Thursday, January 22, 2009


More of the 2009 musings.....I'll be done soon....I hope. Starting a new year always tends to make one look back at the past and not necessarily intentionally. I usually take stock of things from the past year but for some reason....age maybe....I'm really thinking way back in the past at times and it comes at odd moments. I mentioned before about driving down the highway and reliving Thanksgivings of the past. This is odd for me, I usually don't dwell on nostalgia. Papa is the one who really enjoys reliving his past and he remembers so far back and the tiniest details.

My flashback started around New Year's Day. It's traditional to eat either Black-Eyed Peas or Sardines on New Years. My research found: Some say the black-eyed pea's lucky streak dates back to the pharaohs. Others say it started in Vicksburg, Virginia, during the Civil War when the town ran out of food while under siege and the inhabitants were lucky enough to discover cow peas (a.k.a., black-eyed peas. Another old saying goes, "Eat peas on New Year's day to have plenty of everything the rest of the year. My sardine research turns up that this is a Japanese custom...small, dried sardines=good harvest. That's the end of your lesson for today.

Myself, I can't stand to look at the cans containing sardines. I remember a summer babysitting job when I was 14 years old, I had to walk about a mile to this house and watch a boy and a girl that were elementary school age. By the time I arrived at their house each morning, they were just getting up. The little girl would fix herself a bowl of cereal and sit at the table and eat. The little boy, however, always opened a can of sardines (nothing small and dried about them--they were in some sort of mustard sauce if I remember correctly, and quite messy), plopped himself in front of the tv and proceeded to eat those things right out of the can while watching cartoons. He would hold the sardine by its tail above his head, opening his mouth, and dropping it in. He looked like a baby bird eating. And he did this every morning.... all summer long. I have never in my life had a sardine and never will after witnessing this for three months straight.

So you aren't about to get one of those in me but I do try to make a pot of black-eyed peas every New Year's Day. I really don't care for them, at least the way I make them, but my Grandma could make them taste so delicious. She also had a way with pinto beans.

So just before New Year's Day, I'm at the store, in the bean aisle looking for a simple can of black-eyed peas. Those bags of beans make enough for a small army and I was just getting over the mass quantities of food I had around at Christmas. So a can was all I helping of the blasted things, I hoped, would stave off all the bad luck that might be aimed for me in 2009.

Found my black-eyed peas for New Year's Day and also grabbed a few cans of pinto beans, a box of cornbread and a bag of potatoes for dinner that night. I'm buying all this stuff and imaging how it would taste and salivating and it wasn't until I had dinner just about finished that I actually had my first thought of my Grandma.

See how the past sneaks up on you. I'm buying stuff unconsciously wanting that particular mouth-watering southern, artery clogging fried potatoes, pinto beans (minus the chow-chow---this link explains exactly what chow-chow is to you Northerners guess I'll have to give this a try now--and Elders beware, this person made so much they gave it away as Christmas gifts!!)

Anyway, in lieu of chow-chow, beans can be covered in catsup, and lastly, cornbread slathered with butter. A meal that I had had in the my Grandma's house and for a minute I was right back there with her in her kitchen. I could almost hear her talking and smell the food cooking, and and then just as fast, I was back in my house making dinner for Papa and I. But I would like to think I had a little extra help in the kitchen that night because dinner was awfully good.

(and we did have our black eyed peas on New Year's Day so our luck is protected---knock on wood)

Signing off.....Grammy

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


My goodness, two blogs in one day. I'm home from work today on a sick day and am finding myself with extra time on my hands while I'm recovering from another nerve block. This is the second one I've had (the first one in November) and let me tell you they do not compare to the magical epidural injections I had received before. Yesterday, I told Dr. Magic that he must get his money back from his numbing medication because it obviously is NOT working whatsoever.

These injections are given to me in the side of my neck directly on the site where I experience the most pain and they go directly into the joints and are focused on the nerves and extremely unpleasant. They load me up on Valium as before but I am almost coming out of my skin when the injections start. I'm supposed to keep my shoulders relaxed and be very still but my fists are clenched until my palms are almost bleeding and I shake my feet the entire time much to the distress of Dr. Magic. He is sure I might move my head while my other body parts are shaking and rattling around but I do manage to maintain my head and neck in complete stillness.

The first three injections were focused on my bulging discs and the nerve that was being pinched causing the pain in my arm and shoulder---they seemed to have worked. These last two injections are focused on alleviating my arthritis pain in my neck and shoulder. The first one didn't seem to do alot. My shoulder felt a little better but the pain in my neck was never reduced and when I stop my pain pills and muscle relaxers three days before an injection, I really feel the pain that is masked most of the time. I'm supposed to be pretty horizontal today with ice bags and upping the pain meds and for the most part that's what I've done, but I'm bored easily today for some reason (I do know about all things presidential, however, as the inaguaration of Obama is on all channels).

Anyhoo, I have 7 to 10 days to notice if I am helped by the injection and if not, I have a follow-up visit in two months to discuss Plan C if needed.

Hopped up on pain medicine Grammy signing off for the day.


Well, one thing I am is a procrastinator, pure and simple. Happy New Year (I say on January 20) but at times I do get a little OBE (overcome by events) and my writing in my blog is the victim. Actually everywhere I write is a victim.

Besides this blog, I try to write a daily personal journal (of which I'm about a year behind in but I keep calendars and notes as I go along so hopefully I can write about the main events). I also write two separate journals, one for each of the P's, just having a conversation with them and sharing thoughts and information on their development and life. I hope to pass these journals on to them when they are much, much older and I hope they will be able to enjoy reading about their growth and development and funny stories of things that happen in their lives as well as their families' lives.

Our new year has started off pretty routinely. We're back to work and just chugging along through the winter (which I'm already tired of).

Our New Year's Eve was non-eventful. Papa and I stayed home (in the country) but we both did stay up to see the New Year come in. Very quietly in the country. I talked to Fantastic Son early in the evening (about 10:30 since he didn't think I would be up at midnight--this kid so knows his mother!) But I surprised him with a text message at midnight, as well as texting Darling Daughter, who was having a New Year's Eve party at her house with some close friends.

My kids love New Year's Eve. When they were very young, we used to spend every New Year's Eve at Aunt Cracker's house and we CELEBRATED. At midnight, the kids would get apple juice or some sort of kiddie cocktail in a champagne flute and get to toast in the New Year and we would all go outside and bang pots and pans and shoot off fireworks. I was telling Aunt Cracker recently how those parties influenced my kids so much and they try to maintain tradition every year. DD took pictures of Precious with a fancy New Year's Eve party hat on and Perfect was drinking juice in his champagne flute. FS was also at a party and he and Serious Girlfriend had all the bonus kids in tow with them as well. So from Arizona to Missouri there were small children in hats, making toasts and banging on pans. Happy 2009 World.

Until next time......Grammy