Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Family Resemblances

Family resemblance is an interesting thing. In some families all of the children closely resemble each other and you can tell that they are siblings. In other families the children really don't look like each other at all, although they may have certain facial features and other characteristics that they get from their parents. I have four biological sisters, and I don't think we resemble each other very much at all, but maybe that's because I've grown up with my sisters and I know their faces so well that it's hard to see the similarities instead of the differences. I wish we resembled each other more because I like looking like my family. It just says "we belong together." The person people say I look like the most is my mom. I don't see this, but again, it's probably because I know my mom's face so well that I only see the differences instead of the similarities.

What's really interesting is when people say that my sister Laura and I look like since she's adopted and we aren't biologically related. Even more strange is when people say that my youngest sister Chandra resembles resembles my mom or me. People have said this several times over the years, and it's very ironic and interesting since we are different races! I guess it must have something to do with mannerisms that you pick up from being around someone for so many years.
My dad's brother Paul visited last week and although I don't think they look alike at all, it was interesting to look at Paul's face while we talked because every so often I would catch a glimpse of my dad. I saw Paul's feet (he was wearing sandals) and they looked like my dad's feet. Kind of crazy!
Some of my sisters have children that really resemble them. My sister Kristin has four boys, and I think each of her boys have really looked like her, but all in different ways. I don't think her boys really look all that much like each other, but they all look like their mom. I wish I had kids (especially some girls) that looked like me. That's one of the many, many reasons why I wish I had my own children.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

R.I.P. R.E.M.

A few days ago on the news I heard that the band R.E.M. is splitting up after 30 years. That's fine with me; I'm not too broken up over the news, but I did want to give R.E.M. a shout out on my blog. They've had lots of hits over the years, and these are my five faves. These songs definitely take me back to junior high and high school. I love when a song makes you feel nostalgic for whatever reason and takes you back to a different place and time. Take a listen and see if these songs make you feel nostalgic, too! (They probably will if you're anywhere close to my age, or a music fan in general.)

#1) Losing My Religion
#2) Everybody Hurts
#3) Stand
#4) It's the End of the World
#5) Man on the Moon

Friday, September 23, 2011

Myers-Briggs Personality Inventory

Thursday I wrote about my Uncle Paul's visit and some of the fun things we did while he was here. As I said yesterday, Paul is a qualified consultant for the Myers-Briggs type indicator, so a few months ago my mom and I filled out the Myers-Briggs written instrument since we knew Paul would be coming for a visit. Paul analyzed them and came bearing results and a detailed explanation.

In the Myers-Briggs assessment there are four pairs of preferences (Extrovert/Introvert, Sensing/iNtuition, Thinking/Feeling, Judging/Perceiving) and there are 16 different types. Your type is a combination of your preferences on the above four scales. "The Indicator was designed to point in the direction of your preference and nothing more. Preference scores come from comparing the votes you cast for each preference as you responded to each question. The more you voted in one direction the higher the score, and the more you split your vote the lower the score."

I enjoyed finding out what my type is – an ISFJ (Introvert, Sensing, Feeling, Judging). My mom is the same, and so was my dad. The MBTI provides a lot of insight into who you are as a person, how you look at things and handle different situations. I think it would be interesting to find out what type those closest to you are since it is such an insightful exercise.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Crickets Chirping: the Perfect Soundtrack for Prayer

I woke up around 3 AM this morning and I couldn't get back to sleep. I don't know if it was due to the fact that I was hot, or that I was in a lot of [nerve] pain yesterday, or that I've had a lot on my mind, but whatever the reason, I couldn't sleep. Anyone that has ever had a restless night knows how frustrating sleeping problems can be, but last night I actually didn't mind.

This past weekend was the semiannual stake conference where all of my church's congregations in the St. Louis area meet together for one big conference. My stake president shared a quote that really struck me. I'd never heard it before and since I liked it so well I wanted to share it on my blog.

"Sometimes, the Lord sends his blessings in such a highly unusual, dramatic, or precisely timed manner, that it might be likened unto a 'Divine Signature.' It is as though the Lord 'signs' the blessing personally so that we will know with certainty that it comes from Him.In doing so, God not only gives us the blessing, but at the same time, He strengthens our faith and deepens our testimony of Him." Gerald Lund – "Divine Signatures"

Isn't that wonderful? I love knowing that when I pray God truly hears my prayers. And what makes it even better is that He not only hears them, but He answers them. This is such a wonderful concept and I just wish everyone was as sure as I am that this it is true.

Like I said, I've had a lot on my mind lately and I like to think and pray as a way to work through my thoughts and feelings. It was nice to be alone with my thoughts and listen to the crickets chirp while I waited for the whisperings of the spirit to come.

Paul Jo's Visit

This past Sunday my Uncle Paul (my dad's brother) drove up from Atlanta to spend a few days with us. It's been seven years since I've seen Paul, so his visit was long overdue. Here are some of the highlights from his visit:

Eating yummy food: my mom doesn't usually make dinner most nights anymore since it's just the two of us, but since we've had more family around the past few days my mom made dinner each night. Sunday we had taco salads – one of my favorite meals. Monday was spaghetti and meatballs – I can't remember the last time I've actually had spaghetti because my mom and I don't particularly like it, but it was actually really good! Tuesday was hamburgers with potato salad and guacamole (all homemade) – this is the perfect "summer" meal. Wednesday night was stew and biscuits. My mom's biscuits are one of my most favorite foods. What dinner would be complete without something sweet for dessert? My mom made a flourless chocolate torte, a lemonade pie and chocolate chip cookies.

Sharing laughs: my uncle is one of the funniest people I know, and he was constantly saying things and doing things to make me laugh. I think most people's first impression of Paul would be that he's really unique, but I just find him hilarious!

Visiting the cemetery: the cemetery where Paul's brother (my dad) is buried his just a few miles from my house, so my mom and Paul stopped for a visit.
Myers-Briggs character inventory: Paul is a qualified consultant of the Myers-Briggs type indicator, so a few months ago my mom and I both took the Myers-Briggs written instrument which Paul analyzed and he brought the results to share with us. Very interesting! More on this in a later post.

Showing off my projects: Paul was very interested in all of the projects I've made, so I spent some time showing him my blog books, photo books and things like that.

Watching TV: let's face it, watching TV is much more enjoyable when you have someone to watch it with! My mom doesn't really enjoy watching TV shows, so I usually watch them alone while I work on my computer in the evenings. Paul enjoys watching TV, so it was fun to spend time watching/discussing shows with him. Last night we watched the season premiere of The X Factor, and it was so fun watching it with Paul. Paul is also a big Anderson Cooper fan, like I am, so we watched Anderson's new afternoon talk show, as well as AC 360°.

Having conversations: Paul is a fascinating man. Not only is he lots of fun, but he's had lots of interesting experiences and he has a plethora of knowledge about a little bit of everything. I enjoyed hearing about Paul's eight years in the Navy and his job with FAA. I can't say enough about how cool Paul is, and I'm so glad he's MY uncle!

Here are a few pictures that we took with Paul:
There are some things that Paul says that I like to refer as to as "Paul phrases." One of them is, "Ooooh yeah!" (It's not so much what he says, but the way he says it.) So that's what we're saying in the next two pictures.
 Sisterly love between my little-sis, Laura and me:

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Green Can

(This is a DoubleTree Hotel chocolate chip
cookie can like the one we used to have, except
this one is brown instead of green.)

My dad was a Primary teacher for the Blazer Boys class at church for a time in the early 90's and he would always take a treat for the kids in his class in the infamous green can – a DoubleTree Hotel chocolate chip cookie tin that he’d gotten on a business trip.

One time (I must’ve been about six years old) my dad brought home, a new type of candy to fill the green can. He broke open the bag, and we all sampled the candy. I don’t remember what kind of candy it was, but I do remember liking it.

I woke up sometime in the middle of the night and I remember thinking about how good the candy was. I got out of bed and tip-toed out to the kitchen where the green can was sitting on the counter. I reached my hand into the can and pulled out a fistful of candy and ran back to my room. Once I was back in bed, I put the candy under my pillow and started eating it. I repeated this scenario two or three more times that night. I went back to the green can for the final time in the morning before anyone else was awake. When I looked inside the can, I was horrified to see that the can was nearly empty. I’d eaten almost the entire bag of candy over the course of the night!

I panicked because I knew I would be in so much trouble when my dad found out. I decided the only thing to do to save my hide was to blame it on our dog, Bo. When my dad found a nearly empty can he angrily asked what had happened to all of the candy, I knew I would be in so much trouble if he found out the truth, so I told him that I’d seen our dog Bo eating the candy out of the can when I went out to the kitchen early that morning. As I look back, I can’t believe that I was able to come up with such a calculated story and that my dad actually believed it. The least I could've done is tip the can over and drop some of the remaining candy on the floor, but I guess I just wasn't that good at making up calculated lies.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Disappointment Cookies

When I was a little girl my mom would make cookies on a weekly basis so that she would have a treat to put in the sack lunches she packed for us to take to school. She'd make all different kinds – chocolate chip, peanut butter, snickerdoodles, sugar cookies and one of my lesser favorites, "disappointment" cookies. (Aptly named by my older sister Sharon.) What is a disappointment cookie, you might ask? Disappointment cookies are basically like chocolate chip cookies, but they have a combination of chocolate chips AND raisins in them.

I've never been a fan of raisins in cookies, especially when I was a kid. If you are anything like me, I'm sure you can imagine the disappointment of biting into a cookie thinking you're getting a chocolate chip, only to find out that it was in fact a raisin. Need I say more?!

I have another funny story from back in the day related to cookies, but it's getting late, so I think I'll save it for tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Recurring Dreams

I've had many types of recurring dreams since my accident. I had another one of these dreams last night. It's the kind of recurring dream that I love having. I was simply shopping at the mall, trying on clothing. I was a normal, able-bodied girl doing one of my favorite things.

I seriously have dreams like this all the time where I'm shopping, picking out clothes to wear, or I'm doing my hair and makeup and making myself look pretty. I'm not quite sure why I have this kind of dream so often, but maybe it's because I really miss this aspect of my life. I was always such a girly girl. I loved shopping, I loved wearing nice clothes, I loved looking pretty and put together.

Now I feel like when people look at me they see a disabled girl who looks good for her condition. (I DO agree that I look good for someone in a wheelchair as paralysis has a way of making normal people look stiff and unnatural.) However, I don't want to just look good for a disabled person, I to be attractive period, not just in spite of being disabled. Make sense? I know I'm complaining and I should just count my blessings that I'm as healthy and normal looking as I am, but sometimes it's hard to let go of what I once was and will never be again. Knowing that my physical prime was at 19 is a hard pill to swallow sometimes.

Now I've gotten off subject. It's always an exciting night when I'm doing fun things in my dreams!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Goodbye Oprah, Hello Anderson

When the Oprah show went off the air earlier this spring, I wondered what I would watch at 4 PM once September rolled around and the new season of afternoon talk shows debuted. Imagine how pleased I was to hear that Anderson Cooper was starting a new afternoon talk show simply called "Anderson." I have thoroughly enjoyed watching Oprah over the years and I usually found most of her shows interesting and entertaining, but I have to say that I'd take AC over Ms. O any day! (I'm not implying that I have anything against Oprah, because I don't, but I'm just more excited about Anderson's show.)

I think Anderson Cooper is a wonderful reporter, but it's fun to see him step away from the CNN News desk and do something a little more lighthearted and fun, while at the same time still being informative, factual and entertaining. You might not realize it if you're just judging Anderson by his serious CNN side, but he is really funny and witty and he.doesn't have a problem laughing at himself. So if your looking for something to fill the "Oprah-void" you might just want to give Anderson a try.

*Disclaimer: if you are a regular follower of my blog, it probably sounds like I watch a lot of TV since I talk about a lot of shows. It's true, I do. I have the TV on all day and all evening. However, I'm not just sitting watching TV all day long, I work on my computer all day and all evening, and I have the TV on so that I can have some background noise while I'm working on my computer. I have to dictate all of my e-mails, journal entries, blog post, etc., so it's nice to have background noise to give me a little privacy since I don't have any doors in my bedroom area. (My bedroom is actually the living room, but we turned it into my bedroom after my accident since I live in a two-story home and I can't go upstairs where the real bedrooms are.) If a show is on that I want to watch, then I do pay closer attention, but I'm pretty much always multitasking. I work on my computer while keeping one ear on the TV, and if I'm really into a show, then I work on my computer during the commercials. I just wanted to let people know that I DO a lot more than just sit and watch TV all day. :)

Monday, September 12, 2011

Petty Officer James

My sister's fiancé James is in the United States Navy and he came into town a few days ago because he's on leave for two weeks. James is stationed in San Diego, California, and returned last week from a six-month deployment last week.

We don't see James very often since he live in California, so it's nice that he's in town for a few weeks so that I can get to know him better since he's going to be my brother-in-law. I don't know much about the Navy, so I was asking James all sorts of questions about the Navy, his job on the ship (firefighter), what deployment life is like when they are out on the ship for months on end, only docking for brief periods of time, etc. It was a very interesting and enlightening conversation.

James also told me that he spent some time in Japan after the earthquake and tsunami earlier this spring. He helped pass out food, water, clothing and other supplies to the people that were affected. He said that witnessing the devastation first-hand is very different from seeing the damage on TV. He said he saw people's houses just floating away. I'm proud that my future brother-in-law is doing such a great job representing the United States of America.

We put our flag out yesterday in remembrance of September 11, so I made sure to get a picture of Chandra and James standing in front of it since James is a veteran of our country. I also had to get a picture of the Chandra, James and me because I don't have any pictures of the three of us.

Toxic Dust

Yesterday I wrote about my memories from September 11 and the initial catastrophe, but today I want to write about one of the secondary effects of the attacks that day. I recently heard something on CNN about toxic dust and how it's leading to an increase of cancer (and other diseases) in the first responders to Ground Zero.

At first I wasn't sure what toxic dust was and how it correlates to a rise in cancer, but after reading more about it online I've learned that after the towers collapsed, glass, asbestos, cement, lead and other toxins filled the air. Rescue workers were exposed to asbestos, mercury, broken fluorescent lightbulbs and other toxic materials. (I never realized how many chemicals are in the man-made, synthetic materials used in construction.)

Now 10 years later lots of the first responders are developing different types of cancer like melanoma, lymphoma and thyroid cancer, not to mention other things like respiratory illness, depression and posttraumatic stress disorder. It makes me sad that the first responders that went to help and the rescuers that searched for survivors, and then worked to recover bodies are now developing cancer as a result.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

9|11: Ten Years Later

It's hard to believe that today is the 10th anniversary of 9|11. The world definitely seems like a different place now than it was back then. There's a lot more security in this day and age, but it's sad that there's a need for it. Here are some of my recollections from Tuesday, September 11, 2001:

I was a senior in high school and it was about nine o'clock. I was in my second period classSpanish IVand I was taking a test when another teacher came into the classroom and told my Spanish teacher that there had been some sort of terrorist attack on the East Coast. All of the details were sketchy at that point, but as the day progressed, more and more details began coming to light. I was volunteered in the counselor's office during my fourth period, and I remember watching the media coverage on the TV. It was startling to actually see the video of the towers coming down, and to witness the devastation and hysteria of the people. I remember my English teacher, Mr. Brown, telling my class that the attack would rival the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. That was a sobering way to put things into perspective.

I had to work at the movie theater that evening, and I was surprised that there were people actually interested in watching movies with everything that was going on! That evening we had a record-setting low in the attendance at my movie theaterI think only 29 people attended our theater that day.

It's really hard to believe that a decade has come and gone since that day! It's surreal to see the twin towers when I watch movies or TV shows that were filmed before September 2001. For me, there's no way that you can see the New York skyline pre-2001 without vividly remembering what happened to our country that day. One good thing that happened following September 11 was the outpouring of love for our fellow men. Everyone was extra full of kindness and patriotism for a long time after that day, which was one positive outcome of such a horrific event.

I'm sure more terrorist attacks will happen in the future, which is unfortunate and sad, but that seems to be the way the world is these days.

Saturday, September 10, 2011


This afternoon I went to the movies to see Contagion with my younger sister Chandra, her fiancé James and my friend Lacee. I was looking forward to movie because the movie trailers made it look very intense and exciting. Here's a synopsis of the movie:

"When Beth Emhoff (Gwyneth Paltrow) returns to Minnesota from a Hong Kong business trip, she attributes the malaise she feels to jet lag. However, two days later, Beth is dead, and doctors tell her shocked husband (Matt Damon) that they have no idea what killed her. Soon, many others start to exhibit the same symptoms, and a global pandemic explodes. Doctors try to contain the lethal microbe, but society begins to collapse as a blogger (Jude Law) fans the flames of paranoia."

I enjoyed the movie, but I felt like it was a little boring/slow in parts. I don't want to imply that this was a bad or unenjoyable movie, because it wasn't, but it was just good instead of great. It's always to go to the movies!

Friday, September 9, 2011

My Collection Obsession

There's a show on TLC (The Learning Channel) called My Collection Obsession. I've seen two episodes of the show and you wouldn't believe the bizarre things people collect! Here's an example: a teenage boy collected vintage vacuum cleaners. He was very in tune to the sound of his vacuum cleaners and he could recognize any vacuum in his collection just by the sound. Craziness!

I've had a few collections in my lifetime. When I was a little girl I collected things like rocks and postcards – two fairly normal, kid-like things to collect. (Actually, I STILL like collecting postcards. If I know someone is going to be traveling, I'll ask them to send me a postcard or two and I have a photo album where I keep them. Sadly, the postcards I collected when I was a child are long gone. I got rid of them somewhere along the way and it's really a shame because I had a lot of neat ones that I think my nieces and nephews would have enjoyed looking at some day. I had a bunch of postcards that my grandpa sent home to his parents during World War II that I wish I would've hung on to as special mementos during his time in the service.)

I'm still a collector of sorts, but now I mostly collect memories. I have a box where I keep special cards or notes that people have given to me over the years. I LOVE handwritten notes and pictures or letters from my nieces and nephews. I have passion for documenting my life and I have quite the collection of scrapbooks, photo books, blog books, journals, my personal history etc. I'm not quite sure what will become of my collection in years to come, but if anyone wants to know about Heather I. J., they will have a treasure trove of things to select from.

Time has a way of making even the most vivid of memories dull, so that's why I like to document by writing about life so that I can go back and read about the things I've done or experienced and remember. Remembering is really important to me.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Modern Technology: Something to Marvel At

It's always a wonderful surprise when people who enjoy reading my blog leave a comment, send me an e-mail or find me on Facebook. It's what makes all the time and effort I put into blogging worth it.

I recently got a friend request on Facebook from a Japanese woman named Mikiko with this personal message: "hello. my name is mikiko. i happenned to see your blog, and i liked it a lot. there must be a better expornation to it, but i am lack of vocabulary... so. anyway, i thought it would be nice if i could be friend with you. mikiko."

There is definitely a language barrier between my new friend Mikiko and me and I'm sure that some things are getting lost in translation, but we're making it work. I understand just about everything she says, and she says that she understands most of what I say. Mikiko was in a car accident when she was 15 and has been paralyzed for the past 20 years (she can use her arms, but not her hands). We share a lot of the same feelings about our situations and it's been fun to correspond with her and learn what her life is like.

I love how blogging has opened doors for me. I'm having experiences that I never dreamed I would. So, 'hello' to everyone reading this post, wherever you are!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

"Life Is So Good"

My mom and I just finished reading another wonderful book that is "blog-worthy." It was fantastic and I just have to let everyone know just how good it was and why it's worth their time. It's called Life Is So Good and it's the true story of George Dawson, another one of those ordinary people whose life was made extraordinary by his character, disposition and outlook on life. George was such a humble, honest, hard-working man was so interesting to read about George's life and to learn about his experience growing up as a poor black man in the first part of the 20th century.

George never had the opportunity to go to school and always felt ashamed of the fact that he didn't know how to read. Even his children didn't know that he was illiterate until they were adults. George finally had the opportunity to go to school at the age of 98 and at long last he learned how to read.

There are so many good stories in this book, but my favorite was when George was when a white woman hired George to do some day labor. He was paid a fee for the day and a lunch was provided for him part of the way through the work day.

When lunchtime rolled around the white lady brought a bowl of water out and set it on the porch for her dogs. Then she brought out a bowl of stew and biscuits for George. He was famished after several hours of working and he was looking forward to having lunch. But then he looked over at the dogs and he knew that he deserved better than to have to eat with dogs. So as hungry as he was and as much as it pained him he decided to put his bowl of stew and biscuits back on the shelf where the white lady had set it. He decided that he'd rather go hungry than to have to eat with dogs.

At the end of his work day the white lady came out to inspect the work he'd done. She saw the bowl of food still sitting on the porch, untouched. She told George that she had set that bowl of food there for him. George respectively looked the woman square in the eyes and said, "I know ma'am, but I'm a human being and I deserve better than to eat with dogs." The woman got mad at  George and told him that he didn't need to come back to work at her place anymore, and he simply said, "You're right, ma'am. I don't."

Isn't that a wonderful story about sticking up for yourself?! George finally died in 2001 at the wonderfully old age of 103. (He was alive in the 19th, 20th and 21st century – isn't that cool?!) Just think of all of the inventions and technological advancements he would've witnessed. Anyway, Life Is So Good IS so good, and you won't be disappointed!

*I first heard about this book when I was watching Oprah a few months ago and they were showing her most memorable guests of all time. George had been on Oprah in the late 90's and they showed a clip of the episode he was on. Here's that clip:

Monday, September 5, 2011

Favorite Dinner Guest. Ever!

My friend Nate came into town this past weekend for an impromptu visit. I met Nate three years ago when he came to St. Louis to go to orthodontic school, and we became fast friends. Nate graduated school last December and moved shortly thereafter to Tucson, Arizona, where he got a job. I was very sad to see such a dear friend leave, but I'm just grateful for modern technology that allows us to keep in touch.

So imagine my surprise when Nate called Friday afternoon saying that he was coming into town for the holiday weekend. Nate came over for dinner last night – one of our favorite past times from when he used to live here. We had homemade hamburgers for dinner with barbecued baked beans cantaloupe, strawberries and vegetables. For dessert we had one of our staple "Nate Bartschi" desserts from when Nate would have dinner with us. My mom made brownies and we had sundaes with Blue Bunny Peanut Butter Brownie Sensation ice cream (my favorite!) and my mom's homemade hot fudge sauce. SO good!

After dinner I showed him some of my latest projects, and he showed me pictures on his laptop from all of the traveling he's done this year. Nate's visit didn't last long enough, but it was a nice little treat since I wasn't expecting to see him for quite a while. I'll take what I can get and be happy with it.

An evening with Nate would be complete without a few pictures to document our time together.
Another surprise visitor popped over to say hello last night, too. It was Megan Knobloch – one of the sister missionaries that lived in our home for seven months while she was on her mission in St. Louis. She recently got married and was driving with her new husband to Philadelphia where they're going to be living. Boy, were we spoiled yesterday! I could get used to it!

Saturday, September 3, 2011


I remember having a conversation with my dad when I was a little girl and I was asking him what sorts of things had been invented in his lifetime. He told me about things like microwaves and personal computers. Then I asked him if anything had been invented in my lifetime. (I was probably around 10 at that time, so that would've been 1994.) He couldn't think of any inventions, but he said that technology was evolving and progressing all the time.

For some reason this conversation popped into my head the other day. Now I can think of lots of things that have been invented in my lifetime, like iPods, iPads, digital cameras, MP3 files and other things like this. Computers, cameras and cell phones were around when I was born, but the computers, cameras and cell phones of 1984 are basically obsolete these days. We can do things on computers today that wouldn't have been possible five years ago, let alone 27 years ago.

Who would've ever thought that a TV would go from being a square box to a flat rectangle? And who would've thought that a cellular phone wouldn't just be a phone, but a technological mega-device that is a telephone, radio, camera and computer all wrapped up in one tiny, portable device that you can use to watch movies and listen to music?

The concept of the internet has also been created in my lifetime. We're able to use the "World Wide Web" to communicate with people all over the world via e-mails, instant messages and video calls. Blogs are another invention of the 21st century. There've been lots of inventions like these which aren't something tangible you can hold, but they are inventions nonetheless.
It's funny when you're watching old movies or TV shows and the technology is noticeably dated. I remember watching the 1995 movie The Net with my dad. It's basically a thriller where the main character is an expert computer programmer and one of her colleagues send her a disc. He is murdered shortly thereafter and then Sandra Bullock's character's life is in jeopardy as she tries to get help while being chased by bad guys. The reason I'm bringing this movie up is because I think it would be entertaining to watch now, 16 years later, since the technology in that movie is extremely outdated.

I think of my nieces and nephews and I wonder what sorts of technological advancements there will be and what sorts of things will be invented in their lifetimes. Sometimes it seems like everything that can be invented has already been invented, but just wait a decade and things that you could never fathom will be a part of our daily lives, or things you would've never dreamed possible will be possible.

Friday, September 2, 2011

New Set of Wheels

A man from the company that supplies my wheelchair came out to my house last week to give me a seating evaluation. I'm in the process of getting a new wheelchair, and this evaluation is the first step in the process. The man took my measurements and we talked about the things that I like/dislike about my current wheelchair and the things I want in a new wheelchair. Insurance companies will pay for a new wheelchair roughly every five years, and since I've had my chair for 7½ I'm more than due. I never take advantage of my insurance company by ordering something just because I can, but I feel like it's time to upgrade to a new wheelchair that will hopefully be a better fit and feel more comfortable.

Now that the seating evaluation is complete, a therapist will draft a letter that states that my wheelchair is a medical necessity and my doctor will sign off on it. After this the order for the wheelchair is placed. It takes several months for the wheelchair to be built and delivered, so I will hopefully have my new wheelchair by the end of the year. (Anywhere between October and December.)

I really hope my new chair is comfortable and that the backrest, head rest, arm rests, leg rests, seat, etc. are all comfortable. I decided to pick the color "candy red" because I want it to match my bright red van. The metal frame of the chair is the only part that's colored, so most of it will look black since that's what color the head rest, backrest, seat and armrests are. I think I'll nickname my new chair Chariot (Cherry-i-ot), or Cherry (Chair-y) for short. How does that sound?! I can't wait for it to arrive!

Be Prepared

Whether it's an earthquake, a tsunami, a tornado, or a wildfire, it seems like natural disasters are on the rise. It's not IF a disaster will occur, but WHEN. With that in mind, it's really important to be prepared for the storms and disasters that wil inevitably occur.

In my family we are doing our best to be prepared by having a storage of food and water that we could survive off of for a while, we also have 72-hour kits that are relatively accessible and easy to grab in case we have to leave home without much notice, we also keep a stash of other things around that become necessities in the case of an emergency like batteries, flashlights candles, etc.. Like I said, it's not IF a disaster will happen, but WHEN, so we try to prepare as best we can by having a plan.

Earlier this week we took a major step in being prepared by getting a generator. I'm so excited because now I don't have to worry quite so much about what we'll do if/when the electricity goes out. The generator will power everything in the house except the clothes dryer, the air-conditioning and the range/oven. The generator runs on gasoline and has a 6½ gallon tank. Each tank of gasoline will power the generator for approximately 8 to 10 hours, depending on how many things are running off of the generator.

It'll be nice to have the generator to power my special bed, and other things around the house like the refrigerator, toaster oven, and furnace if it's cold or fan if it's hot. It's crazy how much we depend on electricity, and we don't fully realize it until the power is out!
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