Saturday, April 15, 2017


Okay--let's get the bad news over and done with.
Finally made the eye exam yesterday with Dr. Dye.  No glasses for me.  Not yet.  I do not have double vision.  My vision problem is more of a bending, wobbly, shifting thing and prism lenses won't help.  He has to talk to the surgeon.
I had to take a deep breath.
Anyways, I had wondered why they were pushing the cataract surgery so fast and maybe this has something to do with that urgency?  I had swelling in the backs of my eyes and odd readings before the cataract surgery.  They did not know how much the readings may have been off because of the cataracts, but now that my lenses are nice and clear...well, I still have swelling and fluid in the backs of my eyes.  The left one has gotten much better at being able to see a straight line since the surgery, but the right one is still really off kilter.  That is the one with the weird saran wrap like film on the back, if you recall.  So the crazy jumpy warped vision issues are because of the swelling and fluid back there.  No easy fix with glasses.  No point in getting new glasses yet until this issue is dealt with.
Deep breath.
Dr. Dye is not sure what they will want to do.  They may want to try special eye drops for a while to see if they improve.  I might have to see a retinal specialist.  They might have to go in with a needle and try to suck out the fluid...not sure what the future holds, really.  Dr. Dye doesn't know.  This is not his speciality.  (I kind of pressed him to give me an idea what I might be looking at.)  They took another scan of the back of my eyes, Dr. Dye will consult with the surgeon, Dr. Grosz, and get back to me.
There you go.
I am going to try to focus on sending healing energy to my eyes.
And wait.
Still can't see close up.  Computer is still more difficult.  I am sorry I haven't been getting back to your comments and emails.  Not sure when or even if I will, but they are greatly appreciated.  Thank you so very much!!  Like I said, I can read here and there on the computer by enlarging the print to huge, so I do read and savor them all.  And I do pop in to read blogs.  Even occasionally comment.  But things aren't right yet for me and my goofy eyes.  Looks like it may be a while.
So, in the meantime...I do want to especially thank all my snail mail friends!!!  Hand writing is easier for me to read for some reason and something I can actually do more easily in return (mostly muscle memory--but no one has complained they can't read what I am writing--over fifty years of practice--LOL!).  Since I can't really do any other kind of detail work, can't read well, or spend much time at the computer...I really, really appreciate the hand written cards and letters so very much!!  If anyone new wants to write just pop me an email and I'll give you my address.  :)
Now, on to the happy news.  
Look what I saw nibbling there on the patio!      
A regular cottontail rabbit!
These are the ones I grew up with (Mpls, Mn).  They never turn white and look at those cute tiny ears!
I had seen some when I lived in Moorhead, Mn across the river, but not since I moved to Fargo.  Was sweet to see one up close...and this is actually a pretty large one.  :)
To help the slowly failing strength in my wrists/hands I ordered an OXO jar opener (black) and Leah found me a jar seal popper (red).
The jar opener has that rubber circle piece you use to set the jar on so it doesn't move around on the counter--slides right in along the backside of it for storage.  Pretty cool!  And they both work really well!!  I am delighted! 
For two days I cleaned out fountain pens. 
You know how I usually have my trays of filled pens--LOL!  Well, I have been waiting months for them to all go empty (still had a couple that weren't but just couldn't wait any longer--too used to having a big variety of inks to use).  The plan was to fill them all with actual ink bottles I own to test them out to see if they still (or ever) worked well or not.  (I remember some drying out so quickly in fine pens that they drove me crazy--but not sure which ones.)  Some of them are 30-35 years old--a couple maybe older.  As many of you know, I have been using ink samples from Goulet Pens for years!  Time to test out my own ink bottles and any that don't behave well will go into the studio to use with art projects.  :)
I discovered that both my Mont Blanc bottles had completely evaporated and dried up.  Obviously not air tight.  Interesting.  And the only J. Herbin ink I had (about 20 years old) formed a film of some kind.  I had shaken it so I don't know if it was on the top or bottom of the bottle, but it wasn't discolored like mold would be.  No matter where I tried to fill from the bottle the film sucked stuck and plugged.  Not worth straining the bottle, in my opinion, so that got tossed out, too.  
Okay...this gives me the perfect excuse to show you my pen cabinet--for those of you who hadn't seen it years ago when this exciting purchase was made.  (It's actually some kind of a gun or hunter's cabinet, if I remember correctly--real pen cabinets were totally out of my price range and I found this on sale!)  
From left to right on the dresser: my lone serape tetra in the fish bowl (Ian comes to search for it almost every time he comes over), my printer, and the beautiful pen cabinet!
I still do have a few bottles that don't fit inside on the top there because they are too tall--my large Noodler's bottles.
On the left hand side are the Noodler's (6 years old), then two sets of six Levenger inks (20+ yrs old), three Pilot Iroshizuku inks (newest--only a few years old--already know they work beautifully), and then the odd assortment of collected bottles on the right hand side (15-35+ years old). 
  All the Levenger inks and the odds and ends bottles are now in cleaned pens!! 
I know a few of you might wonder what is inside all those drawers--LOL!  So I'll give you a quick peek...any pens in here are clean and empty.  
Left: $3.00 Preppy pens accumulated over several years because I wanted to try the Goulet ink samples but didn't want to spend money on pens.  Right: the under $5 China pens from Amazon.
Left: rag, syringes, and brushes for cleaning.  (Oh, the bulb syringe for cleaning doesn't fit in a drawer so that is what you see in the front left hand corner of the very top with the bottles.) Right: some old calligraphy pens (none of which work very well) and my two Rotring Art Pens and a Parallel Pen for drawing.  
 Left: a red Metropolitan that didn't work but I kept in case I can fix it and the supplies for writing with invisible ink.  Right: three Noodler's pens and my Waterman (none of which work well at all), another rag, and my set of Koh-I-Noor Rapidograph pens for drawing (awesome!).
 A big drawer full of odds and ends--pen cases, a smaller bulb cleaner, different type of syringes, etc.
This big drawer has dip pen/calligraphy supplies.  All that special paper in the back left corner is blotter paper I pre-cut to fit my beloved wooden blotter.
Said bloved blotter...
Lastly, the bottom big drawer is filled with ink cartridges, converters... 
...pen parts and special tools. 
If you had any doubts about me being a pen/ink/paper/writing know now for sure that you were not mistaken--LOL!  (Tip of the iceberg??)
I spent a few hours filling cleaned pens with all those bottles.
Well, not all.  I still have my Noodler's ink bottles to test after these begin to empty out.  :)  How many pens are currently inked up in the trays?  Confession...26!! 
I may have to write letters in segments, but they are a different color each time I pick up a pen.  And yes--my OCD side does keep track.  You may be able to see a highlighter in each of the three trays.  I use those as place holders to keep track of where I left off--LOL!  And I keep a record of which pen has which ink in it using a small spiral notebook...with post-it tabs to keep track of which pen to use for my daily journaling (red tab), which pen to use next for letter writing (yellow tab)...and I divide up the three trays with the blue tabs on the bottom.
I started a brand new notebook, too, as long as I was at it and starting fresh.    
No crossed out colors at the moment.  Pristine.  For now.  ;)
Let's see...I at least managed to get all the stuff off my bedroom floor and on to the bathroom shelves.  Also got a few things from the pantry up there, too.  (Have not exactly been a bundle of energy.)
I did make a trip to the garage to bring out the patio snow shovel and the bird feeder, etc.  Brought in the bird water dish...and they were so happy to see it back! 
I was admittedly bummed out last night with the bad eye news...but this morning April the giraffe finally had her baby!  So stinking cute!!  
And then--look what I saw on the patio this morning!! 
I was thrilled!!
A thirteen striped ground squirrel!! 
I was soooo excited to see one.  But also scared for it.  Just pray that nobody else around here notices it because if they complain again...the maintenance people will hunt it down and kill this little beauty.  :(
I was finally able to make it down to a library day on Tuesday (checked out an audio book) and to the Thursday "coloring" group (just visited).  Nobody has seen me around here for over a month or more--LOL!  Guess what I found out!?  We have a new part-time activity coordinator!!  Her name is Pam.  Whoohoo!!
  They are going to be trying out a bunch of new things--Meals On Wheels, a breakfast group once a week, a walking group, Cinco de Mayo taco night, Cookie Make n' Take, a community garage sale in May...goodness!  Things are looking up!  I am so excited to see this even if I can't go to most of it.  Just wonderful!!  [Only problem is I heard Nazare is trying to use Pam as his personal secretary/assistant--but that's another story.  She's new and I have faith that she will get her bearings and give him what-for.]
Made some bean soup while I was chatting with you--LOL!
Even had some leftover rice to toss into the pot this time.  Yummy!  Time to eat dinner.  I'll be back when I have something to share.  Thank you for being my friends.  :) :)
"A friend is a person with whom I may be sincere.  Before him I may think aloud."
Ralph Waldo Emerson


  1. Oh Rita - will pray for you and resolution to your eye difficulties. Hope you are seeing more clearly again very soon. Prayers from AZ.

  2. Oh, Rita, so sorry to hear about your eye problems. I'm praying there's a solution and soon. But, as always, I marvel at your positive spirit. You are a special human :) {{{HUGS}}}

  3. Sorry to hear the close up vision isn't back yet, but since I don't have your address I can't snail mail. But I do love your ink cabinet. That is way cool. Happy weekend and Easter-if you celebrate. Hugs-Erika

  4. I am so sad to hear that about your eyes, but I will be sending out my own messages to the skies above for it all to work out. I am amazed at all you have accomplished with the limitations you have, Rita. I am also glad to see your wild critters. Sending you love in pretty Easter baskets filled with everything wonderful.

  5. I'm so sorry to hear about the problems you're still having with your eyes. Let's hope that more surgery won't be necessary. My thoughts and very best wishes are with you.

    That sweet cottontail rabbit looks like the Easter bunny.
    And the bean soup looks delicious!

  6. Sounds like you may be feeling better, even if you got bad news. I'm sure someone will figure out your problem and probably soon, too.

    LOVE the squirrel. Hope he runs fast and the maintenance people can't catch him, if he becomes a target.

    Yep, you have a LOT of pens, and I like how you sorted them. Get to feeling better and have a glorious Easter!

  7. I am sorry to hear that you still have eye issues. I hope the drops help and that you get some resolution to this problem soon! Not being able to see properly really sucks. It was bad enough to have the cataract surgery and now this...hope you get to see the retinal specialist soon.
    Your ink supply is great:) And that cabinet is just perfect! :)

  8. I hope the doctors can figure out how to correct your vision problems without putting you thru a lot. I know how hard it is for you to go thru things like this. *hugs*


    I hope the squirrel stays away from the bad guys.

    And yes! April had her calf this morning, and I was able to watch a lot of it during the live stream while at work this morning. I didn't see the actual drop of the calf, but I watched as it struggled to stand. April is such a good mother. :) Terri and I might have to take a trip up to see them both this summer. The park is a little over an hour's drive from us.

    Happy Easter! Have a good week.

  9. So good to find a post from you Rita!!! I'm so sorry to hear of all your vision trouble... I hope there is something the surgeon can do.. It must be very scarey and worrisome ... I will send ALL my good thoughts your way......
    Look at that pen collection... how wonderful! I've seen a case similar to that at Harbor Freight i think ... Its a tool store i don't know if you've heard of it... I eyeball it for some of my craft supplies... like maybe jewelry making... Good to see you Rita... Psssst..... I've added the 'follow by email' to the blog. Look on the right hand side bar....... :) Hugs! deb

  10. Happy Easter!
    So sorry to hear about more sight problems.......i'll be praying for you.
    I would love to have your snail mail.

  11. Well, bummer :( I'm sorry to hear your eyes need more work, and I hope you get good news from the surgeon.

    We have cottontails here, though I haven't seen one in years. They aren't commonly seen in the city. What a treat that is!

    I have one of those red jar seal poppers. They work like magic!

    Your pen cabinet is a fine one. My husband has a small pen case, but it doesn't hold nearly as many as yours. It's important to store them safely, I know.

    That cute little ground squirrel reminds me just a bit of our chipmunks. They are fun to watch, scurrying across the patio.

    The new activities sound like nice additions to the calendar. Variety is nice :) I'll join you for some bean soup; it's one of my favorites :)

    Again, I wish you all the best with your upcoming medical appointments and evaluations.

  12. Rotten news about your eyes - hope that something can be done soon! Love seeing the wildlife around your area! We were woken up by foxes at 4am one day - there were two chasing each other and making such a din and setting off security lights! Your pen collection looks fabulous! Good news that you have some interesting social events coming up! Happy Easter, hugs, Chrisx

  13. Sending HEALING THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS YOUR WAY ♥♥♥ It's so scary when your eyes aren't working right. Love that pen cabinet and all of your pens & supplies. I used to use real ink pens a lot but got away form it and haven't gotten back into it at all. I find the pens every now and then and think I should so something with them but don't.

  14. That is terrible news about your eyes, I am praying they find the right treatment and it works. I also like your pen cabinet I have a thing for pens and stationary things

  15. You are so organized I can't believe it!!

  16. I was afraid there was something more going on with your eyes. I do hope that it is repairable. Mum is having a terrible time with her eyes/ you know. Sending you lots of healing energy for your eyes, my friend. Don't worry about visiting, commenting on blogs, or writing, if you aren't up to it. Do only what you feel comfortable with.

    Your handwriting is lovely in the letters you send me, even since your cataract surgeries.

    Awww....the cottontail rabit is adorable! While we have wild rabbits here in Queensland, they are seen as a pest and the government even erected a rabbit-proof fence to keep them out of farming communities. It is also illegal to have rabbits as pets in Queensland. :( Personally, I believe the human population is the biggest pest on the planet...the very real fact is that humans cause way more destruction and pollution to lands/air and the environment and eco-systems on this planet than any other animal species.

    Mum had the black gadget for opening jars but I've never seen the red one. No doubt they are available here though.

    Wonderful collection of fountain pens. A pity that the Mont Blanc bottles had dried out. Past their shelf life perhaps. I've heard of blotter paper but never heard of a rocker blotter before so had to google it. Cool tool! If I had that many pens, I would need to keep a written record of what inks they contain too.

    I pray there are no complaints about the thirteen striped ground squirrels.

    It's great that they are going to try out some different activities...sounds like fun. Hopefully, Pam will put her foot down if Nazare puts too much on her.

    Your soup looks SO yummy! Makes me want to make up a pot of it myself.

    I hope you are enjoying the Easter long weekend.

    Love and hugs xo

  17. So sorry to hear about your eye problems! Hope it gets sorted out soon.

  18. Sorry to hear about your eye problems Rita, though I must say you are a very well organised person and I love it!
    Stay safe... :D

  19. Rita, so sorry to hear about your eyes. My mom has been dealing with similar problems. 4 years ago she had cataract surgery and her eye hemorrhaged behind the retina. After 7 surgeries in that eye the answer has been to give up and live with wonky vision in that eye. It's a learning curve and a struggle that she learns from every day. Thank god she has the other eye and can still drive. Hope you get better results and get your good eyesight back my friend. I'll cross my fingers and toes. Hugs to you, hope Easter was great, the chocolate always helps everything!

  20. Yum! The bean soup looks delicious! What fun to see the ground squirrel so close. I'm sure it and the birds appreciate the fresh source of water. The holder for your pens is the perfect container for them.


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Have a really great day! :) :)