Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Talking to Surgeon

I went yesterday and spoke to the surgeon. She is a very sweet lady, I met her before, she did my biopsy. She explained to me that having adenomyosis, which is what they believe I have, is the better choice. I also need to have a rectocele repair. (I have had this for 22 years after a doctor felt the need to use high forceps on me & for reasons beyond any other OB/GYN, refused to repair it.)

The other option for adenomyosis is to have an ablation. This would be done out-patient and I would have to return for the rectocele repair. Also, though I prefer to keep my cervix, doing so, could cause the repair to by stress.

This sweet young surgeon does not charge for her work during surgery for Faith Family Clinic. (Please consider donating to this wonderful facility providing medical care for the working yet uninsured.).

She performs these surgeries at The Women's Hospital at Centennial Medical Center. It will be a laproscopic hysterectomy, leaving the ovaries, unless they have problems. Then the rectocele will be repaired.

She says I should up and about in 3 weeks, with restrictions such as no lifting, no floor care, etc. She will tell me fully after she exams how I have healed to that point.

Her surgery scheduler will call me soon and we will pick a date after the first of the year. Then I will go to the hospital and find out who my anesthesiologist is, how much they are going to charge me ($0-$?????) and what the hospital bill is going to be.

I believe I will schedule early in the year, say January, so I can be functional by time to put the garden in.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Facing Surgery

At 45 I have only had two surgeries and been under general anesthesia four times. The prospect of the "little death" is actually more scary than the surgery itself.

The first time was when my third child, David Israel, was born. He was posterior. My midwife had transported me to the hospital due to the fact I was having so much pain between contractions and my babies were so large. She also could not determine what part of the baby was presenting. Fear of a transverse presentation  (I did experience this with a later delivery) and a possibly rupturing uterus, we called for an ambulance.

This was not a good birthing experience for me. The doctor refused to allow me to have any support person what so ever in the labor room with me after giving me pain meds-actually giving me "Twilight Sleep". Had I known this before, I would have refused. Had it known it was "Twilight Sleep", I would have refused. In the delivery room, I was given ether, tied down by my wrists and ankles, "delivered of the child by use of 'high' forceps" and woke up later in a 3rd bed in a recovery room (3rd room), asking for my baby. I was told it was a male and nothing else could be told me to until my mother-in-law arrived. They refused to let my husband any where near me, with good reason for their safety. The child was born "coal tar black", not breathing, and suffered a seizure a few days later that caused enlargement of the ventricles in his brain which also results in shrinkage of the brain itself. This resulted in a diagnosis of Severe Spastic Cerebral Palsy.

You can only imagine how this affected my view of hospital births, (my previous 2 had been born at home), and anesthesia during birth. Please note, this happened in 1990.

The next time I went under general anesthesia was in 1994 when my fifth child was born. Sabrina Eden had been breech. My doctor attempted an External Cephalic Version. This child got transverse with her head right under my heart and very literally started shaking her head, "NO!" We could see it on the ultra-sound and my belly! She is still the child will dig her heels in!

Needless to say, her refusal to even go back to a breech position, resulted in a C-Section two weeks later when labor started spontaneously, four weeks early. (She weighed in at 9lbs. 3 oz. & was 21 inches long). This was a different doctor. Different hospital. Different county. Not the home-birth I had so wanted again, but a much better hospital experience than before.

My next general anesthesia experience was four years later in 1998, had my gall bladder removed after they saw "gravel" in it when doing an ultra sound of my kidneys. I came out of surgery with elevated blood pressure. I remember waking up to the recovery nurse telling me to open my mouth, she wanted me to take a sub-lingual dose of Corgard.  I had warned the doctors and nurses, before surgery, that this medication had been used on me before and it always bottomed out my blood pressure., a potentially life-threatening condition, especially as it dropped to something over 63. (Note-I was at the hospital I gave birth to David Israel in.)

The last time was in 2010. I had a LEEP procedure performed. I woke up once, no drifting in and out, no recovery of senses but no eyes open, just suddenly my eyes were open. The nurse came in a few minutes later, took my vitals, told me to go get something to eat, went over after-care instructions and sent me home. I puked my guts out as I stepped out of the car at the house.

As you see, I have mixed experiences  with "going under". I have some serious reservations about loosing body parts. (Have always regretted letting the gall bladder be removed.) But I have lots of things to consider here.

In seven short days I go talk to the GYN Surgeon to see if she will take my case or refer me to someone else. As a self-pay patient, making less than $20,000 a year, I am also considered a "charity" case. If she will take my case, I will need to already know what I want to do so that I can make pre-payment arrangements with her and the hospital.

The GYN agreed to administer an injection of Progesterone to buy me some symptom relief for 3 months. I asked for this. Those that have known me any length of time, will know that would not be a normal choice for me. However, I am sick of vaginal bleeding every day, menstrual cycles that have been diagnosed as "hemorrhaging", all degrees of uterine cramping, severe anemia and all of its symptoms.

I have been one of the lucky ones, to be very in touch with my body since a young age-in my teens. I always know when I ovulate. I know when something is wrong or right. I was very blessed to actually know the very moment of conception of each of my ten children and therefore to have truly known them and communicated with them from that very moment. I have always been at peace with my body and being a woman and having a uterus-bleeding on a regular basis. It was a a blessing of God. But in recent years, the past 3 or so, the spells of actually hating my body have become increasingly longer & more frequent.

I have 6 days to consider all the options and the pros & cons of each. My inner student is doing lots of research. 

Friday, December 7, 2012

Today's Events

Today has been fairly productive. I made some Butter Cookies using strawberry flavoring instead of vanilla. They have turned out a pretty red color and as delicate and melt in your mouth as ever--with a delicate strawberry flavor! Pat on my own back for such a great, yet simple idea.

Made some Christmas Balls using orange juice and fresh orange zest instead of rum or brandy. They are fairly good also. I do prefer using the Hershey Special Dark cocoa powder as opposed to regular flavor.

MRS came over to sit with his Mom for a bit while I ran to the local "dig store"-Helping Hands of Lyles- to grab some clothes for the grand kids. They are not open Saturday, so had to go today. The blessing was today was half price day so I just went down the wall of children's clothes and grabbed stuff. With this many grands, all of it will be used.

Have been working on my Etsy store and my Facebook Fanpage. Both are looking good-now to get some things made up and ready to sell.

MRS's friends are coming over in the morning to have a squirrel breakfast. I had planned to sleep in but got a message that the grandbaby that is visiting has a dental appointment at 9 a.m.

Off to get a little bit of reading done.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Time to Catch Up!!

It has been a bit since I really sat down here and wrote. So much has happened and is happening right now.

My grand daughter, Kimberlee, has decided that for her eighth birthday on December 17th, she wants a sewing machine. Seems she wants to start making her own clothes, aprons and things for her dolls. Her mom, Virgillia, has decided to buy her a sewing machine and the rest of us are going to put her together a sewing basket of all the needed notions-thread, needles, pins, buttons, cloth and of course the basket to hold it all.

I really can't wait to get in my craft room and go through and get all those pretty pieces of fabric she has taken note of over the past year and get them together for her. Even better will be to see her open all these presents.

I am knee deep in Christmas baking. All sorts of cookies, pies and cakes. I love it. This year I have discovered the joy of using a cookie press. I now MUST have every disc ever made!!!

The pitfalls and joys of waiting on a medical test result are manifesting. The joy is that you can still have moments of thinking you are healthy. The pitfalls are many-waiting on pins & needles, worrying just what the results will be, running over the hundreds of possible results and the thousands of treatment courses for EACH.

Did lots of canning this past summer. Actually still doing some as food stuffs present themselves on mega good sale. The garden did not do near as well we would have liked, but people gifted us with surplus from their gardens and several that went somewhere to pick for themselves would be gracious enough to pick extra for us and stop by with it.

Did you notice the "we"? Yes, I am dating again. It is strange in some ways, almost surreal at times. MRS (yes, his real initials) is very sweet, very patient, and a widower himself. He made sure that I made it to Pau Wau (Pow Wow) this year and went with, therefore meeting my Mother and Brother. So far, they like him. My children have had their own little pow wow and come to the conclusion that MRS is, ". . .the only normal person you have EVER dated. . ." The grands love him dearly.

His family is very special to my heart. They all have this beautiful, wonderful sense of true family that I have only ever dreamed of being a part of.

Dave's sister, Robbie, went to the nursing home a few months before he passed. I promised to make sure she was taken care of and will honor that. Her Alzheimer's is "stabilized". By that they can predict what she is going to do or say to some extinct. She is not changing much. She believes the nursing home is her house and  is very grateful that Bob (her deceased husband) makes enough money to hire her a lot of help as she could never keep such a large place clean by herself.

Pistol, my son, gave me a horse for Mother's Day. Blue Heart is a Quarter horse mix-we believe the "mix" may be giraffe--he has the longest neck we have ever seen on a horse!! I don't spend enough time with him but it is so peaceful to sit on the front porch and watch him. He is in a pasture with MRS's male, neutered donkey named Esmeralda.

Pistol also gave me a smart phone--it has not proven to be as much of a smart phone as a smart a$$ phone! I have enjoyed it though and will continue to do so until such time as I can do some research and decide which one I want to buy.

MRS built us a craft room. He makes knives and the sheaths for them. They are wonderful creations. Working on getting Chakwaina's Creations up, running and profitable.

That is about all for now. Hoping to be writing more often.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Spiced Apple Rings-NO Red Hot Candies!!

I remember the spiced apple rings of my childhood-Daddy made them and I would eat them like there would never be another one!

He never used red hot candy to make them. I searched for a recipe using real spices and finally found one.
It is located here at the The Iowa Housewife's Blog.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

All Things Cherokee: Genealogy FAQs - Blood Quantum - Why It Matters, and Why It Shouldn't

All Things Cherokee: Genealogy FAQs - Blood Quantum - Why It Matters, and Why It Shouldn't

Monday, October 22, 2012

A Great Meal

Ginger Glazed Pork Chops
Roasted Potatoes
Green Beans w/ Black Eyed Peas
Apple Grunt

I love to cook. Can't say I enjoy the clean-up process, but the cooking is awesome. 

I also love to do my own food preservation-canning being my preferred method. 

This meal was served on 21 October 2012 and the recipes follow.

The Apple Grunt has to cook for 6 hours on low in a crock pot so it was put on first.

About 2½ pounds fresh picked apples, weigh before peeling, coring, & cutting in wedges
½ cup sugar
1/3 cup flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground nutmeg
¼ tsp ground allspice
¼ tsp ground cloves
2 cups baking mix (I make my own)
¼ cup half & half
½ cup whole milk
3 Tbsp sugar
3 Tbsp butter, melted

Place apples, first amount of sugar, spices and flour into a 4 quart slow cooker or crock pot. Stir well to coat apple slices well with other ingredients.

Combine next four ingredients in a bowl and stir well. Pour evenly over top of apples.

Cover and cook on low for six hours. Resist lifting the lid.

Next the beans went in another crock pot.

1 quart home canned green beans
1 pint home canned black eyed peas
1 small piece of ham hock

Place all in a slow cooker/crock pot and cook on high for one hour. Reduce to low and cook 4-5 more hours. Resist lifting the lid.

About an hour before supper time-

Turn oven on 425°.

Roasted Potatoes
4 medium potatoes, washed, cut each into 4 wedges then cut each wedge in half the short way
2 medium onions, peel, cut each into 4 wedges then cut each wedge in half the short way
2 Tbsp olive oil
3 Tbsp minced garlic in oil
1½ tsp salt (I use Real Salt)
1 tsp fine ground black pepper (fresh ground preferred)

Combine last four ingredients mixing very well. Add potatoes and onions, stir to coat veggies well. Dump into a 13x9 baking ban. Place in hot oven for 10 minutes.

While potatoes are in oven prepare-

Ginger Glazed Pork Chops

2 Pork Chops
½ tsp salt
½ tsp fresh ground black pepper
1/3 cup Mango Jalapeno Jelly (again I make my own)
3 Tbsp minced garlic in oil
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp ground ginger

Salt & pepper both sides of the meat. Mix next 4 ingredients and combine very well. Coat one side of each chop, laying each pork chop in a baking pan, coated side down. Spoon the rest of jelly mixture evenly over pork chops.

Stir potatoes and slide over in oven. Put pork chops, in pan, inside oven. Turn on broil for about 5 minutes.  Turn ov4n back 425°. Let cook 10 more

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Shop my AVON store!

Shop my AVON store!: Here's a sneak peak at some of the latest products available at Avon. Be sure to click

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Help Heal Phoenix


Phoenix and his twin brother Malachi were born prematurely by emergency c-section. Their Mother discovered her pregnancy when she went to the doctor for missed periods and he told her that as she had undergone a tubal ligation and was using back-up birth control she wasn't pregnant. After an exam the doctor said she had a "missed miscarriage" and wanted to do a D&C. 

Misty refused. She preferred to wait to see if her body would do this on its own. Weeks later she was told was pregnant-one baby. She planned a weekend retreat to tell the Daddy. Before that weekend came, he was killed in a car wreck .Now she is told she is expecting twins. She chooses names. Though her heart is breaking, she has other children and these two wonderful Gifts from God on the way. She must go on. Now the news is that the babies are sharing not only an amniotic sack (bag of waters) they are sharing the same placenta.(Learn more about MoMO Twins here.) This makes it nearly impossible for both babies to live to birth. As a matter of fact, she was told no less than three times that Phoenix was dead. 

She is put on bed rest. During this time my husband was nearing the end of his walk on this earth. Misty had offciated at our Wedding. He asked for her. She came. Sat with us as much as she could. When he passed, she was there to bless the gound and perform his last Ceremony.

A few weeks before the birth Misty was told Phoenix had a "small hole" in his heart. Nothing bad-they would give him some medication for 24 hours after he was born and all would be well. I got there right after the Cardiologist left--Phoenix indeed had a small hole in his heart-along with several other heart defects. There was a name for it-Tetrology of Fallot. He would need to be kept calm at all times. No crying. Several surgeires throughout his life. For the first few months he would have to be fed very small amounts around the clock as to not stress his heart. He also had to gain weight slowly so his damaged heart could keep up.

Fast forward five months. He goes in for surgery. They find another hole in his heart. He has been splayed open, fixed temporarily until he grows so much more surgery is needed. He has complications but is sent home. Now he must not be exposed to many people and definitely no germs for six weeks. his Mom and God-Mother take up residence in the master bedroom of the family's apartment to keep as isolated as possible.

Misty has not been able to work in months. She has a family to support. Times are tough.

Please, consider making a donation to help this family make it through these times.

There are three ways to donate--if you are in the Nashville, Tennessee or Dickson, Tenneessee area just go to a Cornerstone Credit Union Branch. Tell them you need to make a donation to the Phoenix Garrett Account. Or you may send a donation through PayPal to twinphoenixboy@gmail.com. any amount, no matter how small is needed. Small actions will add up to something big. Or you can go to Indiegogo by clicking here or on the box to the upper right.


Sept. 3 2012 Phoenix is still having crying spells that last up to an hour. The doctors warned this could happen. It happens around the clock. His heart rhythms still are not correct so they are now saying another surgery soon to put in a pacemaker. 

This will entail another blood drive. His blood is B negative. The doctors do not want to tax his already taxed body by giving him O negative. If you are B Negative and can get to Nashville be on standby and contact Misty below at her Facebook page so she can set the appointments up when the time comes. 

No matter your blood type, but especially if your Rh factor is negative, please donate blood on a regular basis.

Sept. 5, 2012 Phoenix saw his Pediatric Cardiologist yesterday. His heart is still out of rhythm. She wants to do a 48 hour test on him but the stickers have to go where his scar is. She wants to wait until that his healed so as to not risk irritation that could lead to infection. It does look as though he will be needing a pacemaker. 

He has also lost his appetite so the doctor has decreased his lasix dosage (this is to move the excess fluid from around his heart and lungs). He is already on 22 calories per ounce of intake and may need to go to 24 calories ounces per ounce.

Here is the link to the first story done by Fox17 Nashville.

Misty can be contacted through her Facebook page.
I can be contacted through my Facebook page.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Apple Butter-mmmmm GOOD!

Wash, peel, core and cut up your apples-amount doesn't matter at this point.
Place them in a heavy bottomed pot.
Add 1½ cups of one of the following-apple cider(best), apple juice, water.
Cook on very low heat with the lid on.
Occasionally stir. They will break down into mush.
At this point, measure the apple mush.
For each cup of apple mush add ½ cup sugar and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon. You can adjust these two ingredients to your own tastes and the type of apples you are using.
Put back in heavy bottomed pot and cook till thick.
Put in hot jars. 

Process in a water bath 15 minutes for pints.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Hot Honey Mustard

18 Small to medium hot banana peppers (or jalapenos or habaneras, or a combination)
1 Tbsp mince garlic
2c apple cider vinegar
Wash peppers & remove stems. Place in food processor with a bit of the vinegar & process till almost all liquid.  I leave the seeds. Pour pepper and vinegar mixture along with rest of vinegar and garlic in pot and slowly bring to a boil. Keep at a boil 7-10 minutes.

Remove from heat and add:
2c honey
2c prepared yellow mustard
2tsp Worcestershire sauce
 1½tsp ground Cayenne pepper
1½tsp onion powder
Stir well with a fork or use a wire wisk. Return to heat. Do not boil again but cook well to blend flavors about 20 minutes.

In small bowl combine:
¼c corn starch
¼c water
Stir till smooth.
Wisk mustard mixture  while slowly pouring in corn starch/water mixture. Cook just until thickened.

Pour into hot sterile jars (pints or half pints) and seal.

Makes 3½ pints.

This will be great as a mustard based barbecue sauce for pork or chicken. It will go well as a sauce for sliced roast beef or with the addition of a some horseradish for Corned Beef Brisket. Fish comes to mind also-maybe add some dill for fish.