#20 Practical Matters for Physically Challenged Gardeners

Hendersonville, NC(Zone 7a)

brick raised beds and Caxk of M??? tsjk, tsk TTC and in the same post as a wedding anniversary announcement? hehehe some people / situations DO have a way of getting on one's last nerve!!! You'd better hope there are no sudden disappearances or we just MIGHT be reading about you in the news: headline: Gruesome Find In a Gardener's Raised Bed. hehehe

I can automatically think of two people who'd make VERY GOOD fertilizer for a garden, raised or otherwise!!! I wonder, do you suppose that's why my beautiful gardens are given such scrutiny by the roving police patrol? Come to think of it, thqat roving patrol car drives past my place quite often in the past few yeara (which co-incides with the 2 afore-mentioned people "wprking my last nerve"") I say: Let'em wonder.....and worry!

One of my personal motto's : Don't get mad; get even! Prolly why I'm not married!!! NO tolerance! I USED to be more tolerant. . .but HEY! Life's short!

I gave up on my Tomato Jungle. I've pampered and tended them forever it seems and they've responded by getting some kind of leaf disease and almost quit producing! This morniong, I opened the back door to go out and tend them. . . and quietly SHUT the door! Look, don't touch! How many countless times have we all heared that??

I'm inna mood. Yesterday, one of my doctors gave me two shots that he said would make me feel better: one in my back and t'other INTO my hip! both hurt then and hurt worse now. What comes to mind is calling that doc and asking "Exactly WHJEN am I sposed to feel better?"

I better go. I'm consumed wioth dark, evil thoughts towards my tormentors and aggrtavators.

Milton, MA(Zone 6a)

Beth, my husband has received (on more than one occasion) a steroid shot into his broken back that is supposed to make him feel better "for the next few days." They were INCREDIBLY painful and came with no relief. I think doctors heard a rumor that steroids injected into THE MOST PAINFUL spot will make everything better, but they can't test out the theory, because they don't (yet) have any pain severe enough.

And congratulations on saying "goodbye" to your tomato friends. We're all jealous, but unless you really enjoy tomatoes excessively, you shouldn't be a slave to them. We would go to a farmers' market for tomatoes. I read that and thought "well, I really enjoy enjoy tomatoes excessively" but really, I enjoyed tomatoes when I was 10 or so and had tomato and baloney sandwiches. If I can have my ten-year-old body and my overalls and all that stuff, then I would like those sandwiches. But I don't even like tomatoes from a farmers' market because they don't taste as good as they did when I was ten. Maybe time-travelling would work well for me!

Midland City, AL

Kayís doctor said this yearís bug is especially bad and showing up early. He advised us to get our flu shots ASAP. Good grief! Iíve just recovered from a bad reaction to the last shot I had. Iím dreading this yearís flu shot.

The northern neighbors said our lasagna beds made the northwest corner of our property look like a graveyard. I smiled and nodded. Good fences and duct tape would make for a peaceful neighborhood also.

It is the first day of fall. Time to say good-bye to the tomatoes and put up autumn decorations.

Hereís a fall decorating idea you might like, Beth.

Photo: Scarecrow with an attitude.

Thumbnail by seacanepain
Hendersonville, NC(Zone 7a)

Jim hehehe that scarecrow would DEFINATELY get up the nose of Mgt! unfortunately, then they would turn around and make even MORE problems for me. My Tomato Jungle was started when the ultimate Big Boss (in more ways than one) came over, drew a line in the dirt with her toe (cutting my folower bed in half!), then purred "I just don't think you have enough room for a tomato plant. But you have PLENTY of room on your patio for a few containers." . . . and my Tomato Jungle was born! I started with 11 plants in 10 containersw, but had to give away 2 as there wasn't enough patio space with at least 6 hours of daily sun! Then I panicked and over-reacted when the runt of the lot got covered with white, wooly mold/mildew/??? and yankjed the whole plant out, to prevent the spread of this whatever-it-was.

I REALLY enjoy tomatoes. . and REALLY enjoyed my Jungle while it was in production. But I should have just had my garden helper uproot and kill them all earlier this month, when they first came down with that leaf disease. For almost 3 weeks, I've been dealing with an ailing Tomato Jungle. . . spraying, drastically pruning, daily scrutinizing leaves and tomatoes for signs of infection and discarding them. . . .in return, I got sullen plants that quit producing! Repeatedly, I'd keep a hopeful eye on a green, growing tomato.....anticipating eating it. . . only to have to have to discard it because it suddenly showed signs of infection! It redcently dawned on me (after the umpteenth time of having anticipation turn to disgust) that I was having to gradually discard ttomatoes instead of getting to eat and enjoy them. So I quit!!!! The Jungle still has green fruit, some ripening. . . . but I REFUSE to be tempted anymore!

Shots, supposedfly to make one feel better I know better, but I wasn't thinking due to the pain. Corticosteroid injections make the DOCTOR feel better immediately (they HATE having to admit they can't DO anything, so they DO things on the off chance it'll work. I'm a doctor, but a different kind of doctor.). The release of corticosteroids from the adrenal glands are the body's response to inflammation. However, this natural response by one's own body takes 7-10 days to get ramped up and start making any discernable difference. The corticosteroid injections jump-starts the body's own response: the actual "stuff" injected is gone in 2-3 days but then the body takes over. Relief from pain is ultimately achieved and the vast majority of patients (and doctors) credit the injections - wrongly. In fact, studies show that corticosteroid injections have a downside: the suspension is implicated in the erosion of the protective cartilagenous surfaces of joints. MY lesson: I'll NEVER tell that Dr that my ???? hurts again and(or) consent to corticosteroid injections!! I WILL remember!!!

Milton, MA(Zone 6a)

Beth, that makes sense! (That the perceived lessening of pain is credited to the intervention) They should (probably have) study chronic vs. acute pain re: the steroid shots. My DH is definitely has chronic pain and I bet they work better for acute.

So you are a successful tomato grower?! I have successfully grown half a dozen small tomatoes (one plant, once), but to get those I have planted tomato plants MANY MANY MANY times. This year we bought a plant from Home Depot that already had tomatoes on it! A critter (rabbit?) ate those shortly thereafter. The ones in the Earthbox never fruited. :( I can grow a few herbs, basil, mint, thyme, sometimes dill, but not tomatoes. Hats off to you!

Hendersonville, NC(Zone 7a)

Thank you Carrie, but I think my succedss (ultimate failure??) this year was pure luck! This was the first year I triedd starting seeds indoors, flowers AND the tomatoes. . .so y'all KNOW those tomato seedlings were very pamperedf and carefully tended even BEFORWE I "kicked them out into the cold, cruel world"! lol no straggly Home Depot starter plants for me! nopoe, mine were about 6 inch sturdy little trees!! I had a picture of them "sunning" themselvbes, but my PC crashed and I RUDELY discovered my paid-for auto backup service hadn't saved ANY of my personal stuff, only system stuff (which I did NOT need backing up elsewhere!) At 6 weeks old, they got planted OUTSIDE!! Three seedling-plants (same variety of cherry tomatoes) already had flowers a few days before THE Grand Plant-out. One of those actually had a half-mature-size green tomato the first week outside!

I had tried to grow tomatoes onew time before, using store-bought plants....I had sick, spindly plants that died when about 3 foot tall.

When I planted my tomatoes out, occassionally when I was in a garden center for something elsde, I'd go check out what the "competition" was selling re tomato plants...my much-pampered little trees made there's look sickly!!

IMy Tomato Jungle had an assortment of containers: 2 Earthboxes, 1 18 inch plastic planter and3-5 orange 5 gallon shop buckets from Home Depot (complete with the logo. . . I jokingly asked if I earned a discount, seeing as how they'd be prominantly used right behind their major competitor's: Lowe's . . . no discount, but I got a laugh!!)

I received my "I can't chesw cookbook. . .I've got the desserts covered already! Granny likes her sweetyds!!! It confirmed what I guess I hadn't acknowledged: I'm gonna hafta start cooking again!! Granny is one who'd like prison version loaf. . leaving out her seets! Her sweets (desserts) would have to be served alone...all the rest just mix it up!! There's alot of casseroles I think she'd like. . . but when we lived together a few years ago, she'd eat anything I put in front of her: when pressed as to whether she LIKED something she didn't eat weat with gusto, she'd politely say "It's fine,its just not one of myh favorites." So THAT recipe got deep-sixed and never made again!

I just got back ferom going over to her house and "using her oven". (Remember that's my excuse for going over to bake stuff.) This week's bhaking ended up to be 20 iced pumpkin spice cupcakes. . . baked with enough Benefiber in the batter so that when she ate 2 a day, Granny gets the reccomended daily am,ount of dietary fiber! (I'm a sneaky cook, remember?? hehehe) Tempting sweets, things she CAN eat. . . and it's good for her, too!!! (Benefiber really IS tasteless and doesn't alter the recipe...except for bread-type things like muffins, and a rewcipe for 12 cupcakes makes . . .more = depending how much B. one adds)

Midland City, AL

When youíre in pain and the doctor dangles a possibility of relief in front of your nose, itís tough to refuse.

Ray doesnít get a Tramadol prescription? I think Kay and I were both on it before it was re-classified, but now we are subjected to a pill count every visit to the pain clinic. I hope the abuses are not making it harder for people who need it to get it. I canít imagine anyone using Tramadol as a recreational drug, but I hear of and see people doing things on the news every night that are hard for me to imagine anyone doing

I hope you found this thread, irchairweaver. Everything is a little jumbled together for now, but as the forum grows we will try to get more organized.

Nadi, My god-daughter, has become addicted to electronically spying on birds. I guess cyber bird watching does have its advantages. She can check out a condor in CA, barn owls in Texas and a variety of song birds at a feeder in New York all on the same day. It is sort of interesting. I had only seen condors at a distance. Man, those birds are ugly up close. Lol. Hereís a link to the NY feeder cam. There always seems to be bird activity there.



SE/Gulf Coast Plains, AL(Zone 8b)

Beth, I always have more grape and cherry size tomatoes than I can use, but never the big guys. Nadi said you had some gorgeous big guys. (Not enough vision to see photos.) It seems like tobacco horn worms, think tomato horn worms supersized) always go for the beefsteak. Picking off hornworms is one of the few garden tasks I am squeamish about. They try to wrap around my fingers and they feel simultaneously squishy and prickly. I usually sweet talk Nadi or Jim into the task. Nadine is not squeamish, but she says pulling a hornworm off a tomato plant is like trying to get a kid out of ToyRUs.
Knowing about sneaky cooking is a mark of responsible motherhood.
Note from Nadine: Tobacco hornworm hunting is painful sometimes. They bite, or pinch. Iím not quite sure.

Casa Grande, AZ

Hi gang, :D
I'm back! Duct tape worked. Mainly because the only time I took it off was to talk to friends that called (LOL) ! Heard from a friend in CA, one in GA (best one of 26 years), my neighbor who is back after almost a month of vacation stopped over with a card and a pie she baked for us! My former neighbor whose cat we were caring for was back from her vacation and she called. Both my brother and mother called from OH. My SIL called also but she wasn't in when I tried to reach her. WOW!!

Things have resumed to normalcy in the household between DH and I. We had a very amiable chat about a particular irksome habit. I, however, in my infinite state of enlightenment and perfection have no irritating traits or bad habits! All in all we had a good day and enjoyed ourselves. :D

Also our next door neighbor stopped over and let us know they bought the house now instead of renting it so they will be our 'permanent' neighbors. Nice! I really like them. Young couple. She has 2 kids, he has 1 so they'll make a nice family. Kids are young and absolutely love me. Why? I'm not a 'kid' person. Former neighborhood the people across the street had 4 kids and they loved me too. Why? I'm not a 'kid' person. Maybe it's because I treat, talk to, and interact with children exactly as if they were "little" adults and not brain damaged infantilized individuals incapable of conversing and interacting appropriately?

My current neighbor's kids are fascinated with my plants and yard and come visit me when I garden. I give them a little "tour" every now and then and show them the cacti and Agaves. Teach them what can/can't be touched.
Uhm...kind of amusing, despite our previous educational tour of my yard, one found out the hard way when I was inside. Heard the yelping and subsequent crying...heh..heh..heh. Well, you just don't come into people's yards when they tell you not to unless they're out there!
I know they're a kid BUT they are old enough to know that. They are also old enough to "see" and "know" 4 inch needles are sharp and hurt! Typical kid...cried 10 seconds then stopped and went to go play with his sister in THEIR yard.

Also so much for my gardening projects yesterday (* eye roll...grimace*) Did have a few absolutely crucial things to get done. They didn't. Looks like today or without a doubt tomorrow! Just has to get done!

We all know the phrase "Be careful of what you wish for you just may get it." Well, my current neighbor (Shirley..not with the kids) brought over along with the pie and card two really, big cuttings of prickly pear pads. I had admired her plant and she knew DH always kept saying he wanted one like it. Well, her daughters (that I managed to unload some of my Century Plant pups onto ) were nice enough to return the favor.

Remember the P.Pear vs. automobile picture?
Yeah. The pads are that big! Shirley got two BIG branches from one of her daughter's P.Pear and brought them over. Gee. Thanks.
Now I have to figure out where to plant something in my front yard that grows fast and will become the size of a minivan! Need to move some plants around....again! (smack forehead, groan). I'd need a raised bed the size of the Great Wall of China to retain that thing. It is definitely getting planted in the ground out front!
Let's see...move some plants out of the way, fill in those holes. Dig new holes to put them in.
Dig another huge hole for P. Pear; try to stabilize this thing with one hand while I replace the soil in the hole with my other hand, cuss and swear....GRRRRRRR! Oh and DH, bless his little heart was nice enough to "surprise" me with 2 new cacti also. Gee. Thanks. Cut flowers that DIE in 2 weeks and go IN the garbage would have been equally appreciated. :D
And he wonders why the amount of potted plants wintering on the covered patio keeps increasing while the patio table gets pushed farther out into the sun. Beats me.
(And no we do not expose our precious babies to too much sun. It is still 103-96 degrees! The little sweeties need partial shade!).

Ahhh...if only this little Agave had dying, funky tomatoes (that go IN the garbage) and Tobacco worms (that go IN the garbage) to worry about.

Oh Jim and company,
Latex surgical gloves like at the doctors office. You can get a box real cheap on line. Some drug stores even have them. (get pre-powdered; or use some talcum powder before putting them on.). That should take care of the worm creepies and you can work efficiently.

By the way absolutely loved the scarecrow. Husband was ROFL when I showed him. Is it facing your neighbors? Should be. Also liked what you told them about your flower beds. Me being me would have said, "Yes. It's been very convenient having it so close to home." (*grin*) I know. I'm just not right in the head! Hey...I can HONESTLY say I fell on it one too many times (LOL)

Did you ever think that maybe the landscape truck comes around because the guys are checking you out rather than your yard? Men have to work up the nerve to ask you out. Maybe by making frequent appearances he's trying to start up a conversation. Hmmm....
Never know. Couldn't figure out for the longest time when I was single why DH always got his mail the same time I did and we just happened to keep meeting at the mailbox almost every day! He got off work earlier than I. He told me he knew about when I got home so he used to peek out the window to see when I started walking towards the box! (LOL). Try a little tolerance. Mom always said, "You catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar!"

As for the big boss I think I would have told her that you're planting tomatoes to help feed some of the people in your little local community there and was going to distribute some. Oh, and she can have some too because they're high in antioxidants and good for weight loss; you can put them in salads. :D Nasty, rude, cow! (Her, not you).

As for flue shots I avoid them. Every time I got one I got sick for 2 weeks, fever over 101 and needed antibiotics and wound up with a Drs. bill! I start living off of Airborne, handfuls of vitamins, up my C vitamins, eat more red, yellow and orange bell peppers (they have 3xs as much vitamin C as an orange!) and avoid kids as much as possible.
Not because I'm "not a kid person" but because they're little germ factories. Let's face it kids don't always have the best hygiene or are good about washing hands and not eating off of their friends forks, or chewing on pencils. They pass notes, touch everything in school a million other people have touched, sit on a bus with 50 other kids, etc. After flu season I resume contact with these little alien beings.
Also I am a fan of anything household product with the word "Lysol" on it and keep wipes in my purse less I have to use public carts, open public bathroom doors, etc. Haven't had the flu or a major cold that had me down feeling yucky more than a few days in 3 years! (I probably just jinxed myself.)
Hot tea, tea, tea once Fall comes. Flush the old body fluids and put new good ones in sick or not!

O.K. everyone. As promised here are some blooms.
Have a great day. Peace. Out.

Pics #1 & 2... my neighbor's barrel cactus.
Pic #3...the afore mention 2 cacti Dave got me. The one is ready to bloom (probably today or tomorrow). All excited because it has about 3 possibly 4 more buds on it. :D
Pic #4...An Aloe ferox. Many of the Aloes are flowering right now.
Pic #5...A hedgehog cactus.

Oh, song for the day is, "I Can See Clearly Now" by Johnny Nash.
Such a fabulous song I never tire of. Always puts me in an even better mood than I am.

Thumbnail by Agavegirl1 Thumbnail by Agavegirl1 Thumbnail by Agavegirl1 Thumbnail by Agavegirl1 Thumbnail by Agavegirl1
Milton, MA(Zone 6a)

I used to not get flu shots because there was a rumor that the immune response they caused could exacerbate MS, but ever since I almost died of flu in 2001, I get my vaccination! Also, the rumor has been overridden by facts.

Hendersonville, NC(Zone 7a)

tolerastion and that landscape truck hmmmm, I hadn't thought of THAT! DEFINATELY time for me to get crotchy, grumpy and LESS tolerant! I'm enjoying NOT having anyone to answer to, consider etc. (There IS Granny, but we live happily apart and she;s gotten mellower in her old age!) I'll start by immediately stopping of giving them the excess/culled plants from my yard! lesse...what else can I do? There was a thunderstorm here last night that knocked a few ripening 'maters off the vines....they'd make splendid ammo to hurl at the passing vehicle (reminds me of a dog going after a passing car or mailman hehehe).

shots in general and the yearly flu shot in particular People! People! People!!! in Immunology, one of the first lessons are the body's layers of protection against infection/disease; the skin is the body's FIRST line of defense, not only by being a PHYSICAL barrier but also being host to microbes, having a very modest anti-bacterial property and of course, there's ALWAYS pH: all perfectly designed to create a hostile barrier to germs! As long as it remainse intact, germs have to find another entry point to get in and wreak havoc. (Imagine a stone castle's outer wall, bristling with armed defendors!!) After that course, I became VERY leary of injections! (Except this last time, when I wasn't thinking straight!)
My personal reaction to being threatened with a loaded syringe is :%@%#, no! I won't let you breach my body's defense!)

Thus I do NOT cheerifully go get an annual flu shot...and NOT the pnuemonia shot, either (though I DID allow/get a shingles shot - vaccinations against a single bad actor are in a different category.) The annual flu shot is particularly a bad idea I think: it's a mixture of the recent prevalent strains of the flu. . . one can still get "the flu" especially if it's not one of the strains "covered"' even if it IS one of the strains "covered", one can still "get it" but the symptoms and duration of illness will be shorter and milder. . . . and let's not EVEN get into how the vaccine itself is made! I have the same objections for the pnuemonia shot: several strains etc.
My Granny insists on ggetting every . .single . .vaccination. . . that is availavble!!! She's "drank the Kool-aid". We've reached a detente: she happily goes and gets punctured regularily and I do NOT. Neither of us tries to pressure the other.

Currently, I'm writing up a list of garden chores for my garden helper: it's that time of year to start putting my gartdens to bed for the winter. . . . and prepare for NEXT year's gardens!! Top three chores for him: un-plant all those tomato plants, so I can wash/sanitize/store, uproot all the zinnias and remove the irrigation system, so I can wash, sanitizxe/store and dig up/amend my front garden. Oh yeah: plant daffodil, hyacinth and allium bulbs!

Over the long, cold winter I get to peruse the gardening catalkogs and plan! I don't know why all the companies wait to send out their catalogs until spring : I save the catalogs and plan/design/buy etc. in a two-week splurge of activity the last week and the first week of the years! The new catalogs usually start arriving after my seedlings have already sprouted and started growing (I start indoors, remember?)

Casa Grande, AZ

If you're bored during winter come help me lay some brick. That'll keep you busy. I'll let you look at the catalogs on break. :D Might get some of the piss and vinegar out of you too.
Be nice. Who says you always have to answer to them? Train, train, train, DON'T complain (*grin*)! It works. Their brains get a little more malleable each time. You'd be surprised at how much "sticks".
Occasional relapses but you just "reinforce the training". Kind of like Pavlov and the dog. Bell rings you get rewarded. You don't respond to the bell you get zapped! Operant conditioning. Stimulus and response. Remember we are still considered "animals." :D
Instead of throwing tomatoes take them some. They may just leave you alone and go bother some one else who isn't so "nice" or batting their eyelashes at them.

And I don't want to hear it.....they do it to us!

I'm all for vaccines and immunizations. Especially immunizations! It just seems with me personal, A.G.'s only personal experience, that I almost die when I get the flu vaccine shot then when I don't. It has happened twice. So I skip it.
Probably is good for a lot of other people and invaluable to their health and well being. Carrie is a perfect example.

Guess flu shot is personal one. Plus due to my condition I can't take antihistamines or cold medicines to relieve congestion/cold like symptoms. (speeds up nervous system). Ever get that feel like you're on speed when you take cold medicine or having an out of body experience? Yeah...big problem for me and seizures.

I think immunizations for mumps, measles, rubella, etc. should be mandatory or you will not be allowed in school, work and you'll have to live like a leper.
If you don't care about your health fine. That is your right. You better *%#$ care about mine. You have no right to make me sick and infect the majority of the population because you don't want to do something that science has proved works. If you want to subject your self and family to diseases that have long been eradicated that's is your prerogative. You need not to be so selfish and inconsiderate to everyone else and you should go off and live by yourself and attend your own schools.
You don't have to agree with vaccinations/immunizations but if the laws governing the health of society and school children say do it then do it. The other choice is form your own little society, school, etc. where you don't have to follow rules and nobody will complain about being subjected to you.

Gotta go.
Wise cactus says time to get butt in gear before DH comes home so it looks like I've been productive all day and not playing on the computer. :D

Midland City, AL

Iím almost certain tobacco hornworms canít bite humans, but they do try. They are aggressive. When you pull them off a plant, the caterpillar whips around and latches on to your hand. The caterpillar doesnít do any damage to your skin, but it is an unpleasant sensation.

Kay works in vinyl surgical gloves for many garden jobs. She would probably want the thicker kind for washing dishes to commit hornworm homicide. I want to experiment with the plant spray made with Ivory soap next year. Supposedly, that makes the tomato plants unappetizing to tobacco and tomato hornworms. If that does not work, we will try BT. Organic methods are our ideal, but there are times when the chemicals are unavoidable. We resort to Andros for imported fire ants. None of the organic methods for controlling ants were successful . Biting ants can make gardening a nightmare. Even if I could avoid being bitten by the ants themselves, there would be the damage caused by the aphid ďlivestockĒ the ants herd and protect.

We could grow things all year, but we garden minimally in December and the first half of January. We keep some cool season greens growing and maintain the greenhouse. Many people here start their tomato seeds mid-January.

Territorial Seeds is one of my favorite nurseries for out-of-season gardening. They are more aware than most how much the growing season varies in this country.

It has been a long day. Kay and I both had blood test first thing this morning. There will be no avoiding hypodermic needles. Not as much can go wrong if they are taking blood out instead of putting strange substances in at least. Talk to yíall tomorrow. Have a good night.


BTW: I have never seen a hedehog cactus flowering that is neat.

Casa Grande, AZ

Good Morning gang, :D
Hi Carrie;
They have a thicker surgical glove we used at the prison dependent upon task. It is made with Kevlar. It is still relatively thing and easy to work with but more thick and protective than the regular surgical gloves. Again can pick them up on line or at a medical supply place. I don't think you're going to find the Kevlar ones on shelves in drug stores. Little bit more but worth it. Can wash the outside with mild soap and water, dry them off and re-use.

Ants are another thing. Yikes. Have no suggestions or ideas there except unfortunately a can of Raid or a bottle of Clorox.

Fall is still pretty active with us out here. Late fall (November) we knock off and do more "projects" like building shelves, walls, pruning, fertilizing, etc. Not rubbing it in but keep in mind Winter here is still very mild. Nights get chilly 40s and high 30s. Where I'm at no frost. Very rarely have I encountered a frost and had to cover my plants and outdoor water spigot. Has happened but maybe 1 or 2 times in 2 years. We cover anyway if it dips into the mid 30s.

Late February when danger of frost has passed (usually) most of us are plant shopping/storing on patios, etc. March is usually when we plant in earnest. Would be nice to have a greenhouse. Although Winter is "chilly/cold" for us acclimated here the sun does shine and the greenhouse would make good use of that! Problem is even small ones monopolize too much yard space. Unless you have a huge home (we don't) you don't have a huge yard. Space is at a premium.
Still would be nice though. Maybe I could grow 'maters!!! Winter I could possibly force some tulips or daffodils and such. (Bulbs get kept in fridge in a bag or in the dark).

Then there's Summer when everyone else gets to reek their revenge upon us! It is 108-118 degrees. Any outdoor activity involves hosing yourself off as much as the plants, trying not to keel over from heat stoke or pass out from dehydration and attempting to keep plants from looking like kettle cooked potato chips or turning into overwatered rotted guacamole!

But hey....it's a dry heat you know! (LOL)

Realize germs don't get in through skin. Needs mucous membrane. But keep in mind we touch sick children, door handles, knobs, shopping carts and then maybe 20 minutes later rub our eye, powder our nose, reapply lipstick and maybe wipe off a smudge with our finger, or dip our finger in something to "taste it" while cooking..eating food with your hands (hamburger; fries).
As a mom, how many times have you picked up one of your kids carelessly discarded or left about tissues or even helped them blow their nose and not washed your hands?You let them have a sip off of your glass? Common things mothers do.
Little subconscious movements we do without thinking about them in the course of our day. We never consciously think about how many hand to eye/mouth/nose area movements we make a day! Or hand to "other areas" we do? Basic biology..some areas ARE mucous membrane. May wash our hands when done but how about BEFORE tending to?
You can see how easy it is to get sick. I just try to be "conscious" more at this time and hose everything down with Lysol and wipe anything I can with a Lysol product. I'm constantly washing my hands, and washing my hands, and washing my hands and carry those little alcohol sanitizer wipes.

Don't always have 100% success but seems to work better for me. That and Airborne. :D

I seem to suffer more from allergies! Grrrrrr! Oh, I hate my allergies! I know I live in a dessert but as I've demonstrated there is ALWAYS something in "bloom" or getting ready to. Lots of pollen floating around from cacti, trees, hay, farms and just weeds (people here quaintly call them wild flowers...they're weeds!). We also get tremendous winds on occasion that just blow garbage in from other parts. Highly, highly allergic to dust...which is why I'm always on a cleaning rampage. I get hives as well as sneezing fits!

Jim and Kay,
Sorry about the blood draw today! Yucky! They like to make a pincushion out of me too. Dr. gets mad because I don't get blood work every year. I get them done maybe every 2. Hey...if I'm not sick I don't need to go to a doctor. I'm not going in to pay for an office visit I don't need and a blood test. My Epilepsy meds aren't "toxic" due to build up in blood stream or hard on any of my organs per se; so again unnecessary. It is their C.Y.A. practice. My Neurologist is pretty good about ignoring the blood test thing. My regular generic "doctor" isn't. He's a Nazi about it.

I also demand a copy of my CMP 13. Either the doctor or the lab will mail it to you.
That's how I found my B12 deficiency. They kept saying "it's normal". Well yeah, 280 is more normal than 250 which is rock bottom! BUT they never put 2 and 2 together and said...oh, the reason for a large part of your symptoms is because you are almost bottoming out and have been for probably 20 years! Had I not looked up the B12 levels myself and saw what the appropriate "normal" functioning range is it never would have got fixed! There's plenty of places on the web that will show you how to read your
CMP 13 and other tests and what to look for.

I also found out that my prior pill pushing pimp of a neurologist was making me sick by overdosing me and collecting from the pharmaceutical companies. He earned over $600K in 3 years from pushing pills for drug companies!

Check out Dollars For Docs website. See if yours is there or any specialist. See who they are collecting from then look up the meds you take and see if they match the same pharmaceutical company/manufacturer.

Did you know you can automatically become a guinea pig without your knowledge? Just by agreeing to take a drug your doctor can report to the drug company the "results" of how it works in you and that gets compiled into a "test" with millions of other people! You have to expressly tell them you do NOT want to be part of any tests or clinical trials. You forbid it!

Also there is extended detailed patient labeling available at the pharmacy is you ask the
pharmacist for it. It goes way above and beyond what the drugstore slips into the package with your pills. READ IT. It tells you 9 million other things you never knew about the drug, long term/short term effects, more side effects than listed, what else the drug is used to treat, etc. etc. VERY informative and educational.

Last but not least there is HIPPA. Clearly state, "I have the right to refuse any medical treatment I don't want and feel is unnecessary. I don't want this. I find it unnecessary, and I refuse to pay for it if you administer it because I expressly told you and clearly stated that I did not want this!" Make sure you have a witness.

They tried this crap on me. One tried to give me a pregnancy test to see if that was causing seizures. Uhm....my husband had a vasectomy! They pushed. I refused. They pushed. I told them I would sue them if they didn't get off the subject. They stopped. Also your spouse can do this for you if you "type up" and sign and date a note and put it in your medical file. Demand (nicely) that your doctor keep it there or just keep bringing it in every time. I even bring my own aspiring, razor, shave cream, personal items etc. They'll charge you exurbanite prices on your bill for these things if you accept them. Also I take my pills my self so there is no "administering fee." Sneaky #%^&*@. Bring your own RXs to the hospital and take them your self. I also had 2 additional doctors walk into the room to hear what the other one was saying about my hand. I told them "I'm not paying you. You are not here to consult or treat me. You're hear because you want to be and on your own time. If I receive a bill from you I'm reporting you." Do you know if more than 1 doctor walks in the room they could technically bill you for a consultation?

Review your bill with a fine tooth comb. Ask for a detailed explanation of each and every line. Call your insurance PRIOR and ask what they cover and won't. Burn center tried to keep me there more than 23 hours so they could bill me more. I demanded to be let out at 23 so they couldn't and called my insurance to let them know what they were trying to do. I expressly told insurance company I WAS leaving and to monitor the bill charges. (Will admit though made very liberal use of that morphine drip..took full advantage of it while it was there!)

Also see if certain doctors, follow up places for rehab/physical therapy, out patient surgery are covered. Some doctors although they work in a hospital in your network DO NOT get reimbursed by insurance. They are contracted and bill you directly. Not all rehab/labs/ etc. are in network.

I'm sure you guys all know this stuff though. But still these places are so sneaky. All I have to say is I hate the present private insurance system. I'll leave it there.

I just found that to be well you must do your own research and present it to them.
Never, never, never be afraid to ask for copies of your tests. They HAVE TO give them to you.
I also keep all my own records. I bring them to them. I do not allow them to keep my records. Why should I pay to get my records. They want them, they can ask me. "We can only send them to another doctor." Bull crap. I'll be there in person to pick them up and to hand carry them to another doctor. They are legally and rightfully my property.
I have an 8 inch file of my entire medical history that goes with me to every doctor I go to. I make it clear that they may copy they may NEVER keep! Nobody has given me grief.

Quacks. Liars. Fraudsters. Flim-Flam artists.....Montebanks. HATE them all. I avoid doctors like the plague. Basically I won't go to one unless it falls into the categories of :

broken, pointing the wrong direction, or hanging funny
won't stop bleeding profusely after 2 days;
I can not avoid some medical means of keeping it closed, together or on my body;
turns a color I don't recognize (kind of hard considering I'm an artist);
smells/oozes more than a week;
throbs more than 2 weeks;
hinders range of motion more than 70% for more than a week with no improvement;
I see double; (not self inflicted)
have a fever over 103 for more than 3 days;
vomit more than 3 days; (not self inflicted)
get bit by something poisonous;
I can't avoid stitches and skin bonding self stitch doesn't work (Yes, they have this product);
I can't stand up and am groaning in pain for a reason I can't determine. (not self inflicted)
I go deaf, dumb, blind; (temporarily)
Crazy and senile don't count. I'm already there.

Other than that I do not go to a doctor! Hate them. I pretty much have my personal doctor visits down to 3xs a year for Neurologist and maybe 1-2 times a year for regular M.D. Everything else I go to the pharmacy, or free clinic (make a donation) for. Tired of the health care system pounding me.Also do like the threat they can throw me off because they feel like it and arbitrarily decide I use too much of it. So I say: %$*$^*.... &%^@ and @$*$ THEM!

On the lighter side.....:D
So glad you liked the Hedge Hog cacti. Yes they are pretty and do bloom. Happy I got a photo of that one in particular. Purple blooms from my understanding aren't real common. Red, yellow, orange, white, pink and cream are standards out here on plants. Purple/purple-ish is not common. Couldn't bring a part home with me. It was in a park.

Also here was my late morning surprise from yesterday! Also will be starting on the raised beds today out in the yard. Pretty happy to get that going.

Pics of my cactus day before yesterday with bloom closed. You can see the bud and if you look closely you can see a few more buds on the way. I hope they get mature enough to bloom it would be delightful.
Also just some far away and close ups of my lovely flower that bloomed yesterday morning. :D

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Hendersonville, NC(Zone 7a)

TTC way to go, girl! Very wise way to TRY to "dewal" with medical doctors. I, too, used to insist on having/keeping my medical records. . . .READING them proved very informative - and bad for my blooc pressure in some cases! HIPPA laws gives one the right to see and copy their records. . . there was one very bad actor whose "records" revealed just how BAD he was (He's no longfer my doctor and I've had to refuse to be sent to him for "consultation".

As I said in my tirade against the flu/pnuemonia "shot" , there's a diofference of acceptable/unacceptable depending on what the immunization/vaccination targets: if its aimed at a specific pathogen (measles, tetanus etc.) then it's accceptable/gopod and I totally agree with TTC: there should be NO exemptions allowing anyone to not take these -if they want to avoid them for religious reasons. . then let them go to rtherir particular religious school andsocialize ONLY with their own religious sect. However, when a particular "shot" targets only the most recent prevalent strains, then its unacceptable to me and many others. As TTC points out, the pathogens for the disease are endemic in the environment and can't be avoided/ / /but germs CAN (and do, preferentially) enter the body through a break in the skin. (think Tetanus. . . ever step on a rusty nail or cut your hand/finger badly while gardening?? PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT Tetanus vadccinations need to be kept up-to-date, especially for adult gardiners. . .I think it's every 10 years or so. Ask your doctor!)

Blood tests are always good: they give a snapshot of what your body is actually doing! Ever wonder why adoctors keep examining/looking into your eyes? He/she isn't checking the state of yo0ur soul; they're the only place where the blood can be seen coursing through the blood vessels.

hospitals and hidden charges Regardless of which state or city I was in, I ALWAYS had to surrender any prescription or OTC meds (including herbal remedies and vitamins) whenever I was admitted, so the several dollar administration fee is unavoidable. In addition, I always encountered hospitals standard practice of getting whatever my prescription drugws were (that I had brought in and surrendered, rememgber?) from THEIR pharmacy, so that practice meant I was billed for: inflated medeicine costs (once it was $.50 for an ASPIRIN!!), pro-rated (I HOPE at least it was!) fee for a REGISTERED NURSE to go get it AND several dollars for her to leave the nurse's station and walk down the hall to HAND it to me!!! All unavoidable. What I HAVE found avoidable: all the little stuff one finds on the bedside table. . the plastic water bottle and cup, package of Kleenex, plastic wash basin, washcloth etc. Hospital staff will insist you use their suppolied items as it's "sanitized" thus guaranteed not to bring in any germs from YOUR house (what about the prevalent germs in the hospital??) but one CAN insist right back...only be sure your returnof items is documented, or you'll be charged - particularly, remain vigilant that items don't migrate back . . . And after a hospitalizatioon, always read the itemized charges that they billed your insurance for: often the final bill isn't available at discharge -THEY SAY! It's all been recorded, at the time, but is taking a slow walk through various departments! And let's not forget the solicitous discharge, culminating with the mandatory assisted wheelchair ride OUT of the hospital: another unavoidable charge. (What? You thought it was COMPLEMENTARY?? rofl)

tirade ofver (I won't EVEN start about arbitrary etc and meds!).

Change of subject: a meal for Granny
Tomorrow, I'm fixing semi-homemade spaghetti and garlic bread: she likes it and can "chew" it!! The only change to make is to cut the crust off the Italiasn bread. Several years ago, she had me stop making meatballs and put the meat directly IN the sauce!!

Sadly, those pumpkin spiced cup[cakes I made for her, were not as enjoyable once they got cold! She really liked their taste when she tried one right out of the oven, still warm, but sdhe has no way to heat them back up. (She refuses to even HAVE a toaster oven or microwave in her house even if I bought one for her. . . it's been a few years since she used her TOASTER to make toast!!)

And how's YOUR day going??

Casa Grande, AZ

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH !!! GRRRRRRRR... Pant, pant, pant.......Heave, sweat, AHHHHHHHH...Oh, that's the sound of me trying to get brick "square" in 103 degree heat. Hot, sweaty, dirty, had to stop to feed dog.
From 8:00 a.m. shoveled a mountain of landscape rock out of the way. Raked the rest of it off my square. At 10:30 began "laying out" my pattern. NOTHINGS WORKING!!!

My fault. Bought these pretty "rustic" brick instead of plain red square, flat brick. &#%$ing stuff won't line up, meet, or sit right. AHHHHHHHHHHH !!!

Originally planned [) (] with space in between.
Don't ask what I've got going on now. Just don't. I don't care what it looks like I just want it done so I can get out the Quickcrete. It just has to be good enough not good.

Talk to you tomorrow.

Casa Grande, AZ

:D Good Morning gang,

Uh...uhm...forgot I was working with "rough hewn rock blocks" NOT brick. Duh...no wonder it won't lay right. You did notice from the pictures I'm not a stereotypical blonde, right? Yeah, have my moments though. Looked at pictures...you know, them things that provide VISUAL images. Figured out the problem. Let's just say I'm going to be real, real, real, busy reshuffling rock around today now that I know what it IS supposed to look like.

Do you think the neighbors would get mad if I lit up the back yard like a rock concert (no pun intended) and started now? It was a 103 yesterday! I think from weather forecast it is supposed to be 103-105 today. Groan. Only good thing is I lost 1.5 pounds yesterday between the gallon of water I drank in 4 hours and the brick lifting. :D
I'll shoot for another 1.5 today (LOL)

Get with you all later (if not exhausted.).
Wise Cactus told me, "There's none so blind as those who will not see pictures on computer before endeavoring to undertake such laborious projects; and that's what you get for being simple!"

Hope everyone is doing well, happy and feeling good.
I'm going to walk dog and play with brick.
Peace. Out.

Casa Grande, AZ

Hi gang, :D
Anyone alive and out there? Hope everyone is feeling well.
I am happy to report that my little cacti above with the red flower now has 3 more buds! All different sizes which means they'll bloom at different times. That's good since the flowers typically last a day...maybe 2 if you're lucky. Makes you wonder how these things reproduce and stay alive doesn't it?

Well once again little Agave here busted her butt lifting, rearranging, and flipping brick around. Considering my one bed is comprised of 4 layers of brick and goes about 7 feet long by 3 feet 6 inches wide that was A LOT of brick.
I then proceeded to use my Quickcrete in a tube and caulk each and every brick in place. This meant lifting each one again and setting it back down, lift a brick set down, lift a brick then set down. My everything aches. Can't imagine why can you? My hands are especially sore. I used gloves so the brick wasn't the issue. Squeezing cement out of a tube using a caulk gun was. Cement in a tube isn't exactly liquid, fluid or particularly fast moving. Took a lot of effort and force to squeeze the handle. Hands really ache. My back by my shoulder blades is really achy. Muscle sore, not like I pulled anything or hurt backbone.

Today I'm going to knock off the brick. Give my hands a break. I only have one layer to cement onto the second connecting bed so that won't be too hard. I'll do that in the next day or two. I'm out of brick after that. So moving on with the project will have to wait until I can get to the store and/or have money to buy more brick. I will get it finished. In little dibs and dabs I can add on to it throughout "Winter" here. That's how I did my last back yard. Keeps me busy and out of trouble until Spring when I can go plant crazy! :D

O.K. hope all is well. Talk to you soon.
Tired Agavegirl

Pic #1 Ever have days where you feel like this?
Pic #2 &3 Imitation is the highest form of flattery. I'm planning on imitating Zoe today.

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Benton, KY(Zone 7a)

Testing, testing...(checking on thread post notifications)

Casa Grande, AZ

HI Melodoy,
Yep, it works.

Benton, KY(Zone 7a)


Hendersonville, NC(Zone 7a)

TTC?AG I had wondered about exactly what was the problem you encountered building with the natural rocks, then (with your latest post) I had a light bulb moment and then (pardon me for this) just HAD to burst into laughter! I never even considered that the problem wass so. . . basic?

I know almost all of the buildings out where yu live have smooth exteriora because of the adobe coating, but there ARE examples of buildings and structures (think outdoor grills or pizza ovens eg) that fill most magazines. Plus, common sense SHOULD've clued you in on the fact that brick/stone/rock walls/structures would soon fall down without something being used to "glue" all those pieces together. Even Mario Brothers' video game has brick steps and walls with the characteristic grid of mortar between each and every brick.

You should take solace in the fact that you'd be just as sore if you had used the "glue" the FIRST time. . .plus, the second time allowed you the opportunity to fine tune your structures before fixing everything in place!

At least now you can reward yourself with double the pampering and soaking in a bubble bath!

Here, we're getting rain. . .a steady drizzle of varying intensity that the NAOA predicts will last around the clock for about seven days: so its real nice to open my back door to see my Tomato Jungle and know I DON'T have to go out!!! Wouldn't you know it? The darn surviving green tomatoes have started ripening. . . but I'm not buying it!! Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me!!! Let 'em rot!!! (Vengeful much?? LOL)

Time to go to yet another doctor's visit. **heavy sigh**

Casa Grande, AZ

Hi Bets,
Yep...not a stone mason or brick layer. Like I said, I got rough hewn stone brick that wasn't perfectly square. You know the kind that's kind of { on the sides. Well, doesn't fit together smoothly or line up evenly the way flat, square brick does. So...yep had to basically lay out the whole wall to make sure I could do it with this brick and get the brick reasonable "square" so the whole bed wasn't lopsided or leaning. This then meant, I had to take the brick off in the pattern in which I put them on (smart enough to keep them in order!) and glue them down.

I did know brick won't hold unless you use cement/mortar. Just couldn't get to that until I knew my "brick" would actually form a structure. Sigh.....
That's why I said it would have been smarter of me to "look at pictures" using this kind of brick to get a visual of how they laid it out to make beds. Duh....! (LOL) Nope, too easy. No job is a good job unless I make it 2xs harder than it needs to be.

It is really pretty funny though. Oh well, at least I got a great workout and am 95% done. I have a second bed going. All that's left is to Quickcrete the one layer. Pretty darn effective even for my goof! Husband came home from work and about fell over at what I did. He said it looked pretty good and couldn't believe what I got done by my self.

Told DH the reason Rome wasn't built in a day was because they didn't let women build it! Probably would have been facing backwards but it would have been done in a day! :D
Better yet, if we were in charge of constructing Pharos's pyramids the Exodus would have happened 100 years earlier (ROFL).

Now you be nice to them 'maters! I say so. Just go pick them, let the little dears ripen, and then give them away to someone or let your kids take them to school to give to the teacher. You can always give them to the guys in the maintenance truck cruising around your place. Who knows you may get a date! (wink, wink, nudge, nudge).

Oh yes...plan on rewarding my self with some pasta and home made sauce ( I have to use canned tomatoes :[ ...you won't send me any) and a nice bubble bath. Did sleep like a dead person last night. Nothing like complete and utter physical exhaustion to provide the best nights sleep ever.

Easy day today of seeing if I can save a potentially rotting pole cactus (got to look inside) Poor thing got so water logged in a time when we had about 5 days of non stop rain. They rot easy. So it is just a matter of cutting it, checking and then letting it callous over for about 2 weeks and replanting it. It will be much shorter but much healthier and grow faster. They already grow very fast!

Sorry about another Drs. visit. Yucky! Not a fun way to spend the day. Tell them you need to come to AZ and do physical therapy. Sit on porch, drink something cold and instruct simpletons on how to make raised flower beds!

Here's something that says it all about me! I.Q. of 162 but can't figure out how to lay brick, turn off the timer on the stove or use the remote for the TV!

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Midland City, AL

Hi Ladies. Sorry I was MIA the last few days.

Kayís been sleeping like the dead also, TTC. A little too much like the dead. There is little doubt now she has sleep apnea. She stops breathing when she is asleep in other words. That explains her declining health and the blood pressure and cardiac problems in a seemingly very healthy person. It is good news in a way because it is easily treatable with a CPAP machine (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure). It is basically a breathing mask. Her cardiologist tells me I will be amazed at her recovery once she is set up with the equipment. They will monitor her Wednesday night to see how bad it is and Thursday night to get the right settings on the equipment. It canít be soon enough for me. Now that I know what is happening Iím not sleeping that well. I lay there counting the seconds between breaths.

Beth, I hoped to have some fun photos today, but itís raining here too. It rained nonstop from dawn to dusk and is still coming down. There are flash flood warnings, but it will be drying out and cooling off by Wednesday. Daytime temps in the 70ís. Iíll be thinking about you laying those bricks, TTC. (Wicked laugh) You will get your shot when Iím shivering through January.

Hey, Carrie. Are you okay?

I was planning to put down compost tomorrow, but after all this rain I think I will wait a few days. There is some transplanting to be done and this weather is good for that job. A lot of spiderlilies (Lycoris radiata) have popped up in the yard. There must have been a planting bed there long ago and the plants never had a chance to bloom because of constant mowing. Iím amazed they survived, nonetheless multiplied. I will move them where they will not be mown down. It might also be a good day to dig up shrubs that are persona non grata such as a variegated privet that has reverted entirely to green. Iíll let Nature help me with my work instead of fighting her. Mother Nature kicks butt. I have learned to work on her schedule.


Casa Grande, AZ

Hi Jim :D and company :D

Wow Jim,
Sorry to hear you and Kay aren't getting much sleep...or she's getting sleep in fit's and starts. Dave has sleep apnea also. I wish he would do something about it. It is very disturbing. His blood pressure is fine but he has to take a medication for tachycardia (floppy valve). He also wears support socks to work because his circulation is bad. I'm convinced it is from the lack of oxygen (also explains some of his behaviors...LOL).
Jim, please look into something for me. There is a custom made individual mouth piece that pushes the jaw forward and opens the airway so she can breath effectively. Please see about this option. It is highly effective.
Most doctors don't want to go this route because the sleep study is very, very expensive as well as the CPAP machine and they make a fortune on it and the hospital bill! They don't make as much on a mouth piece.
Also the CPAP is noisy and a lot of times the person (and spouse/other) doesn't sleep well due to the noise and discomfort/cumbersomeness of the mask. Hence they don't sleep any better although they can breathe. I'll dig up some info on the web about the mouth piece for you.
Also for the time being have her sleep sitting propped up in bed with 2-3 pillows.
Dave sleeps this way and it seems to cure the problem 90% of the time.
I still wish he would look into the mouth piece. But men are stubborn. They have the, "Oh no..nothing is wrong with me, or I can handle it." Despite my vocal prodding, protests and pleading I can't force him.
I am trying to persuade him. If not for his sake at least for mine.
I know what you mean though about counting minutes. He'll start in with the jerking and gasping and wake me up. I wake him up to get him breathing regular again. He goes back to sleep in a few minutes. I don't. I'm up or half dozing for several hours "listening". Between that and my own problems DH never understands why I'm always tired and sometimes less than sweet. Know it isn't his fault but still, one can only function so well with no sleep.

I don't know how many times a night Kay is doing this or how often in a week, or if it is lasting more than a few seconds but if possible see if you can hang in there a week or so and explore the mouth piece first. If not go for the CPAP. I truly do understand the anxiety and your concern and the need to feel that you should act quickly. I don't blame you one little bit!

No rain here. Just blood boiling, nose bleed hot. YIPPEE 105 with full sun today! (Hear the sarcasm?) Cacti don't need rain; actually it rots them if they get too much. But people need a relief from heat. Cacti do just fine in the 90s as well as 105! Enough already....! This junk has been going on since the end of May. It is pretty bad when you get all excited that the temperature outside drops from 115 to 105 then you pray for 95! NOPE...not until the 2nd-3rd week of October (supposedly)!
Laughing yet? You get winter and I get 6 months of mind boggling heat and heat stroke.
But on the more positive side no matter how hot it gets I don't have to shovel it in January and there's always this "yellow thing" I can see in the sky everyday I wake up! No SAD (seasonal affect disorder) here. :D Just lots of crazy. (People that go out in 105 degrees and lay brick)

Speaking of crazy DH will be back on his regular 3-11 p.m. starting October 1st. Groan. I hate that schedule. I honestly do like this one. Really, as crazy as it sounds I like this schedule. I 'm a morning person anyway.

Looking forward to seeing lilies. Love them. One of my favorite flowers. Any type is great. I have nothing exciting going on in cactus land. Just waiting for that one little cacti with the red flower above to re-bloom. Has a bud that will probably open in the next 2-4 days. Definitely has 1-2 more buds. We'll see what happens with those. Still have to plant that rather large branch of P.Pear my neighbor's daughter was kind enough to give me. It is exactly like the one with the purple-red fruit I showed you. Uhm...still trying to decide where I'm going to put something that gets the size of a minivan in my front yard. Need to plant it so it lives until Spring. Also need to finish those beds so I can pop it in there in back!

O.K. here is my masonry masterpiece. One bed is 7' x 3' more or less. Was debating on making it higher as it is 10.5 inches deep currently. Wondering if it should be a minimum of 12 inches. Other bed is a start. Don't have the brick cemented. Just laid out to see if it fits. Need to go get more brick.

Carrie, yes, are you well? I have been asking how is everyone and their health. We hope you are just busy and not ill.

Peace. Out.
#1...spot I selected and mounds of landscape rock I shoveled out of way
#2 &3...Tah..Dah!
#4...Cement/mortar in a tube. Works fine; actually quite well. Just sore hands from caulking gun. Cement is not fluid, liquid or quick moving when coming out of a tube!
#5...Wise Cactus who frequently rolls his eyes at me or thumps me on my head with his arm. In case you noticed I'm dressed for winter! Jim...remember your old Army field jacket? Still got mine. Only thing I kept. Love it. Perfect weight and very practical. Just wish it came in some other color than camouflage.

This message was edited Sep 29, 2015 4:57 AM

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Casa Grande, AZ

Hi Jim,
That only took a minute for me to find info.
There are 2 FDA approved and cleared and currently used mouth guards to treat and prevent sleep apnea and snoring both! There is the Mandibular Advancement (MAD) which pushes jaw forward and a TRD which is tongue retaining device that acts like a splint to hold it down.
They recommend these over CPAP because CPAP can give nose bleeds, sinusitis, stomach bloat, dry mouth and cause sores on bridge of nose from the straps.

Both of these advices are used and approved by The American Academy of Sleep Medicine.
Kay would need to see a dentist (look for an AASM dentist near you) and have to have an impression made. They make the mouth guard for her and then she can use it. They'll of course explain all the technicalities/procedures.

It is also considerably less and as effective as CPAP! So if you can hang in a little bit look into this option.


Midland City, AL

I might look into the mouthpiece for myself. I know I snore. Iíve been startled awake by a loud sound only to discover the loud sound that woke me was my own snoring. I saw snoring as just another downside of being overweight, but my reading to understand what is going on with DW has me re-thinking the benign nature of snoring .

There is too much at stake in Kayís case to spend time experimenting. I know she has gone as long as a minute without breathing at night and who knows how many times a night that happens. She is a candidate for the retinal implant because she is in such good shape for someone her age. For some reason, the Argus people have a preference for healthy people in their 60ís. I donít want her to lose the chance at having vision

Iím the one pushing for the CPAP because Kayís older sisters are pushing me. All three of her surviving elder sisters use the machine and one is a hospital administrator. This sister thinks the doctors are making a little extra by subjecting Kay to all these other tests when the problem and its solution are obvious. The sister who is a hospital admin lost her ability to speak temporarily before the source of her problem was diagnosed and treated.

The sound of the machine wonít bother me. I worked around the roar of jets too long. It left me with a mild hearing impairment and tinnitus. I need a background noise to keep the tinnitus at bay. If the fan or AC isnít running, I have an audio device that lets me choose outdoor ambient sounds like beach sounds or a running brook. Sleeping in a totally silent room would be very hard for me.

I donít think Kay has lost many brain cells since she corrected my use of ďlayĒ in my last post. Lol. Sheís only awake 8 hours a day most days though. Something is obviously keeping her sleep from being recuperative causing her to need significantly more of it. Kay has been an extremely energetic person until this last year.

They can do the diagnostic test at home now. Iím not sure yet how that works. I will pick up the kit and get the instructions tomorrow afternoon. Kay will only have to spend one night in the hospital if she test positive in order for the technician to adjust and calibrate the air flow and find out what kind of mask works best.

Thanks for the heads up on straps. That is something I had not considered. Designer labels are wasted on my DW because she rips virtually every label out of her clothes claiming the material the label is made from is irritating.

I didnít get to the spiderlilies today between the rain and truck problems. I spent most of my day with mechanics.

At least we all finally agree at Amargia what plant is meant by the common name spiderlily. There are two members of the Lycoris family, a Crinum and a Hymenocallis I know of that lay claim to the name. (ďLayĒ is proper there, right? Lol.) We decided among ourselves that Lycoris radiata has the best claim to the name spiderlily. It looks the most spidery and it has a spiderís spooky factor going for it. They are considered a funeral flower in Japan. I guess because they bloom at the end of the growing season theyíve come to represent endings. I insisted on calling Lycoris squamigera spiderlilies at first because I grew up calling them that, but I surrendered when I learned the local name for Lycoris squamigera is Naked Ladies. Itís a lot more fun to talk about the Naked Ladies in my garden. The resident ladies insist the proper common name for Lycoris squamigera is Resurrection lily, but in my garden they are Naked Ladies. Itís a good name! The stems are completely bare and they are a soft pink or white. The name is easy to remember because it describes their appearance. There are some old common names for plants that I would never use because they are racist or sexist or just vulgar. Naked ladies is a quaint, descriptive common name. PlantFiles gives it as one of the vernacular names.

I hated it when they moved my shifts around. It took weeks for my bodyís clock to readjust. It would never have occurred to my ex-wife to adjust her schedule to match mine. Thatís a considerate thing to do for your husband, TTC.

I lost a long post I wrote a few days ago. It was the first time ever I was happy that my computer froze, I forgot to save., and my work was lost. I told you all about the problems of working with Portland mortar in high temperatures and why it was best to wait to start the project. ROFL.




Casa Grande, AZ

Hi Jim, :D

Good to hear you and Kay are doing alright. That is spectacular news about the vision! I am soooo keeping my fingers crossed. Wise Cactus is saying positive mantras and sending good thoughts her way! He has all of his younger student cacti doing the same. (Well someone has got to carry on when he's gone. He is very, very, old. ) I think they look for young-ish healthy people to eliminate the risk of any other factors such as side effects of meds, or complications from pre existing conditions. Less interference and clearer test results that way. Also less to monitor on the patient. Let's not forget the CYA factor. They can't say other conditions were caused by them or their tests!

A minute or more is a long time. Understand the urgency and necessity of getting it done. If you need it "NOW" then get the CPAP. Still recommend having her sleep sitting up until then. DH says it does make a difference. Also nose strips seemed to help him because he gets more oxygen and breathes better...oh, it also helps with snoring!

I just suggested the possibility of waiting due to cost. (I didn't know how severe her condition was). The tests are ridiculously expensive and so is the machine. You do have the right under HIPPA to refuse any medical treatment you don't want regardless of them thinking it necessary. You can say it is superfluous and that you will report it to the insurance as inappropriate and attempting to bill more due to the fact you are refusing it and they are pushing it. Her diagnosis is clear. So is the treatment. Nothing else needs to be done except to "prescribe" and "issue" the cure.
A lot of people don't get the fact that they can do this legally and regardless of pushy doctors there isn't a thing they can do. I told a hospital one time they would have to call the cops, tazer (or is it taser?) me and tie me to a wheel chair to roll me out of the hospital when I was capable of walking. I burnt my hand. I was fully capable of walking out. If they forced the issue I would report them and sue them. I have rights under HIPPA and I refuse this "treatment". They let me walk out on my own.

By all means though look into the mouth guards for her once you get her set up so she can breath properly first. They are not "generic" mouth guards like you and I would use for snoring or just to breath better. These are for Apnea sufferers. They are proven to be as equally effective as the CPAP. They're fitted and made for her by experts and professionals Oh and they also range from $60.00 to $1,000.00 depending. Of course the medical field is going to tell you "NO"! Look what they're missing out on!

I am happy that Dave has subsequently been reading more articles on this and is starting to consider it. YIPPEE! Men...long, slow process with them.

Also her sisters may not be aware of changes and updates in the field and with new treatments. They often use the old stand by so much they don't keep up. I had to educate a lot of my doctors on "new things" about my treatment options.
Me being the little research freak and hater of quacks and rip off artists (doctors) puts in tremendous effort to stay on top of things before I let them come near me. So far the only doctor I have that I don't consider a Montebank is my Neurologist and it took me 8 years to find him! He "listens" to me and my input. He gives me things to research and lets me get back to him about my feelings on it. Amazing isn't it!

As for us "generic snorers" regular mouth guards that we can mold with hot water or just have our dentist help us with would be fine. Nose strips help too. Sadly, being overweight doesn't help. I'm a tiny thing though and hover at the bottom part of my "appropriate weight". I snore like a sow! (lol). Got complaints in boot camp about it! Have gotten more than my fair share of bumps, nudges and elbows and commands to "roll over" from DH. Many times find him on the couch in the morning because of it!

I'm not sure if it is because I'm a smoker or not. Doesn't help! My allergies contribute. But I think snoring is hereditary. My mother snores she was never overweight. She stopped smoking. Both of my maternal grandparents snored...LOUDLY...and they weren't overweight and didn't smoke. My dad doesn't snore. My brother doesn't snore. There is some hereditary component to snoring so it is said. I blame it on genetics! :D A much more "lady like" excuse (LOL). I probably could stand to get a mouth guard too.

Thank you for thinking it is nice I get up with my husband. :D I don't know to me it just seems "natural". I always have regardless of my working or not unless I expressly stated I was exhausted and wanted to sleep in. It is my way of spending a little time with him pleasantly. He works 8 hours and I'm here alone. Often when he comes home he isn't real "talkative" or wants to unwind. By the time he does so it is time for bed. When I worked our hours didn't exactly match. Often there were days we didn't see or barely spoke to each other because of it.

I just found it is easy for me to adjust my schedule than it is for him. He has a hard time. I don't. I also found that if I make a special effort to do this and carve out time he is really appreciative and thus more considerate to me. I also discovered he is equally willing and happy to carve out time from his schedule or days off for me. We happily turn the TV off more often now and talk more or just "hang out". Kind of a cool revelation.

He is overjoyed though. October 1st he goes back to his normal 3-11 shift. I hate it. I'm a morning person (NOT this early). Normally I get up about 6:00 or 7:00a.m and go to bed about 10-ish. He gets up at 10:00a.m. and wants to go to bed at 1:00a.m. or 2:00a.m.
Oh well. We have lunch (our "dinner") every day. I just like the schedule he's on now because he gets home at 1:00 in the afternoon. We have so much more time together "awake" every day.

Sorry about the ear thing. That has got to be annoying. I was born with a slight hearing loss in my left ear. It got just a tad worse as a kid due to earaches, high fevers, flu, etc. It wasn't until the military that I went 100% deaf in my left ear.
I worry about my other one as I get older. Husband has bionic ears. So there is always some disagreement about TV and stereo volumes. I have to have people sit or walk on the right of me so I can hear them. People, especially bosses, got frustrated with me when they are on my left and I didn't hear a thing they said.
Regardless of my explaining they just don't "process" the fact that deaf=deaf NOT hearing impaired that can be fixed with a hearing aid. Inmates thankfully never caught on to this. When they asked me why I didn't want them on my left (they notice..they're like dogs) I said it was because I wanted them where I could see them with both of my eyes and both of my hands!

I hate "noise" especially if it is LOUD. Reason I hate going to the movies, don't like surround sound, concerts, loud pops, clicks and bangs, or sirens. Don't mind children but that one sound they're capable of making...YOU KNOW...that one high pitched, screeching, operatic, ultra high frequency, glass shattering endless wail they can ALL let out. Makes me cringe beyond what is probably normal.
Normal crying, play laughing, squeals, squeaks, etc. they make doesn't bother me. It's just THAT one sound. I'm sure you know that sound! It isn't an irritation factor. It is a "your killing me and my hearing" thing. I think if I had a kid I'd also own stock in duct tape! Not to be mean, just to save my hearing.

I'm the opposite of you in terms of sleep. Quiet and dark. Takes awhile for the brain to shut off regardless of how tired the body is. Anything going on in the background keeps me awake.

O.K. Lay vs. Lie:
Lay is a transitive verb. It means to place. "I lay the pencil down today. I laid it down yesterday."
Lie is an intransitive verb. It means to recline/rest. "the dog lies down. It lay down yesterday. It has lain down before."
In this instance DW is correct. It should be, "I lie there awake counting ...."

Your use of "I know of that lay claim of name" is correct, but there is weak and improper sentence structure.
You have, "There are two members of the Lycoris family, a Crinum and a Hymenocallis I know of that lay claim to the name."
Better choices:
"There are two members of the Lycoris family that lay claim to the name. They are Crinum and Hymenocallis.".....OR.........."The Crinum and Hymenocallis, both members of the Lycoris family, lay claim to that name."

Alright now that you want to slap me hard and point out every error I make in my writing...(LOL).

I agree. It is indeed a lot more fun to talk about "naked" anything in the garden. Unless it is a flower or vegetable, however, it isn't appropriate. :D Also agree with you on some plant names just not being quite appropriate or fit.
Not sure of the meaning of lilies in Japan. Will have to look for that one. I have a feeling you are right though. I know in Judeo Christian religions they are associated with Easter, Spring, Death and Resurrection. I've always found symbols and color interesting. Buddhist traditionally wear white to funerals and brides wear red for their wedding gowns. (Hmm..maybe I'll show up at my MIL's funeral in white and claim freedom of religion as my excuse..he..he..he)

Afraid you'll have to post pics of lilies for me. My knowledge of plant species, outside of the obvious common names and things, is pretty much relegated to cacti, Aloes, Agaves and some succulents. Sorry, but I couldn't tell you the name of anything out there. :( Can say it's pretty though!
Oh, did I mention I love the scarecrow. Can you send me instructions on how to make one? That's just my sense of humor! Maybe I'll set it up in front of Congress! (Ha-ha). Also feel your pain on the mortar. I'm still trying to scrub it off shins and hands. (eye roll). Only good thing is here, with the heat it sets fast! Let's just hope it holds if we get rain.

O.K. got 9 million things going on today.
Peace. Out. TTC.
Keep an eye on Kay for me!

Carrie....where are you and are you alright?

Casa Grande, AZ

Good Morning Gang, :D

Will be busy today and tomorrow. Got to plant P.Pear that was given to me. DH is off today and next 3. Got lots to do. But then again, when don't I have lots to do. Will probably pop in once or twice.

Hope all is well with everyone. Carrie, haven't heard from you. Worried. Just a "Hi, o.k.; busy" will be fine.

I'm afraid I didn't explain clearly transitive and intransitive.

Transitive verbs create brief, vigorous sentences. Intransitive is more descriptive.
TV: "I planted flowers and tomatoes".
"I drove my car."

ITV: " I planted flowers and soon after began planting the tomatoes".
"I drove my car over a skunk." (Ewww...)

Have a good day. Hugs to all. Song for the day...Lennie Cravitz's "Let Love Rule".
Peace. Out.

Hendersonville, NC(Zone 7a)

Hey, Ms. Grammar Nazi (LOL): your example of intransitive verbs is unclear as written, thus faulty. It SHOULD read: "I planted flowers, and soon after, began planting tomatoes." Two separate actions require two separate clauses; one can either use commas to clarify this to the reader OR two separate sentences with a semi-colon between them. ( "I planted flowers; soon afterwards, I began planting tomatoes.")

I, too, edited and was edited! :D

With affectation,

Milton, MA(Zone 6a)

Hahahaha! I am fine; thank you all for asking. Busy!

Milton, MA(Zone 6a)

With affectation -- very funny. I was AN EDITOR, not just edited. I can't necessarily explain why some forms are better or even more correct than others, but I can guarantee you: they are. I try to let my grammar Nazi look on with amusement, instead of correcting all the time. (I don't think it;s very polite to correct people on a public forum.) And (I thought this could never happen) as I lose cognitive function from MS, I make more mistakes. Like those famous "it's its" or "their there they're" errors--turns out they're easy to get wrong. I am horrified at myself for publicly "Do the morning glories have they're own potting soil" --how the mighty have fallen...

Also, I am constantly using ellipses (dot dot dot) when I can't figure out what to say.

Hendersonville, NC(Zone 7a)

**groan** All this rain is beginning to make me think of the Great Flood of the Bible: and it rained for 40 days and 40 nights!!!! It's been almost 2 weeks already!!

I hate when its cold and rainy: it makes my BONES ache!! I can do the cold: I just turn the heat up and dive under some warm throws (and sip hot cocoa while giving Thanks I'm inside, warm and toasty). I can even do rain alone, just haul out the raincoat and keep on a=truckin!! But when they're TOGETHER??? No way!!! It seems the damp permeates my house, making my furnace work overtime and my bones ache even under throws!!

Plus, yesterdfay I spent the entire afternoon (and then some!) at
Granny's, making and decorating 2 dozen cupcakes. (Now I know why she got so "fropsted" when I was younger and "volunteered" her to supply a cake for a cake walk!!) She'd promised cupcakes.......Oh, well!! This was my first attempt at decorating and, while they didn't look as perfect as those in the pictures: they're DONE!!!

I KNOW everyone of yo9u have had those mornings when you wake up and your body's talking to you: "I KNOW what you did yesterday and I don't like it. Now you're gonna PAY!!"

I think I'll cancel all my appointments today and go back to bed!!

Milton, MA(Zone 6a)

Well, we needed rain (and we still kind of do). I hate rain and/or cold, and I feel that cold in my bones too. DH has bad arthritis today and I guess that's to do with the rain.

I hope your day gets better, though! :)

Midland City, AL

Beth, I heard on the radio that Joaquin had stalled off the coast and commented to Kay that you might not have to endure all that rain after all. Is all the rain being caused by Joaquin coming close to shore or is it a different weather system giving your region trouble. Is Hendersenville close enough to the mountains that yíall have to think about landslides? (Iím speaking to a southerner GGG; I can say yíall.)

Well, Carrie, you now know you are appreciated and missed. I donít logon to Facebook often. Kay said I would have seen you were just busy via the newsfeed if I had. It is a bad sign when my zombie wife knows more about whatís going on than I do. She doesnít like FB much. It isnít easy to navigate with her screen reading program. She is there more than I am because that is her way of keeping up with what the kids and grandkids are doing

Naw, I donít think TTC is a grammar Nazi. I believed I was living with one of those until today. Nadine defined the traits of a true grammar fascist. It turns out I am fortunate and have yet to encounter one. Nadi claims grammar guru as her standing. Sheís a greedy grammar guru in my opinion. She is accustomed to getting paid for proofreading online and demands a payment from me for her proofreading services. She says I am getting a good deal since payment consists of providing her with the energy to do the job. That translates as a can of Monster energy drink or something that is both sugary and contains coconut. That was fine when I was writing once a week, but now that Iím writing almost every day it isnít good for my wallet or her waistline. Monster cost $2 or more a can and Nadi is trying to lose her pastry chefís dimensions. It is time I learn to proof my own writing. I canít afford a secretary.

Nadi (a.k.a. GGG) claims a true grammar Nazi writes to the newspaper editor, book publisher, etc. to complain about perceived offenders of the English language. Grammar gurus are professionals and only gossip (ďshareĒ) with their professional colleagues the most amusing misuses of the language. Dangling participles, split infinities and sentences ending in a preposition donít bother her kind unless it alters what was meant. In fact, writers who twist sentences in an awkward way to avoid a split infinity are one of Nadiís pet peeves. ďWhen will these _*%#@_ stop trying to stuff English into a Latin mold? It doesnít work people!!!

It appears I goofed even by the greedy grammar gurus standards because obviously I failed to accurately communicate my meaning. Crinum, Hymenopteris, and Lycoris are all plant families. I should have taken the time to look up all the plant names and written something like this:

I know that many members of the Crinum family are called spiderlilies. There are also two members of the Lycoris family, L. radiata and L. squamigera. Yet another plant known as spiderlily is Hymenocallis coronaria.

There is probably a more streamline way to say all that using colons, semi-colons or dashes, but Iíve never been comfortable using those. Maybe I will by the time Kay, Nadi and Richard Lederer are through with me. If I had gotten an English teacher with a sense of humor, like Lederer, I might have retained what I learned the first time around. Think two hens on a nest. One is laying eggs and one is lying on her side. Lol. I can remember that

I managed to pass English only because I have a musicianís ear. If it sounds right, it usually is proper English. I didnít understand how little I remembered about the mechanics of English until I started formally learning Spanish. I need to go back and re- learn all those things I forgot as soon as the English teacher collected my test paper while Kay catches up with me on Spanish vocabulary. I learned what Spanish I know by ear too

I am glad I didnít cave in to Kayís sisters sooner and made sure Kay had all the tests. It will take 7-10 days to get the sleep evaluation test results back, but the results from her last blood test came in this morning. The GP made her an appointment with the nephrologist. Her liver Lipids arn't right. It could be one of the medications. I wish it were just sleep apnea. That is easier to treat than liver damage. At the moment, it looks like it could be both problems.

TTC, there are many versions of the mooning scarecrow. The one in the photo was made with an old coat rack. You will find lots of ideas on the website below to use what you have on hand. TTC, I consider you a GGG also. LOL. ;-) In your case it an acronym for Generous Grammar Guru.


We donít have an entry in the scarecrow contest, but I dropped in at the Dothan Area Botanical Garden to check out this yearís entries. It is still called the scarecrow contest even though the displays are elaborate and often donít include a scarecrow. This yearís garden display theme was movies. I miss the classic scarecrows, but what the DABD does brings kids to the garden in droves.

Photos #1 & #2: There were two entries from dentistís offices. How appropriate. A dentist office is scarier than any haunted house. Movie: Little Shop of Horrors and Dracula.

Photo #3: Not all the displays are designed to scare. Bambi.

Photo #4: The local postal workers got together and did The Wizard of Oz.

Photo #5 I liked Magnificent Maleficent done by Wallace community college.

This message was edited Oct 3, 2015 12:20 AM

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Hendersonville, NC(Zone 7a)

**sad smila** I don't know WHERE all the rain is coming from; I just wish it'd STOP!! Last night, the 7-day forecast from the Nat'l Weather Service predicted more rain until Tuesday. Already, rain is just standing and puddling on the lawn outside my window (*I* ain't going out in that mess!! Plus, drivers here drive WORSE in adverse weather: their thinking must be to hurry up and get wherever fast, so they can get inside!)

Yes, we hyave mudslides here. Locally, retasining walls give way. . . shallow rootede tasll trees topple over (like last year, a block from my Granny's apt.). . .annually, the major highway between NC and TN (thru a mountain gap) gets mclosed by one or more landslides, , , flash floods are a problem. . . one of the major streets here betweern Granny's and my apts is closed because of water covering the road. . . the little creek behind Granny's apt. has been over its banks several times already, coming up to her buildiong and temporarily drowning her plants (one year, it swept away her SHALLOW-rooted plants; the neighbor retreived them later f4rom the branches of the trees klining that creek.. . .her hostas have survived in situ for several years and her lilies are still in place & green). . .

Here, shortly after the claps of thunder and down-pouring of rain. . comes the shreiks and wails of emergency services' sirens.

I do SO enjoy living here in the back of beyond, with its four seasons of torment (bones ache in winter, lungs itch & other allergy symptoms in spring, Drowning& baking & feeding hordes of mosquitoes in the summer, rain rain rain & its problems in the fall). While my gardens were originally that impermeable red clay, at least it didn't have the caliche like in Texas!

Milton, MA(Zone 6a)

Very cool photos, Jim!

I went to my GP Thursday and told her I had lost 20 lbs since July 4 accidentally. She asked me about my appetite and I told her that food tasted like wallpaper paste or cardboard. She had her office schedule me for an MRI. Apparently, changes in taste sensation can be a symptom of some kind of tumor. :(

My MRI was scheduled for 6pm Friday at the hospital. We showed up at 5:15 and left 4 hours later with NO MRI. Grrrr. MRIs disrupt the computer in the baclofen pump (I knew that) but their protocol is to have an Xray before the MRI to show the exact position of the pump and a neurologist has to check afterwards to make sure it turned back on correctly. Plus I needed an IV nurse for the IV for the contrast--I have "fragile veins."

By the time the IV nurse got there and the Xray was done etc, the neurology people had all gone home! Ray points out if someone showed up at the ER with a malfunctioning pump, they would have found a neurologist no matter how late. I don't think I have a tumor but we have to start the whole MRI dance again next week.

Jim. that's scary, Kay's lipids being screwy! Yikes. An appt with a nephrologist sounds warranted.

Jim, your English is pretty good, except for that lie/lay thing. You say "I wish it were just sleep apnea" instead of "I wish it was." That is very subtle but one of my favorite pet peeves. (I guess a FAVORITE pet peeve is redundant.) But statements that are contrary to fact--I wish it were summer all year (but it isn't) / If pigs could fly (but they can't) -- take the conditional tense. I learned about the conditional when I learned French and German. Then I realized English has conditional too, and then people stopped using conditional in English. Have a look at this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J7E-aoXLZGY

This message was edited Oct 3, 2015 11:42 AM

Casa Grande, AZ

Hi Gang, :D
The grammar Nazi, her superfluous commas and random punctuation are back! LOL. Yes, isn't the English language great? What a PITA. I try. I either got crucified or burnt at the stake if I didn't by some sick Sadist. When I write for fun, however, I try not to think about it and just write. When I have to communicate to others in business settings or write something I know will be read/scrutinized then it takes me forever as I agonize over ever little thing literally.


I will graciously accept "Generous Grammar Guru". Kind of chuckling because like you, I avoid some things. If I am unsure of "it's or its" I avoid the contraction and use "it is". I have to monitor my conjunctions and prepositions. I abuse them. Due to my former English teacher I also avoid semicolons and tend to make two separate sentences.

Does anyone remember School House Rock? Those very cute and educational cartoons on Saturday morning T.V. that had cute titles like "Conjunction Junction What's Your Function?", "I'm Only a Bill." and "My Hero Zero?" I miss those. They helped me pass a lot of tests I didn't bother studying for! :D

That stinks about Kay's blood test. It always seems like trouble is in multiples. I don't know what med she takes but many can be hard on kidneys especially if taken as maintenance drugs or for long periods. How off are the Lipids? Is it definitely and indication of damage or more a case of "something isn't right"? I'm sure it will be o.k. and things will get straightened out.

Love the mooning scarecrow! Definitely going to print out instructions on how to make one! Also the scarecrows/figures in the park are amazing. Those took a lot of creativity, time and effort. Really partial to just how cute Bambi is! Here I thought I was brilliant by wanting to put little Santa Hats on my cacti this year!

Sigh...what a nightmare for you with the MRI and X-Ray and pump. I'm not sure what to say in regards to it except I feel really bad you are putting up with the hospital's inept scheduling and having to be inconvenience by being made to come back. Not to mention you have to sit there and "wonder" even longer than necessary. Not to mention another bill.

Sorry for the aches, pains, and gloomy mood that rain is casting on you. Can you send some my way? We need it. Let's see, I just read the news and in regards to AZ there was a 50 year weather comparison statewide.

In 1964 our winter average temp was 50.8 degrees. Coldest winter day was 21 degrees. Summer's average temp was 72.6 and it had a hottest day of 111. The precipitation for 5 years (1959-1964) was 13.3 inches annually. Contrast that to 2014.

In 2014 statewide Winter average was 53.6 and the coldest was 36. The Summer average was 75.3 and hottest Summer day was 114. The annual rainfall for 5 years (2009-2014) averaged 11.5 inches. Big difference. Nah...no hole in that ozone is there?

Sorry rain and cold makes your bones ache but you got the right idea. Blankets, cocoa, and a good book or just a good cat nap. I'm not fond of the cold either. Makes me ache and I can't stop shivering or keeping my teeth from chattering regardless of how many layers of clothes I have on, how many pair of socks or how many blankets. No meat on my little chicken bones plus I don't think my circulation is all that great.

Now rain is another story. Love it. Love the sound, smell, feel of it. Great to sleep or just day dream to. Makes a mess out of my hair though. :( Here in AZ we don't have brains enough to come in from out of it. We stand in it looking up like it is Manna from Heaven. The cacti love it providing it doesn't rain too many days in a row. They thrive on the humidity. Can't say the same for me. I thrive in a hot bath with lots of bubbles and steam rising up!

Your flooding and land/mud slides sound like a problem we get out here in the more remote, dryer, dustier, desert areas. The trees get all tore up from high winds we have. Our lightening is pretty spectacular. Puts on a real show out here. We're actually quite famous for it. Sad but not to uncommon to see some fried large Saguaros that were hit by it. It starts a lot of fires out here too. Many time we just get heat lightening and thunder with no rain.

We've got caliche! It makes real good mud when wet. What do you think the Hopi Indians used to build their huts with? Yep, caliche and straw and some other assorted goodies. 'Skeeters is a just depends on where you live thing. Last place was swarming. Here you see a rare one. Allergies are allergies. Can't escape them.

Since we're on the subject of maladies I had a small seizure last night in bed. NO collateral damage except bloody and chewed up lips. Nothing some medicated lip balm won't cure and more sleep. I want to go out today though. I wanted to work on my raised beds. I think I may for a little bit although my body wants to sleep. I usually feel better if I make myself do something for a little bit.

Aside from that everything is going well. I'll get with you all soon. Take care.

Midland City, AL

I wrote a post yesterday, but had a system crash before I posted. I guess it is time to load Windows 10 even though I donít believe they have all the glitches worked out yet and how a new program will interface with Kayís screen reading program is always dicey.

I can relate to not wanting to drive in storms, Beth. It would need to be a life or death emergency to get me to drive here in the rare winters when this area has significant snow and ice. From the point of view of a Pennsylvania native, that happens once every decade or two. The locals consider it snow even when there is no accumulation or when it snows at night in January and any accumulated snow quickly disappears as soon as the sun rises. That happens every year or two. The fact that local drivers are dangerous when trying to drive in real snow is understandable.

Minor flooding, on the other hand, is common and major floods are more common than real snowfall. They should know all about hydroplaning, but I canít count the times Iíve seen young drivers dramatically speed up approaching a big puddle in the road. Itís like they still have the mindset of a kindergarten boy dressed in raingear stomping through puddles to see how big of a splash he can make. Good link, Carrie. Dyslexia always stood between me and the written word, but Iíve always loved the music of language and word play. I originally started reading Ledererís books because of a chapter on puns.

I am curious. Which medical specialty does MS fall under? I mean what kind of doctor did your GP send you to when he/she suspected you had MS? Are their doctors who specialize in multiple sclerosis?

Beware of learning the botanical names of plants, TTC. I was perfectly sane and a social butterfly before I began learning the scientific names of plants. ;-) I never consciously decided to master botanical Latin. I started reading plant labels at botanical gardens to Kay and she or someone nearby would correct my pronunciation and sometimes translate the meaning for me. Then, Kay couldnít print the labels and only used Braille. That left we light dependent types (sighted) in the dark as to what was in a flat or pot. I started writing out labels and since common names overlap, I had to write the botanical names to avoid confusion.

Sorry, I think I confused you with the common name spiderlilies. I believe it is true lilies you like and have in mind. When I say true lilies I mean members of the Lilium family. Iím sure there are more than a hundred species in the Lilium genus and then there are the hybrids like ĎStargazer'. It wouldnít be too bad if it stopped there, but ďLillyĒ must be the most overused (misused?) word in the garden. Its use isnít even limited to flowers that look like true lilies. The word must have been used at one time as a synonym for flower. There are Amazon lilies (Eucharis family), daylilies (Hemerocallis family), peace lilies (Spathiphyllum), ginger lilies (Hedychium), spiderlilies (several families) and that is the tip of the tip of the iceberg. The worst misuses of the name lily is in cobra lily and voodoo lily. You probably know cobra lilies on sight, TTC. They are carnivorous plants native to California. Voodoo lilies look bizarre and smell disgusting. There are members of the typhonium and amorphophallus family called voodoo lilies, but it doesnít matter which family they belong to. All voodoo lilies look weird and smell like road kill.

With your love for order, learning the scientific names might hold some appeal, but resist the temptation. It is a delusion. Now that it is possible to genetically identify what plant family a specific plant comes from, the system is in the process of being reshuffled. Plants are constantly being moved to new families. Besides, the botanical names for cacti are especially hard on the tongue in my opinion.

If you have the patience for seeds, heck out J.L. Hudson, Seedsman when the impulse to add a something new to the yard hits. You will find unique and affordable plant selection that will grow there. The cacti seeds Iíve seen listed there are surprisingly fast growing by cactus standards.

BTW, I set aside a little dragonfruit plant that is a mailable size, if you are interested. Just tell me when to send it.

Photo #1: This is Lycoris radiata. The plant we call spiderlily at Amargia. It is usually the red spiderlily the Japanese associate with death and reincarnation. Literally, it is reddish. Sometimes the blooms look more pink and sometimes have an orange cast. It is called a red spiderlily despite the variations in color. Nadi tells me in Japanese anime they sometimes use the white variety (Lycoris x albiflora). If you see this flower in the background of a Japanese movie or amine, it is a visual clue that something ominous just happened or is about to. Other common names for this one are hurricane lily and surprise lily)

Photo #2: Lycoris squamigera (a.k.a.: Naked Ladies) Resurrection lilies and they share many of their other common names with L. radiata such as spiderlily, hurricane lily and surprise lily. Some southerners think this one is native because it made itself at home here long ago, but, as far as I know, all Lycoris are from Asia.

Photo #3: This one is called Ox-Blood lily or Schoolhouse lily orÖ Hurricane lily. Lol. Botanically, it is Rhodophiala bifida. Itís a good xera-scape plant and will grow in light shade. It might be worth considering under an aloe or cactus. It likes dry, alkaline soil.

Photo #4: Mystery plant. Lobelia? One of the new Salacias?

Photo #5: TigerTooth Jujubee with ripe fruit.

I would suggest a couple of aspirin after reading this.


Thumbnail by seacanepain Thumbnail by seacanepain Thumbnail by seacanepain Thumbnail by seacanepain Thumbnail by seacanepain
Hendersonville, NC(Zone 7a)

Good news, all and sundry! It's FINALLY stopped raining!!! The NOAA ALMOST ran out of alert colors for their forecasts for this region. Between the flash floods, general flooding, and high winds...IT'S OVER!!!!

Yipee Skippy!!

wb, TTC What's the latest words of wisdom from Wise Cactus??

Did y'all know there's some common fowl (can't remember whrther it's chicken, turkey or peacock) whose young commonly drown in rain storms because they stand out in the rain, with their heads up and mouths open??

Jim, those flowers are pretty. I particularly like No.s 2(Naked Ladies) and 4 (Unknown) Since I must plan/procure seeds etdc for my front garden over this winter (104" by 62") I've started eyeing likely candidates. This year, indoor seed starting produced a bumper crop and worked out REAL well, so I'm going to do it again for next year's gardens. I want annual sunflowers for the strip right next to the house, but haven't found EXACTLY what I want and the rest of that garden in annuals. Course, all must meet the new mature height restrictions. . . .

As for this years' 'mater plants, I SHOULD have taken a weed wacker to them back in September, when they had just shown the leaf disease..while they were still full and bushy!!! Instead, I drastically pruned and treated. . . but to no avail!!! NEXT year, I'm gonna replace all but the two least affedcted..and go for new varieties that have resistance to late blight AND continue to produce in very hot weather.

Today, the sunshine calls for going OUT!!!!! Where? I don't care, as long as it's OUT!!!

Gotta go!!+

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