Tag Archives: fukoladola

Hips Don’t Lie

Here’s an update for anyone interested in what’s been going on with my family.

My dad had a hip replacement at the beginning of the month and was doing great with his recovery. Unfortunately, one day he misjudged the place where he was going to sit and he fell. He was taken to the hospital.

My folks live inland and the nearest medical facility is on the coast, about 90 miles one way.

I was off work for the holidays so I rearranged my holiday stuff and went to California to see what was going on. He didn’t have to do another surgery but he has to keep weight off of his leg for 4-6 weeks. When I got there he was still in the hospital but the next day he was released to adult physical rehab facility.

If you don’t know what that is, you should stop reading right now and wrap your arms around yourself and take a moment to be grateful. Chances are you will know someday, and you will yearn for this more innocent time.

While I was in CA we did several day trips to visit and then I spend several days in a motel and shuttled back and forth to the care center. Mostly to keep him company but also to help get situated and communicate with the staff on any issues that we wanted to bring to their attention.

The good news is that Dad is doing great with his physical therapy, getting more upper body strength to get in and out of the wheelchair, practicing walking with a walker using his good leg, and getting better mobility with both legs. The therapy staff is super terrific and seem to genuinely like working with Dad.

He had another X-ray while I was there and we were hoping for an Xmas miracle but unfortunately, no luck. The bad news is he’s stuck there at least another 4 weeks which was hugely disappointing.

During all this another family member had a health bloop but is recovering well. Also during this time my husband was moving his mother into assisted living. He stayed here while I was gone.

So, all-in-all it was a strange holiday season and not very holiday-ish with all the concerns.

BUT, we had a great meal with the extended family on Christmas eve and got a chance to celebrate being together. Then the immediate family went to spend Christmas day with Dad. The important stuff worked out.

I finally returned home on the 27th and it’s taken a few days to get back into the groove here. I plan to enjoy a lazy holiday weekend and then get ready to go back to work next week.

Hopefully tomorrow I’ll have a companion post about my trip down south.

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This is the Scene Today

A bunch of snow slid off the roof and covered the front step. We could hardly open the front door. We just cleared it off so we could open the door and find the steps. I already had to change pants and socks once today.

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My Secrets To Success

I’m seem to be locked in this pattern of taking a look at my life and coming up with an idea that might make some small part of it easier. Then, in the process of trying to implement this life-changing idea, I instead create a bunch of new problems to solve.

Like, (made-up example) I’m going to get this software that will take care of something that will make my life easier. I end up spending half of whatever free time I had for the weekend installing it — which of course necessitates upgrading some other software and downloading a widget and adding a gadget that needs a special cable that we used to have but it’s not in the garage, basement, laundry room or pile of boxes in the back of the closet so I have to go buy another one somewhere only that store no longer exists so I have to go to a different store with a terrible parking lot that is super busy and the parking spots are all one tiny squosh too small for any normal sized cars, and when I finally get inside they aren’t sure if they have the cable and why couldn’t I just buy it online? Oh, you want to take care of this dumb project today and not drag it out forever, I see, you’re going to stand there until I look around, Oh, look, I found one — then after I install all these various things I still have to configure them and troubleshoot them and get the stuff down to the business of actually making my life easier.

Then, as it turns out, I flubbed up a setting in there somewhere, and I can’t figure it out in the last 15 minutes I’ve allotted to this aggravating project so instead, every time I open my computer I now have to click on a box, and close another program plus a widget, then type in a password, then a number and then, suddenly, everything is easier, but disappointingly so.

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Guess I’m Not Going To Catch Up On Yard Work

Either I have weather and no time or time and no weather.

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The January Crunchy Tooth Surprise

It wasn’t a resolution or even a firm goal but I said I was going try to get my cooking mojo back and try new recipes now and then. I’m not sure how far I’m going to get with this since the problem is putting food on the table after a long day and my long days aren’t going to change.

But I have tried a few new things already. My most successful recipe was Pasta e Ceci (this isn’t the recipe I used but you get the idea) – pasta and garbanzo beans. The recipe was one of those “have dinner on the table in 30 minutes” tall tales and called for canned beans but I had a ton of dried sitting around so I used those instead. But even subtracting that, it took me significantly more than 30 minutes to get this dinner ready.

But we liked it and it made a ton so we had leftovers. I’d try it again.

I also made a red cabbage recipe that our family has at Christmas and I’ve never made myself. So, two recipes so far.

While I was eating my pasta I had a weird sensation biting down followed by a big crunch chunk in my mouth. I broke a crown. First trip to the dentist in 2016.

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Operator Error

In keeping with the weirdly lit food photos theme, I captured these photos in the living room because it was sunny in there.

Yesterday I had a half day at work but there was an early traffic snafu and the bus was running late so I didn’t get home until after 2pm.

I decided to take the time to make a real lunch and relax a little bit before diving into cooking so instead of having all afternoon to cook, I had to rush around.

I made the pie crust and put it in the refrigerator, so that part worked out.

I thought I would make the rolls early this year since that seems to be the item that breaks the camel’s back when I’m rushing around at the last minute. I always think I should just buy rolls, but I want the rolls that Mom makes. (A slightly different version of this Betty Crocker Dinner Rolls recipe.)

My brain wasn’t completely re-started after my day and I somehow confused 1/3 and 3/4ths and added way too little liquid. Rather than cut my losses, I tried to just add more later in the process. It did not work and I unloaded one load of flour soup into the trash.

Then I gave up for the night.

This morning I got up early to do the rolls and pie.

I had started mixing together the pumpkin stuff when I got to the part where the recipe called for 1 tablespoon of ground ginger. This sounded like too much to me. I’ve learned not to blindly trust recipes after that time I accidentally made about 1000 gallons of lentil soup.

I went and found the recipe on line and looked through the comments to see if there was an adjustment on the spices. Instead, most of the comments said things like, “OMG worst pumpkin pie recipe ever,” “Tastes bland,” and “Too much ginger.”

Then I tried to find another recipe which wasn’t a problem except I’d already added stuff to the pumpkin (which I grew myself) so I was stuck with what I had. I improvised and it came out looking okay. We’ll see.

Then I did the rolls correctly. Now I’m taking a quick break before I go back to make the last few things.

Happy Thanksgiving!!

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Lost Items

This was some street art from somewhere in Philadelphia.

One of the things I do before I go on a trip is I clean out my wallet and take only the essential items. The items I remove I put in a safe place. And this time I can’t find my safe place.

I figured once I started looking I would find them quickly. But I looked in the usual spot. The less usual spot. The maybe it fell down spots.

Today I did advanced looking and I still haven’t found them. I’m wondering if maybe I accidentally threw them away. I don’t even know what all it is. I think my tribal ID and my AAA card. Possibly a library card. Poop.

While I was looking today I searched a bunch of drawers and apparently I lost my mind at some point and stocked up for the apocalypse by buying endless Post-Its. There are Post-Its by my bed, in my dresser, in my desk drawer, on my computer desk, in the drawer by the phone and in the annex drawer in the laundry room for when I buy too many Sharpies and Post-Its.

If you need Post-Its let me know and next time you stop by I’ll have a gift bag for you.

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How Your Body Works During the Crud

Usually when I get sick the only thing I take is a pain reliever, if needed, and I do a dose of cough syrup before bed. Otherwise it’s tea and Fisherman’s Friend. I think Tante Irmgard introduced me to FF and it is the only cough lozenge going. Might not taste great but it works. Ricola is pretty good, too, but it’s more like candy and if I eat too many I get a stomach ache.

But my new remedy that I tried for the first time this year is Theraflu which I recommend with reservations. I bought it several months ago because I felt a little off and I was going on a trip and thought it might get me through the day if I went down hard. Luckily, we didn’t need it on the trip.

But I tried it over the weekend when I felt so awful and it was pretty good. For those of you unfamiliar, Theraflu is a powder and you add hot water. I only did a half envelope at a time. It tastes like lemonade made with Pez and battery acid and it did revive me, so recommend if you have a gruesome cold especially if you have to function out in the world. However.

First of all, I know for some people, anti-histamines make them sleepy. For me it keeps me awake. When I did the Theraflu, even early in the day, I had a hard time sleeping at night.

Second, I think it disrupted the whole having a cold process. I’m not a doctor or a scientist but I took biology in high school several decades ago. Here’s how it works. When your body gets a cold all available stations get down to business producing as much snot as quickly as possible to distribute to any area remotely involved in the respiratory system.

Then you come along with your Theraflu and the body’s control center tells everyone: knock it off with the snot making. And the body is like, “What? But I like making snot, I have all the materials here to make tons and tons. I want to make snot.” But the control center says, “Hard cheese, you can just hang out and prep your station. You make snot when I say so. This is temporary.”

So all the snot making systems of the body are tense in readiness for the word they can go back to work. And there you are, thinking you are getting better and the crud will be behind you soon.

Then the Theraflu wears off, the control center hits the button telling everyone they can get back to work. Now your body catches up on the last 4-5 hours of snot making and you are flooded so quickly you’re not even sure what’s happening.

At one point I was doubled over coughing so hard I put my hands over my eyes, partly because I didn’t want my eyeballs to pop out and partly because I didn’t want to see my spleen that I’d just gorked up sitting on the floor with all the used tissues.

Cough remains. We went to the store last night and bought 6 more packets of FF and 4 boxes of tissues. Also a giant basket of food because we ate everything we had even all my emergency meals I had stashed. All we had left was garden burgers and mustard.

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Quick Tulip Update

On Sunday night on the way home from the match I was able to witness the powder blue Cadillac from hell.

At my freeway off-ramp I wait for a light to make a left. The right going traffic has a yield sign.

Blue came off the freeway at high speed going right and did not yield. Horns honking. He then made an illegal u-turn and came back the way I was going.

My light turned green. I waited. He blew through a completely red light at high speed.

I made my left. At the intersection ahead of me, he passed the car waiting at the light on the left. He pulled into the gas station.

I wondered if I should do something. He had his window down and was talking to someone at the gas station.

I’m not the type to do something type plus my team had blown a lead in the 93rd minute so I was moping.

This is just a preview of the tulips. They have barely started coming in.

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Windshield Wipers Academy

A couple of years ago we were hiking in the woods and my sister said she was going to go hug a fatty. I thought maybe it was a euphemism (for?) but nope, she needed to hug a giant tree.

Unlike most people, I hate taking my car in for service.

Just kidding, is there anyone that says, “Yay! It’s time to take the car in.”

The service place is conveniently located as long as I do some planning so I figured out a scheme where I could drop the car off, take the train into work and then pick up the car later and meet a friend (and not have to drive home at rush hour). The plan worked perfectly.

One of the things I asked them to do is replace the windshield wipers.

One morning there was mist on the windshield and when I fired up the wipers, they seemed not quite right. They scraped the mist off but they sort-of stuttered along the windshield and I would say smeared more than wiped. Since I did not want to come up with another scheme so I could return to the service place, I decided that maybe they needed to break in and perhaps there wasn’t enough moisture.

A week later: mist, stutter, smear.

I called and they said bring it in whenever I could.

I really didn’t want to drop everything to do it right away. However, I didn’t see many days in the near future where it would be more convenient and I didn’t want to get stuck in the rain and be crossing my fingers since I couldn’t see.

The next morning I sat in the car, watching the wipers clear the mist and I was uncertain. Was there really a problem or was I being a fussy old lady? It wasn’t like they were a complete failure, just not my usual experience with brand new wipers.

I decided to ease my mind and take it in. A very nice young man helped me and he was patient, but in placating way. He said they were definitely new and he cleaned them off. Then he sat in the car and did a few rounds of the wiper fluid and also seemed uncertain. He said he would go ahead and replace the parts.

He returned from parts with another guy who took one look and said: they’re on backwards. The left and right were swapped.

They went ahead and replaced the parts anyway and even though I was annoyed that they screwed up and I had to make a special trip, I was also relieved that the problem was real and not just fussy old lady syndrome.

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