Wednesday, February 28, 2024

A Mishmash of Hopes, Wishes, and Appreciation as My Favorite Men Fall Apart

My 55th birthday passed uneventfully as my husband somehow hurt his back. ~pout~ Since February 15th he remains in agony despite his doctor’s cortisone shot, prescribed muscle relaxants, and ibuprofen. I don’t know how or when but hope things improve.

Today my friend (AKA ‘little brother’) Scars underwent a hip replacement. His father said he came through well. I can only wish upon him some relief from his lifelong juvenile arthritis pain. Minutes ago he sent photos; the guy is a hero to me.

The same goes for our friend Phoenix who once again fell and wounded the site of his amputated leg. ~sigh~ At least he didn’t end up spending two weeks in hospital this time.

On a brighter note, I’m much healthier than my favorite guys and have free time. I’ve been making a point of lifting weights, swimming laps, or hiking.

Every few hours my husband needs various assistance due to the difficulty he suffers standing. This Friday I’ll be accompanying Phoenix to see his pain therapist. The poor guy can neither wear his prosthetic leg nor balance to get his walker in and out of the car.

Scars and his elderly father may need the understandable help I’ve offered, as well. We shall see. They’re all amazing men.

How are you and yours?


Tuesday, February 20, 2024

A Curious Analysis Has Me Baffled – & – Our Silly Polly

Yesterday morning I took Terra and Polly for their annual vet check-up. Last year the clinic sent me home with Gabapentin for their next visit. It irked me that I was expected to drug my cats.

Worse, the listed expiration date was sometime last summer, so no way did I plan on using it. I told the technician they hadn’t been given this expired (!) medication but that I’d trimmed their front claws the day before. Well, the girls did great other than some hissing and growling.

Apparently they have a reputation, though, as the veterinarian I’d never met before mentioned Terra climbing on top of the wall mounted computer monitor and heading for the built-in high cupboards last time. She didn’t try any stunts yesterday.

He did have to wait until her lengthy low growl subsided in order to hear her heartbeat. lol They each received a CVR booster shot and we came right home.

My husband is equally confused by the vet’s diagnosis of mild obesity and thought perhaps it was to sell me some expensive diet pet food. But the doctor’s sole suggestion involved set feeding times. In agreement, I can’t convince my spouse to stop leaving kibble constantly available. ~sigh~ Meanwhile, neither gained weight over the past year.

Our athletic Terra remains at eleven pounds, her sister at eight. I do agree that Polly’s long coat needs more attention. For that matter, so does Dandelion’s; she will get her check-up sometime in late spring.

Should I be more open to sedating my pets? For experienced cat caretakers, do you think the vet rightly judged them overweight by feel despite lack of any gain?


Sunday, February 18, 2024

The Haves and the Have-Nots

Following a routine check-up I decided to explore the town where my doctor’s office is located. An industrial steel town, Middletown, Ohio houses the archetypal United States blue collar working class. I hate to admit we’ve always considered the city a bit depressing.

Not the most picturesque skyline...

Another business that utilizes the
local railways, whatever this is...

Interspersed between the stark mills, grimy factories, and bleak processing plants, many neighborhood residences make our humble abode appear as a grand estate. My tour really made me pause and give thanks.

These side lots are miniscule...

A nice porch, for sure...

Neatly kept tiny home...

More spacious houses...

The vehicle at far left clearly needs maintenance...

Now here we have these stunning hilltop houses. I suppose the steel barons contracted the mansions on Middletown’s Monument Avenue. These appear newer to varying degrees.

A rambling home...

I want to see this interior!

What fabulous, extraneous architecture...

More modest, but look at that garage door...

Seeing this image, my husband wrongly believed
this to be a multi-family home...

I believe capitalism, however flawed, generally benefits my fellow citizens. The lopsided economics here make my head spin.

Can you imagine I wanted to be an architect until the math defeated me? Would you choose any of these homes, whether modest or affluent?

Saturday, February 17, 2024

Seriously, this is a discount?

My husband and I so fortunate that retirement gives us plenty of time to shop for bargains. How working parents feed their families is both a mystery and growing concern. I doubt many folks have time to check the clearance shelves or even know their location tucked past aisles of freezers just across from the small hardware selection. When I looked up my jaw dropped. It’s no wonder bottles like this remain on the shelves.

For my unsophisticated palete, a brand priced just over one tenth of this tastes just fine.
Can you imagine what the original retail price must have been? Is there any special occasion for which you’d consider such an extravagant purchase?


Tuesday, February 13, 2024

A Trio of Ironies

A longtime pal called the other day. K complained about the overly chatty guy at her hair salon. Funny enough, I could not get a word in edgewise. But she needed to vent and I try to be a compassionate listener.

It's no chore. And I cannot complain. K's parents, who always treated me like another child, continue declining health-wise.

My friend also shared an anecdote. Her youngest daughter S is working toward a hairstyling license yet fears cutting peoples' hair. This fundamental service seems to me as way simpler than the science of hair dyes.


While it seems unrelated, I have seen this aspiring young hairstylist's childhood bedroom strewn with discarded candy wrappers and dirty snack plates. Her unrepentant sloppy nature is legendary among family and friends.

Therein lies another paradox as S complained to her mother about assistants leaving messy countertops. Even with it being a place of business, the incongruous statement left her mother speechless.

Hearing this and K reiterating her taciturn responsive "Huh", I laughed until tears squirted. Poor young S has probably been told my reaction.

Do you know the rather morbid story behind the iconic barber's pole? Isn't it amazing that veterinarians historically treated humans, and would you agree it's likely a great option in dire circumstances?


Sunday, February 4, 2024

Giant Rubber Chicken Makes a Donkey's Day - Credits to ViralHog

This makes me smile every time I watch. And the jokes kind of write themselves. Heh...
Have you ever seen a happier donkey? Do you think the honking toy makes this social mammal feel less alone?

Saturday, February 3, 2024

A Walk About Town

My husband and I have lived in this house since 1994 (!) yet failed to fully explore Franklin’s history. Today I walked the riverside bike path, my unusual starting point coinciding with major downtown roadwork. That introduced me to unknown facts, such as the bed and breakfast where we married in 1997 having been originally commissioned by a sea captain.

Is this not a grand home?

Also, an Irish immigrant designed this intriguing old house locals dubbed the Alamo. It does seem to exhibit that influence. I would very much like to see inside.

I cannot imagine its current purpose....

There is a planned riverfront renovation which I consider long overdue. Surrounding towns have interesting amenities such as open air amphitheaters, independently owned (not chain) restaurants, niche stores, and the like.
This shows the massive infrastructural work...
I have seen but never read this plaque before...

A cool piece of history...

Grand houses across the Great Miami River...

A surprising find; this antique vehicle near a very old train bridge...

Why is there a deflated bike tire in the tree?

Besides the sad residence pictured above I saw many decrepit houses. One place appeared quite lovely; a mat on the sidewalk read ‘welcome to our porch’. Then I noticed a sign promising violence to trespassers. My instincts kicked in and I didn’t pause for a photo.

Do you live in a vibrant community? What improvement(s) would benefit your neighborhood?


Friday, February 2, 2024

My Year?

My dentist prognosticating 2024 as “my year” leaves me in doubt as to specifics. February hasn’t started off so great.

Dandelion decided to jump onto my side around midnight, January 31st. Slipping, she dug her claws into my right forearm. While painful, it didn’t give me much thought until later. I could have sworn she left a shed claw in my flesh.

After consulting my primary care physician via phone I visited a local urgent care facility. The nurse practitioner who treated my topical foot infection last spring retained his dry humor.

“Now, the fun begins,” he quipped upon entering the examination room. His magnified close inspection revealed no foreign object, much to my relief. I’m simply on a seven day antibiotic course.

As in May of 2023 he again said to avoid folk remedies like warm compresses followed by squeezing the wound site. I replied in agreement and how I declined my husband’s suggested ointment and bandage.

Acting impressed, he immediately asked if I had a medical background. Far from it, mere bad luck and being a klutz have taught me a lot over the years.

Did you know that antibiotics help push intruding objects out? Isn’t a good sense of humor important in most any upbeat workplace?