30 Things to Do While I’m 30

Some people do a “30 things to do before I turn 30” list, well, I’m a little late for that since I’ll be 30 in a month.  When I was 15, I did make a goal to visit all of the continents before I was 30.  I made it to 5 out of the 7 before my chronic illnesses prevented me from international travel.  While I still dream of visiting the final two (Antartica and Africa), it won’t be anytime soon.  Instead, I decided to make a list of 30 things to do while I’m 30.

1. Make a website about cavy genetics. ✓
2. Hang portraits of my pets (past and present) in my hallway.
3. Read the rest of the Harry Potter series.
4. Learn basic conversational French. ✓
5. Bake an apple pie and crust from scratch.
6. Take a picture every week and crop/edit it to learn new skills. ✓
7. “Pay it forward” to someone else. ✓
8. Earn a title on one of my dogs. ✓
9. Crochet a dinosaur.
10. Blow bubbles when it is below freezing outside.
11. Make a planner/organizer. ✓
12. Visit a museum I’ve never been to before. ✓
13. Find 30 geocaches.
14. Release a new travel bug for my birthday. ✓
15. Finish a jigsaw puzzle (500+ pieces) by myself.
16. Become a volunteer at the Humane Society. ✓
17. Make paw print art with my pets. ✓
18. Rewatch all of the House episodes. ✓
19. Wear pajamas for a whole day. ✓
20. Try a new food each week. ✓
21. Put my books on shelves in Dewey Decimal order.  ✓
22. Visit an Antartica exhibit at the zoo.
23. Visit an Africa exhibit at the zoo.
24. Fly a kite.
25. Blog once a month. ✓
26. Try to grow Brussel sprouts. ✓
27. Plant a tree. ✓
28. Grow a vegetable that is a “funny color” (purple broccoli, white carrots, etc.). ✓
29. Write a letter to my 40-year-old self.
30. Make a list of Things to do Before I Turn 40 (and do them before I turn 40, not after).

Photos of Enjoyment – April 6-9

April 6: After my mom bought a pie crust, disappointing my newly found skills at pie crust making, I decided to make a crust and turn it into ickles.  Ickles are a pie crust rolled into a rectangle, covered with a layer of brown sugar and cinnamon, rolled up, and baked.
April 7: After experiencing digestive issues over the past few months, my GI decided to schedule me for a EGD (upper GI scope).  I asked for a copy of my images to share, the results showed that I have a hiatal hernia which is causing the reflux.  This is actually good news because it means that I don’t have an ulcer!


April 8: I was getting potatoes ready for mashed potatoes for Easter, and I came across this “guy.”  I decided “he” looked like a little guy with a bad hair day!


April 9: While taking pictures of Maigee wearing her new bandanna from Custom Canines and she gave me this silly shot by yawning during the picture.  I can’t decide if she looks ferocious or like she is laughing.


Days of Enjoyment – April 1-4

I’m going to start photo-journaling as a challenge from How to Cope with Pain to do something enjoyable every day, but also as a way to share some of the everyday life with chronic pain.  The times when life is normal instead of just the times when it isn’t.
Pictures from the past few days…
April 1: Maigee wearing the “cone of shame” after I gave her monthly heartworm and flea/tick preventative.  She is known to lick the flea/tick treatment, so has to wear a cone while it dries.
 April 2: Found some fresh onions in the garden today while weeding and decided to make a childhood favorite side dish, “hobo packs.”  Chop potatoes and carrot, mince onion and garlic, put everything in a foil pack with some oil and seasonings/herbs.  Grill and eat!
April 3: My peas and onions are the first thing to be planted in the garden, and they are both up already.  It is ironic that I grow peas, since neither I, nor my family will eat peas, but I love how the plants look, so I always plant a few!
April 4: While at the feed store, Maigee met the chicks, actually the chicks met Maigee.  She sniffed them a bit, but wasn’t super interested.  The chicks on the other hand were quite curious about her – see the one sticking it’s head out of the wires to see her?

Edit:  If you’d like to see more pictures I’ve taken that didn’t make it to the blog, you can see my album.

I Wanna Be a Jalapeno!

For some bizarre reason, I planted twenty pepper plants – twenty! Last week, I decided to pickle some of my pepper crop. While happily attempting to say that silly tongue twister about Peter Piper’s pickled peppers, I carefully began to de-stem, de-seed, and slice my pretty crop of purple, white, and green peppers. Finally I was down to one last pepper – the jalapeno. I’d worked with jalapenos before, and they hadn’t burned my hands, so I was quite confident that I’d be fine.

I sliced the stem off the top of Mr. Jalapeno and the burning oils instantly burned my nostrils. Now, you’d think that would be enough to deter me and make me retrieve gloves, but I’m not that smart. I continue to slice and deseed the Jalapeno, only to feel the burn starting slowly on my hands. It didn’t take long for me to regret my decision to brave it out. My lungs were burning with each breath and my hands weren’t much better. To make things worse, at some point in time, I must have pushed the hair out of my face because my forehead and cheek were burning as well – OUCH!

No matter what I tried – water, soap, hand cleaner, nothing could help the burn that was stuck on my hands. I continued my pickling and canning in spite of the burn, which was getting worse by the minute, I couldn’t shake it! As I was trying to find something that would offer relief, I was thinking and decided that Christians should be a bit more like Jalapenos.

When we meet someone, especially non-Christians, we should leave a lasting impression on them. An impression that persistently continues to tug at their hearts, like Jalapeno oil on the skin. We have the Spirit living in us, and we shouldn’t hold Him in, but let His love shine through us in everything we do, and on to each person we come into contact with.

I pray I will be a little more like a Jalapeno each day. By the way, a product called Technu works to remove Jalapeno oils from your skin. It is marketed for poisen ivy/oak/sumac. Water just makes it worse. Just in case you decide to pick a peck of pickled peppers without gloves (I don’t recommend it).