Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Stone breakers

                                                         Chanca Piedra- herb "gale of the wind"

When the doctor gave us the results of my husbands colonoscopy, the good news, no cancer, all test normal, all biopsy normal. But some narrowing of his esophagus possible allergy. So the eoe was given an Rx of an allergy spray. But the side effects of the Rx were terrible and not worth continuing. 
So we were back to square one. Why was he not hungry and in pain. His sister thought he might have gallstones (no history of gall but kidney in his tree) but not enough showed up on the scans for the doctor to worry about. So then what? The doctor said eat more fiber, take some peppermint oil and get some exercise.
I decided other people must be having this same issue and I was right. Gallstone type of attacks but too small for the doctors to do anything about it. So I dove into the rabbit hole and discovered after 3 days of reading everything I could, stonebreaker supplement/herb came up. It is an OTC you can get for breaking gall and kidney stones. Does it work? Yes, he is no longer having pain in that region, no nausea, he is hungry again and has his energy back. His stools are normal again and he is not running to the bathroom all the time. So I think his sister was right gallstones just too small for the doctors to deal with. And that is ok.  This stuff works. I took it first to make sure it had no side effects on me before letting him take it.

 You should never take multiple herb supplements along with other meds or prescriptions. I think that is where people go wrong. They are taking all kinds of mood pills, prescriptions and supplements at the same time. But many things counteract with others. You have to read up on what you take and what you add to your body -whether food or herb. And read every part of the paper you get from your pharmacy about what you are taking. Side effects are put there for a reason. 
I am looking forward to when my husband does not need this supplement and can return to normal again. He is only 46 and way too young to have these problems. But now he is feeling better again. 

Weenter Break

This is my youngest and largest cat Frosty. He had the right idea these few cold weeks, naps and lots of them. I was busy keeping my poultry from freezing. I raised their roost bar to 3 feet above the floor of the coop, tons of straw and shavings, kept regular light bulbs on 24/7. I hang several chains on each light to prevent falls on to the straw. That has worked for years with several new lights to replace the old dusty spidery non working ones. All my chicks hatched under their hens in this artic freeze and I have very early chicks for this new year. 

The snow melted into ice then to mud. February mud is weird. It is very slippery as the ground is still frozen under the dirt. So boots and cleats in the mud for now. We have a warm up in the 50's here and that means duck puddles abound. We have rain a snow predicted by next week again. So I am potting up seedlings and getting ready for spring planting of young starts. Broccoli, peppers, rosemary, celery, lisianthus and some carrots. I am looking forward to getting things growing again.


Balls are Back!


Your local stores should now have canning jars again. These were spotted at a local big box store. The prices are what they were originally before 2020 so that is nice. Still hard to find rings and flats for future canning but at least the jars come with.

Saturday, February 13, 2021

Here's Weenter!

Today on this high of 12F degrees we ran out of wood pellets for our upstairs pellet stove. So we drove to town carefully on the icy roads and picked up one ton of pellets. We normally have mild winters in the Ozarks and use about one ton a year. But with this cold winter we have had it was time for one more ton. The main highways are clear but our back roads are hilly and solid ice. We did a few running starts to get over hills on our return trip and we did slide a bit on a curve. But you turn into the slide and keep from hitting the breaks. We also split and stacked firewood for the main woodstove downstairs. We are all set for 4 inches of snow on Sunday Feb 14th and Wed Feb17th are expected in our area. Animals are well fed and warm. In this photo that is solid ice in the driveway. Having four wheel drive, good tires and heavy vehicles a must out here in the Ozarks. 
On a side note that is my husband and he is feeling a lot better. What he did was give up milk and cut back on sugar and coffee. He is taking several herbal supplements I found for gallstone breaking, is taking soluble fiber, and getting some exercise. He works at his desk for long hours and does not get up and go outside as much as I do. But he is feeling hunger again, no nausea and may be getting over whatever has been ailing him for the last year and half. I am so glad I dove down the herbal rabbit hole to get him relief. His doctor recommended the fiber, exercise and peppermint oil for him. I found that Chanca Piedra an herb helps break up stones in the body. Looks like it is working for him.


Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Coffee level up

During this pandemic we watched youtube vids as we do not have TV. One thing I noticed was fellow coffee lovers pouring their coffee. All kinds of rules and pots, cups, holders you name it. So I found a cheap small set of instruments to give it a go. And it was not half bad. I also discovered Geisha coffee beans from Ecuador, Costa Rica and South America. It is Ethiopian beans not Japanese type of coffee bean. It is quite good in any way you brew it. I prefer coffee and chicory but this geisha is quite nice. And wildly popular with the rest of the world. The price for geisha beans is double the cost of normal beans and is hard to find. It is fun to try a new brew and learn a new technique.


I see weenter

It has been ice and snow for the past few weeks here in the Ozarks. This February 14th should be high 17 F and low of 0F. It has been a challenge but the farm animals are doing well. The poultry have heat and warmth and the horses have hay and shelter. The dogs have two shelters and a heated tent. But the dogs  end up in the basement at night when the temps go below teens and after farm is tucked in. 
I had two clutches hatch last week of chicks.The third was abandoned by the hen. All chicks survived under three hens who are now teaching them how to go in and out of the coop. In spite of the cold these chicks are thriving.
On the human front my husbands scopes looked normal and we are waiting on samples taken. No cancer was seen. This means we still do not know why he has no hunger, mild nausea, and pain. Might be a blocked gallbladder duct but images looked clear. So I am trying non surgical otc stone buster herbs on him. It takes weeks to see a doctor and the weather/pandemic is not helping. He had to have the Covid test and was negative. It was his first going under surgery. That was fun. He thought he had not had anything done to him and that he was fine. But he had no memory after returning to the room, dinner nor anything after. He recovered after sleeping a full night and we ok the next day.
We were blessed with a friend who came to our farm twice a day to tend the animals. It is getting harder to find people willing to take the time to do this even out here in the Ozarks.
I am grateful for our life out here and would not want any part of city life. I love that I can plant food and live off what we grow. This year I am adding more flowers for myself and for the bees to pollinate.
Flowers make me happy. 


Saturday, January 2, 2021

Happy New Year 2021


Last year we had planned to be in Japan. But like everything else, plans changed and we stayed on the farm since February 2020. Since we both work from home we were used to that. Going out for church and supplies was not an option. We only went out for grocery pick up, dentist and yes, jury duty for me, ugh.
But we survived and have not gotten the virus yet. Several people at our church did and so far are ok. We did a first, church from home and continue to do so. And now we are dealing with doctor trips and that mean a lot of time in the truck. Our new updated plan to grow our own veggies on fabric worked too well. I was busy all year long putting up our pantry. It was a great project to do together, fabric, irrigation and fences. Very prolific growing year for us and no weeds. All grown from seeds I saved and dirt I had delivered.
My bold idea of making masks for everyone failed. No one wanted to wear them at our church nor in town, that was a big surprise, so I stopped sewing and donated the rest.
This year after we find out what is ailing my husband, we are planning to take a trip as I am sure the whole world is, too. Some beach, waves and water would be nice. Meanwhile I am planning on next years garden. Flowers, peppers, tomato, beans and fabric to keep out the weeds. 
I am working on beading and beadwork that I miss doing. I love all the colors bead provide on jewelry and embroidery. I will still do fiber restoration as projects arise. I need to make a new quilt for my husband. The one I made him 20 years ago is fraying and needs to be replaced. I have advanced my skills since then. The repairs of repairs can no longer be subjected to the water.

The virus is still a big problem in the Ozarks. People are still dying but life goes on. They still only wear masks in the big cities not out here. 
I hope 2021 goes better than 2020. I hope this time next year people will be thriving instead of getting sick. I hope to have been to the beach again :)

Silver and fur

Since it was cold and we needed a break we stayed indoors this new years eve. I rested with my two boys Melon and Frosty. This is Melon under the tinsel tree, it is a small tree and he is 18lbs.

This is a rare event as I hardly ever rest on the futon. My two big boys got lap time and fireplace heat.


Pepper re-Cap

All of these are the peppers I now have drying. For some reason this summer I planted a ton of pepper. I gave away a ton as well. And these hot peppers along with sweet and bell peppers.

Rows and rows of wire strung hot peppers. I plant to save the seeds and grind the rest into powder for spicy meals. I am looking to try adding more sweet ones this year.


Mild Fibrosis, now what?

 Just found out he has mild to moderate liver Fibrosis F2-F3. This is a  liver that gets hard and has scaring not due to disease, drugs nor drinking. The cause gluten intolerance to wheat.

This means as he ages (he is 46) his liver is vulnerable to damage and diseases. His gallbladder and pancreas are fine. Now we wait for what the doctors recommends. But I am not waiting. We are redoing our nutritional needs and taking out as much wheat as we can. This means a lot of backtracking and new foods to make at home. He is already feeling better as we have removed the wheat at home as much as possible.

Celiac maybe?

 Celiac disease is an immune disease in which people can't eat gluten because it will damage their small intestine. If you have celiac disease and eat foods with gluten, your immune system responds by damaging the small intestine. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, and barley.

My husbands blood test came back with high Celiac markers. He still needs to have a colonoscopy but this has changed the game. Two weeks before his blood test we decided to stop breads, donuts, bisquets anything with wheat. And it worked. His pains stopped, his mood improved, he is more regular. We now need to see what damage was done by a year long wait not seeing a doctor about this during the pandemic. The first run of tests never showed this but one year later with a better group, he is seeing real test results. He has had the weight fluxuations, undigested foods, rashes, eczema, lethargy, moods and constant abdominal pains. 

And when you go to see the doctor, it has changed. For his scans, he goes in alone, I wait in the car, not allowed in the waiting room because of the virus. Not fun when it is 20 degrees outside. And it is a two hour drive to get to the doctors office. There are no local labs so lab work, two hour drive. Our friend had colon cancer (she is still with us) she had to drive 4 hours a day 5 days a week to get chemo for 8 months because her insurance would not pay for closer chemo to be administered. Her family took turns each day driving her. After the drive and the doctor, you might want lunch, but most places are take out. In winter this means pick up and eat in your car. Might be the normal for some but as a rule I never eat in my truck to avoid mice and ants. But I am willing to do this as we have no choice. We sometimes go to a park and that is nice.

So now we have the colonoscopy to see what is going on inside my husband. Liver, pancreas, gall bladder and intestines. We are hoping that by the right nutrition we can get him healthy again. He has always eaten healthy now just without wheat. 

Meanwhile I have covered our veggie gardens with plastic. Ordered new cloth again to put in next years plants. That took a lot of time to pull down the t-posts and cattle panels. But the deer were let in

to eat all the leftover plants. 

Friday, December 25, 2020


It has been a simple quiet Christmas for us this year. No one to visit only us and gifts sent out to friends and family. The farm still needs to be fed even in the 10 degree weather. Hay, horses, poultry and an older shepard. She wears a dog diaper when she is inside. It keeps my work a lot simpler to clean up after her. 
We also have an older cat that has her own room, heating pad and litter. She comes out during the day but is put in her room at night. She is a lot happier with that. The only downside is our guest room is occupied for a while. But as this is a pandemic, no guest have stayed.
But I have installed led and solar lights in our coop and kennel. Heating pads for the outside pets. Inside we have warmth and plenty of food.
We watched Christmas Mass on line for the first time ever -not going to church. It was strange but that is the motto of 2020.  We had some cooked ham and plain yams, a simple dinner. As December comes to a close I have jury duty, doctor appointments for my husband and an odd feeling things are not getting better in 2021. This has been the Lentiest year for us.
But I have prayer and hope and that should be enough but it is hard. Winter is a hard season for me. I am looking forward to springtime and getting into the garden again.


Friday, December 11, 2020

Papa Noel in Louisiana

One of the cool things about life in Louisiana. It does not get very cold and rarely snows and Papa Noel and his white flying alligators. This year Mardi Gras was cancelled because of Covid. But this statue  was set up way before the virus in Morgan City.

Just a neat well done thing I had to share.