good day

we started a timber cruise project this last month.


all these photos are from the Black Hills of South Dakota.


We are glad to work as this will help us with the non-insured burned up thing$!


this is the first cruise since my surgery last October.

Oh, I have been doing office paperwork all this time.

but not woods work.

until now.

and I didn't fall down.

 it was good!

I get to walk in the woods with my best friends, Mr. foresterman & Dexter.

mr. foresterman especially is my bestest.

he encouraged me when I was in despair,

when I was thinking I wouldn't ever work again cruising.

You see, I didn't tell you the whole story a little while back.

because its kinda depressing.
I hate depressing.
and I dont do depressing martyr well.
it comes out like a whiny martyr weasel depressed, the worst kind.

but i wanna share now -
not because I'm in a depressing, whiny martyr weasel mood,
but because I owe my ability to cruise to Mr. Foresterman.

and well, maybe someone out there can benefit who might have the same issue?
I'll whine it happy, 'k?

you see, not only did I get a India motif paisley scar that kinda looks like the country of  romantic Italy
one-sided around my belly button down to my unknown nether regions (did I just write that?) 
but the surgery left me with a permanent blood clot in my leg;
not a little one.

one from ankle to groin. 

 a "here to stay  Deep Vein Thrombosis aka chronic DVT"
its when the blood clot hardens and sticks to the main vein forever.

so there goes my chance to be the first 53 year old  to ever run the 100 meters in the 2016 Olympics and win the US gold, ever.

I know, I'm pretty broke up about that.

Since its here to stay I'm going to call him "thrombi"...

rhymes with gumby.

kind of fitting since he's hogged up the main vein totally.

like Montana gumbo, cheez whiz,
and a over-abundant testosterone fueled boorish male friend of a friend who won't let you out of the store until you hear his latest endeavor of his reliving his past experience of accidentally going off trail into the vast unknown on his souped-up ATV with a full cooler strapped on the back and GPS in hand and how he survived for two hours until a timber cruiser found him and guided him back to safety with the cruisers paper map.

yes, I just stereotyped my thrombi.


but the good news is,
 that the scans I get for the Castlemans disease showed that other good little veins 
have taken the place of scooting the blood back up to my heart. 

that's a good thing.

they call them collateral veins.

yay collateral veins!

security - gotta love collateral!

So I take a baby aspirin a day (childhood memories revisited daily!) wear a compression stocking when it really active to help things scoot as I can get kinda puffy (wear one on each leg & they become stylish tights!), never cross my legs (but keep my knees together, I am a lady you know...feral, but a scary lady darns it!), sit for no more than 2 hours at any given time (fitting in totally with my squirrelly pop up mole nature anyway!), drink lots of water that makes me visit every bathroom within a 50 mile radius (hmm... speechless...!) .

and try to make sure I move around a lot so no other blood clots wanna visit again.  
one thromby in my house is enough.

the goal is to keep active, eat right and not gain weight, and to avoid having post-thrombotic syndrome and chronic venous insufficiency (fancy words, I copied them from the internet). and most important, not get mad at mr. foresterman when he asks me if i want to go for a 7 mile hike instead when I want to sit and finish off the half gallon container of chocolate chip ice cream and 1/4 full cream soda liter bottle, or ask if I have my stocking on when we are about to hike a 35% slope and I'm trying to psych myself out, let alone worry about my undergarments...

So theres some things I will have to have heads up over this during my lifetime,
but since I like to take one day at a time because of that natural blonde issue I have -
I figure this should all work out in the wash in the end, as they say.

yes, conversations, like serious ones, are hard for me.

how did you know?

but thats why i have my own mr. foresterman to interpret for me!

I'm sharing this now because i am very close to the one year mark, 
where the reoccurrence rate for another DVT drops off dramatically. 

after i got off the warfarin in February, the next few months were suppose to be touchy months.

  but i was too busy with weddings and random fires to worry about some new blood clot
having a breakup divorce
with the guilty party running away to party in my lungs.

actually (tangent, like you didnt see this coming) 
at the latest scan I asked if my lungs were black and sooty from the fire... 
the nice Doctor said they were clear, without missing a beat.
he tolerates me so well.

So anyway, we don't let anything stop us from living.

living is too important to do!

I like living!

no, let me rephrase -

 I love living!

breathing is good too!

So I remind myself constantly when I'm frustrated about limitations that
it's not the "why" but the "how"

and ill figure out a way, some HOW.

and  through all of this mr. foresterman kept encouraging me.

my cheerman.

all the time.


today is his birthday.

my life didn't really start until I met him.

do you have one of those peoples in your life like that?

oh, I hope so!

where the sun seems brighter, time somewhat stands still when they are around,

and they love you unconditionally?

through sickness and in health?

what a gift.

happy birthday, mr. foresterman.

thank you for being my best friend.

you tolerate me so well.



  1. Oh Happy Birthday Mr. Foresterman (you should be named MY Hero too but that name is taken sorry) Thanks for taking care of our Feral so well.
    OK now Feral I am really bummed to hear about the Olympics(sorry)and truly bummed that you are a natural blonde but I do know I am very glad I found you and yes you love to live and breathe and I really need you too.
    My dear friend I mean that. Take care. Awesome photos.
    Hope there was cake and an nice long romantic hike:) Hugs. B

  2. a wonderful post for your foresterman. happy birthday to him. a big hug to you and dexter dog as well. i know you're all happy to be bouncing around in the woods again!

    congratulations on making it to the almost-one-year mark, my dear! :)

  3. Hi beauty of the forest!! What a lovely post...the pictures you show us is amazing every one with your text.
    Congrats to our loved one...I have one too. He´s always there in bad days and in happy days....
    We are lucky women to have them...
    Warm hugs form Sweden!

  4. I'm never going to whine again when I'm out hiking. Very inspiring words you wrote. Beautiful shots! I don't really get to see fall here in central Florida so I love the shots of the yellow leaves.

  5. Ah, Feral. How happy I am for you today. We could all use a bit of your thankfulness and insight.

    Mr. Foresterman, thank you for being so good to Feral and for sharing her with us.

  6. What a wonderful, encouraging guy you have! Happy Birthday to him!

  7. oh my...crying happy tears! I think we are lucky to have wonderful guys in our lives...through sickness and in healthy good times! So glad you are coming up on your one year they told my niece.."Every day you get away from the surgery the odds go up and up of full recovery"! I didn't blog about it but she got her 3 year throid cancer free mark in June..YIPPEE!--there is nothing like those happy dates!xoxo

  8. Happy Birthday to your hero and best friend. I think you have a keeper there :))
    Your pictures are absolutely stunning - I love every one of them.
    Keep taking good care of yourself.

  9. Happy Birthday Mr Foresterman, Great job taking care of the Feral Gal and keeping her sense of humor intact.

  10. Happy Birthday to your fella! You manage to show the "year from hell" as both a year of sorrow and despair and yet a year of love and beauty. You're an inspiration!

  11. Happy Birthday to Mr. Forestman. You have certainly lived thru a year of above and beyond occurences. My Grandmother's favorite saying was "Nothing is so bad it could not be worse". Keep putting one foot forward and trudging on this year could have been worse, but it was bad enough and now it is behind you. BTW those are some beautiful pictures, thanks for sharing your pictures and your story. Take care.

  12. What wonderful tribute to a wonderful guy! Happy Birthday Mr. Foresterman! I'm so glad that you are there for Feral each and every day!
    What a wonderful post! Congrats on conquering so much!

  13. i have a mr. foresterman also...we are so lucky to have such wonderful men in our lives!!

    happy birthday mr. foresterman. i hope there was cake and singing and lot's of celebrating!!

    i really enjoyed your inages today, all very pretty and very special!!

  14. Happy Birthday Mr. Forestman.

  15. Happy Birthday to your wonderful husband and best wishes to a strong. lovely women.

  16. Happy Birthday to Mr. Foresterman. Today is my husband's birthday too!
    Your pictures are spectacular and so are you.

  17. Looks like an amazing day. The trees are gorgeous. Happy birthday to Mr. Foresterman :)

  18. What a lovely round a bout love story. I am so glad you have him, and that things are looking up for you! You deserve it!

  19. Happy birthday to Mr.Foresterman and we wish him well. Lovely post and we are so pleased it is onwards and upwards with you. Have a wonderful Saturday.
    Best wishes Molly

  20. Happy birthday to Mr. Foresterman!! :)
    What stunning pictures you shared with us today and you did NOT come off as a depressing, whiny martyr weasel. Listen to Mr. Foresterman and do what he tells you and you'll keep getting better and better and wear those stockings!

  21. Happy Birthday Mr. Foresterman :-D. Thanks for taking Feral back to the woods so she can take such beautiful pictures!

  22. I would like to thank you for a fun day. I came across your blog yesterday how I got here I have now idea. I spent the day reading your blog I did read it backwards from today to the start. You took me threw all emotions from a tear in the eye to Laughing. You have a great eye for the perfect picture and a gift with your ability at expressing your self. The love the sadness the joy of life jumps out to all that read it.Thanks for sharing your heart with us all. Take care of yourself. And happy Bday to Foresterman.

  23. Happy Birthday Mr. Foresterman! I love living too. The alternative ain't so good.:) Timber cruising is a job where you can work in a beautiful place. My hubby used to have a portable sawmill business. I'd love visiting him in his "office" in the forest. Keep taking care of yourself.

  24. What a wonderful blog, gorgeous photos and heartfelt words. I too have one of those guys in my life--I didn't start really living and loving until I was 38 years old. Happy Birthday to your guy--may you enjoy many more together!

  25. Exceptional way you have "to speak your truth!" and to include these exceptional photos too . . . the YELLOWS mixed with the greens are brillant contrasts . . .

    Happy Birthday to your "Forest Man!".
    and continued being well, free from "Thromby!"

  26. Oh Feral you are truly the most amazing person. I went over to check and see how our friend Leontien was doing as usual and I noticed you heart felt comment. You are such a caring person and she probably needs to hear more comments like yours. You certainly know how important those comments are. Yes that is why you are my hero. Be well my friend. HUGS

  27. and you, YOU, are a treasured gift to him I am sure...

    Your photos and your writing...will never cease to amaze me. I have so often come across conversations about miracles, and why God allowed certain things, why He just didn't take other problems away...but I think it is miracle in itself that you keep your humour, you keep who you essentially are and keep LIVING amidst chaos and unknown. Yes, it's all figuring out a new normal and it has been ten years since clots sat in my left lung sending the most searing pain I've ever experienced...and really, it seems like a lifetime ago. When I've had to inject the medication two subsequent times, it's all become old hat...if I could do things with the same hilarity and seeing the glass as shining as brightly as she is full as YOU--I'd be so blessed.

    Never stop sharing. Your words count.

  28. Beautiful pictures, beautiful words, beautiful couple. Happy BD Mr. Forestman and thank you Feral for sharing your story.

  29. Ok Feral...You remind me of my Man, (with the butt pictures & all) Only it seems you are as obsessed with his as the Man is with mine :o) You are right about how life didn't start until we met them & how they make every day special & unexpected. So a very happy birthday to your best friend, Mr. Foresterman.

  30. Yep ~ I got me one of those kinda guys too ~ that sees me through it all. LOVE the photos! I'm so glad you're able to be out and about with a bit more confidence than before. Hang in there girl ~ there's a LOT of living to be done out there in this great big beautiful world of ours:) ~ even if it means hiking with your man!

  31. Absolutely stunning pictures! Happy Birthday to the man in your life and I'm sure it was a labor of love for him to help you over the rough patch. That's what love is all about. :o) He knows you would reciprocate.

  32. Happy birthday to mr. foresterman! I am blessed with a good husband too, who lives with my type 1 diabetes, no easy feat, and helped me through my bout with cancer. He cooks for us every day, but never every day food, only the best, most wonderful meals. That's his way of showing love, in the good old New Orleans way. That's where he's from. His birthday was last week. The pictures are so glorious, I had to read your words first and then go back and enjoy the pictures of the forest and your new header photo. Like I said to Tomaz, you are feral and tough. It is not easy to be half-well and then have to go through what you went through on top of it. That's what worried me and that's what has been on my mind. So, thank you so much for this post. With the help of your man and your critters, you will come through this. That much is clear. And even your veins are cooperating!

  33. Wonderful you have Mr. Foresterman, who loves you through and through... I'm so thankful you're close to the one-year mark and you're back in the woods...

  34. Happy Birthday to your main dude- and glad that you are back out and about in the woods you love.

  35. Happy Birthday to Mr. Foresterman; the love of your life, the man that makes you so happy and knows you so well. You two are a wonderful pair.
    I am so sorry about the Olympics, but glad that you have some very nice stockings now. Get your walk on, eat those healthy foods, drink that awesome water and stay encouraged.
    Your photos are so very AWESOME. I love all the Fall colors and sceneries. I feel a little empty when I see the bare trees. But the one with the sunset was so WONDERFUL. I guess there's a way to finding beauty in most anything.
    You have a way of telling your story and I'm intriged. I say prayers for you and yours.

  36. I totally get the vein and thrombosis and Olympics thing. after a big accident 13 years ago, I had to give up my career as an opera singer. Oh - wait - I didn't have one!
    Stunning golden photos, and of the dead trees and moon!
    and happy birthday, Mr Foresterman!
    - The Equestrian Vagabond

  37. Stay well and keep on laughing and living. I loved your post. Sorry about the illness fire ect but you have the good out weight the bad .
    Your an inspiration. I ve had the flu for a month and I never whinned once .. out loud that is.

  38. and I almost forgot I got so lost in your photos and story .. Outstanding images. HB to your Man.

  39. oh...those pictures...i can smell the clean, fresh air...ahhhh!

  40. A balated happy Birthday!

    It's sounds like you've had quite a row to hoe.

    I'm glad you're finding a better grip on the handle.

    Your photos are truly lovely.

    I can feel the cool in the air.

    Just beautiful.

    Sending a gentle prayer your way.

  41. I followed a link from Buttons blog and what do I find some of the most amazing photos I have ever seen....

    I hope your foresterman had an awesome birthday.............

  42. Lucky ME I found your blog! You, your life, your blog- incredible! Thank you from blogland- for posting such amazing photos and words and experiences- you are indeed awesome. I just spent the better part of the morning reading past posts of yours, catching up.Now the dog is mad at me.

  43. that second photo is absolutely delightful!

  44. Bear is a bit slow, but, up here, it's autumn, and that's often a slow time for Bears.

    1. Belated "Happy Birthday" to Mr. Forresterman.

    2. Congratulations on getting healthier, and being able to cruise timer again, instead of being stuck indoors. (Indoors can be soooooo boring.)

    3. I've had a couple of thrombys; they have come and gone without incident. I didn't think much about them, until a gent I knew had one. It killed him, in about 6 hours, while he was undergoing treatment in the hospital. Hmmmm.

    I hope you find cruising to be a continuing delight, along with your companions — Dexter and you Best Guy!

  45. Hi. I'm glad to join the chorus in wishing you well, birthday wishes to hubby, beautiful pix, and great text. Love your attitude on lie. Thanks for sharing. - Karen

  46. Ok, so are you ever going to tell us if it's boxers or briefs? I'm referring to the interview you did with him a loooong time ago on your blog! I'm teasing you know. Yes I do have a man like yours. Very wonderful indeed, my Shug. And I LOVE Life too! And you are doing a wonderful job of living it, and sharing it. Thank you.

    Cindy Bee

    PS - Happy Birthday Mr. Foresterman. I'm guessing briefs.

  47. How did I miss this post??? First of all, a very belated happy birthday to your wonderful husband/best friend/motivator!
    Thank you for sharing all those beautiful photos with us, beauty can be found everywhere but apparently it abounds wherever you are.
    Yay for getting back to work, for compression stockings, for a husband who nags lovingly, for not falling down, for thromby not spreading, for clean lungs, and most of all for unconditional love.
    And thank you for being so inspiring.
    And for a little piece of Baby's pasture that arrived in the mail. It sits in a place of honour in my cabinet.

  48. Absolutely stunning photos!! I am so happy that your health is improving you have had such a hard time this last wishes. And happy birthday to your loving hubby!

  49. You are an inspiration to everyone around you~

  50. Catching up with you, Janice.

    Amazing photos throughout your post -- my dad suffered from multiple blood clots during his long life, but it was well-managed.

    Happy belated b-day to your sweetie.


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