2019/07/15

Ugh #62518

Da Goddess @ 08:09

The pharmacy that sends my prescriptions was slow with my pain meds. Today was started on Tylenol, which is only slightly better than nothing. Still, I took it because I needed some sort of relief…anything. Tylenol was my only option. The delivery of my meds is supposed to happen today and I can’t wait.

Since I had no pain meds, my walk was abbreviated this morning. I’ve been gradually adding distance to my meanderings; however, without meds, I basically did just enough to shake some of the stiffness I’ve had. Yesterday, I completed most of my regular route. There were, unfortunately, too many days last week when I did NO walking due to my pain level.

Last week was also notable for serious ankle pain from an old injury exacerbated by a recent fall. I’ve fallen more times in the past six or seven months than I have in the past three or four years combined. Only a couple of the recent falls have had led to new injuries. Thankfully, none have been too TOO bad. Like all our recent earthquakes (I’ve only felt two aftershocks), it leaves me feeling something worse is just around the corner. Waiting for the other shoe to drop is a morbid past time for anyone, but doubly so for me since the insurance company has decided to play games when it comes to allowing me to see doctors with whom I’ve established therapeutic relationships. In other words: the insurance company is full of doodyheads and I’m fighting for every single thing I need.

So, um, that’s what’s happening in my life.

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Oooh! Oooh! I forgot: this morning, as I was dumping my recycling in the bin, Tabby Cat came to see me. S/he is one of three strays who visit us sporadically. The other two are: Tux, a dusty gray tabby with white bib and feet. Lean and tall, too. And, Blackie. Blackie is, you guessed it, black. Blackie is the most frequent visitor and also the most skittish. Their visits almost make up for the lack of meds. ALMOST. I’m not an idiot…nothing makes up for no meds. But the cats are a wonderful distraction when I’m not feeling great.

Okay, enough of that. Time to get back to the dazzling magical content you’ve come to expect from me. I’m sorry to disappoint y’all on the regular.

2019/07/11

Hunting License

Da Goddess @ 13:32

The spiders have been going crazy in this warmer weather and it’s been difficult to keep after them. Just when I think I have the situation under control, I’m inundated with the offspring of all the arachnids I’ve destroyed.

I can’t spray for them because of Fletch, so I’m left with physically hunting them and killing them myself. Well, Fletch does help. Unfortunately, his help is limited by his interest level, which is as consistent as that of a toddler. Again, this means it’s up to me to keep the spider population in the house to the bare minimum.

The other night, I found a rather large almost translucent whitish spider. When I smooshed it with a paper towel, there was a quite audible POP. There was also an inordinate amount of humours that issued forth from this creature. They seeped through the paper towel and it was only then that I shuddered and gagged. It was just too gross, especially couple with the POP I’d just heard.

As I dragged the body to the trash, I wondered if it was even possible for the thing to fit in the bin. Fortunately, it did. Just barely. After ten minutes of vigorous hand washing, I grabbed a spare pair of heavy duty gloves and cleaned up the carnage in the bedroom. Then I washed my hands again for another ten minutes.

It was only the next day that I learned I needed a hunting license to kill something the size of that spider. Seeing as how my downstairs neighbor and the landlords are the only ones who could’ve heard, I think I might get away with it. You won’t tell anyone else, will you? Cool cool cool.

2019/07/04

Happy Independence Day!

Da Goddess @ 02:43

Flag Day 2009

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

~ The Declaration of Independence July 4, 1776

Be safe, have fun, and remember that Freedom is tentative and we must be vigilant, that we must defend it. We cannot take it for granted. Nor can we take for granted those who protect our freedoms.

God bless our troops and God bless America!

Wishing everyone a very safe day doing whatever it is you’re doing today. Please remember to have your pets safely restrained or contained once the fireworks start. Our sweet companions are oftentimes very afraid of the loud explosions and some are prone to bolt in panic. If possible, secure them indoors to reduce their level of stress.

And now I’m going to shut up and let you go have some fun!

2019/07/01

Joyful Boy

Da Goddess @ 21:08

Fletch brings an inordinate amount of joy to my life. Even when he’s being a turd, he’s funny and sweet and weird and a joy.

With this in mind, I thought spending a precious $8 on a toy for the cat was not only appropriate, but it was totally overdue. (It pays to cruise around the internet to find deals as I paid less than half of the normal price.)

Fletch’s M.O. is to lie down next to the toy and then play. He’ll do this for an hour. Then there are the drive-by sessions. Racing through the room, he’ll take a swipe at a ball, bat it around the track, and then run away, only to come back to do it again. There’s also the attack from the top method, wherein he pounces from above and goes absolutely apeshit. This is my favorite method. It’s wild and crazy and all kinds of wrong, but it’s entertaining as fuck.

No matter what’s going on in my life, Fletch makes it better. The only way this could be even more enjoyable is if he could talk.

P.S. Fletch would like you to know this pic in no way captures his current svelte figure. My boy is definitely rockin’ a summer bod these days.

2019/06/28

Apologies

Da Goddess @ 03:41

I didn’t intend to blog so little in June. It’s been a…um…uhhh…rather interesting month, to be frank. More on this at a later date.

———-

Apropos of nothing: since they’ve done live versions of All in the Family and The Jeffersons, why not give us an episode or two of Soap? That show was ahead of its time and would be perfect to play for today’s audience.

Jacaranda Lane

Da Goddess @ 03:14

It’s Jacaranda time in SoCal. It’s absolutely gorgeous when these trees are in bloom.

Everyone who’s followed me for more than two posts should know I love purple. Purple shirts. Purple pants. Purple people eaters. Purple plants. And, yes, even purple hair. There can never be too much purple in my world. Okay, maybe purple on every wall in a house…if it’s the wrong shade. Otherwise, I’m all about the purple. So, of course, the Jacaranda tree is a favorite.

I didn’t know when I moved in that I’d have a Jacaranda in the yard to admire every day. I didn’t know there’d be one at the end of our private drive (or rather, the beginning of the drive…but I consider it the end as it’s at the beginning, which is one of the last things I see as I leave…). The pictured tree above is that end of the road tree. Look how it shares its purpleness! It looks enchanting, doesn’t it?

If I were to create a fairy tale setting, it would have the trees what bloom purple. Yes, indeedy.

From Wikipedia:

The tree grows to a height of up to 20 m (66 ft).[6] Its bark is thin and grey-brown in colour, smooth when the tree is young though it eventually becomes finely scaly. The twigs are slender and slightly zigzag; they are a light reddish-brown in colour. The flowers are up to 5 cm (2.0 in) long, and are grouped in 30 cm (12 in) panicles. They appear in spring and early summer, and last for up to two months. They are followed by woody seed pods, about 5 cm (2.0 in) in diameter, which contain numerous flat, winged seeds. The Blue Jacaranda is cultivated even in areas where it rarely blooms, for the sake of its large compound leaves. These are up to 45 cm (18 in) long and bi-pinnately compound, with leaflets little more than 1 cm (0.39 in) long.

It also mentionsa white version, but I care not for such a boring color of flowering tree. Give me PURPLE!

Also interesting:

Water extracts using the dried powdered Jacaranda mimosifolia show higher antimicrobial action in vitro against Bacillus cereus and Escherichia coli than gentamicin sulfate does. The extract also acts against Staphylococcus aureus in vitro.

How fantastic it is to discover a possible alternative to fighting harmful bacteria, especially E. coli and Staph, two very stubborn bacteria. Now if only we could get Jacaranda mimosifolia off the vulnerable list!

See? It’s possible to be both beautiful AND helpful!

And that’s all I have to say about that.

Do you have a favorite tree? I want to hear all about it. Even if you don’t know what it’s called, I still want to hear. I love learning about…well, everything!

P.S. the house in the picture is the home of two lovely dogs. I have stories about them, which will be told in another post.

2019/05/21

Grumble Grumble

Da Goddess @ 20:20

burnt pizza

I burnt my cheap frozen pizza. I’m still eating it, but it’s not as yummy as it should be.

I guess the charcoal crust will counteract any enjoyment I might experience during the ingestion of said food product. Is it still considered food? How much char takes it out of the food realm? If I were to leave this out by the rat trap, I’m pretty sure PETA would protest. The ASPCA would take away my cat.

Anyhow, if this is my last entry, I want you to tell my mother I love her so.

2019/05/20

Home-ish Tour, Part I

Da Goddess @ 02:26

I thought I’d finally start posting pics of my happy little home. The first one is my very tiny kitchen. What you see is the entirety of the kitchen. Except for the small fridge that you can see just the edge of on the right. Yep. My kitchen is really, truly that small. Storage is practically nil. I don’t care much, but I would’ve preferred a bit more counter space and more than just a single, small, awkwardly placed cupboard.

my very tiny kitchen

P.S. why is the picture not resized properly? Is it just me not seeing it the right way? Ugh. Doing a post from my phone isn’t the best way to go, but it’s where my pics reside at the moment. I totally need to upload them to the computer. I will. Someday. Someday. Maybe. (Btw, Someday, Someday Maybe by Lauren Graham is an excellent novel. Please read it. Please.)

2019/05/18

Five Three. FIVE. THREE.

Da Goddess @ 00:01

I’ve made it to 53.
For the first time in ages, I feel free.
It might seem silly or somewhat trite,
But I’m making note, as is my right.
I never expected I’d live so long;
I figured by now, I’d be gone.
But now it appears I’ve made it through
And I attribute much of this to you.
You’ve been amazing, of this I’m sure.
You’ve given me friendship true and pure.
I think this is a good place to stop,
As I’ve run out of rhymes…*

This year’s mission statement is:

* No reason for this to have been a rather awful poem, it just happened. I promise not to make a habit of this. Thank you for your support.

2019/05/16

Seventeen Years

Da Goddess @ 02:59

Seventeen fucking years. 17. SEVENTEEN! I’m astounded by how many years have slipped by.

A lot of shit has gone down since I first started this blog. The worst was last year, of course. But because of you, I made it through. Thank you.

I’m not going to say much more. Really just wanted to make a note of this blogiversary and then hobble back to bed.

Thanks, everyone! I love you.

2019/05/07

Dear Dad: One Year Later

Da Goddess @ 10:30

Dad, it’s been a year since you left us and so much has happened. I know you’ve been looking out for us because we’re all still here. So many things could have taken any one of us, especially C and Mom, but, again, we’re still here. Thank you for that.

Thank you for also making it possible to get set up on my own again. I’m not 100% myself yet, but I’m getting there. I keep wanting to call and tell you about so many things. Then I catch myself and remember you’re no longer here. Physically, that is, because I feel you around all the time. I’m so grateful for that. I’m grateful to be reminded of you at every turn. The crows remind me. My landlord’s cars remind me. Just having a place to live, to call my own, reminds me. Thank you thank you thank you.

There are still tears and I think it’s safe to say there will always be a chance of tears. I know you lived a lot longer than you thought you would. I’m glad you did. I’m glad you got to know your grandkids and even happier they got to know you. Thank you for loving them so much!

I also know you felt you were ready to go. I understand. Rather, my head understands while my heart continues to struggle. 87 is a great age. There were times I thought we were going to lose you before — heart attacks are as scary for the family as they are for the patient! You were always too stubborn to go early. I guess a part of me thought you’d defy death forever, as unlikely as that is. All those years of “rehearsals” you’d think I’d have been more prepared. You could have been 105 years old and that would still have felt too soon to me. That said, I get it. It was your time. I’m just glad you didn’t have months or years of pain and suffering. Going as quickly as you did, I consider it a blessing.

I’m going to miss you forever, Dad. I will. All of us will. I’m going to keep thinking of all the good times we had. I’ll remember some of the bad, too. It’s only natural. But I won’t dwell on those because your goodness, subtle kindnesses, inner marshmallow, and your love for your family were stronger than any flaws you had, even that wicked loud roar when you were mad.

It feels like only yesterday I was rushing to hospital. Again, it’s been a crazy year with grieving your death, Mom in and out and in and out of hospital, C’s stroke, the uncertainty of my health, the greater uncertainty of housing…the year was occasionally going by too quickly or crawling along, depending on the memories I was facing, the way things usually go. It pretty much feels like one great big surreal fever dream. When grief engulfs me, I let myself feel it. I acknowledge that heartbreaking sadness washing over me. I accept it as one would any pain you feel because that’s part of life and loving. I’m glad you were my dad. I’m glad you ARE MY dad. I just wish you were here with us live and in person. Since that isn’t possible, I focuse on how lucky I was to have you as a father. Thank you.

I miss you. I miss you. I’ll always miss you. And I love you. Always. ALWAYS.

Thanks for being my dad and for loving me.

With love from your odd child,
Me

2019/05/02

(T)Hairsday — The Color Purple

Da Goddess @ 06:15

I’m still purple. Actually, I’m MORE purple at the moment.

I’ve stopped thinking about my hair color except when I catch sight of myself in the mirror. But other people comment. The comments are always, surprisingly, positive. From little old ladies at the store to my doctors, people have been kind.

It’s not like I’m the only one in the world with vivid hair, so that may well be the very thing that’s softened people’s response to mine. All I know is it makes me happy. For less than $10, I’m getting a couple months worth of joy. Not bad, eh?

The Color Purple

That’s about as good a pic as I can get with the phone. It doesn’t give you the full extent of my purpleness, the depth of the color, nor does it show you the smile on my face. But, trust me when I say it’s very purple, deeply so, and it’s nothing but the embodiment of joy for me.

Now, if you’re considering doing something similar:

1. Consider your skin color. You’ll probably want to avoid colors that wash out your complexion or cause you to look ill. Think about your favorite piece of clothing, the one that gets you compliments. That color is likely what will be a good choice for your hair.

2. Temporary color is a great choice for anyone wanting to give this a trial run. I started with Colorista by L’Oreal. It came with several pairs of gloves (hang on to the extras as they come in super handy for future hair experiments) since one bottle is enough for a couple applications for most people. If you have very long or thick hair, you may require more product than someone with shorter and/or thinner hair.

3. Don’t spend an arm and a leg for color. I got my color at Walmart. The price was excellent. The location was convenient. For me? Doesn’t get better than that!

4. Pay attention to the color swatches on the box. If your hair is very dark, you may need to lighten it before you start playing with color. Here’s the trick with that: buy two boxes of THE least expensive hair dye. Go for anything that DOESN’T say “ash” or “golden” as either of those can cause your vibrant color to look off. I recommend getting two boxes because it makes life easier to have a second on hand in case you need to go lighter.

5. Do NOT do more than one hair lightening or dye job per day! Your hair can’t take it unless you’re using professional products and, if you’re going that route, just have this done professionally (you’ll save yourself a lot of angst).

6. After your hair has lightened up, go ahead and apply the temporary color. Make sure you wear gloves! Follow the directions provided. Seriously. Follow. The. Directions.

7. If, after the first application, you don’t feel your color is bold enough, wait a day. If you find it necessary, do a second application. This generally does the trick. The second application tends to make the color pop. POP. Pop. Pop. POP! That’s kind of the whole point of going with unconventional colors, isn’t it?

8. When/if you’re ready for something more permanent or are looking for color that lasts a few extra washes, try Arctic Fox. It’s a semi permanent color and is holding up quite well. I’m currently sporting Arctic Fox Purple Rain. I waited a week before going with a second application and it was just what I wanted.

9. Use a gentle shampoo after coloring. Harsher shampoo will strip the color and that’s pretty much the opposite of what you want. Condition well.

10. If you’ve decided to go with a permanent color, try Schwartzkopf’s Göt2be products. They’re bright and affordable.

11. If you went and played around with your color, please comment below with a link to photos of your hair. I really really want to see and I want to celebrate your courage.

2019/05/01

TJH: INSPIRE — Whiskers Wednesday – May Day Edition

Da Goddess @ 02:52

Whiskers Wednesday

There’s no such thing as too much Fletch and I realized I’d not posted anything of him since we moved.

He’s my lovely boy. Such a trooper. So sweet. Sometimes an absolute turd. But he’s MY turd. Respect the turd.

“The turd turd turd, the turd is the word…”

Anyhow, enough of that. Please admire the whiskers.

2019/04/28

Kalo Pascha! Happy Easter!

Da Goddess @ 00:01

Christos Anesti! ~ “Christ is risen!”

Alithos Anesti! ~ “Truly He is risen!”

Christos Anesti 2019

“Christos anesti ek nekron
thanato thanaton patisas
kai tois en tois mnimisi
zoen charisamenos”

Christ is risen from the dead, by death trampling down upon death, and to those in the tombs He has granted life.

2019/03/31

Eight Turns

Da Goddess @ 18:32

Because my new home is teeny tiny, I don’t have the luxury of a dishwasher. At least, not a dishwasher run by electricity. It all comes down to me.

I’ll be the first to admit I’m not currently as diligent about getting the job done as I should be, but they always end up done eventually.

Because I’ve been trained well in the art of pathogen elimination (“we can’t be all ‘ooh! Pathogens…having a party'” as per the man who ran the food handlers’ course I had to attend to work in a restaurant back in my teens), I’ll fess up to having a bit of an obsession with making sure every dirty dish as clean as possible (this was something the former bf didn’t worry about & which often led to me rewashing anything and everything he handwashed during our time together). In order to do this, I’ve developed a ritual.

1. Hot water. Lots of it. This causes me an unwelcome level of agita as I have to turn on the water full force in order to get any heat at all to said water. I live in California. We’re notoriously droughty. But this is the only way for me to get my hot water and needs must.

2. Soap. I need an adequate amount of dish soap to ensure each item is properly cleaned. The former bf would notoriously use a single drop for at least half the entire amount of dirty dishes. That’s inadequate and one of the reasons I rewashed his work on a regular basis. As it stands, as much as I’m pinching pennies, I will NOT compromise when it comes to anything that could possibly make me sick. Food poisoning caused by poorly cleaned surfaces is not an option in my home. Thus I definitely use more than one drop of dish soap per item. I bought a large bottle of dish soap in January and, surprisingly (to the former guy), there’s still more than three quarters of that soap left (he considered anything more than that one drop wasteful). In fact, the smaller bottle I’d filled is still half full.

3. Cleaning utensil. I don’t use a sponge. I’d rather mainline pure clostridium than allow a disgusting petri dish of a sponge to touch anything my food will be in contact with. No matter how many times you run a sponge through the microwave or dishwasher (and, frankly speaking, if you have a dishwasher, just fucking use it, okay? It sanitizes beautifully), that sponge will never not be anything more than a pathogen delivery system.

So what DO I use? A brush. A glorious brush from the dollar store or IKEA. You don’t need to spend more than a buck or two for a brush. More expensive brushes don’t perform any better, they simply cost more.

Because brushes lack soft absorbent surfaces, they don’t retain bacteria or fungi the way a sponge does. That said, at least once a week, let your brush sit in bleach for a minimum of one minute to help eliminate any germs hiding in the opening where the bristles attach to the brush wand.

4. Friction is your friend. You don’t have to scrub hard if you have decent friction. Enough friction to create a good amount of bubbles. Bubbles help lift germs from the surface of whatever you’re washing, which then means they can be sent down the drain and away from your gut. (This same principle applies to handwashing as well, as does the amount of soap you use.)

5. Have some fun. Why not? If, like me, you’re stuck washing dishes by hand, it doesn’t have to completely suck. For me, it’s an opportunity to think about things or to let my imagination run wild about projects I’d like to tackle. It’s also prime music time. I put on music I enjoy and let myself just blank out for a bit…or sway or bop along with the beat.

5a. I also indulge my secret, deeply hidden OCD.

Every dish or glass gets the eight turn treatment each side. (Silverware and cooking utensils get a slightly modified eight turns, but I’ll spare you the details.) I hold the plate or bowl firmly by the edge, scrub quickly up and down (or back and forth, or side to side… however you need to imagine it to make it make sense to you) until I get a decent amount of bubbles in that linear pattern that looks lovely. Then, a quarter turn, repeat the scrub. Followed by several more turns with more bubbles. Basically, I end up doing, you guessed it, eight turns. I repeat the same process on the bottom of the plate, bowl, pan, etc.

Why eight? Four alone would seem inadequate. Five would be uneven. Six wouldn’t allow for every rotation to give equal attention to the surface of the item. Seven, again, odd. Eight turns means each direction gets two chances to get rid of food and germs. The twelve it would take to get each turn the equal number of scrubs just seems like overkill. I’ll do it if I must to get rid of everything bad, but this rarely happens.

Eight turns. Each side. Lots of suds (they don’t need to be big bubbles, just sudsy).

6. Rinsing. Hot water, obviously. Both sides, natch.

7. Drying. Make sure you allow your newly cleaned items on a newly cleaned surface, be it a clean towel or a rack. I use a metal rack because it’s the only option I have available, but it’s also what I’d choose due to the ability to sanitize it.

I allow the clean items to air dry. Towel drying has the potential to transfer icky, mean, nasty pathogens to everything you just spent a fair amount of effort to clean. Don’t let the pathogens party on your watch!

***

And there you have my insane approach to handwashing dishes. If I had a two well sink, I’d include a bleach dip. But I don’t so I can’t and I’m okay with it.

Do you have a specific approach to dishwashing? I would love to hear about it.

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