December 27, 2018

Rain Rain And More Rain

Evidently Stella knew something that I didn't at 5:03am. Her loud whine woke me up. I tapped my Garmin face to see the time with a bright white background. It was way too early to get up but I had a hard time convincing Stella of that. All three of us were up and starting our day 24 minutes later. I heard rain in the darkness as I opened the door to let the hounds out. It has not stopped five hours later ... Consequently it's a day of "rambling" and some long lost photos.
These first three photos show just how dark it was at 8am. Normally Stella and I would be heading out to the field for our morning walk. It looked like the middle of the night because it was so dark. The only way I could get a decent photo was to use the flash. Usually Stella doesn't like getting out in the rain but when you have to go, you have to go.
While I stood under the shelter of the roof overhang, I kept saying 'come on' but she had other ideas. She had to check out the scent the field cat left last night. 8am and darker than dark outside
I had to go through my photo archives to pull some out for this post. Back in October 2014 I wrote about this covered bridge near my house. During the winter months with all the leaves off the trees I can see a light that is near or maybe on the covered bridge, as I stand on my driveway, or while sitting near the large kitchen window.
I cannot remember the year but I think this photo was taken in 2016. I had glanced out the window of my computer room to see this deer by the property pole. That's where Stella walks by to end most of her morning walks. I didn't want to startle it, so I took what photos I could from inside that room, shooting a zoom lens through a screen window. Then I decided to sneak outside, quietly as possible. While I stood not far from the house, she stood staring at me, neither of us moving. She eventually turned and started bouncing/running back to the woods.

At that time Stella was still running as fast as she could after any deer she saw, along with Sadie .... so they were both left in the house, sleeping, while I took this photo.
While looking at different folders in my Photos program I saw one labeled 3200. I wasn't sure what that was nor could I remember the last time I looked in that folder. What I found were 3,200 photos with some of them going back 16 years. Possibly they were involved in transferring from Apple's iPhoto to Photos a few years ago. I also found a lot of photos I forgot about and had not been moved to each current folder that each hound has.

This is Arthur around 2003. What I found interesting was how his black hair on his back was turning dark brown to match his shoulders, head and ears. He and Winston had the same mother but Winston was born in the next litter or two litters after Arthur was.
When you see current pictures this past July, the field and yard will not look much different than it did 14 years ago in 2004. The few differences are, me using a different camera, the previous farmer use to store rolls of hay along the edge of the woods and coming in to pick up rolls of hay as he needed them during the winter. The current farmer that bales the field will take all the rolls of hay away to his farm about 15 miles away.

That is Bertha running in from the field. She might look like a heavier Sadie but no relation in any way. She grew to the age of 8 and never could get rid of her weight problem with different foods, different portion sizes and a lot of walks in the field. She was the bloodhound before I bought Sadie in August 2008.
From the time that Sadie arrived in August 2008, she always needed something to do. I can imagine the amount of time I spent away from the house in a normal work day just drove her insane. About the only thing I could find that occupied her, and satisfied that urge to be doing something all the time 24/7 were these kind of bones. She would eventually get each of them down to a size that was unsafe for her to chew on, so I'd throw them away and buy two more "monster bones". None of the basset hounds were interested in a bone that size.
I am glad I saw this picture in the folder rarely looked at. This is a rare photo in my collection which is now over 55,000 photos in my computer photo file. I think this was the spring 2017 with Heidi actually going on a walk with Sadie and Stella. No, that had to be in June or July 2017 because the field is cut and baled. As you know, Heidi doesn't take that many walks in the field, no matter how high or short the grass is. You can barely see the winding path we still take today.
Winston was a puppy in this photo. The photo information did not have the actual date that I took the photo so I am guessing around 2006, when he was only two years old. He loved the camera from his first day he arrived at the age of eight weeks. I have no idea what the look on his face means.  LOL

It was good to turn on the hot water lever on the bathroom sink last night and have hot water. Like anything else, you don't know how nice something is until you don't have it. It was strange though as I was finalizing the steps before turning the power back on for the water heater. I had a scare wondering if it was really a bad thermostat along with the bad heating elements that needed repaired. A bad thermostat would prevent my repair job from working.

Before I started, I never did the electronic checks that would have told me if I had a good or bad thermostat because in the past when I had no hot water, replacing the heating elements were always the solution. So it was a nice surprise to feel hot water not long after I turned on the power.

I had a friend that read the post about the water heater story last night, send me an email afterward, asking a question that would have made draining the tank much much easier. He asked why I didn't shut off the water source for the whole house, which is in the middle of my front yard, plus it's easy to shut off the water.

THEN ... I could have turned on the kitchen and bathroom cold water faucets, draining the water much faster and much better than the time it took with the hose. You know what is laughable about this idea and how stupid I was?

I did a similar act to get the last of the hot water out of the pipes ... I shut off the water source to the water heater with the shutoff valve on top of the water heater. THEN ... I turned on all three hot water faucets in the house to flush what was left of the hot water in the pipes from the hot water tank to the faucets.

I will remember that idea from my friend next December when I empty my water heater again.

I found out this morning how bad of shape I am in by the way some small muscles felt just from the little bending, and squatting I did while working on the water heater. Of course it depends on the way I look at it. Compared to others my age, I am in great shape. Compared to when I was riding a bicycle outside 5-7 days per week in my 40's, I am in terrible shape.

Which brings me to my thoughts and confusion on ways of eating and/or choosing how I am going to eat. It's hard to choose. Every doctor, dietitian, diet fad, medical research, journals, articles, etc .... have different ideas on the most healthiest way to eat. My friend and I are helping each other to stay with the eating limits we started a few weeks ago.

He started after talking to his cardiologist, I started AGAIN just because I was not feeling as energetic as I remember a year or two ago. Since I track everything on a spreadsheet it seems, I know exactly what eating plan I was trying to follow and when. Not really dieting but changes in the way I ate after reading about different foods.

You would think a panel of medical doctors, evaluating the top diets in US News & World Report magazine would be the people to follow. I spent many years eating the Mediterranean Diet, way before it ever had a name. As you know, as you get older your body changes thus what you eat has to change.

In my case some foods, and fruit that are considered healthy give me heartburn. So I quit buying them. If you were to read the most recent reviews in that magazine by those doctors, it would be considered unhealthy to omit those foods and fruit IF I were following the Paleo or Keto Diets.  Since I am making that decision on my own and find the heartburn goes away IF I do not eat those foods and fruit ... how can that be unhealthy? Would those same doctors consider that I am eating unhealthy?

Since May 2015 my best results after changing my eating habits occur when I decrease carbohydrates, increase fat and protein. That weird book from 23 years ago, telling me how to eat based on my blood type, gave me similar if not better results. Is that unhealthy?

In all cases I choose the "middle of the road." Some call it moderation but moderation throws me off the wagon of good eating onto the side of the road where ALL foods of any kind are now my diet. I cannot do that nor can I afford that as I move closer to 70 years old. I can't believe that is just three years and five months away. Damn, life moves fast. LOL

What is confusing to me personally is finding facts from medical doctors or videos showing that fat and protein are now the healthier way to eat. Where's the confusion in that? I have a family history of heart problems. Only on my dad's side of the family. His father, and my two uncles died at a very young age of heart attacks. My dad had triple by-pass at the age of 60. I've passed that age with no health issues of any kind.

I also know the his life and mine were two different things, health wise. He, his two brothers grew up where every day my grandmother cooked meals like it was a holiday. A lot of farm raised fat, protein and added homemade pastries, pies, sugar etc. That is just the way she cooked, even when I was growing up.

So high fat, high protein equals heart attacks ... or it use to.

Now in the past few years medical doctors are saying their new research in the years 2015 and on, show all of that is good for you. All that healthy food they told us to eat in the 1970s and 80's has proven to be the bad choice. Which to believe?

So as I eat my NY strip and use real Kerrygold butter on my baked potato that also includes real fat sour cream ... I wonder at times if I am just building my system up for my first heart attack? Or do I go with the current medical finding and keep eating like that? Who's to say that ten years from now they will say again, that is a terrible way to eat.

The only thing I can do, is research and know how I feel.

If I keep getting heartburn after a 1/4 c of oatmeal, guess what? I'm not buying it even if is known to be 'heart healthy'. If I feel full for the rest of the morning after eating bacon and eggs, with no heartburn and no urges to take a nap (like carbs make me feel), guess what? I'm going to keep eating that way.

I will do what I have done in the past and found positive results.

Read all I can about food, eating habits and consequences. Compare that research to my personal results, then add or subtract the food I am eating. Combine things from each source, sorting out the good and bad with the same goal of not only feeling better but also permanently stop eating processed food in any form (except bagged coffee). I'll cut back on grains (heartburn) and increase fruits (healthy carbs). Should I choose to eat fish over beef, chicken before beef?? I will still enjoy that occasional NY Strip and/or a 5Guy's burger and a Nick's Strom.

A few years ago when I merged my two spreadsheets that listed all the foods I could eat from the book "Eat Right 4 Your Type" by Dr Peter J.D'Adamo w/Catherine Whitney with the spreadsheet from the Paleo Diet .... many of those foods matched as duplicates. It was the list of foods I had color coded that caused me heartburn or made me feel lathargic, that stood out by themselves. Many of them were listed by doctors and dietitians as being very healthy and a requirement.

To me, if it was causing me heartburn it couldn't be healthy for me. Finding out my heartburn stopped once I eliminated those foods, told me I did not have a medical condition that cause it, it was different foods that caused it.

So what do we do when it comes to choosing a way to eat?

The other night when I was looking for a movie to watch that didn't deal with Christmas. It is not because I don't like Christmas movies, but that was all the tv channels were showing ... I pulled a movie from my shelf I had not seen in a while. "Steve Jobs"

I know many don't like Apple and especially Steve Jobs. I can understand those reasons just like I don't like everything I read about others in the tech industry. That led me to pulling a book off my self that I started reading years ago but never finished the 571 pages. After reading a long introduction and the first six pages of the book, it is already a book that I find hard to put down. It will be what I do the rest of the afternoon today right after I publish this post.

With it raining lightly non-stop, what better way to spend the day than with a book.

It's Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson. Mr. Isaacson has written books about Albert Einstein, Henry Kissinger, and Benjamin Franklin.

He pointed out he was not writing about Steve Jobs because he felt Steve Jobs was a Franklin, an Einstein or a Kissinger but he did find Steve Jobs an extremely interesting person. He was a little surprised after he was told that he had free reign to interview everyone good or bad and to write about all sides of Steve Jobs, good or bad. Jobs, requested Walter to be his author and he assured him that in no way would he edit the book or dictate what the book was about. It was to be open and truthful as possible.

I am at a point where I feel there was some other things I wanted to talk about but don't really remember. Since I was too busy yesterday with the water heater project and documenting as much as I could, I failed to log any ideas I may have had into the "Notes" program I told you about.

One thing before I go .... EDITING my blog !!!!

You would never know it after reading a new blog post, but I really do spend time proofreading what I have written. I even use the spell/grammar check that WordPress provides. Not only that, after reading my draft copy 5-6 times, I will look at the post in the 'preview' mode, just like it will look on the website ... I continue to make corrections there.

Then it shocks me, AFTER I publish the post for all to read ... I FIND MORE MISTAKES !!!!

I correct them although it might be the next morning before I catch the mistakes.

I apologize for a blog post(s) that look totally unprofessional with stupid basic spelling and grammar errors .... especially after the number of times I proofread what I have written. I'll try to improve editing my blog posts.

It's dark, gloomy and a very wet day here in 'the tropics' of Southern Indiana.

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