Sunday, June 30, 2013


I haven't slept well since the surgery because my knee couldn't find a comfortable position.  I did sleep in fits and jerks during the night, but I've napped, too.  That, too, wasn't especially comfortable until this afternoon.  This afternoon my knee was enough improved that the slight sideways pressure of sleeping on my side didn't hurt.  I had a wonderful nap.  I don't know if I've ever napped three days in a row before.  If so, it was so long ago that I don't remember it.

Fitbit and Crutches

I'm not trying to get any particular number of steps in while I'm recovering from knee surgery, but I am trying to move about enough so that my knee doesn't lose mobility.  I'm keeping a lot of the weight off of the right knee but putting it through the proper motions for walking.
I usually put my fitbit in my right pocket.  I looked, for curiosity's sake, to see if it was recording anything.  Turns out it records the steps if I have it in my left pocket but not so much in my right pocket.  Interesting.

Second Day Post-Op

I guess this is the second day post-op.  By the end of the day yesterday I was very tired and wondering if I had somehow managed to hurt myself.  This morning I was pretty sure I was in horrible condition as I tried to unfold myself into a standing position.  But once I had gotten upright and moved a bit, I essayed the dauntingly high inch onto the scales (part of my normal morning routine).  I stared at the scales for a long moment trying to figure out what was was the tens column.  I am down about ten pounds!
Throwing up with crutches isn't easy.  Getting somewhere safe to deposit the bit that is determined to escape is rather a sudden impulse. 
Anyway, my blood sugar was good, my weight is good, and I'm definitely more mobile:)

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Birds' Songs

Larry feeds the birds and many times the sounds they make are very pleasant.  But sometimes all we hear are the raucous calls of crows, hawks, and blue jays. We don't feed those on purpose, but it's difficult to explain that to the hawks.

Crutches and Step

I've been messing about trying to figure out the best way to do a step.  Larry and I had figured out going up but a friend said the doctor had told her dad, "Good foot first going up and bad foot first going down."  She said to remember it by remembering "Good go up and bad go down."  Well, it did help to remember and I'm doing better with the little step I must negotiate to get onto either porch.

Storm Door, Crutches, and a Plastic Bag

The doctor said I should not just sit with my leg propped up, I should move about but keep some weight off the right knee.  Well, the storm door and I are having problems.  I've put the crutch on my sandal and tried to move, the crutch gets caught by the door, and I couldn't carry anything that didn't fit in my pockets.
So the thing that props the door open is helpful and so is a plastic bag with a handle.  I can put a bottle of water or whatever in the bag, loop it over my wrist, put my hand on the crutch, and creep along.

Friday, June 28, 2013


I'm not very coordinated, but I'm pretty good with walking without crutches.  With crutches it is a little confusing.  I have no muscle memory to fall back on. So Larry and I discussed it.  Should I alternate and which one lined up with which foot or swing them together.
I thought I could just use the right one since that is the side that I'm supposed to not put a lot of weight on, but decided I'd mess up something else.
So we decided that together was the right way to do it.  And I'm glad because it requires less coordination.  I'm pretty sure it took a while for me to learn to walk.  Opening doors seems to be a problem right now. Which foot do I put out first?  There is just the tiniest step at the threshold, but it seems huge.

Listening Ramdomly

My iPod jumps out of the book I'm listening to (even when locked so I know it's not a pocket change) and starts on another.  I can tell I'm listening to a different book, but finding my place in the one I was listening to is somewhat chancy.  Sometimes I just listen to a section over again to get back to my place, but sometimes I know it is previous to where I was but is something I didn't hear.  So it is an advantage somewhat that I'm familiar with the story.  If it is a totally new book, I can't tell if it's skipping around with the characters' parts of the plot or if the book just doesn't make any sense.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

A Car Pulled In

Today when I went to get the mail, a car pulled in and the couple in the car introduced themselves.
They complimented me on my flowers, sympathized with my husband having to cut around them (that was the man) and said they'd stopped to look at them before when we weren't home:)
The woman said she thought she had a lot of flowers but I have three times as many!

Fragrance of Gardenias

I have enough cuttings inside so we've left the blooms on the bushes.  We were picking blueberries this afternoon and we could smell them.  I mentioned how nice it was to pick the blueberries in the shade and smell the gardenias.  Larry said he had been standing on the west porch early this morning.  There was a slight breeze and he could smell them on the porch.  Nice.

Drip Maintenance

 Maintenance of my drip irrigation in my hybrid tea rose strip is necessary occasionally.  It has been very wet this spring.  It rained over an inch last night, but I'm concerned that it will take a long time before I'll want to bend or squat to make sure everything is in order.  Sure enough, several of the spray tips had come off somehow or other.  So I rummaged about until I found replacements and made the minor adjustments necessary for the next dry season...whenever it happens.

Changed Reader-Additional Complaint

The new person reading in the Outlander series is evidently from somewhere in the northeast because she puts "r's" where they don't belong.  Briana should not have an r sound at the end, nor should saw have an r sound anywhere.  I normally enjoy hearing different accents although I seriously became tired of some.  But I have never become accustomed to hearing r sounds in words that don't have r's where the sound is. 
Also, the text will say, for example, "she said cheerfully..." and the reader reads it as if it were part of an obituary.

Crutches or Walker?

The doctor said I would need crutches for a couple of days.  I think maybe he will agree with a walker instead.  I don't imagine he will be interested in an electric wheelchair. 
The doctor's office called today and said my appointment is in the AM.  That's a relief.

The Back Way

We came back from town the back way looking for the peacock.  We can't always see it, but it was still there last week.  It ranges over a fairly large area or there is more than one.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Something Huge to Wear

A spent some time today looking for something to wear for my knee procedure.  Isn't procedure nicer than surgery? My directions said some large and comfortable.  Well, not jeans, shorts, dress pants...I finally decided on a jersey dress I've had for a long time...but it is large and comfortable.  I wish it were shorter so the splint wouldn't be under it, but it is still the best I could come up with.
The doctor's office called and said my pre-op exam was fine and so the procedure will take place on Friday.  Tomorrow I'll find out what time.  I hope it is early.

Changed Reader

I'm listening to an audio book series, Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon.  I like the series and has read it more than once and listened to it, too.  I really liked the first reader.  I worried a little about whether I would speak with an English or Scottish accent when I finished.  Turned out my own accent is firmly in place.  But this book has a different reader and it is not the same! 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

New Recipe

I had tried fake mashed potatoes made with cauliflower. I wasn't impressed.  But my son kept insisting it was good when he made it.  Well, I'd thought I'd followed directions and it sounded like he used the same ingredients I had.
But during the visit, he made it.  Evidently the difference was that I'd used the blender to puree the mixture and he'd used the food processor.  I didn't have a food processor when I made it but thought a blender would work the same.  Not.
His "mashed potatoes" are quite good.  Now, cauliflower doesn't taste like potatoes, but butter, heavy cream, and sour cream with salt and pepper pretty much take care of the difference.
I wonder why my cursor isn't showing up.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Fitbit Annoyance

It took forever to get my fitbit to sync tonight.  I know several things to do to get it to sync, but tonight nothing worked for a long time.

A Lot Accomplished Today

The guy came to fix the lawnmower, another neighbor came with his big tractor and cut the edges of the meadows that had been cut for hay last week.  The man who plants our fields came and started the no-till procedure involved with planting. We had started to wonder if he was going to plant this season, but I guess he was waiting for the rain to let up.  This has been the most consistently wet spring since we moved here in 2000.
And I had the pre-op done this morning.


The doctor said I won't live until Friday at the rate I'm going and wrote a prescription for anxiety.  I was trying to keep from having a full-scale panic attack by breathing deeply and slowly.  Then I became concerned about hyperventilating.  This time instead of telling me indignantly that it is his office and his rules, he told me to take the medication...gently and kindly.  I don't think he knew I'd panicked the other time.
He also said that the last time I'd had a chronic infection that did not respond to antibiotics and required three surgical procedures to eliminate was long ago enough that I will be no more prone to it than the general population.  That was helpful but I was already panic-stricken.  My brain tells me it is a minor procedure.  Some other part is still frightened. 

Leaping Tall Buildings

Today I went to the doctor for my tests so I can have a surgical procedure on Friday.  The nurse was sporting a boot and walker.
I said, "You're going to have to stop leaping tall buildings at a single bound."
She laughed and replied that she hadn't heard that one yet and would have to remember it.  Then she proceeded to explain what had really happened.
My explanation was better:)

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Gardenias in a Pottery Vase

 The vase with the gardenias in it was made by Cody, Diane's son.  It looks great with my gardenias.

Day Lily #6

This one is #4.
This one is #6.  This one is Larry's favorite.  I can barely tell the difference between #4 and #5.


I enjoying going to places I like with guests. So I particularly enjoyed this visit to Pebble Isle Marina:)

Friday, June 21, 2013

Day Lily #5

This is a double orange.  Actually the picture looks a bit better than the lily.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

audio books

When I read books, it is possible for it to contain a good bit of description and lengthy passages I don't pay much attention to.  I just skim over it looking to see when the next part of the plot starts back.  When listening to an audio book, I find that sometimes I'm immersed in passage after passage of detailed intimate information that I really can't easily skip because my hands are busy with something else.  I don't always have a clue as to how much of it there is in a book and have blithely suggested such books to others only to think later when listening that the suggestion may not have been suitable. 

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Less Enthusiasm

My knee has been bothering me but I've been walking anyway because it doesn't feel worse when I walk.  But then I spoke to a woman who asked if I knew when I had torn my miniscus.  I said I didn't and she said she didn't either but she knew when she ripped the whole thing loose.  It was very painful and she hit the floor.  I asked what she was doing when it ripped loose.  She said she was doing aerobics. I thought, "Well, my knee is safe!" But the more I walked, the better I remembered the doctor's assistant saying in a hesitant voice, "Well, it's all right if you walk, but don't shovel or squat."
So I was walking but then I started thinking, 'What if he didn't mean five miles a day with enthusiasm?'
So I've dropped back to half what I was walking...or a little more, but more gingerly than before.


I'm listening to the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon.  I am on the third book in the series.  I've read and listened to the series several times over the years.  I wonder if I will begin speaking with an English accent or Scottish.  I like the reader as well as the story.
She uses the word "dubious" repeatedly.  It continuously reminds me that I first learned the word from my dad who pronounced it "jubous."

Tuesday, June 18, 2013


An Amish family cuts a couple of our small meadows but it started to rain as they were raked into strips prior to bundling the hay into bales.

Now it will have to dry out before it can be baled.  We don't use much of the hay, they want it for their horses and we want it cut for weed control.


Larry had gotten the garden soil smoothed out after two heavy rains.  We had half an inch yesterday and 2.6 inches last night and this morning.  It is washing badly with every rain.


More of the lilies are blooming now. 

Poison Ivy

I hate poison ivy and poison oak, too.  When I have it, nothing helps except going to the doctor and getting a steroid prescription...except a couple of years ago Larry came home with a salve he'd gotten somewhere called Appalachian Secrets.  I didn't have much hope for it but it actually worked.
A couple of years ago was the last time I'd broken out so I didn't remember where I put it.  I went to several places looking for it.  It didn't help that I didn't remember the name of it but I was sure I'd recognize it.
I finally found it in my drawer where I'd put it for safe keeping.  I've started using it.  I hope it works.  It is possible that it loses its effectiveness over time...and I'm not talking months but years.
However, the address and phone number are on the tube of salve so I can call and ask where to locate it nearby.

Poster Child

Today a friend at the hospital said I am a poster child for my diet:)

Monday, June 17, 2013

Gourds Are Up

I planted four different kinds of gourds and they are all up. My peppers have sprouted.  I usually start them in the greenhouse in February but this year I've started them in the flower boxes on the back porch.  They are just getting their secondary leaves.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Day Lily #4

This one isn't as red in reality as it appears in the picture.  It is sort of a red-brown color.

Predator Owl

Predator Owl is put together and headed for the blueberries!


I've washed four sweaters so far, dried them on the racks, put them in plastic bags, and now they are in the freezer.  I've started on the next batch.  I can't do too many at once because of sweater rack limits as well as freezer space.
I don't think I have moths but it may just be that I have taken such care.  I have had things ruined from moths in the past and really hate it when something that has cost me a lot of money becomes a really soft, beautiful rag...sometimes with sentimental attachments!
Taking care of what I have is cheaper than replacing it, even if I have a way of replacing it.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Food Lists

When I'm going to travel, have company, or not be able to get about easily, I try to plan my meals with that in mind.  It turns out that the lists for company and limited mobility have a lot in common.  I want to have easy access to food when I have company because I don't want to spend all my time in the kitchen. When I had babies I prepared meals and put them in the freezer so we could still eat.  People are willing to feed others, but if I knew ahead of time (and who doesn't?  Pregnancy is about nine months), it made sense to make meals and have them on hand.
I'm going to have knee surgery and will be on crutches for a couple of days.  I have started to think about what to have in the refrigerator for several days.  I went back to the atkins site to see some of their menus.  I also like Linda's Low Carb menus and recipes. Her site indicates when the stuff freezes well. I'm in the mood to eat a lot more often than I'm in the mood to cook so it makes sense to go ahead a cook enough extra to freeze if I like it in the first place.

Hair Trim

That was a narrow escape!  I had somebody trim my hair who does it for a living.  When I do it, it isn't in my eyes, but looks seriously strange sometimes.  If it looked bad every time I did it, I'm pretty sure I would never cut it myself.  But it only looks bad some of the time!  Well, I didn't cut it and I'm really glad.

Friday, June 14, 2013

My Hungry Lavender

 This is one lavender.  It is taking over my peony and several roses.
 I cut it back where it was growing out onto the yard, but it looks gray and ugly where I cut it back.
I suppose I should move the other stuff and just let it have the yard. 


 I got perennials from a nursery a couple of years ago for this flowerbed.  I told them I wanted perennials that flower and bees would like.  So by the time I planted them, I'd pretty well buried the names, too.
My husband named them "Topknot."
I finally looked it up in my herb book.  It is actually bee balm.

It's That Time Again:)

These are the first gardenias to bloom this year.  Again I'm planning to cut the blooms, put them in water in my kitchen window to enjoy the fragrance, and leave them there until they root.  Win, win.

Thursday, June 13, 2013


I've backed off of my goal of 10,000 steps per day because I am going to an orthopedic doctor tomorrow.  I've had an MRI and want to ask what will aggravate a torn meniscus in my knee.  So I'm trying to take it least until tomorrow.

Low-Carb has a really nice post about the low-carb, high fiber diet with a picture of his dinner, his grocery list and how much he spent for the week.
I didn't see anything that looked like snacks on his list, but if he eats all that, it may be meal time before he's hungry again.

I Wish He'd Say...

I wish my husband would tell people he doesn't have an email address.  It would be perfectly true.  I have email.  He is welcome to use it but doesn't.  So if he gives my email address correctly, I get weird emails from odd places.  If he gives it incorrectly, I don't know who gets the mail.  I thought about writing the email address down and putting it beside the phone, but I decided I don't want the newsletters he would subject me to.  Yesterday he proudly told a plant place that he'd ordered from over the phone that they had his email address wrong.  Then he gave them another wrong one.  Since he doesn't EVER check email, he should just tell them he doesn't have email.

Religious Mix

This morning I went to the Baptist Hospital because I left my coffee mug there when I volunteered yesterday.
A little later Jehovah's Witnesses stopped by.  I had to admire the mix: there were two of them and together they hit several demographics: white, black, male, female, old, young. 
Then a bit later an Amish wagon pulled up with a man who had extra zucchini.  I thought he was a peddler and went to get my husband because honestly I cannot imagine paying for squash.  It turned out he was giving away the extra.  So Larry accepted two small ones.  The man said another neighbor only wanted the large ones.  I was pretty happy that Larry got two small ones. The man said he had planted eight plants and I know he had made at least two stops giving them away.
 Larry planted zucchini one year.  We couldn't use them all and I made him promise to only plant one or two of any kind of squash.  I think we may have to include eggplant in that catagory, too.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Today's Brilliant Snack Idea

This was our first really hot day.  I still had some sour cherries in the refrigerator (with fruit fresh)...but not enough for another pie (need 4 cups).  So I had been mulling over the problem of what to do with them.  Finally I decided to make sugar-free vanilla pudding (I make mine with half and half:).  I put it in the refrigerator to finish setting.
I put the pitted sour cherries from our tree in a skillet with splenda, a half teaspoon low-carb thickener, about half a teaspoon of almond flavoring and a little water.  I stirred it on low heat until all the splenda, etc., had mixed nicely and put a couple of tablespoons on the pudding.  It was cool and tasted marvelous!
 I had picked a couple of ripe blueberries that I dropped in, too.

I had done that with apples; it is kind of like pie filling.  I don't eat a whole serving because apples and cherries, even sour cherries, aren't low carb.  So just a little on top of the pudding really dresses up the pudding but doesn't feel like deprivation to me.  I just gave Larry his in a bowl because he doesn't like pudding.


I'm going to stop trying to get in ten thousand steps a day until I've asked the specialist if that is bad for my torn miniscus.

What Did You Eat for Lunch?

Three people at the hospital asked what I had for lunch.  Two of them are dithering about going on the Atkins diet.  The third said he didn't eat anything but had sweet tea:)
I had baked chicken, turnip greens, salad, and water.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Asiatic Lilies?

When catalog orders result in freebies, I plant them.  These are really nice.  There is one bud so tall it didn't fit into the picture.  Deer leave them alone, they get absolutely no care, and bloom beautifully.  The only problem is trying to transplant them.  It's better if they aren't blooming at the time.  If the bloom stalk breaks off, the bulb doesn't send up another.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Asparagus Is Up

Seven tenths inch of rain this morning flooded our row of asparagus again.

One Would Think

We have a lot of porch space.  One would think that somewhere I could find a bit dry enough to pace.  One would be wrong.  The wind is swirling the rain every which way.  It is June 9 and I had taken a blanket out so I could have my coffee, cigarettes, and Kindle on the porch.  Well, if I weren't afraid of electrocuting myself from the multiple outlet, and didn't mind a soggy blanket, then that idea would work.
Well, now what?

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Garden Tools, Weeding, but No Steps

Once when I was working in my garden in Germany, a woman stopped and explained (across the fence) that I was using the wrong tool.  She was speaking German and I was doing my best to understand what she was describing.  So I went immediately to the Bauhaus because the tool I was using wasn't working well at all.  Well, since I didn't have a clue what the name of the tool was, I just called it a scratcher.  It had two stout prongs on one side and a blade like a hoe on the other side.  I've used it for decades.
Today I happened to use Larry's hoe.  It was sharp and the work was much easier.  My tool didn't cut the weeds pulled them out by the roots.  That always seemed good to me.  But today I just wanted the greenery gone so it wouldn't get tangled up in my little tiller and stop it.  Then I'd have to get the greenery and mud out of the tines and start it again.
So I asked Larry if he would show me how to sharpen my scratcher. He took me down to his shop and started up a bench grinder.  I didn't even know "we" had one.  Anyway, now my scratcher is sharpened and works nicely. 
So I started down the edge of a really long flower bed, happy in the idea that I was getting steps in and weeks out.  After I'd worked for a while and put my tools away, I realized I'd left the fitbit on the charger!
Well, at least the weeds were still gone in that section.
I was whining about it and Larry suggested just charging it while I sleep.  I hadn't put it on the charger to charge it; I was trying to get it to sync!

Tire Garden 6/8/13

Now the circle of day lilies I've put outside the tire garden is complete.  I have some day lilies that didn't fit there, but most of the day lily piles are gone.  I've taken out the soil from the smart pots, separated the bulbs, and put the soil into the tire towers that had settled. 
I've planted my gourds, finally.  I think I have another packet of gourd seeds around somewhere, but I've planted the ones I could find.  My neighbor gave me some seeds...came back and got some of them because his didn't sprout.  I don't know if these will sprout or not but I'm going to have to find and plant them to know.  His might not have sprouted because of our odd rain, flood, rain spring.
I could have posted a picture of the tire garden but it would look about like the last one I posted.  The other sides are finished but won't show up in the picture.  I haven't put paper and mulch in the other half of the inside...well, I carried the paper down but haven't spread it and then covered it with mulch.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Mole Holes

These are mole holes.  They have a tunnel underneath.  Moles, snakes, frogs, use the tunnels.  When there is rain, the dirt separating the holes on the surface falls in and then there is the beginning of a "wash."  I am not against the moles because they eat insects in the ground, but I am seriously against the tunnels.  I've stepped injudiciously before and went in up to my ankle.  This is especially apt to happen when we've had rain.  We've had rain. 

Do You Know Anything about Football?

My doctor asked, "Do you know anything about football?"
"Do you know what they do when it's fourth and twenty?"
"Yes, and that's what I'm going to do with you.  I'm going to punt you off to an orthopedic doctor."
Today I had my follow-up conference on the mri results.  I still don't know much except that I have another appointment next week.

Relegated to the Back Porch

I was pacing on the front porch when my husband pointed out that every time I pranced by a hummingbird feeder the hummers were disturbed.  He said it would be better if I walked on the back porch.  I knew it disturbed them but didn't care all that much.  He said they should attack me and I'd go away.  So I picked up the fly swatter and just looked at him.  Then I moved to the back porch.
 I like nature just fine, but it's still mine.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Day Lily #3

I've started staking the numbers for day lily identification.

Lovely Day

 Watching the fish vie for the bread is exciting.

 The state park was freshly mowed and spring-time green.
 Little ones enjoy swinging.

 Bigger ones enjoy swinging, too.

Peaceful, green

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

My Double Delight Hybrid Tea Rose

My husband is a bigger fan of round-up than I am.  I think the breeze must have caused it to go on my rose.  I am pretty sure he wouldn't have done it on purpose.

Daylily 2

I'm going to mark the daylilies by color this they bloom.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013


We've picked cherries three days in a row and I think we have enough for a pie.  This is not on our diet, but we grew the cherries and for the first time we can use them.  I thought about cherry preserves with splenda, but we don't have enough for preserves.  Maybe next year.
But the birds usually get the cherries before we do.  Larry put a short piece of black hose in the tree.  He'd read that the birds think it is a snake and stay away.  I don't know that they thought that, but they didn't get all the cherries this year:)


I didn't volunteer today.  I went for an MRI. I hadn't had one before and was happy I wasn't cold and didn't start to itch all over as soon as they said to be still.  I gave Larry my fitbit while I was in there so I got a few steps that weren't actually mine. 
I wonder why they think a paper band around my wrist will keep me safe.  That's what they said as they put it on, "This is for your safety."  Larry said he thinks it is for correct identification when they pull me from a body bag as the morgue. That doesn't sound safe, either.
When they give me a list of yes/no questions, I need an "I don't have a clue" column.

Monday, June 3, 2013

June Resolution

This year as I collect seeds, carefully dry them, and bag them, I am going to try really hard to label them, too!  When I'm preparing the seeds, I always think I will recognize them the following spring.  Sometimes I am right.

Low-Carb Diet

A friend who works at the hospital told me she was thinking of going on a low-carb diet and for me to write down everything I know about the Atkins Diet.  I have been on this diet since 2004 and know a pretty good bit, but I'm not a dietician.
But I decided to make some notes and post them so she won't have to worry if she loses the notes I made.  Also, this will be a little easier to read than hand-written notes.
There is a good web site for Atkins.  It has tabs for tools, science, and recipes.
I didn't go on the Atkins diet just to lose weight...although I did.  I wanted to control my blood sugar.  It has worked for me.

Atkins Diet: Low carb, high protein, high fiber, high fat (saturated, unsaturated all right; transfat bad).
The simple form to start with is meat and something green (not pistachio ice cream).

When I eat breakfast at the hospital, I have scrambled eggs and bacon.  Sausage would be fine; I prefer bacon.  I put hot sauce on the eggs because I'm seriously tired of the taste of scrambled eggs.

Lunch at the hospital: meat and something green.  The hospital has turnip greens and steamed cabbage pretty often.  A salad is also available.  Ranch dressing is usually there.  The original ranch is lower carb than "lite."
 One day they had baked chicken and spaghetti with meat sauce as their two entre  offerings.  I got the baked chicken and had them put spaghetti sauce on the chicken.  I also had a salad.  All salads are not created equal so stick to green as your guide.  Bacon bits are ok, boiled egg, shredded cheese, raw cauliflower, and cucumbers are the things that aren't green that I can think of that are all right.

It is a good idea to carry snacks: ziplock snack bags of almonds and Atkins bars do not require refrigeration and are filling and "on the diet."

Home snacks: almonds, baby bel cheese balls are available at WalMart in small net bags or Sam's Club in larger net bags.  Strawberries with splenda topped with sour cream with splenda is fabulous. Stuffed eggs are also wonderful. Deli meat/cream cheese roll ups and deli meat/slaw roll ups are good for snacks or a meal.  Be careful about purchased prepared slaw as it frequently contains sugar. I also try to keep a case of Vienna Sausages for snacks.
When I have these snacks available, they sometimes substitute for meals.
A foil packet of tuna turns a bowl of salad into a meal.

Eating Out:
A. Hardees has a low-carb bowl with scrambled eggs, ham, bacon, sausage, cheese
B. Subway: salad
C. Cracker Barrel has low-carb offerings
D. Steak Houses, etc., I look for a 6 oz. steak, buttered steamed broccoli, side's usually about $10.  The salad dressings that are low carb are oil and vinegar, Ranch, Bleu Cheese, and Caesar.
Some places, like Pebble Isle Marina, don't have steamed or grilled vegetables on their menu but they are available.  So ask when you are at a place and don't see them on the menu.  Sometimes they have them.
I order a cheeseburger with no bun and the grilled vegetables frequently.
E. Mexican: taco salad with guacamole salad (don't eat the bowl).
At Home:
Fried stuff: crushed pork rinds for the breading, peanut oil to fry them in...coat with mayonnaise or beaten egg or milk or buttermilk to help the coating to stay on.  This can be done to chicken, squash, whatever.
Use peanut oil instead of olive oil because the olive oil doesn't get hot enough...the fried stuff is limp with olive oil.
An easy meal is to brown some hamburger meat and then put a bag of vegetables (fresh or frozen...fresh I get the broccoli and cauliflower; frozen, I try to get some combination without potatoes, corn, high carb stuff)
Larry likes to stir fry a cabbage with some onions and add cut up slice of ham or brats.
If you like to cook or are willing to cook, search Lindas Low Carb Menus and Recipes.  This is a wonderful site.
Also, you can search Low-carb whatever (creme brulee, baclava, cheesecake cupcakes, anything that crosses your mind that you might like to eat.

When I worked, I cooked and packed up my food for the week...breakfast, snack, lunch and dinner.
I like these containers because they stack nicely in the cabinet and refrigerator.  The small size is for nuts or pudding in a lunch box.  I have larger sizes for the refrigerator which also stack.  Being able to see what is inside is helpful, too. I threw away all my odd-sized containers.

Some recipes I have repeatedly:
Eggplant parmigiana, crustless quiche, tuna salad, pasta using Dreamfields Pasta (available at Krogers and Publix...other places probably, but I got my first from Amazon so I would know what it looked like.

Atkins Products:
The shakes are tasty and filling, but I have to be near a bathroom so I stopped using them.
The bars are good but you'll have to try them to see which you like.
I haven't tried the frozen meals.
Carb Smart Ice Cream (Bryers, I think)
Carb Smart Popsicles
Sometimes I can find these at WalMart, and Kroger.  Sometimes I can't find them at all so I have an insulated bag I keep in the trunk of my car and buy several of each.
Low carb bread 5 or 5 carbs is available at EW James, WalMart, and Kroger.  Probably other places carry it but those stores are handy for me.
Kroger has sugar free pickles and pickle relish.
Pay attention to labels.  Smucker's Sugar free hot fudge topping has the same carb count as the regular.  The store brand cream cheese is higher carb than Philadelphia cream cheese.
Sometimes sugar-free is higher carbs than regular...peanut butter, for example.
Old Fashioned oatmeal (not instant or 1 min) is on the maintenance diet but not the weight loss portion.
Kidney beans are about the lowest carb dried bean.  I like to mix a can into my slaw.

About the vegetables: if you leave them out, you leave out carbs because that is where you will be getting carbs, but your cholesterol will go up.  Eat your veggies. and nuts.
Some people like Almond Milk, unsweetened.  I've used it to cook with and it tastes good, but I drink a lot of water, coffee, and occasionally carbonated drinks made with my Sodastream.
Different stores carry different flavors of sugar-free jello.  I especially like strawberry-banana and black cherry.  I whip cream cheese and add it to either one.
Some diets suggest eating green beans or a can of asparagus when hungry.  I really like it that when I first started this diet and was hungry, I could eat meat, cheese, and drink water until I wasn't  hungry.
I hope this is helpful.

Compost Snake

Mostly what I see in my compost bin is coffee filters and the brown bags I keep in my compost pail in the kitchen.
When I went to empty my compost pail this morning, I saw a snake in it.  I went to get Larry and my camera.  He said it is a king snake.  I took the picture and we put the lid back on.
Larry says king snakes kill other snakes and also small animals like mice and moles.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

My Brown Bread

 This bread is made from seed and nut flours mostly and is what I attribute a lot of my drop in cholesterol.
Cream cheese and ham finished out today's breakfast. 

Sour Cherries

Well, a couple of blueberries are in there, too.
We planted this cherry tree in either 2000 or 2001.  This is the most we've ever gotten from it.  I usually miss out to the birds.  These are sour cherries.  Maybe we'll get enough more tomorrow for a cherry pie.

New Columbine's First Bloom

Cut myself half hour ago. Still leaking through band aid.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Rainy Day Pastimes

 It has rained almost three inches yesterday and today. So sitting on the porch with my Kindle, coffee, ipod and some grape hyacinth seeds to get out of the seed head was good.  I could check email, listen to my iPod while I got the seeds out, drink coffee, and if I decided to smoke, I could walk (I got my steps in today).  I started out in shorts but had to change to jeans and a long-sleeved shirt.
I also made another loaf of toaster bread using flax seeds, sesame seeds, and pecan meal.  It's so high in fiber it is very healthy.  I've been waiting for it to cool so I can slice it, spread it on cookie sheets to freeze, and then put it in a freezer bag.  I eat a slice with peanut butter many days for breakfast.