I'm hoping this is the extent of the ice we get this year - icicles forming on the edge of the porch roof from snow melt. Some of it dripped onto the chain-link fence as well. A few weeks ago when Lexi spent the night, she knocked down some of the icicles and put them in the freezer to keep. A couple of days ago I threw out what was left of them. They had decreased in size a great deal - freezer burn?
Yesterday was Ash Wednesday. Since my appointment with Dr Winkler was at 1:15, which means they want me there at 12:45 to draw blood, I figured I could go to the noon service at church. When Libby (rector) mentioned that the ashes are usually made by burning palms left over from the previous year's Palm Sunday celebration, I thought back about ten years to St Martin's in Mayfield. Seamus had left and Candis had not yet come, so St Martins, Trinity in Fulton, St Paul's in Hickman (the oldest Episcopal church in the area), and St Peter's in Gilbertsville were without a priest for several months. The Diocesan office in Louisville did a great job of finding 'supply' priests for us, and I found it interesting hearing the different voices and observing slight differences in style of celebrating the Eucharist.
During our traditional pancake supper on Shrove Tuesday, we learned that the bishop was coming the next day to do the Ash Wednesday liturgy at the four churches. Since St Martin's would be the first one he visited, we needed to supply him with ashes. The altar guild ladies searched the sacristy and office, hoping to find ashes left over from the prior year, but to no avail. However, they did find palms that had been saved. None of us knew if there was any special procedure that needed to be followed, or prayers that needed to be said, when burning the palms. So I phoned Nick Jaeger who was rector at Grace Church at the time, and asked him those questions. He said there no to those questions and described the set-up he used. I took the palms home with me and spent an hour or so on my front porch burning them. My set-up involved a three-pound, metal coffee can and a sieve/strainer that I used for dyeing rather than food preperation. I half-way expected a cop to stop and ask what I was doing, but none did (they did tend to cruise my street, because of a known 'drug corner' two blocks down). Perhaps I should have mixed some chrism (consecrated oil used in baptisms and, I think, annointing of the sick) to hold the ashes together better, but I doubt there was any at St Martin's. Anyway, I had a small jar of ashes to give Bishop Gulick when he arrived the next day.
When Dr Winkler walked into the exam room, the first thing he did was touch my forehead and ask, "What's this?" I told him I'd been to church. After he checked my lungs, etc, I mentioned that my family doctor said my triglycerides are very high, and that she wants to prescribe something to lower them as long as it is compatible with the stuff I'm already taking. He said that he got a note from her about it and had replied that it was OK, so I guess I need to call and see if she has faxed a prescription to Stone's Drug. He then showed me some of the software he uses. He has a list of the medications, vitamins and minerals I take, and by clicking on an icon can bring up information about possible interaction problems - neat!
Last week he took me off coumadin. He feels that the blood clot I had two and a half years ago was caused by the Thalidomide I was taking at the time. Since I haven't been taking it for over a year, and since the recent scan of my legs showed no signs of clots forming, he put me on one adult aspirin a day instead of the coumadin. The scan of my legs will be repeated in a few weeks.