We lost our pal yesterday. We adopted Jake from the pound thirteen years ago. He was a collie, yellow lab and 57 other kinds of dog mix. He was probably the best dog you’d ever want. Obedient, friendly to a fault (he happily let burglars into the house just so he could cool off under the piano) and always ready for a snack. The only time he ever barked was when there were deer in the yard.
Jake had been going downhill for quite awhile. He had been deaf for a couple of years. He had congestive heart failure, cancer, arthritic hips and thyroid problems. All these seemed to be ameliorated by medications and until the last week kept him interested in all his daily routines. He was becoming incontinent, and we found ourselves cleaning up messes once or twice a day.
Hubby and I wrestled for weeks with the dilemma of when was the ‘right’ time to put him down. We had daughter to consider here, too. After all, Jake was officially her dog. But, he still played with his toys. He ate voraciously and craved attention. There was still a lot of joy to his life.
Yesterday when he got home from work, hubby found the dog lying dead on the front lawn. He said it looked liked Jake was on his way somewhere and just stopped. It was a good way to go. I dreaded taking him to the vet for what would have been a very stressful last ride for him.
So, the family is feeling a bit mournful and melancholy. Our New Year’s celebration will be subdued. Looks like I’ll be making the daily trek out to the road to get the newspapers by myself from now on.
May you all have a blessed and happy New Year.
The holiday season is coming in fits and starts. Hubby and I have been preoccupied the past couple weeks with some worrisome business stuff, which has delayed any preparations. By the end of Tuesday all the stress should be over and we can get on with it. Hubby is talking about getting out of Dodge and going somewhere warm and sunny for a few days. Sounds good to me.
I’ve been holding my own in the eating area. When we go out to restaurants I choose neutral or beneficial proteins. I only eat a small bit of whatever yummy wheat product they dream up to tempt me. And I’m always satisfied with just a taste of someone else’s dessert. A new Italian restaurant opened up in town last week. They served a spelt and porcini mushroom soup that was to die for! I can’t wait to go back and have just that for lunch someday. Yesterday we were invited to a holiday open house. I made sure that I ate lunch at home before we left. The food spread at the open house was unbelievable. Mountains of gorgeous goodies and treats. I didn’t touch a one. I really was almost disappointed that I had no appetite and didn’t get to taste anything forbidden! We had lamb curry for dinner last night. It’s one of my top two favorite beneficial meals. I’m afraid I overate in the portion department. I will assume it is better to occasionally overeat beneficial foods than moderately eat avoids – until I hear differently.
Daughter has been transitioning out of the home. She is transferring to a school in the big city. It will be good for her to get out of a house where she feels like she is treated like a kid half the time. It will be good for us, too. It’s not a big break….she drives down a couple times a week to visit and take more of her stuff out. She brings her kitty to visit, too. I miss the kitty.
The barbershop chorus has been doing a lot of sing-outs the past few weeks. We’ve sung at several nursing homes, a community concert and a military party. This week we are singing at a casino. It’s been fun to dress up and entertain folks. It has helped to take my mind away from the daily stresses and put me in momentary Christmas spirits.
I have an appointment with an orthopedist in a couple weeks to get some medical advice about my bum shoulder. It’s been pretty annoying the past couple months. My physical therapist is stymied and wants some x-rays or MRI done. She suspects there is more disc degeneration between C7 and T1, where the first diagnosis several years ago was degeneration between C4 and C5. It must be an age thing. I’m not thrilled by the prospects.
I wish everyone a wonderful holiday season. Eat well. Rest often. Enjoy life.
The holiday eating frenzy seems to have started early this year.
Thanksgiving was good. It was just the three of us, and we cooked at home. Hubby did the turkey (deep-fried), mashed potatoes and green beans. I made the stuffing, candied sweet potatoes and Waldorf salad. Daughter was in charge of gravy and dessert. (About an hour before dinner, she drove off to the store and bought a bottle of gravy and a pumpkin pie – she’s not really into cooking yet). Of course, since the family disdains BTD, we didn’t try to observe any dietary restrictions. It was all so good with a bottle of Riesling to sip. The only items we saved as leftovers were the turkey, cranberries and pie, so none of us were tempted the next day with stuffing and other naughties.
On Sunday we invited another couple over for dinner. They vacation in warm places a lot in the winter, so we like to see them whenever we can. Hubby made a wonderful braised pot roast with a very garlicky, tomatoey thick sauce that was also used to pour over pasta. To his credit, hubby seems to like spelt pasta, because that is what he is using those rare times he cooks pasta. (He’s an Atkins aficionado, if you remember.) He made a superb squash soup to start the meal. Compared to a couple of years ago, he is cooking more to my liking. He uses vegetable or beef broth instead of chicken. He will use spelt when available. And he is experimenting more with root vegetables.
Anyway, the company and the wine had me eating way too much, even though most of it was compliant. There were petit fours and truffles at dessert time. Who needed it? We all indulged.
Last night I went to a traditional gal’s holiday party where we bring a gift and as you go around the room choosing gifts, you get to steal them away from someone else, etc. It’s great fun. We all bring potluck. Most of it is homemade. I ate an egg before going, hoping I wouldn’t have too big an appetite and would be more picky about what I ate. It worked to some degree. At least I didn’t go back for seconds. The desserts were to die for, though. Pumpkin cheesecake roll, ginger cookies and almond roca to name a few. I did sample those.
This morning my tummy is rumbling, my head is foggy and my throat a bit scratchy. I look forward to a few days of compliance before my next set of temptations is presented.
Okay, it all started Thursday night a week ago. Some friends invited us out to dinner at an Italian restaurant. I generally like to stay away from Italian restaurants because they don’t serve very many items I can safely eat. But, it was their treat, so we went where they wanted. There was very little greenery available on the menu. Mostly pasta and more pasta with a little pasta on the side. I ordered the halibut, and it came served over a huge pile of creamy fettuccini. I can’t say that I ate sparingly, but I didn’t eat ALL of the pasta.
So, Saturday morning I looked at myself in the mirror and thought I looked a little puffy. I also felt a little unbalanced. Thinking I might be coming down with something, I started a regimen of Proberry syrup and Chinese Herbs that my acupuncturist had given me for colds and flu. I mean, I was on top of this one, baby. Well, it didn’t work. By Monday I had a real cold, and yesterday was the peak…couldn’t pass air through the nose, couldn’t sleep…well, you know the routine.
I let my immune system get compromised. I had been having trouble with my shoulder, which was waking me up several times at night, not letting me rest well. The pasta put my immune system over the edge. I was able to see my therapist Wednesday for the shoulder, which allowed me to sleep, which is allowing me to recuperate.
Anyway, another lesson learned on the BTD road to health.
Sometimes I feel this diet is as hard now, if not harder, than when I started 5 ½ years ago. Yes, there are avoid foods that I never eat now, like peanuts, chicken and soy. But, some of the avoid foods that I should have gotten over by now still creep into the old mouth occasionally. I’m stuck on the 6-8 oz of coffee in the morning. I still haven’t been able to take the plunge into abstinence. It’s scary.
On another note (oh yes, the pun is intended), I had an excellent musical weekend. Our barbershop coach from San Jose was up giving private vocal lessons Friday and a full day workshop to the chorus in Saturday. She has discovered a new way of singing that is so inspiring. It is not her method, it is someone else’s, but she says it is going to revolutionize the way singing is taught in a couple of years. Everything is thought about and done in the area of the head above the portal bones (upper jaw). You visualize breathing through the sinuses and eyes, then send the sound backward into your head, never letting it down into your throat or chest. It is truly amazing. We stayed in key, made really big sounds and didn’t run out of breath. I’ve always had trouble attacking notes right on key, tending to want to slide into the right note. With this method, I am spot on most every time. After an hour lesson and the full Saturday workshop, I think I’m ready to take on the world now.
Of course, we had our usual potluck lunch at the workshop. I stayed away from the wheat. Other than chicken, the only proteins were processed meats and cheeses. So, I ate some of those to keep my energy up. There were plenty of raw veggies and fruit to fill up on, too. The desserts were maddening. I ended up indulging in two dollar-sized chocolate chip cookies. Didn’t I say this diet is as hard now as it ever was?
Oh well, the daily battle goes on.