Monday, November 28, 2011

A Bunch of Stuff

I haven't been very good at posting lately. I will use my less the robust health as an excuse. First the health update.

Last Wednesday was my first much better day in a long, long time. Then that night was horrible. No sleep. So our Thanksgiving Thursday was mostly me being a zombie. But then on Friday I noticeably improved and I've felt much better ever since. I'm sleeping better but I'm still cold and have little appetite. The latest batch of tests came in and they are all negative. I supposed to get a chest x-ray because of the persistent cough but my MD is happy that I'm on a generally positive trend. I can tell you that for the most part I'm substantially better than I've been. I even started some light exercise and have gradually been walking for longer time periods.

Thanksgiving itself we had Cabinet Lady, her sister and Dr. Debbie over. All I did was make the turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy and cranberry sauce. I tried a new technique for the turkey. The last couple of years I brined the turkey. This year I saw a recipe for salting it that was suppose to produce a similar result with much less work. It came off as advertised and was such a good technique that in spite of an oven temperature problem whereby it got cooked much more than it was supposed to, the turkey was still very moist.

It turns out (after doing a measurement with an external thermometer) that our oven is running 30 degrees hotter than what it is set for!

Another exciting event was the transfer of our business website to a new hosting company. I have to take my hat off to son-in-law John the Armenian (1A) who did this. Like so many tech things it was supposed to be pretty straight forward. But the software that our website uses is an open-source software so there really is no help line to call if you have a problem. After many hours of panic (he's in the Bay are so I'm just sitting here hoping for the best) and not being able to figure out why the data base wouldn't populate the new host, he just started over and somehow it all worked out.

Then I had a panic with the new email set up. John had sent me the new instructions and I set up a new account in my contact management program. Unfortunately I let the old account up. So when the contact manager tried to connect it had two accounts trying to do this simultaneously and just froze (I figured this out later). What made it worse was that my contact manager is set up to automatically connect to the internet as soon as it opens. So no matter how often I force quit the program and restarted it, I ended up with the same problem so I couldn't even change my settings!

Then came my brainstorm (you'd be so proud of me St. Louis Mike), I deduced that the problem was occurring during the attempt to connect to the internet. So I disabled the wireless modem in the computer. When I opened the contact manager there was nothing to connect to so the program didn't freeze. I deleted the old account and then everything worked fine.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Pre-Thanksgiving Thankful

It's a very, very quiet Wednesday afternoon before the Thanksgiving holiday. I am sitting in my office in the tower working on project for a client that I like a lot. I've finished my cooking this morning for the small gathering we're going to have tomorrow. I'm listening to a Beethoven Piano Concerto on my headphones. It is a gorgeous New Mexico Fall day. The sun is bright, the sky is crystal blue and I'm looking over the city and the mountains which I can do without hardly moving my head here in the serenity of my tower office. I'm feeling better...really a lot better...not well but better and that is a great thing. I have a great family and I know they all received a boon they had not expected that is going to make their holidays much nicer and easier. My most wonderful and lovely Wife just came up the stairs.

I am a very thankful person.

Have a lovely holiday and take time to appreciate all that you have.

Monday, November 21, 2011

The Latest Medical Update

Interesting day today.

On the plus side, I am feeling substantially better. Glo/Mom noted that I was visibly and noticeably more energetic than I’ve been in a month.

On the other side, we’re ramping up the tests. After my doctor talked with Dr. Infectious Diseases they came up with a whole battery of stuff for me to be doing. For all of you with a medical inclination (that’s probably one of you) here are the tests we ordered (requiring three big ass syringes of blood – I accused them of making Twilight cocktails)

List of Tests

  • Free TC, Free T4, TSH
  • Urine culture
  • CBC with Diff
  • Urinalysis Complete (UAC) w/macro and microscopic
  • ANA with titer
  • HIV
  • Rheumatoid Factor
  • Blood Counts x2
  • (the mysterious) Test codes 7948 and 7856

Plus Chest X-Ray, EKG, and if I’m not better in another couple of weeks it’s on to the CAT Scan!

Picture of big ass syringe of my vital fluids (with technician face cropped out to avoid lawsuit)

So take that medical system, who says that I’m not doing my best to support full employment in the medical industry!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Still Ill

No real improvement to report. The two doctors I've been (urgent care and my regular doctor) seem to be flummoxed by the combination of symptoms. I like to think that de-I isn't going to get just any run of the mill disease...needs to be something exotic...something that tests the system.

After my visit to regular doctor on Tuesday, I was sent for more tests (to see if it could be Mono) and I got a homeopathic remedy. (My doctor is an integrative physician meaning he is an MD with background in non-traditional remedies). I've seen no results from the remedy but discovered in reading the instructions for the fourth time today that I have been taking it totally incorrectly. Namely you're not supposed to take this with any fluid or in fact put anything in your mouth for 30 minutes.

I've been taking it with water so I probably have just flushed it through my system. Doh!

Anyway, I go back on Monday to get the test results. If nothing works, I get kicked upstairs to some sort of "infectious disease specialist". (Ominous music inserted here).

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Inside de_I's Sandia Mountain Resort

The joy that hiking enthusiasts have come to expect at de-I Sandia Outfitters has now been expanded to our new resort mountain hotel, de-I's Sandia Mountain Resort.

Our first guests were my niece Renee Michelle and her husband Andrew flying in from Miami. Andrew had taken advantage of our online activity reservation system to reserve a slot in the pasta making course.

"Andrew dearest. Have you ever actually read any of Uncle de-I's Sandia Outfitter posts?"
"No dear. Why?"
"So you really have no idea about his reputation?"
"No dear"
"And you don't remember the year I was slave labor in his restaurant in Albuquerque?"

"Oh. I never really connected that with anything."
"Doesn't it seem a bit odd to you that we're in the Tower dungeon making pasta for 40 people as part of a so called class?"
"It did seem a bit odd that the class was scheduled for 4 hours."

"I don't know what I'm going to do with you dear. It's one thing to lead unsuspecting hikers to their doom but turning our relatives to kitchen scullions? I will never hear the end of this from my brother."

Homemade Pasta

Friday, November 11, 2011

Styling In The House

Niece and blogger Styling with Renee Michelle, along with husband Andrew are here in Albuquerque for the Veterans Day weekend. We originally planned this because Andrew loves to hike and I was excited to take him into the Sandia's. However he has a major leg problem and I am ill so that whole premise has been thrown out the window. Fortunately we can always fall back on food and alcohol :)

There was a bit of drama because their plane was late leaving from Miami and it looked like they would miss their connection and end up coming a day late. But SRM remember to say her prayers to the Magical Unicorn Pony Travel God so they ended up making their connection after all.

Our first day and we stop for New Mexican food
Green Chile Cheese Fries

Then since we couldn't climb, we took the convenient road and drove to the top of the mountain. 54 degrees leaving town and 34 on the top.

The camera folk all in action

Mandatory Sandia's Promo Shot.
(They wanted to stand together but I needed to get the South Crest in the background)

Always something cool to see up in the mountain - Tree roots exposed because of erosion.

And On To Food And Drink

SRM likes cocktails but Andrew not so much.
Wife was very happy to oblige her niece with this Pink Lady.

Many a cheese was lost getting these pictures to you.
As were there vegetable and fruit allies :(
Certainly SRM and Andrew are worthy of a 1998 Oregon Pinot Noir

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Just for You SRM!

Wednesday night niece, blogista, former NM resident, former restaurant slave...I mean culinary apprentice, Styling with Renee Michelle and her BHFOSOTP (Beloved Husband from Other Side of the Pond) will be winging into Albuquerque for an extended weekend.

SRM wrote just a couple of days ago that she was looking forward to going home to Ohio at Christmas to enjoy frosty weather! Well we here at de-I Sandia Resorts (our motto - That Moat Around the Tower is to Keep the Riff Raff Out not You In) always aim to please. So SRM, we arranged for you...

...snow and cold...

...and rain and cold...
...looking forward to a fun time.

"Igor! More chains in the dungeon by Wednesday"

Allies Victorious In Battle Of The Bulge!!!!

This morning was a momentous day. People were in the street shouting victory (or at least one person-me-was in the bathroom shouting victory). For today, when on the scale for the morning weigh in the numbers were:


When last de-I saw numbers like Wife was not even a concept. We were still heading to the moon. The Stones and Beatles were just coming into their heyday.

It helped that yesterday, I ate very little for breakfast because I wasn't feeling well and then skipped lunch during the 4 hour doctors office stay. Makes no difference. It's the number that counts!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Urgent But Evidently Not Critical

So with all my family, friends, and blogmates saying, "go to the doctor", I did exactly that today. Of course you can never get your own doctor on same day notice but there's always the medical plan's Urgent Care center right?

I tootled in at 10:45 after a meeting in Santa Fe. At 2:45, I was still waiting to be seen. Evidently 'urgent' does not mean 'critical' or 'timely'. At 2:45 they said they were moving people over to the Family Practice side of the operation since "they were so far behind" in urgent care. Gad who knows how long I might have waited. I was finally out an hour later. Basically the doctor said he doesn't have a clue so we might as well call it a virus and wait another week to see if it goes away. And let's do some blood work so we can feel like there's something being done.

On the plus side, they had guest internet and I worked the whole three hours I was there and got a butt ton of work done. So when I finally got home, I was pretty much caught up.

Well I think I'll go shiver and feel like crap for the evening since that is evidently what I'm destined for.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

End of Season Color

Well I'm still sick - I'm capitulating and going to the doctor tomorrow - so don't have a lot interesting to write about.

  • Morning - Did a little work and napped
  • Afternoon - Did a little work and napped
  • Evening - Watched TV for and hour and went to bed at 8:30


However, Wife after a whole season of frustration with her garden suddenly hit the jackpot with her fall plants in fine form since September. I took these pictures just a week ago.

Aren't geraniums supposed to be hot weather loving plants?

Of course this week, we finally got a killing frost so they're all gone now. But as one storm blew in on Saturday morning, I caught this rainbow.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Not African Sleeping Sickness

Correspondent SRM informs me that if I really had African Sleeping Sickness, I'd be dead by now. Since I am not writing this from beyond the grave (you hope), it's not that.

But I'm still sick and not happy about it. It's over a week now. I thought I was on the mend Wednesday but on Thursday went down hill to where I am now which is not well.

Sigh. I may actually have to call the doctor on Monday.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Thank God for the Internet!

My travel schedule bit back hard with my coming down with a mysterious ailment last Thursday that has left we with all sorts of weird symptoms and feeling like shit. I still had to do a day trip to Phoenix on Tuesday. But fate actually worked in my favor as I was supposed to visit patriarch, O-I, on Wednesday for four days in Connecticut. But he was without power as was most of the state so it made no sense to do so and we rescheduled to December.

That still left me with this illness where I'm in pain, am consistently tired, have a constant headache, constant body ache, and can't sleep (even though I'm tired). So I got on line and I have been researching the myriad of medical self-help/self-diagnosis websites. Using these tools I've logged many potential diseases and cross correlated the symptoms, eliminating hundreds until I came down with what I feel is certainly the definitive diagnosis.

I have contracted a combination of Mononucleosis, a Brain Tumor, and African Sleeping Sickness*.

I am now working with a compounding pharmacist to concoct a remedy (after releasing him from all liability)

*Not sure how I got this as it is only transmitted by the tse-tse fly which only lives in equatorial Africa. But you can't doubt what you find on the Internet. Right?