Thursday, November 29, 2012

Day 3 (or maybe 7) of Captivity

Three weeks ago, my gout started acting up.  I did my normal precautions of increasing the amount of cherry juice I was taking in, doubling up my meds and so on.  Last week I was looking forward to the short week because it meant I could spend time off my foot and really take care of it.  Thursday I made stuffing and helped Vicki a little in the kitchen but mostly I was a bum and sat in the recliner.  Friday and Saturday – same thing.  Recliner bound.  Saturday I actually felt like thins were improving.  Walking wasn’t so painful and I could manage more tasks on my own.  I thought GOOD – I’m finally healing and getting better. 

Sunday I wake up and my foot is hurting a lot.  I’m thinking oh I just need to take my meds and then it will be back to where it was yesterday.  Nope.  It got worse.  I got up Monday and couldn’t put any pressure on my foot.  I was still determined to go to work. I have a lot of responsibilities and no time to be off work.  I didn’t make it to work.  I called the doctor and made an appointment.

Tuesday I was going to go to work, class and then the doctor’s appointment.  That didn’t happen.  I got up and tried to go but by the time I was dressed I was in serious pain and just couldn’t see how I was going to manage with my foot down all day.   

Vicki went off to the library and to have lunch with Beth.  She came back and took me to the doctor.  The drive in was HELL on my foot.  The doctor was not happy with my foot at all.  She changed my meds and included an antibiotic.  She thought about putting me in the hospital for IV antibiotics but gave me a week off of work and strict instructions instead. 

Thursday and I’ve been confined to the recliner.  Vicki is watching over me (she is the warden) and taking excellent care of me.  The drugs seem to be working.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed that by next Tuesday when I have to go back I’ll be better.  The doctor actually found two drugs I didn’t have any allergic reaction to. 

The good news – I finished an afghan in a week.  I’ve watched a lot of DVDs and DVR programs.  I’ve also gotten a lot of homework done.  I’ve also had offers of help from a number of wonderful people who are all concerned for me.  That has been wonderful and heartwarming. 

I'm starting day 3 of the doctor's enforced captivity but I was already staying recliner bound so an argument could be made for this being the 7th day of my confinement.
 
Today will be interesting as I plan to try to shower.  I also have to pay bills and hopefully get a story submitted to a contest.  I’m thinking a nap might be useful too.  It will come as no surprise that I have a list of things I want to get done but to be honest now that I’ve written my blog, I think taking a nap may be top of my list. 
 
 

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Grant Writing

This semester I’m taking a grant writing class.  I’ve noticed a lot of similarities between grant writing and submissions for publications.  There are similar tips like:
·         Follow the directions exactly
·         Be concise and polite
·         Expect to be rejected

I’m thoroughly enjoying this class as I feel like there are a lot of practical applications I can use it for.  In class, I’m working with a client who is hoping to have a successful grant completion to bring in money for her business.  She is a small business owner in a non-traditional area for women.  The grant will be exceedingly involved and take longer to write than the course will take.  However, through the course I’m hoping to get a base of material that will give us a jumping off point writing her grant. 

There are a few websites that are particularly useful:
·         http://grants.gov/
·         http://www.sba.gov/
·         http://www.nea.gov/index.html
·         Government department that applies to your area
       o   Make sure you check out local, county, state, and federal levels
·         http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/RD_Loans.html

These are just a few of the resources you can find for grants and loans. 

First you have to do a lot of research.  Then you have to do more research.  Be aware you are going to be unsuccessful at finding grants; you will follow a lot of dead ends that initially look promising. 

Be persistent.  Grants requests are often rejected, repeatedly.  Keep trying, edit and redo your grant to fit the place you are applying to.  Keep moving forward and keep trying.  Like getting published, what appeals to the evaluators this year may not appeal next year, which would then open the door to your project (hopefully). 

Be clear on what your project is, what the goals and objectives are, and how this fits with the grantor.  Write the grant like you are the grantor – what matters to them is how it benefits them not what it does for you or your organization. 

The book I am using in class is Winning Grants Step by Step written by Mim Carlson and Tori O’Neal-McElrath and is quite good at outlining the different steps.  Even with it, though, you have to be a strong writer and be very determined. 

I’ve got my fingers crossed that the grant I’m working on will help the small business owner and give me some great experience writing. 

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Shaving Cream

Vicki has been making new goodies again.  She made two different types of face wash, a body wash, and shaving cream.  The first one I tried was the shaving cream.  I don’t shave often because I have the eczema on my leg.  Even without the eczema, I never shaved often as it bothered my legs.  I would end up with dry skin and have a lot of irritation. 

With Vicki’s lovely shaving cream, I got none of that.  My legs came out feeling soft and lovely.  Even with the eczema, I didn’t have any issues.  I almost didn’t put the lotion on this morning because my legs felt so good. 

The only bad thing was that it made the shower slippery.  For most people this probably isn’t a problem but I’m a total klutz.  The shaving cream was light and smooth, it felt like silk on my legs and when I was done, my legs felt smooth and silky.
 
Next I’m going to try her body wash.  It is made with sea salt, oil, and essential oil.  Vicki used it and had great results so I’m looking forward to trying it.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Election Day

Today everyone has the opportunity to go out and choose how our country will be run for the next four years.  I’ve already voted by absentee ballot.  I’ve made my choices.  I’ve been ready for the election nonsense to stop for a few weeks.

Now I heard the figure of $6 billion spent on the elections.  That is an incredible amount of money and my only question is – instead of annoying the hell out of all the country with annoying and false ads, how much good could have been done with that money? 

The best thing about today is that after today the ads, emails, and phone calls should stop.  Last night I got several phone calls and my email has been filled with political pitches.  I get they want to know who I’m voting for and so on but really not anyone’s business unless I choose to share. 

Hopefully after today we can put the ridiculousness of the campaign behind us and move forward into actual governing of the country.  Hopefully this doesn’t involve putting women’s rights back a hundred years or damaging any other progress we’ve made in our society.  It is a matter of holding our breath and seeing what happens.

Get out and vote!

Crafting Escape

It was a good weekend.  Friday I left work to go to the doctor with Vicki.  We were forceful about her needing a different antibiotic.  She ...