Friday, January 24, 2020

Article for Diabetics and a mention of Kidneys

This post will be more for diabetics and people who love them.  So please feel free to skip this one if you have no interest.

Class Action lawsuits on drugs are somewhat common these days.   We know some drugs have had terrible side effects for some people.  I read the article below on one of my Diabetes websites and I know that the SGLT2 inhibitors have given some diabetics serious problems. 

The article deals with excess sugar in the urine which can cause yeast infections and later in the article how SGLT2 drugs can also contribute.  After I read this I asked a friend whose law firms deals with class action drug lawsuits and she told me that there was a real concern about a couple of them.  Since my BIL who is Type 2 and has had serious foot problems as well as being a person with kidney problems before the diabetes, I immediately sent this article to my sister.

By the way, after a warning from the doctor, she put him on a kidney diet and he showed great kidney improvement during his current check-up.  So anybody with kidney problems, it might be worth trying the kidney diet. 

More later ....

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Cherry Angel Cream Cake (Diabetic Recipe)

I wanted to share this delicious looking Cherry Angel Cream Cake recipe I saw on Diabetic Enjoying Food.  I've saved several good recipes from here but eat at your own carb risk.  I don't think I'll be enjoying any - like the 1960s Lays Potato Chip commercial - I can't eat just one (slice). 

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Spring Gardening is in My Heart but Not In The Air

I got a new container gardening book this week and I am dying to buy plants and pots and ......

I used to garden in my yard all the time.  Working for lawyers (read mental fatigue), I would come home every day, and immediately put on my old, "it is already ruined" gardening clothes.  I had all kinds of shovels and spades, wheelbarrows, gardening gloves, and kneeling pads.  I  played out there until I was worn out.  A hot relaxing shower or soak, pjs, and a good book or tv show.  It kept my body parts moving and my head sane for a long time. 

I had a chain-link fence around my yard.  My behind-me neighbor had two hunting-trained labs.  Those dogs never barked and were kept in large, very nice fenced areas.  The dogs seemed to be well fed and cared for but I hated they weren't free to roam. 

It was my understanding that the behind-me neighbor ran a duck hunting business so I guess they were trained to work and not play.  He did let them out fairly regularly and when he did my dogs would run up and down the fence line with them.  My dogs made enough noise to raise the dead but his stayed quiet. 

I planted a row of red-tip photinias that grow very tall and broad down here.  I soon had a very nice shrub-fence blocking the view of my neighbor's yard, yet letting the natural airflow on days with wind.  I loved to see my dogs dart under the branches and glimpses of them as they ran back and forth.  They came in happy and worn-out too.

Every time I see red-tips I think of my little house.  It was the house I lived in when I first came down with diabetes and my life became so complicated.  It was from there I moved to my first apartment since leaving home.  I miss having a yard but intend to make my little balcony the best playground possible. 

I went on the Walmart webpage because I saw some pots on sale.  From there I was like a zillionaire, clicking add to My Cart on everything my little gardening heart desired.  I was over $380 when I shut it down.  It was such fun and I didn't really spend a penny since I exited and did not push Pay. 

Last year I bought half a dozen different types of small plants recommended by my then favorite gardening book.  I have figured out what works and doesn't work of those I bought.  This year I will add a few more different plants that work for small container gardens.  I also want to buy one of those raised flower beds on legs to put on the side of the balcony that looks down on the sidewalk.  Although I would like a tall shelf, it would have to have some kind of lattice-type backing so pots could not fall backward off the shelf and hit a neighbor on the head.  For now, I'll have to limit myself on how many pots I can fit on my balcony. 

As I said, gardening is in my Heart and Head right now but Mother Nature has not caught up with me.  It is cold and rainy and something blew in with the weather than has me sneezing and blowing my nose.  That's ok.  It doesn't cost to dream .... or remember. 

More later .... 

Monday, January 20, 2020

Are You Dehydrated?

This time of year we don't often worry about becoming dehydrated but there are many of us that don't drink enough water, even in the winter. 

We've all read about the importance of water, how our bodies are mostly water, and how much water we should drink each day.  I'm not going to go over this but I will say diabetics, cancer, and dementia patients can also have problems staying hydrated any time of the year. 

One of the diabetic sites I read had the suggestion to try these hydrating foods.  The article link is below the list. 

  1. cucumber
  2. applesauce
  3. carrots
  4. cottage cheese (with celery as a scooper) 
  5. popsicles
  6. watermelon 
  7. iceberg lettuce
  8. grapes
  9. yogurt
  10. broccoli
  11. jello 
  12. tomatoes and tomato sauce 
  13. oranges
  14. soup 
  15. cantaloupes
  16. strawberries and other berries 
  17. bell pepper 
  18. kiwi
I am perpetually dehydrated.  I drink very little in a day.  Even before I reached this glorious age of almost 70 with severe diabetes, my legs and arms were often showing the signs (read it as alligator skin) of dehydration.   

You know, of course, that coffee, tea, and coke do not count as substitutes for water.  I had a hard time teaching myself to drink water when I started trying to control my numbers.  Apparently, if there is not enough water your blood gets thick and your numbers go higher.  Come on.  Is there nothing that diabetes doesn't affect?  It doesn't feel like it.  

I have noticed on certain occasions that I wanted to each something wet.  Watermelon and cantaloupe come to mind so I was very interested to read this article about how I could add more liquid to my intake without grabbing another glass of water.  

Some of you may take a medicine that makes your mouth dry or some of you might be poor water drinkers like me.  This does seem like an easy way to saunter into good health. 

More later .... 

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Mindhunter Canceled by Netflix

This post will not have any interest for some of you because (1) you don't have Netflix, and (2) you don't want to watch a show that is ultimately about the mind of a serial killer.  

That is ok, I understand. You already know I watch some strange programs.  I prefer cozy murders, a la Agatha Christie - there is a body in the library- but this show has appealed to me from an intellectual aspect that I find strange myself.  

What makes a killer?   Are some people born bad?  Why do you cross the road when you see one person coming toward you and not another?  Is it all about childhood?  Is it about nature or nurture?  

The series is loosely based on John E. Douglas and his book Mindhunter: Inside the FBI's Elite Serial Crime Unit.  The character of Holden Ford is based on Douglas. The character of Bill Tench is loosely based on Robert K. Reesler.  I was not familiar with either of these men or the book.  

I did kind of fall for the Bill Tench character with his smooth dry wit and everyman sensibility.  Apparently Holt McCallany the actor who plays Tench has been in the business some 30 years.  I didn't recognize either McCallany or Jonathan Groff who plays the wide-eyed gung-ho younger of the two.  

Here is a better description of the program from The Men's Journal - you can read the whole article by clicking on the link:

Mindhunter follows FBI agents Holden Ford (Jonathan Groff) and Bill Tench (McCallany) during the nascent days of the FBI’s Behavioral Science Unit in the late 1970s. The two agents travel the country teaching local cops federal investigative techniques, while developing the fields of criminal psychology and criminal profiling. How they get that done: Interviewing some of the most notorious real-life serial killers in U.S. history, including Ed Kemper (Cameron Britton) and Richard Speck (Jack Erdie).
The perfect way to sum up the series might be this line from McCallany’s Tench to the higher-ups at the FBI when he defends Holden’s new way of thinking: “How do we get ahead of crazy if we don’t know how crazy thinks?” Tench asks. 
While I truly enjoyed the program what baffles me is why Netflix canceled it.  Netflix never shares viewer information.  Popularity is shared through word of mouth, or word of social media I should probably say. 

When researching why this show was dropped, I read this on Popculture - you can read the whole article by clicking on the link: 
For Netflix, there is more value in variety than longevity, argues Showbiz Cheat Sheet. The company keeps its subscribers hooked with a seemingly endless catalog, not by making them come back for the same show year after year.
The show is also set in the '70s which is a favorite time in my life and the clothes, music and social standards are all a joy for me to watch.  But there must be more than this because there was a series, HBO, I think, called Deuce.  Set in the same time frame but to me, it was an ugly, grimy portrayal of the times and I didn't like it.  

I kind of hate the fact that there are more really dumb shows out there on the channels I am paying for and then they cancel the ones I like.  Is it me?  Am I old and set in my ways?  Yes, probably.  If no one liked the show but me, why not say it was canceled for lack of an audience? That I could understand.  Frustration.  It is not just this show but the fact that I feel unappreciated and treated irresponsibly as a fan of and subscriber to Netflix.  

Just sayin' ....

Friday, January 17, 2020

What is a Bread Store? And does high fiber bread effect dogs?

Since some of you had never heard of a bread store, I thought I'd talk about it a little bit. 

My first experience with bread stores was in Alexandria, Louisiana.  There was a Bunny Bread bakery off the main drive.  The aroma floated for miles in all directions.  It really is true, there is nothing like the smell of fresh-baked bread.  There was a Bunny Bread Outlet in town but I never went there at the time. 

Go even further back in my history to somewhere between the age of 3-4.  After my parents got divorced we lived with my grandmother in a house not far from where I am now.  Across the street from that house was the Borden Milk Company.  I was fascinated as a child with the glass milk jugs (four in a crate) that came out of one opening in the building, followed the path on the conveyor belt to where the crates were loaded on Borden Milk trucks.  I don't know if these trucks were home delivery or being delivered to the stores but I do remember that we did get home delivery back then.  Because this was such a big and pleasant memory, I think my interest in company stores might have started here. 

To continue, my first experience with bread stores was not until much later.  I was quite a coupon cutter when my kids were little.  They thought it was great fun for us all to sit at the table and cut the coupons out of the Sunday handouts and loved to see how much we saved.  They were also great about taking a coupon for, say cereal, and searching the isle for the exact item.  Bless their little souls. 

Not until I had grandchildren did I discover my first bread store.  I took some side road one day and there it was,  a Mrs. Baird's outlet.  It smelled like there was a bakery behind the store but the smell was not as strong as the Bunny Bread in Alexandria.  One day I stopped and went in.  I was amazed at the number of foods that were there besides loaves of bread. 

Whenever I was in that area I would stop but it wasn't often.  However, the grandson loved going there so when we could, we would pick out those odds and ends of breakfast treats (honey bun, donuts, pies).  I never figured out the relationship of the bread store to the bakery.  Was it made on sight?  Was it day-old bread? Store returns?  I never thought to google it -- now, of course, I google everything. 

The Sunbeam Bread Store I go to now is easy to swing by on my usual routes.  I even stop there when I am on the way to my grocery if I'm low on bread.  I have never looked at the dates so I do not know if they are prior to or just past their sell-by date.  I know that I have been very happy with the bread.  It always seems fresh to me.  I usually buy three loaves at a time and immediately freeze them.  They are 75 cents a loaf with a 20 or 30% discount for seniors on Wednesday.  If you compare that to the $2.25 or so you pay for a loaf at the grocery that is quite a nice bit of change in my pocket. 

I do eat a lot of sandwiches just because they are easy.  Tuna, egg salad, and pimento cheese are my go-to.  I love pimento cheese on toast for breakfast.  Strange, I guess.  This may all come to an end with the Nutritionist/Diabetes Educator so I only picked up two this week - one white and one the mighty Nature's Own Life Double Fiber Wheat Bread.

By the way, when I looked for an image to share I found the Double Fiber for sale at $8.99 on one web site!  That really makes me feel like I've saved compared to my 75 cents purchase. 

Now, for the too-much-information part, Buddy usually eats some of the crust off my sandwiches.  So Buddy got to try the Double Fiber bread also.  Hahaha.  Three times on one walk yesterday and twice on one walk this morning.  Yep, it definitely works on dogs too.  So, no, I won't be feeding him any more crust bits of double fiber. 

Speaking of the goofball, I have been trying to teach him to roll over.  He HATES it.  He runs around in circles and barks at me.  I'm going to have to find a really good treat to convince him to try this trick. 

More later......

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Dumb Things I Have Done Recently

There is a gremlin in my computer and I keep losing things I have typed.  First an Alien and then a Gremlin, time to call Ghost Busters! This all fits in with the comedy of errors happening to me. 

-  You know that I listen to my tv through blue-tooth headphones.  I have more trouble hearing in rooms with hard floors, not carpet, or high ceilings.  Since I prefer hardwood floors this has been a real conundrum.  I do have carpet now but have continued to use my headphones to protect my neighbors from loud tv.  So when I set off to do chores the other day I still had my headphones on.  I got in my car. Drove around to the laundry.  I started loading my clothes in the washer and the headphones feel off on the floor when I bent over. Luckily there was no one else in the laundry to see this. I had also taken a bag of garbage to the container earlier that morning.  I can't don't know if I had them on then also. 

- No, that is not the only dumb move.  When I backed out of the non-parking place I had pulled in to by the laundry,  I thought I was ever so clever being able to pull in and then back my little Honda out between two telephone/utility poles.  When I walked back to my car after my last errand I saw scratched paint and then a long line of yellow paint on my bumper.  The pole I thought I had cleverly out-maneuvered was the winner in that little test.  My car is a 2006 and looks like it has been rode hard and put up wet, as we say in Texas, so a little yellow didn't really ruin it, but it hurt my feelings anyway. 

- I ordered my new glasses this week.  I wasn't particularly impressed with Warby Parker because I am used to the practice of having all these measurements taken when the order is placed.  They do not do that whole process there and I asked why.  Why did I even ask why when I knew it felt wrong and I was not going to be satisfied with the answer?  Then I remembered buying some glasses at Costco and they also did not perform the whole process and yet I was pleased with their glasses.  So, I placed my order based on their happiness guarantee.  We'll see.  I am not afraid of going back.  Hopefully, it will not be counted as one of those dumb things. 

- I buy most of my bread from the Bread Store that is near my house.  I forget which brand it is but I think Sunbeam.  The shelves were low on stock and my eyes wandered to the next shelf with Nature's Own bread.  With carb count in mind, I found that one variety had a few carbs less than the white bread I had been buying (I know.  I know.)  So I picked up a loaf of Nature's Own Double Fiber Wheat with 2x the fiber.  See where I am going?  I do like the taste of the bread but I did not realize what 2x the fiber would do to my digestion.  Let's just say I'm pretty clean these days.

I'll end here before all of the above disappears .....

Sunday, January 12, 2020

How to Tell if Your Body Has Been Invaded by an Alien

Just how do you tell if your body has been invaded by an Alien?

When you start doing things YOU would never do.

Thursday I texted my son to tell him I was available if the Grand Girls wanted to come over.  (Doesn't that sentence sound strange even though my family lives by texts).

In order for the Girls to visit I had to put up Christmas which was boxed and just waiting on me.  In order to do that I had to clean out the closet which was half my storage and half Grand Girls storage area.  In order to do that I had to remove and repack a rolling cart that held their papers and craft supplies.  Then I had to move .... .  You get it.  I worked so hard I got overheated twice and had to sit down. 

It was like something crazy took over me and I had to keep moving, changing, reboxing, and recycling anything and everything in there.  I was possessed by an Alien from the Planet of Declutter.

Can you imagine what your life would be like if you didn't have a dedicated place to put Christmas away?  Maybe an Alien would invade you too.

After I recovered from that, I heard the warnings about the terrible weather reported to be heading our way so I removed my planters from the balcony rail and sat them all securely on the balcony floor. They are pretty heavy since I put some pea gravel in the drain chambers on each long side of the planter.  I made them just heavy enough that I could lift but weighty enough not to fall off and land on another resident.  LOL.

This picture is pretty fuzzy but it gives you an idea of how long and thick the flowers had grown.  When I was pulling one of the planters up the green and purple wandering jew got caught in the trellis and literally pulled the whole section of wandering jew out.  It really hurt my heart.  I collected the two feet of flowers and stems and soaked it in a bucket until I could decide what to do.  

I recently picked up a nice large vase that I had intended to use as a beta aquarium.  This morning I decided I had to do something about the whole plant situation.  After I returned all the planters to balcony rail since the bad weather has not arrived (knock wood.  please don't make me get up at 3:00 in the morning to move the planters because the weather has finally blown in.)  

Then I took the large vase intended for a beta and started separating stems, removing dead leaves and ends, and prepared my poor wandering jew for a life as a water growing plant.  I placed the vase on the buffet which gets plenty of light from the window.  There is a good chance it could prosper there.  I'll post a picture as soon as I can tell if the plants will live or if they will be replanted into something else.   

More later ....

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Four Days of Walking does not a new exercise routine make

I'm having brain fog today so this will be short and sweet. 

Buddy and I have been taking extended walks for the last four days.  Now a Buddy Walk is not fast so the amount of calories burned is minimal but it is good for my hip joints to be moving.

I'm still sleeping nights and have accomplished much this week.  Finally went to take my blood test after the Doctor called and left a nagging message.  I was supposed to go last Thursday or Friday but I was waking up at 3 am then and could not go that long with eating.  Anyway, mission accomplished. 

I also went to the eye doctor and got my new prescription.  I am happy to announce that my eyes are free of any diabetic damage.  So thankful.  Since the cataract surgery this summer I have had terrific distance vision and almost nonexistent close-up reading.  She knows I am retired (insert and poor) so she recommended I go without any glasses by using cheaters for reading.  Now those of you who have problems with your close-up vision whether naturally or after cataract surgery, know what a pain finding and/or putting on your cheaters is.  I have decided that I will get the prescription with the close-up and something she added to distance for driving at night.  Money is tight now so maybe next month. 

And if that wasn't enough, I have emailed with the nutritionist/diabetes educator several times and she will help me set up my meal plans.  I laughed when I had to tell her that I don't like to cook, can't afford much in groceries and it all has to fall in line with my diabetic restrictions.  Hahaha.  She'll be earning her money.  My appointment is something like Jan. 24.  She must be good if she is booked up till then. 

More later.....

Monday, January 6, 2020

My Very Own Cindy Lou Who

We had our Family Christmas with the Grand Girls yesterday.  They have been out of town all this time so it was a nice low-pressure meal and presents with the family.  I had to share this one part:

My very own Cindy Lou Who
The DIL used thin pieces of wire to curl the youngest Grand Girls braids up like the cartoon.  

My DIL's family call their after-Christmas Christmas Parties "Grinch Christmas Party".  I'm not sure what the background story is but the kids loved the idea and fun was had by all.  Here is the fireplace decoration.  So cute.  

I have more to share but it will have to wait until the next post.  .....

Sunday, January 5, 2020

New Year. New Me by FaceApp.

This is me but it is absolutely not what I look like.  My DIL turned me on to a phone app called "FaceApp".  If you'll remember she hosted Thanksgiving this year and bless her heart didn't put on makeup when she prefers to look all dolled up.  She didn't want me to post photos of her to Facebook without her makeup so she told me about this app and improved her naked face pictures before they were posted.  It costs about $20 a year although there is a free version with fewer options.

I picked this picture of me because it is a full-face photo.  It was neither a good picture nor a bad picture to start off with.  Just a picture of somebody's nearly 70-year-old grandmother.

For one thing, I had it draw a smile on me.  My lips have disappeared in my old age.  I think they fell down under my chin and helped form my double chin.

I also had it put eye makeup on my eyes which is something I only do on special occasions - like if I know there will be picture taking - and color on my poor eyebrows which now have equal numbers of white and brown hairs.

I'm not sure what it did to my face color but does tend to look healthier.  It was fun playing with all the options.  Hahaha.  So funny.

More later.  Off to Christmas with the Grand Girls who have finally come back to town. 

Friday, January 3, 2020

And a Happy New Year to You

We had gorgeous weather for Christmas and I was so happy for the young Jedis, new bike riders, skateboarders or whatever else the kids were into this Christmas.  The weather has continued to be beautiful, or slightly rainy, or slightly muggy.  Perfect for sending those young 'uns to play outside - that is if they even get to go outside in your area.  Speaking of Jedis, have you seen the commercial with the young girl that has her hair in the three knots and jedi costume where she tries to turn the fridge water off or washer on with her jedi powers?  Precious. 

I wanted to stay up and see the fireworks New Year as we have a great display over the bayou but I didn't make it since I am sleeping early afternoon to early am these days.  The good thing is that my sister gets up very early so we are able to talk yesterday around 4 am and it was good to have a catch-up.  

I had my appointment with the endocrinologist and my blood sugar (A1C) has dropped a whole point.  I told you I had taken it in hand and decided to treat myself according to what my body told me. I guess I did pretty good.  I'm not recommending this habit to anyone else. However, I am encouraged and have contacted a nutritionist/diabetic educator who takes Medicare. So exciting.  She hasn't contacted me back but I'm going to try her once, at least.  

There is a health club near me that has a pool and I have talked with them once about joining but wanted to be sure before I signed on the dotted line.  I'm only going for the water aerobics, at first, anyway.  The problem is my energy level.  Many days I can only make it from the bed to the couch.  Something about the sugar in your bloodstream being converted to energy.  I guess with my bouncing sugar levels the energy comes and goes.  So will I have the stick-to-it-ness to make a go off it.  I'm really thinking about trying it.  The good thing about this gym is that they are open crazy hours - very early and very late for the young professionals.  So I thought that might work with my crazy sleep schedule.  

Like all things involved in my diabetic lifestyle, the nutritionist and gym take money.  The money is well spent if I take it to heart, wasted if I don't.  

I'm feeling chipper today whereas yesterday while talking to my sister on the phone I could barely make sentences.  Dadgummit.  I'll be really mad if my mind goes after I've spent the money to make my body healthier.  Hahaha.  Seriously, the New Year is starting off great.  I hope yours feels just as hopeful.  

More later.