Welcome to my coffee shop in the cyber neighborhood!

Yes, I’ve been gone a while…a long while. I’ve had some other physical and subsequent mental issues. I don’t really want to talk about them. It enhances the stress and potential depression. I read an article that explains the MIA from blogging probably better than I could.

Isolation: When Our Disease Makes Us Withdraw

So whether it’s starting over or
just continuing like I was never gone…

Welcome to my coffee shop in Cyber Space
Try the pumpkin spice scones!

Contact Nani at

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Finding Holiday Spirit With Candy

This is my signature GingerScraps for this month:

A couple of nights ago, after not having been hungry for dinner finally feeling hungry at 2 o'clock in the morning I decided, to go through my jar of candy and see if there was anything that sounded good to replace dinner.

Now of course, I'm a Chocovore. Okay that's the term that was created by Krave cereal when it came out to promote that it has real chocolate inside of it. I decided to adopt that as the reality of my style of eating because chocoholic makes it sound like it's a problem. I'm a very proud Chocovore!

If you've read some of my recent blogs, you know that November was pretty much a crappy month for me. I mean seriously, MS makes things heal slower than normal. So I have to deal with the opioid paranoid government saying I can't have painkillers for more than a month because broken feet should be healed by then, regardless of what my doctor says when she knows that because of my disease it will take two or three months for my feet to truly heal. So there's the general me angry with the government because someone who's actually in pain isn't allowed to have painkillers. So getting around that my CNP (my doctor is a certified nurse practitioner) increased my tramadol at least for the next couple months from the five a month, which is actually that I take three and have 2 that I can use if needed, and increased it to the maximum dosage of eight a day to take 2 every six hours. Now that the pesky government is out-of-the-way , so the ever so brilliant health insurance steps in and says I can't have that many tramadol right now because I've already been given enough tramadol to have 8 day. That doesn't really work because I used PillPack pharmacy and the tramadol isn't in a bottle but it's in separate packs over the course of the day. So I've had to rip apart a week’s worth of pills to steal the tramadol to and the right amount to packets that already have it in it and when the insurance company is okay with them sending me a bottle of extra tramadol to last until the end of the month I'm going to have to figure out how to reassemble the packs I've had to tear apart.

So right now my bad mood can be attributed to the government that doesn't allow people in pain who really need painkillers to have them while there are emails that come in all the time letting addicts find it whenever they want it. The insurance company who has my brain that's already jumbled from all of the painkillers I took last month having to organize how to disassemble my perfectly assembled pills they come in every month. (at least PillPack was allowed to ship the extra tramadol on Friday so I might have it by Monday which should probably only screwup a weeks worth of prepackaged pills.) I'm also angry because MS has got my feet so screwed up that I can't even place them on the floor trying to adjust myself in the recliner without a great deal of pain. Also my feet are still swollen and bruised. I have aides who come in 4 or 5 hours while David is at work. But David does work at least a good 8 hours plus lunch and drive time and if he is at an early meeting he somehow never gets to come home early when he starts early.

Now the last couple nights he's been at the casino in a poker tournament. I'm not really complaining when he is it doing successfully playing poker, but the more successful he is at playing poker more time I'm sitting at home alone and in pain. When it comes right down to it December started with me still as miserable as I was since the sixth of November when I fell broke bones in both my feet. I also bruised and cramped one knee and knocked one of the bulging discs in my back the back so that I've been receiving sciatic nerve problems every time I move back. I'm still in pain from all of that stuff because MS listens to the government and the insurance company and laughs at them hysterically.

What the king brought his broken little princess

So now the piece of candy and how it changed my holiday mood for the better… I hope at least for the rest of the month. I pulled out of the candy jar a couple of nights ago because I wasn't hungry at dinner and got hungry ate about 2 AM. I pulled out a couple of Mr. Goodbar miniatures because Mr. Goodbar has been my favorite candy since I was a child and I figured my inner child could use the chocolate comfort food. I also pulled out of couple of Tootsie Rolls, because I just like Tootsie Rolls. But I found one of the two Pocket Coffees left that my dad brought when he stopped over on his way home from doing a construction project with my brother over the weekend. After a hug and a kiss that I desperately needed, he brought lunch that we shared and he brought me chocolate including Pocket Coffee, which is one of my favorite candies as an adult. I set the Pocket Coffee on the armrest of the recliner while I ate the two mini Mr. Goodbars and I began to cry. No matter what and no matter how bad things are, I can still say without a doubt, that I am loved. I think I needed reassurance of that lately. My dad made a point of stopping to comfort his little princess. I think the candy made me cry because it reminded me that I really am still his little princess I needed to remember that. No matter how lonely I may feels sometimes, there are still plenty of people who love me. I am not alone. I am loved.(Just a little bit of a pain in the foot right now)

I collected a bunch of pictures from Christmases in the past and used Aprilisa's Winter Magic kit and created trhe signature, that included one of the photographs I took of that precious Pocket Coffee. I created the signature that made be happy, that made me smile.

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Weekend Playlist, December 2

There's been a lot of unhappy and perplexing going on in Naniland. Oh, it's Nothing to worry about.

Have I bragged about my niece, Tori, who finished her masters last June in psychology? I am so proud of her and it is such an important and noble profession. I can honestly say the incredible relationship I have with my dad now has everything to do with the counseling place that helped me when I went to it for a few month after school. I can also say seeing a psychologist a while after being diagnosed with MS kept me from being clinically depressed. So I guess what I’m saying is if you’re having any sort of personal problems, things you are even nervous talking to with your best friend, psychologists can save your life, or rather they can show you how to save your own life. Most health insurances cover talking to a professional and there is absolutely NOTHING to be ashamed of in seeking help. Actually it's quite more something to be proud of. It's making your problems your solution.

I’m kind of in that kind of funk right now for many reasons. I’m gonna be meeting with a social worker, who happens to also be a psychologist. I have some pretty big issues that need fixed. And I am openly admitting I'm going to get help because that's what strong people do.

So this week’s songs are not from my general library. They're from a playlist that sort of reflects things that are going on in my brain right now. The playlist doesn't have a title because right now I feel a bit untitled.

Blue Train, Marty Stuart
The Boxer, Simon and Garfunkel
Don’t Lie To Me, Barbra Streisand
Burn, Usher
Who’s Crying Now, Journey

While going through my general funk, I've been reading some of my old journals. When that last song, Who's Crying Now by Journey came on it really reminded me of something sad about my old journals. I used to keep journals written when I was in high school. That's when I started having my occasional not able to sleep and I stayed up all night listening to the radio while writing in my journals. Sometimes it was funny stuff, sometimes it was things that frustrated me. I think back in high school is when I realized when something was bothering me if I wrote about it and just kept writing until the problem presented itself, the real problem, I could solve it. That's something that I've always done.

Nani circa 1981

Sadly, in my 20s, I decided silly things that I'd written when I was in high school were a dumb thing to keep and I threw them all away. I'm 52 now and I'd love to go back and read some of those things that went through my mind when I was a teenager. So note to any teens that read this - don't throw things away that are a piece of you, no matter how silly or painful a piece of you, you think they are, because in years to come you'll wish you had them. Whether it’s to show you how far you’ve come, remind you how strong you were and still could be, or just to remind yourself about the great person you've always been. It's a lot easier now because you can put it all in a digital folder.

Where this particular song really brought out that said memory was because I remember the first time that I heard the song. It came out in July of 1981, which means it wasn't a school night-yay for me on that one, right? But I remember the Journal with the green cardboard cover but all handwritten and I remember talking about Journey's new song and how awesome it was. And just to be silly now, what really made me think about it was hearing the guitar solo at the end and actually writing something like “wha, wha-wha, wha-wha, wha-whaaah … SO COOL!"

Such a silly direct line to remember, huh? But it made me smile.

So here's a fun know. The video is the song with the album cover because no actual video was produced for this song I could find or remember seeing. Why bother? The song came out in July 1981. MTV didn't exist until August 1, 1981. Can you imagine putting out a single and no video today?

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Weekend Playlist, November 25

Oh the wonderful, inspiring, world of music! What I'm going to talk about today is probably what nobody thinks after reading the playlist! Hehe

But first, here are the five songs from my Music library that got me there:

Pray For Me, The Weekend, Kendrick Lemar (Black Panther)
Soothe My Soul, Depeche Mode
You're Going To Miss Me When I'm Gone, Brooks & Dunn
Fools Rush In (Where Angels Fear To Tread), Tommy Dorsey 
It’s Now Or Never, Elvis Presley

There are a number of Elvis Presley songs that were "borrowed" from the classics. “It's Now Or Never" is one of those ones that has very special meaning for me.

You see, when I was young my dad played accordion very often, especially when there were family gatherings and lots of us kids around. We absolutely loved to listen to him play and when I hear a solo accordion tune of any song now it always makes me think of my dad playing for the family. He played for the adults too and they enjoyed listening to it but I don't think it was quite as special as it was when he played "On Top Of Spaghetti" for us kids. He always did that as a major sing-along with all the kids gathered around him. He absolutely loved that.

But now, let's get back to Elvis.. The other kids may have loved “On Top Of Spaghett” but my favorite song that my father played was "It's Now Or Never”. The funniest part of that is when Pop played it, at least when I was really young, he wasn't playing "It's Now Or Never.” He wasn't playing Elvis Presley at all. He was playing “O Sole Mio.’

Please keep in mind that I was born in 1966. I don't have any video of my dad playing accordion. I only have one or two photographs of my dad with an accordion. But believe me he played often and played well. I do have a video of, not my father, but someone else playing…"that song" on the accordion.

I was a kid. But what song do YOU think it is?

As I got older and my love for a classical music got stronger I started to realize there were a lot of old Elvis tunes that I really liked that weren't Elvis tunes when they started out. I still love “It's Now Or Never” and it still reminds me of my dad playing the accordion every time I hear it. But I have to admit especially with their bit of comedy in the song in the video The Three Tenors version of “O Sole Mio” is probably the version of that melody I love the most.

Well, Second most. My memory of my dad playing what I thought was “It’s Now Or Never” on his accordion will still always be the best version in my heart.

It seems that for some reason not possible to embed the Elvis Presley version the song. But as a special treat today here's that version of "O Sole Mio"by The Three Tenors I love so much.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Blame It On The Drugs

I'm eventually getting get my parts of the week straight, just not quite yet. The last couple of weeks have been um, challenging. So remember last post when I told you about surgery. The wonderful thing about anesthesia was it didn't affect me, Woot, woot! But now the next day was kind different.

That Tuesday was election day. It was also the day that I planned to give a call across the street because I'm concerned about the neighbors and I wanted to make sure they were okay. But it ended up being the morning that I was put on a stretcher and wheeled out to the ambulance to be taken to emergency.

It had nothing to do with the surgery. Everything was okay there except that there was a little bit of bleeding which is normal and it had to be explained to the EMTs who were just a little concerned. I was having problems with some discomfort in my back I wanted to move back because my bare feet were slipping and pulling me out of the chair. I don't think David heard the first couple times that I asked to please be pushback or something done with my feet sliding because when it became a frightened emergency he complained about everything's a crisis with me and finally put my shoes on so I wouldn't slide. The unfortunate problem is he didn't stick around long enough to make sure I had my balance. I didn't. I fell, quite painfully, forward.

David called 911. My aide, Heather, came in just before the EMTs did, so she had no idea what was going on except that David did let her know “Davonna’s on the floor.” That kind of launched her into instant caregiver freaking out mode. The EMTs got there got me rolled over on sling for the Hoyer lift so they could use it to put me on the stretcher and covered half naked morning me and carted me out to the street to put me in the ambulance and get me to the hospital. NOT the way I expected the day after surgery to be. I was planning to relax all day, take my meds and recover.

So at the hospital, which I requested because I was sure I had broken many bones in my feet, I got to go through all kinds of interesting things. I was lying in pain for a long time before they gave me anything for the pain. In fact that one point I screamed “OW, OW, OW, OW,” when a spasm was making my foot go insane, a foot that I now know was broken in two places, and heard a woman at one of the desks in front of the room where I was mock my screams and she and the man and woman sitting next to her laughed pretty loudly. With all of my pain it was everything I could do to keep Heather sitting down and not running out to kick butt. She did get the photograph of the mocking woman at UTMC election day morning.

People who loudly mock people in pain need to find a different line of work.
You know, one where human beings aren't involved.

They did finally come and give me a tramadol, which is one of the drugs that I do take. They took x-rays of both my feet. I can promise you when you have broken bones and they're turning your feet all over the place so that they can see the broken bones it hurts like you can't imagine when they've only given you one pill for pain. The doctor on staff took a look at the X-rays and said that because I don't walk and have weight bearing on my feet it makes the bones of my feet very pale and breaks very hard to see. They wrapped up both of my feet in ace bandages and sent me home telling me to continue taking tramadol and Advil.

For the three days after my surgery I had aides in for the full day while David was at work. So thankfully after Heather went back to get the wheelchair van, that thankfully David had already put the wheelchair in before he went to work, and brought me home, Patty was already there waiting to takeover. For my part, I just sat the wheelchair and screamed. One pain pill I already take and wrapping up my feet really didn't cut it as far as easing any pain. When we got me in the recliner and got a hold of Diana my primary care CNP, she added taking the tramadol and valium I'd been prescribed already “as needed” and to add putting ice on my ankles a half hour on, a half hour off. Patty came back for a couple of hours to do the ice until I could fall asleep. Between that and the painkillers David was at least able to sleep without me screaming all night when he had to work next day.

Diana made phone calls and hand delivered prescriptions for me so that every four hours I could take tramadol, Valium and vicaprofen together. Vicaprofen it Is Vicodin for people who are allergic to acetaminophen. Taking those every four hours actually did work at relieving the pain enough for me to fall asleep for a few days until Diana could get the full report from the emergency room and come and look at my feet.

Health insurance does a wonderful job of making sure that people in incredible pain can't get the narcotics they need. There are lots of ways for addicts to get the pills they want. For a while I was really tempted to find them and get the pills it took two days for my CNP to convince them I needed. SMH

Diana is visiting me once a week, while she is working on getting the visiting podiatrist to come and decide what will need to be done with my feet. My right foot is sprained with a broken big toe. Spasms have done a great job working the sprain back normal. (Remember we're talking about me and I always look what the rainbow even if it doesn't seem like there is one.) Now my left foot is fractured in two different places, the heal and the bone in front of it. It may need a cast. It may need surgery. The podiatrist will have to tell. Right know, thanks to (sarcasm) wonderful insurance (/Sarcasm) visiting podiatrist is not in network so my broken foot will have to be carefully covered up from cold so that I can be taken to an in network podiatrist. (sarcasm) because they truly believe increased pain will make me a stronger person. (/sarcasm)

For right now, I been moved up to every six hours for my trifecta of painkillers. I'm willing to put up with a little bit of pain, not the incredible pain I am right now without drugs, but Diana also knows my terrible fear of addiction. But believe me, if I have pain after about five hours I have the pills in my hand and I'm ready to shove them down my throat!

David was gone but he did bring 2 bananas and flowers for me.

David left Friday for a football game and a long weekend with his family in Florida and was back yesterday after work. I’ve needed almost 24/7 care while he was gone. I've had two wonderful friends who've had coffee with me every morning. One even brought me two cream filled long johns! My aides have been here longer during the day, my doctor visits once a week and texts daily, and a nurse spent the night every night he was gone. I was well taken care of. The good news is that the ER visit maxed out my out of pocket expense with the insurance company. That means, although they don't cover home health aides, everything else is free. That means the MRI I still need to get and if they have to do surgery on my foot, at least it's free. See? Rainbow.

Send me a prayer, are wish me luck.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Weekend Playlist, November 11

Music really is one of the coolest stimuli in the world. You know that ages old philosophical question "if you had to give up your ability to see or your ability to hear which would it be?”

Oh I'm not going to answer that question. As a scrapbooker, how could I ever think of not being able to see? It would be the end of one of my favorite hobbies. Every year when David puts his best train photos together and picks out the music to create his end-of-the-year multimedia presentation, I do the editing which absolutely requires vision and hearing. Editing has been my favorite part of every video job I’ve had and working on David show, in addition to some other small things that I do, is one thing that makes me feel totally alive. So for me the answer to the philosophical question is another philosophical question. "at what point does a person lose so much that they don't care what else they lose?"

So here are the last 5 songs that played with my library on shuffle before the feature song today:

She’s Like The Wind, Patrick Swayze
Chocolate Girl, Keith Sweat
Ant Music, Adam and The Ants
Knocking On Heaven’s Door, Heaven
All In A Mouse’s Night, Genesis

All In A Mouse’s Night was on the Genesis album Wind & Wuthering, released in 1976. The first time I had ever heard this song was on February 14, 2006. It was the first truly romantic Valentine's Day I ever had. I used to host "Stag Parties" on Valentine's Day when I would invite anyone who didn't have a date over for chili and what ever the worst B-film we could find on video tape. I am absolutely sure that there will be people who read this that remember The Toxic Avenger and films as such. Heck, I even remember word about those stag parties getting out and one couple begging me that if they promised to sit I'm opposite sides of the room and never look at each other could they please come this year? I have to admit that made me kind proud but my mom donated the chili every year and it had quite the reputation too.

But into 2006 it was different. I'd had dates on Valentine's Day before and it had been many years since we did the stag parties. But in 2006 there was this new guy. He’d been in my world almost a year and we even frequently used the “L-word.” I was almost 40 and had decided I was fine with, in fact I wanted to be, my own person. Casual dating was fine, even in the occasional relationship as long as it wasn't serious, but I liked me unattached. But then 6 foot and 5 inches with light blue eyes on top that I absolutely melted over walked into my life and screwed up everything.

David worked late enough that I could get to Toledo and prepare shrimp scampi for dinner with a little help from Wolfgang Puck for the lobster bisque. I chilled a bottle of Savignon Blanc (no that's not great memory about the wine. That’s been my standard to go with shrimp for, like, ever.) But what I cooked I do remember. I'd put together a chocolate fondue for two and we ate by candlelight.

I remember talking about music and discussing what we thought were romantic songs. Mine was Diamond Rio’s I Know How The River Feels. He told me is wasn't so much a romantic song as much as he wanted to dance to it. I was cleaning some dishes in the kitchen and he started the Genesis song Your Own Special Way and he came into the kitchen and we danced. Guys, you may not totally get it, but gals, I'm sure you understand that everything around you disappears the moment your significant other pulls you away from the sink and slow dances with you in the kitchen.  * sigh*

In further conversation about music while we had our dessert he played this song for me, just a fun and really cute song about a mouse. Oh, this song is so strange too to entertain two cat-people. Think about it. Why is the cat always the bad guy in cartoons? Poor Tom, Sylvester, PePe.. Wait, no, he's only attracted to cats (LOL) but you get one I mean.

This song is not a hit single, so no video this week, but I hope you enjoy giving a listen.