Saturday, July 30, 2011
I need to cut the grass tomorrow - and it's hot and wet and miserable, so I'll get up early and sweat a lot. We walked past the Palm Harbor University High School the last couple of days, and they have four days set aside next week, one for each of the four high school grades, for doling out lockers and parking permits. It has been odd to look at those hugh parking lots with nothing in them, but I guess that will change soon. The summer break doesn't last nearly as long as it did when I was a kid, but I suppose not many of these kids work on their relatives' farms.
Friday, July 29, 2011
I walked the dogs two and a half miles this morning, almost all north and south, and got home not long after the sun came up. My thermometer read 65 degrees, and the paper's prediction was for a low of 75. I guess being close to the coast gives you your own microclimate, because often my measurement is either higher or lower than the extremes the paper predicts. We had a good start to the day.
Then I did some sparking, and picked up Jack and John B. for lunch at Tiffany's. We had a good discussion on a lot of things until Jack expressed a different opinion on the debt ceiling - and John and I disagreed fairly strongly. Years ago we had one strong rule in the bar after work - we never discuss politics or religion. We'll have to be more careful in future.
Dr. Falla called with the results of yesterday's tests - basically everything is OK except for the blocked carotid artery - and Dr. Zuzga will tell me if I'm in trouble Wednesday. Falla agreed that I might have built my own bypass for the blocked artery, but it's up to the surgeon to suggest treatment. I'm working on a list of questions to get answered - just in case. I want to understand what will be done, why it needs to be done, what other choices are available, and how things are going to go before I sign up to anything. I won't be doped up this time.
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.
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