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So Cute it Hurts

Sammy...sitting

I came home from the holiday sick with a cold, thanks to my nephew. Lacking the energy needed to take my suitcase downstairs to put it away, it became a cat bed. Nice! Now I have to clean it AND put it away!

I hope you all have a wonderful 2013 ahead! I am not making resolutions, but, like always, I continue to try to get better. Each and every day.

It’s All About the Hair

I completely changed my diet last January. I ditched grains, vegetable oils, sugar, legumes, low fat anything and most processed foods in favor of animal fats, full fat dairy (yogurt and cheese), meats and non-starchy veggies. In the past year: I’ve lost 40 pounds. A small ganglion cyst that I’ve had on my wrist for at least 15 years just disappeared. My almost daily panic attacks (irregular heartbeats) are gone. I haven’t been sick. I have started to feel a little ill on two occasions, but it never settled in. This is huge!! I used to, I swear, you can ask Mayan, be almost constantly sick. I would go from illness to illness without having a well period in between.

One not so great thing that happened started about four months after changing my diet. My hair started falling out. By the handful! Now, I’ve always had a lot of hair, and long hair, when you lose it, you see it and you are losing it constantly, but this freaked me out! In fact, I was in a full on panic. It had to be my diet, but why?? Was I doing something wrong? How could eating real food be wrong? It only took a few minutes of Googling to find comfort in a blog post by Dr. Michael Eades. I have clipped the relevant bits, emphasis is mine:

Let me tell you what has happened.

You are experiencing a common problem called telogen effluvium, which is the medical term for acute hair loss due to a metabolic, hormonal or drug stress.

So you can better understand what has happened, let’s take a look at the normal hair growth cycle. Hair has a growth phase call anagen and a resting or dormant phase called telogen. Typically for hair on the head, anagen lasts around three years followed by telogen that lasts about three months.

During anagen, the growth phase, the hair follicle is active and the hair grows; during telogen the hair follicle becomes dormant and the hair quits growing. But the hair stays in the hair follicle, and since you can’t really measure the growth of a single hair, you don’t know that the hair is actually dead and the follicle dormant. When the follicle reactivates during anagen, the new hair growing in pushes the old, dead hair out, and the hair falls from the scalp. That’s why we all find hairs on our pillows, in the shower, and other places it’s noticeable. Those old are hairs pushed out by the new hair growing in.

This waxing and waning of anagen and telogen is why we continuously lose hair and yet our head of hair doesn’t continuously thin. And, I suppose, it goes without saying that not all of our hair is in lock step in this cycle otherwise we would have hair for 2-3 years, then it would all fall out at once. The estimate is that about 10% of hair on the head is in telogen at any given time, which means that the other 90% is growing normally. And even the 10% in telogen appears normal if you looked at an individual hair. It’s just not growing and will ultimately be pushed out when the follicle converts to anagen.

But sometimes this cycle can be disrupted.

A number of stresses can send hairs from anagen to telogen before their time. Pregnancy, a major illness, a high fever, an injury, surgery (usually from the anesthesia), some medications and a major change in diet, especially going on a starvation diet.

Whew! I had turned my diet upside down, that is a major change! After a few days, the dramatic losses stopped and I tried to believe that the new growth would come in soon. It wasn’t long before I forgot about it, thankfully the hair loss wasn’t very noticeable in the mirror. Finally, a month or so ago, I was getting frustrated with my hair, it wasn’t cooperating, I couldn’t figure it out. I made an appointment with my stylist for a trim and after a few minutes she said, “oh my gosh, you have a TON of new growth!” Once she said it I could see it and realized why my hair was bothering me. This new growth is lifting my hair around the roots and some of it is poking out, standing on end. The little new hairs are hard to catch when blowing out my hair, so they stay wavy when the longer hairs around them are playing nice.

I’m not complaining, the new growth is great. I am relieved to see it (I’m not going bald! *Does a happy dance*), and it will stop being uncooperative soon enough.

I am reminded of when I was a toddler, I had “baby” hair for a long time and then when my hair actually started growing, this is what happened:

Fancy!

Favorite Mp3s 2011

A few of my favorite posted (at my other blog) songs this year. : ) They are not necessarily songs that were released in 2011, just that I POSTED them last year! When I go back and listen to all of the songs that I DID post, I am finding it really difficult to pick just a few. I liked them all! At any rate, here is a sampling (click the previously posted links below the songs to be directed to posts that include the purchasing information and website/social media links):

“Blackbird” – Ben Ottewell
Ben Ottewell – Previously Posted

“Breadcrumb Trail” – Buried Beds
Buried Beds – Previously Posted

“100 Other Lovers” – DeVotchKa
DeVotchKa – Previously Posted

“Trust” – Generationals
Generationals – Previously Posted

“Poison & Wine” – The Civil Wars
The Civil Wars – Previously Posted

“Greenleaf” – Generationals
Generationals – Previously Posted

“Please Let Go” – Jonah
Jonah – Previously Posted

“Lost in My Mind” – The Head and The Heart
The Head and The Heart – Previously Posted

“Gypsy Faded” – Joseph Arthur
Joseph Arthur – Previously Posted

“Essex” – Ariel Abshire
Ariel Abshire – Previously Posted

“A Little Lost” – Nat Baldwin
Nat Baldwin – Previously Posted

“Shadow” – Gringo Star
Gringo Star – Previously Posted

“Settling It Off” – Peter Wolf Crier
Peter Wolf Crier – Previously Posted

“My Body” – Young the Giant
Young the Giant – Previously Posted

“Colours” – Grouplove
Grouplove – Previously Posted

Mayan reminded me of another song today that probably deserves to be on the list, so here is an extra treat:

“East Harlem” – Beirut
Beirut – Previously Posted

Slide Project: Finished Scanning

I have a lot of sorting and editing to do, but it is a relief to be done with the scanning part of the project.

This is my mom, 1981. Gosh, she would have been 41 years old. That’s six years younger than I am now.*

My parents used to ride bikes across the country with their friends, storing the bikes here and there in mini-storage until they could continue the journey. They had a lot of fun. I wish that I had something like that going on in my life right now. I won’t tell the skinny dipping with real bikers story! There are things that I hear about my mom that surprise me! She seems so conservative. These things just make me admire her more!

Love her!

*Damn. It was worse a few weeks ago when I found pictures of my grandmothers at my age and younger…darn, they LOOKED like grandmothers. Mayan laughed at me, but I seriously felt the need to curl up in a ball and weep. Time is slipping away. Quickly! I need to start LIVING while I have the chance!!

Inappropriate

Mayan and I did a little, very little, holiday shopping yesterday. Target and Barnes and Noble. I wasn’t shopping, I was company for Mayan. We shared some laughs and bought nothing.

As we entered Barnes and Noble a choir of carolers started singing. They were gathered in the middle of the store, dressed in traditional costumes such as this:

It was pretty. I should have stopped to take a picture, but Mayan was trying to be focused on the task at hand, so I just listened as we shopped. We were both startled by a woman in the next aisle complaining loudly that the caroling was inappropriate “it wasn’t even December yet!” and more. Seriously?? How Scrooge-y! Who cares? It was pleasant. How exactly does having an attitude help you? Does it make you happy?

I doubt it.

Maybe she wasn’t Christian? I don’t know. For Pete’s sake, I’m not Christian, but I wasn’t offended…I was happy to hear and see them. They made me smile. It seemed to us that this woman was the type of person that looks for things to be angry about. I just want to shake her and ask “why??” I didn’t say anything, I didn’t even see who was complaining, but her negative attitude bothered me for the rest of the day.

I’m feeling grumpy just thinking about her. Which leaves me in the position of complaining about the complainer. *sigh* A reminder, I guess, that negativity sticks. Even to those who encounter it in passing. So, can I end this mini-rant on a positive note?? I can’t really turn than moment into a positive, but:

Oh my! Thanksgiving!!

Mayan and I invited her (ex) step-mom to join us. The other kids (Rocket and Sissy) were spending the day with their dad’s family and M (step-mom) was going to spend the day alone. I’ve been there, it isn’t fun. The three of us ate our traditional (which isn’t so traditional, but it is delicious!) Thanksgiving dinner, shared some wine and had a few laughs. It was awesome. We had a great time! We feel blessed that M decided to join us. I feel blessed by the close relationship that Mayan and M have. It makes me happy. I would love it if the three of them (the kids and step-mom) could join us next year. I love to see all three kids together!

Those Smiles, Gotta Love Them

Mayan and her brother at his Super Bowl game last Sunday. His team won, they were undefeated for the season. I just love it when they get to see each other. It doesn’t happen often enough!

Beautiful

I just might have posted a starling video in the past, because I think that they are pretty darn amazing to watch. The fluidity. The connection. This one is probably one of the best videos that I’ve seen. It’s worth the watch!!

 

It’s Déjà Vu All Over Again

Last Wednesday morning I took this picture out the back door:

We ended up getting about 10 inches of snow, measured on my deck.

Today, Wednesday morning, I took THIS picture (all of last weeks snow had melted, this is all fresh!):

I measured 9 inches this time.

: /

I Am Not Ready For This!

We have had our first snow of the season…and what a snow it was!

What I woke up to:

 

No. I am not ready for this, but I knew it was coming! Ugh.

What a Cutie!

I had a little visitor the other day. He was just taking it easy in my yard. I took a couple of pictures through my very dirty kitchen window, but when I tried to open it a bit, he startled and ran away.

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