Thursday, 26 February 2015

Yes That Would Be The Number

Not much sleep last night, however what I did get I felt more rested this morning then the past few weeks.  This is a good thing.  Wouldn't matter if I had still been tired on my feet when I got up as going out at 6:30 am in -18 *C woke me "wide" awake whether I wanted to be or not.

Funny thing is I didn't feel too bad until I realized I had two commitments this morning.  As soon as I realized this I started feeling ill, shaky and something just short of an anxiety attack.  First thing I did was call Rob, who told me to try and push myself to go.  Next call to my friend, Vicki, who proceeded to tell me she had banged her hand she just had surgery on this past Tuesday, as to distract my thoughts to her.  Really it was one of those things that are not funny but was funny ... if you know what I mean?

Once I got going where I was headed off to this morning I had settled down and relaxed back to my "norm" self, which I really don't have any idea how to define that state of a "norm" me any more.  I will get it all figured out eventually, as I have been down this dark road before, even though it has been 10 years gone by now.  It seems I do not adapt to change from a routine very well, with this being more or less the main thing I need to work through.

I got back home by lunch time, where I slid by having lunch then overindulging in eating some "bad" foods.  I blew my whole calorie count for the day at lunch time by consuming two toasted Cinnamon Raisin Bagels with Lite Cheddar Cheese (not that the "lite" mattered much after the rest), a huge garden salad with No Fat Raspberry Dressing (not that the ."no fat" mattered either), then ate five, yes that would be the number 5, Nature's Trail Sweet & Salty Peanut bars for a total of 800 calories just for the bars !  The only bonus to eating almost a total of 1600 calories at lunch time is that I am still full and will be skipping dinner tonight.

With depression, fatigue, anxiety and/or stress comes comfort eating.  Believe me after the comfort eating I get more depressed by all the weight I have put on.  It gets to be a vicious circle and a battle within to say the least.

I have walked under 3000 steps so far to day.  I am hoping to get my steps upto a goal of 4000 per day within the next couple of weeks.  I have yet to make my bed and do the dishes today.  My head feels heavy, I am exhausted, but no matter what I will do those to things yet today.

Yesterday we received a Postcard from one of our regular Crabby Cabbie customers, who is a 78 year old Snowbird, down in Florida for a month.  This is the card she had sent us ...

... with this ~ "Thought Rob would enjoy the view".

Yes we love this lady !  Whenever I get to see her we have ourselves some pretty good laughs.  No lack of a sense of humour about this lady.

Despite the temps down in the double digit minuses today, there had been an abundance of Sunshine.  It draped itself across Colpoy's Bay below the escarpment.

I used to always take my camera out with me when outside with our Aussies, but haven't been the last while.  Today I still had it in the Van when I was out with Lexus so was able to capture a couple good shots of my gorgeous girl.

This girl really captures my heart.  Who would guess she had a litter of five pups a short 2 months ago? she was back in prime shape in no time whatsoever.

I did receive a phone call mid-afternoon from the organization my Doctor had referred me to for counselling.  They are now booking appointments into the month of June.  She gave me an appointment and put me on a cancellation list.

Time will tell, in the meantime the support I have with family and friends is priceless, and ever so much appreciated.

Gill, to date this Winter we have burned 12 cords of wood, and maybe will burn 3 more with the rest ready for this upcoming Fall.  There is 8 cords to a bush cord.  Wood is our only source of heat, with two wood stoves, so we spoke for it now as there will be none to be gotten come Fall time.

I have the Kitchener News on & today was the last day the Schneider''s Plant was open with their doors closing for good.  Another Icon closed down again in Kitchener.  For those interested in more news on this Headline, just *click* HERE.  I had worked a half a block away from this Plant for 5 years and knew many of its employees.  My Uncle Bill and my brother had also worked there at one time years ago.  Much a part of Kitchener's history went along with this plant.

My head is aching, my neck is paining me, and I still have a bed to make and dishes to do so I am off not really running to fast to get it all done, Just North of Wiarton & South of the Checkerboard.

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Thinking Ahead

Oh my what a pain, literally to get out of bed this morning.  I tried hard as I could to muffle out Lexus' demands for me to get up until I could not ignore any longer as Buddy decided to also chime in on the request.

I most certainly was dragging my behind today, to the point my bed didn't get made until late afternoon.  The point is though that it is made.  Funny how I have been letting some most things go to pot, but I can not leave my bed unmade or the dishes not done up despite the rest of the house falling down around my head.

This morning I took Rob's scheduled appointment with our Doctor, as he was otherwise booked with a fare.  The appointment went as well as could be expected.  Of course I heard some things I really didn't care to hear, which I already knew but was trying to avoid.  Yes I am driving myself crazy and if I do not stop it soon it will destroy me.  My body can't keep up with my mind anymore, and it needs a break.

My doctor has referred me to a Counsellor to assist me in sorting out my feelings.  Yes sometimes it is best to have an unbiased opinion to help you listen to yourself.  I know I have been fighting the reality of it all for some time now, but to save myself and give me a Peace of mind I need help.

At one time I felt bad for needing help, but now realize there is no shame in it, and actually is a show of strength in admitting the need.  Ah if things were all so simple to finally realize ones journey of life.

Hopefully the wall of darkness is lifted once again towards the light at the end of my tunnel.

I was elated later last night when my Crabby Cabbie Rob had to go downtown, then called me to say he was taking someone up to Lion's Head.  As it happened when he had been downtown he had noticed a person a the side of the road, knelt down in the cold of the night.  When he came back past this same person was hitchhiking.  The poor boy was trying to get home, and the Highway was closed, but he had just walked from Hepworth all the way to Wiarton.  It is a wonder he had not frozen to death.

Rob took the back way up to Lion's Head, as the highway was till closed, and got this young man close to his home as he could without going on closed roads.  The young man was very appreciative, as he had no money.  Rob told him don't worry about it, here is my card and if you ever need a ride you can call and pay for the next ride.

I do LOVE my Crabby Cabbie's heart ... two good deeds within hours of each other.  Yes I do believe  "what goes around comes around", and paying forward leaves us with a really good feeling.

Rob and I have been thinking ahead and the delivery arrived today.

15 Cords of split Maple arrived this afternoon.

Then 10 Cords of Ash arrived a bit later in the afternoon.  Ash can be burned if it is not seasoned, so this is to make sure we are warm until this Winter gets over with, should we run out of our reserves.

Portia was out with us and was quite inquisitive until the wood was dumped with all the big noise, then she hid behind dad's legs where she was safe.

Yes much better to have wood delivered now rather then wait until Fall when it might be more scarce to get Maple.  We might not be able to pay our bills next Fall/Winter, but you can be assured we will be warm.  *smile*.

I can not begin to count how many times I was out with the Aussies today, but I know within one hour I had been out at least 6 times just with Portia !  I was froze and thought my nose was going to fall of my face.  I was very grateful for the Dark Roast coffee Rob had brought home for me this afternoon.  I had taken over 2931 steps by this afternoon, not counting the ones when I didn't have my phone on me.  The app on my iphone that counts my steps is called Pacer, and is a free app to download to your phone.  Last Friday I had almost 5,000 steps that day. 

For anyone with an iphone for the free Pacer app go HERE.  Do you keep track of how much you walk in a day?

This evening Rob was cooking dinner for us.  I am very grateful he has no problem cooking.

Tonight's menu was pan fried Sole, with long grain rice and steamed broccoli on the side.  I take full credit for cooking the rice.

I have to admit this afternoon I had myself a short nap, and actually felt better for it.  I had quite the time shaking the fatigue when I did get up, but it eventually left me.  It is very seldom I ever nap, but I have been so tired.  My Doctor did tell me to discontinue one of my meds, so we will see if that will have some effect.

Rob is gone out on a call right now.  I need to take out the Aussies for another romp before bedtime then call it a night myself, Just North of Wiarton & South of the Checkerboard.

DISCLOSURE:  Any opinions within my blog post(s) are my own and NOT affiliated with any organization I might belong to or affiliated with.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Pay It Forward

Today brought a warmer day in temperature wise, however it was a colder day with the high winds and blowing snow.  The cold winds cut through you like a razor blade.  Sharp and unforgiving.

The winds swept snow across roadways causing no visibility at times and filling in quickly with drifts in some places.  Finally about 2:30 pm the "Road Closed" barricade went up on Hwy 6 just North of Wiarton & three houses South of our place.  Further North it was heard people were leaving their vehicles where they had either gotten stuck or went off the road.  Not a good day to be stranded anywhere.

Rob left at one point today saying to me, "whatever you do don't let this wood stove go out".  Believe you, me, I sure did not let that happen, and the Aussies and I were all snug as a bug this cold Winter's day.

My day was uneventful as the day itself.  I did accomplish making the bed, doing up the dishes, keeping the home fires going, and taking the Aussies out on a regular basis, Portia more then the others.  I even managed a shower to be squeaky clean before dinner.  Rob made dinner for us.  It is absolutely wonderful to have a man who knows how to cook.

My Brother Allan is a good cook, as also is my Uncle Basil, and my youngest Son, Paul, knows how to cook (I made sure of that from when he was old enough to reach a fry pan on the stove top).  Many men in my family know how to cook, which is super nice especially when one of their woman folks are under the weather.  As long as a man can open a can of beans or fry an egg they will never go without.

I would like to thank everyone who has sent me well wishes.  They have all been very inspiring.  I also appreciate the empathy, as sympathy is something I do not look for.  Understanding, or trying to, gives much to the person in need.

I am happy I blog, as I do it for myself.  Some people can express themselves in their own ways, while I find I can express myself the best through blogging., or by paper and pen.  I suppose it gives me a sense of security knowing it can not be taken away from me, or I do not have to face someone with the fear of them not understanding, or even worse, to judge how I feel.  My feelings are my own here and nobody can take a persons feelings from anyone.

Here I can be as honest as I want to be.

Funny when I was in the shower I had all these thoughts come flooding through my brain, now everything I had wanted to write has left me.  Always the way, however maybe it wasn't meant to be.

I am one who has always believed if I receive kindness in any form or words, that I should always pay it forward.  To pay it forward does not always necessarily mean to the person who gave to you, or in the same way.  Paying it forward could be anywhere you might see a need, even if it is a kind word.  Sometimes a kind word can take a terrible situation in ones life, and turn it around.  The power of kindness goes a long way, or so I believe it to.

After Dinner we just sat down when Rob noticed someone walking up the highway with a bag.  He said nobody should have to be walking out in this weather, so he got up, went out and picked the person up and drove them home.  It happened to be one of our neighbours who live just up a concession from us.  The young man had appreciated the ride, as his ride could not go through the Road Closed barricade, and that is why he had been walking the rest of the way.  Yes I am very proud that my Crabby Cabbie Rob also does a pay it forward when he can.

There is a Workshop I signed up for last Year but was unable to attend.  I was called again as there is another one in March in Wiarton which I hope I can attend.  There is spots open for anyone who would like to register and the information is as follows, as shared to the Rotary Club of Wiarton:

Hello,  I coordinate a program that is government funded to support individuals living with Chronic conditions in the communities across Grey Bruce.   I am asking members and support clubs in the Wiarton area to share  this information with their members.  We have scheduled a free workshop in Wiarton that starts the end of March.  Below is some information I hope that you could share.  I also have promotional materials such as posters or brochures available to share.   
Do you  live with asthma, diabetes, COPD, high blood pressure, mental health issues or other chronic conditions?  Did you know that on average you spend only 12 hours a year with a Health Care provider helping you manage your chronic condition?  That means that you are self managing your own health 364.5 days of the year.  The South West Self Management program offers a free workshop in the community to help you learn the tips and tools on how to self manage your health well and get the most out of your life-even with a chronic condition.  Workshop participants attend 2.5 hours once weekly for 6 weeks. The workshop is led by local volunteer peer leaders and a resource book is provided at no costs as well.  Our Wiarton workshop is being offered Thursday afternoons 1-3:30  starting March 25, 2015 at the public library.  More information can be found at or by calling 1-855-463-5692. 
Housed within the Community Care Access Centre our program strives to help people live life to their fullest.  If you would consider sharing this information I would greatly appreciate that.  If you would like more information or there are opportunities to speak to your group, please contact me at your convenience.

Andrea Martin
Program Coordinator, South West Self Management Program
Strategic Planning and Integration
South West Community Care Access Centre
Toll free 1-800-267-0535 ext 587

I have a copy of the brochure of what the Workshop covers,  however one sure way to find out is to sign up for it, which there is no cost to do so.

Before I sign-off for the day I would like to give "special" thanks for the "talk" from the "Dutch Uncle", and the kind note via email from London, England, and to a very special lady who goes by "LC" to her very special friends.  And to everyone else, once again, thank you all for your understanding and support.  I always know who I can count on when needed.

“None but ourselves can free our minds.” 

Now for a little Aussie love ...

Izzy's step-sister, Maggie the Chocolate Lab, has finally warmed up to her.  Photos tell all do they not ?  #cuteness #aussiepuppylove 

A new Season of The "Voice" began last night.  Rob and I both enjoy watching it together, and it is now on twice a week until they have all their picks.  It comes on at 8 pm tonight.

On that note I best get our Portia girl out before it comes on, as I hope not to miss any of it this Season, Just North of Wiarton & South of the Checkerboard.

Monday, 23 February 2015

Straight From The Heart

Last night the Grammy Awards were on TV, which I managed to stay awake right up until Tim McGraw gave his performance.  I am very happy to hear him sing the heartfelt rendition of the song Glen Campbell had wrote for his family before all had been lost to him as he once knew it to be.

Alzheimer's is a terrible disease for a family to witness happening to their loved one.  My own Mother has dementia (which is the most common type of Alzheimer's)and for the past couple of Years told us all she was 80 years old.  She in fact was going on 87 years this year.  Not even a couple of weeks ago she gave her age correctly at 86 years.  

Alzheimer's is not a disease that only the elderly suffer.  I have personally heard of people in their late 40's and early 50's be diagnosed with this disease.  

My friend's father suffered terribly with Alzheimer's, reliving the days when he had been a medic overseas in World War II.  His poor mind tortured with reliving those days had to be horrifying at times.  Something we never want to experience ourselves.  The pain the families of people suffering with this disease have their own times of self-suffering and sadness beyond sadness at times.  

My thought is good memories of times spent with a person suffering are the ones to hold tightly to, as what else is a person to do?

Every so often I get myself in a "funk".  I have been in a "funk" for almost a Year now and I am having a very difficult time getting myself out of it.  Nobody can do anything for me but support and try to understand what I go through day after day.  The past few months, actually since December 7th, I have spiralled downwards.

It is difficult for some of to admit we are experiencing a mental illness for all the World to hear, as my generation grew up to believe it was a weakness of character.  This belief causes some of us more despair.  

With Fibromyalgia, comes depression.  My Fibro has been heightened the past several months with my muscles feeling like they are going to burst from my skin the pain has been so bad.  Fatigue causing some days almost unbearable to live.   All this time the depression has also gotten worse  

Depression has many faces, with usually the real one hidden which an untrained eye might never witness.

Depression has many forms ... despair, lack of interest, overeating, anxiety, poor health, and much more if I were to think longer on it, or feel like thinking longer on it.

My Doctor has been trying different medications to help me with the Fibro and depression.  I am on a third try with a different medication.  They take time to get in ones system to see if they help or not.  I am hoping this one helps, as if not it means starting all over again with a fourth medication.

This statement:   However, chronic pain can cause feelings of anxiety and depression, which may worsen fibromyalgia symptoms.

The article I took  the above statement from can be found by going HERE.

Believe me, nobody, including myself, wants to live most of their life with Chronic pain, fatigue and depression.  It has gotten to the point of being so bad I do not even want people to come to my home anymore, or really want to do much.  I find myself fretting about my son's upcoming wedding this Year, and a Family Reunion.  These should be happy times in my Life for me, but at the moment cause me anxiety that I seem unable to control as much as I have tried.  

My home feels like it is falling down around me.  I guess the only thing that has been keeping me sane is HAVING to look after our Aussies.  I think about how much time might be spent in bed if I did not have our Aussies.  My husband is also been very supportive, to the point when I had been invited out yesterday, I came home to the dishes washed for me and the bed made.  Bless his heart, he might not be comfortable discussing how I am feeling at times, but he does show he understands and cares.  This morning, one of the coldest this Winter, he even let me stay in bed while he looked after our four Aussies, then called me at 7:30 am with a Tim Horton's coffee.  He is a keeper (now he is almost fully trained, mind you), and I love him with all my heart.

My friend, Vicki, has been my rock the past few months.  I know at times I impose on her, but not once as she not taken the time out of her life to hear how I am feeling, or not feeling.  Thank you Vicki, I love you even more for this then I might never say.

There it is out.  I have been hiding my sluggish behaviour behind my smiles and push myself energy, that I have barely had any of. 

Now I have said it, I pray I can stop beating myself up about not getting my house clean, or barely getting the book work done, or forgetting an appointment, or not feeling like going some where. 

Now maybe I can concentrate on getting myself better, as if I am better I will feel better for myself and others.

I love living ! and I have for months been anguishing over not being capable of living life as I want to.  This I need to work towards again to reclaim my Life as I want it without fatigue and depression. Pain I am used to and can tolerate, it is what has been going along with the pain that causes me my dilemma .  

To be quite honest, not only is it the Fibromyalgia, Fatigue and Depression, Menopause also has contributed to my health, or lack of it.  Not a great combination at the best of times I am sure.  

I know I am not the only person who is suffering from some type of illness, but this is happening to me and I am owning it by living it day in and day out.  I need to keep working towards that light which I know will put a REAL smile on my face and give me those belly laughs back that tickle me pink.

I have risen above the darkness before, and I know I can do it again, it just takes more energy some days then others.

Just as I had sat down to write this post, my friend, Vicki, had sent this video to me .... never a lack of encouragement from her, and yes it did make me *smile*.  Thank you xx

More *smiles* can be found over on The "Checkerboard Aussies", Australian Shepherd Dogs' Facebook page by going HERE.  

That is all she wrote this day, Just North of Wiarton & South of the Checkerboard.

Sunday, 22 February 2015

Chilled To The Bone

This morning brought a high of -10* C.  It felt quite balmy when I had been out first thing with the Aussies.  This all changed rather quickly as not much later in the morning the wind picked up and it seemed much colder.

Rob had to go back to return an item at the Canadian Tire in Owen Sound this morning, so I went along as there were a couple of items I needed from Staples that I had forgotten yesterday.  Off we went with me feeling quite chilled to the bone.

Returning back at lunch time I called a friend who had invited me out for lunch today.  We were heading out to the Green Door Cafe for a 1 pm lunch.  Rob and I had lunch out yesterday.  My oh my lunch out two days in a row ...

Yesterday Rob & I had stopped for lunch at the little restaurant located in at the Esso on the corner in Springmount.  My niece, Joanne, had recommended it.  We were not disappointed as I enjoyed an Omelet while Rob had the Hot Hamburg.  The food was very good and the cost was only $23.00 which included taxes & tip.

Today my friend & I had the lunch "special" at the Green Door Cafe, downtown Wiarton.  The Chicken Quesadilla was excellent, and with dessert we were both comfortable with our choices.  

After lunch we made a stop the Foodland Store, then I dropped her off at her home before arriving back home to mine.  By this time it had been after 3 pm.  I was tired and still chilled to the bone, despite the temp being 23*C in our house.

I covered up on the couch with double blankets and watched the movie "The Help".  I had never gotten to watch the whole movie before today.  I loved it !!!  It was funny & emotional with great acting.  If anyone hasn't seen it I would most certainly recommend it.  See more about it HERE.

Dinner this evening was what could be found in the fridge.  Rob had sandwiches from leftover chicken, and I a salad (since lunch had been more like Dinner).

Now for some cuteness to wind up my day....

There is no lacking in the cuteness department with our Aussies, and their puppy followups from their Forever Homes.

Tonight is the Grammy Awards.  I will try to stay awake long enough to watch it, however in past years I usually end up falling asleep.  Do you watch the Grammys?

I am still feeling chilled to the bone, thinking I might have to heat up a bean bag in the mircowave for my feet when I head off to bed, Just North of Wiarton & South of the Checkerboard.

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Could Have Been Better

The day could have been better, however now that I think about it nothing was wrong with the day as it was me that could have been better.  There are some days when I think I would like to pull a blind down between the World and myself, pulling it back up when I feel better with myself and able to face it again.

Time does not stop to wait for us ... this I am certain I have said many times.  Life is to short to pause for a time out, so one must continue on their journey no matter how difficult at times it may seem to be.

I am tired.  I woke up this morning feeling more rested then I had in some time.  That lasted all but part of the morning when the fatigue overcame me once again.  Yes I am tired.  It seems I never feel rested or have the energy my head tells me I need to have.

Today all I accomplished was striping the bed to wash it.  The mattress pad is still in the dryer drying, so the bed still needs made up before I can even think about going to bed.

Rob and I went into Owen Sound this morning to do a bit of shopping.  I do like hanging out with him most days.  It is always nice having my best friend close by me.

Then there is my hairy best friend that is always there for me and has never let me down ...

This boy warms my heart and has put a smile on my face in some of my worse times. 
 Love my Bandit Boy to the Moon & back.

We had some more cuteness sent our way last night from Raven's Forever Home.

Everyone should have a "Tickle Me Aussie" should they not?

Tomorrow is another day, and hopefully the day goes well with a feeling of contentment, Just North of Wiarton & South of the Checkerboard.

Friday, 20 February 2015

Damn Cold

Yes siree Rob, that was damn, damn, triple damn cold out there this morning.  As my dad used to say, "cold enough to freeze the nuts off a bridge".  There is also "freeze the nuts off a brass monkey" or "colder then a witches tit", and I am certain there has to be many more "sayings" about how cold it was this day.

My girlfriend dropped off some chicken backs & necks for me, leaving them in my van since I was not home.  No fear of them going bad today with the temps we had.

I have found myself with yet another little problem the last couple of days.  I always have a problem with some allergy or another all throughout the Year.

This time my feet were affected.  The only thing I did which was different was put Aveeno lotion on them, and yes I ended up having a reaction which resulted in very painful swollen feet.  They have been like this the past 3 days.  And no worries I did wash the counter where I had my feet up on to take the photos ... or maybe I didn't.

This morning Rob headed out early while I was left with getting both wood stoves started and four Aussies looked after ALL BY MYSELF. Not the first time, nor the last time, but damn it was cold out with Buddy, then Portia, today.

I had a couple of errands to downtown.  My van had been running over an hour before it even thought about pushing any heat out of its vents.  Did I mention how damn cold it had been today?

While I was downtown I had to stop on into the Chamber Office to give a hand with something  While down there I can never resist taking a couple of photos ...

I never tire of taking a photo of the old Train Station.  Colpoy's Bay makes a perfect back drop in any Season.

There had been one lone snowmobiler sledding across Colpoy's Bay.  At one time I wouldn't think twice about going across a large body of water on a snowmobile, as I had done years ago up at my sister Jeanne's when she lived in Chapleau.  I most certainly would think about it twice now being the age I am.

Rob never returned home until Dinner time this afternoon.  Since he had been in the City today he had made a pit stop at Costco for us.

Yes we got stocked up on Dog food for the Aussies.  There had been a beautiful surprise for me, as Rob had gotten me this amazing Orchid.  What a sweetie I am married to, and truly I would not trade him up for the World (most days).

Joyce, Rob picked up the two items also that you  had wanted from Costco, give us a call when you will be going by next.

My poor Rob wasn't even hardly home when he had to go back out again.  Someone needed to get up to the hospital so off he went to collect them.  At least he had some dinner before he had to go back to take them back home again.

Both Rob and I are all in but for our shirttails today.  I am certain we will both sleep well tonight while the home fires keep us warm, Just North of Wiarton & South of the Checkerboard.
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