Friday, January 29, 2016

This Week in My Life: Week 4 of 2016

The view from here:

fruit in a pretty antique bowl
a pretty sunset out my front window
this time of year in the tundra, the sky is a bleak white-ish grey pretty much ALL OF THE TIME
so any amount of blue always makes me happy, even though it never lasts.
this is the normal color of the sky. it's depressing.
icicles can be pretty

What I read this week:

I finished Think Like a Freak. I certainly enjoyed it, but it's not as good as the others in the Freakanomics trilogy.

Started A Fireproof Home for the Bride, a work of historical fiction that takes place in a town I lived in for several years and in the overall region I still live in. Though set in the 50s, there are lots of landmarks and things I recognize and know well, which is kind of fun.

the perfect complement to a good book is a cup of Twinings Lemon Ginger tea
in my very favorite tea mug (a gift from a former student)

An update on the evil insurance company situation:

The PA still hasn't been approved. I spent my last 115 bucks (until I'm paid in a few days) to buy 4 days worth of the med. Four days worth! Ridiculous. That $115 will not be reimbursed even when the PA is ultimately approved. (I've decided to say when and not if, since that latter is unthinkable.) If it's not approved when I run out, I'll have to buy more which will likely mean having to decide which bills to not pay this month! I'm also going to try to live on 2 pills a day instead of 3 for a bit, to help me stretch things out. That should be enough to keep me from going into hardcore withdrawal, but will also mean my pain will skyrocket. Fun times. But at least I know that my insurance company "knows my medicine is important to me." End rant, for now.


Winter Storm Jonas got me thinking about the time I got stranded in NYC with my college orchestra after our performance at Avery Fisher Hall - Lincoln Center. Jonas takes 2nd place on the all time list of top 10 biggest blizzards in NYC, while my 2003 blizzard makes the list in 8th place with 19.8 inches. We were a bunch of kids from the MN/ND tundra for whom a little snow and wind and cold was not a big deal (we sometimes have several blizzards a month), so we had a blast being "stuck" in the city for a few extra days. We got super cheap tickets to some Broadway shows, and just generally had a good time exploring the far-less-crowded-than-usual city. Times Square with no traffic was pretty sweet. I just dug out some pictures to scan from this snowy good time, since this was before the digital camera entered my life.

this is near Lincoln Center, a bad picture of someone cross-country skiing right down the middle of the road

I LOVE this picture

right in the heart of Times Square, with a snowplow the only vehicle in sight
and far fewer pedestrians than usual. it was awesome.

Friday, January 22, 2016

This Week in My Life: Week 3 of 2016

The view from here:

reading in front of the (electric) fireplace

my horn corner
awesome horn art by my sistar
and a closeup of my music shelf along with my literature/poetry/etc. shelf

there is a long window seat and large window in between these two

built-in bookshelves and a window seat are pretty much the best things ever in my opinion,
as my Dream Home Pinterest board clearly shows

Things I made this week:

a whole lot of origami
400+ small elephants & tiny elephants & sloths & modular origami & other things

What I read this week:

I finished The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat, a good book by one of my favorite authors, though I feel like his later books are quite a bit better.

I started the third in the Freakanomics trilogy, Think Like a Freak. So far not as good as the other two - it's less focused on the fascinating stories - but rather is a kind of instructional manual for how to retrain your brain to think like they do with little stories peppered throughout.

How I've been feeling this week:

Still tingly. Super annoyed and frustrated. Forced to change insurance plans as of Jan 1st and now dealing with endless crap. Meds I've been on for 7+ years and meds I've only been on for months all have to go through the prior authorization process and/or are flat out not covered.  It's very much stressing me out, as the meds I cannot go even a day without are crazy expensive and the prior auth process often takes toooo long, based on past experience with other equally evil insurance companies.

And the letters they send about how they aren't going to cover things (at least not without a major fight), ends with "We know your medicine is important to you." Yes, clearly! Bite me.


major sundog (meaning it was brrrrrr) 2 years ago today

awesome sunset 1 year ago

So far no cool outside pics today to continue the trend of cool January 22nd photos. We've got several hours left in the day, though, so it could happen.

Friday, January 15, 2016

This Week in My Life: Week 2 of 2016

The view from here:

evidence of frigidly cold temps, trying to appreciate the beauty anyway

shoveling at 5 degrees (feels like -13 degrees)
getting it done before the weekend's -10 to -25 forecast!

Out and about this week:

I had two leave-the-house social encounters in one week, almost a record for me!

played horn duets with a friend

Things I made this week:

a bad picture of homemade veggie pizza 
spinach artichoke frittata!
colored this card (a gift from my friend Gwen) and got it ready to send to my niece
What I read this week:

Finished Sweetwater Silver. I had a few issues with the writing, but overall I enjoyed this. A bit of a tearjerker, which I like. I could very much see this as a movie. Or even better, I would love to see a period piece PBS/BBC type dramatic series covering the whole WASP thing.

Started one of the only books by Oliver Sacks I haven't read, one of his first books, The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat.

How I've been feeling this week:

Super, super tingly. Pins and needles, burning, somewhat numb. Both legs pretty much all the time but really bad at night, right hand and arm often enough, and occasionally my face. Sad emoji.


a walk with my niece in 2007

with my sistar, on our way to my favorite place in the world, Garden of the Gods in 2010

Thanks for stopping by! See you next week, if not before.

Friday, January 8, 2016

This Week in My Life: Week 1 of 2016

To help push me to keep my kind-of-a-resolution to post here more often, I'm going to be bold and make a commitment to post at least once a week this year. The way I'm going to do it is by showing up weekly for a glimpse-into-my-life kind of post. This will also hopefully help me with another kind-of-a-resolution-though-I-haven't-verbalized-it-before-now to take more pictures. Certain members of my family will scoff when reading this, because some of them think I take WAY too many pictures! Yes, when I'm around people like my niece, I do go crazy with the camera, but in my day to day life I go in stretches of taking a ton of pictures, but also long stretches of taking hardly any pictures at all. Knowing I have a post "due" every week where I want to include at least a few pictures will hopefully help me make grabbing the camera more consistent. These posts won't be MS-related, necessarily, though since MS is a part of my life, I'm sure it will make some appearances.

The dismal, gloomy, how-many-more-months-of-gray-and-blah-can-I-take view this week:

out my front window

out my back window

Out and about this week:

Leaving the house is a somewhat rare occurrence for me. This week, I headed out just once, for a trip to the post office and grocery store. The horrible experience was made a little better by this spotting of one of my favorite things to see, a dog in the driver's seat:

makes me miss Nala the Yellow Lab (my sister's new pup)

Things I made this week:
Candy Wrapper Origami Dresses

caramelized mangoes over vanilla ice cream, topped with toasted coconut & cashews, and whipped topping
(an imaginary tropical respite from the dreary, cold, snow-filled life in the tundra)

What I read this week:

Catching up on some favorite MS blogs - Wheelchair Kamikaze, Multiple Sclerosis & Faith, Journey Man, and more.

Started a book I came to in an unusual way. I read this Huffington Post article about WASPs not being allowed burial at Arlington National Cemetery and was rather upset by it, and interested because I didn't really know much of anything about WASPs and their role in WW2. I scanned through the comments (something I rarely do) and some guy posted about how he had done a lot of research on this topic to write a novel. So I clicked through, saw I could read it free via Kindle Unlimited. I have read a few books via the Kindle app on my phone and on my Nook (though I MUCH prefer a real book) and decided to try this one. So I got a free month of Kindle Unlimited, and downloaded the book. Just started it, so no real opinion yet.

Started this book of short daily meditations about life with chronic pain, a Christmas gift from my sistar.

And now some TBT or technically FBF photo fun:

that time my niece and i had a blast "racing" at the airport
my 7th grade basketball "glory days" haha
also, that wasn't my best haircut, although I have kind of been thinking of trying bangs again...

See you next week!