"On the plains of Oklahoma, with a windshield sunset in your eyes like a watercolor painted sky, you'd think heavens doors have opened."
Fly Over States

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Five Years Old

I am struggling to regain my physical equilibrium after being on medication for the better part of two months. Anyone who takes steroids and/or antibiotics knows they can really wreck your system. And for someone like me, who absolutely hates to take more than an aspirin, it has been sort of shocking. I mean, I don’t even put color on my hair because part of me is sure that the chemicals are going to sap my soul or something. I’m not saying I am not grateful for the relief the drugs brought me, but I sure will be glad when they are out of my system and my body gets back to normal. I hate drugs. Just hate them. I think they can be a necessary evil but if I can, I avoid them like the plague. They are usually worse than the underlying condition, in my opinion. But maybe I have just lucky enough to avoid a terrible underlying condition, to be fair.  And I am grateful for that.  So many of us, myself included, take our good health for granted.  Not everyone is that fortunate. 

Husband left town on Wednesday for an overnight business trip to DC. He wanted to just drive himself to the airport and leave his vehicle in the parking lot, overnight. But no, I insisted I would drive him to and from, like a good wife. The girls like the drive and it is no trouble.  I am not working so I ought to be doing SOMETHING to earn my keep.  I dropped him just before noon and had two days of kick up my heels and run nakid in the moonlight household chores planned. Instead, most of the rest of Wednesday was spent in bed, just suddenly miserable, feeling like someone had scoured my insides with steel wool. Other than a bad headache and malaise, the vague, raw feeling was my only symptom. I didn’t really feel “sick,” just exhausted, headachy and sleepy. That is so out of character that if I had been thinking straight, I would have realized I was in trouble.  But I just slept. The girls stayed right with me.  At least I think they did.  I was asleep for the better part of 24 hours.  I got up to feed them and let them out once or twice. 

On Thursday, I got horribly ill. First, I thought I had a stomach bug. Then I thought it was food poisoning.  Next, I thought it was the lack of flora and fauna in my intestines that had been killed off by the antibiotics, coupled with the lack of a robust immune system, due to the prednisone.  Then, I stopped thinking, at all. 

I believe that was as sick as I have ever felt in my life. I was so glad husband was not home because all I wanted to do was curl up and die, preferably in the bathroom, and if I know him, he’d want to be in there, too, to make sure I did it properly. I was too sick to even go get him at the airport (how aggravating since he’d wanted to just drive himself in the first place). When he came through the door late Thursday evening, I was too out of it to even think to hoist myself up off the floor where I had parked myself by the back door so I could look out across the pasture to watch for the headlights of his cab.

Friday and today have slowly gotten better. Today, I managed to eat some vegetable soup my mother-in-law made me (bless her) and some probiotic yogurt that Husband fetched for me (bless him).

I had two cookies, a small bowl of mushrooms and a handful of jelly bellies over a three day period. Husband was gone so I ate like a five year old – a sick five year old. I lost four pounds and it just seems like I should have lost more. I was drinking water like a fish to try to avoid getting dehydrated. I am not a big water drinker and was not thirsty so that was hard to convince myself to keep doing - especially since I was so out of it.  I am telling myself that I really lost ten pounds but drank back about six of them. And maybe that is true. This may be nature’s way of helping me shed the prednisone tonnage. More likely, I am paying for my sins. All of them, starting from age seven. It was that bad.  But today is better. 

Evelyn will be five years old, tomorrow.
We are having such fun with her.
She absolutely loves her Oklahoma home.
She has gotten so sassy and spunky.
She has all but given up her green chair in favor of lying against my chair so I can pet her. Alternatively, she lies across the couch and makes herself as long as possible to drive Pearly crazy (Pearl thinks the couch belongs to her and her dad).
This morning, while I made a break for the bathroom, Evelyn climbed up into my chair. Butter wouldn’t have melted in her mouth when I came back to see her curled up there. You could just see that she was bursting with humor – that is her idea of playing a joke. When I told her to get down, she broke into a huge grin and cast me a sly look as she lumbered away.
Pearl looked horrified. She never sits where she isn’t supposed to.  At least not on purpose.
Husband has been riding herd on Pearl because she wants to dig in the yard, like all puppies – and all Samoyeds – do. He insists that Evelyn was never a digger but I think the man may have a secret drug problem with big-time memory lapses. She dug with the best of them. He and I have had this conversation, many times.  He keeps forgetting that we've had the same conversation.  Next time, I am going to tape record it, I swear I am, and save my breath, thereafter. 

This morning, I was standing at the back window watching Husband and the girls walking by the back fence. He was earnestly pointing at a hole Pearly had dug and I could tell he was giving her a lecture - I could tell by the look on her face (I frequently have that look on my own face) and the fact that his lips were moving. Behind his back, Evelyn was going to town digging in the dirt as hard as she could. I laughed and rapped on the window to get their attention. Husband looked up and I watched him catch sight of her out of the corner of his eye. I screamed with laughter watching him waving his arms around like a big bird, then try to pull Evelyn away from the hole. Evelyn didn’t slow down – she was in the zone. By this time, he was laughing, too. I watched him pull at her ruff and point at the house. She looked mightily peeved, before trotting towards the house, again, with a huge grin on her face.

She knows she is bad. I bet she has tats under all that hair.  Pearl looked horrified - she's a good girl.

My washer is not as heavy duty as I would like and I have dreams of getting a large capacity front loader. Our current washer is fine for most clothes but my quilts are heavy. My mother-in-law has a front load washer she'll let me use and they aren’t far away, but today I decided to just wash our bed quilt (the Patriotic Quilt) in the pink bathtub and hang it on the fence to air dry.  It was quite disgusting wtih red, muddy paw prints all over it.  No offense to the dogs.  I think the people who can sleep under something like that are the ones who are disgusting.

It's probably getting ruined by the dogs but that’s okay.
It took three soapings and one rinsing to get it halfway respectable:

I just like the bubbles.
I can always make another one if this one gets too stained.  I actually think I'd have gotten just about all the stains out if I had properly pretreated it.  Structurally, it is holding up like new.  

While I soaked and washed it, Pearl pretty much stayed under my arm, sticking her nose into what I was doing for every second.   The nasty picture is the first soaping.  EEWWWW.
She's quite the little helper.
Then I hung it on the fence in a place where there aren’t any sharp edges. It was a cloudy day with a nice breeze to help dry it but no bright sun to fade it.
That Evelyn is a cutie:
I enjoyed making this quilt.  It was a labor of love and the one I used to learn how to paper piece.
My father-in-law and his wife are having an auction, next week.  Today, they spent a few hours out in the barn packing up stuff they store there, to sell. Husband came back into the house with this chicken.
OMG, I fell in love with the chicken.
Surely, it is worth at least five million dollars.
This is a masterpiece of a tail.
I'm terrified I'll break it.
It belonged to his grandmother and he says he used to love seeing it at her house when he was a small boy.  I may use it for an art quilt model.

It is times like this, that I am glad I married that bossy man.  WHO KNEW he had a blown glass chicken dowry?

I must be feeling better.

I also love this skull:

We keep the collars of our dearly departed darlings on it.  My father-in-Law found this out in the pasture, decades ago.  Husband has carted it around with him wherever he goes.  This is the first time it has been allowed to be displayed in the house.  After all, it is now an antique.   

I kid.  It was my idea to hang it indoors.  Pretty classy, eh?

Happy Quilting,

Penny, Evelyn and Pearl


Miriam said...

I really hope you get back to full health soon, Penny. It sounds very nasty!!!!

Happy 5th Birthday to Evelyn. :)

ranette said...

Well I am glad you are better Penny, but you should not have been alone being that sick!!!

You could have just had a nasty stomach bug. My Mom had it a couple of weeks ago and she said she ran almost a 103 degree temp which is way too high for an older person.

Evelyn does look very mischievous and Pearl must be the first born because she has that "look"....

Love the Patriotic quilt!

katie z said...

I'm sorry to hear you were so sick. Taking medicine definitely is a thing I avoid at all costs too, so I understand the yuck feeling.

How in the world did you carry the wet quilt outside? How much did it weigh?

Penny said...

Katie, I didn't weigh it but it was heavy - although actually not as heavy as I thought it would be. I used a laundry basket after letting it drain quite a bit in the tub. The water just flowed off it when I hung it on the line. I was afraid the dogs would get their feet muddy from walking by it - and then rear up and put muddy paw prints right back on it. But they didn't and it all worked out fine.

Penny said...

Ranette, I consider it a blessing that I was alone. I have never been one to like having someone fuss over me when I am sick. Even as a little girl, I'd get up in the middle of the night if I was sick, clean it up and then go back to bed, none the wiser - I'm talking 5 - 6 years old. Husband is actually a pretty good nursemaid and I appreciate the efforts. Still, I was kinda glad he wasn't here to see me suffer. It worries him and there really wasn't anything he could do about it, anyway. He has been known on a number of occasions to wake me up to see if I am still alive and, really, that is taking it a bit far, seems to me. He's a darling and I shouldn't tease about the bossy old fool in my posts. He's good to me.

Hope your mom is better. I know there is something going around. I suspect it was a combination of that and the medication ramifications. That would explain the 24 hour stupor - probably was running a fever. I am much better, now. I think I will go to Hobby Lobby and spread the joy. Just kidding. I feel great.

You're right about Pearl. She was the biggest of her litter, too. I think she may be the first born. She likes having a job and is a high achiever. I think Evelyn was the bay of the family who just ended up being the oldest dog.

I need to put the binding on some of my unfinished quilts so I can swap out the Patriotic Quilt and give it a break.

Anonymous said...

You have had a run of 'bad luck' haven't you???

Here's hoping with the spring and sunshine, you will be able to perk up!

LOVE LOVE LOVE the rooster! oh my gosh!

Anonymous said...

meant to add...my front loader washer doesn't do quilts .... they are too heavy to spin. frustrates me to no end!!

Penny said...

FINALLY! Someone else loves the chicken. Thanks, Karol, we are avian sistas!

Run of bad luck? No, I think it all just went bad and sort of ran together. When you get old, even a cold can take you, I'm told.

Paula said...

Glad you're feeling better. My sinus' have been draining all weekend and I've been talking about putting them in front of a firing squad!
Wishing Evelyn a very happy birthday.


Penny said...

Hope your sinuses feel better, soon, Paula. That is miserable.

Evelyn has had a great birthday. Thanks, everyone.

Sherry said...

I hope you get back to 100% very soon!

Many...most...at least some of us make our quilts to be used! I've had people to tell me that a quilt was too old to wash. Well...it's either wash it or throw it away. I'm not having an old sticking quilt in the house.

And hanging it on the fence! LOL I loved that! You are definitely back in Oklahoma! ;o)

Shogun said...

That is a great chicken, and I am not a chicken person at all.

We also save old collars with the tags on them from loved pets of the past.

Hope you are finally going to have a spell of feeling good soon!

Infinity Quilter said...

Good Golly, I'm behind in reading blogs. Happy belated Birthday to Evelyn!!!

Gorgeous quilt!