getting control of the breakthrough seizure activity was more important.

So, no walk. Zero steps today.

Thursday

Rio Del Mar Beach, Aptos California

Had trouble falling asleep last night. Many cramps in legs. Hmm!

Rainy night. Strong windy day.

I wasn't able to pull myself together enough to go out early to walk. Bones too creaky. Too many emails to handle. Cat needed cuddling. Excuses!


Then... Earthquake!

Yup. But, just a little one. Epicenter, if you can call it that a little off shore, from Watsonville, in the Monterey Bay. Really, it was very minor and one of 13 in the area today. Thank heavens for those short shifts! I live only about 10 miles from the previous epicenter of the Loma Prieta Quake (1989).

I finally put on some sweats, (still cold and windy out) and got in the car to drive over to Aptos beach to walk. I parked at the beginning of the half a billion dollar homes, well okay, maybe they are only quarter billion. Once I got my pedometer on, and started walking I had an "oh, no" moment. I had forgotten to change shoes!! I left my Lucky Pink's at home. Darn it! Oh well, slip-ons just had to do.

So, this sidewalk was slanted too. It is across the street from the crazy rich homes. Crazy, because you would have to be crazy to live there. A huge cliff that produces mudslides every winter faces the backs of those homes. The sand and ocean is literally is at the front doors. That is, separated from the sand my only a street and the walk. Well, at least most of them have their first floor as the garage only. I have seen some pretty bad damage on that street. So, I guess it is okay to be crazy if one wants to pay big flood/mudslide insurance (act of God insurance?) and pay for rebuilding when the mud oozes through your kitchen into the living room and right out the balcony and plops down onto the front driveway where the ocean washes the mud away. Still, I wouldn't mind living there just for the incredible view, and the sound of the surf. On the other hand, it is the one and only street that leads to the state park beach. In the summer it is crowded with tourists. The rest of the year it's either surfers or whales washing up on shore. I have a recording of ocean sounds, I think will satisfy me.

And you thought I was going to write about how nice it was by the sea... the seagulls, the sunshine, the waves, the breezes, the warm sand, the beachcombers. Yes, it is all that, and more! It was hard to just enjoy the beauty when my shins were burning, though. My slip-on shoes were not meant to be supportive walkers! I will NOT forget my Lucky Pinks tomorrow. You can bet on it! I want to be in good enough shape for my trip to Vermont that I walk along the shores of Lake Champlain and just hang my mouth open in wonder and joy, forgetting to take pictures.

I didn't care for the inclined, not flat, sidewalk. So I crossed the street to walk along the front of the nice homes. Many people sitting out on their verandas or patios nodded or said hello. Nice people! I wonder if they do that during tourist season, too. I remember how sociable everyone was on New Year's Eve. The whole street was it's own double party. The tourists below on the sand with their bonfires giving toasts to the hosts. The householders out on their balconies in their dress clothes lifting their glasses to their guests. It was a surreal and happy new year where everyone seemed truly happy. What year was that? I forget. But, it was so kewl!

I was determined that I would at least walk as far as the end of the homes, where the public restrooms begin. I did have to stop a couple of times to just stand there and breathe. Coming back, I decided I could handle the sidewalk as the slant evened out my leg length discrepancy. I managed quite well with that, except for the areas where the sand had blown across the pavement. Loose sand is not easy to walk on, when you are as out of practice as I am. Soon, I had lost my momentum, and the pain slowed me down considerably. Other walkers were passing me by, even an old lady with a dog! The jogger, (Bless him!) ran by me, back and forth, so many times, it was Déjà Vu, all over again. Along the sidewalk is a sort of metal bar fence. (something to hang onto when the wind is blowing hard, or the waves are rushing by) I stopped four times, and pushed my spine up against them to help relieve the pain. The burning shins were gone by this time. It was my rib cage and shoulders that were complaining. Next time, I will probably need to take something for pain before I go out, just to keep it to a dull roar. It's very distracting. At least when I am home, in the car, visiting someone's home, I can squirm or change position, or even lie down if need be. But, I had to continue walking. My car was not going to come pick me up. Hey! that's a good idea. You know. They have those cars now that will park for you, and the ones that will watch out for drivers sneaking up on your blind side. They need to invent one that will unpark itself and drive up to whereever you are. That would be great for when you come out of the grocery store and can't remember where in the world you parked your car, too.

Now, see! Who's crazy now. This crazy lady who calls the beach home owners crazy! That's who.

I just need to keep on working on this until my body is as ambitious as my mind wants it to be. It's not like I can't do it... I can.

That last 99 steps I counted myself, just to put my mind off the invisible Samurai jabbing me along with his ancient sword. It was with a sigh of relief, as well as pride when I got in the car. I actually had broken a sweat! Though my body was throbbing and complaining even after I sat down, I was happy to see the numbers on the pedometer.

Oh yeah, forgot to mention... the pedometer says I took 3599 steps!!

My reliable, old, 1987 Dodge tells me that I went a mile. Aren't there only supposed to be 2850 steps in a mile?

Tuesday

These Shoes Were Made for Walking

4-10-07

Didn't sleep well last night, and I received an early phone call. It was Amy, who is the dog walker for Karen, the neighbor who shares her cat, Cinnamon with me. I had previously asked if I could walk with Amy when she takes Karen's dogs out. So, I went her. I was a little disappointed though, as Amy didn't want to take them but more than a block away. The Dachshund was raring to go, and keep on going, but the "redbone" hound that Karen adopted from Katrina (the hurricane/flood) was much slower. Mahree apparently is old, and has arthritis. At one point she literally stood still. I could tell how she was feeling as my arthritis does that to me, too. Sometimes just taking another step seems impossible. I wonder if they have anti-inflammatories for dogs.


Since I didn't walk very far, I won't "count it" as a walk.

Later, when Liz came home, we went walking, ( meandering). But we did 3,282 steps by going in the other direction than before. We stopped halfway and sat on a bench that one of her friends has in her front yard and chatted with her. She gave us cuttings of one of the flowers in her yard that I hope to plant.

I am proud of myself. It seems so incredible to me. Over 3,000 steps and no real negative after effects.

I spent the rest of the day on the computer trying to arrange for a flight so that Xavier, my son, and I can go to Texas for my parents Memorial. They both died within the last 17 months.

Since I could not find my old walking shoes, (not under the bed, not in the closet. Did I toss them?) this evening I went to Ross discount store and bought me a pair of Skechers for only $17. As my mother would say, if she were here, "they're ugly as sin". But they are Pink! I love them! They will be comfortable for this summer as they are sandals.

Getting the shoes was one more goal acheived....

Monday

First Walk

Awoke with pain in the belly, which has been quelled for a few months. Last time I had it bad enough to go to the hospital, it turned out to be passage of a gallstone. I don't have a gallbladder, but I still produce them. The gall duct is quite enlarged so I guess it makes sense that it substitutes nicely for a gallbladder. Go figure.

So, my first nagging thought was, "What will I do in Vermont, surrounded by others who want to get on with the day if I have a bad episode?" Then, one thought jumped to another. I am annoyed with myself that I am having this much anxiety. But, I am sure I will work it out. I had a cup of green tea with ginger and half a lemon, and later was able to have some toast.

Later, I asked my neighbor, Liz Valencia, (picture at right) and asked if she wanted to walk with me. She had a hip replacement last year and walked quite a bit afterwards. She gladly went with me. I recall that she had a nephew who died of Sarcoma a couple of years ago. But, we didn't talk about it, just noticed the flowers and plants along the sidewalk. We walked around the corner, down the street and back. I wanted to go further, but I have been warned to take it slow, a little more each day. Liz knows about the blog and gave me permission to use her name and image.

I wore the pedometer and it counted 1510 steps.

Later, I was surprised to have sacral pain, not leg pain as I had expected. No need to take meds. Just rested a while.