Weird But True

Monday, February 04, 2008

I survived!

OMG - I do NOT know what it was the had caught last week - but I do NOT wish it on ANYONE! It was 2 days before I could eat soup!

Cereal was 3
Chicken 5 days!!!

And my precious veggies - took 6 whole days before I could even LOOK at them!

I don't even know the last time I slept so much in a week!
So many plans had to be canceled:(

And, obviously, it was 7 days before I could return to the gym.

UNHEARD OF in my world!

But alas - it's over.
Appetite is back - and each and every muscle is sore in a good way as I type this - because training was excellent!
I am exhausted - and will no doubt be going to bed early - but it's for a VERY good reason this time......a very good reason!

Monday, January 28, 2008


that's when it hit me. 3:20 a.m. There's a nasty stomach bug going around and......

3:20 a.m. Sunday is when I realized I had it! Let me tell you - puking when sober is not fun. Puking when sober, after leg training, WITH A BRUISED RIB, is torture.

I'm convinced. Don't think I ever felt such terrible pain.

Here I sit - 36 hours later - just managing to take in SOME solid food - 1/2 can of soup took 1/2 hour to get down. Not good.

To add to things my car is in the shop - not even two years old and the power steering is shot. All under warranty - but I'm relying on friends and family for transportation - which isn't much these days - since the thought of putting in my contacts seems overwhelming!

But frustrating just the same.

The EXCELLENT news though is that there are no new spots - even with this flu thing hammering away at my immune system - so that is GREAT!

I had an allergist appointment today - and a dentist - and an xray to see if this is cracked.

All have been rescheduled - nobody is touching me right now. Nobody.

And Kerry - after just one redness reducing facial - and follow up with the rec. skin care line - there is a NOTICIBLE improvement in the capillaries on my face. In fact - it's AMAZING!!!!!

I have another appointment set for March 5 - and I can't wait!!!!!!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

I think I bruised a rib!

This past Saturday was my highly anticipated "adventure" of Bumper Cars on Ice. And let me tell you - it is just as it sounds:)

Giant inflatable cars - bright primary colors - so restrictions - just use the little pedal things and GO! Doesn't take much to get you going on an ice skating rink - let me tell you!

I had a BLAST!!!!! So much fun - but as I sit here typing this 3 days later - my left side is still painful - I definitely at least strained something over there - if not bruised a rib.

Cool - my first sports injury - NICE:)

Anyway - life here is GREAT! Haircut and colored - YIPPEE!! Facial - check - the girl commented on how quickly my skin is responding - and in a few short months there should be no more broken capillaries from having to use those nasty topical steroids to control the rash - YIPPEE!!!!

And folks at work are commenting on my skin - and I never even told them about teh facial thing - so this is a GREAT sign!

And speaking of rash.......

I won't jinx myself - but let's just say.........

let's just say I have a follow up next Monday and I think the Dr. will be very happy with me..........

Monday, January 14, 2008

She shoots...she scores:)

Last night was Christmas rescheduled with Grandma - and it was a HUGE hit - if I do say so myself!

She always tells a story about trying to get served a flaming cherries jubilee and how she never has had one, they'll serve cherries jubilee but never on fire - so she doesn't bother.

So, since she decided she didn't want any Christmas presents this year I started calling all over town to find a restaurant that would be willing to light one on fire.

Took some "doing" - but mission accomplished! We took her to her favorite restaurant for dinner which she was thrilled with anyway. The original plan was to drive around and look at Christmas lights and just "happen" upon the next stop and I was going to suggest we go in for coffee.

However an ice storm forced us to reschedule - the she went out of town - now - no lights.

Anyway - Dad pretended to make a wrong turn and get lost - nice:) We come upon the restaurant - which is located inside a B & B - and I ask to stop so I can run inside and ask directions. I suggest she come in with me so she can see how pretty it is inside.

Dad parks - we all go in- then I tell the hostess about our reservation...
While they prepare the table I fill Grandma in - her eyes light up - PERFECT!

They prepared the whole thing table side. Grandma was blown away! dad loved it - he hasn't had it since 1960 something - I had fresh fruit - no dairy for me *sigh*.

Anyway - a perfect evening was had by all! So this was a GREAT Holiday season - first Dad and I had a great day - and now we spread the fuzzies to Grandma - YEAH!!!!!

I've beaten the cold - YIPPEE - and the spots are diminishing - not gone - just getting smaller - but still a good sign. I have an allergist appointment this morning - and he said if they hadn't improved over last week I was going to start losing privileges again - so at least I won't lose anything. No gain - but that's o.k.

Wednesday is my facial and we don't want to miss that! And next Monday is my haircut/color. Not at the critical stage just yet - but last time was not a full on treatment - as we wanted to make certain I wouldn't react. So this time....
Give me the works!

Monday, January 07, 2008

Run Down.....

That's me at the moment - run down. Still fighting the cold - work is extremely busy, and extremely short staffed. Social life is getting smaller and smaller by the day - simply no energy, And with no energy.......

More spots.

After work on Saturday I went to the gym for a little R & R - LOL. After my shower I fell asleep on the couch with my hair still in towel at 8:30. Moved to the bed around 10:30 - and didn't stir again until 7::30 the next morning! I didn't even sleep in that late on Christmas!

Felt slightly revived - which was good as I had my office Christmas party to attend. All of us went to a local comedy club for some stand off. Great way to spend a night - and so affordable - at only $10!

Much more entertaining than most of the movies I see.

So today I attended to necessary household chores to prepare for the next week at work. *sigh* Good news today is that it is 65 outside right now! Craziness!

Last week the high was 5 - today.......

if you weren't sick before you will be now!

This Sunday I have my Christmas with Grandma - she is back from Florida and since a terrible ice storm cancelled our first attempt - we're going to try again on Sunday.

And next Wed. I have a personal day - ahhhh - can't wait! Not only will it be a little free time - but my next facial - courtesy of Santa- is scheduled.

Just have to survive this week.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008


Another Holiday weekend - wish we had some more of these:)

Once again I am so very sore - but in the best way possible - I do love this feeling - as twisted as it may sound - LOL!

Christmas was TERRIFIC!!! Dad and I had a FABULOUS afternoon together! He loved his gifts - but more importantly we spent the day watching reruns of his favorite t.v show and playing checkers - just like when I was a kid! He called twice during the past week to say just how much he enjoyed my choice for Christmas this year:)

Work has been hell on wheels. SO very busy - and of course short staffed. I come home exhausted - and if I let myself get too rundown the spots start to come back - so guess what my next sentence is......

Yeah - not good.

So Dad and I had planned a short road trip this afternoon - but still fighting a cold that won't let go - and now sports so......

Road trip canceled. Too bad - there was an exhibit at a museum I had wanted to see and today was the last day. But - if I keep pushing.....

I won't finish that thought.

So I made a big pot of homemade spaghetti sauce and some meatballs, hit the video store and laid low today. Very relaxing - wish I had a few more days to do just this.....

But back to the trenches tomorrow - where it will be just as busy for at least the next 10 days........

On that note - I'm shutting down the computer and returning to my couch!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Happy Holidays everyone!

Weekly check in from Syracuse! Hope everyone is having a FABULOUS Holiday with family and friends!!

Dad should be on his way now - I just realized I should have picked a later time as I am SO not hungry right now. Maybe I can convince him to do gift exchanges first with dinner in a bit. Have to wait and see how he's feeling....

This has been a terrific Holiday weekend here!! Terrific presents from my friends so far and, my absolute FAVORITE part of a Holiday, AMAZING training sessions! Nobody goes to the gym over the Holidays so it is my chance to use all of my favorites and since I know I don't have to work on my feet all day - really kick it into overdrive!

I am SO very sore today I thought simply taking the trash out might require a nap afterwards!

Nothing too exciting to report. Work is manageable - as is the rash - social life is slowly picking up - which is AMAZING considering it's winter here and I don't even go to the mailbox unless I am expecting something - LOL!

Happy Holidays to everyone!!!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Still here!!

I survived dinner out last Sunday night - we had a FABULOUS time! So great to catch up with a friend! We use to be inseparable - then had a falling out - and have slowly been rebuilding our friendship over the past couple of years. We're both at different points in our life's - different view and priorities then before. It was so nice to chat we promised to do it on a regular basis - so we'll have to stay on top of this - as it is so easy to let life get in the way and the next thing you know......

Many outings scheduled for the next couple of weeks. Comedy club with co - workers in 3, bumper cars on ice in 5 - REALLY looking forward to this how much fun will THAT be!!!! A meet and greet this week - so nice to be interacting with folks and stay out of the shower for a few minutes:)

Christmas with G'ma was supposed to be today - but mother nature is hitting us with a nasty winter storm - and G'ma has put her foot down that this surprise will have to wait until she returns from Florida - after Christmas. I have to honest - I am disappointed about postponing - as I know it will make her VERY happy/surprised - but the reaction will be the same - just a bit delayed is all.

And her canceling and Mother Nature keeping me close to home will allow for training, cooking, laundry - the usual stuff - but with no rushing - so that's always a nice surprise!

In fact - I'm off to thaw my car now - and hit teh gym before it gets too terribly bad out there:)

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Weekend update...

The week's are just flying by - seemingly always the case but even more so when your days are filled with Dr.'s appointments and cooking/prepping. The bumps are STILL around - beyond frustrating - so yet another Dr.'s appointment in the morning. They are no where near the haircut/color - so at least we know that's not the trigger. And my allergist doesn't think it's food related - he says that's more hives than bumps/rash. Not to sure what the difference is THERE - but hey - whatever. I'm just keeping o!

So with the rash back - and spreading I am starting to pay a bit more attention - AGAIN - to what foods goes in my mouth - and seeing if there is a correlation. Certainly can't hurt. Laundry detergents haven't changed, or bath products, or cleaning supplies, and everything outside is frozen....SOMETHING is causing this - what is the question.

Got my facial this past week - FABULOUS!! OMG made SUCH an a difference in my appearance/texture/confidence after just one. I can not wait to go back. I've asked Santa for gift cards this year:)

Terrific training at the gym - clean healthy living seems to guarantee that. Still fighting with the stupid electronics - old MP3 has been returned, new phone activated, playlists in the new MP3 - but still needs some fine tuning. That's on this weekend's agenda.

Dinner plans with a friend tonight at a new restaurant - fingers crossed on this one. Hopefully no new eruptions come morning!

And I don't know what's in the air here - but the men all seem to have "Holiday Fever". Folks are approaching like crazy - but honestly - with all of the showering/prepping/creaming/etc. Dating is the LAST thing on my mind. Me and Blockbuster get along just fine!

But I am off to visit the one "guy" I would never break a date on - off to visit "gym":)

Friday, November 30, 2007

Baby Steps...

So yes - I DID get my haircut/colored - HOORRAY!!! Came out WAAYYY too light the first time around - so I had to return two days later for a bit more toner but know - I am quite a happy girl! She figures it was because I had SO much regrowth affected why my roots came out so light - who cares - so long as it's better now:)

Still on 3 pills a day and the cream - but the "bumps" are all but gone and the slight redness left where the bumps were should be a memory in a day or so. What this means - after the redness is gone then I get to stop taking the pills right before bed and stop using the cream - aka also get to go back to only showering when I want to - YIPPEE!!

Assuming the rash does not reappear for 7 days - then I get to stop taking the pill at lunchtime:) SO fingers crossed that in two weeks.......

One day at a time - one day a time. At this week's follow up appointment I was "cleared" to have an occasional glass of alcohol - LOL! My Dr. is reintroducing things gradually - and since I really don't mind eating this way - I enjoy my fruits/veggies and chicken so I'm not missing pies/cookies/chocolate - he figures an occasional glass of wine and a haircut would be the best way to make me feel "normal" this Holiday season. He is exactly right:)

I am also cleared for a facial!!! EXCELLENT news - as my skin has been under quite a bit of stress since April - this will also be a HUGE pick me up. That's Tuesday evening - I can't wait!

And the new MP3 should be delivered today. Perfect timing - with the weekend here I should have sometime to get my tunes in there - return this other more thing off of the to do list!

Now if I only could only get my Summer weather back........

Sunday, November 25, 2007

24 HOURS......

To get through before my haircut! I'm a bit worried. There have been a few new spots appearing through out the week - even with the 3 pills and the cream. But I have learned from past weeks - haircut appointment is at 10am tomorrow - allergist at 1. So unless there is a full on rash/hive episode - or if the spots appear on my face/neck before tomorrow - I'm going through with it. I could really use a boost of self esteem these days.

There are SO many activities/meetings that I signed up for information on awhile back that are starting to get together now that it's "that" season. I can definitely go and avoid the food and alcohol - pretty used to that by now - but mixing with new folks when I feel so less than sexy - well..........let's just hope that I get to the haircut tomorrow. Then I'll see if I can bring myself to RSVP.

Training is still GREAT! More PB's last night and I'm about to sign off and go train back and bi's - YIPPEE!! Lizard day - heheehe!

Thanksgiving was as predicted. Dad continued to try and rope me into some activity right through Wednesday night. And then Thursday I got the guilt filled - I was hoping you might stop over anyway - but I stuck to my guns. I needed some quality Michelle time - a day with no appointments/no work. And he has 3 cats - so I am not sitting in THAT or any pet filled house - right now for a moment longer than I have to. I simply can not risk a trigger/episode.

The mp3 - Grrrrrrr - it has so much nonsense pre-programed on it that the memory is half of what they advertise - so it's going back as soon as my new arrives - which should be Wednesday. This is the same brand - but larger memory - that I just put through the washer - so it should be no problem to figure out. I was going to go this route last time - but they don't sell them locally so I have to have it shipped in and I admit - when it comes to my MP3 - this is one gadget I can NOT train without. And since training is the only thing I get to do that doesn't involve cooking/showering - although I guess it does lead to both doesn't it - I was NOT willing to wait a week before. I neede a replacement - IMMEDIATELY! LOL!

So off to grow me some lats - have a great weekend!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Another Monday.....

Another allergist update. So the new treatment is going well - all be it time consuming. Back to no less than 2 showers per day. Currently on 3 types of pills and one cream. But - the rash is subdued and this is the best my skin has looked in months - although it is definitely guarded optimism on my part here. One day at a time. I won't consider myself "normal" until I am no longer forced to alter my decision based on when I have to take my next shower and next set of pills.

But the good news is I am cleared for a haircut on Monday November 26 - thank GAWD!!!! Because I am so overdue I should be ready for my second haircut by now. Ick!

And I've been cleared for mild soaps and detergents again - phew. I don't go back to teh allergist for two weeks - so just tech haircut next Monday. He hopes by then that the rash will be gone completely and we can once again start talking about rebuilding my tolerance.

But I've heard this before.

Thanksgiving has been canceled this year - at least in this family. Gma completely understands and told me to get some sleep and enjoy a day without 16 appointments. dad keeps trying to figure out how to get me to spend the day with him. I know he means well - but I need/want some quality sofa time. And since they both have pets I can't go to their houses for any extended length of time - and since it's a Holiday there is no way to guarantee my meal won't be soaked in something I'm allergic to. And the idea of cooking and entertaining people right now is just to draining to consider. So decision made.

I've almost figured out this MP3 thing. Figured it out enough last week to get in 4 playlists for last week's training sessions - the only pleasure they haven't taken away yet:) Working on creating some new playlists right now and about to transfer them over. Wish me luck!!

Monday, November 12, 2007

In tears......

That's how I left the allergist appointment today - in tears.

My usual Dr. was/is on vacation - so another Dr. in the office was kind enough to see me. However - he feels that my condition is NOT what the first Dr. said it was - and while he did not place me back on steroids he did send me off with 3 prescription. 2 pills and 1 cream.

He also took away my "privilege" to use soap and shampoo/moisturizer. Showers should be kept to a min. ABSOLUTELY no drinking. Try to limit eating out - due to the unknown additives.

Essentially - back 6 weeks:(

What made this even worse was that I was 30 min away from a haircut and 3 hours away from dinner with friends - finally.

Both had to be canceled. And pushed back AT LEAST 2 weeks.

And then I got home to discover that I had accidentally put my MP3 player in the washer and dryer. So I would be without tunes to train on Tuesday. Seriously - the ONLY fun thing left for me to do - and then......

This was one thing I COULD fix right away. And sure - I had to charge it - but I don't even care. Take away my training and I can't even imagine how miserable I'll be.

So my Dr. comes back from vacation on the 15th. His first available appointment isn't until 11/21. I hope I make it that long. I'm itching so badly right now as I type I don't see how I'll sleep tonight...........

Friday, November 09, 2007


So I've been off of the 'roids for 72 hours........

and I just got out of the shower.......

and guess what I saw.....

SPOTS! - ARRRrrrggghhhhh! SO very frustrating! I am literally on my way out the door to work - so no chance of seeing my Dr. today - and the only opening he has on Monday.....

Is the same time as my hair appointment:( So obviously I know where my priorities are......

I'll call my hair lady from work and plead my case - maybe she can squeeze me in somewhere.

Her next opening - is in 2 weeks! I can't even imagine what I will look like by then! But without seeing the allergist - 2 weeks could be.......

I will not even think about it!

Other than that things are still going quite well. My new computer gets hooked up today - hopefully that will go smoothly. I was smart and hired a tech to transfer my files so this should be a no brainer - for him - LOL!

Training is still GREAT - eats are super - as they ave to be:) My Indian Summer was quickly replaced by winter - but it should warm up a bit next week to more seasonable weather - which is ALWAYS good! The less snow and cold the better in my book!

I heard from a bunch of old online pals last week - which was REALLY a nice surprise! I definitely needed it - as the local pals seem to have no use for me now that I can not drink. Luckily I'm enjoying my solo adventures! Even when I suggest/ask if one of them would like to join me - they're more interested in the game/race/party.

They always say that times of "trouble" show you who your true friends are........

Monday, October 29, 2007


Good news was heard all around this week!!

The rash is all but gone - and now I begin to taper off of the roids. Once I am off of them for one full week - I return to the Dr. so he can retest my allergies and see where we go from here. He thinks that many of the "new" ones will no longer be triggers and I'll be able to SLOWLY start to reintroduce things/food. YEAH!!!!!

I was able to wear my hair down out of a pony tail for the first time in 6 weeks! I no longer have to wash and dry my hair twice a day - thank goodness - this was time consuming! I still shower twice a day - but this is usually by choice:)

I had my glass survived! I had a bubble bath too! First one since APRIL!!! WOW!!!!

Another serious health scare turned out to be just that - a scare! Never underestimate piece of mind - that's for sure!!!

I ate in a restaurant by myself for the very first time ever!!! Still very technical ordering - but baby steps!

And another great week in the gym - NICE!!!

Now I must run to catch a movie - alone again! I am really enjoying this whole new found level of independence!!!!

Monday, October 22, 2007

It wouldn't be Monday...

If I didn't have a Dr.'s appointment - or 12!!!

O.K. - 12 is a slight exaggeration - today was only 3 - but my gosh I was a running all over town seemingly just trying to keep up!

I've been probed, scraped and squished. And now I wait for results.

On the rash front things continue to get better daily. He hinted that at next week's visit we may be be discussing how to "rebuild" my tolerance a bit - YIPPEE!!

The other tests - I'm not ready to reveal on the internet just yet - let's see what they find.

But regardless - the weather here was beautiful! My food is prepped for the week. My veggies have been washed and sliced/diced - ready to go - and I even had a chance to break out the canner to keep summer around a bit longer. Oh - and my laundry is FINALLY caught up - wow - that was months in the making - changing your bed sheets every other day sure does create a pile!
And now I am off for shower # 3 of the day - did I mention it was another great week for training? Skin is finally clearing - look out world - there is a lean, mean, strong machine ready to emerge here:)

Have a great week!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Not EXACTLY as good...

As I was hoping for:( He kept me on the same dosage of steroids for another week. I was hoping he would start to taper them off. No such luck.

Not that this came as a total shock - I still don't feel "clean" 10 min after showering - so I know it's still coming out - so to speak.

But a girl can hope - can't she?

Yet - this weekend was still GREAT and full of firsts again! First dinner out - was PERFECT and DELICIOUS! Ordered VERY technically - sure - but arrived as ordered with no issues - YIPPEE!!!

AND washed with soap WITH scent - HOORRAY!!

AND moisturized!

But my hair is still tied up off of my beck for at least another week - oh well - I do kinda like the convenience of this! ANd even less make up than usual is also a time saver!


So of course I am VERY sore today.

Today was supposed to be pamper Michelle day - lunch out - draft beer - mani/pedi/movie/shopping......

But is was also supposed to be sunny - and it is not. So between the clouds and my mood - this special day has been put on hold.

But that's o.kl - since I bought WAY too much at the Farmer's market and was trying to force myself to can some of it......

and now it is cooling on the counter! SO veggies did not go waste - YEAH!

So things are still going well - just as usual - a bit slower than I would like.

But so long as each day is a little bit better than the last - it's all good!!!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

A week in review....

Thanks for all the kind thoughts and well wishes guys - definitely seeing continued improvements day by day. The BEST part of each day is waking up - and seeing just how much better I look and feel from the night before!
I assure everyone that we exhausted every possible test and remedy, old wives tale and strange bit of luck before we - meaning my Dr.'s and I - finally found something that is working. But it's all worth it - as the end is in sight!

Monday I got to shave my legs - TMI I know - but it's been over 4 weeks since they were totally rash free!

Tuesday was first day with grown up soap! Sure - still unscented/hypoallergenic- but I was using stuff for newborns for close to 2 months - and some days THAT was too abrasive!

Wednesday - first day back in a bra - look out world- LOL! 7 weeks on this one!

Thursday - *sigh* - "uneventful:(

Friday - no anti itch lotion on legs!!!! Second shaving! Considering soaking in a hot tub soon.......

Saturday - grown up soap - with scent - HOORRAAYY!!!!

Sunday SIMPLE dinner with G'ma and Dad in a restaurant. VERY specific food prep instructions coming - no need to worry! First time eating out since September 1!!!!

And Monday will be the next follow up - I'll let you know how it goes.

Funny how I wanted a glass of wine so bad - was planning on it for Saturday - but now that Saturday is here......

What's 2 more days:)

Monday, October 08, 2007

So - what IS it........

I went to the doc. on Friday - and I'm really encouraged by what he tells me!

He says that the odd of any further food allergies showing are slim to none - and that we will deal with any of those AFTER we take care of what IS going on.

He says that I have an auto sensitization reaction resulting from a contact dermatitis that was never fully removed/resolved back in April of this year. Ever since April I can't remember one time that I did not have some type of itchy scratchy patch SOME where on me - whether it be my head, ears, neck, hands, leg etc.

Apparently what happens is this response becomes part of the protein structure of the cells itself. And since my body has been fighting this unsuccessfully on it's own for so long - even teenie tiny allergens will trigger a full blown response - aka pollen, artificial sweetener, dairy etc.

I don't have a lot of these things on a daily basis normally - so under normal sit. my body will eventually be able to tolerate most of this again. I won't have to read EVERY box label to look for butter fat, non fat milk powder etc.

Will I be having a double scoop of death by chocolate ice cream topped with whipped cream and reese peanut butter cups anytime soon - no.

Should I continue to live as I am for right now - mostly.

I can stop tracking every single ounce and play purchased that goes into my mouth. He says I can feel free to eat out and have a glass of wine now - without fear that my chicken was grilled in butter - or that a mushroom touched my broccoli.

He put me back on oral steroids to help my body deal with the last of this nonsense. I go back in 10 days. Assuming that things go as he thinks they will - then we can start work on rebuilding my tolerance. If it's not COMPLETELY gone - then I continue as I am until it is - then I work on rebuilding.

So I'm not changing anything for 10 days - or until October 15. I'm still going to eat my own food. I'm avoiding packaged foods, new veggies, and known triggers. I'm staying away from cats/dogs/etc. Every morning I wake up looking better and better - so why risk it now? Better safe than sorry.

What I WILL do is stop recording every minute detail of my life. And I will indulge in just one glass of wine in a few more days - once I am closer to the 15th and looking better.

And I hope to wear a bra or SHAVE in the next couple of days - LOL! Such simple pleasures!!!!!

But overall - it looks like the end is in sight - HORRAY!!!!!!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Counting down.....

Anxiously counting down the days until Friday when I get to see the allergy specialist for the first time. This rash is still hanging on - and my list of "approved" foods and activities seems to get shorter all the time. I am keeping a journal though - literally weighing every ounce of broccoli that I eat and recording it - along with any physical "signs" that we might be able to work with. I figure the more information I can bring with me - the better. Let's just figure out what is causing this - so I can make the necessary changes - and get back to having fun:)

Aside from this ridiculous rash I feel GREAT!!!!! Eliminate something your body sees as a toxin - and WOW! Talk about running on all eight cylinders! I continue to get stronger - clear head - faster - plenty of energy - sleep soundly....if only I would become spot free!

Have to be careful about EVERYTHING! Mushrooms are a trigger - or appear to be, ALL dairy products and things associated with them, whey, butter, butter fats, powdered milk etc. as is all types of artificial sweeteners. Pretty much eliminates all things in a box, bag or wrapper. Even all bran has aspartame in it!

But I love the farmer's market! And giving my $$ straight to the folks that grow it. I am even buying my eggs there now - yummy!!!

I have not drank any alcohol or ate out in over a month now - this is what I miss. A nice glass of wine and someone else to grill my fish or chicken sounds FABULOUS right now. Hopefully next week I'll have the clearance........and the confidence to eat someone else's food. Right now I take no chances. I just want to get to Friday. So I cook everything myself. And drinking only water and green tea that I brew.

I had a couple of "firsts" recently. Tired of sitting around waiting for friends to get their acts together I went to the movies - ALONE! And I was the ONLY PERSON IN THE THEATER! Never did this before - I was always a bit scared or ashamed somehow but guess what - I LOVE IT!!!! So much so I've already gone back for a second movie - ALONE! And again I was the only person there - YIPPEE!!!!

I also went on a brief "road trip" - ALONE. Drove an hour - toured a museum art show I wanted to see - and returned. YIPPEE!!!!!!

As soon as I am "cleared" - I will dine out at a fancy restaurant - ALONE! And indulge myself in the yummy wine and fish I so deparately crave!

I can't wait!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

If only it were that easy.......

Here's a fun game! Go to your kitchen and start reading nutritional labels. Can you spot the milk and artificial sweetener?

Bet you think you can. But think again. Sure - there are the obvious ones but lactose -is milk sugar. Anything that ends in "tol" - an artificial sweetener. Whey, whey protein isolate, butter, butter fats, milk solids.......

Non fat powdered milk is even in granola bars!

Malitol, Xylitol, sorbitol - all fake stuff. Even in most commercial toothpaste!

Be honest - you always seem to swallow at least a bit when brushing - don't you?

I know what you're thinking - C'mon - it can't be that bad. But it's TRUE! And in my case - it's gotten that bad.

After earning of the "cause" of my troubles I made the rec./necessary changes to my diet. Feeling pretty good I grilled some fish, and sauteed some mushrooms, spinach, onions, zucc and cherry tomatoes. Seasoned with the balsamic "vinaigrette" I make myself - and use on my salads.

Half way through dinner - I was "on fire" again - WTF?! Tossed what was left and jumped in the shower. Not the fish - I had the same kind the same way the night before - no troubles. Not the dressing - use it everyday - no troubles. The night before I had a tossed salad with zucc. and tomatos on it. Could it be spinach?! Onions?! Mushrooms?

Thinking back - at the Japanese rest. where I ate the night before the last flare up I had sauteed mushrooms. And onions. We thought it was just MSG that triggered this - but maybe.......

I have onions a lot - but then up until Monday I had cottage cheese daily too. Don't often have mushrooms as they turn too quickly and they usually go to waste. But at the restaurant I ate a lot of them as no one else wanted them - and I (thought) I love them!

Mushroom = fungus = mold = known trigger........

GREAT! Now my veggies are poisonous?! What am I going to do?!
I decide to avoid mushrooms for the short term. The rash keeps progressing - think I'm healing - follow up sched. for Friday - life is going well.

I'm running errands on Wed. I find myself hungry - no food - no fruits veggies for sale. I read the labels and chose a soy based granola bar no chocolate coating, no sugar alcohols.

Not the best tasting - so I only eat 1/3 and toss the rest. This will hold me until I get home.
I wake up Thursday on FIRE again!!!!! Like I was in a tanning bed for 14 days - yet I no longer tan as I'm fearful of skin cancer!! What is going on?!@

Back to the Dr. on my lunch hour. Help - I'm begging. Please.
I explain everything I just did in more detail of course. They want to send me to a dermatologist. Wrong. I can "feel" that this is from it the inside coming out. Creams on the outside won't/'don't help. I feel "polluted". "Toxic". Even if I sit around and do nothing I still feel "grimy" a couple of hours later and need a shower - as if my body has "produced" something.

I explain the mushroom thing, the granola thing. I suggest that I know from my asthma once it's been triggered into a full on attack it takes very little "trigger" to set it off again - and the next attack comes on faster with equal if not more severity.

Could this be what is going on now? Could mushrooms be a trigger? Could I be that sensitive? I had stopped and bought the same type of granola bar that I ate a bite of the day before to show her. Sure enough - lactose is on the label - waaayyyy at the end of the list.

It's possible she agrees - and now I'm going to a food allergy specialist in two weeks. For now I record EVERYTHING I eat - times, amount, any body response. I will beat this - and in time - I will be able to eat a granola bar - but for now - I don't dare even eat at a restaurant for fear that they might cook something with or near butter/mushrooms - or something yet to be determined.

Lucky I like eating this way - clean, healthy, fresh - and that I truly enjoy cooking!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Far from alone.....

Hillary - you and I are far from alone in our observations! Since I started talking about the artificial sweeteners - I have come in contact with 9 NEW people effected by this!

AND - keep in mind that I only learned of the diary troubles on Monday - and it is now Wednesday - I have learned of 4 people who now have some sort of adult onset auto immune response due to an allergic reaction to dairy!!!

2 other folks with chronic rashes - one who lost all her hair and a fourth who had lost sensation in her hands and feet then regained it once she made the dietary changes!!!!!

All this while I listen to the news and learn of ANOTHER packaged salad recall involving E coli!!!!!

Makes you wonder what is REALLY in our food - doesn't it?

Monday, September 17, 2007

Day of discoveries.....

As a result of the Summer of rashes - my Dr. took some blood samples and ran a full spectrum allergy screening to see what was at the "root" of all my trouble.

Environmental, airborne, food, you name it - they tested.

Control what you can after all:)

We've determined on our own that artificial sweeteners are troublesome. So no "fake" sweetness for two weeks now - and I'm feeling GREAT! On top of the world! Even when I am so sore I can barely type - or so cold I look twice my size due to the number of layers on me - for the love of GAWD - give me some HEAT - I still actually feel really good - "head wise". Clean, focused, no tummy troubles - it's nice.

I also took it upon myself to eliminate dairy, wheat and nuts while waiting for the results - to recreate the picture prep "two weeks". Figured couldn't hurt.

My tests are in! Came back through the roof for cat - I knew this - followed by a NEAR TIE with dog! Oh dear - I love my puppies! *sigh* Guess no more pets for me. Bummers.

3rd - again not far below cats - was ragweed and household dust. these two scored essentially equal. I knew these triggers too.

4th on the list - DAIRY! I had NO idea! I asked for clarification - should I cut back or avoid completely........her EXACT words - "Better start reading labels. Avoid milk and all by products is my recommendation. No butter, cream, pudding, yogurt, ice cream, cottage cheese, hard cheese - you name it - best avoid it."

So no more whey protein! And bye bye cottage cheese - FOREVER! I haven't had ice cream in two years - so no biggie - but - but - no cottage cheese?!

And there were some other triggers - but they were all in the moderate range. One was a type of tree that grows right outside my bedroom window here at Heaven - FABULOUS! So when it's pollinating - a/c for me:)

Another discovery today - swordfish - I'm enjoying my first piece of steak right now and let me tell you........

MMmmmmmmmmmmmm - this is one GOOD discovery for today!!!!!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Cookies anyone?

It's that time of year again - the time of year Heaven can be a little less pleasant. With my heat included in my rent - the nice folks here decide when we'll have access to some warmth. We get to chose the temp of course - but they turn off the boiler from May 1 to October 1.

Today is unseasonably cold - 50 and rain ALL day - and the low tonight is supposed to be in the low to mid 30's. Usually don't see this weather until November. In November - I have heat - so while the weather is still not pleasant - at least I am warm and dry.

Now I sit here in sweats - sipping tea I don't really want but somehow need. It was damp and chilly when I came home from work - and I had plenty of leftovers in the fridge - but I needed some heat - took a shower but that only lasts so long.....

SO I made some cookies - that I don't/won't eat. Didn't even lick a spoon. Couldn't care less - just wanted to knock the chill off.

What will I make tomorrow.........

If it's cold 3 days in a row we get heat - the current pattern is 2 freezing - one almost warm 4th normal. This doesn;t get us heat.

Ah well - at least I'll have happy friends and family members:)

Sunday, September 09, 2007

A different kind of Skratch.......

Oh dear - again with a "theme" to my post - I better stop this before someone challenges me to some other foolish project:)

However - as I type this I am trying to distract myself from the new type of scratch - the kind you get when things are healing and drying - but you still just want to claw away....that's what I've got now.

As the last of the chemicals leave my body the rash is now in it's final stage of recovery. However as the rash was weeping/blistering now as it finally dries up I have little scabs on the worst of it. Too much detail I know but it's true. But hopefully these posts may open the eyes of others who suffer from chronic concerns - and cause folks to step back and evaluate what the TRUE cause of the problem is. Seriously - step back for a moment and think about it. How many folks do you know that have IBS? Or migraines? Or claim they simply can't eat "insert anything here" because it hurts their tummy?
Not to mention the bigger concerns - skin conditions....MS......and who knows what else! I couldn't agree with Hilary more - as a teenager with overweight parents one of which was insulin dependent - I was trying to be healthy long before I even graduated high school.

Years of artificial this and diet that. Then as I got older the list of what I could enjoy got smaller and smaller - eventually eliminating some fruits and veggies! It was no wonder I was intolerant - it's just a shame it took this long to FINALLY figure it out!

Anyway - seem to be heading towards clear skin - just have to keep my mits off this last stage - Grrr......

The other Skratch is the new mix tape from my favorite d.j.'s - Skratch n Sniff!!! Best "trainers" I have every had! Another week of good sweats and PB's is in the book!!!!!

Too bad I can't soak in a hot tub this week - heavy lifting week - could really use a good pounding!

I agree Kerry!

I think Blogger determined that my previous post was simply too long - as no matter what font I choose and what size I select - that's all I can get it to display........


Where's an eight year old computer whiz when you need one?!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Totally random......

That best sums up my weekend - TOTALLY RANDOM!

Had 2 great gym sessions on Saturday - and while I had more plans than time for some reason - isn't that so often the case on the weekend - especially Holiday weekends - I was still able to pull it together to meet my friends for dinner. We met at a local overpriced, high showmanship, Japanese steakhouse. Good food - in fact delicious - but I find ANY meal hard to justify when my check alone was $25.00! That's one Japanese beer and the en tree! I know how much I can cook for $25.00 - and I'm a pretty good cook - if I do say so myself:) Yes - he can crack an egg open on the edge of his spatula - but I can make shrimp flare too - and I know how to "spit/throw fire" - old bar tending tricks never die:)

Anyway - good time was had - but as I used the rest room on our way out I noticed my face and neck were VERY flush. Odd - but I went home, drank lots of water, took a shower, and some Benadryil - and went to bed. No worries.

Up at dawn - head to gym - more cardio before lifting and breakfast. I notice I'm a bit "itchy" but blame it on dry skin and make a mental note to take t he time to moisturize better later. After cardio I glance in the mirror on my way out and notice I am REALLY red - hmm - must've been a better session than I thought.

More water - another shower - What the heck? I have red bumps all about - and the water feels like razor blades! Quick cool rinse - more Benadryil - more water - try not to think about it. 30 min. later - I'm calling the emergency referral line.

Long story short - I end up in urgent care. Where the random Dr. I get assigned asks me if I have any known food allergies. Not that I know how. Describe my diet - so I do. Do I use artificial sweetener? I try to avoid - but I was so run down from work this week I did have more coke zero than usual. And rather than claw myself silly I had been chewing sugar free gum since the night before - which I generally avoid. I know that since I had e-coli a couple years back artificial sweetener - even one piece of gum - will cause my to become gassy, bloated, and generally uncomfortable.

Did I know that MSG and aspartame have very similar chemical make up's? - she asks. Now that you mention it - I DO know this - I've watched documentaries and read a couple of books in fact. I immediately like this woman - we're on the same page.

She started asking patients about this when she noticed that when she consumed artificial sweetener's she would develop a burning acne on her face. Eliminate the chemicals - eliminate the acne. Her suspicion was confirmed when she started getting the acne again and couldn't figure out why - until she had a closer look at her chew able calcium tablet supplement. They had changed the formula and added - you guessed it - sucralose! Now sucralose is actually Splenda - so she didn't think this was the cause - however - eliminate the tab - acne gone. So it's all natural or nothing for her.

After watching my documentary a while back - my friend was diagnosed with "IBS". HE followed the Dr.'s advice, filled his RX and still suffered. I shared with him my story of the chewing gum and suggested that perhaps this might actually be the cause of his trouble. He rarely drinks anything but coffee, diet soda/tea or beer. He figured I was trying to get him on the "dark healthy tree hugging side" - whatever - call it what you want - what if it works? It took some convincing on my part - but I convinced him to give it up gradually - at least cut back - he noticed an improvement within days. Didn't change his lifestyle, or his coffee/beer - but no diet soda. He still enjoys wings and draft beer while watching the game.

You might remember that I have been battling skin rashes off and on all Summer. I recall the first on my finger back in April, right after my pics, while I was house sitting for XBF. I thought I had pulled the "wrong weed" and had a reaction. But then I remembered that I was drinking diet ginger ale like no tomorrow then.

Since then I certainly don't have an excessive amount of diet soda - most weeks. 1 or 2 cans a day max. But when I get run down - I use it for energy, sad but true, as I don't drink coffee and there is some caffeine in there. By the end of those "heavy" weeks I feel polluted and gross - so I get some extra water, extra Z's and go back to my limited consumption of 1 or 2 a day.

But this random Dr. got me thinking, when do I look/and feel my best? When do my digestive concerns/troubles go away? When do I have so much energy that I simply drive folks mad? When is my head/skin clear? Right around picture time - as my time with Sue seems to have me in front of a camera every 4 - 5 months. I always thought is was 2 weeks without beer - but really - do my 3 weekly beers make that much of a difference?

The other thing that is different is I don't drink diet soda, don't use protein powder, don't use salad dressing. I check the labels. Guess what is in every single one of these items - an artificial sweetener! Both "name brands" are listed in the ingredients of most of my favorites in one form or another!!!!!!!

I know not everyone will agree with this - and not everyone is effected by this. But I ALSO know that I have NOT taken RX steroids, or antibiotics or even hydro cortisone cream to treat this rash. I continued to train hard and sweat this weekend - as sweating is our bodies naturally cleansing system. I have only used medicated corn starch when the itching got bad and Benadryil the first 24 hours. As I type this 72 hours later - the rash is gone. I feel alert, energetic and BEYOND sore - LOL! My head is clear - and while we ate in last night - I did have 2 beers to test my theory - and I do NOT have the polluted sluggish feeling one might expect.

It's safe to say - in my mind - I will NOT be using anything but Stevia from here on out!

But I have one more random act to leave you with on this TERRIBLY long post - as I was leaving for the gym Monday morning I was passing under a tree and was struck square on top of the head by a falling object! The sky is falling!! The sky is falling!!!! It was a 1/2 eaten apple - dropped from a squirrel I must have startled - and it was a DIRECT hit! LOL!

What are the odd's????????:)

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Holiday weekend!

YIPPEE! This could NOT have come at a better time!

Training was GREAT! I found a new way to abuse my favorite machine - AMAZING! My new addiction! The weather has been great and my Summer winds down - I was in a really good "state".........

This past week at work has been absolutely AWFUL! The Patients were in the usual Back to School rush mode - which I am used to and have grown to expect. I could deal with them - no worries.

But - there were some OTHER folks who treated me FAR worse! By Wednesday - I felt like a dog who was being kicked around! I will NOT go into details here - but let's just say this was unexpected - and resulted in more than one sleepless night.

And for some unknown reason my Father is in a full on dark phase himself - and leaving the MOST draining voice mails. I was leaving work so drained by Friday - that when I returned home to find these waiting.......

I couldn't even call him back!

So Friday night after work instead of heading to the gym to lift I took the night off and went to bed at 8:30! I feel a bit better this morning - and knowing that I will not have to return to work until Tuesday........

I am certain that this is the beginning of a BEAUTIFUL day!

The sun is rising as I type this - I am off for my new favorite cardio session - and will be able to return in a few hours to make up that lifting sessions - PERFECT!

Not to mention that I have dinner plans with friends for tonight, a "mini" adventure for tomorrow and a BBQ on Monday.

Yes - this weekend couldn't have come at a better time:)

Monday, August 20, 2007


I wish I had me a nice "coach" to sit on - or at least snuggle up to these days:) Got a big slap of reality this week!

The weather has given me QUITE a slap - last week 90 - this morning as I sit here - it's a "balmy" 49 degrees outside!

Good Lord - what is Mother Nature doing to me?! It's supposed to warm back up to 90 this weekend - but a girl could use a little "transitional" period. Such extremes just 3 days apart makes for a very cranky Michelle:)

Not to mention work had to hand me a quick slap or two. I still have a job - but the changes that are coming make me wish I HAD moved to the $100 savings apartment a couple of weeks ago. I'll be doing without a LOT more than just me favorite tea and weekly fresh flowers flowers. In fact I had to cancel all of the classes and road trips I was just so excited about finding. I'm not taking any chances - or luxuries - just yet. I'm in full on "squirrel" mode - stashing away whatever I can in anticipation of the changes that are NOT looking good.

So - I hit the gym full force this weekend as at least that's a positive way to release some stress:) And I had a bridal shower this weekend to attend - which turned out to be a very pleasant afternoon. Who knew I could still "act like a girl" - LOL!

And now I hear my veggies calling:) Hope everyone else had a good weekend!

And Remember.....

"It's nice to be important - but more important to be nice"
- Author Unknown

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Wow - 10 days!

Thanks Steve for the "reminder" - LOL! I've been meaning to click over here - I've even read the blogs of others - but it's so very nice out and I am having such a FABULOUS summer that I don't want to waste one minute!!!

When I AM in front of my computer - it's usually Monday - when I am so GAWD AWFUL sore from such a fun weekend, that I don't have the energy to accurately describe just how GREAT things are!!!!

SO let's see - this past week I cracked 2 fillings - 'kay - that wasn't pleasant but she did get me in the next day and 2 hours later - gimme my celery:)

Training - GREAT!! Weather - AWESOME - Veggies - Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm - therefore Nutrition - perfect and DELICIOUS!!!!

I've joined a couple of "classes" - nothing "school" related - but fun stuff - jewelry making - personal finance planning, and a home brew club. I won't be making beer here in Heaven - but it's interesting - and get some around different folks - so all is good!

Dad is planning/preparing for a large fall craft show - so a LOT of time over there with him helping where I can.

Horseback riding is now scheduled for September 2 - forgive me for being cautiously excited - as they ALWAYS cancel *sigh* - I may just go without them - LOL!

Also researched/discovered some other one day adventures - indoor "race" car driving, lazer tag, mirror making, indoor rock wall - so working on seeing if anyone wants to join me:)

Oh - and did I mention it's Back to School time - so SUPER busy at the "real" job......

AND - Sue is also very busy with new clients - so lots of peeps for me:)

Oh yeah - and I still have my DVR - so when I AM sore, or when the sun is no longer shining - my butt is on the coach - like a true American - watching my shows - LOL!!

So I'm alive - and one happy girl!!!! Who now must get ready for the dreaded "real" job.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Need a laugh?.......

On my way home yesterday for lunch I am sitting at a traffic light patiently awaiting my turn.........

Windows open - enjoying yet another gorgeous day - radio on........

I hear a lot of "bass" approaching from behind.....

No biggee - not concerned.

The vecicle that is "rockin" is next to me in the right hand lane........

I glance over - and see,,,,,,,,,,

a late 80's mini van - faded blue color - rust over the wheel wells. A few minor dents and scrapes......


Now I'm curious - I look more.........trying to be subtle.......

sitting low in the driver's seat one hand draped across the steering wheel is a very "large" middle aged man........

"pitting" through his light blue button up short sleeved shirt.......

wearing lined bifocals - I can see the light reflecting off them.......

male pattern baldness - severe........

the song - being sung off key and squeaky that this man is rockin' and jammin' too.......

Let's get it started!

This is WRONG on so many levels.........who sold him this killer system for the outdated mini van?
Who sold him spinners?!
Where is his wife - and kids - seems someone would be MORTIFIED about this!!!!

But yet - I have to laugh...I say CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!! Always keep that inner teen/rebellion alive!!!!!!!!!

And for providing a good giggle for those of us caught in traffic with you:)

There is plenty of time to be a grown up:)