Diabetes Blog Week 2012 – Day 2

Welcome back to Day 2 of Diabetes Blog Week 2012!

The topic for today is “One Great Thing:”

One Great Thing – Tuesday 5/15: Living with diabetes (or caring for someone who lives with it) sure does take a lot of work, and it’s easy to be hard on ourselves if we aren’t “perfect”.  But today it’s time to give ourselves some much deserved credit.  Tell us about just one diabetes thing you (or your loved one) does spectacularly!  Fasting blood sugar checks, oral meds sorted and ready, something always on hand to treat a low, or anything that you do for diabetes.  Nothing is too big or too small to celebrate doing well!

One thing that I do really well is to keep snacks on my nightstand. This is a really simple concept, but one that I didn’t adopt until I started using a Dexcom continuous glucose monitor (CGM) a little less than a year ago. Why the change?

Well, usually, before using a CGM, I would wake up in the middle of the night from being low when I hit 45 or 50. Then I’d stumble downstairs and eat practically everything in the pantry before heading back up and getting in bed. 

With the Dexcom, I have my low alert set to 70, which means that it starts vibrating and/or beeping if my bloodsugar reaches or goes below 70. This is a good thing because I’ll know before I fall too low that my bloodsugar is heading down. And, overnight, the Dexcom will wake me up before I get too low.

Since I’m only about 70 when it starts buzzing, I don’t have to eat the entire pantry to raise my bloodsugar to a decent level. Instead, I’ll eat the recommended 15g of carbohydrates and wait until my bloodsugar goes back up before indulging further. With snacks at my bedside, I have those 15g of carbs within reach (usually a small box of juice or sometimes a granola bar) so I can eat or drink up and go right back to sleep, knowing that good ol’ Dex will wake me again if my bloodsugar decides that 15g of carb just isn’t enough.

And there’s an added bonus! Since I’m not gorging myself on everything in sight, I don’t usually experience the rebound high anymore. It’s such a simple concept, yet it’s relatively new to me, and I’m glad I’ve adopted it!


Diabetes Blog Week 2012 – Day 1

Howdy y’all!

Can you believe it’s been a whole year since I was posting about Diabetes Blog Week 2011?! I sure can’t! Well, believe it or not, it’s time for Diabetes Blog Week 2012!

Karen has a whole list of topics I’ll be discussing over the next week, and we’re kicking it off with today’s topic, “Find A Friend:”

Find A Friend – Monday 5/14: It seems the most popular thing about Diabetes Blog Week is that it helps us find blogs we weren’t reading yet and connect with some new blog friends.  With that in mind, let’s kick off Diabetes Blog Week by making some new connections.  Think about the d-blogs you read that you think we may not know about and introduce us to one that you love!!  Let’s all find a new friend today!

There are two bloggers that I would like to introduce to you today: Faye Bernoulli and Mike Lawson.

Faye Bernoulli is a fabulous wedding and portrait photographer currently based in Philadeplphia, PA (but soon moving to Northern California!). She introduced herself to me after finding my blog when she was looking for other photographers with diabetes. We’ve chatted online and via Facebook, and she helped me get used to keeping the Dexcom receiver on my person, but I can’t get over her gorgeous photography! Head over to her website or blog to check it out!

Mike Lawson uses his blog, What Some Would Call Lies, to tell hilarious stories that may or may not be true. I found him through last year’s Diabetes Blog Week and have been following him since then. He records and posts weekly podcasts that I highly recommend (especially this one!) and his Mirror Mantras are sometimes funny, sometimes inspirational, and usually true. He recently launched an online community for diabetic teens called 1 Sweet Life and is an all-around awesome guy! Definitely check him out!

Happy Monday!


A Photo Walk in Carlsbad

As I’ve mentioned in other posts, I love getting out with fellow photographers to capture some images of our gorgeous surroundings! Last weekend, I organized an outing with the Pacific Photographic Society in the Carlsbad Village area. We met up at a Starbucks, then walked a few miles, stopping to snap some photos along the way. Here are some of the shots I captured!

Of course we headed to the beach to capture the sunset! :)

The rain cleared just in time for our walk and we all had a great time! Thank you to those who joined me! :)


Seeing Oceanside in a New Way

I set up a shoot with the Pacific Photographic Society to photograph the sunset at the Oceanside Pier a while back. It was originally scheduled for a few weeks ago, but we had to cancel last-minute because of poor weather. We rescheduled it for this weekend, and had a wonderful sunset that produced gorgeous photos!

I had just (that day!) picked up a Lensbaby Composer, so I decided it was a great time to test it out! I first shot the group photo with a wide angle lens, but then kept the Lensbaby on for the remainder of the evening. It was pretty fun! It will definitely take a little getting used to, but I was really happy with the results on my first try! What do you think?

The following shots were all taken using the f/11 aperture ring, but I varied the white balance settings and shutter speed to get some different effects. The first one was shot at 1/80s, the second at 1/20s, and the last one at 1.6s. Now I gotta get a neutral density filter to allow an even longer shutter speed! :)

I think the last one was my favorite!


Hope on My Hands

There’s this thing happening on Facebook today called “Write HOPE on your hands for diabetes” in honor of March 1 being “Hope for a cure for Diabetes” day. The concept is simple:

Write HOPE on your hands, and show your support for someone you love with diabetes, then post the photos here and tell us WHO you’re writing Hope on your hands for.

Though my mom was promised a cure within ten years when I was diagnosed (in–*cough cough*–1988!), I learned on Saturday that a cure is really far away. Clay and I went to JDRF San Diego’s Family Day at the La Jolla Institute of Allergy and Immunology. It was really cool because we got to listen to a research update from Dr. Matthias von Herrath, M.D., who is currently working on JDRF-funded research to cure diabetes. Pretty rad! Anyway, though we’d all LOVE to have a cure right around the corner, he highlighted what’s going on now with research and why it’s so hard to find a dang cure. Basically, pancreases are fickle creatures with many jobs, and don’t care to be poked and prodded in the name of research. (I know, RUDE!)

So what does that have to do with today, “Hope for a cure for Diabetes” day?

Well, a lot. Just because there’s not a cure right around the corner, doesn’t mean there will never be a cure. True, I may not see a cure in my lifetime. But, what if we–you and me and everyone on the earth right now–were so successful in our quest for the cure that the next generation never saw Type 1 Diabetes, and it floated into the history books to stay? Now that would be awesome.

In the meantime, I’ll keep checking my bloodsugar, planning my meals, wearing my continuous glucose monitor, bolusing early, and exercising to stave off all the effects of poor diabetes management. But that never means I’ll loose