Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Living or NOT living with a Cat - Parasite!!! Gods Great Moments

The last few days have been SO hard! The medication is so hard to get. They can't seem to get enough in so I get a prescription filled that isn't "Full" and then getting the rest is like another prescription. They take days to get it in and I miss days. I can only get 4 prescription a month on my insurance. Even taking it daily, I am still fighting horrible lung burning, heart pain, still have sores in the throat and soaking my hands every few days kills some but I noticed, they have migrated into my head more.

Reading about it online and from the experiences I have had the past few weeks, these things are so smart at survival. They send out some signal or something as they die warning the others as they leave the gut and head for other parts. I explained how when I would apply Rosemary oil, they would move down my body and eventually were in my hip and knee for about an hour until the oils wore off and then the migrated back to the gut, heart and lung area. 

Now that I have been taking the medication regularly, and as the lungs still burn, I put rosemary on the throat and lungs, they quickly have started in the eyes, sinus and brain. 

The weather here has been about 100 degrees for a week. With the hot weather, things have gotten really hard. They like the heat. I can't be in it for more than a minute before feeling faint, nausea, weak, dizzy and yesterday, they started hard in the eyes and the right eye hadn't had much but they were freaking out in both eyes last night. I mentioned it to Princess Two who is home for a few days and after going to sleep last night, I was awakened in the night with a bright light flashing in my (yes IN) my right eye. I thought to myself, the only thing I know is when your retina detaches, there can be flashes of light. In my sleep state, I thought, "the parasites are making me blind." I forgot about it as I went back to sleep but during the day, I was talking to Princess Two who was sitting in front of the window, and as I looked past her, I noticed I had a "Dark or blind" spot in my right eye which brought the event back into my mind. 
Yesterday, I woke with a very RED left eye. This had been going on and off for a few months now but I hadn't put it together that it was when I had been using oils, hydrogen peroxide or other anti parasite drugs. Now, I am sure it is that I am putting stuff on my lungs, thyroid daily and taking oils by mouth and taking the prescribed medication and they are headed to the hills. I don't have any "goo" in my eye like you get with pink eye so I am sure it is the parasites.  

I have been having heart pain for days again and I can feel them in several parts of the body and I figured out that they are in the tunneling stages when I feel that as it feels like they are tunneling through my diaphragm on both sides most times but I feel it often around the heart as well.

I tried to soak my head with hydrogen peroxide today using a paper towel and clips but I only had one show up as it is difficult to keep it wet and not get it into the eyes. When I took it off however, I could feel them in my sinus. I sprayed a bit of peroxide up the nose as well and it burned something fierce for a few seconds. 

I am praying I can get into a specialist and see if they can get me IV meds as the pills are just working too slowly and obviously these little guys are into surviving!

Now for the blessings of the week. I have been talking to a wonderful woman who is trying to get me into see a specialist for low or no cost. I had to be referred by my primary care physician and as soon as she returned my call, I felt like we were friends. She has been so great to inform me of things and share options. She was out of town and the specialist was out of the office the other days so hopefully, I will hear soon about being seen. Perhaps he could even just consult as to the best way to deal with this. 

First thing this morning, Princess Two runs in and shows me her "account balance" all excited. The number I see when God is telling me things will be "OK" is 111. She sees 444 when she feels God is telling her "things will be OK!" Her account $11,114,44. Yes, he does love us both and is telling us BOTH to trust Him. I told her to send me a screen shot. I will probably share the car situation with you tomorrow as that was part of the rough week I've had. She has joined me on that journey and GOD is in charge. 

I found a penny today as I was frustrated about things and I KNOW God is watching over me with everything that is going on.  

I sat to write this post and flipped to the facebook page and there was this washer and dryer at the top for sale. Not sure why the person put that amount on it but perhaps it was to get peoples attention. Well, it got mine! Top of the page, front and center! 

I don't think any of the 111 sightings are coincidence. Princess Two sent the second photo to me this week as she walked past it for work. I have looked at the clock, stores, etc that all had 111 on them. Even at the mechanics with all the stuff, there was a 111 on something he had taped to his desk and a $4,444 check that someone made and it was just what Princess Two needed at that point. 

No matter how hard our lives get, HE continues to let me know that He is there and I WILL make it through this. God is great and I am grateful that I recognize and know Him! I pray that I can learn what I need to learn to get through this and be done with it. I do know it is to help others figure it out as well but I just hope I can figure it out well enough that others don't have to progress to this point to figure it out!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Live Life Anchored - Part 2 Personalized Keychains

I made some beach bags for our girls camp and since they look all the same, we were looking for a way to make a name tag for each bag and we were trying to make it look like a travel tag. 
I spent some time sewing some ribbons and attaching them to a plastic holder to look like an actual travel tag. After sewing a few, I thought they looked cute but I realized that a teenager wouldn't probably walk around with a cute bag with an big luggage tag. 

I decided to look for a different option. I was thrilled to find a fun item at a second hand store. 
They had a bin full of new key chains. It took me a minute to realize that you could put whatever you want on the inside and the one side lights up. I got them for 25 cents each and got enough to have one for each bag. 

We have been looking for a cute "theme" to put on the sweat pants I bought and altered. Click here for that post.

We searched online for a cute theme and came up with "Live Life Anchored" for the them. 

We found a cute pattern for this and actually contacted the company that printed the pattern and they said we could use the pattern for our sweat pants. 

I wanted to make the same pattern on the key chain / name tags for the bags. 
They were great to allow me to print it up by sending me some little versions in blue and black and I was able to manipulate them to fit the size I needed to go into the key chain.
I used the "image here" sign to measure the anchor sign and name tag sides of the chain. 

I printed them up and cut them down using a fiskars cutter. When I got down to cutting them into individual tags, I found it easier to use the scissors. 

It was easy to remove the inserted tag by pulling the little bottom edge open and tapping the key chain on something and the insert falls out. 

To put the design we wanted in, all we had to do was slide it in and close the bottom edge.

It was such a blessing to find them and make them cute for the girls. It was easy and I think it is something that they will use and also remind them of a fun week at camp and hopefully help remind them of the theme and the lessons learned there.          

Friday, June 26, 2015

Lemonade Rice Crispy Treats and a BIG Thank You

Princess Five and I were sitting down to dinner the other night when I saw a car passing our front windows and someone was pointing at our house.

I didn't recognize the car or the person driving as it was a fast drive by and her hand was in front of her face as she was pointing. I mentioned it to Princess Five thinking it was someone for her. She went and looked out the window. She said someone was headed to the door. 

I then saw a young boy about nine running toward the door. I didn't want to scare him so I didn't go right to the door and open it before he knocked. 
The bell rang and Princess said he was running off up the street. I opened the door and he was gone but I found an envelope on the door step with two flowers taped to the front. 
I thought it was interesting that it was written to Mrs. and my name on the front. Most people who know me well wouldn't probably write that on the front since my divorce. 

The note inside was sweet saying I had been noticed doing good in the community and thanked me for my service. I had to think for a minute about what I have done in the community recently as I feel like I hardly do any service anymore as I have been feeling so tired. 
I then remembered last week when I helped a neighbor who was moving. I also help at the food bank, volunteer at the schools and have recently been doing some community health things and also help in church often so I haven't been able to figure out what the note was referring to but it is still sweet. 
There was a little paper in the card that said to "pay it forward" once I have gotten noticed. 

I had Princess Five whip up some lemonade rice crispy treats and we gave some to the neighbor who gave us some sweet peas recently and then we wrote a little "thank you" note to a woman who does a bunch of service in our community. 
Princess Five needs to get some drive time in as she will be driving on her own soon so I told her we could deliver it at night and she could get some night driving in as the woman lives in a different town. 

She was so funny trying to "sneak up" on the house. The entire family was unpacking the car for about 20 minutes. 
We visited in the car until the house went dark. Just as Princess Five was approaching the house, someone came out and got into a car, she had to hide behind another car and other stuff in the yard as they pulled out. She was so nervous that she threw the card and treat into the dark garage and ran back to the car. 
It was so funny but I worry that they drove over the items when they returned as she didn't put them at a door. 

She meant well and didn't want to take a chance on going back to put it in the right spot so hopefully they got the note and treat eventually. 

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Cleaning for Parasites - Thread Worm - Stongyloides

I recently got diagnosed with "thread worm" parasites. It is a CAT parasite that can infect humans (actually it is in cows, sheep, horses, birds, cats etc) but it is very hard to kill and since most people don't "worm" their cats it is becoming a huge problem. I have found so many of my neighbors and family members have all the symptoms and will be getting tested soon. It is hard to diagnose but I have been able to help with that. Check out these links to see about symptoms, treatments (so far) diagnosis etc.

Part 1
Part 1 re-write
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4 
Part 5

Each of those posts has different information and you will see we have been learning more as we go. So far, I have been on medication for a few weeks and am still suffering with lung burning, "creepy" things crawling on me, seeing things in my eye, heart pain and stomach cramping and gas.

YES, this is very personal and embarrassing to share but because of my diagnosis and God letting me figure out how to "see" the parasites under the skin in their second phase of life, I have been able to help many friends, neighbors and family members figure out why they are having lung damage, rashes, throat bumps, stomach aches, gas, and itching. I think it a years time, this will be on all the Dr.'s watch list as the new "go to" diagnosis for lung / heart / stomach issues.

Anyway, I have been wiping down my home with hydrogen peroxide as I know the parasites DON'T like it. I dust with it regularly and I also share in the video how I am using diatomaceous earth as a drink three times a day in water (1 TBS) per Dr. order and I also sprinkle it on my sheets and bedding in case any come out at night.

For a year or more, I put it on my rashes to keep them calmed down. The best results I had with it is when I mixed it with an anti-fungal, anti-yeast cream on my rashes. The cream held the powder on the skin and due to the massive washing of the hands all the time due to this, and also over using the hydrogen peroxide at first, I got a yeast rash on the skin. Now, I just soak my hands and feet in the hydrogen peroxide every three nights or so for about 1/2 hour. It seems to keep the parasites down.

This can cause edema but any treatment you choose to use to kill this parasite, even the prescription drugs cause edema (swelling) so be aware not to treat a massive infection hard with all the meds on the same day. I started with one med for a few days, soaking only every third or fourth day and then add the second medication after I had killed some of them off. If you choose to do this, you most likely WILL get headaches as you kill off the parasites as this is called a "die off" headache and you feel somewhat sluggish and toxic for a few days.

Of course, this is only my opinion and how we have handled it. You HAVE to get a diagnosis from a Dr. to get the prescription medication but know that ALL farm animals get this and can be treated with several types of medication so make sure you treat all your pets INCLUDING sheep and horses along with cats and dogs as you don't want to get it back once you treat yourself!

Keep your bathrooms clean. Wash with soap in hot water. I actually wash once in the bathroom and then again in the kitchen just to be safe each time I use the bathroom. I have had that practice for years being in the medical field but it didn't seem to do me any good as this comes from the soil. Garden plants, walking barefoot, petting cats, cat scratches etc. I am sure cleaning litter boxes probably also causes a hazard.

We don't own cats but neighbors and family members do. We could have gotten this anywhere!

Anyway, WIPE everything down with peroxide. Vacuum often. Wash bedding in HOT water adding oxy clean type products. Dry on HIGH HOT in the dryer if the items can take it. I just stripped the bed of any non-essential bedding, washed it once, bagged it and won't put it back until I get it under control. This will cut down on the washing and drying process.

Oh the joys of pets!!! Even when the pets aren't yours!!!! 

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Live Life Anchored - 1 (DIY) Beach Bag Backpack or Knapsack

I have taken photos a few times of this project as I have been working on it for about a month but taking the time to do a video and upload it with my slow internet has made it difficult. 
Watch the video and hopefully you can understand my instructions as I made up the pattern for this. 

We made 25 of these bags for about $5. I tell in the video how we stripped "pillow edging" for the cotton handles and we just braided three of them together for the draw string. 
I had pictures of this at one point but because I am uploading a video, I can't check all the cards to find them but it is in the video so check that out. The fabric was donated but you could use donated or clearance fabric that matches your theme.

Basically, you start with a rectangle. Decide how large you want the main bag to be and use double that size on the fabric to cover the front and back. 
Cut 1 piece of the main fabric and 1 piece of an alternating fabric or liner fabric. You could use a sheet for the liner as the flat sheet is usually less than buying that same amount of fabric by the yard. I would check out the clearance fabric isle as well. I found a bolt of liner for $1.50 at a second hand store so the inside was VERY cheap as I was able to do 25 bags with one bolt of fabric. 
Once you have the rectangle cut. Sew the two sides and the long bottom of the fabric with RIGHT or PRINTED sides together. Once you have sewn the sides and bottom together, turn the rectangle inside out so that the printed side is showing. 
Now, fold the rectangle in half so you have a smaller rectangle making it look like a back pack at this point but make sure you fold it RIGHT OR PRINTED side together! 
BEFORE you sew it, make sure you put your handle inside the folded section and only leave the tail ends out and pin it securly as you need to sew that area with a zig-zag to secure the bottoms of the handles at the BASE of the longer seam! 
If you braided your handles as we did, make sure you take out the knots at the end before or after you sew it so that there aren't bumps at the base of the bag. 
Sew the bottom of the bag and up the longer side but leave about a two inch section unsewn at the top of the longer edge so you can make a casing for the draw string! Stitch over the base of the long side several times to catch the handles and give it strength so it won't rip with use. 
Last step is to make a casing for the top draw string. Fold the ragged edge down about 1/4 inch and then over again so that the ragged edge is not seen. Pin the string inside the casing as you make it so it becomes the "draw-string" for your bag.

Zig-zag the casing seam but make sure you don't catch the draw string in the stitching or you won't be able to draw it closed. It should look like the picture when finished. 

I have a lovely stack of 25 bags. I am happy to be done with that project and have many more I need to get done. I want to add that you can add an extra pocked on the outside or inside after you have it put together. I didn't want to make that effort as we are using them for a specific project but it would be easy to do with contrasting fabric. 

If you have any questions, feel free to ask. It is a "Do it Yourself" project but that doesn't mean you can't ask for some help. 

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Sprinkler Valve Box Solenoid Replacement and Repair

You probably won't believe me if I tell you that I hadn't turned on my front sprinklers until last week. We have had rain almost daily for a month and a half. I think there were maybe four or five days in all that we didn't have some rain. 
I made a video for this that will hopefully answer any questions that you may have but I will try to write it down for those that can't watch videos. 

Because of all the rain, I didn't know that the sprinklers weren't working. When I did turn them on last week, we had a few days of rain so once again I didn't recognize that they were not all working. 
I would see some going off or could hear the valve opening or shutting after a cycle so I couldn't figure out why my front lawn was so dead.

After a few days of high heat, the grass was crunching under my feet. It was so dry that I figured something was wrong. You can clearly see in the pictures how green the back grass is vs the front grass.

The first thing I did to diagnose the problem was to check the timer. Since some of the sprinklers were working, I didn't think it was the timer. Because three weren't working, I thought perhaps something got into the line and clogged the valves. 

To do any work on the sprinkler valve boxes or solenoids, you have to turn off the water. The way to do that is to find the "water turn off" valve which is usually near the valve box. Once you locate the turn off, use a tool to turn the water off usually a quarter turn in either direction. 

You will hear it turn off. Next, you need to slowly turn the solenoid until you feel water spurting out. Hold it there, don't take it off or you could lose parts. Just unwind it to where water spurts out as this sometimes will clear the line. Re-tighten it before turning the water back on and testing to see if this worked. 

Do this with each solenoid that isn't turning on when you run the sprinklers. This fixed one of the three in my box that wasn't working. 

Sometimes, solenoids get old and start splitting as you can see in one picture. Other times, it will short out as a power surge can cause that. 

Once you have tried cleaning out the valves, you can test the solenoids by turning on each section individually. 

To do that, push the "manual" button, then push the arrow button to select with section you want to test. 

You can see this by what color wire your solenoid is hooked to in the box and then see what number that color wire is attached to in the timer box.  Then push the "plus" button to add a minute or two and push the "enter" button and this should turn on the sprinkler testing it to see if the solenoid is working.

If you need to change out the solenoids, disconnect each from the wires that run into the house. Make sure the water is turned off. 

Then, turn the broken solenoid and only remove it once there is no water spilling out. You will need to put your finger under it as you pull it out as there is a pin in the center that will drop if you turn it.  

After that, put the new solenoid in and hand tighten it. Once it is in, attach one wire to the colored timer wire and cap. Then attach the other wire to the "power" wires and cap. turn on the water and re-test the sections with the timer. This should fix any problems you have. If it doesn't work, you may need to strip the wire and try to reconnect them again. 

Hope your sprinklers work without incident! :-)