Jumping In

It’s been a while since I’ve been here – I’ve been such a procrastinator lately… today I got some note-taking done, and have been working my way through textbooks, but it’s been very slow. There’s not really enough time to lose! Nevertheless, I’m bingeing on Antiques Road Show at the moment… pleased with the work I did today, though.

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Loving my breakfast! πŸ™‚
I’ve been overhauling my eating patterns lately – problems with gut health, mostly by slipping into lazy eating with not enough nutrients and too much sugar. I’ve been enjoying sauerkraut, and substituting milk when I can. More veg, trying for gluten free – seems to be working…
Overall, my health seems to be on an upward turn. I went to a healing meeting at church a couple of months ago, and have since had substantial relief from the chest pains I’d been having over the last year or so – yay! That is a huge benefit, which I am grateful for – I have whole days where I just revel in feeling well, and have started doing exercises again. There’s still a lot of work to do, but it seems doable now. Sometimes, the state of my health feels like this…

… only not as cute.

Trying to get out and about more. We went to our favourite cafe, where they do a great range of gluten-free (and often dairy-free) food.

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The chai latte was made on almond milk, which I found a tiny bit “thin” in flavour for the spices.

The views from our table –

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It’s generally peaceful there, but more so this time, as we were the only customers for a while.

So – onward into the rest of the term. Hopefully full steam ahead!

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Published in: on July 29, 2017 at 10:17 pm  Leave a Comment  

When Morning Comes

I have had frequent bouts of “not feeling good” lately – nothing major, but wearing. Some days are OK, some are not, and some are very much not. Saturday was horrible, so yesterday was a recovery day.
…but – today! Today was lovely! I wasn’t leaping about or running marathons, but I’ve had three meals today and been able to do lessons with the boys as well as other work. I’ve even been able to walk to the letterbox and back – twice! – today. Comfortably watching Antiques Roadshow at the moment, with butterscotch mousse. Nice! πŸ™‚

Yesterday at church we sang “Great is Thy Faithfulness” – haven’t sung that for a while, and was able to belt it out as a praise for the day and a promise for the morrow (apologies to anyone around me who might have been deafened slightly…)
I’ve also found this song, which I’ve been listening to when I can –

Here’s to tomorrow!

Published in: on August 1, 2016 at 6:35 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Tea For A Reason

Just sent off the money raised at an afternoon tea at my place a couple of weekends ago for a great organisation – go have a look here – Mercy ShipsΒ Β provide free health care for people who would not be able to have access to health care otherwise. It’s really worth having a look at the site to see what they do! The afternoon tea was specifically to raise money for the women’s health programme, particularly issues relating to pregnancy and childbirth.

It was a good afternoon – we watched a DVD about the work of the Africa Mercy, then talked about it all, while eating biscuits and drinking tea in pretty teacups…

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We have friends on the Africa Mercy – if you want to read a more personal view, here’s their blog –
Rothwell Recap
Enjoy!

Published in: on June 7, 2016 at 8:30 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Dancing (As Though No-one Is Watching)

I haven’t been able to do floor exercises (or a range of other exercises…) for a while – too hard to do without working shoulders. This has been a bit annoying, and I’ve let things go. I think, though, that I could just exercise the Mr Bean way – dance.

I’d use a different soundtrack and choreography. Probably.
It’s about just using what’s available and enjoying the moment…

Here’s another “dancing” inspiration…

Published in: on October 30, 2015 at 10:15 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Growing Season

Winter probably wouldn’t be the season I associate with “growing”, but our little container garden is flourishing. We have styrofoam growing containers, made to a pattern by Spurtopia.

Here’s the boxes to the right of the patio…

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Capsicums, thyme, cherry tomatoes, strawberries, lettuce, mint and parsley.

The boxes to the left of the patio…

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Red onions, snow peas, chia seeds, dwarf beans, cucumbers, celery, spring onions, broccoli, carrots and beetroot.
Everything’s growing well (except the broccoli, which seems a bit weedy), and we should get edible stuff soon. πŸ™‚

The strawberries have already yielded some fruit, from pretty pink flowers.

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…and the snow peas and cucumbers are flowering well, with loads of tomatoes appearing all the time!

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Winter salad! Yummy yummy. πŸ™‚

Published in: on June 24, 2015 at 12:31 pm  Leave a Comment  
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On Coming Unglued

Today I had a steroid injection in the left shoulder joint – yesterday was the right joint. (Just as an aside, if you need an injection inΒ your shoulder, go to Exact Radiology in Inala – I got my appointments weeks earlier than the Ipswich region clinics were offering, and they were quick and very good at the actual injection)
The pain relief hasn’t been as spectacular as I’d hoped, but I can feel some improvement and apparently it’ll take another day or so to finally see where I am. I’ll take “improvement which leads to greater ability to cope” over “huddling in a chair whimpering in pain” anyday!
I got to face the screen today while I was having the procedure, which was quite fascinating to watch. Apparently my shoulder capsule was badly “glued up”, so I got to watch the needle going in, and the adhesion being forced apart (sort of blown up like a balloon). It’s uncomfortable but not necessarily painful – you get anaesthetic as well… that’s been wearing off over the evening, though 😦 It seems it’s quite rare to get it in both shoulders at the same time. I feel so special! πŸ˜›

On the up side, we bought a Pandan Cake at a bakery in the shopping centre across the road.

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Isn’t it pretty? πŸ™‚
An interesting, if not very strong, taste. The green colouring is meant to be from the juice of the pandanus leaf, but some are made using pandanus extract and green food colouring. Nice for a bit of afternoon tea, though!

Published in: on December 18, 2014 at 8:01 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Frozen

It’s been a bit of a year… health issues here and there, drifting into “Can’t Be Bothered” the last part of the year..
I’ve had various visits to doctors, with no particularly helpful outcomes. Some things resolve, some don’t. For the last few months I’ve been progressively shutting down – pain, stiffness, lack of interest. Finally, I have an answer, and a light at the end of the tunnel. πŸ™‚

Heard of “Frozen”? I have frozen shoulders! How cool am I?
Seriously, though, it’s been a bit difficult… if you want to read about what it is, here’s a link.
Basically, there’s three stages –
Freezing – increasing stiffness, lots of pain.
Frozen – Stiffness, but pain receding.
Thawing – Mobility increasing, pain returning.
There’s no hard-and-fast rule, but resolution of all three stages appears to take 1-3 years. I’m in the first stage, possibly sliding into second. The pain is… hard to describe.. and can be caused by a random movement, or just lightly bumping against something… sometimes even just sitting still for a period of time can trigger it. I can’t stretch my arms out to the side very far, and behind not at all. This makes things such as dressing oneself, washing/brushing hair, and basic sleeping (can’t stay in one position for too long) difficult to impossible.

I’d love to just Let It Go! πŸ˜‰

What’s in the future?
I’ll probably be getting corticosteroid injections into the shoulder joints sometime next week, which should hopefully reduce or eliminate the need for constant pain medication. I also seem to have thyroid issues (one of the possible underlying factors for frozen shoulders), so I’ve started taking vitamins/minerals/herbal preparation drops to revive and support my thyroid/adrenal/hypothalamus/pancreas. I probably won’t be running marathons by next week, but things are looking up! πŸ™‚

So, if you see me, and I look like I’ve dressed in a dark room, using a random tree branch to brush my hair, it’s not that I’m not trying – I just can’t do it as well as normal…

Here’s to becoming Un-Frozen!

Published in: on December 13, 2014 at 2:46 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Library Day

…again.
We love our local library! Where else could you go for free books, on practically any subject, any day of the week? (Yes, I know you can download e-books at any time. It’s not the same.)
If you don’t have a library card, I would recommend that you go down and get one – libraries are cool. πŸ˜€

So, we’re off soon. I’ll probably just sit in the corner reading – I can’t get any new books out today because I’ve already reached my 20 item limit. I’ll replenish stocks on Tuesday.

I’ve been reading some interesting books lately. I had to let go of formal studying this year, but I’m still choosing books that cover various aspects of my ex-course. What I’ve been finding is that the books I’ve chosen, even if just tenuously linked to natural health/sustainable lifestyles, often say very similar things.

Here’s a quick review of the last three…

book wonder box

The Wonder Box – Roman Krznaric
This is a bit of a romp through history – specifically ways of seeing and understanding different ideas, in different eras and cultures. It’s meant to read like a Renaissance curiosity cabinet, with shelves (chapters) dedicated to each idea – such as love, family, work, nature, belief, and death. The author does not present other perspectives as the truth, or as a definition of the topic involved. We are meant to read these perspectives, and re-examine what we believe, and why. It was interesting to consider whether my understanding of something is based on timeless truth, or fairly contemporary belief.

book wild medicine solutions

The Wild Medicine Solution – Guido Mase
It took me a long while to get to this book, but I found it fascinating once I started reading it properly. It discusses recent findings in physiology and the biochemistry of wild plants, and the importance of including wild plants in everyday life. The author weaves the more clinical and scientific text with myth, history and folklore… It was a bit strange at first, but I found the combination helped me to understand the concepts better than if it had been a solely clinical approach.
If you are looking for a comprehensive herbal, explaining the usage of an alphabetical list of herbs, this is not the book. It does explain the value of three different types of wild plants –
tonics (wormwood, dandelion and burdock) for normalisation of cell function and to nourish the immune system
aromatics (chocolate, astragalus, hawthorn) to relax tension in nerves and muscles, and stimulate sluggish systems, and
bitters (ginger, peppermint, garlic) for digestion, and to balance blood sugar, buffer toxicity and improve metabolism.
The author has found that wild plants can regulate heart variability and adjust the way that DNA is read by the cells.
Of these three books, this is the one that I would like to buy, in order to dip into it more frequently.

book radical homemakers

Radical Homemakers – Shannon Hayes
I quite enjoyed this book. It discusses the ways in which we can use our lives and the choices we make to help ourselves and our communities. Being a stay-at-home, homeschooling Mum (with an interest in sustainability) myself, I found it encouraging to read of others’ journeys. Not all the people interviewed fit that profile, though, so it offers a fairly broad spectrum of experiences. The main resemblance between those interviewed is their commitment to a sustainable and productive lifestyle, a rediscovery of creativity and learning to use their hands and minds to provide for families and communities – to “strengthen independence from an extractive and parasitic economy.” The author holds to four tenets – family, community, social justice and ecological health. Reading about how others work within their individual situations to achieve these goals is inspiring.

Are you ready to lose a few hours in the wonders of the public library service? You know you want to! πŸ˜‰

Ginger, Please!

So, I’m sick again. It’s been a few weeks now of spiralling round the health mountain – just when I think it’s all coming good, I catch something else. Today it’s sniffles/blocked nose (again) with a side order of sore throat. Yay, me.

As tempting as it was, I didn’t go for copious cups of milky coffee (the lazy choice..) I have herbs in the cupboard that are useful for colds/flu, so I made a teapot full to sip… you know what else is really nice in a tea? Just grab a biggish chunk (to taste..) of ginger and grate it into the teapot, then finish with a good splodge of Manuka honey.. good for the cold (and you!), and really tasty, too – I found it soothing as well. If you’re just making your tea with ginger and honey, you can chew the ginger bits left over as well, if you like πŸ™‚

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Here’s my teapot. I chose the cup because that’s how I felt today…

I know I’m getting a bit run down when I start dissolving into tears at nothing… I was watching Doctor Who today (The Christmas Invasion) and started snuffling because they were in ENGLAND, and I CAN”T GO THERE!! *sniffle* I’m off to watch a bit of Midsomer Murders now…

Published in: on August 12, 2013 at 8:28 pm  Comments (3)  
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Coconut Coffee Surprise

I’ve been reading about the health benefits of coconut oil.. it’s good for all sorts of things, but I find it hard to eat it straight. I’ve been putting it in cooked rice, with tuna and seeds… and finely chopped ginger, if I’m feeling adventurous..

The other day I came across a recipe for using it in coffee, instead of milk. Sounds a bit strange, right?
Here it is –

1 tablespoon of coconut oil (or 2, or 3…)
1 teaspoon of unsalted butter
Cup of coffee

Put it all in a blender.
Blend.

Simple! πŸ™‚

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Here it is in the blender… surprisingly normal-looking.

coffee first try

This was my first try. I’m not sure whether it was because I didn’t blend it for long enough, or because I didn’t have any unsalted butter, but it was a bit oilier than I’d like… those spots are little globs of oil.

coffee second try

Second try – bubbles rather than oil splodges πŸ˜€
It’s not as coconutty as you’d think… still a slight tinge of oiliness. I had butter this time.. it seems to make it a bit smoother..

Delicious!

Published in: on August 2, 2013 at 11:49 pm  Comments (2)  
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