Monthly Archives: October 2010

You know the day is not going to be good when …

… you wake up feeling like you just didn’t quite get enough sleep.  Darn, SoLow!!!!  I wish she would quit waking me up in the middle of the night, because she wants to go outside to explore with Sam!  That just starts the day off sluggish!  So what do you do to start feeling better?  You go outside to see your pets and get hugs from those that give them.  Yes, the three dogs were right there but they wanted to play more than they wanted hugs, so I went to see Bob and Willow, the goats.

Bob always gives hugs.  Bob is a good boy.  He head-butts when he wants to play but he does it gently, not like when he head-butts Willow, believe me!  I think they just want to hear their horns click as loud as they can, because they rise up on their back feet, cock their heads to one side, and slam down on each other, horns first.  Ouch!!!  But when Bob wants to play with me, he just pushes at me with his horns because he knows that I don’t have horns to make that clicking sound.  Well, officially, I don’t have horns but there is a debate on whether I had them removed or not.

I went out and sat on the cement block next to their water bowl and snuggled with Bob a bit and was in a much better mood when I stood up.  Unfortunately, Bob took that opportunity to go over and push the gate open and run into the dogs’ yard.  Crap!  Bob, get outta there!  SoLow was so scared that Bob had gotten in that she jumped on the back door, opened it and ran inside, with Sam right behind her, Bob right on her tail and me bringing up the rear.  CRAP!  CRAP! CRAP! 

Have you ever noticed that goats always stay outside?  That’s because we usually don’t put diapers on them and let them into the house.  Here I had a nervous little dog barking, an excited goat running throughout the atrium and living room, hooves making a great clicking sound on the tile, and Sam following along behind cleaning up after the goat!  I’m running around trying to get ahead of Bob so that I could herd him out the back door, flapping my arms and yelling “NO, NO, NO!!!” and Bob is just enjoying the new view he’s getting of my life.  Talk about a Keystone Cops routine!  Fred, the turtle, dives back into the middle of the pond in the atrium as Bob trots past and leisurely reaches out to grab a leaf in passing.  OMG!  Now he’s de-leafing my bamboo!!!  ARGGGGHHHHH!!!!!!

Thankfully, he’s not a stupid goat and heads for the back door, with all three of us following.  I know he went back to his own yard voluntarily and it was really not anything the dogs or I did to scare him, but I like to think we chased him out of the house through the dogs’ yard and back with Willow, who had been staring at the open gates and door in awe.  Seriously, she had never moved the entire time and her mouth was hanging open.  I slammed the gate shut as fast as I could and collapsed in the only chair in the dogs’ yard, breathing heavy and hugging SoLow as if we had just survived a very dangerous situation together.   Bob just looked happy to be strutting around Willow, bragging on what he had done and she didn’t!

SoLow and I both had to retire back to bed for another hour to rest our pounding hearts and calm down.  So much for a relaxing autumn day at home in the country!


Thyroid and WHAT???

I know it’s been a while since I’ve written but it has been totally spastic here lately!

A few years ago, I decided that our oldest Sheltie, Stephi, needed a haircut.  It was summer.  It was hot.  I cut her hair short, thinking that she would be a little cooler with only the undercoat and not all that extra, long hair weighing her down.  Well, it has never grown back in like it used to be.  Every time that Ed looks at her, he frowns and then glares at me.  “I’ll never forgive you for what you did to Stephi,” he usually mutters.  Yeah, bless her heart, she does look pretty ratty, I have to admit.

Recently, she has been getting tumors on her upper chest that grow and grow and finally burst.  The vet cleans them out and then, usually within a few weeks, we will see another one coming up.  Where they have appeared, the hair doesn’t grow back very well so, when she’s walking toward you, there is long hair with spots of very short hair, which just looks strange, to say the least.

The vet wanted to do a blood workup on her back when Nonnie was ill but I just couldn’t handle Nonnie and Stephi at the same time so I put it off.  This week, they did that blood workup and she has thyroid problems.  We are now giving her half a pill twice a day to help with that problem.  They are also testing her for Addison’s disease.  If that is also a problem, then she will need monthly injections. 

With luck, the pills and injections will give her back her beautiful coat of hair, along with her strength and jaunty step.  She’ll still be 14 years old and deaf, but she will feel much better.  For that, I am thrilled.

That’s just one thing that’s been going on.  I’ll write more later.

This says it all!

Thank you, Kim, for sending this picture this morning.  What an email to wake up to!  This picture really does say it all … the smiles, the pride, the joy, the title!  Way to go, Rangers!!!  Now take it all the way!

Front page of the Dallas Morning News, Oct 23, 2010


Superstition is a belief that is NOT based on reason or knowledge.  Yes, that just about describes what I was feeling today during the Texas Ranger-New York Yankee playoff game.  Superstition!!! 

The game started off badly for the Rangers and didn’t get much better throughout the entire game.  It was just an off day for C.J. Wilson, our pitcher.  I don’t know if the rest of the team was just tired, as an old friend of mine suggested, or if they were mentally drained or if they were just reacting to how the pitcher was doing.  Whatever it was, today just didn’t work for them.

When I got up and went to the kitchen to get some iced tea, the Rangers got a run.  Woo-hoo!  Later, when I went to the kitchen again while the Yankees were batting, the Yankees got a run.  Booo hisss!  Superstition reared its head and I reacted, instead of logically reminding myself that the Yankees had already gotten quite a few runs while I was sitting there watching the game.  This was not based on logical reasoning.  Yep, superstition.  I left the room, my stomach in knots.  I literally could not watch the rest of the game but that had NOTHING to do with superstition.

The Rangers have won 3 games and the Yankees 2.  We only have to win one more game and we go to the World Series.  That is a major responsibility laid on the shoulders of these young men, none of which have been to the World Series before. Do we expect them to perform perfectly during every game, with nerves of steel and with total confidence in themselves?  Yes, we do.  Yes, I do.  I know better though.  I am usually so logical in my thinking.  Today, I was emotional and not logical at all.  I couldn’t watch the train wreck that I felt was coming to my team.

Do I still have faith in the Texas Rangers, the players, coaches and owners?  Of course, I do.  Will I watch the next game on Friday night?  Of course, I will.  Will I be nervous?  YES!!!  I have such pride in this team that I want them to do well during every game and the odds are against that, I know.  But I also know that they will bounce back and I intend to be watching when they do.

Yes, Gracie, I will be gloating when they do bounce back!  You just can’t NOT gloat whenever they beat the dratted Yankees!  GO, RANGERS!!!!!  ONE MORE WIN!!!!!

Go, Texas!!!

What a sports week!!!  Rangers.  Cowboys.   Texans.  Stars.  Mavs.  Longhorns.  Oh, wait.  The Cowboys stink this year but the others are looking good, especially the Texas Rangers!!!  Woo-hoo!!!  Yes, Texas is a sports-dominated state.  I don’t really watch anything but baseball but Ed watches da Boys all the time so I kinda keep up with ‘em.  With a season record of 1-4 so far, I’m not paying much attention so far.  I know, I know, I’m a fickle fan, but I just can’t get excited when they lose to an aging quarterback primarily due to penalties!  So…..

Let’s talk Texas Rangers!  Now that’s my game and this year they are looking good.  Yeah, they lost the first one to the dreaded Yankees but they won the second one in a landslide, 7-2.  This is not only the first post-season victory at home in 50 seasons, this is the farthest we’ve ever gotten in the post-season and the fans are going wild around here.  Everywhere you look, you see red or blue t-shirts with the Claw and Antler logo.  What the heck is that, you say???  Let me explain.

When a player does something really well during a game, the players give each other the Claw, a long-distance high-five.  This was really first seen in the Minor Leagues and Nelson Cruz brought it to the Rangers and EVERYONE has adopted it.

When a player does something really well during a game that requires him to utilize his speed, the players give him the Antlers, hands waving up by your head.  Why and how we got this one, I don’t know but it seems to me that the Claw could be used for both instances.  On the other hand, I’m not about to be the only fan doing a Claw when everyone else is giving them the Antlers!  Geez, I gotta LOOK like I know what the players are doing, don’t I?

Anyway, tonight the Giants and Phillies are playing.  I don’t know anything about either one of those teams but since the Giants took the first game, I’m hoping the Phillies take the second.  If nothing else, it would make the series much more interesting.  On the other hand, the Phillies are ranked 12th overall in Batting Average and the Giants are 15th.  Since the Rangers are ranked 1st overall and the Yankees 8th, I’m not sure it matters much which one wins.  hehehe

Tomorrow night, don’t call me because I will NOT be answering the phone after 7 pm Central.  I will be watching my Rangers and I will be practicing the Claw and Antlers at home.  I just hope the Yankees quit walking Josh Hamilton intentionally so he can get some runs.  That should show how the Yankees fear his bat and that’s a good thing!


Did you feel it yesterday?  A slight tremor at 9:06 am, October 13th?  An unusually unsteady feeling?  I did.  At first, I thought we waited just a little too long to get the foundation fixed under our house and it was going to slide down the hill, with me sitting at the computer terminal.  Then I thought maybe I was imagining it, at least until I heard the dogs barking.  Finally, I knew it was an earthquake but I couldn’t quite believe that it was happening in North Texas.

Drake and I had been in an earthquake years ago while I was in California working on a project.  If I remember correctly, it was a 5 point something, which was pretty impressive to 2 Texans in a small multi-story hotel.  Drake was sitting on the bed watching TV and I was getting ready to go to work.  I stopped, turned toward Drake, and asked if he knew what it was.  With huge eyes, he questioned, “Earthquake?”  I’m glad it turned out to be nothing more than what it was because we did everything wrong!  I immediately sat down on the bed next to Drake and we watched the armoire containing the TV walk from side to side and realized why the hotel had bolted all of the furniture either to the floor or the wall.  We kind of jiggled on the mattress for a few minutes and waited for it to be over.  We were calm and thankfully it didn’t last a long time.  As soon as it was over, my local co-workers called to see if we were alright and to make sure we weren’t scared.  I wasn’t scared and I really don’t think Drake was either.  I think we were startled more than anything.  Of course, then we had to jump on the phone to call home so that when they heard the news, they knew we were okay and wouldn’t worry.

Yesterday brought back memories of that time for me, watching Drake’s face as it dawned on him what was going on.  I was very glad that we were not at the high-rise office, feeling the whole building sway back and forth.  I’m not sure either of us would’ve been as calm in a high-rise built to sway instead of break during an earthquake!  I also remember feeling that special bond with Drake that we had survived an earthquake in Los Angeles, California, and could tell everyone in Texas what it felt like.

The earthquake yesterday initially was reported as a 4.3 magnitude by the U.S. Geological Survey but the Oklahoma Geological Survey upgraded the rating to magnitude 5.1, the second-strongest earthquake reported in their state history.  I think the only reason I felt it was because I was sitting still in an office chair.  Ed was getting dressed and moving around and he didn’t know anything about it.  That should tell you how slight the tremor was around here.  Like most things in small-town Texas, if you blink you missed it.  I’m glad I didn’t blink.

The Princess and the Pea

The princess and the pea, that’s what I feel like at night nowadays, sleeping up near the ceiling of the room, able to feel the slightest bump under the mattress.  Ok, I can change that last item if I want to but last night I didn’t want to and this morning, my back was killing me!!!  Maybe I’d better start at the beginning so you understand.


We moved into our house in 1984 and furnished it with okay furniture.  It was comfortable and it was what we could afford at the time.  Unfortunately, we haven’t really changed any of that furniture since then.  After all these years, our water-bed finally broke.  Yes, I said water-bed.  No, it didn’t spring a leak and drown the floor.  The bed frame’s footboard broke off.  We decided that we needed to buy a new bed, but there was so much going on that we were just taking our time.  Then one day, I noticed that the bed liner had broken and it looked like a water-balloon was hanging over the edge and reaching for the floor.  We decided we had to move a little faster or we would be sleeping on the floor soon!


I have decided that, once you decide to change a piece of furniture, none of the other furniture you have looks good anymore.  Unless we found a bed that matched the other bedroom furniture, the entire room looked sick.  It was too old.  It was too dark.  I didn’t like it anymore anyway.  We started looking at new bedroom sets instead and that meant I had to go shopping, not one of my favorite activities!  We finally selected something that was light-colored and had more storage.  It was made in the U.S. of A. and not just made by a U.S. company in a foreign country.  Yes!!!


We returned from Albuquerque Thursday night and they delivered the bedroom set after 1 pm on Friday.  That meant that we had one night to sleep on the old water-bed and then had to really move it the next day to get it drained and to get the other furniture unloaded.  You should now see my dining room, atrium, and front entry.  Do you realize how much “stuff” you have in your bedroom?  Think of all the places you can put things in your bedroom.  Now double it, because I guarantee that you will find double what you think is there.  Or maybe it just takes up twice as much room in the dining room, atrium, and entry because it just adds to what is already there.  Whichever it is, it’s going to take quite a while to get it all back in place.


Now, Adams Furniture in Justin removed all of the old furniture and hauled it off.  They set up the new furniture exactly where we asked them to, which was not where it was originally.  After all these years, my feet are point north instead of west when I sleep.  It’s really kind of strange and feels like sleeping at a hotel at times; you know, a setting that is familiar but still different from what you are used to?  In the middle of the night, getting to the bathroom may be a challenge if I try to get there by turning right because now, I will almost immediately stump my toe on a bookcase.  And needing a drink of water in the kitchen?  That would take me inside Ed’s closet instead.


Oh, yes, the princess and the pea thing?  We got a sleep number mattress, which comes with a plastic foundation instead of old-fashioned box springs.  That’s ok but the bed we bought doesn’t need a box springs or, in this case, a foundation.  We used it anyway so we are exactly one box springs taller than normal, and it was a tall bed frame to begin with.  Poor Stephi, our old Sheltie, and SoLow have both needed steps to get on our bed.  Now, none of our dogs can jump on the bed and, believe me, they have tried!  Even Sam, our best jumper, can’t do it.  When I put SoLow on the bed at night, Sam wants so much to join her as usual snoozing beside me.  SoLow just rubs it in that she gets on the bed and Sam doesn’t.


I wanted to see how it felt to sleep on a really soft mattress, so I changed the setting to a very low number last night.  That was a mistake.  My back has been aching all day long.  I have already put it back where it was.  You live, you learn.  Maybe tomorrow night, I’ll change it to a very high number and see what that is like.  Hmmm.


So why not take the foundation off and just have the mattress? 

  • I’m enjoying not having long Sam-hair on the blanket. 
  • SoLow doesn’t run around the house at night because she has learned that once off the bed, she can’t get back on. 
  • I’m on the same level as the TV screen. 
  • If the speed on the ceiling fan needs changing, I can just get on the bed to adjust it. 
  • It’s warmer in winter up there. 
  • It’s easier to lose weight when you are sleeping and it’s even easier to lose weight at higher altitudes. 
  • I actually exercise while crawling up into bed. 

The downside? 

  • If I’m not careful, I would not only end up on the floor after quite a drop, I would also probably end up with a concussion when I hit the bed frame on the way down. 
  • Before getting up in the morning, you have to peer over the side to make sure you are not dropping down on a sleeping dog. 
  • As I age, I may need a stepladder or a chair-lift. 

I can always remove the foundation later but for now, I’m really enjoying the change.  And the first night, SoLow slept all night long and so did I.  It was wonderful!!!