Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Samson Posts An Update From The Canyon

Samson Says:

See this nice large pillow Soldier got for Christmas? It's soft like velvet and it even has a big bone sewn on it for decoration. What did I get? Nothing, nada, ingenting~that's Swedish~I don't know what it's called in Russian. But I bet I know someone who may look it up on the Internet.......
Mommy: You mean auntie fishducky, don't you?
Samson: Yes, I do, and BTW (that means: by the way) why don't you ever post her nice houses again? Like this one:

I sure wish we could live in a house like that, I could sleep on that big veranda and daddy could have a rocking chair next to me. Sweet!
Mommy: You can always dream, Samson. And I haven't because I still haven't moved all the stuff from the old computer to the new computer. 
Samson: Why?
Mommy: Cause I've been d.i.s.t.r.a.c.t.e.d!!!!
Samson: OK, OK, I was just asking. Humans.......

Mommy: Back to Christmas ~ you got lots of goodies and a big, huge bone, remember. And you got what you asked for last summer. Remember this picture? It was sooo hot, I had to pour water all over you and you asked for cold, cold weather for Christmas. And you got it, didn't you?
Samson: OK, I got that, but not from you. Back to the sleeping arrangements:

I get shooed off the couch,

I'm allowed on this chair, but what good does it do me? But I'm a smart and clever dog and when I remembered that auntie Feral Woman told me I was closely related to the wolf.......

I went and found me a den. So there, you can keep your old velvety pillow, I got built-in pillows in my fur, so I can sleep anywhere. Snug!

BTW, I'm stealing Gracie's typeface, cause she stole my moniker,she's not to be trusted that little sweet-faced Cockapoo. Now she calls herself Gracie Says and has her OWN BLOG, in addition to her OWN BOOK. And what does she do on her blog? Gives advice, she's got an advice column, can you believe it??? I'm going to go there and read it all soon. On the one paw I'm proud of my girlfriend, on the other, I worry where all this is going to end........ 

I mean if Gracie gives dog advice, can the Dog Whisperer be far behind?

Anyway, I still love my Gracie, she's nothing if not enterprising, so I will refer your dog to her advice column:

If your dog is in need of some advice, he/she can go and see Gracie here. My Gracie is very clever and I know she'll give the best advice ~ to your dog, that is. It may be some advice you humans didn't wish for. Heh, heh, heh.........

Have a nice day, everyone!

Posted by Samson the Samoyed dog.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Crazy Clouds For Your Enjoyment ~ Thanks For Your Support Blogger Friends!

Here are the clouds I talked about in my last post. I keep an eye on the sky here and I often see wonderful cloud formations, but I have never seen anything like these again.

There was an order to the way they appeared in the sky, but I have ignored it. They have been on my blog before, a couple of years ago, right after I saw them, so I'm posting them the way they appeared in Picasa.

All along the raven sat on the wire, completely ignorant of the incredible display nature put on in the skies above. I thought this was a cool way to end the post last time I posted these clouds. 

Except now:

Thank you all so very much for your support of my trip to the lab yesterday. It all went well and we had a good time, hubby and I, after he waited three hours for it all to be done. By now I have been 'ultrasounded' throughout, or so it seems. It may be a good thing, in case something is lurking in there somewhere. 

I'm so grateful for your friendship, I get teary eyed. I am an emotional Swede, not the most common version, I don't think, so the tears come.......

Thursday, January 24, 2013

I Need To Take A Few Days Off ~

Sometimes my insulin dependent diabetes gets the best of me and my brain fogs over. I have known people who suffered from MS and from lupus and they told me that happens to them as well. I'm sure everyone has had this happen in their lives at one time or another. 

For me it happens in times of stress. And right now I'm stressed about how to manage my diabetes tomorrow morning as we go the lab in Bakersfield for my extra mammo and the three ultrasounds. I have to finish eating breakfast by 4:30 a.m. and then nothing until around noon. I was embarrassed about my insulin reaction the last time I was there, and I don't want to mess up this time so I have to go back for more, it will be stressful enough to wait for results. 

It's now almost two in the afternoon in California and I, who always get up at five in the morning, haven't even brushed my teeth. I've had both breakfast and lunch in bed, where I have been reading a dark book by that now famous best selling author Gillian Flynn, of Gone Girl fame. The book is even called Dark Places and it's weird, but very well set up. It's the kind of book where you can't wait to reach the end because you want to know what happens, who done it, but you don't want to rush because it's so good. Has anyone read Gone Girl? I have to read it now.

I told my husband I would write a blog post and see if that would make me feel better. And it has. I will take a few days off from blogging, including Sunday's post about the mission in San Gabriel, which I haven't even started to write it yet. 

Thank you so much for your comments. I will start right now to visit your blogs and answer your questions. I am so happy to hear back from so many blogger friends even though I have been missing from reading your posts for days now. 

Does anyone remember my hot pink lenticular clouds? They were gray yesterday and I found them somber and beautiful. Thanks Terry for the link. I have a series of incredible hot pink clouds that I want to post, but worry someone will steal. I've never felt that way about any other photos of mine. Any advice, or should I just not care?

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

On a Winter's Day

As the clouds gathered overnight, the weather got warmer and I woke up to 40° F, early this morning. We had company, a pack of coyotes was yipping and yapping outside our window. Soldier was whining and Samson got scared and jumped up on top of his daddy. Smart boy, he knows where to go. 

My husband took the Wrangler to Lancaster for new brakes and a lube and I headed out to the shed to do some laundry. As I was hanging laundry on the line, I saw these clouds forming. There's no wind and it looks like rain, so not the best weather for drying clothes on the line, but after the frozen pipes, I'm just washing as much as I can every day.

Rain is not predicted until Friday, but the weather forecasters have been wrong before. Not much news from here. We took Samson to the vet yesterday because he's been throwing up, not much, mostly retching, for over a week. I was worried about his pancreas, but he seemed OK to the vet who asked if he may have eaten some cloth. Who knows, he only gets into things when we're gone and we are pretty good about clearing the rooms. 

To be on the safe side, we got antibiotics and some stomach medicine for him. And we also invested in the good and very expensive food for dogs with digestive issues. Since he's already had a bad case of pancreatitis and the Samoyed breed is susceptible to both bloat and diabetes, I will feed him two or three times a day to rest his pancreas as much as possible. 

And both my favorite teams made it to the Superbowl ~ so now what do I do? Enjoy, I know...... 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Samson Says: Ask a Stupid Question.......

Mommy: Samson, what are you doing on the couch?

 Samson: Huh?

Mommy: Samson, look at me when I'm taking to you. What are you doing on the couch?

Samson: Just napping, mommy (minding my own business). 

Posted by Samson, the Samoyed Pup Dog

Friday, January 18, 2013

My Replies to Your Comment of Yesterday & Old Pictures

I've done this before and enjoyed it ~ answering your comments in a post of my own. I'm replying to your comments from yesterday's post below. I've included some more pictures from archives. Hope you'll enjoy it ~ it will be kind of long: 

TexWisGirl:  Thanks for your good thoughts sent my way and I'm so glad Samson makes you smile. He's smiling back at you above.

The Broad: I loved that you thought I looked solid and determined, so I posted the above picture of my paternal grandmother. Perhaps you can see where I got it from.

Manzanita: I was amazed at how blond we all were. Our hair would darken with time, but still. In those days, Sweden was not racially or ethnically mixed. I never met a black person until I was about 15. And I lived in Stockholm, the big city. In high school, we had two Jewish girls and I remember being jealous because they got to skip our Christian religion classes. Yes, we did study Christianity in high school back then.

 My grandfather's hymn book from the late 1800s

fishducky: Thank you, I am feeling much better. I think you will enjoy Wesley, he eats a lot of mice and has an incredible number of survival skills. It's a very, very interesting book.

Buttons: You are so right, bloggers are amazing people and I have come to love my little group of blogger friends, those of you who comment on my blog and share your thoughts and life on your own blogs that I love to visit. I'm not so sure about stunner.....but thank you.

Kittie Howard:  Yes, I'm on a mission to enjoy each day of my life, today I added half an hour to our walks, so now I'm resting and writing this. It's so funny with this beauty stuff, but thank you too. What's an old lady to do, except be happy with these sweet compliments. For a real beauty, I'm posting a picture of my maternal grandmother below:

Sandra:  It's amazing how different the children of today are. To me, it's a little frightening, but I see some of the kids in our family here that are now between 10 and 15 years old and they seem to be turning out very well. Smart about computers and other technology, and very knowledgeable about a whole lot of stuff I had no idea about at their age. Some of it good, some not so good. But that texting has to go. Please! Since you like puppy pictures, here's one of the boys:

Maggid:  Yes, I have loved being 6 ft. tall. Once I left those short boys behind, it has always been a great benefit in my life. Now that I'm in my 70s, I'm shrinking. I think I'm around 5' 10". I have found something good about that too: It brings me closer to my hubby, who's shorter than I. Wesley is a very interesting book that I think you would enjoy.

Nancy Claeys:  It made me sad too. It was my first encounter with death ~ I'm sure I had no idea that someone my age could actually leave this life. The whole class went to his funeral, it was traumatic to say the least. No more falls, I'm keeping my eyes on the ground now. Just like the guys below:

Susan Kane:  Thank you so much for your prayers. I will be OK either way. If something is wrong, we will deal with it; if not it will be just another scare, and I will be grateful. (I have no idea where those semicolons go and with Janie Junebug, grammar police extraordinaire, perhaps reading this, I'm worried!)

S. J. Qualls:  Thank you for your kind words. Blogging has brought back so many memories, some good, some bad of my early school years. It's amazing how much one can bring to the forefront of one's memory collection. (I do remember that you like rocks, so I found a picture.)

Janie Junebug:  Yes, it's important to like those who take care of you when you are not well. I went to UCLA Medical Center when I had breast cancer in 1999 and I loved everyone. My radiologist was French and reminded me of Maurice Chevalier, need I say more? I think you will like Wesley.

Michelle: Yes, it's important to take care of appointments. Here's Samson when he was little:

Bobbi and Gracie:  Bobbi, I can't believe you fell too! I'm so glad you didn't get injured. And I so understand your first concern was for your mac. Gracie, you are so sweet to make sure your mommy was OK. I hope you will enjoy the pictures of Samson as a young dog that I have posted here.

Kim at Golden Pines: I knew you were 6' tall from your posts.  It's never easy growing up a bit different, but I have always been happy about being tall once I left those little boys behind. I am also very grateful for your friendship. Please don't ever feel bad about not having time to comment. What you do for the dogs is what's the most important ~ Carl and your cat too, of course. 

Susan Flett Swiderski: Thank you so much, I am feeling much better today. I even added half an hour to our morning walks. I'm up to one and a half hours, well, for today at least. Thanks for the compliment.

Chatty Crone: Oh, I hope you will find the answers to your diabetes with these tests. Did they put a sensor on you? I hope it will help to figure out what's going on. In a way, it's easier with type 1, which is what I have. You know that you have zero insulin in your body, so you just have to figure out how much to add to keep you going throughout the night and day and then how much to add, depending on how many carbs you eat with your meals. Not an easy thing to do, but the insulin pump makes it easier. Sending hugs and good wishes back to you.

Gina Gao: Thank you Gina, I'm so glad you stopped by. I will come by and visit your blog too.

Patrycja Photography:  It's so nice to hear from you. I don't do Facebook, but I will check out your blog. 

EM Illustrator: I didn't know you were tall too. There are a lot of us in Sweden, I guess. Yes, thank you, I am feeling better. Take care and have a great day. 

Hilary Melton-Butcher: Thanks for the hugs and good wishes! Sending hugs back to you.

It's now 11:37 a.m., PT, and I need to go and eat my lunch and get out of here. I'm amazed, this took me all morning and I didn't even notice. Good thing I'm retired! I will leave this up tomorrow too and just focus on visiting everyone for the next few days. Take good care.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Feeling Better and Some More This & That

Feeling better today, I decided to share this picture, just for fun. I am the girl in the white blouse and dark skirt, about a head taller than all the rest of the girls. I will come back to this picture as I write more stories. There are many here: Ingrid, the girl to the left of me, was my friend since we were about five, then we lost contact over the distances. She lived in Madrid. Then, a few years ago, I learned that she passed away. The boy in the front row, with the pained expression, died of a brain tumor soon after this picture was taken. Some of the other little brats in the front row would gang up with some older boys and bully me, because I was so much taller than they. The boy to the right in the second row, came to my rescue once that I'll never forget. After the first four years of school, I transferred to an all-girls school and life was great. I don't recall any high school dramas of the kind shown in American films. We all got along.
This and the following pictures are just some old, randomly selected ones. I just can't blog without pictures.

I called the lab yesterday and made my appointments. They wanted fasting for the abdomen and I had to whine a bit about my insulin dependent diabetes and how I just can't fast. Not entirely true, since I have an insulin pump I can do it, but I get so evil without breakfast that I try to avoid it at all cost. 

After some back and forth, I was able to get appointments for the 25th beginning at 10:30 a.m., on the condition that I ate nothing after 4:30 a.m. That will work for me, except that I donated away my cumbersome alarm clock. Since I don't trust my cell phone, I will stop by K-mart today and pick up a small travel alarm. They will do all the ultrasounds and also another mammogram. I'm beginning to really like this lab, they are both caring and efficient.

The aches from my fall are beginning to subside and I am beginning to realize that I was really lucky to get away with just a some little aches. 

Thank you all so much for your caring comments on my post of yesterday. Of course I know I can write about anything that bothers me here, but still, I hesitate. I think I hesitate because I know myself well enough and, as a rule, what bothers me one day will usually be gone the next. 

Still, the community I have found in bloggy land continues to amaze me. It's really something else if you think about it. So I am immensely grateful for the gift of having you all in my life.

Finally, on the best books I read in 2012 post, I forgot about this guy, Wesley. An absolutely wonderful book about a young woman who rescues baby barn owl and lives with him for over 20 years. I learned so much ~ about barn owls and their amazing talents, they can, for example, hear a bug crawl on a wall, and, yes, they do eat a lot of mice; but most of all I learned about love, the kind of love that is almost impossible to understand. This woman gave up so much for Wesley, but she made it clear in the book that it was all worth it ~ the love she received back from Wesley knew no bounds. A strong recommend both from me and my friend, Jane, who reminded me that I forgot to include Wesley on my list. 

I'm off to town for most of the rest of today: diabetes support group, dentist hygenist, the vet to pick up meds for dogs, and a bunch of stores. So I'll catch up with everyone tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Not The Best Results, A Mishap, & Comments Back on Samson & Me

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
 ~ John Lennon

So my doctor called and told me they saw something on my mammogram and I need to go back to the lab for an ultrasound. He said in my left breast, my cancer was in the right one. I will call today and see if I can get two ultrasound appointments on the same day, since I also have to have one for my abdominal pain. 

I'm thrilled that I just changed my insurance to Medicare with a high option plan instead of an HMO. It will give me better options for better doctors, should I need them. I'm just sorry I didn't get around to changing my primary, but I can live with him for now.

I feel sort of bad because you were so happy for the good results I just relayed. So now I'm wondering should one even talk about one's health issues on the blogs? I'm laughing about the emails that go back and forth between me and friends my age, as they are increasingly about our health problems. My mother approached old age with a great sense of humor. I'm working on it.

Of course I am worried it may be cancer, but I am not afraid of cancer. Been there, done that so I know the routine, or the basics at least. "Nothing in life is to be feared. It is only to be understood," said Marie Curie, and that's so true. Heights, excepted, I'll never get over that.

The other day, I went outside to see what my hubby was doing and, looking at him, instead of at the ground, I stepped on a rock, twisted my ankle and fell. I landed on my left arm/shoulder, the one I shattered when I fell over Soldier in 2010. Having just watched a bunch of football playoffs, I looked at my husband and said: "See, I fell just like they do on the football field." He didn't think that was funny, but we were both glad nothing serious happened. Just some aches and pains. 

Now, I must let everyone know that I love, love, love this cold weather. Since we moved to the mountains, it has never been this cold for this long here. I only wish that most of the snow had not melted. To have snow would have been perfect for me. It was 20° this morning so, it's getting warmer. (Notice the ° sign!! How cool is that, thank you Chatty Crone!)

I want to respond to the worry about my jacket being too cold. It has some fakey fur inside and I also wear a thermal shirt, a cotton turtleneck, and my fisherman's wool sweater. 

My more than 50-year old sweater.

The one I blogged about a last year that I've owned since I was 15 years old. Made in Norway, but called an Icelandic fisherman's sweater, it's sooo warm. 

My ancient socks.

However, my feet got cold so I dug out these. In Sweden we call them raggsockor. They are also wool and very ancient. 
Growing up in a cold climate, I know if you keep your ears,  neck, hands, and feet warm, you will be OK. So with my earmuffs, wool scarf, Swedish wool mittens, and now these socks in my snow boots, I have conquered the cold. 

Samson Says: OK, auntie Feral Woman, I'll show you how I guard: First I sit by the window and NOTHING escapes me. When I see something untoward,

Finally, I get upset if someone may think I overfeed my dogs. I have never had a fat dog in my life, so I react badly. I'm sorry, but I have a need to explain why Samson gained weight for those of you who didn't know. If you know, you may want to skip this, except perhaps Samson's response to Feral Woman's comment about the guarding abilities of a Samoyed. She has one too and said that Samson may lick a burglar to death. I thought it very funny, Samson, not so much, so he has a rant of his own under his photos.

Samson, being the only surviving puppy of seven, came from a bad stock. I believe the mother dog was too old. My husband took him in at seven weeks to help the person who had the mother. Before he was three, Samson almost died from pancreatitis (sp?), he was throwing up blood and cost us $1,200 at the vet. He also had an enlarged prostate, so he was neutered. Never heard of an enlarged prostate at two years old. 

I prepare myself, I put my head back and get ready to

Then last fall he became blind and was diagnosed with UDS, a syndrome most common in Akitas and other Nordic dogs, like the Samoyed. He was treated with steroids and other drugs for about two months. During this time he was extremely hungry, so I fed him twice a day. It was a bit difficult to get that right. Plus he was so sick he didn't walk very far or very much. So the pounds packed on, but he got his eyesight back and the UDS is now in remission. It's a chronic disease, so he has to be monitored.

 let out a fierce bark that scares even the baddest humans away! Of course, I've never really seen a bad human, but I will know one, they must smell bad, don't they?

He's not allowed in sunlight. I got him some dog goggles, or doggles, as they are called, but he has an ongoing fight with them and I don't feel like hassling with it, so instead we walk at dawn. A beautiful time to walk, but cold now. I found out that it takes the sun 30 minutes to clear the eastern mountain range. It rises at 7:05 in the desert and reaches us at 7:35 right now. 

I am very determined to walk him, I have reduced his food, not tried the veggies yet, but I will. I am worried about diabetes, which is always noted as a common illness in Samoyeds. And, as you know, I have some experience with that as well.

I hope this wasn't too much of a rant .....................


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