A week on the ranch (September 1 - September 6, 2009) - Blogs - Frugal Village Forums
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A week on the ranch (September 1 - September 6, 2009)

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by , 09-07-2009 at 11:20 AM (1747 Views)
The beginning of September marked the beginning of autumn on the ranch. Leaves are starting to turn and fall; the oak trees are dropping acorns down to hungry goats below; the evenings are becoming cool, and I awake in the morning looking forward to a hot cup of coffee.

A trip to the doctor at the beginning of the week disclosed that I have two herniated disks, as well as degenerative OA in three more of my lumbar disks. I was prescribed a TENS machine, and after some experimentation, I think I've found a good placement for it, so I'm hobbling around again. I've also started seriously instituting a routine of supplements and exercise. I mentioned in a thread sometime this week that knowledge is power, and I feel at my most powerful when I am fighting back.

This week was a banner self-sufficiency week. I made soup, dehydrated veggies, and started a fall garden. I thought about stockpiling my winter wood- and yarn-pile. Although I know that I'll be tired of winter long before it ends, for the time being, the idea of chilly nights, listening to the rain sheet off the windows, while curled near my woodstove, sounds like a country dream of heaven.

Work has been challenging. My best friend, who is also my work partner, has been out due to a family illness, so I've been trying to keep the case afloat, despite problems that we have been having with both outside and inside factors. Sometimes, it feels like I'm trying to run a preschool.

I've been listening to a CD on keeping your brain alert and healthy, and it has me thinking of what to do to keep my mind as active as I'm trying to keep my body. I sometimes forget that it takes a healthy brain AND a healthy body to live a good life. Some of the tasks the CD recommends are things I do already: play Sudoku (yes, I'm addicted), read the newspaper, do crosswords. I thought it was interesting that the recommendation to really challenge your brain, and keep it sharp, was to try to learn a new language - not to actually LEARN one, but to just try. It made me want to pick up my German texts again. I took three years of it in high school, but that was a long time back. So I may be trying to re-learn German, or Japanese (studied it only one year), or maybe I'll teach myself something else. I haven't decided yet, and the possibilities, like the possibilities in life, are many and varied.

Well, as promised and hoped for, this week was miles better than last week, and I can only hope that it is the start of a new direction after last month's miseries. I will certainly do everything *I* can to ensure my life keeps moving in a positive direction.

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Ranch Diary


  1. Debbie-cat's Avatar
    I too am looking forward to chilly nights, curled up with a good book. Funny how we tire so quickly of the seasons and wait in anticipation for the next.

    I am glad the TENS machine is helping. A bad back is one of the worst pains.

    I hope your partner's Mother is managing. The pain and fear of the unknown are the most difficult and it is painful to watch not only the afflicted person but their family members go through so much.

    While you are learning your next language ..maybe you should recite to the parrots. This way they could talk back and you will be able to have a conversation and practice!

    Glad this was a better week and I hope that September brings everything you wish for.
  2. fixer's Avatar
    I am glad you had a much better week. In anticipation of Fall and Winter, my wife spent today making a list of all of the embroidery floss she will need until Spring. I will gladly see she gets it. My biggest fear is that we will be snowed in and she runs short. I see her as Jack Nicholsons character in The Shinning.
  3. madhen's Avatar
    All work and no play, fixer....
  4. Judi Dial's Avatar
    I guess I'm too much of an L.A. kid. I HATE winter although we've lived in NH for 15 years now. I think the idea of enjoying being curled up to the woodstove is a great one, if you can get there, I've never really managed it!

    The keep your brain alert stuff is interesting. What's the name of the book?

    Are you ok re your back? Is this new? Back things are no joke.

    Truly impressed, as always!

  5. madhen's Avatar
    Thanks, Judi Dial. I use the woodstove for heat in the winter, because I'm too cheap to run the electric baseboards, so the woodstove is a reality for me, like it or not.

    The back problem started in July, when I was tossed about like an empty sack of flour by a goat. Thought it was a sprained muscle, but apparently, it was a little more than that. No joke is right. I have a whole new respect for my back!!

    The CD is part of a package called "The Healthy Brain Kit" by Drs. Andrew Weil and Gary Small. ISBN 978-1-59179-530-8. It consists of two CD's, a workbook, and a bunch of "brain-training" flash cards. After reading How We Die, and the description in there about how your brain starts to shrink and lose its capabilities as you age, I figured I'd start before things got too late (if not too late already) and try to keep my brain as active as possible. I've already been accused of "living in my head," so I thought I may as well tidy up a bit in there!