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Showing posts from February, 2010

Thanks, God!

Since B's appointment on Monday, and her subsequent change in medication, we've all had a bit of a reprieve this week. B is feeling better and it's so nice to see her working on school work or crafts peacefully, rather than being in mental hell all the time. Thanks, God!

I find myself drifting off into nap land each afternoon for a wee bit. That's how the soup got burned on Wednesday, but I figure it also means I'm a bit more relaxed (and obviously chronically over-tired). The fact that my body is "letting go" a bit this week is something I'm grateful for. Thanks, God!

I finally (after living here for more than a year) found a curtain-rod solution for the 79 inch wide living room vertical blinds fixture. We live on the ground floor with no privacy fence around our very small patio. The good thing about this is that ample sunlight can come in through our big sliding glass doors. The bad news is, if we want to avail ourselves of said sunlight, …

Somewhere, Deep Underground

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Is that a grimace of terror on my face, am I merely camera shy, or am I having fun? Combination of all of the above, I think.

Yet Will I Rejoice in the Lord

17Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls:

18Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.

This verse from the Holy Prophet Habakkuk was read in Matins this morning. It was what I clung to the two times Wes was unemployed and I descended into utter panic (the way I've done this week). And yet, in those times, God cared for us. We never missed a meal and our bills were somehow paid.

A good reminder of what is what. God is in control and he knows our needs. I need to learn to rest in him. This fear of mine is sin, plain and simple. (I tend to reduce my view of my own sinfulness to how many times I yelled at my kids, but in reality this lack of trust in God goes a bit deeper, doesn't it? A good lenten lesson.)

Our family was able to make it to the Liturgy …

About Insurance Costs

Last night, at the pharmacy, I just about fell over. B's main med is over a thousand dollars a month. She's on three others which, thankfully, are generic. We pay 20% of the meds. That's over 200 a month in meds out of pocket.

I was thinking that we had several thousand in our FSA. (Flexible Spending Account). I found out we started the year with $1500. Only enough for our deductible.

Once that is met, we pay 30% and they pay 70%...that's tier two. Tier one coverage is 90/10.

There are no child psychiatrist on either tier. Hence the kerfluffle with the insurance company over whether they will pay for Bingham. Supposedly, they will pay at the 30/70 rate, but if they pay the pretend negotiated rate as opposed to the rate we paid up front, we will be screwed.

Oh wait! We are screwed already!

And they might say Bingham is covered, but does that mean that one small therapist there is covered, or everyone? I think they go by each one who works there, and not…

It's Him! It's Him!

A year or so ago, I was sitting in some doctor's office and picked up a magazine. It was something local, and had a big long feature of the top ten doctors in the Louisville area. There was one featured as being the top Child Psychiatrist here in town: Dr. Peters. I remember thinking "yeah, right! Like, we'll ever get to see him." He looked young, with surfer-dude hair and that certain je ne sais quois air of confidence. I read the article. I might have said a little prayer.

It never occurred to me to try to get in to see him specifically. What hope was there after all? At the time I was not familiar enough with Louisville to remember the clinic...or perhaps we couldn't get in because the clinic was out of network. At any rate, I set the thought aside.

Today was Bethany's appointment at Bingham Clinic. I'd had Bethany write up in her own words what she's been experiencing. I also wrote up what we'd been observing. Observing...HA! I…

Today's the Day!

We have an appointment at 3 pm for B at Bingham Clinic. Any and all prayers are appreciated:

-that God would grant a good rapport between us and the doctor(s)
-that there would be help for Bethany
-effective medications
-that a better/more complete diagnosis could be had, of all she has going on
-that the mystery of her involuntary movements would be solved
-So that she can lead a calm and peaceful life
-that our insurance will approve of these expenses (like they said they would) and pay their part
-that God would have mercy on us. I'm all worn out. We all are. We need some strength.

Or, in lieu of all this, complete and miraculous healing. That would be good, too. God's will be done.

Time for a Pot of Chocolate!

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I've been busy yesterday and today! I went to the thrift store and found this oh-so-charming little teapot! Isn't it just darling? I had to add it to my tea pot collection. The other tea pots in my tea pot cabinet will just have to move over and make room. Hopefully they will all be friends with each other soon.

Additionally, my little shopping spree yielded a sweater and a cute terry cloth hoodie/pants combo for Ariana, a pair of exercise pants for me, TWO gorgeous skirts (one is black crinkle with lace applique and black sequins, and the other is a silk crinkle skirt that fades from brown at the hem to coral higher up, with brown embrodery embellishments. And last but not least, a denim Anthropologie Jacket with a bit of embroidery work on it. Getting that jacket represtents hope, because it's just a tad too small for me, yet. But I am shrinking. Hope.

What I was looking for were smaller blue jeans, and after putting a gazillion pairs in my cart to try on, I…

It's Even Better with Cauliflower!!!!

Here it is: The definitive Nourishing Traditions friendly, GAPS legal, Metabolism Miracle legal, and lenten New England Clam Chowder!

1 large onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
sautee in a couple of Tablespoons of coconut oil.

When onions are clear, add:

1 T. sea salt (I don't really measure, I just dump some in, but it was at least that much and it was perfect, not too salty)
juice from 3 cans of Bumblebee clams
3 bags of frozen cauliflower
64 oz. water
pepper, parsley and italian seasoning to taste

Let boil until cauliflower is very tender, then remove from heat and blend. If it seems like the water has boiled down a bit too much, add a couple of cups back in.

Return to heat, add clams and whisk in 1/4 cup coconut flour to thicken it up a bit.

All those who deigned to eat this, which did not include his and her royal persnickitinesses, LOVED this soup.

Did I mention that I love my new immersion blender?

And did I mention that I've lost over 18 inches of fat since a month…

Calling All Russians or Russophiles

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My friend found this at the antique store and wants to know what the words are on the medallion. I told her I could hook her up with that information. Here it is:

Shrimp!

How to thaw frozen pre-cooked shrimp:

Open bag
dump in big bowl.
Run hot water over it. Let it sit for a few minutes. Drain, and repeat maybe once. The shrimp thaws very quickly.

If you are making a stir fry, de-tail them and add them at the very end. (For years I ate rubbery shrimp added too soon until I figured out what to do.)

Or, serve the shrimp with ketchup and mustard to dip in. Tastes REMARKABLY like hotdogs.

If you are eating bread (like most of the known universe), stuff those puppies into a hot dog bun, add some mustard, ketchup, relish, veg. chili and onions and enjoy the fact that hot dogs and shrimp are both sort of bland and non-descript and can apparently be interchanged with ease.

In need of...

Knitting inspiration! Help! I'm all sick and tired of knitting endless pairs of wool socks (although my kids do love them), for they instantly go through the laundry and become shrunken and felted. I finally figured out that my husband, who finds the hand washed socks on top of the dryer, is the culprit who tossed them into the wash. Grrrr. Communication error. And the other thing about wool socks: they get holes in them really really easily.

I finally finished a small stack of stuff for some nieces and nephew last night at knitting group, and happily spent some time looking at wedding dress patterns for a gal who is going to be getting married this summer. Girly fun!

And I less-than-happily darned a few socks (see above).

So, I need knitting inspiraton. I really want to knit a sweater, but am worried that such an endeavor would ultimately result in a shrunken felted sweater, too, if I used wool.

Furthermore, there's the budgetary difficulty of buying enough yarn f…

What on Earth?

Today I saw a wild turkey, (or a tail-less peacock?) walking on the shoulder of I-64 West in Louisville.

I'm so VERY glad it was not walking in the travel lanes, since it IS lent. ;-)

Dental Gadget Fun (ha!)

It seems like I'm getting less and less fond of going to the dentist as I get older. Perhaps because my teeth seem to require more of everything, and so things have intensified in the dental care department.

It almost feels like since starting the guaifenesin protocol for fibromyalgia five years ago, that my dental health really has gone down hill. Perhaps this is because I can't use listerine or any other anti-germ mouth wash anymore. They ALL contain mint which prevents the guaifenesin from working.

I have more dental care gadgets now that I use regularly than I ever even knew existed a year ago. Sad, but true.

So here is my gear and what I think of each item:

-Toothbrush: tried and true. I don't care what brand, as long as the bristles are soft. Seems I get some fancy schmancy one every time I go to the dentist for a cleaning these days, which is so often (every three months) that they practically keep me supplied for free.

-Tom's of Maine Cinnamon Clove t…

This Side of Heaven

Snow is falling thickly outside today, on the first day of lent. I smile when I think of the book titles tying lent and spring-time together, because from where I sit right now, spring seems like it's a million years away. Winter surrounds us in a way that has not been seen in Kentucky for many many years. I think there's more snow this year than I've ever seen in the more than 20 years I've called this State home.

I was reflecting the other day on the significance of Christ's resurrection, and what it means for our every day lives. Because part of me, the broken and depressed part no doubt, hears the proclamation "Christ is risen!" and my internal response is "So what?"

What IS the significance of the resurrection of Christ? Is it merely a historical "happened long ago" fact that means there's a nice Church for me to go to in Sundays, and a beautiful liturgy for me to participate in? There is that, but there's also way m…

Creamed Broccoli Clam Chowder-GAPS/Metabolism Miracle/lenten

1 large onion
2 stalks celery

chopped and sauteed in either a bit of water or non-olive oil. ;-)

When onions are clear, add:

1 family pack sized bag of frozen broccoli,
64 oz. water
1 tablespoon salt
pepper to taste
a generous sprinkling of garlic powder
juice from three cans of clams

bring to boil and cook until broccoli is tender.

Blend soup with an immersion blender (or put through a blender). I left some chunks of broccoli, but much of it was nicely pureed.

Return to heat and whisk in 1/4 cup coconut flour to thicken. This thickens nicely and quickly.

Add clams.

Stir and serve.

Could also use frozen cauliflower (or a head of fresh cauliflower) for a more
potato-like soup.

Whimsy

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I do think Beatrix Potter's art work is just so darned cute! I'm probably breaking a law for posting this picture, but I lifted it off another blog, similarly posted.

Exciting Update!

Continued prayers, please, but things are looking good!

The doctor-who-is-not-to-be called me back and she had spoken with one of the top honchos as THE place here in town that has been recommended. It's part of the University of Louisville's Hospital System.

I'd called there last week trying to get her in, and was turned down because they are supposedly full.

Well, the nice doctor we saw today called her buddy there and they spoke about B's case, and he said he wants to squeeze her in. His "solo" (I think that's like a resident) has a particular interest in Childhood Schizophrenia and clinically difficult cases are attractive to teaching hospitals. I guess I did not sell B's case very well the other day, eh?

So on Thursday (when Dr. honcho guy goes back in to the office, he's going to speak with the folks in the intake department, and then on Friday I'm to call them and get an appointment for Bethany. If they have not heard of me, the…

"She's too sick and I'm not qualified to treat her!"

Things have been really difficult for my oldest lately. She's developed some sort of movement disorder, which really distresses her. Involuntary arm and leg movements. Is it a side effect of her meds? We don't know. A trip to her doc last week yielded a new drug to try because she happened to have some samples on hand. Okeee-dokeee then. The new drug (B had a total of four doses before we refused to give her any more) sent her, like clockwork, into the blackest pit of depression and despair-with-a-death-wish that I've ever seen her in. She's never ever been this bad. We took ehr off the new medication and back on the old and tried to call her doctor on Sunday. Result: Doctor was unavailable on the weekend. Not reachable by phone. Okay, fine. So we already had a new doctor appointment lined up for today. We can hang on, right?

The New Doctor Report:

We went and saw a very nice and very honest doctor today. It was an expensive hour, but worth it, I hope…

I'm not READY!!!!!

Lent. Auuuuuuugh!

In the past, Lent has meant a huge amount of mental anguish between following the fast (which includes ALL my favorite foods like bread and bread and bread and some pasta) or following my doctor's diet, which feels like: Ech. Very anti-climactic and hard because it does NOT include bread and also doesn't really feel like fasting per se, when the rest of the community is eating the opposite. I know that in years past I've come to Pascha feeling sick and wearing maternity clothes from becoming so bloated in my belly from the carbs. Yech. But I also know the anti-climnactic feeling of looking at those eggs in the Pascha basket and thinking: Not more eggs! Because the low carb diet I'd been on included too many of them for too long.

So how do I find the balance?

I think I like to go around feeling pious by doing certain things (like eating bread durning lent) when deep down I know that I'm being utterly unspiritual and catering precisely to …

Litle Nice Things

Well, after talking it over with Wes I did go out and buy that perfect fabric after all. Due to some smart arrangement of pattern pieces on the cloth (and yes, I did pre-shrink it in the washer and dryer), I was able to cut out both a dress and a blouse. Yay me! The blouse might not be for me. If it doesn't fit (I had a trim a few inches off to to running out of cloth) it might become a blog giveaway item. Maybe. Perhaps.

So, that was nice.

It's snowing like crazy today and it's all beautiful today when I look out the window.

Another good thing.

My kids are chatting pleasantly over breakfast and B is being industrious and helpful in the kitchen. (M to E: "I'm undefeated in both Pokemon and Chaotic." E to M: "That's because YOU'VE NEVER PLAYED." M's response: "I intend to keep it that way." Clever.

I get to take B to see a NEW DOCTOR this morning. Hopefully this will be an answer to prayer.

Last night I slept really…

How to Ignore the Super Bowl

I don't get it. We NEVER, and I mean NEVER watch football. My husband doesn't care about it and neither do I. But the Super Bowl, that he must watch. I shouldn't complain. I could be a Monday night football widow, but I'm not. I really should not complain, but there is something uniquely nerve-wracking about the noise of a football game: animated commentators and the ugly crowd noises in the back ground.

And of course it falls to me to prepare some football game appropriate foods. Tonight we raided the freezer to get rid of all our meat and it's home made chicken nuggets (a vast pile and yes, I made them from scratch), a pound of farm fresh pork sausage cooked up (for those of us who can't do the breading on the nuggets), some leftover meatloaf and some leftover chicken somethingorother (crockpot chicken with tomato and onions...? What's it called?)

I think I need to go hide in my bedroom with a movie and some knitting. Or maybe a good book.

I …

Knitting and Noble Ideas

This morning I knitted an entire sock while I sat and listened to lectures at the Climacus Conference of Thoughtful Ascent. The highlight, I must say, was hearing one speaker just totally trash post-modernism in his short introductiory speech this morning. Well worth hearing. And John Granger, of course, was awesome. He talked for two whole hours. All these great erudite things will be on ancient faith radio next week. I'll have to catch the lectures I missed. My kids were getting fried and so I headed home early and missed the last bit of the conference. However, I did pick up a couple of very good books. I'll blog about them another time.

Pray for B, please. She is VERY depressed, and has been for several days.

"And HOW," you ask, "does she ever find time to sew?"

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Well, a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do, and sometimes this girl has to sew. It feeds my soul. Especially experimenting on finding new patterns that will work for my over-large sasquatch shaped body.

And it's that time of winter when a gal is longing for spring!

So, these yens found me the other day in the sewing section of some store or other, and I found this pattern:

It's the McCalls M5451 Easy Stitch 'n Save blouse pattern. I, of course, refused to follow the directions and promptly experimented with turning it into a dress. I was quite thrilled, you see, to find some cream poly challis fabric that had lovely large-ish flowers scattered broadly on it in sort of a watercolor style in pinks, light purples, pale greens...spring time colors. And all for only a dollar sixty per yard. I promptly snatched up four yards of it. Just the right amount to play with and at a price that would not make a sewing disaster a financial disaster.

I'd been th…

Fabulous Blog Find!

Today I was poking around...and came across this web site: http://www.germanorthodoxchurch.org/

This is the second time in one week that I've had the chance to encouner German Orthodoxy. A couple of friends of mine each are from Germany (one originally from Russia and one originally from Ethiopia)...and so we gather sometimes and slip back and forth between German and English.

My friend has an Orthodox prayer book that is in German, and when we prayed together in that language, it really really blessed my heart. Although I grew up in an American speaking home, and of course my parents taught me the Bible in English, my first experience of Sunday School and "churchliness" as in the German language. I think even perhaps the first Bible verse I at least recall intentionally memorizing (other than the first few verses of Genesis) was in German: Isaiah 53:5.

So, this thrills me.