Picture taken by my friend Cyndi Leos....thank you Cyndi.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

We Had Some Excitement The Day The New Bed Was Delivered...

First night in our new QVC bed and I have to say, I slept very comfortably.  So far so good...

It has been very cold and super windy here. Yesterday, it was stormy, gray skies, the wind was howling and freezing cold.  When the delivery men were carrying out the old mattress and bringing in the new one, I asked them to keep the door closed so our dog would not get out...

Some how, our dog Izzy got out...there was a woman walking her dog and Izzy ran right to them for a "meet and greet", but the woman was screaming at Izzy, "NO! NO!"....I called Izzy and she came toward me, the woman yelled, "YOU NEED TO KEEP YOUR DOG ON A LEAH!!"  I yelled back, "I DO, BUT WE ARE HAVING A BED DELIVERED AND SHE GOT OUT!!"

I looked at Izzy, who was standing on our front patio, but looked like she wanted to play...I could see in her eyes she wanted to rip loose.... Ironically, the other day I was telling my husband I wish there was some place I could take Izzy, remove her leash and let her run free....just to run as fast as she could....

I called to Izzy, but she looked at me and then turned and ran full speed down the street....she was at the corner in seconds.  I ran back into the house to get my shoes on, getting her leash and halter.  Desperately, I grabbed a couple of dog bones and ran back outside.  My husband was in the front of the house and yelled "THERE SHE IS!" and she was right back on the front patio, panting and smiling.

I called her to come in and she did.  I almost cried, because after a year and two months, she knows this is home and it is better here than on the streets.  I don't even want to think about if she would not have come back, or worse, been hit by a car.  Thank God, we don't live in a high traffic neighborhood!

I can just imagine how good it felt for her to rip down to the end of the street and run back up the hill, full speed.  She must have turned around as soon as she saw I was not chasing her....  I am so happy she wants to be with us...

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Magpie Tales #46: Persuasion...

He was shy.
She was impatient.
Driving to his house
on the hill
the wind howled
as her long
smooth legs
swung out
from the car door
and strutted
his drive way
like a woman
with a mission...

Her black,
soft leather,
gloved finger
pushed the door bell...
Her breath
streamed downward
from both
her flared nostrils.
Her mouth
 parted with anticipation...

He opened the door
with surprise and a smile
his heart skipped
as he admired
the cleavage
peeking beneath
her coat...

an invitation
she stepped past him
slipping easily
of the
now lying
at his feet...

Her warm body
waived her
as she lightly
brushed past him,
filling his

his gaze
from her
three inch
black heels
to those black
now, each,
spread like fans
across her bare chest
 upper thigh..

His eyes
met hers

In silence
of her face,
her arms...
her fingers,
from her hands...

His eyes
the gloves
between her breasts
up one side
of her neck
her shoulders...

She tosses
the gloves
at his feet.

Swallowing hard, he
catches his breath
allowing a sigh
to escape
his lips
as he
their bodies
like the gloves
on the wooden floor...


Photo by Tess Kincaid

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Sweet and The Ridiculous...

Back home from California...

Wonderful time with family... full report on our trip on my other blog ...

That's my nose in the upper left hand corner with my grandson, baby Jacob...

Talking away...

Always smiling...

Update on the Dream Beds at Ayres Inn are $1800 for a queen sized mattress and box springs, plus $500-$800 for delivery... forget that idea.

Instead, my husband, who LOVES infomercials, bought a queen sized SERTA perfect sleeper "Kettering" pillow top mattress and box springs on QVC.  He paid $784 with free delivery, set up and haul away of the old mattress...

It will be delivered tomorrow. Wish us luck... I will not allow them to haul away the old mattress until I have laid on it, inspected it, and smelled it...

I have been contacted by our community computer club.  Turns out they took my offer to teach a class on starting a blog.  They want me to schedule a class in January or February.  ME AND MY BIG MOUTH!  I think I was so desperate to get the GURU to fix my desktop when we got the virus, I would have promised anything.  My main problem is nervousness when speaking in front of crowds... Guess this is an opportunity to challenge myself....

I will have to work up a format of the class... (oh Lord, pleas help me). 

Any of you dear blogging buddies, if you have any helpful hints to pass along to me to help me with the class, please feel free to comment with any advice you might have...

Time for a cup of tea.  The news said we are in for very cold weather in Nevada...we may even get some snow...

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Blessings To All My Blogging Friends...

Today I spend the day baking and packing.  I will not be posting until our return next week.

We leave tomorrow on "the road to love" to spend Christmas in California with the rest of our family. I am so looking forward to seeing my family, my three grandsons, my daughters, my sister, my Mom and Dad and my brothers.

May each and every one of you dear fellow bloggers have save travels, both going and coming, and enjoy however each of you choose to spend Christmas Day. May you each stay healthy, happy, warm and well fed.

Love to all of you!!! Donna

Christmas Blessings
to all
Blogging friends...

Monday, December 20, 2010

Beware of System Tool Spy Ware Trojan Horse...

I am so grateful to our community computer GURU at our Computer Club.  He came over today and fixed our computer after my husband inadvertently clicked on a hoax while on FOX SPORTS.  It claimed our computer was infected with a virus.  He thought it was our computer spyware/anti-virus warning.  The virus is called System Tool Spy Ware.  It took control of our computer and completely shut it down.

We had eight of my husband's family for dinner last night.  We leave for California this Friday.  I may not be blogging too much due to wrapping and preparations for our upcoming trip.  I will be posting again, before we leave...until then...

Thursday, December 16, 2010

2nd Sleep Study with CPAP: Felt Like Panic In A Cockpit...And I'm No Pilot...

It has been a busy week. Tuesday, my husband and I were gone all day doing errands and finishing our Christmas stuff.  Tuesday night was the 2nd Sleep Study with the CPAP machine (I will describe later in this post). Wednesday when I returned from the Sleep Study, I had another doctor appointment with the Dermatologist to burn off some barnacle sun damage on my hands and slice off a mole/blister looking thing on my upper chest.  Afterward, I picked up my husband from the car dealer, had lunch, and finished our Christmas stuff.

When we got home I was too tired to do anything.  I used the last of my energy to cook dinner and hit the sack.  Today I had a hair cut appointment at 10am, more errands and then an appointment with the Nutritionist at 2pm.  GOOD NEWS!!!  I LOST 5 POUNDS!!!!  She was very impressed with my food diary, my exercise, and weight loss.  She told me to stay on track and call me if I need her..then we agreed to touch base in January...

2nd Sleep Study with the CPAP Machine:

I had not spoken with my doctor about the first results, other than being told I have moderate sleep apnea.  A few days before the 2nd test, I called the Sleep Center and the manager explained I also had restless leg syndrome.  She told me I stopped breathing 26 times per hour and my oxygen went down to 74%.  Pretty scary... She asked me if I was tired all the time.  I told her I did not have the energy of my youth, but I did not usually nap during the day...

Same as last time, I was asked to come at 10pm.  They were BUSY!  I had to wait in the lobby instead of going straight to a room.  Another woman and her husband were waiting.  She spoke in a whisper, guess she was afraid of disturbing anyone. Her husband was waiting to find out what time to pick her up in the morning. She told me she did not snore, or have sleep apnea, but her oxygen drops to 85% while she sleeps and she said it made her red blood cells increase.  (I googled this and discovered a drop in the oxygen levels in the body will trigger the kidneys and liver to release ERYTHROPOIETIN, which makes more red blood cells.)  She told me to check with my doctor on my next visit.

Our conversation was cut short when I was called to my room.  The young lady asked me to get myself ready and my male tech would be in shortly.  GREAT!  Guess I will be sleeping in a bra tonight...I said to myself...

I had plenty of time to prepare, go to the bathroom, and take some pics of my room....

This is most of the stuff they hook or strap on me...there were two long wire thingies hanging behind the door.
    Peaceful photos on the wall, nice furniture...

Dresser and nice plasma TV on the wall...the "how are you feeling at check in" questionnaire, my water bottle, backpack, and my jeans.

Finally, my tech comes in.  He apologizes for taking so long and tells me he is almost done with another patient, so I read some of my latest James Patterson novel... I look at my phone and it is 11:05 pm ...
This is going to be a long night...I can feel it.

Fifteen minutes later he comes in and apologises again.  He is holding four masks in plastic bags.  I ask how they are sterilized in between patients, as I am grossed out thinking of someone elses nose, mouth, bodily fluids being on the masks.... He assures me they are sent out and sterilized.  I am still uneasy...

First he suggests we try on the various masks because he has been forewarned by the nice nurse manager I spoke with earlier, about my claustrophobia issues.  He shows me the first one for people like me, then casually says, "Most people don't like the air shooting up their nostrils"....


I told him I would try it on...

Believe it or not, it was pretty comfortable...he had different nose pieces depending on the size of the various nostril holes.  It sits right above the mouth, even though in the picture, it looks like it is IN my mouth.

He asked if I wanted to feel it with the air?

This is the machine which is a combination humidifier and air.  He told me he will increase the air pressure during the night as I need it.  I don't know about this...

He started the machine with a light flow of air and I opened my mouth to tell him I did not like it and all the air went out my mouth, making talking difficult and giving me the sensation I couldn't breath, so I ripped it off my face and he lunged to assist me...

I rejected number #1 mask and moved on to #2....

When he connected #2 to the air machine, the air kind of waifed over the bridge of my nose and sneaked down and up my nostrils.  It didn't seem too bad, so we put that one aside as a "maybe"...

I have no pictures of #3 and #4 because I would not keep them on my face long enough for him to take a picture, let alone turn on the air.  #3 captured my nose and was too claustrophobic right away.  #4 had a thicker strap across my forehead and chin and despite him adjusting it, I felt like someone had me in a head lock, so I ripped it off my face immediately.  He started sweating at this point and ask politely if I would allow him to help me on and off with the masks from now on...

By this time it was close to midnight, and I am still not hooked up.  I selected #2 and he began the hooking up procedure.  He used to be a diesel mechanic before he decided he hated the dirty fingernails and broken knuckles.  He decided he might want to be a nurse, but would start off as a medical assistant to see how he liked it.  He LOVES his work.  He also has sleep apnea and has worn the #2 mask for two years and has so much more energy and better sleep.

He is very precise and uses a red grease type pencil to mark my face and scalp before he places the pads and leads on me. Both of us are sweating now, and I ask if he can open the door (the hallway is always cooler than the rooms for some reason) and he gratefully opens the door.  He asks if I mind if he turns down the AC.  I tell him "GO FOR IT!"

Finally I am all hooked up. The manager also told him about my blister from the "ET light" so he gave me another type which was fine and I had no problems. I ask for my extra blanket and he asks if I want the fan.  I told him the room feels good, so I am OK.  He tells me if I change my mind to buzz him and he will bring it in.  He is very kind and patient.

As last time, he turns out the lights and goes to the monitoring room and will call me on the intercom to test all the connections, having me move my eyes, limbs, etc.  I am not sure if it was the dark or the mask, but all of a sudden I began to panic.  I felt like I was wearing an oxygen mask in the cockpit of a fighter jet and I am no pilot!  I don't even like to fly!!! Quickly, I  buzzed him and frantically announced, "THIS IS NOT GOING TO WORK..." 

"I'll be right there Donna..." and in a flash, he had turned on the lights and was removing the mask, I had already pulled away from my face...

"We're out of options here young lady (told 'ya he was kind), if you can't do it, you just can't do it... a lot of people cannot handle it..." 

I was NOT going to drive home at whatever time it was, after getting all hooked up.  I asked him if we could try #1.  After he gets me connected to the machine he warns me he is going to turn on the air...and I brace myself.  I was OK.  I had to keep talking to myself in my mind, making myself calm and telling myself I AM going to do this...

I tell him I am OK.  He turns off the lights and shortly he is giving me my directions.  All systems are GO, so the rest is up to me...

I popped my cholesterol pill with a sip of water, put my ear plugs in and tried to settle in...I have no idea how long it took me to get to sleep.  It seemed like forever.  I coughed once and the air gushed out my mouth, but this time I shut my mouth quickly!  I had worried about keeping my mouth shut during the night, because normally I am a drool-er because my nose gets so stuffy at night.  He had told me I would probably be fine as the machine has a humidifier in it, but if I opened my mouth, he had a chin strap he could put on me...NO FRICKING WAY!!!!  So I propped up my chin with my pillows and hoped for the best...

Around 4am I woke up coughing and momentarily freaked because the pressure of the incoming air felt more like a fire hose of air than the gentle breeze I feel asleep with... Immediately, I heard my tech asking if I was OK, and then before I could focus my eyes, he was in the room beside my bed.

He told me he could stop the study then if I wished, but I did not feel like driving home at 4am and really wanted to return to sleep.  Surprisingly, I feel right back to sleep.  I don't remember any dreams... but he told me the next morning I did reach REM sleep.

Now I schedule a follow up appointment with my doctor and get a script for the CPAP.  Here's hoping between my current insurance and my new insurance, I won't have to pay too much, because I really noticed a HUGE difference in how I felt, especially in my legs.  During the night, my legs feel weird, tingly, like they are going to sleep and I HAVE to move them.  When I first walk in the morning, my legs feel weak and heavy.  My nose is always stuffed and I often have a dull headache.

Another look at my "big hair" from the "goop" for the head leads...and I am so relieved to have this test behind me!

I will keep you posted on what type machine (if I can afford it) I select, but I am leaning toward the nasal one I ended up with.  I know it will take some time to get used to, but I believe the results and benefits will far out weigh the hassle.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Magpie Tales #45: Love At First Sight...

Photo by Tess Kincaid
Another Magpie Tale

Precious and sacred
Mother and child,
my life's longing,
calling to her,
holding, rubbing
my protruding belly.
 Womb dreams,
psychic visions
of an unborn face.
Feeling alive,
Willing to take
all discomfort
and pain
to count ten fingers
and ten toes.
Love at first sight
weeping with a smile,
strong, instant
joyful exhaustion.
a tiny hand
on my breast,
that sweet smell
of a newborn
all from me...
Thanking God.
Overwhelmed with Love,
spilling over
filling my life.
Each day
a precious adventure
Even years
Odd years
Young woman
Oh, my precious daughters,
the gratitude
to hold
and share
another generation...
Mother and child
precious and sacred...


Monday, December 13, 2010

Sleep Study Number 2....

Spent the last two days decorating the interior and exterior of our home for Christmas.  Tomorrow I have a "to do" list about three feet long.  Tomorrow night, I return to the sleep center for my second sleep study to fit me with a CPAP machine for my sleep apnea. 

My plan is to wear myself out tomorrow doing errands so when I arrive at 10pm, hopefully, I will be able to conk out and go to sleep...I am NOT looking forward to this.  I have claustrophobia and cannot imagine anything remotely resembling "comfortable" or "not so bad once you get used to it".  Anything over my face will not be pleasant in any way, shape or form!!! 

If it is more than I can handle, I have no qualms of unplugging and leaving...wish me luck!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Six Word Saturday...

While visiting blogs this morning, hosts a Six Word Saturday (see my side bar to pick up the html if you want a link).  Her challenge is to describe your life in six's mine:

Going to lose weight during holidays

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Magpie Tales #44: No One Believed In Fences...

Another Magpie Tales challenge...

Photo from Tess Kincaid

From 1952 to 1957
we lived in
Bremerton, WA
with four seasons.
It was the best
of my childhood

Winter meant
 breaking off
ice cycles hanging
from the roof,
snow angels,
shoveling snow,
making snowmen,
building the best
snow fort,
snow ball fights,
best of all...
No one believed
 in fences...
 Our sled run
was the top of the hill
from our neighbor's
back yard
all the way to the
the curve
to the
street below us.
Bundling up
layers of
gloves, boots
scarf and hat.
cup of
cocoa with
and away
we went.
Sitting at the top
of the hill
butterflies of
 fear and excitement
(excitement always won)
booted heels
dug in the snow
 either side of
my sled.
gripping the steering cord
both hands with
just the right
space in between.
rocking back and forth
to get
the runner blades
to the slope
of the hill
 cold and wind
biting my
rosy cheeks
One foot on
then the other,
crouched down,
getting the feel
of the rutters,
snow flying on my face
 in my eye lashes
(hated goggles)
gleeful giggles
imagination kicks in
gathering speed
gotta stay on
all the way!
all the way!
feeling free
so very happy
and then
pulling it
back up
the hill


Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Inside INFO On Results To My Sleep Study...

One of the nice ladies at the Sleep Center had told me to call her last Friday.  I did and she told me she types up the notes after it is dictated by the doctor.  She told me she would call me to let me know if I did have sleep apnea and would have to come back.  I had explained to her I have to change health care companies and my doctor wanted me to use my current health plan to do the sleep studies because the sleep centers on the other health plan are conducted at motels and are not as nice.  She did not call me Friday, so I called her yesterday.

She told me I had "moderate" sleep apnea and she had just faxed the doctor's notes to my primary care doctor.  When I called his office, the gal told me he would contact me in a couple of days.  I reminded her, the doctor had wanted me to use this sleep center and I was changing health plans in January.  I will call them back if I don't hear anything by tomorrow.

I am really surprised I have sleep apnea.  I didn't think I did.  Pretty scary.  My husband is convinced he has it, but will not go to the sleep center because he could not stand all the paraphernalia one has to wear for the test.  I am apprehensive as I am claustrophobic and if they are going to have me wear a mask, I may just have to decline and then run on a treadmill daily to loose this weight around my middle and around my neck!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Climbing Reverently, Gratefully...

Photo by Tess Kincaide

The crunch
of fresh fallen
over night
frosted snow
booted feet
weary bones
night shift
tired eyes
a gloved hand
pull keys
 a warm pocket
on door knobs
which lead
to a kitchen
a kettle
warm tea
thick socks
and a
steamy shower
for sweet


Thank you Willow for another Magpie Tales challenge...

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Puttering and Purging In PJ's...

It's cold.

Feels like Christmas.

So much to do,
so little time.

Our family
to make gifts
this year...

Don't like
feeling pressured...

brings on

puttering and purging
personal files
in my PJ's
was more
of a priority
this weekend...


Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sleep Study: Just Call Me Hannibal Lecter With An ET Finger...

It's 10:30am.  I got home from my sleep study at 6 am.  Izzy had been sleeping on my bed and came scampering to greet me.  She did well staying alone, all night with my husband, for the first time.  We took a couple of laps around the block, enjoying a nice, long, brisk walk and watched the sun rise over the valley below...

I was scheduled to arrive at the Nocturna Sleep Center last night at 9 pm, but one of the staff called and asked if I could come at 10:30pm instead.  The staff were very professional, informative, kind and friendly.  The rooms are small, but stylishly designed like any top rated hotel.

I was given a questionnaire to complete, mainly to see if I had any aches or pains and how I felt generally.  I changed into my PJ's and a nice young women came in to attach all the electrodes to me.  It took about forty-five minutes.  I had straps across my chest, my rib cage and my waist.  Leads on my legs, arms, neck and a clip taped around my right pointing finger with a red light, like the tip of ET's finger.

The two worst part were tubing like oxygen, only with sensors on it, which I had to wear up my nose with some piece that hung down toward my mouth (very irritating), and the leads put on my scalp.  First, she exfoliated the spots on my scalp before she put the gel on.  Kind of scraping my scalp.  The gel was thick like toothpaste, followed by the base, the lead, and then wrapped with a cotton ball.

When she finished, I asked her to take a picture of me to share with you all.  I looked like Hannibal Lector!

What do YOU think?

This picture was before she put all the leads on my head.

She put that toothpaste gel on my face and then taped the tubing in place.  Lovely, huh?  Behind my head was a five inch by five inch block where all the ends of the leads were plugged into and it is gathered and secured behind my neck...

And I am suppose to sleep like this??? 

She told me to buzz her if I needed to go to the bathroom or needed anything.  She asked if I needed anything and I asked for a fan, as I usually sleep naked with the windows open and I knew I would be HOT wearing Pj's.  They observe me throughout the night via a camera, so I opted to wear the PJ's. The blanket was very light and I prefer some weight on me, so she brought me another blanket.

I popped my cholesterol medication, drank a sip of water, got my ear plugs out so I would not be distracted by the sound of the fan, and tried to make myself "comfortable".  Once the tech reached the front desk, she called me on the intercom to have me follow some verbal commands to make sure everything was connected properly.

She had me wiggle my legs, my hands, fingers, open and shut my mouth, move my eyes up and down and side to side, breath in and out only from my nose, then only from my mouth, shut my eyes, open my eyes, and breathe with my belly.  After the OK, I put my ear plugs in and told myself as soon as I went to sleep, the sooner I could get all the wires off me and go home!

I normally fall into sleep quickly.  It took some twenty or so minutes of self talk to take myself some other place to distract myself from where I was, and finally fall asleep.  I woke momentarily when I would turn over or was too uncomfortable in a particular position, but I did sleep...I even had a dream... of being released and going home!

The leads on my head, reminded me of sleeping with bobby pins when I was a little kid.  Kind of "pokey" and uncomfortable.  At some point in the night, I began to get a headache from the stuffiness of the room and lying on those "porcupine leads".

Thankfully, at 5:20 am, I heard the muffed voice of my tech asking me to wake up.  She told me to open my eyes but to stay in bed and not go back to sleep.  Surprisingly, I felt wide awake.  I was so relieved to get out of there!  I became aware of my headache and my right ET finger, which was throbbing with pain...

Turns out the pulse lead on my finger with the red light was taped so tight, I got a blister.  Hurt like heck!  I told her and she apologised telling me I must have sensitive skin and I am the first blister she has ever seen.
(I am happy to report it has disappeared and no longer hurts....)

As she gently pulled off the tape from my face (OW!!!!!) , disconnecting me and removing the gooey leads from my scalp, she commented on how thick my hair was and I may have to wash it three times to get it all out of my hair.

Actually, it made an excellent root enhancer as my thick hair looked three times as thick as it normally does...some what resembling a Halloween Fright Wig...

I had to fill out another questionnaire and then I was released to go home.  I should get the results in a week to ten days.  If I have sleep apnea, I have to come in for ANOTHER sleep study...