Sunday, November 25, 2007

What's new?

Nothing too exciting to blog about. Lots of random tidbits I guess.

* Had a pretty quiet Thanksgiving. Didn't overeat, which is a suprise.
* Reading a great book currently - "Voices from Chernobyl"- an oral history about the disaster. I find myself wondering what the hell these people were thinking. But then P reminds me that they were still under Communism when this happened.
* Not too enthusiatic for Christmas this year. Considering not putting up a tree or decorating since it is a ton of work and a pain in the butt. That would make me old and depressed. Still deciding.
* No shopping completed yet. See above.
* Starting baking this weekend. I like to give cookies and sweet breads to friends and family. It is a lot of work. If I couldn't eat gluten currently, I would consider not doing it.
* Starting watching this new show (it's actually on the 4th season) called Kenny vs. Spenny. So funny. Lots of laugh out loud moments and grossness.
* A real Bezoar - not just in Harry Potter.
http://www.cnn.com/2007/HEALTH/11/21/hairball.case/index.html
* We finally finished painting our landing/hallway to upstairs. There is a border waayyy out on the landing (How/why the hell did they do that?) which P ended up painting over. We also rearranged all of our living room furniture (real excitement here folks) and I did a lot of decluttering this house.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Dangerous!

We here in Michigan are the lucky winners of the honor bestowed upon us. Detroit beat out St. Louis to become.... "The Nation's Most Dangerous City". I could have told you that. The main things that come to mind when I think about Detroit are corruption (the current mayor), dereliction, dying, and depressing.

Here's an exerpt from www.abcnews.com

"with at least 75,000 people based on per-capita rates for homicide, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary and auto theft. Each crime category was considered separately and weighted based on its seriousness, CQ Press said. Last year's crime leader, St. Louis, fell to No. 2. Another Michigan city, Flint, ranked third.

Detroit was pegged the nation's murder capital in the 1980s and has lost nearly 1 million people since 1950, according to the Census Bureau
."

Although people not from the Metro Area consider us to be living in Detroit, we actually live quite a long distance from the actual city - around 30 miles. We also don't go into the city very often. It's a hassle. The traffic, the parking, the beggars, the risk of violent crime. Seriously, that is a reason. You don't feel that safe down there unless you are in a very small, highly policed area of Cobo Hall, Joe Louis Area, Tiger Stadium (the new one) and Greektown.

You visit places like Chicago, or Toronto, or London and people live there. They walk around, they shop there. Those cities are vibrant and alive for the most part. There really are no large stores in the city, few pharmacies, and even fewer supermarkets. That stinks for people in the city that have to go elsewhere to shop. Many of them don't have decent transportation. In Detroit there are so many abandoned and vacant buildings you are unsure which is an actual operating building until you are there at night and the lights aren't on. When most Americans hear about Detroit they think about race riots, Devil's Night fires, housing projects, and shootings. I grew up reading the Detroit newspapers and we never ever even considered going to the city for anything. Ever.

I was there three times last year, which is more than usual. Our usual annual pilgrimage is to the Auto Show at Cobo Hall. The organizers have talked about moving it out, but I shudder to think of what would happen. Since I also live in the same county as the city, I was called for jury duty, which I went downtown for. We also went downtown for a Red Wings Game. Thus, I'm done for the year!

I also used to live in Flint when I did my clinicals which to be completely honest, I feel is much, much worse than Detroit. Detroit at least has a good pockets and people do live there. There are open business and the city has history and some attractions. Flint's entire North End should be bulldozed. It is full of rubbish piles, burnt out houses, decrepit houses, and uban blight and decay. It is just all so depressing.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Overindulgence

At work someone is always eating junk. Always. Today, my coworkers were drinking some fru fru drinks from Starbucks and urged me to have one. No thanks, sugary drinks make me sick. Then there was a reception with BOTH huge bagels and tons of regular cream cheese and huge, huge deluxe bakery donuts with about an inch of icing on each. Then later someone brought in cookies. There was brownies down another hallway. Leftover Halloween Candy down another. I am proud to say that I didn't eat any of it. to top it all off, my coworkers all got Chinese for lunch and they are go out for work for nachos and drinks. It's very hard to resist peer pressure and they sort of get upset when you don't indulge with them. Believe me, I would like to. I love donuts and bagels. Bagels are like crack to me, a recovered carb addict. I used to eat two bagels a day when I was heavier because they were 'low fat'. Sure I miss that, but not falling asleep in the morning from insulin spikes makes me feel a lot better. I wish people would not get upset with me because I can't indulge. I do feel left out, but this is my health, my life. I have to take care of myself. No one else is going to. It was almost easier when i couldn't eat wheat so I had a perfect alibi. Of course, they liked to say to that - can't you just have a bite? So a message to them: No thank you, but thanks for the invitation, I just will have to decline.

Monday, November 12, 2007

It's been a busy weekend. TOday is P's birthday so we both took the day off. We didn't do anything specific, but just hung out and did whatever we wanted. Friday P won a work raffle for Red Wings tickets. We ended up driving into the city, which is a PIA. The game was fantastic though, with really great seats. Even non-sports liking P had a great time. Saturday P's brother came over and we went out to eat at a Brazilian restaurant where they bring various cuts of meat to your table and slice off cuts for you. Wonderful, but really busy and not too relaxing. We then played a long game of Cities and Knights of catan and then Ticket to Ride. P's grandma and mum stopped in yesterday on their way to Florida and despite killing myself running around yesterday, we spent time with them. Today I went to the gym and then we went bowling. I bowled a 59 & 63. P had a really hot streak bowling. We are currently hanging out watching You tube 80's videos. Then we are going to eat Chinese food and have a Sopranos marathon tonight.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

It's snowing out.

Very lightly, but still snow. I usually walk/jog (mostly walk these days) at lunch. I am unable to do so because it is just too cold. Thus I am writing in my blog at my desk while I eat the delicous BBQ meatloaf that P made two nights ago.

Speaking of food - I'm back on gluten. I had been off gluten since July 3rd. Honestly, I looked back on it with quite a bit of trepidation because I had been so ill. The [lousy] MD needs a biopsy to diagnose for gluten disease and thus, one must eat gluten prior to having this biopsy.

I ate my first piece of bread on Monday morning for breakfast. Good, healthy, homemade 9-grain bread. 10 minutes later, the heartburn, reflux, and chest pain started. Was it psychosomatic? No, because I was expecting stomach pain and diarrhea. None of that. It was some terrible heartburn, I can assure you. The next days I continued to have heartburn. I have interestingly had no diarrhea to date [yes-there should be a limit on the amount of times I use the word 'diarrhea' in a blog]. I also am having body pains again and a dull aching pain in my navel area. Also, my skin is very itchy again & my bladder seems irritated. So we will see. What is crazy interesting is that I have energy this week. A lot of energy.
Crazy, crazy!!

Last night I did have some stomach pains.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

So the time change really has me messed up. We were in P for P's family Christmas this weekend (his mum and grandma go to FL) and my eating schedule gets off coupled with the time change really wrecks havoc on my blood sugar and thus what I ate. Tomorrow as part of my > 30 days of wheat-eating-I-need-a-biopsy-to-diagnose-celiac I will start eating wheat. I am going to start with a piece of gourmet bread that I have in my freezer. I'll keep you posted.

As P's grandma gets older (she is now 85) the family dinners get less good. Did you ever notice a tendency for old people to be reluctant to throw things away and/or keep things that SHOULD be thrown away?? My grandmother was like that big time. She would buy two liters of soda at Christmas, the store brand of course, and then keep it in the fridge half consumed and offer us some again say ... the next September. Yuck! Routinely we are at P's house and his Grandma has crap in her cupboards that expired say.... 3 years ago? For instance, P's brother wanted a shake earlier in the summer and I found the malted powder in the cupboard. It was a hard dried up rock. I turned it over and the expiration date said "1999" and it clearly was unusable. She thought it was fine and proceeded to try and use it until I stepped in. Then she got angry and defensive. She does go to Florida for half the year which may be why things don't get used and left. They aren't open, so what is the problem (ranch salad dressing, expired 06/2003)? I agree while they most likely won't kill anybody, they are not super fresh and taste that way. She served a caramel apple pie that someone had given her from Sam's Club that had been frozen for over two years. I took a tiny bit of caramel and it tasted like freezer burn. She gave us two pieces to take home because "no one ate it".

When I was a kid, I routinely had old neighbors that would generously give me a bag of candy to take home. The Candy bars were so hard you could use them to pound nails. They promptly went into the trash. My grandma used to freeze milk and then just thaw what she needed. She loved the microwave because she could quickly thaw all of her frozen stuff that had been frozen for years and 'it was a good as fresh'. No grandma, it wasn't. P's grandma had a half bag of unsalted (yuck) tortilla chips on the counter with a 'best by date of August 07". Um Grandma, it's November 4th. Plus you know they were purchased well beyond the sell by date... so those chips are in high school in freshness years.

I definitely think this is an old lady thing. Am I going to be offering flat grocery store soda, stale M & M, and have a kitchen full of rotting bananas? Frankly, I'm a little bit worried. I don't think these ladies see, hear, smell or taste the best and coupled with surviving the depression causes this I-am-offering-you-spoiled-food-syndrome.

You are now warned. Oh.. anyone want a two year old piece of caramel apple pie?

Friday, November 2, 2007

Welcome to November

I haven't been blogging because I have been incredibly tired. I just have absolutely no energy. I skipped out of the gym twice this week and again, I just don't care. I felt asleep at work today, and I don't care. I'm so, so tired and I don't think I am getting any better. I called two different GI practices today to get a 2nd opinion and they both told me that the didn't take my insurance. I told them I would pay out of pocket, but they told me they "only took patients with insurance". Feeling pretty discouraged after that. Don't really care. Just want to lay here/sleep/rest/sit quietly and not expend any energy.