Weekend Coffee Share, What Works for Me

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Natalie the Explorer. It’s 38 degrees outside, but it’s warm and toasty in my house. We Floridians are not so brave with cold weather. Most of us, that is. After eating cereal, I’m drinking green matcha tea in my quest to be healthy. I ran out of half-caff coffee today and don’t think I can handle the full throttle coffee more than 1-2 times a week.

It seems to me that I have to drink copious amounts of water if I’m habitually drinking the coffee ‘zilla.’ Otherwise, my legs may bother me. Yeah, I know I sound old. I’m pretty sensitive to the slightest changes though, because I don’t want small things to get worse. I intend to have an active body for many more years. Movement is very important to me at this point in my life!

Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

For breakfast, I had Nature’s Path Organic Flax Plus Raisin Bran, mixed with Great Grains with blueberries and sliced banana with turmeric mix powder sprinkled on top in an effort to maintain my fiber, energy levels, and address arthritic pain. Two servings of fruit, one of grain, and one of dairy. The Nature’s Path has an overall rating of close to 5 stars, but the flakes look like think carboard cut into flakes, hence the reason I mixt it with Great grains, something I’m familiar with, which makes it more acceptable to me. The Nature’s Path is expensive, so I might not always buy that.

My boyfriend thinks my breakfast habit sounds atrocious, but it’s really healthy, and I consider it a simple, yet comforting feast on a daily basis. He’s never been married and has lived alone without a female influence for a long time. He’s trying to be healthier now, due to my influence, so he says. He’s approaching 50. 🙂 When we went to Savannah recently, we ate in a Bed and Breakfast with dishes inspired by Indian influences. I loved the spices on their potatoes! He is allergic and had to get the spices left off. I think I was affected by turmeric at first years ago, but I never had dangerous reactions and seem to have developed a tolerance.

I’ve been compared to Sheldon Cooper when it comes to my dietary habits. So be it; I know what works for me! I love Thai food, Mediterranean, Chinese, and sometimes Mexican as well as usual American favorites, all with mild spice. However, I bought a turmeric ketchup recently and love it on my grass fed burgers at home. (Who knew burgers could eat grass, right?) 😉 Still, when I go to these types of restaurants, I usually order the same thing. I know what works for me. Having been told I had a slight milk allergy encouraged me to avoid cheese frequently. Some say I obsess over food or seem a little O.C.D. about it. Hey, it works for Sheldon, why not me?

On the writing front, I am tired out from the day job and don’t do much on the writing front currently except to jot down ideas, and I still have them, thank God! I wrote a second installment for Crossroads Diner, a runner-up in Rave Reviews Book Club short story contest, and now have an idea for a third, that, yes, I have written down! They could all be read as stand alone. I love the idea of many flawed people, some holding up a perfect facade, others carrying their scars outwardly, all coming together by chance to rectify themselves or make their way.

Ellie is still in my notebook, crossing paths with Malachi, who has made it into publication since almost two years ago! You can learn more about my writing and books at https://www.amazon.com/Pamela-Schloesser-Canepa/e/B01E0KV716

Next week is Literacy week, which got me thinking about my writing and where I am going with it. I am investing in several different genres now. I still don’t know if I might streamline it and stick with just one. It seems I am largely writing for myself and my moods, and it is cathartic quite often. I’ll have fun talking about books I’ve read and learning what my kids like to read next week. It’s time for me to get out of this chair though, and get a little exercise for the day. Tomorrow, I’ll have a massage to prepare for the week.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Weekend Coffee Share, Full Moon Effects

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share,  hosted by Natalie the Explorer.  It’s a nice, breezy day, and I’m enjoying some half-caff with vanilla cteamer. Pull up a chair!

I enjoyed my breakfast this morning, as well as  a stretch for my back followed by  a short gym visit with my son where I used the stationary bike. I was feeling tired this morning. I wonder how this week’s full moon may have affected that?

I drove home from dinner at the neighborhood Thai restaurant last night, looking at that beautiful moon.When talking to my friend later, he said, ” Do you  think the full moon affects your aches and pains?” It’s true, I was really feeling them yesterday. 

Each little “lotus” is plastic and has edges.

At any rate, my morning laziness included stretching out and laying on my lotus mat, which I also call my pin needle mat. It’s theoretically supposed to release the chemicals you’d produce during acupuncture, and to be honest, I do feel relaxed after it sometimes even fall asleep on it. I ordered it online. If my issue is anxiety, it could also have therapeutic results.

Is anxiety my issue? I’ve mentioned here before about the Mind Body connection with pain. Yes, I somewhat believe in it. I work on improving physically and mentally. However, I haven’t paid enough attention to my dog, another source of fun and relaxation. He will get a trio to the park during Thanksgiving week. I mean, I’m off 3 extra days! This morning, I threw the ball for him as I ate breakfast.

Here he is, anxiously awaiting me to throw the ball!

He’s small enough, and the ball is soft enough that I can throw it inside. In addition, he’s so darn cute when he’s anxious and excited! This 10 year old dogs acts like a puppy again. It puts a smile on my face. 🙂

So, I’ll be spending Thanksgiving holiday with local family, I’ll see my friend/companion Friday, and there will be dog-play time! Other plans will surface, I’m sure, but simple is the way for me these days!

I hope you all have a blessed, fun, and happy Thanksgiving!

Weekend Coffee Share, 7/11. Black Lives Matter; Love One Another

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Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali.  If we were having coffee today, I would savor half-caff with cinnamon creamer and honey, because there are some days I don’t even drink coffee anymore, but rather I drink the Green Macha Tea. I know it gives me some energy and is healthy, but it sure isn’t coffee!  Even the half-caff gives me noticeable effects these days.

A friend shared with me that today there is a challenge for families to use their chalk art to express that Black Lives Matter.  Since I have invested in sidewalk chalk and playdough in my attempts to rest my shoulder from repetitive stress and save the writing for another time, she saw the art I did about a week ago.  So, despite the fact that I am not a high class artist, but rather a person who likes to express myself and keep my hands busy, I have participated in #families4blacklives.    My mother helped edit my neatness and my son approved of it.  🙂  There is still time for you to express yours if you feel so moved!

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Yes, all lives matter, but Jesus told us “Blessed be the poor.” We replied, “Shouldn’t we just bless everyone, Jesus?”  To which he just shook his head.  African Americans have been subject to slavery, Jim Crow laws, and just plain racism since around 1600.  I did not draw what I did to be political, but rather to be supportive. Love is not political, after all.

My dog has been climbing into my bed in the middle of the night a few nights in a row.  The excessive sunlight, COVID anxiety, hot flashes, or teacher anticipation stress regarding the approaching school year have been making it hard to get back to sleep after the restroom wake up in the middle of the night lately. Let’s not forget my shoulder, which prevents me entirely from sleeping on the right side and requires me to only sleep on the left.  As a result, my left leg feels tense and it seems like sciatica is trying to creep up again. A visit to the chiropractor two days ago seems to have helped the sciatic nerve and leg.

My shoulder has been making great progress. I am still seeing an orthopedic surgeon hoping he can tell me more about my MRI results and what the best or worst case scenarios may be.  Physical therapy has helped it immensely and I’m doing the assigned exercises at home.  My reach with that shoulder and arm is much better, and I’m happy with the results so far! We’ll see what the surgeon says. In addition to the arm and shoulder soreness, I have an issue with my hand that feels arthritic. Yes, I got a steroid shot, but it seems to have worn off.  Ever moving onward, I shall never give up!  So much for limiting my writing.  My hand is ready for a rest now.  It has been good to catch up!

I hope you all have an enjoyable weekend and a great week to follow, whether you are in the house, out at work, busying yourself with art, writing or other creativity or working on whatever you need to do.

Weekend Coffee Share, an Island

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“No man is an island” -John Dunne

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclecti Ali. It has been another week full of Live meetings with my sixth graders, the usual online teacher stuff, a broken down computer, and self-publishing a book, which made for a happy break from loneliness or monotony. So, I ordered a new laptop. I use the work laptop, but the microphone does not work, and I’ve been too lazy to take it in to the designated repair center. I’m happy about the new book. One regular reader has told me I’ve taken an “artistic leap,” as it focuses on one character, a young man going through his identity crisis after dropping out of college and obtaining a job where lies and pretending earn his pay.. Give it a look if you like! it intersects with some characters and events from undercurrents in time, but it can also stand on its own.

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https://www.amazon.com/dp/B086VYJYZX

In the last month, I’ve had a pain flare-up, likely due to stress and fear. The news stirs my fear, and going to the grocery store in a mask is weird, but I do it. I feel like I have severe OCD, anxiety, paranoia, and agorophobia. Well, 80% of the world also does right now. I do have arthritis, but there may also be something else. I did so well after physical therapy at the start of this year, but the pain is back intermittently, and I aggravated it by going gung-ho two weeks ago trying a new exercise with light weights. Turns out I should not ever lift anything above shoulder level. 😦 No one told me that; I had to learn the hard way. )

It is relevant that I am currently reading something by Sarno about the Mind-Body Connection. It’s quite interesting, about how emotions or past trauma can cause or prolong chronic pain. Also, certain personality types are more prone to tension-myositis. When I explore these ideas, I feel more in control. Though, I am not really, but I feel it becomes possible.

Family

I am blessed that I have my family here, though. My 78 year old mother, and my 24 year old son. He had his birthday last Sunday and we took a walk in a park just he and I, then came home and my boyfriend came over and we all ordered a great meal from Outback. I bought a cheesecake the day before, so we pigged out on all of that. My dog is also great company in these times; he seems to enjoy having us here, since Mom and I are always here, and my son is here a few days a week since he is working between 20 to 30 hours a week.

My dog has been anxious, though. Perhaps it was because of a stormy day the other day. He seemed to really like energy, or maybe he was preoccupied. And when the storm started, he was very on edge. I had walked him for, and noticed stickers and his leg, so I tried to get one out and he snarled and snapped at me. That is unusual. I kept telling him it was okay and then he started licking my hands as if he really felt sorry. He’s really a good dog. His age in dog years right now would be about 58, sort of young to be a cranky old man. But maybe he’s getting arthritis or something like that similar to what’s going on with me.

My mom took him to the vet, and she said everything looked kind of normal but based on what we had told her she was going to do some blood tests. We are still waiting on the results, but also based on what we had told her, she gave him a chewable medicine and I’m just going to call it doggie Prozac. It seems fitting. He’s in really good spirits today, but not really eating much. So, we pray there is nothing really seriously wrong. He was a stray for three years before becoming hours, and I know there were some hard times, it was evident when we first brought him home. I consider him to be a dog with PTSD, God bless him. I love that dog.

Last night I stayed up a little too late watching Homeland on Showtime with my free trial. I am definitely hooked on that show, as it has many twists and turns and OMG moments. It was a treat to myself to binge watch something again, as I can’t do that much during the week. I do try to take at least two yoga classes per week and I exercise on the back porch about two times a week, trying to stay healthy. Balance, right?

As I mentioned before, my arm and shoulder are kind of bugging me today, so I am writing this via speech to text on my phone. I do need to go back and check for errors. I hope you all have as good a week as possible and taken some sunshine. If I have not visited your weekend coffee share today, please feel free to leave your link in the comments area. I can visit your post via my phone. I’m planning to take it easy today. 🙂 Sending a virtual hug!

Weekend Coffee Share. Summer Goals!

Welcome to my Weekend Coffee Share, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali. This is the week I started my true relaxation and “detox” from stress, including occasional half-cup-of coffee days. I’m writing here and there, but I have no set deadlines this summer.

I do have goals, though. Staying healthy and not feeling stiff or pained every day are two of the biggest. The issue came up last week when my boyfriend and I went on a four hour drive to the memorial for my best friend’s husband. I get stiff just from sitting in a car for those few hours, and we came back the next afternoon.

 Friends are also family.

It was an emotional visit, but this visit was also very life-affirming. I’ve known my friend since age 13. We know so much about each other and have seen each other through some really hard times. We’ve been separated many times by circumstances and distance. Her second husband recently became ill and was hospitalized at the end. He was one of the best husbands in my opinion, even though I only met him once. She loved him very much, and everything she said at the memorial just showed she was full of appreciation for her time with him and relief that his pain was over.  In other words, she was not a basket case at all.  Her husband, whom she has known five to six years and been married to for three, had been sick in the last two years.  Near the end, he developed a rare disease, calciphylaxis, and was in the hospital for most of this last year.  It breaks my heart, but in talking with her I could see that she wasn’t dwelling on the sorrow, and instead was focusing on the wonderful times they had together.  I want to make sure to go and see her or spend time with her more often.

After returning, I’ve been setting a lot of appointments this week.  Routine stuff, and I made it to yoga twice in one week!  I felt great after yesterday’s class, but I feel sore today, so maybe I just have to get used to it.  I also went and tried out a place called Stretch Zone that does assisted stretch.  I decided I’d go back, so I purchased a month’s package to see how I improve after that month.  “Spend all you have for loveliness,” someone said, somewhere.  I used to spend it on vacations and concerts, now I am having to invest in being healthy and a whole person.  In my opinion, well worth it!  It’ll make my next vacation more enjoyable.  I also took my furbaby to get a haircut yesterday.  Yeah, he knows he’s handsome. 🙂

Beside that and binge-watching The Handmaid’s Tale, I’ve been working with a narrator to get Detours in Time onto audio, and after that, Undercurrents in Time as well! I’m trying to finish the Malachi manuscript, but I find I get pretty stiff when sitting in the same place for too long (as mentioned above).  Sometimes I stand near the kitchen counter and type.   I will be posting some brief excerpts in the next week or two!  In reading, I’m alternating between a Kindle book and its audio. That seems to work with my goal of not being too still. Please pray for me so I can get this book finished!  I think I am incorporating a good plan to keep moving.

I hope you all have a great week and are enjoying your summer. Happy Pride month to those of you who are, or have a friend or loved one that is, LGBTQ.  Happy summer to all!

Weekend Coffee Share. “Everything was Beautiful…”

For the animals. This is my weekend coffee share, hosted by Allison at http://eclecticali.wordpress.com every weekend.  Friday and Monday are days off of work for me.  Finally!  Nonetheless, I dreamed work dreams on both Friday and Saturday night, probably because by Sunday a.m., I still hadn’t spend anymore than fifteen minutes on work that I brought home, and I always bring home work!  Above is the album cover for my new Moby c.d., and it is beautiful.  The animals look so human.  His music really takes me away, which, as you can tell, I really need.  Anyhow, I think I read somewhere that Moby is a vegetarian, which is something I think about doing but haven’t yet, for a few different reasons.

I took good care of myself Friday; I had lunch with an old friend and then shopped at a so-called upper scale consignment shop.  I got a pedicure and got out for fun singing karaoke with my boyfriend.  Saturday, I met some work friends for lunch and afterward, my son and I took our dog, Bixby, to the dog park.  Bixby fell in love.  Oh, he has been fixed, but he always seems to find one dog that he wants to follow around and try to dominate.  Dog-training does not seem to help that.

He pretty much chased this one dog from one end of the dog park to the other!  It was fun to watch though, including the way the other dog resisted his advances.  Smart pup, she was!  After that, we came home and I gave him a bath, so he could return to his clean, fluffy self.

So, tomorrow I will exercise and go to the chiropractor.  I really need that; it seems I have carpal tunnel, and I’m dead set against surgery at this point in my life.  I also have arthritis.  Boo.  I’ve been told before that one should reduce carbs to keep arthritis at bay.  Well, I do try.  I’ve thought about vegeterianism, because I hate cooking meat, but I worry that if I adopted that lifestyle, I would end up eating more carbs to satisfy my hunger.  Am I wrong on this point?  I mean, I do need to eat more greens and want to feel healthier, overall.  That, and I love animals.  I also thought about Paleo, even if it’s on and off, because that way I’d really reduce the carbs.  I have to be careful, because I also get spastic colon, a syndrome that came to me via heredity and ample stress.  Sigh.  I’d be glad to hear from any vegetarians or Paleo enthusiasts about what has worked for you.

I’ve done some great self-care this weekend that I had put off for too long.  Sadly, I will have to carve out time today and maybe on my day off tomorrow for the paperwork I brought home from work.  I will not fret; this won’t last forever.  My summer will come, and it will be full of fun, writing, and my character, Malachi!

Have a great week, friends!

#WeekendCoffeeShare. Full Cup, Please!

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Welcome to my 9/15 entry for the #WeekendCoffeeShare, hosted by Allison at Eclectic Ali.  Please  bring the beverage of your choice, or enjoy a Gevalia Keureg coffee like I am having.  I know I am not the best hostess, but you’re here for the conversation, right?  😉

Thank God it’s Saturday!  It has been a busy week, with full cups of coffee daily!  Monday, I went to the chiropractor after my day of teaching, which is something I’ve been doing weekly for about a month. I went to a chiropractor before, but it has been three years. My only thought is, why did I put this off for so long? I always feel so much better after leaving there, except for my neck, which I have to hold steady and face it straight ahead for a few hours. The neck always seems to need adjustment and is much better the next day. So that is something for my health that I added to my schedule. Tuesday, I went to work in a skirt and sleeveless blouse for a morning meeting, then after work, I stayed and had a small dinner on-site so that I would be ready for Open House that night. This meant I was on-site at school for 12 hours that day, which is a little too much for me.  The rest of the week, I didn’t do much outside of the work schedule, partly because grades were due Friday.  I probably brought a little more paperwork home than usual. Ugh.  My wrists have bothered me for for a little over a week, and I really feel that today. I think it’s arthritis and/or my body is reminding me how old it is getting. Thanks, bod! However, I am making adjustments today so that I can write!

I have decided to bring out my Dragon headset again. This was a gift from my mom about four years ago and it lets me speak my thoughts into the microphone, and then edit later. I haven’t used it in a while, probably because of the misunderstandings it seems to have when I speak. Trust me, they are minor, and I have my hands crossed comfortably while this post is actually getting written. Perhaps Dragon will help me get a lot of writing done without much pain to my wrists. Believe me, I had really put off writing for a while due to the discomfort I had felt starting probably four or five years ago. However, when I look back to that time, I also realize there was probably a little bit of depression going on with me, and that can really paralyze one’s dreams and goals. I just kept thinking, this will only get worse with age; there’s no way I can keep working.  How can I write that book I want to publish?

At any rate, today I am thankful that I pushed past those feelings.  I think I hurt just as much now, but not as much inwardly.  My inner voice tells me, “Crap, it hurts, but I’ve got to get up and do as much as I can today, there are lots of people worse off than I am!”   Whereas, that voice used to say, “Why do I have to hurt so much? I can’t do this, I can’t do that….”  Well, now I’m doing it anyway.  Mind over matter.  I have heard that as we get older, we get more stubborn, and I think pain is all relative.  🙂  However, I realize I do seem to get cranky more towards others, or maybe I have less patience due to chemical/hormonal changes.  Well, it’s natural, and I do try to think before speaking.  Don’t get me wrong, I think I am pretty patient with my middle-schoolers; after all, they are middle-schoolers!

So, I didn’t get much writing done this week, but I got a student newsletter finalized for my Journalism class!  I am so proud of them and their work.  I got some beta reader notes for my short prequel story starring Milt and Tabitha from Detours in Time, so I hope to be working on that in just a few minutes.  I am working to make this statement come true:  “If you dream it, you can do it.”  I have so many writing ideas for the next few years!

On that note, I am off to editing land.  I hope you all have a great weekend and a great week, and thanks for stopping by!  Visit other Weekend Coffee Shares from the blogging community at Eclectic Ali.  Namaste and God bless!

A is for Arthritis. #AtoZChallenge

4/01/17

A is for arthritis.

It will not stop me,

Only delay me

I will not bow to it,

Yet I know it’s there;

It sidetracked me long enough.

It won’t be easy,

But I have my Army,

And I won’t cave in.

 

  • “Army” could also be read as “Advil.” 🙂

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***Note:  I wasn’t going to do this.  Because of my arthritis.  Therefore, in rebellion, I’ll start my challenge by writing about arthritis.  Take that!  I also wasn’t going to do this because of my many other writing projects; because of my busy full-time job, my family requirements, volunteer commitments, blah, blah, blah.  Let’s face it.  I am a writer.  My students have been asking me about that a lot as the word seems to be going around.   I want to inspire them to do an alphabet journal and I will share some of my A-Z entries to inspire them.  Can anyone think of a better reason to rebel against my aches and my fatigue? I was sure I could not follow the rules and may not keep up with responding to others’ blogs.  We will see; one can only try, right?  I might as well let my mind take the helm!

The theme for my blog is “Who I am.” Yes, it’s wide open.  It will include little tidbits about me, poems I’ll share, and stories.  I hope you don’t think I’m a cheat.  I am a little bit of a rebel, though.  Just ask my yoga instructors. 🙂  As I said, one can only try, right?  Let’s do this!

Interested in doing the A-Z blog challenge?  Visit http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/

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