Category Archives: Health

Another day at the dentist

Oooooowwwwwww!

My temporary crown collapsed under a chewing assault during lunch last week. Gross.

I quickly called the dental office because my dentist was very clear. If it came out, call RIGHT AWAY. And I did.  It just happened to be 3 weeks after I was supposed to call to get the appointment to get my permanent crown inserted…

So I called and after a bit of back and forth and was told I could come in the next day for another temporary crown or come in 6 days (the next time my dentist was available to see me) for the permanent.  I went with the 6 day wait.

I am not afraid of the dentist like I hear some others are but, I ALWAYS wait to go into the dentist and it has cost me big time.  Pain, lost crowns, more pain, etc.  You see, my dentist is close to my home but far from my job.  And they have “regular hours” like 8:30 – 5:00.  They don’t seem to like the working girl’s hours, there… I am already at work at 8:00am.

But this time I did call right way, took the first, most appropriate appointment and got ‘er done after much poking, drilling filling and grinding.

Ooooowwwww!

The good news?

I didn’t procrastinate this time around and, the procedure was a redo therefore I didn’t have to pay the $600 bill originally designed for me.  Woohoo!

The bad news?

Ooooowwww!

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Good Doggy, Expensive Doggy

16 week old Golden Retriever puppy scratching fleas with leg in motion on a white background "Missy"

My doggy hasn’t been doing so well.  And we are both paying for it.

Last year, I decided to opt out of the Banfield Care Plan (The veterinary practice that is set up in PetSmart stores) because I found it expensive and inefficient.

What I loved about it was that from a scheduling perspective, I was always on top of teeth cleaning, regular exams and shots.  What I didn’t like was that I could never make the numbers match in my favor.  I was paying around $30 per month (young healthy dog plan) and even with the built-in discounts, I was still paying too much for teeth cleanings and the like.  So, I decided to just put a little aside each month to account for the teeth cleanings (around $200+), along with the exam costs (around $40) and save a little cash.

And then along came a case of the cooties.  Ewww.

The poor pooch was diagnosed with a yeast infection that stretched from her ears to her bottom.  Between the exam, tests and prescriptions, her tab came to about $500.  Ouch.

The good news is that she seems to be getting better. A lot less itching, that is for sure.

So here are some takeaways from the pet adventure that never should have been:

  • When the dog is scratching incessantly, do not wait any longer than you have to, to arrange a vet visit.  We may have been able to keep this at a more manageable allergic reaction rather than the yeast infection from hell if I had recognized her issues earlier
  • Some prescriptions for dogs can be filled by pharmacies that cater to humans.  The anti-fungal medication the Vet prescribed would have cost $143 at Banfield.  It cost $88 at Sam’s Club.
  • I am my pet’s advocate.  I have to learn to listen to what she cannot say.
  • YouTube has a video on everything!  I had never heard of this yeast infection condition before known as malassezia.  Yet, lo and behold, I looked it up and there were many peeping-Tom videos of owners helping their dogs, inexpensively, through the recuperation.  Their secret to success?  Selsun Blue. I grabbed a coupon off coupons.com and bought a bottle from Target.  After she finishes her medication at the end of the week, I am taking her to a Dog wash and treating her to a bath.
  • Dog washes are only $10 at PetValue!  Not chasing the dog around the backyard to bathe?  Priceless!!!

Here is to wishing all of our pets a happy and healthy holiday season!

Mirror

 

 

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Eating Green This Summer

Funny Vegetables

I won’t try to fool anyone.  I love myself some cookies.  And donuts.  And pie.  And fajitas and fried chicken.  Love, love, love.

But in the summer time, I get giddy for garden vegetables.  The fresh from the garden taste of tomatoes and cantaloupe is a joy to behold and I am all in.  This year, I planted several tomato plants, eggplant and green pepper.

In addition to doing this out of a desire to have another dimension to my life.  I also look forward to the monetary savings of growing my own food.  Truly, I experienced physical pain earlier this Spring when I had to hand over $2.49 per 2-pack at Aldi for green peppers.

Except for a handful of cherry tomatoes, nothing major has come from my garden, yet.  In fact, the beetles are eating my eggplant and a rabbit has laid claim to the green pepper plant.  But, I am not discouraged!  That is because so many others are doing quite well on their gardens and guess who gets to benefit?  Me!!!!

So far, I have saved by not having to buy zucchini or squash or celery because other gardens surplus has provided for me.  In fact, my mom went so far as to not only give me a load of squash and cucumbers, she took some of the squash, turned it into an amazingly delicious casserole, let herself into my house and left us dinner for the evening.  THANK YOU, MOM!

I am looking forward to when my little patch of gardening earth starts throwing up the goods.  I will eat those veggies and share them, too.

Saving money by gardening is delicious!

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What we Should All Know

Lisa Simpson Basics

Mirror Image is 11 years old.  As young as she is, it still feels like she has been around a lot longer than she has.  So sometimes I am surprised by the questions she asks me.  Questions that have answers that seem obvious to me but apparently, haven’t brushed up against her world yet.

That got me thinking about how many people, myself included, often miss or just don’t know some obvious basic things. No matter how loudly our parents, our church leaders or Suze Orman yells them from the rooftops.  So below are some Wednesday morning thoughts or some basics to live (better) by:

Money

  • Work for it
  • Save more of it
  • Invest It
  • Respect it
  • Talk about it
  • Learn more about it
  • Manage it
  • Don’t let it determine self-worth

Home

  • Research it
  • Clean it
  • Protect it
  • Maintain it regularly

Health & Hygiene

  • Wash hands
  • Cover mouth when coughing/sneezing
  • Stay home when sick with the flu
  • Clean – tone- moisturize
  • Brush 2x/day
  • Self examine
  • Have medical insurance
  • Exercise daily
  • Eat more vegetables
  • Drink more water

Relationships

  • Be respectful
  • Say please
  • Say thank you
  • Flirt
  • Be honest
  • Be enthusiastic
  • Give hugs
  • Accept hugs
  • Genuinely listen
  • Apologize
  • Accept apologies
  • Refuse abuse

Joy & Happiness

  • Pursue it
  • Be responsible for your own
  • Look up
  • Share it
  • Give to others
  • Read EVERYTHING
  • Dance whenever you hear your favorite song
  • Have many favorite songs

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What are some other basics I may have missed?

Weekend Money #3

Girl Sitting on Money

This morning, as I was leaving the house to take my daughter to school when she pipes up “it’s Friday!  What fun thing are we going to do this weekend?”

That means the weekend is here and it is time to plan the money!

I am going to pre-spend here on this post, then reconcile on Monday.  I plan for this to be another avenue of accountability and budgeting.  So here we go:

  • Church (tithes/offering) = $28
  • Gas = $20
  • Personal Care (haircut, mani/pedi, etc.) = $0
  • Groceries = $45
  • Dollar Tree = $10
  • Vehicle Service/Repair = $0
  • Clothes Shopping = $0
  • Gifts = $0
  • Restaurant = $0
  • Zips Dry Cleaning = $0
  • Prescriptions = $35
  • Fun Outing = $0
  • Total = $138

Groceries – I don’t need too much in terms of groceries this weekend – fruit, fresh veggies and milk from Aldi. My freezer is already stuffed with ground turkey and lobster tails – the ingredients for some of Mirror Image’s favorite recipes.  I will be using those lobster tails for Valentine’s dinner on Sunday.

Gas – I read that gas got down to $27 per barrel on Thursday.  The lowest it has been since 2003. I am looking forward to feeling that relief at the gas station.

Dollar Tree – Mirror Image has been watching me tackle organization projects throughout the house all week.  Last night, with the help of these awesome spice jars from IKEA, we almost completely organized our kitchen spice situation.  That is until I accidentally knocked by brand new label maker into the sink.  I tried drying it out in rice overnight but I think it is dead and I will have to replace it. She was very helpful and so impressed, she asked if we could do the same in her room – “but make it look cool” .  I think we will start with some of these organization tools from the Dollar Tree.

Restaurant – Not this weekend.  We will be enjoying these restaurant worthy recipes at home however – The 10 Minute Perfect Broiled Lobster Tail and  Stuffed Peppers with Cheese.

Prescriptions – This week I need to pick up Mirror Image’s back up inhaler for school.  Schools in our County do not allow the students to carry medicine of any kind so she must register her medications with the Nurse and there it stays in case of emergency.  Expensive but necessary.

Fun – As for fun stuff.  It is going to be COLD here this weekend.  I would would like to stay in with cozy slippers and house cleaning projects and watching movies rented from the library this weekend but Mirror Image might rebel.  Maybe we will take advantage of one of the Groupons I have tucked away.  If we do, there will be no additional costs except the medical attention I will late need for frostbite.

I will be back on Monday to tally up my successes (or fails).

Thrifty Image  Mirror