Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Potty Etiquette or Being 59 in a Public Bathroom

I remember the days when my mom would make me stand up on the toilet lids of a public bathroom and squat over the john. I was 3. I am now nearly 60 and I haven't squatted over anything in more years than I can count. Arthritis, weight and bad knees have made me adjust to the lessons my mama taught me. For years I carried a small spritz bottle of Clorox and water and I would just spritz the seat to clean it and sit down to meditate. I had to stop that habit when a year or so back after I had cleaned the seat, sat down, took care of business and two hours later had the worse butt rash. I, being slow on the uptake, didn't immediately equate the rash with the Clorox solution. It took a second round and me waking up in the middle of the night with the worse burning butt you can imagine. I still didn't realize what was wrong with me till I used a mirror to view my backside and low and behold there was a red rashy imprint of a toilet seat on my butt and the back of my legs. I am only so tall and my backside is of a size that when I squat over the toilet, I still come in contact with the seat so I figure I might as well be comfortable and I sit. Now I wipe the seat down use the paper thingy over the back of the toilet and hope for the best. Now to the women who think nothing of peeing all over the seat and leaving the mess: you are classless, tasteless, and taught manners by zoo keepers. When you flush(that's assuming you do... and often you don't) take a glance at the seat and WIPE YOUR MESS. I happened to use a public bathroom the other day and they were out of paper thingies and I swiped without checking closely as I was already at the cross-the-legs point and I sat down and hit the only spot I missed. Man I just hate that. I was already feeling pee cooties scurry up my nether regions. The woman who just left that john was still out side washing her hands(go figure... she will pee on the seat but washes her hands) when I loudly said "I wish to hell people would LEARN not to pee on the seats or else clean up their mess" followed up by " I sure hope the woman who was here last doesn't have any DISEASES." She left in a huff and when I got out another witness laughed and said "Well you told her". My solution is to never use a public bathroom but with age and lack of control(I am just sure I have had a Kegal stroke... but that is for another blog) I have to go when I have to go.+

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Growing and Saving of Food by a Dummy and Ho-Ho's

I hope that in years to come my grandchildren will be reading my blogs and I hope that they enjoy what is written and don't ask their parents why I wasn't committed. I am not paranoid, I just watch the news and realize that we are facing some hard times and that food may be scarce or so expensive that choice may be limited. I filled up at the gas station the other day and paid over 3.60 a gallon. Today the price is up to 3.87 at the same station. I have seen grocery prices rise as well and it scares me. I want to be able to buy all the Ho-Ho's I want so something has to give financially. Thus I decided that I will grow some of my own food and since Ho-Ho's don't grow on bushes I figured I would have to grow fruits and vegetables to save money for a Ho-Ho emergency. There is a lot of things you need to do and know to grow vegetables and fruits. I don't know any of it so I enlisted my friend Faye who has great experience in such things. My son put in two 5ft by 15ft raised beds for me. Faye came over and we went shopping for seeds, plants, trees, fertilizer, and garden tools. I had no clue how to hoe. I know now and have the sore muscles to prove it. I learned that you have to have multiple pepper plants because some are male and some are female.. and you can't tell by looking so you plant a few and hope for the best. I learned that you have to have two of most fruit trees for the same reason. You have to water, feed and weed said beds to nurture your plants. In preparation for my (I'm sure)bountiful harvest I needed a plan to save everything. I plan to to dehydrate, can and freeze and of course I don't know how to do any of those things. I ordered a dehydrator and then realized I needed a Seal-a-Meal. I have time to order the pressure caner, water caner, the jars and the lids. I now have about 6 books on canning, freezing, and dehydrating. I have planting guides and print outs on the making of compost. The plants are in the ground and Demi the Wonder Dog and I visit at least once a day. So far all are still alive but the smallest pepper plant doesn't look good. I know that you aren't supposed to name the things you eat but the petite pitiful pepper plant is named Pedro. We have wildlife around here and I was worried that my plants would get eaten so Stan put a small fence around the beds. I am digging a hole for my compost both brown and green, in layers according to my papers. I am using store bought food stuff now but next year I will have my own, homegrown fertilizer. When I started this I just figured dig a hole, bury a plant, watch it grow and eat it or save it for later. This living off the land is just a tad more complicated. Everyone that has had experience in dehydrating is just so very, very enthusiastic so I figured if I can read a knitting pattern and make a sweater just how hard could this be. You cut up food, stick it on the pans, put it in the dehydrator and 12 hours later you have dried food. I was up the whole fricking night. I started at noon yesterday with 2 fresh pineapples and 6 bananas. I soaked the little banana circles that I cut in fresh lemon juice so they wouldn't get brown and put them on the trays. I cut up the pineapple and put those on the trays. I had 4 trays of food and visions of just bags and bags of dried fruit. At midnight I was still watching over the dehydrator. I was afraid to go to sleep for fear of a electrical fire or over drying. Finally after 12 hours and still sticky bananas I went to bed and set my alarm for a hour. Then another hour and another hour. At 4 am I finally was able to remove the product and seal it up in my new seal-a-meal bags. First I had to figure out how to use the Seal-a- Meal so I practiced on chicken legs. Easy peasy. I took my fruit(which was very tasty if I do say so myself) bagged and sealed it and went back to bed. All in all it has been a learning experience and I have learned a)not to anticipate how much I will have,( to avoid crushing disappointment) b) I need practice, and c) the return on my investment may take a while. The following pictures will take you thru my journey thus far:
Compost prior to going into the ground. Food for the veggies until next year.
Two of my fruit trees. I have lemon, peach, lime and satsumas
My little plants. Note the fence that Stan gave me.
I started with six bananas and two pineapples (okay... i know the yellow things are lemons. I used my pineapples)
put them in this lovely dehydrator Sealed the produce in my new Seal-a-Meal
and ended up with 2 bags of fruit that I could eat at one sitting.


Equipment and supplies for Josh putting the beds in 250.00

Plants, Trees, gardening supplies, and tools 150.00

Fence and hose 125.00

Dehydrator 140.00 Seal-a-Meal(and extra bags) 100.0o

My expression at 4 am in the morning when I realized all I had was two little bags PRICELESS

Stan did casually mention to me that we could have bought a hell of a lot of food for what I spent so far. Start up in any new endeavor is always expensive. I am not daunted in the least. I am asking for the caners for my anniversary present so I didn't list them. All joking aside I really believe that in the near future we will need to be able to grow and preserve our own food. I just hope I have a few years to work out the kinks!!

Friday, April 8, 2011

April 8, 1977 Happy Birthday Josh

I am amazed at you this year. You have learned life skills that I never thought you would even be interested in learning. Shows what a mom knows. When I saw you yesterday with your (as Becky calls it) "man belt" on with all the tools around, it it struck me as how much you have learned. I have always said you could do or be anything you want and you are proving me right with your multi-talented livelihoods. You are such a study of opposites. During the day you are wielding a hammer, nails, screwdriver and all sorts of "man" tools and during the evening you are gracefully demonstrating dance to children. You are impacting the life of your students at night and you are learning construction during the day. You remain driven by your faith and hold to the fact that Jesus is your King. I am proud of you. I love you unconditionally. Happy Birthday Joshua this year and many more.