Saturday, January 25, 2014

Ahhhhh.... the weekend has finally started for me

Some what fun day at work today.  Went to bed extra early last night because of the fun day I had driving to get my new glasses. Just over an hour there in horrible winds and another hour back in even worse winds plus menopausal hot flashes. Fun!  So, I was in bed by 9 PM, which is good but it gave the pinched nerve more time to hurt during the night.  I was up at least 3 times due to the pain.  The last time it never fully went away but by then I was so exhausted I just fell into a nice sleep. The alarm clock was exceptionally loud and rude at 730 AM. Anyone else notice that the earlier your alarm goes off, the louder and ruder it is?

Naturally, as soon as someone came into the library, I had to potty. It never fails, right? Luckily, he took his time and I was back at my desk before he was ready to check out. My co-worker was scheduled to come in an hour after me so that first hour was relatively peaceful. Until the boys showed up. They weren't that bad. The two brothers were actually a good influence on the third boy. He's always trouble.  Unfortunately the brothers left and the sister of the third boy showed up.  He's a bad influence on his little sister and there's always trouble when the two of them are there.  We, the librarians, are used as baby sitters by several parents, including theirs.  Some of the kids are better behaved than others.  I was very, very, very glad when their mom showed up to take them home. And she was only an hour late.  The final two hours of work were, ahhhhh, peaceful.

Then a trip to town to get my new glasses readjusted, pick up a few groceries, cat food and dog food.  Been watching movies since I got home.  First it was "American Psycho 2" which was more of a comedy than I realized and now it's "Dirty Harry" - a classic.  I like Eastwood as Harry but don't like his westerns. Not sure why but I do.  I have "Magnum Force" which I think is the second Dirty Harry movie.

Dumb Bunny was allowed to be "free" today - free to roam the house rather than stay in his not-so-little section of it. I'm going to have to reconsider that with all the rabbit pee I had to clean up. No wonder I'm always out of cleaning rags. And just after I cleaned up one place, either the bunny or one of the cats peed all over the floor somewhere else.  Sheesh.  I discovered why the bunny didn't use the litter box I put in the cat room for him - the cats are using it. He won't use their boxes.  So I might have to only put a box out when I'm going to him roam but will limit where he roams to. Wait. No, that won't work. He can get on the seat of the bar stool to the kitchen counter and down into the living room from there. Drat.  He may just have to be stuck in his room except when I'm home and can keep an eye on him.  He doesn't pee anywhere except his litter box in his room. Sigh, again.

It's supposed to be in the 50's tomorrow so I'm hoping to finally finish moving the mulch pile. It will be so nice to have my lean-to back.  We are supposed to have snow the first week of February and if I get into the lean-to, I won't have to brush/scrape off my car. Naturally the day we have a 70% chance of snow, I get to drive to Kansas City to see the neurosurgeon. Oh well, that's how it goes. I'll make sure to have a good book on cd to listen to and my cell phone.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Youtube Channel

Finally posted some videos onto youtube. They are mostly of my cats and dogs. This one is the one for Daddy.

Daddy - I miss you

I should be back here later. It's nap time.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Updates and Links

Hello again. It's been a while. How have you been?  I've been busy busy busy.  Well, as busy as my back will let me.  Not getting nearly enough sleep  and it's taking longer and longer each morning for the pain to go away.  Some nights it doesn't wake me completely but I spend the night in a light nap stage and in pain.  I finally found a neurosurgeon in Kansas City.  My first appointment is on Feb 3rd. According to the radiology report, I have a large bone spur on L5-S1 that is pressing on the nerve. There's another spur on the right side but it's not a large. I am hoping they can do a minimally invasive surgery to shave off both spurs and have me back to work at the library and at home right away better than before.

I have an appointment with my primary doctor this Monday and I'm going to ask for a referral to one of the orthopedic doctors at the clinic. My knees are getting worse and worse. They grind and grind when I walk up or down the ramps leading up to the house or when I walk the stairs at work (just a few into the library).  If we can get my back to stop hurting and get my knees to stop grinding and hurting, I can start exercising and doing more around the yard and maybe lose this extra weight I'm carrying around.  I could stand to lose 80 lbs or so.  I started packing on the weight while recovering from bi-lateral carpal tunnel surgery back around 1998 or so.

The only good thing about the pinched nerve pain is that it won't let me go back to bed in the morning. I work at the library part time and most days I don't start work until the afternoon. I'm used to sleeping in, especially on days I'm not working. I'm NOT a morning person by any stretch of the imagination. I never have been. Everyone says "Oh, you'll get used to it" and "It'll get easier before you know it". Yeah, right. Bull crap, I say.  Everyone morning I had to get up for school starting with kindergarten, it was a fight to get me up. I would get up early for Saturday morning cartoons but within 15 minutes, I'd be sound asleep in front of the TV and would miss all the cartoons. Nearly every job I've ever had required me to get up early for work. And it's always next to impossible for me to get up and get moving. I'd continue fighting to stay awake until close to lunch time every work day.  Come the weekend, I wouldn't get out of bed until lunch time or later. Then struggle to get my errands and housework done. Then the struggle would start again that next Monday.  Forget going out with friends, going to movies, concerts, etc etc etc. It's still like that but now I can sleep in to a point every day except Saturday.  I'm getting lots done every day now that I can't go back to bed but I usually end up taking a nap (on my days off) or start yawning and fighting to stay awake starting around 5 PM at work.  It's just freakin' crazy.

I want to give you some links to other (much better) homestead blogs.  I'll try to share one each time I get online.  If you visit them, please provide them the link to my blog and let them know I directed you.  I'd love to get more followers and more comments.

This is a link within a link. More like 12 links within a link. Blue Yurt Farms is providing links and information about homesteads with blogs they like and follow. Lots of information here, folks.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Snow snow snow brrr brrrr brrrrrr

Started snowing Saturday (1/4/14) night and didn't stop until late in the afternoon on Sunday.  It was also very windy so some of the drifts got pretty deep.  On Sunday, I went out three times to sweep off the deck and ramp for the kitties (they are so spoiled).  We actually had temps of -21 with the wind chill on Sunday. I've lived in Missouri since the summer of 1995 and I've never known us to have temps so cold. We've had winters with way more snow and ice but not these temps.

I keep the central heat (propane furnace) set on 66 to 68 degrees all winter but I don't have enough insulation in the house and a lot of the duct work is, apparently, uninsulated as well. The area under the house (a 1974 single wide with a 12x30 completely uninsulated living room attached) is pretty much as warm as the inside of the house. Guess where the outside cats are spending their time?? To make it even warmer under there, I've been doing a load or two laundry every day. The dryer isn't vented through the skirting, just under the house.  Warm warm warm!!!  I'm running an EdenPure heater in the living room because it doesn't get nearly warm enough. Not only is it not insulated, it has a tile floor and many windows.  The main thing the heater does is run up the electric bill.  $60 in summer with central air running jumps to $110 in the winter with this damn heater.

I have a 500 gallon propane tank for my furnace. We had it filled up this past fall and it was down to about 30% already. They came to fill it today - $785.40 for 350 gallons. I wonder what my electric bill would be if I had just electric heat.  I wish my house was better set up in terms of the floor plan so I could use wood heat.

A couple of the outside cats are inside but will likely leave in the morning.  One cat has found a burrow in an amazing place.  There's a concrete culvert under my road along the highway. There's a part of it in the middle that has crumbled or something and there's a hole/burrow there.  I delivered food and water to the culvert for her.  I have a food dish in the garage and in the pump house along with the ones on the front porch (where the cats are usually fed). I go out several times a day to make sure their water dish isn't frozen over.

The county doesn't plow my road and no one on the road has a plow so we're all stuck until a big truck or someone with 4 wheel/4x4 drive uses the road. I normally clean my friends' house on Monday but didn't know if I could get out. Then the MFA Propane truck came and I was able to get out. She is an older widow with two dogs and I also pet sit for her. We can't find her snow shovel so I took my outside broom and snow shovel with me.  I shoveled off her front porch and made a trail to her garage and her cabin (where she scrapbooks) by shuffling my boots through the snow. She's a tiny little thing with tiny little feet so she's able to just walk in my prints and be fine.  When I finished with that, and was completely frozen, I thawed out while cleaning her house.  She's usually gone when I do it but she was there today. When I finished she paid me for last week's cleaning and this weeks plus paid me back for something I picked up for her at WalMart and extra for the snow removal.  A nice $60 which is exactly what I needed - money. I went to town - the smaller one but bigger than here. They have a Dollar General, a Subway and a little grocery store. Dog food, dog snacks, people snacks, footlong chicken bacon ranch sub with extra bacon and a container of chocolate almond milk. Perfect.  On my way home I stopped by the library here to see if the entry area needed snow removal. I had my broom and snow shovel so I cleared it off. Decided to go ahead and do it instead of waiting until tomorrow.

I've been home since 5 PM and I'm still cold from my time outside today.  I looked at the temp a bit ago and it's back to -10 on the back porch. Brrrrr.

The treasure found at Dollar General this trip - season 1 of Poltergist The Legacy on DVD for $5.95.  Whoop whoop.  I love this show. Something new to watch.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

New glasses and snow - finally!

Snow started falling last night around 6 PM and didn't stop until close to midnight. Ended up with a couple inches of light, dry snow.  Just enough to make the roads a bit messy.  Naturally I planned on driving to another town to pick up my new glasses today. Well, a bit of snow and lots of cold temperatures weren't going to stop me. And it didn't.

The glasses have progressive bifocal lenses in them and come with their own sunglasses held on with magnets. The frames cost a ton but cheaper than getting a pair of glasses and a separate pair of sunglasses.  The lenses were pretty expensive too.  Thanks to Mom for the Christmas money - otherwise I wouldn't have gotten a new pair of glasses at all.  It's going to take a while to get used to the lenses - weeks they tell me.  That won't be much fun.  I picture lots of headaches until I get used to them. I just hope I do get used to them.  I have 90 days to get used to them or take them back and get a different prescription.  It's a little over an hour's drive to get to the store so I hope I don't need to drive back.

I'm going to have a 90 minute drive to Kansas City sometime soon to meet with a neurosurgeon.  Appears I might need surgery on my lower back.  I have osteoarthritis somewhere along my spine that is pinching the sciatic nerve.  Last night wasn't much fun.  I was already in pain when I went to bed due to a nap with the dogs. After 2 hours I was up in too much pain to sleep. I walked around until the pain lessened and went back to bed. Another 2 hours and I was up again.  I did this through the entire night. But I woke up and got up before the pain was so bad I could barely get out of bed. Guess my brain and body have finally got the message and aren't letting me sleep/lay down too long now.  But it sure as hell leaves me too tired.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


I'm sorry I haven't posted to my blog in a while.  I've been working extra hours and dealing with health issues.  My rheumatologist ordered an MRI and it showed that my sciatic nerve is being pinched but not by the piriformis muscle like we thought. There's osteoarthritis in my spine. I'm not sure if it's in the lumbar area or the sacrum.  It only bothers me when I lay down, which I think is weird. After 2-4 hours, the pain in my left butt cheek, left calf and left foot wakes me up.  My pain level is off the chart.  It's all I can do to sit up on the edge of the bed then stand up (on my right leg only at first).  I have to use the wall to help me walk until the pain in my foot (which goes numb sometimes) and calf subsides enough to walk with a limp.  Things usually settle down as I move around.  If I don't have to stay up, I go back to bed for a while.  It doesn't always work. Sometimes I stay up reading a book until it's time to feed the critters.  Other times I start on housework. Lack of sleep plus more hours at the library are a bad combination.

I have a list of neurologists who accept Missouri Medicaid.  I'll start making phone calls either tomorrow or Friday.  They are all in Kansas City, MO which is about 90 minutes away. I sure wish they were closer but oh well.  I hope that if I have to have back surgery it's the less invasive type and will allow me to get back to work around here immediately.  Otherwise I'll have to either postpone getting my hens or not get them unless I get a regular coop.  If my back is too trashed to move the portable coop around, I'm gonna be pissed.

I did get a good surprise and laugh this morning.  I was up just before 5 AM, put the dogs out with their breakfast and let the bunny out of his room.  I went back to bed and when I got up again just after 8 AM, I found the bunny on the kitchen counter next to the sink.  I think he jumped up the cat tree and jumped over to the counter through a cut out there. A sight I wasn't expecting and don't have a picture of it.