Monday, November 30, 2009


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I accomplished everything I had planned to do today except for one thing.
I cleaned the house this morning, then went over to WalMart. They sure have a lot of Christmas decorations over there and they were putting more stuff out on the shelves while I was there.
Came home and had my lunch and watched my soap (Young & Restless). After lunch, I put some Christmas lights up on the outside of the house. This year, I only put them around our front door. Last year I had them around the front door, all across the porch, across the front of the house and the front of the garage. It's just too much for my anymore to climb up and down the ladder to hang so many lights, so I decided to "downsize" this year. I did put a small fiberoptic tree on the front porch too.
I'll put up the tree and decorate the inside of the house next Monday.
The one thing I didn't get done was stuffing my Christmas cards and letters into envelopes, getting them addressed and ready to mail. I make my own cards and I buy "greeting card envelopes" over at OfficeMax. Well, I thought I had more envelopes, but found out I only had about 5 of them left from last year, so I have to go buy some before I can get the cards and letters ready to go.
Hope you all had a good day.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Not Much To Say Today

Don't really have too much to blog about today. It was cold this morning (37 degrees), so I did not go for my morning walk.
Ben and I went over to The Dollar Tree to get him some "cheater readers", you know, those reading glasses that you can buy a just about any pharmacy. The pair he was using broke, so he wanted more. He says why pay $10 for them at CVS when he can get them at The Dollar Tree for $1.
Then we went over to Staples because I needed to by some color ink cartridges for my printers. Time to make the Christmas Cards and Christmas Letters, so needed the color ink.
Spent the rest of the day at home.
Tomorrow I have a lot to do. I have to clean house (vacuum and dust), then I need to go over to WalMart and pick up a few things. Then after lunch I think I'll put the Christmas lights up on the outside of the house. I noticed that 3 of our neighbors put theirs up today. Plus now that the Christmas Cards and Letters are printed out, I need to stuff them in their envelopes, stamp them and get them mailed. Ben will be at work, so I should be able to get everything done.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Another Busy Day

Went shopping at both Costco and Sam's Club today. We don't do the "Christmas shopping thing". We were there for groceries.
It rained for about 10 minutes around 1:30 AM this morning. We really need a lot more than that! The sky is really pretty though. Love the big fluffy clouds. It's much cooler outside now too. Only made it to the mid-60's today.
I went for a walk before lunch and took a few more photos.

Friday, November 27, 2009


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Life After Turkey

Had to get out and walk this morning since I didn't do any exercise at all yesterday. Needed to walk some of the turkey off. After we had our turkey dinner over at the Hometown Buffet yesterday, I just laid stretched out on the sofa the rest of the day.
After my walk this morning, Ben and I went over to Lowe's Home Improvement Store and bought a storage unit for our garage. Came home and cleaned out the back of the garage and put the unit together. It's one of those 4-shelf plastic ones that just all snaps together. Felt pleased about getting the back of the garage cleaned and organized. Now I'll have to work on the rest of the garage next week.
Took a few photos of the pretty colored trees while out on my walk this morning and am sharing them here.

Thursday, November 26, 2009


Well, since my older brother lives in Northern California and will be with his two sons for Thanksgiving, and my younger brother lives in Orange County California and will be with his four daughters, Ben and I will be just hanging out at home together, watching the marathons on TV. We'll head over to the Hometown Buffet later today for our turker meal.
I'm thankful for my health, my husband, my brothers. I'm thankful that I live in the United States, even though our country has been struggling for a few years to get back on it's feet, it's still the greatest place in the world. I'm thankful for the men and women in uniform who are spending this day away from their families because they are somewhere out there protecting our freedom.
Hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Just Relaxing

I was just sitting here on the sofa relaxing and remembered I had not yet blogged today.
The weather is beautiful for about the 4th or 5th day here. It is still pretty windy though. I had planned to start cleaning out our garage this morning, but when I opened the garage door and started to sweep, the wind just kept blowing leaves and whatever right back into the garage, so I said "What's the use?" and gave up. I'll just have to get to it another day.
Planted some cute little English Daisy Bellis flowers in the spot I prepared next to my patio this morning. The problem is, they are "annuals" and won't last all that long. I didn't see any "perennials" that I liked at the nursery, so I'll just have to wait to see if they get anything else in. I didn't want to leave the spot empty though.
I got some white ones, some red ones and some purple ones. Here is what they look like.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Another Beautiful Day

Another beautiful day here in SoCal.
Did our grocery shopping this morning. There were a lot of people at the store. Guess they were stocking up for Thanksgiving. We are eating out that day, so we were just shopping for our normal canned goods, dry goods, etc.
After lunch, we went over to WalMart which was also very crowded. We had to pick up a filler valve for the toilet in our "second" bathroom. The other one seemed to have something stuck in it and it was "hissing" for lack of a better description. I put the new one on in about 10 minutes and now all is fine. Ben is not very "mechanical" and I usually end up making repairs like that around the house.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Oh What A Beautiful Morning......

Oh what a beautiful day.
Do I sound like "Oklahoma"? (LOL)
It is so pretty outside here today. The wind is blowing a little, but I like wind as long as it is not the destructive kind.
The sky is blue and there is not a cloud to be seen. It's 67 degrees out right now.
After Ben left for work this morning, I had a little housework to do (which I hate by the way), but then I got to go out into the beautiful weather and do a little gardening. Actually, I was preparing an area in my backyard, next to my patio to plant some flowers for ground cover.
Any suggestions as to what I should plant? I'd like something that is low to the ground, colorful and lasts most of the year. Now remember, we don't get snow here in the winter, so just about anything goes, or should I say "grows".

Sunday, November 22, 2009

New Water System

Well today the people came and installed our new water system (filtration/softener). It took about 3 hours to install it and they did a really good job. The system is really nice looking compared to the ugly tanks Culligan Water Systems rented to us.

This system is used by NASA because it is "green". That is one of the reasons we liked it too. Here is a link to the site for this system.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Finally.....A Hike!

Finally was able to get out for a nice 2-mile hike in Placerita Canyon this morning. There were a lot of people out hiking, jogging, biking, and there were a bunch of volunteers cleaning up the dry creekbed for when and "IF" we ever get any rain.


Self Portrait

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday Evening

Feeling so much better today. Whatever got me down yesterday must have just been a little bug. It gave me a headache, some dizziness and some fatigue. Today I was about 90% back to my old self. Hoping tomorrow I'll be 100% because Ben works and I want to get out and go hiking!
Hope everyone has a great weekend.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Feeling Poorly Today

Woke up this morning not feeling very well. Had a headache, felt a little dizzy and felt some body fatigue. Had planned to go for a hike today, but obviously that ended up being a no-go.
Spent the entire day on the sofa watching TV.
Feeling better this evening.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Hard Water

Don't know about where you live, but we have extremely hard water here where we live. It is so hard that if we do not use a water softener service, we do not get any suds when batheing, washing clothes or washing dishes. It is so hard that it tastes like the inside of a pipe if we don't use a service. It leaves hard water spots on everything!
For years we have been using a service called Culligan. We rent a water softener tank from them, which they are supposed to come and change every-other week and they also charge us a service fee each time they come out and change the tank.
There have been three times in the past three months that they have not delivered on the day they were supposed to deliver and I had to call and complain. Also the rental price has gone up $16.00 a month since last December.
We've been using this soft water service for about 26 years. When we first signed up with them, it cost us about $18 a month. Now we are paying about $55 a month.
Well today we had a guy from a company called Puronics come out to our home and talk to us about purchasing a Puronics Water Filter/Softener System. Yes, owning your own system instead of renting one from Culligan can be an expensive purchase, but when you actually think about it in the long run, it's a lot less expensive..
We would be paying Culligan for the rest of our lives to rent their monthly service since our water is hard and keeps getting harder. Right now we pay them over $700 a year and we do not own the system. For about the same price per month, we will be buying a system that will belong to us once it's paid for. Puronics services their product every 3 months for free and every 3 years, they flush it and do a complete maintenance service on it for $275.00 which comes out to less than $100 per year instead of the $700 a year we are paying to Culligan.
The guy from Puronics said we can deduct the cost of the system on our income tax.
And what's really nice is that this system is totally GREEN!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Devil's Punchbowl - Pearblossom, CA

Ben and I drove out to Pearblossom in the desert this morning to visit the Devil's Punchbowl. We had been hearing about this place for years, but had never been there. At first you don't notice the "punchbowl", but when you walk over to the rim of the canyon, it is awesome. Photographs do NOT do it justice. This is something that needs to be seen in person to really appreciate the view.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Beautiful Day In SoCal

After I did my housework this morning, I went for a 3-mile walk on the bike trail that runs along Soledad Canyon Road here in Canyon Country. I had never walked this trail before. Did real good the first mile and a half, but my feet started hurting me really bad on the way back to the car.
It is really beautiful here in SoCal today.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

My Mom and Dad

Today would have been my mom and dad's 71st wedding anniversary.
They met at a roller skating rink in Tulsa, OK back in 1938. My dad worked at the rink and my mom went there with some of her friends. They dated for three months and married on November 15, 1938. They were together for almost 45 years until my dad passed away from a heart attack at the age of 67 in 1983. My mom lived another 15 years. She passed away at the age of 77 in 1998. Today, they are celebrating together in Heaven.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

That Time Of The Year

Well, it's that time of the year where when you go to a mall or to a "membership store" like Sam's Club or Costco, you start to see all of the sample booths where you can taste the Christmas goodies that will be on sale in the store.
This morning Ben and I went over to Sam's Club to pick up a few things we needed. Just inside the door we saw a booth for "FudgieWudgie". There was no representative at the booth when the store first opened but we were told someone would be there later.
After lunch, Ben said he wanted to head back over to Sam's to see if we could get a sample of the FudgieWudgie fudge. It sells for $22.96 a pound, but Sam's Club Members could buy it for $11.48 a pound and we wanted to taste it before we decided if we would buy any of it.
I sampled the Belgian Chocolate/Walnut Fudge and Ben sampled the Chocolate Peanut Butter Fudge. It was so creamy and delicious that we bought one of each. Now I know that this fudge is NOT good for my high cholesterol, but I have to indulge every now and then.
Here is a link to the site:

Thursday, November 12, 2009

You Go Girl!



Tuesday, November 10, 2009

New Blog

I've started a new blog that I hope everyone will check out/follow/comment on. It has to do with Cholesterol and Statins.


Monday, November 9, 2009

Latest On My Cholesterol Problem

If you recall, I took myself off of the Fenofibrate (Tricor) my new doctor had prescribed for me last week after it started causing the muscle/joint pain I always experience when I try statins and/or other cholesterol reducing medications. I emailed my doctor and told him I was going to stop taking it. I had also told him that when I was in his office a week ago.
Well this morning the nurse in my doctor's office called me. She said the doctor wanted me to start taking flush Niacin. I told her, as I had told him last week, that I had tried using flush Niacin about 2 years ago and that I was told by the doctor I had at that time that Niacin does not lower cholesterol unless you take very high amounts of it. I can take up to 250MG before it too gives me the muscle/joint pain.
Then she said the doctor also wanted me to start taking low-dose aspirin. I had told the doctor that I've been taking low-dose aspirin for almost 4 years.
So now we are back to square one. I have once again started taking Bayer Heart Health Advantage to see if it helps. They still want me to watch my diet and do the blood work the doctor ordered for February.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Remember The Edsel?

The Ford Edsel was a "bomb" according to the public and Ford had to quit making them as they were losing money on them. I always thought it was one of the neatest cars ever built. I'm not a "Ford person" but this vehicle was so unique. I was just a little kid when they came out, but I would love to have one now.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Short Hike

Ben worked today so I went for a hike over in Placerita Canyon, however, it ended up being a short hike because my leg muscles were hurting so much from that stupid statin I took for 5 days. Still I did about 1.75 miles in about 40 minutes, so at least I got outside and did a little exercising.
It was really nice out this morning. Weather was perfect.
It always takes about 2 or 3 days for the side effects from the statins to go away from my body, just about the same amount of time it takes for them to show up when I start taking the statin.
Maybe once the pain is gone, I can do a better hike.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Muscle & Joint Pain

Well I was hoping the Cholesterol lowering medication my new doctor gave me would do the trick, but I guess not.
I've been on it for five days now. I had not noticed any problems until after I took it tonight with my dinner. Just before I went to bed around 9:00 PM, I started having a "tingling" feeling in my calf muscles. My first thought was "Oh no, here we go again".
I went to bed and tried to go to sleep, but I started getting the same muscle/joint pain that all of the other Cholesterol lowering medications that I have tried gave me. I got up and took some Tylenol, hoping that would take some of the pain away and I could get some sleep, but I just kept tossing and turning. So now I am up and on the computer.
That makes a total of five Cholesterol lowering medications I have tried and all five have ended in the same results....muscle/joint pain and fatigue.
I've tried Lovastatin, Pravastatin, Lopid, Zetia and now Fenofibrate (Tricor). Each time I try one, it takes less time for the muscle/joint pain to start. The first time it was ten days, the second time it was seven days and after that each one took between three and five days before the side effects kicked in.
I have already emailed my doctor and told him I was taking myself off of the Fenofibrate. I had told him in the office on Monday that I would do that if and when the muscle pain started. I told him that I am going to try to lower my numbers with diet and exercise, so I still want to do the blood work he ordered for me in February.
I did NOT tell him that I am going to start taking the Bayer Heart Health Advantage again. I didn't tell him I was on it before. I want to see if it helps me any. That is mainly why I want to do the blood work in February.
So I GIVE UP on the stupid Cholesterol drugs!

Bomb Shelters

Do you remember Bomb Shelters?
Some people were so afraid that "someone" was going to attack us with a nuclear bomb. Some people were so afraid that they built underground bomb shelters in their backyards.
The were usually built with thick concrete but the one advertised below was made with plywood. I would have worried that maybe the plywood would collapse from the weight of the dirt or that if we were bombed, the radiation would leak through the porous wood.

There was usually just enough room for a family of four. There were cots or bunks for sleeping, camping stoves for cooking and stored canned or boxed foods.

It still amazes me today that when we were in school, they would tell us "duck and cover" under our desks and that this would "protect" us from the radiation. Obviously they had no idea what radiation could do. Here in California, we now "duck and cover" when we have earthquakes.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

"Old Ladies" Lunch

Today I had lunch with 10 of my retired girlfriends from Lockheed (where we all used to work). Several of us have known each other for about 35 years. We all try to get together at least once a year. Sometimes it's a little hard to do as even though all of us live in Southern California, some of us live up to 100 miles away from each other.
We always have so much fun together. We talk about old times, movies, health problems, vacations, etc.
Had a great time.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Do You Remember.....

Remember Saddle Oxfords?


They were the shoes everyone wore in the 1950's. They went with everything....your poodle skirt, your jeans, your shorts, whatever you wore.

I remember in the mid-1960's they came back into style, but they were made of patten leather then. And once again, everyone wore them. I remember in high school, there was not a girl on campus who did not have them.

I see that you can still buy them online. How cool!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

New Meds

Started taking my new cholesterol meds this evening with dinner. From my experience, it takes anywhere between 3 to 10 days for my muscles and joints to start hurting from the statin. The first statin I ever took 4 years ago hit me in 10 days and all the others after that took less time to bring on the pain. I hope that this one won't cause pain, but if it does, I'm done with them forever. I know....I said that before, but I keep thinking that just maybe there is one out there that will not effect me like the others. Maybe I'm crazy too.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Today's Appointment With New Doctor

Well this morning I had my first appointment with my new doctor at Kaiser. He is very young...maybe 35 at the most.
He "talked me into" trying one more statin for my high cholesterol. I told him that my last doctor said I was allergic to statins because of the muscle pain and fatigue they cause me. He said that a lot of that has to do with the dosage of the medication and that maybe they gave me too much at once before. He said that with my high numbers, he really thinks I need medication to control my cholesterol, which I agree since I have not been able to do it with diet, exercise and natural methods.
Anyway, I agreed to try this statin he has recommended. Don't know if that was a wise decision or not. It is Tricor (Fenofibrate). I told him that the minute I feel any muscle pain or fatigue, I will STOP taking this medication. He agreed and told me to email him if that happens.
I'll go over and pick it up tomorrow at the Kaiser Pharmacy. I will go back for blood work again in February. I'll stop taking the Bayer Heart Health Advantage while I'm taking the Fenofibrate. If I don't and my cholesterol is lower next time, I would not know which was lowering it....the Fenofibrate or the Bayer. If the Fenofibrate causes muscle pain or doesn't work, then I will start up the Bayer again.
More to come.....

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Cholesterol Part 2

Well, I've gotten some interesting comments about my last blog here and over on my "Not Over The Hill" web community.
I was told that many people have the same problem as me, they cannot tolerate the statins. Some of them say they are afraid to take statins because they have heard how they can harm our bodies in other ways, like destroying the liver. My grandmother and aunt died from liver disease, so that is another reason I do not want to be dependent on statins.
My older brother and I read up on some of the things that statins cause and one of them is Congestive Heart Failure. It seams that statins destroy muscle. That is why I worried when I started getting the muscle pain when I tried them. Anyway, my brother found an article that said doctors know that COQ10 will help protect your muscles when you are taking statins and since your heart is a muscle, taking the COQ10 will help prevent Congestive Heart Failure.
Our mother died of Congestive Heart Failure and she had been taking statins for many, many years. She never knew about COQ10 and she was never told about it from her doctor, so my brother believes that it was the statins that killed her.
You can search the Internet to find facts about COQ10.
One friend over on "Not Over The Hill" told me that her husband refuses to take statins. He has started using a product called "Benecol Chews". Supposedly these caramel chews have been proven to lower cholesterol. She said he swears by them. Has anyone heard of them or tried them?
I want to see if the "Bayer Heart Health Advantage" tablets help me any before I jump into trying something else.