January 2021

Wow!!! It’s difficult to believe it is the beginning of a new year. A few years ago I had no idea I would be alive to see this year, nor the past 7 years. If you have been following my story you might remember that in May 2013 my doctor at the time told me I would not live to the end of the year, definitely not 2 years. Now it’s almost 8 years later and I am still here. Not only that but the constant intense pain I was in from 2010 through 2016 has lessened considerably and some days it minimum, thankfully. I am on some medication to help take the edge off the pain, but it doesn’t effect my mental thoughts for which I am very grateful.

Other than talking with friends on the phone, and using some media technology applications that provide video and sound, I have been reading lots of books on my tablet and making delicious meals and desserts. I’m trying lots of new recipes and experimenting with recipes I wanted to try for a long time. I am getting braver and making foods that are complicated and time consuming. I also recently was told about Amish Friendship Bread and it needs a starter to be made which takes 10 days before it’s ready to be used. I have since made it twice and once kept it alive for 20 days. I made some almond cookies, chocolate chip cake, and soft pretzels with the starter and I also gave 5 cups away, one cup each to 5 different people so they can try this starter with whatever recipe they want. I found a website that has about 100 different recipes for the starter.

I have a learning curve with my website since earlier last year. My friend Pam who set up this website for me in 2011 updated it so that it will be more secure and as a result the screen looks very different and it is different to try to upload photos. In all honesty, since early last year I have sort of been lazy in the way that I have been using email and Internet. Instead of taking my computer out of the computer bag and setting up my laptop, I have been using my phone, just because it’s handy and easier. So I only put quick posts on this website. Two days ago I unpacked my computer and set it up and installed a program so I can use the computer to visit with friends and see many of them at a time on the screen, rather than my phone which only lets me see 4 of us at a time. What a nice difference. Now I wish I did it 9 months ago.

I still have to figure out how to add photos and I also need to one day connect my phone so I can upload pictures from it to my computer. It’s progress, not perfection. Sometimes it takes me a while of procrastination before I actually get something done. From October until December I took advantage of Amazon offering Kindle Unlimited service to me again like they did over the summer, except it was $5 for 2 months rather than free. So since there are so many books I wanted to read and not as much time to read them, my priority was reading. Especially since due to this quarantine I was not going anywhere or doing anything exciting. Now a week or so ago, they offered 3 free months. So I am taking advantage of that.

I have found several authors that I like and am trying to read all of their books. A few authors I like had free books on Amazon. However, I found out that after their first book since they are not on Kindle Unlimited I would have to purchase the books. A few I did buy, others I only read the free short excerpts which gave a glimpse of what happens but not the details or outcomes. I use my imagination which I know is not the true happenings in the story. I did write a few of the authors to tell them how much I really enjoyed their stories and especially if there was something I identified with. A few wrote back and two even sent me the books after the free one in a series so I could read what really happened. In exchange, I surprised them sending them lots of my favorite recipes. I feel like we bartered, I don’t like to take advantage of anyone. That’s about it for now. One day, eventually, I will connect phone and computer and post photos when I figure it out.

Many years ago I had a Garfield the cat cartoon that I liked. It showed Garfield shackled spread eagle to a dungeon wall with chains. The caption read: Someday I am going to look back at this and laugh. Many times in my life I thought about that as I lived life. Including in 2010 and years after when I had those 4 operations and the pain and complications that came as a result of them. Also many other life experiences that were challenging and/or painful. I try to always be grateful no matter what. Lois a mentor I had from June 1988 to May 1989 taught me to always be grateful no matter what. She would tell me to stand up, take 2 steps and say thank you God that I can walk, talk, and breathe at the same time. Lois was unable to do that. She was on oxygen, had 1/3 of a lung, and was on oxygen the last 6 years of her life. You can search Lois, and also inspirational poems and stories. I wrote a few stories about my time with Lois and what she taught me that still has a strong impact on my life even today.

That’s it for now. I have so much to be grateful for. My gratitude list is extremely long.

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