Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Call Me Cleo

Queen of Denial

Well, my band is still slipped, which is no surprise to me. The doctor says he needs to do surgery again to reposition it. As much as I don't want to have surgery again, I would do it except my insurance company won't pay to have it repositioned. They will pay to have it removed, but not repositioned. I declare that I will not have this thing removed! He'll have to come find me, and then I'll run and he'll have to chase me, and IF he catches me, I hope he doesn't need his nuts anymore cuz I'll rip them suckers right off! I swear! He cannot have it!

His insurance girl is supposed to call me back shortly and let me know how much it will cost to pay for it myself, which really SUCKS because I'm still paying for the original surgery! Gah! I'm going to go back into denial, where I've been the last two weeks, and pretend everything is okay.

Monday, May 28, 2007

RIP, Charles

Oh, man! I just found out that Charles Nelson Reilly died Friday. I loved him and Brett Sommers on Match Game. He was hilarious. And such a flaming gay nerd.

Sunday, May 27, 2007


Happy Blog Birthday to me!
A whole year.
I can't believe I totally missed my blog birthday on May 5th. I'm usually much more wrapped up in myself to forget something like that. No gifts please.

Random Crap

Why do I buy crap like this? I see it and I think it's so cool that I HAVE to have it, and then I find it in a drawer nine years later and think, "What the hell?" At least these could be useful if I chose to actually do something with them. And by "something" I mean try to hem my pants with them, or use them for curtain ties or to tie my climbing roses up a trellis. I'm not kidding either. I wore some uniform pants for four years hemmed with velcro. Hell, I duct-taped some baby socks onto Phoebe's feet just the other day to keep her from making clicking noises with her toenails. These would have worked perfectly!
These new Lay's Rosemary & Herb chips are great. The Rosemary taste could be a little stronger though.
Can you tell what that is inside this vase? It's coffee beans. I love the smell of coffee. We went into a Quazi-Starbucks coffee shop inside a church recently (don't ask) and they had vases full of coffee beans on every table. I thought it was a neat idea so I ran to Wal-Mart and copied it. The vases were $1.97 each, and I bought a 10-lb bag of coffee for less than $10 that filled up three of them. I keep the biggest one in my office right next to me so I can smell it all day. Sometimes I just stick my nose right into the beans and inhale because I'm just a freak like that. One of these days I'm going to inhale a coffee bean straight up my nose and into my lungs and die. Heh. Let those CSI guys figure that one out!
Speaking of coffee...I have drastically reduced the amount of coffee I drink. Did I already tell y'all this? I think I did. Ack! I'm going crazy because I can't remember anything anymore. (Alzheimer's alert!) Maybe y'all are going crazy, too, and can't remember that I told you already. Anywho. I used to drink at least two 32-oz glasses of iced coffee every day, plus I'd get something at Starbucks every time I was near one. I quit the cold coffee cold turkey. I had a headache so bad the first night, I thought I had an aneurysm. (Big word alert!) I went to bed at 7:00 and slept until 8:00 the next day. After that, nadda. (Spanish word alert!)
Okay, I have to go now. My husband informs me that we're going to drive around the countryside and look for a giant rock to put in a flowerbed. Don't you wish your life was as exciting as mine?

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Josh Holloway & Cheddar Bread

One word: Day-um! Cleans up nice too...and those dimples!

Did you see the season finale of Lost last night? I loved it! I've said it before, and I'll say it again, Sawyer is a badass and I love him. Well, I don't love him, but you know. He was really Billy Bad-Ass last night. Fabulous. I think I actually squealed when he shot Tom and they zoomed-in on his face. Sigh. How old am I again? Thirteen?

I made this bread to go with spaghetti yesterday. It's delicious.

Cheddar Bread

1 package active dry yeast
¼ cup warm water
1 cup warm milk
1 Tbsp butter
1 egg, beaten
1 ½ tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
3 cups flour + more for kneading
1 cup (4 oz) sharp cheddar cheese

In a large mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Melt butter in a 2-cup measuring cup in the microwave. Add milk to measuring cup and microwave 1 minute more. Add milk mixture, egg, sugar, salt & 3 cups flour to yeast. Beat with a wooden spoon to form a soft dough.

Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6 minutes. Place in greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover with wax paper sprayed with Pam and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 ½ hours.

Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; knead cheese into the dough. Shape into desired form. Place on a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper. Cover with wax paper sprayed with Pam and let rise 45 minutes to an hour.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes until golden brown. Remove from cookie sheet and let cool on wire rack. Refrigerate leftovers. Yield: 1 loaf. May be doubled to make 2 loaves.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

The Store & The Dump

This is your lucky day, people. Not only did I take pictures at the new grocery store, I also took pictures at the dump! Here we go...

I took this picture standing in line at Starbucks. Nice floral shop and loads of organic stuff throughout the store. It's like they combined a Whole Foods Market, a regular grocery store, and a Target. They had EVERYTHING. I meant to take more pictures, but I think I walked around with my mouth hanging open the whole time. I was in there about an hour, and I didn't see the whole store.
Outside. Duh.
Da Dump
Da Dump Trucks

We made an early morning run to the dump to get rid of the big pile of brush we accumulated over the weekend doing yard work. They have quite a system there. I guess dumps have come a long way since the 70s. That's the last time I remember going to a dump. Back then, we just drove our truck in an unmanned gate and dump our crap in a vast wasteland of crap. This morning we had to go through TWO manned gates, where the dump Natzis scrutinized our most current utility bill and driver's license. Then they instructed us where to go to dump the brush, and where to go to dump the wood and metals. The yard where we dumped both categories of things was tiny compared to what I remember. Apparently the dump workers scoop up the brush not long after you dump it and turn it into wood chips or mulch, and they scoop up the scrap metals and wood and turn it into, uh, scrappy woody metal stuff.
I bought some stuff to put streaks in my hair. I'm going to go see how bad I can mess it up. As long as I don't end up looking like a skunk, I'm good. Pictures may or may not be posted of the results.
One more week to wait and see if my Lap Band has slipped back into place. I can tell you that it hasn't as of this moment. Nothing has changed. I'm still having these really loud gurgly noises in my throat every few seconds like there's air churning around down there that can't escape. I can't go anywhere that I have to stand close to people or where it's really quiet or people start to stare. I can only smile weakly and say, "Sorry. I have this thing." What else am I going to do? I can't go into the whole long story about how my Lap Band slipped, and what is a Lap Band, and what do you mean "slipped"? I guess I could, but I don't wanna.
That is all.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Just for You

There's a brand new Kroger grocery store by my house complete with a Starbucks inside. They had their grand opening yesterday, but we didn't make it over there. I'm on my way now to check it out. I'll take my camera and dazzle and entertain you with pictures later. Can you hardly wait? Grocery store pictures, people! I'm too good to you.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

I'm So Full!

Mmm, breakfast!
Mmm, lunch!

Mmm, dinner!
Okay, it's not that bad. I can have full liquids, which includes applesauce, creamed soups, watered-down grits, and stuff like that. No Food Channel for me today.
And now my stomach hurts. I don't know if it's real or if it's imagined because I know what's going on in there now.
Let's see...what time is it? 8:54 a.m.? Yeah, it's time for a nap. I think I'll just sleep through the next two weeks.

Monday, May 14, 2007

It Slipped

What is a slip?

Slippage occurs when stomach below the band "slips" up through the stoma (the opening inside the band between the pouch and the rest of the stomach), causing a prolapsed or herniated pouch. This herniated area can hang over the edge of the band causing food to be stuck in the pouch and preventing it from passing through the stoma to the larger stomach. This is what causes the heartburn, regurgitation, vomiting, and pain that can be associated with a sympotomatic slip. In severe slipppage, circulation to the stomach can be compromised requiring a second surgery to repair the slippage or to remove the band if there is too much scar tissue to repair the area. It is believed that vomiting is the biggest cause of a slip.

That's what I've got, folks. I'm on liquids for 7 days, and then I'm on soft foods for 7 days after that. Then I go back and they look at my stomach through a fluoroscope to see if my pounch has slipped back to the correct position on its own.

I've been in denial the past three weeks. I knew that things weren't right, but I didn't want to deal with it, and I sure didn't want to have surgery again. I guess I was hoping it would go away. I was waking up at least 2-3 times a night burping up pure acid into my mouth and spitting it out into a garbage can. I'm GROSS, I know. I think that's a pretty clear sign to anyone that something is wrong. Now I get to starve for two weeks.


I don't feel much like writing out the details of my step-nephew's suicide so I won't. The memorial service is Wednesday for this side of the family, and then the funeral is Thursday in Waco for his biological mother's side of the family. I know that my sister and bro-in-law will be glad when the formal services are all over. Bless their hearts.

Talk at ya later. I'm off to go starve. Woe is me.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

A Tragedy

We've had a tragedy in the family. My sister's step-son, Matt, committed suicide Thursday just before his college graduation. It's so sad and senseless.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Laundry Room Before/After

Plain White (Don't look at the dirty wall around the light switch. That must have been left by the previous owners. Yeah, that's it. Those pigs!)

Do you think that color is hideous? Sometimes I think it's horrible, and other times I think I like it. I definitely like it better than the white. ANYTHING is better than white.

Sammi Bugg Update

Gimme some ice cream, please Momma?
That Ben & Jerry sure know how to make ice cream!
She's 13.5 lbs now and smart as a whip. If you don't know what clicker training is and haven't tried it with your pet, try it. She caught on very quickly, and it seems to work better than anything else I've tried. I sent my sister some information about clicker training her parrotlett.
I know those pictures are dark. She's so darn black, it's hard to get a good picture without perfect lighting. Using the flash just makes her blackness turn white from the light reflection. We're going to get some better pictures tonight while it's fully bright out. I'll post a couple of those tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Granny Pee Pants

I woke up last night and felt wetness on the sheets. That's not unusual because I have night sweats all the time and wake up dripping with sweat. But as I got more awake, I noticed that my clothes were dry, and the wetness was farther down in the bed. No, I didn't wet the bed.

Abbey, the 80-lb boxer did.

She was still laying in it, and it appeared that she never even woke up. In fact, I know she didn't because she would have gotten off the bed if she had, and she probably would have been hiding somewhere.

My heart starting pounding when it occurred to me she might have died during the night and that's what caused her to pee. She still hadn't moved. Then, like I did when my children were little, I put my hand on her side to see if she was still breathing.

She was.

She's been on predisone for several days now because of her injured back, and she's been drinking a lot more water because of it. I suppose that's what caused her to do this, and I felt bad for her. She would have been so ashamed if she knew what she did. That's just the way she is. I didn't show her what she did, but I've been calling her "Granny Pee Pants" all day. Hee.

I cleaned up the mess and put new sheets on the bed. Thank goodness I had a thick mattress pad on the bed, and it didn't get on the mattress or the foam pad. It sucked making the bed half awake in the middle of the night though. Plus, I had to wash her down with a washcloth because she was all wet on the side she was laying on. And all this with no air conditioning. I opened my big mouth the other day about there not being very high humidity. It was humid as hell last night, and there was no breeze.

It's nice and cool today. We're supposed to get storms today and the next few days. The air conditioner won't be fixed until Thursday. We need a new compressor, and it won't come in until then.

Gotta go. It's time for Granny Pee Pants to have lunch.

Pecan Pie Cake

This cake is delicious! The second layer sinks to the bottom and creates the pecan pie-like layer. The rest is chewy cake goodness. I halved the recipe and baked in a 9 x 9 pan. I had to bake it much longer than the recipe called for. See notes.

Pecan Pie Cake

1 pkg white cake mix (save 2/3 cup)
1 cup brown sugar
2 sticks butter or margarine, softened, divided
4 eggs, divided
2 tablespoons water
2 cups chopped pecans
1 cup white corn syrup
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup milk
½ tsp salt

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Reserve 2/3 cup cake mix and set aside. Combine remaining cake mix with brown sugar, 1 stick butter, 2 eggs, water and chopped pecans. Bake in a 13 x 9” pan, sprayed with non-stick cooking spray, 20 minutes at 325 degrees.

Meanwhile, combine corn syrup, 1 stick butter, sugar, 2 eggs, milk, vanilla, salt, and reserved 2/3 cup cake mix.

Remove first layer from oven. The middle will be liquid and not cooked thoroughly. Pour second mixture over first layer and place back in oven for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown and middle barely jiggles.

Note: This is good served hot, room temperature, or cold. Recipe may be halved and baked in a 9 x 9 pan. Cooking times may vary. I had to bake mine about 13 extra minutes in the last stage. Check it after 30 minutes and bake it longer if it’s too jiggly.