Baby It’s Cold Outside

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We have had an extended warm period until a few days ago. Enter winter. You know, that wonderful time of the year when my joints hurt, I make sounds getting up and down, wearing multiple layers to try to stay warm, debating how crucial it is if I do not get outside. THAT time of year.

I was lulled into a false sense of winter being postponed this year. I know, I know better but it was 81 just a few days ago. A girl can dream, right?

Anyway, I must confess that my new regimen of supplements and oils and eating better is showing promise, especially this time of year with the colder temperatures. I usually am so bad in pain that I barely make to out of bed into my chair. I become almost housebound, and the pain is truly horrible. That is how the past years have been for me.

Fast forward to now… I am truly amazed at how good I feel, considering I am in pain still but it is not unbearable. I actually FEEL the pain more but it is not intolerable and I am functioning pretty good. I am shocked. I mean, I knew this time of year would test all my improvements to the limit but I am pleasantly surprised at how it really IS working better than I thought.

The pain I feel is there, but not making me unable to do things. This week, for example, I canned six jars of candy apple jelly, five jars of apple butter, plus did eight jars of beef stew too. If you add in the dehydrating oranges and bananas and apples as well, then you can see I have been busy. I also had to help my mother in law by getting her groceries for her, and run getting our own things too. I moved my pantry shelves into a new room and am in the process of getting more organized. Any one of these things would not have been possible last year. Seriously.

I am amazed. I will keep on doing these changes and see how I fare as winter develops. We are having snow tomorrow and the next day. Not a lot of accumulation but snow nonetheless. Fun times. So, I will be honest about how I am feeling as this season progresses.

I hope you are all feeling well!

 

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My Choice on Vaccines

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My personal story as to why I do not vaccinate myself. I do not judge those who do, this is my choice based on my experiences and research into vaccines.

DISCLAIMER: You and your doctor can make the choice that is right for you. I am not a doctor. I am a lupus patient for over 25 years now, and what I state in this post is my opinion only. Do not do anything without discussing with your doctor.
*soapbox alert*
When my sweet baby boy got his routine dpt in 1983, he suffered a seizure afterwards. I was nursing him when he went into a seizure. Talk about scary! Funny thing is, our pediatrician, whom I frantically called, told me it was an adverse reaction known to be from the pertussis vaccine. I was told he should NEVER get another pertussis vaccine. He didn’t. However, this opened my eyes.

Add the fact that while I worked at a hospital, I was given a mandatory hepatitis B vaccine, the first of three injections, and got very, very sick. I was diagnosed with lupus. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

You know what? I had chicken pox, measles, mumps and I lived. I knew of NO ONE dying from them. In this day and society, those who are making INFORMED choices for themselves and their children, are being vilified. Pressured by doctors who want to meet their quota to get their reward money for flu shots, for example. Did you know your doctor gets rewards depending on the percentage of his patients that get the flu shot? It is true. My family doctor told me. Well meaning family and friends putting pressure on those of us who do not take vaccines. My rheumatologists, several different ones I might add, over the years encouraged me to NOT get flu shots as they are known to trigger lupus flares and can interact with the meds I used to be on.

Hmm, outbreaks of all these diseases are happening (mumps, for example) and who are the poor folks getting the diseases? The unvaccinated? Nope. It is the vaccinated. Who are spreading these diseases? You guessed it, the vaccinated. So, before you judge me for my informed choices, check out for yourselves the things in your vaccines, including mercury and aluminum and DNA and cells from aborted babies. Most folks do not know the chicken pox vaccine contains blood components even!

Open your eyes. Think. Research. It is a slippery slope when government controls your body and your children’s body. Make your choices based on the information that is easily found. Ultimately, it is YOUR choice, not the governments. Blindly trusting all will be OK because the government said it is…can lead to dire consequences. Don’t be a sheep…open your eyes, learn, and make your choice based on your research. Peace!
*stepping off my soapbox now*

 

 

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Me, Through The Years

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Throughout the years, I have changed. Physically, mentally, emotionally and in size and shape. If you look at the pictures above, can you pick out the prednisone one? I bet you can. The others are of me during happier times. Lupus changes you in ways you can see and not see.

Do you find you are focused more on the daily struggles versus the big picture? Are you sad, from losing the you that you were before you got sick? Are you happy to be alive another day? Has your weight gone up and down? These are just a few things we all feel at times. I wanted to share a few pics of me so you can see I have been up and down too. I just thought you might like to see who I am. Have a great day!

Black Friday Anyone?

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Hey everybody! I hope you all are doing fine.

Are you a black friday shopper? I confess that I have been in the past. It takes a lot to get me out there in the rush but sometimes it can be worth it. I love a great sale! I have been known to participate in a group, with each of us on the hunt for different items. Divide and conquer.

For the record, I do not celebrate Christmas. Yes, I believe in Jesus. I do not celebrate Christmas for a variety of reasons and we will leave it at that. Does that mean I do not like a fantastic bargain and enjoy the thrill of the hunt on black friday? No. I have this perverse sense of a challenge when out on black friday shopping sprees.

A few of my observations for a successful plan is to decide what is worth the trouble of crowds. In Ohio, all of my stores were side by side so I would start at one and work the rest in order. I had a list, and followed it. Planned in advance. It was fun. I have not done it in several years, mostly because I live in the sticks now, but if shopping is your thing, do it!

I do want to give you a few things I have learned over the years.

First, get plenty of rest before.

Second, eat before leaving.

Third, dress warmly.

Fourth, know your stores layout.

Fifth, BE NICE!

I also have a few recommendations if you like to help others. I have purchased coats, pajamas and the like for VERY cheap at black friday sales. Not for me, but to donate. I could buy children’s coats for $5-10 each, any size will do, and then find a local charity to give them to for those children who need coats. I do the same with pajamas. Size does not matter. It is an easy and cheap way to make someone happy for the most basic of things. Plus, it makes you feel good too. Why do this? Because it does not matter if it is a holiday or not, people need clothing all year long. Do you know how much it helps them? You? Plenty!

So, while out and about, if you indulge in the manic atmosphere of black friday shopping, take a moment and think how you can give to others as well. Trust me, you will feel blessed.

Once Again

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Ok, I know I try to keep it real on here and so you are being warned of another rant coming up.

I have a facebook page like most people these days. I post little bits on how I feel and Bible verses and such to try to be positive. Some days it is not worth trying to be positive. Let me explain.

Three days ago I woke up with blisters on my upper and lower gums, which is fairly common among lupus folks. I went to my facebook page and wrote I had a rough night and woke up with these blisters on my gums. Ok, so what is the problem then?

I had two people, close to me, who said I should not post that and they even acted like I was stupid for sharing this information. Yes, it happened again. Well, after much consideration, I have decided not to put new statuses on my facebook page anymore. I will only say cliche things like “Have a great day” from here on out.

I am sick and tired of judgmental people who live to put others down by their words and actions. I do not need it in my life. Before you say I can delete them, be aware that I cannot, because they are family. The fact they are family only makes it hurt more that they would lash out at me for something I thought nothing about posting.  I have never tried to be anything but honest when I post. Funny thing is, I had a bunch of likes on the post because I have many other folks who deal with autoimmune things as well and they understand because they live with it too.

Am I copping out by not posting any more “real” statuses? Probably. I realize these folks truly just put others down to try to lift themselves up but I am not going to play the game anymore. By not participating, it eliminates their ability to critique every word or thing I say or write.

Why cannot people just leave others alone? Ridiculing sick people must be a worldwide game to many folks. It is a shame that after all these years of advocating and sharing to help others, I feel compelled to basically shut down my page.

If I try to tell them that is hurt my feelings you know what I would get? More ridicule. Blame. Shame. It is the way they do things. They truly do not care how many people they hurt because they are perfect and so they see no wrong. Yes, I have tried frequently to work this out.Not going to happen. So, I will bow out for awhile and leave my page alone for now. I was not on there much anyway.

Thank you for listening/reading. Do you have folks who do this to you too?

Bone Broth Basics

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I got this information from Google and a series of different web pages and blogs. I will reference them below this article for you to check out yourself if you like.
What are the benefits of bone broth protein?
Bone broth is one of the beneficial foods to eat/drink to restore gut health and also support immune system function and healthy inflammation response. Collagen/gelatin and the amino acids proline, glutamine and arginine help seal these openings in the gut lining and support gut integrity. It also has glucosamine. 
What vitamins are in bone broth?
A study on the necessary nutrients for bone health found that the process of bone-formation requires “an adequate and constant supply of nutrients” as follows:calciumproteinmagnesium, phosphorusvitamin Dpotassiumzincmanganese, copper, boroniron, vitamin A, vitamin Kvitamin C, and the B vitamins.
Is bone broth a complete protein?
Broth is not a complete protein, since it only contains three amino acids. A complete protein needs to contain all B essential amino acids. Therefore it is not a meat replacement, but it can be used as a meat extender. Since glycine is used to make other amino acids, it is considered protein sparing.May 23, 2012
What nutrients are in bone broth?
Benefits of Bone Broth: Minerals. Aside from the benefits of all the proteins and sugars, and whatever nutrients might be hiding in the marrow, bone broth is extremely high in minerals. Bones from land animals are rich in calcium,magnesiumpotassium, and phosphorus, and fish bones also contain iodine.
What type of bones are used for bone broth?
There are two types of bones you can use when making homemade bone broth:jointy bones and meaty bones. And before you say anything else, YES. Those are their scientific names! Jointy bones are cartilage-rich bones and connective tissuesthat contain joints — chicken feet, wings, and neckscow knuckles and ox tails.
How do you make your own bone broth?
Instructions
  1. Place bones in your stock pot.
  2. Add onion, carrots, celery, salt and peppercorns.
  3. Pour enough water in the pot to cover everything.
  4. Add vinegar and let stand for 30-40 minutes.
  5. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a low simmer for the recommended amount of time:
  6. Chicken bones: 8-24 hours.
  7. Beef bones: 8-72 hours.
References:

Bone Broth: Nutritional Facts & Benefits

divinehealthfromtheinsideout.com/2012/05/bone-broth-nutritional-facts-benefits/

Pain in Arm Pits?

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As lupus patients, we experience swelling of our lymph nodes at times. It usually is right before a flare begins or during a flare. One of the places we have this happen is in our arm pits.

Why in the arm pits? We have lymph nodes there and when they get swollen, you can experience pain and visible swelling which can hurt as you move your arms. Which begs the question, why do the lymph nodes swell up? I looked into this and found the following information online. I will put the references below the information. I hope it helps someone out there.

From web md: What are the lymph nodes?

WebMD

Lymph Nodes

Lymph nodes are part of the lymph system, which carries lymph fluid, nutrients, and waste material between the body tissues and the bloodstream. The lymph system is also an important part of the immune system, the body’s defense system against disease.

The lymph nodes (sometimes called lymph glands) filter lymph fluid as it flows through them, trapping bacteria, viruses, and other foreign substances, which are then destroyed by special white blood cells called lymphocytes. Lymph nodes may be found singly or in groups; they may be as small as the head of a pin or as large as an olive. Groups of lymph nodes can be felt in the neck, groin, and underarms. Many lymph nodes in the body can’t be felt.

When there is a problem in the body, the nearby lymph nodes may become swollen. For example, if a person has a throat infection, the lymph nodes in the neck may swell and become tender.

Cancer can spread through the lymph system.