Wednesday, July 27, 2011
I don't know how to spell it, but Granita is maybe different, but maybe the same as Italian Ice. It's just sugar water and flavoring - maybe lemon, maybe berries. I never claimed to be perfect - in fact one of my old sayings was "rextine - you dumb XXX!" Of course you can figure it out, but I don't want to be reported to the monitors.
I used brown rice (four cups of water, half a cup of maple syrup, a teaspoon of vanilla, and one cup of cooked rice). It took a long time to cook it so the rice got softer, and the BW decided to blend it afterward. After it was chilled we tried it out after supper, and the tub was full over the top in less than 10 minutes. It is soft serve, so I put it in a plastic container, which is now in the freezer, and we'll see how it works later.
When I saw my internist the last time, he told me to go have a ultrasound of my carotid arteries, because it had been a long time since the last one. I didn't hear anything for four weeks, so I finally called his nurse on Monday, the 11th. They had been clear the last time I had it done, so I didn't think much of it, but I had read that you should always call for results if they don't call you after a test. Anyhow, nothing happened for a week until this week, when he called me and said it looked like there was a 98 pre cent blockage on the left side, and the normal protocol was the follow with a MRI. I asked if that was OK with a pacemaker, and he said no - they would do a CAT scan with contrast on me. Fortunately my kidney is working OK. Anyhow, I had the CAT scan last Thursday.
This morning Lorraine called me, and even though it was his day off, he got the news and called her. There really is a 99 per cent blockage in the rear left carotid artery, and I also have an enlarged lymph node in my neck. I had to show up tomorrow morning for two cat scans because there were also enlarged lymph nodes. So they look at my neck again and my chest. I asked Lorraine if I really needed four arteries to the brain (I didn't even know there were two on each side) and she said yes, you really do. Anyhow, I get the scans and take copies to the first available surgeon (of three choices) which is next Wednesday. I don't think you can put a stent in a 99 pre cent closed artery, and I'm not too keen on having my neck cut open, but it seems as if my internist is excited about it. I also have to find a substitute for the second day of the save driving class, which is more hassle.
This is the fourth time when I get to wonder whether I am a short timer for a while. I can't go back and not be a smoker, and I can't go back and live a cleaner life. I loved those ham and cheese omelets, steaks, and prime ribs, the chili, and the chips and dip. Now I'm stuck with the same body.
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
The BW found a recipe for vanilla ice milk the used a quart of fat free milk, a cup of cooked rice, some maple syrup (1/4 cup) and vanilla. It sounded like a neat idea so I started looking for an ice cream maker. When I was a kid they all worked with ice and rock salt, and the ice cream was custard, with eggs, sugar, and real cream (and sometimes ripe peaches).
It turns out that you can still buy an old fashioned ice cream maker, which would be good if you wanted to make it under a shady tree in the back yard. You can also buy one where you just stick the bowl in your freezer for at least six hours and the mix in the refrigerator for two or three hours, or until it gets cold. Then, in 20 or 30 minutes you have soft serve ice cream but instead of pulling out the paddles and wrapping it in a blanket, you put the ice cream in a closed container and stick it in the freezer for a couple of hours. Or, if you like soft serve, you just eat it now.
I searched the internet and was going to buy a Cuisinart for $49.99 and free shipping from Amazon.com, but Amazon wouldn't take my password. I "successfully" changed the password three times yesterday, and once again today. It still kept saying there was someone else using my e-mail address, so I finally went into Road Runner and set up a new e-mail address for me, and then into Outlook to set up Outlook to collect all the mail from both addresses.
Then we got a coupon from Bed Bath and Beyond for twenty per cent off any one item, and one of the comments was by a lady who had a coupon, the maker was on sale, and she got it for $30. I took the BW to BB&B and the price was $59.99, but with 20 per cent off it only cost $48, and you get instant delivery and the ability to take it back if you hate it. So we now have an ice cream maker.
There is another recipe for chocolate sherbet that can be very low calorie, and you can obviously play with the Italian frozen flavored water (gelato). There was too much going on today, but I think we're going to have fun with the ice cream maker. It only make a quart and a half at a time, but that's enough for one day at least.
Sunday, July 24, 2011
I didn't cut the grass first thing this morning because it was wet. We had three inches of rain the last two or three days, and the BW's new hedge is all perky. If it were a dog the ears would be standing up.
By a quarter to nine it was dry enough, and I did manage to cut it and only clean the mower deck once, at the end of the mowing. The temperature today is going up to 93 or 94 again, and I had to hang both my shirt and jeans in the garage to dry out after I was done. The shirt didn't have any dry places on it - not even the collar.
I dropped out of TOPS this week - turned in all my weight recorder materials to the president and told her that I was going to try a sabbatical. After three years at my goal weight and seven years in TOPS I think I can manage on my own. I do weigh myself every morning and keep a log of my weight, exercise, and food, so between that and Spark People I think I'll be OK. If not, I'll show up again and sign up - like a lot of other people I have seen who stopped and then started again. Time will tell.
Now, if I could get out of Kiwanis and AARP I could look for some other volunteer jobs. I never kept the same job for more than four or five years when I was working for a living, and after that length of time I get tired of what I'm doing now. I'm at that stage with both of the other volunteer jobs now.
Saturday, July 23, 2011
When I got up this morning it felt cooler outside than inside - and it was! It was only 75 degrees outside, and our ride on the trolley turned out to be extremely pleasant. The views over the bridges were incredible, probably because there were no posts to limit them, and partly because I wasn't paying attention to the road to keep from running off or drifting into the oncoming traffic. The front of the trolley had windows, but the pack part just had roll up plastic zipper covers (I assume to keep the rain out.)
There are other, longer range trolleys that have tinted, closed windows and are a little bigger than the one we were on. They are essentially small buses, and they run a lot longer routes than the tourist trolleys. Then there are the PSTA buses. If you buy a pass you can ride any of them any time, so I guess they are all owned by the same organization.
We passed Clearwater beach, which is three miles of sun umbrellas and hoards of people that show up from somewhere. All I get is a quick glance when I'm driving, but hanging out of the trolley you can gawk to your heart's content.
We also toured the downtown of Tarpon Springs, Palm Harbor, Dunedin, and Clearwater as well as all of Clearwater Beach and Sand Key. The trolley doesn't go all the way down the barrier islands - but there is one that covers the whole 30 miles. It's one of those with closed tinted windows, so I'm not sure the tourists would like it unless they want to spend the whole day on the bus.
We saw St. Petersburg trolleys out on the Pier, but I don't know if there is a connection to the northern routes, and they were open like the one we were on.
The BW had a fine time, and we finished up by stopping for a snack before going home.
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