Palm Trees AZ Arizona palm trees are tough Fri, 28 Feb 2020 21:32:38 +0000 en-US hourly 1 On the other side Fri, 28 Feb 2020 21:32:38 +0000

Well, it’s done. Done and done. As I sit here, I’ve been home just shy of 24 hours now. Starting to feel a little bit like normal. Most of the gas seems to have subsided, which was the main discomfort.

I’m home with a fair number of prescriptions. I have these needles that inject blood-thinner, but they’re really fine and you inject your lower belly so you don’t really feel it. Done it twice now; have seven more to go. I have these capsules I have to break open and spread on yogurt or apple sauce each morning for 6 months as a preventative to ulcers. After that, it’s pretty much just vitamins. A daily multivitamin I’ve been taking anyway, a B12 every two days, and calcium citrate and D3 three times a day. Ehn, okay. So I’m a pill guy now. At least none it’s prescriptions after 6 months. Oh, and children’s Tylenol syrup for the next two weeks, as needed. For the moment, I’m taking it every 8 hours needed or not, just to be on the safe side.

It’s kind of astonishing how quickly all this went, now that I think about it. 48 hours ago right now, I’d already been out of surgery for nearly a six hours, and in my own room for about 3. I went in at pretty much exactly 8. My folks and P-Doug were there and P-Doug was getting updates on his phone, so I know that surgery started at 8:13, and I was sewn up at 9:35, I think. That’s amazingly quick. I remember the anesthesiologist saying “you’re going to start feeling a little drowsy”, and looking around, thinking about stuff. I never felt drowsy. It was like a light switch. About 11:15 I woke up. Saw my mom about 11:45. Got moved to my room just after noon, when my folks both came in to see me before heading home to Hamilton.

That room was pretty great. It was just for one person. I thought you had to pay extra for that kind of thing. Had its own bathroom/shower. I watched CP24 for a little over a day so I was all up on the local news. The cat up the phone pole who had to be rescued in Etobicoke. The shitty weather. The folks running to head the federal Conservative Party and the Ontario Liberal Party. The guy who went postal at the brewery in Milwaukee. And umpteen commercials for guys who want your gold, chase ambulances, or counsel your debt.

My heartbeat was fairly elevated in the evening, between 90 and 115, and they were concerned, but I was like, “My heart always races when I have gas pains; it make me anxious.” The fact that the machine was going off every time it got above 90 only made the anxiety worse; it was a vicious circle. When they came in every hour hours to check me at night, yeah, it was between 66 and 72. Of course. I wasn’t worked up. I was asleep. I couldn’t believe this was something unusual to them. The blood pressure was good; in the 110s to 120 over 70s. Even I’m surprised I’ve managed to hold onto that, and I’m hoping having done this lets me keep it. I think I mentioned I found out recently that Larry had something like 225 over something, which is astonishing. He’s managed to get his weight back down under 200.

My first meal? Cream of Wheat and some berry Greek yogurt. Managed to eat about a third of it with no problems. Lunch was cream of tomato soup and chocolate pudding. I got through most of the soup, and nibbled at the pudding. I didn’t want to go crazy, but I had to have me some of that pudding. 🙂 Around 1:30 they officially released me, so I called P-Doug and he arrive a bit before 3. Got in my civvies and checked out, then got my prescriptions. Then came home. P-Doug and I shot the breeze till 7 or so, tried some of the pho broth I bought, and then I hit the hay about 8. Woke up a few times, sipped water, got up for good a little after 6. I’m feeling sort of back to normal at the moment.

Anyway, in the meantime, I lost 20 lbs, most of it during the Optifast regimen. So there’s that, anyway. I have to say, I enjoyed the Optifast. It was like drinking thin cake mix. 🙂 I only departed from it a few times. I had two cups of the chili I made… I just had to chew something… had a 750 ml tub of no fat no sugar Greek yogurt I experimented with with my syrups and stuff; and last weekend when I was out with P-Doug and Larry I had a Greek salad with some slicked chicken on it. A farewell to solid food for a while, but not some guilt-ridden blow-out like a couple Apache burgers or something. 🙂 I felt fine about it. It helped ‘move things along’, too, if you know what I mean. Otherwise, I was pretty much true to the Optifast.

Anyway, blah blah blah. So, that’s that. It’s actually done. Not just speculation, not just something a few months down the road… it’s an irrevocable part of life moving forward. Time to make the best of it.

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On the verge of bariatric surgery Tue, 25 Feb 2020 02:40:34 +0000

Well, here we are.

I meant, as always over the past six or seven years, to be a more frequent flier on this blog. But, hey, I’m back.

I think the last thing I had to say here was that I was getting my ducks in a row for bariatric surgery. Those ducks hatch on Wednesday, a little less than 48 hours from now. I’m a little nervous, of course. By tomorrow night I’ll be a wreck. But by Thursday afternoon, if all goes well, it’ll be a matter of healing and adapting to the new normal. And concentrating on using that advantage to lose the weight.

I look back at this blog 15 years to when I was telling myself to get serious about swatting the weight away back when I was 215 lbs. Part of me is angry at myself for not doing that. But I’ve grown older and more realistic and I’ve come to realize that yes, part of my problem is the way my body works. During those years, even when I was careful, my weight typically went up about 5-10 lbs a year. Waist size went up every couple of years. Every time I went on a diet and hit a plateau, it simply seemed to exacerbate the problem and the propensity to regain the weight.

As recently as 2016, I had my weight back down to the 250s. But I plateaued, as always, couldn’t face the scale, and went back to eating “normally�. Now I want to be clear here. I eat the same sized portions as everyone else. I don’t keep snacks and desserts around my place because I know better. I almost never order dessert when I’m out, either. But I drink beer with the guys on the weekends. I eat fries on the weekends. There were places where, yeah, I’m responsible for being overweight. But not this overweight. I learned recently that when I first started this process, I was weighing in at 330 lbs. It was mortifying to find that out and I’m reluctant to even admit it. That’s the fattest I’ve ever been, to my knowledge.

And it doesn’t seem fair to me, and it doesn’t seem right. I don’t eat a lot of rich food. I don’t take sugar in anything… pop, coffee, tea; nothing. I typically have one sandwich (and I mean cold cuts between two slices of bread, not something huge) for lunch. I look at the things other people eat and I wonder why, how, they can do that and not look like me. But this is my cross to bear.

So, surgery on Wednesday. And keeping an eye on everything from then on, partly enforced by the twin cops of a smaller stomach and the threat of dumping syndrome, which I’m led to understand is highly unpleasant.

So what was the course to getting here? I guess things got rolling for real around August or September, when I started going to Humber River Hospital for various appointments. One was with a cardiologist, who set me up with a sleep study, which led to my being told I have very severe sleep apnea. Not really a surprise. To be honest, I should have done something about that on my own years ago. Anyway, that was addressed, and I wound up with CPAP machine that I’ve been using ever since November (actually, initially, it was a spare in Ohio a friend brought me on a visit). I’ve been sleeping better, not dozing off during the day, and even things like my psoriasis largely clearing up have been benefits. It was getting bad, though. I was dozing off during lulls in conversations. People were noticing. They were concerned. So was I, to tell the truth.

Related to that, one morning I woke up with the left side of my jaw so sore I could barely chew for three or four days. I remembered a dentist telling me in my 20s I needed to get my teeth straightened, or I risked getting hairline fractures in my jaw in my 60s. That kind of scared me, so despite being unemployed at the time (a story for a different time), I looked into Invisalign. As it turned out, a US-based company that did it for a lot less had recently come to Canada. Their model is to 3d-model your teeth, design the aligners you’ll need for 4-10 months, and send them to you all at once. The savings is that you’re not constantly going in for expensive consultations. So, I signed up, and I’m 5 weeks in. My program lasts 6 months, till the end of August. After that, I’ll wear a retainer at night.

Okay, so. All the other things I needed to do were out of the way, so the cardiologist signed off early in December, and later that week I was given my surgery date: February 26th. Which is Wednesday, now. For the past three weeks, I’ve been living largely off Optifast (aside from two cups of chili, 750 ml of Greek yogurt, and a Greek salad with a couple ounces of chicken breast). The idea here is to de-fat my liver so that they can get under it more easily. Hopefully that’s been accomplished. I have to say, though, I think I’m going to miss Optifast. It’s not bad. It’s like drinking thin cake mix. I’ve certainly had worse.

The surgery I’m getting is roux-en-y (often abbreviated to “RNY�). This is the one where most of the stomach is sectioned off, leaving a much smaller one (initially about the size of an egg, though eventually it expands to hold about 2 cups, I’m told) that connects directly to the small intestine. The rest of the stomach is connected to the small intestine further down. This is the surgery that’s supposed to give the best results and can help you lose 70% of the weight you have and helps you to keep it off by limiting the amount of food you can eat, and how fast you can stuff it down. The process of the surgery itself is larposcopic. This means rather than cutting you wide open, a series of small incisions is made, and the surgery is done using small tools and cameras, promoting faster healing and a lot less scarring.

I’m going to be about a month getting back to eating “real� solid food again. Then the process of figuring out what I can eat and tolerate begins. Reputedly, the weight loss for the first 6 months is pretty rapid. I have to say, that’s the one thing in all of this I’m looking forward to. I want to be willing and able to get out and get around this summer in the way I used to. I used to really enjoy getting out in the summer, and I still do, but not as much or as often or with the same gusto as before. And it’s not just because I’m older. It’s because moving around at this weight isn’t that much fun. Getting winded from things you used to take for granted isn’t, either.

I intend, and I believe I will be true to this, not to torture myself by using a scale. I mean to completely ignore it. I have a boatload of old clothes that I’ve been dying to get back into for years, and that’s how I’m going to measure progress. When X fits, I’ll know the weight’s gone down. The scale is just numbers, and they can vary widely and be off because of water retention, and the discouragement can send you fleeing to bad habits again. But what you can wear and what you can do are objective, practical realities, and that’s where my focus is going to be. I’m going to throw out my bathroom scale(s) and not be bothered by that temptation. I’ll just do the very best I can and let the life changes be the indicators.

So, if you happen by this, please wish me well, and remind me to update this thing more often. 🙂

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Effects of Its Particular Charges and Plagiarism Fri, 07 Feb 2020 12:19:08 +0000 Effects of Its Particular Charges and Plagiarism

You might be probably to be supplied an article on nearly every topic for a unique value. Narrative documents are generally a narrative kind. If you would rather learn just how to compose strong ; significant essay then you definitely ought to stick to the listed below tips, it’s aa complete guide for those beginners wishing to create in the very first endeavor. Article writing is a job where a thousand thoughts mix your head in a second, therefore it is always favorable you’ve still another modification. In some instances such kind of authorship is also referred to as convincing writing and needs some intense composing capabilities. It really is essentially a narrative composing. Always have another look at your article when you have finished. Auto Biography essays aren’t centered on any distinguished personas. Each expository essay is going to have definite aim. A systematic strategy is required to compose a procedure article.

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Scholarships with March 2015 deadlines Thu, 06 Feb 2020 18:38:33 +0000 Scholarships with March 2015 deadlines

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For saving money in the expense of the surroundings, all.

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How exactly to Compose in Conclusion of an Article Thu, 06 Feb 2020 13:59:09 +0000 How exactly to Compose in Conclusion of an Article

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How Are We Nearing Mid-August, 2019? Fri, 09 Aug 2019 23:30:02 +0000

I have taken many photos since the onset of Spring.  The ups- and downsides of the weather posed challenges.   The arrival of Spring weather brought lots of rain.  Days of it.  Not particularly stormy (although there were a few incidents), but plants responded beautifully!

Mid-June 2019

Mid-July 2019 
Mid-August 2019 

All things considered, since the onset of dry weather, the plants continue to look pretty healthy; especially in the shade.  Yes, it is now August.  I am happy that I have a couple of rain barrels of water as stand-by.  And yes, I have watered fairly deeply (most of the gardens) a couple of times.

I am so grateful for this peaceful, LOVELY gardening spot.  The sunniest part of our yard is the front yard.  The different flowering plants continue to change from one to the next and have been so bright and beautiful!  In a different way, the rest of the yard (mostly shady) has been beautiful with the softer, more subtle “greens” and blossoms as well.

I can only say this:

We Thank You, Lord!

We thank you for falling rains,
we thank you for the sunshine.
We thank you for constant change,
and for your Grace sublime.

We’re thankful for the beauty through
the times we help you nurture.
We’re grateful for the peace we find
that leads us towards the future.

It’s gardening where we rest our souls
and seek your gentle guidance.
It’s reflection towards your goodness
and where we find your sustenance.

May I never look askance
at times when you have guided.
And may I ever grateful be
for what you have provided.

Blessings to you and yours.
May we each be found helping someone in need.

Most Sincerely,

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Bathurst Street gap, Holland Marsh/East Gwillimbury Fri, 31 May 2019 12:39:47 +0000

Rather than completely restate myself, I would like to direct you who pass by to the following entry I made on Urban Toronto recently…

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Of Labour and Lard Wed, 22 May 2019 19:59:46 +0000

When last we left our hero, namely me, he was taking about a dream of being in the US Senate. In a previous entry, mentioned working contract for a government ministry. Okay. Well, when the Senate dream happened, I’d already moved on to working contract for CIBC, one of the banks here in Canada. I did that from the beginning of August to the end of November, by which time I’d landed my first full-time job in a couple of years. Currently I’m working as a tech writer at a small software company in central Mississauga, about 20 miles west of where I live in Toronto.

Toronto’s not an easy city to get around in, and this drive is a bear, especially on the way home. Between you and me, I have my eye on another position that’s somewhat closer to home. They’ve said they’re interested and are ‘putting an offer together’, but a long weekend and a workday later, I still haven’t seen anything. The drive’s not that much better, and unless they bump my salary up considerably, I’ll probably stay put and keep looking.

Okay, that’s the job thing. The more personal aspect is my weight. If you’ve been reading this blog for a long time, you’ll know that’s a perennial favourite topic. I’m embarrassed to tell you what I weigh now. Maybe someday I’ll fess up. Suffice it to say, it’s awful. Will power’s just been a rollercoaster for me ever since I got my weight down to something sensible with Harvey Brooker back in the early days of the century. But I’ve never been able to keep it there.

I came to realization in, well, March, I guess, that I really need help above and beyond. For the first time, I thought seriously about bariatric surgery. Stomach bypass. So, I went into a clinic near my house to see if they’d take me on and give me a recommendation to the clinics who do these things. They referred me to another clinic nearby that actually does serve as a family doctor. So over I went a couple of weeks later.

They did take me on and the doctor agreed, I fit the profile and he’d give me a recommendation. Asked for some bloodwork to be done. Never easy for me; I’m so phobic about blood I nearly pass out whenever I do this, but got through it. Everything was fine, aside from some protein leakage into my urine and my blood pressure being a little high (no surprises there), but apparently not so high that he gave me a prescription for anything.

Ever since then, though, it’s been rolling a rock up a hill to get this party started. I had to do all the research for the clinic to find a place. Then they buggered off on a two-week vacation without forwarding my recommendation. Finally, when they got back, they sent it in it (or, at least, told me they did). From what I understand, the Ontario Bariatric Network is supposed to contact me and start the process. But as yet, I haven’t heard a word.

The OBN is a set of hospitals across Ontario, but mostly in Toronto, who do bariatric surgery. They were organized by the Ministry of Health back sometime ago, because the province recognizes that helping people get their weight down can head off a lot of expensive and debilitating illnesses, which I am hoping to avoid by doing so. OHIP covers the surgery in Ontario, so it’s very much in my interests to get things moving. I know I’m never going to be some Adonis, but getting back to, and staying at, a weight where I’m comfortable again and I can buy clothes off the rack in regular stores again… that’s going to be like a miracle. I just wish they’d get in touch with me and let me know that, yeah, I’m in the system, and things are now moving ahead, no matter how slowly.

Meanwhile, once again, I’m endevouring to take hold of my problem and try to get my weight down a little in anticipation of the surgery and all the tests that lead up to it. God only knows how far I’ll get, but I’ve got do something while I wait.

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Winter Snow (and ice and rain and lightning and thunder)! Sun, 10 Feb 2019 18:10:44 +0000

It is looking much more like Winter than it has in the past couple of years or so!  I like that!!  I especially enjoy seeing the SNOW piles.  It reminds me of growing up in extreme northern Iowa.

Front – driveway

Backyard trees

Winter weather?  Feed the birds!  They will come!
Tufted Titmouse

Blue Jay and Red Bellied Woodpecker

Northern Flicker

These two photos show birds in my Dad’s tree.  Finally getting big enough to support bigger birds!
Can you find 14 goldfinches, 2 blue jays and one house sparrow?
8 goldfinches

“Hey, You!” (Speaking to me? Maybe he doesn’t want to be watched at the “waterhole!”)
My sister Barb’s tree.

Yes!  I am having fun!  (Don’t like the ice, though!  It is full glare on our gravel roads!)  Be careful; be safe!


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ABC Wednesday – S Thu, 15 Nov 2018 01:26:16 +0000

S is for Snow.

We just received a couple of inches of it this morning.  It has been 32-33 degrees F all day.  I’m not ready for cold weather; nor am I ready for winter.  Bah. Humbug.  (That’s all I’m going to say about that for the moment.) 



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