Friday, June 30, 2023

What I'm Reading This Week #26

Ahh good 'ol 26.  The one that lets you know you're officially halfway through the year.   I've been real irritated at the lack of promised rain we were supposed to get all week.  As a girl who loves a good storm, we never get any around here!  Boo!  We got our washer and dryer delivered Tuesday.  As expected, it didn't go off without a hitch.  While our walls are thankfully still intact, homeboy thought he was going to not install the new dryer vent we were forced to buy because the cleared off laundry center was in the way.  (Which the Mr caught whilst watching him on the camera we put down there.). The Mr has changed that out with it in place before and this guy was smaller so should've had zero problems.  When he tried digging in after the Mr said he paid for it to be installed and would scooch the center out, he said he'd call the store and see what they wanted him to do.  "Do you have a step stool?" That's what I thought little man.  Then the dryer door needed to swing the other way and he said "I don't have the experience to do that and I don't want to break it." That is literally your job and the guys from Home Depot didn't have a problem doing it when they installed them 12 years ago.  So the Mr got the honor of fighting that off then us attempting to screw in the impossibly small screws of which I was zero help since I was ticked we were forced to do that.  So it went about as expected.  I guess it's good to basically have, oh, the entire house replaced now.  😬  Our bank account does not share that feeling.  

Now let's share:

The 3 Big Reasons We Gain More Belly Fat as We Age  (I don't see "because our bodies are assholes" on the list.)

Can Sleeping With Socks On Improve Your Sleep Quality? (Even as a hot sleeper this works for me.  I did it the other night and slept until 6am which never happens.)

Why Our Musical Memories Are So Very Strong  (I can hear a number of songs that take me right back to those feelings (good or bad).  Still time to answer Wednesday's poll on this subject ya know!)

The forced return to the office is the definition of insanity  (Yep.  Not to mention the time lost from families during commutes, spiking stress levels from those commutes as well as sharp decrease in productivity because of people who now think it's time to come over and chat with you all day long because you can't say "I've got another call" to the office windbag.  The Mr started his job the day lockdown started and continually gets outstanding's on his reviews.  Give people the option based on their performance whether they need an office environment or not.)

Most Overrated and Underrated Attractions in Every U.S. State  (I think there's some new road trip stuff on here!  Agree with some- strongly disagree about Graceland.)

Six scenic walks in the Cotswolds  (What I wouldn't give!)

No real plans for the weekend.  Not like it's a long one since the holiday falls on a Tuesday.  Oh wait, SWAT neighbor will be setting off fireworks for 5 days in a row so yeah, I guess I'll be putting earplugs in both ears for the foreseeable future.

What are you getting into this weekend?

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Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Hump Day Poll: Takes Me Back


What song(s) take you back?  Whether it's a good memory, bad break up, some rando song you have no idea why it stuck.  Try to share up to 3 if you can just so we've got a nice mix of stuff to see if they uncover some memories for the rest of us.

Mine are:

New Sensation- INXS   This song was in full rotation on the radio and MTV my second year going out to California for the summer to stay with my dad.  I had a week where my step brother was still in school so I had the house to myself during the day and I loved just dancing around the living room and being alone.  Maybe laying out and giving myself skin problems I'm just now starting to deal with!  😆

Crazy for You- Madonna    Heartbreak song of freshman year.  One of my first crushes.  Completely self centered broken man that I was certain just needed the love of a good woman.  (Wrong- he wanted the love of any man.)  I was the girl at the dance, crying in the corner while he (who didn't even attend that school) was dancing with everyone.  It wasn't until a senior cheerleader who was this bad ass girl was like 'why are you crying?'- I told her the abbreviated version and she was like "I'm going to go kick his ass!"  ROFL  She went over and asked him who he came there with because he didn't go to the school and he said 'my friend' and pointed to me and she said 'maybe you should actually DANCE with her asshole!'  Crazy for You came on and he pulled me up to the dance floor.  It was a pity dance and I knew it.  I hate that I felt secretly excited he finally asked but it led to a bad mental state afterward.  I still get a disgusting pit in my stomach when I hear that song which thankfully isn't often.

Love Me- The 1975   It is not often you can remember exactly where you were when you first heard a song but I do for this one.  The Mr and I were doing our then Sunday morning shopping routine at Target when this song came on the TV monitors in electronics.  I literally stopped in my tracks and looked at him and ran down to see who it was and even waited for the loop since we missed the name of the band so that I could immediately go home and buy the album.  I Like It When You Sleep... is one of the best albums I've heard in decades and they've yet to top it since for us and they don't even play this song live anymore which sucks but damn it was giving me all of the 80's/INXS vibes the second I heard it and I was down!

What song(s) take you back?  Whether it's a good memory, bad break up, some rando song you have no idea why it stuck.  Try to share up to 3 if you can just so we've got a nice mix of stuff to see if they uncover some memories for the rest of us.  Now remember, in order to share in the experience, you have to actually respond here, not just in your mind!  

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Monday, June 26, 2023

That Escalated Quickly Weekend Recap

Happy Monday everyone!  I hope you had a great weekend and got rain or sun if you needed it.  We needed to get the hell out of Dodge and a long road trip was on the menu...anything to keep us away for the day.  There's this cinnamon roll place we found whilst driving to Traverse City for the Mr's birthday in October so we thought we'd go there since a favorite restaurant of ours from TC also had a location basically across the street.   

Because it was in a downtown location, we were going to take it to a park to eat.  Well, that would've been fine if 70% of the effing streets weren't closed!!!  WHO DOES THAT ON A WEEKEND!?!  (Can you feel our rage through the caps?)  Every detour was thwarted by another and some of those detours had no detours and the final slap in the face was the last was a MOVING detour!  So I had him burn rubber before they stopped cars at the next intersection before we both had a blood pressure incident. 

We were screaming and yelling.  So picture both of us going from initially calm and excited to eat lunch to this:


We finally found another park that had ONE picnic table (taken, of course) for a 2 city block sized park so we pulled into the place where we spend the most time anymore.  A cemetery.  It was actually small, quiet and shaded so it was a lovely spot to chill after that shit show.

We checked out the map of geocaches in the area and they kind of sucked and we weren't willing to deal with that crap again to potentially run into more closures.  So we looked within a 50ish mile radius to see if we could find something worth driving to and we did!  A virtual cache took us to the grave of the author of Nancy Drew booksHer story is pretty fascinating and it was a fun find!

There was another cache in the cemetery so we sat by the pond afterward and watched the ducks and geese with their teenaged furry floofs.

We also got behind a retired couple living their best lives.

Sunday was laundry day and the Mr informed me the drum in the dryer was no longer spinning unless he spun it Wheel of Fortune style to get it going.  Now, we could either tear it apart like we did in January 2022 or we could admit defeat and say we got 18 more months out of it than we expected.  We went with the latter and now we've got a new washer and dryer coming.  We're actually getting the same models because we really like them and now that we know how to at least pull the dryer apart if needed, we're happy to stick with them and hopefully get another 12 years out of them.  (REEEALLY sucks you can't get old school ones that are made to last 20+ years.)  So we've got our work cut out for us clearing a path so they can deliver tomorrow.  Since the handrails aren't back on the walls yet, the Mr is going to tell them those walls are new, DO NOT touch them under any circumstance and then stare them down the whole time.  


We have had ZERO luck with "Schnowe's" home store subcontractors not screwing us on stuff from not caulking properly so it rained inside our home after a botched patio door install and one of the subs swindling his mom out of money by doing some 'under the table' shadiness we already paid for.  So we are quite leery about this (hopefully) final process of having poop heads service people in the house.

How was your weekend?

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Friday, June 23, 2023

What I'm Reading This Week #25

Hello hello and happy 6 months until Christmas weekend!!  🎄  Ha thought I was going to say summer!  Hey, don't shoot the messenger!  Consider it your official notice to put saving money back for it on your radar or to start those Christmas crafts you say you're going to do every year but never do.  See...I'm a Christmas angel.  For behold- I bring you tidings of great (impending) joy! 

Now I bring you:

A 102-Year-Old MD Shares The 3 Longevity Tips She Swears By  (My great grandma lived to be 100 and I distinctly remember her drinking pickle juice straight out of the jar the year we lived with her.  I think I'll take these up instead.)

The Easiest Way to Silence Your Inner Critic  (I need to try this because mine has been a real Wreck It Rhonda this week.)

How Can I Overcome Depression And Anxiety Without Therapy or Meds?  (This is a video from a psychiatrist we watch sometimes.  He's a little Howdy Doody but he's got good core stuff.)

The 5 Brain Health Habits Seth Rogen and His Wife Do Every Day  (Two and four were literally *prescribed* by my grandma's doctor and because no one did them for/with her, her condition plummeted so fast that the doctors were astounded.)

TikTok Myth of the Week: Vibration Plates  (Well, that's well and good but I have one that aided me when I had TTS so I could continue PT at home in between chiro appointments.  I had to do slow squats on them to help me with balance and it's particularly good if you're trying to stay balanced as you age.  We also lamented we didn't have a small one to bring with us on long trips in May because both of us could sure use it so I'm keeping my eyes peeled on Prime Day!)

Doctors Dismissed My Pain For 8 Years Before Finding My Cancer  (This is infuriating.  BE YOUR OWN ADVOCATE!)

Patrick Swayze reflects on 'To Wong Foo' role in resurfaced TODAY clip from 1995  (I saw this was on Amazon Prime and even though I own it, I needed something on in the background.  It's always such a fun movie that tackles serious issues that have nothing to do with the main characters from domestic violence to ageism to first love.  I went digging around to see if there were any interviews with Patrick as to how he came to his role as the brilliant and adorable Vida Boheme and found this.  If you've never seen it and have prime, give it a watch.  Can't lose when Stockard Channing and a cameo of Robin Williams are involved.)  

10 Best Small Towns in Maine, According to a Local  (We can vouch for Camden in the off season.  Bucksport was nice too)

40 Years Ago: The Police Exit With a Classic  (Man, what a way to go out.  Not that Stewart and Andy had a choice but still.)

We may or may not have plans for the weekend.  It depends on how we feel tomorrow morning, I suppose, as we're thinking of an all day road trip.  But we also know we've got some house things that need our attention.  Bleh.  So crap shoot weekend on our end!

How about you guys?  Any plans or flying by the seats of your sassy pants?

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Wednesday, June 21, 2023

My Experience with Vulvar Biopsies

(Thought I'd give you a fun graphic for a not at all fun topic)


Obviously, I must first state that I am not a doctor.  What I am about to share is my own personal experience and if you have questions/concerns, you need to ask your own doctor what to expect and how to care for your biopsy site.  Fair warning: I am not a sugar coating kinda gal and use colorful language.  If you need someone who is going to 'polish a turd' for lack of a better term, you need to go somewhere else.  But let me tell you that no matter what you read here, if you have been deemed to need a biopsy what is potentially waiting for you if you're too scared to get one could be WAY worse than just getting it done.  It's not fun but neither is a late stage disease or dying because you were too scared of needles or a diagnosis.  


If you didn't read yesterday's post about my secret struggle the past two years, I strongly urge you to in case you should ever go through the same clown car of symptoms I did.  I've had the 'privilege' of having two vulvar biopsies as well as one inclusion cyst removal in the same spot so basically three times in 9 months with an extra hole on my inner Bassett ear.  (For the physically fit amongst us with no idea to that reference, Bassett ears are how I refer to my labia majora since a 200 lb weight loss leaves them resembling the ears of the droopy hound.)  I had a long stint with major vulvar burning that I and several online doctors mistook as a yeast infection.  When it didn't go away, I began a long journey of ups and downs and the biopsies became necessary.  I'm sharing my experience with them in case others should ever need to have one that you may have a vague idea what to expect and the products I personally used as I recovered.

My doctor, who is a sweary, unflappable kind of lady, approached the biopsy as a quick thing where the worst part of it was the injecting of the numbing anesthetic into the vulva.  She needed to asterisk that with * until it wears off.  Yes, it sucks getting stuck with the needle, more when the anesthetic is administered but it's literally 4 seconds of wanting to donkey kick your gynie in the face until you don't feel it.  I did not feel the punch biopsy at all.  The first time I had it, I took it like a champ with the actual biopsy.  The second one I bled a decent amount to the point she asked me if I was on blood thinners.  That's never something you want to hear but is something you might want to note to self and to your doc should you be on them.  She put some stuff on there to stop the bleeding but told me I'd need a pad since I was "oozy."  The first biopsy I only needed a pad for two days but I needed it for a full 7-8 days before I felt like it was healed enough to not need it.  Honestly, I'd bring your own pad to the party because the ones they give you are shorter and full of crap chemicals that your newly punched poon should never have to absorb.  I like these and they give good coverage without bad crap in them.  (If you're a pad user, just switch to pads that are not bleached with chlorine, have dyes or fragrances, etc.)

The day of is not fun because the stuff wears off and the extent of the procedure starts to make itself known, so for me, laying flat is really the only thing that feels okay.  Matter of fact, if anyone asked my opinion, I would tell them to schedule it on a Friday if possible to have the weekend to remain horizontal.  I'm pretty dense because I stuck to my exercise schedule and while I did strength routines that didn't require much movement, I also did walking workouts.  You know, so that I could rub my Bassett ears against each other anywhere from 5000-7000 steps worth!!  Dope.  If I ever have one again (hopefully not) then I would give myself 1-3 days of either complete rest being as horizontal as possible or doing ground exercises like chest/tri's and/or core stuff.

I always forget that day two is the worst.  It's swollen, uncomfortable and if you don't hydrate, you're going to be in for a world of hurt when you pee.  This time I was actually smart and used the bidet sprayer we got at the beginning of the great TP shortage of 2020.  I also have used a perineal bottle and you can put it in it's little bag and take it in your purse if you have to be away from home during the healing time.  I used small gauze squares with some Neosporin on them to keep the wound free of infection as I healed given its proximity to the back door.  (And of course if you're a stress trotter like me, you always have more diarrhea going through something mentally stressful like that so it's imperative to keep the area clean!  I go so far as to pop organic cotton balls over the rump chute so if anything should inadvertently come out without me knowing, my open wound won't be marinating in fecal bacteria.  Aren't you glad you're reading this?  😆)  I should note that people who don't know if they're allergic to Neosporin (apparently a very small amount of people are) then Aquaphor is a suitable barrier product, it just won't have the antibacterial element to it though.

It typically took me a full two weeks to feel like I'm not constantly thinking about it and that's provided I didn't tear.  I did with the first one.  I thought I was getting better about a week in and a wipe pulled that skin progress back to three on the healing scale which is why I switched to the perineal bottle.  The second time around I had zero issues on that front, thank God, because it's a nice little zap you're not really prepared for.    

I was recently cleared to go back to my annual visits with no more vulvoscopies every six months as long as things stay kosher down below.  The biggest thing to know is if a vulvoscopy is scheduled for you, be prepared they may have to do a punch biopsy just to test what they can't get a clear view of visually.  I was not prepared for that, thrown into it and I wanted to curl up in a corner and cry.  (Actually, I did!)  I don't ever want someone to go into a vulvoscopy (which is just taking a peek at your punani with a scope and a swipe of vinegar) as unprepared for a completely different experience as I was.  I'm not saying that to scare you or make you ruminate before an appointment but it's better than being shocked AF that they are doing something you were mentally unprepared for.

As I said, this is only my personal experience.  Any questions should be directed to your doctor and I suggest writing them down.  Like a note on your phone for you but a physical copy for them to go over with you.  Your brain may go all over the place if you blank out under pressure like I do.  I must stress the importance of having trust in your gynecologist.  When my issue first came up, my interim gynecologist was a complete dolt and just kind of threw her hands up in the air when it didn't come back the way she expected.  She had zero interest in pursuing it further despite my still having symptoms.  YOU KNOW YOUR BODY!!!!  If something is wrong, keep pursuing a doctor who actually cares about you and who will systematically test you for all of the possibilities including some crap you've never even heard of before.  Chats with some of my lady friends over this two year journey from me had a few "that can happen!?!?"  Yep.  But don't wormhole into self diagnosis just do as much research as you can (or have someone you trust do it if they are willing if research triggers you) so you can go in armed with proper questions.

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Tuesday, June 20, 2023

Fire Down Below - My 2ish Year Health Journey

Look, this topic is about lady parts of all kinds.  If stuff like that makes you run for cover, see ya tomorrow or Friday.  (Actually, if just mentioning that makes you run, see ya Friday.  Tomorrow ain't much better!)   I told you I was having a test done (which ended up not being done but I'll go into that) so I figured I'd follow up.  I was going to write about this forever ago but it's been ongoing so I just never did.

God, where to even start?  I had to open up journals to see when all of this madness started and we're actually going to the end of 2020 when I started having my first set of problems which was raw, sore nipples.  I was never a woman who had sore nips during that time of the month or anything like that so this was a new thing for me.  I did all of the research and ended up with things like lanolin for nursing mothers to bamboo boobie pads because my tata's rubbing against my bra HURT.  I was checked for lumps and weirdness and my then gyne had a compound pharmacy whip up a potion that could potentially help me.  It didn't and after like 4-5 months of dealing with that crap, it just seemed to clear up.  The only thing that seemed to work was this tea tree oil salve I use for just about everything.  If my boobs started feeling chafed, I'd put some on and it would feel better.   I was glad that was basically over with as our 25th wedding anniversary was coming up and I didn't want to be on boobie lockdown.  

We have always used a certain big box store whose main color is red's booty wipes.  Never had an issue or anything until I did.  I noticed a few times when I wiped, my area everywhere down there would burn with the fire of a thousand suns even if I ran it under water to get all of the stuff off of it.  I asked the Mr if he noticed a difference because I thought they changed the formula and he didn't at first.  I determined I couldn't use those anymore but the damage was done.  Whilst wiping, I felt a small lump down there on the inner labia majora.  I had the Mr look (you know, foreplay) and he said it looked like a zit.  I looked it up and talked to my bestie and we kind of deduced it was an inclusion cyst or acne.  Warm soaks did nothing for it but the bigger problem was the burning I got after using the last wipes was not going away.  Is this what a yeast infection feels like?  I never had one so I had nothing to compare it to.  I treated it starting a month before we were to leave for our anniversary trip.  No relief.  Checked with then gyne, 'treat it with a different active ingredient and just keep trying until something works.'  Needless to say, I spent our 25th anniversary with a smile on my face and vulva bright red and on fire in a bad way and on my 4th treatment for an infection I didn't even have.

When we got back, I gave the lady bits a rest since nothing was helping.  I called and made an appointment with my gyne who I didn't particularly have a lot of faith in.  She was available when my old one closed and honestly, I just never bothered to look for anyone closer.  I got in after 3 weeks and she took a look, literally recoiled in horror and scooted back like a ghoul was trying to attack her from my crotch and said "oh yeah, you have a yeast infection and BV.  Like I don't even really need to test for it but I will just to confirm."  How on Earth do I still have a yeast infection after using every active ingredient known to man!?  Then the internet horror stories came into play of women who get ZERO relief from them and this is just their life now.  What!?!?!  I got the results back.  "All is normal, give yourself 3 weeks of vaginal rest."  Pardon my French but are you fucking kidding me!?!?!  I'd already given myself 3 weeks of vaginal rest by then which I told them in response to that, the pain was as bad as ever, friggin' HELP. ME!  I got a copy and paste answer of the same thing noted in the results and that was it.  Eff this crap, so I looked at who was closest to me because I couldn't be driving back and forth across town now that I needed in depth help.  

I found someone literally 5 minutes from home who got excellent reviews on multiple platforms and more importantly from her former patients since she was newish in town.  I was waiting for her to come in when I hear her high heels clip clopping down the hall and she stopped to talk to her staff for what seemed like forever.  (It was 5 minutes.)  Then I heard it "I had to tell four women today they had cancer."  My heart dropped.  Cancer was not even on my radar.  Everyone told me these were classic symptoms of a yeast infection.  When she walked in, I was filled with dread and was now shaking.  She's about 15 years younger than I am and very personable...and sweary.  I gave her a detailed list with timeline for the file that I heard her reading out front but she wanted to hear some of it in my words as well.  When it was time to look down south, she did and said "wow lady, your vagina is PISSED. OFF!!  That is really red but we're going to fix it."  I took a deep breath as she seemed to feel like this was treatable.  She was completely reassuring and I felt I made the right choice with her.  She put me on Clobetasol ointment because she agreed this could easily be contact dermatitis and that should help calm everything down.  Thank God!  She did also do a more thorough panel of more obscure yeast and bugs that typical panels don't catch.  (That came back negative though.)  I thought I'd be good to go and when she had me come back for a follow up, she said it was slightly better but not as much as she hoped.  I asked about the inclusion cyst and she agreed that's what it was and said I could either have her remove it or leave it be.  Not wanting anything down there that shouldn't be, I opted to have her remove it.  Holy balls.  That wasn't comfy.  I basically got the equivalent of a biopsy wound and regretted that decision.

When I went back for the follow up, she was a little dismayed the redness wasn't gone so she started thinking of other possibilities.  I had a biopsy done for lichen planos which came back negative and who has even heard of such a thing?!   Not me or any of my girlfriends I talked to about this.  Did you know your labia can just like turn white and disappear!?!  Yep.  I learned all kinds of heinous things that I never knew existed and they were terrifying.   At this point she wanted to make sure I switched anything that touched my crotch to stuff without dyes, perfumes and chlorine bleaching from toilet paper to pads to soap so we switched.  (She recommended Dove unscented to wash down there.  Oh and did you know your super soft TP is literally the worst thing that could touch your skin down there?  Do some Googling.)   I had so many anxiety and horrible panic attacks during that time that it was almost every other day.  A vulvoscopy was scheduled to check for abnormal cells.  They take vinegar on a cotton ball
and swipe it on your poon-tosh and if anything glows then they're abnormal cells.  Well, apparently she saw the light.  Great.  She said this is like stage 0 cancer, not even on the cancer scale and I had something called VIN1.  Totally treatable but I would be on two pea sized swipes of estrogen cream on the opening to make the cells recede for the rest of my life.  As someone who does not like to be on meds of any kind, I asked if that was safe and she said yes.  (You mean like when I asked you if the antifungal powder you prescribed for me for my thigh cracks had talc in it because a family member got ovarian cancer from baby powder use down there her whole life and you said it didn't but it did so I had to research and buy the safe option myself?  FYI-  buy that stuff.  If you're even 30 lbs overweight you likely have skin yeast infections under the hang, thigh cracks and under the boobs.  That stuff only needs to be used 3x a week to keep things at bay and keep you comfy.)

I did research about the cream and was horrified to basically see cancer stamped all over it, it had parabens which can also cause cancer, now would I be rolling the dice being on the pill and putting MORE estrogen down there to up my blood clot risks, etc?  She assured me it was safe but after the powder thing, I didn't have the most confidence and definitely didn't like the idea of being on it for life.  VIN1 can clear up on its own half the time and I was kind of hoping to be one of those people.  She said she'd check me every 6 months so I scheduled the next visit just happy to not have to see her again for a while.  The next visit was a scary one because I'd be finding out if it was doing the trick or not.  I never missed a dose even though I hated the way it made my crotch feel when I applied it.  It burned a little bit and I just felt uncomfortable.  That eventually got better but I still didn't like it.  The vulvascopy (which is only inspection, no tissue samples) revealed to her eye that things had not gotten better and actually looked slightly worse...time to do a biopsy again!  Are you EFFING kidding me!?!?!  I had not mentally prepared for that for some reason and now that I knew what I was in for, my blood pressure shot through the roof and I had tears streaming down my cheeks as she did it.  I have what the Mr calls a pretty high tolerance for pain but the administration of the anesthetic is not fun and for me at least, it wears off fast.  I waited for 10 days for the results from that and I finally got them.  

No abnormalities detected.  See you in 6 months.

Okay, this is where a normal person would rejoice.  Not me. the original biopsy I had done was to test for lichen planos which came back negative.  When she diagnosed me with VIN1, I was diagnosed by sight but no biopsy for confirmation.  Yet when she thought visually I was staying the same or slightly worse, a biopsy said there was nothing there.  Is it because there never was anything there because a biopsy was not done to confirm it or because using the cream has worked?  When she did a follow up a few weeks ago, I actually requested a biopsy and had thoroughly prepared for it and she said never in her life has anyone asked for one.  I said the way my brain works, I would not be able to reconcile it because before when she visually thought I was worse, the biopsy said I had nothing.  She said she could do one but she was not going to let me get cancer and if she saw anything remotely suspect, she had the tools to do one right there and would take it.  She said everything looked good and there was no need for a biopsy which I was happy about but my brain wasn't happy about.  Obviously, I am happy there is a visual regression of those cells and a "thickening" she deems a good thing but I want answers to questions that cannot be answered because we can't go back in time.  She even grabbed my biopsies to compare when I asked her about it and she said "yeah the first biopsy showed abnormal cells and the second one doesn't."  

Well, the first one wasn't testing for cancer or if it was, I wasn't told that.  I suppose I will ask her when I go back (on the Mr's birthday in October- I still may change that.  If something is wrong, I don't want his birthday associated with that.)   If she can tell me if she tested for cancer on that first biopsy in addition to lichen planos because they just check for that anyway, that's one thing.  If she can't give me that answer, I need to let it go.  I'm not trying to Debbie Downer the results but I'm highly analytical and need to have those things straight in my head before I can relax about it.  The pain was gone within about two months of treatment in the beginning so the only thing that reminds me I have something wrong with me is twice a week when I have to apply that damn cream.

While this is typically caused by HPV, I do not have that and I'm too old for the vaccine now which sucks in case it could somehow help.  So I do urge all parents to consider getting their kids vaccinated so they don't have to go through a preventable cancer scare later in life.  (And don't let the BS politicization of vaccines of any kind stop you from saving your kid if they're in the age bracket to qualify.)  The big lesson in this is if your body is in pain and there is nothing obvious that basic tests are revealing, you switch doctors/get second opinions until someone friggin' listens to you.  If that first gyne had her way, I would've just sat there letting it fester untreated.  YOU MATTER and you deserve the healthcare you pay monthly for to work for you even if one or two particular doctors don't.

Swing back tomorrow for some tips should you find yourself needing a biopsy where the sun don't shine.

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Monday, June 19, 2023

Somewhat Productive Weekend Recap

Howdy do, punkin' poo's!  You still reeling from your weekend shenanigans?  Shouldn't every weekend be that way?  If only.  We got a rare burst of energy last Thursday and got a few pics hung up that have been sitting around for, oh, three months.  

They are 20x30 and I altered them to act as soundproofing as we needed something to get the friggin' echo under a bit of control.  Unfortunately, they're not at the worst spots for echo to make much difference yet and that requires a higher ladder that we ordered to reach the area.  Hopefully, next weekend we'll have our museum gallery of sound absorption up.  It's our second to last hope before going the solid core door route in the future or I guess hypnosis for me.  

The Mr fixed the clicking ceiling fan and we finally got around to hanging up the sconces by the TV.

That night I put in my Luminara tapers and we had the most chill night ever with the Mr massaging my barking dogs, listening to Vince Guaraldi's greatest hits and no noises from either side of us.

I think it makes it look more balanced in size with the fireplace.   I was really nervous about us being able to hang them evenly especially with the hook being in the middle of the sconce but after a little searching it said to hang most sconces 66-72" from the ground.  75" was our spot where we needed them and thankfully the floor was even in those areas or I'd never be able to unsee it.

I gave those Sole inserts a try and initially got the wrong size so they gave me horrible blood blisters on the bottom of my big toes (my fault, not theirs) so I ordered the size up to trim them to fit.  Hopefully as my body adjusts to those they'll make a difference.  A lot of people said they went from expensive orthotics to these so really hoping for a win.

We had Sunday brunch while the Mr was on day two of cluster headaches.  Really sucks when he gets them but they're more frequent and multiple days this time which sucks.  We've thrown everything we can at them but hoping maybe today they can ease out for good until the Fall.  If anyone has dealt with cluster headaches and has any tricks of the trade, feel free to throw 'em at us!

We went up and cut more panels to put in the back of the two pics we were able to hang properly.  Of course the other pictures are slightly smaller than the ones we've had templated so the Mr had to cut off the bottom by about 1/2" which is near impossible with a utility knife without it looking like a snapping turtle was gnawing on it.  Then it was some Hail Mary measuring to try to line up the top one with one that was already hung.  Jankified Inc at your service with books, VHS tapes (??), air filters and the like as an attempted tripod to line up picture hooks.

(Excuse the unfinished trim spot on the half wall.  I still have to stain the shelf on top.)

It would've worked had the laser level we have not been an utter POS that doesn't have a flat side to go horizonal on.  So we got a tripod, book and a felt piece to get it as level as possible.  We had to measure up from the stringer to see where the handrails will go when we ever get around to reattaching them so the pictures wouldn't be in the way of them.  

The Mr went down and switched out our water pipe attachments from the ones the plumbers used to these silicone silence clamps.  Ever since we got the house re-piped to PEX, the water lines were attached straight to the joists and would loudly click as the pipes expanded and contracted.  As someone who just spent a ton of money to get noise out of their house (and added more), this was a most unwelcome new development.  We've had the clamps for a few weeks but thankfully he got those up and I already hear a difference when he flipped the water on.  I'm hoping that keeps up because we went from pipes we didn't know we had for 27 years sound wise to getting new pipes and hearing every single expansion and contraction directly underfoot.  No thank you.

Then it was time to get downstairs and get our strength on.  It was a small 30 minute total body one with low weights but some hilarity thanks to doggies.   Then dinner and chillin' for the evening.

There will be a post tomorrow so swing back then!

How was your weekend, you sassy beast?

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Friday, June 16, 2023

What I'm Reading This Week #24

Hip Happy Friday y'all!  Why did this week feel so looooong?  I've been feeling quite mentally off lately, some of which I'll write about next week.  No strength which is not good.  I think because the weather has been cooler we've just decided to keep that up but added an extra lap.  The balls of my feet are paying the price too.  I just ordered new insoles I'll be taking for a spin because the old Spencos I used to swear by have cheaped out according to my feet and that's when a lot of problems started.  I switched to a less expensive insole which has been adequate but not particularly supportive.  I'll do a review of the new ones in case anyone is interested.  Fingers crossed!

Now let's review:

These 3 Spices Can Prevent Cognitive Decline, Research Finds  (Knew about the first two but the third was a surprise)

The Relentless Reality of Anti-Fatness in Fitness  (I think I would've needed bail money with that trainer.)

Generational Dieting Trauma: How To Break the Diet Cycle With Your Kids  (Anyone else remember the magnets of "a minute on the lips, a lifetime on the hips?"  Yeah, those things stick.)

10 Pet Peeves That Reflect Childhood Trauma Wounds  (Oh man, when they apply, they UH-PLY!)

Why I Sleep in a Separate Bed From My Husband  (More people do it than you think.  Pretty eye opening article)

Picking the 'right' sunscreen isn't as important as avoiding these 6 mistakes  (Good thing to remember as we go into summer.  This one is one of my faves and if you want to smell like 80's summer, this one fits the bill and reef safe.)

Should I Use AC When Air Quality Is Bad? How Air Conditioning Impacts Smoke Pollution  (These are the filters we started using in 2020 and they are effective for filtering smoke as well.)

21 Incredible Road Trips in the U.S.  (Looks like some great options!  The Mr and I are considering the Route 66 trip.)

17 "Food Hacks" That Are Actual Hacks  (Some great ideas here!  I'll definitely be using my tea infusers this way the next time I need them.)

7 Modern Farmhouses on the Market Right Now  (I'll be over here picking my jaw up off the floor.)

No plans that I know of but hopefully somewhere in there we either get the heck out of the house or we get some crap done that's been put off.  (We're the reason there are memes about still not being unpacked a month later.  Sometimes we're right on it but this one...still toiletry bags that now live on the table because we're lazy.  😳)

Anyone doing anything this last weekend of Spring?

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Wednesday, June 14, 2023

He Knows What He's Doing - Thoughts on Ageism

 When we were in Maine on vacation, we were walking Dock Square one morning.  There was a geocache we were going to try for a few days earlier but the parking situation wouldn't allow so we skipped it.  We were only a few blocks from it while walking the square so I started heading that direction.  We looked for a few minutes for a magnetic that was supposed to be on the guardrail and I was looking at logs a few feet away from ground zero when an older couple came up to the same spot.  They were looking the same place we were and after not finding it, I said "you looking for it too?"  She said yes and we started chit chatting.  They were about early to mid 70's I'd say. 

They were positive it was there but just in a sneaky container.  You can get things like bolts that are popular for nano's to stick on guardrails to throw people off.  There were a few bolts (full sized) laying on the rocks on this bridge where they had obviously just replaced the one part of the guardrail where the cache had resided.  We knew those weren't it and we sure as hell weren't going to risk it hopping over the rail onto a rocky culvert.  The dude, dressed in decent pants and button up shirt like they'd gone to a nicer restaurant, just hiked his long legs over the guardrail and started walking around on the uneven rocks.  His wife was egging him on telling him to look here or there.  He looked for a good 2-3 minutes as cars and trucks whizzed by us on the road into town completely unfazed.  When they were satisfied it wasn't there, even though we pointed out the shiny new piece of guardrail at ground zero over the faded spots of the rest of the rail several times, they finally relented and we said our goodbyes.

It had been a long time since we saw other cachers in the wild and probably only met one or two people over the 20 years we've done it.  As we were walking around some more, the Mr said he couldn't believe he just hopped the guardrail like that and he'd never do that now, much less at 75ish for him.  I told him my instinct was to gasp and tell him no that we'd already done that because one wrong step and we'd be on a rescue mission toward the water.  We laughed about it and carried on.  I kept going back to that moment for some reason and why it was so jarring seeing someone of that age do that.  Then I thought how upset it makes me when I'm dismissed because of being middle aged but people that age have it so much worse expectation wise.  Who was I to assume because he's older that he couldn't handle that?  It came up again later and I mentioned that thought to the Mr.  That man knows his abilities and he didn't give a second thought to hopping the rail and his wife never said 'be careful' or 'don't fall' or whatever because she knew what her husband's capabilities were too.  

It gave me pause that just because someone's hair is white and their skin is wrinkled doesn't always mean they need to be coddled.  They were clearly in good shape.  I mean, hell,  I hope when I'm that age I can do that without people clutching their pearls but you wouldn't catch me doing that at 48!  I will try to be more aware of treating people older than me as the competent people they are unless they give me reason to believe otherwise.  There was no shaking, being unstable on his feet, a bit of worry from his wife or anything to hint that he wasn't capable of doing what he did other than he was a great grandpa aged man.  Isn't the point these days to age well?  He was clearly doing it!  Yet I was raised with the mentality that great grandparent aged people typically watch golf, play euchre or do other more sedentary activities because their bodies won't let them.  I suspect I'm more sedentary than that guy is  and I've got the aches and stiffness to prove it.  If nothing else, it's given me a bit of a mental kick in the butt to remind myself if I want to prove the stereotypes wrong, the time is now to get out of a crap ass routine that I've been stuck in for far too long.  I want to impress people with my physical abilities at any age, not shrink into a blobbish heap in the corner.

Have you ever caught yourself having protective/cautious thoughts about an older person based on nothing more than their age?

(For more info on how to start geocaching, go to

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Monday, June 12, 2023

Whizzing Weekend Recap

Top o' the Monday to you all!  Did you have a bitchin' weekend?  Do people still say bitchin'?  Nevermind, I know the answer to that and I don't care how old it makes me sound... I'm bringing it back.  

Did you get into any adventures this weekend?  When we finally got out of the house on Saturday we went for a drive.

We checked to see if there were any caches where we ended up and there were a few so we got to get a few more under our belts.

Is it me or did the weekend whiz by?  Speaking of whizzing:

You just never know what you're going to stumble upon when you go geocaching and if you're going to have the coolyons to wee at a PARK in public, I'm gonna document it since you're on public property and clearly a schmuck with no couth.  

We did find a fun one at a DMV.

Love it when people get creative and much more fun to find.  It was in need of a little maintenance so I was able to get in my caching bag and grab some small baggies I keep on hand for damaged log bags and such.  (The kind big enough for a pair of Etsy earrings or something.)  I also make sure I've got some tweezers on hand because it seems like every cache these days are micros/nanos.  When we made it back home, we finished up Ted Lasso (along with Shrinking the other night) and we're both super sad they're over.  Both had some amazing writing involved.  We've also been enjoying The Reluctant Traveler with Eugene Levy even though it really just seems like an advert for rich people stuff that most of us will never be able to afford.  Platonic is so so but we're caught up on that.  I think we've got a few other things in the queue but I think we may re-watch Ted Lasso because I'm not ready for it to be over.  If you're wanting the three month trial like we're getting, the link is here.

We had brunch yesterday then headed out on full bellies to get a walk in as rain was finally forecasted within the hour.  Thankfully we didn't encounter a single soul and it started raining almost halfway into our first lap.  We just popped open the umbrellas and even walked an extra lap we were having such good conversation and enjoying the surroundings.

(Almost reminded us of Hawaii...almost.)

When it was over, we weren't ready to go home to the audible reminders of our neighbors so we decided to stay in the car for an hour and listen to the song of nature as rain bounced off the thin tin our Hyundai calls a roof.

Afterward, we did a park and grab cache before parking and grabbing Renfield from Redbox courtesy of my bestie on her Christmas gift card.

That will bring us back to now ladies and gent.

How was your weekend?

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Friday, June 9, 2023

What I'm Reading This Week #23

Happy Friday all!  Did you get schtuff done this week and are ready for some relaxation this weekend?  I admit, we've been having severe envy of New England this week since they are having perfect weather for us.  60-70 degrees with showers.  Don't think I wasn't trying to find ways to get my butt back there for it too but I had an appointment mid-week that I wanted over with so no go for us.  Thankfully, it wasn't as hot as last week so we were able to get out and walk every day which was nice.

Now let's get into:

Eating Foods With Flavanols May Help Boost Your Memory  (I'll take all the boost I can get)

How to Vent to Your Friends Without Bringing Them Down  (I am guilty of this and feel like I'm alienating people.  I guess I'm one of the weirdos that actually wants to hear someone else's vent.)

10 Ugly Truths About Marriage People Hate Talking About  (#1 is friggin' terrifying but I've sadly read about it many times.  Special place in hell for those people.)

How to stop your smart devices from listening to you and recording what you say  (It amazes me what people say yes to when installing crap on their phones.)

He Predicted the Dark Side of the Internet Over 30 Years Ago. Why Did No One Listen?  (More and more it all makes me want to move off grid and homestead never to be heard from again.)

The 48 Biggest Summer Blockbusters of the Past Half Century  (There are some serious classics on this list!)

I don't know if we've got plans this weekend or not, we'll have to see what I'm able to do.  (I'll elaborate more once I get some results.  Just cross your fingers for an all clear so I can put two years of BS behind me.)   

Any plans for your weekend?

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