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Martha, just write whenever you can. I got your short email just now. I hope you find out what's causing your breathing problems. I understand completely and sympathize with you about sleep issues.

MaryNolan, thank you for the prayer in the Wailing Wall! That is so very special.

Octomom, I agree about the email. I am sorry that I did not make it onto the site yesterday. I used to be on here regularly but lately it has been kind of hit or miss. I have been having problems with shortness of breath and I sometimes go lie down for awhile, and sometimes I end up going to sleep. Since I do not sleep well at night, that is actually a blessing.


Thanks, Mary. I don't think Martha's seen my comment yet. What a nice thought for you to put a prayer in the Wailing Wall. Just in time for Chanukah! I'm coming as fast as I can. Or as fast as my house takes to sell... And you're welcome on the puzzle. I've found the larger sizes get more solves, so I might be posting in the larger sizes in the future. Time for you to step up your game and advance to the next level...


Over my size limit but so pretty I just had to do it!

I wish the best for both of you, Gail and Martha. My torn up shoulders are nothing compared to what you're facing. I'm going to try to find the website where you can put a prayer in the Western Wall that I used to have and put a prayer for each of you there. Tradition says prayers in the Wall should be in Hebrew and I think I still remember enough of it to get by! Glad you didn't delete before I got to see your update, Gail, I'm just hoping you'll have an easy-as-possible trip here and the sooner the better!

Great puzzle. 9:36 Thanks, Gail!


You can interrupt any time, Kirsten. I'm so glad you liked the puzzle.

Martha, I feel so much sorrier for you than I could ever for myself. Your problems are myriad and serious. I urge you to take someone with you to all your appointments to be your eyes and ears, especially since your family lives so close by. It's daunting to have to listen to all the doctors have to say and easy to get thoroughly confused. That's why it's so important to have an advocate with you to ask questions and take notes.

Nortriptyline is one of the original antidepressants that have been found to have good anti-pain properties. I take trazadone for that, along with Neurontin (Gabapentin is the generic) for my neuropathy in my legs. I also take morphine, Effexor, Vitamin D and fish oil. I'm a regular pharmacopia, as are you.

I'd really like to delete these comments and continue by email, if you don't mind. It's too much personal information on here. I'll see when we're online at the same time.


(I'm sorry to interrupt Gail and Martha. Just wanted to let you know how much I like this one Gail. Thanks! :-D )

Oh my, what news! You are making a really big decision. Good luck with the logistics. That sounds so daunting to me. A move across country to a place you have never lived. You are a brave and courageous soul. How on earth will you ever manage the cats? I left Oregon when I was 12, I am now 69 and I still miss it. I have lived in Texas since that time and I do love it here but well....

I am so sorry that the injections did not work. Here I was envying you that you were feeling perky that your pain was gone. However, I was very worried about the Cymbalta. My daughter took that for over a year, has been off it now for several years and she still has some after effects from it. It seems to be the drug of choice right now but the Effexor has been around for a number of years and seems to be effective and fairly safe. None of those drugs is really safe but I take two generics sertraline and nortriptyline (sp). It is impossible to manage without several of the drugs. I take nine different prescription drugs in all.

Alas, the myelogram is with contrast so I will be having the dye. I went away from the doctor so dazed that I am not sure what type of surgery they will be doing. The doctor is a neurosurgeon and my main problem is narrowing of the spinal canal and pressure on the nerve roots. Of course there are bone spurs, bulging discs, arthritis, etc. There is not a single lumbar vertebrae without a problem. They will do a CT scan which will delineate the area for the surgery. My next meeting with the surgeon is when we will go over the results and he will tell me just what he will be doing in the surgery. I am beginning to feel like I am just so many spare parts. Soon there will not be any original parts left! After all this, I have a foot which has become badly distorted by neuropathy and is beginning to become painful. Probably surgery there as well. And I thought that the knee replacement would be the end of it.

I know that you will be happy to again be with family. I am lucky in that my family is nearby. I live 2 doors from my daughter, of course in the country I still have to drive to her house to see her! I have one son who lives just in the next town. My other son lives about a 4 hour drive away and I feel that he is too far away! My thoughts will be with you as you embark on your grand adventure. Keep me posted on how things are going and I will do the same.


Hi Martha, I'm so glad you're back. I'm so very sorry to hear your news is not good. We're the opposite ~ you have to lie down, and I almost can't. Do you know exactly what type of surgery you're going to need? Don't worry too much about a myelogram. All it is is an image, somewhat like an MRI. The only problem may come in if you need a contrasting myelogram. This is where they inject a dye that courses through your system to outline where your problem areas are. Once in a while, it might make a person nauseous, but not everyone has that. Do you have a date set for the procedure? Please let me know.

To save you some time looking through my puzzles, which I know is a chore, here's the Reader's Digest on how I'm doing. The shot I had didn't work, and my pain doc doesn't think a second one will help, so that was very disappointing. I had reached the point where I wanted another one. He feels the disk bulge is mostly the cause of my pain, but surgery is out for me, as it was surgery that disabled me. I guess you can't get fibromyalgia twice, though. If it ruptures, I'll definitely need surgery. I was on Cymbalta for two months for my fibromyalgia and pain, and that didn't work. It cost me $50 a month copay from Medicare. There are other dual reuptake inhibitors on the market that are generic and very similar in property to the Cymbalta, so I'm on Effexor, and just waiting out the six weeks to see if it helps. After that, there's no much more to be done, which is really discouraging.

I do have some big news to report. I've lived in Oregon for the last 33 years. I moved here two weeks before Mt. St. Helens blew her top in 1980. I'm originally from NYC. I have one sister who still lives there, a brother who lives in Delaware, and another sister who lives in Florida. I've put my house on the market and am planning to move to Florida to be closer to family. I never have visitors out here, and at my age (60), it's becoming increasingly difficult to not be around family. I'm not enamored of Florida, but NYC is out of the question. As soon as my house sells, I'll be moving. It's going to be a royal pain, because I'll have five or six cats to get across the country, plus my furniture and possessions and car, and of course, myself. It's very difficult for me to get on a plane due to the pain, and the thought of a nine- or ten-hour plane ride is daunting. But the good news is that it'll be a one-way ticket. The bad news is that I'll never be able to come back to Oregon to see my friends. Oregon is much more my home than anything on the East Coast ever was. All in all, I'm looking forward to it. I just hope my house sells soon.

Yes, your zoo is a wonderful one, and your cats are gorgeous. If you told me where you live, I've forgotten.

Please let me know how things go. I'm so glad to see you back.

I'm back!!! Did you miss me? Sorry that I had not told you my name, it is Martha. How are you doing? I am catching up on months of not being on Jigidi and was forced on today by the roll out to allstars of the new features. I have been working saved puzzles occasionally, but that is all.

I read your post on my kitties' pictures. My zoo is quite a nice one, don't you think? Frankie is very skittish so I have few images of her, none complimentary.

My news is not very good. My pain has ramped up considerably so that the only way I am comfortable is lying down. I cannot take the injections. Wish I could. My back is needing surgery. Everything is in a whirlwind. I am waiting to go in for a myelogram which in itself looks to be quite a procedure. That will tell the doctor where the spinal cord and nerves are so he can plan the surgery.

Let me know how you are doing. I know the information is in your puzzles but right now I do not have the get up and go to go back over several months' puzzles. Take care of yourself and I hope to hear from you.


Great colors, Gail. Fun puzzle. Thanks a lot!


Thanks so much, Barb.


Another very attractive puzzle, Gail. :-)