So yep. I’m IG official! Short post, because I have so much schoolwork by my deadline tonight, but I wanted to leave this fingerprint here for my WP family & peeps of years gone by- for whoever may find this floating out in [cyber] space. So here ya go:
@birgittalindsey <<< IG/Insta
Au Voir! ❤
I feel…SO pregnant. My tubes were cut, tied, and burned 20+ years ago, and while it’s rare to conceive a child after all that, it does happen. I really do believe I’ve had a number of ectopic pregnancies in the past 5 years or so, given the evidence at the time. That’s not uncommon. Most ectopic pregnancies self-abort, and although it all happens without much incident, the emotions (of being pregnant) are very real and very much the same. I’m now caught in a semi-pseudo- (or not) preggers limbo of sorts- the kind that many women dread and for good reason. Home pregnancy tests (HPT) are negative while having every symptom of pregnancy known to man. The problem with this scenario is that the body is not yet producing enough HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) to result in a positive HPT, so the woman is left feeling as if it’s all in her head and the symptoms are merely phantom. It can really mess with the head.
And so the problem with this scenario is that she can truly be very pregnant, but her hormone levels are still too low to trigger a positive, and for whatever reason (mostly, if it’s eptopic), has a miscarriage, which is then perceived as a late period- just heavier than usual. So it’s its own little hell- all of it. I’m laid up on the couch with a heating pad on my lower right kidney; I can’t tell if it’s a bum kidney or a pulled muscle. Whatever it is hurts like the dickens. Also, I skipped my period last month, altogether, which never happens, and I haven’t had one this month either- but the HPT I just took read negative (of course!).
Because of my age (48), there’s a new uninvited guest who crashes this little party I’m having here and it’s called perimenopause. Now, the hot flashes that I’m having (which are also a sign of early pregnancy) and sudden weight gain (ditto) aaaaand heart palpitations (yep, those too) can all be ticked off in either category, so that makes it super fun and mysterious!
And I swear I’ve been feeling little thuds deep within my being, very much like little kicks or movements which are not gas. Any fetus at this stage would be developing its CNS, so little shocks are flushing through its system, which accounts for the little jerks and thuds that are felt. I’ve waited 25 years to go back to school and begin my career. I put my kids first, always, and now it’s finally “my turn”.
Or is it?!
So I asked Josh to make me some mushroom rice last night. This is what he bright me:
And some pics from our mushroom hunt the other day at Henryville Forestry/Clark State Forest, after the rain. Shot in monochrome/experimental high ISO (3200) f/18 using the Super Tak SMC f/4 50 MM vintage film lens.
Until next time, WP. Back to “Behind Mansion Walls”.
And some random pics of my guy, Josh, over the years. My best friend and THE love of my life. ❤
(Cue romantic music)
Life has simply been whizzing by at the speed of sound, lately. Today, I started another semester and as much as I wanted to take it easy and take only one course, I took two (again). At the Master’s level, this is considered full-time. My undergrad. years were so much easier! I had tons to read each week, of course, and tests at the end of each week, but at least I didn’t have research to do (on this level) and the research papers never end; they really don’t.
I’ve spent the past week in bed, nursing a pulled muscle in my back. For some unknown reason I thought it’d be a good idea to touch my nose to my knees- like I did when I trained as a cross-country runner from ages 9-12. Um, not a great idea! I’m 48, not 28. 😉
Yesterday I had planned to stay in bed, healing my back, but in all honesty, I was all better. I just wanted to stay in bed- I’m not going to lie! Josh challenged me to get out and grab some fresh shots, seeing how we were hit with a freak-blizzard on the 2nd official day of spring. So, I did, and came up with these:
Cemetery- Super TAk 50 MM f/4-film. Shot in monochrome. 8th street.
Nothing new to add; just wanted to check in and leave a few words as a “time marker”. I miss my kids SO MUCH. Especially Brian. MAN I love that kid….I love them all, but he’s my only son. My kids own my heart and it hurts so much to let them go! But as a parent, life becomes a long succession of always letting them go. Again and again. You just have to work around it and make your happiness and peace with it, through it, and around it. Enjoy what love and laughter you have and appreciate the good times when they come. It’s taken me a long time to understand that pain is also a friend. Darkness and loneliness make the good times that much better.
oh. And speaking of bad times, perimenopause has me in its wretched teeth and has me sweating all throughout the day. It’s just God-awful. The hot flashes! 20 times per day. I swear, they are HORRIBLE. I just got out of the shower and I’m already drenched.
And here’s my 8 pic pano. of the cemetery that has absolutely nothing do with anything that I’m saying. Again- “time marker”. My blog is my little time capsule. I can tell where I was in my life (at whatever time) by the pics I take. I appreciate my ever-changing style too though, so this blog is a good way to track my growth and artistic evolution.
Until next time!
8 pic stitched-pano. Super-tak 50 MM f/4- film- cemetery- 8th. st.
I’m quite sure that I enjoy pulling all-nighters because it’s the closest thing to getting high that I do these days. (For the record, I stopped smoking pot/getting high a decade ago. So these days, catching a natural sleep-deprived buzz is about all the “partying” that I do any more.) I do love my sleep, I really do, but there’s just something about romancing that space at the edge of dreams…walking in that head-space…that I really love. When coming upon the 28th hour or so without sleep, things start getting a little goofy and slap-happy. It’s so much easier to smile in that place. And smile I do. 🙂
It’s only been about 23 hours without sleep so far; not so bad, really. I know that if I were to come back to this post in a few years, I’d have no recollection of writing this (right now) at all. Well, now that I’ve pointed that out and have just retrieved those encoded thoughts from my episodic memory- I sort of screwed that up, haven’t I? Too late for that thought cluster. (At this point, I’m wondering just how much of this rubbish monologue that I’ll even be able to comprehend later on down the road.) My eyelids feel like they’re made of concrete, but I’m more rebellious than sleepy, so I’ll check back in a bit and see if I’m still making sense.
Things have been going SO well lately. My semester has just ended- I’ve added two more A’s to my grades- whew! I’ll be honest; I thought getting my Master’s degree was going to be a cake walk, I really did. But DANG if I don’t have to write 15 pages of APA-stuffed papers weekly. This is so writing intensive. Two more classes and I’ll have wrapped up my first year. I can hardly believe it! Time is just flying by.
My next two classes will be Substance Abuse Prevention and Neurobiology of Addiction. I’m going to absolutely devour the latter one. I’ve waited patiently for that class and am really excited about taking that one. I love most anything to do with neurobiology, but especially addiction issues.
Josh doesn’t work for Calvin any more. He’s worked for him (off and on) for 11 years. He realized that as long as he stayed with him there, he’d never advance and grow and blossom and all of that good stuff that he’s needed to do for the longest time. So he called another flooring company and it just so happened that the owner had a position on a small crew that had an immediate opening, and in fact, they needed another man. Right on the spot, Josh was offered a position with that company at $3 per hour more than what he was making with Calvin. We couldn’t believe it! Proof that when God opens doors, He lets you know that it’s Him– without a doubt. He makes it so that all you have to do is simply walk through that open door. We complicate things, we humans- we really do. We put up fleeces and practically dare God. As if we’re challenging Him, or playing a game of some kind. But really, all we need to do is cry out to Him, seek His will in the matter, be willing to accept a “no” just as much as a “yes”, and wait patiently on Him.
God is the ultimate mathematician, and artist, and linguist, and everything else one can think of. We just need to trust Him.
So Josh and I are starting a brand, new chapter in our lives. We’re so excited! We’ll have a lot more money, and the fact that Josh is making decent money now means that I’ll be able to sock away some $$$ into my savings account without touching it. I can live with that. 😉
Well I can hear the sheep bleating over the hilltops; they’re coming for me!
I won’t fight ’em off this time…
Lensbaby Composer- Somewhere in the woods
It’s raining non-stop out there. It’s supposed to continue raining all day, all day tomorrow, and then cease on Sunday. It’s already flooding downtown. Josh and I fell asleep to the soft pitter patter of the rain- it’s so soothing at night.
Our Vegan diet/lifestyle is going well still. We’ve been getting quite creative in the kitchen! Here are a few examples of our recent culinary creations:
Beer-battered, deep-fried, “Fish” Tacos (fish = tofu) with Pickled Red Onions and Chipotle mayo w/ cilantro and lime
Homemade Veggie-sausage pizza with Parmesan and Mozzarella “cheeses”, sun-dried tomatoes, black olives, scallions, and shitake and portabella mushrooms
And last night’s amaaazing Purple Cabbage, Carrots, Scallions, Portabella mushrooms, and veggie sausage egg rolls with garlic, ginger, soy sauce, chile oil, and sesame oil. THE BOMB.
School is going well still. Much work to do over the next two weeks! Some videos I have to make as well- book reports, case studies to analyze- ugh. Work, work, work. But two weeks to go, and then I’ll be on my mid-semester break. Still deciding if I want to go full-time or part-time next semester.
I miss my kids. Terribly. I haven’t seen Brianna since Thanksgiving. She’s living somewhere in Louisville- that’s all I know. We were basically each other’s shadow when she lived here, so I respect her fierce privacy. I’m the same way. Just because my car is in the driveway doesn’t mean I’ll answer the door if you knock! I may watch you walk away while I peek out the window, wishing we could’ve chatted, but not really. We all have our little quirks- that’s mine.
I miss my Bri- Bri too. It seems like just yesterday that he and all of his friends were on the other side of the living room wall- drawing on the walls with magic markers after having a wee bit too much to drink. I’d make an extra round of supper and fill the plates with food and deliver them to him and his hungry friends. Man I miss that! It’s so quiet here now. All the kids are gone…and all the kids are grown- living their own lives and doing their own things. It’s so great, but so painful too sometimes. Ahh…but that’s part of life.
Suddenly, the house feels so much emptier…but the rain is like a cloak that covers me with a shroud of privacy. That’s probably why I love the rain the most. It slows the world down…
Pics from my walk a few days ago- before the rain. Test-driving the new Vivitar 70-210 3.5 SMC macro zoom film- KILLER LENS!
Yesterday was a very long day, academically. I had two deadlines in two separate classes: Psychology of Addiction, and Addiction Counseling Theory and Practice. Combined, I wrote a total of 17 pages. I used to get stressed out when I put things off and scrambled to meet my deadlines, but now it’s just part of the game. It’s not impractical either, though it may seem like it. We’re living in a fast-paced, skiddishly-spinning world in which dealing with high-pressured situations are all par for the course. (Unless you live in a hut somewhere in Africa, of course.) But in most peoples’ lives, rambling throughout the day and scrambling to get things done in a hurry is quite normal. I’ve just adapted to it nicely and I don’t really think that’s a bad thing.
I may be repeating myself, as I’ve pulled another all-nighter. The last thing I said to Josh (late last night) was, “Don’t worry. I’m going to sleep soon. I PROMISE.) Oopsy! I accidentally bought a new camera/Canon t3i and Vivitar Series 1 VMC 70-210mm f/3.5 MF lens to go with it instead. (And a 2x converter) I am FREAKING STOKED!!! Capturing pics of razor-sharp owls in flight is a breeze with that lens and I cannot wait to take it out for a spin with the new camera to boot. I’ll have a 2 week break in between semesters (in a few more weeks) and I’m needing to start building up my inventory of pics that I’ll want to start selling soon.
I’m not used to getting excited so much any more, and I’m really not wanting to blather on about Josh’s and my plant-based (mostly vegan) diet and lifestyle change, but really, ever since we made the switch (about a month ago), my mood has been ON POINT. 😉 I’m feeling good- chipper- light in the heels, and Josh and I do a good bit of laughing together. I guess you could say I’m happy. 🙂
Speaking of packages, I’m expecting one to be delivered any moment from Sincerely Nuts, and I have to make Josh’s protein shakes and his lunch, as he’ll be getting up soon for work.
Supper last night: Roasted beet and butternut squash salad with pan-fried tofu w/chile oil, sesame oil, and soy sauce + lemon, EVOO (extra Virgin Olive Oil), sea salt, and fresh cracked pepper a splash of “nooch” (nutritional yeast). and a nice chilled glass of Sunset Blush. It was….amazing. Until next time. x
I’m really not trying to be a lifestyle blogger. Josh and I just decided we wanted to take better care of ourselves, which meant converting to a 100% plant-based (Honey eating vegans, basically) diet. In the first month, Josh is down 25 lbs. and I’m down 8 or so. We women, I swear our battle (of the bulge) is always a little bit harder! We have the extra pounds on our love-handles. And, if you’re blessed with a whole lotta junk in your trunk (thanks to the Mama!) then it’s that much harder on top of everything else. My sister and I both inherited some serious junk in our trunks from our Mama! No complaints there. 😉
Anyway, it’s a lazy Sunday night, and I’m relaxing on the couch with my guy, our dogs and cats with the 55 inch ROKU wide screen + Netflix. I wish I could say that Josh and I love to work out, but alas- we hate to! I’d rather exercise naturally than feel like a hamster on a wheel, being reminded with every wheel-turn that you’re doing the work because you have to, not because you want to. For that reason, I’d rather get exercise from LIFE itself: walking, hiking, doing photoshoots, and being outdoors and in nature.
Josh has been off of work for the past month; thankfully we had enough in our savings account that allowed us to live comfortably without him having to rush out and find another job. He’ll be going back to work next week so our little vacation is over. But it’s been fun. I really don’t have much to write or report. I just wanted to leave a digital thumbprint for references. Even if I don’t have much to say, I like to update now and then so that I can keep a timeline of emotions, pics, thoughts/ideas, and just a general idea of how life is at that point in time. So on that note, I’ll make my exit and leave a pic of these incredibly, ridiculously, healthy and deliciously addictive oat flour pancakes that Josh and I have been making for several days in a row. Seriously, once you start, you’ll want them daily. I promise. I ripped the recipe elsewhere, but tweaked it to make it “my own”.
Banana-Nut, Oat Flour Pancakes with Cacao Nibs and (real) Maple Syrup
Super Tak 135/3.5 film lens
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon white vinegar
2 cups almond milk (we make our own)
2 cups oats- ground to powder/flour
2 teaspoons (leftover) almond pulp (optional)
2 ripe bananas
½ teaspoon cinnamon
3 teaspoons of vanilla flavoring
pinch of salt
sprinkle of cacao nibs- ground up
Several teaspoons of coconut oil (for cooking)
Real maple syrup
Mix the vinegar and almond milk together and set it aside for 5 minutes. Mix everything else up (except for the cacao nibs and 1 banana) in the blender, blend it up for a minute or so, and then add almond milk and vinegar mixture and blend again. (This is now your pancake batter.) That’s it- it’s that easy. Makes 8 mini pancakes. Top with sliced banana, real maple syrup, and crushed cacao nibs, and voila.
Daily factoid: Cacao nibs are a superfood, and they contain the highest levels of antioxidants than any other superfood, or food, for that matter.
Josh and I have created our own spirulina smoothie. We call it: Green Velvet. It’s thick, creamy, delicious and ultra-filling. We’ve recently picked up a new blender (as well as a juicer), and wanted to make our own healthy smoothies. We winged it as we went on, but it exceeded our expectations and despite it looking a bit like paint, was really quite good!
We ground our organic oats in the coffee grinder- same with the cocao nibs- and added it to the mix. It’s wholesome and nutritious with a deep, earthy flavour. In short, it’s fantastic.
1 & 1/2 cups of Coconut milk (1 cup cold- 1/2 cup frozen)
1/4 cup of fresh or frozen cherries
1/2 cup of raw/organic oats- ground to oat flour
2 Tbsps. spirulina
1/2 cup of chia seeds
1/2 cup organic cocao nibs
2 tbsps. of all-natural peanut butter
1/2 cup of raw honey
Josh and I are down a total of 27 lbs. so far (20 for him, 7 for me) without any type of exercise at all (well um, except for sex, of course), but we’re wanting to sign on with our local gym soon. We’re beefing up our smoothie station as well. I’ve just put an order in with Amazon for Ashwaghanda powder, macu macu powder, maca powder, goji berries, spirulina, protein (plant) powder and a few other super foods.
Starting the year off right.
Josh and I have been making some serious changes to our lifestyles. We watched the Netflix documentary What the Health two weeks ago, and were absolutely livid at how the animals are treated as they’re “super-raised”. Most all meat manufacturers (and “growers”) admitted that they pack their animals in so tightly that they can barely move around, and it’s not uncommon at all for many of them to be inundated in their own waste. In fact, many of them stand in several feet of their waste, and many of their neighboring animals were sick and diseased; those who weren’t sick and dying were already dead.
Watching that document opened a dialogue in which we discussed not only animal cruelty and our desire to omit all meats from our diets, but our desires to take better care of our bodies. I saw videos of people who were fighting cancer who decided to switch to a plant-based diet. After consuming a plant-based diet consistently for a year or so, one particular woman was able to eradicate cancer altogether. Today, she is healthy, happy, strong, and cancer free. Also, we learned that when a person eats meats- especially the unhealthy kinds- there are lipids and certain compounds that actually attack the arterial walls; not unlike a dart which sticks in the side of something. Over time, that dart changes the molecular structure of the artery so that it thickens up, ultimately causing it to harden.
Josh and I decided together that we would cut out all meats from our diet. Also though, we learned that milk manufacturers, and paid dairies, add hormones and other awful things to cow’s milk so that it contains puss and hormone-packed mucus that also contributes to unhealthy fats attacking our arteries. (Not to mention, milk does a number on both of our internal systems.) So, we tossed out milk as well. But then we learned that 1 egg yolk is equal to 5 cigarettes in the bad cholesterol department. So, bye bye eggs! As long as we’re cleaning house, we wanted to cover all of our bases.
That pretty much puts us level with vegans. Except, vegans don’t eat honey- seeing how honey is considered “animal-based”. But honey is where I draw the line. I consider raw honey somewhat of a super food, seeing how our it’s fantastic for boosting and protecting the immune system. Nope. Honey and I will never part. Besides, I don’t like to be labeled, and as far as I’m concerned, Josh and I are “plant-based” in our diet choices. We can eat anything we want, at any time. We just choose not to. And for me, having that allowance open at all times, but choosing not to will only continue to fortify our resolve.
We both feel so much better and far more energetic! It makes perfect sense, really. Eating meats (with all of its unhealthy fats) attack not only the arterial walls, but the brain itself. It’s not uncommon for individuals to experience a “clearing of the mind” when going Veganish, and that clearly happened to us as well. We’re alert, and focused and have even noticed that looking at lights and their auras seem so much brighter too. Everything is brighter! Josh has lost 10 lbs. in only two weeks and I’ve lost 7. We’re not even exercising yet, apart from the occasional mile walk at the park with our dogs, or the trip down to the river on the rocks. We’ve decided to join a gym, however, and are looking forward to starting that.
School is going terrific. I’m halfway through my 2nd semester. My two classes for now are: Addiction Counseling Theory and Practice, and Psychology of Addiction. Grad. studies are much different than I thought they would be! This stuff is not easy. I’m seriously giving some thought to obtaining my R.N. license in Nursing, after receiving my Master”s in Addiction Counseling, simply because I’m thinking about having a dual-license. I could work in Rehab as a nurse or an addictions counselor, but that’s so far down the road. And, as it goes with other things, that may not pan out at all. It’s all part of tossing ideas around until it gels and feels right. For now though, I’m focusing on Addiction Counseling.
I would have written here again sooner, but it was the holidays and Josh and I had to endure yet one more year of my sister inviting the entire family unit to her house for Christmas and purposely leaving us out. This has been going on every year for many years now. I’ve told her on more than one occasion that what she’s doing is extremely hurtful. It’s simply neither fair nor “right” to host the most family-focused event of the year at your house if you and another sibling are not speaking. What hurts the most, however, is that my mother knows that it cuts our hearts out, yet she continues to go over there- year after year- knowing that Josh and I are not welcome. It would have helped, tremendously, if my Mom chose to have the family gather at her house instead. That way nobody would feel left out and all would feel welcome, but that didn’t happen, so, we’ll forge ahead, Josh and I, alone.
Close the door and move on.
Meyer-Optik Görlitz Diaplan 80/2.8