Monday, April 15, 2024


Fiesta starts this Thursday in San Antonio.  I don't do Fiesta anymore.  It gets way too crowded and parking is impossible to find, but if you do luck out and find a place in a lot, be ready to shell out big $$.  I haven't been in over 20 years.  The last time I did that was when I marched in the vangaurd as a Confederate Soldier.  That was back when it wasn't politically incorrect to portray one.  I was part of a group that did living history and we were tasked with being in the Fiesta Flambeau parade.  If your not familiar with the Flambeau it is the huge night parade that signifies the end of Fiesta.  I couldn't pass that up plus it was good exposure for our small group.  Back then, they said it drew over 300,000 people downtown to watch it.  Talk about your parking nightmare.  I'm sure the numbers are much higher now.  When I was a kid you could just drive down there and walk to a spot along the route and set up your lawn chairs and watch a great parade.  Not anymore.  If you want to watch it live, you have to pay for a seat well in advance.  It was pretty warm that evening I marched.  Had some major trouble with the heat and was stumbling by the time we got to the end.  Those wool uniforms were very good at causing you to overheat.

Met with the Pain doc and he wants to shoot me with another steroid shot.  I will take him up on that.  He thinks there is a possibility that my fall that broke all those ribs might have affected the work he did prior.  He says the next abalation will work better and hopefully longer but he can't perform it until we are six months out.  I am a leaning toward another try with that then.

We have been trying to catch up on some of the yard work.  Both of us are not getting much done due to our various ailments.  But it's getting done.  WE are just too much DIYer's to give up yet.

Happy Trails

Monday, April 8, 2024

Monday Updates

My new crown was installed fairly easily.  Although removing the temporary crown felt like they were going to uproot what was left.  Not comfortable at all but I am glad to have it done and it seems to be fine, although I am experiencing some major sensitivity to hot/cold.  I assume it has to do with making the crown fit and has made the other teeth move some and expose whatever is reacting.  Sensodine has not worked yet.  But I am truly thankful for this dentist.  I never knew that my previous was as bad as we have learned.

I am still struggling with stamina although I can get through my walk fairly well now.  I still need to increase the number of days I walk.  I got 4 in this last week and hope to get to 5/6 this week.  I did get the front and back yards cut but I really need to weed eat.  That part is out of control but is a real chore right now.

I sent a message to the Pain Doc through the portal about the ablation seeming to have failed.  He wants me to come in to talk about it. So I have an appointment early Friday moring.  When that part acts up it is somewhat worse than before but not as often.  In the past, it was mostly when I was in bed that it bothered me.  Now it's anytime and I can't determine what it is that sets it off.  And the only time it bothers me in bed is when it was acting up before hand.  I'm not sure I can tell him what set if off like I did before because those things haven't been in play.  I an curious what he will tell me.

Sorry about all the 'woe is me' posts that seem to have been going on forever.  I hope I can get over this hump so it is not so prominent in my mind.   But I guess pain does that to you.  And I know it gets old for people to listen to an old man talk about his health issues.  I remember from my younger days.  I don't generally talk about it with anyone else unless they ask.   

And some good news?

I have a big milepost coming up this July.  It will be 10 years (actually 9 and a half) the way the doctor numbers it, since my prostate cancer surgery.  Lord willing if the blood test results are consistent with all the previous tests they will release me and I won't be having to see him anymore.  Although he did advise me to get a PSA test whenever I have a physical just to be sure there is no return.  That's pretty easy to do.

Happy Trails

Monday, April 1, 2024

Easter Weekend

I hope everyone had a great Easter.  Ours went well.  Glad it's over.  Doing all that cooking and getting ready was a chore this time.  Too many aches and pains and all that work tends to aggravate it.  We need to find an easier solution.  I'm afraid the solution would be to not have it here, which I don't like at all.  I think we should turn it into a pot luck deal.  I'm just afraid we would wind up with no meats or pasta lol.  The baby back ribs turned out pretty well it seems.  Everyone said they liked them.  IMO they were just OK.  They were a little dry to me but much meatier.  To little fat, I think, to keep them as moist as they should have been.  I am my harshest critic in what I turn out from my BBQ pit.  I can't seem to just enjoy it, I am always evaluating what went wrong and what I could do better. 

Mom did come to our Easter lunch.  We picked her up on our way from church.  She lost track of time and when I called to tell her we would be there in 20 minutes she freaked out lol.  But she somehow managed to get almost ready by the time we got there.  She had a pretty good grasp of her faculties and we had a good visit.

I will be heading out to get my crown installed this morning.  Yes, they are making me King.  Then the day is free if I ignore all the things I need to do out in the yard.  I am so far behind due to being inoperative from my ribs it has become daunting.  But I am determined to get it done myself and not have to hire someone.  Along with my low stamina and the ribs letting me know they don't like what I am doing, and my neck abaltion has apparently failed it has becomemuch more challenging.  That is very disappointing.  It was supposed to last one to two years and it's not quite three months.  But it is certain I won't go through that again with such a short time of relief.

I'm off to cook breakfast.

Happy Trails

Monday, March 25, 2024

Running Late-BBQ-Pain Doc

I'm running late posting today.  No excuses, I just forgot.  Seems that is happening a lot more lately.  Maybe the old brain is overworked.  Well that's my story...

I got an Amazon Fire Stick the other day.  I never really wanted one since I already have a Smart TV and all the apps I wanted.  However, this TV is several years old, not sure exactly how old, at least 5, probably more.  It seems Samsung in all their wisdom has quit updating it and there are quite a few apps that I don't have access to that I am interested in.  Some will require a subscription, some are free.  I've messed around with it a little.  It will need some tweaking.  It runs darker on the screen than I have the TV set for and there are no adjustments within the app to lighten it.  My very tech savy Son has clued me in on how to adjust it, I may try that today.  

This coming Sunday the family will be here to hunt Easter Eggs if that rabbit doesn't get chased off by the pups.  I will BBQ some baby back ribs andcook a pot of pintos.  Other sides will have to be brought by the others.  Pork Ribs are the most cost effective way to feed the whole crew and it solves the 'no beef' person issue easily.  I get asked to cook ribs pretty often.  They are not my favorite, actually any pork is just ok to me, preferring beef.  That's the main reason I don't cook then often.  But I have been told by quite a few, they have never tasted any better.  So I don't really mind cooking them and they are pretty easy.  I will try a different rub this time.  I'm going more for an 'al pastor' style pork.  

I have my echo cardiogram this coming Friday.  Nothing exciting is expected to be found.  It's just to confirm the cardiologists conclusions on my heart murmur, that there is nothing to worry about.

I also need to go see my pain doc again.  It seems the ablation of my neck nerves that should have lasted 1-2 years has failed.  I am experiencing some of the worst neck pain I have had in the past.  I am not sure I want to go through all that again with it lasting only 2-3 months.  It took almost 2 months of pain for it to actually work and the procedure was extremely unpleasant.  I will just have to visit with him and see what would be his next step.  I guess it would be a referal to a surgeon.  Something that I am now considering as very possible.  But I want my primary care doc to weigh in first.  Lots of things for me to think about in the near future.  

Happy Trails

Monday, March 18, 2024

Dental and Taxes

Paying Taxes like pulling teeth or vice versa.

I've been dealing with a cracked tooth for just over a year.  Dentist hadn't been able to see it with or without X-Rays.  It just wasn't big enough to detect.  I wasn't real sure which tooth it was for sure.  When it hurt, it hurt mostly all over that side of my mouth.  Back in December I must have broken a chip off of it because I could feel a roughness where there wasn't before and any pain I had when I bit down was centered on one tooth.  At my visit for cleaning back in February I brought that to his attention again.  He could actually see it this time.  Got me scheduled for a crown.  The initial visit for that was last Wednesday.  I never had a crown before, unless oyou call an implant a crown.  I knew there would have to be grinding, but with and angle grinder?!?  JK.  I'm not gonna lie, I was nervous for this visit and I don't get nervous about things like this usually.  Of course it wasn't as bad as I had imagiined and he got it done pretty quickly.  Less than 45 mins.  Now I have a temporary crown and will get the premanent one on April 1.  Glad I got most of it done.  It already has stopped bothering me.  I am so glad to have found this dentist.  

I also got my taxes for 2023 done.  I have been using Turbotax for years and still do.  This time I just filed for the standard deduction.  We haven't been able to file using itemized since 'K' lost her job back in 2008, except when she had major surgery.  I was able to finish filing in less than an hour this time instead of stretching it out over a couple days.  Less hair pulling and getting aggravated.  We still have to pay.  

When you use Turbo Tax they give you your pecentage of tax you paid.  It always shocks me how low ours is.  A flat 10% tax rate would more than double what we have to pay.  And again, we have no deductions, we just use the standard deduction.  Not complaining.

Happy trails

Monday, March 11, 2024

Over Worked and a Few Other Things.

We got the two bedrooms swapped around by the time the new bed arrived Friday.  'K' did most of it due to me still not being able to get much done due to my rib injury.  However I had to step in Thursday and Friday to move a few things.  One being taking down our old bed and moving it to the other room.  We set itup the next day to spit up the burden.  Today I am paying the price even though it wasn't that big of job.  

Part of the package of our new bed purchase included set up.  I can't tell you how much I am glad it did.  That bed is super heavy.  We got a bed with a mototized frame in order to raise the head.  Now that we are getting so much older we will be needing that.  And I have needed that already with my injury.

This bed is pretty cool.  It's a Smart Bed.  We can adjust the firmness and it keeps track of how you sleep and sends that info to an app on your phone.  It can tell when you wake up and are restless and when you get out of bed.  I asked if they installed cameras to be able to tell that.  They thought it funnier than it sounds here. And when you get out of bed it has a motion detector that turns on an LED light under the bed.  That light is really helpful in our super dark room.  It stays on until you get back in bed.  Oh and none of that is free.  It's a Sleep Number brand, it's what we had and moved to the other room.  There should be less adjustment to a new bed than there was last time.  First night wasn't what I had hoped for.

We met up at our favorite taco shop Saturday morning with an old friend that now lives in Amarillo.  Spent a couple hours catching up and getting to know her new husband.  It appears they are well matched.  She deserves it.  It was very emotional for her and 'K.'  It was a great visit.

I am back on duty at church.  I am not sure I remember if I mentioned what I do there every Sunday.  Suffice it to say, I am a 'Greeter.'  Standing and moving around for three hours amd opening doors for everyone can be hard for an old man with messed up ribs.  I have eased back into it gradually.  Last Sunday we had a young man or older teen riding a bicycle through our parking lot taking photos of the church and of our sign with times on it.  I got hyper alert and alerted the others due to all the attacks on churches, and a couple recently.  The way he was dressed, especially his 'head cover' and other things made my alarm bells go off.  I challenged him, he didn't answer and rode off a little faster.  I wasn't the only one that noticed.  Nothing we could really do since he broke no laws.  But that wasn't enough for one lady.  Me telling her we were aware didn't phase her.  She needed to tell everyone on the team what she saw and how creepy it was.  Who else she told I don't know.  Bothering our PD would not be fruitful.  We don't want to worry a lot of people needlessly but I can sympathise with her.   Needless to say I will be even more alert in the near future.

Happy Trails

Sunday, March 3, 2024

More Doctors, More Honey Do's and more

During my hospital stay back in January the attending physician was concerned about a heart murmur.  I have known about it since 1996 when they discovered I had diabetes.  The cardiologist at the time said it was so small that my primary care physicians probably could not hear it.  So I never worried about it nor did any of my other doctors.  Apparently it has gotten bigger/louder.  So, Tuesday I have an appointment with a cardiologist, supposedly to get some sort of test to detemine which valve it is.  My primary care doctor wasn't worried about it but agreed to refer me.  Last Monday I got a random message about my blood pressure from my primary.  What?  I don't really check it much as it is usually rather low normal.  My pressure reading were pretty high with those requested checks, nothing dangerous but high none the less.  So, now I expect the cardiologist will run more tests etc. 

We, (K mostly) is preparing for a new bed we bought.  This will entail getting rid of one and moving another into the other room.  It will move into 'K's' craft room.  It's full of her stuff.  This is an opprtune time to remove the carpet and replace it with flooring we have installed ourselves in two other rooms.  Plus the moving of all her junk and 5 plus book cases out of and back in the smallest room we have.  Well I am not able at this time in my reovery to lift and move furniture or get on my knees and install flooring.  She is working at getting things sorted.  But the flooring will have to wait and get it done a piece at a time.  I won't bore you with the 'how' we have agreed on.  It's going to be a 'fun' time I'm sure.  

Snickers is doing great it seems and doesn't seem to have any effects from the meds he is taking.  We will take him in for monthly blood tests on his liver to see how it is healing and adjustment of meds.  I am not sure if the blood tests will ease over time or if this is a monthly thing long term...$$

OK, this is getting long so I will shut up now

Happy Trails