THE CHRISTMAS TOAD

Well, why not? The baby Jesus was born in a manger. Weather permitting; there must have been a toad in that hay, dust and dried, old wood… somewhere. I know when my grandchildren erect my tiny nativity set we throw in many animals for the affect, not accuracy. We’re surrounded by traditions this time of year, whatever our religion. Families have their own way of reliving the past, enjoying the present while wading through the many changes all of us face. When you live with the companion of chronic pain, it shines a light on the whole season and it’s not always a bright luminescent star in the sky. Chronic pain leaves its mark or scar on our everyday lives, and there is no denying that.

Thus far, this year, it has definitely been a “hang the tinsel, drag Sue; nail the wreath onto the door, pick up Sue.” There are so many days each of us are faced with going along to appear normal. Well, I have a Christmas Express for you, we’re not normal. I’m searching my mind right now to try to find something or someone who is normal and I’ve decided we should ban that word from the good ol’ Webster’s Dictionary. Normal has changed with the times as any old movie will bear witness, as society is always in a state of flux.

I think we should just forget all about normal and fulfilling demands to please others and just concentrate on what is important to each of us. There are days when my list of problems is so long, if I read it to you, you would surely nod off before I finished. Santa’s naughty and nice list comes to mind. You know the one that drags the ground like the reams of old copy paper. Due to various parts of my body misbehaving, I find each year, I reduce the decorating, decking the halls and can’t yule or nog at all, thanks to some of my medications. In my own way, like many of you, cutbacks have a different meaning than they do on the news. They simply mean, “Hey, I can’t do that anymore. Find a new way.”

Finding that sweet spot in your life that allows you to find some degree of comfort while carrying on is like searching for a hidden gift in the back of your Mom’s closet. Most of us have found we go too far, begin to hurt or feel rotten before the realization of what we have done sinks in. In other words, we find ourselves in trouble. Our friends and family tell us we should “Just take it easy.”

My reply must be, “Okey festive dokey, I’ll do that.” NOT!

Then, the voice inside my head says, “If I did that there would be laundry hanging on the Christmas tree. My feet would stick to the floor in a less than festive manner and it wouldn’t be wassel. (By the way, someone should explain wassel to me sometime, but I digress.) The stockings would be filled with outdated cans of soup and the garlands I have always loved would still be in the big red Christmas box in the basement.”

Life calls out to us and hustles us along. It just happens to do it in a more festive manner this time of year. Each day I find myself inventing new shortcuts, as my woes and body demand. For instance, on Thanksgiving after my husband had to lift the stuffed free range turkey into the oven, he had to make a run to the jail where he works. Oh yes, my man is in and out of jail every day. Think what you will. He, blessedly, had peeled a large Dutch oven full of potatoes, thanks to his training in the US Army. The time arrived on my kitchen schedule of events to make the dinner all appear and be ready on time. He was still stuck at the jail and I knew I couldn’t lift that huge pot of potatoes onto the stove. Necessity truly is the Ma of invention. I shoved a kitchen towel under a couple of inches on the bottom of the pot, spilling the excessive amount of water he had added into the sink. I then proceeded to slide the pot over to the stove. The lesson being; I cannot lift heavy objects but apparently I can slide them. Incidentally, I must add that was the worst turkey I ever cooked. I’m not sure what that bird was doing out on the free-range, but me thinks she worked out too much because she was stringy. Next year, I’ll return to that overfed Butterball from the past. Oh come on, it’s only once a year. Lighten up.

I find my life infused with compromise, like cloves in a Christmas ham, it sharply stings but smells great. Compromise is everywhere. Frankly, I find that refreshing. It indicates to me I am not out of the game, I just have to play by my own rules. I can’t lift a stack of plates, but I can lift two at a time. I can decorate a section of the tree and then rest while reading or watching a favorite Christmas movie. I have learned to share the joy of decking the halls with the grandchildren and kind of like Tom Sawyer and that painting the fence ruse, I make it look like fun. Actually, that part is easy because it is enjoyable to me, I just can’t manage all of it any longer. I realize there is more to passing on holiday traditions that gifts and tinsel. Some of that passing it forward involves letting our children and grandchildren learn how to cook or bake some of the family favorites as they grow their own traditions mixed with ours.

As far as living up to expectations of days gone by, I don’t even try. I’m a fine cook and have always enjoyed the holiday baking but that too, will face revision this year and the next. There are many fine bakeries and other food distributors in the area and available online.

Well, my friends, I must get this in but I am going to think about that Christmas toad that I seem to be turning into and might find a sweet story in there about the little bugger. Be good, stay safe and figure out new ways to approach life. It’s not over ‘til the toad croaks.

127 thoughts on “THE CHRISTMAS TOAD

    • Janet, always pleased to hear you enjoyed the blog. A bit concerned for you, Annie and my kids who are in the Dallas area. I know how nasty that ice storm can get down there. Stay safe..we’re snowing out here. Fondly, Sue

  1. I like it Sue- the Christmas Toad- croaking out those little Christmas tunes and hopping along at a leisurely pace! Maybe he gets kissed by Santa’s elf and turns into the Christmas Angel… its got potential.
    I’m taking it pretty easy myself this year so I stay well and have enough energy for my Christmas Concert next weekend. Music really is one of the best parts of Christmas for me, so my efforts are concentrated there. Still hope to get the tree up but will tackle that after the 15th. I have decorations in my office, a snowman on the front door, and some little pinwheels along my flower bed. Festive enough for me.
    Mom looked really good at Thanksgiving-,better than the last couple of times I’ve seen her. Cuddling the new great grandbabies might’ve had something to do with it. They are so precious! and cute! Bella is six months old and Lincoln is 6 weeks old.
    It’s 27 F degrees here (minus 3 C for my British and Canadian friends) with freezing rain supposed to turn into snow overnight. I’m off to dive under the covers with a cup of hot tea, and watch some TV. I really miss my fur baby tonight! Love to all xoxoxo

    • Annie, Hope you think about getting a new fur baby soon. They are such wonderful company and a source for our love..and often, conversation. I’m always talking to my dogs and sometimes forget when I’m shopping that they are not with me. Why don’t you get yourself a precious little adorable kitten for Christmas or a rescue?
      Do stay safe today. Oh those ice storms in TX. Sounds to me like you are decorating plenty..already even without a tree. Hope the rehearsals for your singing extravaganza are still going well. It will be beautiful and blessing to many…no doubt. Love, Sue

  2. Well Sue, I have never thought about it, but you are right. There must have been a toad there somewhere. The “stable” was an overhang or a cave, so dry, dusty and dank. 🙂 You have such an imagination ! I would love to hear some of the stories you tell your grands ! I so agree. We change like the leaves on the trees. I am so exhausted right now, I would love to go get my jammies on and slip under the covers. BUT.. I have to wait up on a guy from church who is coming to pick up a banner Carol and I made for him tonight. I sat with Ms Alice today, who was very sassy today. Got home, feed, turn around, go back out to the church, work on the banner, setting up for the sale. It is now 7 and I have not been home long. I pray I have the energy to get thru this weekend ! And I may be leaving the sale and going to sit with Ms Alice so Fran and Doc can go out for their anniversary. SO…need some energy.
    I had a cute little vintage mink hat, too small for me. I thought it would be nice for Ms ALice. So I get it out to take to her. I look inside at the label, it came from Lord N Taylors in New York, and the name of the hat is …Miss Alice !!! It was meant to be ! She was pleased with it and it looks good on her.
    Well I am gonna shut up now and rest.
    Janet, it is still 64 here , until Sunday then we get a drop of 30′ !! The high is supposed to be 36′. Stay warm dear lady and don’t go out in the ice !!
    Love to all
    Tonie

    • TONIE….YOUR SUCH A KIND SOUL, I BET MISS ALICE WILL LOVE THAT HAT, BET SHE’L GO TO BED IN IT?
      SOUNDS LIKE YOU ARE AS BUSY AS EVER, I KNOW HOW YOU FEEL WHEN YOU SAY YOU FALL INTO BED UNDER THE COVERS…..WITH MY DH IN HOSPITAL, I FEEL DRAINED WITH ALL THE THINGS I HAVE TO DO IN HIS PLACE, NOT ENOUGH HOURS IN THE DAY…..AT LEAST I AM MANAGING THE LOGS SO KEEPING WARM………………LOVE YOU MATE…………….JENNIE POO XX

      • Jennie, so glad you are maintaining. I know you surely miss DH and you will more appreciate all the stuff he does now that you are doing it all. 🙂 (not that you don’t already)/ It is really POURING down rain this am !! The poor cat is sitting it out on the porch waiting for me to go feed him. Just praying this don’t turn to ice like it will up further north in a day or so.
        Do take care you ! Love ya right back !
        Tonie

    • Tonie, I have this very fun mental picture of Ms. Alice in her little mink hat. I suspect if she is a bit ornery it might be some of these things we talk about..limitations and not being in her own home for Christmas. That must be difficult not to be surrounded by your own traditional decorations, friends, memories, etc.
      Well, your weather may be on it’s way. Ours is here. 23 degrees out there, snow still falling, no one on the roads except my family who is trying to get to the airport. School cancelled for the grands so they are here. We got the camera when I decided to put the dogs out since George has never seen snow..So funny. He kept shaking his legs, got a face full of snow, turned in a circle by the door then came in and peed on the rug by the door. I suspect he will not be a snow dog. Jake’s way of dealing with it was to pee on every piece of furniture or pot outside then run in.
      It’s very lovely out there on our new street and on the news the film of the snow at the beach is so pretty.
      Hope the dinner, the sale at church and all your activities go well. Poor kitty out there in the rain. He must have been hungry. Glad you got your porch covered. Well, need to move along, get dressed and wrangle the grands away from the TV to help me decorate. Maybe we’ll make cookies also.
      Much love, Sue

  3. Sue
    Do you know its this trying to appear normal ,when people are talking about where they are going on their hols, or where they are going for the w.end what they are going to do in a few mths time.
    It’s all that that you can’t seem to join in and it’s isolating as I can’t plan that far ahead and there seems nothing to say sometimes as you can’t keep your end of the conversation up without saying why ,and who wants to know and whats more you don’t want to seem full of illnesses and misery ….so you try and appear (Normal) and smile at it all….ugh I’d rather be home reading a good book than mixing with normality sometimes
    However it was a good blog again sue. And yea I drag things too especially in the garden you can see all the scratched marks on the ground! That load of pots must have been heavy to drag tho
    But I think it’s an excellent idea to buy in I will do that again this Christmas ,enjoy the time better that way

    Well I got shooting pains in Lower tum I think I got IBS or diver.back ,with the Voltarol taking for back.so taking an antispasmodic.then stop Voltarol and hope back doesn’t get worse..a dose of normal would go down well!

    • Chris dear, hope your gut has calmed a bit. I’ve been eating potatoes, potato soup and oats this morning. If it’s IBS maybe it will clear with diet..sure hope so for you.
      I know dear, isolation can be so depressing. I’ve been left out of so many events, family and friends who don’t understand or just say, “Oh well, your loss” as if I could feel better if I wanted to. I would challenge any ill person to try harder than I have yet there are still those who don’t get it. That ignorance is coming from them, not you, and I think many folks are afraid of pain and illness and just don’t want to be reminded of their own mortality. We can be a powerful reminder and they don’t often know how to react so they put their head in the sand. As I have so often said, we have to find peace within ourselves but we have a harder time with the hurt and loss.
      You know Chris, as far as the garden, I’ve been buying those fake pots that look like pottery but are very light. Also have several stands for pots that are on wheels. Have to watch those on the porch when our wind blows..had one go sailing off…Take care of yourself dear girl…Love, Sue

  4. Sue~~Its a mixture of many things you shared in this post that touches each of us in different ways, and yet that word, PAIN is the glue that unites us in the personal struggles we all deal with each day. Something that “Chris” said truly hit home–“a Dose of Normal would go down well”~~~how great it would be for just one day, or even a moment. I relate to the “Toad in the Stable”~~without doubt there was probably an older Toad just waiting to have a loud “Croak” when a beautiful Silence filled the air and it seemed the world stopped–as a tiny Baby came into the world.

    Christmas is not an easy time for anyone–our fast paced world starts throwing Christmas at us on Aug.30th and there is no stopping it! I saw the tension last week while in a large “Wal****” store (figured I needed to be polite about the name) as a woman had some fabric ready for cutting–she was TIRED–it looked as if the World was sitting on her shoulders, and yet no clerk to be seen. So I butted in, asking how long she had been “ringing the Help Bell”–she said “Seems like forever–but nobody is coming and I have a ton of work to do at home.”

    I don’t know what came over me–maybe the constant feeling of Asking for Help–“Help me open the Pain Medicine Bottle, Help me lift the Laundry basket, Help me get up from the chair” on the list goes. Suddenly I grabbed that silly Bell and started giving it the RING OF ITS LIFE~~while I sang “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” at the top of my lungs! Within 20 seconds, a Clerk came running with a look of desperation as if to say “Stop saying MERRY CHRISTMAS!” I gently put the bell down, stepped away and gave a little wave to the Tired Woman–her Smile was the best Christmas Gift in the world!

    Now I don’t have any plans on returning to that particular store so for whoever endured this old gal singing a horrible “off key” version of a lovely song, I apologize. Guess this “Old Toad” really needed to feel useful in a “unusual” manner….. Thanks for allowing me a bit of “extra space” Sue!!

    Congratulations on “Pot Sliding!” martha

    • HI MARTHA…….LIE YOU, I COULD DO WITH A DOSE OF NORMAL TOO. SUE TELLS A LOVELY STORY, WE HAVE TO HANG ON TO WHAT WE CAN DO DON’T WE AND NOT FOCUS ON WHAT WE CAN’T DO.? I TOO AM FEELING A BIT OF AN OLD TOAD TODAY……NEVER MIND, WHO KNOWS WHAT I WILL BE TOMORROW, GOD BLESS LOVEY. JENNIE XX

    • Martha dear, I agree with everyone else and think that’s wonderful. Frankly, your action in the store is something I would do. Can’t stand that kind of rudeness and think it should be called down at every opportunity. We all know the loudest bell is the one that is heard! I also hate that feeling some clerks give that you are not even there and talk over you to fellow clerks. So many of them have not been taught they are there to serve the public.
      I gave up on normal a long time ago and have actually found more freedom in just being the new me. Take care my dear and I hope you develop some Christmas spirit. It can’t come too early for me. It’s my favorite season. Yesterday I hung lights in the windows and put a fake green garland on the indoor stair rail with huge red bows. I love the ribbon they sell at Costco. You get that great wire edged ribbons and so cheap for so much. Got the grands here today so must make this short. Love, Sue

  5. As always, a beautiful blog, Sue. And oh so true. It’s taken me a lot of years to learn to accept that things are not going to be the picture perfect I had always wanted them to be. I remember how I cried, the first year no one would get my tree out of the attic. It had come down the year before, but everybody hated decorating but me. But, it cost me for days. Sometimes I tend to forget when overdoing it cost me, it also cost those around me. But, after a day of crying over my missed tree, I understood what they meant when they said “I’m not going through that again.” And, indeed, they didn’t need to. I bought a little tiny decorated tree at the dollar store, and truly was just as happy with that. It’s been years since I even asked them to take my tree out of the attic. I’m glad I had the foresight to teach my son to cook. I was never great at baking, but he is very talented with it, so that falls on him now. So many of the foods I loved, neither Ed nor Keith like, so I let those go. I’ve decided they’re just not that important.
    A friend of mine said something a long time ago that helped me put this into perspective. She can’t cook, and that’s no exaggeration, she just simply cannot cook. I’d put her dressing together for her, and talked her through most of the other things. I asked her once why she did all that. She said “so my kids will have wonderful memories of Christmas like I do.” Now, the one thing she could make that was absolutely wonderful was pizza. One year I called her to ask if she wanted me to pick up the stuff for her dressing or did she want to bring it over. She said “I’m not cooking the traditional dinner this year..”She had decided to make pizza instead. She said that what she was giving her children was a memory of her memories. She said now their memories would be “do you remember those great pizzas Mom used to make? And, to me, that’s really okay. I gave Keith the traditional, and he was so unimpressed, he doesn’t want them now. So, I was simply trying to relive my memories. My memories are mine, and they’re wonderful. Now it’s time to be satisfied with what I have now.
    I love you all.
    Linda

    • HI LINDA……………..NOTHING WRONG WITH RELIVING MEMORIES EH?? AT LEAST WE HAVE THEM, SOME POOR FOLKS DON’T HAVE A LOT OF JOY IN THEIR LIVES, SO WE ARE THE FROTUNATE ONES…..BIG HUGS TO YOU……………..JENNIE XX

      • Linda;
        It is hard to let go of YOUR own traditions, I know. Kept me in a funk all last winter being unable to do what I usually did at Christmas. But this year is a whole other ballgame. Gonna start new ones for this time and this house !
        Love ya
        Tonie

  6. Martha
    Good on ya!
    I’d like to meet a lady like you at the shops!
    Linda.
    This creating memories….we seem to just want to make it right in our own way.but the one thing I remember best about my Christmases as a kid was the making do and that shines out
    Tonie
    You’re brave to try those crumpets…pancakes would be my limit!
    Good idea with the cans of salmon for the rings! Would the smell still linger tho .could soak them in Milton or something
    It’s a shame they don’t sell them round your way
    They’ve just started selling them in the shape of Christmas trees here!
    Well it’s 5 am again
    Got a bit of sweeping up outside today with all the storm yesterday. But that’s nothing compared to what some have had
    Chris

  7. Great installment Sue. I had a smile on my face reading the comments (rare lately) and I’m glad that I got the computer out to check a few things. My tree is up, gifts bought and a few wrapped but I’m feeling rather blue this year. I’m not sure why but I’m just not looking forward to the holidays at all, not even singing masses but especially not the effort of a 6 hour round trip with my dad to exchange gifts with my sister’s family. My niece, nephew and their families are really strangers to me now. They make no effort to see or communicate with either my father or I even when they come to town to see friends. Even my sister can be around the corner at dad’s house to do something with his computer but not make the effort to see me. I’m pretty discouraged at the changes my life has taken the past few years and the lack of caring that my family (except dad) demonstrates. I’m going to let them know that this may be the last year of the “tradition” of getting together for me as I’m down for a couple of days after the trip. If it takes a holiday for them to care enough to want to see me (or the gift cards I bring) and I still have to come to them, I’d rather spend that time with my friends here that care enough to know what’s going on with me. The women that have been part of your blogs over the past several years know me better than my own family. I think that’s kind of sad. I know I have so much to be thankful for, but sometimes it is hard to remember that when reality bites you in the tush.

    • LAURA…………..OH DEAR…..ITS AWFUL WHEN THERE IS TROUBLE BETWEEN FAMILIES, ESPECIALLY AT THIS TIME OF YEAR. EVERYTHING GETS HIGHLIGHTED DOESN’T IT, TRY NOT TO FRET ABOUT IT, I HAVE FOLKS TOO WHO I HAVEN’T SEEN FOR YEARS AND I GET CHOKED UP ABOUT IT, BUT I CAN’T CHANGE IT LIVING AS I DO IN ANOTHER COUNTRY, SO I HAVE TO TREASURE WHAT I HAVE. CHIN UP BABE, YOU WILL BE FINE….LOVE YOU………..JENNIE X

    • Dear Laura, I have bite marks on my tush as well…you’re so right. It does hurt, deeply. I guess we expect family to be different. When I look back on the past and current friends on this blog and the old one, I am pressed to come up with anyone who doesn’t have family trouble, including myself. There are some broken relationships in my own family that hurt too deeply to dwell on and I have to consciously put it out of my mind. It’s one of those heartaches you have to decide about…”can I do anything about it or not?” So often the answer is “not” and life is so very short to be hurt, psychically, all the time…gees we have enough to do to be physically in pain each day.
      I thank God for your dear Dad. Just like my dear Jim understands my family as does my DD..both priceless. I have to agree that we belong to a band of brothers and sisters who know the truth about life here in Painville. It is a unique place in so many ways but we also suffer the same crap of life that others have on top of our pain which makes it all the more difficult. Find joy where you can dear girl. Let your faith comfort you as well as your group of friends and your four legged babies. Much love and prayers for comfort during this very emotional time of the year. So many memories, some good some bad. Sue

  8. Martha, loved your story! I bet you’d be a barrel of fun to “hang out” with! You’re right, this is a taxing and tiring time, even for “well” folks. My baby sister Becky would do things like that. I was always too afraid to do anything, and she feared nothing. I enjoy fearless folks.
    Bobsled Laura, I agree about the family thing. I used to get so irritated of some of my late husbands grand kids. They never came around unless they wanted something, and their something was always big (co-sign for a car, that type of thing). We just didn’t know them at all, and I don’t have a clue what to buy folks I don’t know. It would have been nice if there had been gift cards back then. They always showed up for their gifts. They would attack any food I had cooked, never asking if we had any plans for it, such as other folks coming by. (Once I did have friends coming over, I had to start my cooking over, even baking. But how do you tell your husband’s
    family they can’t eat?) They’d collect their gifts and leave. Until the next Christmas.
    Tonie, our weather forecast is horrible, an entire week of freezing rain and sleet (I never quite understood the difference), but that will mean, with the temps staying so low, we’ll have about a week of black ice. Our severe weather warning says that your area will get a couple inches of snow Sunday before it changes to freezing rain and sleet. I hope you don’t have to get out, but if you do, please please be careful! I can tell the barometer is changing already, my knees, ankles, back and left shoulder are all trying to kill me. I sure hate that my ankles have decided to join in the fray, that’s a real pain in the butt! It’s fairly warm right now (69), but it’s supposed to drop and drop fast.
    Chris, I know what you mean about planning ahead. You could ask me today if I want to go to lunch tomorrow. Today I might feel fine and be very excited and say “yes, yes, yes”. Then tomorrow get up with my knee so bad I can’t put weight on my leg at all, or my stomach in an uproar, and thinking about eating makes me nauseated. Heck, sometimes I make that switch over the same day. I never know, so I never can make promises now.
    Sue, now you have me picturing mice in the nativity scene. My mind today has run through the gamut of wild critters that would habitat a stable or cave. I’m enjoying the scenes I’m creating, so thank you!
    Chris, we often made do also. But my outstanding memories are of church, the plays, the music, and seeing everyone at Grandma’s house. My family is really talkative (me included as I’m sure you all know by now), so there was constant talk and laughter and the house filled with love. Now it’s sad to think, my sister doesn’t speak to me, my 2 uncles don’t speak to each other, and I wouldn’t know my cousins children if they knocked on my door. Nobody speaks to one uncle’s wife except me and one of his children..which makes me mad, she took my grandmother and took care of her until she died, my grandma loved her and her kids. She’s done nothing to any of them. But, that’s their shame, not mine. I remember when my grandma died, her dad told me “your family doesn’t realize how good my Jeannie is”. I said “sir, I sure do, I love her for what she’s done and for the kind, sweet woman she is. Please don’t think all of us are unappreciative.” My uncle fell off a building while working, crushed the bones in his pelvis, broke both legs, several ribs, and both arms. He was in intensive care for 6 months, in the hospital 3 more months, and she didn’t let any of us know about it. After I found out, I sent her a letter, telling her I wish I had known. This uncle is only 7 years older than me, and we were raised more like brother and sister than uncle and niece. I told her I understood why she had said nothing, but please not to think his entire family was monsters. I told her I loved him, and her, and I would have been there to help all I could. He answered the email, and said she was really touched by it, and promised to let me know if anything else happened. (I think she doesn’t use the computer at all, but he set up an email address for her in case someone wanted to email her.) So, for my family, a “family holiday” is pretty much out of the question. It’s sad when families get like this. I never thought mine would, but, they did.
    I think I have rambled on enough. Hope you all are warm and safe and Mother Nature treats you well!
    Linda

    • Linda dear, oh dear…families. Can’t live with them, can’t have memories without them. Take the good ones my dear and treasure them. Families are just humans after all and their perceptions of us are built very early and rarely allow for change. I don’t know why that is but it is.
      I am sorry about all the pain and most certainly understand. My ankles are in bad shape as well as knees and then I keep putting on clothes that are now too long for me. Yuk. Having 6 pairs of pants hemmed up right now. It’s pretty hard to ignore parts of your body when they call out to you so loudly, huh? Our new little George likes to grab ankles to get someone to play with him…does it to our Jakie and me. Today he was doing it to the grands and I told them it was because that was all he could reach.
      Thank you for explaining about VA and where you and Tonie live. Bully for you to teach your son how to cook..and baking..My son in TX loves to cook, especially barbecue. Not so sure about the baking part. He used to stand on a chair when he was little and make pancakes. Take care sweet lady and take comfort in the fact we truly understand the complexities of this way of life. Pick the good parts and find comfort in your memories. Love you, Sue

      • Sue, when Keith was about 12, I had gall bladder surgery. Both of my lungs collapsed, and I was in the hospital a long time. His Dad couldn’t cook, he took my gowns home to wash and washed them in bug killer, which made me vomit until a neighbor came up and took them home to wash properly. I made up my mind then, if I lived to go home, my son would know how to take care of himself. I taught him how to wash clothes, fold them, how to cook, how to do anything a woman would normally do around the house. My grandma got very angry with me; she was old school and thought it was a woman’s job to “wait” on a man. I tried to explain to her that the world had changed, women died and left men with a house full of children to care for, or woman just left (I also thought, what if he’s gay? but didn’t dare say such a thing to her, she would have beheaded me). But, no matter what has happened since, he’s been able to take care of himself. And now, bless him, he helps take care of me. He loves it when his friends ask “YOU made this?”, and he always answers, “man you should taste my mom’s” He can make cornbread as good as mine, and he creates his own dishes. I am proud he can do this. He’s never married, but the lady he is engaged to was born with spina bifida, and he will always be responsible for taking care of their home. He is fearless with spices, and sometimes uses combinations I wouldn’t have thought of, but they turn out very tasty. I think I made a very well rounded young man of him, and I’m proud of him. He treats his girlfriend which such love and tenderness, it touches me so much. He took her for her first OB exam, she was afraid and wanted him to go with her into the exam room. He did, and he took a notepad and paper, and wrote everything down. Anything he didn’t understand, he asked me to explain for him. In the ER, we did a bit of OB-GYN nursing, but that wasn’t my strong suite, but we got it figured out .When she goes out at night, without him; he meets her to help her up the steps, then gets her ready for bed. He is such a kind fellow, loves all people, holds no prejudices My best friend has a son 2 years older. Her son is gay. When they got into their teens, David told Keith, and asked Keith if he still wanted to be his friend. Keith’s answer “what’s changed about you that I wouldn’t like now?” David’s sister once said to Keith “you wouldn’t like David if you knew he was queer”. Keith said “I know he is gay, but it’s you I don’t like.” (See Martha, even though I wouldn’t have the nerve to ring the bell, my kid sure would!)
        Of course, sometimes he makes me crazy, but isn’t that normal? He has one of my Dad’s traits that drives me nuts; you ever get on his bad side, you never again get to switch sides. Some of the things I don’t like about him are due to his bipolar disorder. I am proud that he has accepted that he has this and has studied it extensively, and works very hard to keep it under control. Some days he is cranky as hell, but then again, I’d sure hate for him to sit down and start listing my faults! I’m really not the one who could cast the first stone. Sometimes I get very sad thinking about him, he has a near genius IQ and a real talent for writing prose and poetry. But, due to his disease, he can’t get along with many people long enough to hold a job, and he can’t quite work up the discipline to work at his writing on his own. It’s sad that he has so much potential that will most likely never be used. One part of my heart aches for him, while the other part swells with pride.
        I went to LPN (LVN in Texas and Calif) school before I went for my RN. He was in the 8th grade, and his science teacher sent me word that he would like to talk to me. I had to laugh; he asked me to keep my nursing books, especially anatomy book, away from Keith. Seems the teacher would tell the class something, Keith would raise his hand and either tell Mr. Dance he was wrong or was over simplifying the subject! To try to remedy this, the teacher and I both sat down with Keith, complimented him on his ability to understand the subject on a more advanced level, but most of his class mates could not absorb this level just yet. So, Keith left feeling superior, but stopped interrupting to reteach the subject! What a ride raising him has been!
        When he was 3, he asked me could he do something, I said no. I went to the bathroom, came out, and he had done it. I said “son, I’m confused, didn’t we just talk about this?” He said “yes ma’am”. I said, “do you remember what we said?” He repeated our conversation, word for word. I said “did you understand what I said” He said “yes ma’am, you didn’t want me to do it.” I said, well, why did you do it? He said “I thought about it and decided you were wrong.” Slippery slope, that one! Life has never been dull with him!
        Our bad weather is supposed to start tonight. And last until the wee hours of Monday morning. Tonie,if nothing changes, your Sunday dinner will surely be cancelled. I think the weather center says ya’ll will have 6 inches of snow by noon, followed by several hours of sleet and freezing rain. I hope they’re wrong on all our accounts. We’re supposed to get 1/4 inch of ice accumulation while you’re to get 1/2 inch. This should have waited at least 3 weeks, huh? I just hate icy roads.
        Annie, my cousin in the Dallas area posted a pic on fb of her backyard. It looks as if everything, even her pool is covered with snow, but it’s all ice. I pray we all stay warm and safe through this weather. My pain seems to come and go, it will get really bad, then ease up. I’m trying to be so grateful for the times it eases, and it makes the worse a bit better, knowing it won’t last. I hope the power doesn’t go out. I need to start nagging for one of the guys to get the space heater out of the shed and go for kerosene. They both think I overreact to weather forecast, but I’d rather the heater sit in the house unlit, then sit in the shed while we are going cold.
        Love and Warmth to all.
        Linda

  9. One more thing, for those who don’t know. Although Tonie and I both live in VA, and not all that far apart, she is in the mountains, and I live in the foothills. Her beautiful mountains generally protects us from the bad weather. Her area is absolutely beautiful, but in the winter, some of the roads,, such as the “parkway” are closed due to the weather. So, when I have bad weather, she has worse. Often, if she has bad, I still have beautiful weather. This cold and freezing rain coming is very rare for my little piece of VA this time of year. Most of our worst weather happens in January, and it doesn’t last long. We might get 6 inches of snow today, but tomorrow the temps will be in the 40’s or 50’s and all the snow will be gone. You gotta love VA, we got it all (except a dessert), mountains, ocean, flat areas, hilly areas, and lots of fantastic loving people (in spite of my family!)

    • Martha:
      I love it !! I would surely do that had I thought about it, now you have marked me, when I see the bell, I will want to ring it and sing !!
      BSl: Sweetie, it ain’t just your family going down that road. So many more, mine included are coming apart at the seams. People get so wrapped up in their own world that they fail to remember the ones they left behind when starting off on their own. Let alone that we still love them. My brothers and of course my sister and I are still fairly close. But my nephews and nieces , and great of the same sort. Well, not so much. Not much effort is made to get together at all, unless they are roped into it. The love is there, but not the will to pull it off I guess.

      Linda: It has stopped the torrential rains right now, so I must go feed the animals. But I am still praying the ice will go over us. I always remember going to Collinsville to visit with my Uncle Matthew and family. It was so much warmer there and like going into the Carolinas ! We are supposed to have our Christmas banquet for the church Sunday afternoon, but it could be cancelled. I hope it is cleared up cause I really need to get groceries that day as well. I hate this once a month thing. But thankful as well.
      Well as I said, gotta go feed the hungry animals. I have to get my baking done for tomorrow, today and frankly I really don’t feel up to it. But….
      Love to all
      Tonie

  10. HI SUE……………..SORRY IF I KEPT YOU TOO LONG YESTERDAY, I KNOW YOU HAVE A LOT TO DO, BUT IT WAS GREAT TO TALK. GUESS WHAT!! MY EX IS BEING PRESENTED TO THE QUEEN TODAY, ITS FOR THE JUBILEE WINDOW HE DID A YEAR AGO, AND IS JUST NOW GOING IN…………..HE WILL BE GIVEN LUNCH WITH ALL THE DIGNITARITES, I AM QUITE PROUD OF HIM AS ARE THE KIDS TOO..
    LIZ IS OUT WITH SACHA RIGHT NOW, SO THATS A JOB I DON’T HAVE TO DO, I HOPE YOU ARE HAVING A BETTER DAY TODAY SUE……………..AND THANKS FOR SHARING THINGS THAT HELPED PERK ME UP A BIT…BUT MOST OF ALL THANK YOU FOR SUCH A GREAT BLOG, FOOD FOR THOUGHT, I AM NOT GOING TO DO ALL THE THINGS I PLANNED, NO ENERGY, SO WHAT GETS DONE, GETS DONE…OR NOT…………………LOVE YOU LOTS……………..JENNIE XXXXXX

    • Jennie, I loved our conversation. You always make me laugh. So thrilled that DH is doing so well, thank God. Good to have such a kind and sweet neighbor in Liz to walk Sacha but I also know what a good friend you’ve been to her. It is usually a two way street, don’t you think.
      Wow so old EX if being honored for his artistry. That is slightly super. Are the kids going with him to see the Queen?
      Don’t you give our long conversation a thought. I loved every word and I love it when you call from France. I think the whole intercultural thing we have here on the blog is wonderful and educational for all concerned.
      I know your DH will continue to do well. Just hearing he was up walking in the halls was wonderful news. It does sound like you are getting wonderful healthcare. Thank God. Well, I need to check on a couple of kids who are making snowballs, then I think I’ll make a lemon jello cake for tonight. GS loves them. Thinking about whipping up some of that peanut butter fudge that was on the FB the other day, also.
      Stay warm dear girl and it won’t be long now before he’ll be home with you. Love you , Sue

      • HI SUE……….BOY WHAT A NIGHT, I WAS REALLY ILL IN THE NIGHT, D/V, DON’T KNOW WHY, PLUS I HAVE A BAD COLD WITH EARACHE…….BLOODY HELL, I COULD DO WITHOUT THIS, ALL I WANT TO DO IS SLEEP, BUT I HAVE TO GET MY ACT TOGETHER FOR WHEN LIZ COMES TO COLLECT ME. I HOPE ITS GOING WELL WITH YOUR DG’S SUE, I PRESUME YOU HAVE SNOW WHERE YOU ARE, WISH I COULD SHARE A SLICE OF YOUR LEMON JELLO CAKE WITH YOU. I DON’T KNOW WHY I AM FEELING SO WEEPY TODAY, I THINK ITS A COMBINATION OF THINGS, YOU FIND YOURSELF WISHING SOMEONE WOULD KNOCK ON THE DOOR AND ASK IF YOU ARE OK, BUT OF COURSE THAT WON’T HAPPEN BECAUSE OF THE LANGUAGE PROBLEM….NEVER MIND, AS YOU SAY SUE, MY DH WILL SOON BE HOME, AND I CAN TAKE CARE OF HIM.. THINK I WILL GOOGLE THE WINDOW MY EX DID, AND GET SOME MORE INFO, I KNOW HE WENT TO BUCKINGHAM PALACE FOR THE PRESENTATION, THE WINDOW WAS AT WESTMINSTER ABBEY FOR A YEAR, AND IS NOW BEING INSTALLED AT THE PALACE. RIGHT I GUESS ITS TIME TO GET GOING, I HOPE THE WEEKEND IS A RESTFUL ONE FOR YOU MY FRIEND, AND THAT LITTLE ANKLE BITER OF YOURS BEHAVES HIMSELF……….IN THE UK, THAT WHAT WE CALL TODDLERS, WHO ARE JUST LEARNING TO CRAWL…HA HA! LOVE YOU SUE……GOD BLESS……..JEN X

      • Jennie, I am so sorry to hear you’re dealing with an infection, in the gut? Head cold, too? Oh dear, be sure not to pass it onto DH so he can certainly come on home. I really like Oscillio. for the flu and colds and it’s made there in France.
        It must be very isolating to be in a foreign country yet I know there are so many other redeeming qualities which make up for that. Stay warm and remember to drink fluids for both problems, okay? Hope your weather is holding. We’ve had no more snow but still have a lot of it on the ground because it has stayed so cold. The grands are hoping to sled today with their uncle. Might be part grass but still quite a bit of snow.Do take care and know we’re all praying for his recovery and for you to feel better…Love, Sue

  11. Toni that comment really helped me today. It really describes what has happened to the extended family now. I was in a dark place yesterday but am better today. I got a little more sleep and have managed the pain better over last night and this morning. I did a fair amount of praying overnight too and that always makes my thoughts in a better place too.

  12. Well, Peanut butter pinwheels are made and ready to be sliced, fudge is cooling the fridge, just gotta make cupcakes and an applesauce cake. Resting, watching a movie. Was gonna make some pizelles, however, I had forgotten that it takes 6 eggs and my egg supply is down 🙂 The chickies are out enjoying the warm weather today. The rain probably washed up some bugs so they are happy.
    Sue hope you are doing okay, you are too quiet. !!!
    Love ya
    Tonie

  13. Some of you are having really bad weather…is that normal too!!
    It seems early to have so much snow

    Sue I know you have potatoes with your IBS and I have made your soup to.well it’s been discovered at some science place that potatoes are the best for IBS .it was on the news….well I thought if they’d come to this blog they needn’t have wasted their money working that one out!

    tum a bit easier on the spasmodics but I think it’s the diver thing so ill give it the w.end and see how it goes the Voltarol made me go to the loo a lot .it feels like shooting stinging pain
    Be back
    Oh I’ve seen those pots sue they do look realistic
    Chris

    • Chris dear, I love those pots but they are a bit spendy. So the scientists have finally figured out what we’ve known all along about potatoes..bully. I remember years ago having my doctor tell me certain vitamins I took weren’t necessary and I ignored him. Five years later he asked me if I took them and told me I should. My dear, could you find some help from the drug affects on the gut with some yogurt or probiotics to restore good bacteria? Might be worth a try.
      The grands are out playing in the snow so I got a few mins. to chat with all of you. The kids got delayed on the ride to the airport..some truck went off the road and the tow truck that came to help them also went off the road. They picked up a couple whose car had spun out and took them to the next town for help. Fortunately they are now on the plane..relief. Take care…I also liked creamed eggs when my gut is misbehaving or just poached eggs. I find I’ve been eating more peanut butter and honey on my toast. I think it’s a good source of protein. Do you have it in England? Take care…Sue

    • Chris, isn’t it amazing how they overlook the real experts of these diseases, i.e. those of us who live with them daily. I think within a month of the onset of my IBD, I knew that potatoes and chicken broth were my friends. I knew before my diverticulosis was diagnosed that peanuts and popcorn were foods not good for me. That’s one thing I love about my gastric doctor, he’ll tell me “the majority of my patients with this tell me”… and he’ll ask me “is this something I should share with my other Crohn’s patients? He understands that we know our bodies and what makes us feel better and what makes us feel worse. Wish they’d spit that research money among us and let us tell them the truth of it all!

  14. Sue
    I just love peanut butter and golden syrup together but I have the smooth one.used to love the crunchy butter but nuts no good for me so I buy both sorts soDH can have the crunchy one. We have it for breakfast
    Have I missed something is your daughter going away somewhere by air ?
    I have yogurt all the time maybe my tums got used to it. Are your creamed eggs scrambled eggs?
    Chris

    • Chris and Linda, Creamed eggs are just what I call them. You boil eggs, set them aside, make a simple white cream sauce with a roux of butter and flour then stir in milk until creamy, may even add some cheddar cheese grated to the mix, then when hot, peel cooled eggs and chop them into the mix. Works great for tuna for creamed tuna. It’s all sort of like the old “shit on a shingle” don’t blame me, that’s what the army guys called it when made with chipped beef. Serve on toast bits and enjoy.
      I find I often get tired of boiled eggs, scrambled eggs, etc. I also like syrup and peanut butter. You can mix up a batch with a bit of butter and cover it and have a bowl of it for several days. When your gut is crying out, you often just want a quick answer, right? I’m still having problems with my gut…UGH. Life little beastly challenges…Sue

      • Sue, we were talking about peanut butter and syrup today 🙂 Our parents didn’t have much for sweets like we do, so they would mix up PB and Syrup and eat it. There was always syrup and usually pb ! Funny, it got passed on down to us !
        Love
        Tonie

    • HI CHRIS……..YES I EAT THE SMOOTH PEANUT BUTTER TOO, ON HOT TOAST AND A CUP OF YORKSHIRE TEA………IT DOESN’T GET MUCH BETTER THAN THAT EH!! TALK LATER IN THE WEEK
      LOVE JEN XX

      • Jennie:
        What is Yorkshire tea ?? I do so love English Breakfast tea. I always keep some of that along with Earl Grey.

  15. Sue :
    SNOW ?? When did this happen ?? I didn’t think it snowed up there in the rain forest ! We are still having rain and it is absolutely balmy out, 68 last time I looked. Enjoy your babies. I have had a shower, am eating and going to bed.
    Love
    Tonie

    • Tonie, Actually we get some snow every year but it usually only stays a few days. We have lots of ice here with the rain and winds and it’s all bad because of our hills. Our temps this week are bad and when Jim found out his new Camaro is built for speed not traction and couldn’t drive it to work yesterday and had to borrow my Navigator for the 4wheel drive. Had the kids since yesterday morning. Beth and SIL had a tricky ride into Portland to catch the plane yesterday morning so they left early, thank the Lord. Stuck at the side of the road just out of town when a truck jack knifed off the road and then the tow truck who came to rescue them went off the road also. They picked up a couple who had slid and konked a tire and kept them warm until they could drive them into the next town for a tow and help. Did make the plane to Vegas on time.
      The kids are now out with Uncle looking for enough snow to sled…long underwear and all. We couldn’t even get a pizza delivered last night the roads were so bad. I had to cook. The house is a mess of CHristmas chaos and I’m still not up to par. Definitely cutting back more but it’s okay. What goes up must come down..right? I pray your dinner at church is not cancelled by bad weather. You stay safe, okay? Much love, Sue

  16. Sue:
    Just found your note about the snow ! I was off line most of the day and ya’all got ahead of me. I hope you enjoyed the snow. I bet it was beautiful on the beach. I am awake so early, and must try to get in another wink or two to rest up. FMS has been in high gear the last couple of days. Rest up dear friend, we will chat when I get a chance to breathe !!
    Love ya
    Tonie

    • Tonie, it was humorous on the news to watch the people over at the beach make snowmen out of the snow that was on the sand…sandy snowmen. The grands had fun with it here and George who hesitated at first, well, now you can’t get him in. He runs and spread it around and tries to play with old Jake. Very funny considering he was at first afraid to stick his feet into it. I just worry about him getting frostbite on his little feet. Got some yellow snow out there…Sue

      • Ceasar loves to play in it , but at first I have to kick him out in it cause he don’t do cold and wet very well. Get Georgie some little golashes ! So far no rain, but it is early yet, supposed to start in tonight. Just talked to Ms Millie for 2 hours (sound familiar?) we were laughing and talking about everything !! She sends her love and to let you know she has been praying for you as well.
        Love Tonie

  17. Jennie:
    Poor lass ! Soon your love will be home and you won’t be alone anymore. Feeling bad will make you weepy. And your situation makes it even more so. Prayers dear, be careful and let us know you got him home ok. Yes we would like to know more about that window. Very nice indeed. I would like to see it as well. Take care
    Love
    Tonie

    • HI TONIE ……….I AM OK, ONLY A COUPLE OF DAYS TO GO NOW, AND MY DH WILL BE HOME, BEEN KEEPING AS BUSY AS MY BACK WILL ALLOW. THE WINDOW CAN BE SEEN ON YOUTUBE, ITS ON MY F/B PAGE IF YOU WANT TO SEE IT. WE HAVE THICK FROST THIS MORNING, IT LOOKED SO PRETTY. HOW ARE YOU SWEETS???? LOVE YA….JENNIE POO XX

      • Oh yeah, I saw the window, beautiful. There is one frame with a man working on the window, is that your ex ?? I am doing well. No church or anything today so I have been barricaded in the bedroom snug and cozy reading, on the internet and watching tv. We had ice today. More to come this afternoon so they say. But it will go away soon
        Take care
        Love
        Tonie

  18. WHew !!
    Sale is OVER, I am home, in my sweats, BUNDLED up and munching on a bag of a concoction Carol made up that is quite tasty ! Peanuts, crumbled oreos, and mini pretzels covered in white chocolate (melted). I call it : “Mountain Munch” 🙂 We did VERY good today, had a crowd several times, lots of socializing. I stayed and worked on some songs. Got out some of my sheet music and played my fav “Oh Holy Night”. Amazing how I can just loose myself in music and an hour slips by before you know it. Actually and hour and a half. It has really gotten cold here 34′ now, but no ice !
    Hope you are all well and warm.
    Love
    Tonie

    • Dear Tonie, Glad to hear your sale was such a success. I am envious of your 34′, mine has finally climbed up to 21′ after starting out at 13′. Seems a little early for all this ice. Have been housebound since Thursday noon. Getting cabin fever. One good thing is this time I did not lose the internet (keeping fingers crossed). Take care. Janet

      • Janet, ouch. Know how you feel these many miles away…Sorry for the isolation but surely it will pass. Stay safe dear lady. Sue

      • Oh Janet, My house is so little if I am stuck inside that long I would be nutz ! I pray you warm up and soon. All that stuff is coming to us, so hopefully you will get better weather coming in. THis Global Warming ya know ?? Awful stuff 🙂
        Tonie

    • Tonie, Wonderful..glad all your hard work paid off. Music is amazing and I agree…when I can find a few moments to play my keyboard I get lost in it. I’m not very good but with a fancy keyboard with built in chords, you don’t have to be. This cold weather is hurting everyone, FMS, arthritis, etc. Stay warm and rest when you can. Love, Sue

  19. Tonie
    Glad your day went good .you make sure you rest tomorrow girl!

    Gives it 50 f here tomorrow ,there’s a craft fair and carol concert in the park.so par boiled my veg for roasts so we will have lunch then go to it…..hopefully! Be quite nice to go in twilight with all the lights twinkling . It starts getting dark now at 3.30pm
    Jen hope all went well today after we spoke

    Sue hope the kids had a good time on the sledges.
    and all have a good w.end
    Chris

    • Chris, hope you get a lot of pleasure from all the Christmas lights, songs and festivities. Glad your weather is not too severe. Very cold out here tonight. Our street has been closed off for two days due to the hill being covered with ice. We can enter in one spot before it gets too steep. So cold…Sue

      • Sue:
        The hills are why I don’t venture out in the ice. EVERYTHING here is up and down hill. OR mountain 🙂 Slip and slide. I used to ride my horse down to the store (when we had one ) when it was icy, that was fun 🙂

  20. Sue just missed your post when I wrote
    That creamed egg sounds good….another way to do it
    I shall call it that when I make it it’ll make DH laugh

    Sorry about your tum. IT don’t half stick around when it comes
    Chris

    • Chris, SO right. Just have to get through this and try to do it without antibiotics. More potato soup tonight for me. Plain spaghetti for lunch with a bit of butter…Bland can be beautiful when you’re hungry, however. Sue

      • Sue, I love egg noodles with a little butter on them. It’s so easy on my tummy. I also like angle hair pasta with a little pesto. And it has to be just a little pesto, or it gets too oily and spicy for me. I didn’t make any pesto this year. My friend who usually brings me sacks full of basil didn’t bring me any at all this year. So, it’ll have to be store-bought, which I don’t like as much, seems there’s too much of everything in it. Sometimes when i want a little more than bland, I dump a can of clam chowder on my pasta. I never ate pasta until I got Crohn’s. My doctor told me to try it, said a lot of Crohn’s people could handle pasta very well. So, over the past 5 or 6 years, I have learned to like it. Even as a kid I wouldn’t eat spaghetti or mac ‘n cheese. Once when my aunt was visiting from Calif, she made macaroni salad, and I did like that. That was the first time I had seen that dish. I’m very particular about it, but I still like it. I find I can handle dumplings very well, too. They are something else I never would eat. But, most places make it very soupy, and they’re bland. I think dumping a can of chicken, or a cup or so of fresh baked chicken in your creamed eggs would be good. I’m not a fan of canned tuna, but do like the fresh. But, I love salmon, so that would be a good alternative.
        We make me hungry on here!
        So far, so good with the weather.
        Linda

  21. Linda:
    I thought macaroni salad was a staple around here 🙂 I don’t care for it, but have been known to eat it when really hungry. Mother made it with macaroni, peppers,onions,sometimes tomatoes, and mayo. My dumplings are very thick and rich with gravy, not soupy. I too don’t like those kinds.
    Well, no church or banquet today. I looked out and thought it was rain, but it must be icy out there as well. Hope it melts off a bit, I really need to go to the store today. There is one at Ft Chiswell, it is close, but expensive, so I don’t get much there. Just need a few things til Tuesday.
    Back to food, there is a cold salad made with salmon, has peas and other veggies in it with a vinaigrette dressing. It is really good.
    My dogs are growling at me wanting back up on the bed, but I left them down cause they were out in the rain and wet. 🙂 Funny little critters, they have had their breakfast and want to be back on the bed snuggled with me. Okay now I am getting barking ! Irate little critter now.
    Well, need more coffee. Have a wonderful day and stay in out of the ice !
    Love
    Tonie

    • Linda and Tonie, love both of your ideas. I adore homemade pesto but didn’t make any this year due to gut, just ate the fresh basil leaves with plain pasta with some Parmesan and browned mushrooms. Couldn’t take the nuts or the garlic. I like macaroni salad, made many ways. My fav is potato salad but have gone easy on many of the ingredients..onion powder, no onions, dill or peeled pickles, chopped egg and mayo and mustard, celery salt, oh yes, a dash of vinegar, balsamic my fav with a bit of olive oil. I think so many of us with irritable guts have to make do with plain food but it doesn’t have to be boring. Sue.

  22. COUNTING DOWN THE HOURS NOW, I SOUND PATHETIC DON’T I? BUT THATS JUST THE WAY IT IS WITH ME AND MY DH, MY POOR WEE DOG IS NOT HAPPY, HE MISSES HIS MASTER REAL BAD, I FOUND HIM SITTING OUTSIDE DH’S BEDROOM DOOR THIS MORNING, WHINING, IT FAIR BROKE MY HEART I TELL YOU. LIZ TAKES HIM OUT EACH DAY, WE TAKE HIM TO THE HOSPITAL AND SHE TAKES HIM TO THE FOREST WHILST I VISIT, THE PITY IS MY DH’S ROOM IS ON THE SIDE OF THE HOSPITAL THAT CAN’T BE SEEN FROM THE ROAD, SO HE CAN’T LOOK OUT OF THE WINDOW AND CALL TO HIM, I KEEP TELLING HIM HE IS COMING HOME, AND MY DH TALKS TO HIM ON THE PHONE………STOP LAUGHING, HE KNOWS ITS HIM AND RUNS TO THE DOOR, THEN LOOKS BACK AT ME LIKE “DAMIEN” FROM THE ALIEN.
    ITS REALLY WINTERY HERE NOW, GONNA LET MY DH GET OVER STUFF, THEN WE WILL WALK DOWN TO THE VILLAGE TO LOOK AT ALL THE LOVELY THINGS THEY HAVE DONE TO IT THIS YEAR………..OK GOT TO GO, JUST WANTED A CHAT………….KEEP WELL AND WARM,,, LOVE TO YOU ALL………..JENNIE XX

    • Jennie, We do tend to underestimate our pets, don’t we? They grieve just like we do and notice so much. George was chasing things on my laptop this morning. It sounds like DH is doing well and I’m so pleased. Still coming home on Tuesday? It’s almost here. How fortunate for you to have Liz helping out. Good friends attract good friends, don’t they. A walk to the village sounds wonderful and since he’s been walking at the hospital should have been strengthening him..Wonderful. Take care and hope you’re feeling better today. Love, Sue

  23. Ahh Jen
    Loved your post..it sounds like a lovely home to be in
    Like just without the one and the rest are all waiting
    Be a great Christmas. Eh?

    My tum still sore like something cutting it on the left side
    Hosp tomorrow for DH INR then to see my dad then having my hair done…whoopee!
    Over to DD Tuesday
    I got a drs appt Wednesday for tum
    Then Thursday car being serviced so another usual week of bits and bobs
    Didn’t go to that market DH thought parking wud be a problem so we went to a chritmas tree thingy in the local church. Got some black current jam and ginger cake there.
    Be back Chris

    • Jennie Poo ! Sounds like a wonderful relationship. Just the way it should be. I don’t think it is silly talking to them on the phone, we do stuff like that all the time. I can say the names of grandkids and the boys will run to the door and start barking ! Animals know whom they love just like we do ! So happy things went well.

      Chris: You sound like me, it is Seldom a day I just stay at home and do nothing. (like today) I am purposely staying away from kitchen and living room cause I have decorations to put up sitting all over the couch and the kitchen still needs to be set to rights from my last hurrah yesterday. It will wait until tomorrow. Now, I think a nap is in order.
      I pray we all have a good week with no pain !
      Love
      Tonie

    • Chris dear, you seem to have a lot coming at you. Life just doesn’t stop, huh? That ginger cake sounds wonderful. Reminded me many years ago I got a recipe in Finland for a ginger cake and haven’t made it in awhile. Hope all goes well for DH with the doc. Thinking of your full week…Sue

  24. Hi all
    Keep warm all of ya..I see on the news it’s mighty cold with you over there
    Is it really global warming….becos all the weather and stuff has gone mad

    Got drs appt for this pm now for me
    Be back chrs

    • Chris, Indeed it is. Heard on the news that 4000 people had to sleep in the Dallas/Ft. Worth airport in Texas last night. 90& of their flights were canceled due to ice. Terrible down there so thinking of my son and his family, Janet, Annie, and other friends. Ice storms in OK and here, it started snowing again about an hour ago.
      Hope your appt. is fruitful. Take care and we’ll do our best to stay warm. Love, Sue

  25. Sue. Good lor .hope you have heard from the family
    Janet and Annie do you have to go out in it?

    Well dr says I have inflamed diver thingy so on antibiotics .i can’t take anti inflams for my sacrum now so got that and my tum….
    Also just incase gotta go for ultra sound to see if polyps have regrown in uterus
    All good fun innit..when are you supposed to live….
    Be back Chris

    • Hi Chris, It’s not a matter of having to go out, it’s more I can’t go out. I have a more than 300 ft driveway with 2′ of solid ice and a temp that wont get above freezing more than an hour today. I can walk outside if I stay off the driveway, but it is very difficult. Even if I could beat that,the roads out here are not treated, so are also sheets of ice. My main problems are cabin fever and arthritis pain that absolutely hates the cold. Good thing this is such a rare occurrence, didn’t do it at all last year. I don’t know how Annie is doing, she lives way to the east of me and in the city, so the weather is similar, but the living conditions are way different..

      Hope you are feeling better soon. Janet

      • Janet dear, I am so sorry about the cabin fever. I can’t think what a beautiful driveway you have when it isn’t covered with ice. Hang on my dear. Surely it will warm up soon. You’re right, I’m sure it’s a bit better in the city where Annie is and wonder how my grands are getting to school but know some of the schools are closed. My DIL is a teacher and hopefully is also at home. I’m glad my son works at home now except for flights out every week or two. No flights right now. Our DD and SIL got home from their anniversary trip to Vegas last night. They love to go over there to the rodeo which is held there annually. Guess they have a huge cowboy Christmas show. The children here at home got to go sledding three times and were thrilled…they have friends who helped. I told them I’d take them..ha, ha, and they laughed. Everyone knows I would end up in the hospital. It hurts to be left out but there you have it.
        I wish you could see our beautiful Christmas tree. The very top third is empty because I can’t stand on a ladder this year..causes too much pain in my right knee and muscle cramps in the calves, so be it. I’ll make one foray up there and fill the spaces with garland. I love garland. and have some lovely silver and gold folded foil ribbon I’ve been looping around the tree for years. Sweet friend, I hope you can find something in the house that takes your mind off of your isolation and gives you some joy. Thinking of you in the deep freeze. We had fresh snow this morning and come to think of it, I haven’t been out for a week. Jim has my 4 wheel drive and there have only been a couple of cars pass by this AM. Chin up …Love, Sue

    • Chris, well, at least now you have hope of feeling better. I would think of the gut eases up after the antibiotics then you will be well in time for Christmas. I am so sorry they’ve stopped the anti inflammatory for your sacrum. I don’t quite understand why. My dear…newsflash. You are living and this is it. I think you’re doing a fine job of it but what I or anybody else thinks doesn’t really matter. It can have so many rough spots but we can’t let them eat up our days. Love you, Sue

  26. Dear Sue, i am just used to getting out everyday, so spoiled. My husband always looked on days like this as a challenge and there was nothing he loved more than a challenge. He would be out there somehow, no matter how difficult and he would find a way just to prove he could. Is that a man thing? I really just have too much time on my hands and too much pain to do much. That’s the part that drives me up the wall, the not being able to do all the stuff that needs to be done. If I’m not here I don’t see it.
    About the only thing I can do is get on line and complain;, so that’s why the blog is stuck with it. It really is quite beautiful out there. It doesn’t look like ice, it looks like snow. And snow in the country is truly beautiful.
    So many of our blog friends are having real problems, including you. You all have my heartfelt prayers that things will get better and this Christmas will be happy. Janet

    • Janet, Yes..it surely is a man thing. Jim has been out to work, etc. everyday when no one else is out…and without a jacket. That’s so him. Take care now…I just looked out the window and saw two deer walking around the snow strewn lot across the street where the remnants of the construction crew are located from the summer roadwork. So idyllic. Sue

  27. Hi sue

    Yea I know.this is the story!
    How long will the tabs take to work do u think?
    They are co- amoxi something or called augmentum ….they stopped the anti imflam becos they upset the top and bottom tum.
    They have had me bleeding before now from top and the runs from the bottom. But they gave me some as they are the best for me.but can’t take them now
    I suppose they think it caused the diver….what you think
    Glad the family are home and safe
    Good if you hear from the other part down south
    Janet
    How much longer will it go on do you think….you will certainly see outside all fresh and new when you get out!
    Tonie
    You good?
    Be back have to take next pill at 00.30 ish
    Chris

    • Chris, I just wonder why they keep giving you the old drug Augmentum if it keeps upsetting your gut. There are so many newer antiiinflammatories on the market. The antibiotics should help your diverticulitis quite soon. Don’t know if it’s caused by the drug but if it’s upset you before, it’s possible. Are you on anything for the gut everyday? I know you watch your diet. Bleeding is never good, huh? Glad you’re getting help. Love, Sue

  28. I think I got my post all up the creek..the augmentem was the antibiotic .the anti inflam I use is called Voltarol.,or it’s other name is diclofenac .i do use the gel of it as well
    Well it’s nearly 2am..gotta get to sleep to go over to DD early tomorrow
    All best Chris
    Oh yea I did feel like sh.t today and when I went to town to go to drs,two lades older than me ,picked something up for me and said ..there you are my dear…lovely of them but I then felt a 100!!

    • Chris, Well, I confess I was a bit confused since Augmentem is a form of penicillin but folks and some doctors use antibiotics to treat arthritis but those are usually the tetracyclines. I haven’t seen Voltarol used in a long time but every doc is different. The important thing is your divertic. is being treated. Take care dear lady and enjoy your visit to DD’s. Hope you rest without any cramping. Love, Sue

  29. Hey all:
    Been a long day. I worked around the house til afternoon. Got some decorating done, cleaning done. Then went to the church to decorate. A few of use got together to do it and was over there for 4 hours. Home, shower, P.B. and honey sandwich and bed !
    Chris, hope and pray you get to feeling better sweet. Janet, stay off that ice !! We only got a skift of it yesterday. They are calling for it again tonight but I think that is gonna hit north of us. I sure hope so ! The sun was out and warm today. I planted some flower bulbs and aired out the house a little bit.
    Sue, I LOVE the rodeo in Vegas. It is the Nationals. I used to go to the one in Prescott, the oldest in the states. Such a small town and such a BIG event. I do miss them. I gotta start making the goodies to send the grands this week. It looks like I will be booked up til after Christmas 🙂 .
    Well all have a good night’s sleep and I will chat with you tomorrow.
    Jennie, I know you will be happy tomorrow.
    Love to all
    Tonie

    • Tonie, hurray..at least you got to feel the sun and some planting accomplished. I did some more decorating, also but my large white wood venetian blind behind our bed broke it’s strings when I pulled it up. I was going to hang lights in the bedroom window because they look so pretty and can be viewed by everyone up the hill from us. Finally gave up and will have to figure out a way to take it down tomorrow to fix it. Ugh. I’m almost finished decorating the tree..garlands left to do but it’s a nine foot tree and standing on the ladder is so hard on my legs. Boy am I feeling old lately, know how Chris feels. Hope the ice passes you by.
      More snow this AM, kids out of school but supposed to get above freezing tomorrow. We’ll see. It sounds like the Vegas rodeo is quite an event. Rest dear girl…Love ya, Sue

  30. Morning all:
    Raining here again. At least it isn’t ice or snow huh ?? Gotta get going here soon and get to Ms Alice’s. She thinks it is something that you all know about her. She just smiles when I tell her people in England and France ask about her ! 🙂
    Slept so good last night, all thru the night ! You all know how good that feels. Rarity with us huh ?
    Sue, I am going to bring the tree in tomorrow and decorate. Maybe put a few more little things out. I have a bunch of snowmen sitting on a shelf in my living room, a nativity in the bedroom, and a snowman. Little things all over. We did the tree at church in simple country look, it is so pretty. Hope you get yours finished. I know that ladder does kill the legs huh ? Gets my bum knee every time.
    Jennie, hope your sweetie is home safe and sound. I know you will be happy.
    Love to all !!
    Tonie

    • Tonie, love the way you describe your country life. It all sounds festive, quaint and American classic. I love the way each soul in the world celebrates and acknowledges this season with memories and sentiment. Have a peaceful day with Ms Alice and I am pleased you got a good night of sleep.Enjoy today. Relieved you have no ice. Ours is finally melting a bit. Love, Sue

      • HI EVERYONE, WELL MY DH IS HOME AT LAST, SACHA WENT COMPLETELY BONKERS, IT WAS A JOY TO SEE.
        MADE EVERYONE A NICE MEAL, LIZ STAYED AWHILE, THEN ON FRIDAY IT WILL BE OUR TURN TO RETURN ALL THE KINDNESS SHE HAS SHOWN US. I HAVE WORKED MY FINGERS TO THE BONE TODAY, AND LOOK FORWARD TO A DAY OFF TOMORROW. I HAVE CLEANED THE HOUSE FROM TOP TO BOTTOM, INCLUDING CLEANING ALL THE WINDOWS 120 PANELS IN THE FRENCH WINDOW, AND ALL THE LAUNDRY TOO…………EXHAUSTED NOW, MY OWN FAULT, BUT I JUST WANTED MY DH TO COME HOME TO THE SMELL OF APPLE SCENTED LOGS, HOME COOKING AND CANDLES……..PROMISE I WON’T MENTION IT ANYMORE NOW…….I WILL CATCH UP WITH EVERYONE’S NEWS TOMORROW………………ALL LOVE AND HUGS TO EACH………JENNIE XXXXXXX

  31. JENNIE, WONDERFUL NEWS. NOW REST, OKAY AND ENJOY THAT KIND MAN OF YOURS. I’M SURE YOU’RE THE REASON HE IS RECOVERING SO WELL. LOVE, SUE

    • Jennie:
      So glad your hubby is home. Sorry about the bony fingers 🙂 But yes I do understand. You do windows ??? Can you come visit me ??
      Love
      Tonie

      • TONIE…..GUESS WHAT? I FOUND I HAD MISSED SOME WINDOWS TODAY, SO HAD MORE TO DO, IN TOTAL I HAVE CLEANED 340 OF THE BLIGHTERS. MY DH DID THE FRONT DOOR FOR ME TODAY (THE EASY BIT) I NEVER WANT TO SEE ANOTHER WINDOW FOR A LONG TIME TO COME….THEY CAN STAY MUCKY. WHAT ARE YOUR WEATHER CONDITIONS LIKE NOW TONIE, DO YOU HAVE SNOW AND ICE STILL? HOW DO YOU GET TO CHURCH AND MISS ALICE’S, IS IT OK TO DRIVE? I WORRY ABOUT YOU AS IT SEEMS LIKE US YOU ARE A BIT REMOTE. WHAT’S HAPPENING WITH YOU OVER THE CHRISTMAS PERIOD, WILL YOU BE SEEING YOUR SISTER? I HOPE YOU WILL HAVE SOME COMPANY MY FRIEND, ESPECIALLY FAMILY…….LOVE YOU, JEN X

    • Jennie, I love the whoop de doo image of Sacha jumping in joy to see her Daddy home. Sounds like you did overdo but the reason behind it was understandable. Bet everything looked wonderful, sparkling and festive. Okay nurse, I’ll let you go take care of your patient…Love, Sue

      • HELLO MY FRIEND…………GOSH AM I TIRED, ITS ALL CATCHING UP WITH ME NOW, ALSO SUE, I HAVE CYSTITIS ONCE AGAIN, NOT NORMAL THAT IS IT? ITS STILL NOT STINGING WHEN I PEE, BUT AFTERWARDS, SOE AND PAINFUL IN THE PELVIS AND NETHER REGIONS TOO……..ITS BRINGING ME LOW, I AM TRYING TO TAKE CARE OF HUBBY, AND ALL THAT ENTAILS, AND NOW THIS AGAIN. I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO THINK, THE URINE TEST WAS CLEAR WHEN IT WAS TESTED ABOUT THREE WEEKS AGO, SO DOESN’T SEEM LIKE ITS THE BLADDER….MYSTIFYING. I HAVEN’T GOT ANY DECORATIONS UP YET, THOUGHT I WOULD DO IT AFTER THE WEEKEND, BUT THE VILLAGE LOOKS BEAUTIFUL. SACHA WON’T LET DH OUT OF SIGHT, HE KEEPS HIS EYES ON HIM ALL THE TIME, AND KEEPS BRINGING ALL HIS TOYS TO HIM, IT LOOKS LIKE A CRECHE IN MY LIVING ROOM……BLESS!! HOW IS THAT CUTE LITTLE GEORGE DOING, AND ALL THE FAMILY, HAVE YOU GOT YOUR HOUSE DECORATED? DID THE GRANDS HELP? I HOPE YOU ARE TAKING GOOD CARE OF YOURSELF LOVE, AND YOUR JIM TOO, HE WILL GET SOME TIME OFF FOR CHRISTMAS WON’T HE? ……..LOVE YOU SUE XX

  32. Hello, everyone! I’ve been away from here far too long, but enjoyed getting caught up. So many warm stories and visions. Some sadness, too, but I choose to focus on the warm fuzzies. I was just fighting with my tablet. It’s auto-correct has gone ballistic since I updated to Windows 8.1. If it keeps it up I may be tempted to remove the update and return to plain old Windows 8! It seems we have all been getting all sorts of snow, ice and rain. Nasty weather all around. Of course it sets off our bodies. A few times I flashed back to my rheumy visit yesterday. After I finished my litany of what all went on with me since last visit (I am quite thorough and often wonder if he wishes I wasn’t, but when I asked him once he seemed to appreciate it), anyway, I finished and he said, so what you are telling me is you are not doing well, you’re getting worse. Now, I know I included the good and the not so good. He listened and quickly decided it was time for some additional meds. Thankfully he did not suggest biologics yet, but did think we should start addressing my OA as well as my RA. We shall see if it helps.
    Tonie, thanks for reminding me I have to go back through my FB wall and copy some recipes I posted! I do need to do some baking later this week or Saturday. Our cantata at church is this Sunday and afterward we have cookies, hot chocolate, coffee and cider (I think. We just call it the 4 C’s and I always seem to forget what all 4 are! – I’m not alone.)
    Well, folks, I’d love to stay and chat some more, but I must get ready for a visitor. Stay warm, all!

    • Lyn, good to hear your doctor is doing his best..we hope, but if he isn’t it isn’t because you didn’t communicate well. I think that’s great…Hope some of the new measures or meds help. Do you mean you are actually going to take a new med? Just checking, knowing you and your natural caution.
      I know this is a busy time for you with the cantata coming up. Pray it is as beautiful as always. What a joyfilled noise. There seems to be a special quality to Christmas music with the extra effort, the lights from candles and the love that fills the air, don’t you think?
      I love your hair pic on FB. You look adorable and oh so young..Glad your outing was so lovely. We’re still sliding a bit but better, no fresh snow but still too cold to melt all the ice beneath.Supposed to warm up a bit very soon with rain. Think the grands have sledded on every spare spot of grass filled snow over the last few days, even in the dark. You see, we don’t get as much snow as you do so have to take advantage of it when we do. Recitals this week for GS at the guitar and GD for her first piano recital. Fun. Christmas program at her school later…I bought her a new dress full of sparkle and bling and she loves it. Have new 1/2 zip navy sweater for GS..so handsome. Our mail and deliveries have been very sporadic last few days. UPS guy laughed with me yesterday as he waved and drove out of site..He said, “I don’t know how Santa does it in one night. It’s taken us three weeks.” Jolly soul.
      Bet your house looks lovely even if no open house this year. Love ya, Sue

      • Sue, like you, I am much scaled down this year, but yes, I am happy with the festive decorations. I just warmed and made made breakfast of the last of a lovely bag of homemade scones given me by a sweet Irishman (yes, he really grew up in Ireland) and local artist and promoter of the arts. He created a wonderful presentation of James Joyce’s short story “The Dead”. It takes place at Christmas time and in the presentation he shares the story, bringing to the fore the music included in the story. 5 selections either specifically mentioned or could have been the selection in the story, including James Joyce’s favorite song. He sings 3 himself, has a lovely little gal who plays Celtic harp and sings one of the key songs. He asked me to help out by singing an aria from the opera I Puritani that would have been sung by one of the characters. He also brought food that was in the story at the dinner table – he focused on the desert table as he had limited funds available ;). It was wonderful. We are doing another presentation this Sunday afternoon. Yes, the same day as our cantata. The following weekend is big concert weekend for the group I sing with. The Christmas season is rolling right along.
        Thanks for the compliment on my new ‘do. All here will understand why I went so short. I love long hair, but wanted a change and less drying time. 😉 The bob cut was cute, but still more work that I wanted, not to mention I think I really had short in mind and on the brain. I think my stylist was reluctant to go really short. She loved my hair long. I did go short, but the first pixie cut was a bit longer and required more round brush work than my hand and elbow appreciated some days, so I asked to go shorter. Now it is! She blew it dry using just her fingers so I’m hoping this is the easy wash and wear I was after. When she finished she said I should always wear my hair short, at which time I reminded her when I first went to her she told me I should wear it long. We had a good laugh.
        Yes, you and everyone here knows I’m a bit cautious about meds. I know what steroids can do to a body, and didn’t respond to the Medrol pack much, so we’ve kind of by passed them, anti-inflammatories didn’t really do much for the pain, so we left them behind, the tramadol in dose high enough to take the edge off began to depress my breathing, so opioids are pretty much out, I am putting off biologics as long as possible because I don’t wish to tempt the cancer gods. I’ve had abnormal and cancerous cells on my skin and elsewhere and with my aunt battling a terribly aggressive cancer I’m not willing to do that until it becomes absolutely necessary. Not to mention it would need to be covered pretty much by insurance because we couldn’t afford it. Anyway, 2 new meds now. One I asked for after using a sample my mom shared with me. My elbows have become a daily issue like my thumbs now. Mom shared some Voltaire gel that my have helped slightly the soft tissue pain, so I want to try really doses and see if it helps a bit. I know it won’t touch the pain in the bone, but I’m ok with that. The second is to address my OA. I’m not currently taking anything to address that and he thought it was time. We’re trying Effexor. My insurance wouldn’t cover Symbalta, which doc really wanted to try. I know what side effects to look out for, so here goes… Wow, that was long. Sorry. 🙂

      • Sue:
        Oh how I miss those plays and recitals ! I could just picture gd in her holiday dress all velvet and glitter ! Love the sweater for GS ! You must share pics when you go. I so love Christmas, and the love and spirit it gives to all who celebrate. People either change for the good or they go all the way ugly don’t you think ? I was browsing thru Walmart yesterday before I got my groceries and looking for earmuffs. (I think it might help the pain ) THis lady was looking at scarves and was in a motorized chair. She dropped one and I picked it up for her. She saw I was wearing one and asked me to help her with her selection. IT was for a DIL. She said she was “kinda snooty” (out here that means she dresses up a lot) She was looking at pashminas so I showed her how they could be worn and she decided on them. Very pretty ones too ! So she showed me some things she had gotten for her other relatives. I felt so warm and fuzzy, Was so nice to be helpful and so in the spirit of the season. Lifted my spirits all thru the usually hateful shop.

        Lyn, I have tried the Voltran gel and still have some samples I was given. I save them for when I am really hurting bad and use them on my knees and hands. After pulling the lights off a prelit tree the other night mine were so hurting yesterday. I wore my wrist splints last night. Your Christmas always sounds so wonderful for me . Filled with music. I need to go and practice again today for my song in the play. We have play practice tonight and working on the decorations in the fellowship hall. I was on Cymbalta for almost 3 years, it didn’t do much for me, but I know it has for a lot of people. It has a bad weight gain side effect. I am still waiting on my Lyrica to get here. These programs are good but it takes them forever to get you in the systems. I really miss my insurance ! I am praying so hard for my disability to be my Christmas present this year !! 🙂 I would love to see the program your Irish friend put on. Does he still have his accent ?? Love to hear them talk. The people I work for are 2nd generation Irish so I get a kick out of them. All red hair and blue eyes ! Joyce was something else. I would really love to see that presentation of his work. TOo bad we can’t all pile into the car and come see your programs this year huh ?? I love scones ! But I am settling for a Fiber One brownie with my coffee this am ! I did pick me up some bacon and chorizo yesterday. I really love spicy chorizo and eggs. I can forgo the tortillas cause there are none fresh around here and I am not gonna make enough just for me 🙂 SO toast will have to do ! I also love your hair, it looks so good on you. Like I said I look awful in short hair. I heard a stylist say if a woman my age could pull of the longer hair , do it. I have never heard one advocate long hair on an older woman before. I, however, do not listen to what we “should “do, I just do what I like 🙂 My hair being so straight it won’t hold curl unless I have a perm and I don’t want to damage it anymore than the meds have. SO, twist it up or puff it up a little.
        Okay I have chatted enough Have a great day
        Love
        TOnie

      • Oh my gosh. I just glanced back through my entry above after reading Tonie’s reply and saw my darned auto-correct was at it again! I updated my Windows 8 to 8.1 and since then it is tenacious! No matter how many times I correct its correction it keeps “correcting” me!! It is SOOOOO annoying! Sorry. 😦

  33. Sue:
    Well, I am worn out ! Day with Ms Alice, and a trip to the grocery store, home to feed, feed me, and bed. Boy, Fran’s house looks fabulous ! Lotsa work and fun putting up decorations, but I hate taking them down. It has turned off cold tonight, yuk ! But my home is warm and cozy, and I am thankful for that. Hope it is warming up your way and you are still resting up !

    Lyn,
    There were so many goodies left over from our sale, so we put the brownies , fudge and candies in the freezer to add to the loot for the Christmas play. After we have refreshments, so that will save me from doing anything but maybe baking some cookies. I have to make PB Pinwheels to send the kids, M&M cookies, and fudge. Their requests 🙂
    Have fun !!
    Love to all
    Tonie

    • Tonie, Sounds like a pleasurable kind of tired for you tonight. After the way you’ve previously described Fran’s house, I believe and can envision what you all are enjoying there. Hope Ms Alice is adjusting to be away from her own home. I adore the sparkle of Christmas decor but have cut far back this year due to being empty..energy wise.
      Our old houses, 300 strong in town, seem to return to their original brilliance during this season.
      Glad you’re making such progress on the package for the grands. Keep it small enough to fit into an inexpensive priority mail box. I was going to order a special apple cake for my kids in Texas made by a FB friend, It’s angel food cake size but weighs about 6 or 7 lbs…she found out it would cost almost a hundred dollars to send via other routes. Whoosh. No wonder so many of the Amazon, catalog companies are offering free shipping this year.
      Take care with the coming storm. Glad your home is warm this year. It’s late..just awoke and thought I’d see what all of you had to say..now back to sleep. Love, Sue

  34. Jennie, Glad to hear your DH is home. Just remember a caregivers first responsibility is to take care of themselves, If you don’t you can’t take care of someone else.

    still have a sheet of ice for a driveway and the road isn’t much better. Walked out front and some of it was like walking on a skating rink. Have to pick my path very carefully. Looks like another day before it will be thawed enough to get my car out. Looking at the highways on the news I’m not to eager to get out there anyway.

    My prayers are going out to you and your husband. Take care. Janet

    • Janet, Ice melts so slowly, huh? Please be careful dear girl. My kids have a driveway straight uphill covered with ice so get the picture. If you’re like me your larder and fridge are probably needing that trip to the store and I must go also but dread the cold but will wait for the slippage to improve..then have to face the crowds that have also been waiting to get out. Everything has been cancelled around here for days. We didn’t even get mail for three days. Do be good to you and be warm in your heart and body, Love, Sue

      • Dear Sue, Sounds like your ice situation is very similar to mine. Up at 4:30 this morning, the arthritis hates this weather. Got a coyote on the front lawn. Really sounds unhappy. It’s 22 degrees and he must really feel the cold. It’s kind of strange actually they usually hole up in a pack, don’t know what he is doing out there all by himself. Going to try to get a little more sleep. Gentle hugs. Janet

      • Sue, Janet, yes ice melts so slowly, especially when it’s so cold out. And arthritis DOES hate the icy cold, doesn’t it? No fun. Bundle up and stay warm! I do hope your temps raise a bit and aid in the melting process. Be very careful when you are finally able to get out and about. Warm hugs!

    • OK JANET….UNDERSTOOD, I WILL TRY TO LOOK AFTER MYSELF, BUT MUST PUT MY DH FIRST AND EASE HIM IN TO THINGS GRADUALLY. PLEASE YOU BE CAREFUL ON THE ROAD, WE DON’T WANT ANY BROKEN LIMBS JUST BEFORE CHRISTMAS….OK……..TAKE CARE SWEETHEART…..JENNIE XX

  35. Janet:
    Be very careful out there on the ice. Don’t want any news of falling down and going BOOM ! Poor coyote. Ya know it is so weird to have them here in the mtns of Va. I have no idea why they introduced them here, don’t think they were ever native here. I hear them every now and then back in the woods howling. So many people are complaining of them being out when they go hiking and such. Scary if you are alone and come on a pack of them. I pray your ice breaks up soon so you can get out. I do so understand being stranded like that. Do you live out in the country as well ?? I can picture your long flat Texas driveway. I always loved driving thru and seeing those homes set way back from the road. Love it.
    Take care dear
    Love
    TOnie

    • Dear Tonie, I live about 9 miles from the nearest town. I have a little less than 5 acres, surrounded by a 1300 acre ranch and two 15 acre parcels. My family thinks I’m nuts, but I love it out here. Ordinarily I don’t mind the isolation, but this has been a little trying because I can’t get out. I love the coyotes they have such a mournful howl and the little ones yip in the spring. when we first moved here my husband said he didn’t see much wildlife, but wow was he wrong. We have deer, ( I live on Deer Track Road) and a wide variety of smaller critters.

      I love the way your place sounds, with your dogs and the chicks. It must be very beautiful. You take care too. Janet

      • Janet, I live 20 miles from the nearest town. Back “in the sticks” we call it here 🙂 Growing up, or rather in my teenage years, I hated it cause I wanted to do more things than was available here. Now I have done them and I want this back 🙂 I am in the middle of about 15 acres of fields. My sisters house (homeplace) is in front of me, my brothers, up on the hill behind me. There are deer, rabbit, skunk, possum,squirrels,’coons,coyotes,even cougars up in the mtns, along with bear. I love driving and seeing all the little scurrying of animals, the pastures with horses and cows, miniature horses and mules. It gets icy here as well and you would have to be high to getout and drive these hilly, curvy roads even if you had to. Take care sweet and be careful !!
        Love
        Tonie

    • Janet dear, hope you are getting enough warm weather to melt that darn ice. We are having rain which will do the trick out here. A little sunshine would be nice but I’ll settle for ice melting rain. Hope the holidays will see you with your son and family. Love, Sue

  36. Jennie:
    Take care baby ! I am doing fine. We have sunshine and clear skies today. In the high 40’s But just a reprieve until this weekend, then rain and cold again. Believe me I won’t drive up the mtn to Ms Alice’s unless the roads are clear. It is a very uphill climb with a lot of steep curves. I wouldn’t want to end up down in a gully !
    I am going down to South Carolina to my son’s house for Christmas. Guess I will go on the 23rd and come back on Christmas day, I have to work on Thursday. Church is a scant mile away, I could walk it if I wanted to. No worries mate !! You take care now. I got my little tree up and decorated, it is truly a “Charlie Brown Christmas” 🙂 But cheery. I should be baking but I just am not into it today.
    Love ya
    Tonie

  37. I have enjoyed hearing what everyone is up to this holiday season. I just got most of my cards in the mail and three presents sent so I am relieved and hope everything makes it in time. Two of the presents are for friends I made on Facebook. The first is my Pom Teddi’s girlfriend in California. If you ever see a commercial for PetMeds and the door is answered by a woman with a little Pom in her arms … the Pom is Bella, Teddi’s girlfriend! They started exchanging gifts and now Deedee her mom and I usually include something for each other too! The other present is for Teddi’s full brother Bailey Boo and his Mom Judy who has driven from PA to meet us and tour Ottwa with me and we are now great friends. Our Pom Korry also has a little Pom girlfriend in California and he sent a picture in a small frame but it was a Season’s Greetings only present as she is a little Jewish Pom. I was going to send it for Hanukkah but their holiday was early this year and by the time I checked, it was too late. I did tell myself though to keep my packages lighter next year to have smaller bill to Canada Post.!
    We have not had the ice storms that others have had recently, but it has been cold with lots of snow. Tonight they are expecting it to go down to -15C which is chilly. I have been trying to reduce my dosage of prednisone but the last mg. I reduced put my rheumatoid disease in a flare that has included some vasculitis, so guess I will go back to the previous dose which is the lowest it has been since the year 2000 and hope everything settles down. Tonight I have had sharp pain in my right hip which is new but I have suspecting that its’ condition is not good with pain sown that thigh and in my groin area … time will tell. have sais no more surrey for awhile, but sometimes thee things are out of our hands. My rheumy retires in two weeks and I haven’t met my new one yet so I sure hope things settle down.
    Jennie, so glad DH is back home and doing well. Linda, t is great to hear from you again.
    Chris, hope you are feeling better soon and Tonie, glad you are seeing your son and his family at Christmas.
    Janet and Annie please be careful on all that ice and Lyn, sure wish I could hear you sing some time … I’m sure your concerts are beautiful. I use to play the piano some but it is now impossible with the extensive damage in my hands. Our piano will soon be my son’s so I hope my grandkids put it to good use. My son is an elementary school teacher so he is busy practicing Christmas tunes on his guitar for their school Christmas concert.
    Time to get ready for bed as I have another busy day tomorrow and an eye appointment in the afternoon. I am still being followed for Graves Disease of the eye but it is also possible that my eye inflammation s part of my rheumatoid condition.
    Take care all … talk to you later!

    • Mornin All !
      Nana B !! So good to hear from you. WInter is so cold for you up there in the north. We are having a cold spell ourselves, only 26′ this am. BRRR!! I can always tell it is really cold cause the dogs do their biz and come straight back in. I think it is awesome how many friends you have made thru your pommies. Look at all of us, everyone who starts talking with us, becomes one of our family it seems. If people read this blog for the first time, they may think that it is a group put together. But if they only knew that we welcome each and every one who speaks up, well we adopt all !!
      I am sure there are plenty who read it and don’t want to comment. But if you do well, just speak up for you are welcome !!
      I am finding it very hard to play a lot on the piano. I tried to play my guitar the other day, but my hands will not take the stress of all the chords. Sad. I can play the organ and keyboard with ease, no pressure to put on the keys. I can paly the bass guitar, it is not much pressure either. I bet your son will enjoy having his mum’s piano in his home. My mother;s piano is mine, however, I have never been able ot move it from the house. It is a very large upright converted player piano. So very old, has great sound.
      Brenda take very good care of you. Prayers for all your new needs. I know a new Ra Dr is scary, but sometimes it can be a good thing as well. Fresh eyes and all that. I am finding my new one quite the good thing. Take care dear, hugs to all the pomms !
      Love
      TOnie

      • Tonie girl, you sound like a busy lady, well, I guess most of us are now days. I love this season and do wish I felt better but alas…should stop wishing and just get moving with what I have. I love the way you plug the blog. I also wish many others would jump in. I know from FB and other sources many thousands read it each week. We do sound like old friends, which we are but strictly cyber. I hate how that sounds, but each of you mean so much to me and I feel like I know you all so well. It sort of reminds me of nursing. There is an intimacy between us when we meet on this level of pain and suffering.
        I consider myself most fortunate to have stumbled onto this 8 years ago and it has brought me too many reward to even count. God’s blessings to me are legend.
        Hope your weather stays doable for the holiday with all your travels. I love to hear about all your church activities and know you have many friends there. They are always so busy as are you. Can’t understand it when I talk to friends who are bored. Can’t remember the last time I was bored…maybe as a teen. Hope this day goes well for you..stay as well as possible. I hear rain outside..rain I can do so should make some errands happen today. Love..Sue

    • Pommum, Ms. Brenda, it is always wonderful to hear from you even if we do chat on FB. I know what a challenge life is for you thanks to RA and you serve as a constant inspiration to all of us. Anytime you can come and visit it is special. Knowing you I’m sure you are inundated by much to do, like we are.
      I am interested in what is going on with your eyes and am a bit alarmed by that. I, too have eye problems but blame it on the dryness of Sjogren’s and am not sure my young eye doc is that knowledgeable. I suspect your new rheumy will be good. You might have to educate him a bit and when you walk in there he will be quite impressed and probably intimidated by the massive stack of charts you surely have. Thank God you are a nurse, huh? I hope you have full enjoyment and control during the holidays. It’s your life and memories are being made. Much love, Sue

    • Barb, pommum…I don’t know why, but that cracked me up when you said the friend was a Jewish Pom. I often refer to my furry friends as Al-Anon candidates, or AA candidates. Never considered their denomination before!
      Tonie, the weather men were so wrong about us. We got rain and cold, but little else. There was a lot of power outages, so must have been ice somewhere. Now they’re saying snow for Sunday. I’m not listening any more! I’ll report after the event!
      Sue, coughed up some blood again today, but no difference in how I feel, throat is still extremely sore and raw. I wish one of us was wealthy and could pick us all up on a jet and take us around to enjoy the church services and plays all are talking about. Wouldn’t that be fun? In addition to our own village, we could have our own private jet.
      I was very encouraged. For Ed’s birthday last week I got him the latest Patterson book “Cross My Heart”, and he actually got excited over it. That’s the first thing I’ve seen him excited over in over a year! It’s a start, and what a great Christmas gift for me!
      Jen, so happy DH is back home, but Sue is right, you have to be your first priority. I understand what you mean and how you feel, but if you run yourself completely down, what good will you be to either of you? I’m worried about the cystitis again. Maybe you should see a urologist and have him find the root of this problem.
      Love, hugs and prayers to all.
      Linda

      • Linda, just saw this – wonderful news, and gift, of your husband’s response to the book. I pray it continues in some way.

  38. JUST CHECKING IN BRIEFLY, AS MY BATTERY ABOUT TO RUN OUT, AND ITS TOO COLD TO SIT IN MY STUDY TO RECHARGE…….WISH I COULD RECHARGE ME…….NOT TOO GOOD TODAY, LIKE CHRIS GOT IBS AND DIVER PROBS PLUS CYSTITIS…..ALL GOOD INIT!!!!! OK WELL LOOK AFTER YOURSELVES, AND STAY SAFE…….LATERS …JENNIE XXXX

    • Jennie, Sorry to hear about your cold weather, your personal battery running low from all that window washing and cleaning as well as your computer battery. Can’t you plug it in and leave the room while it charges? I hope you are able to enjoy all the wonderful work you’ve done, laugh at Sacha and enjoy your dear man. I hope he is feeling better each day and sleeping well. I’m sure before prostate surgery he was awake a lot.
      I have to do many things today and only hope to get out of here for the first time in a week and get to the store. We’re out of so many things. Just got off the phone with DD while she was getting her car’s brakes fixed and we planned the Christmas holiday meals. I also need to get to the post office and pic up some boxes to mail the most inexpensively as possible.Postal rates over here have gone nuts.
      My floors are a sight from all the snow, water, mud and dogs. Need to get that done.Did some steaming of the floor yesterday but very streaked and my shoulder is hurting today. This falling apart is for the birds, isn’t it? New blog took up most of the day yesterday and should be posted later today. Hope you get some rest and stay comfy, cozy. Love you, Sue

    • Jennie Poo ! I figured with DH being home your battery was charged 🙂 !! SO sorry you are not feeling well ! It is COOOOLLLLDDD here also ! Take care, prayers for your recovery. Love you much !

  39. Hi all
    Antibiotics causing me tummy gripes and getting towards the runs.dont know if I should ring doc tomorrow or not .if its gonna upset it ,should i keep taking them and its the w.end too.that with the diver ain’t no joke!
    Also ultra sound tomorrow and the wand thingy…hope I don’t have wind then! How embarrasing it all is!

    Lyn I think the Voltarol you have mite be the same as mine ,is it diclofenac ?
    your music sounds fantastic it must be like in a dream to listen to it

    Tonie
    How good to see your family again at Christmas …will you still get on line?
    Who will see to all your farmyard ?!! And dogs
    How’s Sue then
    Hope the weather for all is getting warmer

    Chrs

    • Chris dear, it’s my personal opinion you should put up with the diarrhea and keep the antibiotics to clear up your diverticulitis. That can be serious. Get out your yogurt and probiotics to restore the normal, good bacteria to the gut and take antidiarrheal meds if you must, like immodium or your equivalent in England. Get out your pads and go for it.
      I do understand what you’re dealing with…I face it so often. I hope you are able to enjoy the season with your load of health problems. Life just isn’t fair…I know. Love, Sue

    • Hey Chris:
      Dogs will go with me , plus their crate to sleep in. The chickens I will get my nephew up on the hill to come down and feed them. He can keep the eggs while I am gone, so that will be a good deal. I will only be gone 2 days, so not a biggy. He only lives about 110 miles from here. Please take your meds and keep your bum powdered !!
      Love you
      Tonie

      • Tonie, I love that remark to Chris…does that mean the same as “keep your powder dry.” Oh, I know..just being a smart ass but you have to admit they both have to do with explosions, right?
        I’m certain you are getting excited about Christmas with son and his family.
        I just got back from the store and am having trouble typing because my hands are so painfully cold..wore my gloves, too. I think this cold rain with some snow still on the ground feels colder than the snowy days. Jim will definitely be the one to bring in those groceries tonight. It’s already dark out, gets dark around 4PM around here. My hands and feet were hurting so much I cut my list in half and came on home. Praying for good weather for you for your trip. Love, Sue

  40. Sue
    Well that does hark back to what my doc said a year ago
    I couldn’t remember what the side effect was then .it could have been my upper tum.but he said either this or hosp.so I kept on them
    So you must have too,so I mean to keep taking them,just unsure if it would make my tum worse than it is really.hey ho ,get some yogs tomorrow ,think I’ve still got some probiotic tabs still,have a look for those and take
    Back later Chris

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