Archive for August, 2009

On August 15th, 2009 around 3 o’clock on the afternoon, you would have found me on I-95 driving North from our vacation spot in NorthCarolina to Richmond, VA.  You would also have found me practically hyperventilating with nervous excitement.  Why such excitement over LEAVING the beach, you ask?  Because I was on my way to “meet” my best friend from 13 years ago. 

Yes, T and I were inseparable back then.  So many of my happiest childhood memories include our crazy fun times together.  In many ways, we were so very different–she was totally spontaneous, I was a planner; she was a wild child to my (perceived) sensibilities; I’d pretty much grown up in one place, while she had moved often.  Despite our differences, we went together like bees and honey.  We were both talkative, opinionated, independent tom-boys.  When we weren’t providing nanny services for our younger sibs (a task made more bare-able by each others’ company), we were usually exploring the fields, woods, and streams around our homes in our shorts and tees.  (Who needed shoes!?)  We were two free spirits learning where we wanted to make our place in the world. 

Friends are life’s finest blessings. “Friend” and “free” are from the same root word; perhaps because you are free to be yourself with a friend.”
~Author Unknown

We were both gangly–all arms and legs and left feet–but we were gangly together, so it was OK.  Together, T and I discovered boys.  It happened to be the same boy, but our friendship survived just fine.  We also discovered our mutual hatred of geese and love of 4-H.  We formed unique, mature-beyond-our-years opinions about marriage, families, babies, birth, education, and women.  Not necessarily the same opinions, but different opinions, especially compared with other girls our age.  We shared our deepest secrets, desires, and dreams.  Life was pretty awesome with T.

Then, one day, T and her mom and sister moved away.  I was heartbroken, but I made new friends.  They weren’t as uniquely awesome as T, but they were great friends in their own right.  My biggest regret was that I hadn’t been able to keep in touch when she moved away.

About 11 years came and went.  I graduated from high school and college.  I moved to a new city, and then another.  I occasionally thought of my long lost bestie, T.  I even Googled her once or twice, but came up empty handed.  Then, one day, I up and decided that I WAS going to find T.  If Google could tell me anything ELSE, then by gosh it would find her for me, too.  (A teeny bit stalkerish, I know, but this was important.)  It took some time, but I finally found her!  (Yay for Google and social networking sites!) 

Our  “reunion” was bittersweet, at least for me.  I was incredibly happy to have found her, but wanted so badly to see her in the flesh.  See, she lived in Virginia and I lived in Ohio.  Oh well, at least she isn’t in China, I thought.  It could be worse.  I promised myself that sometime, somehow, we would visit.  And so, while planning our Summer ’09 Outer Banks vacation, I convinced hubby that we should travel home via Richmond, VA.

And there I was, driving through Richmond on my way to T and her husband’s house…flipping out.  I didn’t really know what to expect–could our friendship pick up where we’d left off, or would it be awkward and weird?–thus, my heart was trying to jump out of my chest.

As soon as we walked up to the front porch and I saw T waiting with open arms (jumping up and down!), I knew it was all going to be great.  Absolutely, wonderfully great.  And it was.

A good friend is a connection to life – a tie to the past, a road to the future, the key to sanity in a totally insane world.”
~Lois Wyse

T understands parts of me that no other friend of mine can.  I can still tell her anything, absolutely anything.  I wish, fervently, that she could be a bigger part of my day-to-day life.  That we could travel the road to the future side-by-side.  Don’t get me wrong, the Internet is terrific, but it’s just not the same.  And while I have wonderful, awesome friends here in Ohio, there’s just no one else in the world quite like T.

Alverna and Terra


As I look back on all that’s happened..growing up, growing together, changing you, changing me — there were times when we dreamed together, when we laughed and cried together. As I look back on those days, I realize how much I truly miss you and how much I truly love you. The past may be gone forever..and whatever the future holds, our todays make the memories of tomorrow. So, my lifetime friend, it is with all my heart that I send you my love, hoping that you’ll always carry my smile with you, for all we have meant to each other and for whatever the future may hold.”
~Author Unknown

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I posted a couple of months ago about my search for–an appreciation of–a new doctor for my migraines.  Enter Dr. M.

To pick up where I left off in my last post on the topic, Dr. M gave me three treatment options:

1. Leave everything the way it was, including the two preventative medications I was taking daily and the migraine abortive medication I took when I did get headaches.

2. Begin searching (via trial and error) for migraine preventative mediation(s) that would be more effective at reducing the frequency of my migraines.

3. Wean off all preventive medications and begin lifestyle changes designed to minimize my migraines naturally.

I decided to give my body the opportunity to do this on its own and chose option #3.

Dr. M’s instructions were as follows:

1. Exercise (aerobic) 30 minutes daily.

2. Set a sleep routine and stick to it.  Determine the RIGHT amount of sleep for me (between 7-9 hours/night).  Keep the same bedtime every night and rise-time every morning, even on the weekends.

3. Eat small, frequent meals in order to keep my blood sugar level more constant.

4. Keep hydrated – drink plenty of water daily.

5. Learn–and practice–some form of stress management (meditation, reading before bedtime, etc.).

6. Read the book Headache 1-2-3.

To date, I have been better at keeping some of these guidelines than others.  #6 hasn’t yet happened, though I’ve read other headache/migraine prevention books.  #1 has been touch and go.  I bought an elliptical, but find it uncomfortable to use.  (There’s definitely a quality difference between the ones at the gym and the one sitting in my living room!)  I’ve been very good at #’s 3 and 4 (I eat every 3 hours and make a conscious effort to drink a set amount of water or Gatorade throughout the day).  I’m working on making a habit of #5 and have found that giving myself a nighttime routine makes my evening into a de-stressing time (as it’s designed to do). 

For me, #2 has proved to be the key to preventing migraines.  I CANNOT emphasize enough how important sleep regulation can be for migraine prevention.  If I don’t get 8 hours of sleep one night or stay up later than 11pm, I’m almost guaranteed to develop a migraine the next day. 

I’m happy to say that my migraines are managed equally well through these lifestyle modifications as they were through chemistry.  Meanwhile, I feel better, too!

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Why haven’t I posted since April 5th, you ask?  Well, besides the usual busy farm life, work, and summer doings, my garden has been keeping me more than busy.  Unfortunately, this means I haven’t been online as much. 

Unfortunately, as well, “more than busy” still leaves my garden just a notch above “slightly neglected”.  However, even in it’s “notch above slightly neglected” status, gardens tend to do their own thing.  Fortunately for me, it’s own thing still means lots of veggies.

Garden 8.24.09

Today was my first real venture back into the garden after coming home from vacation last week (more on that another time).  As you can see, she did OK while we were gone.  I picked a plastic grocery bag of sweet corn, 7 cukes, 3 yellow summer squash, too many zukes, 1 green pepper, some broccoli, some brussell sprouts, half a paper grocery bag of green beans, and a butt load of tomatoes. 

How many tomatoes equals a butt load?

Garden 8.24.09 - 2

This many.

And there’s still a lot left out there for me to do this week.  Beets, cabbage, and A TON of green beans.  Oh, and I have to figure out what to do with all these tomatoes.  (Anyone know if I can make spaghetti sauce out of table tomatoes?  They’re Brandywines.)

I promise I will be back to post more (I have SO much to talk about!) once I get all my veggies taken care of!

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