Little Bits of Happy

My in-progress felt banner kit. You just have to  sew on sequins.

1. Don’t you love it when a problem resolves itself? Quite awhile ago, after cleaning the stove top, one of the burners wouldn’t light. I figured once it dried out it would be okay. Weeks go by and I am still lighting it by hand. Then my lighter ran out of fluid and I realized the burner was actually igniting.

2. I did some updating on my computer and I didn’t wreck it!  (I will write specifics in a future post.)

3.  A few years ago I got prescription reading glasses.  I only needed them for reading paperbacks or at night when I was tired or the light wasn’t very good (like in our trailer).  Over time I have found myself wearing them more and more, but still just for reading.  The other night I was working on my felt banner for spring and realized I couldn’t tell the difference between the tiny x for orange and the tiny, solid diamond for purple.  What? Then I remembered my glasses.  Turns out I can use them for more than just reading.   🙂 (I suppose that is more of a “duh” moment but I am happy to be able to see the pattern clearly.)

4.  Just when I thought we were going to have to turn the air-conditioning on the weather cooled back down.  I am hoping we can hold out at least until April.


Finally, I am going to take a mini blogging break.  My son’s spring break is next week so we will be immersed in family fun.  I am letting you know so you don’t wonder where I am.  Personally I hate it when a blogger I am following disappears.  I have a very vivid imagination and I always think of all kinds of crazy scenarios, most of which I hope aren’t true for them.

Happy Spring and Happy Easter!!

A Visit to the Doctor

And the Doctor said….

“No more monkeys jumping on the bed!”  (Sorry, I couldn’t resist, that line is stuck in my head!)

But first let’s go through the events leading up to the appointment.

I was having all the symptoms of my thyroid medicine not being effective.  I was tired, cold, crabby and my skin was itchy.  I got my blood drawn and my TSH was .87?  That is the lowest it has ever been which should have meant I was feeling great.  Tired and crabby could be from anything but feeling cold and dry itchy skin say thyroid to me.

I had to wait three weeks for an appointment to see the doctor.  Over time I started to feel a bit better and I thought about cancelling the appointment but I didn’t.  That TSH level worried me. My dry skin improved as did the crabbiness a bit.  I still felt chilly most of the time and I was still tired.  But it seemed like a different type of fatigue from my usual thyroid symptom. Maybe it was related to perimenopause or low iron or something?  I was also feeling a bit edgy.  Not quite to the level of jittery but certainly a bit off.  I was starting to have sleep issues again, waking in the middle of the night and taking a long time to get back to sleep.  Was my thyroid medicine now too high? Or was it really the start of perimenopause?

I started to worry about what I was going to say to the doctor.  I think my body is trying to drive my mind crazy?  And she would respond, ” Yes it is and there is nothing to be done about it.  You’ll just have to live with it and hopefully after a year or two your mind will be returned to you.  That is what happens to most women.”

And then I had this wonderful dream scenario where the doctor said, ” I prescribe complete rest in the evening.  Between 5 and 6 pm you need to retreat to bed with a book or the couch and tv. Under no circumstances are you to prepare or clean up dinner.  You may be brought a tray with a light meal and a piece of dark chocolate. I will call your husband and explain this to him in no uncertain terms.”

So with a smile on my face I headed to the doctor’s office.

Here is what really happened:

I actually felt rather nervous going to the appointment.  I really was feeling better but the TSH result still bothered me.  What exactly was I going to complain about?  I mean, what exactly was my complaint?

My Doctor was wonderful.  She listened, she laughed at my nervous jokes and she gave some thought to my test results.  She said she doesn’t think I am crazy.  I had more blood drawn to test to see if I really am in perimenopause.

We also made a  thyroid game plan.  First up is an ultrasound of my thyroid. My thyroid has never been examined so she wants to make sure there isn’t any swelling or a goiter that isn’t overtly obvious yet.  At the end of April she wants to run a thyroid panel and see if my TSH level drops any further.  If it does she will look at adjusting my thyroid medication.  She said it was “interesting” looking at my TSH levels over the last three plus years as they have declined from 4.28 to 2.31 to 1.88 to .87.  I don’t think that is typical and hence the ultrasound.

So while nothing has been resolved  I do feel better mentally.  Steps are being taken and I feel like have a grasp of the situation.  I love being able to see the results of my tests online.  I feel much better informed at seeing the numbers and not just hearing “you are in the normal range”.  I am not sure if the doctor would have noticed the downward trend of my TSH if I had not pointed it out.   My doctor did confess that I was her first perimenopausal + thyroid patient and she didn’t know if going into menopause would affect my thyroid function.

For now I just have to wait, get the ultrasound done and go from there.  I will continue eating healthy, get my 10k steps a day in and deal with sleep issues as best I can.  I will take care of myself.

To be continued….


An Old-Fashioned Evening



(Brought to you by Directv’s lack of an agreement with the Pac-12 Network)

In keeping with today’s theme I wrote the first draft of this post long hand. You know, on paper with a pen.

Last Friday night I listened to the University of Arizona basketball game ON THE RADIO.  I sat at the kitchen table and sewed nine patch quilt squares while listening to a very exciting game. (My Wildcats lost in OT to Oregon.)   The evening was remarkably calming though.  Those two squares were the best sewing I have ever done. (I am not very good at sewing.)  I relished both the drama of the game and my sense of sewing accomplishment. The evening felt wonderfully… mellow? Entertaining and yet relaxing?  I have struggled to find just the right descriptive word. Seems I can’t accurately describe an old-fashioned evening on a new fangled blog 🙂 .

The evening certainly felt different but in a really nice way.  Maybe it was just the change in routine, doing something oddly novel while still in the familiar comfort of home.  I can’t remember the last time I deliberately sat and listened to the radio in the evening but I hope to do it more often in the future.  Maybe I should send a thank you to Directv. Nah.

A Laundry Experiment

A lovely little breeze helping to dry the clothes.

Lately dinner and laundry have been battling for who will be my top nemesis. Right now dinner is winning. As for laundry I decided to try something different this week: I didn’t do it. For six straight days I ignored dirty clothes as they piled up in the hamper. On the seventh day I sorted all that laundry into four piles: reds, whites, darks and lights. But I still didn’t wash it.  The only reason I sorted it out was because the hamper was at max capacity.

I decided to wait until Friday (today) to do the laundry for a purely devious reason.  My husband was off work and he was planning on painting the large gate that the HOA had sent a letter complaining about.  The fact that I pointed out months ago the gate needed painting made no impression.  A thirty day deadline seems to have worked.  Now I know my husband and he will pretend incompetence in order to somehow suck me into helping (as he does with any major task that he really doesn’t want to do).

I have learned to be prepared and am becoming adept at planning an avoidance strategy.  My mission this time has bill paying and finishing the taxes lined up to commence as he starts his painting project.  I decided to throw the laundry task in as well.  It would add another layer of “see how busy I look” to my day.

I feel snowed under by laundry these days.  The sad thing is I used to enjoy doing laundry.  A basket of clean clothes always seems like such a nice accomplishment.  Now there is just too much.  I typically do two to three loads,  four or five days a week.   I hang much of it outside to take advantage of the dry air, heat and sunshine here.  In the summer clothes dry quicker on the line than in the dryer!

Each individual step of the process doesn’t take much time but at the end of the day it all adds up. I know delaying doing laundry isn’t going to be very helpful.  The same amount will still have to be done. But it felt really nice to not do laundry for a whole week.

Here is what happened when I didn’t do laundry for a week:

  1. No one complained about not having clean clothes.  This is America, our closets are full.
  2. The washer did not start crying from neglect.
  3. I did not get a ticket from the laundry police.

After a week off my loathing for laundry seems a bit less intense.  Interesting.  Maybe I just need a new routine? Hmmm.  Do I really want to think about how I do laundry?  No. I think I just want to do it fewer days a week.  At least once in awhile.  I can make that happen.

Happy Laundry Day!!

Tears of Joy


It is embarrassing to admit but I have a tendency to tear up over sporting events. When I attend in person I almost always have to blink a bit during the National Anthem. I know how lucky I am to live in such a great country but really listening to the words of “The Star Spangled Banner” reminds me of how hard we have had to fight to keep it free.


gabe york

Photo by  Casey Sapio of USA Today Sports

Often I feel a lot of reaction to great plays in sports.  I think it is weird but I can’t seem to do anything about it.  I know it is just happy emotions spilling out my eyes.  This weekend? University of Arizona basketball.  Senior Day.   Gabe York firing four threes in a row?  Three of them in 54 seconds?  The celebrating joy of the entire Wildcat team?  Visiting the “A” center court as he left his home court floor for the final time? I had to grab a tissue.




Today Peyton Manning is announcing his retirement. Has there been a better professional athlete?  What if all athletes with Peyton’s level of talent also exhibited his other attributes: work ethic, sportsmanship, charity, devotion to team, gratitude? It is hard to stop listing all of the positive things Peyton Manning exemplifies.  Can you imagine a NFL, NHL, NBA, MLB and Nascar completely populated with players like Peyton Manning?  Yes, there are some other great players out there, Stephen Curry comes to mind.  But there are too many players who are only playing for their paycheck.  Too many who don’t appreciate that raw talent isn’t enough and so they squander it.

It can be a challenge to find good role models for my son.  I hope whoever takes over for Peyton Manning realizes it is not just about what you do on the field, but how you do it.  That with the big paycheck comes a responsibility off the field as well.

I am hoping to watch Peyton Manning’s press conference.  Will I cry?  Maybe.  But they will be happy tears for a career well played and a life well lived.


Photo from:

Thank You Peyton Manning!!

Change of Season


It was a relief to flip the calendar to March. With 16 days 80° or warmer it is nice to see the word Spring on the calendar. Every time I looked at February I thought I was on the wrong month since it felt more like April!


I walked the dog this morning about 9:30.  It was warm enough not to wear a jacket and a light layer of cloud cover kept the sun from feeling too harsh.


Lots of bird song and buzzing bees in the air.


The trees are still bare but that meant I could see this bird (right in the center).



Turns out it is really hard to get a picture of a bee but can you see the two blurs?

Not too many flowers out yet but I found a few.




Love these little daisy like flowers right next to the walkway to the school.


The blossoms on the lemon tree smell wonderful.



I did my winter pruning of the rose bush in January and it has leafed out wonderfully, I even have a few buds.  Rose bushes aren’t supposed to do well here in pots but I keep it in the shade during the summer afternoons and just let it get a bit of early morning sun during the worst of the heat.



I have had this chrysanthemum for four years now!  I keep it in the shade all summer and somehow it survives the heat.



It is too wonderful having a bit of year around green in the neighborhood.  I wonder how much water these bushes use?



I think they kind of look like hershey kisses.