Saturday, December 12, 2015

I did it myself; 45+ channels, crystal clear sound. It’s not brain surgery (pardon the pun).

Crazy person.

I’m cutting the cord…sort of.

I bought a $69 dollar, 19 inch, refurbished,TV at WalMart (gotta love WM) and HDTV antenna. I live in the mountains. I discontinued the landline, and use the cellphone. It’s a Tracfone, serviceable, but, its no charge; I’m disabled. I use my internet every blessed day and I own two TV’s and a Fire Stick.

Last month, I called Armstrong, to the tune of $200+/- per month. That’s a lot cable. I explained the situation, no landline, and keep the internet and pull the plug for TV (the fishing channel…really?). TV is manageable, and dropped down at $125+/-. Armstrong has excellent service.

I assembled TV (the left-hand is a bear, the four screws in the base for the TV), I lugged the set in my bedroom (its light) and antenna, (20 tries, I finally took duct tape and plastered the signals on the window…again, my left-hand). 

I did it myself; 45+ channels, crystal clear sound. It’s not brain surgery (pardon the pun).

Keep in mind, no internet and no TV; the wire doesn’t help for electricity in a big storm. The cable is out. A small generator, I have a wood stove, five-gallons of water and provisions, just in case. Plus, a have wonderful neighbors.

Bye, Armstrong.

P.S. 01/06/16: Three TV's and the antenna is fine. CBS, ABC, NBC and PBS (4 channels), the sound is good and the picture is clear. 45+ too. I'm a happy girl. 

Saturday, November 21, 2015

I don’t understand the concept of numbers. The gibberiish.

The dropped foot is no picnic. 

I fight throw rugs (no more!), trip myself and the dachshund moves out of the way.

I have WalkAide for seven years. The peroneal foot lifts the electrically…kind of a cattle prod.

 I’m out of electrodes.

Fifteen years, I had stroke. I’m totally bad with numbers and the dreaded spelling. Linda from Hanger products is my contact for Pittsburgh. She called me with a voicemail, indicated that the WalkAide is here and her cellphone is total gibberish. Fifteen years, I don’t understand the concept of numbers. One to ten, or more…I struggled. I can’t hear her; though, the hearing is completely fine. Gibberish.

Finally, numerous voicemails I have a system. The area code, location and the numbers. The brain tells me that four…one…two (I jot it down), call the voicemail, two…two…five (I jot it down), call the voicemail, two…five…three…five (I jot it down). Digits are bad, (1-10) I have no concept, again my brain is fried. For example:




I get that. I get the visional, not numbers. I call numerous times, many, many times. Yikes.

Maybe, I’ll consider the captioned phone. Before the stroke, I have an A personality…always on the move, the next big thing. 

God’s little irony.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

I discontinued the statins. I’m not a Doc or a science guy.

 Spinach and strips of fat.

My cholesterol is 264, down to 283 last year; 200 mg. is the norm. I’m trying. Yay!

I discontinued the statins; muscle pain (especially the calf muscle) and the lower back. I look like a little old lady. Instantly, the pain was gone. (24 hours, more or less)

In my opinion, (just my opinion!), in masks the symptoms. Hypothetically, the woman takes statins, say 175 mg. Meanwhile, the woman eats butter, eggs, dairy, whole milk, the dreaded beef (corn fed). The liver pays the price for statins, (Bloodwork for the liver, that’s a given.) and predispose you for diabetes, type 2.

I’m not a Doc or a science guy.

I’ve changed. Reverse-osmosis water, fruits and vegetables (organic, please), lots of beans, ground turkey, organic chicken, lots of fish and Tofurky. Check it out. It’s a soy-based product.

One vice, I have a sweet-fang. Candy-corn, peanut fudge, caramel is my downfall and love crystallized sugar. Yum.

I’m gonna work on that.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

It’s too much phone-idge.


I discontinued the 547 numbers and I have an existing cellphone, quasi-phone; a generic TracFone. I called Armstrong Cable and the phone is no more; hey, $30 bucks is $30 bucks! TracFone is a free phone and is serviceable, albeit the bells and whistles. It’s too much phone-idge. 

I called Automated Security Alarm (the thing with the neck chain pendant) and Monday morning, bright and early, the person is coming to install the cellphone.

By the way, words fail me. I’m a little bit aphasic, well, a lot. Irony abounds.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Ah, the laden-cholesterol-mystery-meat with egg and the fake cheese. Yum.

Egg White and Tofurky

My caregiver, Anita, and I were starving for McDonald’s Breakfast items, specifically, an Egg McMuffin (Egg White Delight). The McDonald’s person noted the Egg White Delight is not offered, but the laden-cholesterol-mystery-meat with egg was indeed offered. Egg McMuffin indeed. Sales and Marketing? You bet. Yech. 

I passed, thank you, fired up the kitchen and assembled 1/2 Lender’s Onion (Earth Balance Vegan pseudo-butter), Tofurky Smoky Maple Bacon, two egg whites (dogs love yolks), and low-fat mozzarella (left-hand, yet!).

1/2 Lender’s Onion (toasted), fake butter.

In a small skillet, medium-high, Smokey Bacon, turn it over and its done. Its a soy product.

A shade of olive oil in a small bowl and nuke two egg whites, (a nuance of salt, pepper, dill and parsley) One minute.

Sprinkle low-fat cheese with the egg whites. Nuke. 20 seconds +/-.

It isn’t half-bad.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Ah, macaroni and pseudo-cheddar cheese food.

Ah, macaroni and pseudo-cheddar cheese food.

Actually, it’s not half-bad.

I have an unpleasant probable with bad cholesterol. I can’t take statins; joint pains. Grandma and Grandpap Szczekocki died of a stroke, respectively, 64 and 72. They are obese people, with astronomically high blood pressure and extreme headaches after the stroke. Conversely, I too had a stroke. In the emergency I was fit, extremely (68/28) low pressure (I was dying.) and absolutely no headache. …I digress; my cholesterol is 283 last year.

One cup cheddar cheese is 530 calories and half and half is a whopping 313. My poor lipids. That’s not good. Here’s something different.

Boil 1 1/2 cups of mac. Drain it, set aside.

Boil two sizable potatoes (or sweet smallish potatoes), one carrot, one onion. Peel, please. Fork-tender, 10 minutes, save the water.

1/2 cup of peanuts (or cashews), 1 1/2 hot water (from the pan), 5 drops of cayenne, two or three pepper flakes, veggies, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. pepper, 2 tsp. of garlic powder. (Nutri Ninja, Nutribullet, or, a plain old blender, pulse for 20 seconds.)

In your microwave, 1 tablespoon Earth Balance pseudo-butter, handful of crumbs for flavor. 10 seconds.

Spray Pam liberally, 10 x 10 pan. Pour the mac and crumbs (space them out). 40 minutes 380 degrees.

It’s not mac and cheese, but full of veggies and nutritious peanuts. Enjoy!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

I scarfed down Twinkies to a oblivion and washed down diet Coke for breakfast.

Before the stroke, I was a really bad cook.

I scarfed down Twinkies to a oblivion and washed down diet Coke for breakfast. Well, no more. I’m no nutritionist, that said.. 

…spaghetti squash, Ragu, ground turkey, fresh cucumber, tomatoes and sliced onion, and, of course, wine, Stone Villa Niagara. One glass, please. Yum.

A side note, Anita Kennedy is my caregiver, Wednesday 12:30 - 5. She washes vegetables and fruit in a Baggie (with a Cuisinart). My right hand quite dead, but it functions for washes dishes, writing checks (bad!) and the pliable bags, forefinger and thumb, a transport the laundry, bathroom, kitchen, (canned goods, toothpaste, Milk Bones, whatever). The right hand is a claw-arm.

Spaghetti Squash: 400 degrees, 1 hour, baking sheet/aluminum foil.  Cut it in half, take the seeds out, salt and pepper, a dapple margarine or Earth Balance. It’s hot…cool down in half-in-hour. Rings of SS, just like spaghetti. (See below, internet.) Use a fork. Pyrex container.

Ground Turkey: 1 pound of turkey, 3/4 cups Italian bread crumbs, 1 egg white (Izzy and Percy love yolks; their canines), half an onion, a few pepper flakes, salt and pepper.

Ground turkey is just like cardboard, in my opinion. Spruce it up. (See below, internet.) 128 calories, potassium, protein and calcium. Don’t forget cholesterol, it’s lean. Mix it up, thoroughly. I have whopping cholesterol count of 286. Statins? Terrible joint pain. I look like a little old lady.

Low heat, peanut oil (2 teaspoons, +/-), cook thoroughly, use a lid, twenty minutes. Stir the meat vigorously.

Pour Ragu Garden Combination (24 oz., or more) and the meat. Heat.

Cut up (in your Cuisinart slicer) tomatoes, cukes and onions. Vinegar and olive oil, two to one. Salt (to taste) and pepper, pepper flakes and fresh oregano.

And of course, wine.

In the night time though, I put on the brace (I’m not a fool…) and demolish Twinkies. Izzy and Percy polish off the crumbs.

Just for an instant, a millisecond, really, the brain regroups.

Ah, the Tube.

I watch a lot of TV, particularly, Geo Wild, (I love Dr. Pol, the vet) The History 2, (aliens amok) PBS and, of course, Seinfeld.

Then the stroke happened. Captions play a big part of it for person, places or things. Captions settings are great for news, documentaries and just for fun. Indeed, my brain is fried. For example, I can’t wrap my head around it for; Democrat or Republican, the weather’s coming west or east, where is San Diego and Boston? I know stuff, but it’s hard. Just for an instant, a millisecond, really, the brain regroups. Captions help; it’s the narrative.

Ah, aphasia. Ya’ got to love it.

Fifteen years, I fell four times. Swearwords abound.

Fifteen years, I fell four times.

It was a beautiful spring day and I tripped up the (seven steps on the porch). It was snowing out, the van guy was late, the one-step-stoop was unstable with hemi-cane and whacked my right leg in the van. I miscalculated the vacuum and lost my balance and …the dog food incident. Three dogs, hungry for kibble. I wiped out my footing and down I came. I use metoprolol (Lopressor) and I’m dizzy all the time…you can count on that.

I tooled around four times in wheel chair, three weeks. The house is one-floor. I have a smallish kitchen. Swearwords abound.

I’m extremely careful. Live and learn (I learned quickly!) 

Monday, September 7, 2015

Well, I forgot my Knork.

Well, I forgot my Knork.

My right hand is defunct and I eat with utensils on my left hand. The normal fork is cumbersome at best. The knife slices meat, such as chicken, steak and fish, but what about fork? Before the stroke, I'm a two-handed person; a knife and fork. The chicken or the egg? Clearly, it changed.

The Knork tines created a beveled edge to cut through foods, kind of a rocking design. A frequently asked question, "The finger platform provides comfort and leverage while using the fork to cut."  The utensil was appropriate for the right or left hand. It's a built-in system with a fork and knife. It's pretty cool.

I put the Knork in my purse or pocket for pizza, ad-hoc dinner and snackies.   Dishwasher safe.

Check it out.  This is a good deal.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Webcam video from August 17, 2015 06:45 PM (UTC)

Aphasia: I am overwhelmed with aphasia; it's engulfing. I can't form the words.

Aphasia: Take a look.

I had a birthday, August 15, 1947. I’m 68. I have aphasia to the max.

Fifteen years, in 1999, I had a stroke; whopping, catastrophic, massive ischemic thrombosis. I couldn’t speak, walk and tooled away in wheel chair from the nurses station in five hospitals. I was a blank slate. The left side of brain was fried. A left middle cerebral artery has a clot and complete occlusion. Not good. My left gray matter is 80-99%, per the carotid duplex.

It’s some good news, 15 years later, my left carotid arteries are clear. Numbers and letters are bad for me; like a fog. Like slow motion. Backwards and forewards, right to left…I have no concept. Slowly, I’m reading again. Author Carl Hiaasen, he’s a Florida guy, totally irreverent; he makes me laughing. Laughing is good.

My right hand is dead in the water. After the stroke, I wrote gibberish on my left hand. I won an AP award from an editoral I wrote for ’99, six months before the stroke. The universe is chortling hysterically; God’s little irony. Specifically, I couldn’t remember my name, address and ZIP code. I was real mess.

Seven months later, I came home from the hospital in July, 2001. I had rampant Afib for, at least for twenty years. The doctors were puzzled and ordered generic pill, metoprolol, aka, Lopressor. Lopressor reduces the heart rate, I get that. I took the pill, but the Afib was back with a vengeance; pounding, hammering and, frankly, I thought I was going to die.

I believe it’s mercury fillings. The Afib is gone. The dentist extracted the mercury fillings (I have dentures), in 2005. No panic attacks, no heart-stopping Afib and I have my life back. After the stroke, I had one-word sentences; food, water, haircut. I'm slowly learning to speak. It's wonderful feeling. Mercury stays with you for a long, long, God-awful time. But, I HAVE time.

I digress; aphasia, loss of ability. I am overwhelmed with aphasia; it's engulfing. I can't form the words. 

Check it out.