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An update of sorts

Hello again,

The past week or so has been quite busy which is why I haven’t been on here as much as I would have liked to be. RIght now I will just talk about a small part of what made my past week so busy. Last Monday I received a call from my specialist’s office that my specialist had seen the results from the bone scan (that I had a few weeks ago) and wanted to see me. Apparently he saw something and wanted to talk about giving me injections. This was good news to me despite hearing that he found something that should be treated. I can hopefully finally have some relief again. The past few months have been very difficult with the increased amount of pain I have dealt with. I managed to get in this Monday because of a cancellation which is great because otherwise it can take a while to get in to see him. So on Monday I had my appointment with my specialist to talk about the bone scan. As you can imagine, I spent most of yesterday trying to recover which is why I am writing about this today.

I would like to talk a bit more about the bone scan results and the trip to see my specialist. It’s about a 1.5 hour drive to go see my specialist and I am so thankful for painkillers because seeing him turns into an all day affair. I hate taking painkillers unless it is necessary and when it is, they are a life saver. As far as I understand from what my specialist said, there is bone that is irritated somehow but he doesn’t know what is causing it. I need to get injections. He mentioned about getting injections and then said if the injections don’t work, I may need more surgery. I don’t think I reacted at the time to him saying that because I don’t think it really registered. I was busy trying to remember everything I had wanted to ask him so I heard what he said but it didn’t really sink in. Afterwards when I had time to think about it, I was happy that I could get relief with the injections and almost cried thinking about the possibility of more surgery. I realize that the injections do not fix anything but right now I don’t care. If the pain goes down and I can have more of a life again, that is all I want/need right now. I know it’s been 2 years since my last surgery and I joke that I am due for another one but I don’t want any more. It isn’t just the time in the hospital that is tough but the recovery afterwards. It takes months to get back to a point where I feel somewhat normal again. I know that if surgery will fix the problem, it is much better than just covering the pain and I would do the surgery if I had to, but only if I have assurance it will fix it. So I am really hoping for the injections to work. At least for now. I keep telling myself that maybe what ever is causing the pain will fix itself and I won’t need more than a few injections. It could happen right? :) Think positive right? As far as the injections, I have to wait to get in to see him again at the hospital where he can do the injections. I am hoping it doesn’t take too long and I can get in during the month of April.

Now that there seems to be a possible end to the pain I have been in lately, everything feels much more positive. It makes it easier to deal with the pain I am in because it will get better. I keep thinking about the things I will be able to do when I get the pain under control again. I will have more of a life again. Just in time for summer too! :) I really hope it works out. Thanks for reading my blog and sort of joining me on this journey called life. :)

 

 
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Posted by on April 2, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

My New Favorite Song: Happy by Pharrell Williams

Hello again,

This will be a short post but I discovered a new song recently and I absolutely love it! I am aware that I must be living under a rock or something to not have heard it until recently but I finally heard it and I love it. :) Better late than never right? It is titled Happy by Pharrell Williams and it is one of those songs that you can’t help but move around to. :) I actually listen to it when I am having a rough day and need help to smile. :) I can not watch the music video without smiling. :) Even when I am having a really rough day, it still makes me smile. :) I want to buy it and make it my ring tone. lol I can’t personally dance to it because my back is in such bad shape but that doesn’t matter. I move my feet and snap my fingers and watch the video. :)  I have posted the link to the music video is at the bottom of this post and I hope you take time to watch it. :) It is which is quite fun to watch. I hope it brings a smile to your face as well while you watch it. :) You MUST watch it!! If you are like me, and you haven’t heard this yet, please go and watch it! :)

 
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Posted by on March 25, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

I’m Turning Blue

Hi again,

I am literally turning blue. But not to worry- it is not from any kind of medical condition even though it looks like it is. lol It’s from my jeans. Yep. I just bought new jeans and they are totally turning my legs and feet blue. lol

It started out that I needed new jeans because my old ones that I wear around the house were getting holes in them and a bit ragged. Finding jeans is tough for me because for some reason the proportions are never quite right. If I get them long enough for my legs, they are too wide for my waist. Anyways, I finally found some online at Old Navy that are for tall people and they were on sale to boot. YAY! or maybe not. They are the really dark blue which I thought would be great for around the house because dirt may hide better on them. They had a tag on them that states the dye may come off on stuff. Yet, I thought how much could it really let off so I wasn’t too concerned about it. Not a good idea. It turns out these jeans do let off colour. A LOT of colour. The first time I noticed it, I had looked down at my bare feet and thought they looked a little strange. I didn’t have to look very close to see they were quite blue. I looked at my legs by lifting the pant leg and yep they were blue too. Thankfully I knew the cause and wasn’t alarmed. lol When I put on my white slipper socks, it made it even more noticeable. I joked to my mom that I am turning into a smurf! ;) Who doesn’t want to be blue like a smurf?! lol It wasn’t a little bit of blue either. This was a LOT of blue. It happened in a period of a couple of days. I had to go in to town the next day so I thought I better scrub it off. Of course me being me, I just had to forget that the dye would come off of me but permanently dye the cloth. I happened to choose a pink cloth which is now a permanent shade of purplish blue. lol No worries-it is an old cloth and now a pretty shade of purple as well. :) I washed the jeans but I think it will take a few washes before they stop colouring my skin. In the mean time, I better keep washing it off so that I don’t alarm anyone. Thankfully it isn’t summer where I might wear capris the next day. lol It ends up on my hands too. lol My comforter on my bed is also slightly blue from where I lay down during the day. Thankfully it hasn’t really damaged anything but it sure is surprising how much dye comes out of them still. I did get a warning label so I can’t blame anyone but myself. Although I had no idea that much dye could come out of jeans.

What have I learned from all of this? Well definitely wash clothing first that has warning labels about dye coming off. Maybe wash it like 10 times first. Also if I want blue socks, I can put my white socks in with the jeans and have pretty blue socks. ;) I will be careful where I sit for now as well. I don’t think I will buy dark blue jeans again. I now know another way to make pink wash cloths purple. :P My advice to other people is to beware of jeans with a lot of dye in them. I would hate to think what could have happened if I had been sitting on the couch during those couple of days before washing my jeans.

I do hope you were able to laugh along with me as I have found humour in this experience of mine. :) It is very important to be able to laugh at our mistakes. Sometimes it takes awhile to find the humor of course but I am learning that being able to look back on things and laugh at them is very helpful and makes me feel less awful about doing stuff that isn’t so smart. In my defense, I have never bought clothing like this that lets off colour like this. Thanks for reading my blog!

 
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Posted by on March 22, 2014 in Randomness

 
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Perennial Favorites: Scabiosa

Hello again,

After writing the previous post, I started thinking about the perennials I really love and all the information I have learned and gathered from different books and sites. I thought that it might be useful to others to share all that I have learned from personal experience growing certain perennials and the information I have gathered from all the different books and sites. Different books share different tidbits about perennials which is why I love to read any and all books (and websites) that I can. Some will actually tell me if something is considered invasive while others just say that the plant is “vigorous” or some other tag word that usually means it will take over your garden. For me, I don’t want anything that doesn’t behave. I don’t have the ability to control and dead head plants to keep them from spreading everywhere and through other perennials. So now I read thoroughly on each plant I consider before I get it. I have had a few times that I bought something without researching first and ended up with a plant that I still battle years after trying to eradicate it from the flower beds. I have also lucked out sometimes with really wonderful flowers (like Scabiosa) that I can’t get enough of. So just because it is sold on a store shelf, does not mean it is something you should consider buying. To help people maybe discover new perennials that are quite wonderful, I would like to share the plants I have discovered and why they are worth growing. Maybe it will help someone else discover a new favorite as well. :)

pincusion flower

Photo Taken by Heather Vanderdeen – August 2013

So today I chose to talk about a plant I stumbled on more than 10 years ago and have loved since the first season I bought it. It’s name is Scabiosa which sounds kind of ugly for a perennial that is quite beautiful. It’s common name is pincushion Flower which suits it better because of the way it’s stamens peek up above the petals which looks like little pins in a pincushion. :) I have included a photo (that I took myself) on the left that shows one of the flowers from my plant last year.

In short, I love it because here in zone 3, it is the MOST well-behaved, easy care plant I have EVER found. It behaves so well that I wish it would spread a little more so I could divide it into more plants. LOL It doesn’t go to seed here and I am guessing that maybe the season isn’t quite long enough for that to happen. The flowers last so long and they are a beautiful pastel purple. It grows in an almost perfect mound and I have not had to divide it yet even though I would like to create more plants. It flowers beautifully even though it is in partial shade. The bees and butterflies love it which is another bonus. I have not ever seen it affected by disease or other pests which is great. It almost sounds too good to be true. lol But that is why I love it so much. If it would be in other conditions, it may behave differently (i.e-warmer zone or different soil) but I am not sure. According to anything I have read on it, it is well-behaved in many areas.

Below I will share the information I have gathered from different sources and will list where I got it from as well.

Veseys - “pincushion flowers bloom all summer and are outstanding! Domed, lace-edged flowers about 3″ across with a 1½” disc of silvery white. Superb shades of lavender and blue on long, wiry stems. Height 24-36″. ” 

Fine Gardening - “Noteworthy characteristics: long blooming period; attracts butterflies; easy to grow in proper conditions.
Care: Prefers medium, well-drained soil in full sun, but tolerates part shade. Intolerant of wet soils, especially in winter. Deadhead to encourage additional bloom. Divide and replant in fresh soil every 3 years.”

Book: PERENNIALS FOR EVERY PURPOSE

- in the book Larry shares that Scabiosa is easy to grow, especially in cooler climates. Deadheading does help them bloom for longer.

- Scabiosa got its name because it was once used to treat scabies and other causes of itching. However it is no longer considered a medicinal plant. He also states that he is surprised it isn’t more popular and I definitely agree.

Book – Reader’s Digest CAREFREE PLANTS

- preferred soil ph – Neutral to slightly alkaline. – prefers full sun to partial shade

- each flower lasts several days which makes them ideal for cut flowers

- a thin mulch will help keep the soil cool and moist, which is the way that Scabiosa likes it.

I hope this helps to answer some questions you may have about this beautiful perennial. I have been disappointed that I haven’t ever seen it again as a plant for sale in garden centres I visit because it is such a wonderful plant. Maybe it just isn’t popular enough…. yet. I hope to spread the word to friends and family about this wonderful plant and maybe get more people interested in it. I have yet to read anything very bad about it. You can buy seeds though from many places which is what I have done this year to grow more plants. Thanks for taking time to read about this perennial favorite of mine!

 
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Posted by on March 20, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Starting seeds – yay!

Hello again,

This weekend I planted the first batch of seeds that need to be started 8-10 weeks before the last frost. The average last frost date for Red Deer is the end of May according to Veseys. I decided to calculate backwards frorm May 25. I have a greenhouse that I can move plants out to usually in mid April or so which is why I am starting them at 10 weeks back instead of 8. In the greenhouse they can be transplanted into bigger pots and be that much bigger and happier when I can put them outside. Who doesn’t want bigger and happier plants? :)

I wasn’t so sure about starting seeds this year because everything is kind of up in the air with what is happening with my back. I do not know what shape I will be in by the end of May or any other part of the summer for that matter. I still remember 2012 and how I started seeds and had no idea I would need emergency surgery in May of that year. Which also reminded me that I can not predict what will happen so I can not put my life on hold just in case something might happen. That would be silly. Life is so unpredictable but it can not keep us from living.

I also wondered if it is a good idea to start seeds given how I am doing currently. To be honest, it was difficult to even plant the seeds because my back has been pretty bad lately. But growing flowers brings me joy. It becomes the thing that gets me up in the morning no matter what shape my back is in. It gives me a reason to go outside and keep going. Growing flowers is rewarding and I love to sit and enjoy them over the summer and know that I helped them to grow. So despite how my back is doing, I planted the seeds. It is very exciting for me and excitement is never a bad thing. :) It gives me something positive to look forward to and enjoy. So how can I not plant seeds?

I planted 2 perennials and 4 annuals. The perennials are Delphinium and Columbine. Two perennials that I really love. :) The annuals are Dusty Miller, Snap Dragon, Pansy, and Spider Flower. I have never grown Spider Flower before so it will be neat to see what it does. :) I love Dusty Miller because of the silver colour that adds so much to flower beds between the flowers. It really stands out which I really love. Also, I discovered by accident that it sometimes grows back the following year. As you may know, I had surgery in 2012 which caused me to not get a lot done during the summer and fall. That led to me not pulling up annuals that I normally do in the fall which led to the Dusty Millers staying in the ground till spring the following year. Last spring, when I went to pull them finally, I noticed some of them were growing again. :) Apparently it can happen because they are perennials in warmer climates. So this last fall, I left the Dusty Millers in the ground to see if I can get similar results this year. :) I don’t think I need to say anything about Snap Dragons or Pansies do I? Is there anyone who does not love these very cheerful pretty flowers? :)

The next seeds do not have to be started till the end of March which will be the Tomatoes. People ask me why I start my own seeds when I can just buy them in the store. I did buy tomato plants from a store once and they ended up being infected with some sort of disease that caused the plant to not grow right. So I grow my own seeds. I know that there is very little chance of them being infected with anything because I control the environment as much as I can. :) Of course there is always a chance of something happening but it is a lot less likely. So I grow them myself. :) Plus I love planting things. :)

Thanks for reading my blog!

 
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Posted by on March 16, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

A new hair cut

Hi again,

Sorry I haven’t posted again in awhile, but life got in the way I guess. I have been having doctor’s appointments and medical tests/xrays to try to figure out what is going on with my back still. The most recent test was a bone scan on Tuesday which I hope shows something that will explain why I am still in so much pain. But enough about that. Let’s focus on something positive today. :)

The other morning (wednesday), I was able to go in to town and get my hair cut. :) I go to Acadamy of Professional Hair Design in Red Deer because they do fantastic work and for a fraction of the cost of regular hair salons. Being unable to work, I can’t really afford to pay the price a regular salon charges so it works out well. Yesterday, I got a really wonderful lady who did an amazing job on my hair. :) I mentioned that I was thinking of getting my hair coloured and she suggested some colours and said she had time if I wanted to get it done right away. I went with one of the colours she suggested and it looks amazing! It is quite neat how a hair cut and colour can make you feel so much better emotionally. :) I feel happier and more confident. :) I don’t have a very good photo of myself yet but here is one that shows the cut really well and sort of shows the colour. I am actually kind of nervous posting a photo of myself here. lol

2014-03-14 11.46.32

Now that I have shared a photo of myself and my new hair cut, I really would like to share a little bit more about the lady who did my hair. Her name is Kerstyn. She actually has a business where she is mobile and goes to people’s houses to do your hair/makeup. She is a certified makeup artist and is learning to be a hair stylist at the hair Acadamy. She explained that there are a lot of people who are shut in and can’t get out or moms who can’t get some time to go to a hair stylist. So Kerstyn comes to you. I thought that is such an amazing idea because I know what it is like to be stuck at home and unable to get out of the house. There have been times (even recently) over the past several years that I have wanted to get a hair cut but I just couldn’t manage to get out of the house for that. Getting your hair done is something that somehow makes you feel really good even if you are still in a lot of pain. It is hard to explain I suppose. I just want to share about Kerstyn and her business because I think a lot of people can benefit from it and she did a really great job with my hair. I am very happy with it. :) If you would like to check out her facebook page, here is a link, All About You Feel free to check it out and like her page! :)

If you are interested in seeing a before picture, here is what I looked like at the beggining of February before I started getting my hair much shorter (and shortly after I had cut a few inches off my hair already myself). The background on this photo is that I was excited to be wearing my spring coat again and took the photo. I had it cut a bit shorter on Feb 20 before going all the way to what I have left now. :) I wanted to make gradual changes. lol

1779305_10151911700486697_457975593_n

 
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Posted by on March 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

You Matter

Hello again.

You matter. Two very simple yet powerful words when put together. You, the person reading these words, you matter. I may not know you personally or what you are going through but I know that you matter. We all do. Whether you have anyone around you that recognizes that or not doesn’t change your value. Whether you contribute to society or not, you matter. Whether you are disabled, healthy, smart, productive, a millionaire or barely scraping by… you matter.

This is a terribly personal post because this is something I struggle with deeply. I look at myself and how little I am able to contribute and I feel like I don’t matter. I tend to base my worth on what I can or can’t accomplish and because of that, I struggle to see that I matter. Someone I know, recently said those words to me and I think they meant it and I realized just how much it means to me when someone tells me that I do matter. I have value. I would be missed if I died. I broke down in tears hearing those simple words. This person did not say “you matter to me” because that isn’t the point. What meant so much to me was that I matter. period. I have value. I am tearing up thinking about it. So I am sharing this with anyone who is reading this. You matter as well. Whether you have won a nobel prize or you’re just a regular joe, you matter.

I truly mean these words that I am writing. If you would walk up to me on the street and ask me if you matter, I would say yes and I would mean it. You may feel unlovable, worthless, not good enough or useless and the world would be better without you in it but it isn’t true. You may have someone telling you that you are worthless or maybe stupid but that is their opinion and the truth is they don’t know what they are talking about and you do matter. You may be thinking “well you don’t know me…” You may have done things that you are not proud of and wish you could undo but it doesn’t change the fact that you matter and you have value. We have all done things we are not proud of, including the people who you admire and you think matter more than you. How do I know this? Because I struggle with this and I am learning this myself. We are all put here for a reason. If we are put here for a reason, that means that we matter. Just because society places more importance on one person than another doesn’t mean that they matter any more than you do. What society places value on can be a bit messed up. Whether you have no friends or a thousand friends changes nothing when it comes to how much you matter. You have value whether a single person sees it or not.

I do not know if this post has been helpful or not but I hope it has. I know that I am not the only one that struggles with feelings of being worthless or not good enough. I have a feeling that it may be more common than we realize. So that is why I am writing this post – to share something I struggle with and I think other people may also be struggling with secretly. Thanks for taking time to read my blog. :)

 
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Posted by on February 22, 2014 in Uncategorized

 
 
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