The Final Bridge, for now

Dentist time.

It is dentist time again.  Usually, when the dentist puts in a temporary bridge, this is my second bridge, it falls out shortly thereafter.  In fact, a temporary anything tends to fall out shortly thereafter.  This not because my dentist is a bad dentist.  He is definitely not.  I like my dentist, and he is a very good dentist.  

It is in the glue.

It is just that this office doesn’t use strong glue for the temporary.  To my surprise, this temporary bridge stayed in for a month, and was taken out by the dentist.  

To the dentist.

As usual, I am dressed and patient lifted into my power wheelchair.  I wait for my driver.  When she arrives, of course the van ramp doesn’t work.  This time it takes three tries to get the ramp to work.  Finally, it works and I’m off to the dentist. 

At the dentist’s office.

When I get to the dentist, the van ramp works and into the dentist’s waiting room I go.  I sign the usual dental insurance forms. I am called into the dentist office thereafter. 

The permanent bridge.

My permanent bridge is ready and the dentist puts it into my mouth.  He gets it to fit.  He files it down a little and it fits fine.  Apparently, one of my teeth are loose but the permanent bridge fits.  I ask him about my two other broken teeth.  

The billing guy

I ask him if insurance will pay for the teeth.  He does not know and he said I should call someone who does his billing.  He mentions in passing that these teeth are molars, way in the back of my mouth and once the extractions are done, no bridge will be put into my mouth because these teeth are so far back that I don’t chew on them anyway.  

Do I really need to call the billing guy?

Well then I said, I don’t really need to call your billing guy.  He said that I’m right and he threw out the phone number for his billing guy that he was writing.  

Let’s do a cleaning

After the permanent bridge was in, I asked about a cleaning.  I had to wait until the dental assistant who does the cleaning was ready.  

X-ray time

I was taken for a complete set of x-rays.  After the x-rays, I saw the dental assistant, and he did the cleaning while I sat in my power wheelchair.  

The front desk

Then I went to the front desk to arrange for my next dental visit.  It turns out that this will not be for six months. I set up a December 2019 appointment.  I left the dentist’s office after calling my driver.  

Time for a fill-up

We stopped off to get gas.  Home is where I went after that.  The van ramp worked and I went into my house.  I was patient lifted from my power wheelchair into my bed.  I was undressed and a hospital gown was put on me.

Comments 

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Dental Extraction Part Two

Time to return to the dentist.

It is time for another visit to the dentist.  Once again I am dressed and patient lifted into my wheelchair.  I am a paraplegic because my Multiple Sclerosis has progressed to where my legs are largely useless.  I wait for my driver in the house.  

Rampless

When she arrives I go to my van, but the ramp does not come out. It takes two tries to get the ramp to come out.  Finally the ramp comes out after two tries, and to the dentist office we go. The ramp comes out with no problem once we arrive at the dentist office.  I sign the usual dental insurance forms, and I wait in the waiting room.  The wait is not long.  The dentist is busy today.  He has many other patients.  I wait in my wheelchair in the room where the dentist does his work. Finally, the dentist returns. 

Extraction incomplete 

I tell the dentist that it seems like he did not complete the extraction the last time.  He says no and that there might be some gauze left in my mouth.  He starts to poke around my mouth with some instruments, and then he gives me two injections and continues poking around my mouth.  Then he starts drilling.  He continues to poke around my mouth.  

Extraction part two

Then he turns to me, and says, well, you were right there was a piece of the tooth left from last time, and he had to complete the extraction.  

The mold

Then he took a mold, and it felt like he left some of the mold in my mouth.  He told me no that he had taken the mold and put a temporary bridge in my mouth.  I was finished for the day after he made sure the temporary bridge fit properly in my mouth. 

Back to the waiting room.

 I went to the waiting room, called my driver from the waiting room and into the van I went.  There was no problem with the van or the ramp. 

Time to wash the car.

We stopped off at a car wash.  We headed home. Once home, I pushed the button to open the van door and let the ramp out.  The door opened, but the ramp did not come out.  My driver pressed the button on the key and the door closed and then opened, and the ramp came out. 

Home at last. 

Into the house I went. I was home.  Then I navigated the wheelchair into the bedroom, and I was patient lifted into my bed.  I was undressed and went back into my usual hospital gown.

Comments

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SweetLF 3D Rechargeable 100% Waterproof IPX7 Electric Shaver Wet & Dry Rotary Shavers for Men

Not as close as a blade.

This is a review of the SweetLF 3D Rechargeable 100% Waterproof IPX7 Electric Shaver Wet & Dry Rotary Shavers for Men.  I have been using various Norelco electric shavers for many years.  The Norelco electric shavers gave me a reasonably close shave considering they were electric shavers.  I don’t think that any electric shaver gives as good or as close a shave as a blade.  I started using electric shavers as a teenager.

This post contains affiliate links.  I receive a small commission at no additional charge to you.   Please see my affiliate disclaimer.

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Variety is the spice of shaving life

I tried a variety of electric shavers including a number of Remington electric shavers.  I knew I had to switch from the blade racers that I was using because I had too many cuts from the blade racers I was using.

Acne

It wasn’t that the blade razors were bad, it was that as a teenager I had a really bad case of acne.  I cut a lot of acne pimples off my face as a teenager.  This was mostly unintentional, and I desperately needed to find a better way.  Eventually, I discovered Norelco electric shavers.  The shave was reasonably good, but cleaning the electric razor was a chore.

This is not my father-in-law’s Norelco

I got my father-in-law a Norelco electric shaver, and I would regularly go to my in-law’s house to clean my father-in-law’s Norelco electric shaver because it was too difficult for him to clean the shaver.  My father-in-law has since passed away, but the problem with Norelco electric shavers has remained.

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The shave is good, I need more

They provide a reasonably good shave, but are difficult to clean.  I got a Norelco electric shaver for my son.  One day I checked his razor, only to find that he never cleaned the electric razor.  Of course, I cleaned it for him but I thought there must be a better answer.

And now for something completely different

One day I got so fed up with cleaning the Norelco that I decided to try something different.  I read some reviews and I decided that this SweetLF 3D Rechargeable 100% Waterproof IPX7 Electric Shaver Wet & Dry Rotary Shavers for Men was worth a try.  It is relatively low priced for an electric shaver.

Razor burn

It gives a relatively good shave.  The first time I tried it, I got a fair amount of razor burn.  It has self-sharpening rotary heads, and it has been steadily improving with use.  By the third shave, I now get a shave (and no razor burn) that rivals the Norelco electric shavers in closeness.

Is it easy to clean?

But what I love most about this shaver is that it is amazingly easy to clean.  It is a wet/dry shaver, and to clean it I just pop open the top (there is a little button to press), and I run water over the shaving heads.  I do this on the top of the heads, and the bottom of the heads and clean the top hair compartment with running water.

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Unplug the shaver

There is a warning to unplug the shaver first.  This is probably a good idea, but I am handicapped, really can’t do that, although I try to be careful and not run water by the lower part of the handle.  It comes with a brush for cleaning but I have so far never needed it.

Short cord

It comes with a cord, but it is very short.  If you are like me, you will buy a longer cord.  However, depending on how long a cord you need in your bathroom, you may not need to buy a longer cord. Remember to get a cord with a micro usb connector.

Where is the ac adapter?

Another issue with this shaver is that it does not come with an ac adapter.  If you happen to have a spare ac adapter from an extra iPhone, like I do, then there is no problem.

Laptop capable, but really

While it’s true that you could just hook it up to your laptop, let’s get real, how many of us leave an expensive laptop by the sink in the bathroom?  If you don’t have a spare ac adapter, I suggest you buy an ac adapter.  They are relatively inexpensive, and much less expensive than replacing an expensive laptop that accidentally fell into a wet sink.

Cool display

USB QUICK-CHARGING & LED DISPLAY- Enjoy up to about 120 minutes of shaving (or approximately 30 full shaves). The shaver only requires 1 hour to charge and is very convenient for your daily use and for travel. There is also a visible 5 level battery remaining indicator gauge  on the razor so you can quickly see exactly how much power you have left before needing to charge the shaver.  I have never had a problem with the charge. and it arrived almost fully charged.

4-direction floating heads

A SMOOTH AND CLOSE SHAVE – With 4-direction floating heads, the 3D rotary shaver automatically adapts to the contours of the face, neck and even the jaw, and provides a comfortable and close shave everytime.  Well, most of the time.  Now that the self sharpening shaver has worked itself in after three shaves, it now provides a comfortable and close shave.

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Trimmer, please

POP-UP TRIMMER & ONE TOUCH OPEN – Skin-friendly and convenient pop-up beard trimmer easily trims sideburns, moustache and any facial hairstyle. It also features an easy one-touch open tab to quickly trim unwanted facial hair. The trimmer actually works much better than my old Norelco electric shaver.

Can be used with gel

WET AND DRY & FULL WATERPROOF – The IPX7 body is waterproof and allows you to use the electric shaver whether wet or dry including even in the shower. It easily adapts to either shaving foam or gel for a better and closer shaving experience.  I don’t doubt this, but I have to admit that I use an electric shaver without any foam or gel.

Not noisy

QUIET HIGH SPEED MOTOR – The premium quality motor is not only efficient but quiet as well so you can enjoy every moment shaving.  Frankly, I am more concerned with th shave, and easy cleaning, but it is nice that it is not too loud.

Whole body washable

With the whole body washable design, you could shave in the shower, and rinse the shaver head under the tap thoroughly after use.  This makes use and cleaning very convenient.

3D FloatingHead

It has a 3D Floating Head that gives a 360 degree close to the skin shave. It fits the curve of your face and neck perfectly, gives you a reliable close shave every time.

Double-TrackIt has a Double-Track Close to the face cutter so that the contact surface is increased, so save greatly your time and energy when shaving.

Extreme Shaving

It has an Extreme Shaving System with  automatic grinding technology and the blades are self-sharpening, which will not pull the beard or damage your skin, its sharpness can last longer than normal blades.

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Recommendation

This SweetLF 3D Rechargeable 100% Waterproof IPX7 Electric Shaver Wet & Dry Rotary Shavers for Men has three rotary shaving heads.  It works so well that I have bought two – one for me and one for my son.  It is highly recommended and I suggest that you give it a try.

Comments

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Mulberry Leaf Extract

The search for something.

I have been pre-diabetic for some time.  I have been looking for something that could keep me pre-diabetic, and prevent me from becoming diabetic.  At least, I was hoping to find something that would slow down the process of becoming diabetic.  I’ve tried supplements that contained a variety of herbal ingredients, only to find that they made me sick to my stomach.

This post and the product herein are not intended to treat, prevent or cure any illness.  Please consult with your physician before use.

Your results may differ from my results.

This post contains affiliate links.  I receive a small commission at no additional charge to you.   Please see my affiliate disclaimer.

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One day, I decided to try White Mulberry Leaf Extract.  It did not make me sick to my stomach, and so I decided to stay with it.  I had no way of knowing whether it was actually helping me, but at least it did no make me sick.

Hoping for the best

I continued to take the White Mulberry Leaf Extract, and I was hoping for the best.  I would take one pill before breakfast, and an other pill before lunch.

Four months later

It was not until 4 months later that my blood work up showed that my A1c had leveled off.  It had been as high as 6.6, and now it had leveled off at 6.4.  This is not to say that everyone’s results will be the same as my results.  It does seemed to have helped me.  The bottle claims that it provides healthy glucose support, healthy appetite control, and it is rich in antioxidants, proteins and fiber.

This post contains affiliate links.  I receive a small commission at no additional charge to you.   Please see my affiliate disclaimer.

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It works in Asia

I have heard that in Asia, type 2 diabetes is treated with Mulberry Leaf.  Some say that there are chemicals in White Mulberry Leaf Extract that slows the absorption of sugars in the gut.

Stablize my glucose levels

White Mulberry Leaf Extract seems to have helped me stabilize my glucose levels.  Please discuss this with your doctor before trying it.  It worked for me and I hope it works for others.

This post contains affiliate links.  I receive a small commission at no additional charge to you.   Please see my affiliate disclaimer.

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Questions or Comments

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave me your questions and comments below.

Extraction Indecision

Back to the Dentist.

It is time to go back to the dentist.  This is always a project for me and my aide.  I have Multiple Sclerosis and I am a paraplegic.  My legs don’t work.  I need to be changed.  I am patient lifted into my power wheelchair.  I maneuver the wheelchair through the door ways in my house, which is easier said than done, because the wheelchair was bought to fit in the van, not to be used around the house.

My Multiple Sclerosis progresses

As my Multiple Sclerosis has progressed, the power wheelchair has to be brought into my bedroom, and I am patient lifted into the power wheelchair.  I then go to the garage using a specialized ramp that was built for me.

The same driver

Then I wait for my driver, who was the same driver I had the last time I went to the dentist.  This does make it easier because I don’t have to give as thorough driving directions.

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My mistake

I went up the ramp without incident.  When we got to the dentist office, I made a mistake.

The key vs. the inside button

The key needs to be pressed twice to open the automatic van door, and the van ramp should come out automatically.  The button in the van to open the door automatically should only be pressed once. Sure enough, I pressed it twice, and the door would not open.  I had to press the button three times to finally get the door to open. Then it opened and the ramp came out.

I go solar

I disconnected the solar charger which I use for the van.  It helps keep the battery charged.  I don’t use the van that often and the solar charger keeps the battery going.  I went into the dentist office and signed in and signed the insurance form.

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Who’s a Teamster?

I am a Teamster.  How is this possible?  I previously worked at the New York City Houing Authority.  I have been told that when there was a vote for the union that the staff, there are many more clerks and typists than attorneys, decided to vote for the Teamsters Local 237.  The staff attorneys also became Teamsters.  This has turned out to be a godsend in my retirement.  It has means my whole family has dental insurance, eyeglass coverage, and prescription drug coverage.

The wait

Then I waited to be called.  Shortly thereafter, I was called and I spoke to the dentist.

To extract or not to extract

I mentioned that he had told me previously that I was likely to have an extraction of a lower right tooth that was cracked.  Then the dentist told me that he did not think he would do the extraction today.  Then he left the room.  Then he came back to the room, and said O.K., I’ll do the extraction.

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Many injections later

He gave me what felt like 5 injections, and he proceeded to work on the tooth.  Finally, he removed the tooth and I could feel his finger searching in my mouth for the tooth.  He found it, and out it came.

Easier than he thought

He remarked that the extraction was easier than he thought.  He thought the tooth would be in many pieces, but it was only in two pieces.

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Extra gauze

He gave me additional gauze which I ended up not using.  I took the gauze he put into my mouth out, I spit it out, about 3 1/2 hours later.  He also mentioned using ice for the pain.  I am notorious for not having much pain, and I never needed the ice.

Uneventful ride home

The ride home was uneventful.  It was difficult to talk with all the gauze in my mouth.  The van door and ramp worked without any problems.

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A Bridge and a Root Canal to go!

Try, try again.

It’s time for another trip to the dentist.  I tried to go to the dentist last month, but my mobility van ramp would not come out.  My new driver seemed to try everything.  She tried to pull out the ramp by hand to no avail.  She repeatedly opened and closed the van doors.

Telephone call to the mobility company

It was only after a telephone call to the mobility company was there information about the little yellow switch on the floor of the van that can release the ramp mechanism.  They should tell people about this before selling the van to someone.  Please see my blog post on the issue.

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I tried to go to the dentist again

Anyway, I was once again ready to attempt a trip to my dentist.  It was time for the usual routine.  I had a diaper change.  I am a paraplegic from my Multiple Sclerosis.  I was clothed in my hospital bed at home.  I was patient lifted into my power wheelchair designed to fit in the van.  This is a different power wheelchair than I use around the house.

Garage to driveway

I make my way down the specially designed garage ramp which gets me out of the house and into the garage.  From the garage, I can open the garage door and go out the garage to the driveway and into the mobility van.  I went to the van and pressed the van button on the remote controlled van key and nothing.

The grinding noise

I heard a slight grinding noise which means something was happening but not even the van door would open, let alone the van ramp which is supposed to come out after the side door opens.  I had my new driver close the driver’s door ad then open and close the van’s side door.

The charmed life

This worked like a charm.  The side door then opened automatically when I pressed the van button on the remote (actually I had to press the button twice, but this is normal).

Up the ramp

I could then go up the ramp.  This took me two tries.  I haven’t had to do this in a while, and I went too far to the right.  I need to bear to the left to avoid falling off the ramp.  It worked the second time.

In the van

I was in the van.  When I get into the mobility van, I lock into the (EZ) easy lock system, which really isn’t so easy, but it locks me and the power wheelchair into the van.

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Solar powered

I have a solar charger which I disconnect for the duration of my trip to and from the dentist.  See my products page.  It keeps my van charged even though it is not used that often.  Also, twice a week, we have been starting the van and letting it run for half an hour to keep the battery charged.

We have arrived

My new driver and I finally arrive at the dentist office.  The van door and ramp work.  Getting out of the van is easier than getting into the van.  Somehow, going down the ramp and out is easier than going up and into the van.

Talk about the blog

Meanwhile I wait in the waiting room and tell one of the employees at the dentist office about my blog.  Thereafter, I go to the dentist office.  This dentist is very good, because he is willing to work on my teeth while I sit in the power wheelchair.

No transfer

No transfer is needed.  The power wheelchair does not recline, at least it will not recline without removing multiple screws.  It is meant to stay secure in the van.  The idea is that you don’t want movement in case of an accident in the van.

First root canal since Gilenya

I talk to the dentist and discover that he will put in the permanent bridge on the left side of my mouth (lower side), and he plans on doing a root canal on my right side of my mouth (lower side).  This will be the first root canal I’ve had since I started taking Gilenya for Multiple Sclerosis in 2007.  I was part of the clinical study.

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The factory

In this dentist office, they do root canals as a matter of routine.  They work on multiple patients at the same time and have multiple dental offices at this location.  Some might consider it a factory. But this system seems to work well in today’s world of dental plans and insurance.

Grind the bridge

He put on the bridge, it has been so long that my teeth moved a little, and he had to grind the bridge some so it would fit.

Permanent bridge

He gets the bridge to fit and in my mouth it goes with the permanent adhesive.

One root canal to go

Now, it is time for the root canal.   He gives me a couple of injections.  We wait for the area to numb. He performs the root canal.

No pain

After the root canal, he tells me that it was infected. Anyway, now it is all cleaned out.  He tells me that it may not be so good that I had hardly have any pain, because then I don’t know how bad the infection was.  I have to admit that I thought something funky was going on in that area, but I thought it was the cracked tooth I have there.  However, I really had no pain.

Next time

I made an appointment for three weeks, and then we’ll see about extracting the cracked tooth.

Homeward bound

The return home was uneventful and the van door and ramp worked well.

Mother-in-law

I have to apologize for neglecting the website recently.  My mother-in-law recently passed away.  She was 95 years old, and we regretfully have had to deal with various related issues.  I would like to get back into the full swing of things, but this may take a little while.  Anyway, I feel better that I was able to do this blog post.

Comments

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Flip the Chair

I can do it and so can you.

Since I’m disabled, a paraplegic, and I have Multiple Sclerosis, I cannot do many DIY projects.  One that I was able to do may surprise you.

Round cushion

Our kitchen chair has a round cushion that has come loose.  All the screws holding the cushion to the chair had come out.

The screws are gone.

There were no loose screws, they were all missing screws.  I could lift up the cushion and see that there were no screws.  Frankly, the cushion is not heavy and it was easy to sit in my power wheelchair and just lift the cushion up and see that there were no screws.

In the kitchen

I am now working with my OT (Occupational Therapist) in the kitchen.  This provides a nice table and chairs to work with for the OT.  I don’t obviously sit on the kitchen chair.  I stay in the power wheelchair and reach for things that the OT puts on the table and chairs.  She put some things on the chair without screws and sure enough they fell on the floor.

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Get the screws.

Unfortunately, I don’t have any screws and I had to order them from Amazon.  I only needed three screws for the chair.  However, as is usual for Amazon, I ordered 195 wood screws.  Amazon likes to ship things in bulk.  This certainly gave me a choice of a variety of screws.  It also gave me a lifetime supply of screws, if I don’t lose them first.

It is metal.

The kitchen chair has a metal frame. It is much heavier than the cushion.  I do not recommend this unless you have good balance in your seat.  My wheelchair is a 17 inch wheelchair, which means it is small and hugs me on the sides.  I am also seated well in the back of the chair and will not fall.  Also, see my blog on the fall I took when I was not seated well.

Flip it.

Well, I lifted the chair up and flipped it over onto the bench.  The bench is in the back of the kitchen and it is built into the kitchen.  I held the chair with my left hand and screwed with my right hand.  I am right handed.

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The third one is the charm.

The first two screws went into the wood in the cushion without any real problem.  However, the third screw would not go in.  I decided to select a smaller, by that I mean a thinner screw.  This took and after a few turns was going into the wood.  Most any Philips screwdriver will work.  Even a short stubby screwdriver will work.  I finally got all the screws in place and tightened them.

Down is easier.

I was ready to take the kitchen chair off the bench.  For me, taking things down is easier than lifting things up. This is a good thing because I was starting to get tired from the lifting and tightening the screws.  At this point, I could just slide the kitchen chair off the bench, bring it down to the floor and turn it over while it was on the floor.

The OT is in shock!

At his point I positioned the chair at the table and the job was finished.  When I told my OT what I had done she was in shock!  She went to the chair and turned it over in disbelief at what I had done.  As I say, difficult things take time, the impossible takes a little longer.

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Conclusion

Fixing a chair by yourself may seem challenging but it is definitely doable and rewarding when done.  Make sure you select the correct size screws.  You don’t want any unnecessary holes in your chair.

Comments

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My Fall From Grace, and How I Got Up

This weekend I was patient lifted into my around the house power wheelchair. The sling from the patient lift remained under me. I sit on the sling.  It is like a grownup swing in a playground.

My Favorite Power Wheelchair

The power chair by Golden Technologies is my favorite power wheelchair.  It maneuvers well, it is easy to steer, and it easily makes it though all the doorway passages in my house.  It does not have a seat belt.  However, in the past, I have never fallen out of the seat until this weekend.

Eat Lunch

I finished eating lunch in the kitchen. All was well at that time or so I thought.

Front of the Cushion

After years of wear, the seat on the wheelchair lost its front cushion.  I had used the power wheelchair in this condition about ten times without incident.

Seat Me Right

Apparently, unless I am seated just right, with my back against the back of the chair, I will start to slide off the chair.  The leather like or vinyl covering on the cushion is grippy.  However the plastic underneath is smooth.  This allows for the seated person to side off the chair.  This is apparently what happened to me.

Set up the new Dustbuster

I had set up a new Dustbuster like vacuum in the kitchen and I returned to my bedroom.

Adjust Lift Chair

I adjusted my lift chair so that it was not so far forward, but I was not in the lift chair.

I Start to Slide.

I could feel myself slowly starting to slide off the power wheelchair.  I called for help as soon as I could, but it was too late.  My aid tried to patient lift me out of the chair.  As the patient lift went up, I slid further out of the sling and out of the power wheelchair.

The slow fall

It was a slow fall and I did not break any bones, however my leg hurt a lot.  I was on the floor.  People with Multiple Sclerosis sometimes suffer from extreme spasticity, and bend the knee can really hurt.  I had my aid straighten out my leg and leaving it straight on the floor relieved the pain.

Go figure?

But now I had to figure out how to get up and get into bed.  This is what I came up with.  Rather than call the police, the police in my neighborhood are really nice, I had my aide remove the patient lift to the other side of the room.  This cleared my legs.

Rock and roll on the floor

I was on the floor and the sling could be detached from the patient lift.  I turned from side to side so that the sling could be placed under me.  After the sling was properly positioned under me, I rolled myself face up.

Bring it all back

I had my aide bring back the patient lift.  The patient lift can not go to the floor, but it doesn’t have to.  It has chains and the two long chains make it to the floor.  The long chains are attached with hooks about at my knees.  I have a baclofin pump.  Baclofin is a muscle relaxer, which means I have virtually no trunk support. I am a paraplegic, but my arms still function.

Grab the chains

I grabbed the chains attached to the sling by my knees and pulled myself up to a sitting position.  Since I was in a sitting position, sitting upright, the shorter chains for the sling no longer needed to reach the floor.  The sling could be picked up off the floor, and the short chains could be attached to the sling behind my back.

Start and stop

My aide could begin to lift my up with the patient lift but then had to stop.  My legs were under the patient lift, and the patient lift had to be moved back so that my legs were clear of the patient lift.  This had to be done slowly.

Make sure my legs are clear of the patient lift.

It also had to be done a couple of times to make sure that my legs were fully clear of the patient lift. Once my legs were no longer under the patient lift, and were fully clear of the patient lift, I was lifted up with the patient lift and placed in bed.

Good things come slowly

This took some time, but it got me back into bed.  All was well.

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Emerson SmartSet Alarm Clock Radio, USB port for iPhone/iPad/iPod/Android and Tablets, CKS1708

Out with the old.

We had a Sony clock radio, but as time went on, it became increasingly finicky to set the clock.  It was also difficult to set the alarm.  It was useable, but it was a real nuisance to set, especially for Daylight Saving time.  Eventually, we were so frustrated that we decided it was time to buy a new clock radio.  We really did not want to set the time on the clock every time for daylight saving time.  If only there were an alarm clock radio that could set the time all by itself, and not cost a small fortune.

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Enter the Emerson SmartSet Clock Radio.

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The Emerson Clock Radio is smart enough to set the time for you.  Never again have to worry that your clock is 3 hours wrong.  Never again miss appointments and meetings because your clock indicated the wrong time.  The clock receives a signal telling it the right time.  Of course, if the clock is prevented from getting the signal, it does not know what time it is, but how often are you in an air raid shelter 100 feet below ground?

SmartSet technology

Under most normal circumstances, the clock has no trouble setting the time by itself.  The SmartSet technology on the first use sets the correct year, month, day, time, and date.  According to Amazon, we ordered the Emerson on March 12, 2018, and it has been working great to this day.

Month/Date display

Touch a button and the clock displays the correct month and date. The Month/Date button will give you the month and date numerically.  For example, May 20 will appear as “5.20”.

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Grab Big Blue

The clock features a large easy to read 1.4 inch time Blue LED display.  When you are old and sick like I am with Multiple Sclerosis, the big display is welcome.   Also, it is easy to grab and hold from the bed as the back is cut out and provides an easy grasp.

The everyday, weekend or weekday alarm

The alarm clock can be set to wake you everyday, Monday through Friday, and on Saturdays and Sundays.

Two Alarm settings

It has two alarm settings, so you can set it to wake you one time on weekdays, and another time on weekends.

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Radio or buzzer

It can be set to wake you to FM radio or a buzzer.

What about Leap Year?

It automatically sets itself for Leap Year and Daylight Saving Time.  It keeps the correct time when the power returns in power outages.

Does it wake you with a sudden jolt?

The alarm buzzer grows in loudness so you don’t get a sudden jolt waking you up.  Of course, it has a snooze button.

What if the power goes out?

There is a button cell battery (included) which maintains the time and alarm settings, so if you do go into an air raid shelter 100 feet below the ground, it will work – it just needs to get the signal the first time it is turned on.

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Is it bright enough?

It has two brightness settings. You can easily read the large LED display from across the room.

Can it play music from my iPhone?

It has an Aux In port so you can connect a music source such as an iPhone to the clock.

But can it charge your phone?

It has a USB charging port so you can use the clock to charge your iPad/iPhone/Android and other tablets.  I don’t know about you, but at our house, we are always losing those little chargers.  We have found it much harder to lose a clock.

It has Dual Alarms.

To change the alarm modes you depress the Alarm 1 or 2 button, and the Week Button at the same time to set the alarm for everyday, weekends only or weekdays only.

How’s it sound?

The sound quality is very good for an inexpensive Clock Radio.

Recommendation

I highly recommend this Clock Radio for anyone who wants to be on time.

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Apple Macbook Pro (13 inch Retina, Touch Bar, 2.3 GHz Quad-Core i5, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD – Silver

The Apple MacBook Pro.

This is a review of my son’s newest Apple MacBook Pro.  His previous Apple Macbook A1278 got him through high school and the first semester of college.  However, the touchpad locked up, and I tried to unlock it.  I needed a t7 tool to unlock it, but even with the t7, I was not able to unlock it.  The screw was starting to strip and I gave up before it was too bad.  I had my son buy a mouse, and the Macbook worked fine with the mouse.  However, the need for a mouse made for an unsatisfactory experience.  The Apple store refused to touch the 7 year old Mac, and would not repair it.

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New Mac time

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It was time to get a new MacBook.  We looked around on the internet, but more importantly he needed it fast for school.  We needed to know what was in stock at the local Apple store.

Quad Core i5

My son went to the local Apple store and found the dual core i5.  I asked him over the phone whether the store had the quad core i5.  They did but at a higher price.  Still, a quad core (in my opinion) beats a dual core any day, so we went with the quad core.

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More software, please

Typically the Apple store tries to sell you on additional software.  If you need it, so be it,  But you can often get a better deal if you install your own software.

Retina display

This MacBook has a Retina display with True Tone technology.  This is very nice, but in our house, the Mac is often used by multiple users, making the technology more of a nuisance than an advantage.  We just don’t use the Retina technology.

Touch ID

It also has a Touch Bar with Touch ID.  This is also something that we don’t use.  It is pointless to try to use this when you have peanut butter on your finger or a bandaid on your finger.

Graphics

It has Intel Iris Plus Graphics 655, which means the display is beautiful.  We are not video gamers, but I suspect most simple games will play well.  As a home theatre card, the 655 will work well.  You tube videos look great.

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SSD

It has an Ultrafast SSD.  I don’t know how fast, but it boots up in seconds not minutes like the old Mac.  Having an SSD, and only an SSD (not combined with a hard drive) makes this Mac super fast.  Instead of a standard hard drive with a motor and platers to read data off, an SSD is like a giant (it’s actually rather small) flash drive.  Just like there is no motor in a flash drive to break down, there is no motor in a SSD.  You don’t have to wait for the platter to start spinning, because there is no platter, and no motor.  This also means less noise.

Thunderbolt 3

It has 4 Thunderbolt 3 USB-C ports.  These are super fast connections to your computer.  USB 3.1, which is very fast at 10 Gbps, is bested by Thunderbolt 3 at 40 GBPs.  That means it is four times faster than USB 3.1.

Where is the USB?

However, I was expecting Apple to include Thunderbolt 3 to USB 3.1 so that files and data could be transferred via a flash drive.  No such luck.  If you want to transfer files using a USB flash drive from your old Mac to your new Mac, you better buy adapters for it, because Apple does not include the necessary adapters.

Battery life

It has up to 10 hours of battery life.  This depends on what you are doing with your Mac, but it is enough for the typical school day.  This assumes that your typical school day is not crunching video in a video production course and not photo editing, and not writing code for advanced video games.

Wi-Fi anyone?

It has 802.11 ac Wi-Fi.  Ac is the latest greatest and fastest Wi-Fi.   However, it is not any greater in range.  Meaning you cannot go further from the Wi-Fi source.  It is 3 to 5 times faster than n, which was way faster than g.

Big touchpad

It has Force Touch Tracpad.  This means it has a larger, easier to use touchpad.  This is really convenient on a 13 inch laptop.

What operating system does it have?

It has macOS Mojave (the new Mac operating system) with Dark Mode and easier screenshots.  Mojave seems to be working fine and I am having no problems with it.

Where is the power button?

Apparently, the Touch ID button doubles as the power on/off button.

Recommendation

I strongly recommend this Mac to everyone.  The quad core Intel chip works fast, the SSD is ultrafast, and the 8 GB of RAM is enough to move this laptop from the mondane to real excitement.

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