JUDITHWITHROW's SparkPeople Blog http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal.asp?id=JUDITHWITHROW JUDITHWITHROW's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community SparkPeople.com http://assets2.sparkpeople.com/assets/nav/logo_spark.gif http://www.sparkpeople.com/ Rest Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4988092 I found the exercise that works on my weak arms, back and neck! Found it a little too well at yesterday's arthritis class and had to take a pain pill at 1am to get some relief! Whew...did me in! <BR> <BR> The upside is it didn't increase joint pain. I just over did it muscle wise and am recovering today. <BR> <BR> All the exercises my physical therapist showed me in the past, involved weights so they flared up my hands and neck. Not sure how to describe this exercise. Spread your arms t... Thu, 26 Jul 2012 15:56:55 EST Staying Motivated http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4986570 Made it to the pool today for my warm water arthritis class. Did not feel like going but glad I did. Tomorrow is my first Ai Chi water class. I'm curious to see what it involves. It starts at 8:30am...Yikes! <BR> <BR> Got my first cucumber from my garden. It went from tiny to huge in just two days. Guess it was all the rain. <BR> <BR> Stay motivated everyone. Plan your meals and move! Wed, 25 Jul 2012 15:34:18 EST Just for Us Girls http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4984497 Yesterday got rid of my "big girl" panties! Woo Hoo! Tue, 24 Jul 2012 08:54:59 EST I Feel Like Alice http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4983621 I feel like Alice when she drank from the bottle that said "Drink Me". I am shrinking. <BR> <BR> My pants are falling off. My swim suit is too big. My shirts are slipping off my shoulders. My arm chair is roomy. It's easier to roll over in bed. It feels great! <BR> <BR> Went to my first warm water arthritis class and it was just my speed. <BR> <BR> Made a short trip to Costco which was easier. I'm sure it helps that the weather is cooler. <BR> <BR> My son got his new muffler on and it ... Mon, 23 Jul 2012 17:25:58 EST Lost 2 Pounds Last Week! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4981727 Lost 2 more pounds last week! I'm thrilled! My focus and work outs are paying off. My husband had to put my cell phone in his pocket because it was pulling my pants down...lol. A great feeling. <BR> <BR> My husband left for a business trip this morning and while I will miss him, it will be nice to have five days of quiet. My new water exercise classes start this week. I'm excited! <BR> <BR> Have a great Sunday. <BR> Judith Sun, 22 Jul 2012 13:16:53 EST Riding My Exercise Bike on this Cool Rainy Morning http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4980238 Up early this morning. Enjoyed my quiet time while the family slept. <BR> <BR> Didn't feel like it but hopped on my exercise bike and got in a 45 minute ride. Wanted to stop after 20 minutes but pushed myself and did it! My epidural injections have decreased my back, hip and leg pain tremendously and extended my exercise options. Don't get me wrong, it's still not easy but I'm determined! <BR> <BR> Hope to go tot he pool at 3 but since it's rainy here, it might not be open. It's an indoor... Sat, 21 Jul 2012 09:26:06 EST Lightning Closed the Pool so Walked http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4979742 Saved the pool for this evening so my husband could go with me, then bad weather rolled in so the pool was closed. Got in a good walk instead. <BR> <BR> Went out to pick tomatoes. Picked all the ones with some red on them since last night and today's rain was so heavy they were ready to split. Well had so many used my shirt to hold them. My clothes are getting too big and the weight of the tomatoes just about pulled it off my shoulders...lol. <BR> <BR> Can get my capris off without unbutt... Fri, 20 Jul 2012 21:03:38 EST Should I Crawl Back into Bed? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4977881 I was so tempted this morning...to crawl back into bed. My pillow was calling me...lol. <BR> But I did it! I got up and worked out in the pool! Now I'm home and feel so good and proud of myself! <BR> <BR> My tomatoes and zucchini are starting to ripen. Last night I made homemade tomato soup. Tonight I think I will make zucchini with homemade chicken sausage. Yum! <BR> <BR> Last night was stressful so really needed today's workout. Only 3 of my son's 41 credits will transfer to the colleg... Thu, 19 Jul 2012 13:58:11 EST How Much Do I Want it? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4976229 Made it again to the pool today. I am determined! I have put the pool on my calendar for every day and am considering it my therapy appointment. It is my priority just like a docotr's appointment or job. I am digging down deep to make this happen. <BR> <BR> I'm really feeling it in my core and arms. Muscle soreness not increased joint pain so that's good. My hands and wrists are starting to complain so I need to find some support for them. I'm not using the water dumbbells or noodle, it's ... Wed, 18 Jul 2012 13:37:52 EST My Resort Retreat...The YMCA http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4974700 Ive been practicing my visualization skills to turn the Y into my resort retreat. I like to imagine tropical plants and flowers around the indoor pool and whirlpool. A warm breeze, the sweet smell of hibiscus...A cold drink waiting for me. <BR> <BR> I pop in my ear buds and lose myself in my audio book. It helps the illusion that I take my glasses off in the pool. I'm pretty blind...everything is a blur. I recreate what I want to see. <BR> <BR> I got in my 45 minute pool workout today. We... Tue, 17 Jul 2012 14:21:08 EST No More Debates http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4973223 I'm working on those little nagging thoughts...you know the ones..."I'll do it later", "just this once", "a little extra won't hurt", "I'll do it tomorrow".....making excuses is so easy and once I start mulling them over, I've lost the battle. <BR> <BR> I'm working on stopping those thoughts when they start, not even entertaining them. Last night I was tempted to go over my ranges but made the decision to put that thought out of my mind. When I debate with myself, I always lose so no debate... Mon, 16 Jul 2012 17:20:03 EST Pool Closed so Plan 2 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4971752 My plan today was to work out in the pool at 3. Did not feel like going but put the suit on and drove over only to find the YMCA closed. Some kind of alarm system problem. Must have just happened because the email alert came through five minutes after I arrived back home. <BR> <BR> It was sooo tempting to say "Oh well, I tried" and curl up with a good book. BUT I didn't! Changed out of the suit and hit the exercise bike. Rode for 45 minutes. A new record for me. Tomorrow I won't have the c... Sun, 15 Jul 2012 19:51:42 EST Today's Goals Met http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4970225 My goals today were to: <BR> <BR> 1. Eat on plan <BR> <BR> 2. Cook my boys fried rice <BR> <BR> 3. Work out at the pool <BR> <BR> Nice to say I met all my goals. I even cooked the boys Jambalya. Just finished it. Worked out at the pool for 45 minutes then a nice soak in the whirlpool. <BR> <BR> Now my feet are up and I'm resting. Sat, 14 Jul 2012 16:27:09 EST GettingnSerious About Water Exercise http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4968833 Riding my exercise bike has helped me build up enough strength to get back to the pool. The pool itself was not the problem. Getting dressed, Getting there and getting home was the challenge. The getting home is still a little tough but doable. <BR> <BR> As some of you know I am frugal. So all these months of not using the YMCA has felt like wasting money. Now that money is tight, I am determined to make the most of my membership. That means using the pool. <BR> <BR> Last night I signed u... Fri, 13 Jul 2012 14:06:09 EST Back to My Full Methatrexate Dose http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4967676 Im back to my full methatrexate dose...Woo Hoo! I've been feeling the effects of the half dose and am ready to feel better. <BR> <BR> I get labs drawn in three weeks so fingers crossed my liver function stays normal. <BR> <BR> I am expecting the best! <BR> <BR> Got back to the pool this week. It felt sooooo good. Bought a waterproof case for my iPod. Was nice to workout while listening to an audio book. Stayed out of the water yesterday and today due to my lumbar epidural but will get b... Thu, 12 Jul 2012 19:34:04 EST I Need a Pat on the Back http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4964668 Ok Sparkfriends, I need a pat on the back. <BR> <BR> I spent 8 hours today helping my son clean and organize the garage. Remember he almost burned it down last night so I decided he needed supervision. <BR> <BR> I didn't do any heavy lifting but did quite a bit of hammering, drilling and screwing in hooks. The poor guy has no coordination. <BR> <BR> We even hung the three bikes from the rafters. <BR> <BR> I am exhausted but the garage looks great! <BR> <BR> My husband gets home and I... Tue, 10 Jul 2012 22:32:10 EST Ahhh a Break in the Heat http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4961700 Woke up to rain this morning. The heat wave is broken. It's been 100+ for about two weeks where the normal temp this time of year is high 80s. <BR> <BR> I'm sure my garden will just explode with this rain after this hot spell. My corn is as tall as my garage now and has tiny ears forming. We should get cucumbers soon since the vines are covered in flowers. I have tons of tomatoes ready to turn red. Fried green tomatoes is on the menu for breakfast. <BR> <BR> Today I see the rheumy and hav... Mon, 9 Jul 2012 08:07:47 EST Jambalaya http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4960674 I love to cook! I love the process, the smells, the finished product and the joy my family gets from enjoying my creations. <BR> <BR> So even though it's hot, and even though it's a challenge with my hands, today I cooked the boys jambalaya. <BR> <BR> It's fun to tromp into my kitchen garden to pick fresh veggies and herbs to feed my family. <BR> <BR> My boys are crazy about rice...they did live in China until they were 7...so jambalaya is one of their favorites. <BR> <BR> Now they A... Sun, 8 Jul 2012 14:32:01 EST Big check on my to do list http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4959684 Today I made a big check on my to do list. Our oldest son bought a car at auction. Doesn't sound like such a big deal but it was a huge step for us. <BR> <BR> There is a window in time, for my kids it was ages 13-16, when kids are eager to work and drive but if that window is missed, trying to get them motivated is tough. <BR> <BR> That window closed on us and boy has it been hard to get it reopened! At 21, 21, 20 and 19, they are content to depend on us and others for their needs. Wow a... Sat, 7 Jul 2012 20:10:17 EST Pictures Soon? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4956901 Today I am slaying the PC dragon! I was able to free up enough hard drive space to run some repair programs. Not sure what my kids did to the poor pc but suspect its all the links they visit via Facebook. <BR> <BR> So if it all works out, I will be able to post pictures soon. I love my iPad but the photo upload is not compatible to SP. <BR> <BR> Feels good to accomplish something. And yes my husband finally agrees the kids will be barred from the PC. <BR> Judith Thu, 5 Jul 2012 17:54:39 EST Keeping My Focus http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4955527 I am determined to keep my healthy eating and exercising my focus! <BR> <BR> Those of you out there that struggle with chronic pain know how draining it is physically and emotionally. I have made healthy eating and fitness my priority but this week finances are draining that energy. <BR> <BR> Kids, college, medical bills etc, nothing out of the ordinary, but It's extra tight right now. The boys have played around and half heartedly looked for summer jobs and now summer is half over. Last n... Wed, 4 Jul 2012 19:56:55 EST Hopkins Visit http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4953102 Had my Hopkins follow-up yesterday. All their tests for other conditions (thyroid, celiac etc) came back normal. Sleep study showed mild apnea so will get fitted for CPAP and hopefully that will give me more energy. Since my local rheumy wants to start a biologic, and since Hopkins could not offer me anything new, I will stick with the local rheumy. Having the local occupational therapist as part of my team has been the needed piece of the puzzle for me. <BR> <BR> I am feeling much better... Tue, 3 Jul 2012 07:50:03 EST First Ice Cream Cone http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4949193 We stopped by Rita's Ice for my husband's birthday treat. My grand daughter (12mo) ate her first ice cream cone. It was this cute tiny cone that fit perfectly into her fist. <BR> <BR> Lately she is into dropping her food on the floor but boy did she hold on to that cone. It was so cute. She was enjoyable to watch. <BR> <BR> Celebrate the small things today. <BR> Judith Sat, 30 Jun 2012 16:50:12 EST Checking In http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4948000 The last few days have been rough. I've just had no energy and been extremely tired. Wednesday was our anniversary so I drug myself out of bed to spend the day with my husband. Spent the last two days sleeping. I have days like this when I over do it and at times like this week for no apparent reason. Frustrating. <BR> <BR> My Hopkins follow-up is Monday and I will see if they have any different answers for these off days. Will also get the results of my sleep study and blood work. Know the... Fri, 29 Jun 2012 17:23:23 EST Celebrate What You Can Do Today! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4940642 Today I went to Costco! It's my first trip in months and months. I went with my husband. It was tough but I did it! I Told him I'm going to get credit for this on SP and made him look at the time...lol. We walked an hour. <BR> <BR> It's not something I can do every week but I did it today. That's what I am still learning. Celebrate what you can do today and celebrate what you can do tomorrow. You may not be able to do the same thing, but celebrate what you can do! <BR> <BR> Be your bes... Sun, 24 Jun 2012 20:30:37 EST Missing My Garden http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4936582 Its just plain HOT and I'm missing sitting in the garden! As a kid I'd be under the sprinkler...hmmm maybe a good idea. The neighbors might think I'm crazy but the birds would love it. Thu, 21 Jun 2012 17:15:06 EST Anyone see a weight loss specialist? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4933320 Anyone see a weight loss specialist? I have six specialists along with my primary doc but since obesity is a major cause of health problems wonder why I don't see a weight loss specialist. I have no desire for bariatric surgery but wonder what support a weight loss doctor would offer. <BR> <BR> Anyone see a doc for weight loss? Tue, 19 Jun 2012 14:46:20 EST Eating Fake Food http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4928598 I indulged yesterday. Stress lead me to McDonalds. Comfort food is what I wanted but you know what? Eating those fries and quarter pounder did not give me that Ahhh feeling. I felt like I was eating fake food. <BR> <BR> I've been eating fresh veggies, fruit, lean chicken, fish and seafood for several months now and I'm encouraged to see my brain and taste buds consider that real food. <BR> <BR> Nice revelation for me. <BR> <BR> If I'm going to indulge, I'm not wasting it on that low qu... Sat, 16 Jun 2012 05:55:35 EST Heartbreak http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4928149 Its been a tough week. Many of you know the story. <BR> <BR> I waited till 40 to marry. Became an instant mom to 5 kids. My husband was a single father for 5years after his wife left. Tough times for him but an amazing man to suck it up and raise those kids alone. <BR> <BR> Fast forward a year to find us in court fighting a custody battle. How a mother that abandoned her kids to chase one relationship after another from state to state got a temp custody order I will never understand if I ... Fri, 15 Jun 2012 18:17:19 EST A Frosting Sandwich http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4923565 Yep that was my afternoon snack...a chocolate frosting sandwich. I have to give myself points for creativity! <BR> <BR> It is amazing how quickly the brain can zero in on the one unhealthy food in the house...lol. Bring on the stress, insert frosting sandwich. <BR> <BR> Don't let anyone tell you the terrible twos are the worse...young adult kids! Note to self, "no frosting in the house until they reach thirty". <BR> Judith Tue, 12 Jun 2012 15:56:03 EST Barnstorming http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4919382 Today was the county's annual Barnstormer's Tour and I was thrill I was strong enough to participate. At the first two barns I sure could tell I've gotten stronger. After that, it was a struggle but I made it to five of the eight barns. <BR> <BR> The fourth historic barn we saw we fell in love. It and its eleven acres were for sale. We dreamed about buying it to run a bed and breakfast. Oh to be younger and in better health. <BR> <BR> The 1853 farm house is surrounded by tall old black w... Sat, 9 Jun 2012 20:51:16 EST City Farmer http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4917792 I guess you could call me a city farmer. I'd rather be out in the garden than any place else. This is the first time in several years I have been healthy enough in June to be out tending my "crops" and I'm thrilled! <BR> <BR> My leaf and romaine lettuces are beautiful. My snow peas are still producing like crazy. Soon the potatoes will be ready...my first time to grow them. The onions are getting round and fat. The corn is about a foot high. I managed to elude the squirrel this year...smil... Fri, 8 Jun 2012 13:35:51 EST Cool Morning in the Garden http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4913090 Spent the morning enjoying the cool weather in the garden. Enjoyed watching a family of birds, mother, father and their fledglings, while sipping my coffee. <BR> <BR> I have discovered yoga. Now I'm not into the spiritual side, but I find the combination of deep breathing, visualization and stretches beneficial. So...I did some yoga with the sound of the birds and wind in the trees. Definitely on my list to do it outside more often. <BR> <BR> The cool morning is perfect for picking my... Tue, 5 Jun 2012 11:33:25 EST Making Peace with Yourself http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4912253 Ive been thinking a lot about that lately, making peace with yourself. <BR> <BR> In the end, my grandmother was blind and deaf. She could no longer get around or care for herself. She was cut off from the radio and tv that kept her mind busy when her body failed. All she had left was what was inside of her...and that sustained her because she had peace. <BR> <BR> <BR> She was content with her life though she lost her father at 11 to alcohol and heroine. She was a telegrapher at age 14 i... Mon, 4 Jun 2012 21:38:30 EST June Goals http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4910110 One of my teammates blogged about her June goals and it inspired me to do the same. <BR> <BR> June Goals <BR> <BR> Nutrition: <BR> <BR> 1. Track all my food....Stay within my goals. <BR> <BR> 2. Eat 5 serving of veggies daily. <BR> <BR> 3. Eat whole foods...avoid processed, sugar and artificial sweetness <BR> <BR> 4. Eat organic when available <BR> <BR> <BR> Fitness: <BR> <BR> 1. Strength training 3x week <BR> <BR> 2. Exercise bike 30 min 5xweek <BR> <BR> 3. Start back exercisin... Sun, 3 Jun 2012 14:46:36 EST Graduation http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4909306 It was a great day. High school is done! Seven years, five kids and more than a few gray hairs... <BR> <BR> I cried the minute the music started...thinking back to all those months in ICU just a few years ago. We almost didn't have this moment. <BR> <BR> My son stood on that stage, thanked his family and was greatful that his new heart gave him a second chance. His motto is "Fearless the world"! Sat, 2 Jun 2012 21:56:01 EST Occupational Therapy http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4907982 Bad rains here have made yesterday and today tough so put off blogging. <BR> <BR> Really like the therapist. We talked a lot about modifications and respecting my limits. I asked her all the questions I had saved up. <BR> <BR> I loved the paraffin dip...LOVED it. Definitely getting one of those. Did some deep tissue ultra sound massage especially on my pesky pinkie. The bursa is full of fluid so hopefully it will help. <BR> <BR> She loved I am already doing the range of motion exercises... Fri, 1 Jun 2012 20:36:43 EST Better Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4901848 Today I felt better. Good! I was determined to enjoy my day. <BR> <BR> Ate breakfast in the garden with my husband then picked my snow peas while it was still cool. We decided to try a different pick your own farm for strawberries but it was so hot by the time we got there we only filled up a large container. <BR> <BR> Spent the afternoon with the family. Then tried to go to the pool but it was filled to capacity being opening weekend. The baby was tired anyway so they went on home and w... Mon, 28 May 2012 21:48:46 EST Rough Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4900450 It has been a rough day. Frustrating after feeling so good the last few days. My blood pressure has been creeping down since I'm working out more. I'm hoping that's why I feel so rotten today. Hopefully this means my blood pressure med dose can go down. <BR> <BR> I still managed to cook a healthy dinner and straighten up the dining room. I did my stretches too. Didn't think it was wise to ride the exercise bike. <BR> <BR> The dining room was my bedroom for the last ten months. Now that I... Sun, 27 May 2012 21:55:50 EST My Garden http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4899178 Nice and sunny has made the last few days good days. The snow peas are really producing now. It's amazing how fast they grow. I get a good bunch every morning and just munch on them raw. <BR> <BR> My corn is coming up. This is the fourth year I have tried corn and it has never made it this far. The squirrels tend to dig it up. I think I rush it most years and plant it too early. This year I waited and that seems to have done the trick. Now let's see if we get corn. <BR> <BR> This is the f... Sat, 26 May 2012 18:44:10 EST Check the Spam Folder http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4896765 I posted my first item on Craigslist today. A really nice loft bed my kids just don't use. I got 8 requests boom, boom, boom. I asked the first person what time they could pick it up and told the others I would contact them if it fell through...then nothing. No replies...all day. Hmmmmm <BR> <BR> Tonight it dawned on me to check the Spam Folder. Yep there they were. Made me think. <BR> <BR> How many times do I send the message, to eat healthy food or to get up and move, to the spam folde... Thu, 24 May 2012 21:31:46 EST Morning Pleasures http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4891727 Up they climb.... <BR> <BR> Tender, green, leaves unfurling <BR> <BR> Delicate white blossoms becoming little gems <BR> <BR> Sweet and light and crisp......... <BR> <BR> Snow peas from my garden <BR> <BR> Awaiting me each morning tucked among the vines <BR> <BR> A pleasure to search for and enjoy. Mon, 21 May 2012 17:16:46 EST Fruit Instead of Pizza http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4887835 I did a lot of cleaning today. I mean A Lot of cleaning! Sleeping downstairs for months meant my guys has free reign upstairs. It was picking up and sorting then putting away. Three hours worth...Whew I'm feeling it now...smile <BR> <BR> Anyway my point of the blog is after all that, I was tempted to order the family pizza...then I paused and thought about why. Ordering pizza is special and it was my way to celebrate...hmmm how could I do that differently? <BR> <BR> Instead I sent my son t... Fri, 18 May 2012 21:19:38 EST Feeling Free...and Brave...and Strong http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4886543 Summer tanned legs <BR> <BR> Squatting down....Scratching with a stick in the red dirt <BR> <BR> Arms covered in dust of that iron filled soil <BR> <BR> The warm breeze stirring it up on that hot day <BR> <BR> Stick discarded...Running down that ribbon of a road <BR> <BR> Back to girlhood memories of summers on the farm <BR> <BR> Feeling free...and brave...and strong Thu, 17 May 2012 23:34:38 EST Grumpy All Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4886396 Ever have one of those days? Today was that kind of day for me. I am physically feeling better and doing more then find myself frustrated that I can't do as much as I like. <BR> <BR> I know, I know...it takes time. Patience. Still it got to me today. I saw the glass half empty. <BR> <BR> It's nice to have a place where friends understand. Thu, 17 May 2012 21:51:43 EST A Proactive Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4884414 Had a very proactive day. Set up my sleep study...now waiting for the date. Scheduled a consult with my pain specialist to have epidural injections in my lower back. These really helped last year. Left a message for my rheumatologist about therapy for my hands. I am determined to do what I can to stay active and keep building strength! Wed, 16 May 2012 15:39:26 EST Hopkins Rheumatology http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4882998 Spent several hours there taking history, exam etc. <BR> <BR> Since my bloodwork only shows elevated sed rate and elevated crp, I am considered sero-negative so they have to base diagnosis on other factors primarily inflammation. <BR> <BR> The rheumatologist did not feel inflammation during his exam but admitted research shows physical exam is not accurate for lower levels of inflammation in early RA. Since my hands are much better, he wants to put off having an MRI until they get worse ... Tue, 15 May 2012 18:09:37 EST Hopkins http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4881778 Will blog about my Hopkins visit tomorrow. Mon, 14 May 2012 23:12:38 EST Sharing a Moment http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4880094 Red and ripe...held in her fist. <BR> <BR> Juice dripping down her fingers...running down her chin. <BR> <BR> Sweetness on her tongue....delight in her eyes. <BR> <BR> Her first strawberry from Grandma's garden. Sun, 13 May 2012 23:42:55 EST Readjusting http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=4878604 I am learning that living with a chronic condition is all about adjusting. For ten months I have been adjusting to what I can no longer do. Now that I am improving and able to do more, I find I am doing the opposite and readjusting to things I can do. <BR> <BR> My biggest current challenge are the piles. Piles of what? Piles of junk my son and husband have accumulated upstairs. I guess they thought if I couldn't see it, it was "put away". Men :) <BR> <BR> I had been sleeping downstairs ... Sat, 12 May 2012 18:43:56 EST