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Take a walk in Blue Bell Woods listen to the sounds around you, of bird song and bees. Smell the flowers and the scent of Spring in the air. Every year is a new beginning and every day a blessing

"Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts." (Colossians 3:15a NIV)I would love to hear from you, if you don't have a blog you can still comment, join google it's free. I appreciate hearing from you.

Friday, February 23, 2018

Living with Diabetes 2....................

Surprise surprise. Yes I have it, Diabetes 2. So now what?. My blood tests are always crappy. It does not seem to matter what I do there is always something.
I have fought high cholesterol for many years. As I reached 40 I seemed to start with the weight problems. I remember when I was young in my 20s and at a size 4 or 5 I thought I was "fat" I always seemed to have a problem, always on a diet. I was 112 and wanted to be 110 and settled down at 115. So for a while I was size 7 and although not happy with that as I thought I was still fleshy I decided I could live with it.
Here I am possibly 125 1bs
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Once I passed 40 though it was more of a struggle and I went up to 121. Oooooh nooooo. I figured well it cant get too much worse, I was working out with weights and told myself it was muscle. Then the day came and it was 130. Again, well I can't get much worse. I was during all this time dieting one way or other. Weight watchers, and low carb. Atkins. Tried Mahong and liked that but then was worried about the health effects. So stopped that. Then came 140 and now I was worried, still dieting, back to Weight Watchers. I would struggle and take off a few pounds. I wanted 20 pounds off and be 120 again, nope..........150 my body said. Back then I was not even concerned with cholesterol and stuff like that. I had my annual physical and worried more about breast cancer and my Pap tests. When I hit 150 I was panicking. Nothing worked. My doctor said it was my metabolism and we found my Thyroid was not working as it should. So began the pills. Started with Thyroid and got that under control. Then the cholesterol was worrying the doctor and my blood pressure. 160 came and went on to 170. Loose weight he said. Good grief I have been losing weight all my adult life but it just will not stay off. Now during this time no one said anything about my Blood. We tried several different meds for cholesterol and none worked for me, they had so many side effects. I reached 180.
Probably 150bs
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I walk during the summer months while it os not too hot. I am active in my garden and house. I love hiking in the woods. I diet and go up and down. I am learning what lowers my sugar, spices and herbs and what veggies and fruits I should and should not eat. Seems if I like it I can not eat it.
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Then one summer I went on a different diet, I cut out Potatoes, rice, pasta and bread. Very difficult for me because I do not really have a sweet tooth. Anyway I did manage to get down again to 164 then came Thanksgiving and Christmas, I put back and lost 5 pounds. Around this time I stopped eating meat, red meat. No beef or pork (never did eat lamp or veal) and that really helped my cholesterol. I got a really good result after that but it didn't last.
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I started to really get into baking and loved to make bread. Well, I learned alright and I also ate it. So back crept the weight.
With that came my blood sugar problems. When I went to the doc the next time my blood work showed pre diabetes 124. He did not want to diagnose me so had me consult with someone, but she really could not tell me anything I did not already know. So again I tried my best but, sugar went up. Then there was a break through. I had a wonderful blood test result (as I mentioned above). I told him he got the wrong persons tests, but he said no, it's yours so as my blood pressure was low and making me lethargic (I was on 3 pills) he took me off 2 of them and I cut out the cholesterol meds and lowered my thyroid medicine. Next check up in 3 months and it was all creeping back, not as bad but now the added sugar problem. So back on the meds again. Then my blood sugar crossed the line to 125.
He gave me Metformin and I took that for a week before taking myself off of it. It made my insides very angry. Next visit I pretty much told him what to do with it, but he said with my cholesterol high and my blood sugar he was worried about a heart attack. Sigh..............so I started taking the Metformin. My friend Edna told me that she got over the side effects after a couple of weeks so that encouraged me. I have been taking it for awhile now but still plays me up. I bought a kit to test my blood sugar. It does not seem to help much. As with all my other medications, they just do not work for me. However, I am back on the low carb diet and have lost a few pounds. My numbers are still high but I take my blood pressure every day and check my blood sugar.
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Today I was 174 lbs my blood pressure was 141/98 pulse 77 and my blood sugar was 128. Good for me. Edna told me about apple sauce, she said it lowered hers so I tried it. Cant eat apples all day though but will add that to my daily regime. You know, and apple a day keeps the doctor a way. The man has me in there every 3 months darn it all.
Topped at 180
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So what have I learned?. I can not eat anything and stay healthy. Bummer. Haha. So I am experimenting with vegetables. The ones they say lower things, lucky I like veggies. Sigh!!!!! If I want a treat I eat dark chocolate and will indulge in cheesecake if I want a real treat. I can make egg custard for puddings but I am not really a desert person. I make milk shakes with almond milk, frozen fruit and a banana and thats awesome. I want to cut back on dairy anyway, so I have milk just for coffee now. I can not eat nuts, diverticulitis darn it all. I eat eggs for breakfast or oatmeal with honey. If I indulge in bread I eat Pita pockets or that skinny bread that I love and that and it's whole grain. I have discovered a few vegan recipes and I use cheese for the added fat and that is one thing I love so its also snack material. Filling too. I also make a tea from Apple Cider vinegar and honey with cinnamon. That has staved off colds for 2 years or so now.
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So here I am now 72 years old and it is a struggle to be fit, just as it has always been. It can not be called a diet, it is a lifestyle. I am looking forwards to Spring, I really really really need the exercise and maybe that will help me lose some weight again. My goal is 160 for now and boy is it slow going. It seems that when I lose weight and then put it back on again, my body goes into rebellion, it says enough! I am holding on to this. Then I can't lose the weight in the same way as the last time. I have to find a new way to fool my body. At this stage of my life it's my internal health that I worry about rather than looks. Can't really help that anymore I am an old lady, I must accept that.....................well NO I WON'T I will go down fighting darn it.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Going Grey.......

My hair is grey now Actually I do on occasion colour it blondish white. My natural hair colour is black with a reddish tint. It seems though that most of my life I have coloured it red. I love red hair. Mum and me with our natural colour hair
 photo fromoldcomputer506_zpsqv5zrjx6.jpgLooking back it was a nice colour but I always wanted red. As time went on I experimented with colour and was happy to try brilliant reds to orange reds and all in between. It went with my skin tone and my eyes. I just had fun with it. I think I must only have gone back to my natural colour a couple of times.
My Mothers hair was black. Real black, when she started to go grey she did colour it. Hair dye was a lot different back then. She was working at Edwards, a grocery store in the village when she first coloured her hair. My Dad and I have a rather bad sense of humour and so when she was done colouring her hair and she came into the living room, her arms black up past the wrists. We tried so very hard not to laugh. She was most upset. Said "How can I work with food with my hands like this" She was almost crying and sorry to say when she went back to the kitchen to scrub and scrub at her black hands, Dad and I were laughing so hard (quietly) that we bout died. He tried very hard to keep a straight face and be supportive but only had to glance in my direction to start again with fits of giggles. She did manage to get it to a lovely purple shade and wore rubber gloves to work next day. I do not have a picture of that.
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Then I remember one summer my friend Margaret and I went off on holiday with my parents. Margaret came with us on most holidays. She was my constant friend. Anway, we were both into doing our hair and wanted to lighten it up a bit. We bought a spray that is supposed to lighten the hair in the sun. We sprayed and sprayed and no difference. Sprayed again a few more times and as we were going to Norfolk to stay in a cabin on the Broads well we sprayed again. On the way there we noticed a change. It kept changing. Went through several stages of red and kept changing. By the time the sun and everything got to it, well it was pretty yellow by then. Not sure I have pictures of that but this is it during the red stage. This is my Mum, Margaret and me in Norfolk.
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The stuff really damaged my hair. I am not sure it was ever the same after that. In time it grew out and I left well enough alone for a time. Eventually though I got the bug again and went red.
My Dad had dark hair and most of my family did too except for my Uncle Ray who was a ginger.
when I was working it was an incentive to keep it up and I did, and I enjoyed it.
Me and Jason in North Carolina
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Me home from work, still really red
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As I got older I did tone it down a bit
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I had it stripped once to see how it would look but I never did like it grey. It was so drab and so I continued to colour it red. Maybe a bit lighter than before because it started to get thin as well.
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The summer Jason and I went to England I stripped it down and did it blond, it came out yellow and I was not too thrilled with that.
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When I got back I used the lightest I could get. My own hair was by then almost white on front but that horrible dark grey at back. So I streaked it and cut off as much as I could and loved it. It was dark at the roots and white all over. That didn't last and I have not got that look again. I grew it long
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I kept it that way for a time and now I just colour it now and then to brighten it up, but I stick to the whitest I can get and still do not mind the dark roots at the back because it looks good when its up.
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Are we ever happy with what God gave us? Well maybe not but I do know I wish it was not getting so thin, I can live with the grey. If I must.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Beach in February..................

I did it, I got them out of the house. I really wanted to get out, it had been so sunny for a couple of days. I needed daylight and sunshine. It happened to be Gerry's birthday so I tempted him with promise of supper at the Hayloft after. They have great Burrito's and Margarita's. So we headed out to Suttons Bay looking for good pictures. We passed the docks on Grand Traverse Bay where the boats were resting for Winter and the promise of Spring.
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With as cold as it has been this Winter I can not believe the Bay has not frozen over. The Lakes are pretty much frozen but not the Bay. This day was 17F and sunny so was balmy. This the the river at The Narrows going through Lake Leelanau
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We didn't stop in Suttons Bay, I looked for wild fowl but nothing hanging around so off we went to Leland. We were hunting for coffee but Trish's dishes was just closing, it was 3pm. We headed for Fishtown instead and took some pictures there. I think of my friend Susan each time we go there. It was lovely with no people around. The Dam was icy and partly frozen. Beautiful in the sun.
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The dang camera was wrong way around, so here is me. I could not see into the lense and took this before I could see what I was pointed at. I never wear a hat or scarf or gloves usually, I also had on my one and only pair of socks. I am wearing a hat I made for Tristen long ago. It was all I could find and we were going down to the beach later.
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In Summer months this place is jam packed with tourists. I love this time of year, it is more beautiful and we have it to ourselves. I love that. Yes the nice hustle and bustle of people in the little gift shops is fun and the smoked fish and specialty cheese is awesome. The prices are high. Carlson Fisheries are the main supplier of local fish and smoke fish here on site.
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The wind was biting cold on my face and next we were heading for the beach across the Harbor wall. We went to my usual place where we collect Blue Stones. It was so pretty with the sun shining bright on the snow. Snow fences are up and summer homes are empty so once again, we have it all to ourselves. Gabby has never been to the beach in Winter. There is so much more to exploring the beaches than to just go in summer days. The ice had made some of the sand freeze into slabs that broke and stood at an angle.
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There were many shapes, frozen snow balls and stalagmites rising from the floor of the beach. The piles of snow drifted into swirls like ice cream cones.
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I was hoping to get some pictures of the snowballs that have been seen the last couple of years. The water and waves whip the snow into round balls bobbing in the water. The only ones left were frozen on the beach. I could not believe it, Gerry actually got out or the car and came with us. Hard to get him on the beach in summer let alone in February.
Here is Gabby
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.....and Gerry dressed for the Arctic. I admit, I knew enough to find a pair of socks to go in my boots. the only pair I own.
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We left the beach to head for Empire via Glen Arbor. I had hoped to see some deer in town and was not disappointed.
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Heading into Glen Arbor I took a few shots of local curiosities. The old Red School House looks lovely in Winter and the old barn that was decorated for the anniversary of 1776 BiCentennial, the year my parents were here 1996.
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We had taken a detour down to the beach right there by the barn...........and look at what we found. The ice pancakes.
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After going through Glen Arbor and scouting out the Port Oneida road, and seeing no wildlife we headed past the Dunes.
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Again, no one there and Cooper declined our offer of allowing him to climb them. Not today.............sigh, where is the sense of adventure?
Another deer crossed the road as we were waiting for her so that I could get a picture. She obliged in no hurry.
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Off into Empire and the beach there was empty, the light was so pretty and I had forgotten that it would soon be sundown
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Leaving the beach we met this lovely lady
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Not at all worried about us talking to her and posing for some pictures. This was in the village of Empire so obviously used to people and probably well fed.
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About that time we were getting hungry so headed home. We stopped at the Hayloft and ate very good Burrito's Gabby and I saved half ours for today, a nice lunch. Gerry ate all his.
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By the time we were done it was getting dark, and starting to snow, home for coffee and warm up the toes.



Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Seven Years ago...........................

Each year Laura and I write something about Alex, I think we will both continue to do so as long as we can.
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Today Laura posted this....
Today marks 7 years since Alex died. 7 long years but at the same time I sit here and wonder....7 years??!!! Already?? How is that even possible? I think of her every single day. I talk about her at least once a day. She is not gone, she is with the Lord and waiting on the rest of us and I think that is what makes it comforting for me to think of her and talk of her knowing she is not gone she is just out of sight. But her soul lingers. Her memories, her pictures, her things. I can still hear her laugh if I listen. I can still hear her voice. It echoes in my mind. She was unique. She was crazy, funny, dramatic, loud and someone that if she was in the house you knew it even if you hadn't seen her yet. She was messy and left a trail of stuff wherever she went. She wanted all the attention on herself and knew how to get it. She was beautiful but some days she didn't believe that she was, she could be very insecure about it....but other days wow...she knew it. She was also obnoxious and sometimes mean and selfish she wasn't perfect that's for sure. But she could also be very generous. She was often thoughtless but if confronted with a situation she would step up to help. Some days I would get a phone call from her and just have to get serious with her. She always had some drama going on. But other times she would call and her first words would be "Mommy, I just called to say HI!" Or I would get a PM or text from her and I was either shaking my head or laughing. Or she would stop by my house and head right for the pantry and help herself to whatever looked good. Alex had a strong spirit. And it still lingers here. I feel it. She had a rough time in her teens and had a hard time finding herself. Looking for love where there wasn't any. But after her son was born she realized she needed to step up her game and get on track and she did. She found a wonderful guy who asked her to marry him, she got herself a job to get herself through school and got through dental assistant school. And had a job with a local dentist lined up for her upon graduation. We will never know how it would all turn out because she died before she could even get the certificate of graduation. She died having succeeded in what she wanted though. She was very close with my brother Jason and grew up getting to go on trips with him and down to his place to hang out and she loved it. She had a strong male figure in her life in him as well as her dad and granddad. She had three sisters who some days wanted to kill her(lol) but who were there for her when she needed them. She had some good times and made good memories with them. She doted on her baby sister Reina and liked to spoil her. She has left her mark and none of us were untouched by her. She lived with her Nanny and Granddad (my parents) and boy did she give them a run for the money. Her Nanny was a very strong influence in her life, someone who was there for her no matter what and would often get the joy of dealing with her next big drama. But Nanny also loved to shop with her because she was so much fun to shop for. She loved everything! Nanny was often there to pick up the pieces of her life and was there when Tristen was born to help take care of him. Alex loved her Nanny. We all were touched by her in some way. We will all remember her always. You cannot forget someone like Alex. She had many friends and was loved by many. So today to mark the 7th year I just ask that you hug someone you love today. And tell them they are loved. Because you never know when it will be the last time. I had the great privilege of being able to hear her say she loved me one more time just before she died. And I was able to say the same to her and that is a greater gift than even I would ever know until hours later. <3 " The soul takes flight to the world that is invisible and there arriving is sure of bliss and will forever dwell in paradise." Love you forever Alexandra Jane Michaeline.  photo alex familyPicMonkey Image_zpsyw49g4tp.jpg
I really do not have anything to add to that today.
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