The Painkiller Diaries

operation

Still here :-)

 still pecking away with one hand, almost 3 weeks post shoulder surgery.

‘your arm should be a limp noodle for 6 weeks’ my surgeon admonished me.

limp noodle, limp noodle, limp noodle -my sexy new mantra

I was also forewarned the first days after the procedure would be painful. uh, check…and that recovery from rotator cuff surgery is slow.

I’m not exactly the most patient patient in the world, but I think I’m doing as well as can be expected. many thanks for your emails and kind wishes!

I’ve also discovered there’s an awful lot of people who experience this type of injury at some point, so i thought i might share a few of the things i’ve learned while going through the process.

be forewarned; this is not a pretty post by any means. don’t worry, i’m not going to share my photos or the  surgery DVD i was sent home with ( to think i used to be happy leaving a doctor’s office with a plastic ring and balloon)  i haven’t the stomach to watch my movie yet (i get squeemy if my pierced earrings don’t go through on the first pass) but i’ll let you know if my performance was award-worthy once i do.

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i’m just saying…there’ll be no flowers or shoes and little fashion on this post.

you’ll just have to deal.

herewith then,

10 Tips for being a Successful, Semi-Productive, One-Armed Bandit for 6 Weeks;

*note; a couple of these tips are gender specific. you can decide which ones.

1) let’s get the nitty gritty out of the way first; lest this might not cross your mind, it’s a great idea to wax your underarms to within a centimeter of their lives the night before surgery. you will be unable to shave for at least a few weeks after.

2) a mani-ped the day before is mandatory.

3) invest in a good back scratcher-they’re a life-saver.

4) load up on elastic waisted sweats, p.j.’s and slouchy, easy to put on tops. your arm and shoulder will be big and swollen for several days.  arm-holes will be an issue and surgery = bloating.

Screen Shot 2013-11-11 at 7.13.02 PM5) Channel your inner Julian Schnabel and also get yourself at least one decent set of ‘going out’ pyjamas, just in case you simply must make a social appearance

IMG_7904my ‘street jams’

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6) before surgery you should get set up with one of these ice machines that pulse freezing water through a large pad that clamps your arm & shoulder and attaches with velcro bands around your torso.  have a couple of practice sessions before your surgery with whoever will be nursing you during recovery.

ice machineonce you come out of your pain-killer haze, if you’re anything like me,  you’ll start to regard this device with extreme aversion

alien-Don’t. the creature is your friend, and it really does help. it can also be used on knees, thighs, hips, elbows (and possibly faces) so at $195 it’s a good investment.

i warned you this wasn’t going to be pretty.

all men look away now.

 7) one of the hardest things to deal with after surgery is getting dressed, but by the second week i’d devised a pretty genius bra positioning system, even if i do say so myself.

strapless braps. this is how much i love you that i would share this photo of my old M & S strapless bra.

let’s have some trust here people-i don’t want to see this on Pinterest! (at least not credited)

here’s what you do;

a) get a huge t-shirt that pulls on & off easily

b) place the bra (strapless or not, depending on how much you can bear on your shoulder) around your waist over the t-shirt and do it up at the front. if you’ve been suffering from a bad rotator cuff for awhile you’re probably already well versed in doing your bra up like you did in grade school.

c)  pull the t-shirt up with your good hand, very gently, starting from around the chest region. the bra will follow. continue until the bra is in desired location.

d) remove t-shirt over head. voila.

don’t you think i should write instructions for Ikea??

8) buy some slide on hair bands. there is no way, no how you will be able to put your hair up or out of the way yourself for several weeks. it’s impossible.

God bless my male nurse-i love him to pieces and he’s been brilliant, but  he did not miss his calling as a hair dresser.

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scrunchieI hand him my scrunchie and it’s like I’ve given him the plans to build Gaudi’s  Sacrada Familia

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come to think of it, this does resemble one of his loftier follicular efforts :-)

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9) buy several of these rubber kitchen things you use for taking items out of the oven or getting a grip on tough to open jars.  keep one in the kitchen, bedside (or recliner side), in the shower and one where you apply your makeup. these will allow you to ‘get purchase’ on containers  (including child-proof prescription bottles) from the bottom and open them with your one good hand. just place the bottle on the pad, push down and turn.

slimpaley.com

I wish i’d discovered this little trick before my Neely O’Hara “Valley of the Dolls” incident one painful, sleep challenged night.

Patty Duke in Valley of the Dolls, 1967.

i’m still finding pills on the floor.

When I look at the ‘post op’ list i’d compiled of all the things i was going to do from my recovery recliner I have to laugh.

The early days are attention deficit theatre.  Practice my French? c’est fou! organize photos? don’t be ridicoolus. eat an Elvis inspired deep-fried peanut butter & jelly sandwich while under the influence of pain-killers? Even that never happened.

I crossed virtually nothing off, save watching the first 4 episodes of “Homeland”, two instalments of “The Returned” and I’m half-way through reading “Empty Mansions; the mysterious life of Huguette Clark”

but you know what I did watch a ton of??

HGTV

especially

IYOB5

10) hellooo…the “Kitchen Cousins” John Colaneri & George Clooney Anthony Carrino

where have I been?  it’s great!

your thoughts?

my favourite thing about the show is that it doesn’t reek of staged, oh-so-faux drama and deadlines. we needn’t name the multiple offenders here…you know who you are.

no, really-that is my favourite thing.

they arrive, they knock down the kitchen, design a new one, build it on time and within budget (in fact i don’t recall budgets even being discussed) and move on, hopefully to a town near you :-)

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I couldn’t, in all good conscience, leave you with no pleasant visuals!

how did I end up with men carrying heavy lumber in a ‘post-shoulder surgery tips’ post?

your guess is as good as mine, but it is entitled “The Painkiller Diaries”

it had to eventually go off the rails…

Have a great, healthy & happy week!

xxsp

ps. many thanks to my great surgeon Dr. Richard Ryu and the cute staff at Elite Physical Therapy in Montecito!

Blast from the past; a fun post on wearing your pyjamas out; Slumber in the Streets

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The Turning

flowers from my garden, Slimpaley.com

It’s here.

 Autumn has officially arrived.

I will acknowledge its presence and no longer be cranky with those who wished the warm weather away.

I’ve perused the gross weight of all the September issues, witnessed Halloween & Thanksgiving decor in stores for myself and weakly bleet “UNCLE”

Ya got me.

As you may have noticed, I even changed my header photo. Now if I could only figure out how to nix the turquoise banner for a more autumnal shade I’d be good.

WordPress, please heed my cry for help!

Light on the dining room wall, Slim PaleyTruly, I knew It was almost here with the subtle shift of late afternoon light in my dining room. After living in this home for over 20 years we’re like old friends that finish each other’s sentences.

“Slim” (said the house) “Stop trying to act all ‘India Hicks’ with the giant palm fronds still on the table. It’s the end of September. Get over yourself”

Like I said, Very old friends.

white roses. slimpaley.com

And while I for one will still lament the all too soon passing of our summer, I’ll readily concede there are no other seasonal contenders when it comes to the beauty of Autumn light. I could basically just run around my house with a camera from 4pm to 6pm from now through November and be a very happy glamper.

Lost in Arles via Lost in Arles blog

Then there’s the whole “leaf changing thing”

Which I guess is okay if you go in for that sort of stuff…

Another big check in the plus column?

dolce-gabbana-rtw-fw2013-runway-60_112954382617Dolce & Gabbana Fall 2013

Hellooo Fall Fashion!

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Louis Vuitton Fall 2013

Louis Vuitton Fall 2013

Not to mention (always followed by a mention)

A bed & a book

that my flannel sheets will soon be making their eagerly awaited comeback.

Oh Happy Happy Joy Joy!

Truth be told, I could blissfully sleep in flannel all year round.

Of course I wouldn’t still be married, so there’s that…

49032504Photos via here

 I totally adore the colours of Fall

24401145How divine is this copper & rust mixed with palest cream & blush?

I’m So copying. With flowers and a make-up palette. Stay tuned.

Screen Shot 2013-09-24 at 7.41.40 AMphoto Sarah Maingot

Shorter days and cooler nights invite us back to long heavenly soaks in the bath.

Never a bad thing.

Fall. Slimpaley.comAnd Fall food is as comforting as all get out. Soup’s on? I’m there.

be81dd751d0fec8be52948e3190ed470Grilled onions with thyme & cream. Recipe here

Angels on Horseback

A version of “Angels on Horseback” with Medjool dates, water chestnuts & pineapple wrapped in bacon, marinated in soy sauce & pineapple juice then baked. Yum.

Howard Slatkin bar

Libationally (I say it’s a word) it’s fun to adapt your bar, like this one in Howard Slatnik’s home, to the cooler season’s more comforting requirements.

vintage books. Slimpaley.comAnd I must admit, Fall certainly does invite one to hunker down and enjoy more cozy reading time…

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So;

pretty light, gorgeous colours, long baths & flannel sheets. A good meal, a great read, cashmere & a comely cocktail…

I do believe I’ve just talked myself into being very happy that Autumn has arrived!

Check it! I could be on “Super Soul Sunday”

I have a motivational speaker lurking inside of me!

omg. That explains my inexplicable weight gain over the summer…

Phew. Just found the silver lining!

Slimpaley.com

Happy Falling Leaves To All

xxSP

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It was my birthday

white rose bouquet

I tip-toed away and had a quiet little birthday this week. Not a momentous one, nothing ending in a “0″ or marking another decade. Just one of those that glide by with the swiftness of a bird’s wing, a gentle whoosh,silent … Continue reading

Hanging Around

lakeside hammock, Muskoka, Ontario

 Perched on the edge of Lake Muskoka, Ontario,

A heavenly hammock swings between a pair of perfectly placed trees in the garden of our friend’s charming old cottage.

It just doesn’t get much better than this.

I’ll spare the Jim Croce song, but “If I could save time in a bottle…”

This would definitely be one of those times.

BTW, have you ever been to Lake Muskoka or the Lake Region of eastern Canada?

Lake Muskoka

This is how beautiful it is. For miles and miles and miles.  No filter, plain & simple.

Put it on your list.

But once again, I digress…

hammock on deck

I told you I was still putting up a hammock post.

September, Schmmeptember.

beach hammockI could possibly have saved this for my “Indigo” post-which, in my timely fashion, should debut just before Christmas.

Cause I know when one hears the word “Christmas” one instantly thinks Indigo!

porch seat hammock

But for real, who doesn’t adore the promise of a cozy hammock with all the dreamy, romantic emotions  they evoke?

A macramé cocoon twisting gently from the creaky ceiling of a sleeping porch, a mattress ticking pillow, Hudson Bay blanket thrown over the edge and a great book nestled within?

or perhaps it’s more

Robinson Crusoe meets Swiss Family Robinson with Johnny Depp lurking behind the nearest palm tree, whittling you a coconut vessel from which to sip your rum. Together.

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Hey, It’s all good, Matey :-)

At the other end of the spectrum…

hammock under the trees

This romantic vignette helped inspire my English Country Garden Tastemaker Tag Sale on “One King’s Lane” last week.

indoor hammock, tile floor

I also think it’s awfully fun to hang a hammock indoors, given the right setting, don’t you?

I’ve never done it, but never say never, though I think they’re especially great in a young person’s abode.

Lots of dash for little cash.

Besides,extricating one’s self from a hammock can take some manuoevering manuveouring effort.

black & white hammock photo

I love this photo, but I’m sure I’d have that basket weave deeply imprinted on my entire body for the rest of the day.

Ahh, once again, the ageing process…

it’s a beautiful thing.

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Fancy bathing in a hammock big enough for two? check out  Splinterworks.co.uk

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Here’s one sporting my favourite combo of black & white, plus a handy thick rug placed strategically underneath for a two-martini roll out.

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The pinnacle of Hammock Chic- the woven leather one by Hermes

I’ll take two, on either side of the fireplace thank you very much.

boat bed

And a most charming turn on a nautical hammock, a vintage boat brought indoors.

Don’t you just love creative people?!

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2013 A Space Hammock. For the ultimate threesome.

Info HERE

Hammock in Greece

Or the perfect old school hammock swinging gently above the olive groves of Greece.

Pass the feta please.

seaside hammock

Tropical, indoor, old school or space age

Let’s face it. Hammocks rock.

Bora Bora

At the Nui Nui in Bora Bora

Paging Fletcher Christian…

Marlon Brando as Fletcher Christian

sigh.

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Here’s to sweet languorous dreams of a life lived slowly…

But only 9 more months ’til next summer!

Australia-you’re not even allowed to say a thing right now!

Happy September All

xoxSP

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All uncredited photos from Tumblr or pinterest

Happy Labour Day Weekend!

kate-moss-patrick-demarchelier-vogue-june2013

Happy Labour Day Weekend!

Oh YAY.

The weekend that officially licks the stamp, seals the deal, clicks the “send” button on Summer.

 Super.

And me, with all these lovely, summery images & ideas still left to share…

And possibly one of the greatest summery songs by one of the greatest summery bands;

So you have to promise to listen, nice & loud as always, while you stroll leisurely through this post…


(there’ll be a test to make sure you were listening afterwards!)

bouganvilla covered terrace

Well. We’ll soon be kissing these scenarios good-bye, won’t we?terrace with lanterns

( 2 images from Tumblr )

890A8404and no longer running out to my garden to gather roses for the table

(OK,  laying it on a bit thick here-hopefully we still have a couple of months left of roses in Santa Barbara)

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I never got to finish the ultra impressive “SUMMER ICE” post I was working on.

(Martha, you can breathe a sigh of relief my friend-the above was my very best effort- they were supposed to be ice balls but the two halves wouldn’t stick together. It looked so easy in the Japanese video)

ice-cube-tray_300

I wanted to say what a nifty idea this was-freezing aloe vera juice into ice cubes to soothe nasty sunburns.

Particularly great for using on your kid’s friends so they go home and say “Timmy’s mom makes aloe ice-cubes for sunburns!! “

and you just sound like the best frickin’ mom ever.

PS. I never made them.

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I also never told you about my trip to the city of Orange recently where the temperature reached a 100 degrees and as I stepped out my car I spotted this super cool old fashioned ice-dispensing machine. Instagram American Graffiti moment. IF I were old enough to even remember that movie, which, no way, I’m not. My husband told me about it.

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Oh, I had so many summery images collected

canoe as table

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Some, like maybe this one of Daria Werbowy, you could have lived without. But if I’m in testy mood, I’m dragging you with me.

We’re a team here-you’re in or you’re out, you know that.

beachy bracelets

Skinceuticals Sunscreen, Slim Paley photo

I had a whole summer skin products thing I was working on…

but I’ll just say; for me, this was the best face sunscreen I found. Broad spectrum, very lightly tinted, thin consistency (though slightly oily, not a bad thing for me) and a whopping SPF 50 without feeling like you have a mask on. Also comes un-tinted.

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Did I get a chance to write my post on “HAMMOCKS”?

NO.

Well, that post is still coming, maybe even tomorrow, so don’t try and stop me.

Bloody Labour Day.

And did you know that this past Friday, the 30th of August, was “National Marshmallow Roasting Day”?

Swear to God.

 I even had a “Roasted Marshmallow Post” so here it is, somewhat condensed;

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Roasting by the river’s edge in Idaho.

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Toasted Marshmallow Milkshake (with Greek yoghurt!) HERE

mulit-prong marshmallow roasting stick

Help me find these??

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Some perfectly roasted giants mallows I posted on Instagram last month.

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Aqua Creations’ Origami LED “Marshmallow” lamps are folded from a single sheet of paper.

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covered porch, Sun Valley, Slim Paley

The antique lantern in my covered porch in Sun Valley always reminds me of a toasted marshmallow.

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Marshmallow outdoor furniture

marshmallow shaped hanging light

Sigma-Focus-barbeque-open

and if  you’re cramped for space, how cool, er hot, is this wall mounted barbeque from Sigma Focus?!

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bracelet & watch

striped shirt

and when all else fails…

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XOXO SP

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Top photo Kate Moss by Patrick Demarchelier

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