Thursday, January 31, 2008

When you had what they call a "scare"...

... people look at you differently. Which I wouldn't mind so much, except that now, on those days when you fight to get out of bed, it's icy cold and windy outside, and you don't want to think process, but rather cupcakes or soup or cartoons... on those days people get very concerned. "Are you OK?" "You look tired, are you feeling alright?" "Make sure you're not overdoing it now" - it's just a bad day, not a heart problem, really.

That said, I still lose energy and get sore. I'd love to work out again and the gym at work is now free, but since my energy tanks at 3 or 4, I can't really even considered 20 min of cardio....

I may have mentioned this before, but J has been absolutely incredible. From presence of mind though scared at the start of this all, to the presence of mind to do deep research and ask questions to make sure I wasn't getting treated for the sake of treatment, to the emotional and moral support and general taking care of me. There are so many ways this has hit home how much I love him.

In the meantime - Book #3 - The Little Friend by Donna Tartt. I definitely disagree with the critics on this one. Strong storytelling - yes. It brings small-town Mississippi in the 1970's into your home to sit next to you. But I wouldn't call it compelling. It was very very long and often wandered into places that really didn't matter (I guess you could call that "complete"). I also found the ending highly dis-satisfying because it didn't really end, it just ran out of pages.

Friday, January 18, 2008

January - 'tis full of freakiness this year

Is there some sort of curse on January 2008? Something about election years or leap years that could explain all of the weirdness abounding around me?

Yes, things could be freakier - we're not at a total extreme, but the number of unfortunate occurrences in my social circle seems really weird:
- I passed out in bed and wound up diagnosed with Long QT Syndrome, and had a defibrillator implanted.
- Jenny's bunny, Ernie, passed away
- Jenny was in a car accident
- A friend's son had a seizure and puzzling EEG results
- A coworker had a pain in his side that turned out to be a clot

Whatever the case, January has been a month of "firsts" for me:
- First time talking to a 911 operator (very nice lady)
- First time in an ambulance (not good driving "backwards", lying down, when nauseous
- First: CT scan of head (again, glad I was over the nausea as they kept wiggling the table back and forth, EEG (bad hair day after that), many EKGs
- First extensive neurological exam (involving a cruel math trick)

Many many many thanks to the family and friends that surrounded me, kept me sane, and kept me distracted with text messages during the week in the hospital and the recovery at home after. I couldn't do it without you guys. For all of January's weirdness, I'm blessed.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Good for you food can be tasty, too

Last night, J and I went with his visiting Aunt to Tasteology - a new restaurant in Rochester. (They're going to start cooking classes soon, which I'll have to check out)

Tasteology's thing is "healthy menu items from all over the world". Entrees are under 500 calories - made from local, usually organic, produce. Excellent in theory, but what about taste? Would 500 calories satisfy? When it's done smartly, it not only satisfies, it delights!

We started out with Mexican Hot Chocolate, which probably had more calories than dinner, but was so tasty and perfect for the bitter cold that I didn't care. I got a turkey, honey yam, spicy cranberry sauce roti wrap, which came with greens and a small side salad. For desert, I had a "Petit Pleasure" - apple and cranberry with a bit of oaty cookie in the middle.
Excellent. Can't wait to go back and try more. Service was also great and it has a simple, clean decor which has a friendly, healthy feel.

Quick book update:
Book #1 - The Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wilde. A short, highly amusing tale of what happens when a wizened British aristocratic haunt encounters a "modern" American family. Quite fun.

Book #2 - The Mole People: Life in the Tunnels Beneath New York City by Jennifer Toth. I've long been fascinated by people who live differently and the thought of lives lead in secret corners has always been intriguing and one I've enjoyed in Neverwhere and other fictional accounts. Mole People is the first of a few books I have on actual underground societies. I loved the documentary work Toth did - found the vignettes of communities and individuals fascinating. When she tries to tie in historical and literary references, she bounces around and gets a bit mired, but luckily that's only a small portion of the book. A "wow" ending, too.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008


you know the rest....
Christmas was fun, as always. And the boys, though they don't blog about it, are doing well in their various endeavors. Dan played with Nik and the Nice Guys at Turning Stone for New Year's and I heard a part of a discussion about Nik (the group) playing with Three Dog Night at Seneca Niagara this month....
(Dan can post to correct me if I'm wrong)
Sonny continues to get acclaim for his art.

By the end of 2007, I had 4 more books for my list:
#25 - The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger. A book club book that we haven't met on yet, but I can pretty much sum it up with "meh".
#26 - The End of the Affair by Graham Greene. This was pretty good, although I didn't get much deep out of it, it was well done.
#27 - The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams. Quoted at our wedding, I needed to check this out for the first time.
#28 - Zenzele: A letter for my daughter by J. Nozipo Maraire. A striking look at the heritage a mother from Zimbabwe wants to pass on to her daughter studying at Harvard. Extremely well written - so much so that I often had to remind myself it was a novelization. Compelling insider's perspective on life, the struggle for independence, and strength.

2007 closes having been quite a year. Looking back, I've made some significant career discoveries and progress. I traveled quite a bit. J is going back to school with a vision of what he wants to do. We've radically changed our eating habits from nearly all meat to mindful meat-eating, but largely veggies and grains. We're endeavoring to be more green and sustainable. I made several cool craft things - will blog about holiday crafts later this week.

So, I launch into 2008 hoping to finish a couple of books in the next few days and once more shooting for 50. Here are some of the other thoughts I have for the new year:
- be better organized - at least keep piles from proliferating
- bake more
- get back into shape (of course)
- play more
- craft more
- stress less
- continue to explore ways of re-using everyday items and ways to use what I can grow myself
I could go on, but I might start to get worried about being able to keep it up.

Happy 2008 - best wishes all.