Category Archives: RandomBlog2011

Walk With Me Wednesday

Yesterday’s #blogging101 assignment was to add a custom header and Widgets to our blogs.  Mine have been there for about 5 years now, so I could not remember how to do it.  There were some directions, which I did try to follow, but it didn’t work for me.  I did end up redoing the order  and title of 2 of them, so it wasn’t a total fail.  But really nothing to do a whole blog post about.

Today though, we are still working on building connections with fellow bloggers and were asked to follow 4 new blogs.  I am going to highlight a few posts from people I am now following:

Arielle at With All My Affection just posted this about tiles but it first caught my eye because of all of her shoes 😉

Rachel at Create a Path posts about children’s books, crafts, and this post about a dream destination that got me itching to travel.  How I miss seeing new sites and traveling on a whim, which I cannot do now with a baby.

Victoria at Victoria Feathers is participating in a photoaday challenge.  This is a recent post that I liked, showing the before and after editing.

Edwina at Edwina’s Episodes posted this – a sad but funny mishap when getting a tattoo.  It also links to another post she did the day before that was very similar, with getting one’s eyebrows tattooed.

 

So there ya go; just a few posts from a few new people I am following.  Go check them out and give them some blog-loving!  And again, to anyone reading that is a  new follower of mine, Welcome and thank you for checking out my blog.  I hope you will stick around and Walk With Me.

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2011 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Syndey Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 14,000 times in 2011. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 5 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.


Shake, rattle…wait, was that an earthquake?

In light of the recent earthquake felt along most of the East Coast on Tuesday, it made me think that most of those people never thought they would ever experience an earthquake, and most likely, they were not prepared for one.  Now that I live in California, earthquakes are more common here, than when I was in NY.   Still fairly new to them, I started researching how I should prepare for one, or any kind of emergency/disaster situation.   I want to share with you the 7 steps to earthquake safety, as published by the California Earthquake Authority:

The following seven steps may help you and your family be better prepared when an earthquake strikes. They are arranged in the order of measures to take before, during and after an earthquake.

1.Before Step 1 Identify potential hazards in your home and begin to fix them
 2. Step 2 Create your disaster plan
 3. Step 3 Create your disaster supply kits
 4. Step 4 Identify your home’s potential weaknesses and begin to fix them
5.During Step 5 During earthquakes and aftershocks:
Drop, cover and hold on
6.After Step 6 After the shaking stops, check for damage and injuries needing immediate attention
 7. Step 7 When safe, follow your
disaster plan

After our last earthquake about a year ago, I decided to get serious about # 3, and created my own emergency/disaster bag.  Here are a couple pictures of it, as I went through it today, while packing for my move.  I wanted to get rid of any food items that have expired, and as it turns out, the gallon of water that I had in there had leaked all over, causing all of my clothing items to mold (so they are obviously not pictured).

Red for emergencies and easy spotting. Also attached is a whistle, that is also a compass and thermometer

 

Some of the contents that weren't ruined by the leaking water. see list below for recommended contents.

Build a Kit

After a major disaster the usual services we take for granted, such as running water, refrigeration, and telephones, may be unavailable. Experts recommend that you should be prepared to be self-sufficient for at least three days. Store your household disaster kit in an easily accessible location.  Put contents in a large, watertight container (e.g. a large plastic garbage can with a lid and wheels) that you can move easily.

Your basic emergency kit should include:

  • Water – one gallon per person per day
  • Food – ready to eat or requiring minimal water
  • Manual can opener and other cooking supplies
  • Plates, utensils and other feeding supplies
  • First Aid kit & instructions
  • A copy of important documents & phone numbers
  • Warm clothes and rain gear for each family member.
  • Heavy work gloves
  • Disposable camera
  • Unscented liquid household bleach and an eyedropper for water purification
  • Personal hygiene items including toilet paper, feminine supplies, hand sanitizer and soap
  • Plastic sheeting, duct tape and utility knife for covering broken windows
  • Tools such as a crowbar, hammer & nails, staple gun, adjustable wrench and bungee cords.
  • Blanket or sleeping bag
  • Large heavy duty plastic bags and a plastic bucket for waste and sanitation
  • Any special-needs items for children,seniors or people with disabilities. Don’t forget water and supplies for your pets.

A component of your disaster kit is your Go-bag. Put the following items together in a backpack or another easy to carry container in case you must evacuate quickly.  Prepare one Go-bag for each family member and make sure each has an I.D. tag. You may not be at home when an emergency strikes so keep some additional supplies in your car and at work, considering what you would need for your immediate safety.

  • Flashlight
  • Radio – battery operated
  • Batteries
  • Whistle
  • Dust mask
  • Pocket knife
  • Emergency cash in small denominations and quarters for phone calls
  • Sturdy shoes, a change of clothes, and a warm hat
  • Local map
  • Some water and food
  • Permanent marker, paper and tape
  • Photos of family members and pets for re-identification purposes
  • List of emergency point-of -contact phone numbers
  • List of allergies to any drug (especially antibiotics) or food
  • Copy of health insurance and identification cards
  • Extra prescription eye glasses, hearing aid or other vital personal items
  • Prescription medications and first aid supplies
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Extra keys to your house and vehicle
  • Any special-needs items for children,seniors or people with disabilities. Don’t forget to make a Go-bag for your pets.

It’s good to go through your kit at least once  a year, maybe twice per year.  Suggested days could be on New Years Day, or you could do it twice per year on daylight savings days.  If you keep foods, liquids and medicines in your kit, make sure to keep track of expiration dates.  I am considering purchasing MRE’s (meals, ready to eat) from the Army/Navy store, as they have a longer shelf life, and weigh less than canned goods.

Another thing I did was have a smaller version of an emergency kit that I carry in my car.  I picked mine up at Costco, and it was more for roadside emergencies, but I included some first aide items, hygiene items, a mask, gloves, water, flashlight, batteries, and a blanket.

 

Please don’t wait until a disaster strikes around you before you decide to take action…get prepared today!  Be safe!


Fable of the Porcupine

Fable of the porcupine


It was the coldest winter ever.  Many animals died because of the cold. The porcupines, realizing the situation, decided to group together to keep warm.  This way they covered and protected themselves; but the quills of each one wounded their closest companions.  After awhile, they decided to distance themselves one from the other and they began to die, alone and frozen.  So they had to make a choice: either accept the quills of their companions or disappear from the Earth.  Wisely, they decided to go back to being together.  They learned to live with the little wounds caused by the close relationship with their companions in order to receive the warmth that came from the others.  This way they were able to survive.  Moral of the story: The best relationship is not the one that brings together perfect people, but when each individual learns to live with the imperfections of others and can admire the other person’s good qualities.


Happy Blogiversary

Happy blogiversary to you, Happy blogiversary to you, Happy blogiversary, dear Walk A Mile In My Shoes, Happy blogiversary to you!

Today I am celebrating my blogiversary, the 1 year anniversary of my blog!  The whole idea of it still blows me away.  I started this blog kinda on a whim last year, after seeing some of my other friends have blogs and thinking it would be fun.  You can read my very first post :  WELCOME

When I started, I was not very committed. There were days, weeks, even a month or so when I didn’t write anything.  I had a total of 24 posts from 5/17/10 though 12/31/10.  I think only about 3 friends subscribed to my blog and I hardly had any comments.  It wasn’t until WordPress announced its Daily Post Challenge, that I really decided to commit myself to my blog, challenging myself to do it daily, and I met lots of great, amazing, wonderful friends along the way.  I really enjoy writing now and take pride in my blog, and in myself for my renewed committment to it.  That is what I am celebrating today.  I hope you will all celebrate with me!


The results are in

I have been battling with severe on and off lower back pain for about a year and a half now.  It would be a very sudden onset, and feel like I was being stabbed and it spread throughout my lower back.  My back would lock up and I would not be able to move, at all, for days. Sometimes the pain would last for a few weeks.  There were no precursors to the pain; I could be doing anything, even something as simple as reaching for my toothbrush, and then BAM, pain and I’m out of commission for a week or two.

Last August, an x-ray was done and one doctor thought he saw an old fracture but the specialist did not agree.  They told me to lose weight, and take Vicoden for pain and Flexerol for a muscle relaxer as needed. I was out of work for 2 weeks.  Since August, I have had repeat pain about every 2-3 months now.  I couldn’t take it anymore so I went to my doctor 2 weeks ago, after a week of being in extreme pain, all locked up.  I finally convinced her that the meds were not working and asked for an MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging).

According to Wikipedia:

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), nuclear magnetic resonance imaging (NMRI), or magnetic resonance tomography (MRT) is amedical imaging technique used in radiology to visualize detailed internal structures. MRI makes use of the property of Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) to image nuclei of atoms inside the body.

An MRI machine uses a powerful magnetic field to align the magnetization of some atoms in the body, and radio frequency fields to systematically alter the alignment of this magnetization. This causes the nuclei to produce a rotating magnetic field detectable by the scanner—and this information is recorded to construct an image of the scanned area of the body.[1]:36 Strong magnetic field gradients cause nuclei at different locations to rotate at different speeds. 3-D spatial information can be obtained by providing gradients in each direction.

MRI provides good contrast between the different soft tissues of the body, which make it especially useful in imaging the brainmuscles, theheart, and cancers compared with other medical imaging techniques such as computed tomography (CT) or X-rays. Unlike CT scans or traditional X-rays, MRI uses no ionizing radiation.

Well, I had the MRI done last week.  It took about an hour and 20 minutes.  They did several pictures first without the dye, and then they injected me with the contrast dye and did a few more.  The chamber is really small, and I am a slightly claustrophobic person, so I was getting really antsy and at one point they had to pull me out for a few minutes because I got really nauseous.

Today I went to my doctor for the results.  I knew it wasn’t great when she came in with visual aids of the spine.  She informed me that the good news was the fracture was gone.  But the bad news was that I have bulging discs on my L4 and L5, which is the lower lumbar region of the spine.  These bulging discs were pressing on my nerves, causing them to pinch, which is why I was having the pain.

  

example of bulging disc

I was relieved to finally know what was causing my pain, and finally felt like my doctor could understand my pain.  She has changed my medications to Neurontin, which is a neurological medication that addresses pain in the nerves.  I need to take it daily now, not just when there is pain.  I still have the Flexerol and Ibruprophen for when needed.  My doctor is also wanting me to of course lose weight, to see if that helps the pain, and even gave me the info for her trainer.  She also wants me to go for physical therapy and to see an orthopedic specialist for any additional recommendations.  I am glad surgery is not being considered at this time.

Hopefully, now with an actual diagnosis, and better pain management medications, I will be feeling better and can start on my new weight loss goal.  Wish me luck!