Cloudy with a Chance of Pain

Today's Headache Forecast.png

Perhaps you've heard of people being able to predict when a storm is coming with their "trick knee" or because some other joint starts to hurt. It took me awhile to realize that their is a connection between my headaches and the weather. From my own experience, if it is going to rain, the likelihood that I'm going to get a headache goes way up. Add in some of my other headache triggers, like hormonal changes, alcohol, and stress, and I'm in for a perfect-headache-storm.

I know I am not alone in my weather-induced migraines, for I just discovered that has a migraine module on their local forecast. The website shows that I am currently experiencing headache weather (it's raining). However, according to the their iPhone app, my migraine risk is low. 

Accuweather App Migraine Risk.PNG

At any rate, thankfully I don't have a headache today and my forecast for the weekend looks pain free.

What are your headache triggers? How does the weather affect you?

Happy Spring!

The Laughing Song

by William Blake

When the green woods laugh, with the voice of joy
And the dimpling stream runs laughing by,
When the air does laugh with our merry wit,
And the green hill laughs with the noise of it.

When the meadows laugh with lively green
And the grasshopper laughs in the merry scene,
When Mary and Susan and Emily,
With their sweet round mouths sing Ha, Ha, He.

When the painted birds laugh in the shade
Where our table with cherries and nuts is spread
Come live & be merry and join with me,
To sing the sweet chorus of Ha, Ha, He.

Not Ashley Judd

On Monday, I posted this on Facebook:

Ashley Judd Haircut Facebook Post.jpg

I do not – nor will I ever – look like Ashley Judd.

There are many other ways I am not like Ashley Judd:

  1. I do not have a make-up artist.
  2. Actually, I don't wear make-up at all.
  3. I do not have a hair-sylist.
  4. Actually, I don't style my hair at all.
  5. I don't even wash my hair that often.
  6. I don't have any kind of stylist.
  7. I am not married to a race-car driver.
  8. I have not considered running for congress.
  9. I could go on, but I won't.

People have said I remind them of her, like Tommy, the older gentleman who used to bag my groceries, but then he couldn't remember her name, so he'd say "Hey there, Sheila!" every time he saw me. I've also had people say I look like Natalie Portman, Winona Ryder, and Helena Bonham Carter. Countless people have also told me I look like their friend, "so-and-so". I once had a boyfriend who said I reminded him of a humpback whale. (I forcefully told him that it didn't matter how he meant it, that sort of analogy was never appropriate. He wasn't my boyfriend for very much longer after that.) The point is, I think I just have one of those doppelgänger faces. For some reason it reminds people of people.

I do like a short hairstyle Ashley Judd used to have, so I brought a bunch of pictures of her with me to my hair cut appointment. I joked with the stylist that I wanted him to "make me look like Ashley Judd". After a little nervous laughter from him, I assured him that the pictures were just for reference to the style, length and layers of the type of hair cut I wanted. No miracles were expected. I even threw in a few pictures of myself in short hair to prove what I wanted was within the realm of possibility.

Two of these people are not Ashley Judd.

Two of these people are not Ashley Judd.

He then talked about the unrealistic expectations of some of his clients and how he has to remind them that these celebreties have hair-stylists that do their hair for them. [hint, hint] Coincidentally, Curtis had the same thought when I showed these pictures.

"You look great in short hair or long hair," my very, very wise husband began, "but don't get a hair cut that you have to 'style' everyday."

This was a not so subtle reference to difference number four between Ashley and me. I assured both Curtis and the man about to cut my hair that I was going into this haircut with realistic expectations. I am not, nor will I ever be, Ashley Judd. And I am okay with that.

By now you might be wondering how my haircut turned out. It is easy to post a picture of a celebrity on your Facebook page with a pithy comment about how you want to look like her. It is an entirely different thing to post a picture of yourself in a haircut that you've already compared to said celebrity, especially when you consider the aforementioned differences one through six. Even if  I hadn't inadvertently compared myself to a celebrity, posting a self-portrait is not an easy thing to do. Maybe if you are sixteen it is no big deal, but I am not sixteen.

I am not usually overly critical of the way I look. I am satisfied. But a part of the secret to my happiness with my appearance is not spending too much time looking at myself in the mirror or looking at pictures of myself. If I look at myself too long, any perceived flaw suddenly appears to be my most prominent feature.

Many were asking to see my new haircut and growing impatient. So I began to take self-portraits. I tried to find a flattering angle: looking up. looking down, looking off into the middle-distance, scowling, smirking, smiling, squinting, looking puzzled, and eventually looking annoyed.

I was becoming sick of myself, my face, and I even started hating my new hair-cut, which I had been perfectly happy with before my photo-session began.

This was my final self-portrait which just about sums up how I felt about the whole process:

I bet Ashley Judd has "people" following her around with lip balm, so that she never has chapped lips.

I bet Ashley Judd has "people" following her around with lip balm, so that she never has chapped lips.

Then came the editing. I tried different filters and different brightnesses. I even tried to erase the dark circles under my eyes.

Haircut 3.jpg

Then I tried lightening my whole face to remove all wrinkles and blemishes.

Haircut 6.jpg

Hey, why not blot out my face entirely? It was the hair everyone wanted to see anyway, right?

Haircut Face Flare 2.jpg

Are you sick of me, yet? Curtis certainly was. I was flipping through pictures of myself for him like an ophthalmologist flipping through lenses. "Which wife do you like better? This one or this one? How about this one? Is this one better? Or this one? I think he answered yes to all of the above. Did I mention he is very wise?

Enough of that. Here is my new haircut. And my old face. And some guy walking by behind me.

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My Impulsive Goat Purchase

On Thursday I went to the farm store to get milk and eggs and pork chops. I came home with all of that, plus three goats. They are our first livestock on the farm.

Three Goats in a Mini-Van.JPG

It was an impulsive purchase. One that was not cleared with my husband. I texted him the picture of the goats in the back of the mini-van along with the word "sorry". He was not pleased, but not really all that surprised either. How long can a woman last on a farm in the spring without buying baby animals that are right there in front of her for sale and everything?

I am not going to say how much I paid for the trio, as I really don't want to know whether or not I got a good deal. As I said, this was an impulse buy which by definition excludes logical considerations like price; and the fact that the main pasture fence isn't installed yet; and the fact that we are going on vacation in two weeks; and the fact that two of the goats are uncastrated males and may impregnate the three-month-old female at any moment. 

Let's just look at their cuteness and think about that, because that's what I did.


Goat #1



This is one of the male goats. He is the only one who has been named, so far. Mike came up with the name, "LaChonky". He is a Pygmy goat. I'm not sure of his age (one of those pesky details one forgets to ask during an impulsive purchase). He has proven to be the feistiest and most charismatic of the bunch.

Here he is doing an impression of Curtis finding out I bought three goats without talking to him first:

Oh, snap!

Oh, snap!


Goat #2

Male Lamancha Pygmy Cross.JPG

This is the other male. He is a cross between a Lamancha and a Pygmy goat. I believe he is three months old and twin brother to the female. He is also "intact", as they say, and could possibly impregnate his sister (another pesky detail). He is the most skittish of the three and scoots away when we try to pet him. We are working hard to win him over.


Goat #3

Femaie Lamancha Pygmy Cross.JPG

This is the little doeling. Like her brother she is a three-month-old Lamancha-Pygmy cross. The Lamancha breed is a dairy-type goat, so perhaps when she is older we will have her bred and try her as a milk goat. She is as cute as a button and sweet as can be. My favorite for sure.

I wanted to introduce you to the new members of the farm, but you can expect more goat pictures and stories soon, starting with my search for a vet who will castrate the two bucks.

Mio Peloso Italiano

My hairy Italian

My hairy Italian


I am married to a swarthy Sicilian. He is dark and handsome and.... hairy. All his hairs look the same: short, dark, coarse, and curly.

The other day I opened the camera on my phone while it was pointed down at some vintage Fire King coffee mugs that my mom gave me. I liked the way it looked, so I snapped the picture.

Later, I took a closer look.

Fire King Mugs with Beard Hair

Fire King Mugs with Beard Hair


Aren't they awesome mugs? Let's just ignore what I'm going to assume is a beard hair on the kitchen table. Okay?

Weblinx: Cute Overload and Real Food


Come on!? A puppy in a cup!? And an incoming duck!? How can you not love that?

Cute related: we will definately be watching Animal Planet's Puppy Bowl IX on Sunday. I mean, Mike and I will... in the other room... on the small t.v..

I have enjoyed reading this series by Keeper of the Home on simple ways to put more real food in your diet and avoid processed food. She gives lots of great ideas, tips, information and links. Of particular interest to me was her link to a Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce.


A friend of mine introduced me to the iPhone app Cinemagram, which you can use to create animated GIF files, or little moving picture files made from movie clips. I find the medium to be sometimes cool and funny, and at other times annoying and head-ache inducing.

I've already shared one of our barn falling down (then coming back up, then down again, then up again...) on Facebook.

I also included one in a previous post, showing Curtis cutting Mike's hair. This one was created using a different app called Giffer. Giffer converts a series of still photos (instead of video) into a animated GIF file. Also, the Giffer GIF files can be downloaded onto your camera roll and don't have to be shared with the public or hosted on an external site like the Cinemagram GIFs do.

Do you have a headache yet?

I think animated GIFs are best in small doses. So I will show you one more and then be done, for now. Here is a nice, calm GIF which is less likely to send you into a seizure.

This kind of GIF is called a Cinemagraph. The difference is that you can select only certain parts of the image to move, while the rest of the image stays still. Pretty cool, huh?

[My techie explanations are attempts at giving you the general idea about animated GIF files. It is very likely that I don't know what I'm talking about, so don't quote me. However, I do stand by my statement: "Pretty cool, huh?" You can quote me on that.]

The Bride of Frankenstein and Other Scary Things

I am a notoriously violent sleeper.

By day... I am all sweetness and light.

[family eye-rolling]

By night... you better watch your back.

[family head-nodding]

I kick, scream, hit, and curse in my sleep. Usually, my violence is directed outwardly, but recently I've begun attacking myself. Literally.

This is the second time I've tried to scratch my face off in my sleep in as many months. I'm considering wearing mittens to bed. Curtis suggested I go as the Bride of Frankenstein for Halloween. Thanks, Honey.


Other scary news from the week:

King got a referral to an orthodontist. [Shudder]


Also, I saw this interesting Halloween decoration in the neighborhood:

Amusing? Disturbing? Puzzling? Yes.


Finally, we are expecting thousands of trick-or-treaters tonight. It is truly scary. We can't afford to buy "good" candy for the masses, so I buy bulk piñata candy.

This is 1000 pieces. We'll be lucky if we don't run out by 9 p.m. Seriously.

Happy Halloween!

A Good Start

Each day before we begin our studies we sing a hymn together. This week's hymn is "Praise to the Lord the Almighty" It has proved to be a source of strength and inspiration to me. I am one of those people who needs a constant reminder not to rely on my own power to get me through the day.

Praise to the Lord, who doth prosper thy work and defend thee!
Surely his goodness and mercy here daily attend thee;
Ponder anew what the Almighty will do,
If with his love he befriend thee!