Showing posts from August, 2007

I'm running a little manic today

Ron made a very loving mistake last night. I came out to help him in the yard (he was already mowing), and mowed for about half an hour (our lot is a tad over 6,000 square feet).

Ron ran in the house (hobbled, really), and brought me out a "treat", a nice frosty bottle of Diet Dr Pepper. It was hot and miserable so I said "Thank you, honey!" and chugged it down like a frat student at a kegger party.

But it was 7 PM. I was glad to hear later on that Ron had decided that we weren't going to work today (we're going Sat & Sun.). I didn't get to sleep until sometime around midnight, and I woke up at 10 AM. I just feel a little extra vibrant, careless, and energized. My spelling is suffering, as well.

I want to BUY, BUY things! Fortunately, today's lithium and what's already in my bloodstream are controlling the worst of it. I'm not even depressed about it like I am normally.

I'm definitely in the acceptance stage. If I drink caff…

He who will not work.

Ron heard back from Jody, our insurance agent. Unfortunately, she can only get us insurance at $800 a year. Ouch.

So we'll be going with the guys the mortgage company recomended. They quoted us $600. I hope we don't regret it. I mean, really,we're just doing this so, God forbid, the mortgage company gets their money back if the house is "totalled" in a flood.

Ron and I were just discussing the Katrina evacuees in Houston. In the beginning, everyone couldn't do enough for them. Actually, I admire the strippers. Once they got settled, bought a few costumes, made a few calls, and went right to work in Houston. They were doing fine! I imagine a few Houston strippers wanted to hurt 'em, though. Obviously, getting naked for money is not God's will but I admire the tenacity.

I read somewhere that 23% of the residents of New Orleans lived below the poverty line. They had never had anything like what they got in Houston. $2,000 debit card, hando…

Sticker Shock

We faxed our flood elevation certificate to two different insurance agents for quotes. One guy's already gotten back to us. $600 a year.

We live in a house valued at $68K. We have $53K on the mortgage. We have a 6% chance of flooding in the life of the mortgage.

I'm glad I take my pills. So glad.

Hopefully, Jody, who does our homeowners', can get us a better deal. I like her better anyway.

OUCH! That's a month and a half of mortgage payments.

I'm glad I take my pills.
I got paid today. Always a happy occasion; I do meter readings (the machines keep a running total), "rob" the machines of their bills (I double rubber-band the food machine money because our Rowe Food machines accept $5 bills).

Hm. That brings up a good point. What machines do we have?
* One Royal Vendor soda machine, holds 5 selections, about one case of each. It's the only soda machine we have that belongs to the State.
* One "Vendo" soda machine (property of Dr Pepper - we have a contract)
* One "zombie" (always dead) API food machine. It's still in the shop right now. I tease Ron and tell him the repairman has it set up somewhere, making money. We're doing meter readings when it comes back for that reason.
* One API coffee machine - it's excellent and very well behaved. Ron services it and does an excellent job. I'd drink a cup of coffee out of there anyday.
* One Rowe Snack machine - it's made enough in its' lif…

The Linen Expert

Today I went to work, the bank and then we went to Walmart. My meds had me goofy again - it's very frustrating at times. I love being sane. I love the fact that I put $90 into my "fun money" account, been home for hours, been online for hours, and haven't spent a dime. I love the fact that with the sheets I bought my total at Walmart was only $60. I'd been thinking about the sheets for months and I finally decided to splurge.

I have a weakness for nice linens. In 1997 I worked for Strouds "The Linen Experts". They were a very high-end linen shop. One of the first things they did when they hired me was to give me a bath towel. I still have it, I love it, and it utterly ruined me for anything you get at the discount store. YUMMY. Then I was extensively trained for a week (the workbook was over an inch thick and I was a cashier. I knew all the answers - why combed cotton was better than regular, thread counts, Egyptian and Pima cottons, you na…

"What do you blog about?"

Someone asked me that today. I was speechless. What don't I blog about?

I told her the first thing going into todays' blog would probably be the "Not So Secret Lovers" (nssl). The nssl are people we know well; each of them is a wonderful, likeable person. The nssl spend long intimate lunches together, talking and giggling quietly. They're a "cute couple". He waits for her to "get free" so they can spend every free moment together. I've seen them kissing, cuddling, and holding hands.

Just one problem; he's married, and not to her. How do, I, as a Christian, react to this? I can't exactly whip out my Bible, screaming about sinners. I can't exactly smile and approve, either. I wrestle with this one every day.

From their reactions to me, I guess they can tell I don't approve, but I'm not going to come out and say it. I can't really. I'm just a vendor's employee. We just ignore each other unless Mr.…
Sometimes when I'm typing I wonder if anyone really reads these. Am I just sending energy out into the void, never to be read? A fleeting glance, "Nah" and then a mouse click? Or do I have a devoted fan club, hanging onto my every word? (Doubtful)

I like to think I have at least a few "regulars" who enjoy reading up on what I've got to say. I know I have family reading this but my freinds either aren't big readers or aren't on the Internet.

I got an email today. The present Ron got me has shipped! I didn't open it because, God forbid, it might have a receipt inside. That would ruin my present.

With my birthday coming up I thought I'd make it easy. Mom and Dad, you gave me the digital camera. You can get me a present NEXT year. A card would be lovely. For our anniversary, Ron would love "The usual".

Others: A copy of "Teach yourself Visually Handspinning" would be awesome.
Um. Wool yarn, in either brights or…

Chocolate is out

Last night about 7 PM, I realized I was totally exhausted. I went to bed at 8 and lay awake for the usual long while, then I finally dropped off and slept at least 11 hours straight. I woke up with a mild headache and came to a sad conclusion: Chocolate is OUT. The last 3 times I ate sugarfree chocolate, I got a bad headache. If it progresses the way the peanuts did, eventually headache will undergo a horrifying metamorphasis into migraine. I don't want that, so chocolate's out.

I was really suprised today when I got home from work, tired, went to bed. I slept about 3 hours, and I'm kind of tired again. But the fatigue is a small, minor, price to pay when it comes to my sanity. Ron was having a rough day today and was a little snarly, but I was able to put it into the perspective of "Ron's a little snarly, he must not have slept enough last night" and go on, not taking it personally. I like that.

I'm hearing a lot of thunder right now. The sky&…

Why I HATE the Twilight Zone

About the only thing Ron does, consistently, that bothers me is when he watches those independent TV shows about the Middle East or something, gets really upset and outraged, and wants to talk about it for hours the next day. I tell him "If it upsets you, don't watch it." When he's done with that I have to hear about how reality isn't reality because everything is made of atoms. All the things we think are real, aren't. Humanity is so stupid. etc. When is God going to hurry up and rapture us? Huh? He's tired. Why won't God hurry up? Repeat ad infinitum. When I get tired I start talking knitting, which makes the point for me. He'll listen, to an extent, but then he gets SICK OF IT JUST LIKE I DO and leaves me alone.

I had no idea I was this peeved. I just hate it when I've endured it all day and I finally relax, thinking he's done, I do something I really enjoy (like a knitting message board) and heeee's back! ACK!

His su…
After I finish this post I'm going to log off, eat something, and watch the next killer spider movie on Sci-fi. Give me a ball of yarn and the Sci-fi channel and I'm a happy woman.

I wasn't too happy last night, though. Last night I cast on for a vest I plan to knit. I did a gauge swatch and discovered my gauge (stitches per inch) was 4.5, and 6 rows per inch. I did the math (correctly). I used the same needle (I am a circular needle diva, the only time you'll see straights in my hands are when I am using double-pointed needles to finish a hat). I cast on (put X amount of stitches on the needle to begin knitting).

Since I gained a fair amount of weight last year (when I was up or down, I didn't care what I ate, with blubbery consequences), I had to cast on 116. I did. "Work 3 inches in garter stitch". I did one row. Hm... looks kind of wide, there. I knit another row. I am not that fat! It's not getting better. What the ??? I finish the…

2 strips of bacon

Ron and I have begun a running joke. My birthday is Sept 22.

Now, we haven't always had good birthdays with me because, until last year, I didn't know I was bipolar. My pattern runs, Depressed in August, Manic in September, Depressed in October (I am a "rapid cycler"). The last several years, manic has generally equalled hostile and paranoid = lousy birthdays.

One thing we've done when I wasn't sick, something that worked well, was make a list. See, when I was a kid Mom would tell me to make a list for my birthday. When I got together with Ron it worked too.

At first, and this always makes me smile, I'd peck away at Ron's old braillewriter. It looks like a mutated, old-fashioned typewriter with only 7 keys. You press down on a combination of keys ("b" is key 1 and 2 at the same time, "A" is key one, "c" is key one and four). I'd always mix up my "I's" and "E's", giving "E lovi you" a…

"Hit and stop"

It's always odd when I see the man who hit my husband. See, about 5 years ago Ron was run over by one of "our" postal workers as he walked to work. Ron was crossing at a light, he had the light, but "Rick" was in a hurry and blew through the red light. Ooops! There's a blind man, swerve, bang, drag, stop, 911, lights, sirens, etc. When they asked about it at the hospital, I told them it was a "Hit and stop".

I never really understood the whole concept of "God filling you up" with one thing or another, I just kind of said "Yeah, right", with a little dose of "That would never happen to me". So, it's the day after the accident (January 8). I've just had a dreadful encounter with the officer investigating the accident. The officer (he doesn't deserve to be capitalized), began by informing me that he wasn't going to file charges on the man who hit my husband. Then he told me Ron was walking opposi…

Backpack Evangelism

The State of Texas doesn't have the money to repair our microwaves, so we're going to have to make do with a cheap discount store microwave. Tough. We were told one guy set his popcorn on fire in the last microwave, and he was "angry" about it. Implication: he was angry enough to slam the door hard enough to break the latches. A lot of cold lunches in their future.

I've had really persistent headaches the last couple days, I just took some Alka-Seltzer for the first time. It's supposed to be fairly gentle to stomachs, so I'll see. Luckily the headache is more at the moderate level.

I went to Michael's crafts today. Wow! They eliminated 90% of their acrylics, now it's just novelty, baby, and wool yarns. Yay! I got myself a 32-inch size 8 circular needle, too. I've been wanting one. They have a pretty decent collection of wool yarn - I just need to get some white wool yarn so I can make my Santa hat for this winter. I bought myself …

"The Snackinator"

Last week, Ron wanted to bring home some snack foods from work. He asked me what we had, and I read them all off. Plain Lays and Ruffles, BBQ Ruffles, Cheddar Ruffles, Chili Cheese Fritos, Cheetos, Sour Cream and Onion Lays, and the Zapps chips.

"Nah," he said "I don't want any of that. Don't we have anything different?" I had to tell him no.

When the time came to make my Vistar order, I got different alright. I'd been eying the Dave & Thomas Honey Mustard Popcorn in the catalog. The other vendors sell the "Movie Theater" popcorn (which is delicious, btw). Why not?

"Ew!" Popcorn should be plain, cheddar, or caramel flavored, Ron told me. Honey mustard was wierd. No one would buy it. The idea was awful. I told him he wanted "Different" and I have good instincts on these things. My Jalapeno Zapp's chips are huge, people will walk out of their way to come buy them from us. Didn't he trust me? Aren…

On Genetics

I get migraines. My Mom did, and so did my Maternal Grandmother. My maternal grandmother (Hopie) was not an "easy" person, but she and I have some creepy similarities.

She had some kind of paranoid schitzophrenia (whoo, tough to type that!). I have type one Bipolar with psychotic features. She smothered her food with salt, so do I. I probably eat a couple grams of salt a day; and I go through about 4 packets of salt at a fast food restaurant.

Today I started to get a migraine. As soon as I got home, I took 4 ginger root capsules (they cost about $4 for a hundred at Walmart). When Hopie got a migraine, she always ate candied ginger root (which I love).



Well. Ron had me to some research today on floodplains. We're in the .2% floodplain; or .2% chance of flooding in any given year. Put another way, 6% chance over the life of the mortgage. We're also in the "shallow" floodplain; basically, if we get an overhwhelming (like Allison, 36 inches in 12 hours) amount of rain in a very short period of time, flood city. Squish, squish.

That's not so bad, really. We can certainly live with that.

I feel terrible for Mexico, it looks like Hurricane Dean is going to get them. But then, who'd wish a hurricane on anyone?

We got up at 3 AM today to go to work and receive our deliveries. Ron and Mike both loved the Honey Mustard popcorn; I tried it, but it's too spicy for me. The company was out of the Jalapeno chips, so hopefully the customers will give these a try.

The employees managed the feat of killing all three of our microwaves (commercial) at one time. It is aggravating to watch some guy get his leftover…

The gun catalog

Just now, I saw a hand clenching the side of our fence. What the heck is going on, I thought. Slowly, a head levered itself over the fence and the woman who moved in last month (next door) surveyed our yard. I tapped on the window, loud enough that she heard me, and she looked up. I then closed the window blinds. If she wants to say something about our yard, she can come and say it, otherwise I'm going to blow it off. I'll tell Ron, though, just so he knows.

So we have a nosy neighbor. Their yard looks pretty bad, too. A year ago, I would have been outside, raving loudly. I would have been enraged, livid, furious. Next step, paranoia. How long has she been watching us? Why has she been watching us? I would have gone out there screaming and definitely would have ended up with very poor relations between us, at best. Assuming I wasn't depressed; then I'd be curled up into a ball of misery.

I guess the thing that's really struck me about the difference b…

Onto Happier Subjects

I found the perfect knitting pattern. A couple years ago, I had my beloved charcoal heather-gray hoodie. It was one of those cheap poly-cotton "Sweatshirt" hoodies but I wore that thing every day. I've been looking for something evocative of my beloved hoodie. Zippered front. Hood. Cozy and comfortable. Well, I found it in a most unlikely place.

First of all, I'm going to make a child's vest and donate it to some needy child. A small child's vest will be good practice and I get to do a good deed at the same time. Win-win. Then, I plan to make myself a vest; probably the "Albion" vest pattern from Oat Couture (I already ordered the pattern). Then, the hoodie. Technically, it's the "Lady's hooded Cardigan" from the Bernat Urban Camouflage pattern book. In my humble opinion, most of the items are absolutely hideous in the "recommended" yarns. UGH! But, with a little imagination I can see a nice cozy sweater for…

9 inches below flood plain

The surveyor came out today. Bad news. Our house is 9 inches below the flood plain! He nodded sagely when I told him the story of the airboats causing waves to crash into the house during Tropical Storm Allison (we didn't live here yet). Apparently, I should expect this in the future.

Anyway, it's discouraging. Our real estate agent obviously skipped her "Ethics" class - she lied to us and told us we were NOT in the flood plain. Thanks a lot. The surveyor was a nice guy with very reasonable prices so I'm glad of that. But we're probably looking at another several hundred dollars a year in insurance.

Ironically, we don't qualify for coverage with Hurricane Dean headed for the Gulf (of Mexico), so we'll have to wait and see - if we flood, then we have to get coverage that won't cover the flooding we'd already be dealing with. Or maybe nothing will happen with Dean and we'll just be crying over our lost money. At any rate, all our t…

I've spent two tropical storms at work now

The first tropical storm was Allison. 36 inches in about 8 hours. The place wasn't his yet, so we had to watch the other guys' employees walk out the door while hungry postal workers milled around, complaining about their hunger and thirst.

This time, I told Ron I didn't care how early we had to get up, I wanted us there and gone early. We had to get up at 5 AM but we got home before the rain hit. Thunderstorms, flooding, the usual with any kind of tropical event in Houston. We went in today, too. I was sure glad we did. In the first 30 seconds I ensured "Soda 2" would accept bills - it has a trick validator. It won't take bills if we get a storm. Now it did. Then one of the food machines was hinky; a coin jam AND a dead validator. Fixed that. Snacks were pretty dead (the machines were full and didn't require stocking), so I helped Ron out by stocking soda machines, etc. Even though rain is forecast, AND it's the tax-free-weekend (insane …

YOYO - or I come from Earthquake country

"I come from Earthquake country" I say, as I explain the fact that I actually have a disaster kit. In California, near the San Andreas fault, you never know when "The Big One" will hit. One minute you could be watching your television (my husband) or reading a romance novel while lying in bed (myself) and then WHAM! Your furniture is possessed, jumping all over your house like it's trying to kill you. Large things are trying to fall over and smash you (my husband), bookcases go flying, you hide (if you can - I never knew I could fit under a standard sized pillow but I managed it), scream, and beg God not to take you yet.

When it's all over, if you aren't injured and your house is intact, you take stock. You have no electricity for sure. Utility companies advise turning off your gas, and in a bad quake you don't have any water either. All you've got are the contents of your DISASTER KIT. You're going to live off that until things get…

I got it all over with today

It wasn't a bad day, but it's the kind of day where I get home, sit down, and thank God for my medication. It started out harmlessly enough. Ron woke me up at 5-something. He left a soda in the bathroom for me (incredible motivation - I am truly addicted to my diet sodas). I got up, took my pills.

I prepared my "box" - it's an 18 gallon sterilite tote box with a snap on lid. I couldn't get the lid to snap into place, though! My other box is fine, what's the deal with this STUPID! AAAGH! Ron wanted to know, I told him, he said "You have the wrong lid for the box". Stupid indeed. So I took my other, first box. It contained my knitting bag, purse, "cold bag" (an insulated 6-pack tote I use to keep cold foods cold), and my list.

Then I dropped my deodorant while dressing and mutilated it pretty badly. AGH! Luckily I had already applied it.

Got dressed, ate a sugarfree pudding cup, took my pills. All set. We had a good ride to…

So, while I was laying there in bed, unable to sleep...

I thought about aromatherapy. I tried everything to get to sleep last night, calcium tablets, hot bath, reading something boring, and finally the Benadryl. If I can get to sleep, the Benadryl will do it.

As I prepared to lie down again, I sprinkled a few drops of lavender essential oil on my pillow. The next thing I remember, the alarm was going off.

Aromatherapy is basically "Take a whiff of this, it'll help you feel better". I have always loved the citrus aromas (orange, lemon, grapefruit), which are very balancing for someone with my illness. When I'm depressed, it helps lift my mood. If I'm manic, it helps ground me. I have a bottle of orange essential oil on the table next to "my chair". Thankfully, I don't have to use it much. Neroli is a wonderful orange blossom fragrance. It isn't cheap but you can't beat it for anxiety. When I was having a ghastly day and freaking out, a couple whiffs of neroli could calm me down like nothing else. Ot…

No more Sudafed!

We had weeks of rain recently, then record-setting heat. Needless to say, the allergen levels are through the roof!

I recently got out my freindly little red tablets, the Sudafed. "Back in the day", every time I took them, they'd make me manic. I didn't know from "Manic" at the time, but I did know I could never get to sleep, spent all my money, etc. Generally I wavered between suffering with allergies and suffering with manias. I told one doctor who told me that no, Sudafed couldn't do anything like that to me. Little does he know!

A few years ago the methamphetamine addicts forced the FDA to require the Sudafed guys to reformulate their product. Happily, the new product worked for me and I could take it as needed with no manias.

Until now. As I lay awake in bed last night, thanking God for various things (I figured He didn't need me whining), I decided this had to go in my blog. See, that's the thing with Bipolar; sometimes it doesn&#…

I owe knitting and spinning to my pills

We usually take Thursdays off if we can. Last Thursday, I was prostrate with a migraine. Today, I could have been. We went to KFC yesterday and I ordered a side dish of macaroni and cheese. It had the lurid, unnatural hue that I've learned comes from Food Dye Yellow #5, a major "trigger" for me. You couldn't have paid me to eat it! I feel fine today, I'm so glad I could literally see the trouble brewing, and today, we had lots of fun.

We started off with a trip to Walmart, where I got 3 cases of my favorite diet decaf soda. Happily, I still have about half of this weeks' budget. I still haven't gotten my dehydrated food from Walton's, but they haven't charged me, either. We got great trips to and from Walmart, then home. I put away the groceries and Chuck came by. We went out to breakfast, then looked at steel carts. They won't work for us, but all 3 of us had fun looking around at the hardware store. Ron agrees with me - hardware…

64 people!

EEEK! We have about 64 people here for some kind of safety meeting/training session. They're like a swarm of incredibly polite locusts, descending on our machines, clink, clink, goes the money, the coils rotate, the snacks and sodas drop and silence. They start eating and drinking and leave.

I love my job. My snack machines were WEAK though, so I had to go to "The Warehouse" and buy candy bars. I should have gotten Cheetos but I'm BRAIN DEAD. Anyway, the machines looked a lot better at the end of my work day than they did when I started. Yay! Snickers, Peanut M&M's, fixed the thing that was going out on my snack machine #2 (I hope), alerted Ron to a coin jam error message, etc.

My back's a little sore from lugging around those candy bars. I really enjoy my job, but who would have thought it'd be vending. Whew. I sure earned my keep today, and I'm not complaining. I kept thanking everyone, because they pay the mortgage.

Speaking of, what the [expletiv…
Certain Mondays are about as bad as it gets for me at work. I have to wake up at 3 AM, eat, take my pills (I'd better!), go to work. Receive several hundred dollars' worth of junk food, about 10 trays of donut and pastry products, and over a hundred dollars worth of sandwiches. Helping Ron, of course, and taking care of "My" snack machines. But then, having done all that, I'm generally off around 9-10 AM when a lot of people are just getting started, or taking their first coffee break. Not bad!

Today was a little sad, and a little "Boy, I'm glad I listened to God". Now, obviously I'm bipolar. Yes, I will have delusions if I don't take my pills. I will have strange and paranoid thoughts, feel invisible bugs crawling on me, and occasionally hear things that aren't there. To be a total geek, though, I have to clarify and say the last two are "Hallucinations" and not delusions. OK, back to subject. Having said all that,…

Heather gets Hammered (with yet another migraine)

Ugh. Oh, my head. I guess I stuck up too far, and the Devil wanted to hammer me down. How best to accomplish this task? Give Heather a migraine.

It began, as these things do, by being awakened at 4 AM with agonizing head pain. By 8 AM, I was in full-on-retching-into-my-bucket agony. Obviously, we weren't going to work. I spent an absolutely miserable two days.

It's only now I feel somewhat human, albeit a very weak and dehydrated human. UGH. I wouldn't wish this on my worst enemy. One of the drivers Ron had while I was sick said he'd pray for me, which I thought was very sweet.

I did get some good news today, the Bibles I ordered from Christian books came. I will sneakily put some out tomorrow at work. I figure if other people can put out their "Finding Your Spirit Guide" stuff I am certainly entitled to put out "My stuff". I'm not forcing it on anyone. I'm putting some "Free books" in the free book pile.

Ron got a cr…