Clothes and Skin Cancer

A few years back, I wrote about clothes that were great for travel, since they don’t wrinkle.  I still like these nylon clothes, but now I wear them at night.  A few months ago, I was diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma.  Sounds very scary, but after a few minor office procedures, the cancer is completely gone.

There were many shocking things to me.  First of all, the small bump behind my knee was about the size of a skin tag and perfectly round and not dark.  In fact, it was white and red.  I thought it was a bug bite.  However, I decided to have a whole body check from a dermatologist because the thing was solid and didn’t go away.

The second shocking thing about this is that it was located on my leg and I haven’t worn shorts for decades.  However, I was wearing regular clothing.  Since this incident, I have invested in sport clothes with a SPF (Sun Protection Factor) of at least 30.  When I can find the 50 rating, I am elated.

The third shocking thing about this experience is that it laid me up for six weeks!  Because the location was at a point on my skin that gets a lot of pulling and stretching, I was told not to exercise and even walking was verboten!

The forth shocking thing is the size of the incision.  Lets do the math.  The diameter of the bump was .125 inches.  The resulting scar was 3.0 inches.  So, .125 (x) = 3.0, then x = 24.  The width of the scar was 24 times the width of the original bump.  Give that word problem to your teenager.

The final shock was that recent news has reported younger and darker skinned people are getting skin cancer;  and, they were using sun block lotions.  I have never been a fan of these products, but I am starting to use them on exposed areas.  The sun protection factor clothing doesn’t require you to slather on buckets of chemicals every two hours.  Where it is possible to cover up, I cover up.  Where it is not possible, I apply the best chemical I can find.

I believe that life has a purpose.  The things we experience are meant to teach us a lesson.  Furthermore, we must pass our knowledge on.  So, have fun, but stay safe and encourage others to do the same.


Free Garden Fun

IMG_2343Find this whimsical garden decoration just north of the Orlando airport in the explorations gardens behind the University of Florida Orange County Extension service office on Conway Road.  The parking is free.

Take a free self guided and very educational tour of the shade, formal, pollinator, trial, bog, flowering tree, fruit tree, succulent, tropical, and small vegetable gardens.  The best time to visit is during the week and on a sunny day.  Plan to spend about an hour.  It’s a nice place to visit when you are looking for inexpensive but worthwhile activities while you are waiting to check into your hotel.   When you need to enjoy some air conditioning a bit of shopping and a light meal, it is a short drive to the Florida Mall, the mall at Millenia, or Disney Springs (formally Downtown Disney.)

Flameless Battery Candles

Flameless Candles, USB Shelf

Flameless Battery Candles on a USB Shelf


Living in Florida, I have a more stylish and automatic solution for dark hallways and occasional power outages.  I have many flameless, also called battery operated, candles in strategic locations around my home, including on top of bathroom wall cabinets.  My family like them and my guests love them.

The picture that I have posted is on a shelf that has two lights that can be charged by a USB connection.  I found this shelf on sale at Lowes Home Improvement Store.  It is installed over a doorway that leads into a windowless hallway.  On top of the shelf, I have several battery operated candles with timers.  Each timer will turn on automatically and provide a small amount of light for five hours before it will automatically switch off.  I have the hallway candles on a staggered schedule, so that there will be some light regardless of the time of day or night.  If you live in a home with a stairway, I would suggest installing several small accent shelves every few steps and place some flameless candles on each one.  It will be beautiful and practical. It will make a great house warming gift!

I prefer the candles that have the five hour timers and use double A size batteries.  The triple A ones will not perform as well, and without a timer it will be too much of a problem to remember to turn them on nightly and off every morning.

You can find these type of timer candles at big box stores, such as WalMarts.  Jo-Ann Fabric and Crafts also sells them, and in various colors, sizes and scents.  Bed Bath and Beyond carry taper candles for your dining table that have five hour times too.  Romantic and safe.

Dave and Busters Side Salad

Dave and Busters Meatless Side Salad

Sweet Apple Pecan Side Salad

The picture looks like it’s a french fry salad, but it’s really an apple and candied pecan salad with just the right amount of crumbled blue cheese and a raspberry vinaigrette.  I ordered this as a meatless side salad.  I was glad that I did.  It’s delicious.  I will return to Dave and Busters to order this again and again.

SunRail Shines!


Inside SunRail TrainThe long awaited SunRail train traveled from Orlando to DeBary today and carried more than passengers.  It carried the Orlando area into the league of major cities.

With WiFi enabled train cars and outlets to charge your mobile devices, SunRail is a sign of the times.  SunRail will not stand still.  Next month. an application for your mobile device will enable you to determine where the train is in real time; this will allow you to plan your travel time more effectively.

Although the technology is futuristic, the old fashioned kindness and friendliness of the people in the increasingly crowded cars was appreciated when a Fox News reporter offered his seat to me.  Shine on!