Categories
Out and About Personal Life

It Was a Frosty, Foggy Morning, and I Think I Have Hemorrhoids

I seem to have run into some bad luck this holiday season. First, on December 1, I start showing symptoms of COVID-19; then, on Christmas Eve, I get pain in my gums that lasts several days; and, finally, on New Year’s Day, I get what I think are most likely hemorrhoids. What did I do to deserve all this bad fortune? I thought I had been a good person.

OK, maybe I’m to blame. I did lose 35 pounds in a little over four months. Maybe now my body is fighting back.

I had been looking forward to being slim not just for the last four months but for at least the last four years. Now I’m at my goal weight (I will write a post about my weight-loss journey soon), but it came at a price.

Still, I didn’t let these afflictions keep me from getting some nice winter photos today. After all, that is why you clicked the link, isn’t it? No, I shouldn’t have said that; my hemorrhoids are probably why you’re here. Well, I will be video conferencing with a doctor in an hour, so I will fill you in on all the salacious details. No, they won’t be examining my derrière over video. At least I don’t think that’s how it works. (Note: I will post the update after the photos.)

I’m starting to ramble. Here are the photos.

Sign for the National Weather Service Forecast Office in the Twin Cities/Chanhassen, Minnesota
Trees with frost
Prairie with frost
The National Weather Service Forecast Office in the Twin Cities/Chanhassen, Minnesota

Update, 1/2/2021: I had my appointment with a physician assistant (not a medical doctor). We talked over the phone, rather than over video. Interestingly, I forgot to spend undue time making sure I had the right diagnosis, but I’m about 99 percent sure I have hemorrhoids. I’ve only had them one other time in my life — almost exactly 10 years ago — and the symptoms were the same as what I have now. I believe they went away within a week of using Preparation H, witch hazel, or a prescription (I don’t remember which).

The PA prescribed a medication, recommended fiber-rich foods, dispensed other home remedies and things to look out for, and generally answered my questions. I’m optimistic my pain will subside once I start implementing these treatments.

I’ll probably write at least one more update to this post once my body gets back to normal.

Categories
Uncategorized

Record-Breaking October Snow

Today might beat the all-time daily record for October snowfall in the Twin Cities

As I write this post at 5 p.m. on October 20, 2020, we are in a Winter Storm Warning in the Twin Cities. It has been snowing nonstop since this morning. We are on track to possibly beat the all-time daily record for October snowfall in the Twin Cities. We will for sure be the runner-up for the October snowfall record, with the 1991 Halloween blizzard possibly inching ahead. (As a side note, I’ve heard stories of the 1991 Halloween blizzard my entire life. I was three at the time.)

Categories
Uncategorized

First Snow

The first snow of the season came at 9 a.m. today here in the Twin Cities.

Categories
Out and About

Juxtaposition

I’ve walked by this location numerous times in the past two months while going on long walks, but I just noticed this ironic placement of a Porta-Potty today. I had to take a quick picture with my phone.

On a related note, the technical name for a Porta-Potty is actually chemical toilet, since they use chemicals to mask the odors.

This photo was taken at Rice Marsh Lake in Chanhassen, Minnesota.

Ironically, someone placed a Porta-Potty right next to a NO DUMPING ALLOWED sign

Is this just childish humor? Possibly. But I must admit I was excited when I first noticed this connection.

Categories
Out and About Pug Life

Charles A. Lindbergh State Park at Peak Fall Colors

Today, my mom, my puggles, and I decided to visit Charles A. Lindbergh State Park in Little Falls, Minnesota, because it was the closest state park at peak fall colors according to the DNR’s Fall Color Finder*. It was a fine state park situated near the Mississippi River. These are the photos I got. (* Update, 12/29/2020: Because of today’s political climate, I am compelled to add that I don’t agree with the political views of the historical figure for which this state park is named.)

My mom and our puggles stand on a bridge over a creek
Maple leaves in full flame
My mom and our puggles in the woods
Missy smiles amid a bed of pine needles
My mom and Pugsley smile for the camera on a bridge
Here we are back at the entrance near the parking lot
My mom sits on a bench close to the Mississippi River
Sign for Charles A. Lindbergh State Park
Categories
Gear

Buy a Hummingbird Feeder, and the Hummingbirds Will Come

A couple months ago, I read a gear review on Wired.com about hummingbird feeders. Since my mom is a huge hummingbird fan and has tons of hummingbird decorations, I told her to read the review. We bought a hummingbird feeder — and, later, a second one — and ever since we have been inundated with hummingbirds. If you like hummingbirds, it makes so much sense to have a hummingbird feeder (or two) so you can enjoy hummingbirds every day rather than waiting for perhaps one the entire summer.

Even though the high was around 60 degrees today, and I’m guessing the hummingbirds are beginning to migrate from Minnesota, it wasn’t long before I captured this hummingbird at one of our feeders this evening.

A hummingbird drinks sugar water out of a hummingbird feeder

The hummingbird feeders we use cost $30 on Amazon. The ASIN for the feeders is B00P91VK4U, so you can just copy and paste that into the Amazon search box. We followed the instructions for the sugar water that were included with the feeders, and the hummingbirds seem to love it!

My mom has a view of the hummingbird feeders from her new home office, which I assembled

My mom had previously counted about 20 days in a row seeing hummingbirds.

And that is so much better than just one sighting for the entire summer.

Categories
Out and About

Moving

Who needs U-Haul, anyway?

A sofa being transported on top of a car
Categories
Gear

Everyone Needs a Weather Radio

I bought my first Midland NOAA weather alert radio in 2016. It has informed me of weather hazards numerous times since then. Had I not owned the weather radio, I wouldn’t have bothered checking the weather report manually and wouldn’t have known that inclement weather was approaching. The weather radios provide me with alerts in every season, alerting me for everything from tornadoes to blizzards.

The National Weather Service Forecast Office in the Twin Cities/Chanhassen, Minnesota. Pictured is the Doppler radar.

I’ve only used Midland weather radios, which are apparently the most popular brand. I have three different models: the weather-only WR120EZ, the WR400 (new model), and the WR300 (old model). The latter two include AM/FM, and they are therefore my picks.

I wanted to make this post to inform everyone how important it is to own a NOAA weather radio. I also wanted a way to save the user manuals, which I often worry I won’t be able to find (in my house or online). Here are pictures of the aforementioned weather radios in addition to their user manuals (linked at the end of this post as PDFs).

Midland WR120EZ
Midland WR400
Midland WR300
Categories
Pug Life

My Dogs at the Golden Hour

In photography, the golden hour is defined as the first hour after sunrise and the last hour before sunset. Many photographers consider it the best time for photography, because of the pleasing, warm tones it engenders. I used to go out a few times a week at the golden hour to take pictures. More recently, I haven’t been as interested in photography, but this website is sure to change that.

This evening, I went out with my dogs, beginning an hour before sunset. These are the results.

Pugsley and Missy in the grass
Missy stares pensively in the grass
Missy flashes a smile for the camera
Categories
Pug Life

An Evening in Centennial Lakes Park

Centennial Lakes Park is a 24-acre park and man-made pond located in Edina, Minnesota. It’s my mom’s favorite park, so we went there with our puggles, Pugsley and Missy, this evening.

Missy and Pugsley pose for the camera
My mom and puggles by the pond
My mom and puggles by the miniature golf course