Wednesday, January 19, 2011

It's been a busy 2 weeks!!

I had an appointment with a general surgeon on the 6th and had my gallbladder removed laparoscopically on the 7th.  It took almost eight months to discover the problem, after numerous medical tests.  I now know I have no cardiac artery blockages; an extra spleen, a fatty liver and apparently no other unusual findings in my abdomen.  I was concerned about having the surgery right before the semester begins, but I just felt it was the right thing to do--gotta love the promptings of the Holy Spirit.  I've had an uneventful recovery and was told that my gallbladder was inflamed--a good thing it was removed when it was--could have become infected or burst.  Feeling much better and a couple of people (nurses) have commented that I look better.  Felt well enough to attend the Winter Bible Study at church, beginning two days after the surgery. 
We covered the book of Galatians in 6 lessons during the Winter Bible Study.  Learned that Paul had to defend himself vigorously against his detractors in most of his letters.  And that he probably was a practicing Jewish Christian (kept the feasts, etc), but was not legalistic about the Jewish laws.  He certainly did not want the Gentile Christians to be subject to the Jewish customs (the point of the Letter to the Galatians).  He had Timothy be circumcised to increase Timothy's acceptance by Jews to whom they were preaching, because Timothy had a Jewish mother and a Gentile father.  Enjoyed eating at church each evening before the Study--met a lot of people.
Tasha is healing well.  Will try to upload picture.  She had to wear the e-collar longer than we wanted because she wouldn't leave the area alone.
Had a fun day with my friend yesterday.  We made our own version of portable scrap bags.  It is a fabric cylinder with a small embroidery hoop inside the top and faric covered cardboard circle inside the bottom.  You twist the middle and the hoop fits around the cardboard circle to make a compact package to tuck in with your quilting supplies for classes.  We also had a fabulous lunch and snacks.  Good visit with my friend's mom and met my friend's daughter at lunch.  Just what I needed before the semester begins.  My friend and I both have Christmas quilt blocks that we won in block lotteries and plan on working on turning the blocks into quilts. And we both joined an embroidered ornament of the month club.

Many blessings,

Tuesday, January 4, 2011



Yesterday was one busy day.  Ran errands, grocery shopping (remind me not to grocery shop close to the first of the month), ate out at Flat Tire Burgers in Edmond.  They make great burgers, sandwiches and coneys.  I love their homemade potato chips, some of which came home with me.

I worked on the President's Block for a previous president of one the local quilt guilds.  She just asked that we make her a block, no other specifications, so I made a CQ block.  Worked on the tree patch (finished) last night and the (modified) paisley motif.  Almost done and hope to get it to her next week.

I think I will use BDE for the flowers of the month on my challenge crazy quilt instead of silk ribbon.  I can't find many of the patterns needed and discovered there are new BDE stitches that I want to learn while searching for patterns.  Since there is no actual BDE group in Oklahoma, I decided to join an online group.  I think I "chose" the right one, as it seems to be active and informative.  I am so grateful when the Holy Spirit leads me when I don't know what to do.  I got muslin for the foundation and have begun drafting a diamond pattern for the block.  Thinking about how I want to do the center oval applique that will feature the embroidered flower.

Found some Christmas hanky fabric on sale and bought the last of the bolt, when I was at the fabric store looking for the muslin.  I love coupons and sales, especially when you can combine the two.  May use the "hankies" on the Chrismas stocking challenge for the COQG Quit Show.  Keeping the idea for that to myself.  Also found supplies for some of the Christmas ornaments and boot purses that I want to make to sell.  Have five pairs of boots that I got at a Master Gardener garage sale last year that I plan to use for the purses.  Also in that bunch of boots were a pair of boots in good condition for my dh, my ds and myself.  Not a bad deal for a dollar a pair.

Got another foot for my Bernina, since I had a coupon.  I have about half the feet made for it.  I think I have all the really "important" ones.

Today, I am cooking several meals.  Bought a whole chicken to cup up and use for two different recipes.  Moroccan Chicken and Chicken Cacciatore.    Will make several meals, a couple to eat and a couple to freeze.  And homemade oatmeal cookies.  I like them for breakfast and some to take to the Master Gardener meeting tomorrow. 

This year I will only be an Associate Master Gardener, since I can't keep up with the volunteer requirements (20 hours/year).  It doesn't really change anything for me, since I usually can't go on the trips/tours and always forget to use my discount card at TLC.  It does relieve me from having to keep up with the education requirement and attending most of the meetings.  I usually read a lot about gardening and the education requirement is not a problem. 

I am wanting to cook healthier.  I got some silken tofu (firm and soft) to use in recipes.  I substitute Greek yogurt for sour cream when needed.

Tasha has gotten used to her E-collar and her hot spots are healing.  We will probably be able to remove the collar soon.  Tasha uses the collar to "bump" us and as a tool to scoop with.


Sunday, January 2, 2011

Tasha Update, 2011 Projects, Bag of Stuff

Tasha's hip is much improved today--see pix at end of post.  She is adjustig to the E-collar, but is not happy about it.  She paced and whined all night.  She is a very smart dog and can get to her food, water and most importantly, her ice cubes.  She can lie down.  But she chooses to be upset, so we just leave her be.

I plan to organize today for the projects I want to complete this year.  I am part of a Yahoo Crazy Quilting group (crazyquilting) and one of the members (Cathy Kizerian) posed a challenge (A CQ by 2-0-1-2) to complete a big crazy quilt by 2012. I have the supplies gathered and I need to get started.  More on that project later.  Another project is a set of felt 12 Days of Christmas ornaments.  I have ideas for items to sell through the Oklahoma Food Coop, etsy, maybe in a booth at a craft/antique mall and I want to get that organized.

My stepmother gave me a bag of family items and I went through it yesterday.  I have items for several people in my family.  They will have surprises in the mail this week.  I discovered a couple of baggies of newspaper clippings that one of my ancestors enjoyed collecting.  It contains poems, a couple of quilt block ideas, some recipes, some historical items.  I have an old cigar box of letters from the early 1900s with some unused postcards in it.  Many items have stamps still in good condition.


overview of area

first day

second day


Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!!!

Life sometimes gets in the way of the best-laid plans.  I had prepared today’s post yesterday; since I knew I would work last night.  Except. . .Tasha developed a large “hot spot” (pyotraumatic dermatitis) on her left hip.  We noticed it yesterday and began trying to treat it ourselves.  We couldn’t really keep her from worrying it, even by watching her and giving her a dried trachea to chew, so this afternoon when I woke up; off to the emergency vet we go.  Thankfully, they are very close and have dealt with Tasha before.  They got us in quickly and then had to sedate her to shave and treat the area, and it was suggested we go have a cup of coffee.  We went to a nearby Braum’s.  Apparently, Braum’s is remodeling all their stores and this one is a mess.  The manager on duty apologized for the disarray and lack of lids for the coffee cups.  When we returned to the vet, they recommended getting an E-collar from PetSmart.  I had looked online at PetSmart’s E-collars yesterday and the reviews weren’t favorable for use with a big dog, so I asked if we could get one from the vet.  They fitted one to her and she looks so sad.  She is adjusting to it, after running into all the furniture, cabinets and walls.  We had to put her water and food bowls on the floor, on a bathmat, so she could get to them.  She was a wild woman for awhile, but “ya gotta do what ya gotta do.”  She’s getting better at judging distances with the E-collar and we are “ignoring” her so we don’t reinforce unwanted behavior.  She’s calming down.  I will try to post pictures of her in the E-collar and of her shaved hip.  Poor babu.  She can’t have oral cortisone since it stimulates her incontinence problem.  She has an oral antibiotic and a combination antibiotic/cortisone spray.  She was incontinent once yesterday from licking the OTC cortisone ointment off the hot spot.  We had forgotten what oral cortisone does to her, even though we tried to distract her from licking it.  Happy New Year!!!!

On to the prepared post, with some revisions.

What are your 2011 New Year’s resolutions? 

Are New Year’s resolutions even necessary, if you are always striving for positive personal growth? 

I am not planning any resolutions for this year, just continuing toward the goals already in place.  I try to:

read my Bible and various devotions most days.  I have an ongoing Bible reading plan and usually have prayer book(s) and lists, devotion(s) and ongoing spiritual disciplines also.

pray without ceasing. 

listen to and obey God.

have an attitude of gratitude.

treat everyone with kindness and compassion. 

be an encourager.

be generous with my time, money, gifts/talents and effort.

be creative.

read widely.

be self-sufficient (i.e., able to survive—heirloom vege garden, chickens, etc.).

be organized.

diet and exercise, both of which are derailed due to minor health issues.  I do walk fairly constantly/engage in physical labor with my nursing/teaching and I do try to eat healthy and local. 

This is not an exhaustive list.  You get the idea.

Not that I succeed in achieving these goals all the time, or even most of the time.  These goals reflect the core value of love—for God, others and self—powered by the Holy Spirit.  I try to achieve excellence instead of perfection, because only Jesus was perfect. 

Do you have ongoing goals for positive personal growth?  What helps you stay on track?  I am very grateful for the Holy Spirit as my Helper, since He is the One working in me (Phil. 1:6) to bring to completion God’s Work in me.  I couldn’t think of trying to achieve, much less excel, in any of these in my own power.

Think about your New Year’s resolution as continuing on with any positive personal growth goals already in place.

Speaking of eating healthy, I just discovered resources for local and healthy food information in Oklahoma, through the Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture website, under the Local/Community tab.

I especially like the Buy Fresh, Buy Local page, where you can find information on purchasing locally produced foods.