Tuesday, March 17, 2015


It's been difficult to have a positive attitude lately.  We have been having a hard time getting my thyroid kick started.  In November and December, things were going well, and then I had a setback.  The meds weren't working, and I reacted adversely to any new ones we tried.  I had gone down two sizes, but gradually took it all back in.  My worst problem with this disease is the swelling from inflamation.  The edema is so severe, it is painful.  I know when I wake up each morning how I am going to do by how badly my ribs hurt.  My toes feel like I could poke them with a pin and they would squirt water.  I wish it were that easy.
I think I sabotaged myself.  I gave up on my diet, truly believing that what I ate did not affect my symptoms.  I continued to be gluten and dairy free, for the most part.  I love tomatoes, and I wanted to not be affected by them.  Dumb, but I finally have to admit that the nightshade vegetables are a big issue for me.
So, I am back on the Paleo Leap again.  I am also drinking 10 ounces of coconut water a day to help with the swelling.  I was whining the other day about how yucky it had gotten to be, when my husband started singing "Put the lime in the coconut and drink it all up".  Well, darn, if it doesn't make it more palatable.  I had been adding lemon, but lime is much better.  In addition to the coconut water, I am taking 400mg of Potassium at night.

I had a family event to go to on Saturday, and I could not fit into any of my clothes.  I went in to Nordstroms, where I don't usually shop, but I needed help.  I started crying when I told the clerk what I needed.  She was amazing, and set me up with a beautiful orange skirt, an aqua tank top, and a multi colored floral cardigan.
Three days later, I am down two sizes again.
Yesterday I went on my Monday hike with the Tukwila Trailers, a group of senior women who go out hiking for two hours every Monday, rain, snow, or shine.  I love this group.  I was dismayed to discover I had very little energy, and found myself bringing up the rear.  Fatigue is my second worst symptom.
After we hike, we all go out to lunch.  This is also very difficult, since it is hard to find something on the menu I can eat.  I'm finding a bacon burger without bun, tomato or cheese will be good.  Or, a salad is a good option.  Yesterday the fist bite of my salad told me it was from a bag, and often, those bagged salads have sulfites in them.  I swelled up on the way home in the van.

Lasagna Gardening and other Tales

Happy St. Patricks Day.  I'm really not sure why we celebrate this day, I just know that in college it meant we went out to drink green beer.  I do enjoy the tradition of corned beef and cabbage, and I cooked mine Sunday night.  This morning we had hash with our eggs for breakfast.  Yum.

Friday was an incredibly beautiful day, with temps at 68 degrees.  The record in our neck of the woods is 70, so we almost made it.  I took advantage and started working on the vegetable garden.  We first formed this garden when I moved in with Terry two years ago.  The soil was in great condition, but the weeds had won the battle.  We spent hours on our hands and knees, pulling out every last root of every last weed.  Friday when I started work by raking out the straw, there were 3 weeds.  Three.  So, I am going to tell you about how we do our lasagna gardens.

 You start with a bed with good soil and no signs of weeds.
 Next, you cover the soil with either cardboard or wet newspaper.  I chose to use newspaper on this garden since I had lettuce and cabbage starts that I wanted to plant right away.
 A simple poke with the trowel makes for a hole to place your starts in to.  Then, you cover it all with either straw or mulch.  I need to take a trip to the farm and garden store to get some straw, since I like it best.
This method cuts way down on your weeds, and more importantly, conserves moisture.  With the mild winter we have had, and no snow in the mountains, I suspect we are going to have a dry summer with water restrictions.
 This is the garden in the front yard that we finished that same morning.  I want to start growing  more vegetables out front, so I lifted all of the perennials and replanted them elsewhere.  Then I raked the soil level before laying down cardboard.  We save cardboard all year, since our goal is to have all of our beds lasagna style.  It's a little hard to see, but I set up the bedsprings as a trellis for the sweet peas I planted.
 On Saturday, I joined my son, brother, and sister in law in taking the ferry to Bainbridge Island for a Memorial service celebrating the life of my Uncle Norman.
 Here I am with my son, Michael.
Uncle Norm was quite the man.  He was loved by everyone.  He never seemed to lose his temper.  
As my cousin, his daughter said, he didn't even get mad when she crashed the car into the mailbox.  Or when she drove it into the ditch, or when she crashed it. . . . .
I know as a child, he would delight me by talking like Donald Duck.  His passing gave the family the opportunity to gather and share stories and pictures and be embraced by the love.  He would have loved the party we held in his honor.

We arrived early for the service, so stopped at a Starbucks for some coffee.  One of my cousin's sons was there with his family, and he told me he had something for me.  He presented me with a bag full of booklets that my Mom had given him years ago when he was writing a report for school on the history of aviation.  I was totally amazed when I got home and looked them over.  This is just a sampling.  They were all published in 1943.  I guess I should explain that my Dad was a Marine, and a Naval Aviator.  He flew a SBD dive bomber.
Now, we need to have a family meeting to decide what to do with these.  Terry wants to scan the covers for the artwork.  Maybe they will end up in a Flight Museum.  We shall see.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

On Line Dating in your 60's

Most people are amazed when they learn that Terry and I met through an on-line dating service.
Yes, it's true.
I was 61, lonely, and looking for some fun.  I didn't necessarily want to get married again, but wanted some male companionship.

I was on vacation with my brother in Palm Desert.  He had just met a woman on E_Harmony, and was pretty sure this would be his wife.  (They were married that year).  So, he sat me down and showed me the ropes.  I went through the lengthy process, answered all of the questions, and sat back and waited.  And waited.  After a few weeks, I got notification of some picks for me.  I saw there was a man from my home town, and I got a little excited, wondering who that could be.
When the picture came up, I was flabbergasted.  It was my brother!!!
I had always told him he needed a woman like me, but really.
I never made a connection on that site, but tried several others.  Most of the men who contacted me were frauds.  They prey on widows, but it's not hard to discern them.
I met a couple of nice men.  Actually had a few dates.
Then Terry contacted me, and the rest is history.
It was not smooth sailing.  I broke up with him three times, but eventually came to realize that I wanted and needed him in my life.
Thank you, Terry, for being patient with me and waiting.