Thursday, December 31, 2009

My 2009

Relaxing, waiting for the New Year. Not much choice as I am partly deaf due to a sinus infection.

This is the time of year when the media review the past year and make predictions for the new. In addition, we get a decade review and projections of what will happen in the next ten years.

My 2009:
Started off terrible. I was in the middle of a battle with my employer to resolve my "duty to accommodate" request, which came close to becoming a grievance. I lost six months of pay due to extreme fatigue, caused by the aggravation of my MS. I wasn't sure if I could go on. I wanted to quit working only to have it over and done. My employer refused to acknowledge my MS. They picked on one tiny part of a Health Canada report to insist that I MUST seek psychiatric treatment before they would even consider accommodating me. I'm telling you, there were times I felt like I was in the 1950's Soviet Union. Nothing is more evil than the person who smiles at you and then proceeds to try and destroy you.

Please, Please, if you are not trained in medicine or psychology don't try and impose your half baked ideas about therapy and drugs on someone. And if you no nothing about an illness; either educate yourself or shut up!!

Fortunately, providence rescued me in the form of a court case that ruled in favour of another woman who was going through similar hell. The attitude of my employer at the time was to impose accommodation rather than accommodate. There is a big difference. I don't know why they had that attitude and I don't care. I'm just glad that a judge had enough brains to review policy and give them all a legal slap!

Even after I received my accomodation it was a tug of war. This one person just couldn't stand being bested, even though allowing me to work at home was the right thing to do.

Then in the summer something strange (but good) happened. I made peace with a relative. End result of that is I came into some unexpected money, which I used to fix up my dilapidated house.

What I want to say is things can get better. You must hang in there. We all of us go through trying times and things can look bleak but we must not lose hope.

When things are better, remember the bad times but don't dwell on them. Use them as a lesson and savour the good. Oh ain't I the little philosopher!

I want to say Thank You to the following :

My Son. Kid, without you I don't know how I would have made it. You're awesome.

My Dad. Thanks for accepting my wanting to make peace. Oh and thanks for the money too. My house feels more like a home now.

Mom Thanks for the cross and your blessings. Keep praying. I think it works.

Frank. You kept telling me things would get better and they did. Your positive attitude was and is a tonic. You're one interesting guy.

Cathy, The Debbies, Joanne and Marta. You helped me out and prevented my cracking up. Thanks girls.

Postcards. Yeah my hobby was a good distraction from all my misery. Love ya, postcard pals.

The beautiful nature trails of Hamilton. Those walks restore my soul.

The birds in my backyard. Even though I spend too much time daydreaming when I watch you from my office window. Yeah even you crazy woodpecker!!

Dr. Paulseth. For being such a calm, cool, collected, doctor. You assured me I wasn't nuts when others were trying so hard to make me feel that I was.

Oh and thanks to all the bloggers out there who helped me unravel the crazy mystery of MS. Your advice,your stories, are an inspiration.

Here's looking to a truly Happy 2010 for all of us.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Not Even 1% Fun

The old expression about traveling "getting there is half the fun". If ever there was anything so far removed from the truth, it is that statement.

I decided to go away for Christmas. I never said before, but my son has been away doing volunteer work for the past three months. There is also lots of feuding in my family. Had a lovely time visiting friends in the South West of the U.S. Had a delicious traditional Mexican Christmas meal.

The day after I arrived the failed bomb plot occurred. Yeah you know the one. The guy paid cash for a one way ticket to the U.S., his only luggage being explosives stuffed in his crotch. His father had warned authorities about his radical beliefs, he was on a watch list etc. etc. A dozen red flags.

My nice trip marred by 24/7 reporting of new airport security. There I was, already so tired from my trip down; that I couldn't even imagine what further annoyances could be put in place to make air travel even more irritating.

Every trip the flying experience gets worse. There is no communication between the various entities that are needed to get me and my fellow passengers off the ground. Every airport has their own rules, which seem to change with every flight.

All the billions spent on warfare, on intelligence, on security, yet still these evil fanatics can figure out ways to terrorize us. The only reason we got lucky this time is due to the fact that this nut was inept. Yeah lucky us.

So there I was getting ready to come back home. Glad that I only had a suitcase and my purse to take with me, albeit a very large purse. The media had said that no carry on bags would be permitted. Then the story changed to only one piece of carry on luggage. You would not be allowed to have anything in your lap, you would not be allowed to get up from your seat one hour before landing(great news for the incontinent) No liquids of any kind would be permitted. There would be thorough body searches.

I packed my bag, thought twice about having a small bottle of hand sanitizer and my lip gloss on me. Decided to go ahead and include them as these items are not sold in any airports. You can buy booze, cigarettes, perfume, fancy bags, and overpriced souvenirs, yet the only lip balm I have ever seen in an airport is the cheap, waxy, medicinal brand. Oh yeah you can also buy $4.00 bottles of water because you can't bring your own eco friendly water bottle with you.

Forget about me hiding this stuff in my panties. For some reason I am always the one who gets the pat down and the wand treatment when I go through security. I also get the third degree from immigration: Why am I visiting the U.S.? Who am I visiting? Where do I know these people from? What is their address? How long am I staying? (Hey you yelled at me to see my itinerary, check it out) Yeah, they shake down old ladies and let the bad guys sail through. And why don't the airports have any hand sanitizer? Everywhere you go now malls, offices, there are huge courtesy bottles of it, yet not at the airports.

Things went very smoothly at the El Paso airport. They had the same vigorous security in place, only this time I went through with no body search. Carry on bags? People had the usual ton of stuff. They did pull random people from the line to search them prior to boarding. That was the only difference I saw. Procedures on the airplane were the same as always. There were no restrictions on moving about the cabin at anytime, except when the seat belt sign was on. You could use your laptop, snooze with a blanket, and use the bathroom as much as you wanted.

At Houston I can't say what new measures they had in place, as I was already cleared and was just passing through for my connecting flight.

I can't say what security would work to keep us safe. Yes it's true that if a person has evil on their mind they will figure out a way, however, this time we really were asleep at the wheel.

I don't mind the delay for extra security. I appreciate that they are trying to keep us safe. I am baffled that in this so called information age, a bungler like this guy, who did a dozen suspicious things, could get on a plane and try to blow it up.

Air travel is already so difficult what with flight delays, unannounced gate changes, missed connecting flights, bad expensive food, gross bathrooms, crying babies, and lines, constant waiting in lines.

Instead of hassling innocent travelers, let's by all means have effective security.

Oh yeah and I had to pay $20 to check my bag!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Strange Sort Of Holiday

Here I am posing with the case for the atomic bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima.
Yeah, it's been a weird holiday so far. Do you know where this picture was taken? I'll send you a postcard if you do.




Saturday, December 26, 2009

Merry Belated Christmas

I'm out and about. Updates after the holiday. Hope you are all having a good one

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Blogging Around

Really don't feel much like blogging myself so I've been checking out other blogs leaving the odd comment here and there. Wish I had the energy to take on a few more blogs, as there are lots of good ones. May as well face it. I simply don't have the energy to do that much reading. Sorry if you have a new blog I just can't take on anymore right now.


Watched the movie "49th Parallel" 1949 last night. Lots of stereotypes about Canada. Complimentary, but stereotypes none the less. The story is about a group of Nazi officers stranded on Hudson's Bay after there U Boat is sunk by the Canadian Air Force. So who is the first Canadian they encounter? A French fur trapper played by Laurence Olivier!! I won't give away the story, but recommend it just to see the old Canada. The one I grew up in. Oh now I sound like an old fogey.

I have this feeling that Canada is not held in as high regard anymore, what with our stupidity at the climate talks and our involvement in Afghanistan( No I don't call it a war, cus it ain't) We aren't the clean living peace niks we use to be. Which is a shame.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Big Clean Up

Finally the work is done, the contractors gone, and my house is in order. Everything is looking good. I'm amazed at how much warmer and quieter it is inside thanks to the new windows. No more drafts!

Haven't been feeling to bad except for the cursed fatigue.

I am unhappy with a couple of fair weather friends, no, more like bad weather friends.I was annoyed with one of them who went away this week to spend the holidays out west. When I said give me a call before you leave9 I wanted to say Merry Christmas have a safe trip) she said "Oh she would be too busy" but not so busy that she managed to send me stupid email jokes that evening. Yeah OK lady I'll remember that in the New Year when you call me up to keep me on the phone for two hours complaining about your boyfriend. And yeah I hope you are reading this. Having friends means making time for them and not just when it' convenient for you.

Straightening up the house and getting ready for the holidays has left me with little energy for anything else, so the old blog has been neglected. To be honest I'm not even sure if I want to carry on with a blog. I feel like I've said pretty much everything I can about MS and prattling on about my life doesn't seem to be worth the time and energy involved. We'll see. Maybe I'm over tired.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Canada You Have A Choice !!

I'd like to thank my friend Herrad at Access Denied, for making me aware of this
site

and this one
Sign the petition

There is still time to save the Copenhagen climate talks.

Monday, December 14, 2009

MS Is Everywhere

Day one of the window install. Somehow a general conversation about taxes evolved into a discussion about MS. Don't remember exactly what we were talking about when the window guy mentioned his wife has progressive MS and is in a wheel chair. I felt myself freeze for a couple of seconds. I don't know why it is that every person I meet who has MS or has a loved one with MS, it's the progressive type.

At least I will be able to help this guy, as he and his wife are not claiming all that they can on their taxes for disability. I'm not allowed to give specific advice but I can at least point them in the right direction. They are losing out and why should they? AND why isn't anybody telling them this stuff???

So now I have decided that my next volunteer work will be to advise anyone with a disability, chronic condition, syndrome, on how to legally maximize their tax claims.

I may have to wait till I retire as I'm not certain if i would be permitted to do this by my employer, even though I wouldn't charge for it. They are very picky about what I can do outside of work and rightly so. Too many kooks in the past giving out free advice that was in fact rubbish. The media is always quick to pounce on Revenue when they screw up. Funny they never scrutinized the banks in the same way. We might have been able to avoid this massive credit crunch.

Yeah we all hate taxes. What kind of a world would it be though if we didn't have them? People always say they don't want the government in their face, yet they don't seem to mind money grubbing corporations doing it.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Eternally Dripping Sinus

Yes a very elegant topic tonight. My dripping left sinus, which has been that way now for about two years. Today I had a rotten headache from it and the sensation that every time I breathed the air was shooting up straight into my brain.
My feet are driving me crazy too Amazing how many different kinds of pain in them. Sharp, that feels like an electric knife, dull pulsing, prickly, stabbing, burning. Even more fun when I have two, three, types happening at once

At least my Christmas shopping is done !

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Winter is Here !!

Feels like -20C out there with the wind chill And Oh what a chilly wind!It felt like a hurricane when I went out this afternoon. I could barely walk. It burned the skin on my face and now I have two big red patches underneath my eyes. It's still howling out there now.

I feel like a wreck. Thank goodness for the old movie channel because I sure don't feel like doing much. Right now I'm cooking chili and watching "Odds Against Tomorrow" starring Harry Belafonte as a small time crook who joins up with two white guys to rob a bank. Interesting racial tensions, greed overcoming any prejudice.

I was watching the birds outside today and wondering how they manage in this cold.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Copenhagen





I'm embarrassed that Canada has been described as the "ant at the picnic" at the Copenhagen climate summit.
Polar bears are eating their young due to starvation. The Russians are booking commercial ships for the North East Passage, offering free ice breakers, so confident are they that the arctic sea will remain free of ice. In spite of this our Prime Minister, rejects calls for controls on the Tar Sands saying it is important for jobs and the Canadian economy. I guess when we are all under water we will finally get it That climate change is here.

We have to stop kidding ourselves that an ever expanding economy is sustainable.
That we can just keep on sucking commodities out of the ground to make a bunch of junk that we don't need.

Get out of your car, go for a walk, quit hanging around malls buying cheap plastic stuff, stop drinking bottled water, and start looking for energy alternatives.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Attack of The Woodpeckers

Help ! The woodpeckers are attacking ! I heard what sounded like someone banging on my kitchen window. It was a woodpecker who managed to grab hold of the screen and was tapping away. Must have been some juicy bugs that attracted him. In fact my whole yard must be bug filled since the woodpeckers like hanging out there. Oh! can they ever make a racket too. Add to that the sparrow clan that chatters away in my front yard bushes and it's quite noisy, but noisy in a good way. The sounds of nature I enjoy. The sound of my neighbours unhappy yelping dogs not at all. Ah the joys of working at home. Am I complaining? No way ! Even the worst day at home is better than the best day in the office. I find I still get very tired during the day.Now at least I can take a break when I really need one and not at some mandated time. I never find the office coffee break therapeutic. Too many people, too much going on.

Had some good news. The windows will be installed next Monday. Looks like Santa is bringing me an early Christmas gift.

Some advice if you are thinking of buying a home. Unless you are really handy and really healthy, don't buy an old house. Sure they have their charms and new houses have problems too.I am learning the hard( read: expensive)way that an old house can be a real money pit if you have to pay people to fix it for you. The good old days when I could do most of it myself( yeah I was MS fix it) are long gone and now it costs me a fortune to get things done.

I was a little sad today thinking how useless I am now, at least when it comes to things like that. A total weakling. House repairs were actually fun for me. I had a real sense of accomplishment when I completed a job. Ah! may as well forget it and move on. Lots of other things I can still do and many things left I want to try.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

December 6, 1989




In this picture - The Honourable Helena Guergis, Minister of State (Status of Women), places a red rose to represent all the women and girls who are victims of violence. The 14 white roses, which were placed by her colleagues, represent the 14 young women who lost their lives at l’École Polytechnique in Montréal on December 6, 1989.


On December 6, 1989 Marc Lepine murdered 14 women "because they were feminists".
Read how one women tried to save lives by denying being a feminist and how today she realizes she had many misconceptions about what that meant.

I am a feminist. I am not a man hating, bra burning, militant.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Blogify ?

blogify: To dramatize or overexaggerate. To describe otherwise bland subjects in a horribly depressing and/or dramatic manner. To make dreary . . .– Urban Dictionary

Check it out at Urban Dictionary

How would you describe your blog? Mine: Woman too tired to be as interesting as she would like to be.

Yeah but I try.

And I see my American friends continue with intelligent debate of
the health care issue:

William Shatner:
If you have money, you're going to get health care. If you don't have money it's more difficult.
Rush Limbaugh:
If you have money you're going to get a house on the beach. If you don't have money you're going to live in a bungalow somewhere.

William Shatner:
But we're talking about health care.

Rush Limbaugh:
What's the difference?

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Rain In December

Sitting here taking a break from writing Christmas cards watching "Diary of a Madman"
I think Vincent Price enjoyed playing crazy guys. He did such a good job too. The characters are often sympathetic, and not over the top wacko like they are in today's movies. Oh don't I sound like an old fogy.

Well I have a new furnace and central air! The job went smoothly, only I think one of the guys had a bladder problem, because he used the bathroom about twenty times. My germ paranoia had me with the bleach, scrubbing away after he left. Hard to believe such a tiny furnace is such an uber heating machine. Here I am with this super efficient heating system and the weather is spring like out. It poured rain again this evening. Am I complaining? No, my winter boots can wait.


Not much else going on. I think the Afghan troop surge is a mistake and I hope our Prime Minister doesn't extend Canada's involvement there.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

A Cookie A Day

Not as healthy as an apple and don't blame me if this adds to your holiday calories. A different cookie recipe every day till Christmas here

Monday, November 30, 2009

Furnace Day

Get my new furnace installed Tuesday. Good thing the weather is reasonable as I won't have any heat all day!!

Think I'll pop out and get my blood test done finally. Have to get started with the mega vitamin D soon.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Celebrity MS : Does It Help Us ?

Last night I watched the movie "Hillary and Jackie" 1998, a film about the cellist Jackie du Pre, who's career was cut short and died from progressive MS.

This film was a box office hit and received several Academy Award nominations.

Du Pre's rapid decline from MS and her debilitating symptoms were difficult for me to watch. Questions kept popping up in my mind "Does a film like this and the high profile celebrity of the person, do anything to educate people about MS?" "Is it because I am sensitive about my own MS that I was disturbed by this movie?" " Does being a celebrity, having an illness like MS, and going public with it, benefit us regular folks with MS or does it do more harm?" "Is any of this really the point?" "Films are meant to be enjoyed and not teach, unless they are documentaries?"

So many questions. I guess because no matter how much we try to inform people about MS, the majority have no clue what it is. My city has a small population 500,000. Every year there is an MS walk. One of our hospitals is a leader in MS research, yet most of the people who live here no nothing about MS or what they do know is so filled with prejudice and misconception.

So I guess I'm asking the big question. Does a film like Hillary and Jackie, help educate us concerning MS, or does it scare the bee geeburrs out of us and cause harm?

Du Pre had a rare, extreme, form of MS and how do we know that she didn't have other conditions that caused her death? Many MS suffers have additional serious illnesses. Just because you have MS doesn't mean you are safe from other health problems. It's not like God says: "OK you have MS so I'll give you a break". Maybe because her decline was so rapid they never did diagnose any other condition and just assumed it was the MS.

Imagine finding out you have MS, something you know very little about. You or a member of your family watches a movie like this and/or Montel Williams spreading so much misinformation about MS.

Not a very good start is it?

Bad enough you have journeyed through the maze of tests, and doctors, and diagnosis,
(if you are lucky) and misdiagnosis (most likely) and then your first experience with high profile individuals with MS, are a women who declines and dies, and a guy who tells you to drink lots of juice.

The celebrity world is not one I'm keen on. I could care less what they wear, where they go, and don't care about their views on anything. I'm just wondering if it is a good thing to show high profile individuals with an illness or does it do harm ?

I apologize for my sloppy editing. Typing this takes me so long due to my ever weakening typing skills. I'm simply too tired to polish it up.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

Here's wishing all my American buddies a Happy Thanksgiving. Go easy on the turkey and may Santa bring you a decent health care bill.

I am amazed to read in the New York Times how many people look up turkey recipes.
Too late for today I guess, but here's my easy advice to cook a tasty juicy turkey.

1. Buy a fresh turkey. You are better off with a smaller fresh turkey, than a bigger frozen one. A smaller portion of something tasty, is better than a large portion of dried up tasteless meat.

2. Don't bother to stuff the turkey You can make the stuffing and bake it separate from the bird. Instead, put a half onion, a few celery stalks, a carrot, and a bunch of parsley tied with string (so it is easy to remove later)in the cavity. You don't even have to peel them, but wash and make sure the onion is cut in half. As for seasonings, that's your choice I rub a little sage on top and a bit of seasoning salt. This will add so much flavour to the pan juices for gravy later.

3. Start the oven at a high temperature 400-425 for the first half hour or so to give the turkey a chance to brown. Then turn the heat low to about 300- 325.

4. Check it every hour or so. Drain off any pan juices, and instead of using them to baste the turkey, use some water. Pour about half a cup of water all over the turkey and keep draining it off as you go along. Trust me, it really works and you will have enough pan juices to make a ton of tasty gravy.

5. You can use a thermometer to test if the turkey is cooked. I don't. I can tell from the legs( the skin will have shrunk away on them) and if the pan juices are clear, if it is done. Roughly one hour, plus another hour for every kilo. I have never had anybody get sick from eating my turkey, so I must be doing it right. And speaking of that: Allow the turkey to stand for about 20 minutes before you slice it, HOWEVER, DO NOT, let it sit around too long and don't keep it in a warm oven for very long after it is cooked. Half hour MAX. If you don't have time to remove all the meat from the carcass please find room in the fridge for the leftover turkey.
The greatest source of food poisoning is food improperly cooked and left to sit around. Also cross contamination. Clean any area, plates, and utensils used to prepare the raw meat and use clean ones to serve( yeah it's Mom again)

6. Take all your pan juices and if you want to remove the fat, place them in the fridge to allow it to cool and then just skim the fat off.

7. Put the pan juices to boil on the stove with the vegetables you used in the turkey. Allow that to simmer for a few minutes to squeeze as much flavour out of everything. Remove all this from the liquid and then taste to see if it needs more seasoning. Be careful not to burn your tongue(Gee do I sound like your mother?) The best way to thicken the gravy without having it turn out all gloppy and lumpy, is to use potato or rice flour or a combination of both. You can buy Veloutine which is a premixed combination of these and great because unlike regular flour, you can put it right in the hot liquid. Use a whisk to blend and if it gets a little too thick, simply add some water.
8. If you have to use regular flour, make a roux, which is flour blended with some melted butter. Add some of the liquid to this and whisk, then add that to the remaining liquid You can always make a bit more roux if the gravy isn't thick enough.If you still get lumps simply strain the whole works.

It really is much easier than it sounds and truthfully is much less tiring than me writing all this out. Don't be afraid It's only a turkey. If you have any questions feel free to ask. I'm always available to answer food questions. Food being one of my favourite things

Advice: Don't cook everything !! If baking isn't your thing buy pre made desserts !
Use frozen vegetables to save all that peeling They can taste as good as fresh if you don't over cook them.

Don't be a cooking martyr. If you don't feel like cooking. Don't do it! You can buy an entire cooked turkey meal with all the trimmings for about $90. it's supposed to be enough for 4 people, but I'm certain without gluttony it could serve 8.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

It's No Picnic

The gloomy, rainy, weather, has me in a funk. I really shouldn't be complaining about 11C temperatures considering that furnace use is at a minimum and I still don't need my winter coat.

I'm simply frustrated at the return of the pulsing in my ears and the pain in my left foot. I was fine and then out of nowhere the whooshing started and the pain, and now I feel crummy. Crummy because I wanted so bad to rest this afternoon due to a major fatigue jag. No luck though. Think I'll have an early vapour session this evening. I have to attend a "town hall meeting" tomorrow and with the entire group from work there, the last thing I need is to be all shriveled. They have enough to gossip about. I'm in no mood for the "poor Carole" or "she's faking it" comments. Whispered of course! Not only that, the agenda promises to be extremely boring. I don't do boring so good these days.

Strange that I had to see a news story about a recall of swine flu vaccine in Canada, on BBC World. Nothing about it in the local media. 178,00 doses were recalled by Glaxo Smith Kline, due to higher than normal allergic reactions which included breathing problems, rashes, and shock. I guess they thought the big story was a deer running around downtown Toronto.

At least I did get to see a movie I have heard about over the years "Mr Hulot's Holiday". The misadventures of Mr Hulot and his fellow vacationers was funny and
made me think of a few holidays I've had like that. Now in summer when anyone says to me "Lets rent a cottage on the shores of( insert name of Great Lake) for a week" I pretend I don't hear them. More about that another time. I need to shower and get my "medicine" ready. Gee I sound like those old ladies who sip their therapeutic brandy.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Follow Up On Some Research

Here is a very good summary about "Research into Blood Flow in the Brain and Venous Insufficiency, or CCSVI, in MS".

This research was in the news a couple of months ago and several bloggers did discuss it. I find this article is written in plain language. Well, as plain as any scientific research can be made. There is also a FAQ list that you might find helpful.

My understanding is that blood flow problems may be causing the inflammations that result in myelin damage. The researchers are building on studies that were abandoned years ago, as MS research moved toward studying the immune system causes of MS. This does not mean that current research is misguided nor that the old research was useless. It means (to me)that perhaps there is a new way to resolve the MS question and come up with treatments, that would lessen the need for the powerful drugs that are now used to combat MS. In future, a procedure such as one used to unblock clogged arteries might help relieve MS and prevent further symptom episodes. Not a cure, but a step in the right direction

I am posting this today aware that it is old news, however this article and the FAQ's really cleared up some of the questions I had about this research. It's possible my interpretation is wrong. That's why you should read it for yourself and decide. I am not an MS expert as some blogger claim to be. I am trying to find something positive, that can make me and maybe others, feel a little more hopeful about our situation.

It might have to do with me feeling better about things these days and make up for all the whining I do.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Results

The neuro appointment went smoothly My balance is not so great and my reflexes aren't either, otherwise physically, things aren't that bad.

My doctor wants to try mega doses of vitamin D. This seems to be the latest treatment for MS. I have to have a blood test first and then will most likely take about 4,000 units a day to start. I was just too tired to go for the blood test today. I'm already taking 1,000 units a day as a supplement, so I'm part way there.

I don't know what the big deal was about the Health Canada report. The doctor there DID, recommend for me to work at home and my neuro DID, give a diagnosis of relapsing remitting MS. Yes, there was a suggestion I go see a psychiatrist but that was not mandatory, as my employer insisted. I discussed it with my doctor and he said that's a standard recommendation when an individual is diagnosed with an illness like MS.

I explained to him that at the time (last fall) I was so stressed out about my work situation that I was depressed and I did feel suicidal. When you are losing half your pay cheque due to illness and your employer is stone walling, on top of the MS, that would make most anybody depressed. Regardless of how low I was feeling, I would never have killed myself.

What happened is instead of trying to resolve my work situation my employer focused on one thing. Lets pack her off to a shrink and he will fix her up. If that doesn't work, we will pension her off and be done. Not sure if it's lack of caring,laziness, or both. Luckily, a court case( Lloyd vs CRA) came along just at the right time to help me out. Now things aren't that bad at work. I'm at home four days and one day in the office per week.

I've decided to move on and look ahead. Will I forgive and forget ? NO !!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I Said Doctor, Doctor, Mr MD

Have my Neuro appointment in the morning. Not exactly over the moon about that.
What's the point? At least I will finally get my hands on the Health Canada report I had to fight so hard to get released. Tonight I don't feel like a bag of bones. I feel like a piece of raw bacon lying around.

You want a nice, no whining blog ? Sorry, guess you will have to go elsewhere.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Dignitas

Not much in the mood for writing. Way too tired. Here's an interesting article about the Dignitas clinic in Switzerland. 80% of people who get permission to end their life decide not to That's how effective the counseling is. We need to have a dialogue here in Canada to allow assisted suicide No I'm not contemplating it. I just think it would be worthwhile to know that if things were really bad I could die with dignity.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

It Started With A Mirror

Watching the silent version of "The Thief of Bagdad' with Douglas(hunk) Fairbanks.
These silents films have been given a boost with new music soundtracks

It started with the installation of a new mirror. I was at a discount decorating store on Saturday looking for Christmas cards, and noticed a dusty mirror sitting in a corner. It was such a good deal I couldn't resist. Oval shaped with an ornate antique gold coloured frame. Today I put it up and it looks pretty snazzy. Had one of those rare bursts of energy, so next thing you know I'm practically reorganizing the entire upstairs of my house. Managed to conquer the dust bunnies too. The weather was bad out otherwise I would have gone for a long walk. It was so nice to feel good for a few hours. I hit the wall around 3:00 and couldn't do much after that. Still, tonight I don't feel so bad.Tired but not weak.

I think my feeling good is partly due to my THC vapour knocking me out, which allowed me to have a nice long sleep on Saturday night. I am only using it a few times per week in the evening at stronger doses, rather than every day mild ones. Saturday I was in so much pain with the sensation of a nail being shoved up the bottom of my left foot. Decided I may as well have a good stiff shot of vapour and it worked. My foot calmed, my twitchy leg relaxed, and I fell asleep. Nice !

The beauty of it is I wake up the next morning and I don't feel like a zombie like I do when I take sleeping pills. Haven't had one of those in awhile and I don't miss it. Don't miss the yucky metallic taste in my mouth either.

Haven't had much time for my blog and when I have time, I don't have the energy. This week I had seriously considered packing it in. I wonder if there is any point to this blogging? Well, here I am at it again.

The weather continues mild. Saturday was like a spring day. I know it won't last. The Santa Claus parade was today and snow is just around the corner.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Energy Audit

No, not on me, although I could use one. This audit will allow me to get a rebate from the government when I install a new furnace, which looks like I'm going ahead with. Getting a new central air unit too, thanks to MS. Meaning, that I always thought of air conditioning as a luxury and now I see it as a necessity.

On December 1st it will be bye bye, to the old clunky furnace and noisy air conditioning unit. Plus I should save some money on my gas bill.

Got the Swine Flu shot today. It was pure fluke. I was in the mall on my way to the bank and noticed another clinic . It was so quiet, not like the long noisy lines of the last two weeks. I thought what the heck, may as well get one. I was in and out in less than five minutes, aside from the twenty minute wait after the shot.

Remembrance Day
" Never Forget - Never Again"


The Berlin wall fell without any violence. Why can't we resolve all issues that way?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

MS Update

Well it is called Carole's MS Blog, which I haven't had the energy to update.

I am soooooooooo tired. Not sleepy tired. Weak, bag of bones, tired. I have one good day were I get busy and then one horrible day were I can barely move. Even now I don't feel liking typing this. Only doing it because next week I have to see the neuro and I want to remind myself of how awful I feel.

AND how many people come to me for advice. I help them yet nobody can help me with this. I suppose if I was rich and had servants it would be less bothersome. Only I don't and lots to do, only I don't have the strength. It sucks !!!!!!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Veterans Week




Once again I'm a little late posting this. Here are some links to veterans week activities and Operation Legacy "Never Forget - Never Again"

veterans affairs

operation legacy

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Charles and Camilla

Well I managed to get at least one decent shot of the famous wave.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Marijuna for Autism

Read here about a mother's decision to give her son medical marijuana to treat his autism. I disagree with some of what she has to say. A vapourizer, although not cheap, isn't nearly as expensive as she says and it doesn't leave the house reeking of pot.

Might go see the royals at Dundurn castle tomorrow. Not a fan of the monarchy. Just want to see Camilla up close, which might be possible as the public is welcome and they want it to be informal. Sir Allan McNab, the laird of the castle, was her great, great, great, grandfather.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Go Dad !!!

Congratulations to my Dad, on passing his driver's license test. Pretty good for a ninety year old guy. I pity the fool who tells him his license is fake!

Got a new HD cable box. Oh what fun on the telephone this evening trying to get the thing activated. Me reading out two long number codes, being put on hold, rereading the codes, being put on hold, rereading the codes, until at last! The tiny light turned on, only to shut off again. The tech guy assured me that it would magically turn on again in half an hour. Here we are, three hours later, and no magic.

Heard the new swine flu, public service ads on the radio today. After weeks of brain washing to get the shot, we are told only high risk groups can get one for now. And they try to make it seem like this was the plan all along. Don't you just love government propaganda ?

Monday, November 2, 2009

More Pointless Research

Came across this story today in the Toronto Star. Read about the Marshmallow Effect.

Yeah put marshmallows in front of a kid, leave the room, and then you are surprised when they eat the marshmallows, even though you promised them more if they waited.
This is credible? Sorrow to tell you dear parents but your child is doomed because they couldn't wait to eat a marshmallow! Sheesh!! What next? Any wonder we still don't have cures for so many illnesses?

Feeling Guilty

OK. You may think this post adolescent and/or tell me to ask an advice columnist.
Hey! What's the point of having a blog if I can't use to sort out some of my dilemmas, even if those dilemmas are no big deal in comparison to big problems all around me? Age does not always bring wisdom and I find myself confronted with situations that are no different than ones I faced in kindergarten. AND I know there is loads of free advice out there, so feel free to post a comment, even if it is simply to tell me to grow up.

Do you ever find yourself starting a friendship with a person only to find as you get to know them, that you don't really like the individual? There is a saying "the less you know a person, the more you like them". It's not so easy to tell a person to buzz off or cut ties, especially when that person has been kind when others didn't care.

Yet I find that certain people thrive on helping others, not so much because they want you to feel better but because it makes them feel better. I also dislike that this results in the person claiming bragging rights "Oh if it weren't for me you would be a mess" and "you have this and that and it's all thanks to me". They also like to remind you constantly about how caring and compassionate they are.

What I would like to do is tell this person "Yes I am grateful, you did help me, only now I feel you are holding me ransom to that help. How long to I have to go on paying you back? You are a good person, however I find your constant bragging and constant need of compliments very draining. Yes you do good in the community and you have a big heart, yet why do you have this need to always tell everyone, all the time about it? Why must you always tell me how much you paid for everything you own?" Remind me all the time of how you live in a ritzy neighbourhood and everyone is jealous of that. You think that is why you don't have any friends, because people are jealous of you, when in fact they are just so fed up and really don't want to hear how your expensive designer sunglasses were stolen or your that your husband bought you an expensive designer watch, or that you just won another award for your good works."

Nah, I may as well face the truth. I will never say those things. I just can't be that cruel. Perhaps I'm also afraid that I will be confronted with my own annoying faults and I can't handle it. Meanwhile, I still have a buddy that I don't really want.

I also have a fair weather friend and a relative I don't get along with who is in jam, but that will have to wait for another time.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Standard Time

A beautiful mild day today for the start of Standard Time. Why can't we leave the clocks alone and stop this nonsense of day light savings time. What exactly are we saving?
My stairs and walkway are finished at last! A few finishing touches still to do but at least I can use my front door again. How nice to have shallower stairs and a wider path. I went out tonight to organize the recycling and it was effortless to climb up and down. Ah! relief for my wonky knees. I'll take some photos once everything is done. Next will be the windows and doors to be replaced.All this reno work, maybe I should have torn the house down and started over.

It's official. There isn't enough Swine Flu vaccine to go around. The clinics are still on for this week, yet only for high risk groups. Apparently there was a foul up at the plant producing the vaccine. Shots for regular folks won't be available for several weeks. The chief medical officer said they weren't expecting such a high turn out at the clinics. Well what did they expect? They have bombarded us with ads to "get the shot" "get the shot" and now that we have decided "OK I will get the shot" they don't have enough. If they don't have them available again before Christmas, I'm not even going to bother. Seems rather pointless. What a total cock up of a mess, the way this whole situation has been handled. I wonder what would happen if we had a serious plague? Best not to think about it.

I switched my cable t.v. channel line up this weekend. So many channels I didn't watch anymore. I now have Silver Screen Classics, which is turning out to be a great channel. I watched "A Night To Remember" this evening. The 1958 version of the sinking of Titanic. When I first saw it as a girl it made quite an impression on me Although the recent version by James Cameron is good I still prefer this one. Not sure if that's due to nostalgia or not. Anyway, I'm a movie nut, so this will be a great way to pass the dark, chilly, winter nights.

Well even with an extra hour I seem to have used up my day. Time to shut everything down and get ready for sleep.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Deceased Dentists Perhaps?


"Most of the candy sold during this season has been dedicated and prayed over by witches�I do not buy candy during the Halloween season. Curses are sent through the tricks and treats of the innocent whether they get it by going door to door or by purchasing it from the local grocery store. The demons cannot tell the difference."

-- Dr. Kimberly Daniels, in an essay posted on Pat Robertson's Christian Broadcasting Network

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Sidewalks, Swine Flu , Space, True Confessions

More windy, wet, and gloomy weather, resulting in further delay of the outdoor renovations.
Rain rain go away and come back when the work is done!

Today was my regular office stint. While at the mall for my morning break, I noticed a huge line stretching all the way from one end to the other and up to the second level. At first I thought people were lined up to buy tickets for a hot concert. Turns out they were waiting to get a Swine Flu shot. A thirteen year old boy died on the weekend from swine flu, which has parents in panic mode. Not that I blame them. This flu is hitting young people the hardest. On my way home I took a short cut through the mall and the line was still huge. A public health nurse was making an announcement that there would be a clinic everyday next week, all day. I guess she was hoping that some would hear that and come back another time. Nobody budged.

One thing that really upsets me about this Swine Flu is an annoucement on the business news, that Glaxo Smith Kline is making huge profits thanks to the vaccine.

Then on the evening news there was a story about possible cuts to the NASA budget or at the very least, cancellation of any possible trips to the moon. Should space exploration be funded by public money? We always hear that private enterprise is best. That is the arguement against a public health care option in America, so why not private money for a trip to the moon? Bored rich people can pay millions to travel to the space station, a publicly funded project. Why not let them take over the whole thing? Funny how something as important as health is left to for profit corporations, but space travel is somehow better suited to government funding. Or is it that the corporations will sit back, wait and see when they can make a buck off of it, and then whine (or should I say lobby) to privatize.

Finally, a few comments about celebrity true confessions. Normally I could care less about what the beautiful people, who's mirrors are covered in lip prints, are up to. However, I'm really getting weary of tell all books were individuals admit to cheating and cover ups, ten years after the fact. Yeah when the money was rolling in and you were getting lots of attention, you never had this crisis of conscience. Now you have had a very long think, have decided that what you did was bad, and you feel so terrible. Guess it's a good way for you to flog some books too. Crystal Meth!
How pathetic is that?

Time for some vapour I think ;) ;)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

No Great Loss

You will no longer be able to get a Big Mac in Iceland. Read the details here
(Yes, I am always trying to get you to read more)

Hey! people eating locally grown food instead? Sounds like an improvement to me. Even if it is a hamburger.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Computer Nerds

Got bit by a flea today and does it ever itch!

Response to my IT inquiry as to why I couldn't access a data base: "Huh?" "How did that happen?"

Response to my inquiry regarding a redundancy error on my Sims3 game, that won't reloaded after the computer crash: "The disk is scratched".

Yikes !! Less than two months till Christmas !!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Update and Mini Movie Review

Today when I feel the worst I have in ages, I thought I may as well update my blog.

Got my computer back from the shop. The guy was able to put things back almost as they were before the crash.
Still no front stairs. The weather has been so awful, cold rainy and extreme wind. Not good stair building weather. Today is lovely, only it's Sunday, so I suppose the workers are resting. I'm too tired to care.

It never fails! I feel good, get carried away doing things, and then pay for it the next day AND today I'm paying big time. I can barely move. It took me half an hour to psyche myself to get out of bed. I am so profoundly tired, it is beyond description.

Otherwise not much happening. I did watch a very good horror movie last night.
"The Host" a Korean film about a mutant lizard that emerges from the Han river, scoops people up, and dumps them in a sewer to eat later.
What makes it a good film is that it isn't over the top scary and you beleive that something like this could actually happen. The lizard isn't that big, about the size of a car, but fast and clever. The main characters, a dysfunctional family,who get a phone call from their little girl telling them she is still alive. They search for her, bickering and fighting all the way. The authorities screw everything up, refusing to believe that the girl is alive. The ending is unexpected and unconventional. I won't tell you in case you decide to check it out, which I suggest you do. Movie watching is a great escape when you feel crummy.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Headaches Not Just From MS

After a crazy weekend with my good computer crashing and having no stairs outside, is it any wonder I have a massive headache today ?

Yesterday I was accused of trying to use fake ID.
I was looking at notebook computers and I thought what the heck, instead of buying online I would give some business to my local computer store. When I presented my Visa card to buy a laptop, I was told I would need a picture ID. I went back home to get my driver's license because I don't normally carry it around and I never use my work ID for identification. It's only a short ten minute walk, so no big deal. I get back to the store and give the cashier my license. She calls the manager, he looks at my license, and flashes it back and forth . He puts it back on the counter and without even looking at me, tells the cashier not to accept it because it's a fake !! I am stunned and tell him so. He tells me that a "good" license has a hologram on it and me stupid, why I even bothered I don't know, tell him that there is a hologram on it. He says it's not the right kind of hologram !!

The cashier pipes in and says I can use my health card as ID. Me, continuing to be stupid, take out my health card and tell the cashier that legally she isn't allowed to ask for a health card as ID. Well, now three people are looking at my health card scrutinizing it. I don't know why this third guy had to get into the act ,but no matter. I get very annoyed and tell them to forget the whole thing . Just as I am about to leave the cashier says that it doesn't matter because my transaction has been declined by Visa. I call her an idiot, and the store manager a moron, and I walk out. It was a Sunday so there really wasn't much I could do about it except fire off an email to the head office of this store.

This morning I call Visa and they tell me there was no reason for the sale to be declined. Then I went over to the drivers license bureau which is in the same mall as the computer store. I tell them about the fake ID incident. They call the Ministry of Transportation and verify that my license if fine . I go back to the store and buy a cable for my modem, it was just a few bucks and I paid cash. It was they same idiot cashier and manager. After making my purchase I tell them that I checked with Visa and there in nothing wrong with my card and that I also checked with the license bureau and my drivers license is fine. I also said I had reported the incident by email, but that I was sending a complaint letter to there head office. Did they care ? No they told me to get out of the store because they really weren't interested in dealing with a person who tries to use fake ID !! I called them both idiots, morons and told them where to go. I was so angry.They threatened me with the mall cop.

Now you are wondering why on earth did I go back to that store and why did I spend money there? Two reasons: I wanted to see what their reaction would be and I also wanted a record of the store number and the sales clerk ID# My memory is very poor and if there is one thing I have learned from my work grievance, is you better have your facts straight or an incident can, and will, be used against you.

So this evening I have some letters to write. I don't really want to because I have so many other things on my plate. Still, I really think these people need to face their stupidity and apologize to me

One good thing. I'm very pleased with the work on my stairs and walkway. These young men from Back Yard Boys, are very professional and do excellent work. It's going to look fantastic when it's done and I won't have to worry about falling down the stairs anymore. Hey when people deserve compliments I give them. When they deserve my wrath, I give that too.

Now where's the Advil ?

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Blog Action Day

Nat @ London Calling reminded me that today is Blog Action Day on Climate Change.

My post is short. Here's a link to "Ontario Drive Clean" which by coincidence is ten years old. I don't own a car and I don't believe in car ownership. We have adapted our lifestyle to the car instead of the car adapting to us. Instead of living in the suburbs and driving everywhere, do like me. Buy a dumpy house in the ghetto and walk everywhere or use public transit. You will feel better and so will the earth. If you have to drive a car, at least keep it clean to save the air we breathe. It also reduces the effects of climate change.

Oh yeah and you will save on gas too, which I notice the price is going up again.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

David Suzuki and Alt Nobel

David Suzuki says he feels humiliated about winning the alternative Nobel prize for the environment because Canada is failing it's obligations on climate change.
Shame on us !!

A Turkey Ending

Not much to say about the Thanksgiving weekend. Plans made, revised, cancelled, revised. Mostly to do with the diabolical weather, that made sure that when there were outdoor activities (fairs, festivals) it poured rain or was freezing cold. Sad because these are yearly events. When they are ruined there's not much you can do, except wait till next year. End result is I had an alt dinner of Indian Butter Chicken. Yes I ditched the traditional meal. I have cooked so many turkey dinners;it was time for a change.

Today I'm exhausted. I have a pattern of having a good day, followed by a bad one. It's still a shock to wake up in the morning and feel so awful. I think of all the things I need to do and I cry. I'm always trying to bargain "Please let me have a good day so I can get such and such done, "so I can see so and so and they won't worry " "so I can not have an anxiety attack or a brain freeze or pee my pants, at the worst possible moment" There are no bargains to be made. Last week I was jealous when a friend said he felt refreshed after a good night's sleep. I can't remember the last time I felt that way. The best I can do these days is to feel OK. The MS roller coaster does what it pleases and either I hold on for the ride, or I give up. Those are my choices. I choose the ride. Some days it really sucks and others it's tolerable. What else can I do except keep going?

Attention to The Obama defenders. You are becoming similar to the Bush defenders, who would tell me " don't you dare criticize our wonderful President "you commie, lesbian, pot smoker" (Anyone who supports gay rights is a lesbian). Now, instead it's " don't you dare criticize our wonderful president you racist, ungrateful, moocher".

Relax OK? If the guy is so wonderful he will survive anything thrown at him. He has to take his lumps too, just like everybody else. That's politics. To loosely quote Mario Cuomo " the politics of campaigning is poetry, the politics of governing is prose ".

I will never mention the subject again, as I have more important things to worry about in my own country, although our dollar is going way up and our economy is creating jobs, so there is hope. Oh yeah and I still have my universal health care .

Saturday, October 10, 2009

100 or 1000 years ?

Last night's Mega Art crawl was a washout due to heavy rain, so instead today I'm going to talk about the environment or rather about three news stories I read, heard, and saw this morning. Yeah I'm a news junkie. Not sure if it does me any good. Like all addicts I rationalize my habit trying to convince myself that being in the know matters. Then I realize that what goes on in the world is out of my control, that human behaviour is unpredictable, and we are doomed to continue making the same mistakes. Then again, maybe not. So I keep listening, reading, watching.

Oh and while I'm writing this Martha Stewart, is on the tube introducing her show "Everyday Food" That's were she does all the talking and other people do the cooking. Yeah, they do the cooking because you need an army to make one of these meals. These shows discourage cooking by making it all seem so complicated and requiring many gadgets and appliances. No wonder people eat so much junk food.

My first eco news story is taken from The Toronto Star. Hippie Eco Activist Stewart Brand, who wrote the Whole Earth catalog, says "The Greens" should grow up. He advocates building more nuclear power plants to save the planet. He justifies this stance by stating that it doesn't matter if nuclear waste will be around for 1,00 years because we most likely will only last another 100. Very encouraging words !!

Next is Guy Laliberte founder of Cirque du Soliel who paid $35 mil to become an astronaut on the International Space Station Here's a link to his space show to promote One Drop, an organization that works to clean up our water.

Finally, the most interesting eco story I saw was on BBC world. Masai warriors, who once hunted lions are now doing there bit to save them. They have been equipped with electronic tracking devices to determine where the lions are and what they are up to. Their hunting skills make the Masai ideal for this task. It is hoped this will help cut down on poaching and allow researchers to figure out how to preserve the big cats in the wild. Sorry I can't find a link to this story it was a t.v. newscast.

Now I have to tend to my clogged kitchen sink by pouring "eco friendly" drain cleaner down it. Wow! it sure doesn't smell like friendly stuff

Friday, October 9, 2009

Nobel Also Rans

With today's news of Obama winning the Nobel peace prize, I thought I'd post a link to a story of Nobel also rans, who should have one.

Does the president of the United States really deserve a Nobel ? and if so Why ?

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Recession ? Really ?

You would never know there is a recession around here. The frustration I'm having with contractors.

Two weeks ago I had a guy come around to give me an estimate for a new walkway and stairs for the front of my house. He had done work on a place down the street and I really liked it. OK, so he comes over, is very polite, shows me the brochures, and discusses what should be done. I'm impressed and tell him to go ahead with the job.
He says he will be back the following week with an invoice and pick up a deposit.
Great! Wonderful! We shake hands on it and chat for awhile.
A week goes by I don't hear from him . I call to ask what's going on. He says he will be around on Friday. They are so busy because everyone wants to take advantage of the government tax rebate for home renovations. Friday he's a no show. The weekend goes by and I don't hear anything. I call him Monday morning and leave a message. Here it is Tuesday and still nothing.

Now the company that is doing my new windows( been in business 35 years) calls and says that they can't do them till December, because mine is a custom order and takes longer. December !! This Canada man. They tell me not to worry they will replace them one at a time and compensate me for any extra heating bill. Sorry but they are so busy because of the tax rebate. Ah yes so busy, but not too busy to take my deposit, which if I had known I would have kept and use it to do my Christmas shopping. I guess new windows are what Santa is bringing this year, so to heck with my plans.

Don't even get me started talking about the cable company, who when I tell them that my cable doesn't work properly when it's raining, they don't believe me and insist I need a new digital box. They too are Oh So Busy, and threaten me with a $100 billing if the cable problem is my fault !! Then there's the plumber and the guy who is supposed to do my flooring and painting. They are so busy too.

Now I'm wondering if this entire tax rebate thing is such a good idea. Yeah OK, it's supposed to be good for the economy. However when I read about local governments not being able to met their budgets and cut backs( you just wait and see they haven't even begun) maybe our tax dollars shouldn't go to prop up business.

Build lousy cars that nobody wants? Hey don't worry the government will bail you out. Run a dodgy bank? No problem, there's lots of tax money for you. Home sales are down and business is bad? Well here's this nifty tax rebate that will encourage people to get their old house fixed. And don't worry, because even if there's no money they will just make more of it and sink us all into debt.

End result? Nobody has to try, nobody has to compete, nobody has to give customer service or even provide a simple courtesy like a phone call. Big Brother is out their and no matter how much you screw up he will help you. And the suckers?, well they just have to keep paying. What a sweet deal. Just wait till the real bill comes due and their aren't enough people to pay it.

I read an article in The Independent, that California may become the first of many failed states. California! The richest state in the richest country in the world.
As I write this, on the radio news, the buzz is that Australia is raising interests rates and the stock markets love it. Whoopee ! The recovery is here !!

Yeah but for who ?

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Sun Worshipping Long Past

Here I am on the beach in Toronto. It was sometime during the 1970's, not sure of the actual date. That was back when I was a sun worshiper. I spent as much time as I could at the pool or on the beach tanning.

How different things are now, that I can barely stand being in the sun.

After the cancer scares about too much sun, I started weaning myself off long tanning sessions. I tried those fake tan creams. Gave them up because I can't stand how they smell and they clogged my pores. Now because of MS, I avoid the sun and use leg makeup and bronzer's.
The current trend is back to sunbathing . All that natural vitamin D that's also free of charge. Yeah vitamin D has replaced C and E, as the new miracle nutrient. I wonder how long it will take for it to be replaced by another wonder supplement ?
Think I'll stick to the tablets and sitting in the shade.

So what do think? Is the sun friend or foe ? Do you sunbathe ?


Thursday, October 1, 2009

Furnace Day

October 1st and I celebrated by turning on the heat!It was only a couple of weeks ago I had the air conditioning going full blast. Crazy weather.

Finally the letter I have been waiting for arrived. A strange thing happened with the original one. A lady showed up at my house today and handed me an opened envelope. She was very apologetic saying she opened it by mistake. This lady lives two streets away from me, so how the heck did my letter get mailed to her place ? I took her word for it but it does bug me that she opened the envelope.

I'm feeling much better, though still very weak. Had to take things slow today.
The news is that a second wave of swine flu has hit our area. I'm pretty certain I don't have it, not that it would be such a bad thing. It would be worth having swine flu to be over and done with it and not need to get a shot. Everyday there's a news story about swine flu and I'm really getting fed up. I might go over to the clinic tomorrow and get myself checked, just out of curiosity.

Hope I can go to the art gallery tomorrow too because it's free night and they have some new exhibits.
That's it for me. I'm too tired to type anymore

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Where Oh Where Has My Litttle Letter Gone!

Day three of "The Cold", the most boring story ever told. That won't stop me telling it.(**whining alert**)
Got up early to call my boss for another sick day, used the bathroom, and then went back to bed. Slept till 11:00. That extra sleep really helped, as I was feeling so weak. At least today the sensation of having a watermelon stuffed up my nose is gone.

Well wishers call and ask if they can help with offers of food and rides. Do I need to go to the doctor? No thanks. that's the last place I need to go. Besides, when you cough or sneeze these days people automatically assume you have swine flu and want to seal you in a plastic bag and ship you to the emergency. Food ? No, I have lots and there is always delivery. I would add that I'm a better cook than all of them but that would be really rude. Please go away and leave me to rot in peace.

I can be such a misanthrope when ill.

That's not such a good thing. Being independent can be a blessing, it's gotten me through many bad times, but it can also be a curse. I'm not very good at asking for help, yet I know the day will come when I will have to. Just hope I recognize that day and don't wait too long.

What is really frustrating, is how the everyday annoyances of life become magnified when I'm sick.

I've been waiting for an important letter(local mail) for two weeks now. The first attempt at sending it failed and now the second attempt, this time by registered mail, seems to be headed the same way. I can get parcels from all over the world in less than a week, but for some reason a letter from a few hundred kilometers away never gets here. I have a tracking number that I can look up on the Canada Post website, only I'm not in the mood for that B.S.

So I will fritter away the day watching movies, write a few postcards, and catch up on email.

Oh grammar police !! Please if you don't like the way I write my blog go elsewhere.
I like my blog to read the way I speak. Yeah lots of contractions, excessive use of the words : "but" "so" "just" "because" and lousy punctuation.

One day if you're nice, I'll let you read my short stories.
For a fee !!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

So Pretty So Deadly

Yuck ! Ack !Bleck ! That is how I feel. Have a look at these pretty crystal sculptures of various germs, viruses, and bacteria.

Who would think they could cause so much misery .

Monday, September 28, 2009

Chicken Soup

Nothing much happening It's cold and raining outside and I'm inside with a cold. Yeah a plain old ordinary boring cold. Haven't had one in years. I'd forgotten how miserable it is to have one. Not sick enough to stop any activities, but sick enough to feel lousy while doing them. Serves me right for not wearing a jacket and forgetting my umbrella, resulting in me being cold and wet on Saturday. Yeah I know germs cause colds however, when your body temperature is lower and you're tired, it's a gateway for all sorts of nasty things to take hold.

Had another meeting last Friday were we once again reinvented the wheel. Good thing I'm a strong person. A weaker soul would have packed it in ages ago. Reading between the lines of their "we are here to help you but........." "MS is blah blah blah". Were the idea came from that my tele work was temporary to get me through the summer, I have no clue. At least the medical officer has released my file to my own doctor. Can't wait to see what's in there( or can I ?).

Well that's it for me. Time to blow my nose and have some soup. I made nice chicken vegetable from scratch. Yes I did too! Perhaps a premonition on Saturday that I would need it ?

Friday, September 25, 2009

Baby Shaped Pears

Not much happening around here. I did speak to the Green Party candidate yesterday. The federal election may happen in October now and they really need volunteers. Looks like I'm a recruit. It will be a good opportunity for me to get back into volunteering and maybe do some good at the same time. You should avoid my blog if you don't want to read me nattering on about it over the next few weeks.

I have to prepare for my meeting today which has me a little nervous. An awful feeling to totally lose trust in others, but that's the way I feel. I know that if they thought they could get away with it, they would love to chuck me out the door. Well sorry, I'm not ready to leave yet.

Just when you think the news can't get any more bizarre Robert Mugabe makes a speech at the U.N. talking about democracy !!?? Why do they even allow this man a voice ?

Here's a news story about a farmer in China who grows pears that look like babies. To me they look like baby Buddhas. I'm not providing the video link because I'm fed up with this latest way to shove advertising in my face. Regardless, I think this guy is clever and good for him figuring out a way to make more money from pears.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

More News To Cause Flu Worries

The morning news had this story about flu shots.
No very encouraging, especially with flu season just around the corner. These scientists do nothing with all their studies except cause worry. There is so much confusion out there. Is a flu shot good or no? I don't think anybody knows for certain, just like they don't know if MS drugs work.

I have something weird happening with my eye,s so I can't type very much
Hope it's only temporary because it really is a pain in the ass.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Another Meeting



A friend sent me this cartoon. Normally I avoid Dilbert . It's way too much like the office where I work. I thought since I have yet another meeting to review my tele work on Friday, that this cartoon was appropriate. You would be amazed at how many people who claim they love being in the office, hate that anyone is permitted to work at home.
Can people ever mind their own business? What I mean is they don't want to get involved when it's time to be outspoken for a good purpose, but they sure love to gossip and complain about things that in no way affect their own life. Why do they so enjoy screwing up something for another person? It doesn't improve their lot.

I tried a cooling tip today. I placed a frozen bottle of water in front of my fan at work. It gives an extra cooling boost, lasts for hours, and can be refrozen. I really appreciated it too, after walking to work with this the muggy weather.

Major melt down.

Want to give a plug to a volunteer group Katimavik. If you know a young Canadian who is under the age of 21 and is looking for an adventure and doing some good at the same time, tell them to check it out.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Oh Yeah Now It's Hot and Humid !!




The sun is in Libra, my sign, which means it's Fall. So why did the weather have to turn so hot and humid?

Yesterday I had to go to court as an observer. I decided to do a few errands first, the bank, dollar store, etc. Big mistake!! I was overheated, bathed in sweat,dizzy, disoriented. Had to sit down in the mall and pull myself together. Thank God for air conditioning !! After a few sips of water and a pat down with some tissues, I continued on to the court house.
It was raining out, a light drizzle that turned the atmosphere into a steam bath. I was stressed out because they had made a big deal about us arriving on time for the afternoon session and I hadn't planned on my mall rest stop. By the time I got to the court I looked like I had been caught in the rain, I was so drenched in sweat. At least I and had a few minutes to spare. Went in the bathroom to pull myself together. I hate public bathrooms. They're always a mess and there's never any place to put your stuff without it getting wet or yuck!!, having to put it on the floor.
Turns out it wasn't such a big deal about arriving on time. Half the people showed up late. Not that I minded, since I hate being late for things.

Sat in the court feeling sick. I wanted to take my clothes off, lie down, have a cool drink . Couldn't do any of those things . That's when the MS thing really sucks because I can't just grin and bear it. I knew I would pay the price later and I did.

Walking home afterwards, I was so tired, dizzy, and in pain. Fed up. Had some dinner. Once again thank God, that there was food ready that just had to be heated up. After, I crashed out on the sofa, like a total dead weight. My head spinning and doing that weird thing were it feels like there are mini explosions or I'm passing out briefly. So tired and I was already exhausted from that wedding shower on Sunday.

It's not at all fun when I think that my options are to stay home and never do anything. Yeah I would feel less tired, but then my life would suck even more.

Looking at the weather report I see that I have an entire week of this to look forward to. Goody !!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Money Butteflies and Fail Cake



What do you think of my money butterflies ?

I had to go to a wedding shower and it was one were you give money instead of a gift. I found that kind of boring, so I made money butterflies. I stuck them in a flower arrangement, with plants from my garden (jungle !!). Not my idea. When I went to the Peach Festival, a woman was selling flower bouquets of money roses and butterflies. I went home, practiced a little, and decided to stick with butterflies as they are pretty easy to make. The bodies are made from cheapie paper butterflies I bought at the dollar store. I tore the wings off and replaced them with money ones. I fastened them to wooden barbecue skewers with craft wire. I already had the container and the only additional cost was for some floral foam because I wanted to use live plants. Not counting the money, it cost me about $5.00 to make instead of the $30-$50 retail.
Oh yeah, that's not my kitchen in the picture.

Just to show you I'm not a Martha Stewart. Here is my Fail cake. I dropped it on the floor. Fortunately it was in a box when I did that, so it was still edible.


Friday, September 18, 2009

End MS Anniversary

OK I'm a couple of days late, but it's still worth reading about the one year anniversary of End MS.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Vitamin D

Have you had a vitamin D test ? Do you tale a supplement?
When you choose healthy food do you use that to justify eating a less healthy choice ?

I haven't had a test for vitamin D About a year ago I decided on my own to take a supplement of 1,00 units each day. I have now added a multivitamin to that.
Do I feel better? I can't answer that question because my healthy is constantly shifting .
As for food choices Yeah I have to admit that I do justify eating a rich dessert because I had a healthy low fat meal.

Monday, September 14, 2009

MS and Smoking

Browsing through a community newspaper I picked up at the art crawl last Friday
"The Voice in Diaspora" I came across an article on MS and smoking. The article cites a study published in Neurology that shows a link between cigarette smoking and MS. Briefly, that smoking increases the severity of MS symptoms and smokers are more likely to develop primary progressive MS. The good news is those who quit smoking can siginificantly reduce their symptoms.

This is something I was not aware of, although no good has ever come from smoking so
I'm not surprised. At least I can say I have never smoked tobacco, not even a puff of a cigarette. Yes,I do use weed, but I don't smoke it. I only breathe in the vapour which has no smoke. The plant matter is intact when I'm done.

What a crazy hypocritical world. Tobacco is legal even though it's implicated as the culprit in so many illnesses and marijuana is illegal(Yes it still is in Canada) and been shown time and time again to have benefits for those who are ill. You can walk into a convenience store and buy a pack of smokes that can kill you but if you want dope it's a big "medical marijuana" production.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Vacation End




Here's a photo of my favourite Fish n Chip place, Hutch's. It's on the way home from my harbour walk, so at least I can justify eating that fat ladened food .
This swan agrees !


Amazing that it took a whole week for me to relax. Tomorrow it's back to work.
At least I can stay home and don't have to face the snake pit till Wednesday. Have a new boss too. Yup! Let's see now that's, 4 team leaders, 4 managers, in one year, and I'm in the same spot. Well OK I did change desks a couple of times.

Had a good swim this afternoon My evaluation is over and I have decided to use the YMCA. It has all the amenities I'm looking for and a nicer, bigger pool than the YWCA. I found out I don't need to get a membership either. I can get what they call a 'clip card" 12 swims for $30.00. That suits my purpose as I know I will never use any of the other facilities. Aerobics just ain't my thing, nor is anything else that gets me all hot and bothered.

Speaking of hot. Now I have this weird thing happening were I'm hot and cold at the same time. My head is boiling like it's going to explode and my arms and legs are cold. It only happens once in awhile, but when it does it's very strange.

This weekend I joined the Green Party!! I'm also going to volunteer if the rumoured federal election happens this fall. Depends on whether the opposition decides on a no confidence vote this Friday. It seemed like a sure thing ,then today on the radio I heard the NDP leader Jack Layton, say he would be willing to work with the Conservatives to avoid an election. Sheesh ! I wish these guys would make up their minds!

I'm supporting the Greens more as a protest vote than anything. The mainstream parties have nothing to offer me. Also, when people talk about change they don't really mean it. What they mean is they want change as long as it doesn't inconvenience them too much. They want to save the planet, but they still want to drive a car and buy crap at Wal Mart. Meanwhile the Russians, are launching commercial shipping in the Arctic, as it will be ice free most of the year now thanks to climate change.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Truth About Death Panels

Here's an interesting article that debunks death panels It includes information about assisted suicide and the real death panels: capital punishment around the world.

An informed opinion is best. Don't you think ?

Friday, September 11, 2009

September Art Crawl

Not much new to report from the Art Crawl tonight. except that James Street is becoming more gentrified. Can't make up my mind if that is a good thing or not. It really would be good for the downtown core to be spruced up. Far too many derelict and abandoned buildings.

I commissioned some art work !! Scott Webster, the artist I mentioned in my July Art Crawl post, is doing two black and white paintings for me. He likes to draw from photos and especially likes movie stills. I picked two scenes from La Dolce Vita . I'll post them here as soon as I get them.

After, we had really good Mexican food at Mex I Can. I tried vegetarian Tostadas for a change. Yummy sauted Cactus filling.

I had a couple of "spells" tonight, but nothing too serious. Dizzy and melting at the same time. Not at all fun.

These ladies were having a good time Salsa dancing.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

YM or YW ?

Had a good swim today at the YWCA. The only problem was I found the water too warm and I got overheated. Had to quit after only 30 minutes. I love swimming in cold water. I guess growing up swimming in Lake Ontario got me use to it. That water was never warm.

Tomorrow I'm going to the YMCA to try their pool. I'm doing this to decide which one I will get a membership at. I went to the YM a couple of years ago as a guest on my son's pass. He went their for weight training and I would go swimming. I stopped going when I was having all those hassles at work and was too exhausted to do anything in the evenings.

I just want to refresh my memory of the YM because I seem to recall that the water was cold in the pool. They also had a nice shower and change room. I was really disappointed with the one at the YW. It's kind of grubby. One strange thing is the toilets are right in the shower area !! Not in a separate room . They also only have one shower with hot water!

I would prefer to go to the YW as it is a little closer to home and has fewer "weirdos". The men's residence at the YM has quit a collection of them. At the same time I'm such a fuss pot about hygiene. The YW change rooms and shower area just didn't look that clean. And there is that warm pool water to consider.

One thing is certain. I miss swimming on a regular basis so I will have to make up my mind soon. It will be good for me to get that exercise again .

I'm still a sweaty mess. Had the air conditioning cranked up high today and all the ceiling fans going.
Even with all that, I was melting.

Monday, September 7, 2009

While I Sweat

Or should I be more lady like and say perspire? Nah, it really feels like sweat and there's nothing lady like about it. I have been this way all my life. My mother said I was the sweatiest kid ever. Now it is excessive, non stop. No wonder I feel so weak.

Here are some amazing nature photos Except for the last one, which shows how disgusting we humans are.

Wish I had the patience to do work like this. Patience is in short supply these days.

I decided to remove Ad sense from my blog, as it is stupid and pointless.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Sooooo Tired

This has been fatigue week. I feel like a pile of bones with no shape. A result I think of the rise in temperature outside and work stress.

Gossip is an evil cancer that infects even the nicest people. Amazing too how gossip, rumour, can be twisted to become fact. I put up a poster at my desk. It's an ad for a volunteer group with the words "Get A Life!" emblazoned on it in bright orange.
Do you think they will get the message? These losers, who have nothing better to do than make others miserable with their poison. I try not to let it get to me but they know how to blind side you with the most awful comments, in that wicked passive/ aggressive way.

That's partly why I'm taking a week off. I need some rest. I need to be away from a toxic environment.

At least I have hot water.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Hot Water

At this very moment a new hot water tank is being installed in my basement. I'm writing this because I am so stressed out from this guy and the entire process.
I have been stuck in the house for two days waiting for a service call.

The tank conked out on Sunday morning. Sunday afternoon I called and booked an appointment to get it fixed. I managed to get a call booked for Monday morning, only after being threatened that if the damage was my fault or had nothing to do with the actual tank, I would have to pay. I was also asked by the customer excuses rep.
(a.k.a customer service rep.) if I would be willing to take part in a survey. I said sure no problem.

Monday morning a guy shows up, says I need a new tank, says he will call the request in, and I should have a new tank the same day. He warns me it might not be till late that evening as Mondays are always "hairy". Monday comes and goes and no tank or call. Oh no wait. I did get that survey call, were the woman tried to sell me a bunch of stuff. I politely told her that unless the purchase came with a hot water tank to be installed immediately, I wasn't interested. She didn't like that response.

Today I call customer excuses again and find out that they have no record of any request for a new tank. They book another appointment and tell me the guy would be there between 12-4.The day goes by, still no tank.

The thought of another sponge bath tonight had me back on the phone. Customer excuse rep. tells me the guy is on his way. That was at 6:00 and it is now 7:30. Guy walks in and immediately starts whining. My stairs are too narrow (how did they get the old tank in I wonder)I don't have enough light in the basement.The stairs are too rickety (well maybe if you lost 200 lbs. they wouldn't be). The doorway is too narrow (see above). Why doesn't the hot water tap work in the basement? (he's got me there since I never use it). I suggest he do like the washing machine guys and take the side door off for easier access to the basement. He tells me that he isn't allowed to do that. He stumbles around in the basement making all sorts of racket, talking to himself. Yells at me to turn on the hot water upstairs.I do so and am told by him not to touch the tap till he says .

He comes back upstairs and decides to use the side door after all. He then goes out and disappears. Comes back ten minutes later with another guy. They sure are making a whole lot of racket down there. And why do they need to keep moving their truck ?
I don't want to know.

Stayed tuned for the next installment.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Peaches

Is it really the end of August? The summer sure is going fast and the days are already getting noticeably shorter. An article on the Weather Network site says we only had 3 days this summer that went over 30C, 70 hours less sun, and more rain to date than all of last summer. I'm not complaining. Cooler temperatures and less sun allowed me to enjoy the outdoors without the "strangeness", meaning far less MS symptoms. For example, yesterday I went to the Winona Peach Festival. It was overcast and threaten rain all day, yet I didn't mind. I had a good time even with killer hot flashes If it had been hot and sunny, no way would I have been able to even think of going.

Forgot to bring my camera, but you can check it out here

One thing I really liked was the food. Not that it was a big deal or anything Typical fare : hotdogs, corn on the cob, chunky fries, peach sundaes (yummy!), cotton candy, popcorn, etc. What made it good was the fact that there was no corporate food . All the booths were run by local community groups for fund raising, so it was kind of nice to know that I was supporting the Salt Fleet Boy's Hockey Club, and not Mc You Know Who.

And Oh the peaches ! The most beautiful looking, big juicy peaches. I bought a basket to take home, even though I had just bought some at the Farmer's Market.
It's going to be a peachy week. Maybe I won't even notice that September has arrived

Tomorrow,I have a guy coming to look at my hot water tank. No hot water all day today.

I also have another guy coming to give me an estimate on new windows. That should be interesting (read expensive) OK maybe they will be Gals, not that it will make it any cheaper.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Tired?

I'm still in meltdown mode. Luckily a nice lady at work let me borrow her fan yesterday, otherwise I'm sure I would have passed out. Everybody had sweaters on complaining the air conditioning was too high. I was suffocating. When I got home I had to drink about 5 glasses of water and have a cool shower. Later I went out for dinner with a friend. Everybody was wearing pants and long sleeve tops. I was in shorts and t shirt, enjoying a cool breeze on a tree filled patio.

Here's a few songs to celebrate tiredness. Not that I feel like celebrating anything right now. Yay! to air conditioning and ceiling fans.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Heat Wave

We're having a heat wave and I'm having an internal heat wave. Could it be menopause ?
So far it's not fun. Time for some THC to help me sleep Ahhhhh!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Life Is A Beach

8:30 p.m Toronto, Lake Ontario. Strolling on the boardwalk in "The Beaches" area of the city. Seems like rock sculptures have replaced sand castles.








Saturday, August 15, 2009

Britain Stirkes Back : Round Two

As the health care debate in the U.S. rages on, Britain continues to speak out against the myths of social medicine. Here is an article in today's Independent about "welfare health care" in the U.S. Yes, in the richest state, in the richest country in the world, people line up like beggars to get the health care they need. Read the stats on how much Americans pay for health care and how phony the debate is about "government control of health care"

You might be asking yourself "Why is Taxingwoman sticking her nose into an issue that has nothing to do with her? She has universal health care, so why doesn't she mind her own business? "
In answer to that. I love having America as a neighbour and yet it is like living in a cage with an 800 pound gorilla(I borrowed that from somebody but can't remember who) What happens there often spills over into my country. We have soldiers dying in Afghanistan because our Conservative government wanted to make up with George Bush,for not sending troops to Iraq. End result is we are now stuck in a pointless mess of wasted lives and wasted money.

I am concerned because today I heard several ads on the radio for "fast health care in the U.S." An insurance company will fix it so you can go to the U.S. for speedy health care. I worry that this is another attempt to erode our universal health care system. People here don't seem to get it that millions of Americans, wait and wait for the treatment they need because they can't afford it. Insurance companies in typical fashion, mess people about, denying claims or coverage. How many horror stories I have been told, news reports I have watched, regarding the U.S. system and I don't want it here.

America I don't understand ? You don't trust your government to regulate your health care system, but you trust private corporations ?

Look at the banks,insurance companies, and the auto industry. They came running pretty quick to the government for help when their greed sank them.