One specific thing that popped up while I've been home, and I'll try not to expend too many words on it, but about a month ago, I started getting sustained heart palpitations. I went to my usual urgent care facility, which is also where my regular doctor is, but when you just walk in you see whomever is available and this time it was the Physician's Assistant (how does one formally address them? they aren't Dr. So-and-So) who diagnosed them as PVC's (premature ventricular contractions) which typically are more bothersome than threatening. She referred me to a local cardiologist for a stress test but when I went, her equipment wasn't working and I just didn't have a good feeling about her office and staff in general so did not make a subsequent appointment. I found a different cardiologist; the appointment was yesterday. I really liked him, his staff and his office set up - stuff like that is really important in my book! I explained the stresses of this past year and gave my health history along with any family health issues. He fit in a stress test while I was there. During that test, my BP went up to 240/100 so they stopped the test and will do another one again in a couple months. In the meantime, they fitted me with a 24-hour monitor (the top lead is so itchy!) and have me scheduled for further tests in February. He recommended I take the usual baby aspirin dosage and take magnesium (oxide), which has a natural bp-lowering affect and wants me to continue monitoring my BP at home. He doesn't think there's any reason I should postpone my trip back up to the wet land around the 20th.
In other news, the furnace has been repaired as of yesterday. There was a part that normally opens & closes and it was sticking closed, so had to be replaced. All is good, and warm, now = happiness :)
After the cold snap of several nights with sub-freezing temperatures, I took inventory of how our outdoor plants survived. Here are some photos of their really sad condition:
|Jade plant, normally stands about three feet high, was looking very round and full and in bloom. Very sadly drooping.|
|Some areas that weren't quite so exposed, were unharmed. These plants get these clusters of star-shaped flowers (no fragrance) usually around December, but I think these plants actually were getting them in October this past year.|
|The second plant at the other end of the window is more exposed and suffered more damage. It isn't dead, but sure doesn't look very pretty.|
|The geranium plant didn't fare very well either, though the "Red Apple" plant that hasn't been tended to all year did fine. It doesn't belong IN the geranium pot, but not much has been maintained in these areas in my absences of 2014.|
|The aloe on the doorstep is fine - it's well protected, but does need to be cleaned up of the old dried 'leaves'. That's a good-sized plant in a large pot.|
|In the back yard, the Schefflera suffered significant leaf damage, already turning brown. It has long needed some maintenance and pruning, so it may finally get some...or not.|
|This 'frond' was the only one damaged on the large epiphyllum. It's also long over due for pruning care.|
|And what did I spy in my bulb pots? New growth! This is just one of them but all three or four pots had new shoots popping up.|
|Oh Flame, I know you're not squawking at me; nice yawn! Truly life in the slow lane.|
Next week starts off with Nick back to school on Monday and me taking "the girls" to visit the torture device. That'll be one more thing off my list. Nick's asking for me to arrange for music or voice lessons again. Unless he miraculously is endowed with a car, it would have to be arranged to have someone come to our home; not sure I'm comfortable with that during those times I'm gone. What to do, what to do.