Day to day stuff....a memoir without order.
Imagination is described by Webster as...The act or power of forming a mental image of something not present to the senses in reality. Albert Einstein said "Logic will get you from A to B, but imagination will take you everywhere."
I never realized it until I read it somewhere but there are ways to boost one's imagination:
Create a visual journal
Draw whatever you see for 15 minutes a day. You don't need to be an artist.
Think like an artist
Cut out pictures from magazines & piece them together to create an original image.
Listen to Bach
Close your eyes while playing your favorite music. Or listen to the sounds of nature on a CD or in the great outdoors.
Play word games
Try thinking of as many words as you can that begin with MAR...or you pick.
Let your mind wander, or focus on a single object & study its characteristics.
Everyone has a story....here's mine.....c
|Today was grocery-shopping day which I have decreased to twice a month for the last year, used to go every week. Today was my first time as a Covid, fully-vaccinated person and even though I continue to wear a mask and distance when possible, I must say I felt so much better in the store than I have for months! I know it may not be true, but I felt so much safer from catching the virus. Of course, I hope it is true.
|I had my second Covid shot on the 17th and still only a sore arm for a couple of days. So happy that is over.
Zoom meeting today with my writing pod, so looking forward to that. We are a memoir pod of mostly little old ladies, not very exciting, but when you've been cooped up for so long, all social contact is welcome, enjoyed, and relished!
My PMR is still under control with the Prednisone, alternating 10 mg and 5 mg every other day this month. Next month, 7 1/2 mg every day. My doc says 7 1/2 is the turning point for adverse symptoms to my glaucoma and osteoporosis. It has certainly made the pain go away.
I'm getting a new roof next week. Hopefully, the rain will stay away as I have a tiny leak which started about 2 weeks ago with that weekend deluge. The contractor says two days and it will be finished, pending the weather of course.
Our weather is beautiful right now, chilly at night (40s) but absolutely lovely during the day (70s). I think we are having our few days of spring here in Florida. I planted some herbs last weekend and in seven days hope to see some tiny leaves...except for where a silly squirrel has been messing around. There are many many birds at my feeders, having a grand time, and I hear the sandhill cranes coming to or going from Payne's Prairie. It's hard to tell which.
|I had my first Covid shot on January 18th and am scheduled for my second on February 17th. I hope everyone in my age group is doing as well. I experienced only a sore arm with the first but expect a few stronger symptoms with the second...more after the 17th.
I'm still on Prednisone (low dose) for my PMR, but thankfully I have very mild symptoms at this stage of trying to decrease the daily amount. Although Pred has some potentially serious side effects, to me it remains a miracle drug. I would surely be using a walker without it.
One of my dear writer friends passed away last Tuesday. She was the leader of the Life History Group I have been attending for seven or so years now. Of course, for the past year we have not met in person, and only last month did she let us know her breast cancer had returned. She was deeply involved in her small town's history and was the editor of an online town newspaper, The Waldo Phoenix. The paper's name tells you a lot about the town and about Penny. I will miss her.
|I've had another flare of PMR (polymyalgia rheumatica) and am back on Prednisone. Unlike when I was first diagnosed, the Prednisone did not work immediately this time, took a little over a week, but now I am feeling 100% better. Hoping I will not be on it as long this time, over 3 years the first time.
Finally, I am having the exterior of my house painted. I kept putting it off because I feel so "invaded" when people I don't know are in close proximity, but I bit the bullet from necessity and on Friday had a swarm of painters outside. They will be back on Monday. I tend to hibernate inside which, durng this time of Covid, is becoming normal. I had to take down my bird feeder and bath, and the birds are fussing at me.
|Well, I rescheduled my eye appointment, not feeling particularly comfortable going at this time. Only a delay though, until October 20th, and probably nothing will have changed by then. Although I have no urgent problem, I do have glaucoma (high pressure), which is monitored every six months and treated daily with eye drops. So I should keep my October appointment I suppose.
Nothing much is happening around my house for which I'm very thankful considering what is going on other places. My computer sits in front of a window with a view of the street in front of my house so nothing much gets past me as I'm at the computer a lot. I write short stories for a couple groups I'm part of and I'm continuously (for years now) working on a memoir. Closer to the window is a bird feeder, bird bath, and a hummingbird feeder so I have many distractions. The hummies are not eating quite as much as they were. I think in October they begin to leave for distant places, but I will continue to refill every 4 days. Otherwise the mix goes putrid in the 90+ degree weather we have now. The water in the bird bath has to be changed every day. I have noticed that once one bird gets in, they all want in, splashing, shaking, acting just like little kids.
I will be happy to see fall this year even though fall in Florida lasts about two days or that's what it seems like anyway. My back porch is not usable in the summer, too too hot. I will enjoy sitting in the porch swing again, even napping in it, listening to the crows, the bluejays, the woodpeckers, and of course the neighboring doggies, all sounds of fall to me.
|I have a doctor's appointment (eye) this coming Friday and can't decide whether to go or not. I expect I will end up going. A notifying letter (email) said to come alone if at all possible and wear a mask, which I will since that has become the norm for going anywhere. One of my prescriptions I was able to pick up through a drive-though but the other I had to go inside. Before I could enter the building my temperature was taken and I was asked a few pertinent Covid questions.
School started here in Alachua County yesterday, public schools showing a 35% actual attendance, the rest on-line in some fashion. The U of F (60,000 students) also welcomed 50% in-person attendance yesterday. I haven't been out for anything yet so I don't know the effect on traffic but I'm sure it has increased dramatically.
I have new neighbors on both sides and have met neither as of today. Both have several vehicles lined up on their driveways. I guess that's the norm now. Maybe their garages are filled with moving stuff and will contain some of the cars later when everything is put away. Both have been quiet so who could ask for more. Hope to meet them soon.
Sometimes I think we seniors are being culled by Covid, even purposely. In the beginning there were special shopping times for seniors but that has disappeared, warnings as well. I guess we are smart enough to know what to do. It is interesting how younger people are so relatively free from concern, carelessly playing with the much longer life they have left whereas old folks like me guard our remaining short time here so fiercely.
|My writers' group had its third monthly program yesterday via Zoom. It's beginning to feel like the norm, like a real get-together. At first the Zoom meetings were so stilted and distanced, everyone wondering what to do, how to act, what to say, dwelling on appearance in that Hollywood Squares spotlight, but now it seems like any other meeting...almost. We always have a board meeting prior to the program and that is becoming the norm as well. People are used to raising their hand to be recognized whereas in our in-person meetings, somehow we knew when to speak by other signals. I guess you can get used to anything.
I live in Florida, the State with astronomically climbing positive test results. I don't go out often, just for groceries once every 2 weeks, and prescriptions, thankfully only 2 every 90 days. I always wear a mask and I carry my own hand sanitizer and keep socially distanced as best I can.
The University and College in my town are planning to re-open on August 31st with a low percentage of in-person classes, mainly labs that cannot be done online but I suppose the dorms will be open, haven't read anything about that yet. Our population will swell by several thousands if that happens. Schools are being bullied into re-opening as well but no definite date set as far as I know. Times are scary but life goes on...for most.
|Yesterday I attended my neighbor's little girl's dance recital on Zoom. She was so excited to be able to show her stuff because programs with covid restrictions are not easy. It went very well with some of the girls performing on the outdoor studio stage and others performing in their homes. Abby performed from home and of course was perfect, cartwheels and all. Gosh, I wish I was that limber! It was really nice to look forward to something special on Sunday again.
Several shops and restaurants are open now with 50% limitations. I don't feel comfortable going to any of them yet. Our library branches have instituted a drive-up for books on hold. I rode past the last time I took Mr. Truck for a drive and noticed a very long line. Uh-uh. I'll continue with the electronic system for now.
I noticed several basil plants growing (on their own from an old plant I had pulled up last fall) outside my kitchen door. The confederate jasmine on my fence is blooming profusely. My hummies are back and cardinals and chickadees are splashing in the birdbath. Mother Nature has no regard for covid and in fact I think she likes it.
|My poor little desk calendar is so empty. I'm writing things on it like "took the truck for a ride to no place for nothing." Sad. But on the other hand, I have been painting and reading...a lot. My sleep hours are all messed up, napping too much during the day and remaining bug-eyed at night. Will we ever be back to normal, whatever that is, I'm beginning to not remember.
Some things are continuing in this funny time of pandemicese. The lawn guy comes as usual every two weeks. Grocery shopping must happen unless one orders for delivery. I still go to the store although it is not as pleasant an experience as it used to be. My Publix has aisle arrows for direction and I am amazed at the people who don't bother to look or look and don't care. I try to get outside every day to do a little yard work, weeding, picking up pine cones, filling the bird feeders and refreshing their water. I resist going to the mail box every day for junk mail.
Yesterday I tried following a youtube exercise video (for seniors) and could only get through 20 minutes of it. And it was not difficult, believe me. I need a video on motivation...or a kick in the butt!
|This is day 49 of our "self-imposed" stay-at-home order here in Florida. I say self-imposed because in the end it really is up to us whether we comply or not.
Like many others, I have been experimenting with new recipes. Yesterday I decided try a curry dish that I made a while back, mainly because I had a sweet potato, one of the main ingredients. It is a crock pot recipe and since I had only one sweet potato and the recipe called for two, I halved everything. The time I made it before, I don't recall any bad side effects, even though I eat curry infrequently and sometimes spicy food upsets my tummy so beware if you have a spicy food problem. To me, it smells delicious while cooking and does get better with time. I had it over some brown rice, but will have the rest alone for lunches. Hope you enjoy it if you decide to give it a try.
African Peanut Curry (for the crock pot) serves 6
1 T olive oil
4 cloves crushed garlic
2 small yellow onions - chopped
2 sweet potatoes - diced
1 T curry, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp chili powder
2 cups vegetable broth
1 tsp salt (less depending on how salty your veggie broth is)
1/3 cup peanut butter
1-27 oz can crushed tomatoes
1-14 oz can chickpeas
1 diced red pepper
2 cups chopped spinach
1/4 cup chopped peanuts
Combine all ingredients in crock pot through the crushed tomatoes.
Cook on high for 5 hours or on low for 8 hours.
In last hour add chickpeas and red pepper.
Stir in spinach when ready to serve and top with peanuts.
Serve over rice, quinoa, orzo or eat alone. Even better when left in fridge overnight to meld flavors.