Thursday, May 19, 2016

So What Have We Been Up To Lately?

Not a whole heck of a lot, actually.

We did have a fun few days with Millie when little Diesel from down the street was out running around the neighborhood. He gets out of his yard on occasion and spends the day wandering. We took Millie outside in the front yard, being a little nervous that she might not like another dog in her yard but since Diesel is a little smaller than her she didn't see him as much of a threat. He wanted to play with her and at first she wasn't sure how to do that but caught on quickly. They ran around the front yard chasing each other and play biting, then they would get tired and go back to either sniffing around or laying in the shade.
He is a fun little dog but very very energetic. He ran into the house before we could stop him and I ran around after him trying to get him back out. He discovered the doggy door and bam, out into the backyard for some more running around. Then he discovered the cats and started chasing them and scaring the heck out of them, so no, Diesel, you can't be in the back yard anymore. We got him out front and about 5 minutes later he came back in the house through the doggy door. He had gone to the side gate and managed to dig his way under in that 5 minutes, so now we know how he gets out of his own yard all the time. Keith put some bricks under the fence so he couldn't dig his way under again, something I didn't want to happen since I really didn't want him making himself at home inside our house.

We had a few days in a row where Millie had a little playmate but haven't seen Diesel in a while so his people must have fixed it so he can't dig out of the yard. I kind of miss him and so does Millie!

We ordered an outdoor dog house thing with a waterproof fabric shell and a mesh floor, thinking Millie would use it out in the yard. However, Buddie found it first so it will be his outside hideaway. I thought it was cute that on the front of the box they show an orange cat in the house and that's exactly what we have in it here at home.

It's getting to be summer here, yesterday it was 94 and today supposed to be about the same. Then tomorrow it is supposed to be about 20 degrees cooler which will be nice, but probably the last cool day we will see in a long time. We've been enjoying being able to sit out in the front yard lately but soon it will be just too hot for much of that. I cleaned up the yard the other day, weed whacking and pulling out some overgrown flowers and if I do say so myself it looks pretty nice.
This is the view from the 'porch' which isn't actually a porch, more like a patio I guess. I found some great chairs over at Target for $21.00 each and they are seriously comfortable, much better than the plastic chairs we had.
Well worth the money, the mesh canvas fabric has a little give so you aren't sitting on hard plastic. They are also really lightweight so you can move them from shady spot to shady spot very easily. I think we will really get our money's worth with these plus they are in my favorite shade of aqua blue.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Thunder! and Some Actual Cooking

We don't usually get much in the way of thunderstorms here in Central CA, we don't usually get much in the way of storms period but this spring we've had 3 or 4 of them. Must be El Nino messing about with us.

We had one a few weeks ago where we were sitting watching TV in the evening and all of a sudden Keith jumps up and runs outside. I had no idea what made him jump up and run outside until I went outside too and off in the distance we could see lightning. We watched from the front yard for a while and then it started sprinkling so we went out back and under the little part of the patio that has a cover. Then BOOM! it started absolutely pouring buckets and then it started hailing all while we are huddled under the small roof with no way to get back inside without getting hit by hail. Serves us right for being outside during a thunderstorm.

Last night we had another one, not quite as exciting but the thunder made Millie bark and then since it wouldn't go away when she ferociously barked at it she figured she'd better hide under the bed.
On another note, as everyone probably already knows I really don't like to cook but we have to eat and certainly can't afford to go out every night, so...even though I was home alone last night I actually managed to cook myself a decent meal for once. When it's just me home I tend to eat whatever I can find, which usually isn't much. Dinner is sometimes yogurt and a protein shake or some soy protein cereal. I'm not supposed to eat cereal but did find some lower carb cereals, the Special K protein cereal being one of them. The Special K actually tastes good, too, but you have to look at the portion size, you can't fill that bowl to the top or way too many carbs. It's filling, too, because of the protein, not like regular cereals that leave you hungry in an hour and spike your blood sugar.

I got some fresh zucchini and a red bell pepper and thawed out a chicken breast to marinade. I just put the chicken in a pan with a little olive oil and cooked it for about 9 minutes per side, then sliced the zucchini and pepper and sauteed it in a little butter along with some thawed frozen corn. I added some dried basil and a little salt and pepper while the vegetables were cooking and instead of cooking them until they were soggy, cooked them on a little higher heat so that they crisped up a bit. They looked appetizing, which has been a big issue for quite a while with me and my digestive issues, no appetite, and they tasted really good. I've had a hard time eating chicken lately too what with the lack of appetite but it tasted good too, and healthy.
This may be my go to meal in the future.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Colonoscopy Yay!

I went to see a gastro doctor about my intestinal difficulties a month or so ago and we scheduled a colonoscopy which I did on Monday. I got to spend my Sunday drinking hot tea with no cream and eating jello (gag) and taking ducolax pills and then drinking an entire bottle of miralax mixed with 64 ounces of liquid. 64 ounces of liquid is a lot of liquid to get down in a few hours, but the prep is a whole lot better than it was 9 years ago when I had my last colonoscopy. That prep involved enemas, not just one but two, and no enemas are way better than two of them. The ducolax and the miralax work just fine to clean out your colon and you spend a lot of time on the toilet.

The colonoscopy went fine, I was sort of awake and could hear the doctor and nurses talking but sort of asleep and had some weird kind of dreams but couldn't really feel what they were doing. I had one moment of 'discomfort' and I'm assuming that is when they snipped off the one polyp that they found. They had asked me if it was okay if a pre-med student observed the procedure and I was fine with that, he was just going to be watching the screen so I'm assuming a lot of the talking that I heard was the doctor explaining things to the student.

The doctor thinks that my issues are because my pancreas is not working correctly which is directly related to alcohol use. I haven't had a drink in about 10 years but back in my single days there was quite a bit of beer and margarita drinking and I guess it all catches up with you. Keith is also having pancreas problems, again directly related to alcohol. He's consumed quite a few beers (and whiskey) in his life too. So, no more drinking ever for him and since I don't drink at all anymore, not such a big change for me. It does kind of make me want a gin and tonic though since I know I'll never ever get to have one again!

I go in for my follow up early next month and will probably be prescribed some digestive enzymes that should help and am supposed to eat low fat on top of my low carb diet. Most of us don't really know what the pancreas does, but if it's not working correctly your food is not being digested properly which means your body isn't getting the nutrients out of the foods and actually could lead to malnutrition despite trying to eat a healthy diet. Plus you get DIARRHEA!

Keith is going in for an MRI next week for his pancreas issues and then will go for a follow up with the same gastro doctor that I saw, who I like very much and seems to be very caring and thorough. Keith doesn't get diarrhea but rather pain and vomiting when his pancreas is acting up. If it's not coming out one end, it's coming out the other around here!

We are getting tired of doctor visits though so I'm hoping that we can get ourselves eating the proper foods and him not drinking any beer and get our innards back in shape soon!

Friday, April 22, 2016

Millie and the Hedgehog

When I get tired of chewing on my squeaky hedgehog.
I use it as a handy pillow for my chin!
I took Miss Millie on a little walk to drop some packages off at Office Depot this morning. She was laying on the desk by the front window looking somewhat sad since Keith left yesterday morning so I thought a walk might cheer her up a little. She is doing better on her walks, not pulling as much on the leash and not barking as much at trucks, bikes, etc. I only let her walk through Office Depot if she has taken her poo on the way over, I don't want a repeat of that time she pood in Petco (but what more appropriate place to take a poo?) and if she hasn't taken a poo, carrying it is.

I keep her on a very short leash while walking through the store because she does have a tendency to sniff at people's ankles with her wet little nose and we don't want any startled shoppers. She likes to sniff at the close to the floor displays as we are quickly walking by, especially the ones that have candy in them, those big bags of M&Ms probably smell pretty good to a dog despite the fact that chocolate is very very bad for them.

Later today we will have our afternoon sit in the front yard if it is not too hot. It's been warming up here and we've actually had to turn the a/c on a few times late in the day. Summer starts early up here!

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Is That a Homeless Guy Sleeping in the Grass?

This morning Keith got home from work and while I ran a few errands he said he would take Millie for a walk. She knows what the word 'walk' means and you seriously have to spell it out in front of her so she doesn't get all excited. You can't say walk and then not do it RIGHT THAT MINUTE! So not fair.

She also knows the word 'outside' and that it means we get to go out in the front yard for an hour or so. She has been behaving herself really well while out front, if she starts to wander into the neighbor's yard she will reluctantly come back after a 'Millie' and a point to where she is supposed to be. We have a few stray cats that like to sleep under our big daisy bushes so the first thing she does when she goes 'outside' is to go stick her nose into those daisy bushes to see if there is an OMG! KITTY CAT! under one of them. There sometimes is and the cat goes running and Millie is very good about just watching it go instead of chasing after it after a few times of getting in trouble for doing just that. It's funny that seeing a cat in the yard from inside the house sets her off in a tizzy of barking and growling but if she is outside then she doesn't go as nuts about the whole cats in the yard thing.

Anyway, while I was gone Keith took her for a walk and his idea of a walk is no leash around the neighborhood then a carry across the street and over to the big grassy area behind the Home Depot store. He watches her very carefully and she knows that when he whistles it's time to go to papa.

I ran my errands and then drove back home along the street by the big grassy area, thinking I might see the two of them. I saw a man laying in the grass and at first thought it was a homeless guy taking a nap and then realized that wait a minute, that is not a homeless man, that is Keith laying there and there is Millie wandering about by him.

I swung around and went down the alley between the grass and Home Depot, thinking they might want a ride home, which they did. I was glad he took her for a little outing, she gets a little sad each time he leaves for work and seems to miss him a lot.