February 29, 2012

flying my freak flag

Do you have things that just drive you crazy for no other reason than it's just a quirk of your personality? I'm not sure what it is with me but this week I'm flying my freak flag and it's flying high and waving all over the darn place.

photo attribution

It could very well be I have problems with authority figures or want my way or it could just be I'm getting bitchy in my old age.

Anyway I did all this research to find a Dermatologist that takes my insurance plan, it's not all that easy and sometimes when choosing a specialist I might have to drive as many as 60-100 miles to stay {in network}. So I find this doctor 42 miles from my house at this point I'm doing a happy dance. I looked up his credentials and so on and call his office to confirm he's on my plan and make an appointment.

I still have that rash under my arm {7weeks or more} and I want him to take a look at the area around my healed MRSA wound; the skin surrounding the scar tissue is hyper-pigmented and I wanted an opinion on if it needed treatment or if the discoloration will fade with time. Let me just say that these two issues were treated previously by two different doctors, rash by my internist, wound by my wound doctor.

I dial the phone and the receptionist answers the phone the conversation goes something like this...

"Him my name is Jen, is Dr. Blah Blah Blah taking on new patients?"

"Are you insured, what kind of insurance do you have?"
Now I'm thinking to myself I guess that means he's taking new patients but a hello would have been nice so I play along....

So mentioned the company.
She clarified a few more questions about my insurance then went on.....

"So what's the problem you'll be seeing the doctor for?"
I told her about my arm pit rash and my skin surrounding the scar, then she says to me....

"We require your doctor(s) send over a referral and we get you an appointment."

OK hold the phone.....my insurance doesn't require referrals to see a specialist.What if i have a reason that I don't want to share the fact that I'm seeing a dermatologist with either of these two doctors, that's certainly my prerogative? Then my next thought was, doctors don't do anything for free anymore or over the phone! Will i have to pay- make an appointment in order to get this referral that isn't even required?

Or what if I was a person who didn't have a regular doctor?

I spent a lot of money with my wound treatment last year....I'm still getting bills eight months later.  In addition, my former wound doctor is a hospitalist he doesn't even have an office- the hospital is his office and we all know their rates! 

Ridiculous, this whole that's what this whole thing is is becoming. All I want is a freakin appointment, I'm not a circus clown jumping thru hoops...so we continue to converse. I go on to tell her, "I've had this insurance for 30+ years and have never been required to do this before, may I ask why?"

"It's the doctor's preference and it's his personal rule" the receptionist tells me.

So I say, "I'm a 52 year old woman I believe I am capable of making the decision as to whether I need to see a dermatologist without another doctors evaluation, permission, knowledge or referral, rolling my eyes."
I'm glad she couldn't see me because I was being a tad disrespectful with my facial expressions!

She then says to me, "if you want to see Dr Blah Blah Blah the referral  is required"

Then I told her with a sigh, "With all due respect I think this rule is unnecessary and may even cause me to incur an unnecessary expense  I believe I'd rather find another doctor, thanks but no thanks."

Now I'm annoyed! This type of crap bothers me to no end.

I then hang up my phone so I can  hoist my freak flag a bit higher and started looking for another doctor!

Do you have quirky things that just really annoy you more than they should?

When was the last time you flew your freak flag?

Linking up with Shell today.
Thanks Shell....

February 28, 2012

it's the worst feeling

I'm not sure how it is that I missed last weeks link up but I think I found a pretty neat quote from Mark Twain  to contribute for this weeks link up.

To be perfectly honest there was a period in my life when I felt intense personal loneliness especially after my kids accident when I was plagued with terrible self doubt. On a lighter note, I think everyone of us has gone through periods when we just feel like our skin just quite doesn't fit... my teenage years come to mind!

What about you?

 Linking up with Bits of Bee today.


February 26, 2012

he gave me a dirty look, the bastard!

I've come to believe two things, one I should just stay out of parking lots because nothing good happens there and two, I despise men who are abusers. A few years ago I had an altercation with a women who left her babies in her car and went shopping, I literally sat in my car and watched them so they wouldn't get kidnapped or hurt, but that's another post.

Today, Bill and I were out running errands today. We both went into Sams Club, I ran into Walgreen's so when we got to Food Lion he decided to go in alone, we just needed two items so I was just sitting in the car checking my blog on my smart phone. And then they pulled up.......

photo attribution

A white SUV pulled up two spaces to the right of me, the space between was un-occupied so I had a clear view of all the goings on in the car. So I'm relaxing reading blogs sitting back in my seat and I hear this man yell a profanity. I look up to see who I assume to be the wife hurl her body out of the drivers seat soon to be followed by items he's throwing at her. They were cups and other items he had handy in the cup holder. She then opens the rear end of the SUV and he turns his head still yelling, angrily.

In all honesty I can't make out what he's saying but I have a clear view of her. Body language is such a telling indicator of how a person feels. Her head was down, her shoulders were slumped and her hair was hanging over her face to hide her tears, poor thing. She gathered her eco-friendly bags and headed into the grocery store. He however was sitting high on the hog in the passenger seat all seething in his rage, real honest to goodness rage.

At that point I sat up and he caught his first glimpse of me, his mouth clamped shut. I started to feel a bit of relief for her that he'd calmed down; maybe the fact that he didn't want an audience to his misdeeds was enough to end this incident. And that's when I saw him - a small child - a boy about five stand up and lean into say something to his father from the back seat.

I'm not even going to go into what kind of man does this type of thing to his wife, that I will never understand. I have to tell you I was feeling so angry for her and at the same time so much sympathy too. And the kid, really who does this in front of their own child? What kind of man are you mister? Oh I know....Creep!

Then creep locked eyes with me. I have to tell you I don't scare easily, I had to bite my lip not to roll down my window and say something, but for the child I would have been tempted. He did try to intimidate me when the boy sat down, the bastard made a face at me then he made an aggressive move towards me trying to scare me. It didn't work, I lifted my phone as if to take his picture. He sat looking straight then, but not quite as straight as when Bill returned from the store, he apparently only likes to pick on women, bastard wuss!

scavenger hunt sunday 2/26

This is my first time ever joining Scavenger Hunt. I am very excited to join such a talented pool of  people who love photography and photographers. Thank you Ashley for having such a great Sunday link up I'm happy to add my five pictures to the mix this week!


These are one of a pair of cross beams in my great room, they also have been known to double as a play gym for my cats- Tarzan , Cheetah and Linus!

A Glimpse

Here's my grandson Xavier as he glimpses at who knows what! He has a beautiful face and a wonderful full head of hair doesn't he?


I picked up my year book from a million years ago, not only is it a gold mine for something handwritten, but I did get more than a few giggles.


We recently did a full bath renovation, getting under this every morning is  truly bliss!


This shot shows the lovely gray of this bird  as compared to the black-white of his own feathers and green of the feeder.

This weeks words are;

Show Me Your Style

February 24, 2012

the scoop- a bunch of randomness

Sorry I haven't posted in a few days, you know how it is life gets in the way. I had a boomer of a migraine since my last post. I usually get about one a month but this weather has been so crazy it's been a trigger for more than my usual. My doctor who has worked with me for years to get me to a minimum of headaches joked saying he wanted to bottle me because he's been pleased with my headache health. Anyhoo...this one sent me back to bed and believe you me I haven't done that in years. We had originally planned on starting our painting adventure but add some paint fumes to a horrid migraine and my head probably would have exploded all over the living room.

On Saturday, dragging my ass literally with a headache hangover I removed all the crap from the walls and removed every bit of china and all those neat glasses with the gold from my parents old mid century modern break-front and Bill painted from behind the fridge thru under the balcony. The green is so yummy and although bright it is so serene compared to the yellow that was up before. We've decided not to put the break-front back, I think I'm gonna sell it on Craig's List along with some of the china. Mom gave me the OK to sell the furniture since she and. Dad purchased the piece back in the late 60's maybe early 70's then for about $125.00. Don't know what I'll get for it now but we can't put it in the garage, it's already overflowing with stuff.

there two drawers and the two pieces of sliding glass too!
I confess I have a lot of stuff, I have a huge side board filled to the brim with stuff too, 30+ years of china and glasses and tea sets and things people give me, two sets of silver because heck one isn't enough when you have a family of seven and it's a service of eight! Your not a hoarder if it's stored neatly are you? Because I've had this china for years and I've never used it once? To be honest we inherited these beautiful dishes (some dinner plates are missing from the set) so that kinda makes them rather lacking in function but I hate to part with them for the sentimental value.I think it's time however to see what I can do about selling them.

nice huh?
Now I don't give a darn if I have to stick these babies to the ceiling and space is lacking in my side board but I'm not getting rid of these glasses. I love these things! Bill's uncle left them to us, my parents had ones like this too, all gold and glittery in every different size, stemmed and tall glasses too. How'd ya like to sip your Shirley Temple outa one of these babies?

Today we took Mom shopping and then to lunch, it's Friday so it's fish today, being Lent and all! We had fantastic little shrimp baskets at a local restaurant before hitting the market. Mom was happy to get out of the house and cold weather is not her friend. Remember just the other day when I posted pictures of our first snow? first-snow Today here in Virginia it was 80 degrees, unbelievable and what can only be described as tornado weather.

Oh crap, the thunder is starting to rumble outside now so I better rap this up before we loose power, that's been known to happen here!

February 21, 2012

from my kitchen- Irish Soda Bread

St Patty's Day had always been a special day for our family, if there isn't a party then we'll usually find one or go to the parade or a street festival. This year, Bill, Mom and I are going down to Charlotte to my cousin Jeanmarie and  her husband Hans house for a  party. 

Did you all know that I was actually supposed to be born on St Patty's Day, but I came early? 

Anyway,  when I spoke to my cousin last night we agreed that my contribution to the party would be the Irish Soda bread. You know how I love to bake, and I have such a good recipe anyway, why wouldn't I? Hans will be cooking the corned beef and cabbage, Irish beers will be flowing as this adult only party. 

I'd decided to share my recipe for Irish Soda bread with all of you so that you can have it in advance of the holiday. Try it, you'll like it very much it's the best I've ever tried. 

And if your looking for the recipe for Corned Beef and Cabbage, go visit my friend Liz over at A NUT IN A NUTSHELL, since apparently great minds think alike!
celtic symbol attribution

      Irish Soda Bread

4 c sifted flour
1 1/2 tsps baking soda
1 tsp salt
3/4 c sugar
1 c raisins (or cranberries for a nice change)
2 tbsp melted butter
2 eggs, beaten
2 cups buttermilk

1 tbsp caraway seeds
Mix dry ingredients. Mix butter, eggs and buttermilk. Stir into dry ingredients. Use a 2 qt pan (like a pyrex) because it works the best  since this batter is rather moist. (it may be necessary to add more flour). Don't forget to put the cross on top with a knife..
 Bake at 350 degrees for 1.25 hours.

February 20, 2012

picture day - first snow

We had our first snow of the season Sunday evening! I was so excited that I went running out in the dark with my camera. I guess twenty five plus years in the south will not erase the northerner in me!

My cats followed close behind they were slipping and sliding through the snow like maniacs, it was so funny! They were running around so fast I didn't have a prayer of getting a picture of them, sorry!

So with the camera that I received for Christmas in hand I began my mission to get some photographs of all that white goodness. I found out however, it's not at all easy to take pictures in the dark and snow with a flash. The flash reflects off the flakes, I'll spare you all my pictorial failures. 

I probably need to get off my rear end and read about how to take the camera off AUTO so I can change the settings. But hey! I'm having a blast as it is so I'm not going to rush things.

I did get out in the morning, first thing. It was beautiful and pearly white out. And all that snow was melting...so sad :(

February 18, 2012

Photo Day- birds of a feather feed together

You know me if the sun's shining and the weather's nice, I'm going to be out there with my camera.

The cats were having a great time lazing around in the yard taking dust baths, I sometimes think they think they are birds.

The birds were in the feeders and pretty hungry today. I have to wonder whether that's a sign of the weather to come. Many of them are pretty skidish of me with the camera and wouldn't even go to the feeder with me on the steps or deck, but I did get a few shots.

So like every other person in our area, Bill went out to the grocery store today and picked up a few things in case the weather turns. They're saying 2-4 inches for our area, I'm ready, there will be soup ( comfort food is a must ) tomorrow whether the rain stays rain or turns into snow. Frankly sixty degree weather is wacky so I guess snow would actually be normal!

Talk about the luck of the Irish! This gorgeous little woodpecker decided to raid our feeder as I was out with my camera today. Isn't he/she just wonderful? Nor very large as woodpeckers go but bursting with character and color and pattern. I gather he decided to fill his belly before the impending storm as well. 

He's really to big for the feeder however so he hangs on and picks the feed out with his long beak. We must have a nest in one of our large trees because this one is a daily visitor. We have bigger ones too I can here them tap- tap- tapping on the trees during the day when the windows are open.

I guess we should be happy for the weather coming to our town soon, we can probably use the precipitation. Bill just came in and said the next door neighbor just set a grass fire, by accident. Not good! Thank goodness they were able to put it out without anyone being hurt or any property damage. Bill had the phone in his hand and was about to call 911 but thank the Lord it wasn't necessary.

That's all for now folks.
Enjoy the photo's!

February 16, 2012

The scoop, what's on my mind today

Gosh today is one yucky day, and I'm not only talking about how I'm feeling but I'm talking about the weather too! Mine started off with one zinger of a migraine, I hate waking up with them, that's the way it goes with me.  I always awaken with them. Then I was off to the doctor for some answers about the sudden onset of that joint pain that started two weeks ago. Well, if you missed it it wasn't Lyme's Disease, good news. My full blood panel came back normal, I'm normal, go figure! Seriously, all levels all organs working as they should and the pee in the cup tests wasn't any more humiliating then it normally is....., more good news. So we're left with the answer; why did Jen have such bad joint pain that made her run to the doctor like a little cowering weenie? And I'm not a little cowering weenie! My doctor's answer is, he doesn't have an answer at least not from any of the tests results! Do I have a condition like arthritis...maybe but that would just be guessing and I don't go to my doctor to guess. Can my joint pain be a symptom of another condition, maybe maybe not! So for now we are both just content to watch and wait.

After the doctor we went to Denny's for a late breakfast, last time we went there the service had a lot to be desired, but we were starving and Mom's a diabetic and she wanted egg's so, Mom rules. Anyway as we waited to be served this lady went up to the register to pay her bill and very loudly yelled at the girl about how long she waited, how bad the food was, how cold the food was, how bad the service was, she thought the bill was incorrect and so on. I really don't know if any of her complaints were warranted but it kind of struck me as this kid behind the counter cowered as this rather large loud woman screamed at her that there's a difference between lodging an appropriate complaint for bad or incompetent service and then there just plain bitching for the sake of being mean. I'm all for the former, the latter is wholly inappropriate, enough said!

Have I mentioned that Bill and I have decided to paint our great room? Last week we went to Home Depot and got a bunch of those little sample paints and put them up all over the wall to see how they looked on the wall at different points of the day.We have windows on the east, south and west so there's lots of sun that affects the color at various points of the day. The color we have now is sort of a maize color, anyway I really really wanted a color in the orange family but it just wasn't going to work in such a large space (living, dining, kitchen and balcony), its just to much color. We also picked a bunch of different bright and fresh greens so that's what we're going with a color called grass something or other.We really like color and are not afraid to use it. I'll put before and after pictures once we get going on the painting, most likely after this weekend.

February 14, 2012

February 13, 2012

I was given two awards! Surprise, I'm giving one to you!

Two awards in one week! I'm feeling very honored so I thought I'd just spread the love all at once...read on!
Blog awards are so cool! So the other day when I went over to Jenn & Casey's blog
SO THIS IS LOVE to see what was going on and do my daily reading and guess what I found? I found an award with my name on it, how cool is that?!  As great as these things are there are a few housekeeping things, rules that need to be taken care of while basking of course!                                        

The Rules for The Versatile Blogger Award
1. Thank the award-giver and link back to them in your post.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Pass this award along to 15 recently discovered blogs you enjoy reading.
4. Contact your chosen bloggers to let them know about the award.

So, I'd like to thank Jenn and Casey who are so much fun and have a super cool blog for their kindness which I happily accept. You should go visit them I'm sure you'll agree with me.
Now before I share the love with some of my new blog friends,  I have to share 7 things about myself.
  1. Did you play school or vet or mom maybe teacher when growing up? Not me I played Nun. On the beach of all places; a bit of wet hair and a beach towel and you could be Sister Jennifer Lynn. I won't name names but I wasn't alone Sister Mary Frances!
  2. My first kiss….the slide at the school, third grade, Michael Martini pinned me down and kissed me on the..... hey this chick doesn't kiss and tell.
  3. I love beer, I don’t abuse it, but if I had to pick my favorite type of beer I’d have to say I’m partial to Lagers
  4. Every month during my pregnancies I craved different things, for example I had a, watermelon month, bagels month, potatoes, hot fudge sundaes, strawberries. That potato month was a bitch…. I gained ten pounds.
  5.  The little corns in Chinese food gross me out, there about the only thing on the plant I won’t eat; they look like little alien vegies! Beam them up Scottie.
  6. Neither of my natural children shares my eye color, brown. Eric had blue, Matthew’s eyes are hazel. Ok so I’m a tiny bit vain don’t you want your kids to look like you?
  7. Until three years ago I had never in my life had a female doctor. I know weird huh!
I am happy to pass the Versatile Blogger Award along to these blogs, enjoy ladies and gents.

The Rules For The Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award

And because my blog friends are so AWESOME I have been given another award by my new friend Pixie over at PurrPause. This blog award is especially sweet hee hee! And I want to thank Pixie for being so sweet and generous. 

Now I must do two things. Tell my readers 7 things you might not already know about me. Then I get to pass this lovely and sweet award on to 10 of my blog friends. 

  1. When I got my first computer I didn’t have a clue how to type. Oh I could look at the keys but that seemed like cheating soooo I sent away for a Mavis Beacon CD and learned how to type. I know I’m a dork!
  2. Kids now a day have cell phones to communicate with their friends- expensive no?When I was a kid my friend and neighbor Mary ( Sister Mary to you) and I talked to each all the time, we didn’t even use the telephone however we used, two Campbell’s soup cans with a string attached strung from her room to mine across the yard.
  3. I don’t put milk or sugar in my hot beverages; I drink my coffee and tea black. I actually drink my ice tea without sugar which is contrary to the southern way- which is the only way- sweet. 
  4.  I think ice cube trays were invented by the devil, I don't have an ice-maker and I hate filling them.
  5. I have a pet cemetery out in our back yard. I placed it within a reasonable distance from our vegetable garden so that I can visit with them when I’m out there. They each have their own grave-markers with their names and dates. I have 2 dogs and 4 cats out there.
  6. When I gave birth to my son Matthew my doctor told me he was going to attach a red zipper to my C-section; joking right? Then in noticed the custodians kept on mopping the floor over and over outside my hospital room trying to get a peek every time the nurse checked my bandage…sure enough there it was, a red zipper attached with two stitches over my incision.
  7.  I sleep in the right side of the bed, two pillows-soft- never feathers.
I am happy to pass along this Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award to ten blogger friends.
Enjoy it people and dog!

I enjoy reading each and every one of your blogs, enjoy both awards I think you deserve them because you all rock in my book!

February 11, 2012

photo day- these past few days....the rundown

Firstly, I wanted to thank each and every one of you for your concern for my health. As it turns out my Lyme's Disease test was negative so that's good news. I have every confidence my doctor will figure out what's going on with all this joint pain and my rash. The pain for the most part seems to have abated, maybe it's the anti-inflammatory medications he has me taking.  Hopefully whatever it is; is done......
In any case, you've all been very kind and I promise I'll let you know if I find out anything from my doctor when I do.

This weekend my husband and I went up to Charlottesville, Virginia for a funeral of our friend and neighbors brother. He was a long time police officer on their local police force, his deceased brother was once Commissioner of Police and he was eulogized by no less then three Commissioners of Police.  There's something about a funeral of a cop, and the love of his fellow officers was quite evident in the sea of blue uniforms that lined the pews of the church. Quite sad....very moving.

And although it was a sad time and our primary reason for being there was to be with our friends, we did go to the pedestrian mall downtown.... what a nice place. Sometimes you just need to clear your head, get some fresh air, take a walk and then there's this thing called food! So we went to the place where there's restaurants, shopping, theater and  local musicians playing in the square, like this gentleman here. Bill and I found time to go there twice once for lunch and once for dinner but mostly we enjoyed walking and chatting with merchants, musicians and soaking in some of the atmosphere.

I wasn't sad to come home however. Have I mentioned how much I hate staying in hotels? Hotels are the most horrible places where I think the air quality is terrible, do you agree? Unless they're on a beach, then I can take it..... Didn't get to do to much with the camera this week, hope you like my pictures.

February 7, 2012

I'm ticked off

So I've kept it to myself but I haven't been feeling all that well lately. Yesterday I broke down and went to the doctor. Pain is a great motivator. Joint pain for lack of a better way to describe it is a bitch.

Pain in my knees, shoulders, collarbones, pelvis and hips and they all hurt like the blazes. And then there's my neck which aches and is rather on the stiff side with just a touch of a headache that's dull and nagging.

Did I mention the rash I have under my arm? Been there for four weeks! Just kinda there not doing much, not itching or scratching just there.

My doctor thinks this little bug which can pass a bacteria into your body when it bites is the cause of all of my yuckiness! Ugh! Lymes Disease.
Photo attribution

Blood test are pending, I don't even want to think what it could be if it isn't Lymes Disease. There are many other not so great condition's that share these symptoms; not all that encouraging; Lupus, Fibromyalgia, some cancers or infections.  He has me on something for the inflammation, it's heaven not to be in all that pain. Now I wait for the results....

The cats have been banned from the bedroom for the duration, probably not a bad idea anyway. Will keep you posted on this drama as it unfolds.