Foto Friday Fun 77

 Posted by on September 19, 2014  Foto Friday Fun
Sep 192014

This week’s Foto Friday Fun features 7 images chosen by readers from my photo archives.  Our meme number for this week is 2458.  Please join in with a post and link below with a #2458 photo from your archives.  And check out the other posts linked to the Foto Friday Fun meme.

Sky Island and canyon Walhalla Plateau North Rim Grand Canyon National Park Arizona

Sky Island and canyon view Walhalla Plateau North Rim Grand Canyon National Park ArizonaYogi used to choose this week’s 2458 number.  In my photo index that’s just one of seven images for a panorama of Sky Island seen near the Walhalla overlook during a hike this summer.  So you get a twofer.  I remember when I used to have to tape together panorama prints and they went on the refrigerator door.  Did you ever do that?

Purple-crested Turaco Pretoriuskop camp Kruger National Park South AfricaSherry chose #4892 and writes “This is like playing the lottery only less expensive and more fun.”  I don’t buy lottery tickets but it sure was a gamble taking photos of this Purple-crested Turaco roosting high above camp.  And although I struggle to photograph birds I did get quite a few more birds in Kruger National Park.

Collared lioness by road Addo Elephant National Park South AfricaElaine chose #7911, a sleeping beauty seen along the road in Addo Elephant National Park South Africa.

Setting up telescopes Lodge veranda Star Party North Rim Grand Canyon National Park ArizonaDiane chose #2221 which brings us to setting up a telescope for the week long 2014 Grand Canyon Star Party.  This annual mid-June event includes about a dozen scopes on the Lodge veranda and volunteer amateur astronomists from Tucson share the night sky with visitors.

Egret Mankwe Dam Pilanesberg Game Reserve South AfricaSallie chose #9991, “because probably I am last to choose.”  She wasn’t the last to choose but did take the highest number to choose from.  And was getting pretty close to the end of this year’s journey in South Africa with an egret fishing along the shores of Mankwe Dam in Pilanesberg Game Reserve.

Zebra from underground birdhide Addo Elephant National Park South AfricaJonker chose #7531 a “ Random number cause that’s how I roll.”  Sometimes he rolls up the road from where he lives to Addo Elephant National Park where I’m sure he’s seen zebras.  But I wonder if he’s seen them from the underground bird hide accessible from the main camp.  Sure was a great place to see them up close.

Uncle Sam spraying Forever Resort truck and train 4th of July parade North Rim Grand Canyon National Park ArizonaBibi chose #3333 for “Absolutely no reason.”  4th of July gives us at the North Rim a reason to have a water parade.  Uncle Sam had a wonderful time spraying every one who got within reach of his hose.

Dark-eyed Junco Lodge veranda North Rim Grand Canyon National Park ArizonaSomething a little different than Grand landscapes, my choice for this week of a Dark-eyed Junco checking out some scraps on the lodge veranda.  I see these flitting on the ground everywhere but can rarely get a photo.

Please share your own #2458 photo and story by adding your link below and linking back to Foto Friday Fun 77.  You can also leave a number between 01 and 9990 in a comment for next week’s Foto Friday Fun.  And in order to give you a head start for next week I’m choosing #1500 because this is my 1500th post since October 8, 2008.

Do you have a favorite from this week?

Capturing the present for future memories of the past

Sep 182014

Where my RV is parked this summer I enjoy changing sky over Grand Canyon through my window.  Don’t get me wrong, I go outside to look too.

Stormy sunset over canyon thru RV window North Rim Grand Canyon National Park ArizonaSome evenings it’s a stormy sunset view with last light reflecting off the weather station.

Foggy canyon view thru RV window North Rim Grand Canyon National Park ArizonaSome mornings begin with barely a view and change within an hour.

Canyon view Foggy canyon view thru RV window North Rim Grand Canyon National Park ArizonaAnd then there’s this morning’s view.

You can skies from all over the world, or share your own, at Sky Watch Friday.

Compression stockings for life

 Posted by on September 15, 2014  Health
Sep 152014

I mean really, if I have to wear compression stockings for life do they have to be ugly?

skinny legs wearing socksTired, aching legs occur when the blood flow slows down in the legs.  Nurses have worn white support hose, or compression stockings, for over 50 years.  Athletes, long flight travelers and anyone on their feet or sitting for many hours at a time could benefit from wearing them.  Compression stockings create significant pressure on the legs, ankles and feet compressing the surface veins, arteries and muscles so the circulating blood is forced through narrower channels.  As a result, the arterial pressure is increased, which causes more blood to return to the heart and less blood to pool in the feet.

Last summer, after the fire, I was sick and having trouble with my feet and ankles swelling.  After a battery of tests that were all within ‘normal’ parameters the swelling went away.  I was happy with that and forgot about it.

Gaelyn's swollen feet Pretoria South AfricaOther than when I fly overseas and always land with swollen feet even wearing compression stockings—known as Economy Class Syndrome—and trying to move around and exercise, not an easy thing to do when I choose a window seat so have to crawl over at least one person.  So I only wore the compression stockings when needed.

Condor Talk, Park Ranger, North Rim Grand CanyonWell about a month ago my feet and ankles swelled like balloons.  Remember, I’m on my feet for 10 hours a day when working.  I went to the Kanab Clinic 85 miles away in Utah, the closest option, and went through another battery of tests.  Results say I have a strong heart, good blood pressure, no blood clots, and good arteries, but I have lousy veins thus poor circulation.  I do have varicose veins which I’m sure to have inherited from my Dad.  Mom had edema so there’s another factor for water retention.  The PA I saw recommended I wear compression stockings every day, all day.

What size and how much compression?

I guessed at first and stupidly bought cheap low-to-no compression at Walgreens which were entirely useless.  Compression is expressed in mmHg (millimeters of mercury). Whatever that means.  The higher the mmHg, the stronger the gradient compression: 8-15 mmHg – Mild Compression, 15-20 mmHg – Moderate Compression, 20-30 mmHg – Firm Compression, 30-40 mmHg – Extra Firm Compression.  I use firm compression pantyhose style when flying but find them too much otherwise so wear knee high moderate for every day wear.

I learned not to take them off immediately upon getting home, like my bra (another story), as then my feet and legs itched terribly with the change in blood flow.  Elevating feet above the heart is a good idea.  So I take them off just before going to bed.

I thought good hiking socks at $6-12/pair was expensive.  These are not cheap at $25-65/pair.  Good thing they’re sturdy so can be either hand-washed nightly or bagged and machine washed.  Watch the material content if you have problems with latex.

How to measure yourself.  For knee highs measure circumference of ankle and widest part of calf then height from floor to one finger width below back of knee.  For thigh high add circumference of thigh and height from floor to bottom of buttocks.  Then use charts provided at sites that sell compression stockings.  I’m wearing women’s small.

putting on compression stockings healthwisePutting them on and off 

If the directions say to roll the the socks down to the toes and insert foot don’t bother.  Talked to a friend that wears them and thank goodness because after I bought two pairs of Jobst at a real medical store in Flagstaff the directions on the package for putting them on and taking them off caused a lot of pain.  My friend instructed me to fold the top over the bottom with just the toes showing then slide foot into them and pull up the top.  Much easier.  And do the same thing in reverse to take them off.  Rolling them down just put too much pressure on my swollen feet.

Why so ugly?

Being like a heavy nylon stocking in beige, white, taupe, navy and black they are rather ugly.  Not bad to wear under pants and even with another pair of socks over if shoes are big enough.  A long dress isn’t too bad.  But what about with shorts?  I found a few very colorful patterns online, but for $20/pair the reviews aren’t the best and one company’s pretty patterns have a very ugly seam that breaks up the pattern.  Call me picky and blame my mother the seamstress.  Besides, who wants seamed socks?

Standard and colorful compression stockingsStandard ugly & colorful.   Which would you choose?

Was really excited when I found the colorful choices offered by Sockwell and ordered two pairs through Amazon.  They’re made with a blend of Merino wool, bamboo and spandex.  And they are made in the USA.

Wearing new compression socksSo now I’m wearing compression stockings for life and no more swollen feet and legs.  In fact they are quite comfortable except for a little warm on a hot day.  Do you wear compression stockings or think maybe you need to?

I am not endorsing any specific company nor receiving any compensation.  But I did figure I’m not the only person that needs to wear compression stockings for life.  So why should they be ugly?