…faux fur…

…and arthritis.

I can see that quizzical look as you read the title and first line of this post. What the heck does one have to do with the other? On the surface? Not a lot. However when you knead down into the folds of a faux fur coverlet you’ll see what I mean. No doubt!

Rainy, cold, gray days like we’re having here in the Pacific Northwest make me want to fly away to the balmy, mostly sun-filled days in my native Hawaii. Every winter without fail I half-jokingly insist to my husband that we should return home. I am definitely like a fish out of water when it comes to the weather here. Every bone in my body throbs like a drum beat, as if chanting…”Give me heat. I need heat.”

As if to satisfy the relentless request for warmth, I switch on all the lamps in the living room..a total of seven…as well as the space heater. I also turn on the one down the hall near the bedrooms, and the one in the kitchen. All the while the furnace in the lower level laundry room blasts heat throughout the entire house.

As for me, I’m covered from the neck down…a hoodie over my long-sleeved shirt, comfortable pants to my knees…AND compression socks from my knees to my toes! If I could work with gloved hands I would.

So after a full day puttering around the house…doing a little bit of this, that and the other…I usually call it quits at about midnight. I always aim to end the day earlier, but it never seems to work out that way. Don’t get me wrong. I take little…sometimes long…breaks here and there throughout the day. I’ll catch snippets of HGTV’s “Love it or List it,” “Flip or Flop,” “House Hunters,” or “Million Dollar Listings, Los Angeles.” Sometimes I’ll stop to play computer games on my Nook. And, of course, I can’t just play one game. I usually go until I successfully finish a level and can go on to the next one.

One of the last things I do before calling it a night involves water…hot, cold and somewhere in-between. There’s dishes to wash or load into the dishwasher, depending…how big, how fragile, how much cooked-on-grime. When I turn out the kitchen lights…and all the other lights upstairs, I head downstairs to our master bedroom suite to shower before diving under the bed covers. Of course I run the water as close to hot as I can stand. It soothes all the muscles, especially those in my lower back.

In recent weeks, as the weather has gotten colder and wetter, I’ve taken to pulling the faux fur coverlet, that usually lies at the foot of our bed, over all the other covers under which I bury myself…the sheet, the quilt, and the duvet. Sometimes I even wear socks to bed! In addition to all this, we’ve begun using our gas fireplace to bring the bedroom to a cozy temperature, before turning it off and going to sleep.  

While I never, ever feel hot enough to kick the covers off, my husband spends most of the night…partially outside the covers. I call him…my “hot-blooded Hawaiian!” ha, ha.

Last night, for the first time, I noticed as I pulled the faux fur up to my chin and lay my hands on its luxurious warmth…how soothing it was to my arthritic fingers. While I still couldn’t completely bend my stiff knuckles, I felt relief. Kneading my fingers into the folds of the “fur,” whatever stress remained from the day disappeared. My lips curled into a soft smile, as I lay, eyes closed in the dark…thankful for my…

…little piece of faux fur heaven.



365 photo challenge: around

As I was preparing for bed last night, electric toothbrush buzzing around inside my mouth…POOF!…the light went out. And, of course, so did my toothbrush. Thankfully, I was not going to be up much longer, so being without heat, let alone lights, was not going to have me shriveling up like a ball under the blankets, and everythingelse I could heap on top of the bed, including the kitchen sink! Been there; done that. Not the kitchen sink, of course…no hot water.

Pulling out flashlights from wherever we could remember stashing them, hubby and I went about our business as usual. He climbed into bed with a small flashlight, and continued reading his e-book. I lit a huge candle, sporting 3 wicks, which permanently sits on the bathroom shelf, waiting for just such occasions. It’s like a good guard dog, which I’ve often thought of giving to Goodwill since it collects dust when not performing its duty, the candle, not the dog.

An almost burnt-down lit candle on a candle ho...

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By the light of the flickering flames, I quickly jumped in and out of the shower. Well, maybe not so quickly. It actually felt luxurious being warmed head-to-toe by the hot water. But maneuvering around in the dark afterwards was not so easy.

Thinking I was clever, I brought the lit candle with me and set it upon the dresser next to my bed. Crawling into bed with my book, I settled cozily into my side of the bed to read a few pages before going nighty-night. Well, duh? The pretty ceramic holder was too tall for the candlelight to shine on what I was reading. Grabbing a bulky flashlight instead, I propped it on my shoulder so that its light shone directly on my open book. Problem solved. But before long, my shoulder ached, so I had to switch the flashlight to the other side. I eventually gave in to Puget Sound Energy, and gave up on my battery-powered light as well.

next time AROUND…i’ll be reading by “my itty bitty light”…hugmamma. (i’d better go out and by one today!)