Addendum to Feeling Good!

How could I have possibly forgotten about the little “glitch” last night?

Mark and Ben and I arrived at Wegman’s a few minutes before Carly. We looked around at all the food (and they certainly have a wide variety) and decided the subs looked good. When Carly arrived, Ben went off into the store to pick up a bag of potato chips to go along with the sub.

Carly works at another Wegman’s as an overnight baker, so I asked her if she wanted to check out the bakery while we kept an eye out for Ben. Well, along the way, *something* felt like it landed in the back of my throat. It was one of those “featherduster-tickling” feelings. I suddenly (after being totally cough-free ALL day) broke out into a coughing rampage. You know the kind…where it feels as though you are gagging and choking all at once?

As I stood gasping for air, Carly asked if I was all right to which I responded, NO! I suddenly remembered that I had placed a can of Pepsi into my purse…..As I grabbed the can, I could “hear” the strains of the theme to the old Popeye cartoons when Popeye grabbed for his spinach can and poured it down his throat! (WHY do such GOOFY things happen when you feel like you are about to breathe your very last breath???)

I downed a small amount of the carbonated delight and let it “sit” in the back of my throat. It helped until I tried to say “it helped” and I began choking and gagging once again! By this time, tears (certainly NOT of JOY!) were streaming from my right eye and I felt so ridiculous. I downed a larger swig and this time, it did the trick. I walked around, not speaking, tears streaming from my right eye, feeling like such a basket case. Fortunately the only people nearby were Carly and Mark. If anyone else came near, I merely turned my back and walked away.

I guess each day as we count our blessings, we need to thank God that we do not choke on a regular basis!!! Perhaps even better, we must thank Him that we ARE fearfully and wonderfully made!

Oh, It Feels SO Good!

Yes, I am finally cough and cold FREE! Told you I wanted to be there by Thursday!

And, life is good! I am so happy that the Buffalo Sabres won last night! We were unable to watch the game…something seemed to be “hosed up” with our RoadRunner, but everything is working now. In fact, I was unable to get online last night as well.

Yesterday, I got up, feeling so much better than I have in quite a long time. I was able to stay “on my feet” the entire day without wandering off to lie down for awhile! What a huge thing that is!

Last night was Michelle’s Bible study night, and Mark and Ben went along with me. We met Carly at Wegman’s. We bought a couple of subs and a bag of chips and were able to just sit and chat for a long time. That was so refreshing.

Carly’s husband, Jeff, lost his job due to downsizing of a very small company…this happened right at the same time that he was suffering from a terrible case of bronchitis-on-the-verge-of-pneumonia! Carly has been anxious over this, as you can imagine. He was offered a job in Amherst, just north of Buffalo, and Carly is more nervous than a cat in a room full of rocking chairs. She would love to have him take the job, as one of her heart’s desires would be to move to Buffalo. She loves it there.

Last night as I plopped onto the bed to call it a night, the wind was blowing so hard! The trees were swaying and the temperature was almost 40! What a change! This morning, when I got up with the boys, the winds were still blowing (QUITE briskly) and the lid of the hot tub was lying on the back deck. No one was inside the tub, so it looks like those winds blew the cover off! This has happened before, but at least it wasn’t sub-freezing temps this time! The water had gone from 102 degrees to 98, so apparently, the lid hadn’t been off for too long!

As I walked the boys, I could actually hear birds singing in the midst of the wind blowing. What a cheerful sound that is! I could hear two phoebes off in the distance… would call out, then another would answer from another area. And, as I listened, my memory went back to so many years ago when Michelle was just a baby……I remember one day Mark and I walked out on the front porch on a spring day. Mark suddenly stopped and listened….”Listen, the birds are calling out to Michelle. Hear them? Swee-tie, swee-tie!” I will never forget that, as I thought that had to be one of the cutest things I had ever heard. Mark had NO idea *what* a phoebe even was!

Wow, That Was Easy!

Yesterday, I posted that I needed to just get *over* the cold thing. And, I think I HAVE! The coughing actually subsided today to the point that I am rarely coughing at all! I am so happy!

I had to run Michelle to the library this morning to pick up a book for language arts. As we scurried out the door, I thought it wasn’t too bad temperature wise. But, it was chilly and windy most of the day, requiring a fire in the stove.

Tomorrow, the weatherman is promising temperatures much higher than today! It is supposed to be in the 40’s and perhaps even reaching into the 50’s. I am so glad to be feeling better, but I am still kind of weak and lacking energy.

Today, when I was walking between the garage and house, I had to stop for a minute to look! The snow had piled up pretty deep in that last bout we had, but next to the house, it had begun “sagging”… apparently because of the warmth of the house. Look at my brave little tulip plants, peeking out from the snow!

If you are familiar with snow, you can see this is the “crunchy” variety!

After Ben finished his schoolwork this afternoon, he and Murphy settled down to watch a movie. I love this picture! Murphy could care less about what is on TV. Angus, on the other hand, watches intently. He loves seeing shows about animals, and gets very disturbed when watching shows with any form of violence. Murphy is just happy to be near someone he loves!

And, sorry…but I just had to include a picture of my silly cactus. I have finally come to the conclusion that it is….(drumroll…..) actually nothing other than a Holiday Cactus! It’s primary goal is to merely celebrate any and all holidays within reason! I wonder if it will bloom for the 4th of July?

Get Over It, Already!

That is how I feel about this hacking, nagging, driving me crazy cough. I suppose I could have gone to the doctor, but I really would rather let nature take its course.

This weekend was totally non-eventful. We worked in the garage a little yesterday, as Mark needed a hand with his workbench.

This morning, I was coughing stuff up and not feeling so wonderful. I had thought I read that the temps were going to be near 40. Guess I must have been hallucinating, but, I have been sick, so that is my excuse, and I am sticking with it!

Even though I felt sorry, errrr…..*sick* this morning, the show must go on, so I somehow managed to pack six orders! I actually dispatched the help of Michelle, who made the workload much lighter. She works well, and rarely says anything. Makes the job seem easy!

The temperature never made it up past 30 outside, much to my dismay. When I did go outside, the winds were whipping about, making it feel terribly chilly.

After our packing, I made my way back up to the bed, where I rested. This coughing is much more miserable than anything, but it really is getting better. As in it is now much “higher” up in my chest instead of from the bottoms of my feet!

Michelle came upstairs shortly before dinner time. She asked me if I had been thinking about dinner. UGH! I have been cooking, sorta, since this thing overcame me. In between, the kids have been making a few things, and Mark has bought out a couple of times. So, I tried not to growl at Michelle, thinking she wanted me to arise and cook. But NO! She used my laptop to find a recipe for Ziti and she made it, along with brussel sprouts. And, it was DELICIOUS! Hurrah for Michelle!

One of my cyberfriends is concerned about the death of her Scottie a couple of weeks ago. He had been eating canned Nutro food, one of the tainted foods from the Menu Foods Income Fund,
and now, she and her husband are feeling as though they poisoned their little boy…My heart goes out to this couple, as they have been nothing but loving and caring pet owners. This is such a sad situation….one of the suspected “culprits” in the mess is a new source of wheat gluten for the company. The shame of it all is that dogs cannot even process gluten.

In looking through the whole mess with canned foods and kibble, it makes me rethink making my own food for the boys. I did “cook” for Angus previously, and although any food could be contaminated at any time, I felt good giving him food that I knew exactly what the ingredients were. It really isn’t that hard making food for pets. I have a friend in Canada who cooks for her three Scotties and has for quite some time. She said there are cookbooks for dogs…..guess I need to grab out the list.

I hope I am not hallucinating once again, but I am sure I heard the weatherman say it is going to be 60 degrees on Thursday. I am going to try to be OVER this thing by Thursday. I so want to breathe in fresh air without choking!

Snow and Disappointment

How disappointed the kids were that they couldn’t go to Splash Lagoon last night, as they had been anticipating this outing since last November. We heard on the radio that the outing was being postponed because of the threat of a winter storm. Since folks would be traveling from all over New York and Pennsylvania, safety was more important than anything. We received a call later in the day to verify that the event was truly postponed.

In all honesty, I was relieved, as I now am in the final stages of this cold….coughing and causing my head to throb with each outbreak! For the past three mornings, the first thing I did upon getting out of bed was go to the medicine chest to get some ibuprophen. What a terrible way to arise!

The weatherman predicted a winter storm, and as of about 3 o’clock yesterday, we were wondering if the storm would take a turn and go elsewhere. Well, shortly thereafter, it began snowing and it never stopped! The snow was very dry and pellet-like. By this morning, when the boys and I went outside, the snow was up over their shoulders. Angus “hopped” through the snow, blazing a path for Murphy and me to follow.

It was just so gray and dismal outside the entire day. It is hard to imagine all of this snow after enjoying balmy temperatures in the 60’s just days ago. But, that is weather for you!!!

As the gloomy day unfolded, Mark and Michelle were cozy inside the garage! That third bay on the right goes all the way to the back of the garage, then turns to the left, forming a huge “L” shape. The back of the garage houses a year’s supply of firewood for both the house, and garage.

The remaining part of the garage is the “old” part that Mark built about 11 years ago. Last March, Michelle and I worked for three days, insulating the downstairs of this part. This now houses Mark’s emerging woodshop.

Mark had taken apart an old workbench he slapped together years ago. He and Ben then remilled the old boards on the planer, causing them to look just like new! He then redesigned the workbench so it will be comfortable working at it seated. In the middle of building the bench, he needed to build the base for his bandsaw. And, we had to disassemble the bandsaw and carry it down, piece by piece! (it has some very heavy cast iron parts!)

Mark was getting ready to assemble his “new” workbench when I suggested he poly it. He hadn’t really planned to do this, so he thought about it, and agreed it would preserve it and help keep it nicer. So, this morning, Michelle and I lifted the bottom onto sawhorses and she and Mark spent the better part of the day sanding and poly-ing the bench.

Mark was very surprised to learn that I had kept the fire burning through the night in the garage! When he came out this morning, it was a toasty 55 degrees! After stoking the stove a bit, it was as warm as the house! He and Michelle worked in total comfort.

After seeing just how nice the new workbench looks in its poly coat, Mark told me he is going to place it in the living room as a piece of furniture!

This little Jotul stove first served in the house for a few years. It really didn’t keep the house toasty warm, so when we bought a larger model, this little guy went out to the garage! It does a terrific job of keeping the temps warm inside when winds howl and snow blows outside!

All in all, it was a rather non-momentous day. Mark and Ben ran to Circut City after finishing up in the garage. Michelle and I remained home, and I had corned beef and cabbage awaiting when the guys returned.

Much snow moving was done today, and after this, I think I wouldn’t mind if it doesn’t snow any more this year. Even though our “winter” seemed short, there was a lot of shoveling and moving snow about. I think perhaps it is time now for some warmer weather!

Happy St Patty’s…Just a Wee Bit Early

Every now and then, I like to take a trip down memory lane and look at pictures. I had to giggle over last year’s St Patty’s pictures. Here is Angus wishing you a Happy St. Patty’s Day….I am not sure exactly what Angus had in mind, but he sure looks funny! Murphy made ***sure*** he and Angus would never have to wear those ridiculous hats EVER again…I think he demolished the very last one just a month or two ago. I am not even sure where he found them!

Tomorrow morning, I will start preparing the corned beef for the traditional corned beef and cabbage. Mark had never even heard of it before, and now he looks forward to it every year. So, whether you choose to celebrate St. Patty’s any way you see fit (green bagels, green beer, corned beef and cabbage) or not, here’s to the Irish!

And yes, I do indeed have a wee bit o’ the Irish in me. My maternal great grandmother happened to be Irish! She was a wee little woman whom I remember precious little about. She passed away when I was only 11.

For those experiencing the wild winter storm on the east coast, please stay safe and warm!


As I was feeling sick the past few days ago, one of the most comforting things was lying on my bed, or in it. I have a set of flannel sheets that are so snug and cozy and they were also a great comfort as I rested.

Some of the time when I wasn’t feeling really weak or tired, I would lie on my back with the laptop propped up on my knees. I had to make sure there were no blankets underneath, or the poor laptop would have overheated! When I used the laptop, I couldn’t stand having the lights on in the room, so I used a small nightlight in an outlet to my right side.

The above shadow appeared on my ceiling from the nightlight. It is my silly St. Patrick’s Day cactus, er…Christmas cactus that keeps on blooming. (is that where the expression “bloomin’ idiot” comes from?) Anyway, this is just kind of a silly entry that shows my shadow on the ceiling that just made me feel like all was right in the Bristolwood during my beleaguered stay in bed!

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Snow, Snow Go Away?

Well, most of it has in about a period of three days!

After struggling today to get my last entry uploaded, I went outside and was amazed at how much the terrain has changed since yesterday! Almost all of the snow was gone this morning!

Here are two pictures of the woods in front of the house.

The camper is free of snow on its roof, and there is little left near it, either!

The only snow that remains near the house is from shoveling, or where Mark piled it pretty high with the plow on the ATV.

I just happened to show this little guy’s eye and nose peeking out through the snow yesterday. I was simply ecstatic to see his whole being this morning. And, look at the daffodils coming up right behind him! I think some of my tulips are also coming up in this little garden on the side of the house.

And….these are the daffodils I showed in my last entry. They were peeking up through the snow. In looking at them, I think they actually grew about an inch since yesterday! And, near them are my Columbines, shooting out new leaves of green!

Michelle had to be at the Bible study at about 4 this afternoon. She was rehearsing with the worship group. So…I had a lot of time to spend just hanging out. So, I went to Aldi…then wandered over to WalMart, then, lastly went to Wegman’s where I had some Chinese for dinner. Since Wegman’s has WIFI, I took my laptop along. The only problem was that shortly after booting the computer up, I got the “change to electric power” message. I was bummed, so I asked an employee if they had electic available…..but, of COURSE! They are Wegman’s, after all!

So, I ordered a Chai Latte and sat and relaxed with my laptop for some time. I then shopped for a while before picking Michelle up.

On our way home, we came down the route that goes through the valley. At one point, we saw flashing yellow lights along the sides of the road….then encountered a sign that said “Road Flooded Ahead”. The water wasn’t real deep, but you could see it moving swiftly across the road. Michelle was a tad nervous, but I knew it was going to be fine. We were both very happy to just get home!

Tonight’s forecast is for rain changing to snow with 1-3″ by morning. As much as I love the winter, I think we have seen enough for now! We were also advised we have a “winter storm” that will pass through Friday night. As I looked ahead at the forecast, we are supposed to be back into the 40’s next week. Ah, the wonderful weather coaster!

It is all OK….after all, spring is in the air!

Turning the Corner, continued…

Last night was a little sad here, as the Buffalo Sabres lost their FOURTH game in a row. The blow was softened just a bit by the fact that it was the Pittsburgh Penguins who beat them. I used to be a big fan of the Penguins in the late 80’s and early 90’s, during the time when Mario Lemieux played. He was such a fantastic player, with finesse, and great skill. So, it was quite cool that before the game last night, Mario announced that the city of Pittsburgh has now signed and sealed a contract that will keep the Pens in Pittsburgh with a new stadium for the next 30 years! Hurrah Mario, who worked hard to get this to happen!!!

Carly called me on Monday, asking if I might be interested in going with her to the vet on Tuesday. Well, on Monday, I was feeling less than stellar, so it looked unlikely…Yesterday, when I was feeling pretty chipper, I called and told her I would meet her and Jeff at the vets’.

Carly said that Joe had been licking a certain spot on his rear left leg. He had licked it to the point that it was going to become raw, so she wanted the vet to see him. And, my, oh my, was little Joe a wonderful patient!

Joe immediately stole the heart of the girl behind the desk.

Upon entering the exam room, little Joe sniffed his way around the room…..

Then he patiently sat atop (the REALLY nice) Corian table, awaiting the vet.

As the vet explained that she suspected Joe had licked himself into a skin infection, he listened with great interest! The vet decided that they would have a tech shave the area and then clean it. Carly would have to clean the area each day, and also give Joe an antibiotic. Carly, Jeff, and I sat in the exam room as the vet walked Joe down to another location for his treatment. He came back a short time later, still quite chipper in spite of the fact that the shaven area revealed bright red skin that was inflamed. Thankfully, Joe’s skin is as black as his hair, so it really doesn’t look too bad.

And, what was Joe’s repayment for being such a GOOD boy?

Yes, he must now wear an Elizabethan collar until the wound is thoroughly healed. Poor little Joe! I sure hope he got some cookies when he got back home! His patience really impressed me.

After the vet, I went right home, feeling a little tired.

Everyone was enjoying the warm weather here. Even the Scotties were outside for a while! Ben was having some silly fun sliding around on the snow in the front yard!

He was having a good time, until suddenly, he slid a bit too far, landing right in our little (albeit *turbulent* right now because of massive snow melting!) stream! ALthough the quality of this picture is lacking a bit, you can see Ben’s reaction to the….well……….*COLD* water!

Needless to say, he pulled himself outta there….fast!

I even made it out to the garage (first time in a few days) to see the new base Mark made for his bandsaw. I remember when Mark came up with the idea a couple of weeks ago, but now the base is completed. It is really cool, because it has a mobile base so it can move all around.

The little garden toad that we inherited from my father-in-law was beginning to poke his head through the snow in the side yard! He sits in front of the daffodils that I posted the picture of when the weather was soooo frigidly COLD!

And, speaking of daffodils, I looked down from the porch and spotted these in the melting snow!

I snapped this picture as I walked across the front porch. It was so hard for us to go back into the house. It was just one of those days that you want to go on and on and on….

As the sun headed over the mountains to the west, our only regret was that the day was over….

I went upstairs to lie down on the bed for a little while and when I turned to look out the window, I *had* to grab the camera once again. This was so spectacular…..

Red sky at night, sailor’s delight….