Friday, May 29, 2009

Pay It Forward!

Yesterday when I stopped into the post office to pick up the mail after a long day of cooking up at the cafe, I was pleasantly surprised to see a package!! The package was from Sherri of the blog My Life in the Fishbowl and was filled with the goodies she sent to me for being selected as a winner in her round of the Pay It Forward challenge.

I couldn't wait to get home and open up my package!! Inside I found a wonderful Starbucks gift card (how did she know how much I love a yummy coffee beverage!?), a cute photo album, a lovely notepad, a flowered nail file (I always seem to lose these so getting one was wonderful!), flower shaped post-it notes, cucumber melon antibacterial deep cleaning hand gel (this will come in so handy working up at the cafe), and lastly a very sweet note from Sherri! Even though we only know each other from the vast blogosphere I feel like our friendship is beyond the boundaries of the internet.

Now it's my turn to Pay It Forward. Please know that to play along with this game you do not need to go to grand levels for the goodies in the packages. The real point of this is to simply let others know that they are appreciated and to help them feel inspired as they blog.

On to the rules: To enter, leave me a comment saying you are interested in being a participant in the Pay It Forward challenge. The entry must include either an email or a blog address to reach you at if you are a winner. To help keep shipping costs down this challenge is only open to U.S. addresses.
I will accept posts/entries to the challenge until Midnight on Thursday, June 4th. On Friday, June 5th I will post the 3 winners of this round of the Pay It Forward challenge! I better get my brain in gear and figure out what goodies will be in my boxes to ship off!

In other news:

Suzy is doing a little better today. I am getting her to eat a few bites of food a few times during the day and she seems to be feeling better with less pain. However, she seems to still be having some lingering issues unrelated to the colitis from how the vet techs handled her. I think that she might have had a small brain bleed or mild stroke from the stress and such of their treatment. But slowly she is starting to become the sweet girl again that we left behind when we went on vacation. It is going to be a long road and probably have more than a few bumps in it, but I believe that we will come out the other side of this journey.

I worked 2 days in a row up at the cafe and know now that at this point 2 days in a row is my limit. My body just is not capable of more than that due to my illness. I also have been trying out the second medication to help me reach that restful stage of sleep and I think that the first medication is better at the job for me. I see the Rheumatologist again on Tuesday, June 2nd and hopefully we will move forward with some other treatment options in addition to the medication to help with sleep. I still have a lot of pain and muscle burning. The brain fog episodes are a little less frequent but I still am having them especially when I am working or exerting myself. Right now my schedule for the month of June is to be the cook up at the cafe on Wednesdays and Thursdays but the other cook doesn't want to work 5 days straight per week as it is just too much for her to do. So my schedule might be changing to help out more up at the cafe.

We are hoping to get some major work done on the laminate floor laying on Saturday and the repair man is scheduled to come to fix our satillite internet too. Hopefully they do fix it and we stop having all the problems which have been going on for the past 2 weeks or so. If things are fixed then I should be able to post on my blogs more regularly again!!

Enjoy the weekend everyone! Don't forget to enter my round of the Pay It Forward challenge!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Will the Stress Ever Decrease?

I feel like the weight of the world is on my shoulders from all of the stress I have in my life right now.

Suzy has made another turn for the worse and I begin to wonder if she will ever get over this colitis. She is refusing to eat; although I was able to tempt her into eating a few spoonfuls of yogurt. I am having to give her the Pepto-Bismol again as she is yelping with belly pain again. I need to her pull through this illness. I just can not bear the thought of losing her.

I know that I need to work shifts up at the cafe, but the schedule for June is still not posted and nobody has called asking me what shifts I will be available to work and which I will not be available to work.

The laying of the new laminate floors is going slowly. I know that the rain is a blessing considering that we live on the High Desert Plains, but it sure does make it difficult to get the pieces cut that need it out on the table saw!!

I also think about the stress of others at this time with it being Memorial Day. The remembrance of the sacrifices of the brave men and women who have given their lives for our freedom. The remembrance of the sacrifices of their families. The remembrance that FREEDOM is not FREE and that the price of it has been and continues to be paid in blood. I am thankful for all the brave souls who have, do currently, and will in the future serve this great country and I am thankful for their families for allowing them to do so with honor and support.

Happy Memorial Day!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Long Days

It seems like I just can't get enough rest. I am tired all the time even with the medication to help me enter that restorative part of sleep. Maybe it is just because of all the stress and worry over the sick Suzy dog the last week. Maybe it is something more. I don't really know.

Suzy is doing better every day now. She is still not eating very well for us but you can tell she is definitely doing better. Hopefully things can get back to "normal" now that she has made the upswing with her colitis.

It is raining here pretty hard this afternoon which makes it really hard to run in and out to the garage to use the table saw for the laminate floor project. I guess it is always something! LOL

I have a turkey baking in the oven and it smells wonderful! Hopefully it tastes as good as it smells :) Around here turkey is what happens when you don't get to the grocery store to get provisions after being on vacation. Only one left in the freezer now... I guess that means that I had better get groceries soon! I wish that the grocery store wasn't 60 miles one way or that I had more time so that going wasn't an issue! Hopefully I will have the time to pick up a few things when I go into town for the dentist on Tuesday.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

100 SPF Sunblock

Today I am going to share a story with you from our recent vacation to Florida. I hope that you find it as funny as I did! Sorry no photos to go with it as I didn't even think to try and snap some!

DH went fishing with a family friend one day of our vacation. He had a wonderful time and got to experience a lot of new for him experiences. He helped cast net for the live bait they would use. He went flats fishing for the first time. He caught a keeper sea trout, and saw our friend catch many sea trout and a redfish. He had just a great day out on the water!

OK, now for the funny part... I told him that he needed to wear sunblock and that he should put it on before he left and then again after about 4 hours. He decided to use the 100 SPF that we had gotten for me to use since I am very fair skinned and need to protect it due to the EDS. Anyhow DH put the sunblock on himself and didn't ask anyone for help. Now in case you didn't know 100 SPF sunblock has the texture of toothpaste almost. I mean this stuff is THICK! Well needless to say you could see all kinds of alternating white and sunburn streaks on DH - from his legs looking tiger striped to his face. At least it wasn't a horrible sunburn and just a mild one that turned to tan on him quickly, but none the less very funny to see!

Suzy update: I had to take her back to the vet on Friday for blood work and x-rays. The vet was out of the office on a ranch call but the vet techs were there and could do these tests for him to review. The vet techs were able to draw blood but were unable to muzzle her to do the x-rays. When we went back to help muzzle her she was very worn out looking and very stressed. She did let us muzzle her and then the vet techs picked her up and put her on the x=ray table. It was very stressful to say the least for the little girl and she suffered an eye injury that should self heal in about a week. Thankfully the eye doesn't seem to bother her. The vet called and said that the blood work and x-ray looked OK. Suzy seems to be doing a little better today and I hope that she has made the turn so that the worst is behind us.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Home Again & Back to the Grind

We got home very late Sunday evening from our vacation. We had a great time and I have a lot of stories to share over the next week or so.

However, today I am going to just touch on how this week has been so far...

I think that the medication that the Rheumatologist prescribed to help me get better sleep is helping some. I still have the horrible burning muscle pain but I am having less "brain fog" issues which is a step in the right direction. I ended up working a partial shift on Monday and a full shift on Tuesday up at the cafe as a waitress. It was very hard and I definitely can not do what I used to be able to, but I was able to get through it. Towards the end of the full shift I started having "brain fog" issues pretty severely.

Also, our female husky was a little off when we got home Sunday night and jus kept getting worse so we ended up making an emergency vet run when DH and I got home on Tuesday. She should be OK but she is in a lot of pain and in a horrible mood because of it. She has to eat special prescription dog food for a few days and take antibiotics for a week. The vet said that it is colitis which is basically an infection in her digestive tract. So needless to say that whole situation is adding to my stress levels which doesn't help with the pain and other stuff at all.

Today I am trying to rest some from all the exertion of the last few days and get some work done on my frelance projects since I am way behind from vacation! I am having a hard time focusing today for some reason so the writing isn't going so well for my articles :(

To end I will share one thing from our vacation... My parents generously bought me a new laptop! It is my first ever laptop and it is WONDERFUL!! It actually is quite a lot better than my old computer which to be honest is on it's last legs so to speak. In case you are wondering which laptop I got you can go here to see.

Happy hump day everyone!

Monday, May 11, 2009


Hi everyone!

I just wanted to let you all know that we made it down to Florida OK and are having a great time so far! I should have lots of fun stories to share when I get home :)

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Laundry & Packing

Been working on laundry and packing for 2 days now... So not fun! I will definitely need the vacation to recover from all the work of getting ready to go! LOL

Actually with everything planned, I bet that I need a vacation after the vacation to recover from all the fun!

We are going to Florida to celebrate my parent's 40th wedding anniversary! Wow! That is a lot of years to be together! There is a day of flats fishing and a day of grouper fishing planned as well as a trip to Webster for the big flea market. Then there is the Mother's Day/Anniversary dinner out on Sunday plus church of course. Basically from the time we get there until at least Thursday there is stuff planned for each day. Hopefully Friday and Saturday we can relax a little before flying home on Sunday.

Also I won the privilege of participating in the Pay it Forward game going on in the blogosphere. So look for a post about how to win a chance to play too soon :)

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Preliminary Diagnosis - Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome & FIbromyalgia

Sorry for the delay in letting everyone know what happened with the Rheumatologist appointment on Monday. I really was wiped out today after the trip and spent most of the day in bed to be perfectly honest. I am having a hard time accepting the news I think... So bare with me if this doesn't make the most sense ever or I leave out some details.

The preliminary diagnosis is Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS) and Fibromyalgia.

EDS is an inherited disorder that causes a genetic defect in collagen and connective-tissue synthesis and structure. It is also known as Hyperextensibility Syndrome. There are quite a few types of EDS and right now we are not positive as to which one I have. In order to know for certain that would require genetic testing and knowing the type doesn't appear to be necessary. EDS is characterized by (1) joint hypermobility, (2) cutaneous fragility, and (3) hyperextensibility. One estimate is that 1 in 400,000 people have some form of EDS from mild to severe. Some clinical manifestations that allow for diagnosis include many things from muscle weakness, muscle pain, tendency to fall down easily, poor body control, difficulty walking, bruise easily, joint pain, white and soft skin, underlying vessels are easily seen through the skin, skin has a doughy feel, skin is easily hyperextensible, molluscoid pseudo tumors form at scar sites and pressure points, fragile skin, poor wound healing, joints are hyperextensible, joints dislocate, skin scarring, skin scarring with hyperpigmentation, varicosities, early onset of osteoarthritis, nearsightedness, scars that stretch over time, and scoliosis to name just a few. The management and treatment for EDS is basically to protect the joints and the skin while treating the other symptoms as best possible for the patient.

Oddly it appears that EDS and Fibromyalgia occur together at a high rate of incidence... Lucky me.

If you want more information on Fibromyalgia I have posted about it before here on my blog so just check out the previous posts.

I am to see the Rheumatologist again in 1 month. The current treatment plan for this first month is to get me to regain restorative sleep. This means I get to start some new medications that will hopefully aid in getting to the restorative part of sleep. It also means that I am not to be woken during the night which we are trying to figure out with the dogs and the different schedules that DH and I keep. Another thing that the Dr. said is that there is no such thing as too much sleep for me right now. My DH isn't too happy about either of these orders from the Dr. but I do know he wants me to get well so he is trying to respect her opinion. I honestly think that if I could just wake up and feel refreshed and not still exhausted that things would/could be so much better.

I do appreciate that she is going slow with this and starting with the least dangerous medications possible. Also that she isn't trying to throw too many things into the mix all at once is a good thing in my book too. Yes, it might take longer to get me well this way but it should limit any potential issues that may arise due to medication problems and it should help us to see which things work and which don't much easier. Actually doing it in a systematic stepwise fashion could get me to feeling better faster than throwing a bunch of medications at me and praying for the best considering how many drug allergies I have and how they have a way of not acting as expected.

I know that I am not going to start feeling better overnight, and that I never will feel entirely well again ever. I am working on dealing with that and coming to terms with it. I need to get to a point where the pain is manageable and not all encompassing and I think that we can do that...

Friday, May 1, 2009

Starting to Get Excited!

I think that both myself and my DH are starting to get excited about our upcoming trip! We will be leaving on next Friday to drive to Denver to catch a very early morning flight to Florida. We are going to visit my parents for 8 days! Sunday is both Mother's Day and their 40th wedding anniversary! So we are going to celebrate with them and do some fishing which makes DH very happy! The plan is to go flats fishing on the West coast with one of the friends of the family and then to go sports fishing on a charter off the East coast too. DH is just too excited about the idea of going fishing!! He loves to fish and he loves to eat it too... Me I like to fish but hate to eat it!! Ewww gross!!

Then shortly after we get back my parents and a couple of their friends are coming out here to Wyoming. They should be here sometime in June and stay for probably a month off and on. They are planning on using our house as their base of operations to go visit places like Mt. Rushmore, Crazy Horse, Devils Tower, Yellowstone, and who knows where else. It should be fun though!

DH is already stressing out about getting the laminate flooring all laid, the painting he has started but never finished actually finished, and about 10 other projects that he has needed to do but just hasn't gotten around to! LOL - Men!! Yes, the floor and painting have to be done but who knows what else he will stress himself and me out about!!

Monday is finally the rheumatologist appointment. I am nervous and excited about it. I really just hope and pray that I get some answers and some help!

Have a great weekend everyone!