Thursday, 2 January 2014

2014? Already?

Happy New Year!

2013 was a great year for me, despite a lot of down time with the dog. Love her to bits, though, and fingers crossed for good health and no unexpected major expenses this year. 

Speaking of yellow dog, she has been LOVING this early winter weather and pretty much wanders around in a face slide or making doggy snow angels. Goofball. It's been a bit tricky for us to take her on all of our outings lately since the cold has been so...cold. With a windchill in the -30s, her little paws can't stand prolonged contact with the ground. I've been using invisible boots again (the salve you slather on to protect against salt and cold) but it just can't compete with the -30 temps. 

Anyhow, the upside of all of the ice and snow is I'm back on snowshoes again! Whooo! We've been out a few times and I could not wipe the grin from my face on the first outing. Sunshine, snow, Nance's smirk, and a racing dog. It was so incredibly peaceful. I won't pretend my cardio's where it needs to be, but am pretty confident we'll be on the snowshoes enough during the winter that I'll stop sucking wind at the top of hills. 

On the health side of things, I'm finding it hard to keep the sensation in my feet when showshoeing. I'm careful not to overtighten the toe strap of the shoes. I wear a loose-ish sock and don't tie my boots tightly either, so I'm not sure what else to try. Those hand warmers burn my skin if left in one spot too long, so I don't think I ca use those in my footwear. I've tried double socks and that's a no go too. Stupid comorbities - I look forward to cool weather all summer long only to lose all sensation in my toes and fingers from Raynauds. I swear I keep SmartWool in the black all year 'round! 

Sidebar: It is incredibly interesting to me that I have 3 cousins with MS (all female), at least 2 with Raynauds, and no one on one side of my family ever has warm feet. Won't someone please sit next to me and tell me the circulatory system has nothing to do with MS again...

So, I thought I'd do a little taking stock from 2013. Things I'm particularly grateful for:

1. My health and that of those around me. I have MS. It's no more a death sentence than being born is. It's not something I'd choose, but I have it and it's not going anywhere. So far it's not impacting me to any severe degree. I make better choices based on it, and that part was hard to figure out, but it's getting easier. 
2. The funniest, most charming pets in the world. I know it sounds silly to many, but I spend all day, every day with these two critters and would be at a loss without their snuggles. [Note: If they weren't so cute, their wrestling sessions would annoy me to an early grave}
3. Love. I am loved. I love. That helps me to laugh often, smile more any one person deserves to, and offers me the freedom to be the person I am and expand my comfort zone.
4. The basics - having a roof over my head and food to eat. It's easy to forget how fortunate I really am just to have those. A recent ice storm left many around us without power, no running water, no way to shower, and no viable means to cook. It's unfathomable to me that so many in the world face that on a daily basis.

I lean towards being an appreciative person (or, I sure think and hope I do), so the list would be endless if I kept going, but that's the short version.

I'm totally humbled by Santa's visit this year. Myself, I'm trying to move towards giving experiences more than material goods since it's hard to find "stuff" that those around me need or might want. I'm not sure I'm any better at finding experiences to give! Y'all need to drop more hints. :)

I'm overjoyed by this funky little ukulele Santa left with my name on it. I've been  strumming along to a lot of my faves (and transposing others so I can simplify the chords to match my novice skills). Poor Nance, someone should have given her earplugs.

I am totally excited to see what 2013 brings. I hope it brings nothing but the best for you.


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