Friday, June 21, 2024

creeper, monitor, and unwelcome house guests

The rangoon creeper, always one of the last things to come back after freezing to the ground, has finally started to bloom.

I’m starting this post with a picture because FB had removed three of my posts updating on all these medical procedures for going against their community standards accusing me of trolling for likes and sympathy. What?! The one thing they had in common was no photo. 

The first tropical storm of the season, Alberto, has been causing flooding all along the Gulf Coast. We’ve had rain every day this week so far with Wednesday raining all day but fortunately is was just a gentle rain with occasional bouts of heavier rain and really really windy all week. My neighbor Gary says we’ve gotten some over 4” cumulative this week. Only a 42% chance of rain today so we probably won’t get any. Oops, I take that back. It's raining.

The heart monitor came late Wednesday afternoon so I didn’t attach it until Thursday morning before SHARE, getting up a half hour earlier than usual to make sure I had enough time to get it on and functioning. This will be the fourth time I’ve worn a heart monitor and all the previous times it was the kind with multiple leads attached to a box that had to be worn in a pouch around your neck. This time though it’s one lead with the monitor attached to it, so no wires, and a phone.

The monitor sends the data to the phone and the phone sends the data to the doctor. And it’s waterproof so nothing has to be detached to shower. The phone needs to be within 10 feet of the monitor so I can just keep it in a pocket or set it on a table nearby. This is so much better! Also, the Watchman procedure to get me off the blood thinner has been scheduled for after the angiogram since trying to get them both done the same day would have been a scheduling nightmare and involving two different buildings and I’ll have to go under general anesthesia again and spend the night in the hospital with another week of recovery. I’ll be glad when these last two procedures are done and if the angiogram does show an aneurysm, just have to face/deal with that. Though if it shows no aneurysm, taking a blood thinner shouldn’t be a problem except it’s a fucking expensive drug and even with Medicare it costs about $140 a month ($700 a month if I had to buy it over the counter). So, we’ll see.

The weirdest thing happened this morning. I have two hooks that I hang my yoga clothes and day clothes on when I go to bed. When I got up this morning and put on my capri length leggings I felt a couple of little pinches. What the hell? Stuck my hand down in there and felt something so I took them off, turned them inside out and there were ants in my pants! Checked every piece of clothing hanging on those hooks and there were ants in every single one of them. Looked all around and did not see any ants anywhere else. I have no idea how they got in my clothes or why they were in my clothes.

And last, oh joy, I discovered I have a nest of armadillos under my house. Went out with Minnie yesterday afternoon and she ran straight to one of the openings to the crawl space and started barking hysterically. 

When I could get her to stop and pulled her away I saw two little armadillo faces poking out and the ground around one of the azaleas was thoroughly rooted through this morning. 

Ordinarily I don't mind critters under the house, I usually have possums living under there but armadillos can carry leprosy, though as long as I don’t eat them or have one as a pet in the house, I should be fine. Still, I don’t really want armadillos nesting under my house and I have no idea how to get rid of them as they are nocturnal animals. If I was on a slab I could just flood their burrow and when they ran out fill it in and while half the house is on a slab, that's not where I saw them.


  1. Oh goodness, you are sure going through a lot with all of these tests. I hope it is all over soon and you get a clean bill of health. I'm on the blood thinner Eliquis and is it $140 for 3 months so I wonder why yours would be so high. I have a Medicare Advantage plan.
    Ants in your pants is nuts! and then armadillos under your home?! Texas is wacky, Ellen! ;)

    1. I do have an advantage plan. for two quarters the eliquis costs me $131 for 3 months then the other two quarters it costs me nearly $480 for 3 months. something about the 'donut hole' which I have never understood. so really I guess the monthly average is closer to $100 a month.

  2. I was happy there were no photos! But I can't understand why your posts, perfectly acceptable explanations of your situation, should have been removed. But then I've never had anything to do with any Z product, so I don't know the rules.
    You're certainly having your issues with critters! I've never seen an armadillo, so I wasn't aware they might be under a house!

  3. I'm glad the heart monitor is better. The cost of healthcare in the U.S. is cruel. I did have to laugh about the ants in your pants!

  4. It's never a dull day for you. The monitor looks very nifty! I had ants in clothes, shoes and in between bank notes in my purse. But these are the benign boring European common and garden ones.

  5. Except for aneurysms and heart monitors, our lives are so similar. We have armadillos who live under our house too.
    I so hope that all of this is over for you soon and that you are back to 100% Ellen Power which is mighty.

  6. I love (is this sick of me?) hearing about how people deal with medical issues as we age...though I just bet none of the people making censorship decisions are elderly! Good for you with the new version of the heart monitor. I did Eliquis after my heart attack for the first year, but my BP was so low they took me off it. Thank heavens! Of course I'll be on heart meds till I die. Keep up doing whatever you can...ants can be handled, but I'm not sure of armadillos.

  7. I so dislike FB! I seldom look, and post once every two or three years. Glad you are getting rain but no storms. May it continue. I don't have a heart monitor, but a pacemaker monitor that sits on the floor and monitors the pm when I am near, like all night. Then it sends its data to a computer somewhere. Independent little things, but I suppose I'd hear if something went wrong.

  8. 37paddington—can you hire someone to remove the armadillos? I mean, you’re juggling an awful lot right now. Also, I really dislike FB. How stupid could they be, removing your posts. Glad you can share here.

  9. This imparts a whole new meaning to “ants in your pants!” I think they are members of the Ellenophile subspecies, inherently attracted to you and destined to be your companions forever. As for armadillos under the house, I have no suggestions since we don’t have them here. Is it even possible you can coexist together, even in an uneasy truce?

  10. That ant situation is BIZARRE!! Also having armadillos under your house might be the most Texas thing ever.

  11. I couldn't count the number of times my mother would say, "Sit still! Do you have ants in your pants?" Apparently ants have been invading clothing for a good long time. I wouldn't worry about leprosy unless you serve up armadillo for dinner, but those critters certainly can 'aerate' a lawn. There are some great stories about hill country kids making 25 cents an hour for catching armadillos, back in the day. They'd get a hold on their tails and pull them out of their burrows, but I don't recommend you trying the technique.

  12. The ants! How weird! As for armadillos, I'm afraid I have no suggestions. We used to have them in Florida but we pretty much left them alone. (Never under the house, though!)


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