Decided to Make a Little Post Again

Got a new homemaker today.  Raquel.  People want to call her Rachel because Raquel is too hard.  Seriously, people?  How rude can you be, and how hard is to say Raquel?  Not hard at all.  Jeez.  She’s young and bubbly and very fun to talk to, so I am hoping she stays a while. Nice to have someone to talk to again.

Heat

went off last night.  This happens every winter.  The units on the roof are ten bazillion years old, and the landlord has not interest in doing anything about anything, so a valve sticks and cold air just blows in constantly.   Fun times.  So I turned it off, after which it took several minutes to actually shut off.  I was getting nervous that it wouldn’t.  Turned on my fireplace, Lunatic and I got under our two blankets combined, and had a nice night.  It was 50 in here when I got up.  Turned off the fireplace, turned on the emergency heat, and warmed up to 55.  Yay.  Turned on the heat, and it’s working again.  Every other time, some poor guy has had to go up on the roof and manually unstick the valve.  Very relieved not to have to call, more relieved that heat is working.  I have my fireplace and a little heater fan, so even if the emergency heat did not work, I’d be fine.  Cold, but fine.  🙂  It’s winter.  I do like winter.

freezing-cold

Today Is

twelve drummers drumming day, also known as take down the tree day.  I slept really poorly, and so am in a mass of pain today, so I have decided to rename my tree The Winter Tree, and leave it up for a while longer.  Because I can.  It’s my tree, and no needles fall off cause it’s fake. Also, I love the lights.   🙂

It’s 2 degrees, at 5:15pm Eastern.  You really have to feel bad and be worried about people who have to be outside in this kind of weather.  So glad I am not one of them.  Stay warm, people.  Watch out for you neighbors and friends, make sure they are warm and okay.  And give coffee and blankets and whatever else might help to those forced to be outside for any reason. ANY reason.  No judgemental, blame the victim crap here, please.  I’m pretty sure Jesus wouldn’t be doing that shit.

12 drummers drumming

The Sun Has Come Out

It stopped snowing last evening, then we had some serious wind going on.  It is now 7 degrees Fahrenheit, at 9am Eastern.  Move Your Car So We Can Plow guy came around at 8, but fortunately for me, I do not have a car to move.  No going out in the cold for me.  Did go out Wednesday in the cold, but it wasn’t that bad at all.  I do love winter.  Of course, I don’t live where the flooding was.  Freezing cold blizzard, topped by floods.  Fun times for the lucky ones in those areas.  Boston, Scituate, Hull, and more.  It’s salt water, so don’t know if it will freeze in place now or not.  Welcome to our restaurant.  Please bring ice skates. Hope you all are having a great start to the new year, floods or not.  Tomorrow is take down the Christmas tree day.  Easy job.  Fold up the branches and put it back into the box.  🙂2013-12-24 17.50.34

Bit of a storm update.

From the Boston Globe:
epstein5_010118Still snowing like crazy, but apparently it is flooding in many areas, which is not the winter storm norm.  Ha Ha.  I see lot of people dissing global warming, but this is caused by global warming.  The ice is melting at the poles, the oceans are rising, thus flooding.  Thus extremes of temperature. We are having a record long cold stretch here, below freezing since December 24th.  Stronger storms.  It’s not good news, people.     NECN flooding post

Brief aside, saw Urgent Care doctor yesterday as mine was not in.  Nothing serious, not really that urgent, but as he’s reading my chart (I did NOT have blood work done) he said it shows that I have not been eating enough.  I was too surprised to ask how he got that from my chart, but have to call my regular doctor tomorrow and will ask.  That’s puzzling, don’t you think?  Besides, after being on Prednisone for five years, there is no way you could call me underweight.  Anyone who tells you that Prednisone does not cause weight gain has never been on it. Trust me.  I know whereof I speak.  🙂

OMG

theskyisfallingWe’re having a snowstorm here in New England. Like the many, many, many snowstorms just like this one (and worse) that we’ve had here in New England. One would think that it’s the Apocalypse from all the hype. News is not about telling you the facts, it’s all about how to get more ratings. How to get more ratings? Try to scare you to death about every little thing that happens, or even might possibly odds are a million to one but still someday maybe could happen. Responsible reporting has gone the way of the passenger pigeon. I love a good snowstorm, and it’s been a few years of really lame ones recently, but they were a regular occurrence for most of the seventeen years I’ve lived here. It’s not like it’s been a hundred years since we had a good storm. Good grief. I don’t even have tv, and I am still just fed up with the irrational hype. Once in New Hampshire, my husband worked three miles from our home, and it took him four hours to get home.  That was snow.  Stay home if you can, having stocked up on no-heat or extra water-needed edibles and bottled or jugged water (if you have lots of jugs hanging around) in case the power goes out, make sure to clear your roof if it starts to get deep up there, and have some sort of emergency heating available, and candles and matches. People survived big storms before we even had stores to buy these things and alarmist reporters and weathermen to make it all seem like the worst thing that ever happened anywhere anytime. So glad I don’t have tv, and an added bonus is I don’t have Trump in my face at every opportunity. I’ve had this laptop on for less than half an hour, and I am already saturated with the hype. It’s everywhere. Chicken Little, anyone? I loved that story when I was a kid.chicken little

 

A friend’s house, less than a mile from me.100_0922

This below was my first winter in New England.  It snowed for days.  It was glorious.  Started out with these huge flakes just slowly floating down from the sky, and it never stopped.  Or it seemed so, anyway.  It was truly beautiful.  This picture is Peabody, MA. after the storm.  Can’t find any of my town.  Not great at Search, maybe?

feb 27 1969 peabody ma

Out my window right now, holding up the curtain, followed by a link to snowstorm article, if you’re interested.

window010418

https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2013/02/09/boston-biggest-snowstorms/DzYKmJfGEdy7C9Wd7uKmXM/story.html

It’s New Year’s Eve

My advice for the new year, don’t do resolutions. You’re just setting yourself up for failure from the start. I do hope 2018 is better than 2017. I hope we take back our country from the greed-driven, money obsessed people who have lied and cheated their way to the top. Vote this year. In every election. Vote. Get them out of office, even if their office is dog catcher. Happy New Year, everybody.

newyear-e-cards-greetings

IT’S TWO TURTLE DOVES DAY

Just in case you didn’t know.2trtldvs

I am finally having a half-way decent day.  Pain and exhaustion are not fun.  My homemaker came for three hours today, to make up for Monday.  I told him he had his work cut out for him.  Then I had to explain what that means.  He’s so cute.  He cleaned everything.  He cleaned to stove and the burner trays and the burners.  Did not ask him to do that.  Did a great job on everything, too.  Glad I kept him.  He and Lunatic did not start out well, but just keep getting better and better.  Would have missed out if I had decided against them.

I am eating lamb vindaloo from Trader Joe’s.  I love Trader Joe’s.  Lamb Vindaloo was mentioned in Red Dwarf, so when I saw it I went for it.  It is very good, and set-your-mouth-on-fire hot.  I like hot.

Watched the last season of Broadchurch after refreshing myself on what went before.  What a good show.  I wonder if there will be more.  Looking forward to more Shetland, if it ever gets to Netflix.  The last season of Longmire is up, too.  Looking forward to that.  There are some really good shows out there, and it is so great to watch without commercials.  Binge-watching is now my fav thing.  Me and Lunatic and a blanket on the couch.  It’s a good thing.

Hope you all had a great Christmas, or Solstice, or whatever you celebrate.  I’m Solstice, myself,  with the Christmas tree and all.  🙂  Happy Holidays everyone.

50: what’s an odd thing you collect?

newspaper

Don’t know how odd it is, but I collect information.  I am an information junkie.  I have a ton of bookmarks, and a ton of hard-copy info on just about any subject you can imagine.  I like to know things, I guess.  🙂

Here is something that bothered me:  “Fans have been criticizing the studio producing the Fantastic Beasts sequel, and J.K. Rowling, for the decision to keep Johnny Depp on the cast in light of allegations of domestic abuse made by his ex-wife Amber Heard. ”

Men are pigs.  I get that.  But allegations are not proof, and what happened to ‘innocent until proven guilty’?  All of a sudden, men everywhere are being condemned, fired, ostracized for things that have been ‘alleged’.  When several women allege something, I tend to believe them, but at the same time, we need to be sure of what we’re doing.

Remember the Daycare Child Abuse craze several years ago.  Ridiculous allegations were brought and people were even imprisoned for things that there was no actual evidence or proof of.  Lives were ruined because of what sounds a lot like some form of mass hysteria.

Maybe I just think too much.  Oh, well.

49: do you like buying CDs and records? what was the last one you bought?

vinyl record

I used to.  Belonged to all those record clubs (buy one, get 10,00 free).  Well, maybe not 10,000, and not really free.  But when my husband left, he took my records and my record player, among other things, so then later I bought cd’s.  Now I have a bunch of cd’s I never play, because YouTube.  You can find any music on YouTube.

So after moving to 3 mg Prednisone last Wednesday, I went through several days of pain, so much that I cancelled my homemaker yesterday and slept til 3:30 pm.  Much better today.  It takes a while for my body to adjust to the lower dose, and it is not fun during the process.

Went to Thanksgiving dinner at the restaurant with DD2 on Thursday.  Fancy schmancy place  in downtown Providence, not far from Atwell’s Avenue, with the pineapple.

Here’s what I wrote my friend Tess about it.

“Very nice place, attached to the Omni Hotel, across the street from The Providence Journal building.  Very posh, very loud.  Need some sound-proofing tiles or something.  Dinner was good.  Not spectacular, but very good.  Turkey was so-so,  more like processed turkey, but the veg were really good.   Real mashed potatoes, cubed sweet potatoes cooked with something tasty and not completely covered with marshmallow stuff, and green beans perfectly cooked with onions, bacon and sliced toasted almonds. Kris took the leftovers home.  Not the turkey, just the veg. Stuffing good, cranberry sauce had orange and cinnamon, very nice.  We ordered both desserts and split them.  The pumpkin cheesecake was nice, but not really cheesecakey, and the carrot cake was delicious and no nuts, which made Kris happy.

But the star of the dinner was the Lobster Bisque, made with tomato.  We wanted to order a gallon to take home.  Oh, man was that stuff good. A really lovely cocktail, kind of like a margarita but with sugar on the rim, and stuck on with some kind of juice, cranberries on the stirring stick.  It was really good. Merry Berry, it was called.  I’d order that again in a flash.  That and the lobster bisque, oh, yeah. I would just order those if I ever went back.”
Seriously, that lobster bisque was amazing.  It was quite an expensive dinner, but was worth it just to spend the time with DD2 and go to some place snazzy.  Service was incredibly slow, at one point we were wondering if they remembered we were there. But a nice experience over all.
It has gotten much colder recently, with the occasional warmer day here and there.  Hoping for some snow this winter.  I like snow.  I don’t have to shovel or drive in it.  🙂  I’d still liked it back when I did, though.
Luna and I are getting along swimmingly, except for the odd times she attacks me.  Haven’t figured out what that’s about.  Is she playing, frightened, startled, what?  Still very happy I adopted her, though.  She is great company and wants to sit with me all the time.
Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving, if you celebrate it.  Later.

48: what was your biggest fear as a kid? is it the same today?

f767
Sorry to say it was my dad when he was drinking.  He was a violent alcoholic, and I was terrified a good deal of the time.  Not-drinking, he was the sweetest, kindest, do anything for you, shy man.  Not really afraid of much now, maybe the thought of some random bug crawling on me.

Turns out I don’t really have any business casual clothes.  After years of just being here by myself and only going out to casual eateries, my wardrobe consists of jeans, sneakers, and tee shirts, pretty much.  No way to go shopping, either.  Maybe I could color my sneakers black with magic markers, but the pants thing doesn’t really have a fix, and I only own one skirt, and there is not top that goes with it.  I am hopeless.  Illness changes your life in ways you don’t even really realize.

A Learning Day

Turns out my homemaker is a Muslim, so today we had a very interesting talk about religion and me being atheist and all.  He is very knowledgeable for someone so young, although maybe all Muslims are.  He is the first I have interacted with that I am aware of, and definitely the first I have discussed religion with.  Learned some things, one of which is how alike all major religions are.  How ironic is it that we all share the same basic beliefs, and yet use any small differences as excuses to hate and even murder each other.  You just can’t seem to get past the basic flaw in humanity, which is hate, kill, look down upon any and every one who is not exactly like yourself.  Sad.  If there is a god, and he did create us, either he made a huge error somewhere along the process, or if he made us like himself, he is a very flawed character.  I am happier being atheist.

I did feel it necessary to question one thing.  The Koran seems to condemn homosexuality, like the Bible does.  So if, as he says, the Koran is the last written of the four major books of religion, and the most unchanged and perfect, is it implying that, if god made each of us, that in the case of homosexuals, he made a mistake?  God was wrong?  How can that be if god is omnipotent and perfect and does not make mistakes?  Seems a bit of a contradiction there, at least to me.  He didn’t really have a good rebuttal for that, and I think it made him uncomfortable, which was not my intent, but if I have a question, I’m going to ask it, cause I have no tact, as my friend Beth delights in reminding me frequently.  No tact and no filters.  Religion puzzles me, because it does seem that it used for hate more than for good, in spite of what the religious people would have you believe.  I am proud to be atheist.  I do my best to do the right thing and treat people with kindness and compassion, because it is the right thing to do, not because some religion tells me I should.  If I only do right because I’m afraid of retribution, then I am not really a good person.

Lots to think about.  I do love a good discussion, and very few people seem open to discussing things without getting angry or resentful.  Discussions are not arguments, they are exchanges of views, sometimes heated exchanges, but not angry or malicious exchanges.  We don’t talk enough, we don’t hear other people’s views enough, without our defenses going up.  There’s nothing to defend against.  Your point of view is yours, mine is mine, and I learn from hearing yours, as I would hope you learn from hearing mine.  Doesn’t mean minds are changed, or attempts made to change them.  Okay.  Done.

 

learning

47: what food do you think should be banned from the universe?

okraOkra.  Definitely okra.  Probably liver, too, but definitely okra.  Ick.

Re yesterday’s menu, the only thing on there that I don’t approve of is marshmallows on sweet potatoes.  No. No, no, no.  My dad made the best candied sweet  potatoes, with nary a marshmallow in sight.  He cooked the potatoes, peeled and sliced them, and layered them with butter, maple syrup, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Then he baked them til the top was crispy.  He used a 13×9 pan, cause there were five of us, plus guests.  Too deep and the potatoes don’t get the right finish.  My dad was a fabulous cook, so was his dad.  He even made his own waffle cutter for fries, among other things.  He made a steak roll, with some kind of bread stuffing in it, that was fantastic.  Oh, I must be hungry.  LOL  Lemon meringue pie.  Deep-fried shrimp.  Onion rings.  My mom, on the other hand made pickled watermelon rind, watery spaghetti sauce, other barely edible things, with the occasional spectacular dish, like pot au feu, which was the best thing ever invented in the world.  I make great toast.  I used to cook a lot, and always from scratch, but once I became ill, it sort of fell by the wayside.  I miss cooking sometimes, but it’s just not on, except for the rare good day when everything comes together.  Guess I’m done for now.

 

#45 do you trust your instincts a lot?

I do.

Dumb questions, but trying to get some inspiration here.  Been struggling.  Pain, no energy at all, no motivation, no anything.  Very depressing, when you think about it.  Nothing to do that I am able to do, nothing to look forward to.  Well, this year, surprised the hell out of me, too, DD2 is taking me out for Thanksgiving dinner.  After year after year of turning me down when I asked if she wanted to get together, out of the blue came this. I’ve gotten quite used to spending every holiday alone.

Going to some snaz place in Providence, ‘business casual’ dress.  Bit of anxiety for someone who wears jeans everywhere.  Do I even have any clothes that qualify as ‘business casual’?  The menu lists ‘amuse-bouche’, which shows you it is a fancy restaurant.  LOLOL  Hoping I am good on the day, and DD is in a good mood, because she is fun and a very interesting conversationalist.  We talk about politics, religion, climate change, her weird sister (I know you read this DD1.  🙂 )all the things nobody else I know even wants to touch on.  So that’s something to look forward to, except I don’t really do that because I can never be sure it’s actually going to happen.  I never know til the day, sometimes the hour, if I’m going to be able to do something or not.  So planning ahead isn’t something I usually do.  It’s kind of freeing, actually, in a weird way.  Live in the moment.  Works for me.

 

Pain

images.duckduckgo.com (2)I have been having it for  while, with the occasional feeling somewhat better.  I have figured out that if I take two Aleve around 11pm, I can wake up relatively pain-free and be somewhat functional for the first  part of the day.  Unfortunately, you cannot take Aleve at will, because it will eat holes in your stomach.  Every thing is a trade-off when you are ill. 🙂

Anyway, I made scrambled eggs the other day, and I thought I would run through it for those of you who have never been in constant pain.  Imagine you are sitting on the sofa and realize, ‘Oh, some scrambled eggs would go down a treat right about now.  Now imagine every one of the following steps involves energy you don’t have and causes you pain.  Every movement causes you pain.

First, you get up.  Ow ow ow.  Take a breather.  (this repeats after every step.)  Walk to the kitchen.   Open the place you keep the skillet.  Reach in.  Pick up the skillet.  Pull skillet out of it’s spot.  Lift/move skillet to stove.  Turn on stove.  Walk to frig.  Open frig.  Remove eggs and butter.  Close frig.  Walk to stove.  Open butter, open drawer, reach in, pick up and remove knife, close drawer.  Cut butter.  Move butter you have cut to pan.  Open egg carton. Remove eggs.  Close carton.  Carry carton to frig, open frig, place carton inside, close frig.  Walk back to stove.  Pick up egg, break egg into pan, carry shells to sink or trash, back to stove, repeat with second egg.  Reach for spatula, pick up spatula, move spatula to pan, stir eggs.  Reach to burner knobs, turn off burner, Oh, you forgot a plate.  Walk to cupboard, open cupboard, reach in, pick up plate, remove plate, close cupboard, walk back to stove. Put plate down, pick up pan, slide eggs onto plate, replace pan or walk to sink and put pan in sink, walk back to stove, open drawer, reach in, remove fork, close drawer, pick up plate and carry it and fork to wherever you are going to sit to eat your eggs.  Eat eggs, get up, walk to sink, put plate and fork in sink, walk back to your seat.  Sit.  Spend a good amount of time recovering from all that effort.  Remember, every single move took energy you don’t have, and caused it’s own pain.  Every. Single. Move.

This is life with fibromyalgia, and many other chronic pain illnesses as well.  Just so you know.  When you think of people with invisible illnesses as ‘lazy’ ‘goldbrickers’ ‘good-for-nothings’, remember this.  When you tell them to ‘just get over it’, ‘you just need to push yourself’ ‘get outside and Do something’, remember this.  It’s easier to disparage people with these illnesses than it is to accept that they are real illnesses and could possibly happen to you, because YOU are not lazy, or goldbricking, or a good-for-nothing.  Neither were we.  Remember.

Pain Oh Pain Oh Pain

Have been in some serious pain since Thursday, so brain is on vacation, just trying to get through the day.  I try to just deal with the now, but the now is being same ole same ole, and I want to GET THINGS DONE, darn it.  My coping mechanisms are sleep, read if I can concentrate, binge-watch my current show, which right now is Dark Matter.  Wil Wheaton.  Evil, evil, evil.  He does it so well.  It’s a ‘dilemma of the week’ type show, but it’s sci-fi, and I have been starving for sci-fi pretty much since the sci-fi channel changed their name and turned into the dreck channel.  I miss sci-fi Friday.  Still.  I seem to moan and groan and complain a lot when I’m in pain, so that’s that for now.