Archive for April, 2009
Thyme is one of the easiest herb to grow and the hardest one to get ride of once you get it started!
It is related to the mint family which is why it is so hardy. Some varieties of thyme that are in my garden last all winter long, other’s get kind of crunchy so I just trim them all the way back to where you see the healthy flexible stalks.
It thrives in a hot sunny location and doesn’t require much water once it’s established. The low growing varieties are great if you place them between flagstones for a walkway… it will squeeze out the weeds and discourages ants…. I assume they don’t like the smell. The creeping types really added great character to my new rather bland garden walls. (I’ll post my before and after photo’s once the snow clears)
I love to use it fresh in a variety of dishes and it’s one of the herbs that keeps it’s flavor even after it dries. See some of my favorite recipes at my cooking site Chrissy Cooks!
There are many varieties and each has a fabulous flavor, color and different growing habits. The more you cut it back, the bushier and healthier it gets so trim it up regularly for cooking. I love the scent of fresh herbs in my kitchen so I’ll gather them up as I’m cutting flowers to bring indoors for my bouquets.
There are a bunch of different type of thyme including:
- English thyme — the most common
- Lemon thyme — smells of lemons
- Variegated lemon thyme — with bi-colour leaves
- Orange thyme — an unusually low-growing, ground cover thyme that smells like orange
- Creeping thyme — the lowest-growing of the widely used thymes, good for walkways
- Silver thyme — white/cream variegate
- Summer thyme — unusually strong flavor
- Purple thyme — This is the variety I have grown and creeping down my garden bricks
I love to plant thyme along pathways where you bump against it as you wander by which releases the fresh scents. I also found interesting history and medicinal uses for Thyme at Wikipedia
I was hoping my surgeon would be a dead ringer for Dr. McDreamy or Dr. McSteamy or even the new guy… Dr. McWhacked, but no such luck! He did however look wise and said what we expected him to say… “I need to perform a parathyroidectomy on you as soon as we can get it scheduled!”
I did quite a bit of research online about this surgery and in most cases it was an inpatient procedure. Not so for me! *Maybe some of the docs in the hospital will be like Greys Hunks!!?? One can only hope! The doc says my calcium level of 12 is so high, (normal is a very narrow range 8-9) that I will need to be monitored for a full day in the hospital. After they remove the tumor they will test my blood to see if it is returning to normal levels at certain intervals.
I will immediately be given supplemental calcium so that once the “busted” parathyroid glad isn’t pumping it out, and my system kicks back in to regulate it. This is important because if my calcium gets too low I could get some weird muscle cramping. This would be serious if it would be my heart muscle or diaphram muscle.. No SHIT! NOT good… so now I wait!
If anyone is out there in medical school and wondering what specialty to go into? I’d recommend Endochronology! You’ll have a FULL appointments calendar!
The surgery schedule is so full that I have to wait ANOTHER month before I get this surgery that by all accounts could make me feel 10 Years Younger! Come ON already…
I’ll be praying until then.
If you’ve got a similar situation, I’d love to hear about your experience if you’d like to share.
Look for part 4 of this series to join with me in this my pursuit of health!
The Surgery next month
pt 7: Two Week Post Operative
pt 5: 2 Days Post Op
pt 4: Tomorrow is Surgery Day
The 2nd Time around!
Like at least half of you out there I have been divorced and now praise God, very happily married again. Being married for me a second time is a force that is greater that I can really explain. I never expected to find a soul mate in my 40′s, but I did. We are extremely happy and that doesn’t just happen by accident. The wisdom that both of us gained from going through a failed first marriage is working overtime to make sure THIS marriage does indeed last until Death Do Us Part.
Are we kidding ourselves? I don’t think so…. the 2nd time around you are much better prepared. You know how hard it is to make a marriage work and before you enter into wedding bliss you make sure of a number of things first!
- Kids… do you want them or not? (we did NOT want anymore!)
- Finances... are you frugal or a credit card deamon? What is their credit score? This is important if you are planning on buying a new home together…
- The In-Laws... Do you get along? Are they going to be meddlesome?
- Holidays… where do you spend them?
- Housework… who does what? why?
- Income… whose in charge of the $$$$$?
- Vacations… alone, together, his kids, her kids, all kids…
- Disappointments come when your expectations are different, so discussing EVERYTHING before you get married is a must!
Ok, so then what… you are committed to one another, your families don’t suck too much, his kids haven’t put out “OFFICIAL” contracts on your life… so how are you going to keep the romance alive for the next 30+ years.
My commitment to myself at the beginning of this new marriage was to be a GREAT WIFE! I can only control what I do… and like in the movie and books about “Fireproof” (I have a link provided) You can make your relationship better first! If it’s not what you want it to be.. go first! what’s there to loose? and there is so much to gain.
Here are some of the things we do… OFTEN
- SEX.. yes… I said it! Lots of sex, fun sex, crazy sex, quiet sex, on vacation, at home, in secluded spots…. without a great sexual connection, you become roommates, brother and sister and your eyes and hormones make you less blind to the world around you. Show me a man who has great sex with his wife and I’ll show you a man that has no reason to fool around.
- TALK! We talk about everything and anything. My husband is great at knowing when I have something on my mind and I’m keeping it to myself. He will bug me until I spit it out… and after that… it’s not a big deal. Most things that my slightly whacked out Menopausal brain is telling me are misunderstandings or misinterpretations of what’s true. DON’T let things get out of control… Fix them NOW!
- SILLY STUFF We did lot’s of silly little things for each other when we were dating, and we continue to do silly stuff now. You know the things… leaving little notes hidden, a piece of something silky in his coat pocket, having the stage set when he comes home from work… For Valentines day I always line the path with hearts and red and pink things, he acts like it embarrasses him, but I know he’d be disappointed if I stopped making a fuss.
- CHEER him on! It may not be YOUR favorite thing, fishing, football, weight lifting, playing softball.. but you can be his cheerleader! Make him feel like he is YOUR hero! His boss his customers, his co-workers are there everyday to beat him down… my job as a great wife is to repair that damage.
- ROMANCE It comes easy for me… I’m a big sap and even my girlfriends and daughters ask me for “to do’s” that are romantic. Men have been told they aren’t romantic because they don’t act like the men in a romance novel act…. TRUE they don’t.. but we don’t really act like those women either… so lets cut them some slack. Romance can be things as simple as remembering what your favorite ice cream is, taking the time to wrap YOUR presents under the tree even though it looks a little like the box has been drop kicked a few times… Look for when they try to be romantic and then PRAISE them for it.. You’ll be surprised at how much more he’ll try when you notice.
- RECREATE together! A favorite book of mine “His Needs Her Needs… affair proofing your marriage” says that one of men’s top needs is to have a wife that will be a companion to him in the marriage. If you watched the Bronco’s with him when you dated…hopefully you didn’t pretend to be a football fan just to make him like you… I happen to be as big of a fan as Jim is so we make it an event! I have special Bronco Dip, Bronco Burgers, Orange Crush Daquari’s.
- TIME We enjoy doing the simple things together too, grocery shop, do errands, yard work, decorating the house for the holidays… would it be more efficient to split up those things and do them separately? yes… but it can be a lot more fun if you do it together.
- AFFECTION Men like it just as much as women do… especially if they have that #1 need taken care of “sex”. You’d be surprised at how much more affectionate guys are. Snuggle on the couch, always hold hands, kiss for at least 30 seconds every day.. no pecking! We have a sign next to our bed that says “Always Kiss Me Goodnight” and we always do!
I know that lots of you ladies out there are married to guys that won’t respond to the things I’ve talked about… But many of you have just stopped trying or are waiting for him to Go First! Watch that movie Fireproof, and give it a try.. You might be surprised.
I’d love to know your views on marraige or 2nd marriages or if anyone has seen the movie and used those techniques? Just click on the comments and lets chat.
Oh Joy! My bulbs are starting to appear, some are a bit raggedy because of the recent March 1 day blizzards, but plants in Colorado quickly learn to adjust to this likely occurrence.
I was just at the grocery store and picked up a few summer flowering bulbs. I only get the kind that don’t need to be dug up in the fall. ‘
I NEVER remember to do that, so it’s a bit pricey to buy gladiolus to bloom just once. I stick with dahlias and lilies…”Lazy Gardener Proof” that’s the only things I have time for.
Plant these summer bulbs near the end of April in well prepared soil, follow the instructions on how deep the hole is and make sure the tip is pointing UP! If you can’t tell which is up or down, do a google search and click images, you should find plenty of examples of what to look for. Add a little bone meal to the planting hole. I often put three to five bulbs in a large hole to give the garden a lush natural look. Flowers in nature don’t grown in straight lines and neither should the one’s in your garden.
Things to do in April in your Garden:
- If you left your perennial stalks to give interest to your winter garden, now is the time to start trimming all the dead back and gradually pushing back the winter mulch throughout the month. Forgot to do that in the fall? Well, whatever is coming up you know is super hardy!
- Cut back your evergreen perennials (plants that are green all year) and remove plant material from last year that’s on the ground.
- Plant and transplant perennials on a cloudy day or early in the evening. Plant at the lvel of the base of the stem in well prepared soil. You can also plant perennials in the mountains now if the soil isn’t still frozen.
- Make sure you follow the recommendations for your plants. Are they sun lovers? Partial sun? Partial shade? All shade? Some plants will just grow pretty much anywhere… I LOVE those!
- If you had an area of your garden that didn’t do well last year, it’s probably because you have things planted there that need different conditions, try dividing your perennials and plant them in different area’s this year to see where they thrive.
- Plant from seed hardy annuals and perennials like California poppys, snapdragons, bachelor’s buttons, baby’s breath, pansies & larkspur.
- Fork 2-3″ of good compost into garden beds, this serves as a weed barrier and water conservation method.
- Divide fall blooming bulbs and perennials in late April.
- Once the flowers on bulb plants like tulips and daffodils have died do NOT cut back the foliage until it has turned yellow… usually mid summer. These green leaves collect nutrients from the soil, sun and water to recharge your bulbs for next spring. DO cut back the flower stalks after they’ve bloomed and DON’T let them go to seed.
- Seed wildflower beds if it wasn’t done last fall.
- Cut back ornamental grasses at the base of the plant.
- Plant ground cover.
- Trim out old overgrown shrubs by pruning no more than 1/3 of the oldest canes from the base of the shrub. Wait to prune shrubs that are starting to bud out until after they bloom.
Spring gardening brings me back to balance… all things are new and fresh and ready to start over. If you are stuck in winter in your life… remember spring always comes. Just the feel of soil and seed in my hands reminds me of that each spring. Don’t forget to just sit back and enjoy the results of your efforts when you finish. A nice glass of sun tea, or a glass of Pino on your patio is a great way to enjoy life, get in touch with yourself and God and thank him for his bounty in your life.
Next: Dividing Perennials
TWO MORE WEEKS!
It took almost 2 weeks to get an appointment as it seems a VERY large population of women have thyroid issues of some sort, so these doctors are all very sought after. I researched the suggestions from my doc online and found one that was close that could get me in quickly and had a nurse that really seemed to love the doctor so I scheduled.
The appointment was very thorough going through each of my ailments, he said my calcium levels were one of the highest he’d ever seen and was surprised I wasn’t sicker. This doc is also certain that I have one of these tumors on my parathyroid gland, he tried to see if he could feel anything in my neck but no luck there… in any case I would need to get the area scanned by Ultra-sound so off to try to get another appointment.
Fast forward another week and the scanning appointment. This is the same place I’d been to have my Mammogram and ultrasound because they thought they saw something…. NEVER good news… but turned out to be teenie cysts non-malignant type. Anyway, this is a gorgeous, new, state of the art facility and I was treated very well by the staff and doctors. They poked and prodded with the scanner for about 30 minutes and said they’d found the culprit and would forward the records to my Endo.
Sigh of relieve, at least we are moving forward.
A few days later my Endo calls and says it was as he’d thought and I need to schedule with the surgeon ASAP! yeah right….. He suggested someone that I again researched and this guy definitely sounds like he knows what he’s doing…
- Valedictorian of his large high school
- Dartmouth College, Summa Cum Laude
- University of Colorado Medical School, M.D., Salutatorian
- Duke University Medical Center, General Surgery Residency
- Specialties – Transplant and Neck Surgeries.
- He takes my Insurance!
I like the looks of these stats. You can graduate from Medical school with a C as well as an A and this guy was obviously an over achiever. I like that quality in a man I’m going to let cut me open!
I managed to get a consultation with him in just 10 days. The quickest yet..
I would LOVE to hear from anyone else who has gone through this surgery!
Look for part 3 of this series to join with me in this my pursuit of health! Consultation with the Surgeon in a couple of weeks!