DRAFT TODAY, POST TOMORROW: Some posts may be in draft status until I (aka procrastinator extraordinaire) get around to posting them.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

More predictions for this year!

Today, the eye specialist had news for me. He measured from the outside edges of my eyes and said it has decreased from 19 to 18. He said that was a good sign.

April will be the two year mark for this Graves disease so he thinks it has run is course. He wants to see me in April to be sure and we will probably be scheduling surgery at that point.

The surgery is outpatient but I would need to stay home at least one day after. He will cut my eyelid and kind of stretch out the tendon until the eyelid covets the top of my eyeball like it's supposed to.

Although any surgery, and especially anything around me eyes, makes me nervous, I am a little excited to get something fixed. Finally. I hope, though he can't guarantee, that my eyes won't feel so tired and worn out constantly anymore.

Monday, January 27, 2014

This year is going to be a better year.

The endocrinologist said so. My thyroid levels were a little high so he suggested taking a half pill once a week. When I reminded him that I'm already doing that, he said I can skip every Sunday.

He asked about the eye specialist and wrote down when I said I will have to have surgery on my eye eventually. (Yep, I need to schedule that...)

He asked about symptoms: tremors, heart palpitations,  constipation and diarrhea.... Um yeah, same as always. Even after uber cleaning up my diet. I got a little frustrated and he could tell. So he said it's going to be a better year. He did not back that up with any evidence.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Garden Update

We went to Baker Nursery over the weekend to get fruit trees and replacement roses and a few other odds and ends. We got peaches, plums, apples, a rose and 2 rose trees, some flowers for under the tree by my gardens, and some transplants for the veggie garden. We're not pulling everything out yet but the middle of the farm is being planted with corn, beans, and then squash and watermelon will be scattered throughout.
At Baker Nursery
Messy box
The other messy box
strawberry patch (with mustard greens and tomatoes)
Pomegranate tree (lettuce)
the farm (celery and tomatoes in front)
walnut tree
the farm (brussel sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, broccoli romanesco)
How my broccoli goes
broccoli romanesco coming in (finally)
messy tomatoes
taxi tomatoes--I love the yellow!
Jalapenos turning red
(homemade sriracha--I'm coming for you!)
carrots, unthinned
pecan tree, I mean twig
Citrus trees
A giant green cauliflower
NEW peach tree
NEW rose tree

Friday, January 17, 2014

Dogs are kids too

Since last week, Mick set up a play pen attached to Teka's kennel and the wall next to the doggie door for her space. Cassi's playpen is attached to the wall on the other side of the doggie door and then wrapped behind a bookshelf. Of course, she is still pushing it open. I've asked him to find the other kennel and duplicate Teka's side for Cassi soon.

I came home last night and they were both at the door. Dammit! It doesn't appear they "got into it" with each other but I had to look at how Teka got out. She pulled the top anchor of the playpen out of the wall. Out. of. the. wall. Now Mick has agreed we can start her on doggie Prozac...

A couple of days ago, Cassi's cone cracked open and became dangerous. Mick duct taped it and I went to Petsmart and bought a new one. A larger one too because she had figured out how to lick her wound around the cone. She's having more trouble navigating with the larger cone and I actually already caught her getting around it once, but just that once.

While I was making dinner last night, Cassi managed to get her new cone off. Snapped it open somehow. She was behaving so I let her keep it off while she was supervised. Mick came home and found the piece that had come off but decided to let her keep it off anyway.

I went to Walgreens this morning to get Teka's Prozac. They also had a prescription for Cassi for her heart murmur. I guess Mick forgot about it (he's saying he thought they weren't medicating her until after he sees the cardiologist next week).

The pharmacist said I could save some money by buying the discount plan. Since there were 2 dogs, they could use a "family" plan. It would pay for itself in the first or second visit. So I signed my dogs up for their own family discount plan. (Cassi is the primary, in case you wondered.)

It's like having kids.... #itsnotreally.

Update: Cassi's prescription was a "just in case" after all. The cardiologist said not to give it to her.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Doggie Anxiety

Our Vizsla Teka has been an anxious dog for a long time, but she always loved going in her kennel. She would finish her morning routine and go lay in her kennel waiting for her treat before we left for the day. She would get nervous about something and go hide in there.

Not long ago, Teka didn't want to go in and I figured out that the smell I was trying to clean up but couldn't find was pee from Cassi on the rug in front of the doggie door. After I threw it out, Teka went back to being her normal self.

Then very recently, she didn't want to go in the kennel anymore. She pulled the kennel cover through and chewed it. Then again. Then through the top and destroyed a wicker basket on top of the kennel. And chewed through a cord running behind the kennel. (It was a little cord for the electric collar remote.)

Then I came home and she wasn't in her kennel. Of course, Cassi wasn't either. She doesn't have a kennel but a playpen, and it's attached to the kennel but nothing on the other end so she has taken to pushing it open. We keep the door to the room closed so she doesn't get that much additional freedom but I keep asking for a more permanent fix.

So Mick was sure I just didn't put Teka in her kennel, that there was no way she could have gotten out, but I actually had a very clear memory of putting her in the kennel that day. It sounded like it happened again to either Mick or his dad but the details were relayed to me somewhat fuzzy. So Mick just left them both in the playpen/open kennel area.

And we went to a meeting. We talked about how Teka was limping around--her toe was swollen and we thought it was from trying to get out of her kennel. She was outside one day and came running/hobbling up to me squealing like crazy until Mick yelled at her to settle down.

And we discussed during our drive how that may not have been a good idea to leave them together. But they were fine when we got home, although Cassi had pushed the pen open so they were both right next to the door.

But Cassi was not fine. About a half hour after coming home, I found a giant hole/gash in her leg. Teka fucking bit Cassi. We decided against the emergency vet but we weren't sure if she'd need stitches. So he took the day off and took them both to the vet.

Teka's toe is jammed but not broken, so she gets some pain medicine. And the vet recommended Prozac for long-term anxiety use. Mick isn't on board yet but I think she needs it. An "alternative" recommendation is Valerian, an herbal supplement for anxiety.

Teka also vomited up her last two meals so they recommended 20 mg Pepcid for a few days and something about pancreas testing. (This is from my terrible notes--I'm pretty sure the recommendation was for Teka but I don't remember the details that came at me fast and furious. We do not have Pepcid...)

Cassi got sutures for her wound and has to wear a cone for about 10 days when she can get her stitches out. She also got pain medication and antibiotics.

The vet also found a heart murmur. Cassi has ventricular premature contraction; she is on the highest side of the normal range. The vet recommended an anti-arrhythmic medication and then she will have to see the cardiologist.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Whole30 Week 1

Each day I have started with hot water with lemon, then coffee. I started by trying bulletproof coffee using coconut oil only (it usually has coconut oil and ghee but I'm not too sure I can have ghee), then adding coconut milk, then adding cinnamon, then taking out the coconut oil. I just read that the coconut oil only version is better blended rather than using the little frother I have been using. I'm going to keep experimenting, I guess, but I miss using sweetener. I drink my normal amount of water and maybe some ice tea during the day.

Day 2 Breakfast
Part of sweet potato and Belly Dance Beets (from Well Fed 2)

Leftovers: Jerk chicken

I made meatballs--spicy buffalo ranch chicken meatballs with steamed broccoli (from my garden), tomatoes (from my garden) with avocado oil and salt and pepper. Mick didn't like the meatballs and I don't think he liked the sauce either. I might add some mashed cauliflower or sweet potato or squash next time around.
Cooking the meatballs.
Dinner is served!
Day 3
Lunch: leftover meatballs, broccoli, turnips, tomatoes and avocado
All kinds of leftovers!
Dinner: Taco Salad. (Mick had tacos.) Note I can't use my usual Organic Kirkland Salsa since it has sugar but I was able to use Drew's Organic. There is orange bell pepper, carrot, jalapeno, and cilantro from my garden in the meat, and the lettuce and radishes (golden and chiogga) are also from my garden. Holy hell, I don't see him in my blurry photo but I almost ate one of those damn green tomato worm caterpillar things. Those things are impossible to get rid of!

Day 4
Breakfast: I made sausage! They are pretty good, a little dry reheated but the flavor is good. Mick was actually going and grabbing them off the tray I was draining them on.

Those greens are mustard greens (from my garden) with pecans and unsweetened cherries (can't find unsweetened cranberries) using the collards recipe from Well Fed 2.
Day 5
Spaghetti squash with veggies from my garden including broccoli, peppers, eggplant. The zucchini is store bought though. I used the one kind of sausage I can get at Costco that happens to also not have sugar! My spicy Sprouts version does have sugar though. I used Classico marinara and Rao puttanesca mixed for the sauce. Note that Classico Organic has sugar.

Day 6
Fiona's Green Chicken from Food For Humans (nomnonpaleo). It's fantastic. Mick doesn't eat chicken on the bone so I get it all to myself. It's really, really good.

Day 7
Dinner is Crispy Chicken and Salsa Roja from Food For Humans (nomnompaleo) and collards (from my garden) from Well Fed 2. A sweet potato and guacamole round it out. The salsa is made with tomatoes and cilantro and jalapenos from my garden. Mick liked the chicken but didn't think the salsa went with it and he thought the chicken could use something more.

Observations: Don't eat lots of beets at once. I was really freaked out when my pee was blood red. It was pink first, which should have been my warning but I'm slow.

 It is a lot of work to "eat the rainbow" but it gives some very pretty plates.

I'm still hungry in the late afternoon (workdays) so I have been eating a Clif Kit's Organic Cashew bar, most like the Larabar the discussions say can be included as "emergency" food. I have to figure out something else maybe, but I can't do just 3 meals. I get hangry.*

People are discussing how hard it is, and it is hard, but I guess I'm not having as much of the withdrawal symptoms since I was most of the way there.

I'm used to a late snack (sweet) so I'm trying not to eat but when my stomach audibly rumbles, it's hard to ignore. I'm trying to use hot tea as a placebo.

I'm keeping track of my poo (poo issues) in a private journal because I'm pretty sure I'm NOT feeling any different yet.

*see next week...

Thursday, January 2, 2014


After much (internal) debate and quite a bit of research, I have decided to do the Whole30, starting January 2nd.

That's today!

I don't feel that I prepared enough but I'm going to do it anyway. For example, I got this cute Crock Pot Lunch warmer, which is a lunch warmer, as you may have guessed. Well, I didn't! I thought I could put some stuff in it to cook by lunch time. But it needs to already be cooked. It's still awesome but not quite as useful as I'd hoped.

If you know my diet, you may wonder why I would cut out even MORE. After a while of intermittent constipation and diarrhea, I recently had a couple bouts of painful diarrhea, with stomach cramping as I have rarely had. It was not my old back/butt pain, but definitely D-cramping.

I will not tolerate this any longer. My body obviously doesn't like something I'm doing so it's time to figure out what that something is.

Since I already eat no gluten or wheat, no dairy, no soy, no artificial sweeteners, I'm already halfway there. Right? Maybe.

For the next 30+ days, I will not have sugar, grains, or legumes. I thought about trying to do the AIP version but I don't want to set myself up for failure. I already have the no eggs part but the no nightshades is rough. I grow and eat a lot of tomatoes, peppers and eggplant. This seems like enough. But I will have to try that next if I don't get relief.

Did you know there is sugar in nearly all sausage and bacon? Nix my shortcut breakfast.

Did you notice that most nuts have peanut (legume) oil or some other not great oil? Snacks are allowed but looks rough so far.

I bought orange juice and almond milk at Costco while I was sick. Let me repeat. At. Costco. I hope it is still good next month...

I am probably not going to document everything as I go but I will try to hit the highlights.

Starting weight: 173.5 (no scale usage during the Whole30!)

What I ate:
Breakfast (yep, this was it; I will do better...)
Hot water with juice of half a lemon
Bulletproof coffee (oh how I miss my Torani syrup and almond milk)

Lunch (a coworker thought it looked good!)
Leftover salmon my DH smoked
Half package organic sweet potatoes steamers from Costco
Large handful frozen Earthbound Farms organic spinach
3 small tomatoes from my garden
It's all mixed up. Like me.
Cliff Kits organic cashew bar

Jerk chicken
Mustard greens (using collard greens recipe from Well Fed 2; I used dried unsweetened cherries instead of cranberries)
Microwave baked sweet potato
mine in front, Mick's in back
Snack: hot tea (it was nearing bedtime and I was hungry; it didn't fill me but tookmthemgrumbling away at least...)

Mustard greens from my garden!
I also roasted turnips and made happy belly beets from Well Fed 2.
I used apple cider vinegar instead of rice wine vinegar.
I have a lot of food ready for cooking this weekend. I hope I have the energy!
beets, pistachios, etc...