Orange hat and sunglasses

George is sitting in front of lush vegetation with a waterfall. He is sidewalk in the wheelchair with the front foot on the ground. Wearing an orange hat, bright green shirt, jeans shorts, and flip flops.

It has been awhile, and I apologize. Things have not gone exactly smoothly. After reacting to a new medicine in October, one side effect led to another as I felt like I was on a downward spiral. My multiple sclerosis reared its ugly head, as well. A few weeks ago my doctor and I agreed that it was time to stop all new things and let my body clear itself. It has been slow, but I think we see progress.

I had hoped to be back in the gym and on my bike, but stretching and light exercise are as far as I’ve gotten so far. With spring suddenly here (remember I’m in Florida) I feel better, and the pool will soon be ready. Next week I’m going to get some sun, fresh air, and relaxation. I’ll have new books on my Kindle and audiobooks on my phone. I’m not going to stress over anything. This is it. Do it, George.

Sometimes things go badly. The point is to try and keep our heads clear and our spirits up. Sandy has been my guiding angel. Several of you have done much to help, too. Things are looking better, thank you.

By the way, I realize that clothing combination is not exactly “correct.” Sometimes it is good to simply have fun and disregard what someone else might think. There is a fun person inside all of us just wanting to be given the chance.

And thanks for stopping by. I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to share with you. I appreciate your comments, too.

Picture shows George in front of lush foliage with a waterfall. He is wearing an orange hat, brown sunglasses, bright green shirt, jeans shorts, and flip flops. He is sideways in his wheelchair with one foot forward and on the ground.

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Better times

It is an old photo that I’d found, taken in the 1950’s in London. This reminds me of a quieter time, people feeling safe. It also reminds me of a time in my life when I felt vulnerable, criticized. There is no utopia, neither now nor in the past. It is a reminder to accept our blessings and know that we have a future as individuals and together.

To those of you in the cold and snow, please continue to be vigilant and safe. I understand and care.

Thank you for reading as I ramble through life on wheels. As you can see, it’s not all about wheels, but more about life.

Picture is an old black and white street scene taken on a bridge in London. There are only a few people, walking on a snow packed sidewalk. There is a black car piled high with snow and a double decker bus in the background.

Captain, camera, and coloring

IMG_0826If you were to ask me my favorite villain I’d tell you it’s a toss up between Auric Goldfinger and the delightful Captain Hook. (Delightful, George? Okay, maybe not all that delightful.) I enjoy his antics and his frustrations.

I’m creative by nature, and that has been expressed with photography and writing. This summer I saw some adult coloring. “Can I do that?” I watched a 10 minute video on YouTube and was hooked, pun intended. Off to the crafts store! I started with 12 colors and soon added over 100 more.

I learned that in adult coloring there are no rules. Color what you like in any colors you like. Let your imagination guide you. With that in mind I chose my first project, a camera. But not just any camera, a Flower Power camera!fullsizeoutput_17afWith my strongest reading glasses and my pencils I enter a zone of concentration free of outside stresses. Time passes unnoticed. One day I almost forgot to eat lunch.

Since nobody’s perfect and there aren’t any rules, there is no penalty for the mistake I made in the Captain Hook picture. If you look between his legs, you’ll notice a small area of ocean I forgot to color. Oops. I noticed it after getting this ready to share. It has now been corrected, by the way.

I like to see how others share their lives and experiences. I love to read and listen to audiobooks, see your pictures on Instagram, and read your blogs. Thank you for stopping by and indulging me whilst I ramble about villains and psychedelic cameras. However you express yourself, enjoy your time and know that others enjoy your work.

Media: Both pictures feature adult coloring. The top is of Disney’s Captain Hook with a bit of liberty taken with the colors. He has flowing blond hair, a red and purple hat, a red coat with purple and green trim. He is on board a ship with sword drawn and pointing downwards. The second picture is a 35mm camera in shades of purple, blue, orange, peach, and yellow. It has lavender eyes and an inverted heart shaped nose in orange. It has flowers and fringe of orange, yellow, and teal. 

Ramblings on my paraversary

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New Converse were at the top of my Christmas wish list this year. Whilst my white ones remain pristine (remember they seldom even touch the ground), the blue ones are my absolute favorites. They are sun-faded and worn on the inside. I’ll pair the old ones with my old jeans!

Twenty-four years ago tomorrow came the dramatic words about never walking again – except they weren’t dramatic. In a room that I remember as quiet and private, the doctor simply explained. We talked of progress and wheelchairs and adapting as we go.

Change and adapt have been the bywords over the 24 years, and I see no end to that. We have moved, made new friends, helped some people, and have been helped by many we’ve met along the trail.

My world has been expanded so much after something that seemed so terrible. In the last few years there has been a tendency for people who have varying disabilities to become friends and work together for our common goals. Let’s keep that going.

Thanks to every one of you for your friendship, your support, and your kindness. Not just to me, but to each other. Another year will make a quarter century of living on wheels. I wonder what “adapt” will mean this year. I’ll let you know. Thank you again.

Picture: George’s feet in new blue and white Converse All-Star’s, loosely laced. They are on the footrest of his wheelchair. The pavement is brick.

Winter solstice and the patio

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Earlier this year I wrote about the empty pot and suggested we should view the full ones instead. The empty pots By the end of summer and damage to the plants in Hurricane Irma there was almost nothing left. All the pots were empty. The winter solstice here in Florida means a time of cooler weather and a break from the seemingly endless summer. We used this time to plant anew. Even added a fresh coat of paint to the old lawn furniture.

fullsizeoutput_173bAs the days get longer I’m hoping to make more progress in working through my arm and shoulder woes, get through the reaction to a prescription med, and begin to feel almost human again. Like the new plantings in the old pots, this is the time to grow again.

The flowers were available when we first planted, but they were not a really good idea. They were delicate in the heat and attracted bees to which I am highly allergic. Now we have colorful perennials that should  take the heat and the cold and be okay if (when) I miss a day of watering.

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We still have the aloe, rosemary, and oregano, as those perennials literally weathered the storm. And in the front of the house the small rose is blooming.

As I was watering this morning, a songbird landed in the top of the elm and began singing. (Does anyone know what this bird is? White tip tail; I think it might be a mockingbird, as is sounds very much like a sparrow.) In Florida the beginning of winter was a new beginning on the patio and I hope in my life. fullsizeoutput_173a

My family will be arriving from Taiwan just before Christmas. Sandy and I are excited beyond words and feeling truly blessed. We wish all of you the joy of Christmas. Thank you so very much for stopping by and for your support. You are awesome!

Media: The top photo shows 3 small and 1 large planter with a red, ornamental grass, colorful crotons, and a tall tai plant; green bushes a behind. Below on the right is the edge of the brick patio with planters of grasses and crotons leading to the statue (her name is Gina) that has graced our patio for years. Then below on the left is the truck planter now planted with succulents. Center are the herbs, aloe plant, and the rose that is beside the front walkway. The final picture is a songbird in the top of a drake (Chinese) elm that has mostly lost its leaves for the winter. The bird is gray with white on the breast and has white on the tips of the tail that can be seen in flight.

 

 

Coats in the closet

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I love winter clothes. I’m in heaven when the Bean winter catalog arrives. The problem is  that I intensely dislike winter. That little incident with the ice and the spinal cord notwithstanding, winter is not my thing.

When we get an occasional cold spell (near Orlando, Florida) I head to the coat closet. Now comes the problem. Which coat? We have about 10 cold days a year, so I have to be prepared. So here I am this morning, sitting in front of an array of choices. The ancient teal one with the purple collar? No, it’s too warm for today. The blue and white striped hoodie? No, it’s better for wind and rain. The blue Mickey Mouse hoodie? Maybe. The polar fleece pullover? Another possibility. Denim jacket? Why do men’s denim jackets have to be made from such heavy material? London Fog? Another one best suited for rain. Canvas pullover?

Ah ha! The plaid pullover! My favorite. The choice is made! Off I go outside. Wait a minute. It’s cold out here. Back inside, coat hung up, I think I’ll slip on a sweater. Now, which sweater????

Thank you for stopping by. I love your comments. It’s been awhile between posts because  it appears I reacted to a new med, and things went downhill for a few weeks. I hope y’all are having a wonderful holiday season.

Picture: George is outside in the sun in front of a background of green trees. From the top down, blonde hair, sunglasses, and the plaid coat. Multicolored, predominately blue and red with a bit of yellow layered over a red tee shirt. 

 

Beautiful Pandora

Portrait of a beautiful young lady with blue skin and long, dark hair.

Pandora at Disney’s Animal Kingdom has been on our radar for months. Summer in Florida is not the time for someone living with MS to be out, so we waited. The weather finally cooled. It was worth the wait!

It was a cool day, so my available energy was good. There is a long hill just after the park entrance. “Let’s see if I can push this.” Indeed, I did. I kept up with young families pushing strollers, so that was encouraging. (I’ve been rehabbing my shoulder and arm all summer.)

It’s the South, y’all, and for lunch we had a Southern favorite, pulled pork on mac and cheese with a side of cole slaw. And a big ol’ Diet Coke. We ate in a shelter house by the lake at the Flame Tree Barbecue.

Then on to Pandora. One of the most popular features is meeting the beautiful, blue skinned warrior Neytiri. The vegetation is awesome.

It’s afternoon and time for a break. Sandy went to get something to drink. “If you see something really neat, get that if you’d like.” She did! Behold! Chocolate mousse plus blueberry and lemon. If you are going to indulge, this is the way.

We explored a bit more and wisely decided to call it a day whilst my limited energy was still holding out. Next time we are going to do the ride and see the River of Lights.

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Thank you for stopping by. As always, I love your comments. I’d also be delighted if you subscribe. Coming soon, Epcot Food and Wine.

Pictures: Top photo is a close up of Neytire. She has clear, blue skin and beautiful, long hair. First composite photo has vegetation. A red plant resembling a croton only with fan leaves and a large yellow plant in the shape of a pineapple set amidst luscious ferns. Second composite are a chocolate mousse, a blue and yellow mousse, and then Sandy siting back and enjoying her soda. Final picture is George in my wheelchair, left leg on the footrest, right leg forward and on the ground, wearing an orange hat, bright green shirt, jeans shorts, and blue flip flops. (Yes, it’s a tad bit colorful!)