Saturday, July 29, 2006
the ABC's !

Grandi, over at Grandi's Grazings had a fun meme up - i wasn't tagged, but thought I'd join the fun!

Accent--i don't know, ohio? midwestern, possibly?
Bible book I like -- love love love isaiah.
Chore I don't care for -- cleaning the bathroom
Dog or cat-- i don't have either, but if i could it'd be a cat!
Essential electronics-- i've gotta say a/c, cell phone, laptop and fridge!
Favorite movie-- probably Gone with the Wind
Gold or silver-- silver and/or white gold. only.
Handbag I carry most often-- in the summer, probably my big pink one.

Insomnia-- an unfortunate side effect of migraines.
Job title-- hm. homemaker?
Kids-- none.

Living arrangements-- my husband and i live in a one bdrm apartment.
Most memorable moment/time-- probably my wedding day
Naughtiest childhood behavior-- bullying my siblings.
Overnight hospital stay-- last summer to try and 'break the migraine cycle'. obviously did not work.
Phobias-- ferris wheels. i have this recurring dream where i crash to the ground and die. unpleasant.
Quote -- by henry david Thoreau; 'i have learned this at least by my experiment: that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavours to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.'
Religion -- LDS (mormon)
Siblings -- 1 older sister, 2 younger sisters, and one younger brother.
Time I wake up -- whenever i feel like it. gosh!
Unusual talent -- sensing a storm before it arrives.
Vegetable I refuse to eat -- pickled beets. ugh.
Worst habit-- biting my nails.

Xrays-- um, yes? i've had them?
Yummy stuff I cook(or make) -- my favorite is thai mussaman curry. mmmmm...
Zoo animals I like most-- polar bears. they are so fuzzzy and cute!

Tag yourself and join in! let me know in comments that you're playing!


Friday, July 28, 2006

a sunset near tahoe; for more fun pictures from our trip, you can go to click on the picture category california trip 2006 .

sooo the dr.s appointment yesterday. if you're bored silly by this talk of dr.s and headaches, stop reading NOW. :)

this was my first appointment at the pain clinic; i saw three ppl.; a physical therapist, an anesthisiologist (wow hard to spell) and a pain dr. the 3 of them then talked about me for a while, and then came back to tell me what the 'treatment plan' is. i won't bore you with all the details; basically all of them asked lots of questions, poked me and watched me to make sure things were normal. they believe that my headaches are BOTH migraine and tension; that is, not simultaneously, but that i have both components. i have tension headaches and migraines, and they feed off each other somehow. this is the first time a dr. has said this, so it'll be interesting to see how it goes. they identified 2 trigger points in my neck, which they believe are causing the tension headaches. the plan is to do physical therapy for my neck (i don't know what that entails exactly), and then do injections of anesthesia into the trigger points, to hopefully calm down the muscles, and (again hopefully) lessen the tension headaches. after that, they think the migraines will be easier to control.

so that's the plan! i feel pretty good about it, i'm up for anything, you know. :)

Thursday, July 27, 2006
home again home again jiggity jog

whew. we're back. we arrived home at 12:30 last night. wow.

i am, in a word, exhausted. but we had a great time; on the way home we stopped by to see spencer's grandmother in souther california. i wish we could have stayed longer, but it was fabulous to see her for a few hours. (for those of you who might mention it, i realize southern california is not on the way home per se from northern california....but we made a few adjustments).

and we had so much fun seeing spencer's friend and his wife; they were amazing hosts and i loved getting to know his wife better; they got married about 6 months ago (we went to the wedding) and so this was my first chance to get to know her really. we had to go shopping, of course, and perhaps later i'll post some pictures of my finds. for now, i'll leave you with one more picture. tomorrow i'll tell you all about my visit (today) to the pain clinic. ooh, aah, i know.

Sunday, July 23, 2006
wish you were here...

i'm on vacation. at the beach today.....will be back wednesday-ish to tell you all about it!

Thursday, July 20, 2006

gah. i just made a whole thursday 13 -- and was putting the pictures in it -- when firefox decides it is time to shut down. WHAT!?!?!?!? i'm too irritated now to rewrite it. maybe later.

Monday, July 17, 2006
one unimportant thing, and another REALLY important thing

first, the unimportant thing. have you guys ever made your own salad dressing before? i did today (due to the migraine diet), and it was FABULOUS! i took some recommendations from the betty crocker cookbook, but this is what i ended up with;
oil (unfortunately vegetable b/c olive is not allowed)
black pepper

and voila! a fabulous dressing! i wish i'd have had some garlic, but alas, i couldn't find my garlic powder; it must have been hiding in the back of the shelf (i am too short to see back there).

now for something else; i rarely (that is, never) discuss anything political or of any importance on my blog; i don't want arguments or heated debates -- but on many levels this isn't political; it's about humanity. i'm talking about darfur -- the genocide that is taking place there, and the utter lack of the U.S.' aid. it tears at my heart to read about it, and to know that really, nothing is being done. if i were in those women's place, and i was fearing for my life and that of my child's, i would be hoping and praying that someone thousands of miles away would be doing something; that the rest of the world would be outraged and come to the assistance of my country. it seems to me that nothing is more important than helping to protect these people and restore order to their country. please visit and read more about this -- sign an online postcard, write to your senators and representatives about this. it reminds me of WWII and the genocide of the jews; not having been alive at that time, i can't really say it reminds me of that, but what i mean is, i think in 30 years, we'll look back (and our grandchildren will ask us) why no one did anything to prevent this tragedy? did we know what was happening? if so, how could we as a country have turned a blind eye?

this quote was shamelessly lifted from the site;

'if every member of the house and senate had received 100 letters from people back home saying we have to do something about Rwanda, when the crises was first developing, then I think the response would have been different.'
--former U.S. senator Paul Simon

Saturday, July 15, 2006
family reunion

well i've been gone all week. i forgot to tell you i was leaving! oops. spencer's family had a big family reunion; in the interest of maintaining others' privacy, i won't post their pictures on the internet. we got home yesterday afternoon, and we just knackered from a long week. it went by quickly, and we had a fabulous time. i have a much better handle on the aunts and uncles and cousins' names now, so that's a good thing. he comes from a big family. thankfully, the reunion coordinator was aware of my 'issues' (headaches) and got us a fabulous room that was both dark and quiet. a girl couldn't ask for much more.

we (the other women of the family) exchanged quilt squares, and i tell you, it was more meaningful than i thought it'd be. mostly b/c i knew that everyone's stack of 33 squares represented so much work and i was much more grateful for them than i would've been before this expedition. we also received instructions for quilting the squares all together, so that's my next (overwhelming) adventure. we shall see, friends, we shall see.

now, tonight, we're off to a friends' house for a BBQ; more later. :)

Sunday, July 09, 2006
you thought i was done talking about headaches?

yeah right. i've only just begun to talk!!! hahahaha. in any case, it was suggested in the comments that i fill you (my readers) in on what treatments/tests/other nonsense i have tried to relieve these migraines.

for those who are new; i have migraines. every day. i have it when i wake up in the morning, until i go to sleep at night. so when i say all the time, i mean all the time. anywho, this is the reason i don't have a job, and don't go to school. needless to say, it cramps my style.

i have seen 5 neurologists, in california, pennsylvania, and utah. (that's a whole other story) i also have seen a holistic chiropractor and a massage therapist (for a massage with essential oils) -- we have done tests including an MRI with and without contrast, an EKG, and EEG, hearing and balance testing, testing my sight, testing for a hole in my heart, a spinal tap to test the pressure of the fluid and to be sure there was no infection in it.

i have tried many many many meds; in the preventative category we have topamax, depakote, zonegran, propranonol, verapamil, and doxepin. all of these had no effect except the topamax made me lose weight, the depakote helped me gain it back, and the doxepin made the headaches worse. in the 'natural' arena i've tried these supplements for prevention: feverfew, butterbur, vit.B2, and magnesium.

as far as abortives go, i use toradol, and if that doesn't help, i go to zomig. i have used in the past imitrex, relpax, maxalt (didn't work), and frova.

moving on. ......

what i DO take; is prozac (supposed to help w/preventing) -- a calcium supplement, and an anti-seizure med called tegretol. tegretol helps my headaches somewhat. unfortunately, i'm still not at a functioning human being level after it, but it does help. this was actually prescribed b/c i had a few seizures, and my neuro wanted that to stop. it's a lucky side effect that it helps my headaches. seriously now. i'd rather have the seizures than the migraines. just sayin'.

so i've tried the chiropractor, a massage w/essential oils, those meds, a natural remedy that didn't work for me, staying off wheat for a couple months to test for a wheat allergy. i went in to the hospital overnight last summer for a round of IV meds; DHE being the main one to 'break the cycle' of the migraines. this worked, but a week later they started back up again. ah, and then there was the 'headache stick', changing of birth control pills, taking me off of birth control pills, and the current elimination diet.

that's about all i can think of right now. there might be more. in any case, the main problem is that every med i try has to be tried for 3 months. and that's after i've tapered up to the correct dosage. so that takes a lot of time.

:) hopefully this has sparked some idea for you; something else i should try. let me know! i'm interested in trying acupuncture, but have not gotten a recommendation for a good one in town yet.

brownish hair

so on saturday evening (like a week and a half ago), i was talking to my SIL and we were talking about hair colors past and present. long story short, i decided i was ready for something new. and when i'm ready for something new, i don't usually wait around to 'think about it'. by sunday morning i had purchased hair dye and dyed my own hair brown. ha! crazy, huh? indeed. i've been blonde for my whole life -- i once dyed it red in high school, but it faded out pretty quick. so this is a big adjustment.

be gentle:

why is it that no one takes any pictures of me when i've actually fixed my hair; it's down and lookin' good? weird how that works....


whoo hoo!!! i was tagged by Krisco, and am more than happy to join in !!

Five Things In my closet

clothes. lots.
my hanger with belts and scarves
my husband's clothes - he doesn't use very much room, luckily.
shoes - - this is something of a family joke. i have upwards of 80 pairs of shoes. go ahead, laugh.
my bathrobe -hangs in there since my hook broke off the door.

Five Things In My fridge
pudding dessert - one of my husband's favorites
jug of green smoothie; has fruit and spinach. actually tastes very good.
skim milk
yogurt, cheese, etc., other dairy products i can't eat right now
lime jello. my dessert last night. i made the jello GEL!

Five Things In My car
sun shades
small yellow pages (this is awesome)
empty water bottle
coupons for restaurants
blanket for sitting on

Five Things In My Purse
gum -- extra peppermint
medicine for any possible migraine situation
ear plugs. also important for headaches when loud noises are around.

I tag:
the Edge
the Muum
Queen Beth
the House Warden
Holy Mama!
Novelist in Training

dream big, right?

Friday, July 07, 2006
a post wherein i talk about headaches....again.

hi friends -- this could be a long one. first let me say that i WILL show you all the finished product whenever it's done. i don't know when that'll be. i get the rest of the squares next week, though, so technically i could begin working on it after that. let's get real, though, shall we? i'm gonna be needing a little quilting break. mm-kay?

soooooo you know me, always looking for ways to get rid of this everliving headache; it doesn't want to go away. a year and a half i've had this headache. last night, at dinner with the aunts and cousins, one of the aunts and i had a conversation about what i eat, what i don't eat, etc. and b/c my neurologist didn't feel it would be helpful (that is, he believed food triggers aren't the issue w/my chronic migraines), i haven't done a total elimination diet. but having thought more and more about it lately, i just feel like i need to! of course, most all my favorite foods need to be eliminated, like ice cream (how will i live without thee?), peanut butter (*gasp!), and cheese. whew. that makes me sound disgusting. i do EAT other things, those are just my favorites. in any case, the list is long. let me show you:


: Beans (lima, Italian, pole, broad, fava, string, navy, pinto, garbanzo, lentils, snow peas), pickles, chili peppers, olives.
: All other fresh, frozen, dried, and canned vegetables and vegetable juices.

Limit tomatoes to 1/2 cup per day; limit onions to 1/2 cup per day.

: Dried fruits that contain preservatives (such as raisins, dates, figs, apricots), avocados, papayas, passion fruit, red plums, banana-peel extract.
Allowed: All other fresh, frozen, and canned fruits and juices. Limit citrus fruits (oranges, grapefruits, tangerines, lemons, limes) and pineapple to 1/2 cup per day. Limit bananas to 1/2 banana per day. (Technically, a tomato is a fruit, so remember to limit tomatoes to 1/2 cup per day.) Organic dried fruits without preservatives (particularly sulfites).

Breads and Cereals
: Any fresh yeast product straight out of the oven; for example, yeast breads, crackers, pizza dough, doughnuts, soft pretzels.
: Store-bought and homemade breads (white, whole wheat, French, Italian, bagels, etc.) are fine as long as they are not straight out of the oven and have been allowed to cool (it's OK to reheat them). Just be careful that they don't contain other prohibited ingredients, such as raisins, nuts, chocolate, or cheeses. Likewise, you can eat all hot and cold cereals unless they contain specifically prohibited items, such as dried fruit or artificial sweeteners.

Dairy Products and Eggs
: Most cheeses. Sour cream, whole milk, chocolate milk, buttermilk, cream.
: Skim milk or 1% homogenized milk. Cheeses: American, ricotta, cream cheese, Velveeta, pot, farmer, cottage. Skim milkbased yogurt (limit it to 1/2 cup per day). Eggs.

: Alcoholic beverages, especially red wine; beverages containing chocolate or cocoa; diet beverages containing artificial sweeteners.
Allowed: Fruit and vegetable juices, noncaffeinated drinks (if they don't contain artificial sweeteners). Limit caffeinated drinks, such as coffee, tea, or soda, to 2 cups (approximately 16 ounces) per day. For soda, that's a little more than one can a day.

: Most canned soups and bouillon cubes (they usually contain MSG, preservatives, or other prohibited ingredients).
: Homemade soups and stocks, unless they contain other specifically prohibited foods, such as beans, cheese, or large amounts of onion or tomato.

: Chocolate, carob, and licorice; ice cream; desserts containing other prohibited foods, such as nuts or dried fruit, or those made with liqueurs; whipped cream.
: Cakes, cookies, candies, and pies, unless they contain prohibited ingredients; gelatin, sherbet, and sorbet.

: Monosodium glutamate (MSG) and tenderizers containing MSG; soy sauce; vinegar, except for white and cider vinegars; salad dressings containing wine or vinegar, unless it is white or cider vinegar; cooking sherry; olive oil; seeds, nuts, peanuts, and peanut butter; all artificial sweeteners; preservatives, such as nitrates and sulfites; coconuts; capers. Most mustards, ketchups, and mayonnaises.
Allowed: Anything else not specifically prohibited, all herbs and spices, white vinegar, cider vinegar, honey, jams, jellies, dry mustard.

Meat and Seafood
: Bacon, hot dogs, pepperoni, sausage, salami, bologna, ham; organs (liver and other organ meats) ; all aged, canned, cured, or processed meat products; caviar.
: All fresh beef, poultry, fish, or pork products, unless specifically prohibited; tuna and other canned seafood that is packed in water.


and that's the list. soooooo my plan is to follow this TO THE LETTER. for how long? i haven't decided yet. i'm going to consult at least one doctor, and see what they think. i'm guessing it'll be 2 to 3 months. so tonight for a farewell, i had a rather large bowl of ice cream (combination peanut butter and baby ruth). wow. that was fabulous. but tomorrow; it starts. i'm feeling resolute, but also nervous. i just don't know. i know i need to do it to at least rule it out; i need to know that i've tried everything within my power. and i really am willing to do whatever it takes to get rid of this, don't get me wrong. it just goes against my nature to LIMIT what i eat, to consult a list (cringe) of foods that are ALLOWED and NOT allowed. the passive aggresive in me wants to rebel!!!! lol. but tomorrow it begins! eating what is allowed on the list. not eating what is NOT allowed on the list!

hello friday!

yesterday was spent quilting; again. this time i was visiting my aunts (actually spencer's aunts, i guess they'd be my aunts-in-law?) anyways, the quilting pros. they helped me finish all my squares. whew. what a day! then, after that was all done, it was dinner time -- we all went out for mexican food, and more talking. it was a great time. i got to help others get their squares done too - at least a little.

now today, i'm knackered! i'll most likely be spending the whole day in bed, resting and recovering from the 'exertions' of yesterday. thankfully, i've got movies to keep my mind occupied. :)

we have hardly any weekend plans; tomorrow my BIL and his lovely wife are coming over for a visit.....i don't really know what we'll do, but hopefully we'll figure out something fun. i'd love to go to the zoo, or visit the garden up by the U.

**edited to add** -- i'm coming up on 10,000 visitors!?!? how crazy is that?

Wednesday, July 05, 2006
What's for Dinner Wednesday?

What IS for dinner tonight? i don't know! i'm quilting madly -- actually just cutting and sewing on lines -- nothing too major -- but i've been working hard on this all day! rather than making dinner, do you think it'd be ok if i just watched Kiss me Kate? that's what i'd RATHER do.

but i guess being a grown-up is about doing things you'd rather not do..... hmmmm.....i'd also rather make banana bread than cook dinner. what's with me? i'd ALWAYS rather bake than cook something like DINNER. lol.

any ideas??

what're you having for dinner?

Tuesday, July 04, 2006
happy 4th of july!

so fabulous. we're leaving in a bit to spend the day with my family; but of course i had to give you a blog entry before i left!

i woke up this morning to breakfast in bed! my husband is so sweet! we had an orange roll and a raspberry roll (like cinnamon rolls) -- and fresh rasperries yummmm and orange juice! so this was delicious and fabulous, but he also brought me a dozen roses! this was a great surprise. i love my husband. i think he's the best.

and, for an update on the quilting; at long last we have good news to report. spencer's aunt is a quilting genius, and she fixed my problem. i went to sew with his aunts and cousins for many hours yesterday, and they helped me finish 10 squares! they actually did most of the work, and i cut and ironed. lol. in any case, we're getting together again on thursday to sew, and hopefully we'll finish them all up then!! here's a picture of the fabulous square, in all its glory:

enjoy your fourth, and remember the sacrifices of men and women to allow us our freedom!

Sunday, July 02, 2006
what? how did i forget HER?

baffling. last week i didn't have the laptop for a few days; and my list of favorites hasn't been exported yet to our desktop computer. SO i was browsing blogs through my site's links (on the RH side there), when i realized that one of my most favoritest reads wasn't listed!! how could this be? an oversight? must be.

so without further ado, i must formally announce the addition of mary over at Owlhaven to my blogroll. i've been reading her daily for quite some time now, and love reading about her adorable kids, her garage sale finds, and her sense of humor. welcome to my blogroll; if you haven't read her before, PLEASE go check it out; you'll be missing out otherwise. :)

Saturday, July 01, 2006
hoooooray for saturday!

as i was circulating around my migraine forums today, i read an article (that orginally came from O magazine) which i found to really ring true for me. the link is

and it's written by a woman who has daily migraines (like me!), and also cluster headaches and tension -type headaches (thankfully i don't have either of those!). it's a pretty short article, but she talks briefly about what life is like when you're in pain all the time. this isn't a woe is me moment, i just thought you all might enjoy it. life changes dramatically when pain dictates what you can or cannot do.....

was mentioning in the comments that she also suffers from migraines; if i were you i'd give the pomegranate juice a try. it helped a lot more at first than it does now, but i know that for some people, it can quash a migraine attack completely. and wouldn't it be GREAT if it worked for you? i'm also going to look into the capsule forms of pomegranate juice that my sister mentioned in the comments. also, in case you didn't realize it, i will try ANYTHING i think *might* work. case in point: i read the product reviews for this thing called 'headon' -- it looks like a big chapstick that you put all over your forehead.


but for $6, worth a try, right? right. it does give an interesting cooling sensation, which i won't pretend i dislike. especially for really bad headaches, i can see it helping.
HeadOn - Apply Directly to Forehead Migraine Relief

when my sister saw it, i think she thought it was an SNL skit or something. unfortunately, no. this is my life! lol

ok, on to a less serious note. :) spencer's aunt called and is going to get together with me on monday to help me QUILT! that's right. quilting. still, i have not even gotten one square completed. and for those of you who might have forgotten, i need 33 squares completed by july 11th. that's right. less than 2 weeks away. THIRTY THREE. wow.

i'll be sure to keep you all posted on that bit of nonsense. :)

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Location: Salt Lake City, Utah, United States

I'm 25 - married, and recently graduated from Brigham Young University, studying music; I play piano. My husband is just starting his PhD program at the University of Utah in computer architecture.



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